Thursday, October 15, 2009

Teaching an 8 Year Old To Sew

My grandson, Gavin, has been asking me for a while now to teach him to sew.  He loves my quilts, he's always enjoyed playing with scraps on my design wall, and he has decided that it is time for him to make a quilt himself.  Since he is going to be 9 in a few weeks, and since I learned about that age, and especially since he was at Gramma's last week, I decided it was time, too!  So, today I am sharing a step by step "tutorial" of sorts on teaching children to way!

First gather all your scraps in one place....
I have to confess. This basket doesn't contain all my scraps.      
I also have scraps here....

and even here!

(And don't tell anyone, but I might even be able to find a few more if I try.)

                        Now, for the next step.
Well, this is what happened next at my house.  It wasn't  exactly planned, but someone (two little rascals named Gavin and Aidan) really had some fun! (You can skip this step if you want!
I had Gavin practice on lined paper for a while with no thread in the needle just to get the basic idea. Then he started putting some scraps together.  He did great!!! (And I am being totally unbiased.)
We only had time for him to finish a single block, which he was so happy with that he wanted me to quilt it right then and make a tiny little quilt from it.  Instead it is hanging on Gramma's design wall waiting for our next sewing day.  And Gramma is really looking forward to that!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Hey! We Survived a Road Trip!

Since the last time I blogged, I haven't been home a lot.  I've been travelling.  I certainly haven't had time to quilt, so there will definitely be no Show-and-Tell today.
From September 12th through the 20th Phil and I went on a little Vacation/Road Trip.  Now, I have to say I have been pretty spoiled and have really learned to like flying "wherever" for vacation.  We haven't done a driving vacation in a long time.  So, I wasn't sure how this whole Road Trip thing would work out, but considering we logged 2600 miles, we really had a great time!  

The first attraction was the BMW Performance Driving School in Greenville, S.C. Phil really loves his BMW, but he would never drive it as hard as he got to drive the cars in the Driving School. He had the biggest smile on his face when they finished! And not just because he placed 3rd in the timed course and 1st in the five-lap race on a wet skid pad!

Next, we spent a day in Washington D.C.  Since we had only planned to be there one day we focused on just a few special things that we wanted to see.   First, we visited the WWII Memorial and were both moved by the beauty of the structure and the special meaning in every aspect of its design. It was really awe-inspiring. If you ever have an opportunity to see this striking monument, it is well worth the time.

Then we saw the Lincoln Memorial. That is a very somber and beautiful monument, as well. It surprised me how respectful and quiet visitors were, but that is a good thing!

We rounded out the day seeing the Smithsonian's "Castle" and the National Gallery of Art and timed it just right to be able to experience DC's rush hour traffic as we headed out to West Chester, PA.

And just what is in West Chester, PA you may ask??  Why, that would be my BFF!

We have been best friends since we were 10 years old (except for that one year, 6th grade, when we didn't speak for almost the whole school year, but we don't talk about that.)  Phil has known Vicki's hubby, Bruce since they were in the 3rd grade, so we have a lot of history and plenty of memories!  While there we had the privilege of touring the House and Studio of American artist N.C.Wyeth and spending some time in the Brandywine River Museum, where quite a lot of artwork by his children and grandchildren is on display.   We also enjoyed an evening with Bruce and Vicki's kids and grandkids, and that was a real special and fun treat!  (And noisy!)
It was really hard to leave there, especially for me.  (I love my BFF!)  But we had reservations at a Bed & Breakfast in Marblehead, OH and plans to see a young friend of ours in Put In Bay.  (Yes, I did say Put In Bay!)  Jennifer works at Stone Laboratories there and gave us a great tour of the island.  We enjoyed a lovely dinner with her at Axel and Harry's and got caught up on what she has been doing and what her plans are.

Next stop, French Lick, IN where we spent a night at the French Lick Springs Resort and Spa. Ahhh, what a great way to finish off our Road Trip! This place is very cool. It's on the National Register of Historic Places, having been built in 1845 around the "miracle waters" of their sulfur springs, and famous guests include the likes of FDR, Clark Gable, Bing Crosby and many more. Not only that, but in 1917 their famous chef created and served tomato juice! How's that for a mini history lesson!?

We almost needed a vacation to recover from our vacation, but isn't that always the way? I can tell you, though, I was very happy to be reunited with my sewing room! Hopefully, I will have something "quilty" to show you one of these days, soon!