Seven hearts, seven days

It’s Valentine’s week, and truthfully, Valentine’s Day has never been an event in my life. I received my first and only rose from my husband, as a joke, from a petrol station. Although he is my first ‘admirer’, the romantic in me is constantly disappointed by the practical in him. Sigh.

Although Valentine’s Day can be a bit icky, with satin red hearts on ribbons and pink teddy bears holding I Love You hearts, I love hearts. Hearts have inspired our creative projects this week. Seven days, seven hearts.


Crayon hearts.

As usual, I forgot to follow the instructions properly. My little girl helped me shave the crayon wax into baking paper. We (I) ironed it, and the crayon melted. (That bit was per instructions).


What we were meant to do was trace hearts, and then hang. What we did was melt the crayon wax on to craft paper, then traced the hearts. We hung these from a branch.


The effect was pretty, nevertheless.


Painted leaf hearts

Dried leaves, painted, threaded, hung.



Sponge hearts

Cut out heart shape in sponge. Sponged.



Screen print heart

Plain grey skivvy. Cut out heart shape from paper. Used the very infrequently used screen printing frame and wedge.



Stone hearts

Moulded clay into heart shapes. Dried.



Pink heart cookies

Macadamia butter
Natural pink food colouring
Fresh ginger

Mix ingredients and need into cookie dough. Roll out and cut hearts. Bake for 10 min in moderate oven.


Sprinkle with icing sugar.



Hearts in a tin

After two parties this weekend, staying over at my parents, and late nights, I was exhausted. So Sunday, Elki chose a heart tin at the market, and we filled it with little hearts.


Seven days, seven hearts. Happy heart week.

Have you been doing anything creative this week?

Link up your creative, crafty posts below, and share the linky love.

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Click here to enter your link and view this Linky Tools list…

I’m also hosting a “Lover of the Year Award” linky this Thursday – an opportunity to celebrate your loved one. Tell us all how great they are and why they’re yours. Please, spread the word.

Heart Mama_Lover of The Year

Linking with Jess for IBOT at Essentially Jess.

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Fish, feather, leaves

Another view from our somewhat scruffy *ahem* creative craft table.


We went to a party on Sunday. Our first real kid’s party. It was underwater themed. Typical me only thought about a costume the morning of, so my poor little girls had their needs neglected, as I cut out a fish and collected necessary ingredients. Luckily, Elka did the decorating. I thought she did a smashing job. I liked the feather tail.




We love moulding clay on our craft table. It’s squishy, like play dough, but sets, so our little objects remain forever in the world. Sort of. Until they break, or crumble, or disappear under the couch. Elka invented the “sparkly ball”. Roll moulding clay into glitter. Vavoom. Sparkly ball. Stick a feather in it. Wrap a bit of string around it. Whatever – it doesn’t matter. It sparkles.




Painted leaves are fun. Our walks are always mission-to-collect-bits-for-craft-table; i.e., the pram becomes a cesspit for organic matter. But some bits end up looking pretty – like these.



Elka starts pre-school today, so I am sure she will bring some good ideas home with her.

Next week, I will make this a Linky…so if you want to join in, add your craft links at the end of the post, and we can share crafty ideas.

What are you doing on the craft table this week? 

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Creativity and impermanence

One of the most wonderful things about children is that they are little buddhas living in the perpetual now…immersed in their experience. An experience comes; it goes. Life changes, and they flow with it.

As parents, we click to capture their nows on Instagram. We catalogue their creations in portfolios, desperate to cement all those wonderful nows, so we never forget and never let go.

Observing Elka in her state of making this week, I realised that children’s creativity is a wonderful practice in transience. Although we hastily photograph their creations, or file them away, they don’t care if their beautiful artwork dissolves. It was the making which was the magic. The lasting doesn’t matter much to them.

This week, we collected pretty petals from the garden in baskets, and stuck them onto coloured paper. I quickly took my camera to them, knowing: a. the petals would be blown away and b. the petals would quickly brown and die.

Transient flower art

Transient flower art

My photo-making was irrelevant to Elka. She enjoyed collecting and sticking petals onto paper. She didn’t care if our petal art later disappeared was scrunched and thrown in the bin.


Transient flower art

Elka loves to paint, but she especially loves this Buddha Board. It sits on our dining room table, and through the day, Elka takes water to board, and paints. It doesn’t matter what she paints, because at some point her design dries and disappears. It was the painting which was the fun bit.

As you probably know from reading Heart Mama, I love the lessons from children. With children, I am learning to be patient, learning how to play and learning to be in the moment. I am also learning to let things go, and let flower petals brown.

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Storytelling: the heart of connectedness and creativity

This is my daughter Elka telling Granny Annie a tale about the Big Bad Wolf and Red Riding Hood playing hide and seek. It wasn’t a happy ending.

Last week, I wrote about storytelling, and its role in our life. Storytelling in the bath, in the car, when things get difficult, when we haven’t anything else to do. Stories get teeth brushed and pyjamas on.  Stories about Red Riding Hood, the Big Bad Wolf, the Three Little Pigs. Stories that are part this world, part books, part imagination.

Storytelling is a way of nourishing creativity, and to be creative, we must unleash our inner storyteller. As adults, when we write fiction, we need to switch off our analytic ‘adult’ brain, and retreat to our childlike stream of consciousness. We have to part ways with judgement and our inner critic, and simply let the story flow through our pen.

Reading to children, and inventing tales is a beautiful way to nourish creativity. Listen to the stories children tell while they play. If they invite you to, engage in their fantasy world, asking questions.

Connect with a child through stories

Stories are an insight into little minds. They tell us what a child has been reading or watching on television. They may also tell us what a child is thinking or feeling. Complex emotions and thoughts may present themselves in childrens’ stories. Storytelling is a way of communicating, and connecting us all.

In an article called The Secrets of Storytelling: Why we love a good yarn, Jeremy Hsu (2008) wrote:

Most scientists are starting to agree: stories have such a powerful and universal appeal that the neurological roots of both telling tales and enjoying them are probably tied to crucial parts of our social cognition.

Pam Allyn (2010) writes about the social benefits to storytelling:

Story reminds us that connectedness to the world does not always mean some have more and some have less, but that we all have stories and that is what brings us together.

Nourish storytelling. Nourish creativity.

Nourish Creativity will happen here every Monday.

Linking with Grace for FYBF at With Some Grace.

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View from the craft table

Welcome to the first post in the “Nourishing Creativity” series.

This series run on a Monday, and will include craft ideas and other creative activities to do with children. I will also take this opportunity to talk about all things creative in relation to children. Stay tuned.

If you are a writer, a crafter or have creative activities you would like to suggest, please contact me about your contribution. I want this series to run every week, if possible, so you help is welcome!

Without further ado, the view from the craft table this week…

Flower crowns

Flower crown

Flower crown

Flower crown

Flower crown

Flower crown

Flower crown

We collected bits and pieces from the garden and made crowns – one for Elka, one for Eve and one for me. I helped Elka twirl the jasmine vine into a ‘crown’ shape, and Elka stuck flowers in. Pretty.

Rainbow handprints

Rainbow handprints

Rainbow handprints


Rainbow handprint

Just a simple handprint…we took coloured paper, and marbled coloured paint. This could of course get messy, but Elka is finicky about cleaning her hands, so after every handprint, she diligently went to the basin to wash off the paint. We even did rainbow footprints from Eve’s feet…I have been meaning to do this for weeks.

Rainbow footprint

Rainbow footprint

‘The pursuit of truth and beauty is a sphere of activity in which we are permitted to remain children all our lives.’ ~ Albert Einstein

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