Friday, 24 December 2010

Plugging the gaps day 7

Still coughing.  Still sneezing.  Still spluttering.  But we did manage to finish the cake and the girls were very surprised I let them help (not as surprised as I was!).  The walnuts come from the garden of a distant relative in Belgium!

Plugging the gaps day 6

Sneeze.  Cough.  Splutter.

Wednesday, 22 December 2010

Plugging the gaps day 5

Well, as the illnesses have increased, the creativity has decreased! The girls had some surprise visitors this morning and a planned visitor this afternoon so there was plenty of playmobil creativity between the rest on the sofa sessions!

Dd2 was a bit creative with this book:

and I managed to marzipan the Christmas cake - very quickly without 4 little helping hands!
I'm not sure what tomorrow will bring but between coughs and sneezes I hope we will get at least one fun creative thing done together.

Oh yes, yesterday's lego creativity:

Tuesday, 21 December 2010

Plugging the gaps day 4

Still just about keeping up with my challenge ... dd1 and I decorated her birthday cake today and for some creative craft I let the girls wrap some Christmas presents - unsupervised!  They did a good job!  Both girls are still quite poorly and I'm not feeling brilliant myself so I have scaled back my cooking and crafting plans a bit, but one way or another we will have to marzipan the Christmas cake tomorrow!

Monday, 20 December 2010

Plugging the gaps day 3

Well, I'm still just about keeping up with my challenge, despite dd2 being very poorly today and dd1 still suffering from croup (they didn't make it to the party this morning but apparently they will be wearing the hats for dd1's birthday tomorow!).  For the cooking creation we made the next stage of the Christmas cake and for the crafty bit, they did some lego with dh while I was out shopping.  Perfect!  Tomorrow, our cooking creation will be dd1's birthday cake!  I'm not sure about the crafty bit yet, but something will come to me I'm sure.
Poorly on the sofa with the puppy:
 Next stage of the Christmas cake:

Sunday, 19 December 2010

Plugging the gaps day 2

Well, what I planned didn't quite happen, but I'm still keeping up with my challenge, so for some cookery we started making our Christmas cake:

And for a more crafty type creation the girls made silly hats for a party they are going to tomorrow:

Saturday, 18 December 2010

Plugging the gaps day 1

Due to the presence of Honey the labradoodle puppy in our homeschool we have had to pare back our learning to the bare essentials.  However, now that dh is home and homeschool is officially broken up, I am plugging some of the creative gaps from this term.  I have set myself the challenge of doing two creative things every day up to Christmas with the girls - one to be cooking of some kind and the other to be something like Christmas decorations.  The more fun it is the better.  For once, there are no 'rules' - the food doesn't have to be healthy and the decorations etc do not have to refer to the true meaning of Christmas.  It is actually very relaxing to let myself off the tight reins of purposeful activity and living for a brief moment as well!
Today we made some jelly and ice cream - it was a culinary disaster really, but when you are 5 and 6 years old it can also be viewed as a total success!  The jelly didn't set, probably due to one of the many things we added to it (marshmallows, coloured balls, glittery sprinkles), the custard we then tried to pour on top fell into it, but the ice cream snowballs rolled in flower shaped sprinkles weren't too bad!  We made metallic paper chains and the girls had carte-blanche to decorate the trees (one in the playroom upstairs away from the puppy and the other in their bedroom, also away from the puppy!).
Tomorrow I was hoping we would make a Christmas cake (half of us are wheat and gluten intolerant and those types of cake don't keep very well so it has to be made fairly last minute) but I have been unable to get to any shops due to the snow so instead we will be making mince pies with homemeade gluten free mincemeat kindly given to us last year by one of dh's colleagues last year (oops!).  I have just checked that it has survived a year in the fridge and all seems to be well!  I'm not sure what to do about decorations as I had planned on getting some paper doilys and making doily dolly chains - maybe we'll make our own doilys!
For those of you who aren't faint-hearted, here's the jelly!


Each year we have asked our children to create a picture for our family Christmas card/email.  This year was no different.  Below are pictures of the stages dd1 went through in making the picture this year.  She thought her first attempt was perfect and told me so but with a bit of guidance she managed to put herself in the shoes of the recipient and think about things like how much white space would be left on the paper and what the image would look like when it was reduced in size on the computer.  She was thrilled with the final result which was coloured with watercolour pencils by dd2 and painted over with water by dd2 and me.  To be honest, there were some moments of frustration on dd1's behalf during the whole process but I hope she has begun to learn that completing a task is about completing it to the best of your ability and not just getting the job done as quickly as possible!