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Puddlesuits and Wellyboots

The weather lately has been atrocious. Cold, windy, wet, and even a slight of sprinkle of snow the other day. We’ve hibernated away in the warmth of our lounge for a long time now and I think we were all starting to get a bit of cabin fever!

We live practically smack bang in the middle of Birmingham, but luckily have quite a few lovely parks around us so in the summer we were out and about in the garden or the park as often as we could.

Anyway, back to this week. We were getting fed up of being inside, so on Sunday we dressed up in coats, puddlesuits and wellies and went for a walk. We walked to our local cemetery, which sounds morbid but is a lovely peaceful place where the kids can have a walk and because there’s lots of trees, its great for collecting leaves, conkers, twigs and all sorts of interesting bits! We also always go and visit the grave of some of my family buried there. The paths are very bumpy so lots of deep puddles for the kids to have a jump and paddle in! We’ve taught the kids to respect where they are, so they know not to trample over graves. They are interested in all the different shaped headstones and monuments!

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Yesterday it was  absolutely bucketing it down but we got dressed up in our wellyboots and puddlesuits, and went in the back garden. It’s the first time we have played out in the rain but won’t be the last time! They loved it. They went on their slide, played in the playhouse and in their Little Tikes cars, whilst we shivered with a cup of coffee!

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After twenty minutes we went back in and warm up. They had lovely colour to their cheeks and had a lovely nap afterwards (win!), so for anyone who might be thinking its too wet to go out – wrap up and get out there!

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Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

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Autumn Art

I was having a look through some photos on my phone and found this one from back in October.

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Because we didn’t have too bad weather, we had been on lots of walks. Our favourite place to go for a walk was the cemetery! Sounds morbid but it’s so quiet and peaceful. The kids can walk around without worrying about traffic and I find it really beautiful and fascinating, especially in the autumn.

Its absolutely full of trees so perfect for a nature walk. We always took our little bucket, and came back with it (and the tray in the back of their trikes!) full of twigs, conkers, acorns, pinecones and leaves. We used them in a lovely autumn sensory bin and then we used them to create some art.

I was having a look through some photos on my phone and found this one from back in October.
Because we didn’t have too bad weather, we had been on lots of walks. Our favourite place to go for a walk was the cemetery! Sounds morbid but it’s so quiet and peaceful. The kids can walk around without worrying about traffic and I find it really beautiful and fascinating, especially in the autumn.

It’s absolutely full of trees so perfect for a nature walk. We always took our little bucket, and came back with it (and the tray in the back of their trikes!) full of twigs, conkers, acorns, pinecones and leaves. We used them in a lovely autumn sensory bin and then we used them to create some art.

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Painting with natural materials is lovely because it’s environmentally friendly and creates some gorgeous textures and effects, making it not only an art activity but a sensory one as well. Harrison loved dipping the twigs in the paint and using them to draw with, and rolling the pinecones to make prints. We kept to autumny colours – browns, reds, orange, yellow and green.

With some of the leaves we created a leaf wreath. This was done by cutting the centre bit out of a paper plate and simply glueing the leaves around it. Within a couple of days the leaves had completely dried out which made it really fragile and delicate but beautiful. It was doing this activity that made me realise just how lovely a leaf is, and it really made us think about all the beautiful colours!

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Circle printing

In the summer, we started working on shape and colour with Harrison. As we were lucky enough to have had such nice weather (for once!) we did most of our art and crafts outside.

We decided to start with circles, as it is the easiest shape to draw, its difficult to confuse with other shapes (rectangles & squares) and a circle forms a base for many letters.

We started off by going on a circle hunt. We went round the playroom and the kitchen finding as many things as possible that were circular.

We found:
Cookie and play dough cutters
Lids to jars (all different sizes)
Bowls
Cups
The little measuring thing you use for washing machines
Tubs
Building blocks

It’s amazing what you find when you’re looking! We then chose a colour. At this point Harrison knee that red and blue were colour words but I don’t think he could actually identify the colour, son we chose red. We put some paint on a plastic plate and then got to work dipping the circles into the paint and then printing it into the paper. I kept repeating the vocabulary – ‘ that’s a nice red circle’, ‘can you print me a big red circle?’ etc, and we counted all the circles. We noticed that some were big and some were small, and that the cookie cutters made a wobbly edge!

The great thing about this activity is that you could choose different shapes and colours to focus on.

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Painting with feet

I definitely recommend doing this on a warm dry day and in the garden unless you’re very brave daft, as it does get rather messy!!

Harrison had great fun doing this. I ripped off some paper from a roll of lining paper (£2 from Wilko, great for loads of art activities!) and weighed it down with some large stones. On plastic plates I squirted some red and blue paint (the washable stuff used in schools). Then we took our shoes off, put our feet in the cold slimy paint and walked and stamped and marched all over the paper. It was so much fun!

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I made sure I was prepared before hand and had a washing up bowl of warm soapy water and a towel ready to wash feet when we’d finished. Still ended up with colourful footprints on the yard!

We will definitely be doing this again in the summer (weather permitting!) but will change it a bit by putting blobs of different coloured paint on the paper first rather than on plates, and now Harrison is less fussy about paint on his hands we will use hands and feet.

Because we had such a big piece of paper we didn’t keep the whole piece of paper, I just cut an a4 size bit off for their art folder but I would fold it up and keep it next time and use as lovely personalised wrapping paper – could plan ahead and use festive colours for christmas paper!

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One of the mum, Kayleigh, in the Activities 4 kids Facebook group (please feel to send a request to join!)  also did this activitiy with her daughter – as you can see messy but fun!!

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