Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Plaiting Onions & Garlic

"Plaiting" onions or garlic is a fun activity for the whole family!  These braids are a wonderful way to display a beautiful harvest in your kitchen, and they are useful, too.  This technique also works well with onion or garlic with stems intact.  Sorting sizes may be done by younger children, and the actual braiding, by older children.

Supplies needed:
1.  Onions or garlic, various sizes
2.  Sharp scissors or gardening shears
3.  Twisty ties (or twine)
4.  Yarn, twine or rope

1.  Harvest your onions/garlic.  Lay them in a safe place to dry for at least a week.  Trim the roots off.

2.  Divide the onions/garlic into three groups, "Small", "Medium", and "Large".

3.  Start with three in front of you.  Place a large one in the middle, and two medium ones on either side.
4.  Take a twisty-tie or twine and wrap around the base of all three together.

5.  Begin braiding.  Take the right stem over the middle.  Left stem over the middle.

6.  Add a small onion/garlic on the left and take right stem over the middle.  Any time you add a new onion, the stem will be in the middle.
7.  Add a small onion/garlic on the right and take the left stem over the middle.
8.  Add a large onion/garlic in the middle.
9.  Continue adding, alternating medium and small on the sides, and always adding large ones to the middle.  Sometimes you will run out of stems from farther down, but that's OK.  There are always new stems to braid.  Keep going!

10.  When the braid is the length that you wish, tie a square knot with twine, yarn or rope around the stems just above the top onions.  Tie a bow, making a loop and face it to the backside.

11.  Trim the tops of the stems, if you want to.  Hang on the wall.  As you need onions/garlic, cut them from the top and work your way down.

Have fun!

Autumn Handwork eBook

Our Autumn Handwork eBook is now available at Little Acorn Learning!  Also, check out their wonderful Afterschool Guide and Seasonal Menu.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Happy Autumn!

Autumn is...

Setting up our Autumn display -- pumpkins and corn stalks from our old garden.  Tunisian crocheting a bow for the stalks.  (Look!  One of the baby kittens has come to play.).

Spinning up our new Autumn Equinox yarn!

Geology Block Grade 6

Updating the nature table.  (pics to come!)

Celebrating Michaelmas at Davis Waldorf School (pics of kids not on blog for privacy. Rick's Grade 6 class made the dragon with flour puffing out!)

Crocheting berets.

Golden light is turning gray
Mists begin to rule the day
Bare the trees their branches lift
Clouds of dead leaves earthward drift....
The Harvest Craft Book

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Essential Elements of Early Childhood Series

Sign up for "Essential Elements of Early Childhood" through the Waldorf Connection!  The first speakers in the series include Rahima Baldwin, Lisa Boisvert MacKenzie, Danielle Epifani and Christine Natale.

You can try the first class/session on September 23, "Three Ways to Create a Nourishing Home for your Child" for free at: http://thewaldorfconnection.com/dap/a/?a=8 

The first call includes:
1. What is play? - with Lisa Boisvert MacKenzie
2. The 4 Senses in Early Childhood Development - with Danielle Epifani
3. The Importance of a Mother's Voice - with Christine Natale

More teleseminars to come in this series!  Listen to them live or purchase the mp3 files to hear in the car or when you have time.
Attendance is free, but you do need to register.  Sign up early, as space is limited!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Inspired to do Handwork....

Ricky has been spinning yarns and carding batts to fundraise for his Waldorf class 8 field trip.  These pictures show one of his elemental yarns, "Californium", and some batts.

Joey crocheted coffee mug holders for each day of the school week for her teacher (Daddy!).  She crocheted "LAPHH" on each one for Love - Abundance - Peace - Health - Happiness.  A nice reminder for him each morning.

Mommy has been crocheting hats and scarves and spinning yarns for customers.

East of the Sun

West of the Moon


Friday, September 10, 2010

Transitioning from Homeschooling to Waldorf Schooling

This past week, we transitioned from a homeschooling family to a Waldorf-schooling family.  The kids love their teachers (Joey's teacher is Daddy!), and we are enjoying being immersed in a school that is full of art, beauty and spirit. 

Rick's Grade 6 room (Mommy knitted the silk tie from the pattern in Living Craft Magazine)

Wilson at the Rose Ceremony for Grade 1

Joey in her new classroom

Ricky with his Grade 1 buddy at the Rose Ceremony

We felted some indoor shoes for Wilson.  More pics to come!

Mommy subbed for the 6-8 grade Winds teacher one day (taught band 16 years ago--nice to be back in the classroom for a bit!).

A tour of the beautiful new Kindergarten classrooms with handmade wood furniture.

Homemade fruit smoothies after school with berries from the farmer's market and mint from our garden.

Ricky is off to Ashland, Oregon with Grade 8 next week.  Joey and Rick are exploring Mt. Lassen with Grade 6.  What a wonderful way to start off the school year! 

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Syrendell Workshops and Lessons

Syrendell offers customized lessons or small group workshops for homeschoolers, Waldorf schoolers, co-ops and anyone who is interested in handwork, art or Wadorf curriculum. Lessons and workshops are offered at our home in Davis or at your location.  Email us if you are interested.  We now have a beautiful arts and crafts studio!

Some pictures from recent lessons in wet-on-wet watercoloring and chalkboard drawing.

Come and join us for upcoming workshops!  More information and registration at: http://www.syrendellacademy.com/.

Handwork in the Dell: Full Day Workshop
September 25, 2010
9:00am - 3:00pm
Davis, California

Open to adults who want to learn more about fiber arts and how to teach handwork to their own children in a homelearning and/or Waldorf-inspired environment. Limited space available. (Teens also welcome -- please email us in advance). Come join Jennifer & Joey Tan at Syrendell for a day of fiber arts fun!  Lunch included.  $80

Spinning in the Dell: 1/2-day Workshop

September 26, 2010
1:00pm- 3:00pm
Davis, California

Open to adults and teens who want to learn how to spin. Beginners will learn on a spindle. Seasoned spindlers will learn the spinning wheel. We will learn about fibers, how to card batts and make our own yarn! Limited space available. (Children ages 9-17 able to learn how to spin are welcome to attend with a parent -- email us in advance). Come join Jennifer & Joey Tan at Syrendell for a day of spinning!  $30

Aromatherapy in the Dell: 1/2-Day Workshop
October 3, 2010
10:00am - 12:00pm
Davis, California

Open to adults and teens who want to learn more about aromatherapy and how to use it for self, children and home. We will experience a variety of oils and custom blend an synergy oil to take home. Limited space available. (Teens also welcome -- please email us in advance). $30