Spring activities to make us all feel good including nature arts and crafts ideas

It’s Spring! There usually are two spring false starts: one is on the 1st March (which coincides with the meteorological start of spring) and the other one on 21st March (which is the so-called astronomical start of spring). By the 22nd of March it’s guaranteed Spring and the weather is good enough to spend more time outside or in the garden. The warmer weather is uplifting and the sights and sounds of nature engage all our senses and make us feel good.

Here are my top outdoor activities to make us feel good this Spring.

Image by Bessi from Pixabay 

Spot your first bumblebee searching for nectar 

The lifecycle of a bumblebee begins in spring, when rising temperatures awaken a queen bumblebee that has been hibernating alone in the soil. She’ll feed on flowers, drinking nectar to gain energy and collecting pollen to bring back to the nest. There are 24 different species of bumblebee in the UK. They love plants such as dahlias, buddleia, lavender, clematis, foxglove, hosta and wildflowers.

bee, barnes riverside, London, nature

I took this picture on Barnes Riverside

Make a dream catcher and dream about all the things you want to do these coming seasons – hopefully out of the pandemic! 

Dream catchers are really fun, and you don’t need many supplies to make them, just some cheap uncoated paper plates, string, glue and things to decorate them. To make a paper plate dream catcher, all you need to do is:

  • Cut out the paper plate’s centre, leaving only the other ring
  • Punch holes along the ring’s inner edge to hang the dream catcher and attach some feathers at the bottom
  • Let your kids’ imaginations go wild as they decorate the paper ring
  • Take three lengths of string or wool and tie a feather to one end and then add beads onto the string
  • Cut a length of string to place across the middle of the plate
  • Tie off the string on one hole
  • Weave the string through the holes across the middle of the ring to create a web
  • Add some beads at random to the string
  • To finish, attach the feathers and a loop of string to hang it.

There are a ton of fun arts and craft ideas to do with your kids whatever their age. All you need to get started is plenty of imagination and creativity. 

Smell the sweet fragrance of flowers in bloom 

Whether it’s smelling the scent of flowers in your garden or those in parks and outdoor spaces, engage your sense of smell and enjoy the beautiful fragrance of tulips, daffodils, irises, hyacinths or magnolia.

flowers Richmond photo by Monica Costa

I created this collage from pictures of flowers found in Richmond Riverside

Make art from fallen flowers and leaves

Involve children in making nature arts and crafts with recycled fallen flowers and leaves. It’s easy to preserve the beauty of nature by making pressed flower crafts. There’s a lovely kit available from toysandbears.com to help with that. In the box there are enough materials for making trinket boxes, greeting cards and bookmarks. This box is suitable for ages 5+. 

The kit comes with all you need to make art from pressed flower – just add the leaves and the flowers

Here’s an example of a card cover made with pressed flowers. 

Smell the scent of freshly cut grass

Spring is generally the time to start mowing the lawn. Involve the children in cutting the grass (in all safety of course) and planting new seeds. Freshly cut grass smells so good as it reminds us of summer and weekends, which makes us feel good and boosts our mood.  

Declutter the garden

Have a spring clean in the garden. Remove fallen leaves, prune back hedges, throw away old stuff, tidy the shed and clean tools and furniture so that they are all ready to use.

 

Feel the freshness of the earth and air – Reconnect with nature. Dig the garden soil, perhaps in order to plant, or hoe to remove weeds as they start to grow, and breath in the fresh spring air. The more fresh air you get the more oxygen you will breathe, which increases the amount of serotonin (the happy hormone) you inhale, consequently making you happier!

 

Look out for a glimpse of wildlife waking up 

Hedgehogs normally come out of hibernation in mid-March to early-April depending how warm the weather is. Their first priority is water, so help them by leaving out a small bowl of fresh water in your garden. Special hedgehog food is available to buy if you wish. Hedgehogs are nocturnal so your best chance of seeing them is at night. They like dry spaces such as under garden sheds, near compost heaps or hedges, or in an untidy bit of your garden.

Sense new life and optimism in every scene 

Wonder at the power of nature. See the bulbs emerging from the soil, pale green leaves appearing on trees, flower buds starting to open and the sight of beautiful blossom everywhere.

Wander through carpets of beautiful bluebells 

Carpets of bluebells are one of the greatest sights of spring. Bluebells usefully flower from late March through to May. The best places to spot them are in old and ancient woods, in fields and gardens. Native bluebells have a strong and sweet scent, so the stronger the smell the more likely you’ve found a native specimen.

Listen to the lullaby of birds returning 

A large number of birds migrate to the UK every spring including Swallows, Warblers, Martins, Swifts and Cuckoos. Get up early and enjoy listening to the ‘dawn chorus’ as birds defend their territories and sing to attract a mate. Birds begin to sing about an hour before sunrise. It’s best to pick a day with fine weather and little wind. The first songsters of the season are residents such as Robins and Great Tits, followed by migrants such as the Chiffchaff or Blackcap Warbler.

 

Read the Spring issue of the London Mums magazine here.

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