Tuesday, 20 June 2017

Giant Bubbles, Rivers and More

Today we had fun making giant bubbles, recipe is here, we used straws with wool threaded through them to make the bubble wand, we have all enjoyed seeing who could make the largest bubble.

Knowing that the heat was going to last, I decided to make some ice chalks, they need a hot day for them to work well and melt enough to draw with, think I should of made more than one tray though!

 They all had a great time exploring the feel of the ice cubes and looking at the colours before deciding to try and draw something.

Home ed wise, my plan today was to look at rivers with M, now I had planned to use the sandpit to create a mini river, tiny waterfall, plunge pool and estuary. Now the last time we did this it worked really well and we even managed to create a meander, didn't work so well this time think the sand needed to be wetter before we started! Anyway at least M can see how a river picks up debris and deposits it at the estuary etc and the younger ones have had a fantastic time playing with the very wet sand and water.

Toucan artwork from last week.

The rabbits enjoying the freedom to explore the garden and nibble various flowers, they have discovered how delicious the grape vine leaves are.

Sunday, 18 June 2017

Mainly Crafts

So a week and half ago I final decided what I would make a friend for a special birthday, what I didn't say was that it only gave me seven days to make the imagine when shawl. Hence not a lot of blogging and an awful lot of knitting, finished shawl was pressed just 2 hours before the party, cutting it rather fine to say the least. Thank you Karen for mentioning it knitted up small, ended up going up a couple of needle sizes to get it the right size. Started of loving the pattern, then had my doubts as to whether it was going to look right, took till I took it of the needles and pressed it for me to decided it was fine! It was lovely to have an evening out and caught up with some friends I hadn't seen in a while and to see my friend (one of L's godmothers) having a great time, she wanted a party that would create happy memories and I think from the look of her she did. Joining Kat for Unraveled wednesdays.

 Before my mammoth knitting session I finished L's geranium dress, really pleased with it. Loving the little cap sleeves, perfect to protect little shoulders from the sun.

Taking Anna's idea and used some left over fabric to make a little dress for her doll, I used a dolls pattern I already had.

Reading and enjoying Lab Girl by Hope Jahren, it covers her story starting as a child and being allowed into her fathers lab, the struggle to get her own lab, getting funding and lots of interesting stories and facts in between. Her friendship with Bill, lots of botany facts, she writes in such an engaging way about her determination to succeed, as well as her passion for botany. There is a lovely part where she talks about her favourite tree from her childhood, not sure if my children have a favourite tree but I do have fond memories of the willow trees at my junior school. There were two of them at the edge of the school field on a slope and during the summer months our teacher would take us outside to sit under the trees while she read to us, can remember watching the branches move in the breeze and seeing glimpses of the sky. Had a library notice to say that The Kabul Beauty School was in, so this will be my next read, having thoroughly enjoyed the Little Coffee Shop, can't wait to start this one.

The girls have been busy studying the rainforest, m has been working on deforestation and L is enjoying learning lots about all the different animals. This week hoping to look at the Amazon river and explore the different parts of a river.

Garden is doing well, have lots of baby pea pods, flowers on the tomatoes and today planted out lots of sunflowers after I finished putting a second coat of paint on the shed.

Wednesday, 7 June 2017

Tigers and Garden

My younger ones are fascinated by tigers and we have enjoyed the story The Tiger Who Came to Tea and then had some fun creating tiger prints, using shaving foam as a base, first time we did this we used a bit too much black paint, so only a little black otherwise it seems to take over the picture!!

Then use a knife to gently mix the paint into the foam.

Gently lay a piece of paper down and press on it all over, then leave to dry, while paintings are drying

they had a lot of fun mixing the left over paint into the shaving foam and exploring the texture!

Finished tiger prints.

They have also drawn some pictures of tigers and described them in their own words, the top one is a cute mummy tiger carrying her baby and the bottom picture is a rainbow monster tiger.

Finished sticker page from the eco kids magazines.

Having fallen in love with the Eco Kids magazines, I've ordered a couple of back issues, including one on the Amazon river, which hopefully will go down as well as the rainforest one did. M has been recapping photosynthesis to help explain why the rainforests are called the lungs of the world and has started to look at deforestation. Yesterday as it was raining so much in the afternoon we sat and watched Rio, which led to a talk about why people were trying to steal the birds, where was Rio de Janeiro, so today's plan to have the maps out and look at Brazil and see where that leads us. Hoping to also do some more art based on Henri Roussea as well but we will see.

M is doing well working through her preIGCSE course, she is on a high as her last assignment came back with an A grade, you can't get better than that. It means even more because she has verbal dyspraxia and as a young child really struggled to speak, lots of speech therapy to help her but it also meant learning to read and write wasn't easy either but she has been very determined and it is paying of now.

I found this series The History of the Home and thought M would rather enjoy it, she has enjoyed the frontier house and the Victorian farm etc, one of the opening scenes was at the Wealden Down Open Air Museum, we have been a couple of times and loved it. Hoping either this year or next we might make another trip there as M was only about 4 or 5 when she went last.

On a crafting front I have just ordered some of this wool in deep water to make the imagine when shawl for a friend, this will be a birthday present, so justifying buying more wool before using up the stash I was supposed to be working through! I alternating knitting at the moment either the main part of L's cardi which is just plain knitting and panel 2 of the blanket with lots of cabling. Reading A Daughter's A Daughter by Mary Westmacott, otherwise known as Agatha Christie, I have not read of her romance books and wasn't sure what I would make of it but actually enjoying it and making me giggle in places. There is a  lovely conversation between an older lady and one entering her 40s  , she talks about how women in their 20's to 40's are biologically and relationship concerned and rightly so but towards the end for their 40s they gain a second blooming in the mind and the spirit and the older a woman gets the more interesting the older they become, a very positive view of getting older. Also have the next two books from The Little Coffee Shop in Kabul to read at some point.

Well my plans for the day might change a bit, L got up and asked to have the colour rice out to play with, so while I finished writing my blog she set up the tray below to play with.

After all the rain and wind we have, this morning we have sun and some photos of the flowers that have survived the weather!

 One of my new penstemons is just coming into flower this one is called heavenly blue.

 We have some tiny cucumbers growing, ignore the weeds, it's a job for later in the week.

Grape vine has lots of grapes growing, hoping for another lovely crop this year.

Linking with Nicole at Frontier Dreams

Sunday, 4 June 2017


After enjoying the Eco Kids magazine and the children's enthusiasm for the rainforest, we have enjoyed watching some clips of different rainforest animals, tigerstapir and macaws, which seem to be the favourite at the moment. Then there was that wonderful moment when they came across a picture of an ocelot and the children realise that they aren't just something made up in minecraft but a real creature.  I've also made the most of my twinkl membership and have used various power points they have put together including this one, which is photos of various rainforest animals and this one on the rainforest habitat. This then led on to a discussion with M about deforestation and I came across this you tube video which worked well for all ages, not always easy to do when you are working with a wide age range. M has decided that next week she would like to look more at deforestation and it's impact, I've found a couple of videos to start her of with, this on the effect on the climate and the lungs of our planet, plus a recap of photosynthesis.

We've had the books out looking at the different layers of the rainforest and the children spent time painting their own rainforest and decorating them with some animal stickers.

Perfect time to introduce  Henri Rousseau, we based out art on Surprise! we'll be looking at some more of his art work next week.

I am hoping to use this power point with them next week as it goes over some of what we have already learnt, plus a bit more.

Weekend has been busy mainly with a lot of time spent at the allotment, planting out plants and more seeds, harvesting a few red currants, strawberries and golden raspberries. Also painted one side of my husbands shed, this is the side that will be seen in our secret garden, when we finish it but was the old chicken run, I've gone for a purple colour bright but not over powering! The rest of the fences I am leaving brown with all the climbers over, think painting it all purple would be too much and today we picked up some lovely butterfly solar lights.