The Girls were sent a bundle of goodies by Memory Foam Warehouse so that we could enjoy talking about the Classic film Bedknobs and Broomsticks, but also so that we could talk about beds. As if I need encouragement: my bed would be my Desert Island Luxury item!
My Girls are similarly inclined. They take care to make sure the covers are just so when they get into bed. They arrange their favourite possessions, including dolls house furniture, magazines, pen and paper and the ubiquitous stuffed toys. I am astonished that they fit with all that “important stuff” with them. None of it ever falls out either. When I asked them why they did so, the answer- with a d’uh- was that they needed the things in their dreams.
I think that’s the inspiration behind their Bed 2071, so called because that’s how many buttons it has, which comes with all the standard features, [as dictated]:
- a top bit and a bottom bit to stop you growing too fast
- a lovely mattress that is good to bounce on if you have too much energy
- lots of little spaces for important things- there are little shelves by the head and pockets for small things that might get lost in the covers
- really comfy cushions and blankets which are all so soft, like marshmallows and bunny tails.
In addition the bed has a few novel additions that I’m not certain you’d find at Memory Foam Warehouse:
- silvery sparkly sides so that the fairies can find you in the dark
- made from biscuits and pancakes so that you can nibble if you are a bit hungry or didn’t like your tea. (These “grow back” magically so there is always food for your friends when they come to sleepover or if you find a lost person or a cat and they are hungry.)
- Big straws for a drink of milk which can be hot or cold and all the flavours that you can imagine. The straws have flashing lights that sparkle when you are drinking.
- a floating mattress so that when you fall in the water, you can use it as a boat or an island and not get wet at all. And a magic slide that comes out of the bottom so that you can slide into the water and make big splashes.
- Wings so that you can fly high up in the clouds. And a cloudy magic that makes you look like a cloud flying in the sky so that nobody can see you.
- The bed should be magical and sparkly and have pink and purple and all the colour of the rainbow sparkles when it starts and stops.
- Can make you feel better when you are not very well and if you are sad it will make you feel happier. And if you have a headache or you hurt your knee it will fix it on the journey so that you can have a lovely party when you get there.
- It can travel to magical lands with fairies and princesses and trees made from sweets and little kittens that sing songs and can juggle.
We were provided with a beautiful art set and paper with which to conjour up the bed that they imagined, which the girls fell upon like, well, girls and art supplies. They weren’t content with just drawing their bed masterpiece, though. They wanted to make a magical marvellous bed that they could play with and show their dolls. And presumably take to bed. So I helped them construct one from a cardboard biscuit box, craft supplies and bits from the recycling box. As methodical as we were I don;t think there was space for 2071 buttons. But the dolls in the dollhouse seem happy enough to ride in it!
We were sent the items mentioned, and were asked to talk to our children about imaginary beds, then create an artwork of that magical bed, which we did, and which is our entry to the Memory Foam Warehouse’s The Age of Believing competition. The prize is a £100 Disney Store voucher.
There was an accidental sock-dying incident recently: Dimples ended up with one white sock and one peachy-pink one. No longer a pair, she refuses to wear them, and so I came to find myself learning how to make a sock bunny. More specifically, how to make one each.
They are fairly straight forward and all you need is:
stuffing: I conveniently had a dog-savaged cushion.
a needle and thread
Although this is not a no-sew craft, you really do not need seamstress-level skills with a needle to achieve this. The basic running stitch, a bit of back-and-forth and you can whip up a rabbit in three shakes of a rabbit tail. An hour in ordinary time.
The key things is being able to visualise the rabbit- the face is formed from the heel section, the ears from the top end and the rump from the toe end. you form the body parts as you go so the trickiest bit- the ears- comes last.
Stuff bit by bit, forming as you go, so that you are happy with the shape of the body part before you sew it in place.
First, stuff the toe end, firmly (you will form the tail with running stitch when you have filled the body) until you are satisfied with the shape. Using a running stitch, stitch a large circle across the end of your bunny (the toe of the sock)- the seam for which should run across the middle of the circle. Pull shut, stuffing the reducing bulge with more stuffing from inside with your free hand, if you need too. Sew back and forth to shape and secure the tail “bulge” then secure your thread so it doesn’t unravel.
Next you need to sew up the neck of the body- think of the invisible line that runs from the corner, where the leg of the sock joins the top foot edge of the sock, straight down to the edge of the heel just before it starts bending up to the leg- and secure. I used a running stitch (double thread) around three times then I sewed over the same spot to secure the loose thread.
Next, stuff the head until you are happy with the shape.
The ears are trickier as there is more fabric that needs sewing tightly. I found that the best way to do this was to gather the fabric, then fold inwards- creating a W shape- precisely where the meeting point of the two ears would go on the head. This created a crease across the top of the head that I sewed together with running stitch. I repeated this on the rear/body side of the ears. Then I ran a running stitch all around the head opening and secured to seal the stuffing in place- double thread and oversewed as before to hold tightly.
I then sewed the head to the body at the back, so that it was less wobbly.
Finally, I removed the lace edge (which could be used as neck trim, but Dimples declined) then cut a deep “v” into the remaining open fabric edge, to create a pair of ears. I sewed along the open edge to seal the cut edges. Lastly- at Dimples’ behest- I added a pink bow around the base of the ears. You can sew one, or both, of the ears down onto the body to create that floppy-eared look.
For more great Bunny Craft Ideas, check out our latest Crafty Hangout
with ideas from:
Red Ted Art: tiny knitted bunny, bunnies from eggs, paper mache bunny basket, toilet roll bunny, carrot cake
Kids Chaos: Carrot Soup, Bunny Biscuits, Pom Pom Bunnies, Up-cycled Rabbit phone holders,
Zing Zing Tree: Wooden Peg Bunny, Flannel bunny bathroom gifts, Felted Bunnies, Paper Bunny crafts
Domestic Goddesque: Pipecleaner bunnies, Up-cycled Bunny Ears, Bunny Bottom Printed Card, Sock Bunny
Me and My Shadow: bunny stenciled card, Bunny Eared Gift Jar, bunny buns and Bento,
Or try some Bunny cookies or cork bunnies!
Dimples was very clear when she had her party that she wanted a Dora Craft Party.
I came up with some simple Dora themed Party decor for the areas of the house that we were using.
I put together a colouring and activity pack by printing pages from internet searches on the internet. These kept the children busy until everyone arrived.
We made Toilet roll binoculars for the main craft.
Once the children had finished their binoculars, we began the lengthy Map Activity, which encompassed a letter hunt, spelling a magic phrase which opened an enchanted door. From the door the children had to go through the long tunnel, watching out for Swiper on the way. After the Swiper element- he was stuck to the back of the door so I was able to open and close it, hiding and revealing him, saying “Where is Swiper, I can’t see him!” until the children were all screaming!! Finally we hopped over the 4 stepping stones to the birthday table.
Food was the standard party fare, laid out on a purple, pink and orange table-cloth (just three plastic tablecloths stuck together to cover the large table): “map” sandwiches (finger sandwiches) with jam, cheese or cucumber; a million cooked cocktail sausages, a veggie platter the kids ignored, corn chips and child-taste-bud-friendly dips for savoury. Juice or water to drink in Dora table decor. Then there was a rainbow jelly plate, mini banana muffins with Dora toppers, and star-shaped biscuits for pudding.
Lastly we played Pass the Parcel, Musical Statues, Musical Bumps and so on before revealing the Dora Backpack cake and sending everyone home with their colouring pack, binoculars and Backpack-style party bag containing: playdough set, Dora stickers, Chocolate covered banana sweets and a thank you note- which matched the invitations.
Dora partyware came from Delights- I won a voucher to spend with them in a Netmums competition- along with party bags & playdough gifts.
Personalised invitations and thank you notes from Picture It Sheffield, via Ebay.
1. DH and I go to the wedding of a good friend. Without the children. Overnight.
2. Back home we plant a few (dozen) trees. The Girls stage sword fights with the supporting canes.
3. The wonder Hound gets a tennis ball stuck in my boot. I may have laughed for a good ten minutes watching her trying to reacquire it.
4. She fell asleep in Daddy’s office. Little sister fell asleep next to me in the sitting room. Why can’t children sleep in their actual beds?
5. Honkopoly Day!
6. They’re not sure about that large puddle on the school run.
7. I. Am. Doing. My. Teeth!
8. Testing tents on the lawn. They came in when it started raining!
9. I can see you: we test the craft for the upcoming birthday party.
10. A double rainbow is lucky, right?
11. Dimples finds a way to amuse herself whilst her sister has a swimming lesson.
12. More party prep: these are the stickers for the party bags, which will look like Dora’s Backpack. Why do I do this to myself?
13. Just making Swiper. As you do.
14. Valentine’s Gift from DH: pretty chicken teacups. With saucers.
15. Party day! We enjoyed a family walk after it was all over.
16. She loves that dog. Almost as much as her presents.
17. I have a four-year-old! She’s very impressed with her first gift!
18. Anniversary gift from DH.
19. A Bucket List moment: DH and I watch a Champions League football match.
20. On the road to the Beach House for a few days of half-term.
21. LBG drew me whilst we waited for lunch.
22. New umbrellas for the Girls.
23. They watch DH and I plant yet more trees. With their umbrellas.
24. Dimples fall asleep mid-weekly shop.
25. First Swimming Lesson!
27. Baking for Victory. Or to feel better.
28. Printing fun with the Dimpled One.
The spring bulbs are trying to push through and the bird song is back in the trees that surround our house. I’m filled with the hope that the awful grey wetness of this winter is coming to an end.
So with spring in mind, I made a ladybug- or ladybird- magnet from a champagne cork.
It really was very simple. I cut the fatter top section of a champagne cork off, making sure that it’s cut edge was fairly straight as this would later hold the magnet.
Then I painted it red: it took three layers to give a really good coat. My top tip was given to me by Me and My Shadow- I poked a cocktail stick into the underside of the cork, and used that to hold the cork whilst I painted it. No paint-covered fingers!
Once dry, I added ladybird details with a permanent marker.
Then I added two layers of Mod Podge to seal the colour.
Once dry I stuck on googly eyes and a magnet.
Quick, easy and very cute. I am making a flock of them for Dimples to use for her maths homework.
For other wonderful Spring Craft Ideas, why not take a look at our latest Craft Hangout? Crafts featured include:
Red Ted Art: 5 little ducks, cress heads, toilet roll sheep & seed bombs.
Kids Chaos: Daffodil cookie pops, frog stone painting
Zing Zing Tree: Cone Squirrel, bottle top flowers and a spring flower box you must take a look at.
Domestic Goddesque: Pinwheel (try Red Ted Art for a tutorial), Butterfly Collage, Ladybird Cork Magnet and Easter Chick Printing from TP roll: I used the same technique for wrapping paper and a card.
Me and My Shadow: Egg carton daffodil, Violet Cookies, cookie cutter paper mache seed bombs and an April Showers necklace.
We recently had the most marvellous package which allowed us to explore the pancake possibilities with Warburtons.
Even opening the box had us spellbound.
Pancakes tend to be a weekend treat for us, but because it was half-term, we got to eat a leisurely breakfast on a week day.
And Warburtons sent such a huge range of topping suggestions- from pancetta to chilli jam to popping candy- that we really got to try some new flavour combinations.
The Girls are dyed-in-the-wool believers in the “pancakes = sweet toppings” school of thought. They tried Toffee & Popping Candy, Chocolate Cream (melt chocolaate over a low heat with mascarpone) with Toasted Coconut and Dried Banana with Mascarpone and Cinnamon Caramel. With a side helping of Maple Spray so intense, I smelled of Canada all day.
DH and I enjoyed delicious yogurt and Coconut Granola & simple Cinnamon Butter with fresh banana, before moving on to some savoury toppings. Feta, Chilli Jam and Mint (Which DH didn’t eat because of his cheese allergy) was a surprise triumph: salty cheese, the sweet jam and the freshness of the mint, combined together with a chilli kick that reminded me of trips to the Middle East. Fried pancetta, Pistachio nut and creamy Avocado a reminder of a different trip, this one to America. though, to be fair, the sweet ones reminded us o the USA too.
It was a feast, of food as well as flavour. And it’s made me realise that pancakes are more than lemon juice and sugar. Not that there’s anything wrong with that either.
Disclosure: we were sent our amazing Pancake Possibilities Discovery Pack by Warburtons for the purposes of writing this post. All opinions, flavour combinations and memories are our own. Check out the Warburtons Facebook Page for more fun.
Last week a few bloggers got together for a Craft Hangout where we talked about great Fairytale Craft ideas. The Girls and I made some really lovely Rapunzel bookmarks. I also showed a Cinderella’s Glass Slipper Craft on the hangout.
It’s super simple to make. I tried making it out of a clean recycled milk carton (the plastic ones, not the Tetrapak kind) but it wasn’t as transparent as I wanted. It’s a Glass Slipper after all.
So I ran a laminator sheet through my laminator which gave a totally transparent yet solid sheet to work with.
Using the Paper Witch Shoe template I found on Skip To My Lou, I cut out the shape and folded it along the lines indicated. I stuck it all down using sellotape dots and added a ribbon bow. The dots were visible in places but the effect was definitely right and the girls didn’t complain at all.
They would make a fabulous Princess Party favour or place setting: you could even make them for a fairytale wedding if you wanted.