Thursday, 29 August 2013

Back to Basics - Home Ed Style

I overwhelm myself so easily, searching for fun, exciting, educational stuff to do, clicking from blogs to searches to websites to pinterest, list of equipment, ingredients and such,overload.
Then I shut down, give up, feeling like I've already produced a wealth of entertaining projects, when in fact, nothing has been accomplished, the table is bare ! 

Then something kicks in, memories of washing my doll's clothes in the garden, making cardboard box camps, fairy house building, all simple, easy fun.
So, I set the table up with pots of beans, seeds, spices and a mound of dough, leftover from pie making.
He's still there, at the table, an hour and a half later, mixing, smelling, chopping, tasting !

We took a wander in the garden, finding fresh ingredients, herbs snipped and smelt, adding more interest to my little chefs creations.

Reminding myself ( yet again ) simple, slow, easy is the best

Water Play - make the most of the good weather, in the garden with buckets, pots, pans, washing doll's clothes, cuddly toys, bikes, the car.

Painting - think big, splatter paint, foot prints, take your paints to a favourite spot and capture it.

Play dough, dough, salt dough - add seeds, spices, beans, herbs, colour.

What's your go to, easy activity ?

He does the washing up too.

Tuesday, 27 August 2013

Us, warts and all

Yesterday's beach day felt, very much like the coming of the end, Summer retreating, Autumn drifting in.
The place was packed, everyone come to give a salute, a farewell, a nod of thanks. 
Today feels like it should be September, funny how this early Bank Holiday has confused my sense of time.

What a Summer ! 
So much adventure, fun and laughter with family and very, dear friends.
So many events that have been left unsaid here, the great and the good, like the magical time spent with a long lost, much loved, very special family member, not seen for over 30 years to the heartbreakingly sad, of our wonderful daughter still in hospital battling an eating disorder.
How much to share, how much to tuck away, a constant bloggers dilemma and yet if too much is left out, this place feels hollow, dare I say alittle fake, especially as I have spent hours trawling through blogs hoping to find a glimpse of how others cope, manage, survive under such    sadness. 

So, this morning over breakfast,  while remembering our fabulous time in Lewis, with some delicious marmalade bought there, thinking about the coming of Autumn and the changes the turning of the year brings, I'm thinking about the now and where we, all are.
Our biggest boy, just turned 19, he heads back to Leeds next week, house sharing with 3 friends ! looking forward to his second year of a politics degree. He is full of ideas, thoughts, passionate about the World, it's people and his place here.
Our girl, is now 15 and 19 months into a hospital stay, battling anorexia and depression, it destroys us, wears us out and leaves us longing for all the answers, the miracle cure but mainly for our girl to be back, to be home, to be well.
Little man is going to be 6 in afew short weeks, 6, yes really. He's a joy, most of the time, hard work, frustrating and loud some of the time. He's learning in the home environment, a mix up of free play, visits, friends to play, festivals and the odd workbook thrown in for good measure.

Knitting, cooking, days out and all will continue on these pages, with maybe just a touch more of who we really are.

Tuesday, 20 August 2013

All Summer Long

Holding onto Summer, even though signs of glorious Autumn are creeping in everywhere, blackberries ripening, tree ladened with apples, leaves changing colour.
A weekend at Just So festival in Cheshire, two days to fill the senses with wonder, pure magic of childhood, stories told from the back of a gypsy wagon, high flying ladies and strong men, clay sculptures to make, colour, sights and sounds in every direction.
A change is coming with the turning of the seasons, new plans, ideas and thoughts to put into action but for now, Summer is captivating us.

Tuesday, 13 August 2013


And holding onto the peace our wonderful week away gifted us.

Sunday, 11 August 2013

On the Isle - 6

The blackhouses at Garenin, with thick walls, low, thatched roofs and peat fires.
Nestled into the surrounding land, rocks, cliffs and heather.
Overlooking the most secret of bays.

Friday, 9 August 2013

On the Isle - 5

Carloway Show, to watch the strong men  toss the caber, admire the animals, amaze at the prize vegetables, knitted, sewn, crocheted, woven, baked and created goodies.
Test your strength among the old and young as men and women, girls and boys competed in the tug of war.
A day of community, catching up on news, sitting awhile with friends, listening to the piper, games, races and candy floss.

Home, to smile at the hens settling down for the night.

Thursday, 8 August 2013

On the Isle - 4

Fish and chips with a view

Wednesday, 7 August 2013

Knitting on the Isle - 3 - Yarn Along

Using my thick,thin handspun to knit a Simple yet Effective Shawl, in colours of sunshine and bright, new moss.
As my new spinner yarn is somewhat uneven, I've gone up afew needle sizes to a 5.5mm, which is creating a nice knit.
Stunning places to sit awhile with needles and yarn, here in Lewis, inspiration surrounds you, vast skies, craggy rock sides, wide, open beaches, tall, strong fortresses all painted in palettes of undeniable beauty.
I seriously under estimated the amount of yarn I have for this project, will need to order and spin more, such a chore haha, wondering how well I can match it up.
Third time knitting this shawl, still loving it, perfect for pick up, put down wave watching, castle climbing, shell seeking.

Just started reading Eloise by Judy Finnigan of This Morning and Book Club, set in Cornwall with the promise of spooky goings on, seems a perfect holiday read.

Joining the Yarn Along crowd over at

Tuesday, 6 August 2013

On the Isle - 2

Bosta beach, very nearly, all to ourselves
Shells to collect, rocks to climb
Sea to paddle in and streams to explore
Days of complete bliss

Monday, 5 August 2013

On the Isle - 1

We're in Lewis, arrived Saturday to a marching band, parade of floats and stunning rainbows.

Sunday, 4 August 2013

Cambridge Folk Festival

A weekend away with friends
Heat, bands, beer and a glorious hotel
Dancing in the rain
Laughter, love and chocolates on your pillow
Pretty parasols
Spicy kebabs, warm cloudy cider and ice creams
Deep South blues, soulful folk, guitars and African beats
Summer festivalling