Tuesday, July 31, 2012

cookies for sale

We had a little yard sale last weekend.  The kids sold cookies and lemonade.  They made more money than we did!  In all fairness we had a presale on facebook the week before and really didn't even think it was worth it to go ahead and have the yard-sale, but the kids wanted to have their stands.  So we only sold a few dollars worth of the leftover stuff but the kids sold out (and ate) of all the cookies and almost (drank or) sold out of lemonade.

We used the recipe on the back of the generic chocolate chips I had picked up at aldis, which had all the sugar be brown sugar.  I will have to go back there just for chocolate chips, because i didn't write it down!  They were just as good or even better than this recipe I have recommended before.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

The Indian costume

 Lou is persistent.  He's strong willed and stubborn.  When he gets something in his little mind, he will not drop it.  It's a skill that hopefully he can hone and use as a strength someday.  That's the way it was with this Indian costume; he asked and asked and begged and begged until he got it.   He even pulled the fabric from my shelves and brought it to me saying he would stand by the sewing machine until I was ready.

(He's been hunting bears, that's what his 'sign' is telling us)

The pants are  just a basic elastic waist pant.  I traced the shorts he was wearing that day to make the pattern. 

(Four deer!  I shot four deer!)   The top is a vest style that I made by tracing the shirt he was wearing.  I didn't finish any edges and left lots of fringe.  I added a little trim detail with red and aqua thread on my sewing machine.

We added a belt and medicine pouch and a feathered headband and he was all set.  I probably should have finished up the edges a little better, he's worn it three days straight.  It's going to need a washing sooner or later.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

hats and hot animals and a queen

This post is about hats.  and the fair. Fair and then the hats. They are going together today. There are hot animals and a queen too.

  I took Bee, Lou, and the neighbor girls to the county fair.  We wanted to see Bee's 4H project and all the animals.  There was also partaking of an RC Cola, so it was a legit fair experience.   When Bee saw "The Queen," it was like she saw Justin Beiber... except she doesn't know who that is... but it was a pretty big deal.  The queen was happy to take a break from the llama barn to pose for a photo with some fans.

We saw Bee's project, which received a participant ribbon.  I was really trying to let her do it on her own.  She lacked motivation and this is the display she wanted.  Now we know what the other projects looked like and next year we will know better what to do.  She participated in the 'collections' category and showed her smashed pennies, which she has been collecting for awhile.

This table made me hungry and jealous. It's not a good combination. 

It was hot.  We're in the midwest where we've had drought and scorching heat this summer.  I have a lot of international readers (which excites my family- so hello from all of us!) so you may or may not know that it's been really hot over here for us.  It was over 100 degrees this day. Fahrenheit that is. Smart of us to go to the fair!  Anyway, the animals are in outside buildings and were keeping cool the best they could.  There were fans and misters brought in.  This chicken had his rear turned to a fan and seemed to be cooling off his rump. Feathers were ruffling in the breeze. 

 Onto the hats.  I found a free pattern for bucket hats through Oliver + S.   I made up Lou's blue one first as the test and it turned out pretty nice.  It's the kids size 6-8.  He's a young 5, but big headed.  It was a little snug on him and kind of babyish in print.  Then I made Bee's a touch bigger, just cutting the pattern about 1/4 inch bigger and it was perfect for her. She's a new 7, but also big headed  (2 c-sections over here- I'm just sayin').  I also lengthened the brim on all the hats by 3/4 inch.  I didn't have time to remake Lou's until the next day, but he wanted to wear the light blue one, so all was good.

I wish I would have had this hat pattern years ago.  I have them in hats all the time.  I like how easy the pattern is, it comes together in about an hour.  The second hat was done in about 45 minutes (plus hand sewing to finish it up).  It also used such little fabric, 1/3 yard I believe for the exterior and interior each.  It's totally reversible, which is fun.  It calls for interfacing, but I was out.  I just used a piece of thicker fabric in place and it turned out fine.

Bee kept saying, "Don't I look cute in this hat?" This is probably not something to be proud of, her bragging and all, but it made me happy that she like it.

Lou later selected some fire fabric, which we had on hand. I made this one even bigger than the pattern allowed.  I stretched it out (the 6-8 size) in most places 1/2 inch.  It fits him great.  In fact, it almost fits me.  I think if I keep stretching the pattern, I can get one for me and maybe one for hubby. 

It's hard to say what he's doing here.  I won't try to explain it. 

Monday, July 23, 2012

the other summer pastimes (and reading list)

Besides swimming, we've done some extra reading this summer.  First, swimming pictures, then book list.

I added our summer books to my longer list of our chapter books, but here they are.

Where the Red Fern Grows-  My favorite book of all times.  Favorite. I cried, Bee cried. We were a mess!  You can't go wrong with a story about two coon hounds and a boy who loves them.

Holes-  This was a favorite read aloud when I taught elementary school.  I was thinking the plot was a little too intertwined and thick for the kids to get, but they loved it.  We watched the movie too, and I had forgotten that it's probably the closest book/video set out there.  

Chocolate Fever-  After reading Holes, this was a basic plot.  Too basic.  It was short and funny and easily understood, but afterwards, even Luke said something about it being a simple book. 
Cricket in Times Square-   This is one of those books that I've had in my classroom library forever, but hadn't read myself.  What a sweet story it was.  Animals who are friends- one with an undiscovered talent.  We all liked it.  It would make a great read aloud in a classroom and I'll remember that.
Currently reading:  
Half Magic
On the list:  
Mrs. Frisby and the rats of Nimh

Bud, Not Buddy  Will wait until they are a little older,but it's a good story.  Bee is confused already how our neighbor's girlfriend has a baby when she isn't married. I don't want to go there.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

silly bandz game

I saw this on Pinterest at Growing in PreK. I didn't have any letter silly bandz, but we had plenty of animals and other shapes.  I used the scanner on our home printer to copy each one and then put them in a word document.  A quick print and laminate and we have a new matching game.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

colored flowers in colored jars

Here's another project for the classroom.  I pinned a colorful birthday party on pinterest and my co-teacher said she loved the colored flowers in the colored buckets.  She was picturing them on our window sills.  It was something I hadn't even noticed, but did like them when I went back and looked.  I figured I could make my own version. 

Now that I've spent more time looking at it, I think I want that bunting too!

My classroom budget said smaller containers and fewer flowers.  I painted the inside of some mason jars I already had on hand.  You sort of just glop some paint inside and thin it with a tiny touch of water.  Then you roll the paint around in the jar until its covered. It takes two days at least to dry.  I really like this look, how the gloss of the glass is still there on the outside.

I found some fall flowers on sale at Michaels.  Each bundle had two to three colors of flowers.  I bought three of each color combo and switch the flower heads around until they were all one color. 

The green wasn't green enough, and there was white, and I really wanted blue and the red was a little too maroon.  I considered spray paint and dye and using a brush to paint.  After I started painting the jars, I had extra paint on hand.  

I watered the paint down a little more and put it in a plastic bowl.  I dipped the blooms in and swooshed around to coat.  This picture shows the very last one.  There was more paint at the start.  I also kept the bundles together, except this first one which I unknowingly cut apart.  

Then I hung them to dry inside a plastic bag. I ended up cutting the sides down after they weren't the first night.  I rigged this up hanging it from my ironing board.  I have linoleum in my sewing room, it's the only floor in the house that I don't care so much for and risked some drips.

The white flowers became blue and the sage/light hunter green flowers became a nice primary green.  The maroon became a nice red. I had the jars on hand as well as the paint.  I only had to buy flowers.  With my teacher discount at Michaels, I think I have about $7 in this project. Now that I know I can paint the flowers, I probably could have picked some up at the dollar store, but I think I'd have about the same amount in it.

I have since added pink and need one more so each window sill in our classroom gets one. We have 8 windows.   I am not sure what other color to try for.  We'll probably need new curtains now too. 

Thursday, July 19, 2012

weird stuff in the garden

All the carrot tops dried up and withered away.  When I had to water the garden, they got plenty of water, in the last two weeks, we've had rain.  I didn't realize they weren't getting any water since they were sort of protected under the porch overhang. I pulled them up and we just had these tiny stubs of carrots.  

I left one out on the table to clean up and have the kids taste.  

Either we have rabbits in the house  

or the kids couldn't wait. 

Many of the onions tops also dried up.  I don't know but it probably had something to do with my neglect.  I can't confirm that.  They are little, but still count as onions. 

This is only weird because we actually got to eat them, but we picked the rest of the corn this week.  The racoons let us get it all!  Here's one batch.  I had to pretend 'little house on the prairie' for the kids to get them to help pick.  I was Laura, Lou was Almanzo and Bee was Mary (preblindness)- who played her part very conceited bragging about her blond hair.  They were both concerned that Almanzo and Laura didn't know each other as kids, but we worked through it.

Next year, we need to plant more I guess, I only canned 3 pints and froze 2 quart bags in additional to what we ate fresh. 

The vine borers are here again.  I've lost most of the yellow squash and zucchini plants.  I think I've down to one of each, that's from 6 each.  There is still an acorn squash plant that seems undisturbed though.  We'll wait and see. I did get this weird squash zucchini combo on a zucchini plant.  It tasted fine, it just looked a little weird.  

 It made some nice zucchini bread. This loaf got delivered to a friend.  I used some of those leftover cupcake wrappers from Bee's party to add some color. 

 With typing this, now all I can think about is zucchini bread.  Thank goodness the folk at the grocery store are better at growing zucchini than I am and I can get some there today. 

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

back to school wreath

My co teacher and I are in school mode for sure!  I told her I love this time of year because you are fully refreshed, optimistically ready to get back in, and everything seems doable.  All ideas seems like a good ideas and the rigors of the day-to-day school things aren't weighing you down.   

We're going with a school supply/art supply ish theme for the beginning of the year.  After that, we pretty much go seasonal. I suppose this is seasonal as well, but without the apples so much.  This will be our first year to teach together (but we've been excited and waiting to do so!) but she was Lou's teacher the past two years and was Bee's teacher too.  I know we're going to be a really great team. 

Here's my first decor project.  I made this wreath by hot-glueing fabric strips of fabric sort of scrunched up on a flat wooden cutout.  I got the wooden rings at a garage sale for a nickle a piece.  I knew they'd come in handy.  I had all the school supply stuff at home except the little chalkboard easel, which was from Michaels for $1. Everything is hot glued on.  I've got a bulletin board brewing that we get to work on soon! 

Monday, July 16, 2012

more projects

 Oh man, this is a great one.  I love pinterest.  Here's a gem.  Printing on sentence strips.  Find out how at A Turn To Learn.

Here's another pinterest find, while I'm talking about it.  I saw this cute hair cut doll at Family Sponge, which I found via Pinterest.  We went with a slightly bigger container.  They used a paper tube.  We had to hot glue on the hair instead of knotting it on.  

Bee also insisted on longer hair.  White was all we had on hand, it works.  The hair is super short now, but she trimmed it slowly, inching her way up.  

Sunday, July 15, 2012

race day

My mom and sister came into town and joined us in a 5k. It was both of their first and Hubby's first too. The kids ran about a mile each and spent the rest of the race in the worlds biggest jogging stroller, which I pushed. 

and then it rained.  It poured.  At least it wasn't too sunny.  We're all already looking for our next race.  I told them they'd like it!

Edited to add:  The race facebook page, shared these photos:

Friday, July 13, 2012

new book and a tattoo

 We got the kids these fun new books for a little something to do on long car trips.  We have been having so much fun with them.  I thought I'd share some of the drawings the kids have been doing in them.  

There were several choices, boys, girls, fairy tales, etc.  They all have cute little drawing starts with plenty of space for the reader/artist to draw in their own sketches. 

Here's a cute one from Lou's 'boy' book. 

Here's one from Bee.  I'm not sure what exactly she is balancing on.

Lou's cute little Frankenstein:

A silly little fish picture:

This henna page is from Bee's book.  She got pretty excited about it since she had heard about henna tattoos at art camp.  We had to look up pictures online of henna. She sketched several designs. 

For her birthday, she got a henna kit!  We've been having fun with it!  I'm tattooed, 

she's tattooed, 

 the neighbors are tattooed, 

even Lou got tattooed.

 He is to be referred to as White Hawk from now on.   He says he's a wrestler and pretty tough with his ink.