"We write to taste life twice - once in the moment and in introspection."

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Lapbooking Fun

We've recently discovered the fun and benefit of lapbooking. I'm impressed by how much 6yo Peanut Pixie-face remembers of our studies of Ancient Egypt, mostly because of her lapbooking and enjoying rereading her lapbook and showing Daddy and Aunt Barb her lapbook and anybody else who would sit still long enough. Unfortunately, we didn't really do lapbooks or notebooks when we studies Ancient Rome, so she doesn't remember as much. Oh, well, the plan is to repeat those studies at a deeper level in about four years, so we'll do it then.

We also learned much about insects while doing lapbooks on an alphabetical listing of insects to study. We used this study as a review of the alphabet as well as our science studies. The forms as well as lessons plans for this study came from http://www.lapbooklessons.com/ . I just hope they get the whole series finished soon. Of course, I could go on on my own, but it just hasn't happened yet.

So yesterday I spent a lot of time (slow computer) printing up form and plans for lapbooking our current studies of the Middle Ages. I think we'll have fun using them. I got a unit study from http://www.homeschoolshare.com/ on Robin Hood as well as ones on knights and vikings. They have little lapbooking booklets to print off and easily fill out and put in your lapbook (or notebook for the older kids).

I've found that printing on cardstock, both white and colored, adds some sturdiness to the booklets so they don't get crumpled as little hands enjoy their books over and over. Also a friend gave us a helpful book called The Ultimate Lap Book Handbook which we use for reference and booklet ideas. I am reminded now that I need to make more use of it!

I encourage you to give this a try; maybe start with a lapbook on one of the aforementioned websites. I think you find it fun and very beneficial for retention and review.

Motivated to do better, I

Sunday, February 20, 2011

I'm happy to have three finishes to report as well as a start. I've told myself that I have to finish at least two things before I will allow myself to start something new, so I'm obeying my rules well. In fact, I might be kissing up to myself by finishing one more than required.

Well, on to the show:

This is the "compendium quilt" that I made for my aunt for Christmas. My darling husband gave me a gift certificate to rent the long-arm quilting machine at the local quilt shop and I had a blast playing on it and quilting this with a free-form style of rows of bows. I finally got the binding on - also playing with doing it all with machine, something I'm only just starting to learn.

I also finished the binding on this Christmas lap quilt. I had machine quilted it on my own machine since there was no batting to make it fat and unwieldy.

This materials for this skirt have been sitting in my quiltery for a few months, waiting its turn. Well, this weekend became its turn, so I cut off the bottom of the denim and added the plaid ruffles for my plaid-loving daughter. One of the ruffles had been a plain tablerunner; one was from pillowshams I'd picked up at the thrift store; one I don't know where I got; the last, skinny one was from a shirt, either my husband's or my son's. Sweetie loves it and wore it to church this morning.

The "start" is going to be a wallhanging for our entry room which will serve the dual purpose of decorating that plain wall as well as teaching the seasons and months to my younger daughters. I plan to make a wallhanging of the season blocks, which are colored with Crayola crayons & then ironed for permanancy, and then sew buttons all along the outer borders. Onto the bottom buttons I will hang a different month block each month, having made them using a variety of techniques that I want to try but don't want to make a big project of yet. Sound fun? It does to me, even if I am getting a late start on the monthly blocks. I do have January and February blocks prepared for bluework and redwork embroidery. Not sure yet what I'll do for March, but I'm considering hand-applique which I've never tried. Maybe Sunbonnet Sue? We'll see what inspiration strikes.

Well, I hope you're doing something creative!


Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Words of Wisdom Wednesday

These words of wisdom come from Kate B. Wilkinson can be found in many old hymnbooks. If our family has a "theme song," I think it would be this one.

May the mind of Christ my Savior live in me from day to day
By his love and pow'r controlling all I do and say.

May the word of God dwell richly in my heart from hour to hour,
So that all may see I triumph only thoruhg his pow'r.

May the peace of God my Father, rule my life in everything,
That I may be calm to comfort sick and sorrowing.

May the love of Jesus fill me as the waters fill the sea:
Him exalting self abasing; this is victory.

May I run the race before me, strong and brave to face the foe,
Looking only unto Jesus as I onward go.

May his beauty rest upon me as I seek the lost to win,
And my they forget the channel, seeing only Him.

Seeking to serve, I

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

The Blessing of A Grand-person

Since my mom lives so far away, Dad is with the Lord as is my dear mother-in-love and my father-in-love is also far away, our family is so thankful that my aunt lives nearby and fills the role of grand-person. She was a missionary schoolteacher to the Navajo people and when she retired, we asked that she come live near us so we could "take care of her in her old age." Well, she's done so much to bless us that we feel more like she's taking care of us. Every Monday evening for the past 12+ years she's come over for dinner, bringing one of her world-class pies (I blame my weight on her!) and we've had delightful visits with her. On Thursday afternoons we go to her apartment and have a snack time and pop in and out from music lessons so children don't have to stay at the music studio for too many hours waiting for siblings. Aunt Barb will turn 80 this fall, but she's still very active, especially in her church, helping in various, often unseen ways that are a good example for us. We thank God for the relative good health she has and ask that He will be preparing us for the time when her health is not so good and we need to step into a greater degree of servanthood for her. We know He has taught us much through Aunt Barb and will continue to use her in our spiritual growth, hopefully for many more years. :)

Yesterday she came, bringing Chocolate Chip Pecan Pie, during the day, because foul weather was expected for the evening. She very patiently spent probably an hour working with the Peanut Pixie-face on her reading and numbers. It was both inspiring and funny to listen to them working together. Aunt Barb was so patient when Peanut was not exactly keeping her mind on things, but at one point I had to laugh as Aunt Barb commented, "I remember now why I retired."

I have to show you this lovely doll quilt she made for the Peanut for Christmas. So cute!

Because Aunt Barb was doing my work and the other girls were doing their independent studies, I was able to machine quilt some more on this quickie summer quilt I pieced for the Princess. She just turned 13 and loves Cicely Mary Barker's Flower Fairies and has learned a lot about wildflowers from her book, The Complete Book of the Flower Fairies. For the quilt, I had purchased some remnants of the Flower Fairy fabric. So I just made some colorful borders around the fairy blocks, added a wide border that looks like a fairy garden around the outside and am quilting it onto a blue gingham flannel with no batting. It's rather simple and quick, which is what we needed right now.
 I still have some meander quilting to do in the flower border and then the binding, but that shouldn't take too long.

Once again, I am much blessed, so I