Valentine Sugar Pop Quilt Progress

Wednesday, May 25, 2011


This week I pieced the 42 squares together.  Overall, it was a very satisfying feeling.  But so tricky-even though this pattern was labeled "For the confident beginner."  I read that this week and it made me laugh.  I'm way too confident for a beginner, and my corners show it.  

I plan to have someone local quilt it with a long arm machine.  This is me being realistic.
When I actually "quilt" something, I'll start with a potholder, I think.  

Look at that corner (the one on the right side).  The quilters are gonna laugh, aren't they?

Anyone have any experience with quilting services?  Any advice?

Are you a successful homeschooler?

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

One of the best parts of being part of a homeschool community is the time I get with all the other homeschooling moms.  We could (and do) talk for hours about curriculum, testing, reading levels, unopened science kits, used book fairs and speed drills.

But if I'm completely honest, when I listen to other moms talk about the most recent project done by their 8 year old, I'm secretly comparing my child's knowledge and ability in that area.  I'm constantly trying to determine where my children fit, or excel or lack compared to other students.

It's so easy to focus on what we're not doing or where I think my child is "behind" where they might be in a formal school.  And enjoy all the guilt that comes with that train of thought.

With a school year soon coming to a close, my mind is moving on to how much better we will be next school year, when we start using _______ book, or just start fresh.   But that's not how I want to finish the year.

It was not a failure.

In fact, we saw a lot of success.

I want to claim each success, celebrate them.  Not for me, but for my kids -who grow most often in spite of me-but a lot of times, also because of me.

  • Keeping Geography Songs going in the car led us to learn every song in under a year.  My 4 year old can tell you what countries are in Equitorial Africa.  I love that.  (and need to video it)
  • Boo loves to read--he reads road signs, movies on our netflix queue, and bedtime stories to his siblings.  I tell him, "Stop reading!"  And he says, "I can't, Mom!"
  • Belle is thisclose to finishing math book-which is just about on-time.
  • She and I have also found a time to read together-while Daddy reads to the boys at bedtime, she and I sneak off and I read to her.  This is sacred time between us-time we despiritely need, I believe for our relationship both now and later. 
  • Big Boy and I also enjoy couch time, and are well into 100 Easy Lessons.  He loves and needs this one on one time.  And so do I.  

Here's my challenge for anyone who home-schools:  notice your successes.  name them, write them down (maybe in your yearbook?), throw a party, call a friend.  it's up to you.  But do share them-with other moms and your kids-it is their success, too.

And of course, tell me!  I'd love to hear what's worked for you!

Dyeing Paper

Saturday, May 14, 2011

We're always looking for some fun ideas to keep us busy.  All this month, Aimee at HomeSpun Threads is hosting a Summer Soiree-31 Days of Indoor Ideas to ready us for the heat of the summer. 
A Craft Camp for Kids, if you will.  

Today, I'm sharing our tissue paper dyeing fun!  We had everything on hand, and the hardest part was waiting for them to dry.  Stop by and check out all the cool ideas.  

What do you make with tissue paper?

More Room on the Night Table

Thursday, May 12, 2011

When you don't have a lamp on your table, you can fit a lot more books
Or cups.  Or toys. 
Or nothing at all, if you can do that.

I've always loved Pottery Barn's wall sconces, but never could justify the price tag.  
So when I saw the Nester's link to Copy Cat Chic's affordable version-I ordered 2.  

pottery barn adjustable arc lamp - $139

lakeside collection adjustable wall lamp - $19.95

and now I have more room for my books.  

Thrifting for Springtime Skirts

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Each spring I find myself longing for a few free hours to spend going through the racks of my thrift store on a skirt hunt. I went a few weeks ago and came home with three new looks for under $10.
above: skirt: Anthropology via thrift, $2.99, jeans: target, $4, shirt: kohl's from years ago, 
scarf: gift from India
above, skirt: Harolds, thrifted $2.99, tank: Old Navy $2, cardigan: Express via eBay $.99
above, skirt: Old Navy, thrifted $2.99, shirt: Kohl's, denim jacket: Old Navy, both from years ago

Thank you, Belle for taking my pictures this week!
I'm sure she thinks her mama is crazy, but at least I'm out of my pajamas-which is more than I can say for her baby brother and sister...

Found any good deals lately?

All You Get is 24 Hours

Monday, May 2, 2011

I ran the other day.  Then I signed up for a half marathon.  So, I probably should run again.

It's been so long since I've run.  Too long to tell you, but I will say that it has been the longest period I have not run in my entire adult life.  I call myself a runner, and I love my running group.  But I also love sleep.  And call myself a sleeper.

"I am a mother, and my time is not my own," I tell my group.

But it is spring, a time for new beginnings.  So here goes a new running season.

Now I want to keep the momentum and best use my running time.  Have you noticed that one good decision leads to another?  It's true.  The day I ran, I ate less ice cream.  I didn't not eat ice cream, but I ate less.   And I cleaned my shower.  Just because I felt like I was on a roll.

Time is the one resource we are each given equally. 

Since running uses precious time, I want to make it count the most.  In the past, I've watched movies from the treadmill (on my weekday runs).  But this week, I chose to watch a DVD of a Beth Moore message.  And I've got some more messages that I can watch or listen to next week-including 24 Hours is All You Get: Ways to Wisely Use Your Day   and podcasts of Sono Harris's messages for weary moms.

I really want my miles to go farther.

How to you make your time go farther while your kids are still little?