Happy 1st Day of Spring! It’s a chilly one here…
Join us again this Spring for local hikes on some nearby Kansas City trails. Click on the image above for the schedule of hikes. All families are welcome to join us in building community while we explore the nature that surrounds us. If you are not local, find your nearby trails and have fun exploring with your family.
View this post from last Spring for some great resources for connecting with your family through nature this season.
This is one of our favorite tree stump perches in the forest behind our house and it just happens to be in the shape of a heart. It makes me happy every time I pass by.
I spotted this lovely rock on a hike with my kiddos yesterday. They were so thrilled that we found a heart shaped rock the day before Valentine’s Day. I told them that it must be a sign of God’s love. It also reminds me of this great story of a family who collects heart shaped rocks and displays them in their home.
Have fun starting your own nature collection, maybe even a collection of hearts.
Have a beautiful day!
Since moving into our home three years ago I have really enjoyed incorporating natural objects into the decor at different seasons through the year. Winter is a time when I especially like to display the collected sycamore tree bark and the variated twigs to create a woodland theme and focus on the natural beauty and details of these objects. This year I decided to pair a woodland arrangement with the paintings by my good friend Erin, which are inspired by the coastlines and sandy beaches of Seaside, Florida. The paintings and the arrangement complement each other well and they bring out the beauty inspired by the natural world. You can view more of Erin’s work here.
The collection of ornaments for this arrangement include thin laser cut ornaments that I picked up a few years ago at George, a local shop with a highly curated selection of beautiful objects. The glass ornaments with feathers inside are from Black Bamboo, another favorite local shop. These were gifts to my husband and children. One child in particular likes to collect feathers and I love this idea for showcasing his collection. The woodland glass ornaments with the hand stamped leaf is the DIY I had on the blog last week. What is also nice about using a woodland theme is that it can be used as decor throughout the winter months.
We spend almost all of our time during the winter months in this room by the fire and it is rarely EVER this clean. Sorry, I had to pick up the legos and blocks, random socks, and my coffee mug for this shot. Notice the sycamore bark sculpture on the left side of the fireplace – this is another way that I have incorporated natural objects indoors and this one stays all year long.
The star above is made from the variated sycamore twigs and twine and the bowls are filled with vintage glass ornaments and sycamore bark. I have had the vintage ornaments for awhile now but I always enjoy placing these in bowls along with the bark.
Here are a couple of Etsy shops that are carrying vintage ornaments along with some other fun repurposed items to add to your decor. Also, search your local antique shops for vintage Christmas decor to add to your collection.
These might look a bit familiar. They are the same leaves I used for printing the Thank You gift tags a few weeks back. I love incorporating natural materials into holiday decor and these are very simple to make.
A variety of pressed leaves (thin leaves work better with this because after pressing the leaf onto paper you roll it slightly to slip it into the glass bulb. Wide leaves and ones with a lot of points are harder to slip into the glass bulb.)
4″ Clear glass bulb ornaments (I found mine on sale at a local Hobby Lobby)
White acrylic paint + paint brush
Brayer (these work well, but are not necessary. You can also just use your hand to press.)
Brown kraft cardstock (The weight of the cardstock works well, it seems to helps the print lay on the inside of the ornament nicely)
First select your leaf. The leaf I used for this was 4-1/2 inches long, but just experiment with sizes. Paint the backside with white acrylic. Lay painted side down onto craft paper and then lay a scrap piece of paper over it. Either use your brayer or your hands to press, making sure you press on all areas of the leaf. This might take several tests to get the print you like, but this is the fun part! You can keep repainting the backside of the leaf with paint as long as it is a sturdy leaf. When you have a good print, let it dry. After the print is dry cut around your design and roll with painted side to the outside and slip into the glass bulb. It should lay on the inside of the glass, but you can also use a Qtip to help press it to the side.
To make this an even easier craft, use leaf stamps and white stamp pads to create your designs.
Involve your children in the collecting, painting and pressing of the leaves and maybe make some homemade woodland holiday cards while your supplies are out.
The Five and One group had a great time exploring the Overland Park Arboretum trails last weekend. Among the discoveries were snails, deer, a fawn, tadpoles, frogs, a turtle, many birds, native plants, and a creek full of water. Join us for our next hike on Sunday, July 1 at the Parkville Nature Sanctuary. Five and One hike schedule.
For more hiking tips and inspiration view an earlier Family Nature Hikes post here.
Oh so clever! Colossal shared the stunning lego work of DeTamaso Pantera today and I could not wait to share them with you. The boys have not seen these yet but I can only imagine their excitement. Pantera has a host of other creative lego creations to look at here – don’t miss the dragonfly. Such a perfect summer activity (for moms and dads too) when it is just too unbearably hot outside. Love those wings…
We’re delighted to have our Children’s Nature Kit and our Children’s Organic Garden Seed kit included in the Gardening Collection on the Felt and Wire shop. Take a few moments to look at all of the other lovely gardening and nature inspired products featured in the collection too.