Monday, May 31

Chore Charts

We've taken a step on our never-ending quest to get the kids to clean up/help around the house! I found this (downloadable) chore chart over at Simple Mom (Scroll down and you will see it listed as the Preschooler's Chore Chart). She explains how they handle chores and allowance, and it sounded great to me so I decided to give it a try.
I printed out the chart, and sat down with our 5yr old to decide which chores she would like to do. I was thinking 3-4, she picked 5. Here's how and why it's worked so far... two weeks later:

1. There have only been a couple of days when she has actually completed all five chores. I'm not pushing for her to complete everything- my goal right now is for her to be conscious of picking up after herself, and contributing to the household.
2. We use stickers, so she has instant gratification- she gets to pick the sticker and put it on the chart, when she completes the chore.
3. She's getting an allowance. I wasn't sure what that would mean to her, but when I explained that she would get a coin for every sticker on her chart at the end of the week, her eyes lit up and she said "I get MONEY? It'll be MY money?? Woo HOOO!". Ok, then. We started out saying a nickel for every sticker, but we changed it up to a dime for every sticker. At a nickel a sticker- if she did every chore on her chart, she'd earn $1.75/week. With a dime she could make $3.50, but at the rate she's going she's making about $1.60/week. And it's working out great. She got paid, and we showed her how to set some of it aside for other things, and keep the rest for something fun. A few days later she took a trip to the mall with Dad, and paid for her very own ice cream!

Tuesday, May 25

The 10-minute Skirt Projects

Ok, so maybe they were more like 15 minutes projects. It seems like there have been a lot of blog posts about making skirts recently... so I've had skirts on the brain.
First, I found some cute waffle-ish (I don't know the technical name for it but it's light and bumpy) fabric at Walmart with a double border. I cut the fabric in half, and sewed up the sides. Then I folded the bottom over twice and hemmed it up.
Next, I folded over the top, making sure the elastic band would fit snugly inside.
After measuring the elastic around my 5 year old's waist, I used a safety pin and threaded the elastic through the waistband. Then I sewed the elastic together. For some reason whenever I use elastic, it always ends up too loose, so I have to cut off a couple of inches of elastic and sew it back together. My point? Make sure you try the skirt on one last time before you sew the waistband shut.
And now give yourself a pat on the back-- your skirt is done!

My second project involved a hula skirt that I had found at a thrift store. (No! I don't mean a grass skirt!)
It looked like it would fit a 10-12 year old, so I thought I might be able to turn it into a cute dress for my 5 year old. I had a smallish piece of another Hawaiian print in green and white, so even though the greens do not match AT ALL, I decided to use this to make some sleeves. I cut 2 pieces roughly 15" x 6". Sorry about the wrinkles... I just didn't feel like ironing!
Then I hemmed the long sides, and gathered the short sides so that the ends were about 2".
Then I put the dress on my daughter, and pinned the sleeves in place.
I sewed them down, and they ended up looking a little like cap sleeves.
I wanted to tie the "sleeve fabric" in some other way, so I used the rest of it to make a flower, and sew it on. She wore it to school today- I guess it passed the test!

Monday, May 17

Have you got a few hours to spare? If so, you really need to head over to Sew, Mama, Sew. They are doing their Giveaway Day(s). They have one, two and three lists of bloggers out there doing giveaways! It's a bit overwhelming, but fun to explore and always a fun way to discover new blogs!

Wednesday, May 12

Vote for Me!

So, I've entered a contest over at Simply Modern Mom, about Mommy Moments. I submitted this photo of me hauling my two kids around in an attempt to win some fun stuff!
So if you have a minute... go over to Simply Modern Mom and vote for #15! (That's me.) Or you can vote for whichever picture you like the best... I won't mind! : ) Voting ends this Sunday.

Sunday, May 9

Year of the Quilt

I love quilt shows! I find them so inspiring- and am always in awe (and a little jealous!) of the talent and creativity exhibited. A few days ago a friend and I went to the Hawaii Quilt Guild show and it did not disappoint. They even quilted the trees!
One of my favorite things about living in Hawaii has been learning about the history and culture of the islands. I love how people celebrate the Hawaiian culture through quilts! Here are some of my favorite quilts:

"Kuu Hae Aloha Mae...My Beloved Flag Forever" by Patricia Lei Murray. This quilt is a tribute to Queen Lili'uokalani. You can read her story here or here.

"Princess Ka'iulani" by Monika Scola
a close-up of some of the beautiful 3D details
I think it's a good likeness.
image taken from Maui Celtic.

"Naupaka by the Sea" by Emma Jean Mader. In this picture, she is actually working on it's twin!

"Swimming Honus" by Debby Gayagas. Can you spot the turtles?

"Paradise of Birds" by Shirfeir Sunada

"Celebrating Aloha" by Patricia Lei Murray

"The President's Quilt" by Marion Speers

I also love quilts that show a sense of humor like the
"I Love Pizza" quilt by Melede Gerwig
Here's a closer look... I need this in my kitchen!

and "Sweet Dreams" by Betty Sestak
This quilt was made for her 18-yr old granddaughter who is off to college this fall. It still makes me laugh! What a fun grandma!

I love the different points of view...
"Circle of Friends" by Shirfeir Sunada
vs. "Sakura Ninja" by Barbara Alama

and finally...
I love Christmas quilts!
"2009 Christmas Tree and Santa" by Doris Tando. (The Santa was on the back)