Thursday, May 19, 2016

Modest Swimsuit Tutorial

Here's a little tutorial for sewing your own modest swimsuit bottoms, which have become completely impossible to find in stores!

I used three different patterns for this suit- the Grand Slam by Peekaboo for the top, the Skater skirt (modified) by Peekaboo, and the Love Notions leggings pattern (which is free!).  The fabric I also purchased from Peekaboo which is AMAZING quality.  I used some other fabric for another swimsuit and it wasn't nearly as nice to work with.  Still cute though, and it was my practice run.

This one I used the same bottoms, but I used the Peekaboo Little Miss Sunshine tee because I intended it for indoor swim lessons and didn't need it for sun coverage.

First- some tips for sewing with swim material.  Swimsuits have something called "negative ease", meaning they are smaller than your body for purposes of staying put in water.  I sized down on the leggings part, but not the skirt, as it's not part of how the suit stays on the body.  Just keep that in mind with sizing purposes. 
Second, I used a serger, so I'm not sure how this would turn out trying to use a stretch stitch on a regular machine.  I never had any success with sewing knits like that, but that doesn't mean its not possible!  
Third, like knits, you can poke holes in your fabric with your pins.  I use wonder clips to avoid this.  When sewing with swim, you should use as many as you can.  This stuff is WIGGLY! 
Fourth, for girls suits, you might want to line light colors in the front.  I did for the pineapple suit, but not for the black floral, it was plenty dark so I didn't worry about how it would look wet. 

See?  Lots of clips!

Now for the tutorial!

1- Cut two of the leggings (one right and one left- flip the pattern for this)

2- Cut two of the skirt section. I cut 6 inches off the pattern to make it more of a flounce, and less of a full skirt. 

3. Cut your waistband.  I changed mine to 9 x 18" because I didn't want her tummy showing if the shirt came up at all.  Last year her rashguard always would ride up and she'd get burned on her back. 

4. Clip all your seams together. 

5. After sewing your seams, you can press them on lower heat.  I sew my leggings by stitching the legs individually, then turning one right side out and putting inside the other and then sewing the crotch seam.  I can't remember if that's how the instructions say to do it, it's just my method of preference. 

6. You now have all your pieces sewn- now divide each one into quarters and mark with pins. This is the only time I use pins, there is just not a great way around it.  

7. Match up your pins.  First do the leggings into the skirt- clip at quarter points. They should be relatively similar in size and shouldn't give you much trouble. 

8. The slightly difficult part is getting them attached to your tiny waistband. Attach at quarter points or more often if you need to.  Stretch your waistband to fit as you sew CAREFULLY- do not stretch the outer skirt, and always make sure you have all the pieces and none have slipped out.

9. Ta da!  It's almost done! It's okay if its wavy where it attaches to the skirt a bit.  It will smooth out on your kiddo.  

Now you just need to hem as you will- I hemmed the legs but left the skirt unhemmed.  It hangs nicely that way (like a flounce) and will not unravel or fray, but its up to you of course. And you are ready for the beach!

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Fabric Sources

Here is a list of my favorite fabric sources, some are more budget friendly than others! :)  I haven't been successful in finding any cotton/lycra at a decent price in town, so I order almost only online.  Be careful of weight when ordering and fabric content. I prefer at least 9-10 oz and 95/5 cotton lycra.  Here's a new pic of the kiddos!  Headband and skirt fabric are from Peekaboo and stretch lace and solid fabric from my top are Purple Seamstress.

Purple Seamstress on FB
Awesome source for all your solids and yarn dyed stripe needs.  Everything is a great weight and very inexpensive.  You can request a swatch card so you can see all of her colors.  Ships super fast, like have your fabric in 48-72 hours from ordering! Super nice and also stocks stretch lace.  You message her on FB to order.

Sahara Fabrics
Pretty customs, gorgeous weight.

Peekaboo Fabrics (also where I get most of my patterns)
Hello GORGEOUS custom prints.  Can be pricey but oh-so-worth it. She is super sweet and always has adorable BOY prints which is so hard to find. Also stocks solids, Art Gallery knits (pretty decent weight but nothing like customs) and Riley Blake (which I've never bought).  Super nice and helpful also.

EuroGirls Knits
Buttery soft, super thick and POLKA DOTS of every color!  I love their fabrics.  Always has a coupon code if you join their FB group.

NR Fabrics
Great shipping, prints that are cute but not custom prices.  Has a coupon code in her FB group for her etsy store.

Kiddie Prints 
A custom group that stocks a lot of Disney themed knits.  Recently their knits have gotten a bit of a slinky feel which I don't love, but I'm willing to work with because their designs are SO cute.

Girl Charlee
This one you just have to be careful about fabric weights.  Very trendy knits but I don't love the quality all the time.  I also don't recommend their solids, which pill (IMHO).  But if you are looking for something super trendy and don't mind some long and kind of expensive shipping (lol) they are the place to go for sure!

Monday, June 9, 2014

Curriculum for First Grade

Here is our curriculum for First Grade.  We aren't taking a break this summer as baby will be coming in August, Lord willing, and we'll take a break then.  I'd still like a new maze book and logic book, but this is plenty for now!


BJU Bible Truths- A Father's Care (grade 1)


The Usborne Book of Famous Paintings

Usborne My Very First Art Colouring Book


Peterson Color in Field Guide: Butterflies

Peterson Color in Field Guide: Wildflowers


Math in Focus, Singapore Approach (grade 1)

Math in Focus Singapore Approach workbook


Sonlight Science A


A Reason for Handwriting Manuscript A


The Best Sight Word Book Ever

Finishing up...  Teach your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons

History and Geography- (We use these as a base and do unit studies or focus on things that interest her)

Usborne Sticker Kings and Queens

Usborne Sticker Fashion Long Ago

Usborne Sticker Costumes Around the World

My Pop Up World Atlas

Beginning Geography (Continuing this one)

Usborne Living Long Ago

Usborne A Street Through Time

Extras- (E loves the R/S/L books, so we use them to change things up if we're bored, or just for play)

Ready Set Learn Time

Ready Set Learn Vowels

R/S/L First Grade Activities

R/S/L Printing Practice

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Review of our Kindergarten Homeschool Curriculum

I need to write this all down for future schooling purposes!  This post will contain all the curriculum we bought, then what we liked/ didn't like/ used/ didn't use.

Fun at our zoo- they have zoo school classes we do every once in a while. 

What we bought to start with, in blue.  What I bought later in red.  A pic of our daily schedule- this way we cover all our bases!  I plan on chalkboarding this at some point.  Bought the chalkboard, just need the energy and motivation to do it, ha!

Language Arts-

A Reason for Writing

We absolutely loved this.  She finished it in late March/ early April. We bought the first grade level, but it seems like a BIG jump from the kinder one we enjoyed so much, so we are waiting on using that one for a while. 

Language Lessons for Little Ones

Ehhhh.... it's okay.  We liked the paintings and the poetry.  The rest was a little useless, since we were doing reading elsewhere.  We can use it for any future children, so I'm glad we have it as an introduction to art and poetry.  

Lined paper/ pencils (Sonlight)

We use this all the time for free writing. 

Teach your Child to Read in 100 Lessons
(we already own this... we started with it and got bored, but I'd like to continue with it)

Love this one.  We are continuing to use it, mixed with a sight word book.  She's breezing right along with reading, and this was probably the best purchase of all of our school books. 

Learning how to play go fish at Gigi's. 

Ready Set Learn Sight Words

I love the Ready Set Learn books.  They are SO inexpensive and they have a sticker chart with a sticker for every page you complete.  E gets a big kick out of the sticker charts and tracking her progress.  I felt like we needed something for sight words since, lets face it, phonics just can't do it all in the wacky English language. 

Ready Set Learn Word Games

Some of these she can't do yet, but some are perfectly fine for her.  Just a fun extra she likes to do sometimes. 


Sonlight Science

We started with this one, but I decided to save it for next year.  It was a bit over her head, and she didn't find it interesting at all.  We did use all the books that came with it though, and enjoyed those a lot.  I'm saving this for first grade. 

Let's read and find out books

I love these, super interesting, and the way we ended up doing science was once a week mainly, and focusing on some fun topic she liked, reading about it, and then doing an art project to go along with it.  Topic books work great for this. 

Usborne look inside your body

She loves this book so much she actually requests it for bedtime reading.  Lots and lots of fun and flaps. 

Other than this we used library books and a few science books (single topic) that I picked up along the way.

And some nature journaling too. 


Teach Them Spanish

I was really annoyed that this book requires you to have a copy machine.  Which I don't.  It has printing on both sides of the page, which it often wants you to cut up.  Really irritating.  Pretty repetitive book too, the subject matter was fine though.  Not a love, not a hate.


Singapore Math B

Ours came as one book, not sure why I linked to two books.  But this has been fine.  We don't loooove math, and E doesn't seem to enjoy this book too much, but it works.  I like the concepts. 

Activity book

Lollipop logic

She loved this book and finished it pretty quickly.  Definitely a good purchase!  I really liked how it seemed to teach her *how* to think about problems. 

Hooked on Math Kindergarten

E's favorite math book.  Finished it early. 

When she finished the book, with the certificate from the end.  We do a lot of school in princess gear :)


Timberdoodle Beginning Geography

Was a bit much at first, but perfect about halfway through our year.

My Pop Up World Atlas

Great resource for fun exploring. 

Melissa and Doug World Map Puzzle

Fun add on. 


Usborne living long ago

A street through time

Both fun books to read and look at.  Usually for "history" we focus on a period in time- like Egypt, during Passover, and read books about Egypt, and Moses, etc.  This works really well for us and I think we'll continue this idea next year.


Memory Verse CD

GREAT way to memorize scripture.  I learned them all too!

Berenstein Bears Bible Storybook

I really like this bible storybook.  Much more in depth than our others. Combined with the Jesus Storybook Bible, everything I wanted covered was there.

A Child's Book of Character Building

Meh.  Allright.  We do this once a week, next year I plan on doing something different.  It works though.  A lot of the stories focus on school, which isn't my favorite. 


Ready Set Learn Time

Kumon Amazing Mazes

Love both of these.

All in all, a great year!  Lots of enjoyable learning and bonding.  I'm so very thankful for all the blessings in homeschooling- I see her relationship with her brother growing and her sweet spirit shining brightly.  I can't imagine packing my sweet baby off to a school for eight hours a day, I just couldn't do it.  Lord willing we'll continue schooling through the summer and then take some time off when the baby comes in August, and pick back up in the fall!  We still do school for about an hour each day.  It's amazing what you can accomplish in an hour.  And we both love the one on one time we get with school!

Sweet sibling love at our neighborhood weekly bible study. 

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Thirty days of October Fun! -Week One-

Thought I'd try to take a picture and make a little post every day in October!  Here's the first week- I'll edit this post as the week progresses.

Day One
We have a little rotating Bible time with the neighborhood kiddos- it's so much fun!  We hosted this week- read The Pumpkin Parable, played some cute games, sang Jesus wants me for a Sonbeam, and made jack o lanterns from paper plates and their hand prints were the leaves :)

Getting her face painted later that night at Neighborhood Night Out.  It amazes me how still that little gal can be sometimes!  She was like a statue :)

Day Two:
Evie and I made a black and orange paper chain (lots of good fine motor skills in the glueing and weaving together!)  Originally we were going to have 31 links and tear off one each day until trick or treating, but she decided she'd rather keep it whole.  It amazed me how much she enjoyed making this!

Day Three:
We planted mums today in her mommy made Red Riding Hood dress!

A better shot of the dress from the other day when she wore it the first time. 

Day Four:

We took a fall leaf finding bike ride and then did leaf rubbings, in her mommy made rainbow pony skirt!

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Our DIY Homeschool Calendar!

I wanted to incorporate a calendar time for Miss E into our school this year, but since we don't have a school room, and we do our learning in the kitchen/ breakfast room, I didn't want to have some primary colored kiddie calendar that looked silly in our house.  I love those calendars, don't get me wrong, but our house is an open floor plan type of look, so we just don't have a kid colored area.  I was planning on just hand drawing it, but my awesome and SUPER talented friend Lindsay designed it on her fancy pants computer instead... and can I just say, did an amazing job!  

I pretty much just sat next to her in awe and watched her make magic with her computer. 

Then I went home and tried to make some pockets with just my hand lettering.  
Not so pretty.  I threw these away!

So I ended up typing them up on the computer in the matching font and making pockets with contact paper.  25 year old contact paper.  No lie, my mom bought the roll when my brother went to school.  Now that was an investment, lol! 

It has a Weather area (I used these printables from Learn Create Love), a sight words area (I used the dolch kinder list and cut them out), a season area, and a Catechism (Westminster Shorter) question area.  If anyone would like the questions, I typed them up all prettily and can email them to you :)  I would post the file, but as I am not computer savvy, the best I can do is email!

We are using these videos each day to learn the days of the week and months (another one here) of the year.  Each day she writes the day and temperature on with a dry erase marker, and we do a sight word and catechism question as we learn them.  She pastes them in her journal when she has one memorized.  So far its been great fun! :)