Ryan completed his tote bag and has used it a bunch of times already.
He was very excited about it as you can see!
His favorite part, as he will tell you if he can remember the name, was sewing the gusset (the bottom corners of the tote bag that give it some depth. You can see it above... It appears as a straight-ish line across the bottom of the bag in the side view).
Jessica completed her tote bag (in her favorite colors) as well. Here she is hard at work.
I couldn't help post these two photos below too... from our visit to see the *incredible* ballet of Alice'sAdventures in Wonderland by the National Ballet of Canada. Thank you Kennedy Center for the great ticket special for the matinee! We had a great girls afternoon out!
Happy Tuesday! Tomorrow I'll have a photo of me in my finished Funked Out Peasant Top! Off to my kitchen to heat up a bowl of green soup ammended with some brown rice and chickpeas. On this cold winter day, this is just the kind of soul-soothing nourishment that I need!
Here are photos from Ryan's first few sewing lessons and the culmination of his first project: a cloth napkin to use at mealtimes. We started the lessons on Jessica's Janome sewing machine (her 5th birthday present) but it was acting wonky and after trying to fix it 2-3 times it was still acting up and I can't figure out why. We switched to my machine and he liked it MUCH better. The boy has great taste, what can I say?! Sewing on a Bernina is a dream.
He was so excited with his first sewing accomplishment that he brought it in to school to show his friends and teachers and to use at lunch. He even brought it to dinner when we went out to eat (!!). He started planning a tote bag last night!
If anyone can recommend any other beginner projects that would be good for boys please let me know. I've signed the kids up for beginner seeing classes that start in February but it's always good to have a few projects in my stash for days off and free time when the motivation strikes.
Jessi and I made these as zippered Duck tape clutch (with inside pocket),prototypes to see if this would be a good activity for her upcoming birthday party. She found this video tutorial for a duck tape clutch on YouTube and we already had all the supplies needed on hand at home so we gave it a try.
It didn't take too long to complete and we like how these came out but we decided not to do this at her party because Jessi was getting too frustrated with it (she's a bit of a perfectionist and once duck tape sticks... well, it's pretty stuck.). So she's thinking of other ideas (not necessarily craft related).
I never want a macro lens more than when I visit the U.S. Botanical Garden. There is so much beauty to enjoy here. The colors and textures are so vibrant.
Our intention for our Friday field trip was to go to the garden and paint. The kids and I packed up our watercolors, sketchbooks, pens, pencils, and snacks and headed out. Ironically we never even sat down, instead choosing to wander around taking in the sights and smells of all the incredible flowers, plants, and trees. I still have this stubborn cold that has lingered now for 3 weeks so I was crushed that I couldn't enjoy the amazing aroma of the orchid room. I love that smell! I miss that smell. I need to go back when this stupid virus runs its course. And I'll bring my paints and hopefully use them next time.
Ryan brought a pen and his summer journal and wrote a poem about the plants he saw and recorded a few species that he especially liked.
There is so much inspiration in this one place. I heart the U.S. Botanical Garden.
This week's Word of the Week (debris) has been interrupted due to some recently uncovered criminal events of my pre-teen daughter. Not to be alarmed... they are only a crime against our rules.
It was discovered that J had her phone with her in her room after being tucked in (she isn't allowed to have it except on weekends unless she has our permission) and was texting way past bedtime.... THE NIGHT BEFORE HER LAST standardized test at school. Grmpmhf!!
And so in it's place of the originally scheduled word, I present to you the new Word of the Week.
We're thinking of letting J find this about our discovery on her own (as she passes the new word up on the wall in our hallway). Her phone has been taken away at least until the end of school (and in my mind, indefinitely, or at least until further notice).
Thank you, Mike, for you continued humor and keen intellect!! We had so much fun laughing together about this incident and how we're handling it this afternoon!!
I just realized I'm a few days days late on changing our "word of the week" (something I started doing a couple of months ago to help bring new words into the kids' vocabularies to encourage them to be stronger readers and to enrich their writing). It's no secret that I adore words and am a voracious reader and my kids are no different. Ryan loves to read and is going through a Pokemon phase. Jessi has chosen to take a creative writing class during a summer program she's enrolled in that offered jewelry making and mixed-media art in the same time block.
I suppose I haven't changed last week's word because I am enamored with it and wanted to live with ILLUMINATE a bit longer.
I love its meaning.
I love its sound.
I love its richness.
Another sketchbook peek from a page that was started a few months ago. My drawings are on the left; Ryans are on the right. The kids both loved my waterbrush and watercolor set so much that we had to make a quick detour to Michael's when we were traveling in Novemeber to get them their own watercolor sketchbook so that we could all do it at the same time (because what was happening is that when I'd want to paint, the kids wanted to, I handed the sketchbook over to them, did a few tidying up things in our hotel room, and then I'd never get the sketchbook back. The pages were super thick and hard to just rip out and we didn't have scissors.) For the holidays each child received their own waterbrush and set of travel watercolor set. Now we're all happy to do watercolors together in our own sketchbooks (and it's really fun to pass our sketchbooks around to each other to draw in so we have each other's art in our own books).
We had been raising these guys (above) since they looked like these guys (below).
I highly recommend doing this! It has been one of the most incredible things to witness up close and be a part of! I was just as excited as the kids were (maybe more so) to see these little guys crawling about, weaving their silk, forming their "J" and then the chrysalis, and then transforming into butterfies. We were actually there at the exact time that one of our little babies emerged from the chrysalis. It was amazing!!
Four out of five of them have stretched their wings to fly away from our nest. We even think we saw one a the next day). One wasn't ready when the other ones were (we think this is the one that was born last, a full day and half after the others) so s/he's still with us a bit longer until its also ready to spread its wings and FLY.
Plan on more butterfly photos in future posts. Don't say you weren't warned.