Everyday Play with Kate Ritchie

Kate Ritchie and Daughter Mae
Beloved Aussie actor, radio host and author Kate Ritchie has created the ultimate collection of recipes, activities and ideas for families.

By celebrating the wonder of nature, the power of creativity and the pure joy of playing together, this book shows how easy it is to make every day feel a little extraordinary.

We chat with Kate about the inspiration behind Everyday Play, and her favourite family activities. 

kate ritchie and daughter mae

We love ‘Everyday Play – easy ideas for extraordinary days’! Can you tell us a little bit about your inspiration for creating a book centred around making every day feel a little extraordinary?

My daughter Mae seems to be my inspiration for everything these days. It began with my first book I Just Couldn’t Wait To Meet You, continued with my second It’s Not Scribble To Me and has now seen us create Everyday Play together. You can see so much of her input as you flick through the pages of Everyday Play. From the photographs right through to the artwork.

I wanted to create a book that could be used as a gentle guide for being creative and to encourage downtime as well.

I know, as a mother, that we get so much from both and it is important to remember that. Just being together, taking a bath or breathing in the seasons can be as extraordinary as cutting, pasting, drawing and cooking. They are all part of the big picture but we certainly can’t do them all at once!

It can be easy to let the sometimes mundanity of parenting take over and not see the joy in the little things through the mountain of washing and the everyday to-do list. You’ve written three books now, each in one way or another related back to the joy and excitement you have had in becoming a mum. How has having a daughter changed how you view the world around you?

Children, I feel, are a good reminder to take pleasure in the most simple of tasks. For me my daughter has taught me (and continues to teach me) that being present is a real gift, if you can manage it. You’re right. It is so easy to be overwhelmed by all the things we ‘must do’ or must ’tick off our list’ but there is real joy in not doing much at all and that is when I feel the greatest connection with her and feel the most at ease. 

Don’t get me wrong this is not something I have yet mastered (being comfortable doing nothing) but when I do, I can see the benefits for us as a family. The other thing she has taught me is to remember to be kind to myself and to try speaking to myself the way I would want people to speak to her. Now and in the future.

Kate Ritchie new book

What’s your absolute favourite activity from the book that you love to do with your family?

We love to cook. I have always loved being in the kitchen and entertaining. It’s one of the ways I show love and I am so pleased that has been something Mae has taken to. 

When it comes to specific activities from the book my favourites would have to be Letters of Love and Thanks on page 56 which encourages little ones to write little notes of appreciation to the people they love every now and then, Birdwatching on page 32 (yes, I am a daggy bird fan!) and on page 128 I even shared a recipe that was gifted to me by the woman who cooked all the food we ate on the set of Home and Away. Even after all these years I still have the recipe for the Summer Bay Diner Muffins scrawled on the back of a script. I thought it was too good not to share. With Carol’s permission, of course!

Kate Ritchie Everyday Play

Finish this sentence

An extraordinary day for me is… 

Not being dictated to by an alarm or schedule. One spent with people who I love and who love me back unconditionally. Oh, and eating lots of yummy food for the soul.

Everydayplay kate ritchie

Enter our competition to win 1 of 5 copies of Everday Play by Kate Ritchie

Everyday Play is published by Penguin, RRP $27.99

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