The 8th May will mark 75 years since VE Day (victory in Europe) as the United Kingdom remembers the end of war in Europe.
I have been thinking about how we can prepare for this celebration whilst being outdoors. It is also the first week in May and many May Day and May fair celebrations have been cancelled so I am going to merge all these spring festivities together this week and would love if you joined me through the week to prepare natural costumes, decorations, food and music to be used on Friday when given thanks to the military on VE Day.
By using natural resources we are also helping the environment. If we use natural materials we already have or materials that will naturally decompose we are reducing our carbon footprint and helping our planet.
Lets start with party decorations, on VE Day many people decorate there houses and gardens with red, white and blue symbolising the colours in the British flag. So why not go on a red white and blue treasure hunt around your home and garden and see what items you can can find. On my walk I collected a range of white, red and blue flowers and different leaves from British trees to make a floral display.
You can also use your flowers to make some bunting by either sticking the flowers you have found to paper or if you have an old sheet or white cotton around you can make some bunting/ flags with your finds. You can place the flowers under the cotton and hit the cotton on top of the flower with a rock or small hammer and the colour from the flowers will transfer to your cotton flag.
When you go to any party you usually go in your best clothes or even a costume so for Friday I am going to make a May Day crown or spring crown. When out for my walk I collected some long Ivy and twisted it around each other to make a thick rope shape and then tied it around my head.
Whilst on my walk I spotted blossom and flowers and chose a few to push through the vines to make a floral crown. You can add as little or as much as you wish. You may want to just collect some flowers and stick them to a paper crown when you get home. If making this crown for Friday it is a good idea to make it on Thursday afternoon or Friday morning so the flowers do not wilt before the party.
On Friday a two minute silence will take place at 11am, which will be broadcast on the BBC. It is quite hard for children to be quiet for 2 minutes so why not stand by an open window or door and spend those two minutes listening, what can you hear? I wonder if there were any birds around in ww2?
'The Nation's Toast to the Heroes of WW2' is scheduled for 3pm, with people across the country standing up and raising a glass of a drink of their choice while saying the following toast: "To those who gave so much, we thank you" so why not create a natural cocktail by infusing some mint or nettle in some water or add a beech or hawthorn leaf to your drink. You may even have a dandelion or daisy in your garden which are edible and can be added to your mocktail.
Solo pipers and town criers around the country will mark VE Day. Individual pipers will play Battle's O'er, a traditional air performed on the bagpipes at the end of a battle, from the four highest peaks across the United Kingdom - Ben Nevis, Scafell Peak, Mount Snowdon, and Slieve Donald. Why don't you join in and make a Dandelion stalk trumpet. You need to find a tall Dandelion and snap off its flower head and place the end in your mouth and give a really hard blow. You can also experiment with grass pulled between your fingers to make a squeeking noice.
Remember to stay safe whilst completing the above activities in your garden and when out for your daily exercise. I would love to see some photographs of you VE Day activities.