Friday, 18 April 2014

Easter Bird Feeders

I've wanted to make these bird feeders with the kids for ages as I think they're brilliant - a really clever yet very simple idea, so this afternoon we gathered up the necessary equipment and made our very own Easter themed bird feeders to hang out in the garden. Since the children have been so enthusiastic about our garden work, I thought that this would be the ideal activity to carry that on and really keep them interested.

You'll need bird seed, twine, cookie cutters (we used our Easter themed cutters in keeping with the season!) and some gelatine, as well as some water, an old baking tray, and some greaseproof paper. Typically I have just run out of greaseproof paper so we just used some tin foil.

Make up the gelatine as per the packet instructions, and then stir in your bird seed. Lay your cookie cutters on the tray and half fill with the mixture, before adding your twine loops in to the middle and filling the rest of the way with the bird seed, being sure to press it in firmly.
Leave them to dry overnight (turning occasionally), then simply pop out of the cookie cutter moulds and hang them out in the garden for the birds to enjoy.


This post is inspired by an idea from Pretty Prudent.

Thursday, 17 April 2014

Easter Egg Decorating

HRS UK invited us to design our very own Easter eggs using the fab Cocoapod chocolate egg decorating kit, so we've been busy doing just that.

It proved to be a very popular activity with my kids and although we started out with a large quantity of sweets, the amount soon dwindled as the kids each had a turn at creating their own design - rather unsurprisingly, I wouldn't have expected anything different!

The girls designs (E at the top, A below)

Unfortunately our egg got a bit 'scrambled' (badoom-tish) in the post, but it didn't make a difference to our enjoyment of the activity & the kids came up with some very eye-catching & unique creations using the sweets provided.

L & H's designs - H at the top, L below

It was good fun and encouraged the kids to really get creative, I have to say that they rather enjoyed eating their efforts afterwards too so it was a win/win situation! The design below is our joint family effort, of sheep grazing in a field next to a river, enjoying the Spring sunshine.

This is our entry for the HRS UK easter egg decorating competition.
All links are no-follow.

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

A Favourite Place. #theGallery

We're lucky enough to live in the beautiful West Country - surrounded by rolling hills and stunning countryside but just within a stone's throw of Bath and Bristol, and only an hour-ish drive from the beach.

There are lots of places I enjoy visiting locally but I have to say, my favourite has to be the White Horse at Westbury. There are stunning views, wide open spaces for the kids to run around & kick a ball or fly a kite, and a lovely walk around the top of the hill - perfect for a Spring or Summer evening.

It's breathtaking at sunset, we like to go late afternoon so we can enjoy the last of the day's warmth, & watch the sun go down before we head home.

Sticky Fingers Photo Gallery

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Little Green Fingers

While green fingers certainly run in my family, unfortunately it seems to have missed me completely. With that said, out of my own five children it appears that it is H in particular who has inherited the love of gardening from my father & grandfather, and he has been taking pride in potting his own plants and seeds since we started working on the garden.

We bought him a little four-tier greenhouse for him to keep all of his seeds and things in, and A helped him build it & put it out in the garden. Unfortunately we had a minor mishap with a freak gust of wind catching it & knocking it over, which meant he lost all of his newly planted seeds and a tray. He was so upset about bless his heart, so I helped him repot the Pansies & Violas and then we took him to buy new seeds & trays to replace them.

He's been sure to add extra weight to it to keep it steady this time, as clearly we didn't add enough the first time! But it seems like it will hold now so fingers crossed it doesn't happen again. He's bought some more Pansy seeds, and he also chose some Mint to grow this time, too. Perfect for mojitos...

The Mister has been busy digging out old tree stumps and levelling out other areas of the garden ready for our new pots, and pebbles for our 'garden of remembrance' for our hamsters, Sparky & Cannonbolt. The ground isn't suitable for planting at the side of the house so we'll just decorate it with pots, stones, and other knick-knacks instead.

The kids have potted up lots of lovely plants ready to decorate the garden with, and they've been taking
good care of them until the patio & tiered areas are ready for them. H is first out there with the watering can in the mornings (which he then has to wrestle with E for) and it's good to see them taking an interest.

My sister J has shown me some lovely free-standing planters which are ideal for planting veg, so I think that will be my next plan, depending on how our Summer flowers go. It'd be lovely to "grow our own" and like I said, I am rubbish at it but now H is keen I think I'll let him have a go! He & my nephew S (9) seem to be the able gardeners, maybe it just skipped a generation!

Hopefully in the coming months we should have some beautiful borders & pots full of Victoria Cross Poppies, Desert Bluebells, Sweet Peas, Black Velvet Gladioli, Anemones, and Pansies provided all goes well, and with the kids being this keen to take care of them I have high hopes for a garden bursting with colour come the Summertime.

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