Watermelon Cupcakes with Pineapple Frosting

20120730-145012.jpg

Watermelon Cupcakes

Watermelon Cupcakes

What you’ll need~

8 cupcake liners
8 cupcake shaped pieces of seedless watermelon, (see below)
2 cups pineapple cream cheese frosting
Sprinkles for garnish
How to make them~

Place the liners in an 8-cup cupcake tin. Cut 3-inch thick slices of seedless watermelon. Cut round cupcake sized pieces from the slices. Put a watermelon ‘cupcake’ in each liner. Place a dollop of frosting on each cupcake. Decorate as desired with sprinkles. Serves 8.

Spotted on Blisstree. Click here for link.

Pineapple Cream Cheese Frosting

Ingredients

1/2 cup butter, room temperature
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, room temperature
4 tablespoons pineapple juice
4 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar

Directions

Cream the butter and cream cheese together with an electric mixer in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Add the pineapple juice and continue beating until absorbed into the mixture. Beat the confectioners’ sugar into the mixture a little at a time until completely integrated.

Spotted on All Recipes. Click here for link.

Visit Go Au Pair at http://www.goaupair.com

Advertisements

Mermaid Wand

20120730-133203.jpg

Collect sand and shells for a magical craft that memorializes a trip to the beach.

Materials
corrugated cardboard
scissors
tacky glue
sand and shells
thin dowel

Instructions
Cut a starfish shape from corrugated cardboard (download our free template).
Coat the star with an even layer of tacky glue, then sprinkle it with a layer of sand. Adhere shells with more glue and let it dry.
Dab glue onto the end of a thin dowel (ours is about 1/8 inch wide) and insert it into a channel in the cardboard.

Tips:
Instead of bringing sand back home, you can make a mermaid wand right at the beach. Just bring the starfish shape to the shore, along with a bottle of glue and a dowel.

Spotted on Family Fun. Click here for link.
Visit Go Au Pair at http://www.goaupair.com.

Lounging at the Lagoon Tour

20120801-125427.jpg

8/4/2012 –
Jimmy Buffett and the Coral Reefer Band “Lounging at the Lagoon Tour” 2012
Atlantic City, the wait is over. Jimmy Buffett and the Coral Reefer Band will perform at Boardwalk Hall as part of Jimmy Buffett’s “LOUNGING AT THE LAGOON” Tour 2012. Local Parrotheads won’t want to miss their chance to soak in the full Margaritaville experience. Jimmy will have a new live CD/DVD this summer, which was recorded in Las Vegas last October. It will be released on Jimmy’s own Mailboat Records. And Jimmy’s first digital album release, Volcano – Live 2011, is now available for download through iTunes, and contains new live versions of the songs from this classic album. Additionally, the game, Margaritaville, is now available online – it’s an island virtual world filled with music, adventure and the Margaritaville lifestyle. Showtime is 8 p.m. Tickets are $228, $158, $98 and $68.

Atlantic City Boardwalk Hall is located at 2301 Boardwalk at the center of the world-famous Boardwalk. The venue is bounded by Pacific, Georgia and Mississippi Avenues. West Hall is bound by Florida, Pacific and Georgia Avenues.

Spotted on Boardwalk Hall. Click here for link.
Visit Go Au Pair at http://www.goaupair.com

Discovery Seashell Museum

20120801-103947.jpg

2721 Asbury Ave.
Ocean City, NJ 08226
(609) 398-2316

This neat Museum and shop is associated with an important member of the sea shell industry in Florida and has connections throughout the world. Members of the Strange Family, operators of the Museum, are all certified divers and have traveled around the world collecting seashells.

Visitors will see some of the rarest and finest seashell specimens such as the Glory of India cone. An unusual exhibit features freaks of nature, including the only Siamese Twin Helmet shell known to exist.

In the Shell Yard more than 10,000 varieties of seashells can be seen, as well as fifteen different types of coral, carved shells, and mysterious air plants that grow in shells without the need of soil.

Located on the Jersey Shore, the Museum is open during summer months — perfect timing for beach combers who want to get a better idea of what they’re looking for. Serious collectors will find that elusive Golden Cowry. The Shop offers shells and shell-craft items for sale to collectors at every level.

Tours are Self-Guided, though museum staff are on hand to answer all questions.

Spotted on Field Trip. Click here for link.
Visit Go Au Pair at http://www.goaupair.com

Poor Kitty

20120731-102313.jpg

To play purr-fectly, you can’t laugh.

This game is for 5 players or more.

To play, pick one person to be the “Kitty.”

That person has to go up to a player and act like a kitty, (meowing, purring, etc.).

The player then has to pat the kitty on the head 3 times and say, “Poor Kitty,” WITHOUT LAUGHING! Yes, you must keep a straight face.

If the player is successful at not laughing, the kitty must move on to a different person. But if not, the person who laughed becomes the kitty!

Spotted on PBS Kids. Click here for link.
Visit Go Au Pair at http://www.goaupair.com

Adriana, an Au Pair from South Africa with Go Au Pair

“I am a bubbly, fun-loving person and I will go out of my way to lift people”s spirits.”

Name: Adriana
Age: 17
Availability Date: ASAP
Nationality: South Africa
English Rank: 5

Program Type: Standard Au Pair
Type of Experience: Baby-sitting, Youth Group
Age Experience: 2-5 years old, 5 -10 years old, Over 10 years old
Driver’s License: No
Infant Qualified: No

Education: High School Graduate
Languages: English, Afrikaans
Hobbies: I enjoy listening to music, singing, and making people laugh.

How has Adriana been described by references?

Focused, courageous, and willing to burn the midnight oil to reach the goals as set, she communicates easily with her peers and seniors.

Why does Adriana want to be an Au Pair?

I want to be an Au Pair because of my love for children first and foremost. Another reason I”d like to be an Au Pair is to experience different cultures, lifestyles and routines.

Spotted on Go Au Pair. Click here for link.

Visit Go Au Pair at www.goaupair.com

Raising Money-Smart Kids: Allowance and Savings

20120801-070851.jpg

Find yourself digging out of a small mound of debt? Haven’t balanced your checkbook in months? A budget– what’s that? Just because we parents have hit a few bumps on the road to financial security doesn’t mean our kids are condemned to repeat our mistakes. With a little planning, we can teach our kids some money smarts…and maybe even learn a few new tricks ourselves.

Allowance Essentials

In order to learn how to use money, kids need to have some. Allowance remains the best teaching tool, says Jayne Pearl, author of Kids and Money (Bloomberg Press, 1999) and financial columnist for Oxygen.com.

At what age?

“It can be started quite young in a very modest way,” says Pearl, citing age six or seven as a common starting point.

Before receiving an allowance, kids should…

be able to count, add, and subtract
be familiar with the different coins and bills
show interest in money or spending
Should allowance be linked to chores?

No, says Pearl, along with other experts. Tying allowance to chores can lead to power struggles and take away the incentive for helping out the family with no reward. (“Sure, I’ll help bring in the groceries…if you give me a dollar.”) It also reinforces discrimination since women don’t get paid for doing chores. “Children (and fathers too) should have to contribute to household chores just because they are part of the family,” says Pearl. Instead of money, parents can tie chores to other consequences: “When my son doesn’t do his chores because he doesn’t feel like it, I might not feel like taking him to soccer practice,” says Pearl. However, kids can be paid for extra tasks that you might otherwise pay someone else to do, like washing the car.

How much?

Base it on family circumstances and what you expect kids to pay for. Make kids responsible for certain purchases, like school lunch, bus fare, sports fees and equipment. “Give the kids the money that you’re spending anyway and put them in charge of it,” says Pearl. “For instance, my son would get his hair cut every week if I let him, but it gets expensive. So I put into his allowance, which is based on a budget of what he’s supposed to pay for, a monthly amount for haircuts. If he wants another haircut during the month, then he has to use his own money. He has to make trade-offs, which is the whole point of allowance, to teach the kids how to tell themselves No, how to make trade-offs, and how to delay gratification instead of just saying Gimme!”

When should it be raised?

Though most parents automatically give a child a raise each year, Pearl says this isn’t absolutely necessary. A raise should be based on increased expenses a child has to cover. Allow your kids to negotiate their raise and have them document their spending to prove they need a raise. This is an important part of the learning process.

Teach the Value of Saving

“Pay yourself first!” say financial experts. Unfortunately, saving money is a skill that many adults haven’t mastered. Hollis Harman, author of Money Sense for Kids! (Barron’s, 1999), says start them young. “I think the concept missing in our culture is this default mentality of saving a portion of everything you receive. If that could be plugged into our kids before the age of ten, it would be like brushing your teeth-you have to do that too.”

For young kids, Harman recommends three glass jars: one is for spending now, one is for short-term savings, and one is for long-term savings. “It’s the jar that becomes their bank account that then becomes an investment account and starts to build their future and their net worth.” Allowance, gifts and earnings should always be divided among the three jars.

Teach kids the rewards of saving by giving them meaningful short-term goals, says Jayne Pearl. Five- or six-year-olds might save for a five-dollar toy that they can get in just two or three weeks, while ten-year-olds might save for a fifty-dollar item over several months. “Kids feel the power of delayed gratification,” says Pearl, “and it teaches them that they can set goals that are meaningful.”

Pearl uses the example of her son, who saved for a year and a half to buy an electric guitar. “When he got it home, he was so overwhelmed he was in tears,” she recalls. “There’s so much pride attached to this guitar. I would have robbed him of that experience had I just bought it for him.”

Teaching kids how to save carries rewards far beyond material objects. It shows kids the power of setting and achieving goals. “If you don’t believe that you are able to set goals that are meaningful and achieve them, you’re not going to be successful in life. You’re not even going to try,” says Jayne Pearl. “So this is a very important element of getting kids on a cycle of success.”

Spotted on Parenthood. Click here for link.
Visit Go Au Pair at http://www.goaupair.com