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What’s Your Spring Fun?

I think one of the greatest things about Spring is the ability to have impromptu fun of any sort at any time. The weather is perfect so often—the warmth of the sun combined with a soft, cool breeze make it easy to do almost anything. Longer days allow for more stolen moments from the hustle and bustle of daily activities. You only need look around for a chance to share those fun moments with the kids, and act like a kid yourself.

Today, a picnic dinner as the sun starts to set, on a fresh cut lawn to boot, was too good an opportunity to pass up. It allowed us healthy nibbles shared at our leisure family style, a game of frisbee played mid-bite and between bites, and for lots of Ring Around the Rosie. The long hour and a half dinner would normally have been a somewhat rushed affair, coming on the heels of a long, busy day. But we chose to take our time tonight, push bed time just a bit and enjoy each other and the chance to simply play for a bit.

Don’t let the perfect weather this Spring pass you by without a little bit of this stolen joy in your own life. What will be your impromptu Spring fun?

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This week at a glance

Team Happenings

Wow, it’s nearly May!  It’s so hard to believe that summer is just around the corner.   Make sure you stop back later this week to check out the NaturalKids Summer Gift Guide when it arrives!

Also, if you haven’t yet participated in the Earth Day Giveaway, there is still time!  Today is the last day, so make sure to enter right away – so many goodies to win, and your chances are pretty good.

 

Summer has me thinking about planting gardens, picking flowers, and plenty of dreaming about the little farming homestead I hope to eventually have.  Here are some of my favorite NaturalKids picks for farming fun:

[sh-etsy-treasury treasury=”NTc0Mjc2M3wyNzIwMTg3MjEx” size=”large” columns=”3″ display=”tiled”]

Member Happenings

Gypsy Forest is having a sale!  Lots of $10 & $15 dollar hand sewn goods. The sale items are all over 50% off.

The Magic Onions blog by FairyFolk is running a Fairy Garden Contest – many great ideas and inspiration, and many prized provided by members of the NaturalKids Team!

From the Archives

 

April 26, 2011 - Dark Chocolate Almond Butter Cups
April 28, 2010 - Spring / Summer Acorn Gnome Tutorial
April 29, 2009 - Make Toys For Your Kids!


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Autumn in the Southern Hemisphere

Hi, I’m Linda, my family and I live in sunny South Africa. Come and take a walk with me through our season of Autumn…We have just embarked on this wonderful season, my favourite time of year. I think it’s the colours and shades of golden brown, yellow, orange and ochre that stir a warmth within and a realisation that the year is slowing down and mother nature is going to rest for a short while in preparation for the winter months and coming Spring. The shadows are lengthening and the days are beginning later and ending earlier.

Autumn is the beginning of many changes around our little suburban homestead…The wood is brought in from the woodpile and packed alongside the various fireplaces in preparation for our cold evenings. We have carpets of leaves all over our garden, great for raking and making leaf mould that will work wonders in our garden and veggie beds throughout the year…

We have quite a few uses for the fallen leaves, they are placed in the chicken area along with some straw, this is cleared out each week and mixed into our compost heap, creating the most wonderful rich compost. Our chickens only spend part of their morning and evenings within their enclosure and during the day, they are out scratching around, eating worms and grass.

We begin the preparation of all our veggie beds, each bed is dug over and filled to the top with our homemade compost, we also add organic Bounce Back and let the beds rest for a few days. Then the planting of our winter veg begins. We only plant organic and heirloom seeds in our garden. I am so looking forward to our winter produce and bartering vegetables and eggs with our neighbours.

Our celebrations are opposite to those of the north, we celebrate our Autumn Equinox in March and our Winter Solstice in June. These celebrations usually involve a hearty meal with neighbours where we make and bring food that we have harvested from our gardens. We also celebrate our Spring day on the 1st of September and dance around a ‘May’ pole in our garden.

Autumn is also a time when we increase our amount of raw juicing, Kye loves to help me with this and he loves drinking his juice as well:)

Veggie and fruit juice:

Cut up and juice, one pineapple, five apples, three carrots, three spinach leaves, one cucumber and two oranges, stir and drink, it’s delicious!

Martie, one of our two rabbits that live and range freely on our property…

Thank you so much for joining me on this little journey through our homestead in South Africa during our Autumn months…

Linda Dawkins is a homeschooling mother of four from South Africa. She is a pattern designer of knitted animals and flowers, a gardener, homesteader and tries to be as self sufficient as possible… You can read more about her life and discover her pattern shops over at Natural Suburbia.

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What I’m Loving This Week


spring beeswax orna…

$12.80

Needle Felted Bunny…

$175.00

A Trio of Cotton Ea…

$4.50

Spring Easter Chick…

$9.00

Needle felted Waldo…

$14.00

Easter white bunny…

$12.00

Needle Felted Bunny…

$16.00

Waldorf Toy – Stuff…

$32.00

Handmade Christmas …

$30.00

Felted Bunny Set – …

$42.00

Waldorf Spring Toy-…

$25.00

beeswax egg candles…

$16.80

Red Gnome Jacaranda…

$3.00

Little Felt Rabbit

$14.00

Wooden Toy – Wooden…

$12.00

Plush Rabbit Sewing..

 

 

$6.00

Etsy treasury created by Ziezo Designs

 

Gnomes and Gnumbers: A Mathematical Tale… Love this! I’m tucking it away for this fall when my oldest begins first grade.

♥A neat tutorial for whittling gnomes from fallen branches. These are  so cute. I think I’ll make up a set to stuff the wool Easter eggs I’m making for my little ones.

Popovers! I’ve developed a little obsession with them this week and love this recipe.

♥Hide little notes or surprises inside of your real Easter eggs.

♥This is such a great article on Rhythm.

Egg shell candles… on the ‘to make for Easter’ list.

♥I can’t wait to try this  sugar free, homemade fruit snack recipe.

 

To see more of what I’m loving visit my Pinterest boards.

 

Julie Hunter is a wife and mama, raising 3 spirited girls, two babydoll sheep, angora rabbits and a gaggle of chickens and ducks in the North Carolina Foothills. She spends her days at home, crafting with her children, homeschooling, taking long gathering walks in the woods and knitting Waldorf-inspired toys. You can find her blogging and keeping shop at This Cosy Life.

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Happy Spring Equinox!

Hello Spring! The time has come to start shedding those winter layers, dig in the garden and play in the mud. I must say, I’ve been waiting for this day, not so patiently for the past couple of months. Now my little ones and I will celebrate the Spring Equinox with a walk to gather flowers and whatever other treasures we can find to place on our Spring nature table

We’ve already started growing wheat grass. You can find the tutorial here and a soil-less version here. Ours is for our nature table but it also makes a nice alternative to plastic or paper grass in Easter baskets. We’re also going to start some seedlings in egg shells, which we are happy to have lots of since our backyard ladies are laying like crazy right now! Yes, we are very happy you’re here, Spring!

Here are some sweet offerings from our Natural Kids members for Spring. You can find many more items that would be wonderful on a nature table or in an Easter basket here.

Needle Felted Yellow Easter Chick from Art of Felting

Spring Gardening Wood Toy Set from Armadillo Dreams

Spring Vintage Inspired Beeswax Ornaments from Pretty Dreamer

Pastel Rainbow Stacker from The Enchanted Cupboard

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What I’m Loving This Week


SALE TODAY – Tiny W…

$7.88

Flower Box Baby Dol…

$14.00

Playsilks and Playc…

$52.00

Bird Nest & Egg Spr…

$12.00

Easter Sale – Easte…

$21.60

alpine folk cow / f…

$34.00

Waldorf Toy Stuffed…

$65.00

CUSTOM (ship in 48 …

$4.00

Easter waldorf toy …

$24.00

Wool Felt Easter Bu…

$15.00

Waldorf spring Toy-…

$27.00

Handmade Christmas …

$30.00

play silks – hand d…

$7.50

Grape-Hyacinth – F…

$9.90

Waldorf Doll – Jasm…

$63.00

Daffodil Flower Kni…

$3.50

Etsy treasury created by Gypsy Forest

 

Seed paper, these would be sweet Easter gifts for my children to make.

♥We’re trying to cut out sugar this Strawberry Honey Galette looks amazing!

♥I can’t wait to dye our Easter eggs this year with natural dyes from food.

♥Here’s a great article on simplifying Easter baskets.

♥Love these pompom chicks!

♥Great idea for keeping your seed packets organized.

♥An article on celebrating spring and a sweet verse.

 

What spring treasures have you found this week?

 

Julie Hunter is a wife and mama, raising 3 spirited girls, two babydoll sheep, angora rabbits and a gaggle of chickens and ducks in the North Carolina Foothills. She spends her days at home, crafting with her children, homeschooling, taking long gathering walks in the woods and knitting Waldorf-inspired toys. You can find her blogging and keeping shop at This Cosy Life.

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Signs of Spring

I am starting to see signs of spring all around. The sweet green grass is popping up here and there. When I see then it always makes me think of one of the children’s favorite spring song. This is a great song to add to the rhythm of your day or to your circle time. This is a good song to teach to children as it has a part you sing and they a part they sing.

Daffodil Pattern from Mama4Earth

The Green Grass Grows All Around

first published in 1912, with words by William Jerome[2] and melody by Harry Von Tilzer

To hear a variation of the song played go here.

There was a tree

(There was a tree)

All in the wood

(All in the wood)

The prettiest tree

(The prettiest tree)

That you ever did see

(That you ever did see)

The tree in a hole

And the hole in the ground

And the green grass grows all around, all around

The green grass grows all around

And on that tree

(And on that tree)

There was a limb

(There was a limb)

The prettiest limb

(The prettiest limb)

That you ever did see

(That you ever did see)

The limb on the tree,

And the tree in a hole,

And the hole in the ground

And the green grass grows all around, all around

The green grass grows all around.

And on that limb

(And on that limb)

There was a branch

(There was a branch)

The prettiest branch

(The prettiest branch)

That you ever did see

(That you ever did see)

The branch on the limb,

And the limb on the tree,

And the tree in a hole,

And the hole in the ground

And the green grass grows all around, all around

The green grass grows all around.

And on that branch

(And on that branch)

There was a nest

(There was a nest)

The prettiest nest

(The prettiest nest)

That you ever did see

(That you ever did see)

The nest on the branch,

And the branch on the limb,

And the limb on the tree,

And the tree in a hole,

And the hole in the ground

And the green grass grows all around, all around

The green grass grows all around.

And in that nest

(And in that nest)

There was an egg

(There was an egg)

The prettiest egg

(The prettiest egg)

That you ever did see

(That you ever did see)

The egg in the nest,

And the nest on the branch,

And the branch on the limb,

And the limb on the tree,

And the tree in a hole,

And the hole in the ground

And the green grass grows all around, all around

The green grass grows all around.

And in that egg

(And in that egg)

There was a bird

(There was a bird)

The prettiest bird

(The prettiest bird)

That you ever did see

(That you ever did see)

The bird in the egg,

And the egg in the nest,

And the nest on the branch,

And the branch on the limb,

And the limb on the tree,

And the tree in a hole,

And the hole in the ground

And the green grass grows all around, all around

The green grass grows all around.

And on that bird

(And on that bird)

There was a wing

(There was a wing)

The prettiest wing

(The prettiest wing)

That you ever did see

(That you ever did see)

The wing on the bird,

And the bird in the egg,

And the egg in the nest,

And the nest on the branch,

And the branch on the limb,

And the limb on the tree,

And the tree in a hole,

And the hole in the ground

And the green grass grows all around, all around

The green grass grows all around.

And on that wing

(And on that wing)

There was a feather

(There was a feather)

The prettiest feather

(The prettiest feather)

That you ever did see

(That you ever did see)

The feather on the wing,

And the wing on the bird,

And the bird in the egg,

And the egg in the nest,

And the nest on the branch,

And the branch on the limb,

And the limb on the tree,

And the tree in a hole,

And the hole in the ground

And the green grass grows all around, all around

The green grass grows all around.

And on that feather

(And on that feather)

There was a bug

(There was a bug)

The prettiest bug

(The prettiest bug)

That you ever did see

(That you ever did see)

The bug on the feather,

And the feather on the wing,

And the wing on the bird,

And the bird in the egg,

And the egg in the nest,

And the nest on the branch,

And the branch on the limb,

And the limb on the tree,

And the tree in a hole,

And the hole in the ground

And the green grass grows all around, all around

The green grass grows all around.

And on that bug

(And on that bug)

There was a germ

(There was a germ)

The prettiest germ

(The prettiest germ)

That you ever did see

(That you ever did see)

The germ on the bug,

And the bug on the feather,

And the feather on the wing,

And the wing on the bird,

And the bird in the egg,

And the egg in the nest,

And the nest on the branch,

And the branch on the limb,

And the limb on the tree,

And the tree in a hole,

And the hole in the ground

And the green grass grows all around, all around

The green grass grows all around.

Yes, the green grass grows all around, all around

The green grass grows all around!

 


Beccijo Neff is a toymaker, storyteller, and award winning Artist from Pennsylvania. She homeschools 4 children and is happily married. You can find more about her life and her work at her blog . To see her enchanting toys stop at her shop, it will brighten and delight you eyes to see all the magical things she creates.



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The Story of Hugin and his Carrot

Recently, we attended a Harvest Celebration at my daughter’s Waldorf school, and during the presentation, they did a Thanksgiving puppet show: “The Story of Hugin and his Carrot.”
My daughter LOVES this story/show, so I asked her teacher for a copy of it (there wasn’t one, it was a story she had memorized from years ago). It seems to be a spin off of Tolstoy’s story, “The Turnip,” except instead of needing a turnip to make a lantern, Hugin is trying to pull a carrot for a Thanksgiving Day soup.

We wish those who celebrate a very Happy Thanksgiving, and those who do not a very happy Thursday!

~The Story of Hugin and his Carrot~

Once upon a time there was a little boy named Hugin and he wanted a carrot to make a soup for Thanksgiving, so he went out into the garden and planted a carrot-seed and he said,

“Carrot, carrot, grow for me
Grow as big as big can be
That on Thanksgiving Day we’ll eat
A soup that tastes of carrots sweet.”

So the carrot grew and grew and nearly filled the garden. Then, Hugin went to pull the carrot up. And he pulled and he pulled… but the carrot did not budge an inch.

Then a Bear came by and asked ’What are you doing Hugin?’
And Hugin replied, “I am pulling up a carrot.

Bear, Bear pull with me,
Pull as hard as hard can be
That on Thanksgiving Day we’ll eat
A soup that tastes of carrots sweet!”

So Bear pulled Hugin, and Hugin pulled the carrot; and they pulled, and they pulled… but the carrot didn’t budge an inch.

Just a Fox came along and asked ”What are you doing Bear?” And Bear replied ”I am helping Hugin to pull his carrot.” And Hugin said

“Foxy, Foxy pull with me,
Pull as hard as hard can be
That on Thanksgiving Day we will eat
A soup that tastes of carrots sweet!”

So Fox pulled Bear, and Bear pulled Hugin and Hugin pulled the carrot. They pulled and they pulled, but the carrot did not budge an inch.

Just then a Hare came by and asked ’What are you doing Fox?” And Fox replied “I am helping Bear to help Hugin to pull up a carrot.” And Hugin said

“Hare, Hare pull with me,
Pull as hard as hard can be
That on Thanksgiving Day we will eat
A soup that tastes of carrots sweet!”

So Hare pulled Fox, and Fox pulled Bear and Bear pulled Hugin and Hugin pulled the carrot and they pulled and they pulled but… the carrot didn’t budge an inch.

Just then a Mouse came by and asked ’What are you doing Hare?” And Hare replied “I am helping Fox to help Bear to help Hugin to pull up a carrot.” And Hugin said

“Mouse, Mouse pull with me,
Pull as hard as hard can be
That on Thanksgiving Day we will eat
A soup that tastes of carrots sweet!”

So Mouse pulled Hare, and Hare pulled Fox, and Fox pulled Bear and Bear pulled Hugin and Hugin pulled the carrot and they pulled and they pulled but… the carrot didn’t budge an inch.

Just then a Caterpillar came by and asked ’What are you doing Mouse?” And Mouse replied “I am helping Hare to help Fox to help Bear to help Hugin to pull up a carrot.” And Caterpillar said, “But does Hugin know the right way to pull up a carrot? Did he first ask its Root Gnome if he might?”

Then Hugin bent down and put his mouth close to the ground and called,

“Gnome, good Root Gnome
May I take your carrot home?
Then on Thanksgiving Day we‘ll eat
A soup that tastes of carrots sweet?”

And at once a little Root Gnome popped up his brown head out of the ground and said, “Good gracious me, Hugin, why didn’t you tell me? All this time I’ve been pulling the other way. Now pull again!”

And he popped back his brown head into the ground.

So Caterpillar pulled Mouse, and Mouse pulled Hare, and Hare pulled Fox, and Fox pulled Bear, and Bear pulled Hugin, and Hugin pulled the carrot. And suddenly Mouse sat down backwards with a bang on Caterpillar, and Hare sat down backwards with a bang on Mouse, and Fox sat down backwards with a bang on Hare, and Bear sat down backwards with a bang on Fox, and Hugin sat down backwards with a bang on Bear with the biggest, orange, chubbiest carrot in his hands that ever anyone saw!

Then Hugin got up and said ”Sorry!” to Bear, and Bear got up and said “Sorry” to Fox, and Fox got up and said “Sorry” to Hare, and Hare got up and said “Sorry” to Mouse, and Mouse got up and said “Sorry” to Caterpillar.

And nobody was hurt, and everybody laughed “Ha-Ha-Ha“ and Hugin made a carrot soup.

THE END!!!!!!

Recreate the story yourself with these characters from our Natural Kids Team members!

Hugin –      Bear –

Fox –      Hare –

Mouse –      Caterpillar –

Carrot –

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What I’m Loving This Week


Sale Today Only – K…

$50.40

Oak Gnome – colored…

$9.90

KNITTING PATTERN – …

$4.50

Harvest Doll 14&quo…

$140.00

map lichen upcycled…

$15.00

NB Gypsy Shoes

$22.00

Wool Play Food– A …

$18.50

Brown Window Star A…

$14.00

Fall Leaves – Felte…

$5.00

Native American Nee…

$50.00

Needle Felted Art D…

$52.00

Pure Beeswax Pineco…

$24.60

Natural Decor, Wald…

$14.00

pumpkin PIE – wool …

$30.00

Bamboo Terry Hooded…

$47.00

Waldorf Doll Clothe…

$18.50

Etsy treasury created by This Cosy Life

Halloween and Martinmas have come and gone. If you live in the US you are probably preparing for Thanksgiving which is only less than two weeks away. Here is some Thanksgiving inspiration I’ve come across this week.

Savory Autumn Leaf Pies… I made these and they were yummy!

Beeswax leaves would make a lovely (and sweet smelling) decoration

♥Some vegetarian Thanksgiving recipes

Beautiful for the table

♥Thanksgiving songs

Apple pie baked in the apple

♥Make a gratitude tree

 

Julie Hunter is a single mama raising 3 spirited girls, two babydoll sheep, angora rabbits and a gaggle of chickens and ducks in the North Carolina Foothills. She spends her days at home, crafting with her children, homeschooling, taking long gathering walks in the woods and knitting Waldorf-inspired toys. You can find her blogging and keeping shop at This Cosy Life.