Monday, 31 January 2011

Mindful Monday

A very quick one this week since I don't have anything to add to the resource I am about to share. simply because they say it so much better than I can lol!

This week I would like to share a particular series being done by the Deer park Dharmacast on meditation. Here is verse 1. There are 14 verses in total and if you haven't yet have an established meditation practise now is an excellent time to start :).

Sunday, 30 January 2011

Horses of Newbury

The video is called wild horses of newbury but as far as I can find out there where no wild horses near this site at the time of filming.
Beautiful little clip at the same time so very very sad

Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Mindful Monday - Why should you bother?

* The autopost didn't work so apologies for being a day late :)*

So why should you bother practising mindfulness?
Mindfulness has shown to help people suffering from depressia, reduce stress and increase general happiness. It helps people to be more patient, which when you are parenting little ones is something that is tested multiple times a day.

A good Non-Buddhist autor on the subject of mindfulness is John Kabat Zin, He has many books including wherever you go, there you are.
He has several video's on youtube which you might find interesting. Here is one I particularly like:

I'd love to know how you are getting on :)

Euan reading his mail

A letter from granny

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Wednesday, 19 January 2011

the second week and start of the 3rd

It looks like I didn't take any pictures of our blackboard last week. though they might be on the proper camera, the batteries where once again "borrowed" by someone so I need to get them back and upload those pictures to see.
Due to the flu in the home the past week and a half have been much more relaxed than I had planned but Ce'st la vie I guess. We introduced the letter B last week made bread and butter and chased around the house for as many things we could find starting with B.

We also made our own pair of knitting needles, Euan still has to paint the ends of his but can't decide on a colour for them.

Blackboard letter C

Yesterday was a day off because all 3 boys had fevers and were utterly miserable, today however Euan asked for HS and asked to start knitting. We carried on our Gnome story and introduced the letter C. Practised some wavy forms which Euan really tried to rush trough because he wanted to start knitting. Obviously this resulted in it all taking longer than he wanted it to take lol!

Euan learning to knit

We managed to knit 3 rows before he had to stop. I remember those first few weeks of knitting, how hard it felt and how much I wanted to scream at my knitting. The number of times that I chucked it all in the bin, only to come back later and fish it out again lol! He did allright and finished up being pretty pleased with it all :).

St Nicholas

I also recieved my copy of St Nicholas by Jacob streit today, I realise this is a book often wanted by waldorfy mums and wanted to say that Mercury Press still has copies. The book is only $7.50 and they are quick to respond to emails.

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

160 windowstar points

For 20 windowstars, 1120 folds in a jar to be assembled over the next few days

Sent from my iPhone

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Monday, 17 January 2011

Mindful Monday

One thing that comes up again and again on e-lists I am on is mindfulness. Other mums asking what it means and how they can achieve it.

Minfulness is the practise of being fully present each moment of every day, or at least striving to live fully in each moment as it is easier said then done. Especially with our hectic schedules these days. And I think just because of these schedules it is important to be mindful.

For a thorough primer on mindfulness I suggest "the miracle of mindfulness" by Thich Nhat Hanh. It is a quick and enjoyable read. Another plus is that this book is generally available from the many second hand bookplaces on the internet, even if youcan't find it second hand its pretty cheap new.

I would like to invite you to join me in the building of our midfulness practise, maybe you have been working on this for awhile and could do with a kick in the behind or maybe you are entirely new to mindfulness. Either way join in and take a moment to tell us about your practise maybe how you started what inspired you to work on your mindulness etc.

And incase you need a hand to get started I am sharing a Gatha from the Plum Village Sangha. Gatha's are short poems that help you be present in the moment. You breath in whilst saying the first line silently in your mind, you breath out for the second line. You breathe in for the third line and breath out on the forth line. then smile and start your day!
Waking up this morning, I smile.
Twenty-four brand new hours are before me.
I vow to live fully in each moment
and to look at all beings with eyes of compassion.

I've employed Mr linky so you can sign up to the Minful Mondays. Now I've not used it before so if it doens't display properly bear with me :)

Sunday, 16 January 2011

Homemade soutdough bread/ thuisgebakken zuurdesem

Made a starter from scratch starting last sunday and I just pulled the first loave out of the oven,Yum!

Ben vorige week met mn eigen zetsel begonnen en heb zojuist het eerste brood uit de oven gehaald,erg lekker!

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Friday, 14 January 2011

Food friday - Creamy lentil soup

Someone on Twitter asked me to share my recipe so here it is.
I must add though that it barely qualifies as a recipe it is that simple. feel free to add stuff to it. I often add any carrots towards the end that where leftover from last nights dinner, peas are good and also adding potatoes (smal cubes) in with the onions is great.

about50 gr red lentils per person
1 medium onion per 3 servings
stock cubes
tbsp of your oil of choice

Add the oil in your pan and et it warm up add the onion diced and cook until glazed and browning around the edges add your lentils stir them trough and add water till you have 1 inch or so over the top of the lentils. Add your choice of stock cube. Cook this until the lentils are softend and taste if its good you can choose to use your immersion blender and turn it into a creamy soup. I like the lentils unblended to but the kids prefer it smooth. Obviously if you added anything to it (peas pototo etc) you can't really blend it.

You could add garam masala to this, paprika or a dash of cayenne is nice too.


Romige rode linzen soep

ongeveer 50 gr linzen per persoon
1 medium grote ui per 3 porties
bouillon blokje naar keuze
eetl olie naar keuze

snipper de ui en fruit deze in de olie todat het glazig en light gebruint is. voeg de linzen toe en roer goed om voeg nu goeg water to aan de linzen totdat er 2.5 cms water bovenop staat. voeg ook de bouiilon blokjes toe even goed door roeren en laten pruttelen todat de linzen gaar zijn 15-20 minuten.
Als je wilt kan je ze nu met de staafmixer mixen en dus lekker romig maken of je kunt het zo laten (de kids vinden het gemixt het lekkers hier)
Je zou nu nog specerijen toe kunnen voegen zoals kerrie, zoete paprika of een klein beetje cayenne.

Ook kun je aan deze soep macaroni toevoegen of plakjes wortel blokjes aardappel of erwtjes.


Wednesday, 12 January 2011

Michael Gove in fiery debate with caller over Baccalaureate

Interview on the BBC.
I have to say it was rather amusing when Gove claimed to not interupt people and then a minute or so later did it himself and had this pointed out to him.

This caller has been added to my list of personal heroes right next to Sir Ken, it was great to hear someone without any obviously noticable interest in HE be so passionate about learning.


It was saddening to listen to this as this person claims to be an educational guru (as per his twitter account)yet has absolutely no idea about learning.
Just to be clear about the difference between the two:

Educating as defined by webster

transitive verb
a : to provide schooling for b : to train by formal instruction and supervised practice especially in a skill, trade, or profession
a : to develop mentally, morally, or aesthetically especially by instruction b : to provide with information : inform
: to persuade or condition to feel, believe, or act in a desired way
intransitive verb
: to educate a person or thing

The definition of learning as defined by webster

Definition of LEARNING
: the act or experience of one that learns
: knowledge or skill acquired by instruction or study
: modification of a behavioral tendency by experience (as exposure to conditioning)

Now Mr. gove in the interview claims that people learn because of the national curriculum. I would love to know how the (British for that matter) National curriculum ensured that I am the polyglot that I am today? Seriously I dropped all languages as soon as I could in school because the way they where forced onto me was boring as could be. Yet here I am fluent in more languages than the average Dutch person.
I would also like to know what the National Curriculum did for hubby? He stopped with his education took on a mindless job and then found his passion and became one of the best in his field. He has been to more countries doing his job than he could ever imagine he would when he was stuck in a school that  could not go with his interests because they where stuck with the National Curriculum.

And what does the National curriculum do for all those kids that have different learning needs? be it the so called "gifted" children or those with the lovely named "learning difficulties"? Not much as far as I can see from the growing numbers of people who keep these kids at home and come to HE lists to complain about the horrendousness that was school. And a lot of these schools score high on all those crappy tables, schools that those middle class families with their shiny 4x4's fight over.

I think Mr. Gove needs to wake up and see real learning take place. real life long learning takes places when the person involved is passionate about the subject, has a love for what they are doing. Real life long learning happens very little in a school building. I have found that cramming happens in school buildings, learning for testing and sometimes when you are lucky and you have a teacher who know how to bring a subject to you in a way that makes your heart sing even if it isn't your favourite subject or even if you don't really enjoy it then real learning might take place.

Next time I see a shooting star I will wish for a learning minister (not education!) who understands learning, who will not look to a girl who was abused and killed as a way to put limits on home educators, who will get rid of tables and websites and whatnots telling people which schools are "good", who will instead work to enable children to become the best they can be doing a job that makes them truly happy. Doesn't matter if this job means being a binman or a doctor because we can't do without either.

The first week..

I've was meaning to write this over the weekend but we had to buy hay and new shoes both are incredibilly time consuming because we don't have a car.

The twins quickly settled down and accepted that this was school time, Euan got (and still) up every morning asking for more school and generally things went really smoothly.

Last week was the Epiphany so I tied that into our lesson. I had originally planned to use ALGF's story for the introduction of the alphabet but the fables and fairytales didn't feel right. I could not justify to myself the violence used in them. And yes I know most of you anthroposofists will tell me that kids don't see them the way we do. That they are good for the development etc. for me and Euan I don't think it would have worked.

Instead I started a story about a gnome at the end of a garden who had lost his name. The gnome packed some food and started an adventure to find his name. Along the way he meets other gnomes and fairies and animals that help him find his name.

On the Epiphany day the gnome met someone who told him the story of the 3 kings. We got out my incense burner (which has seen very little use since I've had kids) and the frankincense and myrh and had fun lighting the charcoal (surprisingly it still self ignited!) and scooping spoonfulls of incense on it.

K for king

The board had the letter K on it together with a crown. this was the first letter we introduced. The forms for this week where simple straight lines.


This weeks MLB entry

Happy Epiphany

We made a star for the window and made star shaped biscuits (no picture of those surprisingly!)

Sunday, 9 January 2011

Petition to stop league tables for 5y/o

I just recieved this from a home-ed list I am on. I can not believe that they are seriously thinking of adding yet more pressure to children by even considering to do this. I have signed the petition and hope you will join me!

******start of email************************
Please sign and pass the petition on to family and friends.
You may have to copy and paste the petition link into your browser.
Many thanks.

Dear friends,
Please accept my apologies for this rather impersonal `round-robin' email. I'm
writing in support of a new petition that has just been launched by parent and
journalist Frances Laing, which is challenging the government's plans for
publishing league performance tables school-by-school for 5 year olds. Frances
has a major feature about the new petition appearing in Nursery World magazine
in next week's issue, and we are hoping to get some really high-profile names as
signatories by Monday morning, who can then be mentioned in the report. It's
very easy to sign the petition – see below for the link that enables you to
sign, and I'm also copying the petition text below for ease of reference. I hope
you agree that this is a very worthwhile public campaign, and that you'll
consider adding your name to those who are deeply concerned about this proposal.

I hope this finds you well; and warm best wishes to you for the coming year.

Kind regards,

Richard House

Petition link for signing:

Petition text:

The UK government is proposing to begin publishing school league performance
tables for England's five year olds on a school by school basis.

We, the undersigned, believe that such an unprecedented development puts both
young children and their teachers, parents and carers under unwarranted pressure
that is distinctly unhelpful - especially for children at such a tender age.

We believe such tables to be divisive and unnecessary, and that they generate
all manner of unintended and unforeseeable consequences that do far more harm
than good.

Thursday, 6 January 2011

Swap catch up!

I participated in 2 yule swaps on crafster and have yet to post pictures so here they are

the card swap:

the stocking plus gift swap:

My favourite by far is the beautiful glass goddess she made me. She sits right next to my pc!

Give away winner!

So the new year has started with colds bugs and general unwellness here hop your year started better!

Anyway we rolled the dice:
Giveaway winner

Amy said...

Those are adorable and could come in handy throughout the year, count me in!

Amy please mail ( vera AT thelothians DOT net) me your ravelry id and I'll get the pattern to you asap!

Happy Epiphany

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