July Goals!

It’s July!!! And I’m feeling much recharged after my littles have been in day camp for the past 3 1/2 weeks. lol. I’ll be honest, I’m a much better mother when I have a bit of a break from my kids! And today is Kate’s birthday! She’s officially 12!!! I can’t believe I have a 12 year old. And I’m so excited because she’s getting her first vaccine today! I cannot wait for the twins to be able to get vaccinated as well and then I can stop worrying so much. So June goals…

  1. Hexie Blocks. Done! I actually got 2 blocks done. πŸ™‚
  2. Pinwheels. Well, I didn’t finish them, but I did finish a big batch. I think I only need to do 20 more.
  3. Scrapping. Honestly, not much done here.
  4. Project Life. I was more successful here. πŸ™‚ I got 3 weeks of June done and I finished March!
  5. Bee Yourself. Yes! I got the sushi block done and I’m really pleased with it. πŸ™‚ I also redid the avocado seeds and I’m much happier with them now.
  6. Habit Tracker. Not so much. :/ But it was fun to play with for a week. πŸ™‚
  7. Windchime Quilt. Nada.
  8. Clean Art Room. ::sigh:: I had such high hopes for this goal and then I didn’t do a darn thing.
  9. Field Trip Time! I didn’t really plan field trips, but I did schedule approximately 4 million appointments for July. lol. RaptorDad and I discussed taking a little road trip, but I think we’re going to wait until next summer when the kids are all vaccinated. I do think we’re going to do a little day trip or two though.
  10. Advent Calendar. Whoops. lol.

July Goals!

  1. Hexie Blocks. I’d love to get another 2 blocks done this month.
  2. Pinwheels. Dare I say it? I’d really love to finish these this month.
  3. Scrapping. Is there even a point in setting a goal here? I’m sure my inspiration will return at some point. Maybe I’ll set a super simple goal of doing 4 pages: 1 a week.
  4. Project Life. I’m trying to do Project Life in real time again. So maybe my goal will me to keep current with June and July?
  5. Bee Yourself. I’m so happy that I’m making progress on this quilt! I’d love to get another few blocks done, maybe the AEK block? And then keep working on the flags?
  6. Stickers. I’ve gotten obsessed with stickers! And I’d like to try my hand at designing a few.
  7. Art Room. Oh boy. It’s a huge mess in here. I think I want to pick a small section and work on cleaning out/ reorganizing it. Maybe the corner with the closet…
  8. Adventure Time! I’d love to plan 2 fun day trips with the kids in July? We have a ton of appointments, but I think we can do 2. πŸ™‚
  9. School Prep. I need to order all the things! Uniforms, backpacks, shoes, locker decorations…
  10. Master Bathroom Closet. Oh boy. I’d really love to get my house all organized, but I need to take some baby steps. I think I’ll try to work on the master bathroom closet this month. Wish me luck!

Welcome to Summer!

We made it y’all! There were points this spring when I wasn’t sure I would survive my time as a learning coach, but I am pleased to report that all 3 of my children made it through. With good grades even! It’s been less than a week and I’m already starting to forget the hards parts in favor of remembering the sweet moments. Stockholm syndrome? Perhaps. But I’ll take it. lol.

That said, I did get into a bit of a funk last month and ended up reading a bunch of junky romance novels instead of doing anything crafty. I love reading, but I have noticed that my overall mood is better when I spend at least some time being creative each day. I’m experimenting with a habit tracker this month and one of the things I’m tracking is if I do anything creative. I think it will be interesting to look at at the end of the month.

We also made the huge decision to let the twins go to a 3 week *in person* camp at their school. The school is offering it to help get the kids catch up on their academics since so many of them were distance learning this year. I’m nervous about letting them go, but the covid levels in our part of Texas are actually super low right now and I’m fairly certain that most, if not all, of the adults involved will be vaccinated. Also, their school did a great job with their covid protocols this past year. There were very few cases at the school and there did not appear to be any community spread within the school. That said, we will be watching the numbers closely!

Since the kids will be spending 3 weeks at camp, and then another week at Mobile Loaves and Fishes camp (more on that later I’m sure) I’m going to set some more ambitious goals for this month. Honestly, I’m giddy at the thought of having so much free time! I think RaptorDad and I might even go on a lunch date! But first, let’s look at my pitiful progress last month.

  1. Hexie Block. I worked on this, but did not finish.
  2. Butterfly Effect Quilt. I got all of the papers cut and organized and even made the first butterfly. But y’all, this pattern is so teeny tiny and the pieces are super fiddly. I put it away for a bit because I was unhappy with how the first butterfly ended up. I’ve since learned a new method for EPP, the flat backstitch, and I’m cautiously optimistic that it will work better.
  3. Pinwheels. I made some progress on this one, but not as much as I would have liked. I’m up to a grand total of 74 pinwheels out of 120. And I’ve got the next batch of 26 to the 1/2 square triangle stage.
  4. Low Volume Log Cabin. No progress, but I’ve been thinking about how I want to piece the back. Need to decide on that.
  5. Bee Yourself Quilt. This was my one win. I designed a new hexie flower petal block and made 4 of them. I love it so much that I’m considering making a whole quilt out of them. lol.
  6. Ice Cream Soda. Well, I did manage to get round 4 finished, but very little else got done.
  7. Windchime Quilt. Same here. Part of the problem is that we’ve had a ridiculously rainy May. Usually I work on my EPP while the kids are playing at various parks, but we’ve been stuck at home lately.
  8. Scrapping. I got a single layout done.
  9. Project Life. Nada.
  10. Summer Homeschool Schedule. Not so much a schedule since we’ve got a single week before camp, but I did order our workbooks and we’re doing a page or 2 a day. Mia does more because she loves workbooks so much. Xander begrudgingly does a page a day, but once he sits down he has fun. Kate’s working on some math, which she doesn’t love, but which I think will help her a lot when it comes time for Algebra next year.

June Goals!

  1. Hexie Block. I would like to finish 2 blocks this month.
  2. Pinwheels. I’d love to finish these this month! And I think it’s possible.
  3. Scrapping. This is going to be one of my big goals for the month. Honestly, I’d love to edit, print, and scrap all of 2021 so far. It’s a big goal, but I think with my new plan of doing fewer layouts it’s possible.
  4. Project Life. I’d also love to get March 2021 and April 2021 done.
  5. Bee Yourself. I’d like to design and prep another block. Maybe the clamshell block? Or the bookshelf block? Sushi block? Not sure yet, but I think getting one more done is doable.
  6. Habit Tracker. I’m interested to track my habits and see how it correlates to my mood. I suspect that spending more time being creative will lead to a boost in mood, but we’ll see?
  7. Windchime Quilt. I’d like to finish block number 12 and get that row added to the quilt.
  8. Clean Art Room. I would like to do a big clean out of the art room. I feel like it’s time to clear out the ghosts of projects past. lol. There are some old projects that I’m just never going to finish and I think it’s time to let them go. It would also be super nice to have the stuff that I actually do use more organized!
  9. Field Trip Time! We didn’t manage to make it to a state park in May. We did discover some cool new play grounds though! Still, I’d like to plan a few day trips for the summer. These will likely be happening in July just because of camp, but I want to get them on the books so to speak.
  10. Advent Calendar. I’d love to spend some time on this this month!

It’s May!

Hopefully this marks the start of my final month as a virtual learning coach! Yay!!! So let’s see how we did in April.

  1. Hexies. Done!
  2. Caterpillar Quilt. Done! Oh my gosh, this has been on my list for months, but I finally finished the center. Now I jut have to do 4 bazillion pinwheels for the border.
  3. Project Life. I didn’t do anything for this.
  4. Scrapbook. This either. ::sigh:: Like I didn’t scrap a single layout.
  5. Monthly Kid Adventure. We went on several adventures this month! We went out to Muleshoe Recreational Area and took bluebonnet pics. We went to the zoo. And we got our state park for the month: Buscher State Park. πŸ™‚
  6. Seasonal Celebration. We played an epic April Fool’s prank on Kate. We dyed Easter eggs. So much fun!
  7. Bluebonnet Pictures. Done! Not the best we’ve ever gotten, which is a bummer because we drove all the way out to Muleshoe, but we had fun. Should have gone a week or two earlier.
  8. 60 Degree Diamond Quilt. Done! I can’t believe I actually finished this one. It should come as no surprise that I was finally motivated to finish it so that I could start a new quilt. lol. More on that later.
  9. GoPro Video. I didn’t get anything edited, but we had a ton of fun playing with the camera and taking videos. πŸ™‚
  10. Twins Turn 6! We got them a trampoline! So needless to say, they were thrilled.

May Goals

  1. Hexie Block. I really want to keep this momentum going.
  2. Butterfly Effect Quilt. I’m starting a new EPP quilt! It’s gorgeous and it’s got a gazillion teeny tiny pieces. I’d love to get the paper pieces all cut, labeled, and organized. I’d also love to get the first ring of butterflies done.
  3. Pinwheels. I would also love to get all of the pinwheels done. I think I have 50 done? I need 120 total.
  4. Low Volume Log Cabin. This is another surprise finish from last month. I’d like to piece the back and get it all basted so I can stick it in a drawer and put off quilting it for a year. lol.
  5. Bee Yourself Quilt. This was nowhere on my list for last month, but I pulled it out and started working on the flag blocks. I’d love to keep making progress on this!
  6. Ice Cream Soda. I am almost done with the last block for round 4! I’d love to get the grey joining pieces on rounds 2-4 and prep round 5.
  7. Windchime Quilt. lol. I guess I’m aiming to make progress on all of the quilts. I have everything prepped for block number 12. I’d love to get that block finished.
  8. Scrapping. Sigh. I’d like to get anything done. Maybe I should set aside a day to work on printing editing photos.
  9. Project Life. If I could finish March 2021 that would be great.
  10. Summer Homeschool Schedule. I’m thinking of a lose daily/ weekly schedule?

60 Degree Diamonds

I finished my Corona Craft!

Last April, I decided to try a new English Paper Piecing shape: 60 degree diamonds! They are trickier than hexies, but still so much fun. πŸ™‚ I got the idea for the overall layout from The New Hexagon, but other than that I pretty much made it up as I went along. It’s 100% stitched by hand aside from the binding. I even hand quilted it. It’s far from perfect, but it’s finished. πŸ™‚

And what prompted me to finally finish it? I’m starting a new quilt! <3

Buescher State Park

State Park visit number 4 is in the books! We had the day off for Good Friday, and when we got up the kids were bored and we were all driving each other crazy. I thought I’d look up close by state parks and we’d just go for it. Buscher State Park is about an hour away from us so I loaded the kids up and we drove out there to check it out.

buscher park

Having done zero research other than mapping how long it would take to get there, I was counting on getting a park map once we got there to give us some ideas of what to do. Naturally, the park headquarters was closed for lunch when we got there. lol. But we’re not ones to let a little thing like lack of information stop us from exploring! We followed some signs to a parking area, saw a trail head, and we were off!

It was a cute little park and we had a nice hike, but honestly I should have taken some time to look things up before we got there. On the way out of the park, we found an actual lake that would have been fun to explore. Oh well! There’s always next time. πŸ™‚

Sponge Cake!

Oh man, Kate loves the idea of April Fool’s Day, but I never have my stuff together enough to actually set up a prank. But this year I got her good! RaptorDad and I were watching YouTube the other day and we saw a video for a sponge cake that looked like a sponge. I knew I had to make it happen.

Mia and I sneakily made this cake while Kate was in class in her bedroom and I honestly can’t believe how well it turned out! The colors weren’t quite perfect, but if you’re not looking at it next to a sponge it was pretty convincing. The trick is to cut the top with a serrated knife so you get that “rough sponge” look. I put the cake on the counter, sprinkled a few crumbs around, and waited. Very impatiently. lol. Finally Kate came out and I asked her if she could wipe off the counter for me. Her face when she tried to pick up the “sponge” was priceless! I wish I had a video but I didn’t want her to get suspicious.

And amazingly, the cake tasted good! It was a very moist lemon cake and we gobbled it down. Time to start planning for next year!

Bee Yourself Quilt

You know which quilt was nowhere on my goals list for this month? My Bee Yourself Quilt. You know which quilt I’ve been working on? My Bee Yourself Quilt. lol.

I decided I wanted to try to make a Zelda block. First I tried applique, then I tried EPP plus applique. Both looked like garbage. I finally decided that if I was going to have strong points, I was going to have to suck it up and try to machine piece it.

It turned out way better than I had ever hoped! Especially since I was making up the pattern as I went along.

Then I decided to go nuts and sew together the whole bottom corner! I was resisting sewing any blocks together in case I wanted to rearrange any of them, but this little corner gave the boost I needed to tackle the next big obstacle. The flags.

I decided it would be fun to have a little 2×3 inch flag from each country I’ve been to. Then I sketched out all of the flags, looked at Greece, and panicked. lol. I’ve been kicking it around in my mind for a few months now and it finally came to me yesterday: bias tape! So I made some teeny tiny bias tape and appliqued it down. Success!

Then I did a bunch more! No lie, I was feeling pretty cocky after Peru. Ireland, and Italy. Then I looked at Mexico. Now that is a complicated flag. lol. I almost threw in the towel at that point, but then I figured I could try to simplify it and use embroidery.

It’s not perfect, but I’m really pleased with the way it turned out! I’ve got a bunch more to do, but I’m feeling good about these first 5. πŸ™‚ Next up: Scotland!

April Goals!

We made it through March! A bit bittersweet because it marks a year that we’ve been living in lockdown. It’s been crazy watching my timehop posts come up from last March when we thought this was going to over in just a few weeks, and yet here we are. lol. I am FOR SURE ready for my kids to go back to school next fall. But you know what? I have also really loved this year as we’ve been forced to slow down and spend 24/7 together. I feel like my kids are much closer than they used to be now that they are their only playmates. And as frustrating as virtual school is, there has been something magical about teaching my kids to read. <3

  1. Hexies. Totally got another block done!
  2. Caterpillar Quilt. ::sigh:: I did not get the center done, but I did make some progress on in. I got another row done and got a bunch more pinwheels done! Only one row to go. πŸ™‚
  3. Project Life. Well, I got less done on this this month, but I did get February finished so that’s something.
  4. Scrapbook. I didn’t get 4 months done, but I did get 2! I got January of 2021 and February of 2019. Slowly but surely making progress. πŸ™‚
  5. Monthly Kid Adventure. We did 2 this month since it was spring break! We went to Longhorn Caverns State Park and Mustang Island State Park. Highly recommend both!
  6. Monthly Seasonal Celebration. We did some stuff for Saint Patrick’s Day, but we also made pie for Pi Day which was super fun. πŸ™‚
  7. Staff Development. Whoops. I didn’t even look at this. lol. Oh well.
  8. Windchime Quilt. I got block number 11 done!
  9. Low Volume Log Cabin. Not only did I do 6 blocks, I did 14 AND got them all assembled into a quilt top!
  10. Ice Cream Soda. I got the joining pieces on round 1, and I got 3/7 blocks done for round 4. πŸ™‚

And now for April. πŸ™‚

  1. Hexies. Always hexies. lol. I want to get another block done this month. I’m also teaching a virtual workshop on English Paper Piecing this month so I need to update my presentation.
  2. Caterpillar Quilt. No excuses. I have to design and applique 2 more blocks and then add the last row.
  3. Project Life. I guess finish March 2021?
  4. Scrapbook. I’d love to finish February and March of 2021 and March of 2019. This will never happen. lol.
  5. Monthly Kid Adventure. Not sure where we’re going this month… Need to figure it out!
  6. Monthly Seasonal Celebration. Easter! I even remembered to order white eggs and a dye kit. lol.
  7. Bluebonnet Pictures. I usually do these in March, but I feel like the bluebonnets are coming out a bit late this year. I need to find a good location and figure out some outfits.
  8. 60 Degree Diamond Quilt. I need to pull this out and finish quilting it.
  9. GoPro. RaptorDad got me a GoPro for my birthday! I’m so excited! I would love to edit together a little video this month and put it on the blog. πŸ™‚
  10. Twins Turn 6! The RaptorBabies turn 6 this month! ::sob:: Where has the time gone?!? I need to figure out something to make their birthday fun since we can’t have a party.

Low Volume Log Cabin

My goal was to get 6 more blocks done for this quilt this month, but then I found the perfect backing so I decided just to finish it!

My resident quilt holder decided it was so windy that she’d hold it up like a flag instead. lol.

I adore low volume prints. And you know what? I now adore log cabin blocks! There’s zero seam matching until you sew the blocks together. My kind of quilt! I’m super happy with this top and I can’t wait to get it quilted! Quilting suggestions? I’ll be doing it on my domestic machine and I could generously be described as a newborn quilter. lol.

Mustang Island State Park

I grew up on the coast and I absolutely love the beach. The sound of the waves, the feel of the sand between my toes, it’s the ultimate recharge place for me. And y’all, because of Covid we hadn’t been to the beach for over a year! 13 months to be exact. Well, I decided that it couldn’t be put off any longer! I did a bit of research and the closest beach to us is Corpus Christi. And wouldn’t you know it? Just on the other side of Corpus is a state park! It’s like it was meant to be. lol.

Mustang Island State Park is about 4 hours from us which is a doable drive. I didn’t want to risk staying in a hotel, nor did I want to deal with food and packing, so we decided to do it as a day trip. Which was an insane idea but I regret nothing!

The beach was perfection! I’m actually wondering if they brought in sand after the last hurricane because the sand was so soft and pristine! Mia was beyond thrilled at the giant sand box. lol. We picked up some sand toys at Target curbside and it was totally worth the $10.

I think spring is my favorite time to go to the beach. It’s warm enough to feel like you’re at the beach, but cool enough that my kids are happy just to get their feet wet so I don’t have to worry about them in the water.

No lie, the drive back was brutal, especially because we got stuck behind an accident in San Antonio for a hour. Literally. But it was so worth it! We basically drove for 4.5 hours (we had to make a pit stop to see the World’s Largest Pecan in Seguin!), played at the beach for 3.5 hours, then drove for 5 hours back home. I *may* have limited snacks and water bottles in the car so that we could avoid potty breaks. lol.

What can I say, I’m a sucker for cheesy roadside attractions!

We are fairly cautious when it comes to Covid and I went round and round in my head as to if we should do this or not. But it seemed very safe. We drove, so no exposure there. I did stop to get gas, but I get gas here too. And once we got to the beach, it wasn’t crowded at all so we had no problem keeping to ourselves. I think there was at least 20 feet between us and the next closest person. Plus, the wind was blowing very strongly and the sun was bleaching everything.

And now that I know we can do it in a (very long) day, we might go again the next time we have a day off!