Welcome to our blog.

..... We craft
..... We garden
..... We explore
..... Nature inspired

Three children *** Two dogs *** Two parents *** Country loving *** Cottage dwelling in the South-West of the UK. That's us!

We've been blogging since January 2010.

Children

Eldest: 12 yo daughter

Middle: 10 yo daughter

Youngest: 7 yo son

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Mission

We strive to be self sufficient. We love living in the countryside and enjoy nature. We'd rather be searching for beetles than shopping for shoes. We take inspiration from the nature all around us. We like to spread happiness and share our skills.

Just a thought….

"A moment spent in wonder is worth a lifetime spent in awe."

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Hello World

I love reading your comments

  • sustainablemum Hope you have a lovely holiday with the children. Enjoy your Christmas! 21 Dec
  • se7en Did I ever mention that I just love your dog!!! Wishing you the very best holidays, sounds like a you have fun days ahead!!! 21 Dec
  • Crafting Mother Really fun to have such a selection to play with. Usually I know what I want to make and then sort out supplies. Fun exercise... 19 Dec
  • Crafting Mother And she won a prize for it! So pleased as it was her own creation. Apart from the scarf. 19 Dec
  • Crafting Mother It really didn't occur to me until I stood back and saw the finished jumper. Influences really do creep up. 19 Dec
  • melissa what a fun project!! i like all the little festive bits and bobs! 18 Dec

Joining in 2014

Crafts on Sea

Read the Printed Word!
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TOTS100 - UK Parent Blogs
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Makes me smile

"God has an inordinate fondness for stars and beetles."

- J B S Haldane

Bug of the moment - Mayfly

Photos

There have been cases when people lifted my photos and words, and used them without credit to me or asking permission first. Using them for their own commercial gain. I have now added a level of security to deter people from doing this. Apologies to people who do play nicely. If you would like to use any of my photos, please contact me.

Copyright notice:

All my words and photos are copyrighted to me. They cannot be used for commercial benefit by anyone else. If you would like to use any of them, then please ask me first and don't just take. Written permission only. Don't pass my words, photos or ideas off as your own. It's not nice.

..making a list and checking it twice..

Christmas homemade and homegrown wreath

Last day of term. Getting the last urgent items off my desk. Checking I’ve everything in place for all the craft activities we have in store. Double checking events we don’t want to miss. It’s a day of lists. Ticking off and adding new items.

winter solstice children craft activities

If we were to be snowed in (sigh. unlikely), the freezer is full and store cupboard ready. The wood pile is stacked. I have craft activities for every day, so no need to be bored. Winter solstice and Christmas are covered.

winter craft activities

A new piano carol book has arrived, so I am expecting lots of homemade music. Books. Seasonal reading at the ready. Baking, sewing, making…. Outdoor activities too, although I know the first week they’ll just want to be home.

waiting

I know this girl is looking forward to them being around. She enjoys their dashing around and busy natures. Little hands are always full of treats too, according to her. (hmm)

So the list is growing, but items are being ticked off. Roll on end of school. I’m ready. (almost)

Check back as we’ll be sharing our seasonal craft activities over the week. Lots, I hope.


 

Forgot to mention that the wreath at top is the willow wreath I made a few weeks ago. Now decorated entirely with nature from our garden – pine cones, acorn caps and holly. Even the willow base is from our tree. Something rather satisfying about the idea that we grew it all.


 

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A wintery centre piece for our table

winter table centre piece 1

The house is decorated. Bits and pieces of homemade fun are added on a daily basis. Except our kitchen table remains bare. The kitchen is the heart of our home. We eat at the table, complete homework, and craft there too. It is constantly being cleared and then covered again. Alas, nothing stays still. I needed something special.

winter table centre piece 2

I was lucky to hear about the Country Basket’s Festive Face-off competition. I was sent a selection of crafting bits and pieces to inspire. I love the combination of white and green. Reminds me of the snow on trees. And I am sucker for snow scenes!

winter table centre piece 3

I love the little wire balls. They can be carefully opened to add things into . I thought it would be fun to add some of my festive acorn caps, I’ve been working on. Also by threading the silvery hearts onto to the wire flower stem, I could make a slightly different flower. And this is what I particularly like about a centre piece. It should make you look twice. Maybe ponder but I really like not making it matchy-matchy. A more organic arrangement.

winter table centre piece 4

So here is the wintery centre piece that will be gracing our table this winter.

Disclaimer: Country Baskets sent me (thank you) a selection of festive decorations free of charge, in order to enter the competition.

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Christmas Jumper Day

Homemade Christmas Jumpers

Seeing one of the children rushing out of school, clutching a note, has one of three effects on me. A sense of dread (small slip of paper, typically, letting you know that they have unwelcome guests in the classroom  – nits), sense of the inevitable  (sponsorship or school trip requests – reach for purse, again) or sense of joy (a creative challenge -Yeh!) I love the latter, but I guess it might make other parents groan and, again, reach for their purses/wallets.

fox christmas jumper

This year, the primary school is joining in with Save the Children’s Christmas Jumper Day. Just as I was bemoaning the fact that all my children are now too old to be in the nativity play. The thought of no costume making this year. Instead I had jumper-making to look forward to and plus its a charity I like.

Youngest was easy. Finally settled on using an old jumper of his which had a fox on it. He helped design, but was happy for me to do most of the work! I stitched on the words. Ummed and Ahhed over “Xmas” or “Christmas” but time became a factor. The jaunty Christmas hat, which is perfect for a sneaky fox, came from a toddler jumper I hand knitted years ago and then felted (sob). The white feather boa was left over from an angel outfit from years ago.

He’s happy.

polar bear christmas jumper

Middling wanted to do her own. We found a slightly too big jumper, but lovely festive colour, for her to use. She raided my scrap bag and sequin box, and went for it. I offered to knit her the scarf, but the rest is all hers. This morning I suggested she used some of my 3-D fabric paint to add snow to some of the trees. Five minutes before we left for school, as I stood, using the hair dryer to make the paint set, I did wonder if I should keep my creative suggestions to myself.

She went off happy.

I’m pleased that the school encouraged the children to make their own. They could either wear a shop bought jumper or have fun designing their own, so no-one should feel left out. (Unless they forgot. Like I do sometimes.) My children had fun, and this morning ran into school, clutching their donation money.

(No nits or purses were harmed in this activity)

Are you sporting a Christmas jumper today?

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