Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Yarn Ornaments

I know this is too old to be of use but we got a late start this year since I was so sick throughout most of December.  As soon as I got off work I would nap until the girls came home and then it was homework/food/showers/storytime/dishes/laundry all the way to bedtime at around nine.
So these were finished with just one day to spare but I think they did a great and creative job on them!

I see these a lot with cardboard but since I didn't have any that was thin enough I used cardstock.   I traced two circles on each one using the bottom of a plastic Happy Meal bucket.  We made six so each girl had three to decorate.

The girls painted whatever they wanted on one side.  Bug's are the brightly colored three and Goose chose blue and gray shades to match her white yarn.  Her gradiated one is so pretty and it took her ages to mix all those individual colors!

I laminated them to make them sturdier then cut small slits evenly around them.  Bug didn't want to do a lot of confusing work so she told me to stop after eight.  Goose decided to brave more than that but I think by the end she wished she had stuck with eight, too.
We wrapped the string all the way across then started to move to the right with each turn.  I let them have complete control so they're not perfect stars like most of the Pinterest example ones were, but I love them all the same.

My 2014 Book List

  1:  1984 by George Orwell
  2:  All Woman and Springtime by Brandon W. Jones
  3:  Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
  4:  Next by Michael Crichton
  5:  The Penelopiad by Margaret Atwood
  6:  Briar Rose by Jane Yolen
  7:  The Blood of Flowers by Anita Amirrezvani
  8:  Going Vintage by Lindsey Leavitt
  9:  Escape from Camp 14:  One Man's Remarkable Odyssey from North Korea to Freedom in the West by Blaine Harden
10:  The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle series) by Maggie Stiefvater
11:  The Upstairs Room by Johanna Reiss

12:  Junie B. First Grader:  Turkeys We Have Loved and Eaten (and Other Thankful Stuff) by Barbara Park
13:  The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate by Jacqueline Kelly
14:  The Dream Thieves (The Raven Cycle series) by Maggie Stiefvater
15:  The Absolute True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie

16:  Love in a Nutshell by Janet Evanovich & Dorien Kelly
17:  Takedown Twenty (Stephanie Plum series) by Janet Evanovich
18:  Pippi on the Run by Astrid Lindgren
19:  Iced (Fever series) by Karen Marie Moning

20:  Penny From Heaven by Jennifer L. Holm
21:  Frozen:  Anna's Icy Adventure by Walt Disney Company
22:  Something Real by Heather Demetrios
23:  Kirsten Learns a Lesson (American Girls) by Janet Beeler Shaw
24:  Kirsten Saves the Day (American Girls) by Janet Beeler Shaw
25:  Junie B. First Grader:  Dumb Bunny by Barbara Park
26:  Tell the Wolves I'm Home by Carol Rifka Brunt
27:  The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate
28:  Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige
29:  Unhinged (Splintered series)  by A.G. Howard
30:  Mr. Popper's Penguins by Richard Atwater
31:  Unicorn Valley by Rosie Banks

32:  Destiny, Rewritten by Kathryn Fitzmaurice
33:  Dark Places by Gillian Flynn
34:  The Little Prince by
35:  Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress by Sijie Dae
36:  Waterless Mountain by Laura Adams Armer
37:  A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett
38:  The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
39:  Persian Girls by Nahid Rachlin
40:  Dreams of Gods and Monsters (Daughter of Smoke & Bone series) by Laini Taylor
41:  Enchanted Palace by Rosie Banks
42:  Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
43:  The Strain (The Strain Trilogy) by Guillermo del Toro

44:  And the Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini
45:  Lord of the Flies by William Golding
46:  The Notebook by Nicholas Sparks
47:  Running with Scissors by Augusten Burroughs
48:  The Book of Lost Things by John Connolly
49:  The Fall (The Strain Trilogy) by Guillermo del Toro
50:  The Gates by John Connolly
51:  Midnight Crossroad by Charlaine Harris
52:  Breaking Stalin's Nose by Eugene Yelchin
53:  China Dolls by Lisa See
54:  Charlotte's Web by E.B. White
55:  Pompeii by Robert Harris

56:  Hyperbole and a Half by Allie Brosh
57:  The Night Eternal (The Strain Trilogy by Guillermo del Toro)
58:  The Mysterious Island by Jules Verne
59:  The Prisoner of Heaven by Carlos Ruiz Zafón
60:  Junie B. First Grader:  Jingle Bells, Batman Smells by Barbara Park
61:  Point Blank Protector by Stephanie Newton
62:  Gloria's Way by Ann Cameron
63:  The Lost Daughters of China by Karin Evans
64:  Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson
65:  Ruin and Rising (Grisha series) by Leigh Bardugo 
66:  The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin
67:  The Moon Pearl by Ruthanne Lum McCunn
68:  Cloud Island by Rosie Banks
69:  The Bonesetter's Daughter by Amy Tan
70:  Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn
71:  Full Scoop by Janet Evanovich 
72:  A Rancher's Pride by Barbara White Daille
73:  The Strangers (The Books of Elsewhere series) by Jacqueline West
74:  Cemetery Girl by David J. Bell

75:  In the Shadow of Blackbirds by Cat Winters
76:  The Bookstore by Deborah Meyler
77:  Top Secret Twenty-One (Stephanie Plum series) by Janet Evanovich
78:  Reconstructing Amelia by Kimberly McCreight
79:  Night Film by Marisha Pessl
80:  The People of Paper by Salvador Plascencia
81:  Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm (adapted version) by Kate Douglas Wiggin
82:  Mermaid Reef by Rosie Banks 
83: Without You, There Is No Us:  My Time With the Sons of North Korea's Elite by Suki Kim
84: Girl in Reverse by Barbara Stuber
85: Where'd You Go, Bernadette?  by Maria Semple
86: Idlewild by Nick Sagan
87: The Case of the Missing Mummy by Francess Lin Lantz 
88: The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde
89:  Shoot the Moon by Billie Letts
90:  Animal Farm by George Orwell

91:  Horns by Joe Hill
92:  Saige (American Girls) by Jessie Haas
93:  Inside Out & Back Again by Thanhha Lai
94:  The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald 
95:  Bunk 3, Teddy & Me by Cathy East Dubowski
96:  The Case of the Rock & Roll Mystery by Lisa Eisenberg

97:  The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
98:  The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
99:  The Good Girl by Mary Kubica
100:  Running Out of Time by Margaret Peterson Haddix
101:  Call it Courage by Armstrong Sperry
102:  Our Only May Amelia by Jennifer L. Holm

103:  Blue Lily, Lily Blue (The Raven Cycle series) by Maggie Stiefvater 
104:  Dear Enemy by Jack Cavanaugh
105:  Sounder by William H. Armstrong
106:  Water Buffalo Days by Quang Nhuong Hyunh
107:  Barakamon, Vol 1 by Satsuki Yoshino
108:  Howl's Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones
109:  Kat, Incorrigible by Stephanie Burgis
110:  Snowy the Surprise Puppy by Jenny Dale
111:  A Wonderlandiful World by Shannon Hale
112:  Stone Mattress:  Nine Tales by Margaret Atwood 
113:  Before I Go to Sleep by S.J Watson

114:  Black Wings (Black Wings series) by Christina Henry 
115:  The Hidden Magic of Walt Disney World by Susan Veness
116:  Wreck-It Ralph Junior Novelization by Irene Trimble

My goal was originally 75 but I surpassed that by a long shot!  Next year I think I am going more for quality over quantity and I bought a ton of LARGE classic novels to start.  I also really want to hold off on the library and try to make it through my overstuffed bookcases a little.  My goal is to only check out books that are part of any series that I am already reading.  I am going to try not to buy any books either.  I might use my library bookstore though since they're all around 50 cents apiece.  My local used bookstore is going out of business in a few months and she's promised me a large discount since I'm a frequent shopper so I might have to pick up a few ones from there, too!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Book Pretties

Just a few of my favorite book pictures over the last few weeks.  I love taking pictures of pretty books and I'm the dork that keeps them on my phone for weeks just to ooh and ahh over them.

Library books I was excited about.  The only one I didn't make it through was Prince Lestat and that's because it was just a great big steaming pile of NO and I was only about 20 pages into it.

A stack of great FREE books from my library!  I won a gift card to the library's used bookstore and they were half-priced so the paperbacks were a quarter and the hardbacks were just fifty cents!

My Xmas presents!  I was so excited because the Dumas ones were only $3 and War and Peace is one I've been searching for.  Can't wait to start these next year.

These were the ones I really wanted to get through in December but I have been sick for the last couple of weeks and I did three weeks of double shifts so I barely had time to read :(

 My absolute favorite book ever.  I read this for the first time when I was in sixth or seventh grade and I've loved it ever since.

I saw these at the bookstore and couldn't help taking a pic of them because they're gorgeous.

The Puffin chalk covers are some of the most beautiful covers I've ever seen on books so I was excited to see a paperback version set up.  I just ordered the Jane Eyre hardbook cover and it should be here at the end of next month!

A very happy Sunday for me consists of this and a comfy chair to relax in.

My husband bought me this and I'm only halfway through it but it's a great read so far.  The only disappointment I've had is that it goes from page 18 to page 51.  I don't know if I can take it back to the store or write the publisher or if I just have to deal with it...

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Craft Loom

I used to make these all the time at my grandma's and my mom still has a few lying around.  These bands are so pretty and bright.

These aren't near as big as the ones I remember making.  The loom was really, really hard to do the finishing loops on and when she was done the potholder was about the size of my hand. 

Not very useful during actual use.
But my Bug did this about 90% on her own and she was so proud of herself and even if the potholder doesn't get used a lot I still love it!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

What They're Reading Now

I haven't talked about what books Bug has been reading in awhile but it's not for lack of material!  They (mainly the oldest) still read like fiends.  Goose is a solo reader and doesn't like to share her books so I don't know what she's interested in anymore unless she decides to share.
The books I mentioned last time are still on heavy, HEAVY rotation and I'm happy to say we finally found a copy of The Day the Crayons Quit in the bookstore so that's one less book I have to check out every couple of weeks.
Bug has actually started to read some chapter books with me, but she's very picky about them and she doesn't like them to be very long so there's not a whole lot of variety.
Some of her favorites lately are:

Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm by Kate Douglas Wiggin
We read an adapted version of this but it was still so long that it took us a week and a half to get through.  I personally thought it was a little boring but Bug loved it surprisingly enough.  She talked about it for several days afterwards.  I didn't realize the book was so different from the Shirley Temple movie I loved and owned as a child. 

She got Gloria's Way by Ann Cameron out of a free book pile over the summer and made me read it to her even though I didn't enjoy it at all.  I tried several times to get her to read it on her own but she didn't understand why I wouldn't want to share in the hilarity of Gloria and her friends so I stuck it out.  It's one of her favorites and she's already asked me to read it again.

Junie B. is always a hit in our household even though I think she's a little bit of a brat.  I think the Christmas special is the last one we have left that we haven't read and Bug was a little disappointed but she has most of the series to reread over and over whenever she wants (which she happily does).

Charlotte's Web was one that I didn't have high hopes for her to stay interested in since it's so long and the typing on each page is really small.  While reading the story she lost interest a few times but once I was finished she said she liked it.  She's watched the movie twice since then and thinks it's so neat how she knows what's happening since she read the book!

Pippi is absolutely HUGE around here.  I bought them the movie that I loved when I was little and it's still one of their favorites even though they've seen it a hundred times.  Bug has read several of the books over the last year and looks forward to every new adventure Pippi has.

The Secret Kingdom series by Rosie Banks is the newest series Bug has gotten interested in.  Even her older sister enjoys it.  We bought the first two books from a school book fair and ordered a few more from the library.  Unfortunately our library doesn't have all the books in the series so unless I find them at a bookstore we can't find out how the series ends...

We're currently two chapters away from being finished with The Case of the Missing Mummy by Francess Lin Lantz and she has been begging me to read her extra chapters before bed because she's dying to see how it ends.  We have a few other Mary-Kate and Ashley mysteries in our bookcase so I bet she'll go straight to them once we're finished.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

What They're Reading Now

One of my favorite things to do on my old blog was to list our favorite children's books every week and I miss doing it so I will try and start it up again here.

Bug is a chronic book repeater when we go to the library.  There's a couple of books that she makes me check out at least once a month.  I finally broke down and bought all of the Pigeon books and I might have to do the same with the other two because I. Am. Sick. Of. Checking. Then. Out.

The Pigeon Series by Mo Willems

There's several in this series (and a new one on the way that we are VERY excited for!), but I think these two are Bug's favorites.  She reads them over and over.  I bought these in a set from school and it was probably one of the best book buys I've made.  They get thoroughly read over and over and the little's laugh like crazy over them.

Bebé Goes Shopping by Susan Middleton Elya

This has been read so many times that Bug has it memorized and can even repeat the Spanish words along with me.  I like that there's a guide in the back that tells you what the Spanish words mean and how they're pronounced in case you need help.  

A Day With No Crayons by Elizabeth Rusch

This book is so pretty and lovely inside.  I love that they make real paintings out of the every day found items and it sparked several conversations between me and my little's about who the painters were and they were excited to see Starry Night which they already knew.  Bug's favorite part is the very last picture where Liza makes a collage in her room of herself.  She loves to look at it and see which items Liza uses.  

These other two are current books she likes:

The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt

This book is the newest one in our "GET THIS BOOK THE NEXT TIME YOU GO TO THE LIBRARY, MOMMY.  I LOVE IT." rotation. 
The letters from the crayons are adorable (Yellow's is too hard to read though.  We always have to tilt it back and forth to read each line.)   Bug likes to pretend to get angry and shouts at Duncan for being mean to the crayons.

Junie B., First Grader:  Turkeys We Have Loved and Eaten (and Other Thankful Stuff) by Barbara Park

Junie B. is VERY popular in our household.  In fact, Goose threw a drama-filled fit when I made her clear them all off of her bookcase to give to her little sister.  Bug got three new ones from Christmas and checks them out every week at her school library.  Personally, I hate Junie B.  She's kind of a brat.  But I read them because they enjoy them.  *shrug*  This one is what we're currently reading and it's a special edition so it's a little bit longer than they normally are.  We try to read at least one chapter a night so it will take us a while to get through this but I know Bug will already have another one ready and waiting for when we're done.

Goose has declared herself too old to read with us every night now (a fact that still makes me a little weepy), so I don't know what she's reading at the moment.  She just recently finished A Series of Unfortunate Events and it has turned her into a Lemony Snicket fanatic.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Bow holder

I had a really pretty picture frame and I didn't want to throw it away when the glass broke so I bought some zebra patterned ribbon and glued strips of it to the back to make an easy bow holder for some of their fancier bows so they wouldn't get squashed in their jewelry box.
I think I need to make another one solely designated for holiday themed bows so they're all in one place.