Showing posts from May, 2008

Dinner Plate Hat from Sweater: How To

Seriously folks, this blog post is going to take longer to create than the hat, thanks to all the pictures I have to upload...

My victim: A size medium thrift store sweater in a ramie cotton blend:

Tools: The plate,

the scissors, a marker... and a measuring tape.

I place the plate on the upper back of the sweater, just barely avoiding where the tag is sewn in. Draw a circle around it. Cut it out. (I did all my marking and then all the cutting.)

Then, measure five inches from the bottom ribbing of the sweater, and cut off that strip. This will become your brim.

Handle the cut knit gently and it won't ravel out.

Take the brim piece and cut it into a long strip (it starts out as a loop) by making a cut in the center of the back or front of the sweater, so that if there are any seams in the strip they will be evenly spaced and towards the back.

Now take that strip, and fold it in half, and trim it so that the width will measure three inches at the ends, and five in the middle. …

The other pants leg...

got turned into this little "flapper hat". This one actually fits me. Woo Hoo! I think this is the first time in my big-headed life I've worn a hat that is not too small. A very nice experience, I must say. Now I'm beginning to understand the attraction. No worries about my hair, for one thing.

I call this the "Dinner Plate Hat" because for the crown of the hat, I traced around a dinner plate on the large "butt" of those huge jeans, just below the back pocket.

And then I calculated the circumference to cut the band. C=Dx3.14 remember?

When I put it on, initially, it looked like a badly fitted shower cap in denim, so I added the scrunchie pleats on one side, flipped up the "brim" and pinned it up with a brooch that desperately needed some work to do. I must say, I'm pleased with the results, even if it does look like a scrunched up, pinned denim shower cap....

My next project will be another dinner plate hat, cut from a thrif…

Playing with Denim and a Blog Giveaway!

A friend of mine has the cutest little denim cap. I decided to try and copy it. So, in order to get some already faded denim, I went to the thrift store and purchased (on half-off day) the largest pair of jeans I could find on the rack for a mere two dollars.

I made the cap! Mine is slightly different, in that the band on hers was pieced from more than one strip of fabric and I decided to keep it simple the on my first try. The back of it sports a little denim bow, and the front is very plain, no brim. It has gentle elastic going through the front band which stretches out flat when worn.

It's a teensy bit more snug than I wanted it to be. Oh, well. Looks really cute on my youngest daughter, though!

Additionally, I made another book cover. This one is for my very first Morning Coffee blog giveaway!

So, if you would like a book cover made to fit the Jordanville prayer book, in plain denim with pink and purple dots on the inside lining fabric, drop me a line in the comments bo…

Too Good Not to Share!

Hot fresh bread just came out of the oven. A pot of vegetable soup along side. It's one of those rare moments of beauty that truly brings joy.

The Music I Listen To

H and S asks me in the comments section, what kinds of music I listen to, and not just Church music.

Well, lets see...there's the background music that plays on my second-favorite computer game called "Bejeweled" (It's one of those puzzle types of games where you move colored squares into sequences of three and they then disappear and the other blocks fall into place and things get rearranged and you keep going...very relaxing). It's sort of a smooth jazz type of muzac, which normally I hate but I'm getting used to it because I like the game so much...

For starters, I rarely listen to music unless I'm in the car. We don't buy music all that often, and when we do, it feels like a shot in the dark. I'm not super devoted to any one artist or band. I have started checking some music out from the library.

The newest CD we've bought is Coldplay...can't remember the title of it...the one that has "Yellow" on it.

I have an ancie…

It Actually Happened!

I was at a party yesterday. It was a mix of people most of whom I didn't know. People standing around doing the small talk at parties thing. I joined the group of folks that my husband was talking to. A younger man and his father were chatting, and asking my dh about computer programming stuff. I could tell from the questions they were asking that they weren't in the computer field.

Then the man turns to me and asks me what I do. "I am homeschooling my four kids." And it was like someone flipped a switch on his face, and all the polite interest just vanished. I've never seen such a reaction that obviously disdainful before. I was taken aback.

To her credit, the man's wife tried to save the situation by saying something like "ah, you are a teacher!" in a syrupy voice.

That's when I decided to get my cain and take the kids for a mile long walk to play in the fountain down town.

A Way to Give

Yesterday in my blog reading, I found out about a charity/almsgiving opportunity that I am really really really excited about.

The ideal set up for me would be to be able to do something charity/almsgivingwise out of my own home, with my sewing machine. I am responisble for taking care of and homeschooling my kids, and I have the added dubious joy of having less physical energy than many people and a bad back.

So, given all these restrictions, I've thought it would be nice to do something with my sewing skills.

For a while, I was hoping to do some sewing for some school kids in Swaziland, working with a friend who visited Swaziland last winter, but that has not panned out.

Yesterday, I learned about Goods4Girls.

I'm so excited about this organization that it gives me chills.

Imagine being a very poor young girl in an African country. Perhaps you are an Aids orphan, or just very very poor. What if you have an opportunity to go to primary school? That would be nice, wou…

Between a Rock and a Hard Place

Going off the meds because the side effects are hideous and getting worse...dizziness, nausea, headache.

And now I'm worried about feeling low. Yeah, um.

Modest Swimwear: Some Thoughts

Well, Memorial Day is next Monday, and one thing that marks the season is that this weekend, the city pools open. We live a block away from a very nice pool, so one thing our family always does is purchase a family pool pass. We always get more than our money's worth and it gives the kids a nice chance to exercise.

One of the things I'm very interested in, personally as a woman, and as a mother, is modesty. And it is very very difficult to mesh the two thing: Swim wear, and modesty.

I always wonder why the presence of a pool or a large body of water suddenly makes it socially OK for people to wear less than what would be covered by their underwear. Personally, I hate wearing a swimsuit. Yes, I'm fat, so nobody is checking me out for being a hottie or anything like that except for maybe the nasty 65 year old men who like fat "younger" women. But I'd like to think that I'm mature enough and modest enough that even if I were a "hottie" that …

Another Ridiculously Easy Meal

This is what I do every non-fasting Sunday for common meal:

A bag of frozen ravioli. Dump this into the crock pot, frozen. A jar of pasta sauce. Dump this in as well. Plug in, and turn on high, and in about 3 hours (the time it takes for Sunday School and Liturgy), it will all be perfect.

Oh, and just so anyone can know, Lasagna noodles, even the regular kind, do NOT have to be pre-cooked unless you barely put any sauce on your lasagna.

And did you know, that a can of plain pumpkin and a box of cake mix (spice cake is delish) such as dark fudge chocolate makes an excellent low fat, very moist and not at all rubbery (lenten) cake?

Easiest Meal Ever

You will need:

9x13 casserole dish
2-3 cups brown rice, uncookes
package of onion soup mix (dry)
chicken pieces (I use a bag of frozen chicken thighs)

Put rice and seasoning packet into casserole dish. Add twice the measure of water as you put in rice. Arrange as many chicken thighs on there as you can fit. I overlap them, and get a whole bag on there, as they shrink when cooking (8 thighs or so). Drumsticks work well, too.

Stick in oven and bake at 400 degrees F. for about an hour and a half.

If you use white rice, you have to thaw the chicken first, or the rice overcooks.

This literally takes three minutes to do and is very good.

Fasting version:

Use lentils instead of chicken pieces, and increase water (twice rice measure plus twice lentil measure). This version, I do in a crock pot. Also very yummy. And quick and effortless.

I usually serve chicken and rice with peas and a salad.

Bad Fibro Cycle

(The cane I want.)
I'd appreciate anyone's prayers. I am currently in a really bad fibromyalgia cycle. I'm to the point on the guaifenesin protocol that I don't cycle as often as I used to, so when I do cycle, I'm not used to it, and it really sets me back and slows me down.

My mantra is "God's will be done". I did not choose this. But God made me, and I have this, so I hope that in it, God will somehow be glorified. For the opportunity to glorify God, even in this nasty chronic illness, I am grateful.

But it's also hard. Right now my hip is really bad, and I've been on my not-very-ergonomically-correct cane more often which makes my wrists hurt. And, I've not been very able to exercise. Which slows down my weight loss efforts, which gets me discouraged. And the pain makes me want a glass of wine, and then I get the I get even more discouraged about my weight loss efforts. But I keep trying, (except when I'm not…

Why, Why, Why?????

Can I sit down, with a cup of coffee, fully intending to pick up my Bible and read some more, but get sucked into the world of facebook and myspace and morningcoffee, instead. An hour and a half...wasted.

I do not love God enough. God have mercy!

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Bible Challenge Update

I finally finished Numbers this morning. I hadn't had much reading time this week, as I've really been working on "being present" with my kids during the day, instead of tuning them out in favor of reading. Hence the slow-down.

And, quite frankly, I find Numbers to be the most boring book of the Pentateuch. I did, however, get a little bit convicted about the complaining and murmuring thing.

Glory to God for all things.

Humor from the Spectrum

I am neurotypical. Unfortunately, this means I have a strong herd instinct, and will tend to do exactly what everyone around me is doing. I cannot help this. It is innate.

"So, what happens when an NT like me lives with people on the spectrum?" I ask, while shuffling my feet and gazing at the floor.

{This is a joke. Sort of. Directed at NTs. We tell many such jokes around our house. And we ALL laugh.}

a picture

Inspired by women with icons

A Few Details

I'm noticing so many points of continuity between Old Covenant Worship and Christian Worship as I plow through the Pentateuch.

***Confession-Numbers 5:5-7 "And the LORD said to Moses, "Say to the People of Israel, When a man or woman commits any of the sins that men commit by breaking faith with the LORD, and that person is guilty, he shall confess his sin which he has committed; and he shall make full restitution for his wrong, adding a fifth to it, and giving it to him to whom he did the wrong."

And I'm could it not be?...when a person brought a sin offering, did they not have to tell the priest what it was for?

And we Orthodox Christians make confession in front of our offering: Christ and the cross of Christ.

***The cost of worship: The tabernacle, the holy things, etc. all very costly. But it's a both-and proposition, not an either-or proposition for the people of God when it comes to a balance between worship and caring for the poo…

Which Austen Heroine Am I?


A Lady's Meme

Outside My Window … it is dark.


I am thinking … about when Wes will get home from work and if he's died in a car wreck.


I am thankful for … quiet.

From the kitchen … a low fat turkey sandwich with mustard and sprouts.


I am wearing … a nightgown and a bath robe.


I am creating … yet another blog post.


I am going … nowhere.


I am reading … Numbers and Luke.


I am hoping … to be with God someday.


I am hearing … the hum of the computer and traffic far off on the larger streets in the neighborhood.


Around the house …all is quiet and asleep.

One of my favorite things … sitting on my back porch, snuggled up in my sleeping bad with a cup of coffee, lit candles and a prayer book.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week...take the kids to the dentist, go to Weight Watchers, Bible Study, keep schooling them and reading as much as I can for the Bible Reading Challenge.

Here is a picture thought I am sharing … Proof that I am domestically challenged.

If you are reading…

My kids

have checked a Latin-English Dictionary out from the library and are busy making up new "Harry Potter" spells to go with the sanded down sticks with duct tape handles that they are calling wands.

Classical Un-schooling, I say!

And no, I did not put them up to this...

This is just SO God:

"If you meet your enemy's ox or his ass going astray, you shall bring it back to him. If you see the ass of one who hates you lying under its burden, you shall refrain from leaving him with it, you shall help him to lift it up." Ex. 23:4-5

It sounds like the same God who said:

"You have heard that it was said, 'You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.' But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for he makes his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and the unjust. For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? And if you salute only your brethren, what more are you doing that others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? You, therefore, must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect."--Matthew 5: 43-48

WHY had I never noticed that juicy little morsel in Exodus bef…

The Happy Homemaker

Whenever I read blogs by women who just glory in home-making, I'm a bit flummoxed. I will freely admit, that I don't quite "get it". See, I have this love-hate relationship with my whole "homemaker" status. Since graduating from seminary, I've never been anything but a stay-at-home mom. And now a homeschooling mom on top of that.

And I like my life. But I HATE the "homemaking" part of it. OK, the fun stuff is fun. I like making things...sometimes. I like baking and cooking...sometimes. I like having the freedom to set my own schedule. I like being with my kids each day. I like teaching them.

But I loathe housework. Did I use a strong enough word? The dusting, scrubbing, washing parts. Just. Hate. It. Because it's nasty and has to be done again and again. And it stays nasty. And it keeps getting undone. And my house is shabby without the chic. So I feel perpetually defeated by the grungy reality of it all.

Cleaning ho…

Mother's Day

I had a nice mother's day. My family got me a present, which was somewhat unexpected (a new knife set, and a CD that I wanted). I always like presents. And the knives are good. The ones we got when we were married, sixteen years ago next month, were literally falling apart. So now I'll probably cut myself tomorrow.

And I didn't have to do anything in the kitchen. Also nice. In fact, I've slugged about all day and everyone has waited on me hand and foot. They even let me take a nap this afternoon! My whole family has been very very nice to me today.

The weather is very windy and stormy and I'm pretty much hurting all over. Is it OK to talk about that, without complaining? Just stating a fact. It's the fibro. In fact, my friend who has fibro was also hurting today. It's just that kind of weather.

But it was a nice mother's day.

Lightning Seeds - Pure

This song is one of my all time favorites. I can't believe it's almost 20 years old! Now I feel really old!!!! "Yellow" reminded me of this one. So I looked it up.

Bible Reading Challenge

I read this challenge on someone else's blog a few weeks ago, and it seemed like a neat idea: Read the Bible as fast as you can. The whole thing. The same way you would if you were reading a page turner. Pick it up and read whenever you get a chance. Spend entire evenings reading, etc.

Here's how I'm playing: Start date was yesterday, May 9th, 2008. I'd recently read the first three chapters of Mark, so I'm counting that.

My goal is to pray through the Psalter fairly regularly anyways, so I'm just going to keep doing that, and when I have gone through the whole thing, I'll add that to my "completed" list.

Oh, and this challenge includes the Deutrocanonical books.

As I complete each book, I will report in here on my blog. You can see the list in the sidebar. Feel free to totally nag me if I get bogged down.
Completed So far: Genesis, Mark.

Currently in: Exodus

Anyone want to join me on this challenge? (I've done the "Throug…

How to Make a Fabric Book Cover

My poor ol' Jordanville prayer book was getting ratty. So I taped up the parts that were falling apart, and made a book cover. While I was at it, I decided to make a coordinating set of covers for my pocket Psalter and my Bible.

I also decided to blog the process, so that if anyone wants to know how to make a quick and easy book cover, you can learn.

You will need:

Two types of fabric that you like (quilting fabric or something of that weight works best), that probably coordinate in some way, according to your tastes. If you use denim or a heavier weight fabric, line it with something light weight so that you don't have too much bulk.

Pencil (for drawing lines where you will cut the fabric, marking buttonholes and button placement.)

Measuring tape

Straight edge

sharp scissors

a sewing machine

a button

the ability to do some simple math.

First you measure your book, from the edge of the front cover, around the spine (with the book closed) to the edge of the back cover. Add eig…