Thursday, September 21, 2006

We went greenlaning on Sunday in Elsie Mo, and returned to Aversley wood which we'd found before but hadn't had time to explore. The weather was gorgeous so we parked up close to the wood for a chilli and pasta lunch before our walk. We were lucky enough to pick loads of blackberries and a good amount of rosehips too. During our picking we saw rabbits being chased by weazles, a creature we haven't seen in the wild before. We also found some hornets enjoying the sap from the trees. Our walk was wonderfully peaceful, through unspoilt woodlands - a perfect afternoon stroll, climbing over fallen trees, investigating spider's webs and listening to the sounds of birds in the trees and the occasional cry from (what we believe) foxes.
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With thanks to the recipes and website provided by Learning Naturally, we have started to make rosehip hearts, which are still drying out in the airing cupboard. The details, together with some other crafts using natural materials, is here. With out left over rosehips I'm going to have a go at making apple and rosehip jelly. I used to make blackcurrant jam in our old house with the glut of blackcurrants we'd have each year from the garden. My first attempts, just after B was born, were fabulous enough to pass on as presents, but the year after things went down hill. The jam started off fine, but ended up rock solid within a day or two!

P had Monday and Tuesday off work. Monday was chores day for P and I, with P helping to sort out K and B's mini films. We've managed to transfer them from camcorder to PC and view them successfully, but B's needs quite a bit of editing which will take some time to do! We'd also like to add some titles and music to the finished version.

Tuesday we decided to spend the day out and about and headed towards Milton Keynes. On the way we stopped off at a nature park along the A421 for lunch (I don't remember the name of it and it's not on the map). Certainly a place worth returning to as it ticked all the boxes for us, cycle paths (and cycle hire), lakes, playground, cafe and park areas using natural resources. Once at MK we did a bit of Ikea shopping and took a peek at Hobbycraft, which, although full of craft items, wasn't as inspirational to K and me as we'd hoped. As we negotiated our way along the H (horizontal) and V (verticle) road grid to find our way out of MK, we were overtaken by a rather nice limo which we reckon held Mr. Robbie Williams heading towards The Bowl for his evening gig. Once out of MK, we drove to Bedford to try out the Oasis Beach Pool. A brilliant fun pool this one, a bit, but not quite as good as, the excellent Coral pool at Bracknell which we'd visited a couple of year's ago. Anyway, for a very reasonable family fee of just over £7.00 we enjoyed 2 1/2 hours of slides, sprays and wave machines. We all had a great time, B loved the wave machine and K loved the slides, especially as she could time herself and try and beat her previous miles per hour!

On Wednesday morning swimming was still the main topic of discussion so I decided to use the swimming pool as a way of understanding depth and measurement, mainly for B, to learn cm to m conversion. We all drew our ideal fun pool design on paper, coloured, labelled and then added our different depths at various points of the drawing. Yesterday we'd noticed that the depth ranged from 0.3m to 1.6m, so this was our guide. B did some conversions of m to cm and cm to m to show he'd understood it all. After this, K and B wanted to use their drawings to produce a 3D version of their pools using junk. This took up all the morning and was good fun, making water slides and different pools. When finished, their small dolls and toy soldiers had a fun time playing in the pools before the cardboard sections gave way!

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K's fun pool drawing

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B's drawing and 3D pool

K and B went to play with friends on Wednesday afternoon and I spent the time to clear K's bedroom, shift around her furniture and give it a much needed clean! It's looking so much better now with all her model horses, stables and scenes off the floor and sitting on a two level coffee table. We now have a good area of carpet that we can see and be able to hoover much easier in future.

Thursday afternoon I kept going with the cleaning bug and gave B's room a good tidy up and hoover. There as a pile of old flour mixed with plastacine left on the carpet after his mini film project which desperately needed hoovering up, and I took the opportunity to really clean his shelves and any working areas. Finished off tidying the front/office room, clearing out some papers that I knew I'd never read through and generally making work spaces neater. Feel much better for all that! This morning, after our normal "work" the children did a bit more of their Discovery stories and B did some of his Star Wars project. We also had a look at some optical illusions in the Usborne Science book and checked out this fun website.

Tomorrow we're going to have a baking day to celebrate the Harvest on Sunday and hopefully, if time is on our side, do an Autumnal painting to celebrate to first day of Autumn on Saturday.
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At 4:01 pm, Blogger Nikki said...

I love your pool drawings/3D pools idea. I grew up in Wokingham/Bracknell and Jon's and my first home was in Warfield Green, just a mile or two from Bracknell's Coral Reef. 'Twas lovely. Miss living there. Feeling very inspired now by your rosehips...will have to go on a nature collection expedition this weekend, I think.

At 10:15 pm, Blogger Classroomfree said...

All sounds lovely :-)


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