Sponsored by Nuffnang*
I believe we’re all well versed on how challenging I find weekends with all the boys all on my own. This weekend was starting out the same way with Death By 1000 Questions from Oscar and a.l.l. of the boys playing wargames in the back room. At 5.30am.
By 10am I was reading the riot act, thinking to myself, AWESOME barely 18 hours into the school holidays and I’m already putting new rules and job lists on the fridge and yelling at the offspring. Way to go, Idaho.
BUT! I had an out. Saturday afternoon we had been invited to an event put on Tetra Pak to encourage healthy eating and exercise called Tetra Pak Kids (there is even a page on Facebook you can become a fan of here). It was at Marrickville which, for those out-of-towners or equally geographically challenged as myself, is here:
From our place, on the other side of the city, it is actually quite straightforward to get there, albeit a bit of a hike. I’d allocated just under an hour to get there. Which would of been fine, if I hadn’t have thought Marrickville was in the vicinity of Balmain, which is here:
Now, to get from where I was to where I should be doesn’t look that bad. Factor in a dodgy GPS, trying to use GoogleMaps on my iPhone and Saturday afternoon traffic and well, hello 1hour and 45minutes. In.the.car. With.four.boys.
Needlesss to say, by the time we arrived Oscar was, naturally, the only one feeling a glimmer of excitement and enthusiasm. I think Grover captured our collective state of mind:
And then, well, then I’m not sure what happened. Well, yes I am, these guys were well versed in how to engage disengaged kids. Oh sure, Oscar was in amongst it from the get-go becoming best buddies with the Tetra Pak Kids Ambassador, Wendll Sailor (who is an absolute legend and did.not.stop for the entire FOUR hours) but the others were not so sure.
The games were put on hold for a brief cooking demonstration by celebrity chef Darren Simpson and suddenly my boys were in. FOOD! The program is about giving parents tips and tricks for healthy diets and exercise for their kids. Darren whipped up a penne with meatballs, sneakily made using good-quality sausages:
and a might tasty looking quesadilla:
Later on in the day he made some rice paper rolls (which we’re having for dinner tonight as the boys have been asking for them ever since Saturday’s adventure) and got some of the kids up to help make them. There’s a handful of recipes on the website – I’m definitely giving the granola a whirl as it’s got zero fat in it. Meanwhile, Felix had sat himself front and centre thus ensuring his involvement:
Afterwards, when Jasper cracked it for not getting a go, Darren found an extra wrap and let him make one up. Instantly on the good list Mr Simpson, a gold star even.
But it was after that first cooking session that things started to turn around. For starters there was this:
An enclosed jumping castle come blow-up climbing/sliding thingy that they had the kids running through finding rubber chickens and racing each other and so on and so forth. They were all suddenly laughing and running and hot and sweaty and – gasp – having fun.
At some stage the Tetra Pak Kids crew had siphoned the bigger kids off for some indoor basketball and soccer while the younger ones kept on going with the races and games through the jumping castle.
I tell you, Wendll is the absolute star. There were some diehard NRL families there, picking his brain for tips on this weekend’s games and who he truly barracks for, but for us it was about seeing someone engage with kids and have some fun. He’s endorsed a whole heap of exercises and activities for kids, primarily aged between 6-10 but really adaptable to anyone, that are also on the website.
I had envisioned us being there for about an hour or so. We were infact one of the last families to leave. It was a great afternoon of fun and activity but the main thing it did was provide me with a salient reminder that the best way to shift a fug, be it mine or the kids, is to get moving. Even just a game of footy out the back or a scooter ride up and down the street can shift the foulest of moods AND be good for you! Who knew!
There are two more events coming in Sydney:
Saturday, 16 April – Penrith
Saturday, 23 April – Campbelltown
Visit the website for details on venues and also for more information about the program.
* with apologies to you all for the oversight of forgetting to badge this as a sponsored post when I originally posted it.