Issue 95 is out now
Kate Hodges

By Kate Hodges

03rd April 2020

Make pickles from veg scraps, witchy mindfulness, lockdown aromatherapy, fun growing projects, cloudspotting for beginners. Plus plant a herb garden, create a wild outdoor room, make your own bagpipes.

Kate Hodges

By Kate Hodges

03rd April 2020

Kate Hodges

By Kate Hodges

03rd April 2020

RECIPE Hey Pickle
With supermarket shelves low on food, we’re all looking for ways to make use of every ounce of produce. Over on The Green Parent, Lindsay Jean Hard has some cool ideas for making the most of food scraps and how to cook zero waste. We cannot wait to get the kids into the kitchen and make some quick pickles out of sad looking veg, rinds and peels. Zing up those lunches for virtually no money!

DO Make Some Noise
Right now, we’re finding solace in music. We’re listening to cheery tunes in the morning, chilling out to relaxing soundtracks during lessons, and dancing around to old hits played on our record player in the evenings. More widely, beyond the four walls we are all faced with right now, we can come together communally through music. There are kids’ music clubs springing up online – we like Go Kid Music and Mr Scullins Music Room, where you can learn to play ukulele, take part in singing assemblies or have a samba party using only household objects! Have you tried making your own instruments yet? These ideas are lovely, a straw harmonica (use paper ones!), can drums, a rainstick or a water xylophone, or if you’re a real glutton for punishment, try making this recorder-and-bag bagpipe!

DO Smell to Get Well
In a time of uncertainty and lack of schedule, essential oils can help keep a sense of rhythm, they can calm, and perk us up. We have some ideas for oils you can use with children here, to help with anxiety, to encourage connection and joy, and for those who are finding things a little intense. Find more ideas for using essential oils through your day here and here.

DO The Grow Team
If you’re lucky enough to have a garden, why not try some long-form projects over the summer? We love the idea of creating a wild outdoor room in which to spend lazy days, or making a bender or shelter where you might spend summer afternoons hiding, reading and eating berries. Smaller kids will love creating their own herb garden and picking bits for their tea or perhaps you could get witchy together and start your own medicinal herb garden. If you have access to a larger or communal garden, try making a clay pizza oven, but if you don’t have outside space, try making your own cactus garden or roll up some seed bombs and start brightening up your neighbourhood on your walks with some guerrilla gardening.

DO Look UP
Yes, it’s important to learn and do during lockdown, but it’s also vital to find ways for children to let go, destress and drift away for a few minutes. Even if you have no outside space, you can gaze upwards and try cloudspotting. If you’d like to get scientific, the BBC has a guide to types of cloud, some common, some very rare.Cloud guru, Gavin Pretor-Pinney is more whimsical, but his lecture for the American Meteorological Society beautifully combines fact with wonder – if you get really into spotting, you might join his Cloud Appreciation Society. Wait for a day when the fluff is high in the sky, lay on your backs or look out of your window, and see what shapes you can spot, while imagining families around the world doing the same.

What we’ve been reading this week:

The Cunning Folk Guide to Self-Isolation: What to read, what to watch, and advice on how to cope in these strange times.
“One of the most important things for our mental health is routine. At present we might feel out of control, but we can create a new routine by bringing new rituals into our lives. Rituals allow us take hold of the things we can control.” Read more here

Found something inspirational to read that you’d like to share? Want to share your lockdown creations with us? Have an idea for things to do? We’d love to hear from you. Email Kate

And, once more, as it builds and builds (thanks for all your links and tip-offs!)
This month, the world has become a darker, more intense place. Many of us are now in semi- or total-lockdown, living small-scale, confined to houses and, if we’re lucky, gardens. Testing times, to be sure. We’ve started a list of online resources to help, from how to structure your days, to lesson plans and home-ed resources, online story tellers and ideas for kitchen-table art, front-room workouts, inventive ways to play, stress reducers for the family, fun sites to visit, virtual museums to explore, and the online communities springing up to support us all. Please take a look, share and get in touch if you have any suggestions for more resources

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