Sunday, March 30, 2008

Almost in time for Easter

Well, as you have seen, I made a dress for Miss E. It turned out pretty well so I commenced sewing a matching dress for Miss A. I thought I'd get it done before Easter and the girls could wear them last Sunday, but since that didn't happen, I *did* manage to finish the second dress in time for this Sunday, ie, today and the girls wore them this morning and looked so sweet. It's probably been since Mr. E was born that I've sewn any dresses for the girls so this felt like a major accomplishment.

Here are a few pics from this afternoon before they changed into their "day clothes" as Mr. E calls them :)


and lest you forget the boys - they don't have "new duds" from Mama's sewing machine, but how 'bout this ensemble? Black cowboy hat, cool sunglasses and a pop gun!? (and no, those weren't part of his outfit when we left the house!)

and Mr. E during "quiet time" one day this week - "Is quiet time over, Mama?"

until next time...........

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

And the winner is......

Today Miss A drew a winner in her contest!

Drumroll please................................................

The winner is........Matthew!

Now, I'll be sending an email to the winner to notify him and see if he is interested in the prize of YARN :) If not, we'll choose another winner.

And, for those of you who have been waiting to find out the answers to the quiz - here they are, exactly as Miss A told me:

1. Half of a head

2. Half of an apple

3. A Quarter of a butterfly

For a recap, go here.

Thanks for playing along! Miss A had a great time reading over all of the responses! (as did I!)

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

As Promised, the Finished Dress!

Whew! It is finished! Hooray! Well, except for snipping off little threads here, there and yonder, but that can happen later :)

I *thought* for a few minutes earlier that I'd have to delay posting as the sewing machine threw a tiny screw during sewing and I stopped to search and search for it - when I say tiny, I mean tiny!

Anyway, after turning the machine upside down, it fell out and I was able to fix it and proceed w/the hemming! Whew!

Miss E tried it on and I think it looks pretty good considering my extreme lack of knowledge in this area and self-taughtedness (I'm sure that's not a word, but hey!).

So, here 'tis! Whaddya think? Be honest!

The fabric is a lightweight cotton blend - gingham check (Pink/white) - doesn't photograph fabulously in low light and it's an extremely low light sort of day around here - it's been raining heavily ALL DAY!

and of COURSE, a twirling shot! (just for you sis. C!)

So now I'm trying to decide if I want to do the same pattern again in another fabric or if I want to give this one a go:

Have to think about it.....stay tuned...tomorrow the answers to the contest! If you haven't entered yet, there's still a little time! Until tomorrow.....or we float away, whichever comes first!

Monday, March 17, 2008

A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words...

or stitches...

Where have we been? Here. Just busy as usual. School continues on - On the Math Front - Miss E is only 3 lessons away from starting Gamma in Math U See - she is very excited. Miss A is continuing on in Alpha and doing well. Mr. E is chugging along in Primer and doing great too. Mr. Baby is talking up a storm and we can almost always tell what he's saying these days :) He "sings" Amazing Grace often and when he's not singing that, he's singing Kindred in Christ along w/everyone else at bedtime. This past Sunday CKB mentioned Amazing Grace and quoted the first line during his sermon - Mr. Baby heard what Daddy had said and started singing from the 2nd pew :) I don't know if anyone else in the church house heard/knew what was going on, but it brought joy to my heart and to CKB's when I told him about it later. :)

Ok, stitches. Yes. It's been probably 4 years since I've done anything w/sewing (since Mr. E was born) and lately I've been saddened more and more every time I look for long dresses for the girls and don't find them. So, I dusted off the sewing machine, literally, after digging it out of the box it's been packed in, and looked to see what patterns I had that might be the right size. Most of the patterns were too small now for the girls. I think I had 2 that went up to size 8. Sigh. So I chose one to try. Simplicity 5827.

Now, I can hear you saying "But, you said LONG dresses". Yes, I did. I lengthened the pattern :) Now, it is still not turning out quite as long as I'd like, but the dress I'm ALMOST DONE WITH is a "test" run w/some fabric I got long ago for $1/yd that I had thought to make curtains with for the girls' room, but never did before we moved from our house in S. TX. Hmm, curtain fabric...clothes...brings a certain movie to mind...but this material looks fine for dresses whereas in that movie...well....anyway....

So...long story short, in my ever so tiny amount of spare time on a couple of evenings lately, I've been trying to make a dress for Miss E. I am thrilled to report that it is almost done! I even put in my first zipper and I *think* it looks fine! Now, I'm not a wonderful seamstress - noone has taught me to sew, so I'm just thrilled when it turns out looking like the picture on the package AND fits!

So.....stay tuned because I HOPE to post a pic of the final product TOMORROW - all I have left to do is hem it and get Miss E to model it :) Yay! Then, I hope to make another for Miss A - and hopefully that one will go a little more quickly! Whether or not I'll stick w/this pattern remains to be seen...I might try out the other one I had that went up to an 8...we'll see.

In stitches.....CAB

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Busy Days and a Quiz for You With a Prize for the Winner!

Today Miss A approached me in the kitchen with the following question:

"Mama, do you want to take a quiz?!"

I glanced down at her and thought, hmm, wonder what this is all about...and replied "Sure!"

She handed me a small scrap of paper (she reallllly likes to cut paper w/her scissors!)

Here 'tis:

She then asked me what it was and I gave her my answer.

She handed me a second little scrap and asked me what I thought it was:

I answered.

Then, the last scrap was handed over and again I was asked to tell her what I thought it was:

I answered.

I got 2 out of 3.

Your challenge, should you choose to come out of lurkdom and accept it - give your answers in the comments and one week from today, I'll let you know what the three pictures are!

Ready....go! Miss A and I are waiting!!! And, drumroll please, there's even a prize, should you choose to accept it....a couple of skeins of super soft fuzzy yarn that is mainly white w/pink, blue, other baby type colored specks in it that is WAY too fuzzy for me to crochet with and maintain my sanity at the same time. The skeins are virtually brand new - I tried to crochet a swatch with it, but a few stitches into it I decided it was NOT the yarn for least for me! So, if you choose to participate and enter your guesses, you'll be entered into a drawing for the yarn! You don't even have to get them all right! Fun! If you don't need yarn, etc. then you can choose to accept another prize - the prize of knowing you made the day of little Miss A who thinks it is very neat that Mama is blogging about her quiz! Have fun and tell your friends - the more the merrier!

Hear Ye! Hear Ye! Miss E lost her first tooth!

Well, it's high time I share this exciting news with y'all!

Miss E lost her first tooth! She noticed it was loose back on our trip to the Smokies, which I will blog about one of these days..years...eventually...anyway, and this past Saturday it came out....with a little help ;)

Here she is grinning away! Her "big girl" tooth was already well on its way in behind it before the baby tooth came out, too!

Another one of those "milestones" - sigh - she's growing up TOO fast!

Alphabetical List of 50 States WITHOUT capitals or abbreviations

Alphabetical list of 50 states WITHOUT capitals or abbreviations

Well, today I needed a list of the 50 states to print and post on the wall for the children, but could I find one quickly? No. Not one without the capitals or some other info. that I didn't want right now. I just wanted a simple listing that I could print out or cut/paste and print. So, I typed them out. And here they are for some other person to possibly stumble upon and print in the future. Maybe noone will, who knows, but if I ever need them again, they'll be here. :)

Maybe if I'd felt like conducting numerous google searches all morning I'd have eventually found one, but I don't have that kind of time so I took the listing of states WITH CAPITALS AND ABBREVIATIONS and deleted the info. I didn't need and now I have the simplified listing, which is all we need at this point.

50 States

New Hampshire
New Jersey
New Mexico
New York
North Carolina
North Dakota
Rhode Island
South Carolina
South Dakota
West Virginia

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Snow Day Part 2 and Homeschool Day at the Fort Worth Zoo

Snow Day 2 started off as Homeschool Day at the Fort Worth Zoo. We had pre-purchased our tickets with a small amount of trepidation as the form did state "No Refunds, No Exchanges, No Rainchecks". Hmm. So, we were prepared to go come rain, sleet, snow or hail. Little did we know that that was exactly what we were going to experience! All of it!

We headed out early hoping to get there around opening time and it sprinkled a little off and on as we traveled along...a little rain never hurt anyone, right? About halfway there it hit me that we forgot the stroller - ugh. Oh well, they rent them, don't they? And we did have the little umbrella stroller in the back - not much protection in it, but at least it was a stroller. We continued on....and on...and sure is aways to get there from our place. We finally arrive and it's sprinkling still - figures - everyone piles out of the van, mittens on, coats on, hats on, check check and check - off we go! We pick up our tickets and proceed directly to the first indoor exhibit - primates - after watching the monkeys jump around for a little bit, we head for the exit to see what else we can see. Halfway down the ramp we have to turn back as the zoo guy tells us he's closed off the ramp because it's getting too slippery - yes, you guessed it, the rain has turned into sleet! Fun! We go back through monkeydom and exit out the entrance. After walking awhile and not seeing ANY animals out ANYWHERE and no indoor exhibits or ways to see the animals from the indoor cages where they were obviously keeping dry and warm, unlike us, we stopped and got some lunch at Grandy's. There were a few other folks in there. We enjoyed a chicken lunch...not much else at Grandy's apparently...and watched as the sleet turned into a beautiful snowfall. Sooo pretty to watch and enjoy while we ate lunch. As we were preparing to leave, they had decided to shut down Grandy's and were starting to clean up. Hmmm. The zoo folk were walking by and scattering salt on the wooden walkways and ramps leading to the Grandy's. Hmm. We got bundled up again and headed out, hopeful we might see something for our efforts and $$ and were rewarded finally with a pair of Nubian Ibex perched up on a rock. No other animals were to be seen, however we did hear the lion roaring...but there was no way to see him.

We decided at this point to try to visit Texas Town since part of our whole reason for wanting a visit to the zoo had been a train ride for Mr. E's birthday, but the train was shut down, as was the carousel and everything else down that way. It was definitely time to go. As we trudged along toward the zoo entrance we were passed up by the Education Director who asked us a few questions and informed us that they would be sending out return tickets - wow - what great news considering the fact that we hadn't seen any animals, gotten to ride the train or enjoy the TX Town area as we usually did, but instead had spent entirely too much time walking around in the sleet, rain and snow. This was last Thursday. So far, no tickets. We'll see. According to Mr. Education Director guy, we didn't need to do anything to get the tickets sent to us. Time will tell, I suppose.

It probably took about 4-5 hours to get home - the farther we went, the more traffic and snow there was on the roads and still falling all around us. I imagine a lot of schools and businesses sent people home early that day. The day was a big waste of time in many respects, but on a positive note, we are *supposed* to get return tickets (too bad they can't fly us back so we don't have to drive all that way again :) ), and the Lord blessed us to be safe and not get in a wreck on the way there or back.

When we got home, we spent a little time in the front yard and built snowman #2, complete with Christmas tree limbs for arms - yes, that's right, from our Christmas tree - gotta get your tinder for fires somewhere! And real bona fide "...eyes made out of coal...."

Ok, here's snowman #2!
The snow was wetter this time and so the snowman had more shape this time and wasn't just a mound of snow on the ground ;)

This gives you an idea of the size of snowman #2 - taller than Mr. Baby this time!

And lest we ever forget this day, I now have a hat - I was the only one w/o a hood on my coat and/or a hat and since the rain had picked up and we didn't have an umbrella, we purchased a lovely Ft. Worth Zoo hat for me to wear - it would've been a miserable day without it considering the constancy of the rain/sleet and snow! Here's Miss E modeling the pink flamingo hat!

Monday, March 10, 2008

Part 2 of Snow Day 1

Snow Day 1? Yes, Snow day 1 because there was a SECOND DAY WITH SNOW IN THE SAME WEEK! Hard to believe!

Well, it happened, but that'll be a separate post.

For now, here are more pics from the snow from EARLY last week!

Here's the snowman:

and the front of the house.....

and the van...later we found out the starburst on the windshield became a lovely crack - sigh -

You can see how deep the snow is as Miss E gathers some up....I promise, she DOES have feet!

Look at that accumulation on the jungle gym dome thingie!

somehow I didn't find my hairbrush before we headed at that cute Mr. Baby!

Hmmm, what's he going to do with that snow.....and where are HIS feet?!?

Uh oh....Mr. E is winding up.......

Looks like Miss A got it right in the face - yikes!

Well, that ends part 2 of snow day 1! Stay tuned for the exciting adventure we had on Snow Day #2!

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Snow Day

Well, it finally March... It snowed! Yay! The girls have been praying for snow for awhile now and were thankful to finally see some night before last! The snow continued through the evening accumulating to about 3 inches or so at our house - hooray! As a home educator, it's hard to justify a total "snow day", but we did start our school day a little later so the children could get out and play in the snow before it all melted away. (Without proper snow gear, you don't last too long out there - about the time the snow melted through my tennis shoes, I was ready to call it a day!) We had a nice hot breakfast afterward and then commenced our regular routine with periodic snowman breaks to see if our little snowman was still in the back yard. A small pile of snow remained today - amazingly there was still some snow on the ground 24 hours after the initial snowfall - now that's something in our neck of the woods!

I know some folks in other parts of the country are probably a bit tired of snow and ready for Spring, like the folks over at Peakmore Academy, but for us, this was a big treat and now, I agree and am ready for Spring whenever it decides to arrive! (of course last night the weather report said snow again this Friday - we'll see - THAT would REALLY be something to have snow 2 times in one week!). I have to confess, I've never lived anywhere that snow fell and then stayed around for a long time, weeks, etc. and I would like to experience it at least once :) But, as long as we live in Texas, I don't see that happening!

Here are a few pics from early on - later I'll add some more from the day after when the children got to get out and play (the camera is in DH's work zone right now so I can't get the rest of the pics just yet!).

Here we have Mr. Baby and CKB - Mr. Baby is telling CKB all about the weird white stuff he sees falling on Daddy.

And here we have Mr. Baby and CKB showing me how the weird white stuff just sits on top of one's hair - Mr. Baby got a big boy haircut awhile back and his hair refuses to lie down on top producing a mischievous spikey appearance at the crown of his hair - perfect for fluffy snow to sit on don't you think?

Here you see the snow starting to accumulate a little on a piece of plywood that was lying by the fence...from a project last summer...we really should put that away....anyway, they all look to be having a lot of fun! Of COURSE this would be the day that all of Miss E's jeans were in the wash....ahem....oh well, it didn't deter her one bit!

The backyard decor shows some accumulation now as well...a good gauge throughout of how much was falling.... (Mom, THAT'S the jungle gym we got awhile back that I keep forgetting to send you pictures of :) )

Later in the evening as the snow is still falling, you can see we have quite a bit piling up!

Ah yes, the picture is blurry - just a little sidenote, FALLING SNOWFLAKES and AUTOFOCUS do NOT mix! :) Learned that it's best to change over to Manual Focus :)

Hmm, that is why this one is blurry too - sigh - but it's just a pic of the birdfeeder, so I'm not too concerned :)

And our sad little tree looks better w/snow on it than it does with leaves!

More to come when I get the other pics transferred onto the pc....stay tuned!