Carole’s Crafts – Air Dry Clay

We’ve been working with air dry clay this week and I know some of our Young Carers have asked if they can give it a try and they’ll be getting some clay delivered to them very soon.

If you’re looking for ideas of things to make with it, plus top tips on how to stop it drying out and how to get the best results, Carole has some how-to videos below!


Carole’s Crafts – Pebble Painting and Jar Painting

Painted Pebbles

You Will Need:

  • Pebbles/stones with a flattish surface to paint on
  • Paint pens – I found oil based ones work best – or you could use acrylic paint, permanent markers or nail varnish.

I painted the pebbles with white wall paint to make the colours from the pens more vibrant. The idea for drawing the cats came from a design on some wrapping paper.

I drew round the pebbles onto some paper and then sketched the design on with a pencil so I could perfect my design before drawing it onto my pebble (you could use tracing paper to do this if you wanted to.)

Go over the pencil lines with your paint. I used oil based paint pens, but you can use whatever you have – paints, permanent markers or even nail varnish.

Here are some other designs I made:

For Pac Man I drew around the pebble on plain paper and copied the design my friend had sent me.

I painted the stone in black acrylic paint and left to dry. I then added Pac Man in the middle and worked from there.

With the tortoise stone I again drew the design first in pencil then painted with acrylic paint, letting this dry before adding the pen details. I have a desktop fan which helped the pebbles to dry quicker but a hair dryer on a cool setting will do the same if you can’t wait for the layers of paint to dry naturally.

For this pebble I sketched the design, starting with a dot in the middle and made some segments ready to have dots of nail varnish put on.

Painted Jars or Vase

You Will Need:

  • Permanent markers/paint pens/paints/nail varnish
  • Clean glass jar or vase

The design was inspired by painted pebbles on Pinterest.

I roughly measured the height and width of my jar and cut a piece of paper to fit.  Then I sketched the houses onto this.

Next I put blue tac on the front of the paper and stuck it to the inside of the vase to give me a guide.

I tested the pens on my glass coffee jar and used the same colour pen for all the windows etc and then moved on to the next coloured pens, rather than keep swapping pens. Be careful not to smudge as you work around the vase.

The finished item! I did a small variation adding a castle and a lighthouse.


Carole’s Cookery – Savoury Bake

This is a slightly different version of the potato based flan I did back in lockdown – click here to see that one.

You Will Need:

  • Oil for greasing the dish
  • Wafer thin ham
  • Garlic
  • Onions
  • Peppers
  • Mushrooms
  • Cooked bacon
  • Feta cheese, cut into chunks
  • 1.5 pints milk
  • 4 eggs

You can pretty much add whatever you have to this bake, it’s really flexible!

Use a little oil to grease an ovenproof dish. Lay the wafer thin ham as a base, overlapping the slices to cover the bottom and sides of the dish.

As in the recipe for the potato based flan, grill the bacon while lightly frying the garlic, onion and peppers. Pop it all into the ham-lined dish, add the mushrooms, feta cheese, then beat the eggs and milk together and pour into the dish.

Cook in the oven at 160C for around 30-45 mins, depending on the size of the flan. It will be cooked when the egg and milk mixture is set. Serve hot for tea and cold in a picnic – cook once, eat twice!

Carole’s Crafts – Cultivation Update 2

Do you remember when Carole planted her vegetables back in April? This is the carrot crop! For some reason the purple ones were the smallest and the white ones grew the largest.

Carole had thought they would grow depending on the room they had in the pot, or that the orange ones would grow the largest. There was no waste at all with these as the green carrot tops were delivered to children local to Carole for them to feed to their pet rabbit.

The small tomatoes are also ready for picking, well done Carole!

Carole’s Crafts – Make your Own Play Dough

This week Carole’s been making play dough. Scroll down to watch our video to see how it’s done. If you’d like to try but need help getting hold of the ingredients just let us know and we’ll help you out – here’s what you need:

Large pot
Spoon for stirring
250g plain flour
210g salt
4 teaspoons cream of tartar
450ml lukewarm water
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil (coconut oil works too)
Food coloring
  • Stir together the flour, salt and cream of tartar in a large pan.
  • Add the water and oil.
  • Cook over a low/medium heat, stirring all the time.
  • Continue stirring until the dough thickens and begins to form into a ball.
  • Remove from heat and then place inside a bowl or onto greaseproof paper
  • Allow to cool slightly and then knead until smooth.
  • Divide the dough into balls and then either add the food colouring and knead while wearing gloves (to prevent your hands from getting stained or put the dough in a plastic bag with a few drops of food colouring and knead it in the bag.
Store the play dough inside plastic bags or tubs to keep it soft. If stored properly it should keep for up to 3 months.

Carole’s Crafts – Young Carers Story Book

At last week’s Zoom club we played a game where we went round the group saying 2 words each to make a story. What we ended up with was a short, very silly story about a dog with superpowers, who just happened to invent an economical car. One of our Young Carers suggested we design a book cover for this masterpiece for next week’s club and Carole has got some inspiration for you if you want to have a go!

You will need:

  • Pens
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • A box (maybe a cereal packet or an old box file)

I looked online for some cartoon pictures of dogs for ideas then did the same for cars.

I copied the image from the net with a few small changes.

If you’re not comfortable with drawing or just want to do a different option I saw this photo of a dog in a magazine which I thought looked like he was flying – like SuperDog! I cut the car out of some card as I couldn’t find a photo.

I added some trees, seeing as though in our story he eats them! They were made from dyed flowers. I made a hole in the base of the box with scissors and stuck the stick end in.


The drawing was coloured in and stuck on an old box that had sweets in. You could use a shoe box or cover anything you wanted to.

I covered the sides and top of the box and drew lines on it to look like pages.


Then I added a title and who the story was written by.





Carole’s Cookery – Lasagne


  • 1 pack of minced beef OR 1 pack of frozen Quorn mince if you want to make it a vegetarian dish
  • 1 or 2 onions, chopped
  • Oil for frying
  • Mushrooms
  • Peppers
  • Tomatoes
  • Tin of chickpeas (optional)
  • 2 jars of red pasta sauce
  • 2 jars of white sauce
  • Lasagne sheets
  • Grated cheese

Lightly fry the chopped onions.

Add the peppers.

Add the Quorn if using. This doesn’t need as much time to cook as if you were using meat mince.

If you make this with mince beef you’ll need to cook it until the meat turns from red to brown, like this:

Add chickpeas if using.

Add 1 or 2 jars of pasta sauce.

Add the chopped mushrooms and tomatoes and stir in.

Cook over a low to medium heat until the ingredients are soft.

Transfer the ingredients into an ovenproof dish.

Cover with lasagne sheets.

Pour on the white sauce and spread to evenly cover the sheets.

If your dish is deep enough and you want more layers repeat the process and top with another layer of red sauce, lasagne sheets and then white sauce.

Finish off with grated cheese sprinkled on top.

Bake at 180C for 30 to 45 minutes or until topping is golden brown and crisp.



Carole’s Crafts – Encaustic Art

This week we’ve got a video tutorial for you! If you fancy trying this – or any of Carole’s crafts, cookery or cultivation – but haven’t got all the equipment you need, just let us know and we’ll do our best to provide!

Young Carers Videos

This poem was written at one of our poetry workshops last year and it seemed very apt for Carers Week and this year’s theme of Making Carers Visible. Well done everyone who contributed and thanks to Ledbury Poetry Festival and the lovely Toni Cook who helped our Young Carers find their words.

If you enjoyed that, you’ll love this, where our Young Carers take the Loo Roll Challenge!