The other day we went apple picking for my birthday. It was something I had wanted to do for a long time and it was wonderful; I know we’re only a few days in and all, but it really has made my autumn!
The only problem is that we ended up with quite a large number of apples (over 5 kg in fact) and so I needed some ideas of what to do with them; although we eat apples like they’re going out of fashion, I didn’t think we could manage to just eat them all. I have a number of recipes planned for the coming days, but I thought we’d start by using them to do some painting. Again, this is something we have never tried, so it had to be done!
I set everything up in the tuff spot outside. It was a lovely day and I wanted to make the most of the September sun, but I also didn’t have any paper plates to put blobs of paint onto; I thought it would be easier and cleaner to just shove it on the tuff spot in the garden. So that is what we did.
I cut up four apples, put blobs of autumn-coloured paint (orange, red, yellow and brown) directly onto the tuff spot, and stuck a strip of paper down the middle (I did it in two halves so that both A and E had their own of everything, in the hope of minimising arguments). A then added a few leaves also!
They were so excited that they instantly dived in. They both plonked their apples straight into the paint and began to print. (A got covered in paint straight away; I was so relieved I had decided to do this outside).
But then E got paint on his hands, so that was enough of that and he went off to do some sweeping instead.
A, however, remained engaged for ages. She mixed the paints and commented on the colours that resulted. She experimented with textures, comparing the results produced by dabbing the apples and sliding the apples. She also compared the sizes and shapes of the apples (one of the best things about picking the apples from the orchard was the sheer amount on offer. There were so many varieties, colours, sizes, and tastes; amazing for both the taste buds, and the resulting learning opportunities)!
After a while she decided that she wanted to print with the leaves also; as she did so she commented on the patterns and textures produced (we must do leaf printing properly later on in the season when more leaves have fallen from the trees).
I thought that the result was quite beautiful (though how can it not be when it is made of such beautiful colours)!
Are there any other activities that you enjoy doing with apples (besides baking), especially any non‑messy ones for my mess-phobic boy?