When you love nature as much as my two do, and you’re slightly uncreative when it comes to children’s crafts like I am, you can imagine how thrilled I was when I discovered Mud & Bloom!
“Inspiring your kids to connect with the outdoors, Mud & Bloom delivers fun and educational nature and gardening activities through your letter box each month”. Their website description is spot on – the activities are definitely fun and educational.
*Disclaimer – we received the November box free from Mud & Bloom so we could test it out and review it. Our opinions are totally our own. This post also includes an affiliate link to Amazon. Find my full affiliate disclaimer here.
Mud & Bloom November Box Review
Firstly, I’ll just say how impressed I was when this tiny box came through my letterbox, and was STUFFED with colourful bits and bobs. I mean seriously, they get so much in there for a letterbox size box.
They must spend an awful lot of time planning the packing, because when I tried to get it all neatly back in for photos – I just couldn’t do it! So well done packing team!
What Was in The Box?
The boxes come with almost everything you need for four nature or gardening activities, with the exception of the actual nature which of course you collect yourself.
As we had the sibling box, there was enough in there for both boy’s to do each of the crafts each.
We had the November Mud & Bloom box, and it included a fungi finder checklist (pictures and info of different fungi you may find out in your parks and woods), a pinecone owl activity, nature peg doll activity, leaf lantern activity, and crocus bulbs to plant. Phew! That’s a lot in one tiny box!
There’s basically enough to focus on one activity per week for the month.
This is what the website says about the boxes in general:
The boxes are for 3-8 year old’s and will be delivered through your letter box at the beginning of each month.
Each box includes everything you need for four seasonal activities: gardening and nature crafts – along with instructions, nature news and a quiz aimed at teaching children about the seasons, plants, insects, birds, soil and rainfall.
Activities have been created by qualified teachers and support the national curriculum with influence from Forest School, Steiner and Montessori education.
As a home educating family, we get to spend a lot of time outdoors. We truly love to make the most of our local parks and woods every day possible. Having the Mud & Bloom activities added a wonderful extra bit of fun to our usual outings.
In the first week we were lucky to have gorgeous Autumn weather – it was perfect for going on a nature hunt. Our mission was to find leaves, sticks and acorn cupules to make the nature peg dolls.
We had such a lovely time, and as we were on the hunt for specific things, we actually explored parts of the park that we hadn’t before. It was lovely.
The boys really enjoyed doing this one. More than I thought they would. They really put their full effort and concentration into it, and once done they took them outside into the garden to be cavemen in their dinosaur game.
How lovely is that?
Also on this walk we did the mushroom hunt. Now in all honesty, as much as we love nature and being outside, I’ve never thought to look for mushrooms with them, and never really noticed any.
What a surprise, when we were specifically trying to find some – they were everywhere! The boy’s loved looking for mushrooms, and it was so surprising at how many varieties there were in one park.
It’s definitely encouraged me to spend more time looking at nature, and I’ll be getting some books from Amazon to help us identify things. I’ve seen a one great little book on Amazon that we’ll be getting – Collins Food For Free book.
Obviously, unless you really know your fungi and which ones you can touch or not – then make sure your children know NOT TO TOUCH! It’s made very clear on the leaflet anyway, as many can be poisonous,
This week we planted our crocus bulbs. Mud & Bloom are keen to make sure any of their gardening activites in their boxes can also be enjoyed by children who don’t have a garden. So the bulbs in this box could be planted in a small pot and kept by your back door, or balcony for example.
We have an area in our garden with some plants and bushes, so we could have planted them there, but I thought putting them in a small pot would be an easier activity to do indoors if it’s raining outside.
And Mud & Bloom makes this SO EASY!! Honestly, I couldn’t believe how easy it was to get the boy’s doing some ‘gardening’ indoors!
The box provided two packets of crocus bulbs, with three bulbs in each pack, and two packs of compact organic peat pellets, providing four pellets for each child. You simply pop the pellets into a bowl of warm water, and in ten minutes they’ve expanded enough to use!
Once expanded the boys could crumble them into their pots, and then plant the bulbs. The pots now sit in the garden with regular visits from the boy’s to see if they’ve grown yet. They should start to show in January or February I believe.
This week we made the pinecone owls. In the box we had three colours of felt, and pipe cleaners, all we needed to do was go on a pinecone hunt! This is something that most children are experts at doing!
Mine most definitely are, and our pinecone covered garden, and the ones permanently wedged behind our radiators are proof of that!
Pinecones collected, they got down to the serious business of making their owls. This involved taking the felt to cut out wings and eyes, and using the pipe cleaners to make feet.
When they had finished, the owls looked like little superheroes!
Superheroes with very big feet! Haha!
This week we made the leaf lanterns. We had a lovely time looking for pretty leaves to make them with, which we then had to dry and place between books to flatten for a couple of days.
I may have left them a bit too long….they were perhaps a little too dry and crunchy, but we made it work!
Other than the leaves, everything we needed to make the lanterns was in the box. This included the kite paper, the card strips, wire for the handles, and the template to make the card bottom, and of course the glue.
The boy’s could not contain themselves all day waiting for it to get dark to light their lanterns.
Look how wonderful they are! I personally will definitely make lanterns like these again, for our garden in the Summer, with some citronella tea lights.
Do We Recommend The Mud & Bloom Subscription Box?
Absolutely yes! This box has been a dream to review. We spend so much time outdoors in the parks and woods, it was just wonderful to have added reasons to collect the types of nature my two normally bring home anyway.
As home educators we do many things during our week. Crafts, games, reading, drawing, playing – but getting outside is what we do most. Though as much as we get outside, and love it, I’m not really creative when it comes to how to use the nature we collect.
This is why I loved Mud & Bloom so bloody much! It took me from drab nature mum to FAB nature mum in an instant! Everything is taken care of, all activities thought of. The amount of activites included in each box is perfect. Not too much, not too little.
All of the activites are easy enough to do, and my two five year old’s found them mostly easy, with some help from me. The boy’s had so much fun with each activity, and it was nice to know that for a whole month we had one dedicated nature craft for each week to look forward to.
The Mud & Bloom prices are from £9.95 for a single box and from £12.95 for a sibling box. Postage is free in the UK, and varies for the EU.
I truly cannot recommend Mud & Bloom enough. It’s just such a wonderful way to keep children connected to nature in a fun way, and so accessible really no matter where you live, garden or not.
Why not check them out at MudandBloom.com and see for yourself. There’s no contract, you can cancel or skip a month at any time by just contacting them.
All in all, Mud & Bloom provides fantastic value, and fantastic opportunites to just get outside with your kids, in their natural world that they love. Go have a looksie – MudandBloom.com.
Many thanks to Mud & Bloom for providing us with the November box as a gift to review it.