Saturday, December 29, 2012

American Girl Doll Room - Part 1

I am so excited to share with you my first video tutorial. In this one I am highlighting the techniques I used to create the walls. I want to share with you a few additional tips that are not included on the video. 

After I painted the walls, I applied inexpensive trim molding that I painted white. This created a much more realistic look to the room that you can't get from just painting it on. I used Gorilla Glue. Be careful with this as it does seep out as it expands as it is drying. You can't beat the hold it has however. 

You'll also notice that I used hinges on the boards to hold them together. This is such a nice feature for several reasons. First, it allows you to fold the boards shut for storage. Secondly it is a very sturdy way to hold the boards. I had seen someone who made this type of project using duct tape. My goal with this project was to have something that would last. Finally, it allows the girls to adjust the size of their rooms. 

I hope you enjoy this first video and I am looking forward to bringing you more later this week. 

Monday, December 24, 2012

American Girl Rooms

This Christmas I wanted to give my 9 & 12 year old daughters scenes for their AG dolls. So I built and designed two bedrooms, one is cottage style and the other is a Paris themed room. Over the next week or so I'll be uploading video's that explain exactly how each piece was made, but for now enjoy pictures of the rooms.

Friday, December 14, 2012

This week we read a new (to me) book that is now in my top two favorite books of all time. It is The Little Fir Tree by Margaret Wise Brown. The other day, I cuddled my three little ones around me while I opened the pages to read. Throughout the story there are songs with the music that go with the story. Since my oldest is a pianist, I had her play the pieces as we sang them when came to each. It was magical I tell ya! It felt like that moment in A Charlie Brown Christmas when they are all singing, holding hands around the Christmas Tree. I instantly knew I was in love!

So what is YOUR favorite Christmas picture book?

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Menu Plan December

Please note that the items in red should be made ahead of time. Click on links for recipes. For a printable version, click here. Menu

I love Snowmen!

New listing in my etsy shop!  This is a fun group game for all ages!!!

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Memoria Press Lessons

This week for 1st grade includes...

Music - O Tannenbaum

Poetry - Winter by Christina Rossetti

Bread And Milk For Breakfast

 Bread and milk for breakfast, 
And woollen frocks to wear, 
And a crumb for robin redbreast 
On the cold days of the year.

Picture Study - The Annunciation by Sandro Botticelli

Art - Salt Dough Ornaments

Salt Dough Directions

Reading Lists

I am determined to get my younger daughters reading levels up this year so that by next school year I can give a bit more independent work during our homeschool time. I am on the search for good books for them to read and came across this post listing books to read from grades 1-8. So that I don't lose this resource and so that I can share it with you, I am posting it here on my blog. Enjoy!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Crafting with FELT for Christmas

Sorry about the bad photos! I took the pictures in a very dark room and they didn't turn out as good as usual and since I already gave a bunch of these away, I couldn't retake the photos.

Birdie Keychain by Allison (age 18)

Felt Candy Cane Mice for my kids in co-op

Camera Key Chain by Michelle aka me

Oreo Cookie Keychain by Allison (age 18)

Penguin Softie by Meghan (age 12)

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Gearing up for a 30 day shred...

In January, I am going to be doing 30 days straight of diet & exercise. So, in anticipation of that, I am preparing by doing a few different workouts a week. Here are my videos for this week.

Would you like to join me? Stay tuned!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

An Old Christmas Greeting - Memoria Press Kindergarten Poetry Week 14

Christmas Greeting

Sing hey! Sing hey! 
For Christmas Day; 
Twine mistletoe and holly, 
For friendship glows 
In winter snows, 
And so let's all be jolly.

Winter - Memoria Press Poetry Week 12

Bread And Milk For Breakfast

                                                       Bread and milk for breakfast, 

And woollen frocks to wear, 
And a crumb for robin redbreast 
On the cold days of the year.

An Old Rat's Tale - Memoria Press Week 11


He was a rat, and she was a rat,
And down in one hole they did dwell.
And each was as black as your Sunday hat,
And they loved one another well.

He had a tail, and she had a tail,
Both long and curling and fine.
And each said, "My love's tail is the finest tail
In the world, excepting mine!"

He smelt the cheese, and she smelt the cheese,
And they both pronounced it good;
And both remarked it would greatly add
To the charm of their daily food.

So he ventured out and she ventured out;
And I saw them go with pain.
But what them befell I never can tell,
For they never came back again.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Thanksgiving Play

Would you like to have a Thanksgiving Play for your homeschool group or family to perform? Here is one I put together for my own homeschool co-op. For families with just a few children, combine multiple characters into one character. For instance, Pilgrim 1-2-3 could be read by just one child. You shouldn't need to modify the lines at all to do this.

You can read it as a readers theater, or put together some props and scenery for a more elaborate play. If you use it, please leave me a comment telling me all about it!

Looking for something fun and creative to give to your children this Christmas? Check out my etsy shop for handmade capes. Click the picture to take you there.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Would you consider Following my blog?

I am excited to see a lot more traffic here at my blog which encourages me to post more often. As of right now, I have 10 followers and I would like to see that number grow. If you have been enjoying visiting my blog, would you consider becoming a follower? I promise to keep adding and updating my blog if you give me the support of letting me know your out there.

Also, I have a lot of interests

  • homeschooling (all ages)
  • sewing
  • crafting
  • frugalness
  • cooking / baking
  • home management
  • art
  • movie making
  • history
  • drama
  • more...
I would love comments to let me know what you would be interested in future posts on. Either ask me some questions or let me know topics you would like to see. 

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Halloween 2012

Gypsy (and our friend the Nerd)

Skirt: Personal Collection
Black Shawl: Thrifted
Colorful Scarf: Goodwill
Velvet Jacket: Goodwill
Shirt: Personal Collection
Necklace: Personal Collection

Total Halloween 2012 Cost: $4.50
We have always been super into costumes / drama / history in my house so it is no surprise that Halloween is a fun time for us. I want to share some of this years costumes, mostly from our dress up box and tell you how we made them.

This is all of us

My oldest and my youngest

Princess Leia:
Dress: Personal Collection / Thrift Store Find 1980's style dress
Shirt: Since the dress was short sleeve, we added a white turtleneck
Belt: Oldest daughters closet
White Leggins: Mom's longjohns
Cape: I sewed the kids a bunch of these a few years ago using a pattern I created. This is one of them.
Light Saber: Son's toy
Gun: Daughters Water Gun

Total Halloween 2012 Cost $8.00 for the White Turtle neck from Target
Red Riding Hood

Dress: Amish Dress bought at a thrift store in Amish Country few years ago.
White Shirt: Daughters
White Apron: Handmade a few years ago for dress up.
Cape: Another one I made.
Basket: I think my Grandma gave this to me or I bought it at a garage sale.

Total Halloween 2012 Cost $0
Super Girl

Shirt: Daughter's T-shirt
Skirt: Goodwill Halloween 2011, Tennis skirt (she was  a cheerleader last year)
Tights: Target
Boots: Mine
Cape: Sewed it that day.

Total Halloween 2012 Cost: $10 for tights and fabric for the cape.


Hat, Sword, Hook & Eye Patch: Dollar Tree
Shirt: Dress up box (girls shirt)
Vest: Goodwill, Ladies Section
Pants: Goodwill, Boys Section
Scarves: Goodwill
Belt: Goodwill Costume
Boots: Winter Wear

Total Halloween 2012 Cost: $9

I am most proud of this costume because I think it turned out amazing and I just pieced it together that day. Here are some more shots of my son in his pirate outfit. 

Just Bitten
(I couldn't think what to be so I chose to be bitten by a Vampire.
I got a $2 Chipotle Burrito for dressing up, plus it was fun!)

Dress: Garage Sale Find
Cape: I made this for all my historical reenacting projects. It is real wool. The pattern is by Folkwear.
Necklaces: Personal Collection

Total Halloween 2012 Cost: $0 

Moral of the story... 

Keep a really great costume box and add to it all year long from Garage Sales, Thrift Stores, Sewing Projects and gifts from friends. 

Saturday, October 27, 2012

I want a new dress...

I have been on a diet for two weeks and I am very proud of myself for having lost 4 lbs already. It has been a combination of diet, running and strength training. My goal is to lose around 20-25 lbs. I would love to get myself something like these. Maybe I'll make one!
Shine and Dine Dress - Modcloth 

West Coast Spring - Shabby Apple

Pick of the Licorice Dress - Modcloth 

Which one would you choose?

Friday, October 19, 2012

Calling all who love art!

We joined a homeschool co-op this year for the first time in years. We have to drive 30 minutes to get to it and it is an all day thing. The reason I chose this co-op is because it offers classes for all of my kids from 1st grade all the way up to high school. I am teaching two of the classes (history and art for the 4th-6th grades) and while I don't feel I have reached my full potential with the history class, I think art is going well. Of course I did study art in school and have taught art for the last 3 years in a group setting so I would hope I have that class down.

Speaking of art... I would like to announce that in just a few short weeks time I will be releasing the 1st of my art at home DVD's. I am looking for a few families to try it out and let me know what they think. Once it is available for sale, it will be a monthly art program geared towards elementary age students. It will however include a few "bonus" lessons for the younger and the older (jr. high/high school age) crowds.

If you would be interested in being one of my testers for this program, please leave a comment below to let me know. Also let me know the ages of your kids that will be using the program. I would like to have all ages participating.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Kids Winter Wear For Sale

I have the following items available for sale. Contact me at if you are interested:

Boys Size 4/S Coat - Name Brand / Protection System
This coat is in good condition although there are a few small spatters of white paint in a few places, (on the front right, a couple on the sleeves. It is barely noticeable.

Size XXS/4 Snow Pants Name Brand LL Bean
These pants are in excellent condition minus one small hole on the leg. It is in no danger of continued ripping. These pants are really special as they open from the ankle all the way up to the waist on both legs. You can see it partially opened in the picture below. 

Girls Size 6X/Large Coat - Name Brand Rothschild
This coat is in good condition with a bit of discoloration on the sleeves from wear. It is hard to see. The coat has a lot of wear left in it.

Boys or Girls Size 4/S Green Coat - Name Brand Lands End
This coat is in like new condition. No marks of any kind. It was worn only a handful of times. Inside pockets, fleece lining etc...