Entries from October 2015

flowers through the letter box

I once read that Elton John spent £300,000 on flowers in less than a year, simply because he likes flowers. Excessive? Maybe but who doesn’t love flowers?  I certainly do and if I could be surrounded by an abundance of fresh flowers in my home everyday of the year I would.  But since I’m no Elton, I have to settle for flowers once in a while.  When I do get them, just looking at them brightens my spirits even on the gloomiest of days.  So when Bloom & Wild offered to send me a bouquet, I couldn’t say no.  I was especially attracted to Bloom & Wild’s offer not just because of the beautiful flowers but also because of their very clever idea of letterbox flowers.

flowers through the letterbox

So, what are letterbox flowers?  Letterbox flowers are simply flowers that fit through a regular door letterbox – such a simple idea, but aren’t the simplest ideas always the best?  In the past, receiving flowers hasn’t ever been a complete surprise for me because every time my hubby or a friend sent me flowers, they would call to check if I was going to be around to take a delivery so I kind of guessed what they were up to.  But now, if you want to surprise someone with flowers, how lovely that you don’t have to check when they will be home.  And when they do come home, they will find a box of flowers waiting for them – enough to make anybody’s day special.    

flowers through the letterbox

I was a little concerned that being in a box the flowers may not be as fresh as flowers delivered in water but I needn’t have been.  They were absolutely beautiful as you can see.  And as a bonus many of the flowers hadn’t bloomed which means I got to watch them open up and I will get to enjoy them for longer.  As these flowers come flat in a box, you have to arrange them yourself.  For me, this was a positive – the flowers come with a card that suggests arrangement ideas and I loved doing it myself.  There are four different letterbox flower bouquets you can choose from – either as a one off or you can get a 3 bouquet bundle, delivered over a period of your choosing.  With the bundles you end up spending less than £20 per bouquet so it’s very good value too, especially as the bouquets are generous with many stems.

flowers through the letterbox UK

Now that I’ve discovered these flowers that fit through a letterbox, I can”t wait to surprise a friend.  It’s such a nice way to let someone know you’re thinking of them.  And in case my husband is reading – let’s just say I love surprises especially if they involve flowers! (hint! hint!)

Japanese cloth gift wrapping

Do you know Furoshiki?  Don’t worry, it’s not a swear word but it’s a beautiful eco-friendly Japanese tradition of wrapping gifts in cloth.  It comes from the old Japanese culture of caring for the environment and reducing waste.  Last week I was reminded of this beautiful Japanese cloth wrapping tradition when I was given a cloth wrapped gift by a cousin visiting from India.  She didn’t use a traditional Japanese cloth but instead used an Indian fabric which looked so pretty.  With the gift giving season coming up and since we’ve got a spate of birthdays before then, I thought it was a good time to start thinking gift wrapping and why not try something new and environmentally friendly this year?

Furoshiki wrapping cloths are available to buy in the most beautiful patterned Japanese fabrics.  They can be expensive compared to paper so think of them as part of the gift.  Otherwise you don’t have to restrict yourself to these – my cousin just used some off-cuts of fabric she had lying around the house so you can use practically any fabric that you have.  I’ve also seen gifts wrapped in beautiful tea towels which are very much a part of the gift. Once you get used to fabric wrapping, you can wrap practically anything in these cloths.  The Japanese don’t stop at gifts but also make pouches with handles to carry stuff around or wrap their lunch boxes in these cloths as some of the pictures above show.  I also love them for wrapping a bottle of wine – so much nicer than taking the bottle as is. 

This Japanese cloth wrapping method looks complicated but it’s actually quite straightforward – it’s kind of like origami with cloth but simpler.  In case you want some help, here is a good site showing you lots of different ways to use cloth wraps.  The site goes in to step by step instructions for different methods of cloth wrapping, making it easy to follow.  But for the simplest option, you can also get cloth wrap bags that tie at the top to make them look wrapped like in the third picture.   

Images: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 |

Autumn is definitely here and when you are surrounded by an abundance of leaves in the most amazing colours, it seems crazy not to do something with them.  There are so many fun crafts you can do with autumn leaves that kids will just adore getting involved in.  I’ve got a fun idea for a craft which I plan to do soon but in the meantime, I have collected 7 fabulous autumn leaf crafts that you can make today.  Most of these crafts don’t require anything special but instead can be done using stuff you have lying around the home.  Just get the kids to gather a bagful of leaves each and get started:

fall leaves craft ideas for kids

Paint your leaves and make fun animals.  The shapes of the leaves are so great for making all kinds of animals and the stems are the perfect ready made noses or tails.

painted autumn leaves diy idea

Instead of animal faces, you can just paint the leaves in pretty colours or patterns which is easier for younger kids to do.  How stunning do the bright colours look and I’m especially loving the polka dots.

easy fall leaf diy ideas

For a super sweet and simple DIY, how cute are these animal headbands?  All you need is a handful of leaves, some kraft paper and a pen and you’re good to go.  Easy and oh so cute!

fall leaves easy DIY ideasThis is another great idea for a craft using autumn leaves.  If you’ve got paper punchers in any shape, you can punch out autumn leaves and then what you make with them is entirely up to you.  I’m thinking collages, bracelets, bookmarks or anything at all. 

fall leaves craft ideas for kidsI think these fishy leaves are just the best.  Make a whole aquarium using just some leaves and two paint colours – fab!

autumn leaves crafts for kidsUsing leaves and other gathered bits like sticks, seeds and acorns, make the funniest leaf faces!  I love how simple this craft is, perfect even for the youngest of kids.

easy autumn leaf crafts

For older kids looking for a bit more of a challenge, try embroidering autumn leaves – create faces, patterns or even stitch up a few leaves together to make a garland.

I love each of these autumn leaf crafts and can’t choose which one to try first!  Have you done anything fun with autumn leaves?  Do share in the comments.

Image credits and find all the how to’s: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 |

kids morning routine chart

Are your school mornings a mad dash?  We are already three weeks in to the new school term and nothing has changed here – no matter what, we are always running late.  Sometimes we make it just in time but often we end up being late and it’s getting embarrassing given we live next door to our school.  I had been trying to think of ways to organise our mornings better when Anya suggested a kids morning routine chart.  She said it would help her to know what order she has to do things and when.

kids morning routine chart

I decided to give her suggestion a try and I finally made one last week.  It’s a very simple DIY kids morning routine chart that outlines exactly what she has to do and when.  We’ve only been using it for a week but the chart has helped.  One of the best things about it for me is that I don’t feel like a drill sergeant anymore!  I’m no longer telling her to brush her teeth 20 times before she actually does it.  Or if I left the room, I used to come back and find she had emptied her lego box and started building a mammoth house which was impossible to tear her away from.  Now she looks at the chart and she knows exactly what to do when.  And the chart is also helping her to be more independent.

how do you get your kids to school on timeWe’ve also built in a little treat called ‘golden time’ which falls in the middle of the morning routine.  If the first part of the routine is done in time then she gets 5 minutes playtime.  This has really encouraged her (more than I imagined) to try and get things done quickly.  For us, it was always the first part of the morning that went so leisurely which meant that in the last 5-10 minutes before leaving, we were running around like headless chickens to get out the door on time.  Anya doesn’t always manage to get her ‘golden time’ but the incentive is there for her to try.  DIY kids morning routine chart

I’ve made the kids morning routine chart out of regular printer paper, spelling out the morning routine.  I used a teardrop shape because it looks pretty and used some washi tape to add colour but also to keep my walls from peeling!  And I intentionally used a stand out colour for golden time so that it can’t be missed or forgotten.  You can of course make any kind of chart – it takes just minutes and it could take some of the stress out of the mad morning dash!

Do you have any tips for taking the stress out of the morning madness?

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Theme by Blogmilk   Coded by Brandi Bernoskie