Our list of books this week:
Friday, July 31, 2009
Our list of books this week:
My next decision was how to bind the quilt. I didn't want white, or black, or any solid color. I wanted multi colored to blend with the scrappy border. So I found a chunk of pretty obnoxious teddy bear fabric that had the right colors and made binding from that. I think it turned out nicely!
And this came 100% out of my existing stash! I love it when I can finish a project without buying anything new.
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
Saturday, July 25, 2009
School-I asked a few questions of each boy like what's 2+2, sing the ABC song, etc. You could present them with a diploma and a graduation hat, if desired.
Pilot Training School-They sat in their chairs and pretended to fly a plane as I narrated what to do.
Pilot License-I printed out a photo of each child, their name, address, etc on the back, and put them together back to back and put contact paper over each one. You could also use an old badge holder. I also gave them "pilot's hats" which were just two hats out of our dress up bin.
We wrote a few interview questions for Paw Paw because he used to be an air traffic controller, drew him a nice picture of airplanes, and stuck it in the mail.
Daddy let Thing One play "Flight Control" on his ipod. This is his new obsession!
Friday, July 24, 2009
I like the laundry basket in the background. Completely unintentional but very representative of my life right now.
I've got a wierd poofy hair thing happening this morning, due to wearing a headband all day yesterday. No concealer to cover up those big purple bags under my eyes. That's the makeup I don't usually let myself be seen without. My youngest has inherited my slightly crooked eyes. I am now finding gray hairs in my eyebrows on a regular basis. I have no idea how much gray is on my head, I haven't had my natural color since high school. I'm in the process of growing it out and am sooooo in hate with it right now. I'm about one bad hair day away from cutting it all off again. I need someone to talk me down from the precipice.
Yes, folks, at 36, it's not pretty. But it's beautiful.
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
Monday, July 20, 2009
I think I will put sashing between each blocks, to space them out a bit. Give they eye a place to rest. There's a lot going on in this quilt.
I saw Bonnie Hunter speak at my guild meeting last year. She is amazing. I like her scrap system. She preaches that you pay the same amount of money per yard for those scraps, so use them up! I spent an entire week last year, about two hours per day, cutting my scraps into strips and squares. I used many of those squares in these stars.
Sunday, July 19, 2009
To make these prints, you will need a clean styrofoam meat or vegetable tray, acrylic craft paint, a paintbrush, a palette (I use a paper plate), some paper or blank cards to print on, and a mark-making tool or two. You can use about anything to make marks. I have here a toothpick, a pencil, a chopstick, some ceramic and printmaking tools, a corn holder, and a nut pick.
Start by cutting your tray into a piece that is the same size as your card, or smaller. Make sure you have cut off any pieces with marks on them, like a recycle symbol or manufacturer's mark (these will show up in your printed image). After your styrofoam is all trimmed, you'll have a nice piece that is flat on both sides. You can use each side to make a separate design if desired.
Use one of your mark-making tools to draw a simple picture. Don't get too complicated. Don't forget to reverse any writing!You'll end up with something like this:
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
It is the home of:
Fresh fruits and veggies
Occasional treats like pastries or artisan bread
Civic events, like a day when firetrucks, ambulances and police cars come out for the kids to see
Community events like corn roasts, build a scarecrow, free snowcones
Knowledgeable local growers
Right now, there are cherries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, cantaloupe, peaches (REAL peaches), corn, squash, cucumbers, eggplant, onions, herb plants, potted and cut flowers, fair trade coffee, honey, salsa, preserves and jellies. Non food items for sale include rain barrels, gourmet doggie treats, and green cleansers.
Often, my husband and I will take turns taking the kids to the market to give the other spouse some quiet time alone. As much as I love those days, I love the days we all go together even more. It's so fun to walk over, all of us hand in hand, and explore the sights, sounds, smells and textures of the market.
Pirates by Lamm
Being five years old, Thing One doesn't write very well yet and certainly not well enough to write tiny letters on a postcard. So in order to expedite the process, and give him a way to participate, we have collected postcards from our town and region, and he gets to pick the card. I try to help based on the recipient's requests (certain people want certain kinds of cards). I print out the addresses with the post code attached and he pastes them onto the cards. Then he narrates what he wants to say and I write it for him. We usually wait until we can request three or four addresses at a time then prepare them all as one workbox, then make a trip to the post office to purchase stamps as another workbox.
We have also been doing a project called Making Friends. This site has cute paper dolls that you can customize to look like yourself and reflect your interests and hobbies. Through their Friends Across America program, you can send yours off to someone else and get someone else's in return. We do about two of these as a workbox per week, and then when we have ten completed, we stick them in an envelope and send it off to the address on the site. We received our first packet of friends last week, from a Brownie troupe. Thing One liked reading about each girl's interests.
We are also doing some package exchanges. One is with a friend's child, with the theme My Town. Thing One has a set of world landmark flash cards that he really likes, and dad came up with the idea of making landmark cards for our town. Thing One really wants to laminate them! It's so funny what makes them excited. We will probably include some brochures, a city map, maybe some regional snacks.
I also signed up each of my boys to participate in an online exchange with kids their own age. These packages can contain anything you think your partner might like to receive. These will contain more fun things, but I am considering some regional or city-specific items too, and information about our family since these are strangers.
Friday, July 10, 2009
The next year, We added a flower bed down the length of the yard on one side, and a small flower bed on the other side of the yard. We only planted a few herbs and some sunflowers that first year. We discovered that the sunflowers grew great, and all faced into our neighbors' yard. So the next year we planted them on the opposite side of the yard and were actually able to enjoy looking at the blooms! Thing One helped me plant a bunch of tulip, daffodil, iris and hyacinth bulbs. Bulbs are suck an easy gardening project for little ones. They bloom fairly well and have come back each year. It is such a joy to see those shoots come up when the spring starts thawing the ground. And I do love having vases full of flowers I grew myself!
We eventually took on our front yard. It was a simple slope when we moved in, with an azalea bush and a dogwood tree, both in pretty sad shape. When the dogwood tree fell over and crushed what was left of the azalea tree, we knew it was time to decide how to proceed. We debated about what to do with it for at least a year.
We eventually decided to do three tiers. The top will hold a bench eventually, and was planted with ferns. The middle tier is the smallest and holds a few miscellaneous plants. Perhaps next year I will actually plan what I want to plant on this tier. The bottom tier is just grass so we have a bit of front yard space to sit upon.
The best thing about our yard is all the wildlife. We keep bird feeders full in the winter, sometimes right outside our front window, sometimes in the back yard at the patio door. The squirrels and chipmunks always find them, too. In the spring, we start seeing tiny bunnies in our clover in the back yard. They often eat our plants too, but they are so darned cute. Right now, a chipmunk is burrowing tunnels all underneath our patio, and the bricks are collapsing in random places all over. It's very aggravating!
We talked about animals and birds that live in or near the bay, and fishes and shellfish. Our book list this week:
We listened to some new music. Of course, I played "Sitting on the Dock of the Bay" by Otis Redding, and we checked these cds out of the library:
We talked about the Bay Bridge and watched a dvd about how it was designed and built (Modern Marvels Vol. 13). The same dvd had an episode about lighthouses, so we watched that one, too.
We visited the National Wildlife Refuge Visitor's Center, which was recently renovated. I was disappointed to see all the same exhibits we have seen before, but it's been several years since we visited and it was all new to Things One and Two. The big hits there were the touch tables (animal pelts, bones, and antlers), the kids' area with puzzles and books, and the tram ride. The tram ride was a forty minute long tour of some of the refuge. I learned a lot and I think the boys did too. Thing One said the tram ride was his favorite thing we did this week.
We made a wave jar with oil and water colored blue. This is from the book Simple Nature Experiments with Everyday Materials by Anthony D. Fredericks. I used an old empty plastic mayonnaise jar that I had been saving to use as an estimation jar. We also grew some magic crystals.
I had hoped to actually go to the bay this week, perhaps take a boat tour or go to the beach. I have to admit that I don't like the beach. I have never really cared for all that sand everywhere. I'm more of a mountain hiker and forest explorer kind of person. But it feels selfish to live this close to the bay, study it for a week, and not go see it.