Monday, May 30, 2011

Guest Post on HomeSpun-Threads

As I told you a few posts ago, I am guest posting over at HomeSpun-Threads.

You can see it over here. I completely missed when it was put up and then I have been having trouble getting computer time. (Again!)

Check out the other ideas for the Summer Soiree while you are over there. Heaps of great ideas for entertaining the kids.

Have a great week. Hopefully, I'll be back soon with another post :-)

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Another box cubby house

The latest box cubby house

I love when we get a new appliance that comes in a big cardboard box. These boxes housed our new split system air conditioner. After we watched the electrician drive out of the drive way, Amelia and I raced outside and dragged the boxes inside. I was really hoping the boxes would be left behind. We haven't had a box cubby for a while.

The girls made the window boxes out of rice bubble packets and I struggled with the roof. We did make paper flowers for the window boxes but they didn't survive too long. After the cubby spent about a month inside being used as lots of different things, the girls dragged it outside to use in the yard.

The box cubby outside

It has gotten so cold out now and the kids all have colds so they haven't been able to be playing in it much. It gets dragged under the car port in the late afternoon so it doesn't get wet overnight. Once that happens it will be off to the recycling! Cubby houses are so much fun! Do you make box cubbies at your house?

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Thinking about birthdays

Felt sewing kits for birthdays

Esther and Ellamay are going to be 7 in June. As they are about to be 7, they no longer want "baby stuff". Yikes! Trying to work out what will be good gifts is a bit tricky. I decided to go with some creative gifts. I like to encourage their creativity because I want them to grow up being able to look at something and have the skills to make it themselves if they want to.

Using my vast collection of acrylic felt, I cut out some simple shapes that they can practise their sewing skills on. I also cut out some Little Pink Houses and some owls. Follow the links to find the patterns for them. The owl is actually a pattern for a teething toy. I thought if they don't feel like sewing some of these, the shapes can be glued onto a canvas as a cute picture for the wall. I have packaged each felt project in little click bags and even printed the little house picture out so Esther and Ellamay had a reference for it.

Birthday sewing stuff

These are some other bits and pieces I have bought for their kit. I am including some coloured elastic head bands that they can sew some of the felt shapes onto.

I have also bought some kids stitching books. I will share those another day though. (Need to take more pictures).

Friday, May 20, 2011

Silent listener

The unseen guest

Tim took this photo at the little cottage at Campaspe Run when we were there recently. "God is the head of this house. The unseen guest at every meal. The silent listener to every conversation." What an important thing to remember. God is always there. Mum and Dad have this on their wall too. I saw it every day when I was growing up. I think I get it more now though. God is there not only keeping us in check but taking care of us too.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Scraps of a birthday project

Scraps of felt project

Craftiness! Hooray! I do still have a little bit of craft left in me. I know it's been lacking around here. I hope I have got my groove back now. Esther and Ellamay are turning 7 next month. My wee little babies aren't babies anymore. I have been trying to come up with suitable presents for them but have had a hard time this year. They are getting so grown up apparently.

I have been working on sewing kits for them. It was a great idea because I have such a huge stack of acrylic felt to use up and it is perfect for them to learn to sew with. And I can whittle away the stack. Everybody wins! :-)

My next project is to take photos and post them here so you can look at all the pretties.

Hopefully, I can steal a bit more time on the big computer to do that. :-)

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Summer Soiree at Home Spun-Threads

You might have noticed this button pop up over the side there --->

I am extremely late posting this (of course - still trying to catch up!) but I was asked to do a guest post over on Home Spun-Threads. There is a great craft each day of May, for kids. Now we aren't coming into summer here in Oz but winter. Plenty of these crafts could be used in the winter time too. So pop over and check out all the crafts that are featured. I am going to be up some time next week I think... I have to work out how to send the post first! (Sometimes, I am not so tech savy.) And make sure you visit all the clever people featured.

Royal wedding watching

Did you catch the Royal Wedding at the end of last month? Our little darlings were excited that it was on telly. Can you believe I let them stay up until 10.45  P.M. to watch it?! Madness is what that was. I paid for it the rest of that weekend too. They were a bit tired.
Princess Esther

Amelia dressed up as a princess

Ellamay being a princess

Esther and Ellamay watching Royal wedding

You will have to excuse the mess. In between watching intently on the TV, they were busy making royal flags, playing with Princess Kate paper dolls and Esther made a letter E fascinator which she wore for most of the night. Unfortunately, not in any of my photos :-(.

I painted their nails, they dressed up in sparkly material and we had a royal dinner of chips and pasties. The kids loved it. And the thing about royal weddings? You remember what you were doing when you are older so you can tell the story to your own kids.

I am glad royal weddings don't happen too often :-)

Campaspe Run, Elmore

Wow, do I have the slows lately on posting! The truth is I have to fight to get time on our big beautiful computer because our children all want turns on it. And if it's not them, it is my darling husband. I am stuck with the unreliable dinosaur of a laptop. I think I will put in a suggestion for a nice shiny new one for my birthday or a "just because" kind of thing *grin*.

Anyway, here are some photos of part 2 of our adventure at Elmore from my last post. This place is called Campaspe Run and has a history of the area and the Sunshine harvesters that were invented on a farm in the district.

Wandering with the kids


Old wares
Amelia and Esther in header


Smithy shop

It was an interesting wander. The kids really liked seeing all the "olden days stuff". Especially the old cottage they had set up with old wares, table and bed.

I have so much to catch up with. (Ahhh!!!) I will get another post up later today hopefully. Have a great day!

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Riding on the trains

Family on the train

Over Easter, we had a 5 day long weekend because Easter Monday and Anzac Day fell on the 25th April, which meant we had Tuesday off as well. Does that make sense? We had hoped to go to the Fair in Bendigo but we ended up not making it. My sister-in-law took the 3 kids out on Easter Saturday for a shopping adventure and Tim and I went out (alone!) for lunch and to look at furniture shops. Totally off topic at hand. Sorry. So anyway, because we completely missed the Fair this year, we took the girls to the Elmore Miniature Railway to make it up to them. If you are into trains or even if you aren't this is a great time out. The railway is open on school holidays and weekends. We use to take Esther and Ellamay there when they were little. We haven't been since before Amelia was born.

Esther and Ellamay waiting to leave

I believe the tracks are 1 kilometre long and the ride goes for about 8 minutes. It cost us $10 for the family. Bargain!

Esther waving to other train

Ellamay on train

Amelia on little train

The kids loved it. We went 'round three times. On two different trains.

Round the bend

Back to the station

And back to the station, ready to begin some more fun.

I found a video of the railway on YouTube if you would like to see what it's like there. This was taken a few years ago and I have to say it is much more fun in person :-)

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Train story...

"Please can we go on the other train?"

I am still playing catch up. Isn't this photo too cute! Tomorrow I have an adventure to share about riding on trains at the Elmore Miniature Railway. See you then :-)

Easter egg hunt

Easter hunt

On Easter Sunday, the three girls were treated to an egg hunt in the yard at my in-laws place. The kids do love an egg hunt. Who doesn't? All that chocolate for a reward. Mmm... There was the usual mad rush around trying to get as many eggs as they could get their little hands on.

Egg hunt rewards

A little bit of comparing to see who did the best.

Esther with her eggs

Ellamay with her egg bucket

Amelia and her egg bucket

And then of course, proudly showing off the haul.

Empty capsules after Easter

If you are wondering about this photo, these are empty capsules for Amelia's enzymes she has to take whenever she eats anything with fat in it. One part of having Cystic Fibrosis means that Amelia cannot digest fat which is why she must take these enzymes. Amelia has one capsule per 4-5 grams of fat. I saved most of the capsules for the day to see how many she had taken. I think we are about 5 short. She would normally have between 10 and 14 in a regular food day. Easter Sunday she had approximately 20 and most of that was for chocolate. After studying the nutritional information on Easter eggs so much now, it almost makes me feel bad about eating chocolate. Almost. :-)

3D Easter eggs that became other things...

Okay. I know Easter was last month now. You will just have to smile politely while I catch up :-) Got your smiles on? Here goes the first of the late Easter posts. Call it preparation for next year.

This craft is from the Disney Family Fun website. If you haven't seen this site before, it is an excellent resource for kids crafts.

3d Easter egg craft

This is the one I made. It started off being Amelia's but she lost interest because it was "a bit too twicky, Mummy". We decided to make them with only two sides of the folded paper because it was a bit harder than we thought it was going to be. The one I made could hang on the art string in the kitchen easier then too.

Ellamay and the bunny house

Ellamay and Esther both turned theirs into bunny houses. Ellamay's had staircases and striped floor boards.

Esther and the bunny house

Esther went with pink flooring.

Bunny in the house

And a bunny inside. The photo below he was having a sleep I think. He looks a little sick. Perhaps too many Easter eggs?

Esther's finished bunny house

Ellamay ended up creating a pathway off the side of her egg bunny house.

Ellamay's finished bunny house

They dreamed up all kinds of stories to go with them too. I think they had a lot more fun making these than playing with them. And a lot more fun making them this way than the original idea. It's great to see the kids take an idea and make it their own.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Pretty cottons and other distractions

Pretty cottons

Hi. I didn't mean to have a blogging break for so long. It just kind of happened. I am mid-craft so many things at the moment. Aside from the crafty things, I am trying to get back into the decluttering of the house again. I was going strong and then one thing and another came up... like boredom. :-) I have managed to get rid of quite a few more bags of old clothes and toys though. I have a goal in mind now so I must get serious about it. More on that later.

The kids holidays finished just after Easter. School holidays were quite full on here. Heaps of kids making. Easter crafts and anything else they could come up with. We even managed an adventure. It's good to get back to some kind of routine though.

I have just picked up a stitching project again which I started a while ago. I am having trouble concentrating on it though. A lot of sleepless nights lately. Amelia has a cough again and so I have spent a lot of nights up with her lately.

Lately, we have had sick and miserable kids - the wintery weather has brought with it the coughs and colds we hate. The kids have been creating - I have been working on lots of things for the kids to do on the pump with Amelia. Tim has been crazy busy trying to catch up at work because of all the short weeks because of public holidays around Easter. And there has been a lot of changes going on around here one way and another.

I have been completely distracted lately too because I have been googling around for inspirations for a renovation. We are planning to start working on our house, room by room, to update everything and make it lovely. Tim has started building Esther and Ellamay some loft beds which will help with the limited storage situation at our house. I am very excited and so are the girls. And I think Tim is loving to be out in his shed again.

Anyway. I should go and do something else. So many things to do and so little time. Sigh. I will be catching up with posts in the next few days (hopefully) about our Easter and adventures.