I know Madam is ill when she wants cuddles and just lies on me for hours without muttering an insult or asking a why. Now, i'm not saying that I want her to be ill, but once the sweaty fever stage is over and the cuddle stage kicks in, there is a pleasure to be had in sitting on the sofa watching the Wizard Of Oz again (Glinda is a man, I swear, look at her hands).Now madam is 3 (nearly 4, that's very important) and confident enough to take over Greece, it's all "No Mummy, I can do it!" and "Leave me alone, I want to do it!", which is of course, to be lauded and expacted. But a little sad too.
So, once the Calpol has kicked in and things have calmed down enough that i'm no longer worried and she's no longer delirious, we can enjoy a pajama day on the sofa, watching Dorothy be far too big for that frock, really, and the Munchkins smoke enormous cigars. I'm sure they'd not get away with that now. We're too tired for anything else, since the wee hours were spent mopping brows and administering Calpol. Once son has been shifted, grudgingly, to school, wishing he were ill, we can flop out and collapse. And later on, when she's actually allowed me to prise the lumps from her nose and wipe her face ( a bit), we can bake biscuists (ginger for the cold, naturally), and try out a recipe for homemade knock off moonsand.
First, the worlds easiest ginger biscuit recipe. This recipe makes a LOT of biscuits, about 40 by my sizing, but this is the right amount for this house, wherein they don;t survive long. They are fatter versions of shop biscuits, cracked and crunchy. If you like yours chewy in the middle, swap the golden syrup for black treacle and cook for less time. This recipe is also ultimately child friendly, there's a fair bit for them to do. they can crack and whisk eggs and do the stirring and ball rolling.
You will need (in the dry bowl, sifted)
350g Self-Raising Flour
1 teaspoon bicarb
1 tablespoon ginger
1/2 teaspoon mixed spice
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon.
You will need, in the wet bowl, melted,
85g golden syrup
Melt the wet ingredients. Add a beaten egg. Add to the dry bowl, mix until you get a very stiff plaibale dough. Roll into walnut sized balls.
Bake at Gas mark 3 for 15-20 minutes. Allow to cool, eat by the handful, saying they are good for a cold.
And now onto mess making toys.Moonsand, as all parents who have thus far managed to avoid playdough know, is even more epxnsive than playdough and probably much more annoying to clean up. However, all messy toys are good toys, and what better to cheer up an ailing child than giving them things they can be messy with on purpose. This recipe is simple enough, and cheap enough to give the makers of Moonsand cause for concern. The texture is exactly the same, silky "sand" that sticks together and makes nifty castles. Madam spent a happy hour burying her Polly Pockets alive.
Take 8 parts flour to one part baby oil. Mix. That's it! The only bugbear is that you can't add food colouring as it is water, not oil based, and will turn the flour into glop. So a nice scented oil, like baby oil is the way to go, or a bright yellow oil, like rapeseed, will give you a pastel yellow shade. How easy is that?