A recycled paper Easter nest { guest post }

Today’s guest post is from one of my very favourite bloggers, Steph from this Brown Wren.  Steph and I have been blogging buddies for years now and I have always adore the gentle approach to life that she has and her creativity is something that just flows from all that she does.  Steph takes the most beautiful photos as you can see below along with a beautiful Easter nest tutorial which she has made with her two adorable children from recycled newspaper that she has made especially for us.  


I remember placing the basket at the end of my bed and carefully creeping under the covers so as not to disturb it. Usually home for dinner rolls when my parents entertained friends it now, filled with shredded paper, waited patiently for the Easter Bunny’s foil encrusted bounty.  It was always a rather meagre offering compared to some of today’s standards but for my brother and I, it was plenty.  I can vividly recall that first cloyingly sweet mouthful of chocolate while I swept bed hair out of my face and sleep out of my eyes.

This year we’re hunting out fair trade chocolates to extend the spirit of Easter beyond our home.  We have created little paper nests from old newspapers and our babies will wake to a few small chocolates and something Mumma made…perhaps a little knitted bunny each. We will gift the littles in our extended family with small homemade chocolates and biscuits while the adults will receive a virtual chicken. A gift pledged to those in need to encourage hope, growth and new life; the true essence of this time.

A modest affair steeped in simplicity and resonating with our love of this earth and our fellow man.

Steph x
We used the local paper cut into small squares to make two small and one larger nest. The paper was soaked in boiling water for about ten minutes and then handfuls were blitzed in the blender with extra water. The pulp was pressed into a sieve to remove a lot of the water and when it was not too wet, not too dry, it was pushed into an oiled bowl. We took care to press everything together well to avoid cracks.  A few days drying and the nests were gently eased from their vessels. Some earthy paint and last year’s blown eggs and an Easter spirit is starting to glow in our home. 

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Thanks so much Steph for this beautiful post.  How adorable is that little tongue of concentration.  What a beautiful idea to purchase a virtual chicken as an Easter gift.  

As a little side, Steph has just this week opened a little online store selling beautiful handmade sleepwear for children from vintage fabrics.  You’ll love it!

This craft is part of an Easter series here on Frog Goose and Bear and in this last week before Easter we have been sharing an Easter themed craft or activity every day, so if you’d like to see the rest of the posts in this series, just click here …

Some easy peasy Easter recipes to make with kids.

Earlier this week we had a lovely time with some of our favourite little friends making these simple chocolate Easter nests that have become an annual tradition in our house.

200g of melted chocolate, mixed together with 2 tablespoons of peanut butter and a packet of Chang’s Oriental Fried Noodles, spooned onto some baking paper.  Place some Cadbury mini eggs on top to look like little eggs in a nest and pop it in the fridge to set and your done!

MORE EASTER RECIPES:

mini Easter chocolates
We made these little Easter chocolates earlier this week when my 2 year old niece came over.  It is as simple as pouring melted chocolate into a mould.  We used vintage moulds that I kept from my childhood to make these.

mini marshmallow nests

Another twist on the Easter nest are these scrumptious looking marshmallow nests made by my clever friend Lucy the Kitchenmaid containing only rice bubbles, marshmallows and butter.  My kids would love these!
Chocolate marshmallow eggs
While we are on the topic of Lucy and her delicious recipes, she also shares the recipe for this deliciously beautiful homemade chocolate marshmallow egg over on her blog.  This one does look ever so slightly trickier and is probably one for the adults to attempt, but looks oh so worth it!
Hot cross buns
These hot cross buns from Cathie of Melbourne Epicure also look delicious and fun to make with the kids.  Along with the recipe, she also includes how to make them egg and dairy free.


Do you have any Easter recipes that have become an annual tradition at your house?

This post is part of an Easter series.  For more Easter crafts and recipes, click on the image below.  All simple activities that will keep you & your kids busy over the school holidays right up until Easter Sunday.

How to make the cutest pom pom carrot { guest post }

Today’s guest post is from my new clever blogging buddy Clare who lives all the way over in the USA.  It’s spring there and the weather is warming up.  It’s cold here today and I’m sitting here all rugged up with my slippers on.  I wish I was in Clare’s neck of the woods right now.  I was introduced to Clare’s lovely blog, Cats Eat Dogs, when I did the recent online blogging course called Blog with Pip (which, by the way, has been a wonderful resource and I would recommend!).  She has written a lovely little tutorial for us on how to make the cutest pom pom carrots that I’m sure every little Easter bunny will just love! If you head over to her blog, she has also made a cute little pom pom rabbit. Thanks Clare!



Springtime brings Easter and baby chicks and lambs and veggies galore!  The weather is warming and everything is growing, so what better use of a pom pom than to make carrots.

Here’s how.

Make three pom poms in graduating sizes, I used a cereal packet to cut my pom pom bases out and increased the size of each circle by 2cm each time, ending up with 4cm, 6cm and 8cm discs. I used orange fluffy wool but any orange wool will be great. 

For the leafy top, I loosely wrapped some green wool around my hand a few times in an uneven manner and tied it like a pom pom and trimmed open the ends. Almost like a very loose freeform pom pom.

Sew them together using the wool already on the pom, include the ‘leaves’ as you sew the three together.

When the pom poms are sewn into the carrot shape, trim them to get that lovely carrot shape.  

Arrange your carrots with some Easter bunnies for a super cute Easter arrangement.

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Pom poms are really fun to make and if you haven’t made them before, you’ll find a simple tutorial here.  You can also make them using a fork or on your fingers as well.

This post is part of a series of all things Easter here on FGB.  If you’d like to check out the rest of the series, just head on over here …



Are you in Easter overload yet?  I hope not, because this week we are celebrating and counting down the days until Easter, by having an Easter crafty post every day until Sunday, so come back again tomorrow for even more Easter fun!  Perfect for Easter holiday crafting with the kids.

How to make a gorgeous Easter Mug { guest post }

Prepare yourself for an overload of Easter crafts, activities and recipes as we end this Easter craft series with a bang! We’ll be sharing a new craft every day until Sunday!

Today’s guest post is written by my beautiful friend Cathie from Melbourne Epicure.  Many of you will know her as the best baker around and she shares many of her delicious recipes on her blog, the generous soul that she is.  Cathie and I share a love of all things craft and parties and she has been kind enough to share an adorable Easter activity that she did with her children.


Bunny Thumbprint Mugs
I absolutely love using the kid’s handprints and footprints to create art, it’s something that just says childhood to me.  
Maybe it’s my childhood memory of finger-painting or maybe just because it’s cute.
Here’s a little quick craft we did with the kids for Easter.  
It really is quick and can make a perfect last minute gift.

Here’s what you’ll need:

Cup or plate
Ceramic paint
Ceramic marker
Paintbrushes
A few little thumbs and fingers!


What to do:
Using your paint brush, paint your child’s thumb and index finger.

Gently press onto mug first with their thumb and then with their finger.  Allow to dry.
Continue until you have as many bunnies as you’d like.

When the paint has dried, paint on some bunny tails with white paint.


Allow to dry and then draw on the bunny ears.


Follow paint manufacturer’s instructions on bottle on setting paint.

There you have it, just in time for someone special this Easter.
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Thanks so much Cathie – so adorable!

This post is part of an Easter craft series here on the blog.  If you’d like to see more posts from this series, just click on the pic below.



How to Dip Dye Easter Eggs

Decorating eggs has been an Easter tradition in our family for as long as I can remember. The classic dip-dyed method is one of the easiest ways to decorate eggs.  It’s timeless and will always be the best in my book.  When I was younger we used rubber bands to make patterns, but I always had trouble with getting them to stay on, so this time I’ve gone with the simple and effective crayon drawing which has a guaranteed effect.  You can blow the eggs if you’d like them to last a long time, or simply use hard boiled eggs.

You will need

  • eggs
  • a white wax crayon
  • food dye
  • white vinegar
  • paper towel
1. Draw on each egg with the white crayon.  At this stage you’ll hardly be able to see the crayon, but don’t worry, it won’t stay this way.
2. Place a few drops of food dye into a bowl of vinegar.   One bowl for each colour.
3. Place your eggs in the bowls and roll them through the dye until the eggs are the desired colour.   You can use a spoon or wear rubber gloves if you don’t want to colour your fingers.  You’ll notice that the dye does not colour the wax from the crayon.
4.  Place your eggs on paper towel to dry.
5.  Your eggs are done!  All ready for the Easter fairy to deliver ;)
These dip dyed eggs in a bowl make a lovely Easter decoration, or if you use boiled eggs you can serve them up to your kids for lunch or even have an Easter egg and spoon race!
Is egg decorating a tradition in your house?
This post is part of an Easter series here on Frog Goose and Bear.  To see all of the Easter crafts, recipes and activities in this series, you can click on the image below.


This post was originally published on Kidspot.com.au in March 2013.


How to make a Floral Easter Crown { guest post }

Today’s Easter guest post is from the delightful Melissa Mander-Jones who blogs at Miss Sew & So. She describes herself as loving styling, crafting, living & laughing by the sea and every time I visit her blog or see her pics on instagram I wish I didn’t live so far away so I could pop over for a craft session and a glass of wine in her relaxing & gorgeous abode.  

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Everyone needs a Floral Easter crown…

This Easter craft is super quick…and CRAZY cute, once you have all your *bits* together.

We are making this at Audrey’s 9th Birthday with her *bestie gang* from school.

I’m going to have each place sorted, and set up with all they’ll each need to make their own.

I can’t wait to see how they put their’s together…undoubtedly I’ll be sitting on my *helping hands*!!

I’ll be thinking balance and they’ll be thinking *go-for-it-fun*!

The girls sweet-as crowns will have a creative energy, that as party-planner,  mine will not!

What you need:

-fabric flowers…all sorts, go as simple or indulgent as you like!

-craft wire for the actual head piece {I found some in our fabric store covered in soft white fluff stuff!}

-garden ties



What to do- building that crown!

-remove all the fabric flower heads from their stems, leaving a small green end to tie onto the crown keeping the flower in firmly in place.

-measure your craft wire for the head to be crowned…

-cut to size and join so all the sharp ends are covered and tied. Lay on the table with all your inspiration {flowers, vine leaves…etc etc}

-using the green garden ties, firstly tie your vine leaves as the base and build up using your larger then smaller flowers to fill the spaces in between.

-be sure to tuck all the garden tie ends in upon themselves, so there are no sharp ends!

Put on head in your dressing gown…giggle and enjoy!

This is one of the simplest, prettiest easter/birthday crafts we’ve done.

It’s super inexpensive and almost built from what you may already have around your home!

Enjoy!

Melissa & Audrey 

xox

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How cute is that giggling almost 9 year old Audrey?  Thanks so much for sharing Melissa!

This post is part of an Easter craft series here on Frog Goose and Bear.  To see all of the other crafts, recipes & activities in the series just click on the image below.



Crafty fun at The School’s Kids Holiday Camp

Last week I had the opportunity to be ‘intern’ for the day and help out at the Kids Holiday Camp run by Megan Morton’s The School down here in Melbourne at the Abbotsford Convent masterfully organised by the fabulous Ms Candy Sparkles.  

The camp ran for three days and the children could attend just one day or all three. Each day was different, but the day that I was there, the kids made dream creatures with the super talented Madeleine Stamer in the morning and sparkle terrariums with Candy in the afternoon among much more creativeness along the way like feathery & sparkly crowns, pom poms, dancing in the rain, eating hot cross buns and drinking hot chocolate.

Madeleine also drew an extra special Easter design especially for the kids in this class to colour using watercolours (you can see it in the top pic).  She has been generous enough to share the design as a free download over on her blog if you’d like to print it out for yourself.

Goose (aged 10) came along with me on the day and had a ball!  Goose made the delightful Pheonix dream creature in the picture above which is now hanging above her bed.  She is a huge fan of anything creative and her words at the end of the day were “Can we do that again?  No, let me rephrase that – when are we doing that again?”

The School in Sydney runs amazing classes for both adults and children covering all things creative and stylish and can often be found running classes in other parts of the country as well.  Candy is running a Kids Holiday Camp in Sydney too and there are still places left for Tuesday and Wednesday this week so if you’re a Sydney-sider, go and check out the website for more details coz I know your kids would just love it!

Being around kids expressing their creativity is something that I just can’t get enough of.

What have you been up to during the school hols?  Do you go crazy with activities or spend lots of lazy days in your pj’s or a mix of both?

If you or your kidlets are up for any Easter crafting, you might like to check out our Easter Craft Series for some fun and simple Easter themed crafts, recipes and activities.

P.S.  Big thanks to my beautiful friend Susannah for looking after Frog & Bear (as well as her own three kids) for the whole day so that Goose and I could go along to this.  Where would we be without friends like this ? xo

How to make an adorably simple Easter Jar Bunny { guest post }

A couple of years ago I met my lovely friend Caroline when our children were at kinder together.  Do you know how nice it is to come across someone in your everyday travels who shares the same interests, loves and passions – in this case a love of craft and kids parties topped the list!  She is a a very talented craftster and has her own online store where she sells top quality gorgeous stuff!  She and her two adorable daughters made these simple bunny jars for their school teachers last week and she has been generous enough to write up a very cute and clever tutorial for us to follow so that we can give them a go too!

How cute was that tutorial??!!  She’s going to teach me how to do fun stuff like that on my pictures too.  Don’t you love having talented friends?  Don’t you think she would be an awesome blogger?  For another quick and easy DIY Easter gift, Caroline has also designed some adorable printables to pop on top of a bag of marshmallows to gift a bag of bunny tails.  You can purchase them to print yourself at home from her online store.



This tutorial is part of a series of Easter posts where I am sharing lots of Easter crafts, recipes and activities here on the blog up until Easter.  School holidays are here in Victoria.  Have you got up to anything Easterish?  For the rest of the series click here…


If you’d like to submit a guest post for this series, just send me an email – I’d LOVE to hear from you!

Fluoro Bling bling Easter Eggs

Every Christmas my mother-in-law makes Christmas tree decorations with the kids by using little pins to add sequins and ribbon to polystyrene balls of varied sizes. Admittedly the kids often lose interest about half way through (as the balls are too big and the sequins so small) and Grandma or I end up finishing them off, but they do enjoy the process and it is simple for even the youngest of crafters to have fun with (although I probably wouldn’t attempt with kids under 3 years of age).  

When I spotted these polystyrene eggs at Spotlight my mind went straight to those Christmas decorations and I wondered if we could do the same thing for Easter decorations.  A few steps further in the store and I came across some neon sequins (just for fun) and when looking for pins discovered that there is such a thing as sequin pins which are perfect as they are much shorter than your usual sewing pin and are therefore not going to poke through the other side of your eggs!  The eggs are pretty small so the kiddos didn’t lose interest and they looked great whether placed in a pattern or randomly spread.

These would look cute in a little bowl or you could hang them by adding some ribbon folded in half and attached by a pin to the top of the egg.

This post is part of an Easter series here on Frog Goose and Bear. School holidays started here in Victoria yesterday and I plan to do LOTS of Easter crafting so come on back for a visit for more over the coming fortnight! Just click on the pic below for lots more Easter themed crafts, recipes and activities. 

Have you been getting your Easter craft on?  If you’re up for sharing – I’d love to see pics of what you get up to!





In other news, this Wednesday I am lucky enough to be able to help out at The School’s  Kids Holiday Club with the clever Ms Candy Sparkles and fifteen 5-12 year olds at the Abbotsford convent where we are going to make sparkly terrariums and amazing dream creatures.  There are still spaces for the Tuesday and Thursday full day workshops – see here for details if you think your kids would LOVE it.  I think they totally would!

Unleash Creative: A day of crafty indulgence

I was lucky enough to attend the first Unleash Creative event in Melbourne on Saturday! For me, it was creative heaven.  So much colour and creativity and how wonderful to be allowed to set aside a whole day to just craft and hang out with other lovely folk who share the same passion!  And not just any crafts either – new to me, super cool crafts!   Not to mention all the party inspiration that was there too (I just can’t help myself and always have half an eye out for party ideas) and I’ve come home with a list a mile long of recommended craft supply stores, party shops, how to’s, where to’s, etc, etc.

   Here are my pics from the day … 
How cool is that wall (above) decorated with origami paper and double sided tape!
We were each given one of four coloured name tags when we walked in and we stuck with that group for the day.  These are the gorgeous blue ladies – thanks for making it a fun day!
Our clever clogs teachers for the day (pictured below) were:

and the whole day was put together by super organiser extrordinaire Magdalena Franco.
Here are my four creations for the day …
My cuckoo clock (bottom left pic) is not quite finished, but if you like all things kitsch and kooky, there is a full tutorial including downloadable templates over on Allira’s blog complete with a deer head and dangling toadstools.
This was just the beginning of many Unleash Creative events across Australia.  

Check out the Unleash Creative website for more deets!
I must also mention the deliciously exquisite dessert table for morning tea made by the super clever Caz from Nectar and Stone (I must admit to having tasted her goodies on another occasion and both times they have been divine)

along with the most amazingly scrumptious lunchboxes by Miss Jackson (I’m not exaggerating here!  I’d love one of those delivered every day, thanks! (seriously, please!)

I know I’ve used a lot of descriptives like awesome and gorgeous and amazing, but I came out of the day on a creative high, feeling both content and inspired.  We all have our thing that makes us feel alive and for me, it’s getting those creative juices flowing.  Huge thanks for letting me be a part of the day Magdalena - can’t wait for the next one! 






















You’ll find more pics of the day on instagram under the hashtag #ucmelb.


On leaving we were given the BEST goodie bag ever with generous gifts from some of my favourites – thanks to blank, little shop of, lovemaedandelynewoodsfolk & more!


What is it that makes you feel refreshed, rejuvenated and alive?

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