Friday, December 19, 2014

Handmade Holidays - Double Lucceted Treble Clef Ornament

Wilson wanted to make a Christmas gift for his violin teacher. We decided to make a treble clef ornament. Originally, we were going to crochet, but Wilson had the idea to use the double lucet so that we could string a piece of wire down inside of our cord. Double lucet from Sister Maide.

Once the lucetted cord was done, we strung a piece of wire through the inside until it touched the knotted end. We cut the wire, took the loops off of the double lucet, and then tightened up and tied the open end. With a weaving needle, Wilson wove in the ends. Carefully, we bent the wired cord into a treble clef shape, and then added a metal hook.  The project took a couple of hours.  We used yarn and wire leftover from previous projects. The violin teacher loved the gift!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Geo-Crochet = Geometry and Crochet

A fun way to learn geometry is through handwork. Crocheting basic shapes leads to discussions and observations about numbers, patterns, fractions, and so much more!

We started with some lovely alpaca yarn that came straight from Upstream Alpacas. They handspun and dyed the yarns from their own alpacas.

Our 5th grader Wilson then wound each skein into a ball.

We played with geoblocks, figuring out which shapes can be used to form other shapes, such as using 6 triangles to make a hexagon.

Wilson then learned how to crochet granny triangles. He had made granny squares before, so he understood the concept of starting with a circle to create another shape.

The rainbow-colored triangles were done!  Now, time to crochet edging and lay out the triangles.

One thing that we learned, is that the triangle points wanted to curve. Wilson made sure to single crochet three times into each corner.

The triangles were sewn up with leftover yarn.

The 6 triangles, when sewn together, curled up a bit, looking like a circle.

Wilson blocked the triangles using water, a foam board, and push pins to encourage the yarn to hold a hexagonal shape.

The end result is a beautiful, rainbow hexagon! We use it in our homeschooling bookcase and place special calendar gnomes on top.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Ancient History - Grade 5 Waldorf Homeschooling

We have been delving into the Ancient History blocks this year for homeschooling.  Grade 5 is rich with stories, mythology, geography, food and festivals from ancient cultures. We love reading stories from EarthschoolingStory of the World and other wonderful books.

Wilson is creating a main lesson book featuring the deities from each part of the world that he studies. He chooses two gods/goddesses, learns about them, and adds a simple poem to his drawings. Here are some samples from Egypt, Babylonia, and India.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Needlefelted Tapestry - Autumn Song

Jennifer had the pleasure of attending a felted fairytale tapestry workshop at Davis Waldorf School, taught by the wonderful Suzanne Down of Juniper Tree Puppets.  Jennifer decided to choose a scene that represents elements of a new pentatonic song that Rick wrote for his first graders.  Song words, below (and an audio clip coming, soon!).

 Inspiration from Suzanne included looking at felted scenes and also postcards of felted scenes.

After many layers and some extra work at home, the scene is finally finished!

Red, Orange, Yellow, Brown
Music and Lyrics by Rick Tan

Red, orange, yellow, brown
Leaves are tumbling down, down
Trees branches cold and bare
Signs of Autumn here and there, there

Summer's gone and Winter's near
Autumn season's here
Hard at work, the gnomes and fairies
Gathering acorns, seeds and berries

Apples and pumpkins it's harvest time
Scarves and mittens dear friends of mine

Red, orange, yellow, brown
Leaves are tumbling down, down
Trees branches cold and bare
Signs of Autumn here and there, there

Summer's gone and Winter's near
Autumn season's here!

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Linden's 3rd Birthday

Our baby Linden turned three in October! Seems like yesterday that she was born blissfully at home in the waterbirthing tub with family present.

We used cuttings from the yard for simple decorations.

Linden loves butterflies! We made a crown of butterflies out of plant-dyed felt and roving from Mama Judes on Etsy. Crocheted bunting was made by Jennifer, originally for our 20th anniversary celebration. The colors were perfect for the butterfly birthday!

Extended family came to celebrate.

Kids had handmade fairy bubble wands.

Kids and adults needlefelted butterflies and dragonflies.

Our oldest son and his girlfriend made a beautiful "3" cake.

Sweet Linden Faye. Crochet pattern for her top by Chez Plum. Silk Cape dyed with Logwood from Griffin Dyeworks.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

The Waldorf Cookbook

Second Edition of The Waldorf Cookbook Released

Preserving the Waldorf tradition through nourishment
Award winning journalist and Anthroposophic fiber artist Kelly Sundstrom has just released the second edition of The Waldorf Cookbook, collection of recipes from Waldorf Schools, teachers, and parents all over the world. These recipes are the most cherished in the Waldorf tradition, and hand selected by Waldorf Schools around the globe.
After the resounding success of its first release, the second release of The Waldorf Cookbook has 260 pages and includes more recipes, spaces to take notes and a beautifully designed cover illustrated by Sundstrom herself (please see attachment). Special care has been taken to ensure that all of the recipes in The Waldorf Cookbook have remained as original and pure as possible.
These recipes have been passed down from generation to generation, crossing oceans and mountains to find their way into your family's home,” says Sundstrom. “There is nothing like an old-fashioned recipe, one that has a history and has been nourishing the hearts and minds of the world for ages. This is what The Waldorf Cookbook brings to you.”
We have a limited amount of cookbooks in stock at Syrendell!  
Email us to order. $23.50 plus $5 shipping.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Homeschooling Again...Joy!

Ancient Humans - Watercoloring Stonehenge

Geometry - Pentagons and pentagrams

We have decided to homeschool at least one more year with our son Wilson.  He is currently considered a 5th grader, so we are joyfully jumping into all things ancient, while continuing to deepen our understanding of botany that we started at the end of last year. We are using Earthschooling, Teaching Textbooks (math), Story of the World, and an eclectic mix of books, field trips, and our own projects. Some highlights from our first couple of weeks.

Botany - Growing seeds indoors and then transplanting into the Fall garden

Botany - Identifying plants during a hike to Boiling Spring Lake in Drakesbad within the Lassen Volcanic National Park

PE - Tap dancing with siblings and Mommy

Art - Watercoloring a scene from our camping trip to Lake Almanor

Botany - Crayon drawing the stages of plants