Tuesday, August 31, 2010

At the moment...

Green felt scraps

I thought I better get back to the Crisis and type something so you all know I am still here! And because I like posts with photos better than without - here is a random photo of felt scraps :-)

Seems like there is just not enough hours in the day. Or maybe too many. There has been ear aches and coughs and colds and a tired mummy trying to get back to routine here. I am actually starting to feel much better. Finally. The kids are worn out and ready for their September school holidays. Tim is getting sick now so I hope he can fight the rotten virus off better than I did.

I have been mid-crafting a lot while I have been under the weather and I am completely behind in photo taking and photo uploading, not that there are too many completed projects. I will try to get that done this week.  In the meantime, the felt scraps in the above photo are for some kind of hoop wall hanging that I am working on (Mid-Craft style) and as usual the original idea has changed since I first started it. It will be some kind of leaf and flower thing.

There has been a lot of planning and talking about our road trip that is happening next month. Tim has 3 weeks off work and for one of those weeks we are driving to and staying in our nation's capital, Canberra. A 5 or 6 hour trip. Madness, that's what that is! I can't wait but it is still a scary prospect. I have been putting together little travel packs for the girls to have in the back seat to keep them entertained. (Another photo waiting to be taken.)

It is also Amelia's 3rd birthday in a couple of weeks which I am afraid is being overshadowed by our holiday. I haven't made any presents for her at this stage and so I will just have to save up the other things for Christmas. I am very inspired by this bug birthday party on Prudent Baby and would like to have a go at a couple of things on there. Especially the buggie headbands and the tissue flower garland.

That's the latest here. What news with you?

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Hobby horse

When Amelia and I were out shopping last week we had to buy a roll of wrapping paper. Amelia insisted upon carrying it. Well, it was more like riding it. For some reason, when she sees a long roll of paper she sees a horse at the moment. As soon as we got home, I asked if she wanted to make a horse. She was very excited to make her own horsey.

I found a long cardboard roll in the cupboard that I'd been saving up from a fabric bolt. Then we got onto Google and looked up "horse head template". We found a hobby horse craft with a printable horse head which was perfect for ours.

Amelia and her hobby horse

I had to enlarge the copy that we made because it was too small for our horse. I traced the head onto two pieces of scrap photo mat board (my favourite craft material!) and cut it out. We cut some brown yarn and glued it in between the two cut outs with white PVA glue. We found a googly eye and glued that on and then I cut a slit in the top of the cardboard roll and we slotted the head into it. More glue. And then one happy little girl.

Amelia rode the horsey around and around the house and when her big sisters got home from school, they wanted to make one too. Instead, they ended up colouring in the one we made. Ellamay made a bed for it so it could have a sleep. It looked kind of creepy lying on the pillow like that :-) They thought it was wonderful though.

Horsey Sleepin'

Saturday, August 21, 2010


This week I had a good mail day. Good mail days are pretty rare because I don't buy online much... but this week 3 purchases all showed up on the same day.

Ebay binoculars for the kids

Binoculars for the kids when we go on our road trip next month (more about that some time). These were eBay purchases. I thought they could be explorers with them :-).

New book

This book is from the Book Depository (they have free postage worldwide!). I have read the introduction and feel inspired to be a fabulous photographer now. Obviously, I need to keep reading so I can find out how to take photos of books without glare and fuzz (which is called 'noise' apparently).

Funny flip flap flower

And this. This is the silliest thing I have bought off eBay. I love it. It's called a Flip Flap and it is a solar powered flower. When it is in bright light it waves backwards and forwards. I find it very entertaining to watch. I put it on the window ledge so I can look at it while I wash the dishes. It makes me happy. I am funny like that. And this little piece of happiness only cost me $3. Got to love that.
We have to vote in the federal election today, aside from that, I don't think we have plans so hopefully it will be a quiet weekend. Tim has been super busy in the last few weeks so it will be nice to have him around. Hope you have a lovely weekend too.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Home made note books

Today I have Ellamay home from school. Poor darling has an ear ache. Ear aches are such horrible things. So later we will be off to the doctors again. We were up last night for most of the night. We even watched a little bit of a Barbie movie to try to take Ellamay's mind off it. She must be bad because it didn't work.

I don't know what it is like for the rest of the world but when we go somewhere like the doctors, the kids get bored really quickly. Last year, we were at the doctors a lot with the kids and it would drive me crazy the mischief they would find.

I had seen around the Internet about making note books out of cereal boxes and recycling cardboard and paper into little books (sorry, no links). So I tried it. I made some with new card and recycled some old stuff too. They are a fantastic thing to have a stack of so they can get pulled out whenever you need them. Like doctors visits.

Pile of new books

We finished last year's supply a long time ago so I decided I better make some more. We are planning a road trip in the next couple of months and I wanted to have some to take with us. Plus, these books are great to have when the kids friends come over to share around or maybe for a special story writing effort.

Books waiting for tails to be tied

I have a handy, dandy rotary paper trimmer which I use to cut the card and paper for these. I love it. I use to use a blade, steel ruler and cutting mat. That was hard work when there is a big stack to cut! After they are folded, I stamp them with some of my stamp collection and then I sew them with the sewing machine. I only put 4 or maybe 5 sheets of paper in them so they go through the sewing machine fine. That many pages is perfect for my kids. They love getting new note books but don't always like finishing all the pages. I finish the books off by tying and trimming the cotton. I have made them without tying the ends. I just like them this way. :-)

Stack of books

My new stock pile. They should keep us going for a while. Now, I better go and grab some pencils, stickers and a few new books so I am ready to go.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

The new cardboard box kitchen

Do you remember a while back (it was May) I had a mid-craft list of things I was working on? One of the list was making a new cardboard box kitchen for the kids to play with. I finally finished it in the last month and I am finally sharing the photos. I bought boxes for this like I did the Barbie box house. Makes life much easier if they are all the same size.

The sink is the cake tin reused from the original kitchen I made last year. The tap spout is a cardboard roll (from baking paper) that I cut and hot glued into shape. Then covered with silver contact. I bought some cheap self adhesive hooks for the taps and they can turn from side to side.

The shelves are made from foam core board that I bought on sale from the local art and craft shop. I also used it for strengthening the doors and as shelf supports. The oven door has clear vinyl table cloth for the window. And the handle for the oven and the cupboard are made from a plastic coat hanger.

The stove top has knobs made from the tops of toothpick jars, so they actually turn. I bought a pack of 4 jars for $2. (Now I have to think of something to do with all those toothpicks!). I used some coloured paper for the burners cut in circles and then covered over it with clear contact.

It even has a range hood with buttons (silver stickers). The silver contact and the spotty contact I bought from Target where they were clearing it for .56 cents a roll which I thought was a great price til I was there last week and saw them clearing it for .03 cents a roll! The contact for the cupboard I bought at the Reject Shop for $2 a roll. I got the idea of using contact after seeing this great post at Childhood 101 about a box kitchen. Check that one out too.

Amelia has been having a great time cooking up a storm. It will be interesting to see if it lasts as well as the last kitchen did. I really need to make some more felt food for it though I think. I will add it to my ever increasing list.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Project 52 - Who's counting anyway?

We aren't counting that's for sure! We have not had much in the way of dates over the last... probably almost 2 months. I have been sick. The kids have been sick. The winter is really taking it out of me. We have managed to sit slumped on the couch together here and there. Brought each other a cup of tea. Random nice moments.

After a yummy Sunday roast at my parents place, we left the kids with Mum and Dad for an hour. We needed to go to the local shopping centre for a few things. While we were there we stopped to share a thickshake. This is a choc mint thickshake from Wendy's. Tim's weakness. I will admit... mine too now.

Choc mint shake date :-)

It was nice to sit and not have kids wanting our attention. We talked and did some people watching. And then about 15 minutes later...

End of shake date :-(

It was finished and we went back to get the kids.

Check out Simply Modern Mom for more Project 52 dates.

Bubbly Volcanoes

Amelia has a cough again. Back to pink medicine (antibiotics) and trying to get her doing more physio. The newest physio method we are trying to introduce is blowing bubbles. We have tried on and off for the last 12 months but she hasn't been interested. Tim tried it with her about a month ago and we called it Bubbly Volcanoes and suddenly it's fun. We are not calling it physio either which I think is helping.

We fill a 2 litre bottle almost half full of water, add dish drops and then put the tubing down into the bottom of the bottle. Then she blows bubbles. We tell her to make the bubbles come out like a volcano.

It is excellent for improving her lung function and helps her cough (which is a good thing - to help move the troublesome mucus).

Physio is an important part of treatment for Cystic Fibrosis. We try to encourage Amelia to be as active as possible. Running in our house is not banned. Tickle torture is a regular game. Jumping on beds happens often and the dancing and prancing around - that is inevitable in house full of little girls. One day soon, (maybe around Christmas time), we will get a trampoline. That will be fabulous physio!

The physio method we have used since Amelia's diagnosis at 5 weeks is called percussion's. We make a cup shape of our hand and firmly pat on Amelia's chest, sides and back as she is lying down. This takes 20 minutes. It helps loosen and move mucus, which is the most important thing. We have done this almost everyday (sometimes twice a day) since she was 5 weeks old.

The bubbly volcanoes will eventually replace this method. This will be much better for everyone. She will have to blow bubbles for 10-15 minutes at a time. That is some serious lung function!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Tree Stitch

Trunk Stitch

New stitching project in the works. The photo has turned out nice and big. Must be the new Flickr set up... I couldn't make it work before. Anyway, it's a tree. When I started it, I was making it very basic and just an outline of the tree with our family's names on it. It looked too plain when I had done that. So here is a peak at what I am up to. I should probably research some embroidery stitches so it looks like I know what I am doing. I am making it up as I go along. There are so many stitches still to be done... I don't know when it will ever be finished. And yet I am still dreaming up more stitching projects to make. Good way to distract me from still feeling lousy.

In other news, I have a few posts that I am in the middle of (how surprising!), so I hope to get them finished and up this week. Just to show I am still alive. The Crisis has been a bit neglected lately. I am working on it...

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Under the weather

I have been to the doctors again this week. I have been there so much in the last month I need some sort of rewards card! I have spent the last few days resting as much as possible in hopes of knocking this rotten virus. I tried the 'think you are better and make yourself get on with things' trick which failed miserably. It feels very indulgent to lie in bed for a couple of hours here and there. I just don't do that. I have been coughing so much I really haven't slept. But the staying still thing has been nice.

While sitting up in bed I have been stitching. Something I haven't done in a while. Ruby red acrylic felt hearts. It is so satisfying to stitch up felt. I will post a photo of the finished product soon.

Amelia has come down with something in the last few days too. High temp and miserable. She has been snuggled up in bed beside me while I have been resting. She doesn't usually have day time sleeps anymore, but she has been this week. I am hoping that the temperature has finally left her today. She has been asking if she can go shopping with me so that must be a good sign. :-)