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Category: Arts & Craft

Driftwood Christmas decorations

I recently posted an article on how to make a felt Christmas tree decoration. And this is following the same suit, but using a bit of nature too.

When Christmas was in my sights, and I could begin making things, (without looking like a crazed Christmas elf) I hunted around my ever-growing craft cupboard, to see what I could find. I came across a big bag of ribbons, and the lightbulb went off. I remembered seeing online – probably Pinterest – a type of driftwood and ribbon decoration. So next trip to the beach, I got my little Christmas helpers to find as many small sticks as possible. Now I asked for sticks, and I got an array of blades of grass, flowers and branches, and the odd few that were perfect!

I think this has to be my easiest, and my favourite decoration I’ve made over the years – it just looks so pretty!

All you need is some ribbon, string or hemp twine, and small pieces of wood – I used driftwood, but if you’re not by the beach you could find any that you like, just as long as it doesn’t bend.

Homemade felt Christmas tree decorations!

Christmas is almost here!! I love this time of year, even though its hard being away from family in the UK! When my Husband and I moved over here 5.5 years ago, we had no Christmas decorations – we wanted them to grow organically, not buy them all in our first year.

Top 5 Eco – Easter ideas

Easter for many kids has turned into the green light for eating as much chocolate as possible, and it’s easy to see why parents buy into it and let them have this day of indulgence – we love seeing our kids happy.

I didn’t come from a family that gave out lots of eggs. My brother and I got one egg each, which was plenty even though at the time I’m sure I wished there were more!

With our two being only 3 they’re still unaware of Easter, and what it means to some people. We feel like we’re at a good age with them to start as we mean to go on.

As a Vegan family Easter is always going to be a little harder – or easier, it depends how you look at it – Sure you can get dairy free eggs, but not as readily. And giving 3-year-old twins Dark chocolate is not the best idea, especially after dinner!

I’m not here to tell you what is right or wrong, as there’s neither. I’m going to go through a few ideas on how you can make Easter not just about chocolate.

1. A great company I’ve just recently come across is Eco eggs. These Easter eggs are made from a non toxic plastic that’s derived from plants. They are 100% compostable and open up so you can fit treasures inside.

Eco eggs

I love the idea of these as you can use them year after year, and you can think of your own little surprises to put inside. If you’re wanting to avoid chocolate and sweets altogether, here are some ideas on what you could put in them.

Micro machine cars would be heaven for Bert, he’d love them over chocolate any day.

micro machines

A few coins here and there, kids love getting pocket-money and this would feel like such a bonus to get cash.

Pocket money

Crazy shaped natural crayons would be fun, you’d just have to buy one pack and your sorted.

Crazy crayons

There are any number of small toys that your child might be into. My two love playing with little toys, I’m not sure if it’s just because they’re little and it’ll change once they get bigger, but for now they love anything tiny.Tiny toys

You could also put food in there is you wanted, like chocolate coated sultanas, nuts, dried fruit, popcorn, berries or a little sweet like a jelly baby.

2. Last year the kids had an Easter egg hunt, and we used Nacido’s shaker eggs as a part of it. As the kids were only just 2 they didn’t know that chocolate eggs were normally the prize!

Nacido egg3. You could also make your own eggs! I know it sounds a little trickier than it actually is. I came across this recipe for Healthy Oatmeal Peanut Butter Eggs, and they do look pretty scrummy.

Peanut butter easter eggs

4. If you’re wanting to dye your eggs for a hunt or as decoration there are a few brands that have great eco natural dyes. Eco-kids do a lovely egg colouring kit with all the dyes made from organic fruit and veggies. Glob colors are also a brand with a great natural egg colouring kit.

eco eggs

5. If you’re a Vegan family or someone has an egg allergy in your house, EggNots are a fun and realistic way of getting the look and feel that you want – traditional chicken egg without the chicken! They’re made from a dyeable ceramic product so will last well and look lovely.

eggnots

 

At the end of the day, Easter is about (If you’re not religious) having fun and making the most of spending time together.  There are lots of alternative ways to enjoy Easter, without as much chocolate.

Makedo – Let your imagination come to life

Most people are aware that one of the most important parts of a child’s upbringing is Play. Children learn vast amounts about themselves, others and the world – real and imaginary – this creates the back bone of our generations to come. Nurturing this in my eyes is essential and SO MUCH FUN (not only for the kids)!

Makedo are encouraging us to reuse and recycle what would normally be thrown out – boxes, paper cups, toilet rolls, tissue boxes, the list is endless – they have enabled kids to truly Make what their imaginations can see.

There are two sorts of kits you can buy, the ‘Make anything kits’ which is where you do exactly that – you get a safe-saw, pins, clips and lock hinges along with a poster of inspiration, and you let your imagination run wild and free. The ‘Guided kits’ are filled with the same parts – along with card cut outs to use for example a Robot, Aeroplane and Monster faces to name a few.

This is the ‘Make anything Kit’

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These are some of the ‘Guided Kits’

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Here are some of the amazing ideas you can make.

Makedo_Robot_Ezra02_300dpi-960x1356

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mymakedo.com

How to turn a tin into a drum for the kids – or you!

I was out shopping with the kids the other day and popped into the local toy store for some inspiration, I saw these really sweet little drums that were so funky but also pretty expensive – I started to think maybe I could make one (I have these thoughts about a lot of things, it doesn’t always pan out!). When I got home I had a look to see what we had around the house that could be turned into a drum, and I found it!

What you will need –

  • A tin of any size (Larger is better though)
  • Tin opener
  • Fabric of your choice
  • Faux or real leather
  • Thin rope
  • PVA glue
  • Scissors
  • I didn’t use Eyelet Pliers to make the holes in the leather, but I think next time I will as it’ll make the drum stronger and last longer.

Open both side of the tin with the tin opener, draw around tin onto the back of leather and cut about 2 inches out, do this twice.

drum

Make small snips with scissors around outside of leather.

drum1

Cut fabric to the size of the tin and glue down with PVA.

drum2

Thread rope through holes and tie off.

drum3

Bring it all together by placing your leather on each end of the tin, thread rope from top to bottom and tighten as you go.

drum4