Both Tom and I were ill with the same thing over the weekend. However, he was the one convalescing in bed, and I was the one soldiering on. As a distraction from how rough I felt I decided to make a stripy jelly with the kids (pictured left). This creation took us all of Saturday.
As I coughed and sputtered and sneezed over orange and pink and purple jelly cubes and waited patiently for each layer to set before adding the next one, Betty remarked 'But Mummy I don't even like jelly anymore'. And it is a known fact that, like me, Dolly has never liked jelly. 'Ok' I thought, 'so you and your sister don't like jelly (although yesterday you loved jelly you fickle little four year old), but Granny and Daddy love jelly'.
Once all the layers had set, I began turning it out of the mould and the nerves and excitement really started to set in. Out glooped the jelly, and there it proudly wobbled, perfectly formed, in all its stripy glory. I placed it on the table and stared at it in awe. Jelly really is an exciting and versatile medium to work with. Betty sauntered up and said 'Why have you made that yucky jelly Mummy?' I ignored her.
It turned out that Tom was 'too poorly' to eat jelly, and Granny didn't want to catch my germs that were 'more than likely festering all over it'. So with no-one actually wanting to eat the jelly, I took hundreds of photos of it, then ate a token spoonful of it, before slopping it into the bin; rationalising that the whole thing only cost £1.20 and that it had helped take my mind off the feelings of wanting to stick my head in the oven.
I am now dreaming up my next jelly creation. The next one, when I am better (for I have now succumbed to my illness, kicked Tom out of bed, and am under the duvet), will involve Betty and Dolly's castle shaped beach buckets. Having researched how to create new and exciting colours of jelly, the possibilities are endless. For me, jelly is the new play dough.