Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Strawberry Pickin!

This is one of my favorite times of year, spring. I love everything about it, the weather, Easter, opening the windows, flowers, spring cleaning, and the strawberries!
There's a short time from late April through May when the strawberries are in season and it's customary around here to pick your own. I loved strawberry picking when I was a kid and was very disappointed when the farm where we always went closed. Luckily, a new place opened up a few years ago and it's just down the road from our home. I procrastinated last year and we ended up not getting to go, so this year I made sure the kids got to go pickin'!

We had a great time and almost got more strawberries than we could eat. Plus, at $8 a bucket, it was an affordable family outing. I definitely recommend it to anyone. If you'd rather get the strawberries without the picking, most places sell them already picked for a few more dollars a bucket. Your local farmers market is also a great place to go. At the state farmers market in Raleigh most of the vendors give out free samples so you can try them all before you decide which ones to get, and there are LOTS to choose from! Hurry though, the strawberries will be out of season before you know it!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Travel Tiger

This is Travel Tiger. Each child in my daughter's class was allowed to bring him and his belongings home for a couple of days. The idea is to take him somewhere or do something interesting with him and document it in the notebook that comes with him. It gets the kids to write and to think outside the box. It would've been pretty fun if I had gotten some prior notice of our house guest's arrival, or if it had been on a weekend.

Becca-Lynn came home with Travel Tiger on a Monday and he had to be returned on Wednesday. She was so excited, and I was nearly broke, had no ink in the printer for pictures, and had very little gas in the car. Luckily, Becca-Lynn said that lots of kids added stuff to his bag, so I knew I'd have to come up with a project quick. Either that or she'd have nothing to write about except how Travel Tiger got to sleep in the top bunk with her. I couldn't let that happen!

Another child's mom had already made a mini quilt and pillow so I decided to make him a night shirt. Travel Tiger is an odd size, however, so I scrapped that idea and it came to me! A book bag!
And of course he needed books to put in his book bag!

The book bag was made from a small piece of scrap fabric with bias tape for the shoulder straps. The little books are just folded paper that I sewed together for the spine.

I really had fun making this. I like it when I'm pushed to come up with a project that I wouldn't have had a reason to do otherwise. Situations like this can really stimulate our creativity if we let it.