Welcome to our blog.

….. We make
….. We explore
….. We nuture

Three children *** One big, grey dog *** Two parents *** Country loving *** Cottage dwelling in the South-West of the UK. That’s us!

We’ve been blogging, about everyday happenings that bring us joy, since January 2010.

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Just a thought….

“A moment spent in wonder is worth a lifetime spent in awe.”

 

Thank you….

  • Merlinda Little The riddles game reminds me of that Tom Hanks film called Da Vinci Code! Its so awesome and sadly I am not very good with... 25 Feb
  • Louisa Your code wheels sound like great fun. My daughter is also fond of riddles and is always testing me with them. I enjoy the thought... 24 Feb
  • Craft Mother Absolutely. It ticks so many boxes but, most importantly, captures their imagination and creativity. Hope your son enjoys it in the future. 24 Feb
  • Craft Mother Never easy, but worth the effort. I need to keep reminding myself. 24 Feb
  • Christy I love the idea of riddle solving and hidden messages. Creative and gets them thinking! I'll definitely be using this when my son is older.... 24 Feb
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Sticky

encouraging children to enjoy nature

An interesting kind of helpful

making-apple-pieI woke up on Sunday, knowing that the apples had to be picked. Collecting windfalls is one thing, but I’d looked up. I knew. There were an amazing number of big apples hanging from the branches. They needed to come down. Continue reading

AlphabetPhoto: D is for…

dunnock nest in handsWe have a nature table. The children love to add their nature finds. Every now and again, the area has to be sorted and carefully cleared of the items that are no longer suitable.

Today I uncovered the dunnock’s nest from last year. We had the best view imaginable of the dunnock pair hopping in and out of the ivy that covered the fence. We could get ready in the morning and watch them from our conservatory, without fear of disturbing them.

We watched them have two broods and, once the area had gone quiet, we peeked. One lone egg remained. So we left it alone, just in case. A few weeks later it was still there. Abandoned.

dunnock nestI love the blue, and the pointed end. Looks almost similar in shape to a cliff laying bird’s egg. The adult birds are brown and ….dare I say it…..a bit dull. Eek! I used to mistake them for house sparrows. Dunnocks are indeed also known as hedge sparrows.

Having watched our pair of dunnocks, I really appreciate how dedicated they were in raising their brood. So cautious. They never flew straight to the nest. Always zig-zagging to try to fool us watchers.

The nest is light to hold. The inside is more spongy than I imagined. A good layer of moss and sheeps wool. The outside is made up of bigger twigs. Including some from our Tamarisk tree. The children love spotting the different building materials that make up the nest.

Joining in with #AlphabetPhoto today. Pop over to PODCast and see the other “Ds”. Any one else chosen D for dunnock?

Homemade bird feeders

peanut and seed pine cone feeder on fig tree 2

In January, we like to reassess the bird feeders in our garden. Some are looking tired, some neglected. With the drop in temperature, the birds need the extra calories, just to get through the nights. We want to help them and attract them to the garden at the same time. Birdwatching is a favourite pastime around here.

making peanut and seed bird feeders using pine cone

Not forgetting that it’s the Big Garden Bird Watch on 24th-25th January. Time to get the birds used to new feeders and encourage the birds to visit. All but the bravest birds, take time to get used to new additions to the garden.

making peanut and seed bird feeders using pine cone 1

Along with all the different styles of feeders in the shops, we love manufacturing our own. Especially out of recycled materials. This weekend, Eldest gathered up pine cones, peanut butter and seeds to make a feeder or two.

peanut and seed bird feeders using pine cone

These are ready to go outside. I can see the sparrows queuing up already.

peanut and seed pine cone feeder on fig tree

Can’t help thinking that this one almost looks like the head of an interesting beastie. Hope it doesn’t scare them away.

homemade recycled bird feeder

This is a feeder, she made in the Autumn. The robins love it. As I write this, I can see one sifting through the seeds, finding a choice morsel.

Although it hangs in a tree that the house sparrows favour (mobs of them), I am yet to see one of them use it. Maybe its the pink or the flavour. Discerning lot, the sparrows! The feeder has weathered amazingly well.

I hope they like the new pine cone feeders. I suspect more will be made.

Anyone else gearing up for the RSPB’s Big Garden Watch?

(Note: if you make a peanut seed feeder, be sure to hang it somewhere that dogs won’t reach. They like them too……apparently)


Linking up with Outdoor Play Party. Go look at the great tips for looking after wildlife this winter.

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