DIY macrame plant hangers

with the warmer weather has come the urge to plant and grow things.  we have a lovely little covered porch where i hang a big basket of petunia’s each season. there are other hooks that need plants hung from them and i’ve been trying to think of ways to HANG plants without actually spending money.

macrame collage 2b

and, that’s when it hit me… MACRAME! yes, many think it’s tacky or too old school, but i actually really love macrame hanging planters. they can be so simple, neutral, colourful, or complex. the possibilities are endless.

so, for my firts attempt at macrame i wanted to start simple, and i found this fantastic tutorial from brit & co. below is the plant holder from them… BOOM, love that pink!

macrame 1 

here’s the one i made from an ancient, stretched out t-shirt.

and, yes of course it’s turquoise! haha!

DSC_0233

 

i wanted to include some macrame inspiration i found.

macrame plant hanger, macrame

mini macrame hangers from free people

macrame plant hangers, macrame

5 hangers from modern macrame

macrame plant hangers

macrame plant hangers from erin made this

 

here’s another great tutorial from pigment using cotton rope and beads instead of fabric. aren’t they lovely?

macrame plant hanger, diy plant hanger,  

 

macrame, DIY ombre macrame, macrame plant hanger

macrame plant hanger from space craft studios

 

good luck with your own macrame project.

have a lovely week friends! 

xo, mama lola

painting flower pots!

now that the growing season is here i want to share a favourite project that my boys love to do… paint terracotta flower pots!

painting flower pots, mother's day, gift idea, kids crafts

it’s a wonderful way to be creative, while also learning about how things grow. my kids made each of their grandmother’s a painted pot for mother’s day and planted a geranium in them. they were so proud of their

 

DSC_0179b

DSC_0181b

all you need are some pots, paints, brushes and we used a spray sealant to try to protect the pots from water.

i love using ice cube trays as paint trays instead, as they don’t tip over easily and the paints can be mixed well in the deep slots. my kids often paint outside as the tidying up is so much easier. plus, if they get paint all over it’s not a big deal!

DSC_0185b DSC_0218b

TA-DAA!

check out these lovely flower pots!

painted flower pots, kids crafts, mother's day, gift ideas, gifts for grandmothers painted flower pots, mother's day, gift idea

i love how carefree the kids are when painting. they do not get inhibited with concerns about what other’s may think of their creations. they just create completely in the moment, enjoying the paint and colours, but most importantly the process.

happy painting and planting to you!

xo, mama lola

make your own backyard teepee!

 

we have been spending an enormous amount of time outside. the weather is warm and inviting, so we’ve tried to take advantage of the summer weather! i’ve wanted to build a teepee for the kids in the backyard for a while, but just never got around to it, but when a friend of mine made one for her boys, i was inspired!

DIY teepee, backyard teepee,

DSC_0669b

i found an old white sheet in the basement, which i decided would be perfect if painted. then, i dug around for fabric paint, which i couldn’t find so i made do with tempera paint. the paint bottle said it would stain if not treated, so i hoped it would work! although, i don’t really care what happens to the teepee fabric. if after a big rain storm the paint bleeds, i’m ok with that.

garden teepee, painting fabric

INSTRUCTIONS:

1. depending on the size of the teepee you want you will need 3-6 sticks for the frame. we just used branches we found in our backyard. we pushed the branches into the ground a little bit for extra support. we used nylon rope to tie the branches at the top.

2. choose a fabric that will be big enough to nicely wrap around the frame/ branches. make sure you leave  an opening! start stapling the fabric to one of the branches at the doorway and work your way around. i had to fold extra fabric tucking it under and stapling it well. i wasn’t too concerned about the precision of the stapling, because i knew it didn’t matter with the integrity of the teepee.

3. enjoy!

garden teepee for kids, make your own teepee

our teepee provides great shade. i chose it’s location in our yard carefully, angling the doorway away from the table area and patio, tucking it away in a more quiet area. i’m hoping the teepee will be a part of games of the imagination, but also a place to tuck away with a book on a hot day, a place lie back and listen to the birds chirping away, and just a place to be.

DIY garden teepee,

the kids love it.

i love it!

it has worked out so well!

xo, mama lola

pressing flowers with kids.

pressing flowers, summer crafts

i remember as a little girl collecting all sorts of flowers and leaves and stuffing our old school, massive phone books with them. those old phone books were ideal for pressing flowers, as you could fill them with quite a collection and the paper was perfect. plus, at our house anyway we had a huge stack of yellow pages and white pages.

redtedart has a great tutorial on how to press flowers. it’s really not hard and you don’t need any special equipment, except maybe some patience as the flowers take a few weeks to press and dry properly. 

when travelling, i have picked a flower and placed them into the book i have with me. sometimes i have forgotten about them and rediscovered them a while later. what a lovely way to reminisce about an exciting adventure! 

the dainty squid pressed other wonderful natural finds, like mushrooms! 
go check out more of her beautiful pictures HERE!

this summer i will get the kids to collect and press a few leaves or flowers from our road trip. once we get back home, we can make something out of them!
 
xo, mama lola

how to build fairy houses!

fairies are wonderful, magical creatures that live in the corners of gardens, under the roots of trees and through-out the woods. they rarely come out when us humans are around, but many children have shared stories of sightings.

there is no right way to build a fairy house.it’s all about exploring the land and environment surrounding you, using interesting pieces of nature to build the fairies safe, cozy places to rest. it is vital to remember not to kill anything living when making a fairy house; so do not break branches off of living trees or tear living moss from a rock. use items that are already dead.

fairy house from make happy
fairy and gnome house by my garden diaries
home for the faeries by juise
fairy house kit from mom fluential
fairy house from make happy
miniature gardening is a real trend from mr. brown thumb 
list of things you need to build a fairy house from list plan it

which one is your favourite?
enjoy your fairy house building projects! they are a great way to connect with the natural world and children

xo, mama lola

treeplanting, at home this time!

our backyard is great. it’s enclosed, gated and safe for the kids to run around in. there are smallish beds for me to garden in and even room for our sweet shed in one corner. but, it’s always lacked in the pretty fence department. on one side of the yard there is a simple, cheap, but pleasant to the eyes wooden fence. the other side has the shed and a neighbours garage wall, which is all fine, but it’s the back of the yard which has a rusty old horrendous thing that pains me to look at! i have been bugging dear hubby for a few years to do something about the fence or lack there of, so finally this spring we got a quote from an awesome local carpenter. unfortunately, his quote was more than this single income family could afford, so we had to come up with a plan B.

then the other day i was at the grocery store and saw hundreds of potted cedar trees and that’s when it hit me… let’s plant a cedar hedge along the back fence. 

dear hubby and the boys thought this was the greatest idea ever!

so on saturday morning dear hubby headed out first thing to buy the trees. we wanted to get a head start on the day. it was snowing that morning and there was snow on the ground, but dear hubby was excited to get planting!

here’s bear digging a hole, with dear hubby’s treeplanting shovel from back in the day. i can’t help but ooze some sappy mama pride watching my kids planting. for those who don’t know, dear hubby and i met and fell in love while working as treeplanters in northern ontario about 12 years ago!


it is a bit cliche to plant trees for earth day, but i think there’s something really important about it. the soil was freezing, the air cold but the guys got to work and planted 10 trees into the back yard. they learned some valuable lessons along the way and saved a bunch of worms, too!

in this pic you can really see the nasty chain link fence, but look how beautiful and green these cedars are! and, they were only $16 each and came with a years warranty! we may pop some trellis back behind the cedars for added privacy.


happy hump day y’all! it’s pouring rain here and i am thrilled about that, as the cedars need lots of water to get rooted properly into the soil.

xo, mama lola

~ earth day ~

earth day crafts, kids crafts, earth day

earth day around the corner.

how will you discuss this important day with your kids?below, i have compiled 10 fun projects you can do with the kids. projects that will hopefully initiate some kind of dialogue about planet earth, how we must care for and why. some of the links i included are from adult artists (like the painter rocks and sticks), but kids can have a blast looking for the materials and then decorating them. this list is just a starting point, like a brainstorming session.

 
earth day, crafts, earth day crafts, kids crafts, natural ctafts

1. stained glass earth [ mom on time out]
2. tree craft fro toddlers [momma rambles]
3. glitter earth handprint [apples and abc’s]
4. painter sticks [molly goldberg]
5. stick wreath [sf girl by bay]
6. painted rocks [sand between my toes]
7. living centre piece [live renewed]
8. gnome house [the gardeners anonymous blog]
9. terranium tutorial [pieced pastimes]

 
jenny, over at the jenny evolution has compiled a fantastic collection of books  (HERE) to get the discussion about earth day rolling with your kids. “the giving tree” is on her list; it’s a book i can’t read to the kids without crying! gets me every time!
 

 

 
 
 
to me, earth day is not just about the planet, but also focussing on the details that make up our beautiful round home. the trees, the soil, the sticks, the worms, the varying weather and so on. 

EVERY DAY SHOULD BE EARTH DAY!

 

 

feel free to add links in the comment section to your earth day themed projects! 
i would love to see what you have been or will be up to!

xo, mama lola

theme thursday :: this years garden ideas!


although it is actually snowing outside as i type this, i have been busy on pinterest looking for ideas on how to improve our garden. we have a decent sized backyard, but it is quite shaded. this is good for the kids, as they can play and not have to be in the direct hit of the blaring sun, but it is not so good for my tiny, pathetic veggie garden. 

so, the plan is to rip out some patio stones next to the wall of the house that gets the most sun and build  raised bed for some veggies and flowers. it will probably look a lot like the picture below if all goes according to plan. this picture is from flickr, so no instructions, just looks pretty.



but, this raised bed below is similar and comes with great detailed instructions on how to build it from old town home.


for plant markers, i actually made these last year for some seeds i started. click on the picture to take you to the original post. how cute and easy are they to make!

we have some stone paths and i love way the cracks are filled with thyme and look so soft. i found this picture at scravings, and apparently the thyme fills the air with a wonderful aroma as well!


i love how lush this garden is from simplypix. there must be a flurry of activity with butterflies and insects and birds; my boys would love that! 


i love big containers over flowing with greenery and bursts of flowers. daisy’s are some of my favourites. so unpretentious, simple yet a true sign of summer! this picture is from vibedekdesign.


how about using old logs as planters? i think something like this would look great at the cottage! found this idea at the rabbit factory.
i will leave you with this funny, but true sentiment. i actually find gardening very therapeutic. it allows me to lose myself in my thoughts, providing new ways of seeing things and it is another creative outlet for me. i am not a good gardener, but each season i learn a little more! turning the soil with my bare hands and feeling the pulse of the earth in my hands connects me and grounds me. perhaps, that is why am so anxious for spring to arrive, because i feel like i need some garden therapy!


what will you be planting this year in your garden?

happy thursday everyone!
here, check out my pinterest board: grow THIS

xo, mama lola