Some Fudge, a Dog and Playing in the Woods

The sale has been keeping me really busy (thank you your orders) and I’m now working on what new stock I will be bringing in (I always get excited deciding what toys to stock!)

It’s been a busy week and naturally I have some pics, although less than I might’ve done as my camera ran out of batteries whilst we were in the woods.

Erk has gone off on an outwards bounds trip in the Peak District with a group of home-educated teens and R. is back from boarding school for half term (having turned 14 in the interim).

We had a bash at making some fudge:

Whilst we do quite a bit of baking here, I’m not a natural-born cook, it’s something I have to work on.  Erk and his friend B have recently discovered caramel hot chocolate (courtesy of one of the cafes in town – I was rather surprised to hear that at 12 they choose to visit a cafe, but I’m rather pleased that they choose to do that than some of the other possible choices for refreshment in town, but it does seem rather sophisticated in comparison to myself at the same age).  They wanted to make caramel, but I wasn’t so sure, so we ended up making fudge.

Erm, the first lot was burnt beyond repair and there aren’t any photos as we rushed to salvage the pan.

We did successfully make fudge on the second attempt, but they ate it before I could take a photo 😉

We’ve been to Sandall Beat Woods, twice.  Home-educators in Doncaster seem to be a rather disparate bunch.  According to the local authority HE advisor there are some 200 children being home-educated in and around Doncaster (although I think they include children being tutored by the LA at home and Roma and Traveller families in this number).  I’ve no idea where they all are, I’ve come across a small fraction of that number.

Still, a few of us have finally got together and organised a regular meet-up in Sandall Beat for some chat, a play, crafts, singing and a shared picnic.  Unfortunately my camera ran out of batteries after a couple of photos, but a good time was had by all!

A pic before other families turned up (we arrived first).
Ted having a climb.
It really is a fantastic location for a home-ed meet up, lots of space, fresh air, places to explore (yesterday a group of children were busy building with stacked branches whilst parents had a discussion with the park ranger, who told us that the pile of branches were always moving from tree to tree as various groups of children leant them up against trees to make shelters).  We’ve been organising a monthly meeting led by the park ranger for the older children (7+) to start in March (they’re pretty booked up until then).  For more information please visit the relevant entry on the South Yorkshire Home Education Communication (SYHEC) site.
I’m going to be running a circle time there which I’m really looking forward to doing again, lots of reading through my books and getting ideas for dancing songs to do, plus memorising of more verses and stories.
Erk has been busy doing a project on the Vikings.  Whilst I have a passing interest in the Vikings (obligatory perhaps for someone with Scandinavian heritage) I never realised that the Vikings also moved East to trade, I’ve been learning so much whilst working on this with Erk.
Whilst playing with the Brio trains Nin asked, “Why don’t the magnets like each other?” and of course she’s been busy painting (this time some beads for making more jewellery, although where we’re going to keep all of her creations I’m not too sure, perhaps I should make a chest like Elfie and Me, however I have a feeling mine wouldn’t look as beautiful.)
Aside from that I finished Ted’s mittens (I will take a pic eventually), started some mittens for Nin and frogged them twice. The beautiful Natural Dye Studio yarn she picked to have them made in just wasn’t looking ‘right’ as mittens.  So I cast-on again to make her a floppy, lacy beret a la “Spin Me Right Round” by Solveig Engevold (Ravelry is such a wonderful resource – if you’re a knitter or crocheter and haven’t joined up yet, DO, you won’t regret it!  I’m NinnyNoodleNoo so do seek me out and add me as a friend.  OK, maybe you will regret joining, but only because it’ll eat away at your knitting time as you browse through all the lovely creations on there…)  The yarn is looking beautiful as a beret, if I hadn’t’ve been so busy I would’ve finished it by now (a really simple knit).
I haven’t finished Nin’s dress as a little while ago I carefully rolled it up before going off to bed and when I picked it up again the next day the crochet hook had disappeared.  I can’t find it anywhere and it looks like I need to order another one.
I’ve also taken a couple of daft dog photos:
Every so often he heaved a very heavy sigh…
I’ve known Irish Setters, so was fairly prepared for owning a Setter (Monty is a Tricolour English Setter), but didn’t realise just how much Setters are lacking in the brain cells department (I don’t know about last in the queue when the brains were being doled out, Monty wasn’t even in it!)  Still, despite his abundant dippiness, he really is the most lovely, cuddly dog (even if he is still convinced that he’s a tiny puppy that will fit on my lap *sigh*)
So, hopefully I will remember to get some more batteries for my camera, but in the meantime I know I can enjoy looking at other lovely blogs 🙂
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