Friday, June 28, 2013

Sweet Pea Tote

Made this tote using Simplicity pattern 2396.  

Whenever I sew a project, the most boring time consuming part has always been the pattern layout and cutting.  All I want to do is to get to the machine and sew!  I felt so lazy for pinning that I used carbon paper to trace the pattern...not sure if I could get the marks cleaned.  Yikes.  Fortunately, they are all inside the bag, so it's not really an eye sore. This tote was pretty easy to make.  Perhaps, I will make a few more with different fabric combinations.

 debut of the bag--small bag, yet big enough to carry my wallet, a water bottle, an umbrella, my make up bag and a jacket!

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Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Repurpose Glass Bottle Pump

Bath & Body Works' Aromatherapy carries my favorite body lotion--Lavender Vanilla.  I became an instant fan after trying this fragrance in the store years and years ago.  Through the ages, the packaging turned from the blue round bottle to the oblong shape.  Being the hoarder sentimentalist in the family, I keep them all.
I finally decided to peel off the stickers, clean the bottles with rubbing alcohol, apply a coat of glass paint over letter stencils and put them to use.  Dr. Bronner's Organic Pure Castile Liquid Soap Lavender was what I grabbed to make the hand soap with some lavender essential oil and water.  For the dish soap, Dawn dish detergent was diluted with 1/2 bottle of water.
The only thing I would do differently next time is to use a different font stencil instead of this fancy, yet hard to read one.  The kids keep on asking, "Mom, which one says 'hand'?"  Humm...
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Friday, June 21, 2013

JJ's New Math Skill--Carry Over Subtraction

Recently I got a set of wooden number rods (similar to the Montessori Number Rods, only in different colors and fit in a child's palm) at a sale for $1.  I write numbers on them to identify their lengths.  Then, I use them to introduce the concept of carry over subtraction to JJ.  Here's how:
  1. Set the minuend (the number that is to be subtracted from) using number rods.  In this case, 15--1 ten rod and 1 five rod.
  2. Since the subtrahend (the number that is to be subtracted) is greater than the one's place of the minuend, JJ needs to substitute the ten rod with 10 ones cubes. 
  3. Remove the ten rod.
  4. From the 10 ones cubes, subtract the subtrahend.  In this case, 6 ones cubes.
  5. Remove the cubes and get the difference.  Start by saying the name of the number rod (5), then add the remaining ones cubes to that number (6, 7, 8, 9).  Easy?  JJ thinks so, too.

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Friday, June 14, 2013

10,000 Pageviews!

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DIY Western Stamps

This year, the VBS theme is western.  That's why my mind has been preoccupied with country thoughts.  I have stopped by thrift stores often and found a couple of stuffed animals that I could use in the classroom.  Horses, a cow, and a snake (for the Moses' story).  The best one yes was a 2' toy horse for under $5!  But I still could not find any western stamps.

Went to the craft store and got some foam stickers in the shapes of boot, horse, horse she, cowboy hat, and cactus.  To turn them into stamps is the easiest thing.  Peel off backings and stick on a wooden block (or acrylic blocks).  I had JJ tested the stamps and found that three layers of the same foam shape for the stamps would get the best stamp image.  Easy peasy!
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Friday, June 7, 2013

I Love You More Than This

For a few weeks, JJ and I played the "I Love You More Than..." game right before her afternoon naps.  Then, one day, JJ asked when she'd get a special Me & Mommy journal (picture below) just like her sister's.

That's when an inspiration stroke.  I gave JJ a small 5x5 scrap book and some 3D stickers and asked her to decorate the cover (with my supervision, of course).  Then, we started taking turns writing and drawing on the pages.  Since JJ has learned many words and how to look up words in a dictionary, she has no problem expressing her thoughts.  We have had much fun doodling and reading what the other person writes on the pages.  JJ would read this book over and over during the day and ask if I like what she's done.
As I write "Dear JJ, I love you more than (this)" each time, I pray that she will grow her love for Jesus day by day.  So when He asks her, "JJ, do you love me more than these? (John 21:15)", she will gladly answer, "Of course, I do!" without hesitation.
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Monday, June 3, 2013

Party with JJ

After reading "Princess Posey and the Monster Stew", JJ made two party hats, one for herself, one for Jimmy, her dolly, following the instruction in the back of the book.  
So, what are you two celebrating? End of the school, perhaps?
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Saturday, June 1, 2013

JJ's Dance Costume

Right before school ends, it's probably the busiest time of the year.  Life seems to be jammed in the midst of finishing up assignments and tests, band concerts, class parties, and preparations for graduations.  Swim competitions are already in full swing since May.  Dance rehearsals for end of the year performances take up at least a full week.  And taking dance pictures is in the middle of all activities.
JJ's dance costume is not much different from last year.  Well, I remember the same puffy tutu, polka dots and the feathers...fine, this year is hot pink instead of sliver and black; but basically, same same lah.

Phew.  Glad the hour long dance photo is done.  Now everyone could smile.
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