Circles, shields, shells and wheels

October 18, 2014 § Leave a comment

What can you make with circles?

Turns out, quite a lot.

Hubby brought home some huge cardboard circles the other night as Bean was asking us to make him a shield like Hiccup’s shield. I can paint, but I’m not so great at drawing (or at least, I didn’t want the weight of responsibility to get it right!) so I passed the drawing challenge over to the Husband. He excelled.

I coloured the shield in today. And glued on the dome that Husband brought home (there are definitely some unexpected benefits of having your dad work in the loudspeaker development industry!!) and voila, one Hiccup’s Shield!

Hiccup's Shield

Of course, since it’s nearly Bean’s birthday and everything is pretty much bought and organised for his Spiderman themed birthday tea, he’s discovered a new obsession: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. No, the birthday tea is not changing!!

But it was handy that Husband had brought home extra giant circles intended for Monster Truck Wheels for the Bear.

Two of them have been converted into TMNT shells instead! I’ve finished one mask, lunch has inconveniently happened though so Raph’s mask isn’t finished yet but here’s a very happy Leonardo with his mask and his shell.

TMNT Leo turtle shell

The Monster Truck Wheels are next on the list…. Tyre treads can’t be that hard to draw, can they??!


What I Love

June 8, 2014 § Leave a comment


What I Love

I love watching my boys play. I love watching them ride their bikes, watching them go faster, improve their balance, discover a new trick. I love listening to them sing, to their stories, to their imagination. I love saying “yes, let’s do that!” to them. I love snuggling with them at the end of the day, I love kissing them goodnight when bedtime is finally done, I love their smiles when they see me or daddy.

I love painting on big canvases. I love doodling on smaller ones. I love colour, and how it mixes and melds. I love crochet and learning new stitches, I love this new hobby to keep my brain active. I love the community of friends it has brought me into.

I love singing, playing piano, trying to play guitar. I love listening to music, singing along.

I love riding my bike with my littlest on his bike seat in front of me. I love being alone on the seafront, eyes closed with the wind pushing against me, smelling the sea, feeling the wind, being. I love being in the garden with the kids playing. I love walking in the woods or by the river. I love showing my children new things, old places. I love swimming in the sea, paddling in the shallows. I love paddling in a boat, cooking on open fires, huddling in shelters in the snow. I love being outside.

I love being inside! I love my food, I love cooking and baking. I love a glass of wine at the end of the day. I love chocolate (dark) and filter coffee (decaf these days, but still black). I love chick-lit books, rom-coms, soppy pointless feel-good reads that don’t require any real thought.

This morning, I did not want to get up at all. Bear suffered with a fever through the night and the last thing I wanted was Bean prodding me saying cheerfully “mama it’s wake-up time!” But as I grumped in bed scrolling through my news feed this status caught my attention:

“I have already decided, this is beautiful day and I will rejoice and be glad!”

And so, I decided, that I would rejoice and be glad.

I have had THE most trying morning so far.

But, I shall rejoice and be glad, for today IS a beautiful day.

I am grateful for friends sending love my way, helping JOY be in my heart this morning. And when we lie crumpled on the floor, we have the opportunity to see things from a very different perspective!

Storm Art

June 7, 2013 § Leave a comment

We did some big messy art today, outside in the gorgeous sunshine (and strong winds!). It’s so lovely to be able to go outside to paint! Here’s what we got up to, painting inspired by Jupiter’s storms.

jeni and the beans

storm art

Today’s unschooling subject was Art!

Yeah yeah… ok… who am I kidding… we pretty much just had a blast 🙂 Half an hour of utter paint mayhem, followed by a cold paddling pool wash, followed by more playing in the dustbowl that the digging patch has become. And at some point one or the other of the boys managed to get paint on the backs of my arms and back. I wonder who that could possibly have been. Bean pointed at Bear. Bear didn’t say otherwise….

We’d originally started off while Bean was rustling around in the dustbowl “making storms”. We started chatting about Jupiter, about how there was a really big storm on Jupiter which had been going on for hundreds of years. I suggested maybe we could get the paints out and paint a big storm, like on Jupiter. We went indoors for a bit and looked at…

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Anything but silent…

May 3, 2013 § Leave a comment

It may have been a but quiet on the blog front but it’s been anything BUT silent in the Messy house!

Steve has been here, there and everywhere, from mission trips to South Africa and Lesotho, to job interviews in Glasgow and Yorkshire. I think he needs some time off – at work!

We have been so busy, my happy little bumbling-along life has been taken over with groups and gatherings – all of which are good and lovely, but it does mean that in order to sustain our need for frugal living alongside all this socialising and gadding about there are things that get put on the back burner. On top of this my Bear has had a fun few weeks of taking a very long time to settle to sleep and all I want to do in the evenings is curl up! So, a lot of my “me” activities are on the back burner. Like blogging! Most of my journals are suffering at the moment. As is my breadmaking (which I’ve not blogged about) and the crochet blanket (also not blogged about yet!) that I’m working on for Bear.

It’s been pretty eventful though too. We’re embarking on a new adventure in Unschooling for the Bean (and the Bear too, by default) and if you’re interested you can follow that adventure over on my sister blog jeni and the beans. I’m still figuring out what I’ll write there and what I’ll write here, but I’ll probably keep this blog with an emphasis on kids’ art and craft, whereas the other blog will be a much wider journal on life and learning with hopefully some guest bloggers too.

Posts in the pipeline from the messy mama:
Mini Maypole crafts (from our fab home ed group)
Gardening and mud


April 6, 2013 § 1 Comment

GraceLoved it so much, I had to draw my own ❤ The background is one of Bean’s, from last spring possibly – it’s been taped to our back door since then! Thought it could do with rescuing really 😉


April 7, 2012 § 1 Comment

Oh my gosh. I’ve been tagged. Thankyou, thesinglecrunch!! So the game is like a joke chain letter, you write some jokes and then tag some other bloggers….

Anyway. My mum sends me jokes sporadically. She gets them from friends and cousins of hers. Most of them are un-reprintable, as funny as they are, but here are some I enjoyed enough to send on to friends!

Happy IVGLDSW Day!
Today is  International Very Good Looking, Damn Smart Woman’s Day, so please send this  message to someone you think fits this description. Please do not send it  back to me as I have already received it from a Very Good Looking, Damn  Smart Woman! And remember this motto to live by: Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, wine in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming “WOO HOO what a ride!”

Have a wonderful day!

To the Girls!!

Inside every older person is a younger person — wondering what the hell happened.
Cora Harvey Armstrong

Inside me lives a skinny woman crying to get out. But I can usually shut her up with cookies.

The  hardest years in life are those between ten and seventy.
Helen Hayes (at 73)

I  refuse to think of them as chin hairs. I think of them as stray eyebrows.
Janette Barber

Thirty-five is when you finally get your head together and your body starts falling apart.
Caryn Leschen

If you can’t be a good example — then you’ll just have to be a horrible warning.

Nobody  can make you feel inferior without your permission.
Eleanor Roosevelt

When life hands you lemons, ask for tequila and salt and call me over!



And here’s the joke I was looking for… (sent from my mum’s Australian cousin)


A young Aussie lad moved to London and went to Harrod’s looking for a job.

The manager asked ‘Do you have any sales experience?’

The young man answered, ‘Yeah, I was a salesman back home in Dubbo.’

The manager liked the Aussie so he gave him the job.

His first day was challenging and busy, but he got through it.

After the store was locked up, the manager came down and asked, ‘OK, so how many sales did you make today?’

The Aussie said,  ‘One!’

The manager groaned and continued, ‘Just one? Our sales people average 20 or 30 sales a day.

‘How much was the sale for?’


The manager choked and exclaimed  £124,237.64!!  What the hell did you sell him?’

‘Well, first I sold him a small fish hook, then some sinkers and then I sold him a new fishing rod.’

‘Then I asked him where he was going fishing and he said down at the coast, so I told him he would need a boat, so we went down to the boat department and I sold him that twin-engine Power Cat.’

‘Then he said he didn’t think his Honda Civic would pull the boat, so I took him down to car sales and I sold him the 4×4.

The manager, incredulous, said, ‘You mean to tell me…a guy came in here to buy a fish hook and you sold him a boat and a 4×4?’

‘No, no, no… he came in here to buy a box of tampons for his girlfriend and I said…
“Well, since your weekend’s stuffed, you might as well go fishing”.’

And since I’m pretty new on the blogosphere and don’t have many friends on here yet I’m tagging existing friends:

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