Archive for May, 2007

Could you lend me a hand?

May 31, 2007

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My 17 year old nephew will travel this summer to China to work in three orphanages. I thought it would be special for him to have gifts to distribute to the children. I believe this simple gesture can bring joy to these little ones and share kindness and maybe offer hope.

I talked with Hope’s Heart, the organization he is going with and they said they could use 200 small security blankets. I was totally inspired by what Carol did for the orphans with Made for China. I am also amazed at all of the skirts Randi was able to collect for Sewing Seeds. This was all made possible by your generosity and big hearts. So, if you could spare just a little more time and fabric I would truly appreciate help making these blankets.

They need to be about 12″ X 12″ in size and made from something soft or silky to bring comfort to the children. Carol has a tutorial on how she made her Linus blankets.

I took two pieces of fabric 12 1/2″ X 12 1/2″ in size, one a flannel and one a ‘minky’ type fabric.

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With right sides together I sewed around the edge with a 1/4 inch seam leaving about a 3″ opening.

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Turn right side out and then top stitch around the edge—making sure to close the opening.

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These little blankets can be made as simply as the one above or could have a ruffle, small tags sticking out from the edges to provide tactile stimulation or bound with bias tape or satin blanket binding. These blankets can be made from scraps sewn together.

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I was lucky enough to have my friend’s daughter help me sew blankets today. She made the darling patchwork one above and helped with the others. She is so very sweet and talented!

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If you are able to help with this project please leave a comment and I will send you the mailing address and more details. Please consider mentioning this project to your friends or even linking to this post on your blog. Blankets will need to be mailed by the end of June.

THANK YOU!

By the way if you check out the website for Hope’s Heart you will see that there are many things we can do. Lillie is my niece (sister of my nephew that is going this summer).

For Catherine

May 24, 2007

My dearest and oldest friend left today for Cleveland, where her mother will be having open heart surgery tomorrow. I wish I was there with her to keep her company. I pray for a successful surgery and safe return home for their entire family. I could never be able explain how much I care for Catherine. We have been friends since the third grade and somehow my emotions are tied to hers. When things are really wrong I can tell, no matter how many thousands of miles have separated us. So today as I know she is in a strange place and filled with worry, I am so blue. I am wishing this was all behind her and we were laughing and having a popcorn combo at Target.

To keep her mind busy while waiting at the hospital I made her a little care package. She would like to learn to crochet so I set her up with books, needles, yarn and instructions (and in-case it is just too frustrating—magazines, snacks, notebook, some Irish Cream for her coffee and some Tylenol!). I used my crayon roll tutorial to make a holder for her crochet hooks. I sewed 1″ and 1/2″ pockets for the hooks. I added a little pocket on the bottom corner for yarn needles.

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She can keep everything in this tote. I found Colorfool’s Tutorial (for making the handles and tote) and Super Eggplant”s Tutorial (for the construction of the tote) very helpful. It is totally reversible.

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So Cat, I hope it brings you comfort knowing that you are in my thoughts and prayers. I thank you so much for all you do for me, especially the joy you bring to my life. I am thankful for your extreme generosity and kindness. I admire you as a person and a mom! I love your desire to grow and evolve! My parents always said be careful who you hang out with because you become them —– I am glad that since the third grade I have hung out with you. You are truly wonderful! See you soon!

View from my bed

May 13, 2007

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Happy Mother’s Day to you blog loving moms and daughters! You make this world brighter and more beautiful by the things you create, the goodness you make, and the love and kindness you share!  Have a wonderful day!

Thankful beyond words!

May 11, 2007

Our final gift for Teacher Appreciation Week

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I want my blog to be a fun, creative and beautiful place. I need this little spot here in blog world. Sometimes it is a counter balance to a stress filled life. Our oldest son is on the Autistic Spectrum and often our days are long and trying. Our hearts and minds have been opened, stretched and blessed by our son. We have been challenged in what seems to be beyond our limits most days, but yet somehow (truly the grace of God and support from friends, family and our schools) despite all of our parenting inadequacies this child is confident and believes he has something to offer to all of us. He can finally see value in his disability. We could have never done this alone!
I put this all out there for you to in some way give words to the deep appreciation we feel for our son’s amazing and supportive teachers and school staff. Last year was unimaginable—difficult beyond words. This year because of a phenomenal special ed teacher, an awesome autism consultant (and her special para professional) and our son’s extremely capable and caring para professional— our son has bloomed.

Let’s do lunch

May 10, 2007

My friends and I got together to make sack lunches for our children’s teachers today. We decided how many lunches and what each of us would bring ahead of time. We then gathered in the morning to assemble them. Each lunch goes into this bag.

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Take a colored lunch sack and place a napkin folded in half over the top edge of the sack. Place two hole punches in the top center and then feed 18 inches of ribbon through the holes. Tie on a fork and then add any embellishment. I used a little flower that had an existing sticky dot on the back. Make sure it is easy for them to retrieve their fork. Fill the sack with a yummy lunch and stick the plate in the top. Our lunch included a chicken salad sandwich, pasta salad, fruit and double chocolate chip cookies.

Very Fortunate Wednesday

May 9, 2007

These plastic flowered Chinese containers (from a dollar store) are filled with fortune cookies (found at a grocery store). I slit the center of the flower on the top and bottom and fed the ribbon through like a belt buckle.

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A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops.  ~Henry Adams

Thanks a latte!

May 9, 2007

For Tuesday’s teacher appreciation treat I filled take out coffee cups with a gift card from our local coffee shop. You can download for free the font I used on the tag from Fontologie.

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If only I had enough time I would have made this cute crochet coffee cozy for the cup.

The hardest arithmetic to master is that which enables us to count our blessings. ~Eric Hoffer

Out of this world!

May 9, 2007

Monday was out of this world but not in a good way.  We had too much rain! Teachers  were to receive a Milky Way candy bar telling them they were out of this world, but school was canceled due to flooding (YIKES).  The water is normally only on the other side of those trees.

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For the teacher appreciation treats I  printed the words on card stock then lightly scored the paper to fold nicely around the Milky Way candy bar.  I wrapped  a ribbon around the sides and finished off with a cute mini clothes pin clip.

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Teacher Appreciation Week

May 6, 2007

This week is national Teacher Appreciation Week. Both my sons have great teachers and I love this opportunity to thank them. My oldest son has a team of teachers that help him through the day. There are four in particular that I wanted to thank each day with a small something. Here are some ideas I am thinking about:

  • You are out of this world” tag attached to a Milky Way or Mars candy bar
  • You deserve an extra payday!” tag attached to a Payday candy bar
  • There is no ‘sub’stitute for you!” tag attached to a gift card for the local sub shop
  • You are ‘extra’ special” tag with a pack of Extra Gum
  • Thanks for helping Blake ‘bloom’” tag with a bouquet of flowers
  • We appreciate the ‘mounds’ of work you do!” tag attached to a Mounds candy bar
  • Thanks for giving Blake a hand” tag with hand lotion
  • Thanks a ‘latte’!” tag with a gift card from local coffee shop, special coffees or travel mug
  • You are ‘souper’! – soup mix, custom decorated soup bowls or homemade soup
  • Thanks for holding everything together” tag with fun paper clips
  • Just a note to say you are specialcustom made note pads , purchased notepads or post it notes
  • You are a ‘treasure’ tag with Treasures candy
  • You really measure up” tag with a cool ruler, yardstick or measuring tape
  • You are ‘sum’body special” tag with a calculator or math game for the class
  • You are the apple of our eye” with a basket of apples (construction paper leaves with nice sayings—A+ teacher, you’re special etc. can be hot glued to the stems)
  • You are ‘tea’rrific!” tag with a selection of teas
  • You deserve a ‘break’ today! Thanks for your hard work” tag with a Fast-Break candy bar or McDonald’s gift certificates
  • You are a smart cookie” tag with homemade cookies
  • Thanks for a ‘picture’ perfect year” tag with movie coupons or nice picture frame
  • Thanks for making our school year bright” tag with a package of highlighters
  • Thanks for helping Blake grow” tag with flower seeds
  • You are o’fish’ally the best!” tag attached to Goldfish Crackers
  • Thanks for lighting the way” or “You light up our world” with a flashlight or nice candle
  • We are your biggest ‘fan’!”with a cute desk fan, hand held fan or paper fan.
  • Thanks for the ‘time’ you spend with Blake” tag on a cute clock, fun watch or pretty appointment book
  • We are fortunate to have you!” tag with a Chinese take out box filled with fortune cookies
  • You have been a ‘bright’ spot in our year!” tag with a package of highlighters
  • You are a joy!” tag attached to an Almond Joy candy bar
  • Thanks for giving Blake a hand!” tag attached to work or garden gloves filled with candy
  • You have been just ‘write’ for Blake!” package of nice pencils or pens in a case or container
  • You rock!” tag with pop rocks, rock candy, Rock Star soft drink or painted rock for a paperweight
  • You have been ‘key’ to Blake’s success!” tag attached to a key ring, maybe a pretty handmade beaded one
  • We are ‘nuts’ about you!” tag attached to some nuts
  • You ‘float’ above the rest” tag attached to a balloon or a fun pool float for the summer
  • You are worth more than a 100 grand to Blake!” tag attached to a 100 Grand candy bar
  • You ‘mint’ so much to us this year” tag attached to some mints
  • You were ‘mint’ to be a teacher!” tag attached to some mints
  • “Here is a ‘pat’ on the back for doing such a great job!” tag attached to a gift certificate for a massage
  • You are an ‘amazing’ teacher” tag attached to an Amazing candy bar

Do you have any ideas that you have used to thank your children’s teachers? I would love to hear about them!

 

We often take for granted the very things that most deserve our gratitude.

~Cynthia Ozick

Happy May Day!

May 1, 2007

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My favorite holiday is May Day. I love the sweet unexpectedness of goodies. Usually May Day is a very elaborate affair around here. This year we have too many projects with our house and too much going on to give May Day it’s usual attention. To make matters worse Kansas experienced a very late frost and most of the flowers are gone. So we borrowed a fabulous idea from our friend Jenni.

We used plain brown drink holders from McDonald’s.

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A little paint.

These could also be decorated with rubber stamps, stickers, crayons, markers, collage items, etc……….

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We filled them with  garden flowers,  candy hot glued to floral picks and a tag.

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We are ready to “ding” and “dash”—– My boys favorite part!