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Guest series: Disney Delights #4 – Why I am showing my son Disney princess films

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If you wear a dress and you have an animal sidekick, you’re a princess.
— Maui, Moana

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Moana is pretty much my 1-year-old son’s favourite movie. He chuckles every time baby Moana helps the turtle to the water, exclaims in delight when the water does something cool, and makes this weird exclamation-crossed-screeching sound when Maui “be’s awesome”. We even ordered him a plush Maui “magical fish hook” we found on Etsy. He was delighted. But, as Moana herself points out, she’s not a princess. It occurred to me, while watching this exact scene, that I hadn’t really shown my son any Disney princess films.

I started off with Aladdin (yes, there’s Princess Jasmine, but the movie isn’t about her), because I’d seen the musical twice during my pregnancy (I love Disney and I love musicals, so put the two together …), and thought he’d enjoy it (he bounced a lot in utero while I watched the live show). He did love it, and watched it over and over. Next, I introduced The Lion King, mainly because I had a think back to the movies that my younger brother and male cousins enjoyed as toddlers and young children. Simba was a favourite in all three households. J loved this one, too. But, during this first exploration into the wonderful world of Disney, not once did it occur to me to show him a proper princess film.

Guest series: Disney Delights #3 – Princess Parade (Hannah | The Alphabet of Love)

This month, we have a post from Hannah, over at the very unique blog, The Alphabet of Love. Hannah lives in England, with her 4 year old daughter, her partner, and his son. I’m delighted (get what I did, there?!) that Hannah has decided to share a bit about her Disney love in this series. Over to you, Hannah!

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As it says in the title of the series, Disney really is a delight. Sure, after what feels like 1000 replays of the same film or song back to back, it may not feel like such a delight. But isn’t it lovely that one animated film can be so effective, it is desired to be watched so many times?

My daughter, Bella, who is 5 years old, has grown to adore Disney films, toys and fancy dress – fancy dress being her favourite. I love it when she does her very own ‘Disney Parade’, changing into all her different princess outfits. When she puts an outfit on, she transforms into that character.

Scrapbook Sunday: Making a cardboard box town – Karen (The Mini Malpi)

Welcome to the second entry in the Scrapbook Sunday series (which collects fun activities for kids/families from parents who’ve tried them with their kids, for others to explore). Today, Karen shares how to make your own cardboard box town!

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Have you heard of Biggleton? The new ‘preschool live action series featuring a cast of five to seven year olds pretending to be grown-ups in an imaginary town’ first aired on CBeebies on 27 November 2017.

It turned out to be really well timed for us in The Mini Malpi household, as my eldest was off sick from school. A lot of screen time was had that day as he lay on the sofa feeling sorry for himself, the numerous trailers for Biggleton adding some much-needed excitement to his day.

‘Twas the night before … my son’s first Christmas!

I was so excited leading up to Christmas this year. My son was born in February, so this was his first Christmas. In my family, we celebrate on Christmas Eve with a turkey dinner that my mum cooks, followed by various activities (depending on who is in attendance that year), until it’s finally present time at midnight.

Present time was always earlier when young kids were there – there’d been three child eras that I’d been a part of, mine and my brothers’s, my younger cousins’, and my cousin’s children’s. Due to a falling out, the latter era didn’t last very long; as such, it’s been quite a while since we had any kids in the house on Christmas. My little man is the first grandchild on both sides, and the first baby in my family in ten years or so. It was bound to be special, and he got spoiled with lots of toys and clothes.

As this would be the first time we didn’t spend Christmas together, J’s daddy and I gave him his own little Christmas on the 23rd. He absolutely loved his baby tricycle, and has ridden it many times every day since.

10 things that make my baby laugh

There’s nothing so heartwarming as seeing your baby delight in the littlest (and, often, silliest!) of things. Their commitment to laughing at these things – not to mention the true amazement in their faces as, little by little, they begin to comprehend the world around them – is enough to lift anyone up when they’re down in the dumps. Here are ten things that make my baby laugh!

1. ‘Hello, poopy!’!

After I have changed his nappy, I leave J in the playpen in his room, so I can go and dispose of said nappy and wash my hands. When I return, I hover outside the door until he notices me and looks up cheekily from whatever mischief he’s attempting. ‘Hello, poopy!’, I say to my little poop machine. And he giggles (he knows he’s the “poopy”).

Guest series: Disney Delights #2 – A Disney monorail ride down Memory (E. L.) Lane (E. L. Lane Writer)

This week, we hear from E. L. Lane, sharing various memories of Disney World, and what they mean to her and her family. I loved her post when I first read it, and am grateful that she decided to share these special moments on my blog.

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Hi all! I’m E. L. Lane, and I was born and raised in Miami, Florida. Only a four-hour drive from Orlando, Florida, it is home to the most magical place on earth: Walt Disney World.

I went to Walt Disney World countless times as a kid, and created many childhood memories in these parks that will last me a lifetime. Come along with me on a short monorail ride down memory lane.

‘Please stand clear of the doors. Por favor manténganse alejado de las puertas.

Next stop: E. L. Lane’s childhood memories of Walt Disney World

Guest series: Disney Delights #1 – A diamond in the rough

Know this. Only one may enter here. One whose worth lies far within. A diamond in the rough.
— Cave of Wonders, Aladdin

Like so many things, it is not what is outside, but what is inside that counts.
Merchant, Aladdin

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I love many of the Disney films. I’m yet to declare an absolute favourite, but Aladdin is definitely a contender. It has an interesting story, fun characters, great songs, doesn’t revolve around a princess (despite Jasmine being one of “the” Disney princesses), has an amazing colour scheme and score, and features Robin Williams (may he rest in peace). I love that Aladdin’s journey from rags to riches is underpinned by the lessons he learns about being true to oneself, and being honest with others. It’s a great lesson to learn, and a great one to share with my son. When he’s old enough, hopefully he will read further into the film’s dialogue than ‘Right here, direct from the lamp. Right here for your very much wish-fulfillment. Thank you.’.

Scrapbook Sunday: Sparkly firework playdough – Lisa (The Toy Hunter)

Welcome to the first entry in this new guest series, Scrapbook Sunday (which collects fun activities for kids/families from parents who’ve tried them with their kids, for others to explore). Today, Lisa shares her recipe for making sparkly firework playdough for Bonfire Night!

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Bonfire Night … Just writing the words conjures up images of crisp Autumn nights, sparkly fireworks, and family time. This year, Bonfire Night falls on Sunday, 5 November, and people across the UK will be having back garden firework parties, going to organised firework displays, or having bonfires and gathering together to mark this very British event. Kids will be learning about the origins of Bonfire Night at school and may also be coming home with homemade crafts that reflect the season.