Our fun, but frugal, summer

Mama fuel! Hubby made sure I was fully stocked at the start of the holidays

Wow, time is definitely whipping by this August! I don’t know about you but we’ve been trying to have lots of fun. It’s our first experience of school holidays with the Lamb and we quickly realised six weeks of entertainment can be EXPENSIVE! At the beginning of the holiday, I set the challenge to have a fun, yet frugal, break. It’s definitely a challenge keeping a toddler entertained, especially on a budget but with a little imagination and enthusiasm, we’ve been enjoying ourselves.

I was lucky to find this book, DK Nature Activities Bug Hunter, in the local charity shop and it’s been an inspiration. We only have a small garden, in the middle of the city but it’s been a delight to go out and discover what wee beasties we have lurking in the lavender! There are also a number of different activities to get a little more up-close to some of the bugs which we’ll also be trying to keep popping back.

Here are a few of the critters we’ve found so far:

  • Slugs and snails. Frankly, we’ve found far too many of these and there’s a good chance the Lamb will be going back to preschool muttering ‘bloody snails’ after these gastropods have filled their bellies on our lovingly nurtured strawberries!

  • A harvestman. I was really excited to find one of these in the garden. More commonly known as ‘daddy long legs’ I had never seen one with these colours before. Although part of the arachnid family, they don’t spin silk or have venom, unlike their other eight-legged relatives.

  • Hoverflies. The calendula has proven very popular with assorted flying creatures, from butterflies, bees and hoverflies, they’ve all enjoyed these cheerful yellow flowers. I’ve been harvesting some of the flowers myself to make balms and teas from, but more on that at a later date!

  • Moths and butterflies. I started a bit of a debate on Facebook as to which was better: moths or butterflies. Most people seemed to prefer moths but we’ve been lucky enough to see both fluttering around the garden.

  • The lesser-known peg bug. This cheeky bug helped enormously while I was hanging washing and seems a frequent visitor to our garden – do you have one?
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