Make Your Own Garden Fairies #BostikBloggers

My girls are all about the fairies, so we have a very random collection of different fairies around the house, but when we wanted some for our fairy gardens in the allotment, I didn’t want to use any of the beautiful fairy statues in case they go walkabout fly off in the middle of the night.

Fortunately the theme for April’s Bostik Bloggers was “wings” or “flying”, so a bag of fun coloured feathers seemed a perfect way to bring some fairies into our garden.Garden Fairies PinIt

For this project, each fairy will require:

  • A lollipop stick
  • A mini cupcake case
  • A pompop
  • Two feathers
  • Scissors
  • GlueMake your Own Garden Fairies

You can be as decorative with these garden fairies as you like, and could incorporate pipe cleaners for arms, but we didn’t find that necessary this time round.

Make your Own Garden Fairies

To start, glue the feathers half way down the lollipop stick.  Turn the stick around and add a dollop of glue where the head would go and pop a pompom in place. Make your Own Garden Fairies

Make a small cut in top of the cupcake case. Slide the lollipop stick through the case to two thirds down.  (You can use a glue dot to fix it in place if it is too big or loose.)

Make your Own Garden Fairies

Leave it all to dry, then find a spot in the garden!

Introduce your fairies to their new home, and enjoy how pretty it – and simple – it is.

Gelatin Bird Feeders For The Garden (With Recipe)

I love the idea of helping out nature, though living on a lush green Island with rolling hills and meadows, it can be hard to imagine that we need to. But, because here and now we might not need to, doesn’t mean I don’t need to instil a wish to protect our wildlife in my children. At five and three they are perfectly capable of learning how, and now is the time that they are still so full of enthusiasm, so it’s the perfect time to do it.

Recently we’ve been talking about birds and how birds fly, and the different types of birds and all that, so it seemed fitting to make gelatin bird feeders for the garden, though this is something we’d normally do in Autumn. We don’t actually have a garden either, so we’ve just hung them in trees around us.
bird feeders

These bird feeders are made with gelatin, as they last a little longer than for example peanut butter, and gelatin isn’t harmful to the birds – and probably helps their beaks grow stronger too!

We’ve made them in cookie cutters so that we can play with the shapes, and have fun with them. Since we live by the sea, we’ve even had a few ships to hang in the trees.

Birdfeeders

Tip: Don’t hang them in direct sunlight. If it gets too hot the gelatin begins to melt. Also, press as much together as you can in one shape to hold them tightly together. Gelatin Bird Feeders

How to make gelatin bird feeders:

  1. To make the birdfeeders, plan on a packet of gelatin (powder) to a cup of bird seed. So if you’re making two cups (500ml) bird seed, add two packets of gelatin and so on.
  2. Prepare the gelatin to the manufacturers directions, but only add 1 cup of water to one packet of gelatin (250ml water). (Or double if you’re making double) It needs to be thicker than jelly to hold it all together. Once the gelatin has melted, leave it to cool for a couple of minutes, then add in the bird seed. It mustn’t be runny and since your seed may differ to mine, just add more if it’s too wet and liquid.
  3. Stir in well till all the seed is coated, then scoop in to your waiting shapes.
  4. We scoop half the amount needed to fill the shape, then add a length of string, before adding in the rest of the seed, so that the string is in the centre when you pull the shape out of the cutter. Press down firmly to compact everything as much as possible, before setting aside overnight to dry.
  5. Don’t leave in the sun or it may melt again.
  6. Carefully remove from the cutter, and hang somewhere to enjoy.

Google ‘garden birds’ in your local area and see if you can find a checklist of what you should be able to find in your country. Keep an eye on your bird feeder and see how many local birds you can spot in your garden.

We love the RSPB’s ‘First’ Series of books. They are perfect for small people.  And why not turn it into a full experience by using a bird watching kit to really feel like a nature explorer.

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Skills - Sensory Skills - Explore Nature Skills - Creativity

How To: Make An Outdoor Chalkboard

Outdoor ChalkboardMy children never owned a cot. In fact, I wanted to buy Ameli a gorgeous sleigh cot at great expense, but from an hour after her birth, Ameli (and later Aviya) slept in my bed with me, so a cot never became a necessity, and I’m glad in retrospect that we never bought one ready for her arrival. As such, I’ve never paid much attention to the repurposed cots and cribs on Pinterest, but recently I was looking for a piece of outdoor-primed wood to turn into an outdoor chalkboard.

I was collecting a wooden pallet for the garden when I noticed the owner of the pallet had an dismantled cot lying by their skip. I had a lightbulb moment about our outdoor chalkboard, and asked if I could perhaps have it.

So, now we are proud owners of someone else’s discarded crib, and I can’t wait to put it to good use. I bought chalkboard paint some time ago, so all I had to do was the DIY – something I’m not normally great at. I’m the queen of Pinterest Fails. None the less, I set out to create our own chalkboard.

How To Make An Outdoor Chalkboard

I used masking tape along the outsides of the crib head board to create a frame, although I don’t suppose this was necessary, really. I could just as easily have left it and painted the whole thing, but I wanted the frame. Next I took one of the children’s thicker paint brushes, and painted the paint onto the board.

It was quite streaky, which concerned me, but it dried perfectly smoothly within half an hour.

After testing it and seeing the chalk created a few ‘scratches’ as it wrote, I decided to paint a second layer.

Chalk Board

Once that had dried, I pulled off the masking tape – pull away from the direction of the paint, so that if it does create any ‘chips’ it doesn’t pull the ends of the paint off, negating having created a border in the first place. If it does, just touch those up.

Being a cot, it already had holes drilled into it for the sides to slot into, so I just threaded some string through those to tie it to the fence.

And there we have a lovely DIY outdoor chalkboard for the children… and I’m quite pleased with myself!

 

How To: Make A Photo Garden

Did you know that on the other side of the world, yesterday was spring day? If the thought of the end of summer and the approach of winter is a bit upsetting, why not create a brand new garden of your own?  This craft activity will bring you the height of summer all year round.

You’ll need:

  • Green paper
  • Cupcake cups
  • Photographs with faces
  • Glue
  • Scissors
  • A sheet of paper

I cut the ‘stems’ and ‘leaves’ out for Ameli, and dotted them with glue. She stuck them all over the place – a few of the leaves actually made it onto stems, but others were not so lucky. Either way, its important to let her craft without trying to guide her every step, so we’ll just assume those are some autumn leaves in the sky there!

Next, I dotted glue in the cupcakes and she pasted the faces inside, then we glued the cupcakes to the stems.  Here I had to give a little help to make sure that the faces were the right side up.

And that’s the end of that – a garden of smiley, loved faces, and five or six less photographs in a box of never looked at pictures.

For more ideas of crafts to make with old photographs: