On Midsummer’s Eve…

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My eldest daughter returned home from her class camp, just in time for my Birthday on Saturday (Midsummer’s Eve and St. Johns – I shared more about this festival here). 

She had a wondeful time. The weather was very hot, which was perhaps not ideal, but she enjoyed the water sports and swimming to cool down and particularly liked the extensive gardens surrounding her teacher’s house. Her teacher is fortunate to live in a beautiful location, surrounded by forests. It was a real gift to the children to have all that space to play in and explore. They could relax and feel more spacious than at school and my daughter said it was a good class bonding experience, which is just what her particular class needed. There is also something about visiting your teacher’s home and seeing where and how they live that opens up another aspect to that person. Teachers can seem like such a mystery.

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The children camped on one of the lawns,

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and enjoyed exploring the grounds and taking walks through the woods, accompanied on occasion by the six resident dogs 🙂

The teacher also has several bee hives on her property and the children were allowed to examine them, if they wore a beekeeping outfit.

I visited on Wednesday, but I didn’t manage to take part in the walk as they left a lot later than planned. The heat was getting to some of the children so a slow pace was required, but it was fun to spend time with the class and get to know them better.

Whilst my eldest was at camp, we spent some special times with our youngest. We went to the sea for a paddle,

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played games and made home made pizza and all her favourite dishes – very much like last year really! As it wasn’t the first time her sister has been away, she adapted very quickly and also had a few friends over to play which kept her happily entertained. Last year C was still in Kindergarten. I can see she has taken a big leap in her maturity recently.

My eldest daughter returned from camp on Thursday evening with plenty of stories of camp life – memories to cherish for another year. 

On Friday our school celebrated St John’s festival,  which included wearing fiery colours, circle dancing and leaping over a small central fire. They were also allowed to put any wishes into the fire. My girls later told me, separately, that they had both wished that Delilah (our hen that died recently) was happy now. So sweet.

We are no longer allowed to take photos at our festivals, but I shared a couple on my Midsummer post last year

Our Nature Table is very red and fiery. The strawberry family are back,

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and Mother Earth and her children have built a big bonfire for Midsummer 🙂

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I had a lovely Birthday on Saturday with my little family and was really touched by everyone’s efforts. I have been feeling very low in energy recently and have been feeling quite emotional too, so I think everyone really wanted to make an effort to cheer me up and give me a lovely day. They certainly achieved that 🌈 They decorated the place themselves, remembering how I always do it.

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The detail is ingrained on their memories 🙂

They even made a sweet collage of old baby photos they found of me!

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The presents were prettily wrapped with fragrant bunches of lavender that the girls picked from our garden (to keep you calm mummy)!

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and the vase of flowers in the Birthday ring was also fresh from our garden.

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So many beautiful touches – it was so lovely to be celebrated in this way!

My daughters only made their presents on Friday afternoon because there was no time beforehand with my eldest in camp. Considering the limited time they had, I was amazed at what they acheived!

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My eldest quickly whipped up some bunting for me,

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and my youngest made me a mobile for our bedroom 🙂 Bless them.

My eldest also wrote me a quick poem on Saturday morning. As I have mentioned before she hasn’t been keen to read and write, but she really wanted to write a poem for me. I was really touched. She says she will write it again on card so I can frame it 🙂

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That’s one to melt a mama’s heart – a definite keeper! 🙂

Unfortunately the weather had turned by the weekend and it was much cooler and quite breezy. We still had a good day though. We went out for brunch and played cards and then visited a favourite garden, with a beautiful wildflower meadow, for a couple of hours. It was so uplifting to see these beautiful flowers.

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There was no rushing about (except for the children’s running!) – just a slow quiet day with my favourite people!

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with plenty of time to smell the roses 🙂

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I don’t know if you know, but the Fairies always have a big celebration on Midsummer’s night! We invite the fairies to celebrate in our garden by setting up a party area for them. My daughters set it all up by themselves this year amongst the flowers and it was just perfect for their fairy friends 🙂

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There was a seating area,

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two fairy dance floors,

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and a fairy feast

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and a bathing area with poppy petals floating on it for the fairies to rest on.

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In the morning it was clear there had been guests that night. Things had been moved and green fairy dust was scattered all over. They even left us two little green crystals in the walnut bowls the girls had left out for them. My daughters adore the magic of this night. I remember as a child feeling that Midsummer’s night held a special quality too. Some books I would recommend to share on Midsummer’s Eve with children are:

Little Fairy Can’t Sleep by Daniela Drescher and The Flower’s Festival by Elsa Beskow.

The next evening I met up with a few friends for a Birthday drink by the beach. It was quite breezy, but at the end of the evening the wind had quietened and we marvelled at the evening sky and the twinkling stars. We are so small in this great vast universe and yet so interconnected to everything.

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We spent a little time throwing pebbles in the sea, making wishes and with each throw, letting go of things that no longer serve us. We all found it very cathartic. I would highly recommend it!

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Now just a little bit about what I have been making so this can count as a weekly round up/craft post (!)

I finished the Geranium dress for my eldest. She is really pleased with it and wore it straight away. Here she is on my birthday wearing the dress

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and briefly from the back, here she is wearing the Front Range sweater in the short sleeved version.

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I didn’t manage to capture her wearing it from the front as she soon decided it was too warm to wear all those layers.

I have also finally finished knitting my first sweater for myself.

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I am really pleased with it. I just need to block it a bit to stop the hem riding up, but it looks great on – a lovely flattering fit I find.

And now to think of new projects. The girls would like me to make little sweaters for their dolls in the left over yarn. And I have some lovely soft alpaca yarn that would be perfect for a shawl…hmmnn let’s see….

I hope you are enjoying whatever you are working on. Joining Nicole for Crafting On. 

 

6 thoughts on “On Midsummer’s Eve…

  1. The sweaters and dress look great! Garter stitch edging always has to cause trouble, doesn’t it? 😉 I’m glad to hear that the campout went well and that you had a lovely birthday. It is so important to feel loved on a birthday, I think. I feel a little vulnerable this year, too, and I am hoping it will lift soon. I love your little midsummer fire on the nature table. I hope I can remember that for next year.

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    • Thanks Brandy! It really does make the world of difference to experience love and kindnesses on your birthday – I agree. I have heard from a friend who is into astrology that this is a difficult time astrologically, especially for Cancerians – like you and I – who will be feeling things intensely which makes us feel are more overwhelmed and vulnerable right now. We need to take things slowl, protect ourselves and reserve our energies. I do hope things lift soon for us both! This too shall pass. Hugs

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      • That is an interesting thought. I am definitely trying to take care right now–healing through knitting. 😉 I was thinking about the garter stitch edge. I just read in Elizabeth Zimmerman’s Knitter’s Almanac that she recommended a smaller needle for the edge to help with the curling. I’ll have to try that next time. Oh, and cast off in purl on the right side. I always get confused about which side to cast off.

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  2. Belated birthday wishes. Love your sweater the colour really is gorgeous and so is your daughter’s dress, I’ve just bought L some more fabric to make the top in that pattern, it really is a nice sew isn’t it? Loving the fairy midsummer party what a great idea 🙂

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    • Thanks Helen! Sorry for the late reply. I have been offline for a while. Lots to sort out before we head off on our five week tour on Saturday! Yes I love the dress – nice and easy to sew and so pretty. My girls love the flutter sleeves and floatiness. Yes we love a fairy party here! 🙂

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