Stunning Christmas Decor from Nature

Christmas Decorations from Nature | DIY natural elements for festive decor via Racheous

I love earthy tones for decor and frugal ideas, so nature as home decor is a perfect match for me. I have been so inspired by the gorgeous Christmas decorations straight from nature that I thought I would share some of my favourite inspiration and ideas!

 

Christmas nature garlands decor
Acorn garland via The Magic Onions
Gold pine cone garland via Desiree Casoni
Nature garland via Wildlife Fun 4 Kids

I am slightly garland obsessed so when I saw these beautiful DIY garlands, I was in love. Click through for tutorials.

Christmas nature tree decor baubles pine cone gnome
Colourful nature baubles via An Everyday Story
Pine cone gnome via The Magic Onions
Christmas nature bauble via Desiree Casoni

If you’re lucky enough to have a real Christmas tree, even better but either way you can include these gorgeous decorations and bring natural elements indoors.

Christmas nature wreaths wreath DIY sprigs star anise natural
Star anise wreath via Lilla Blanka
Sprig wreath gift embellishment via Odessa May Society
Rosemary wreath via All About You

I love these unique DIY nature wreaths. I paricularly love that the scents are very Christmas-y!

Christmas candles DIY nature
Cinnamon votive via All About You
Seed pod candle via The Magic Onion
Rosemary votive via Patchwork Harmony

Candles are another of my very favourite elements for the home and these natural touches are stunning. I love the ambiance that candlelight provides on the nights around Christmas time.

Christmas nature inspired natural elements decor touches
Yarn wrapped pine cones via Family Chic
Cinnamon and rosemary napkins via Patchwork Harmony
Nature table decor via Noralill

These simple natural additions are such lovely finishing touches. I love that so many of these ideas can be adapted to different colour themes and use mostly items you already have in your home.

stunning christmas decor nature

Nature on the Light Table | Spring Blog Hop

Spring Blog Hop Racheous Loveable LearningWelcome to the 2013 Spring Blog Hop! Here in Australia we are enjoying gorgeous Spring weather. Join me and some incredible Australian bloggers as we share some inviting Spring inspired activities and ideas for kids.

My favourite colour is purple so Cameron takes to pointing out all the jacaranda trees wherever we drive. At our new (well, it’s been 6 months, it’s time to stop calling it new!) home, we have a beautiful MASSIVE frangipani tree on one side of our house. Until Spring it is pretty ugly but we have watched as leaves have shot through and just this week some flowers have blossomed.

I love Australia’s unique flowers.

native australian flowers springI love teaching my kids about the changing seasons because it’s simple and exciting for them. Near the end of Winter, we stopped chopping and collecting wood for the fire, which brought about a discussion of changing seasons.

Spring for us means flowers and butterflies in our yard, trips to the water park and running in the sprinkler (it gets hot quick here). We have a trip to the Botanic Gardens planned for next week, which means duck feeding (speaking of feeding ducks, read Wildlife Fun 4 Kids post on not feeding ducks bread here) and seeing how different the gardens look in Spring.

We collected some flowers and leaves from our garden and pressed them in our flower press. A week later the kids were excited to see how flat they were and to help me put them through the laminator.

pressed laminated flowers nature leaves springThey are fun for on the light table and for general exploring. I was inspired by Where Imagination Grows.

Racheous - Loveable Learning nature on the light tableWe also made and printed this Spring pre-writing activity on an OHP sheet and use it with whiteboard markers on both the light box and OHP. (click image below to download)

spring pre-writing flower printable

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What does Spring mean to you and your family?

Be sure to join us on Twitter (#springbloghop) and Facebook to follow the blog hop and see all the great ideas for exploring Spring with your children!

Hop along to these brilliant bloggers joining in on the Spring fun throughout November!:

Wildlife Fun 4 Kids – Nature’s Glitter

Danya Banya – Nature Art

Triple T Mum – Glittery Gelatin Butterfly Sun Catcher

The Craft Train – Spring Butterfly Art

Childhood 101 – Invitation to Play Flower Shop

One Perfect Day – Spring Scavenger Hunt for Kids (free printable!)

Just for Daisy – Flower Press Fairy Cards

My Little Bookcase – Create a Mud Kitchen Recipe Book

Picklebums – Catch a Bug! Free Printable Game

Happy Whimsical Hearts

I’ll be linking here and have an exciting series starting soon about playful learning with light and reflection.

Lazy Rainy Morning

diy, montessori, fine motorLucy threading craft matchsticks into a parmesan shaker.

Today is Monday, but no ordinary Monday. We have Michael home because of the extended weekend. It’s been steadily raining all morning so we have been doing quiet activities and pottering about. Lucy has a great little attention span for a 14 month old. She finished the above activity three times before interrupting Cameron.

baster, transfer, montessoriTransferring with a turkey baster. Hard hat optional.

The above pic was taken near the end where he was just playing. Initially it was set up with blue and yellow for transferring practice and colour mixing. He did this for quite some time before donning his rainboots and an umbrella and playing in the drizzly rain outside.

reggio, toddler, nature, exploration
reggio, toddler, nature, exploration

I’ve started doing more semi-structured introductions to new language and concepts with Lucy. For example, here we explored a shell, a starfish, a geode, an amethyst crystal and a sea urchin . It’s just about introducing the language to her in general (i.e. A smooth, white shell. A bumpy, rough, orange starfish.. you get the idea).

How was your weekend?

Nature Exploration

At the moment I’m assessing and planning several of the kids spaces in our home. One that is clearly needed in our new home is somewhere to gather our tools and resources for nature exploration. Having a proper backyard has transformed our daily life. We spend so much time outside.

outdoor environment playspace swings

What tips would you recommend for nature investigation? Would you suggest baskets? a shelf? something else entirely? I have space (particularly outdoors undercover) but am thinking of practicality… would a basket be best? Because it is portable?

I’m thinking several baskets [say one for 'tools' (such as magnifiers, bug catchers, clipboard, containers) and another for relevant reference books/guides and another for record keeping (i.e. flower press, nature journal, photos of prior finds)] on a shelf?

bug insection exploration nature preschooler homeschool montessori reggio

As we have only just moved to a place with a backyard full of nature enriched opportunities; we have never established a routine with incorporating nature into our lives. At our last home, there was very little to discover and nature enriched experiences were planned and few & far between.

giant grasshopper queensland australia

Now I want to set up an area that can hopefully inspire a more organic and frequent exploration of nature. What would you include for a curious 3 year old boy? What has made for great investigation and memories in your home? What is used time and time again?

Any advice and guidance would be so appreciated!