Tuesday, 25 December 2012

Merry Christmas Everyone x x

That's it!  A big Merry Christmas from me, Carl, Hugo and Martha.

BIg love and wishes for a very happy day

Sam x

Saturday, 22 December 2012

Chasing Santas and finding creativity everywhere

This morning I had a job to expel the bionic energy in my children so, off we went to the wonderful hash harriers group that we have here in our village.  It was proper shedding down with rain but the babes still need exercising so out of the car and on with the games!

It was dd's first go and thankfully she loved it.  Ds showed her the ropes and both were soaked through in minutes.

It being the last session of the year, two Santa's appeared at different posts in the field.  The game was to run to each of them, do your exercises that Santa gave you and gather in the sweeties, it was so much fun (to watch especially).

It got me thinking about creativity in all different walks of life, not just art or craft.  To my mind creativity is all about keeping things fresh and finding new ways of coming at things in the everydayness of life...Chasing Santa's?  Utterly brilliant.

Much love

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

My lovely moment in silver glittery shoes...

I had a lovely moment this weekend.  We were in London visiting our dearest mates to eat Samuel-Peypesesque celebratory nosh, drink our own bodyweight in fizz and red wine, sing carols by the tree (whilst knocking off all the decs as we brushed past the table laid fair for 16) laugh stupidly, talk stupidly, engage in secret-santa's,climb out of silvery glitter heels at every opportunity and eventually dance to 'don't you want me baby' too loud and far too early in the morning..we had a ball.

Ah yes, my lovely moment.  Seeing my 'Londonisms' in Town & Country Living Magazine, as just popped through the door of my friends house...thank you Gods...nice touch!

http://samanthabarnes.co.uk/home/all-paintings-and-prints/londonisms.php  follow the link to find yours special place in The Big Smoke.

Much love

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

and this Certificate is awarded to....

Children LOVE rewards.  Sometimes when we (as adults) get out of whack with things, we can learn a lot from children.

My after-school artypops art group finishes next week and its time to look at what worked, what didn't, what can be learnt from and what can improved on...something of a SWOT test (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities & threats? am off too google...be back in a mo)  thats right indeed.

Firstly, the children LOVED all the activities, from dip-ink drawings using peacock feathers to making decs for the tree, all the activities were enjoyed.  They particularly enjoyed not knowing each week what they were going to be doing, they loved the surprise...perfect.

Secondly, they loved the snacks - marvellous.  Jammy dodgers win out every time..

Thirdly, the singing....I know.  Helped along am sure by Christmas play preparations but am thinking of taking a small iPod in for the next classes...there are only so many times I can hear 'Away in a Manger' in one day.

Fourthly, the carrying system for getting all our wee treasures home once we bought them.  Must get some more paper bags, they worked a treat...(swoon) just imagine if I had 'artypops' printed onto them...they would be just gorgeous...yummy.  (get the logo sorted first Sam).

Lastly, certificates.  Ah yes, I deliberated but in the end I remembered just how much my babes love recognition.  All the children in my class have done so well, kept themselves beautifully occupied and behaved wonderfully, they all deserve one.  I have written them out and encapsulated them (not a big fan of lamenating as its not very eco-friendly, but for longevity have gone ahead and done it.)

So there we have it, the first official course of 'artypops after-school classes' are completed.  Well done everyone.

If the children get certificates...do I get a medal?  And, is it normal to feel quite so sad about them being over?

Much love


Saturday, 8 December 2012

All hail the 'Christmas print-out' (perfect emergency activity for the Christmas hangover)

Good morning the world

Ah yes, the morning after Christmas party number one...ouchy heads all round.

No pinchy craniums for the babes of course and off they are with their lovely (loud) voices and excitable babbles about our installing a Christmas tree today... time for emergency bacon and eggs me thinks.

Back in 20.

Much better, yum and groan.

My post today is in celebration of the Christmas print out.  Very very simply...we're talking about these at cbeebies among others (you'll find some more listed below at the end of this post.)  The only downside to these is that your printer has to have both ink and paper in... if you're luck is in and you have both, print away dear hearts and occupy little minds for as long as it lasts.

Below is a quick screen-shot of some of the many gazillions on offer. Invest in good felt-tips and have them on stand by at all times.  I bought dd some Crayola tips nearly a month ago now and they have survived a bashing twice to three times a day and are still going strong.

I wanted to find some really gorgeous ones but alas I can't find any that really stand out from the crowd...hmmm, perhaps next year I will make some of my own as I love to produce line-drawings.  Here are two that are consistently in my best-sellers list 'Polar Bear' & 'Goosey Goo'.  Hope you enjoy!

Other places to find Christmas printables.  (will be adding to the list)


Monday, 3 December 2012

So... what was in the box?!

The box.

The box jammed in between the children contained the sweetest pressie I think I have ever been given.

My mum and dad together made my family a hand-knitted nativity set...aw.  Not only had they made this for us, they also made one for my sister and family too.  Mum knitted the wee figures and Dad (a cabinet maker and joiner) made the cot and the shelter.  I can't tell you how much I love it, we all love it.

On with the photos.

And then, onto the very essence of what Artypops is all about.  This is a drawing that darling daughter has done of the nativity set...I LOVE to see how these things naturally get digested into the minds of our little ones and spring-off new ideas.

Even the box was a mega success...

Well done the olds..we love it x x x

Sunday, 2 December 2012

Pushing, lifting, bending, scooping, walking, scoffing, Grrrring and woofing...read on, read on...

Ah yes, it's all getting proper snuggly, cosy and baltic.  Yesterday, as much of the family as possible was summoned to my aunt's house, who lives deep, deep in the countryside to help stack the huge pile of logs from pile to 'dry-log-room-in-shed' (all very rural.)  We worked like little elfs, loading up the wheelbarrow (flat-tyred wheelbarrow of course) tipping out, stacking and bending over and over again..and again...singing merrily as we worked.  

And then there was the real version.  Summoned to my aunts house in the freezing freezingness with teenagers and toddlers to move a gazillion logs...marvellous, yay...no really.   Our part of the family swung in to our local bakery to purchase hot pasties, sausage rolls and mince pies for the whole team to scoff once our work was done.  They tasted goooood and we ate them next to the real fire with the (really) big dog looking lovingly at us/our pasties.    After nosh, we walked said massive lab dog in beautiful countryside.   Our bellies full and thoroughly exercised, we waved, laughed and jollied ourselves into our cars to reverse through the garden and back onto the lane to be off our our merry ways...Oh such fun, tra la la.  

The car didn't start.  Nice.

Butting up to two cars to try and jumpstart said motor, no avail.  Rush into nearest town to purchase new battery..an hour with the babes in the cold..nice.  Hurray they are back, battery in...no start.  Bugger it.  Left car in the village and went home driven by aunt.  Grrr.  

Home, hot baths all round.  Hot choc all round.  Bed by 8pm for all apart from Daddy to watch two lots of The Killing (apparently brilliant but bit too gruesome for me in places).  Woken at 10 for two lots of puke from darling son and then back to bed, via a quick dip into twitter after loading wash 1 of 20 in the w. machine.  

Hurray for rescue services.  Fresh-faced and jolly once more (it being the next day) we all arrived at the broken down car at the same time...  The nice man started our car and instructed us not to stop or stall until we get to our local garage (no pressure there then).  Once there, dump the car.  We did as told.

Back into the maroon Corsa that we purchased last week for 450nicker to be runabout for me, allowing me to get to art classes, etc etc.  We jammed ourselves in, along with a big big box that my mum had given me sheepishly and told us to open when we get home.

Back at home, babes (one very white one) jammed in the back of tiny Corsa with massive box, out we spilled..or planned to but snap - the handbrake on the Corsa snapped, amazingly this time...I didn't and neither did Darling husband.

Once untangled from the far-too-bigger-bodies being in a far-too-smaller-car for us...home home home.  Sofa day for wee boy, wee gal on and off it too all day in sympathy.

So where is the art in this post then eh?  Well, dearest readers. the art is in the everydayness of life. The beautiful countryside that we walked the dog in.  The fire that we scoffed our pasties by...from every situation we have to find the  good bits...

My best bit was seeing my teenage nieces pushing the car, along with my mum, aunt, massive dog, Darling husband and babes!  It felt distinctly 70's!

A new post coming about what was in the box...its very very special.

Merry December everyone...no really!