Monthly Archives: August 2010

Blog news / Community?

I am not the best blogger – that is the technical stuff is still a challenge for me – so I do not know how to add this as a “widget” to my side bar.  I will keep trying.

The news:  I have joined / been accepted as a blogger for Hearts at Home.

Hearts at Home is a Christ-centered organization that encourages, educates, and equips women in the profession of motherhood.  Hearts offers various resources, including conferences, events, trade books, a website, an online newsletter, and a radio program to encourage mothers. The goal of all resources is to provide encouragement, personal growth opportunities, new ideas, fresh perspective, and renewed vision for the vital role of mother.

My blog is now or soon will be part of their blog list

Since Christ, my home as my ministry and mothering intentionally are all part of my “themes of life” it seemed like a great fit for me.

Here is their statement of faith:

Hearts at Home is a non-denominational, Christ-centered organization. We believe:

  • The Bible is the inspired word of God and is the final authority on all issues pertaining to the Christian life.
  • God exists eternally in three persons: the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
  • Jesus is God’s Son, born of a virgin, fully man yet fully divine.
  • Jesus led a sinless life, died to atone for our sins, was resurrected, ascended to heaven, and will return to take all believers to heaven for eternity.
  • God is active in our lives, and He hears and answers prayer.

By joining their blog team I will be able to share more and more motivational, inspirational “nuggets” with all my friends here.  I know I need, I want to, step beyond my home walls while remaining within my ministry of mother / wife and this seems like a start. I hope it will also encourage me to keep my head up and stay positive after all I can just look around at the community of bloggers and be lifted up.

Anyone want to join me?  🙂

or does anyone want to join my blogroll of homeschooling families?

I’d love a community here.

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How did we do today??

If you have read this blog for any amount of time you understand one of the biggest focuses of our lives is our faith and our parenting; and especially the junction of the  two.

If I accomplish nothing else with my life, the men I raise will be my monument; no matter what else I might accomplish they will speak louder than anything else ever could.

I created a post not to long ago about the 5 Questions I Ask Each Night.

So let’s take a regular day, today, and grade ourselves.

Have we done something to strengthen their minds / intellect

Hummmm can I count the counting in Hide and Seek?  🙂 Really we didn’t do much, very little reading,, nothing stressful; ok we always try to avoid stress.

Sidewalk chalk of the boys names, identification of letters.  Big Brother especially can spell his nick-name (4 letters) and we are working on adding the final 4 letters to spell his entire name.  it is nice that it is only adding, not changing to go from nick-name to real full name.  That was honestly less than 5 minutes.

I am going to count looking at nuts, acorns, and looking for animal prints here too; not so academic but it doesn’t have to be strictly academic if they are thinking.


Have we done something to strength their spirit / faith / their foundation in God?

Our hike this morning was a great glimpse of God and His beauty and creation.  we saw deer prints, and Big Brother spotted a dragon print.  we made an effort to be still and listen, for all of 5 seconds. 🙂   I talked to the boys about God’s creation and the details.  Big Brother and I had an opportunity to talk about being good stewards of the land God gave us when we had to avoid the broken beer bottles; a good discussion about responsibility and behaviors that clearly show disrespect for others.

Today while we were outside i went off to the hill and sat, while the boys were playing together to pray.  Both bo ys, independently came over to me for hugs and kisses.

Little Brother opened my arms, and silently sat in my lap — facing the hill outward like I was — then closed my arms around him.

Have we done something to strengthen their bodies

This morning we took advantage of this mid-west fall day and we o n another family exploring adventures.  Big Brother doesn’t like to go hiking, so we go exploring.  🙂  Goelder woods was our destination today.  45 acres of undeveloped timber.  well somewhat developed, there are a few grills and trails.   we hiked about a mile and played a lot of hide and seek.  Today we “upped” the counting number from 16 to 20; adding some more counting practice.  Sadly we also found a lot of broken beer bottles and many unbroken ones.  The unbroken ones we picked up and removed, but it was sad to have to stop the boys climbing on rocks because of all the broken brown glass.

I think we hikes about a mile, and Big Brother walked the whole way (not always so happily, but he did it).

Have we done something to strengthen their emotional self.

Momma cuddled on the sofa and watched 2 movies with them in the heat of the day, after the hike.  we played outside, and ran the wagon down our sledding hill, that was fun.   This afternoon, last activity before getting ready for bed started, i let them play in the water.  I got them the 2 hoses from the 2 sides of the house and let them water war.  They also washed all the sidewalk chalk off the drive, and washed the wagon (that did need it).   It is my belief that family time, cuddles and play builds them emotionally.  Tonight as every night both boys fell asleep on me or by me.  Little Bother nursed to sleep on the sofa.  After Little Brother was in bed Big Brother, sofa again, put his head in my lap, wrapped his hand in my hair and dozed off peacefully as I petted his hair.  Safe and secure, without anxiety or stress.

Have we done something to strengthen our family bond(s)

All of the above?  🙂  we spent genuine time together as a family — engaged with each other and our reality.  we hiked, we prays, we cuddled.

The boys played together in a real way.

So I ask YOU: how did we do today?

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Getting the Harvest In

Our Garden

The Daddy wanted a garden again this year, a bit bigger than last.  So a garden we have.  It is not large, but it still has not gone great.  The corn (sweet) never grew taller than Big Brother; this was our first year for corn.  I hard from others of struggles in the corn area, so maybe it wasn’t me.  I was looking forward to corn stalks to decorate with too.  The tomatoes have done great (they did well last year).  The peppers also (Big Brother’s hand in the pepper photo too) have done great too.  We have smaller cooking ones, black tomatoes, given to us by a friend.  I am freezing them for salsa.  We have the bigger ones that get sliced up for BLTs (a loved summer dinner here).

The pumpkins and watermelons have totally disappointed me.  They were the things I most wanted to have.  Our own pumpkins for decorating, I thought the boys would love that.

All three of my boys love watermelon too.

We have 2 small (baseball sized) watermelon.  In the photo that is Big Brother touching it, he is not five yet, remember.

I have little faith they are going to get any bigger.

No pumpkins, none.

I got ONE butternut squash, one.

However, we had a part of the garden grow like wildfire and that part was as planted by God, not us. The hand of God is so close if you open your eyes and look.  There are small reminders everywhere you look, if you look.  Such a cool little treat that He gave us.  We have a compost pile, and apparently I am not the best compost-er.  End of last year I tossed the old decorative gourds I had used for decoration all fall in the compost pile.

Well this spring we had a big plant grow right out of the compost pile.  This is really cool, in my opinion.

Every fall we have a party.  We try to do an indoor/outdoor thing with a bonfire, have a chili bar and invite family and friends.  We do a costume theme for the boys, since this is their Halloween and birthday party.  This party started in 2006 when Big Brother turned one.  In the past we’ve done it at the very end of Oct (Little Brother birthday is in late Oct and Big Brother’s is in mid-Nov.) especially since Halloween is a favorite event around here.  This year we are planning it for earlier in the month of October in hopes of a better chance at good weather.

We decorate for Halloween / fall for the event rather than a “children’s birthday theme”.

I am really excited that this year we can decorate for the event with all our own gourds.  Silly maybe, but it is something I can say I accomplished out of my garden.  I have a long way to go to be the “homemaker” of my dreams with my own bounty on the slf to feed my family though the long winter, but it is something.  I have so many friends canning and “putting up the harvest” I am excited to decorate with my own gourds; it is something.  Further each of them is a little gift from God, a tiny reminder of His unexpected, of His plan, not our’s.  Also He planted two plants; we got both yellow and orange gourds!!  I was stunned at how big the leaves on the vines got, and how long and thick the veins got.

Today the boys and I gathered in the harvest.  I left a few on the vein in hopes of them getting bigger, but most of them we picked them.  The boys started out with a nice hose war, uninterested in my efforts until I sent Big Brother for the wagon.  Then they both decided to help momma.  Little Brother DID get to pick a couple, but I never got a good picture.  You will notice the pictures Big Brother took of momma and Little Brother turned out nicely.

After they were all picked I had the boys scrub them up.  Little Brother by this point had stripped.  The boys got a nice 90+ minutes in the bright fall sunshine and fresh air; and we got the harvest in.

Our Garden

The Daddy wanted a garden again this year, a bit bigger than last.  So a garden we have.  It is not large, but it still has not gone great.  The corn (sweet) never grew taller than Big Brother; this was our first year for corn.  I was looking forward to corn stalks to decorate with too.  The tomatoes have done great (they did well last year) and the peppers also.  We have smaller cooking ones, black tomatoes, given to us by a friend.  The ones in this picture are green, but the get a reddish black when ripe.  I am freezing them for salsa.  We have the bigger ones that get sliced up for BLTs (a loved summer dinner here).

The pumpkins and watermelons have totally disappointed me.  They were the things I most wanted to have.  Our own pumpkins for decorating, I thought the boys would love that.  All three of my boys love watermelon too.  We have 2 small (baseball sized) watermelon.  In the photo that is Big Brother touching it, he is not five yet, remember.  I have little faith they are going to get any bigger.  No pumpkins, none.  I got ONE butternut squash, one.

However, we had a part of the garden grow like wildfire and that part was as planted by God, not us.  The hand of God is so close if you open your eyes and look.  Such a cool little treat that He gave us.  We have a compost pile, and apparently I am not the best compost-er.  End of last year I tossed the old decorative gourds I had used for decoration all fall in the compost pile.  Well this spring we had a big plant grow right out of the compost pile.  This is really cool, in my opinion.

Every fall we have a party.  We try to do an indoor/outdoor thing with a bonfire, have a chili bar and invite family and friends.  We do a costume theme for the boys, since this is their Halloween and birthday party.  This party started in 2006 when Big Brother turned one.  In the past we’ve done it at the very end of Oct (Little Brother birthday is in late Oct and Big Brother’s is in mid-Nov.) especially since Halloween is a favorite event around here.  This year we are planning it for earlier in the month of October in hopes of a better chance at good weather.  We decorate for Halloween / fall for the event rather than a “children’s birthday theme”.

I am really excited that this year we can decorate for the event with all our own gourds.  Silly maybe, but it is something I can say I accomplished out of my garden.  I have so many friends canning and “putting up the harvest” I am excited to decorate with my own gourds; it is something.  Further each of them is a little gift from God, a tiny reminder of His unexpected, of His plan, not our’s.  Also He planted two plants; we got both yellow and orange gourds!!  I was stunned at how big the leaves on the vines got, and how long and thick the veins got.

Today the boys and I gathered in the harvest.  I left a few on the vein in hopes of them getting bigger, but most of them we picked them.  The boys started out with a nice hose war, uninterested in my efforts until I sent Big Brother for the wagon.  Then they both decided to help momma.  Little Brother DID get to pick a couple, but I never got a good picture.  You will notice the pictures Big Brother took of momma and Little Brother turned out nicely.

After they were all picked I had the boys scrub them up.  Little Brother by this point had stripped.  The boys got a nice 90+ minutes in the bright fall sunshine and fresh air; and we got the harvest in.

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8.25.10

August 25th 2010

My 4 yo corrected my reading today.  Kinda.  🙂  he was showing me pictures out of his bible and I was talking about the story – I was nursing Little Brother and not actually reading the book, especially since Big Brother was flipping pages so fast.  He saw a picture of Jonah falling into the whales mouth and said something, I told him “Jonah did not obey God and tried to go the wrong way.  God created a storm and Jonah ended up in the whale”  Big Brother said “no momma it says a big fish, it doesn’t say whale”.  He was RIGHT, the text under the pictures – 2 lines – did have the phrase ‘big fish” in it and did not have “whale” in it.  Big Brother went on to say “b-b-b-big f-f-f-fish  … a b and an f.  w-w-w-whale, that starts with a w.  no w See momma”.  My boy is so smart.

This afternoon he brought me one of his bibles and asked to “read about the bad guy” I thought he wanted to read Samson and Goliath

as he like to be Samson and be strong, he said “No momma the _____ and the _______ one” I told him I am sorry I can’t understand you” he said “Let my people go” Ahhhh he was trying to say Pharaoh and the Israelites.  I asked him if that is what he meant and he said “Yes that bad king guy” I did finally get him to say Pharaoh and the Israelites clear enough I could understand it, but I am not sure anyone else would be able to.  I was so pleased; his “Bible memory” is really expanding.

Library today.  Big brother was rather random in his choices; not like he usually is.  However a mom and a little girl, maybe his age or so, were having a scene outside the door (opens into park with small set of play equipment) and I think he was somewhat unsettled by that.  Mom yelling, child crying.  So here are the books we brought home today.

Green Puppy Goes to the Dentist.  Yesssss a Blue’s Clues book.  Oy I hate TV books, but this one was not too badly written.

Doom in a Box. Superman.  A repeat visitor to our home.

Paddington Bear in the Garden. Cute, I like it.  One we have checked out several times.

The Cow that wouldn’t Come Down.  By Johnson.  Creative.

We The People the Story of Our Constitution.  By Cheney.  Off the non-fiction shelf.  I grabbed it.  Too old for the boys now, but Big brother has looked at the pictures some.

In My Back Yard.  Little brother is in love.  It is a simple counting books with great pictures of animals.  Little Brother, yes LITTLE Brother sat with me over 10 minutes in a row and turned pages and pointed and yell.  He pointed to each of the numerals.  Back and forth, back and forth though the book.  I have never seen such an interest in a book.  I was not allowed to read it, but we sat together and looked at it and talked about it.

Robin’s Room by Margaret wise Brown.  I am not sure how I feel about this book.  Odd.  Half way though you turn the book over – like upside down – then you are turning pages the wrong way for the rest of the book.  Ok, the story and art work are cute – and with out the gymnastics I’d say it vas a good book to check out, though not buy.  However, the gymnastics really needs an amazing and awesome book, and this is not.  So it is ok.  Hope he doesn’t choose it again.

What’s Alice Up to.  By Jessup.  It is written from the prospective of the dog.  Cute.

Franklin Runs Away.  Yes another TV book, but for the life on me I do not think they have seen Franklin on TV, unless maybe at Pa Pa’s house.

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Seeking God in the daily life of a Momma

It frequently grabs my attention how God works.  About a month ago I cam across several quotes by the Blessed Mother Teresa.  I love quotes and am a sucker for any page of them.  Several of her’s spoke to me that day and I saved them here and began loosely drafting a blog post (this post) around them; asking myself what did she have to say to me, a mom in the middle of the US in the middle of a field trying to keep two little boys alive, fed and educated too.  I was not in any hurry just jotting down thoughts as they came to me.  Now I realize, thanks to a wonderful friend’s reminder, that we are approaching the anniversary of her death AND then learn that she would have been 100 this month also.  I felt obliged to finish off this post and get it posted; but it is interesting to me that this writing started a month before I was reminded of the anniversary.

It seems incredible to me that we lost this gem 13 years ago; she would have been 100 this August 26th.  The Blessed Mother Teresa is a role model to us all, a stunning example of deep personal faith and the amazing amount God can accomplish though any of us that are willing to give ourselves, and our efforts over to Him.  She was a living breathing example, blasted on the nightly news, of the effectiveness of faith.  She spoke to a generation.

One of the Blessed Mother Teresa’s most famous quotes is: Let’s do something beautiful for God.

What could be more beautiful than raising our children, and managing our home for His glory?  Our children, what more could we ever dream to do for our Father, for the world in general?  We are not all called to mission to the world at large, maybe we quietly raise the next great man or woman of God now?  There is a mission field in your living room.

I am certainly not blogging on Biblical interpretations, I am no where near that smart, learned, or educated.  I have no education or credential to allow me to speak with standing on anything Biblical.

Nevertheless I think our faith and the Bible warrants application to our lives, mandates it.  The day to day application of our faith to our lives is a subject I feel is open to us all to consider and expound on.  I think that as a community, many of us mother’s (not all and we love you who aren’t) we have a right to discuss the Bible, the teaching and our lives in light of them.

We are called to encourage each other, to challenge and lead one another, to be accountable to one another.  Titus 2:3 Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, 4 and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, 5 to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled.

So come with me just a mom and believer to talk about, think about, the Bible some more and how we can apply commandments directly to lives of sippy cups and picture books that we live in this season.

Today are you enjoying or enduring: are you merely surviving or thriving in the place God has planted you?  More importantly if you are surviving and enduring, why are you not thriving and enjoying?  You are where are, I am where I am for a reason.

Ecclesiastes 3:1 For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven…4 a time to weep, and a time to laugh; time to mourn, and a time to dance…9 What gain has the worker from his toil? 10 I have seen the business that God has given to the children of man to be busy with. 11 He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, he has put eternity into man’s heart, yet so that he cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end. 12 I perceived that there is nothing better for them than to be joyful and to do good as long as they live; 13 also that everyone should eat and drink and take pleasure in all his toil—this is God’s gift to man.

Our tasks, our chores, or challenges are a gift from God.  Ok I’d rather have a pony too, but that does put them in a whole new light, doesn’t it?  Our families, and their care, are our blessings to enjoy, not hardships to endure.  In Psalm 16:11 it says, “in His presence is fullness of joy”.  So there is fullness of joy in that sink of dishes, that basket of dirty laundry.  You are where you are because God wants you there; He has a reason, a mission a need for you.  I need this reminder right now as much, or more, than the next of you.  Read this as my reminder to myself, my call for you to join me.

what encouragement can the Blessed Mother, her life so different than mine (and I bet your’s) on a day to day life can offer us, mentoring us even today as we approach the 13th anniversary of her death.

There is always the danger that we may just do the work for the sake of the work. This is where the respect and the love and the devotion come in — that we do it to God, to Christ, and that’s why we try to do it as beautifully as possible. — the Blessed Mother Teresa

I mother two blessing today.  My friend mothers nine, another friend who is mothering seven.  Michelle Duggaer mothers 19.  How many did the Blessed Mother Teresa mother?  We must remember we are in this place in, in this time in our lives because it severs God, and we have ample opportunity to love and Serve now, here, today.  All work can be for God.  Mopping, reading bed-time stores, fixing another snack; God is there.  Invite the ‘glorious into the mundane’ to turn the mundane tasks of running a household in to acts of service to not only our family but our Lord.

Seek to find God in the details of life, the muddy foot prints, the smashed dandelions pressed into your hand by a smiling and grubby two year old; jelly covered faces.  Can there be a better example than The Blessed Mother Teresa for the challenge of seeking God and service in the unglamorous, daily, never ends task of caring for others (some of whom can not care for themselves, some of whom we are the entire world to?).  We need to deepen our call to love and serve God in ourselves, our neighbors and in all of creation.

How do we pray in a world that seems to be moving in fast-forward? How do we grow in the contemplative dimension of our Christian life in a culture in that is constantly moving?  Look back:  “be filled with all the fullness of God” (Ephesians 3:19).  How amazing could your prayer life be, if as you fill the sink to wash up after dinner you prayed “Thanks be to You Father for this family, this home and all your previsions given so freely to us”?

STOP and see God.  The toddler covered head to toe in mud and GRINNING TO EAR; the baby trying to feed himself with blueberries in his hair.  These are our daily opportunities to see God.   So is the pile of dishes, for that says “Thank you God that I was able to feed my family their fill today”; the pile of dirty laundry that says “thank you God that my children, my family, have clothes enough to change”.

There is no trick or magic blessing to convert these raw materials of daily living into a life of contemplative ease. All we have to do is downshift our frenetic pace and begin to live with mindfulness, the prayerful awareness that all that is contains the fullness of God’s glory. Before you get out of bed each day ask God to show himself to you, He will be faithful to do so.  Each of us can be contemplative; it is a skill to learn, a habit to develop, a life skill to teach our children.  I am confident the Blessed Mother Teresa did more practical work any day that I do in my “best” day.  She served her God in the place He put her for the time He put her there.

We need to find God, and he cannot be found in noise and restlessness. God is the friend of silence. See how nature — trees, flowers, grass — grows in silence; see the stars, the moon and the sun, how they move in silence… We need silence to be able to touch souls.the Blessed Mother Teresa

Try to feel the need for prayer often during the day and take the trouble to pray. Prayer make the heart large enough until it can contain God’s gift of Himself. Ask and seek, and your heart will grow big enough to receive Him and keep Him as your own. the Blessed Mother Teresa

To learn more about the amazing woman, tool of God, born Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu and known to us as the Blessed Mother Teresa please see  http://www.ewtn.com/motherteresa/ or http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mother_Teresa.

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“new” books :0)

Went to the used book store in Winterset again, they are still running 50% off books.  I love that.

For fun for the boys I got:

  1. Horses a First Discovery Book.
  2. Animals in the wild.
  3. Make it Balance: Let’s Explore Science.

For Our Read-a-Loud shelf I got:

  1. Adventures Here and There.  Published in 1958
  2. My own Book of Animal Stories. Published in 1994.

For school this fall, or when we get to it, I got:

  1. What Holds My Bones Together? And other questions kids ask About How Their Bodies work.  A Scholastic book.
  2. Why Does My Nose Run?  And other questions kids ask about what Makes Them Sick & Not Sick.  A Scholastic book.
  3. My Amazing Body: Staying Healthy. A Raintree Perspective book. 
  4. My Amazing Body: Eating. A Raintree Perspective book.

I am planning a “unit” on the human body, the basics of how it works, and food and good vs bad food and the NEED for food to our body.  I am really excited to add these 4 books to the others I have been collecting some from dear friends and some from paperbackswap.com.  I continue to watch the used book store too.  Here is what I had before this great trip:

  1. Use Your Brain: a Let’s read and Find Out Science Book
  2. Eat Healthy, Feel Great.  A Sears book.
  3. You Can’t See Your Bones with Binoculars; a Guide to your 206 Bones.
  4. My Amazing Body; a First Look Book.

I am not planning anything too detailed or pushy; my main goal is start to make a connection between Big Brother’s body and food for him.  My real inspiration is to get him to eat more, and eat better; to show him “why”.  In keeping with our belief that academics should never be pushed this young (Big Brother will turn 5 in Nov this year) we won’t be doing real lessons.  I will start “stacking the stack” at book time, and momma choice will be a book or two about the body and food.  Then, as we shop or cook or eat I will start drawing on what we have read and having simple conservations.  We do that now, but Big brother doesn’t seem to have the foundation to make the connections, he needs more hooks, more exposure to the building concepts.  I will find a few crafts for us to do, and some coloring.  If Big Brother seems into it we might make a book about the body or something he can show the grandparents.

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First Attempt at Fabric Art

Our first attempt at fabric Art

NOTE:  This was going to be part 1 of 2; but the boys really did not show that much excitement or interest in the fabric art, and have not asked about it since we finished it – so as I had no clear “what to do with this creations once it was done” (that is it was not a gift or part of a bigger project) I am just going to let it fade.  We did it, I learned some stuff.  I DO have some holiday plans using this technique but for now we will not go back to it

Oyyy I am getting brave, or nuts.  I actually tried fabric art with my boys.  MY BOYS and NON-washable paint.  Yes, me.  I know you can’t believe it, I can hardly believe it myself.  ??

After I bought the paint, I just sat and looked at it like, uhhh do I really want to try this??   Boy the changes in me now that I am not only a mom to 2 boys but as a homeschooling mom of 2 boys.  Believe it or not the “home school’ title does push me – I can’t skate and say “oh they do messy art at pre-school” or “they can ______ at school” it is all me, as it should be, but I have to go beyond my comfort zones to be sure I am giving them a full experience.   No cool projects coming home, they are making them AT HOME.  I love it this way – I am growing right along with them.   They push my comfort zone along at a dizzying pace.

Inspired by this blog post by a dear Momma’s buddy: http://chickiepeaspod.wordpress.com/

The original art project she worked from can he found here:  http://thatartistwoman.blogspot.com/2008/09/how-to-do-fall-glue-batik.html and here http://thatartistwoman.blogspot.com/2008/07/kid-friendly-batik.html

I started with some 24 month one-ies that were too stained to hand-me-down.  I pulled them tight over cardboard to hold the fabric for the boys.  This allowed the fabric to be stretched tight, and held kind of still for the boys, it also gave it a “handle” of sorts to be grabbed by the boys and by momma when wet.

The plan was, to remove it, restrech it, and have them paint the other side.  This proved to be a mistake!!  (you’ll see)

I did a simple design in washable glue (Elmers School glue) the night before; a butterfly on one and a happy face on the other.  Frankly, at the time, I had a hard time thinking of big simple objects to do for them.I had the boys use actual paintbrushes and talked a lot to Big Brother about not “scrubbing” the brush and painting in one direction.  Little Brother was annoyed not to get to paint on his hands and body, and did not seem all that interested in the project.

This was the first time we worked on one-paint-brush-per-color and they stay here.  Big Brother just doesn’t think it is art unless he gets to mix colors, mixing the colors is all he is really interested in, not the picture or the project.

It seems so obvious now, that the cardboard would be a bad idea.  The paint and glue soaked though the fabric and “glued” the fabric to the cardboard anyplace they touched – so the whole area of the “art”.  The fabric stuck to the cardboard.  I realized as I tore the fabric off the backing, that maybe if I had removed it wet and then just hung the fabric on the drying rack to dry things might have been better.  Live and learn.

As it was, I did not think of that in time, though, again, the paint and glue sticking the fabric to the cardboard seems so obvious in retrospect.  I torn the fabric off the cardboard and tossed the 2 pieces in the washing machine on hot.

I was lucky, yes there was a little brown paper in the washer after the run,

no more than if I had washed a brown receipt, and the fabric was FINE.

All the paper came off and no damage was done to the art.  I was really astonished at how clearly the glue design was.  The school glue of course prevented the paint soaking into the fabric; then it washed out.  The paint being non-washable did not wash out (and did maintain its color well) and the glue did – thus the nice white patterns.  I can see letting the boys use this to make a flag for the family, or for their room; I was really happy.   My uncreative mind is already churning on how to make useful or practical Christmas gifts with this process (for the boys to give).

Things learned:

  1. paint and glue soak though the fabric and attach to cardboard and thus attach the fabric to the “backing”
  2. the boys are still really ready for “pictures” they just enjoy the process of getting messy and mixing the colors and that is just fine.
  3. Big Brother really needs more work on fine motor; if he holds the brush correctly he has no strength behind it.

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