Thursday, 31 May 2012

needle and thREAD

I'm finally organised enough to join in with Elizabeth and friends for a sewing update.  I completed my jersey wrap top at the weekend and I'm totally loving the fit and design:

The material is a heavy weight jersey in a random patchwork design and it was a real bargain from the sale rack.

It looks good with jeans and ...

... a skirt.

My second completed project is a fully lined bag in summery pink fabric:

A work in progress in the loft room.

The finished result.

The patterned material was from the sale rack and I have enough material left to make another bag, so great value all round.

With all the sewing and knitting projects on the go, I haven't had much time for reading, but I'm slowly working my way through this gem:

Buddhism for Mothers: A Calm Approach to Caring for Yourself and Your Children

I haven't abandoned my Catholic Christian faith but there are some very practical suggestions in the book regarding caring for oneself as a mother and trying to be mindful in the moments of everyday living.

Sunday, 27 May 2012

Sunshine :: Sewing :: Sleuthing

We've been making the most of the  much needed sunshine in these parts.  It has been good to cast off the winter woollies, eat outside, dry washing really quickly and be generally uplifted by the blue up above.

   Pip "helping" Dave in the workshop.

An impromptu den in the under stairs cupboard, courtesy of some blankets and the rotary airer.

Pip dancing to Planet Rock.

We visited our home ed friends from the north and helped celebrate A's third birthday.  S had made some yummy buffet food and the sun shone brightly so we had the birthday lunch outdoors:

There was sandcastle building at the front of the house:

S made a beautiful Waldorf doll for her birthday girl:

And we all cheered when a connection was made to A's dad via skype since work commitments prevented him from being at the party:

It really was a lovely day and Pip managed to stay awake for the journey home.

I've been busy in my sewing room in the rafters and in addition to making the top as modelled by Pip dancing to rock music, I've actually made something just for me!

The pattern is called "Summer Fling" by the Australian pattern people Make It Perfect.  I've used one of their patterns before when I made the Winter Dress for Pip and the instructions and pattern layout are a dream to work with.

Close up of sleeve binding which was a doddle to make and finishes off the garment nicely.

I have also finished a stretch wrap jersey top which I have yet to photograph.  I guess you could say I'm on a roll with the sewing, but in all honesty it was a case of needs must.  My summer wardrobe consisted of  two tops, two pairs of trousers and two skirts!!

  My next job is to cut out a flared skirt using some lovely red and ivory polka dot jersey stretch fabric.  Apart from the fabric required for the Summer Fling top all my other fabric was purchased in the remnant sale.  So the wrap top only cost £3.00 to make and the jersey skirt, £2.50.  I also bought some dark green corduroy for a winter skirt, a pale grey stripe for another summer skirt and some pink abstract design for a summer bag.

The sleuthing story was as a result of my friend S seeing me in a very bad state health wise.  In the space of one week I'd suffer three horrendous migraine attacks, the worst occurring on the day of her visit.  Within half an hour of her and the kids and arriving, I had to retreat to bed.  The worst part was not the actual pain but the awful constant nausea and vertigo.  S was a star she helped Dave dish up the lunch and then they all visited the maritime museum, so that the house was quiet and the kids occupied.

  Upon there arrival home I was feeling much improved, and through our chat together she wondered if I was suffering from a histamine intolerance.  So I googled around and recognised a lot of my symptoms including abdominal pain, heart palpitations and anxiety attacks.  I've been on the diet for over a week now and have not had any abdominal pain or migraines, hurrah!!  The only down side is that the diet is very limiting, but this should only be the case for four weeks, as I will then need to challenge my system with some of the offending foods.

If your interested to know just what I'm having to avoid then this site is pretty comprehensive:

We've also had another productive week in the learning zone.  Benedict has remained on task with his narration, copy work and illustrations, as well as maths, spelling and geology.  I too have been busy checking through our home ed report which needs to be submitted by the middle of June.

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Busy Doing Something

Sometimes I feel like we are wading through treacle when it comes to home schooling, it is often a case of one step forward and two back.  However  I'm learning to roll with it, to enjoy the successes, accept the failures and work with the grey in between, that's life isn't it?  So here's our take on life in the learning zone these past few days:

As a result of nagging from me, Benedict took a break from LEGO... for all of a day! *smile* and came up with his version of a spitfire.  You can guarantee a running commentary to accompany any of his creations and the stories woven into the design are quite interesting.

We've finally begun work on our lap book "Things We See In Church", this will run in conjunction with preparation for the sacrament of confession and first Holy Communion.  Lap books are great!  They are a totally fab way of achieving progress in short bursts.  Benedict hates any task that appears monumental and when faced with the insurmountable quite understandably looses heart.

A mini book focusing on the different candles found in church.

A big first, a burst of creative writing.  The last time Benedict felt inspired to write a story was last year!!  He wrote five sides of A4 in total and each page was decorated with tiny illustrations.  To complete the project he designed a front cover and then stapled the sheets together to form a book.  He was justifiably proud of his efforts and I restrained myself from proof reading or correcting any grammatical errors.

In addition to this morning's narration work, copy work and art, we found this really great maths game entitled "Beat The Clock."  Benedict sometimes struggles with hand and eye co-ordination for computer games, so I was in charge of pressing the stop clock!  The object of the game was to match the time on the clock with the written time listed underneath.  This is the first clock game that has been a huge success, so we'll be logging on to this site on a regular basis.

After lunch Dave and Benedict completed the extension work based on their recent study of rock formations, they quite literally had a smashing time!

After they had smashed, grouped and identified the rocks, they watched a you tube video of the eruption of pillow lava off the East Coast of Samoa.

The day finished with his weekly swimming lesson and this week he came home with a certificate and a badge, so big smiles all round!

Thursday, 10 May 2012

Classrooms who needs them?

Found this on the sew liberated blog and am posting the video here:

Grab a cup of your favourite brew and enjoy the film!

Monday, 7 May 2012

"If I Only Had A Brain..."

We visited here : Wray Scarecrow Festival on Friday with our home school friends from up North.  The over arching theme was the Queen's Diamond Jubilee and the  2012 Olympics, with the odd jibe at the government cuts, a nod to Charles Dickens and a link to the 400th anniversary of the Pendle Witches, including 40 years of Meg and Mog.

Here are some pictures from the day. All on my smart phone I hasten to add, no way was I going to lumber a DSLR with me AND be responsible for "Light Foot Lottie" AKA Miss PJ !

  "I think we are amused!"

The Queen's Jubilee Barge... HMS Recession!

A Long Jumper!!

Over The Garden Wall.

Fagin's Corner.


Fred Dibnah, photo for Dad!

Cute Scarecrow Family.

Meg and Mog

This last one was mine and Pip's favourite and there was also a chance to snap a shot of you wearing one of the witches' hats:

Little Miss PJ looking quite fetching with the black and grey hair extensions.

We had an ice-cream stop outside the Post Office and the sit down was most welcome.  There was silence in the car on the way home from the kiddoes... they were absolutely worn out, bliss!