Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Homemade Bags

We have travel games that needed bags for safe keeping and to be handy to grab when there's a long car ride.  So, I whipped up a couple drawstring bags with fabric out of the scrap cupboard.  Colorful and fun and easy to store : )

Monday, September 15, 2014

Best Breakfast - Ever

Toasted croissant, ham, egg, and cheese.  Coffee with caramel creamer.  So Good!

Thursday, September 11, 2014


When I was 9 I saved up enough money to buy a 'real' doll.  I'd never played with baby dolls much, but I had wanted a porcelain doll for a long time.  I found a doll with thick brown hair like me.  Not too fancy, with a rose on her dress, so I called her RoseAnna.
 Over the years I'd collected many things for her and now my son finds little doll sized things for her.  The 'chest of drawers' was the most recent acquisition.

It fits all her clothes, her tea set, parasol, toys, etc.   The Bible is about 1 inch tall and is actually the entire New Testament!  She had mini buttons and pins, small scissors that open and close, a little rocking horse and wooden chicken, hair clips, a small purse with actual coins, candle stick, small pencil and paper for letter writing, snow shoes...

These are her three outfits: the original rose dress, and the two that my Mom made for me.  She also has flannel pajamas and a hand-knit snow suit with tiny little hand-knit mittens and hat.

She is 24 years old now.  My first quilting and knitting projects were the quilt and blankets that my Grandmother Hazel helped me make for her.  Her pillow is made out of milkweed down (the silky stuff on the top of the seeds) I'd collected the pods, opened them and let the seeds dry - it's wonderfully soft! 

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Summer Blooms

So many pretty flowers all summer long...these are just some random snapshots from this week.  I LOVE summer!  I love the warm, sunny days.  I love that everything is green and growing!  I love the lazy rainy days.  I love gardening, swimming, library days, no schedule...I could be perfectly happy with summer all year long!

Monday, September 8, 2014

Cloth Cover for Pitcher

We'll perk a pot of coffee and then store the extra in the fridge for iced coffee later.  We also usually have iced tea in the fridge...so, it can be confusing sometimes, depending on the color of the tea.  While the boys worked on school this morning, I embroidered this little pitcher cloth.  It's cute, keeps the coffee clean, and notifies everyone what's in the pitcher.  I have another square of check fabric to edge in lavender and I'll embroider "Tea" on it - for another school day. 

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Home Schooling

This is the first week of school for us.  I told some friends that I would share my *Most Important* item for homeschooling.  I'd been telling them about how essential it was to my schooling success.  It's a list.  It took months to develop, test, and prove effective.  I keep it in my teacher's planner, on the inside cover, so that I see it every day when I check the schedule for the boy's work for that day.

You see, for me, schooling my children - along with the housekeeping, mothering, and housewifely things that I have to do - requires an extra amount of self-control, fortitude, and grace.  Teaching doesn't come naturally to me, but I could never give up the opportunity to shape my own child's mind and mold his character, to foster a learning mind and give him the tools he'll need for life...  So, this is my list:

Kind/Gentle Tone
Be Patient

I want to be reminded of these things because if schooling isn't a positive experience, my children will not love learning - I want my children to love learning!  I can't possibly tell them everything they need to know, but I can give them the tools to learn - to give them a lifestyle of learning.
I can easily become frustrated and impatient.  I feel like there's too much to do and not enough time.  I still have the housework to do and meals to prepare...but, I make school first priority.  My Babe and I talked about it and agreed on that.  The laundry may pile up, the floors may be dirty, and My Babe may have to do his own ironing once in a while.  But, I will get my cup of coffee (it helps me relax), I'll sit down and smile, and school will be good - if I feel myself stressing out I leave the room for a minute and decide what needs to happen to improve the situation.  Things to try:

Change the subject - sometimes it's better to work on something else for a while and come back to the problem later

Change the scenery - a new work station can jump start a lagging work ethic

Set the timer - knowing there's a reward if you finish on time (stickers, 2 minutes play - cumulative*, m+ms, etc), or if you don't finish on time, that's o.k. - there's always next time to try again!

Jumping jacks - 10 will get them out of a rut, 20 will change that stubborn attitude

Set firm consequences for bad attitude.  If I have to be Miss Gently Patient, then I expect my students to smile and do their best work too!

* I'll give them 2 minutes for each item of school work (a page, paragraph, or line) that they finish on time.  That time is allocated for playtime with a special toy, or to watch a nature video, etc. ...10, 12, or even 20 minutes can be accumulated in a morning and then the time is rewarded after school.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

New Orchid

Pink tiger striped orchid for my living room : )

Monday, September 1, 2014

Tea Tray Cloths

I use a tray when we have tea so that I can bring everything - tea pot, cups, cookies, etc. - into the living room or wherever we want to enjoy our tea.  I would put a dishtowel on the tray to catch tea spills.  But, I got tired of trying the fold the towels to fit the tray, so I sewed 'tray liners' instead. 
I sewed two fabrics together, wrong sides together, leaving a hole in the stitching on one side for turning it right side out, then pressed and top-stitched.   One is blue check and red plaid, the other is daisy zig-zag print and wildflower botanical print.
 This way I can line my tea tray with whatever liner suits my mood, wash and repeat!

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