Monthly Archives: August 2014

Into the wild

nature

September is almost here and I ve been trying to get into a new routine. Jonah is starting nursery and we need to manage our daily time better. I have also been having nature on my mind quite a lot recently especially with regards to my children and their mental and physical wellbeing. Last night I stumbled across two programs (without any efforts to find them!), which bizarrely enough were very much linked to what I was thinking about and trying to figure out. Both of them started with the scary fact that our children will be the first generation to die younger than their parents!!!!! …and the main problem mentioned was that nowadays we spent most of our lives indoors. And it does make you think that most of our life we get up- jump in the car drive to work and spend the whole day indoors and drive back home and just stay home for the rest of the evening. It’s definitely not a nice perspective for my children to have and I don’t want nature to be downsized to a weekend trip… so more time outdoors will be the starting point of our new routine! We even tried it out today spending 2.5 hours of earlish morning in the woods and afternoon in the garden. I love the inspiration that children have from being in the wild….(???I’d love to say “in the wild”…but a park in the middle of a big city…is a bit far from “wild”…though I guess it’s our “city wild”, with no footpaths or any human in sight). It even made tired children who slept very badly last night a lot calmer for the whole day.

 

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Spending time in nature

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The temperature seems to be dropping down everyday and I can feel every degree of it! It almost feels like I can smell Autumn in the air and it feels like it’s just around the corner! …so we ve been taking advantage of the last few days of the summer and still mostly dry weather and we ventured out to a few forests and meadows over the past few days. Being close to nature is wonderful and it stimulates children’s imagination in so many ways. From finding ” a bouncy branch” on an old oak tree, finding slippery slopes to run down or roll down from, to looking out for animal foot prints and collecting different tree leaves. It makes children feel free.

heatherBeautiful heather, that we collected on one of our walks- it brightens up our kitchen windowsill.

…huh…with many outings…my crochet blanket has been growing quite sloooowly…but still growing :)blanket

 

Ratatouille garden

This week’s harvest looked like this:

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Don’t need to spend too long looking for nice recipes. It kind of looks like ratatouille already just need to add a few peppers. Perfect ripening times veggies!

Also managed to crochet two more squares!

Granny square 2&3

Air drying clay

I wanted to try out air drying clay for ageees. Having little children gives me opportunit to try new things :). I didn’t have much of a clue how to use it but I assumed it would be pretty easy because the clay I bought didn’t have any instructions. Being over familiar with playdough, I expected it to mould easily in our hands, which it didn’t, but once we got the idea it was easy to make basic shapes. Adding a tiny bit of water made the clay easier to work with.

Od dluzszego czasu chcialam wyprobowac glinki ceramicznej. Nie mam pojecia jak sie jej uzywa, ale wyszlam z zalozenia, ze nie jest to skomplikowany proces skoro glinka ceramiczna która zakupilam nie posiadala zadnych instrukcji. Bedac nazbyt przyzwyczajona do ciastoliny, myslalam ze bedzie sie ja bardzo latwo modelowalo. Jest to calkowicie inny material, ale szybko mozna sie polapac w jego modelowaniu, uzycie malych ilosci wody pozwolilo nam na wygodniejsze uzywanie.  

My idea for this craft came from something I saw on pinterest ages ago. Someone made a big leaf print in concrete to make stepping stones for their garden. I thought that making a leaf print in clay would be simple enough for Jonah’s first clay project. I used a redcurrant leaf from our garden.

Pomyslalam ze odbijanie liscia czerwonej porzeczki, bedzie latwym I ciekawym pomyslem dla maluchow jako ich pierwszy projekt z glinki ceramicznej.

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Jonah enjoyed pressing the leaf down and together we used a plastic knife to cut out the leaf shape from the rest of the clay. Two favourite things that Jonah can make very well out of playdough are snowmen and snails. So using his super snail making skills I though that adding a snail onto the leaf would make a good finish for this little project.

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Air drying clay can take a few days to dry, depending on the temperature. Jonah’s project took about 40 hours on a hot sunny windowsill, with the wind blowing through. Then Jonah painted it with acrylic paint, he chose his favourite colour blue (ignoring my strong encouragement towards at least a bit of green colour on the leaf!). We let it dry for 24 hours and then I painted it with a clear glaze, which required another 12 hours to dry. Finally Jonah’s handmade present for Granny was finished.

blue

A candle holder.

Getting ready for colder months…

Today we went on a short morning visit to Forge Mill farm and while the kids were playing at the playground I found lots of elderberry bushes around the playground and some of the elderberries were ripe already!! We picked a few and this afternoon we made some flu busting elderberry, honey and ginger syrup. My Grandma used to make elderberry syrup every year (though she used sugar instead of honey) and it was great for preventing flu and very soothing once we had a cold. Reducing the numbers of sniffles and colds that the boys catch this year is my biggest Autumn/Winter goal. Nothing worse than poorly little people.

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I tried this recipe, which looked quite good and included what I wanted to use to make it:

http://wellnessmama.com/1888/elderberry-syrup/

It’s a brilliant recipe! The syrup turned out way better then I expected and it has a great flavour. My children love it -It was hard to pull them away from the jar, they’d be quite happy to drink it all in one sitting! The suggested dose for preventing colds is 1 tsp a day and I think it won’t be easy trying to keep it down to that little amount:)

Granny Square blanket

It’s been over three years since I made this baby blanket for new born Jonah and then to be used by Noah.

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Granny square blankets are brilliant as every square is like a separate little project and it’s so exciting to put them all together to make a woolly cosiness for a little baby. Now it’s time for a new granny square blanket or rather a throw to cover a bare Ikea armchair… I started this morning and this is my first square…. many squares to come and I’m hoping that finding a little bit of time to make one little square will be easier then getting on with a big project.

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