Mud and Bloom Kids Nature, Craft & Gardening January Box – review

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This month Flora, Alan and I have been really excited to try a monthly subscription box with a difference – it’s one for kids!  Mud and Bloom * deliver fantastic seasonal nature crafts and gardening activities through your letterbox at the beginning of every month.  Each box includes everything you need to help you get your kids out into nature.

About Mud and Bloom boxes

The boxes arrive addressed to your child and they’re aimed at 3-8 year-olds – although we know two ten year-olds that would love their own boxes too.  Each box includes at least two seasonal activities: one gardening and one nature craft – along with instructions, quizzes, and games aimed at teaching children about the seasons, plants, insects, birds, soil and rainfall.

The activities have been created by qualified teachers and support the EYFS, KS1 and KS2 national curriculum, with influence from Forest School, Montessori and Steiner education.

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Mud & Bloom’s Anja Ffrench believes passionately in connecting children to nature, so everything you need to grow is provided – instructions, seeds and even compost!  You don’t need special equipment, there’s no need to even have a garden.  And the craft activities come with all the building materials you need to make things, using easy-to-find seasonal treasures from your garden or local park.

January’s box

This month’s box contained:

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  • instructions on how to grow an avocado tree (toothpicks provided)
  • instructions on how to build a twig boat (sail, glue, and cord provided)
  • instructions on how to grow your own edible sprouting seeds (seeds and muslin provided)
  • a fact sheet and things to look out for this month
  • a checklist of birds to be seen in January
  • and a quiz.

Trees and seeds

Flora and I decided to tackle the avocado trees and sprouting seeds first.  After removing the stones from the fruits and washing them, we both had fun stabbing them with toothpicks and then suspending them over jars of water.  They’ll take a few weeks to root so we’ll keep you posted on progress.

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Then we tackled the sprouting seeds.  This was slightly more labour intensive as it involved washing and rinsing the seeds three times each day.  But after six days they’d all sprouted madly and completely filled the jar.  And, yes, we did eat them for tea, I was so proud of Flora for trying them and even liking them!

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Building a boat

This was a project for Flora and her dad, so they went off to collect some suitable twigs (easy enough after all the high winds).  To be fair, Flora struggled with fastening the knots as she’s only seven, but between them, they did a great job.  The boat’s maiden voyage on our pond met with no mishaps, although I suspect our resident frog and newt may have been a little startled.  This was her favourite activity in the whole box.

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Facts, birds, and quiz

The Nature News fact sheet was really interesting – did you know that moss spores look like mini lollipops? Or that hedgehogs will often hibernate in compost bins?  After a quick read through, Flora was delighted to get all her quiz answers correct 🙂  And we were so pleased that with one exception, (Goldfinch), we could tick off seeing all the January birds in our garden.

What did we think?

I’d been looking for a gardening subscription box for myself so when the lovely Word of Rachel messaged me about Mud and Bloom I was really excited.  In fact, this box is so much better because it’s something that Flora really got engaged with and had fun with – and it got her away from the iPad/TV for a while too – result!  She was very lucky to attend a Montessori nursery, so we know first hand how beneficial it is for kids to get grubbing around in nature.  But many primary schools just don’t seem to have the time to devote to these kinds of activities in the same way, sadly.  This box has been a brilliant way of getting our whole family involved in and learning about nature again – with the added bonus that all the activities link to the national curriculum too.  We think these boxes are an absolute steal at only £7.95 each including UK P&P, so a huge thank you to Mud and Bloom for sending them over – we can’t wait to see what’s in our February box!

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Are you tempted to try a Mud and Bloom box?  If you are (and why wouldn’t you be?!) then you can use our code LISASNOTEBOOK to receive a 50% discount on your first box.  Who do you know that would love their own nature and crafts subscription box?

* We were gifted this January box for review but all opinions and photos are our own and this is an honest, unbiased review.

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Isabel
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Isabel

What a fun idea, it sounds like you had lots of adventures with this box! When my niece is over the chicken pox I think I shall have to get her one because one of her favourite places to be is in grannys garden and she loves watching things grow.

Huda
Guest

This look awesome! Such a unique and great idea for kids to do something other than use their iPads, plus they get to learn new skills too! Love it! ☺️

@abbeylouisarose
Guest

I am seriously impressed with this box, Lisa! It’s actually the first subscription box for kids that I’ve ever come across and for £7.95, it’s an absolute bargain! It’s the ideal combination of fun and educational activities and I’m not surprised that children older than the age range are also enthralled by it! Can I make a twig boat too?! Sounds like a wonderful way to spend an afternoon! Much love to you and Flora xx

Abbey

Hannah Kaye
Guest

Wow this seems such a lovely box for kids! I think my cousin’s son would love this!

Bexa
Guest

This is such a great idea! Definitely sounds like fun for the whole family and anything that encourages creativity is fantastic! That little twig boat is the cutest and I really want to grow an avocado tree now! Great review Lisa! I didn’t even know boxes like this existed so thank you for sharing <3 xx

Bexa | http://www.hellobexa.com

Chloe
Guest

Hi, what a fantastic gift box. I normally have tea but love this idea as I love my garden. This looks like so much fun for the whole family. I want to grow an avocado tree.

Lena Dee
Guest

Oh my goodness! This is mad cute…I didn’t even know boxes like this existed! I think it’s a great way for kids to have fun and keep their little minds occupied and productive. I also think it teaches responsibility. And you got to eat it after lol that takes the cake. Lovely post!

xx Lena | https://lenadeexo.com

Kelly
Guest
Kelly

What a great idea! My niece would love this and it would get her away from her iPad for a few hours so I’m definitely going to give it a go.

Lady B.
Guest

What a great idea! I wonder if these are available in the US? This would make a perfect holiday or birthday gift! So much better than toys or money or something electronic. Thanks for your review Lisa!

Zoe Jackson
Guest
Zoe Jackson

Wow this box sounds like one my children would love, last summer they loved being out in the garden with me, planting flowers and mainly discovering bugs but this spring/summer they’re a little older and would love something like this. This is awesome!

Melanie
Guest

This sounds like a fabulous fun box for the whole family! My son is 4 and loves discovering and doing so this would perfect. Great post thanks Lisa

Melanie | http://www.frasersfunhouse.com

Jenny in Neverland
Guest

Okay this is SUCH a cute idea and I’m so glad Flora loved it! What a lovely way to enrich their education about important things like nature and food but in a really fun way (: And they’re so cheap too! xxx

Jennifer | Mrs Q Beauty
Guest

This looks like a fun idea. My son would love to receive a subscription box.

Jennifer | Mrs Q Beauty

Violetta
Guest
Violetta

Great review, Lisa, and a truly inspired idea from Anja who creates these boxes. I’ve just signed up and I can’t wait to share all the fun and discoveries with my 5-year-old!

Ms Via
Guest

This is such an interesting way to connect the kids to nature. I loved how you are able to grow avocado tree. I would never think about it hehehe. But these are fun activities for small kids my boys have become a little bigger for these hehehe. 🙂

Bethany Jane
Guest

This is the most fun box I’ve ever seen, I so wish we’d had something like this when I was a kid! I used to love getting stuck in with the gardening with my dad, but after we moved when I was 7 I didn’t get a chance to get to grips with nature much. This is such a lovely idea to get kids interested in the great outdoors, and such a nice thing to do as a family too. I love it!
Beth x http://www.adventureandanxiety.com

kirstie
Guest

These look really fun! I may have to grab one just to try it out for myself, ahaha! I am such a big kid 🙂