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DIY Peter Rabbit Birthday Cake Hack

DIY Peter Rabbit Birthday Cake Hack

*This post contains affiliate links. So after the response I had last month when I shared my transformation of this Tesco Unicorn birthday cake into a DIY Dinosaur cake I decided to try and share a different cake back each month throughout 2020. With William […]

William is One!

William is One!

And just like that my squishy little sunshine boy has turned one! Little boy, I feel like you have taught me so much over this last year. You are genuinely the funniest, cheekiest little person I have ever met. You light up a room and steal […]

Strawberry & Raspberry Scented Play dough Recipe

Strawberry & Raspberry Scented Play dough Recipe

*This  Strawberry & Raspberry Play Dough Recipe contains affiliate links.

With the winter weather meaning we have a few more home days just recently I’ve been reaching for some easy indoor activities to keep the littles occupied. Our tub of homemade play dough has been out more times than I can count over the last month or so as with so many ways to play it’s a sure fire way to entertain Florence and lately even William is getting in on the play dough action.

As Valentines Day is coming up I’ve been planning a few Valentines theme play ideas and in preparation I’ve made this super sweet scented play dough. I’ve used a slightly different recipe this time to make sure the smell of the strawberry and raspberry really come through. 

Recipe for Strawberry Scented Play Dough


1 11g sachet of strawberry jelly crystals

1 cup plain flour

1/2 cup salt

2tsp Cream of Tartare

1 tbsp oil (cooking or baby oil)

Red food colouring


Combine the flour, salt and cream of tartare in a saucepan.

Make up the strawberry jelly according to the instructions on the packet.

Pour in the jelly mixture along with the tbsp of oil and food colouring. We used red Dr Oetker food colouring* for this batch but it turned out more of a pinky red than what I was originally going for.

Add to a high heat and continue to stir until the mixture until it sticks together in a ball. This could take between 2-4 minutes depending on your hob.

When you remove the dough from the pan it might not feel as firm but once cooled it will feel more like your usual dough.

Raspberry scented play dough

For the raspberry scented play dough, I followed exactly the same method and instead used a raspberry jelly sachet and some hot pink food colouring. I used ProGel food colouring* this time – it gives off a much more vivid colour.

You might find that this play dough is a bit stickier than your normal jelly free batch but once handled a bit more it seems to lose its stickiness. I really love the way the scents fill the room when this play dough is played with.

This scented play dough should be stored in an airtight container or zip lock bag in the fridge to keep it fresh and prevent it from going hard.

I’ll be sharing some fun ways to play in the coming weeks.

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Fun at Little Street, Maidstone

Fun at Little Street, Maidstone

One of the things I really want to do here on the blog this year is showcase some of our favourite family friendly days out and attractions in our local area. I’ve previously shared our day at Kent Life Hops ‘n’ Harvest Festival and our […]

What to expect at your child’s first nasal flu vaccine

What to expect at your child’s first nasal flu vaccine

I don’t usually post this sort of thing but it was something I googled quite a lot in the lead up to Florence’s first nasal Flu Vaccine and frankly I was none the wiser by the time the appointment came around. Florence is quite wary […]

DIY Dinosaur Swamp Birthday Cake Hack

DIY Dinosaur Swamp Birthday Cake Hack

I honestly never know what is going to come at me each day. My days are filled with random occurrences, challenges and tasks that sometimes you just have to roll with it.

Today as I was walking back from the doctors with Florence my sister text me asking if I could make her a cake. That’s all the information she gave me. When? What sort of cake? What for?

It turned out a friend of hers had been let down at the last minute by her cake maker for her son’s birthday party today and was in a bit of a panic. Libby had had the idea that I might be able to help and while I might have been a little uneasy about how well I could actually make a birthday cake (I mean, it’s okay when it’s just me and the kids who are going to eat it, frankly they couldn’t care less what our baking efforts look like!) it was a challenge I was prepared to take!

With such limited time and my questionable baking skills  I decided to try and find a shop bought birthday cake and decorate it myself. The closest one in Tesco to the shape she wanted was this Unicorn Celebration Cake (£12). It looked fairly easy to remove the unicorn detailing and as it was white in colour It would be a perfect blank canvas.

I also purchased some cooking chocolate, TESCO vanilla fondant, green food colouring, some Kinder Buenos, Cadbury & Lindor Chocolate Eggs, some mini Cadbury eggs, a pineapple, and some fresh mint leaves.

From Unicorn to Dinosaur Swamp Birthday Cake

I started off by removing all of the unicorn detailing from the cake. It was mostly white chocolate and butter cream icing and was fairly easy to remove. As the chocolate parts were pointed and poked in to the sponge it did leave a couple of holes but that wouldn’t make too much difference as they could be filled in.

Next I spooned half of the pot of vanilla icing into a bowl and mixed in a couple of drops of the food colouring. I wanted a fairly pale green and because of the effect I was going for it didn’t really matter if some parts were greener than others.

Using a spatula I spread about 2 heaped tablespoons of the buttercream across the top of the cake and then proceeded to cover the sides too, using the blunt side of a dinner knife to smooth over any particularly bumpy bits. Again, it didn’t matter too much about it being super smooth – just as long as the edge of the top was.

I roped Sean in for the next bit as I’ve always been a bit useless at melting chocolate and the drip bit made me a bit nervous! He melted the chocolate over boiling water and added a splash of milk to make it a bit runnier.

Pouring it on was a bit of a joint effort as I was so worried about ruining the cake! We poured it into the centre of the cake and allowed it to spread out and drip down, pouring more on in the parts which weren’t dripping enough! I think we might need a bit more practice on this front!

I then added the larger eggs (with their bottoms cut off at different angles using a hot knife, so they’d stand!) along with the whole smaller chocolate eggs around the top of the cake.

For the greenery I cut varying sized leaves from the pineapple and stood them up around the eggs and added some sprigs of mint by simply poking their stems into the cake.

Next I sprinkled on some flakes of Kinder Bueno which Florence had ever so enthusiastically bashed with her (clean) toy hammer to create a bark effect.

Once the initial decoration was done, it was time to move the cake from its original cake board to a large round one.

I used the remaining chocolate to cover the silver board and also help make the cake stick to it! Sean carefully lifted the cake into the centre before I added some final touches to the swamp decor. A couple more eggs, leaves and Bueno crumbs were scattered around the board along with some artificial ivy I had in a craft box.

Finally all that was left to do was add the dinosaurs!

I think they look quite at home there don’t you?

I was really surprised by how easy it was to transform the original Unicorn cake into this dinosaur Swamp birthday cake and the whole decorating process only took about an hour! Not to mention the fact it cost a fraction of the price paying a cake maker would cost!

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Staying Organised as a Busy Family with BoxClever {#AD – Gifted for Review)

Staying Organised as a Busy Family with BoxClever {#AD – Gifted for Review)

Life with a young family is unsurprisingly busy and keeping on top of all the playgroups and appointments and work bits can be a bit of a challenge, especially when baby brain comes into play. I have been using my phone diary for a while […]

31 Dinner Ideas for Families – A Monthly Meal plan

31 Dinner Ideas for Families – A Monthly Meal plan

Our budget is really tight this month what with Christmas just happening and S going from weekly to monthly pay in his new job so I’ve been really focussed on trying to make sure we are as efficient with our money over the next month […]