Tag: fun

Add a smile(stone) to social distancing

When we re-open the Gardens – whenever that will be – we know that social distancing will be a ‘new normal’ for some while…

from Staff Smiles Stones (by gill )

So, the (still working) team here have been thinking about what that would look like. We want to help people feel safe when they come to visit, and know that others are looking out for their health too. Shops and supermarkets are using yellow floor tape and painted circles…that’s not quite the thing we want to do in our historic Garden.

We’ve come up with a number of ideas and one of them needs your help.

Smile Stones … have you seen them about?

There is a lovely phenomenon of people painting pebbles and leaving them in the environment for people to find, to make them smile, to think and sometimes to collect and pass on. (PS the advice at present during Covid-19 , is NOT to pick them up and move them – just a precaution)

Smile stones are a little piece of everyday sharing and of spreading love.  We already have a few in the Gardens deposited (with permission) by local people.

We think stone and pebble smiles stones would make wonderful social distance markers all around our garden… Every 2 metres a bright little stone hedgehog or ladybird, or perhaps a heart lifting message to keep you going on to the next marker?

If you’d like to take part in helping brighten up our Gardens walking routes we’d love you to start now.

Aldridge smile stones

Below are some facebook pages and other things about how to paint stones.

How to get them to us

We will leave a plant pot attached to the (inner) gates of the Gardens – you can just pop your stones in there, and we’ll keep them ready for when we open (if the pot disappears , just roll your stones under the gate and our gardener will pick them up when she visits..)

Thank you – do pass on this activity to anyone you think might enjoy taking part.

PS … don’t spend money getting fancy paint… do what you can, a coat of clear nail varnish will do the trick –  or any outdoor varnish you have in your diy cupboard – over the top of house paint/kids paint or marker pens will do!

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/articles/2P3gnRmv7FYlS7YwklbvVHd/how-to-become-a-rock-artist

Facebook has 

https://www.facebook.com/smilestonesbg/

and lots of groups in Erdington, Sutton Coldfield and Staffs — just search

 

 

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Happy Birthday Will Shakespeare

April 23rd is traditionally celebrated as the birth – and death – day of local lad, William Shakespeare.

It is also a saint’s day in the old calendar: St George’s Day.

St George, with his dragon slaying and masterful horseriding is a very popular saint- being a patron saint not just in England, but also Georgia, Ethiopia, Catalonia, Aragon, Valencia, Portugal, Brazil, Bulgaria and …….

Our multinational friends at REEP have yet again provided a whole shelf full of lovely games and puzzles to amuse us and those learning English through Gardening.

There are some lovely games and resources about plants mentioned by Shakespeare. Apparently he mentions 180 …I’ve just counted we have about 86 of the in the Gardens click here to go to their shelf of games 

download some of the games on in pdf or online

REEP-2020-SHAKESPEARE-Decode-Plants, 

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Hello bunting…

Looking forward…

Volunteers have been central to pretty well every event and activity in the Gardens for decades, we are really missing their input and daily conversation.

So many people also contribute in the background by making, doing, cooking and inventing. Here is one thing which anyone could get involved in and help us with… if they wished.

Bunting is jolly. Full stop.

We use it for decorating  the stretch tent for events, for cheering up the entrance gates and courtyard, making intriguing spaces in the woodland area even more intriguing…

We would love more and welcome anyone’s efforts in making it during our lockdown. We can’t supply the materials Im afraid, so anything you do will be gratefully received as a donation.

We are happy to have any designs you make… triangular and cloth bunting would be used more often, but knitted, paper, square, animal shaped or anything would be lovely… Maybe we can use them all to make a jolly festival atmosphere on our return to opening – we’ll all need it.

Here below is a bit of help and inspiration

https://www.wikihow.com/Make-Bunting

    you tube: make ‘no-waste’ bunting  

 

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Hungry Caterpillar- downloadable activities

Bugs are beautiful…. even before they become butterflies.

Although gardeners aren’t always keen on caterpillars eating their crops, we do love watching the fluttering colour of butterflies in the Gardens.
Eric Carle’s famous book – The Very Hungry Caterpillar is a favourite of ours. Here are some lovely colouring pages and worksheets supplied for free by one of our suppliers (earlyyearsresources.co.uk) all based on that lovely book.

Click on the link to download  Hungry Caterpillar activity sheets
And, you can see and hear the book, read by Eric Carle himself here below. You don’t have to share the experience with a young one…but you can 🙂

 

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Not bored with Easter yet?…

Really gutted we couldn’t do our Alice in Wonderland Easter Egg Hunt this year… Maybe we’ll turn it all upside down and send it through the Looking Glass and do something later in the year…. when things are ‘normal’ again.

If you and the littl’uns still have room for bunny and egg based fun, take a look the lovely online present we just got from our lovely friends at REEP.

REEP work in the UK, Spain and Morocco with people and gardens. Our own asst. gardener, Tanya, has been lucky enough, twice, to help them out at a girls school in Morocco.

Have a look below for some online puzzles and games with an Easter and a Gardening theme – for grown ups too, don’t be shy. Their are word searches, poems, puzzles and some gardening ‘how tos’

Click on the picture below to go to their page to explore….

https://reepinfo.org/easter-activities

 

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