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Want to save bucks? Here are 7 easy ways to cut down your electrical bill this winter.

Want to save bucks? Here are 7 easy ways to cut down your electrical bill this winter.

Want to save bucks? Here are 7 easy ways to cut down your electrical bill this winter.

Want to save bucks? Here are 7 easy ways to cut down your electrical bill this winter.

Want to save bucks? Here are 7 easy ways to cut down your electrical bill this winter.

For Hectic Moms – Tips To Make More Me-Time

Want to save bucks? Here are 7 easy ways to cut down your electrical bill this winter.

Want an easy way to save money? Here are 7 tips to help you cut down on your electrical account this winter.

Winter is around the corner, and the TastyMoments team reckons it’s going to a cold one this year. And, with everyone trying to save bucks, we thought we’d give you a couple of low-effort tips to save electricity and money this winter.

1. Use Your Microwave Instead of Your Oven

Microwaves are incredibly energy efficient. According to the experts, a microwave uses approximately 80% less power than conventional ovens. And with delicious comfort food ready-meals like those from Nice ‘nEasy, you’ve got even more reason to use this appliance for cooking your quick dinners this winter.

2. Switch Off the Heat Drying Setting On Your Dishwasher

Dishwashers are incredibly energy-efficient, especially when you do the dishes without the heat drying function. Instead – we recommend you air or hand dry your dishes to save anywhere between 15%-50% power per load. Other tips include washing only full loads and placing the dishes into the machine without rinsing. Modern dishwashers are built to remove stuck-on gunk. So it’s really an unnecessary waste of water and power to rinse your dishes beforehand.

3. Unplug Everything You Don’t Use

Did you know that standby power can account for 10% of an average household’s annual electricity use? Yip, even while the device or appliance is sitting dormant, it draws a small amount of power to ensure it’s ready for you when you need it. You can save a chunk by simply encouraging your family to unplug any electrical device that isn’t being used at that moment.

4. Keep Your Windows and Doors Shut

When it’s cold, it’s best to “trap” the heat in your home by keeping your doors and windows shut. Of course, ensure ventilation and that you get enough fresh air. But try to keep access points to large areas in your home closed up. The trapped heat will mean that you will need less power to heat up the room when it gets really cold at night.

5. Use Hot Water Bottles or Microwaveable Heat Packs Instead of Electric Blankets

No one likes getting into a chilly bed – but electric blankets are energy guzzlers, especially when left on overnight. Instead, heat a “rice bag” in the microwave or fill up an old-fashioned water bottle to keep your toes toasty warm at night. Also, use blankets instead of a bar heater to keep you snug thought the evening. TOP TIP – You can easily make a rice bag at home and save even more bucks.

6. Keep an Eye on Your Geyser

You can save quite a bit of money by getting a relatively cheap geyser blanket to help retain the heat in your tank for longer. Also, switch off your geyser when you’re not using it. Alternatively, get a geyser timer (you may need a plumber to install this) to automatically switch your geyser on and off over set periods. Even reducing your water temperature down from 65 degrees to 60 degrees results in a saving of almost 15% in a three-person household.

So, let’s all pull together and save electricity (and money) this winter. It may just help Eskom keep the lights on during periods of significant power use.

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Have you got a gamer in the house? Getting worried? Here are a few ways you can tell whether your child is addicted to gaming

Have you got a gamer in the house? Getting worried? Here are a few ways you can tell whether your child is addicted to gaming

Have you got a gamer in the house? Getting worried? Here are X a few ways you can tell whether your child is addicted to gaming.

Have you got a gamer in the house? Getting worried? Here are X ways you can tell whether your child is addicted to gaming.

Have you got a gamer in the house? Getting worried? Here are X ways you can tell whether your child is addicted to gaming.

For Hectic Moms – Tips To Make More Me-Time

Have you got a gamer in the house? Getting worried? Here are X a few ways you can tell whether your child is addicted to gaming.

Is your child addicted to gaming? Here’s how you can tell.

The TastyMoments team have a few gamers in our households. We’ve been chatting (over a couple of Ital Pizza Classics for a quick and easy lunch) about what we consider healthy habits when it comes to playing in the virtual world. The new Netflix documentary, “Not A Game”, takes a closer look at the role of gaming in the modern world and assesses its pros and cons. The pros are often very case-specific, telling stories of chronically ill and disabled children who have found new life in the online world. The stories of the downside of gaming are mostly of teens suffering from gaming addiction that eventually becomes unmanageable. So, we asked the question, how would we know if our children are addicted to gaming? And if so, what can we do about it.

First of all, gaming addiction is defined as “the excessive or compulsive use of computer and video games that may interfere with daily life.” The reason people become addicted to gaming rests in our brain response and how we release dopamine. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter (a chemical messenger in the brain) released when we expect a reward or a positive outcome. Doing drugs, for instance, releases dopamine and people chase that “dopamine high”. According to Healthline.com, “When you come to associate a certain activity with pleasure, mere anticipation may be enough to raise dopamine levels. It could be a certain food, sex, shopping, or just about anything else that you enjoy. It’s a cycle of motivation, reward, and reinforcement.” Studies conducted by the California State University found that video games can have a similar effect on children’s brains as drug abuse or alcoholism. 

So when your child throws an insane tantrum because you’ve switched off a game, you know that it’s due to their brain’s chemical response, much like when drugs are taken away from a drug addict. However, it’s also reassuring to know that true gaming addiction (in the clinical sense) is not that common, affecting around 6%-15% of gamers.  

According to Parent.com – you should keep a lookout for the following signs of addiction if you’re concerned.

  • Does your child talk about their game(s) incessantly?
  • Does your child play for hours on end?
  • Does your child get defensive when you try to discuss their excessive gaming habit?
  • Does your child get angry or explosive when made to stop?
  • Does your child sacrifice basic needs (e.g., sleep) to game?
  • Does your child hide or downplay time spent gaming?
  • Does your child seem preoccupied, depressed, or lonely?

If your child exhibits any of these symptoms, they may be addicted to gaming. There are several ways to encourage your child to spend less time online. The most obvious being that you limit gaming time to an hour or two a day. Other methods include reinforcing the perspective that gaming is a hobby or a pastime – not who you are or a way of life. There’s more to life than gaming, and it helps to take the kids on outings or reinforce other positive behaviours (like tossing a ball in the back yard) when they’re not playing. Another idea is to remove the gaming console or computer from your child’s room when game time is off-limits. In extreme cases, you may need to get a therapist or counsellor involved. Like any addiction, the root of the problem may not sit in the “drug” itself but the person using it to escape from other troubles. Ensure open lines of communication and try and find the root cause of your child’s gaming obsession.

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2 Common social media challenges teens face and some ideas on how you can help!

2 Common social media challenges teens face and some ideas on how you can help!

TeenProblems

2 Common social media challenges teens face and some ideas on how you can help!

2 Common social media challenges teens face and some ideas on how you can help!

For Hectic Moms – Tips To Make More Me-Time

Teen-Problems-and-Cyber-Bullying

Being a teen is tough. Here are 2 of the most common challenges they face due to social media and some ideas on how you can help them cope.

Got a teen in the house? We feel for you! We wish they could avoid the new challenges posed by the omnipresence of social media – but in a modern household, it doesn’t seem realistic.

So, grab your partner for a quick and easy dinner, put an Ital Pizza Familia in the oven because the TastyMoments team have got some ideas that may help.

Body Image and Insecurity

In a world brimming with beautiful, trim and polished influencers, it’s hard not to feel inadequate. Even adults report feeling insecure on social media. Even Khloe Kardashian recently fought tooth and nail to have an unedited, no-filter bikini pic (posted by mistake by an assistant) removed from the internet. Instead of saying, “Yes, this is the real me, bits and all.” she waged a losing battle against the internet and its tabloids. The overwhelming message is that you aren’t “good enough” without a filter, designer clothes and make-up. We adults may roll our eyes, but for teens, this dilemma is all too real. According to Healio’s interview with Jamie Zelazny, PhD, RN, assistant professor at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, “A study published in 2015 found that the threshold for where kids start to have more mental health problems is the 2-hour mark,” Zelazny said. “Teens who reported using social media sites more than 2 hours a day were much more likely to report poor mental health outcomes like distress and suicidal ideation. A study done the following year found that problematic internet use resulted in poor mental health outcomes longitudinally, and these were mediated by poor sleep.”

However, the tide is slowly turning, with many people celebrating a natural, no filter “look” and the body-positive movement. If your teens express insecurity about their looks – ask them to follow and engage with the people who do meaningful work (like Greta Thunberg). Or people who espouse self-love and acceptance. Ask your teen what they would like to improve about themselves and to unpack the reasons why. You may find that the root cause lies elsewhere. And if the problem is a legitimate health concern, put steps in place to help them achieve their goal. Open channels of communication are a must. As per the advice from Dr. Zelazny, it’s also worthwhile to limit their social media time to 2-hours a day, max. Furthermore, a healthy sleep routine and diet also do wonders for mental health.

Cyber Bullying

Oooh, this is a tough one. Bullying isn’t new, but it used to be reserved for the schoolyard. Nowadays, you can’t escape it. Kids can now be bullied in spaces that were once safe – because their phones are always with them. The first thing we encourage is to have a genuine conversation about the nature of bullies and bullying. Remind them that it’s easy to be nasty when you’re faceless behind a keyboard and really push the fact that these people should be ignored. Bullies are most often people who feel unloved themselves, so ask them (if possible) to feel sorry for them instead. A practical tip is to block the bullies from your child’s accounts or get your kid off social media entirely for a month or two. Tell them to delete the comments immediately – so that they’re not tempted to revisit them later. Furthermore, ensure your child does not respond to the comments – it will only inflame the matter further. Again, fostering a loving, caring, and honest relationship with your teen will allow you to spot warning signs and intervene if necessary.

Together, you will navigate this strange yet wonderful new world.

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Got a long-term love? You’re so lucky! Here are 5 reasons that it’s just the best.

Got a long-term love? You’re so lucky! Here are 5 reasons that it’s just the best.

Got a long-term love? You’re so lucky! Here are 5 reasons that it’s just the best.

Got a long-term love? You’re so lucky! Here are 5 reasons that it’s just the best.

Got a long-term love? You’re so lucky! Here are 5 reasons that it’s just the best.

For Hectic Moms – Tips To Make More Me-Time

Got a long-term love? You’re so lucky! Here are 5 reasons that it’s just the best.

Been with each other since forever? Celebrate that love! Here are 5 reasons why it’s the best.

Lockdown was tough on relationships. Some of us may even have questioned our marriages or long-term partnerships, and the experts agree, there was a massive surge in divorce applications over 2020. However, if you have stuck it out and made it through, you really know that you’re onto something good. So, in the spirit of celebrating love with Ristorante Pizza, the champion of romantic dinner ideas, here are 5 TastyMoments reasons why you are so lucky to be in long-term love.

You’ve Mastered the Art of Compromise

Long-term relationships are about 3 things, communication, consistency (which creates trust) and compromise. If you’ve been a long-term partnership, chances are good that you’ve had to endure your fair share of outings with the in-laws, dodgy old friends from high school and hectic hobbies – and survived. We always joke that the UN Council should be made up of people who have been married for a long time. Because compromise (and the resultant art of negotiation) is one of the most valuable life skills one can have.

Your Partner Is Cool with Your Wobbly Bits

The wonderful thing about long-term relationships is that you get to age together. Ageing can be a cruel process (how dare those wrinkles and rolls just appear like that?). But when you’re wrapped in true love, the kind that sees your insides and not the wobbly bits, you are spared your own worst insecurities because your partner only sees the beautiful parts of you. Nothing else matters.

You Have Your Own Language

Long-term couples begin to develop their own words, phrases and jokes that only they understand. Furthermore, your partner most likely knows your body language and expressions better than you know yourself. According to Carol Bruess, director of family studies at the University of St. Thomas in Minnesota, “When couples have their own language rituals … they feel like they know one another in a way that others don’t, and that they have a strong connection or bond to each other. They have their own little private world.” What could be better than that?

They Know You Don't Like Coriander

When your love spans over years or even decades, chances are pretty good that your partner knows your likes and dislikes by heart. And they’re cool with it! Even if you don’t like coriander, and they do. It’s so reassuring not to have to explain yourself, your choices and habits to someone new. Your partner gets it, and if someone doesn’t like it – chances are good they’ll defend you against ridicule. And besides, who cares what they think? You’ve got your person.

You've Always Got Each Other.

So many people are lonely and face their challenges by themselves. They often have no one to sense-check whether they should tell their boss to take a hike or have a backup when the chips are down. If you’re lucky enough to have a long-term love, you know you’ve got someone to lean on when the going gets tough. It’s something married couples often take for granted. If this article achieves anything today, we ask that you take a second to look them in the eye and thank them for being your partner. You don’t know how fortunate you are.

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10 Ways in which you can teach your kids the importance, and real value, of money

10 Ways in which you can teach your kids the importance, and real value, of money

10 Ways in which you can teach your kids the importance, and real value, of money

10 Ways in which you can teach your kids the importance, and real value, of money

10 Ways in which you can teach your kids the importance, and real value, of money

For Hectic Moms – Tips To Make More Me-Time

10 Ways in which you can teach your kids the importance, and real value, of money

10 Important money lessons that will stand children in good stead for the rest of their lives

The TastyMoments team have been thinking about the best ways to teach young children good money management skills. Don’t let your kids think that money appears magically when you stick a piece of plastic in an ATM – or slap that very same credit card on a table at a restaurant. We all know those bucks have been hard-earned by someone.

So, let’s gather around the kitchen table now and think up some cheap dinner ideas. A winner is to get the cheese of your choice and allow everyone to choose their own toppings to put on Ital Pizza Classic Bases.

Let’s start by making our kids understand that money is earned

Let your family members help with simple, age-appropriate tasks such as making their beds, taking out the trash, walking the dog or helping to weed the garden. Then put the money in a personalised glass jar so that they can see their savings grow to the point that they can afford that new device that they’ve been wanting for so long. This way, you can show them that money can buy the freedom of choice – a valuable life lesson. And that it is earned by making a valuable contribution.

Migrate from the glass jar to opening a savings account

Little ones need to understand the concept of banking and the associated processes. So, take them with you when you go into a branch. When paying online, take the time to explain to them why you are paying utility and other bills, so that they understand the importance of these disciplines. Besides, nothing in life is easy without having formulated a plan. Therefore, helping them to develop a savings plan will help them to achieve their goals.

Having money is a privilege – not a right

Many people in the world have not benefited from a good education, training or a job. As we know, life can be really tough when there is no stable income. But equally, show your kids the importance of being generous. Encourage them to set 10% of their earnings aside to donate to someone, or an organisation, of their choosing. Not only will they feel good about making a difference, but they will also be empowered and in control of their circumstances.

Stress the importance of education and hands-on learning

Very few people can create a comfortable life without having qualified in a particular profession. Talk to your young ones about their fields of interest – whether that be digital game development or architecture – and encourage them to find out more about what classes they need to take to qualify. Getting educated is expensive – and it’s probably even more challenging to get a bursary. So, encourage them to consult Google to get ready for the road ahead.

The difference between ‘good’ and ‘bad’ spending

If you have a Spendy Wendy on your hands, try and point out the difference between splashing out on a pair of sneakers or an essential mobile phone. And, more so, if they stick to their older model, they may be able to buy that mountain bike in the window soon. The concept of delayed gratification is essential.

Life is unpredictable, and circumstances can change

Chances are that, at some stage in their lives, people will lose money through no fault of their own. Things like a pandemic, natural disasters, and retrenchments are realities – ones that no one can predict. That is why money cannot be the be-all and end-all of life. It is, therefore, more important that kids be taught that values such as integrity, honesty and reliability can carry them through life. And may very well lead them to greater prosperity—what a nice thought.

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7 Important – and inexpensive – ways in which kids can help to make their mothers feel loved and appreciated

7 Important – and inexpensive – ways in which kids can help to make their mothers feel loved and appreciated

SpoilMom

7 Important - and inexpensive - ways in which kids can help to make their mothers feel loved and appreciated

7 Important - and inexpensive - ways in which kids can help to make their mothers feel loved and appreciated

For Hectic Moms – Tips To Make More Me-Time

SpoilMom

7 Ideas on how children can show their moms they love them to bits – and make them realise just how awesome they are!

A couple of the TastyMoments team are mothers. These moms know that sometimes families take the cooking, cleaning and multitude of other chores for granted. So, now is the time to leave a printout of this blog somewhere where your family will find it. Or ask the oldest sibling to suggest some salad ideas and then call a family meeting over a Ristorante Pizza or a few slices of mouth-watering Patisserie Baked Cheesecake. This way, everyone can participate and discuss ways to help around the house and show their appreciation for everything mom does.

Gestures like these will make a world of difference to mothers, especially in a time of shutdowns, online shopping and Zoom calls. So, kids, it’s time to sit up and take note, mainly because Mother’s Day is around the corner.

Let’s start with the classiest, easiest move

On your way back from school, pick a flower or succulent from the sidewalk. Geraniums are great as they are easy to propagate. Simply place a small piece of the stem in a glass of water for a day and then plant it in a container, a window box or that special place in the garden that she loves.

Google a recipe and bake some biscuits

Imagine the surprise of being given a batch of home-baked yummies featuring love messages. All you need is some icing to write messages like: You mean the world to me. I love you so much. I’ll always do my best for you—world’s best mom. And if the baking part is too daunting, you can always buy a packet of biscuits and personalise them.

Memories

Go through the pics on your phone and send – or print – some of the moments which will have special significance. You could even stick them on the mirror in her bathroom. She’ll probably leave them up for days.

Make a surprise breakfast

Set your alarm to get up in time to beat mom to the kitchen. Make tea the way she likes it take it to her. Then start breakfast. Here is a breakfast idea: make a couple of delicious Egg and BBQ Ital Pizzas (yum) – the perfect love and care message.

Run her a bath

These days, a bath is a rare luxury. Put a few drops of fragrant oil in the water, pour her favourite drink, light a candle and invite her to relax and enjoy.

Tell her she was right

We often inadvertently ask our moms for advice. When their wise words come to serve you, always acknowledge that she was right. You may be surprised at how often she is. She’s a lot more life experience than you, you know…

A small chocolate on the pillow

The best way to ensure that she has the sweetest of dreams is for her to find a choccie on her pillow. It’s a sure way to surprise and delight – and something you should be able to manage once a month.

Whether you take the dog for a walk, make her a playlist or surprise her by cleaning your room. You know how much she does for you. Your turn now!

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5 Ways in which you can make it easier for kids to go back to school during winter post-lockdown

5 Ways in which you can make it easier for kids to go back to school during winter post-lockdown

Ways in which you can make it easier for kids to go back to school during winter post-lockdown

5 Ways in which you can make it easier for kids to go back to school during winter post-lockdown

5 Ways in which you can make it easier for kids to go back to school during winter post-lockdown

For Hectic Moms – Tips To Make More Me-Time

Ways in which you can make it easier for kids to go back to school during winter post-lockdown

Here are 5 ideas on how to make sure that your children are happy about going back to school after a lockdown in the colder months

The TastyMoments team has wondered how one keeps one’s family motivated and keen to get back into the swing of things after the holidays and all the recent interruptions due to the virus. Here’s an idea: call a ‘back to school’ meeting over some Ital Pizza Minis or – better yet – Ital Pizza Pops and discuss the way forward. Once you’ve reached an agreement, stick a roster onto the refrigerator door so that everyone knows what’s expected of them.

But until school starts, it is our suggestion that you keep them in ‘learning mode’. Diarise a few readings at the library so that they can experience the joy of books or drag them off to a planetarium, museum, park, theatre or art gallery. Even a graffiti tour will do. If you keep your eyes open, there is always something out there for them to experience.

But back to school for now. Here’s how you can help them confidently master the first few weeks.

Masks and tissues

After you’ve poured some orange juice, cooked a bowl of oats or boiled a few eggs to ensure full tummies, make super-sure, they have enough tissues and masks in case of runny noses. If they have a few extra, they will also help new friends who might not have a supply at hand.

Create structure

Believe it or not, rules make youngsters feel secure. If they know homework is to be done between 16h00 and 19h00, they have the freedom to choose what they want to do with the rest of the day. This will eliminate arguments about TV or FB time.

Make sure they’re warm enough

There is nothing worse than being cold on an icy winter’s day. Ask granny to knit an extra jersey, or better yet, fork out on a warm jacket. A pair of gloves and a beanie will add extra love.

Enough sleep

There is a reason why bears and other mammals hibernate in winter. And, we are also mammals, after all! Decide on a bedtime rule and stick to it. A cup of warm chocolate milk will help make them sleepy, reassure and keep them warm, and not so keen to spend another hour or two on their devices. It’s worth the effort to send them to dreamland smiling.

Make a checklist - for all to consult before leaving the house

It’s easy to forget things that can make all the difference between that panicky phone call and having to drop everything to rush to school.

The checklist should include:

  • Sanitiser and mask
  • Lunch box (including some vitamins in the form of carrots, raw peas or apple segments)
  • Sports kit
  • Sunscreen
  • Clean shoes
  • School books in a backpack
  • Pencil case
  • Transport arrangements: who is taking and fetching?
  • Agreed ETA at home
  • Permission about having friends over, COVID protocols and device time

QUICK DINNER IDEA: A delicious, nutrient-rich pot of veg soup served with yummy Ital Pizza Slices will go a long way in protecting everyone from the dreaded lurgy during these times. Soups freeze well, so they can be made over weekends for the week. Cooking time also doubles as family time, so get the young ones to pitch in and help with chopping and peeling. Happy school, everyone.

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EASTER TIME IS F-EASTER TIME. WHO ON EARTH DOES NOT LOVE CHOCOLATE – AND PERHAPS A BIT OF ROMANCE?

EASTER TIME IS F-EASTER TIME. WHO ON EARTH DOES NOT LOVE CHOCOLATE – AND PERHAPS A BIT OF ROMANCE?

EASTER TIME IS F-EASTER TIME. WHO ON EARTH DOES NOT LOVE CHOCOLATE - AND PERHAPS A BIT OF ROMANCE?

EASTER TIME IS F-EASTER TIME. WHO ON EARTH DOES NOT LOVE CHOCOLATE - AND PERHAPS A BIT OF ROMANCE?

EASTER TIME IS F-EASTER TIME. WHO ON EARTH DOES NOT LOVE CHOCOLATE - AND PERHAPS A BIT OF ROMANCE?

For Hectic Moms – Tips To Make More Me-Time

EASTER TIME IS F-EASTER TIME. WHO ON EARTH DOES NOT LOVE CHOCOLATE - AND PERHAPS A BIT OF ROMANCE?

IT’S EASTER - AN EGGCELLENT TIME TO GET TO KNOW AND PLAY WITH THE 4 MAIN KINDS OF CHOCOLATE.

The first thing the TastyMoments team wants you to know is that you can think of chocolate as a vegetable! Yip, cocoa beans come from a tree. So, right there is everyone’s perfect excuse.

But chocolates mean different things to different people. It could be the start of an egg hunt, a well-done for good school marks or a sign of interest from a dishy person.

So, here’s a fun dessert idea. Why not invite that guy you fancy, one or two of your other favourite peeps and get creative. Start by getting a Dr. Oetker Patisserie Cheesecake in your hands and invite everyone over. Ask them to bring the chocolates they like – and then you can all go wild decorating the cake. Dip strawberries into melted chocolate, shave chocolate to make the hair on a funny face – go wherever your imagination takes you. Or you can try these awesome chocolate décor tricks from us!  Then it’s time for tea and cake – or a yummy, fun dessert after a few crispy Ital Pizza Classic variations have come out of the oven.

While you’re at it, you can regale your friends and family with these little known, fast facts about this globally celebrated confectionary.

A look back in time

Did you know that National Chocolate Day is celebrated on the 7th of July? This is said to be when chocolate was introduced to Europe, as far back as 1550.

It became a bit of a French thing

When told that the people were starving and did not have bread during the French Revolution, Marie-Antoinette apparently said, ‘Let them eat cake. Well, it seems her tastes did not end at cake. She also loved chocolate – which she considered to be an aphrodisiac.

The other famous Frenchman who loved chocolate was Napoleon. He insisted that his armies had access to wine and chocolate at all times. The combination seemed to work well for a time. And then, as with all conquerors – his time, too, came to an end.

Bragging rights

Although cocoa (or cacao – the words are interchangeable) originates from central and south America, guess who is currently the biggest producer? Africa!

It takes years for the trees to grow mature enough to produce the beans, which are then picked, dried and roasted to release their full flavour. Although the trees can live for up to 200 years, they produce beans for only about 25 of these years. Seeing as it takes around 800 beans to make 1kg of cocoa, farming it is no child’s play. So, hats off to our continent.

The four kinds of chocolate

Milk chocolate was first made in Switzerland in 1875 by a Mr Peter. No one else could get it right until he tried to add a product his neighbour, Mr Nestlé, invented. The trick turned out to be to add condensed milk. This is still to this day the most popular variety of our favourite sweet.

White chocolate is made of cocoa butter which contains no cocoa. So, strictly speaking, it is not even chocolate—fancy that.

Dark chocolate can consist of up to 80% cocoa, as opposed to the 20-40%  ratio of milk chocolate. It is less sweet but absolutely delicious when a candied orange rind is dipped in it.

Ruby chocolate is the latest addition to the family. It was first released in 2017 and made with pink cocoa beans, which explains the colour. No colourants are added. One of the TastyMoments team has had the pleasure of having some and raves about the unique flavour.  It looks like white chocolate after it has been mixed with berries. But not a berry in sight. Just a pure, natural pink delight.

Bring on the chocoholic’s dream. It’s Easter, after all.

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5 GREAT AND EASY MIDWEEK DINNER IDEAS

5 GREAT AND EASY MIDWEEK DINNER IDEAS

5 GREAT AND EASY MIDWEEK DINNER IDEAS

5 GREAT AND EASY MIDWEEK DINNER IDEAS

5 GREAT AND EASY MIDWEEK DINNER IDEAS

For Hectic Moms – Tips To Make More Me-Time

5 GREAT AND EASY MIDWEEK DINNER IDEAS

MIDWEEK MEAL IDEAS HAVE YOU STUMPED? HERE ARE SOME EASY ANSWERS.

What’s for dinner, maaaaaaaaa? Sound familiar? We all get a little “over” cooking, especially around Wednesdays when the energy and patience levels dip. So that TastyMoments team have looked at 5 easy midweek meals for you to try this Easter.

Vegan-Veggie Vibes

Tomato Vegetarian Pizza & Mushroom, Onion & Bell Pepper Vegan or Vegetarian Pizza

Everyone is on the vegan bus now; it’s better for the planet, healthier for you and can be pretty affordable if you do it right. So, if you’ve got a vegan at home – or just feel like trying it out, you can’t go wrong with these two fantastic vegan or vegetarian pizza recipes.

TOP TIP: You can either use Happy Days Pizza Bases or Ital Pizza Classic Bases. Always keep a couple in the freezer for DIY pizza days.

Butter Chicken Roti In A Flash

Making proper butter chicken at home is quite the chore! Now you don’t have to schlepp cause this recipe hack uses Nice ‘n Easy’s famous Butter Chicken ready-meal for the filling. We promise we won’t reveal your secret! You can get all the glory.

TOP TIP: This recipe shines when you add a bit of mango chutney!

Make It Mexican

Mexicana Pizza And Mushroom & Goats Cheese Pizza

We all love a bit of Mexican food, so why not spice things up with this two-topping wonder recipe that will make everyone in the family happy? Make your own guacamole, a fresh tomato and onion relish and serve with spice tortilla crisps. And just like that, you have your own Mexican feast. Just add a frozen margarita cocktail (or mocktail) to make a proper event!

Caprese Salad On a Pizza? Say No More!

We love this fresh take on a classic, Caprese Salad On Pizza. Simply add tomato slices, mozzarella & rocket to a pizza base. This is a perfect midweek meal when the weather is hot. The real magic comes from the Balsamic Crema (or reduction) that gives this salady pizza its sweetness and acidity. YUM!

Pizza Pops For Little People

When you’re a kid, everything tastes better when it’s on a stick. Why not wow your little ones with Pizza Pops tonight? TOP TIP: Get them involved in the cooking process. It might be a little messier, but it’s an excellent opportunity to bond as a family and chat about ingredients and nutrition. Yes, it’s a spoil meal, but it can be topped with a host of healthy, fresh veggies to help them get in their green. It’s a WIN-WIN!

Enjoy!

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9 EGG-STRA SPECIAL EASTER ACTIVITIES TO DO WITH YOUR KIDS OVER EASTER

9 EGG-STRA SPECIAL EASTER ACTIVITIES TO DO WITH YOUR KIDS OVER EASTER

9 EGG-STRA SPECIAL EASTER ACTIVITIES TO DO WITH YOUR KIDS OVER EASTER

9 EGG-STRA SPECIAL EASTER ACTIVITIES TO DO WITH YOUR KIDS OVER EASTER

9 EGG-STRA SPECIAL EASTER ACTIVITIES TO DO WITH YOUR KIDS OVER EASTER

For Hectic Moms – Tips To Make More Me-Time

9 EGG-STRA SPECIAL EASTER ACTIVITIES TO DO WITH YOUR KIDS OVER EASTER

9 EXCITING, FUN THINGS TO DO WITH YOUR KIDS OVER THE EASTER HOLS

The TastyMoments team had some inspiration and hopped to plan some fabulous things to do around this special time of the year. So, here goes:

Host An Egg Hunt

Round up some of your besties, let them each bring a handful of small easter eggs and help you to dot them around the apartment or garden. Don’t forget to make a note of where you’ve hidden them; otherwise, you might discover them shrivelled up and sad looking when next you’re spring cleaning or weeding the garden.

The Easter Brunch - A Breakfast Idea Your Family Will Love

Easter is a time for eggs, after all. So why not save some of the prepared spaghetti mince, scoop it into a pan and poach eggs in mince nests. Or try our awesome Shakshuka Pizza recipe!

Top Tip: As a unique, unexpected Easter treat, you could serve some Ital Pizza Minis instead of toast on the side. Imagine the delight!

Read The Tale Of Peter Rabbit Out Loud

You could do it library style, invite a few kids around for a reading. Or choose an evening to put the little ones to bed early with a chocolate drink and a reading session. Remember to make yourself a cuppa, too, to keep that voice lubricated.

The ‘Egg’ Toss

This lekker game requires nothing more than a great imagination, a wastepaper basket and a few balls. Place the basket in the middle of the room or lawn and let everyone take a turn at landing the balls in the basket. You might even discover another Micheal Jordan, Shaquille O’Neal or Kobe Bryant in the family.

The Spoon Race

Have you ever been handed a hard-boiled egg and a spoon? Unless you’re a granny, you might not have. But if you’re old enough to have seen your folks run the race in a hessian potato bag, you’ll know that you can’t win if you lose the egg.  Sadly, the scratchy potato sacks have long made way for plastic bags, but spoons and eggs are still around to provide entertainment.

Challenge The Kids To Dream Up A Play

Book an evening with the whole family, including grandparents. Then give the young ones enough warning to write their own script or rehearse one they have found online. They can choose the theme, whether that be a traditional Easter narrative or an original alternative. Lights, cameras action. Someone has to be the videographer to capture the footage to watch next Easter.

Go For A Bunny Picnic

If you have a bunny park in the vicinity, gather a blanket, some carrots, lettuce and anything else a rabbit may eat. Then, add a few egg mayo sandwiches and a couple of slices of Château Gâteau cake for desert and head out. In fact, any park will do. It’s always a good idea to take a soccer ball to kick around before unpacking the picnic basket. And remember the sunblock.

Get The Kids To Clear Out Their Cupboards

Kids outgrow toys, clothes and school stationery – now that they have devices at hand. Help them to put together a gift box to drop off at a community centre. This way, they will get to understand generosity and gratitude.

Picasso, Anyone?

If your granny didn’t teach you how to suck eggs, there’s always Google. And if it seems like too much of a mission, simply boil the eggs. Get some non-toxic water-based paint and a couple of paintbrushes spread plenty of newspaper on the floor and let them get creative. Then proudly display the works of art until Easter.

Enjoy!

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5 WAYS TO GET YOUR TEEN TO SHARE THEIR FEELINGS

5 WAYS TO GET YOUR TEEN TO SHARE THEIR FEELINGS

5 WAYS TO GET YOUR TEEN TO SHARE THEIR FEELINGS

5 WAYS TO GET YOUR TEEN TO SHARE THEIR FEELINGS

5 WAYS TO GET YOUR TEEN TO SHARE THEIR FEELINGS

For Hectic Moms – Tips To Make More Me-Time

5 WAYS TO GET YOUR TEEN TO SHARE THEIR FEELINGS

5 WAYS TO GET YOUR TEEN TO SHARE THEIR FEELINGS

Being a teenager is not easy. In adolescence, they start to try out new things and start discovering what they really want out of life. It becomes a huge responsibility for these youngsters to work out who they are. They are still inexperienced, as they have not had much exposure to the world and its challenges.

In the USA, the University of Rochester, known for its scientific research, studied close on 300 teenagers over many years. Their findings confirmed that youngsters who feel free to express their emotions are less likely to become depressed when, later in life, they experience stressful events.

But teenagers can sometimes feel completely overwhelmed. So, the TastyMoments team have come up with a few bonding ideas for you to consider while you dream up another easy dinner tonight. (HINT: Teens love Ital Pizza.) Read on to find out you can make things easier for them – and steer your household through calmer waters.

Listen

As parents, we often think we need to provide instant solutions. Not so. First, listen carefully to find out what might be bugging them. Even if you feel it is not important that John has not been invited to Jabu’s birthday party, to him, it might matter very much. Take out the time to look him in the eye and listen.

Validate Their Feelings

Kids know whether there is genuine empathy or whether you are dismissive of their feelings. Try not to pooh-pooh and downplay disappointments. If the boy she had a crush on falls for someone else, they are bound to be devastated. Saying ‘He was never right for you, anyway’ is not going to make things better. Try to acknowledge the feelings of rejection by responding with something like ‘Shuwee that must be very hard. I know how it feels.’

Show Them You Trust Them

Children are much more likely to act responsibly if they believe that their parents have faith in them. One way to demonstrate your confidence is to volunteer a privilege – suggest that they can meet a friend or host a sleepover. This way, they will learn to take responsibility and assert their independence. They are not going to have an adult watching over them for the rest of their lives, so you may as well boost their confidence from an early age.

Don’t Dictate

Let’s face it, dictators have had only ever messed up the world. Your child will rebel if they feel forced to follow the rules, especially if they consider them to be unreasonable. So, rather have an open discussion about what you (both) think should, and shouldn’t, be allowed. You may very well end up understanding your child a lot better.

Praise

Let’s face it, dictators have had only ever messed up the world. Your child will rebel if they feel forced to follow the rules, especially if they consider them to be unreasonable. So, rather have an open discussion about what you (both) think should, and shouldn’t, be allowed. You may very well end up understanding your child a lot better.

A last thought – do things together. Go bowling, take a walk or watch a movie over an Ital Pizza Thick’A. We all know the old saying: people who play together stay together. Just relax and enjoy – no intrusive questions during these times.

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5 HOME TECH TRENDS MOMS WILL LOVE

5 HOME TECH TRENDS MOMS WILL LOVE

Home-Tech-Ideas-panel

5 HOME TECH TRENDS MOMS WILL LOVE

5 HOME TECH TRENDS MOMS WILL LOVE

5 HOME TECH TRENDS MOMS WILL LOVE

THE HOME OF THE FUTURE IS HERE….5 HOME TECH TRENDS MOMS WILL LOVE

Let’s face it; cool tech is not only cool; it can offer instant solutions that save time and money. While few of us can afford to install all of these at once, we can afford to dream. So, think of the gadgets below as mom’s dream team.

Wireless LED lights

Tired of paying electricians to come and drill holes and chop out plaster to score cables into the walls? Well, it is no longer necessary to install permanent light fittings. Smart lights have waved goodbye to traditional mounted light fittings and on/off wall switches. You can now simply place the light of your choice wherever you need it. And even better, your lighting system can be controlled remotely through a smartphone to turn lights on and off automatically. Apart from the unimaginable convenience, imagine the savings on the electricity bill.

Who has heard of a smart tap?

The TastyMoments team has heard of smart people, smartphones and smart Friday night dinner ideas for the kids (like these Ital Pizza Minis). But we have to confess that smart faucets have escaped our attention. Be assured; this tap can save you big bucks while reducing the family’s carbon footprint.

Water-wise practices have become essential. You can either keep a bucket to catch your shower water until it has reached the desired temperature or start thinking about a smart tap. The water is instantly at the right temperature. It can be voice or motion-activated, which means fewer hands touching and less chance of picking up the dreaded virus. It also shows how much water is being used and will alert you if there is a leak. Best of all, there is an auto-shutdown function in case your little one leaves the tap running.

Shower water flow meter

The shower meter is similar to the smart tap but also very different. The shower meter does not require batteries or electricity – energy generated by the running water charges it. It monitors the temperature and volume of water and is a cheaper, easy-to-install option. Think back on the hectic drought in Cape Town a few years ago. The peeps under the mountain had to take short showers in buckets to catch the water for other uses. Soon it could be us! It is estimated that a shower meter can save 8 000 litres per person annually – not to mention – save the planet.

What on earth is a bediator?

With winter around the corner, bediators have come at the right time. Bediators are beautifully designed, space-age looking radiators that can be flipped horizontally to become a bed at night. Get it? Bed (rad-)iator. They are also much more energy-efficient than old skool radiators.

Wireless music

Most homes have a spaghetti mess-nest of cables behind the cabinet housing their sound systems, TV’s, and dare we even still mention it, DVD player. (It’s allowed. We all have some cool home movies which have not been transferred to devices.)

Stand-alone, wireless WiFi home speakers will forever eliminate the spiders gathering dust and fluff behind your current set-up. The sleek, classy, compact design has not sacrificed any audio quality – a must for music lovers who have to clean the kitchen.

Z-wave door and window sensors

These monitor vulnerable entry points to your home – a cost-effective security system that instantly alerts you to intrusions. You’ll receive a text and email as soon as activity is detected. And,  you can check whether you’ve locked all the doors from anywhere.

Well, there you have it – a peep into the future home.

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WHY EATING DINNER TOGETHER IS GREAT FOR KIDS

WHY EATING DINNER TOGETHER IS GREAT FOR KIDS

4 REASONS WHY EATING TOGETHER IS GOOD FOR CHILDREN

4 REASONS WHY EATING TOGETHER IS GOOD FOR CHILDREN

4 REASONS WHY EATING TOGETHER IS GOOD FOR CHILDREN

For Hectic Moms – Tips To Make More Me-Time

4 REASONS WHY EATING TOGETHER IS GOOD FOR CHILDREN

THE GREAT BENEFITS OF EATING MEALS TOGETHER

Find out why it’s so important to eat dinner with your children.

With so much to get through in a day, the TastyMoments team knows all too well that coming up with easy dinner ideas can be a proverbial pain. So, it’s good to remember that everyone absolutely loves a crisp, fresh Ital Pizza Familia. Keep a few in the freezer, simply stick one in the oven when you’re pressed for time.

What is more important than the side dish is that there are significant benefits to eating together. Take a look.

A Sense of Belonging

By sharing a meal, you are signalling that all who sit at the table belong to the same ‘tribe’ – the same group of family and friends. It is pure proof that everyone is important and has an equal right to participate in what the family can provide.

It is also an opportunity to make your kids understand that they, too, have a responsibility toward the group. So, don’t be afraid to divvie up the chores. One person gets to set the table (even if it is in front of the TV) and another to de-set. Then everyone pitches in to wash or pack the dishwasher. Initially, they may be grumpy, but soon everyone will feel a sense of importance in knowing that they are making a useful contribution. They will also start to understand why good housekeeping is essential and how participating contributes to family bonding.

Time to Set The Example

Supper time is the ideal opportunity to teach kids good manners. Sure, table manners are essential, but other manners are equally valuable. Simple things such as allowing a sibling to tell a story without interruptions, praising a fellow family member for an achievement or expressing empathy for someone else are critical social skills. What’s more, they will stand children in good stead for the rest of their lives.

What’s News?

Being surrounded by mobile phones, TVs and other devices, your little ones are bound to hear some stories which may be disturbing to them. Mealtimes are opportunities to listen to and understand their concerns. This is your chance to guide them on how to interpret events. Now that the Don has vacated the White House, there may be less fake news out there, but with the disruptions of the ever-present virus, your children may be tense about the future. Talking openly will help. Even if you do not know all the answers, your willingness to chat about current affairs will be a great comfort to them.

Explore New Worlds and Tastes

Ask everyone to introduce a weekend theme. Take Italy, the home of pizza, for example. Everyone could bring a fact about this fascinating country to the table. Heard of the Tower of Pisa? Or the Vatican – the smallest independent state in the world, housed in the city of Rome. This information may stimulate an interest in a subject they may never otherwise have considered.

Now’s the time to set the time – for your family’s dinner date. It will soon become everyone’s favourite time of day. Now, let them slice the pizza, pass around the salad, enjoy the companionship and say thanks for the privileges of the day.

Top tip: Ask the kids to make a tomato and onion salad or another all-time favourite, beetroot salad. Make it fun, turn up some music, and they will love being involved.

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Love Languages

Love Languages

What is your Love Language?

Get to know the 5 Languages of Love

Get to know the 5 Languages of Love

For Hectic Moms – Tips To Make More Me-Time

What is your love language?

What is your Love Language?

Here’s why and a few recommendations to get you started.

Love Languages are ways of showing affection – and also the way people enjoy receiving love. The concept was penned by Dr Gary Chapman in a book called The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love that Lasts. We are all different, and some things mean more to one person than to another. Understanding your loved ones’ needs and their expression of appreciation for you, go a long way to ensure rewarding relationships. As the word ‘language’ implies, it’s all about how we communicate with each other. Everyone in the TastyMoments team has a different way in which they want to be shown “love”. Some of us can’t live without words of praise, while others prefer a hug. Ask your partner, which one of these “love languages” they prefer? Many people often have more than one.

Words

The old saying, ‘sticks and stones can break my bones, but words can never harm me’ is not true. Words can be more hurtful than physical pain. People that appreciate Words of affirmation value verbal expressions of affection. These could include declarations of love, encouragement and acknowledgement – even if they are delivered digitally. So, if your special someone loves this kind of affirmation, use words. It will make your special someone feel most appreciated and understood.

Tic Toc... Time

Your loved ones most likely enjoy spending quality time together. So, get your act together and plan a few outings. Go for a walk in the park and hold hands or have a meaningful conversation about something that matters to them. Watch a movie together over an easy romantic dinner, like a Ristorante Pizza and some salad; and when they talk, give them your full attention. No cell phone distractions here.

Time For A Service

Isn’t it wonderful if someone goes the extra mile? Whether your partner is hanging a picture or taking the car for a service, these things are incredibly helpful and meaningful. Actions speak louder than words. Acts of service are tangible expressions of how much someone cares.

Present Time

Gifts are appreciated as symbols of care and respect for one another. It’s not about the monetary value of what you give, but about understanding the recipient’s needs. Even a note will suffice. The mere fact that you have noted what it is that they appreciate will do the trick.

The Golden Touch

Your loved ones feel warmth and love in all forms of touch. Cuddle on the couch in front of the TV, or have a lie-in on a Saturday morning. Physical intimacy is life-affirming and makes children feel secure. They will also benefit significantly from a hug and kiss on the cheek before they enter the schoolyard. It will boost their confidence – all the more reason to do it every morning.

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How pets show us they love us

How pets show us they love us

Do you know the signs of love your pet shows you?

This is how pets show us they love us

This is how pets show us they love us

For Hectic Moms – Tips To Make More Me-Time

The 5 ‘Love Languages’ of cats and dogs

The 5 ‘Love Languages’ of cats and dogs

There is a good reason that dogs are called “a man’s best friend”. And that our language is littered with references such as It’s raining cats and dogs’. These pets have become synonymous with households in many parts of the world – and, perhaps more so in South Africa, where they have ample space to run.

The TastyMoments team has thought a bit about how we know how much they love us?

The Waggly Tail

Many of us have grown up knowing dogs, even if they belonged to grandpa or the neighbours. Their tails are the give-away signal that they really like and welcome one. Scientists have proven that the ‘love hormone’, oxytocin, is released in dogs when they gaze at you lovingly or get stroked. This is the same hormone that is secreted when a mother gives birth to a child. It is credited with strengthening bonds between people, and also animals. We all have this chemical response when exposed to affection – especially when it’s coming from Fido!

Dogs can learn to recognise their own names and those of the other woofs in their pack. They are also capable of recognising the names of humans. Watch your furballs when you mention the name of someone whom they know well, but who is not present. They will no doubt show signs of excitement in anticipation that the person may appear.

Vets in the UK believe that dogs are even capable of recognising songs. So, play a happy tune while putting an easy family dinner like an Ital Pizza Familia in the oven to give you a bit of time to play with them. You will eventually see signs of their anticipation when they hear the song.

There are many other signs of their trust and protective feelings toward you— like herding the family when you go on walks and barking at strangers.

Cats

Your cat’s soothing purr is a sure-fire sign that they loooove you. Kittens purr to communicate with their moms, and this behaviour is continued into adulthood – provided, of course, that you have earned the right to be right up there with their regal mothers. It is a sign that your cat is relaxed and trusts you implicitly.

Rolling on their back is another sign of a confident, happy kitty. Their bellies are their most vulnerable parts, and if they entrust you with a stroke, you are part of the pride. However, they may ‘hold’ your hand to ensure that you don’t take them for granted.

Ever heard of bunting? It’s what your cat does when they bump their head against you. It’s their attempt to leave their scent on you to make sure you know you are theirs!

A few other signs are kneading, or even scratching your favourite lounge seat. They can smell you, and this is their way of wanting to bond. And you may consider an upright or forward curling tail, slow blinks and their rear end in your face ‘cat kisses’. Now you know you’ve been getting more cat kisses than you ever thought.

TOP TIP: Try to get your kids used to pets from an early age. This way they will be confident, trust the pet and not be afraid.

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Feel Better With These Science-Backed Tips

Feel Better With These Science-Backed Tips

Feel Better With These Science-Backed Tips

Feel Better With These Science-Backed Tips

For Hectic Moms – Tips To Make More Me-Time

Take Control Of Your Mood With These Clever Tips

Got the blues?

We’re here to help you feel better with these clever, science-backed tips.

Feeling a little overwhelmed with 2021 already? We don’t blame you; it’s been a crazy year thus far and it is only January! The TastyMoments team have been doing some homework and we’ve found a couple of science-backed methods to making yourself feel better.

1. Beat The Blahs With Exercise:

It’s probably the last thing you feel like doing when you’re down, but exercise is a great way to boost your mood. Why? Exercising helps our brain release endorphins – your body’s own feel-good chemical. While it might not cause happiness, it will certainly make you feel better.

2. Learn To Let Go:

Holding on to stress and anger can make us sick and depressed. Forgiveness and a little bit of “hakuna matata” vibes go a long way to making you feel better. It may seem an impossible task but when you let go of past hurts and resentments, you give yourself permission to heal and move on with your life. With a bit of practice, it can be done!

3. Take It Easy On Yourself

When you master the art of being kind and caring to yourself, you will almost certainly feel better. Most often, we’re our own worst enemies and all our negative self-talk and criticism can really impact your frame of minds. When you talk to yourself, ask what you would tell your best friend if they were facing the problem. Chances are you’d be a lot more supportive, understanding and kind. Try and cultivate the habit of speaking to yourself the same way you would your best friend.

4. Avoid Eating Alone:

Eating alone is a real downer. Create the habit of sitting down with friends or family over meals. Lucky for you, Ital Pizza Familia is and easy dinner meal, ideal for sharing, so you have the perfect excuse to make more shared moments over a slice. Besides, pizza is a mood booster in itself, so it’s a win-win!

Remember, you are not alone. As they said in the film The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, “Everything will be alright in the end so if it is not alright it is not the end.”

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3 Good Reasons Why You Should Teach Your Kids How To Drive

3 Good Reasons Why You Should Teach Your Kids How To Drive

Got teens in the house? Here’s 3 good reasons you should teach them how to drive.

3 Good Reasons Why You Should Teach Your Kids How To Drive

3 Good Reasons Why You Should Teach Your Kids How To Drive

For Hectic Moms – Tips To Make More Me-Time

Got teens in the house?

This is why you should teach them how to drive.

Self-drive cars are not really here, yet. And we all remember how intimidating The Official K53 Learner’s and Driver’s Manual when we first had it in our hands. At the tender age of 18, the test was booked, and everyone seemed to expect the newbie to just get in the car and get it. No way, José. That’s not how the story goes. The first time can be downright scary.

The good news is that you can teach the little ones from a young age to watch and learn during every school run. Here’s why from the team at TastyMoments.

Children are impressionable.

Youngsters are receptive, and love being taught new skills. If you take time to point out the objects you take into consideration when you’re on the road, they too will start to take notice and adopt these skills. 

An excellent way to get them involved is to ask them to point out objects that may affect your driving. You could show them the recycler and his trolley a good 50 m ahead of you in traffic demonstrate that it gives you time to change lanes. Or point out that you stay 5 m away from that pack of cyclists (even though they should be riding in tandem). This way, they will learn how to avoid potential obstacles.

Remember, they will learn from you.

When you’re behind the wheel, you’d better be on your best behaviour, Doll! If you lose your temper and shout at the guy who is not sticking to his lane, they are likely to do the same. Impatient or angry people take chances. Instead, demonstrate that you have allowed enough time to get to your destination in a pleasant mood. That way, they will feel safe and relaxed and adopt responsible driving habits.

But, most important, set an example when it comes to your mobile phone. Do not look at text messages, even at robots. Texting while driving is now considered to be more dangerous than drunk driving. Seriously. So, don’t fiddle with the phone or the controls while driving. 

It goes without saying that you should not be ferrying kids around when you have had a glass or two. Instead, get everyone home safely and have a refreshing drink while serving a quick and convenient Ital Pizza in front of the TV. Here’s a cool tip. Slice up an avocado to add to the topping once the pizza is cooked. Avocados are considered superfoods and for good reason. More brain food!

3. Kids feel safe when they are familiar with things

If kids develop a level of familiarity with a vehicle, they will feel much more at home when they first get into the driver’s seat. Take time to point out the car’s pedals and their functions. When the youngsters are tall enough, let them press down the clutch and learn to change gears in a stationary vehicle. If your car’s an automatic, keep in mind that their first car might not be, so show them how to use the handbrake to prepare them for that first dreaded uphill start. 

Now, dream of the convenience and time saved when your eldest is equipped to fetch and carry the rest of the brood. Bliss!

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5 TastyMoments approved educational Apps

5 TastyMoments approved educational Apps

Here are 5 TastyMoments approved educational apps your kids must try.

Here are 5 TastyMoments approved educational apps your kids must try.

For Hectic Moms – Tips To Make More Me-Time

Feel good about letting you kids play these 5 TastyMoments approved apps.

You won’t feel guilty about letting your kids play these 5 educational apps.

If your kids are anything like ours, their devices are more like limbs than tools. It’s almost impossible to escape the virtual world, especially since COVID has forced us to teach our kids online. Even the most resistant parents have to succumb to the “ah ma, can I have your phone for 10 more minutes” plea. Lucky for you a slice of Ital Pizza Thick’A almost always gets their attention. Thank goodness for small blessings and easy dinners. 

So instead of letting them blow people up on Fortnite, we recommend these 5 Tastymoments-approved educational apps. 

1. QuickMath Jr.

This FREE iOs app (sorry, no Android yet) is ideal for kids aged 4-8. It’s perfect for a little person who may not be loving maths rights now. It’s cool because it approaches the subject creatively – making it more conceptual and easier for kids to connect to the ideas. Here’s what the Apple App Store’s editors had to say about it. “We wish we’d gotten to learn math like this! First, we designed a lovable creature—ours was a bug-eyed monster in a bowler hat. Then we played with our creation in a fun, fast mini-games that secretly teach math foundations.” Say no more! 

2. Peak Brain Training

Ideal for older kids, we recommend Peak Brain Training. In fact, it’s great for adults too. It’s a puzzle game that is designed to keep track of your performance and challenge you daily. “Our games are designed to push you hard with short, intense workouts designed around your life. Challenge the skills that matter to you most with games that test your Focus, Memory, Problem Solving, Mental Agility and more.” The whole TastyMoments is pretty addicted to it! And we don’t have to feel guilty about it cause we’re exercising our brains, you see? It was voted the best app in both the Apple App Store and Google Play. There is a subscription fee attached to the full app buy you can play the free version and enjoy a limited experience. 

3. BrainPOP Jr.

We’re excited about this app because it gives your kids a free “movie of the week”. The movies are educational and super entertaining. You can subscribe to the full library if you like, but there’s a whole bunch of free content your kids can enjoy too. It covers subjects like art, technology, maths and science, to name a few. It’s perfect for kids aged 6-9 and is available pretty much everywhere. 

4. ScratchJr

Got a budding young computer genius in your home? Best you nurture this sought-after talent with ScratchJr. This app teaches your kids the beginnings of writing code. It might seem a bit tricky, but once they get the hang of it, they’ll be writing their own endings to the story told in the app. It’s available on the Google Play Store and the Apple App Store and is excellent for kids aged 5-7. 

5. DuoLingo

This is the app for the little linguist in your home. Why waste time when you can learn a new language instead? According to the developers, “Duolingo is an incredibly popular, highly rated app that allows students of all ages to learn a foreign language. This educational app has an intuitive and engaging interface and a neat progress tracker, as well as a bevy of languages from which to choose”.  

So cool. We wish we had these when we were growing up! 

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Brainy Lunchbox Tips

Brainy Lunchbox Tips

5 Clever Lunch(Box) Tips

5 Clever Lunch(Box) Tips

For Hectic Moms – Tips To Make More Me-Time

Brain booster lunchbox ideas for the new year

5 lekker schoolday lunch ideas

Brain booster lunch(box) ideas for the new year.

To kick off the start of the new year, why not try out some of these yummy lunchbox and after school snack ideas from the TastyMoments team? It’s one way you can keep your kids strong and on top of their game.

1. Greens Are Great:

There are many ways in which to sneak in some greens. Add some crunchy lettuce and thinly sliced cucumber to that lovely ham, cheese and tomato sandwich. Or, staying with the lettuce, roll some leaves around a tuna mayo mixture. A handful of fresh or frozen peas is also a tasty way in which to get them to love the vitamins. 

2. What’s the Plan?:

Good lunches need a bit of planning. Ask the kids to help to draw up a weekly menu. They will be much happier to try new things if they have been involved in the decision making. Ask questions like: ‘Would you rather have carrot sticks or apple wedges?’ or ‘Brown or wholewheat bread?’ And remember, if you’ve got a sporty bunch, they may need some extra carbs and fruit to keep them going.  

3. All Hail The Chicken:

For a meat-eating family, there’s nothing better than a cold chicken breast or leg at lunchtime. The mere sight of a plump piece is enough to tingle the tastebuds. These days there are rotisserie chickens available around the corner. And, what’s great is that they’re often more affordable than the cost of cooking and cleaning at home. Now, simply add potato salad and another veg or two.

4. Your Friend, the Freezer:

Frozen foods can be more nutritious than veggies that have been lying around for days.  So, feel free to treat everyone to a selection of Ital Pizza Slices. As we all know all too well, nothing says I love you louder than pizza! 

5. Keep It Fresh:

Yes, this means fresh peeled orange or naartjie segments, mango slices and, of course, the ever-ready, transportable banana. Keep the thinking fresh too. Allow the kids to find interesting ideas in magazines. It may be a broccoli and feta soup or a fabulous Greek salad served with Ital Pizza Minis. Pizza again? As they say, anyone who says money cannot buy happiness has clearly never spent their money on pizza! 

TOP TIP: A couple of nice, spill-proof containers will make life easier. And if you’re going to work, why not pack you own lunch? You’re sure to eat better and save a fortune to boot.

Enjoy these TastyTips?

PS. Have one of your own? Let us know in the comment section below.

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2 Reasons Not To Trash Our Rubbish Dumps

2 Reasons Not To Trash Our Rubbish Dumps

Do Not Trash Our Rubbish Dumps

Do Not Trash Our Rubbish Dumps

For Hectic Moms – Tips To Make More Me-Time

Recycling plastic and glass

2 very good reasons not to trash our rubbish dumps.

We all want our children to live in a clean and healthy, natural environment. They should be allowed to enjoy the privilege of having butterflies, bees, polar bears and aardvark to observe as much as we have. Well, there is one way in which we all can do something super easy at no cost to you – or our precious planet. So, let’s get that delicious, crispy, cheesy and convenient Ital Pizza Thick’A ready and talk RECYCLING.

Plastic Bottles

Smart people are increasingly telling us that we are destroying the very environment that sustains our children. As far back as 2018, it was estimated that more than 3000 million kg’s of plastic bottles were collected in the US alone. Considering the feather-light weight of a water bottle, this a veritable Mount Rushmere of bottles.

The bottle manufacturing process creates greenhouse gasses, and plastic in landfills take between 100 and 400 years to biodegrade. Eek! By recycling, we use fewer fossil fuels which reduces carbon emissions and, in turn, slows down global warming. 

All plastics are made by extracting limited, valuable resources from our planet. This while we should be protecting as much of it as is humanly possible. Think of recycling as a way to extract less water, oil, metals and oxygen-generating trees and preserving these materials for our children’s children. 

In the US recyclers save as much energy as it would take to provide power to 15 million homes for a full year. Imagine living without your TV, mobile phone, computer, lights, security system, garage, stove and hair drier, not to mention the straightener – for a whole year. Starting to sound like the end of the world, right? And plastics that end up in landfills also produce methane gas which is 30 x more damaging than carbon dioxide. 

Glass

Much of what we have said so far holds true for glass too. But not all glass should go into the recycling bin. Windowpanes, light bulbs, drinking glasses, windscreens, Pyrex dishes and glass used in laboratories are excluded as they have different molecular structures. Solely glass used for foods, drinks and other packaging purposes should contribute to the effort. Remember to remove screw tops, other caps and lids first. 

It is also important to recycle correctly. Kids need to understand what goes where. When stuff gets mixed up, the recycling is ‘contaminated’. This means it becomes less valuable and could make other people’s best efforts worthless. (In South Africa the coloured glass is not separated at the point of collection, but at the of recycling centre).

The TastyMoments team thinks that the time has come for every one of us to become a Recycler and live by the mantra reduce, reuse and recycle.

P.S. Did you know that South Africa has one of the most advanced return systems in the world? Hats off to these forward-thinking planet saviours.

Enjoy these TastyTips?

PS. Have one of your own? Let us know in the comment section below.

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