One of our favourite autumn activities is making conker creatures. Like most families, we absolutely love collecting conkers (or horse chestnuts) in the autumn. There’s something so tactile about those smooth, shiny shells that’s just irresistible. A conker hunt means the thrill of finding a shiny conker hiding under crinkly leaves, or revealing hidden treasure by winkling them out from a spiky green casing. Just irresistible!
It takes the kids no time at all to amass a great big pile of them and, as they last for ages, they make a great material for some lovely autumn crafts. We’ve come up with lots of ideas on how to use them, and one activity we often do, is creating these cute Conker Creatures.
Yoto Player is both a children’s audio player and an online platform of carefully curated content. If you’ve seen any of my other posts on MP3 players for children, you’ll know I’m a big fan of screen-free audio time for kids, and have tested out many of them before finally settling on our family favourite.
So when the lovely people behind Yoto asked us to take a look at their device, I was a little hesitant. Would this be more of the same? I wasn’t sure if Yoto Player would be any different from any of the many other kids’ audio devices we’d looked at. Because really, what more could it offer?
Well, it turns out the answer to that is ‘a lot!’ Read on to find out more.
One of Sophy Henn’s ‘Ted’ board book series, Time to Go With Ted is a charming and funny board book for very young readers. With big flaps on every page and toddler-level humour, these delightful little books are a great way to start children on their reading adventures.
How to Look After Your Dinosaur is one of the few picture books about dinosaurs that we could find when we were looking for books with a BAME boy as the main character. Delightfully written and illustrated by award-wining artist, Jason Cockcroft, it takes a distinctly cuddly approach to portraying a T-Rex that is sure to appeal to younger readers.
My Sister is an alien is that rare thing – a children’s picture book that manages to be irresistibly sweet without being cloying. The story is about a young boy called Alfie, who has a new baby sister that, in a Chinese-whispers case of child-ears picking up and misunderstanding pieces of grown-up conversation, he realises may actually be an alien…
Lizard from the Park is a whimsical New York-set picture book from author-illustrator Mark Pett. In classic picture book fashion, it takes an utterly absurd idea (finding a dinosaur egg in Central Park), and treats it with an almost complete seriousness that carries you along with the story. Charming and amusing in equal measure, it’s a total delight!
Whether you want them for ornaments or to use in a party banner, making DIY twig letters is a wonderfully easy craft to do. Here at Rhubarb and Wren, we’ve been making them for forest school parties, seasonal events, and even as individual letter ornaments to hang on the Christmas tree and decorate presents!
Soot Sprites, or Susuwatari, are among our favourite Studio Ghibli characters. These little gremlins are little black balls with big eyes and (sometimes) long, thin limbs.
Because of their simple shape and appearance, you can make a DIY Soot Sprite quickly and easily. All you need is to make a simple pompom!
My kids absolutely adore making these, and our house is becoming as soot sprite-ful as Mei and Satsuki’s attic…
If you’ve never made a pompom, or only know the old cardboard-donut method, never fear. We’ve got a much better method. In fact, it’s the best, quickest and most mind blowingly-easy way to make pompoms you’ll ever find.
So you’ll soon be able to whip up a few DIY Soot Sprites in a matter of minutes. Read on to find out how.
Yes, okay, we already (huge fans, remember) own most of them on DVD or blu-ray. But many of our friends don’t, and so them being on Netflix makes it even easier to share the love. Plus, there are one or two that will be new to us too, and we’re really excited to see.
If you haven’t yet discovered this most delightful of animation studios, read on to find out more and find out which are the best Studio Ghibli movies for newbies to start with.
Tasty vegan picnic pastries the whole family will love
These delicious vegan rissoles are proof positive that great food doesn’t need complicated recipes with hundreds of ingredients. Just flaky shortcrust pastry with a simple vegan filling, you can whip up a batch in minutes. Tofu and Avocado rissoles are sooooo irresistibly tasty and are far easier to make than to share, but they do make great party finger-food. Make these vegan nibbles for your New Year and get Veganuary started with a bang!