Thursday, 30 September 2010

Autumn Gnome Giveaway Winner!

The lucky winner of the gnomes is:

Twig and Toadstool !

Well done ladies!
Thank you to all who entered and a big thank you to Knittingmomma for 
offering these lovely things!

Wednesday, 29 September 2010


It's Michaelmas today.
It's the first time we have celebrated it.
You can find out lots of information here on a great post by Twig and Toadstool.

This is our table setting for Michaelmas.
I made the dragon out of felt after reading this at Rhythm of the Home.
It took a few evenings.
The beeswax candle was made by Big Seed.

I bought the wooden fire from Rjabinnik at Etsy.
I liked the link with dragon breathing fire and Big Seed is also into playing with fire engines.
It will be useful for storytelling this season.

Big Seed is too young to understand the real story behind Michaelmas,
and he is scared of dragons and we kept it very simple.

Here is his happy dragon painting.
What you say? It looks like a fish?
That's because he painted over his legs!

He didn't want a dragon story tonight so we played his current favourite game.
A pot of wooden acorns and a pot of real acorns.
( The block in the middle of the pic is purely artistic, placed there by Big Seed).
Roll a dice and put that number in your opponent's pot.
The winner is the first to empty their pot.

Happy Michaelmas to you


Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Gnomes, Watercolours and Diamonds

Our Autumn Gnomes have arrived from Rjabinnik at Etsy.
I absolutely adore these creatures, they are so beautiful!

The gnomes asked Big Seed to make them an Autumn watercolour, so he did.

He used the pipette technique he is fond of.

Then the gnomes wanted to show us a secret place in the garden,
some real Autumn treasures...

Tiny dewdrops all around these Lady's Mantle leaves
sparkling like real diamonds.
It was such a surprise to see on our wander round the garden.

I have had this in the garden for years and never noticed this before.

What magic will you see tomorrow in unexpected places?

Friday, 24 September 2010

Classifying Leaves And Sorting Autumn Treasures

This is one of the best leaf activities we have done yet.
We used the leaves collected in our Autumn bag from our trip and sorted them by type using special cards.

I printed 2 of these sheets from here and laminated them.

I use one as a base card and one cut up into individual cards.
We play a matching game with these cards usually.

Then I laid the cards out for Big Seed to classify the leaves.

Then he sorted his other treasures.
It's more fun than sorting pictures.
He was totally absorbed.

Thursday, 23 September 2010

Autumn Equinox : Harvest T-Shirt And A Garden Feast

Today is the Autumn Equinox and I am waiting for a red moon to appear if the clouds will disappear.
We made preparations all day and celebrated our real harvest.

Inspired by Twig And Toadstool, we made use of discarded veg tops
and printed this Harvest T-shirt.
We used an apple, Summer squash, sweet red pepper, carrots and courgettes to print this
with fabric paints.
All except the pepper were from our garden.
Big Seed wore this with pride for supper.

Big Seed harvesting some apples from our small tree.

We used those apples to make this homely apple cake.

What could be more appropriate than a rainbow of roasted vegetables from our garden?

With sausages and homemade apple sauce.

Here is our table decorated for the Harvest Feast.
Flowers from the garden, a few things from our Autumn box, beeswax candles
and Big Seed's leaf hat he made to wear with his t-shirt.

(Yeah I know it looks a bit much with that wallpaper, but I didn't know
I would be doing all this stuff when we put the wallpaper up.
White walls next time.)

Wine from our grapes grown in the greenhouse.
This stuff is seriously we sip it out of shot glasses,
or we would fall asleep on our plates!

Enjoy your harvest...and look out for the red moon!


Tuesday, 21 September 2010

Autumn Sensory Box

It has finally all come together..
at last The Autumn Sensory Box,
as a gift to Big Seed to celebrate Autumn Equinox.

Inspired by Counting Coconuts, I emptied the sand from the box and filled it
with Autumnal delights.

1 set of silk leaves of various colours
1 set of brown paper leaves for scrapbooking
Leaf buttons all from Ebay

7 needle felted acorns made by myself

10 needle felted apples by myself in a wooden bowl

Leaf cookie cutters from CSN Stores

Wooden apple from Ebay

Gorgeous knitted apples from Grandma Seed in a knitted pouch.

Toy hedgehog found by chance in the shop at the Welsh National Botanic Gardens
Always a lovely day out there.

Little box with mirror and wooden squirrel to hide inside

Autumn Gnome made by myself, real cones and felt pumpkins from a local toy shop.

I adore these wooden acorns from Etsy shop Natural Kids & Toys

I added a strawberry huller ( like tweezers) and a yellow Chinese soup spoon,
cinnamon sticks, and some real acorns.

I covered the box with our new Autumn silk from Beneath The Rowan Tree.

Then we gathered round to see his face when he lifted it.
He loved it...well what kid wouldn't?

Many of these objects have dual purposes to justify being bought.
The wooden acorns, apples, buttons, etc will be used in counting games.
The leaves and buttons will be used for sorting activities.
The Autumn silk is used a great deal in dressing up as King Autumn Gnome and for storytelling.
The cutters for playdough, cooking, and roleplay.
Wooden animals for imaginary play and storytelling.

You can alternatively make a natural sensory box from real leaves and treasures for free.

Homeschooling can be really beautiful!

Have you entered our Autumn Gnome Giveaway here?

abc button

Monday, 20 September 2010

Autumn Gnome Giveaway Time !

The gorgeous Etsy shop Knittingmomma is kindly offering
a Rainbow Autumn Gnome 
and a Surprise Gnome
for our Autumn giveaway.

All you mums have to do is to have a browse around Knittingmomma and leave a comment
about your favourite item from her Etsy shop on this blog.
The lucky winner will be drawn on the 30th September.
Don't forget to include your name/codename.
One entry per person.

Good luck ladies and keep spreading the gnome love around the world!


Sunday, 19 September 2010

Our Autumn Table

Now that my camera is back I can show you our Autumn Table.

Along with the squirrel, hedgehog, gnomes, etc, Big Seed chose 
some orange lolly sticks and 2 orange cars.
This reminds me that it is HIS table really, and if this is his interpretation of autumn colours,
I can go with it.

This is his collection of Autumn crystals.
We are so lucky to have a crystal shop open up in such a small neighbourhood!

Feel free to share your link of your autumn table


Wet Felted Tree and Necklace

I had a go at a does look more like a Winter tree
but it is an Autumn one with the leaves all blown off. (Well, that's my excuse!)

I turned it into a game with some needlefelted apples.
I just cannot for the life of me make wet felted balls.

Big Seed made this necklace.
He made some wet felted sausages which he calls chogs...
no, I don't know why either.
I cut them for him as it's quite difficult and we threaded them together.

abc button

Friday, 17 September 2010

Putting Feelers Out For An Autumn Swap

I am loving the photos on people's blogs of Autumn Swaps.
I am going to take the plunge and put feelers out for crafty people interested in a small swap.
I have not done this before so any help would be appreciated.
Leave me a comment or email me at with your name, and also
your country.
We are in the UK but we maybe able to do this internationally.

Here's hoping something will come of this


Speaking of crafty do you like Little Seed's Autumn socks?
Of course Big Seed wanted his socks in the picture too.

Thanks Grandma Seed!

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Autumn Collecting Bag

Big Seed used fabric paints to print leaves onto a cloth bag.
He also used acorn "hats" to print circles.
We drew a hedgehog and squirrel and plum tree on the back with fabric crayons.

We went out today and collected some Autumn treasure.

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Apple Tree T-Shirt

Here is my first attempt at applique.
I made Big Seed an apple tree t-shirt as it's so appropriate this month.

His favourite t-shirt has a button on it and he is about to grow out of it,
so it inspired me to make him this one.

With cute apple buttons.
Sorry this picture refuses to rotate the right way but you get the idea.

Got some nice ideas for other applique projects,
I now wonder why I didn't try this years ago!

Science With Milk

I saw this post here and after I saw the video on it
we HAD to do this.

You just need colouring drops, and a cotton bud dipped in washing-up liquid.
Then watch the colours swirl and move away from the cotton bud.

It's really fun...we had to do it 3 times in a row.



Friday, 10 September 2010

We Are Officially Homeschooling

We have finally made a firm decision to keep Big Seed happy and homeschool him in my
Steiner/Montessori/relaxed way.
It's definitely the right thing to do for now.
Last term I was homeschooling him part-time, but the summer break
has been too long and he is not happy going again.

So we are really getting into the swing of things now and it's fantastic!
Sigh of relief.

But my camera is broken so we will be taking a bit of a blogging break for a week
until it comes back.


Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Z is for zebra

Big Seed has a fixation on the letter Z.
So we wrote some with lolly sticks...
( I wrote z in pencil for him to place the sticks upon)

We drew zebras which led to this...

which led to this...

domino zebra stripes.

Monday, 6 September 2010

Tactile Wooden Alphabet

I will say that I dabble in Montessori because I don't follow
it strictly to the letter but I really like some of the ideas they use.
I also find it very expensive to do at home if you live in the UK because there is only
one major supplier, unlike the US.

I really like the wooden movable alphabet.
I bought this from here for £12, which is good value as you get about 6 of each letter.
Daddy Seed made the box which I am so pleased with (or they are expensive).

Big Seed sees them displayed like this and immediately wants to play with them.
He thinks it's another game and enjoys feeling them.

(I have never come across these in any mainsteam school, probably due to the expense as pieces probably get lost. So sad as it helps to make sense of word building. I also wonder if this would encourage boys who are not drawn to writing, as this makes it more physical.)

I gathered some objects together and I also placed the initial sounds on the table
for Big Seed to match up.
To my surprise he did them all correctly first time. So we are now building an alphabet box.

You can do all these activities with a printed out alphabet and images from the internet.

Then he moved onto something simple...
Sorting pompoms into silicon cupcake holders with a strawberry huller.
These are easier to use than tweezers.
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