Saturday, 30 May 2009

Enjoying the Sun & a Cake.

The weather's been great for most of the last couple of weeks so we've been spending a lot of time outside. We had a picnic in the park on Thursday and Isaac was well cared for by a couple of 5 year olds. 

We've been in the garden a lot and the baby tent has made its first appearance of the year. I want to get a wigwam or maybe make a living one as we're lacking in shade in the garden and whilst that's lovely it does make it hard to be out there all the time. 

He takes his comfort where he can!

He would happily play in water all day. Flowing water is much more fun but a paddling pool will do.

We brought a bit of the beach home...

Today is our friend Jonah's second birthday. Happy Birthday Jonah! I made him a tractor cake. 

Wednesday, 27 May 2009

Homemade Bricks and Yellow

I've been reading lots of stuff on Steiner/Waldorf and one of the suggestions in it is that instead of regular shapes found in mass produced wooden bricks that you use real wood complete with bark and cut it to different sizes so that it can be whatever your child wants it to be and not just a brick. Now Isaac will make practically anything into a phone so I thought it was a bit pointless as I figured he'd use his imagination anyway but as we were having to deal with our dead olive trees I figured they could live a new life. 

Isaac really likes them and loves filling his bucket with them. He's not got the control to build with bricks yet anyway so there definitely score points at the moment as they're animals (the r shaped one is a horse and the knobbly ones are chickens with the straight ones currently dogs). He's also gone and got out his regular bricks and played with them more since having his olive blocks. 

We've not had chance to paint really recently but today Isaac handed me his apron so we got the yellow out for the first time. He still asked for blue but seemed happy to stick with a single colour and had a splashing time (there's yellow paint on the underside of the wall cabinets). He's very firm about when he's finished a 'picture' and today pointed to a shape and said it was a monkey. As with the olive bricks I'm wary of recording the label and fixing the meaning into a picture as it then limits his freedom to change his mind and make things into something else (the ability to make a picture in the image of something else doesn't come until children are much older) but I think it's good to make a record of when he's using his imagination and starting to express himself. 

Monday, 25 May 2009

Lessons from a toddler

So the lessons I learnt from my 21 month old today are, amongst others:

1) Lie back and look at the sky. 

This was done by pushing me over and gently guiding my head to the floor so that I was lying flat and looking up, he then went and lay down next to me and looked at the sky. 

2) No no seriously, lie back.

Every time I tried to get up I was reminded to take my time and rest a while.

3) roll around a little. OK so you get a bit dusty but it's fun!

4) lie back some more

5) oh and take your shoes off to do all the lying back, it's much better!

And finally.
6) put the camera down!

He took this picture, looked at the screen and said 'mummy', turned the camera off and put it in my bag.

We also did lots of running, playing with a ball and swinging and Isaac did some sliding too (I can't fit on the slide....).

Sunday, 24 May 2009

We've been to Wales

We had a lot of this...

a fair bit of this...

Some more of this...

Some digging (let's not mention the dog in the garden at this point!).

Lots of splashing...

Some storming of the ramparts...

Some more of this...

A few views like this (this was 30 seconds walk from the cottage)

And these at regular intervals (and buses and vans and other wheeled things!)

A good time was had by all!

Saturday, 16 May 2009

I Swing. And other park adventures.

As part of the regeneration of the local park they're chopping down some trees and making others safe (ie chopping off loads of branches). The upshot of this is mounds of earth and wood chippings appearing in the park as if we've had an attack of very large moles. It's hard to show how steep this pile of earth is but Isaac had great fun climbing it and then running down it before sitting and digging in it. Matthew said Finny was digging in it this morning too. 

We were having so much fun (well I say we, Isaac was having the fun, we were watching) on the way home from shopping that Matthew went and got the bear for a bonus walk. 

Isaac decided to head off to the play park though which dogs aren't allowed in so we didn't spend long as a family group.

I've been reading this week about how swinging (along with lots of other outdoor playing activities) helps the brain develop. I'm glad that's true but when it comes down to it it's also plain fun! Isaac said "I swing" at one point today and he takes obvious delight in it.

As do I!

Thursday, 14 May 2009

Old Fashioned (and cheap) Fun.

Take one old sheet (free from Freecycle as it happens) and allow child to play at length. If you can put the sheet over something tall (like a parent) then this is even more fun but I didn't have my camera at that point.

The dog got involved too...

Take one large cardboard box and leave it on the floor whilst you sort the washing out. 

Put a towel on the floor, draw the stool up to the sink and then go about cooking dinner. 

I'm hoping with a bit of practice that he'll do real washing up soon ;~)