Archive for the ‘for the seasons’ Category

Christmas Jumper Day

Wednesday, December 14th, 2016

Make your own Christmas jumper

My 7 year old decorated her Disana merino jumper for Christmas Jumper Day on the 16th. Here's what we did to ensure the jumper would go back to the same favourite everyday jumper it was, and make it easy to re-Christmas it or another jumper next year.  

 

red-disana_jumper

 

 

  • She came up with line/pattern design based on other Christmassy patterns she'd seen. 
  • Using wool she'd carded, she needle felted the Christmas trees and snowmen onto a piece of felt.

felting-trees

 

  • We then stitched on some other embellishments she had in her sewing/jewelry box.
  • She plaited some merino tops for cuffs.

plattingwool

  • I carefully tacked on the piece of felt and the cuffs to the jumper so as not to damage the jumper and to make it easy to snip off after Christmas.

finishedjumper_square

Christmas Crafts

Thursday, December 3rd, 2015

Making decorations is one of our favourite things to do. Here are some of my favourites this year. Hammering wild carrot Christmas trees into cloth is a fun thing for children to do. They can come out looking great too.12314091_10153371944413722_4033771897848355208_nYou can make some beautiful decorations using cinnamon and dried fruit. Simply slice the fruit thinly and dry in the oven at around 80C for an hour on each side. Then children can string them with cranberries and cinnamon sticks.

I love this twig wreath and will dig out the drift wood I've saved since a holiday in Cornwall.
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Finally if you have accidentally shrunk some jumpers or they are too old and holey to pass on this is a nice way to upcycle them and make your house feel warm.enhanced-buzz-30374-1354550934-4

 

 

Simple midsummer celebrations and children’s crafts

Wednesday, July 3rd, 2013

Midsummer flowers in white and green - time to celebrate the summer with your children!

Midsummer isn't just one day, it's that glorious couple of weeks at the end of June/beginning of July when the whole earth just seems to blossom in white and green and gold. How wonderful and natural to want to celebrate!

We had a midsummer picnic at the weekend and it was so lovely, fun and full of happiness that I wanted to share the simple things we did.   It can be adapted for almost any time of year too. (more…)

Ten wonderful things about cycling!

Thursday, June 20th, 2013

I love working at Cambridge Baby for so many reasons, the biggest being the wonderful people here. But one reason struck me even before walking through the front door. I can cycle here.

After years of commuting on stuffy buses I can merrily propel myself through the countryside over the commons, through the buttercups and past the cows to work. One of the wonderful things about Cambridge as a city is that so many people cycle to get around.

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Martinmas

Sunday, November 11th, 2012

Martinmas is on November 11th. It's my favourite festival that my daughter celebrates at Kindergarten. St Martin was famous for cutting his cloak in half with his sword and giving half to a beggar to save him from freezing.  Legend has it that, the following night, Christ appeared to Martin in a dream dressed in the piece of cloak Martin had cut. “All Year Round” - a lovely book about celebrating the seasons with your family - says

“Martin’s half cloak brought hope and comfort to the beggar-his compassionate gesture may warm us also, and protect us from wintry despair.”

Image of Martinmas Lanterns - from http://thewonderofchildhood.com/2011/10/martinmas-lantern-walk/

To celebrate Martinmas, we carry home-made candle lanterns as a symbol of the small light we can shine into the dark world.  There are links to making your own lantern below. Families join together for a lantern walk through the woods, and the candlelight and song make the experience a magical one for everyone. This year for us it was very special - the teachers had strung candle lanterns on the trees, lighting the path we followed as it wound through the woodland.  We rested under a the spreading branches of a sheltering tree, and the children gathered round to hear the story of St Martin, and each received their own gift of home-made biscuits. Here  is one version of a  St Martins Song that they sing
I walk with my little lantern, My lantern travels with me. Above the stars are shining, And down below shine we. Shine bright my light! All through the night! Rabimmel, rabammel, rabum. Shine bright my light! All through the night! Rabimmel, rabammel, rabum.

Lantern Ideas

This  is a tutorial for the leaf lantern. My children age 3 and 18 months loved scribbling with wax crayons and collecting the leaves yesterday. The best bit is it looks wonderful no matter how crazy the scribbling as long as you get loads of wax on there. http://bebehblog.com/leaf-lanterns-ive-officially-become-a-crazy-craft-blogger/ Here is a german website full of lantern ideas, there are also lots on pinterest. http://www.kikisweb.de/spezial/stmartin/Laternen/laternen.htm

Sharing ideas

To encourage sharing, try a special Martinmas breakfast of a croissant or bread that can be cut in half and shared with the person next to you, to remind us of St Martin cutting his cloak in half and giving it away, and to value community and the gifts we all bring to others. Given that wool coats last through many children,  Martinmas is a good day to hand on coats that your family have grown out of to a new family to enjoy.  No need to cut them in half though! There are more nice ideas at The Wonder Of Childhood's Martinmas post - here.

Wrap up Warm

Finally here are are a few tips to keep you warm if you go on a lantern walk.
  • Wool socks inside boots for children and grown-ups (even if the boots leak or feet get wet, they'll still be warm and cosy).

We love Autumn!

Thursday, September 6th, 2012

This morning was a beautiful crisp blue morning and the hedgerows were full of delicious blackberries. This afternoon we definitely have a taste of an Indian summer. These Blackberry Ice Lollies are perfect for sunny September days like today. 275g of blackberries 375g of Organic Natural Yoghurt 3 tbsp of honey/sugar (optional) 1. Whiz the blackberries in a blender 2. Mix the honey and yoghurt 3. Fold the blackberries and yoghurt together 4. Put into lolly moulds and freeze until solid ( roughly seven hours) Speaking of purple things... For when it gets a wee bit chillier these beautiful hooded wool coats will make all little girls feel like something out of a fairytale.

We’ve been searching for lovely clothes to catch those first falling leaves. My favourite is this soft wool skirt from FUB. My little girl loves to twirl and this skirt twirls!!! Its gorgeously soft and its perfect for playing in the autumn leaves - because its Merino wool you can just brush the dirt off.

Enjoy this magical time of year.