Friday, June 12, 2009

craft hope dolls

A few weeks ago we took a weekend trip to a friend's cabin with their family and my friend said she had a sewing project she planned to work on while we were there. It's this cool project for Craft Hope where they're sending handmade dolls to kids in an orphanage in Nicaraugua. A missionary is going to deliver them on her trip there. I hadn't touched my sewing machine in two months, so I wasn't sure whether I was 'in' or not, but nevertheless brought my machine, supplies and fabric scraps just in case. Our oldest kids (ages 7-10) were pretty interested in making the dolls, so we decided to at least get started. We didn't finish during our trip, but knew we had plenty of time before the deadline to complete and send off the dolls.

Well, the deadline is Saturday and my girls and I just finished the dolls and sent them off (Priority Mail, mind you) yesterday! Even though I helped with some of the assembly and I had to remind them to keep things simple (you wouldn't believe the embellishments they wanted to do!), they made the dolls all on their own and were very proud of their results.

Now they're ready to make more dolls, and this time I think I'll let them embellish however they want since we're not on such a short timeline. Of course we also have fabric waiting for the reading caddies they want to make for themselves ... we've also talked about making some skirts for the summer ... as well as more pj pants since their current matching pair seem to get smaller after every wash ... not to mention that Craft Hope will have a new project announcement on the 14th.

Not enough time!

Thursday, June 11, 2009


My oldest daughter's 4th grade class took me by surprise the other day. Last week was the end of school (yes, I'm a little late with this post), and like most of you, it's a scramble with teacher gifts, class parties, and deciding what to do with the massive amounts of projects that come home in that last week! Well, in the midst of the chaos, Pumpkin's class put together something pretty special for their volunteer Art Docent (aka: me).

They made watercolor pictures that incorporated their initials and tied it together to make a book. They also gave me pretty flowers and a few chocolate bars that are long gone. :)

I was totally blown away. Their such a thoughtful group of kids and they got so much pleasure out of watching someone receive something they had made. It truly was an honored moment for me.

The kids and I had fun working on gifts for their teachers, too! We decided to make reading caddies for their teachers. The girls made theirs completely on their own and I made the one for Worker's preschool teacher (unfortunately I forgot to take a photo!)

I also had fun making a tangy tomatillo salsa. Hubby was pretty excited that it hadn't all been given away!

Lastly, there were group gifts from the class to their teacher. I wasn't sure whether I would be able to pull all this together and was quite doubtful up to the last minute. Being the art docent for my daughters' classrooms, I have an opportunity to have the kids create something as a group that would be near impossible outside of school. Given that, I decided to make my final lessons of the year into something we could give to their teachers in appreciation.

For Sunshine's class, the kids made watercolor apples which I mounted on mat board and framed.

For Pumpkin's class, the kids watercolored small squares of paper with their names already on them and then, when dry, wrote something encouraging to their teacher. I decoupaged a small box and labeled it the Encouragement Box.

It was very fun doing all these projects, however, I discovered that all my normal downtime (you know, 5-10 min. sitting time, max!) was being taken up by these other activities. They were very fulfilling activities, but I definitely needed a break! And as my husband noted, what's going to happen next year? (I think I'm beginning to get a reputation at school - good or bad??)