Special Sponsor Post…hands on: as we grow

I’m sure you have noticed that I’ve been adding sponsors (if you haven’t, check out the sidebar).  One of my very first sponsors is a new bloggy friend of mine.  Jamie is a mother of 2 very active and adorable little boys.  Her blog hands on: as we grow is full of easy and fun activities sure to keep your kids MOVING!  You can see her Guest Post visit here.  It has been so fun getting to know Jamie behind the scenes and I thought you might enjoy getting to know her too!  Just look at how adorable her family is!

Me:  Of course since you and I both love kid stuff, I better start off with a kid question.  How old are Henry and George right now?

Jamie: Thanks for starting out with a simple question!  Henry’s 3 and George is just about to turn one – next month already!

Me:  You have written that both boys have a lot of energy.  I notice that Hands on: As We Grow focuses on A LOT of really neat moving/learning experiences.  Do you have a favorite?

Jamie:  My favorite moving activities have been those with art. We do a lot of ‘big art’ here; it’s the easiest way for me to get Henry excited about painting or creating in some way.  My favorite big art would have to be the Ribbon Throw Painting. Though Henry’s favorite would probably be painting on the window.  He asks to do it quite often! Although… The balloon activities were a huge hit with Henry.  Since George’s birthday is right around the corner, we may be breaking those out again!

Me:  You have no formal training in early education…is that right?

Jamie:  I have absolutely no training, whatsoever, in education.  I have a Bachelor of Arts degree for graphic design.  I just believe that as a stay at home mom, there is a reason I’m staying home and not sending them to a day care.  I want to be able to teach and watch my children grow up in these early years by taking part in their lives as a stay at home mom.  I firmly believe in play and for play to be the central focus of childhood, especially early childhood.  But there are learning opportunities during their play. Even if you aren’t aware of them (which I’m not to many of them!), or if you point them out, your child is learning either way. I feel that my job is to make sure those opportunities for playing, and experiencing new exciting ways to play, are available to my children.

Me:  Has Henry done much learning in the  kitchen yet?

Jamie: Henry spends time with me in the kitchen a lot. It used to be every day that we either made a recipe together, or he helped me set the table. As he’s now officially a preschooler, he has much more important things to do. Henry enjoys much more now going to the bakery with Dad. He watches how Dad measures the ingredients and how they’re mixed (in a gigantic mixer!). Less often, Henry tags along with me to the bakery to help me decorate cakes. He usually decorates a cupcake or two while I’m working, check out his Cupcake Masterpieces!

Me: I know that you are not only a stay at home mom / fantastic blogger; you also own and runPedretti’s Bakery with your Husband and Father-in-Law, what a wonderful way to be connected to family.  Have you always been passionate about cakes or did you “marry into it”?

Jamie: I definitely married into it. I had absolutely no knowledge about the bakery or cakes beforehand. And even after marriage, it still took me a little while to dig myself into it. It wasn’t until I started decorating cakes that I became a part of the bakery (not that I wasn’t welcome before, I just never had a place, and I already had a full-time job).

Me:  Do you have formal training in cake decorating?

Jamie: If you call taking a class at Michael’s formal training, then yes. There were three classes that I took; each class was only one hour a week for a month. It taught me all the basics of cake decorating. I also learned a lot from my mother-in-law. She was the only cake decorator for the bakery and had cancer. I decided to learn how to decorate in case anything ever happened to her (unfortunately, she passed away last summer). I then started doing wedding cakes for the bakery (the bakery did do them in the past, but not for many years) on a whim for one of our employee’s sister. It made me feel a little more confident and then we started telling people I’d do wedding cakes. It wasn’t for another year (or maybe two) that I focused more energy on it and treated it more as a part of the business rather than an on-the-side hobby.

Me: What cake decorating tips can you pass on to newbies, or people who just want to add a little something to their homemade cakes?

Jamie:  Hmmm. 1) If you’re trying to write a name, write in cursive, print is much harder. 2) Less is more. 3) Make a plan in your head before starting. You can’t erase on cakes. 4) Love VIVA paper towels. They’re the key to making a smooth frosting. 5) Learn the basics if you’re really interested, take the Michael’s class! Once you know them, you can do anything!

 Now that you know a little bit about Jamie head on over and see all of the wonderful things she has to offer!

Energetic Activities at hands on : as we grow border=

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