Hiding a Geocache

imageThe best way I would describe geocaching is that it is hunting for treasure. It’s an official game that is run worldwide and anyone can take part. We find that it’s a fantastic way of exploring different areas and really exciting for the children. The easiest way to play is to download the Geocaching app on your phone and search for nearby caches. You will then see a map with Geocaches marked on and a blue dot to show you your location. Click on the cache you want to find, read the description and hint, follow your way to the green dot and start searching.

We like the traditional caches that are big enough to include swappables (treasure). Being fairly new to this we aren’t interested in puzzle caches, we just want to explore, see beautiful places and find treasure. Check out our first Geocaching adventure.

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After some successful finds at various locations we thought it would be fun to share the love and create our own Geocache. Penguin had fun choosing some toys to put in the cache. We made a small log book which we are looking forward to see being filled up. We found a good hidey hole under a tree and used a few sticks to hide the cache.

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Here’s how to hide a cache…

  1. Scout for a good location to hide a cache
  2. Get a suitable container
  3. Put small log book, pencil and treasure in container
  4. Hide your cache and save coordinates
  5. Submit cache information to geocaching.com
  6. Visit cache periodically to check it’s still there and stocked with treasure

For a more detailed instructions of how to hide a geocache you can go to the official Geocaching site, follow the link. We used geogz.com to print out a label for the container.

Have you ever been Geocaching? What was your experience like?

Button Birthday Cards

imageWe love making birthday cards and are always on the look out for different ideas. Maybe this simple but effective idea will take you fancy! That is if you can cope with glitter and buttons. I know buttons are very fearful for some! And as for glitter….well you have to be prepared to have a sparkly house.

I made these cards with my 3 year old, so she needed some assistance but thoroughly enjoyed herself. I folded the card in two and using PVA glue I made the shape of a number. Little Missy chose the buttons and put them on the glue.

Little Missy can’t get enough of glittery artwork so nearly shook the whole pot of glitter over the buttons.

We managed to save some of the glitter by shaking it onto some paper when the glue was dried and putting it back into the pot, ready for our next glittery project.

Little Missy had so much fun with the buttons and glitter she went on to create more glittery artwork!!

What glittery projects have you enjoyed? Or are you scared of buttons? Please comment below

Sarah 🙂

 

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Making Bird Feeders

It’s coming to the time of year when the birds in our gardens will be looking for extra food to munch on, these bird feeders will be a real treat and look cute too.

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Zori used her fine motor skills threading blueberries and cheerios onto a pipe cleaner. You can really see her concentrating in this picture 🙂

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We hung these up in the garden, Zori was really proud of her creation. It’s best to hang up any new bird feeder creation in the same area where your usual bird food is, this way you can ensure the birds will enjoy your tasty treat.

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Coventry Transport Museum

This year Coventry Transport Museum had a 9.5 million pound face lift! So we thought we’d make a day of it. It was a real treat to go on a day when enthusiasts had all brought their dinky cars (not sure of their official name) for a bit of a show and tell.

Coventry Transport Museum has this fantastic massive space out front, great for a parade of beautiful cars.

Munashe and Zori chose their favourites 🙂

Before you go to the museum do be aware, it’s rather big! Being home to a vast quantity of vehicles it’s kind of got to be. It’s probably best to allow at least 2-3 hours to go around. This museum is a perfect day out for a vehicle enthusiast. And it’s free, which is awesome! One of Munashe’s first words was car (pronounced ‘dar’). Instead of going to sleep cuddling a teddy bear he would be clutching two wooden cars. So this day out was a hit with our little munchkins. Having an older car loving brother means Zori enjoys brumming a car around the living room just as much as Munashe.

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The museum goes through the history of transportation, along with bikes, cars and other vehicles from back in the day, they are displayed alongside videos and activities to engage young and old.

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There are a whole array of cars to be seen, en-route thought the museum Munashe practiced his motor racing moves and decided he’d quite like to own this Jaguar when he’s able to drive!

Coventry transport museum is home to the worlds fastest car (at the time of writing), the Thrust SSC set the world land speed record, at a massive 763mph back in 1997. This record may be broken at the end of the year by the Bloodhound. The Thurst SSC is a definite must see. The car (if you can call it that) is massive and resembles more of a rocket than a car. They even have a 4D simulator (for a fee). Sounds a little scary but fun. Simulating going at 763mph, not your average roller coaster sim!

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The little Munchkins enjoyed designing a fast car and putting it to the test 🙂 They managed 762mph. Not Bad!image

To finish off, here was one of my favorite dinky cars. Very cute with the only door right at the front!image

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Feeding the Dragon…Party Game

Munashe recently celebrated his 5th birthday! He was very excited to choose the theme for his party…DRAGONS!! So in keeping with the dragon theme, we thought the ‘Feeding the Dragon’ game would be fun. It basically consists of kids throwing food (play food, balls etc) through the dragons mouth. I am no good at coming up with fantastic original illustrations so I enlisted the help of Leo (aka leothexplorer). He came up with this fantastic illustration with the most perfect wide mouth for feeding the dragon.

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I had the job of copying and painting this onto a large cardboard box. I first drew the dragon in pencil, going over the lines with a black permanent marker. I used acrylic paint to colour the dragon in.

I cut out the mouth with my trusty craft knife and stuck some teeth made of paper. I wanted the teeth to move out of the way when hit with play food, rather that bashing up the cardboard. I found mixing the colours and painting very therapeutic and was really pleased with the final result.

Aside from the party, it has kept Zori and Munashe entertained and practicing their throwing skills.

imageLooks like Zori is going to be the dragons dinner!

For more dragon party ides check out Dragon Egg Hunt and Roaring Dragon Activity

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Trash 2 Treasure

Making Dragon Eggs

Munashe recently celebrated his fifth birthday. Where did all that time go? He now is making lots of his own choices and when it came to decide what theme he would like for his birthday party he chose DRAGONS!!

Making these dragon eggs took me back to my primary school days. Not that I ever made dragon eggs but because of paper mâché and balloons!  Don’t you just love paper mâché?

First things first..ripping up the newspaper. Next, mixing up the wallpaper paste and start sticking.

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Zori absolutely loves this glue…lots of fun, sensory play and gooey fingers.

We could have kept going and covered these balloons more times to make them extra strong but it was really tricky to know how many layers we had done. So lots of guess work involved. The more layers, the stronger the dragon egg.

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We did a final layer in white printer paper, this was to make the painting stage more straight forward. I’m sure poster paints used to be more opaque than they are today. I remember the big boxes of coloured powder that we mixed ourselves. Now we just have semi opaque paint in bottles. Some things were just better back in the day!

The white layer worked really well and painting was a joy.

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The dragon eggs made up part of our ‘Hunt the Dragon Eggs’ game. For extra excitement I’d made some Origami Dragons and put them inside the paper mâché eggs. Munashe was very pleased to find a dragon 🙂

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For other dragon party ideas check out Feeding the Dragon andRoaring Dragon Activity

What theme did your child choose for their last birthday? Please comment below 🙂

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Making Crayons Disaster

Here’s one of my epic fails…

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…so we have a load of broken crayons and I’d seen all these fantastic shaped home made crayons on pinterest which looked so much fun. So I thought, lets give it a go. Our little munchkins were enthusiastic. In my impatience we had to make do with molds which I think were meant to be tomatoes (basically just ovals with a leafy top). Not as interesting as a star shape or a funky lego figure.

Ok, so Zori and Munashe got to use some fine motor skills peeling the remaining paper off the crayons. Then there was a little bit of grouping colours together.

Then came the fun bit. We put them in the oven at about 180c and left them for about ten minutes.

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This is what happened…followed by bellows of smoke (exaggeration) and nasty fumes!

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Oops…so I thought all silicone was created equal. Apparently not. It may have helped if I’d read the label. In hindsight I’m guessing what I had bought was a couple of silicone ice cubes trays rather that silicone baking molds. I still don’t understand the difference but I do understand that there is a difference. Hopefully no one else out there will make the same mistake.

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As for the end result. We have some salvaged crayons, lovely and rotund, slightly chalky, and they work a treat. So not all terrible after all. The silicone is in the bin and life goes on!

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