stitching update

Jack has moved on from embroidery for the time being. I wanted to find a way to present his work and honor it.  I rearranged our entry wall so that we now have a place to hang our stitch work.


I started working on some quick stitch projects so that we could stitch together. I ordered some already stamped linens to work on. These are great for me because they don't require a lot of planning and I can literally pick them up and go.


So far, I have finished a fall bread cloth. It has this cute little pumpkin design in each corner. It turned out really cute and I can't wait to use it!



The other day Jack asked me to show him how to stitch.  I asked him what shape he wanted to stitch we drew it up and he got to work.


The next day he decided to make a stuffy for his best friend.  He designed it, cut it and stitched it himself.  It's a Minecraft block.



That evening he stitched a surprise for me:


And since then he has completed a few more:






These will be framed soon.  I love that he has found something he enjoys spending time on.   He told me it's quite meditative.  I know that it why I love doing it. I just need to actually finish a piece. My favorite part is hearing him say, "Mom want to sit and stitch with me?" 

magnetic slime

I recently saw this post on Frugal Fun For Boys on magnetic slime.  I knew this would be right up Jack's alley.


This was really easy and quick to make.




It was super messy, but tons of fun.  Jack played with it for days.  Ours was rather thick and we tried to make it thinner the next time around.  We didn't have a  lot of success making it thinner, but it was a great science exploration. 

For the recipe and directions be sure to check out the post on Frugal Fun for Boys.

the car

My husband recently bought and started a new project car.


It is a 1928 Pontiac. 








There is so much character in these old cars.  I've seen a restored car like this, but it just isn't the same.   Right now the plan is to steampunk the car.  All the kids and the neighbors are excited about this and ready to jump in to help.  We'll see how it comes along.

After one week it looks like this:


Of course our neighbor who is a expert at these things says all the hard work is done and now comes the fun part.  I hope he's right!

Colonial fair

This year quite a few families in our homeschool group were going to be studying the colonial times.  A new family joined the group happened to be involved in reenacting the colonial period and French Indian war.  We decided to try to bring a piece of that to the group with a colonial fair. 


Those who wanted to were encouraged to set up tables and teach everyone else how to make something from that time period.  Jack made dreamcatchers. I did leather stamping and Alex made soap.


There were quill pens and ink.




Herbs and salves. There were also: corn husk dolls, butter making, tea, and children's games.

Our friend was able to get another reenactor to come down and show us some of his collection of Colonial items.




First, we went around and everyone to a turn explaining their tables and what they prepared. We had our experts explain what they had brought with them. After that everyone was free to visit the tables and make something or collect samples. It worked out really well.

It was a really fun day. The kids and adults really enjoyed it.   We are looking forward to planning the next one.



One of our friends from our project group introduced us to the art of Suminagashi, or Japanese paper marbling. 


Our friends used ink from the craft store along with paintbrushes and a floating medium.  We wanted a bit more variety in color and a cheaper option, so we bought this kit from Amazon.


The kit we bought comes with littel circles of paper to use instead of floating medium. The circles are reusable.  It also has six colors of ink.




We are thinking of binding some of them into a book. The others I think we will use in our art projects. 

It's a fun way to explore colors and design.

Scenes from the weekend 1/5


We had to change the fish tank our due to a leak. It is now named the Desolation of Smaug.  :)



Still playing with the new camera. Maybe the yellow cast is coming from the walls.


Jack was up at around 5 am. Sigh. I didn't get to sleep last night until about 2. I am one tired mama today. My to do list quickly went from 20 things to the handful that absolutely couldn't be put off.


Game playing is becoming a habit. 


I keep coming back to the moon. This week I am working on a moon phase felt banner.


Finished crocheting a scarf.  I pictured it different than it turned out, but it will work.  And it is done. And that is what is important this time around. I finished my first crochet project. Now to finish the knitted one.  I have grand plans of working on projects and finishing at least one per week. Between crocheting, knitting, embroidery and other mediums I think it is doable. I need to get back to my creative practice.

Tomorrow we start back to school. All of us. It's been a fun few weeks, but I crave our regular routine.

December 1 2013...

...or the day I try to get back in the blogging spirit. Because December should be easy to blog about, right? Fun, exciting and special! Maybe I will even pick up my real camera one day. 

Did you have a good Thanksgiving? Ours was nice and relaxing. We changed things up this year and didn't cook a turkey. My hubby brought up the valid point that it wasn't a real favorite of anyone here. We cooked ribs instead. Still did the potatoes, rolls, cheese ball and all the other favorites. It turned out great. My oldest son made it for dinner and my father in law.  Here are some pics from the long weekend:


The hubby.


Love these star ornaments we found at Target.


Our little tree hugger.


Steve playing Perplexus, a new favorite around here.


There is always someone playing music around here.




We still have one rose.


I dyed my hair. It was supposed to be auburn. It's more of a rockin' reddish-purple.  Everyone loves it, except me. I need to get used to it I suppose.


I'm also working on custom orders for the shop. This is a key chain in progress. I am making 3 with the same saying for an adoptive mother and her two birth mothers.  They are all amazing.

Here is a link to the shop:
Abundant Soul

Use the coupon code grateful13 for 20% through Tuesday December 3.


Happy December 1st!


checking my list

Today was a good day! I actually had enough energy to get some things done. Either that or realizing that Christmas Eve is 3 weeks from today spurred me into action. Yikes!


We brought out the Christmas decorations and Jack decorated himself as well as the tree.  More pictures to come. 

I shipped the first orders out for my etsy store. Squeeee!

I started Christmas shopping.  I was able to finish shopping for our two secret Santa kids. And get most of ours done.

I started a few new cuffs. Alex came up with an awesome design for one that I will hopefully get done in a few days.

I did the laundry.

We did school! Yay for that. Especially on a day that we end up doing two unit tests.  Excited that today's history lesson was on Saint Nicholas, just in time for the holiday this week.

Found this while shopping. Love it!

It was a pretty good Monday all around.


where have I been?!?

It's been a while. Sorry about that.  I caught the bug going around and was down for a week or so.  I am still recovering, but getting better every day. We lost most of November, now we are struggling to get caught up to December. Here are some photos from the last little bit:

Jack with his Hero factory creation. What else do you do when confined to a room for 2 weeks?


The girls drug me out for some black Friday shopping. We made it about an hour and a half before I couldn't stand up anymore. Sigh.

After a month off, the boys are back to work on the bug. It got a paint job and is starting to get put back together.

The boy and his piggy.

Fiddling with some electronics.


Alex made Thanksgiving dinner for us, three days late. Everyone wanted to wait until I could eat with them.  She did it all. I was very impressed.

Jack did help grate the cheese for the cheeseball.


Last week we struggled to get back into our homeschooling routine.  We decided music can be good at certain times.


Jack made a sculpture of a Mario bomb from tissues, tape and permanent marker.  You can't really tell from the pic, but it was awesome.

And I opened an etsy store! Here is the link: 

So glad to be back here in this space and looking forward to posting more during my favorite season!




Where have we been?

We've been here. Yes, we have been busy.  We have been having fun. I haven't had the time, or made the time, for the blog.   So here I am a couple of weeks later trying to ease my way back into it.  Pictures do a good job of that, right? 

Water wars at park.

18th birthday party and silly string wars.  I didn't get near enough pictures for this.

Learning about Matisse.


The farm with friends.

The mountains with friends.



TEDed videos.

Creating art with nature.

Celebrating 8!



Birthday party.

Birthday cake.

Art class for me!

Which means lots of new jewelry.

It's been a very full two weeks!




Random things on a Monday:

  • I made Jack a slouchy beanie. It looks good. I am thinking I need to make more.
  • I started making a stunt dummy aka fencing target today
  • I also made a practice foil. We won't order real gear for Jack until the end of the month, but he can't wait that long!  Time to get creative.
  • I made the first batch of pumpkin muffins for fall. Yummy goodness.
  • I finally started to get some of our school papers put away into binders.  Jack is really enjoying his picture history narrations and I want to keep encouraging that.
  • Laundry done. Phew!
  • We watched The NeverEnding Story last night. It's been a long time. I think Goonies will be next.
  • Did I mention that the leaves are already starting to fall off of our Mulberry trees? Just a few every day, but fall is coming.
  • I helped Alex replace her iphone screen tonight. It's not all done, but we did finally get it apart.
  • Zac and I have been trying to get back to our nightly walk. Unfortunately we keep picking the night before the garbage is collected, which means it is a smelly walk. 
  • Rugby started.  Enough said.

And I am glad Monday is over.



Scenes from the weekend 8/20


Potatoes from the garden.

Waffle muffins for the freezer.


I spent most of Sunday in the kitchen trying to fill the freezer and use up some eggs.  We are getting lots of eggs every day.  I still have a couple of dozen waiting to be given away.   

The waffle muffins turned out well. I just made waffle batter and put them in a muffin tin to cook.  Zac misses the waffle texture, but they taste the same. Next time I might mix some syrup in the batter and see how that turns out.

The potatoes are the only thing we have been getting from the garden. At least it is something. I am hoping that now that it will be cooling down some and we don't have the piggies out there anymore that the garden will take off again.  One can hope, right? 


scenes from the weekend 8/5

This weekend we took the opportunity of everyone having the day off and headed to one of our favorite spots.




"It's the biggest wish flower I've ever seen!"










We had a fun day. Great to be up in the mountains again.

On the list for this week:

  • science notebook and art portfolio for homeschool
  • finish up menu plan and do shopping that is needed.
  • start stocking freezer- school starts next week, time to do some baking and stock the freezer for quick breakfasts and snacks.
  • natural cleaner class- email supply lists, finish trying out recipes, and clean my house (it's a never ending project)
  • finish any school shopping
  • would love to fit in one last trip tot he mountains or to our favorite pool.

What is on your list?

scenes from the weekend

These two boys went away camping for a few days.  They had a blast catching snakes and lizards. Zac even taught Jack how to use a rabbit stick. No rabbits were used in the demo.  

What else happened this weekend?  School shopping, work, movie watching, cooking, organizing, cleaning up after the cat- yuck apparently her food wasn't agreeing with her.

On the list for this week:

  • finish homeschool planning
  • finish our natural cleaner class info
  • make and test natural cleaning recipes
  • Clean my house!  Just kidding it is clean but I do have some clutter spots to deal with and the boys room.
  • school shopping
  • pay school fees
  • sign T up for the next ACT
  • work on all my other organizing projects.
  • work on my felt projects for Christmas

What is on your list?


a potter

Alex finished up taking her first pottery class this past week. She really enjoyed it and is looking forward to exploring pottery more.  Take a look at her finished pieces:

Love the glazing on this small mug.

This little pot is her favorite piece.

Love the glazing on this piece also.


This bowl reminds me of a stormy ocean. 


Looking forward to adding more pieces to our pottery collection!


scenes from the weekend

A snake at park day.

A worm bin completed.


The mason bee home I made last year is no longer vacant! We have bee larva!!! So excited about this.

The weekly batch of granola.

The latest felt project. Star magnets.

Not pictured: the birthday cake with family, the coffee, the late nights staying up waiting for teens to be home, the back to school shopping,  the chores.


On the list for this week:

  • homeschool planning full force- be ready for some posts on that.
  • our next class for the co-op is going to be a green cleaner day, I know it doesn't have much to do with gardening but there are some that are interested. So I am starting to gather resources for that and create a binder.
  • Another project I am getting ready to start is an herbal medicine kit for the coming winter. Time to  gather resources and organize them. 
  • School shopping as our schedule allows.
  • And that is all. Well you know what I mean, that and the other hundred things.

What is on your list?