We Still Love Eggs Even Though Easter Is Over!

We’ve been doing a lot of learning about something special over here…

Eggs!

We found a little organic hennery just ten minutes drive from our house, and took a visit…

Above we see the egg packing machine, and the many boxes of eggs all ready to drive to the supermarket –

Below we see the lady who has the job of cleaning the eggs!

And all the eggs on their way..

And here are (some) of the chickens…

Now, don’t worry, they have another MUCH bigger outside bit…

The farmer tells me the grass still needs to grow after the long winter – but of course the chickens still go out there every day!

This hennery has just three people working there, and it’s a real organic farm, driving their eggs to the local supermarket to be sold.

We bought rather a lot!

So at home we’ve been making meringues and cooking scrambled eggs, omelettes and pancakes.

We’ve also been reading lots of books about eggs.

These are two of my favourites…

‘The Emperor’s Egg’ by Martin Jenkins is a fascinating book about penguins and the way they look after their eggs and offspring – it is simply told, with a sense of humour and added extra details for older chidren, and some beautiful pictures too.

My hen is dancing‘ by Karen Wallace is also lovely – a story all about chickens, how they live, what they eat, the process of the egg, and how they bring up their offspring – plus some wonderfully detailed pictures about the different kinds of chickens there are.

Some other lovely books about eggs we’ve been reading are….

Daisy and the Egg‘  by Jane Simmons

‘The Cow that Laid an Egg’  by Andy Cutbill

‘The Ugly Duckling‘  by Ladybird books (traditional)

‘The Hungry Caterpillar’ by Eric Carle

We also decided to make our own book about eggs and the creatures who come out of them…

We found pictures of penguins, frogs, spiders, chicks, ducklings, snakes, crocodiles and dinosaurs – and stuck them inside broken eggs.

Then it was time for a little play…

A basket of plastic eggs, and a basket of small toy animals kept him happy for HOURS!

Just hiding the animals in the eggs (just ones who start life in eggs of course!) and letting him open the eggs and see which animal was inside…

… was SUPER exciting for him!

And now he knows all about eggs! 🙂

Celebrating The Royal Wedding!

Whether royalists or not, it’s part of our history, and the day just can’t be ignored – at least not for our family…

With a little red, white and blue ‘royal’ printing..

A little ‘royal’ play time…

Some flag flying…

And a ‘royal’ tea…

And of course a little ‘royal’ television (the wedding!) and a little ‘royal’ reading!

Just Add Water!

Inspired by a friend’s ‘toy’ back in England, we decided to build a little water experiment for the kids…

Using two long open gutters, cut in to smaller pieces…

Plastic garden trellises to balance the gutters at different levels…

And wooden rounds of tree trunk to lean the guttering at the lower levels…

Aim towards the sand pit, and add water!  

Music In The Garden

This is a project I meant to do last year before the cold set in – but now we’ve had a taste of summer here in Sweden, so I’ve set it up quickly!

Our Music Tree!

Using a handy small tree with a broom handle threaded through…

Some pipes of different metal, clay flower pots of different sizes, some old pieces of xylophone, a cow bell, a plastic bottle filled with corn kernels, a metal triangle, some small bells on string, and a bunch of shells on string….

And drums of different kinds (plastic, metal and wood)…


From The (Little) Land Of Red, White & Blue!

Home from England, where we spent a very busy, but very fun time with family, friends and lots of sun!

We travelled on a big red double decker bus…

We visited a toy shop with 5 floors…

(did you know they stayed open in the 2nd world war despite being bombed five times?!)

We travelled on the ‘tube’ (London underground)…

We saw Big Ben…

(did you know it’s the bell called ‘Big Ben’, not the clock?)

And the London Eye…

Learnt about the gory history behind the Tower of London…

(did you know they used to keep crocodiles and a polar bear in the moat?)

Crossed Tower Bridge…

(did you know a double decker bus had to jump over the gap when it opened once?)

Observed the sentry guards…

Stood still like the guards of Buckingham Palace…

(did you know their hats are made from bear skin?)

And saw ALOT of union jacks…

Did I mention feeding the pigeons?


The Princess Diana Memorial play park?


Playing in St James’ Park?

Or the street entertainers in Trafalgar Square?

Ah yes, London has much to offer! 🙂

We’re Off To London!

Early tomorrow morning we’re off to….

LONDON!

We’re lucky enough to borrow a friend’s house for 2 weeks while they’re away!

We’re hoping to ride a red double decker bus, see Buckingham Palace, visit ‘Hamleys’ (the biggest toy shop in the world), and enjoy Princess Diana’s ‘Peter Pan’ play park – among other things!

I’ll try my best to blog while we’re away , but if not, we hope to see you in 2 weeks!

🙂

Celebrating Spring With Feathers & Fairies

Yes, I do believe it’s arrived! The snow has melted and the sun is shining. 🙂

All week Maya and I have been busy making flower fairies in celebration of the flowers reappearing after the long winter.

Here they are..

From left to right…

Snowdrop, Crocus, Primrose, Violet and…..

Dandelion (this was Alfie’s choice of colour!)

This was a great first sewing activity for Maya – and she just loved sewing!

The bodies were made from a folded over pipe-cleaner stuck into a bead (for head) and the two pipe-cleaner pieces sticking out the bottom for legs. Then we simply cut a square of felt to fit the body, sewed the felt together and gathered it around the neck. The hat was made in roughly the same way, but shaped around the edge, and a ‘stem’ of a green felt circle (or snips of felt for the crocuses’ stamen) glued on to the bead, underneath the hat. The leaves were cut and shaped to fit, and sewed around the neck.

Then the fairies were set in place next to our ‘ Swedish Easter Tree’…

This ‘tree’ is a huge Swedish tradition – attaching coloured feathers to birch branches, which are put in to water, the buds opening in time for Easter day, to show bright green leaves.

It looks very pretty in our living room window!

And as you can see, ‘snowdrop’ and ‘crocus’s friends have already come to say hello…


Lets Make Easter Bunny Biscuits!

Admittedly Alfie DOES spend most of his time as ‘chief taster’ while cooking – but one always has to do a little Easter baking!

What do we need?

175g unsalted butter

50g sugar

2 large eggs

1 tsp vanilla essence

350g plain flour

50g cocoa powder

white icing (in tube)

mini marshmallows

bunny cookie cutter

 

What do we do?

Beat butter and sugar together until smooth.

Beat in eggs and vanilla.

Stir in flour and cocoa powder gently.

Mix and knead in to a good dough.

Roll out to 1 cm thick and use bunny cutter to form biscuits.

Put in fridge for an hour.

Bake in oven at 180 degrees C / gas mark 4 for 10 minutes.

When cool, draw icing for ears, nose and use to ‘glue’ on marshmallow tail.

Let’s Help The Birds To Build Their Nests!

Lately we’ve been spotting a lot of new bird’s nests, watching great-tits move in to our bird box, setting up new bird boxes – and the other day we were even lucky enough to see a crow collecting twigs for his nest.

So we decided to help them build…

…with some wool…

… cut in to pieces…

… and hung on some broken tree branches which had been blown down by the wind….

…. and set out in the garden to help the birds make their nests lovely and warm…

Alfie thought this was a great idea – the cutting of the wool and the hanging of it on the branches kept him amused for over an hour – and he’s been eagerly looking out the window for the birds ever since! 🙂