A to Z Holiday Fun

(For those of you who followed my winter holiday posts and pics on FB, you might want to just skip to the recipe at the bottom!)

I am fortunate to be able to spend the holidays with my children, as I am a teacher. I really love the June/July holidays, because there are not numerous shopping trips to the mall for Easter eggs or Christmas presents like in April and December. I also love that they tend to sleep in a bit later, because it is so warm and cosy in bed! Although I let them watch some TV, I prefer to keep them busy with other activities (even though it sometimes means a bit of work for me!) This past holiday I came up with the idea of choosing a different letter of the alphabet each day and planned activities around that letter (I have two boys, so my holiday was very boy related – and there was lots of sport!) I didn’t get to every letter, so I have added a few letters and activities that we didn’t get to, for this post. Don’t feel that you have to wait until the holidays – some of these activities are easy enough to do after school or on the weekend. The whole point is to spend quality time with your children – make memories with them! These are the things they will remember in years to come.

Airport visit to watch planes take off, paper Aeroplane races, Aquariums
Basketball, Baking, Biscuits, Braais, Botanical gardens, Beaches, Bicycle rides
Cricket, Crumpets, Camping, Chalk, Construction (supervised of course!)
Drawing, Doughnuts, Donating unwanted items, Dressing up
Easter egg hunts (if it’s that time of year)
Friends, Food, Family, making Forts out of blankets

G & T’s (for mom!)
Hockey, Hot chocolate, Hulu Hoops, Hide and seek
Ice-Cream, Ice-lollies
Jumping Castles, Jungle Gyms, Jelly, Juggling
Kite flying, Knitting
Library visits, Lego, Ludo, Laser Tag
Milkshakes, Muffins, Magazines, Museum, Movies, Making Music
Nature walks
Obstacle courses
Painting, Puzzles, Putt-Putt, Pizza, Picnics, Pancakes
Quiz games, the Quiet game
Rugby, making things out of Recycled materials, Road trips, Rummicub, Reading
Soccer, Scrabble, Spur, Slime, Snuggles, Snakes and ladders, Swings, Slides, Swimming
Treasure hunts, Tennis, Thrift shopping, Trains, Trampolines, Treehouse, Tea parties

Water balloons, Water gun fights, Waffles
X (hopefully no X-rays to check for broken bones!)
Yummy foods
Zoo trips and lots of zzzzzzzzzz’s at the end of the day

So on the first day back at school, after three weeks of activities, I asked my 7 year old son what he had drawn for news that day. (Two days before school started, we had been to a lovely lunch at a friend’s house, where the children had been given balls of dough and had rolled them out and chosen pizza toppings to put on. Our friend then baked the pizzas in a Weber on a pizza stone – delicious!) My son told me that he had drawn himself and his friends making pizzas, and he had drawn me drinking gin in the corner!

“Each day of our lives we make deposits into the memory banks of our children” – Charles R. Swindoll


Recipe for today
(This recipe is perfect for making with your children, or for lunch boxes or if someone is coming around for tea – or any time you have bananas that are going brown!)


For the muffins:

375ml cake flour
5ml cinnamon
5ml baking powder
5ml bicarb
pinch salt
3 ripe bananas, mashed
160ml sugar
1 egg
5ml vanilla essence
125ml sunflower oil

For the topping:

120ml brown sugar
45ml cake flour
45ml oats
45ml butter/Stork bake

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius and line a standard muffin pan with paper cupcake cases. Sieve the dry ingredients together in a bowl. Mix together the mashed bananas, sugar, egg, vanilla and oil (I use my Kenwood mixer, but you can just mix the ingredients together with a spoon). Stir in the dry ingredients until just combined. Spoon the mixture into the cupcake cases, filling them 3/4 full. For the topping, combine the sugar, flour and oats and rub in the butter. Sprinkle over the muffin mixture. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until a testing skewer/sharp knife comes out clean. Cool and enjoy! Makes 12-15 muffins.

Author: Mel Martin