Thursday, April 30, 2009

What do you call.....

a girl who loves to cut everything with scissors?

A Cliptomaniac!

Cowboy roundup meal and tie dye shirts, part one

So here are the Ocean tie dyed shirts. After washing, I remembered that last year's shirts were much brighter when we left them overnight. Oh well. I do like the colors though. The kids would NOT sit still for a picture, so here we are:

Then we had our Cowboy Round Up meal. It was nasty muddy outside, so we ate at the table instead of our fake campfire in the backyard. We talked about cowboy clothing and why the cowboys wore bandanas. I gave them a hint, "It's something that bothered you at t-ball practice the other night." (I was looking for "mosquitos" or "bugs"). Abby starts frantically frantically waving her hand, "I know, their tags were itchy!!!!" What??

Baked Beans
BBQ Brisket

The kids liked their meal and afterwards we took them for a walk around the neighborhood with their ponies. Daddy showed them how to poke an ant hill with their stick ponies. You know, 'cause that's a life skill.

Daddy was a good sport too:

We'll wear the Fire t's tomorrow.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Tie Dye

I love watching the Duggar family on TV. Nate says, "Mom, we should totally have that many kids - it would ONLY be 13 more." Gulp.

Nate's wishful thinking aside, I really do admire this family. I just finished their book and got some great tips for parenting a large family. One thing that I've noticed is that when they go out as a group, they wear matching clothes. This makes it easier for Mommy and Daddy to keep track of everyone.

Well, because we are such a PFUN pfamily, we can't just do matching clothes. We have to make our own TIE DYE matching clothes. Last year we did two sets, brights and camo. This year we changed it up a bit.

This is the dye kit we used.

The dye bottles inside look like this. You just mix with water.

Start with your plain white cotton shirt (don't use cruddy poly/cotton).

Get it wet, and wring it out. Pinch the middle and let the rest hang down. Apply rubber bands and 2-3 inch intervals (see the shirts on the sides above).

Apply the dye. Really squeeze it down in there, as it is going through many layers of cloth. We called these "Fire":

And these "Ocean":

Cover with trash bags and let the dye set for 6-8 hrs. Clip off the rubber bands and throw the shirts into the washing machine. Wash 2-3 times until the water is clear.

Free tips:
#1 Use better gloves than the ones that come in the kit. My hands look terrible.
#2 For super bright dye, leave overnight before rinsing.
#3 Do not use the sorry cheapo trashbags to protect your counter. They don't (protect). Use the Hefty's.

Tomorrow I'll show you the finished products! And we are celebrating the end of our horse unit with a cowboy roundup! (We are forgoing the suggested backyard bonfire. I don't think our neighbors would appreciate us burning down their houses.)

Thursday, April 09, 2009

What we do in our free time

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Family Rule Phylacteries

Today we read Deuteronomy 11:18, "Fix these words of Mine in your hearts and minds, tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads." We discussed the difference between being a Pharisee (just making an outward show of following God) and being a true disciple (hiding God's Word in your heart). We then came up with some family rules and made phylacteries with them.

The kids liked wearing them on their hands.

Anna sang us a song about the rules. She likes to sing.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

A horse is a horse

Our next topic of study in our obedience unit is horses. We are reading "King of the Wind" by Marguerite Henry. Today we made stick horses out of paper bags and newspaper.

Later, we taped them onto the kids' bikes and rode our "horses" around the neighborhood. Yes, folks stared at us. We are used to it.

Can you say "petulant 3 year old"?

Studying light

We've made several fun projects during the first two weeks of our Konos study of light and authority.

We made a lighthouse.
We talked about how God gives us authorities (governments, teachers, parents, etc) to help guide us from danger. We affirmed God's Word as the one immovable, totally trustworthy "lighthouse" in our lives.:

(I googled "building a model lighthouse" and you would not BELIEVE the crazy instructions I found. Who needs to build a two story lighthouse in your backyard? Are you deterring ships?)

We built a lantern and walked around in the dark. We talked about how God's Word sheds light on our immediate path and we need to trust that He will give us the light we need, when we need it. Looking too far ahead can cause fear, we need to simply trust and walk in the light He gives us now.

And finally, we made our own candles and enjoyed a candlelight supper. Philip said this was wicked messy and asked for Konos' address so he could send them a "thank you for giving my wife messy ideas" card.

First, I chopped up a block of paraffin:

Then we broke up crayons and added them for color:

We melted the crayons and paraffin over a double boiler (note, if you desire trying this: do not use the pan you plan on using for supper that night.) We also added some peppermint essential oil.:

We took empty one quart milk cartons and placed wicks in the center. We added ice cubes and some random other broken crayons (the kids wanted polka dots in their candles):

We poured in the wax. This was very messy. A funnel would have helped. A lot.

When they were solid, we peeled off the cartons:

Then we enjoyed our candles at dinner. It was neat when they burned low, as the light flickered through the holes created by the ice cubes.

Now we are moving on to our study of horses. Lots o' fun! More projects to come in the future!


Doesn't it feel good to accomplish something? In late January I began running and doing Weight Watchers. This past Sunday I completed my first half marathon. Can I tell you how fantastic it was to run across the finish line? To hear the cheering and cowbells? Super awesome!

And I've lost almost a Gabriel sized amount of weight. I was thinking, as we walked/ran, how much harder it would have been with this little guy on my back: