Thursday, August 25, 2011

Reading Motivation

School is off to a great start.  One of our school-wide goals this year is to motivate reluctant readers to enjoy reading.  In one of my reading groups I asked the students to complete a reading inventory.  My heart sank when I saw one boy's response to the question, "How many books do you have in your home?"  His response was, "none!"  None?  Is that even possible?  I look around my house and there are books in every room.  Lots of books ... many kinds of books ... children's books ... picture books ... biographies ... Bibles ... cookbooks ... dictionaries ... novels ... song books ... and on and on.  I love to read-- especially a great historical novel -- but really do enjoy reading all kinds of books.  I most recently finished a book titled, The Bookseller of Kabul, by Asne Seierstad.  It was a fascinating description of an Afghan family as observed by a western journalist.  In reading this book I felt as if I had traveled to an unknown place, and learned of ways and traditions that are so different to my own way of thinking.  When this same student told me he really didn't like to read, my challenge was set before me -- do whatever I can to draw him into books. I see an exciting year ahead.  Let's see what happens!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

And the winner is...

Drum roll please!

No 1 -- Chris G said...

Oooohhh...Pic me, Mrs. S!!! I would love to have one of these. I choose Number 3. I'm thinking I might use it in my office to hold CDs/DVDs.

Wow!  No. 1.  How often does that happen?  I used the very scientific method of putting all the numbers in a jar and having my husband pull out the ticket.  Chris, your basket will be delivered to you hopefully within a week.  This being the first week of school, though, I'm not going to promise!  Thanks to all who entered.  I'll do it again sometime.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Summer is Fading

Summer is fading ... much like the petals on this sunflower.  After seeing the children at Back To School Night this evening, though, I don't mind the fading so much.  They were so excited to be there, to see their classrooms, and to talk to their teachers --both from last year and the new ones they will yet get to know.  There is nothing like smiles, hugs, and faces full of excitement to get a teacher focused on their purpose in teaching.  What a privilege, and yes, opportunity we have been given. In my corner of the world, the students arrive on Tuesday, and what an exciting day that will be!

Don't forget the give-away.  If you haven't already signed up for it, it's not too late.  I'll choose a winner on Sunday evening.  To enter, go to

Monday, August 15, 2011


It's been a whole year (August 11, 2010) since I started blogging about my sewing adventures.  To celebrate that, the motivation it has given me to keep creating, and the friends I have met, I am doing my first-ever GIVEAWAY!  I remember how excited I was during my first months of blogging to win 3 giveaways.  Wow!  Having a blog must make a difference, I thought. I'm not so sure about that now as I've not won any since, but... It is always fun to see what others are offering.  This weekend I tried another project from Joel Dewberry's book, Sewn Spaces.  His pattern for reversible fabric boxes was quite easy to sew together.  The one I made and am showing below will be going to my daughter-in-law -- because she liked the fabric, and because she is so special :)  -- but, I will make another one to give to one of my readers.  You will find a picture with three fabric choices.  To enter this giveaway please leave a comment below telling me which fabric choice you would like, and what you might use your box for.   I will randomly choose a number on Sunday evening, and will post the winner!  I learned a few things making this first one -- I need to add a thicker interfacing or batting to make the sides stand up a bit more.  Actually, I guess that's the only change I would make.  It sewed together very easily, and makes a nice reversible box.
Side 1

Side 2 -- the pretty side!

The box!

The empty box.  Hmmm... what could go in this box?

 small sized photo albums...

favorite DVDs...

washcloths for the bathroom...

How about a casserole?  

Here are the 3 choices -- #1(Daisy Chain) and #2 (Midwest Modern) feature prints by Amy Butler, and #3 fabrics are "Mama's Cottons 2" by ConnectingThreads.
I'm linking this project to Sumo's Sweet Stuff.  Check out all the great things people are making.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Post #50!

You would think Post #50 would have some fanfare, but it's a busy day ahead getting reading for the beach!  Beach chairs and umbrella ready ... swimsuit ready ... books and magazines ready ... food?  ... almost ready-- Oatmeal bread is in the making, cookies are made, chips, salsa, sandwich stuff -- what more could we need?  The Beach!!

I'm linking today at Sumo's Sweet Stuff Market Yourself Monday