Happy Tutorial Thursday! Today I’m showing you how to make three adorable scissor cases from one template. Along with that I will show you how easy it is to attach a snap fastener and really step up your sewing game!
These are super easy to make and fun to customize too. And of course you can add any fun decor like buttons, binding, elastic etc.
The first case features a snap closure which I will show you how to install. The second has a fun elastic/button closure perfect for larger scissors, and the third case features two pockets which I like to use for a scissor and a pen or seam ripper.
Make one or all three and have fun customizing the colors and styles! I hope you enjoy this project, if you make one of my easy scissor cases make sure to share it on social media, tag @ericaarndt on Instagram and use #easyscissorcase so I can see what you make!
Hello friends! We’re knee deep into our 11th grade homeschool year and today I’m sharing my thoughts on our curriculum choices, what we love and what we don’t!
Overall we’re happy with our choices for 11th grade this year but we have had a few things that aren’t working for us. For two of my other kids we’ve used the Janice Campbell literature units and they did great with them. But for my son it’s not working as well. I honestly think he just needs something a little more structured. He’s doing “okay” with it, and so I’m not planning to swap it out, but I do have to have to stay on top of him a little more with it. Even though it’s a bit challenging for him to stay on track, I do think it’s beneficial for him to learn time management skills and so we’re sticking with it. I also think he could use a little more direction as far as the writing styles go. So for next year we’ll most likely go back to an IEW unit where he’s getting a little more instruction. There are samples and instructions in the Janice Campbell units, but it’s just not quite enough to get him to where I would like to see his writing.
The other thing that we did decide to try at the beginning of the year was BJU English/Grammar. It was kind of a last minute decision and it was something that I wanted to do since he was in high school. I really like other BJU distance online units, so I thought the English would be great. And I think for another student it is probably fine, but unfortunately he was struggling with it and it wasn’t working out for him. So after about two months in we switched back to IEW Fix it! Grammar Book 6 for him and we’re both quite happy with that choice. The IEW lessons make logical sense to him and he does well with it. Apparently I need to take my own advice and not try to fix something that isn’t broken! LOL!
Other than that he’s doing great with everything else we’ve chosen for him this year. I hope to have him moving into dual enrollment classes next year like we did with our older daughter, so I want to make sure he’s on track and ready for those.
Let’s start off by talking about how we can prevent this travesty from happening.
Tip #1: Pre-wash your fabrics. If you have a questionable fabric on hand (reds, browns, navy’s I’m talking to you) you may want to pre-wash it. This will release any residual dye that might otherwise be absorbed into your finished quilt, and possibly save you a lot of heartache in the end. Keep in mind that pre-washing will also cause your fabric to shrink a bit, so you’ll also want to pre-wash the other fabrics you’re planning to use in your project, I just wouldn’t pre-wash them together if you get my drift.
Now I have to confess that I NEVER pre-wash my fabric for quilting because I prefer how it feels straight off of the bolt. It’s nice and smooth and I just feel like it’s easier to get crisp accurate cuts. I guess I just like living on the edge. So I mean, you do you.
Tip #2: Purchase quality materials. While I normally purchase quilting fabric, I decided to save a few bucks on my Winterberry quilt. I needed some solid fabric and so I purchased a fairly inexpensive solid red from a big box store, which shall remain unnamed. I saved about $10-$15. I do NOT recommend this, I would gladly have paid a few more dollars so that my quilt remained beautiful and white. Instead I ended up crying over my bathtub one night as I watched the hot pink water swirl all around my beloved quilt.
So take it from me, buy decent quality fabrics. I’ve never had a quilt bleed like this before, and I always do high contrast quilts typically with a white background. So, learn from my mistakes and save yourself and your quilt.
Tip #3: Wash your quilts in cool water and always include a color catcher if they are high contrast like mine. This method has worked for me for years and I’ve literally never had a quilt bleed before! But then again, I always purchase better quality quilting fabric, except this time….sigh…, and obviously the bleed that came out of this lower quality fabric was just too much for my poor little color catcher to handle.
Now let’s talk about how to fix fabric that has bled.
I’m in the “no quilt left behind” camp. So when I pulled my red and white Winterberry quilt out of the wash and saw all of the horrific hot pink splotches all over my white fabric, I did what any normal person would do and I cried. After that I got mad. And after that I got determined. And let’s just say I wasn’t about to give up on her! I immediately did some research and found a method that I think worked quite well.
I recommend doing this process in your bath tub. You’re going to need a LOT of water, and your washing machine just can’t handle that. So forgo your spa time and give up your tub, your quilt needs it more than you do!
Step 1: Fill a bathtub with HOT water. Normally I avoid hot water on my quilts, however in this case we actually WANT the fabric dye to release from the quilt.
Step 2: Dissolve about 1 cup of Dawn Dish Soap. I prefer ultra pure, but I was out, so I just used the regular kind.
Step 3: Completely submerge your quilt and swish it around. A LOT.
Step 4: Let your quilt soak for 10-12 hours, or overnight.
Step 5: Rinse and repeat steps 1-4 until the water runs clear. Mine took about 5 soak cycles.
Step 6: Use Synthrapol if the dawn isn’t doing the trick!
Step 7: Wash in cool water on gentle cycle and tumble dry low.
Unfortunately I was so distraught that I didn’t take a picture of my quilt at the start of this process. But just imagine a bunch of horrible hot pink splotches all over my lovely white. Here’s a picture of my quilt after the first soak, as you can see the white fabric is very pink, but the first soak did get rid of the hot pink splotches, so that gave me hope.
I mean just look at all of the dye that came out in during the first soak. I can’t even believe it!
I mean seriously.
That water is so pink, I just can’t even.
But with each soak it got lighter and lighter and so did my white background fabric. Interestingly enough, the white faux fur I used on the backing didn’t take the dye at all. It stayed super white throughout this process.
Just keep at it, remember all of that hard work you put into your quilt. Don’t let all of that go to waste, get in there and do your part to save her! After all she deserves to shine!
And here is my quilt after about five soaking cycles. I kept at it until my water ran clear and then did a couple more for good measure. I also did two rinses that were just plain water to help get some of the soap out before putting it back into my machine.
Here’s an up close picture, you can see the pink splotches are mostly gone, and the background fabric is back to a nice creamy white.
And that’s it friends! Just a little bit of time, about three days, and some hard work swishing and swirling my quilt in the bathtub, and thankfully that pesky pink was gone! I was so happy to see that the dawn really did the trick. My quilt does have a very slight pink tint to the white if you look very close, but it is 1000 times better than when I started!
And I’m so happy that all of that hard work I put into my quilt wasn’t wasted on cheap fabric. Now, I know I’ve really harped on the “cheap” fabric bit, but I do want to say that I have heard of higher quality fabrics bleeding as well. I’ve never had that happen with my fabrics, but I still think that a little prevention will go a long way to keeping your quilts happy and the right color. And by right color, I mean white. Because that’s pretty much what I use for all of my backgrounds, and I want my whites to stay that way.
So those are my tips for preventing and fixing fabric bleed. I hope they’ve helped you out, and remember, don’t give up on your quilt! Just a little bit of love can salvage even the pinkest of bleeds!
Hi friends! We’re nearing the half-way mark for our homeschool year, and so today I’m sharing our 9th grade mid-year curriculum review, and letting you know what’s working and what’s not!
Since we’re doing mostly online work for my 9th grader this year, I knew it would be a bit intense and take more time than in years past. I think overall we’re happy with our choice, and I’m not ready to toss anything out at this point. But I will say that doing history, math, science, and Spanish, all online, has been a challenge.
Each of our online subjects take about an hour, and then of course she has English, Writing, and Literature on top of that. So she is definitely putting in some work this year! I think looking back I would probably choose the same curriculum, mainly because I want to keep her on track for graduation. However, I might have used something like Story of the World or Abeka (text book based) for history, or possibly skipped a formal writing curriculum for the year. I feel fairly confident in her writing skills, and since many of her subjects already require her to do writing assignments, we could have probably skipped it this year. As a matter of fact, as some of you may know, she’s already an author!
But in the spirit of not quitting, we have decided to go ahead and finish out the year! That said, I have eased up on some of the BJU assignments that are given out. If you’ve used BJU Press before you’ll know that they have several quizzes, reports, tests, essays, and projects due for each subject. As we go through our week we decide which of those we want to do and which we want to skip. I’ve also allowed her a little leeway on tests, so for example, she has had times where there were a few major tests scheduled all on the same day. If that happens I will usually allow her to spread them out and take one a day instead.
All in all she’s doing well with her schedule, and while I am giving her some leeway as I mentioned before, I also think it’s an good time to start teaching those important time management skills. When she gets to college she will be dealing with managing her classes, and most likely will have multiple tests per day. Especially around mid-terms and finals, so we’re working through that and making sure she has the necessary skills to manage her time without getting too stressed.
Happy Tutorial Thursday! Today I’m showing you how to make these adorable fabric notions bowls to brighten up your sewing space! All of the information is included in the video tutorial, and as always, I do have a PDF pattern for Erica’s Fabric Notions Bowl here for those of you who prefer written instructions!
For this project I used some of my Poppie Cotton fabric stash, these beautiful prints are from their Cherished Moments collection. Check with your local quilt shop or online for this fun fabric. I love shopping small businesses on Etsy for my fabric too!
This adorable little fabric notions bowl finishes at approximately 4-1/2″ in diameter and 2-1/4″ tall.
They’re perfect for storing your smaller notions like wonder clips, thread, labels, buttons and more!
By the way! We have a fun NEW Merch Shop! We do get some proceeds from your purchases there, we hope you like the items, and thank you so much for helping support my blog in this way!
I get so many questions on what we’re doing for high school and college that I wanted to share our plan. Although I know this plan isn’t for everyone, it’s working well for us and we hope to graduate our kids early and virtually debt free!
When I went to college, the path was pretty straight forward. You graduated high school, went to a 4-year university, accumulated a ton of student loans and debt, graduated, and hoped for a job that would pay off all of your debt. Things have changed drastically and now there are so many options out there for higher education.
As a homeschooler, I was worried about college just like everyone else. But now that we’re at this stage of life, I’m so happy to see that our options have increased. Gone are the days where you needed a 4-year degree to pursue your dreams. Depending on what your goals are, there are trade schools, online options, CLEP testing, community college, apprenticeships, military opportunities, and dual enrollment courses that can all work together to get your high schooler to where they want to go.
We are planning to take advantage of a variety of options and will hopefully come out on top, ahead of schedule, and almost debt free!
Before I get in to all of this, I do want to caution you against rushing your student into dual enrollment classes too early. Of course it’s just my opinion, but throwing a younger student into college level classes before they are ready can cause a lot of stress, anxiety, and if they go in person, it can be difficult being the youngest in a class full of adults. Please take this advice as just that, and keep it in mind before rushing into the dual enrollment process. I know there are opportunities to start these classes earlier, but we really wanted our daughter to be comfortable taking these classes and so we waited for her senior year to start. I think it was the right decision for her, but of course your family might be different.
So what are we doing?
We’ve decided on a combination of CLEP testing, dual enrollment classes, online classes, and then will ultimately transfer into a university to complete her bachelor’s degree. So let’s talk about a few of the options that we are taking advantage of. She is also participating in 4H where she’s already earned a few scholarships for her intended degree and of course we’re saving for future courses as well.
What is CLEP testing you ask? CLEP testing is a way to help students earn college credit for what they already know, for the fraction of the cost of a college class. Now I say “fraction” because it’s definitely not free. There is a fee to take the test, and we also paid for a Study.com class to help prepare for the test as well. But considering the cost of a regular college class, it’s definitely a less expensive way to go. Last summer our daughter took the English CLEP test and tested out of that subject earning 3 college credit hours. You can do CLEP tests for a number of subjects, and if your student is comfortable with that route, it can be a great resources. You can learn more about CLEP testing on their website.
After this year, we may try to have her CLEP out of math as well. She is currently taking Shormann Pre-Calculus which is a CLEP preparatory class. Math isn’t typically her strong suit, but if she can test out that is one less class she’ll have to take in the future.
Depending on your state, community colleges often offer free dual enrollment courses to homeschool students. Through these courses kids can receive dual enrollment credits meaning they get high school and college credit for the course at the same time. It’s a great way to take advantage of free credit hours, and speed up the college graduation process as well.
As of last semester, our senior completed 9 free credit hours her first semester, and she’s currently taking 15 more credits her second semester. We didn’t want to rush her into it, so we started her with less credits. But after doing so well, she’s decided to take more this semester. That means she’ll end her senior year with 24 college credits already under her belt. She also earned a small scholarship in one of her classes as well which took care of her book costs this year as well.
The combination of her 3 CLEP credits and her dual enrollment credits she will finish her senior year in high school with a total of 27 college credit hours. She is also considering doing one class this summer so she can finish with a full 30 hours.
In our state she can take another year of classes for free, so she’ll do what’s called a “5th year” consisting of all college classes. She plans to take another 30 credit hours next year. That means she’ll finish high school with 60 college credit hours. From there she will most likely transfer into a university here as a junior and then finish out her two years there to complete her bachelor’s degree. This path should save us about $60,000 in the end! Of course we know things can change, but that’s our current plan.
There are so many online college options now as well! Those classes do tend to be less expensive and a bit more flexible too. Right now her dual enrollment classes are all online, but depending on what she needs for the future we may look at other online options as well.
I just suggest contacting your prospective college or university and see what transfer credits they are willing to accept. Our state universities have all of that information on their website, so you can see what you need to take, and what credits will transfer over directly. That way you can make sure that the classes you are taking will count for the proper degree.
Of course these are just a few options that are working for us, but there are so many other as well. There are Apprenticeships, Career Colleges, like culinary, fashion, and art, Internships, Military opportunities, online colleges, and more. Just remember, there are a lot of options and education can be traditional or alternative depending on what your student is interested in.
I highly suggest sitting down with your high schooler, discussing what they’re interested in, and then coming up with a game plan to get them started off on the right path to help them achieve their goals for the future, whatever that may be!
Happy February friends! I have another freebie for you today, it’s time for my monthly printable calendars! Download the February 2021 FREE Printable Calendarshere and add a little fun into your homeschool day.
For kiddos who need more handwriting and number writing practice, I’ve created a traceable version where they can practice number formation and counting.
I’ve also created one with numbers already printed for students not ready for handwriting, or for students who already know how to write numbers well.
To use the traceable calendar: Have students use a marker or pencil to trace each number, then have student count up to today’s number.
To use the dot calendar: Have students a bingo dabber or small stickers to mark each day as it passes. Have students start back at one and count up to today’s number for counting practice. If they’re ready you might also encourage them to count only odd or even numbers.
Alternate advanced ideas:
Have students create a pattern as they write/mark their dates!
For example write odd numbers in red and even numbers in blue (ABA pattern). For more advanced patterns, use multiple colors to create more patterns.
You can also use stickers to create patterns, for example on day 1 put a star sticker, day 2 a smiley face, day 3 a star, and so on. See below for more pattern ideas.
Here are a few patterns you can encourage your kiddos to use when working with daily calendars:
AAB (i.e.: red, red, blue)
ABBA (i.e.: red, blue, blue, red)
ABAB (i.e.: red, blue, red, blue)
ABC (i.e.: red, blue, green)
There are lots of ways to create patterns, so feel free to get creative with your calendars!
Weather: I’ve also included a small weather graph at the bottom of the monthly calendar as well. Have students either color one square or put an “x” in one square for the appropriate weather each day. At the end of the month compare each weather type to see which type of weather was most/least common.
Hello friends! Well, we made it through our first semester of my daughter’s senior year! Honestly it went so well! She did a great job in her college dual enrollment classes and even won a $100 scholarship for her work in her graphic design course.
Since she’s doing dual enrollment, that means that her classes change at the semester mark, so I thought I would share what she’ll be doing for the 2nd semester of her senior year.
She’s continuing with her Word of Life Challenger Quiet Time for Teens, and Pre-Calculus with Geometry by Shormann Math as those are both going well. I do think the Shormann does a decent job at college preparatory math, it is also a CLEP prep course, so we may have her take the math CLEP and see if she can test out of that at the end of the year. She’s already tested out of the English CLEP so she earned 3 credits that way which was nice.
For her second semester she’ll be doing Psychology 101, Art History 101, Photoshop I and II, Adobe Illustrator, and Business Marketing for Social Media. The last few classes are a lot of fun and go towards her degree in graphic design, the first two are just standard general education courses she’ll have to take either way.
She is just staring there second semester, so I’ll keep you posted, but I’m fairly confident she’ll be able to keep up with all of her courses and by the end of this year she will have 27 undergrad college credits accumulated! We’re discussing the possibility of her taking 1 summer course so she can get a full 30 credit hours this year, then next year she’ll do another year of dual enrollment so she can transfer into a university as a junior.
There are so many different options for higher education now, and while we don’t know if this is the right path for everyone, it’s working for us so far and hopefully we can get her a leg up on college and graduate with as little debt as possible!
Hello and happy Tutorial Thursday! Today I’ll show you how to make these adorable Quilty pin cushions to brighten your sewing space! We will be making the start one in this video tutorial, but I do have a PDF pattern for Erica’s Easy Quilty Pin Cushions here, and the pattern includes all three cute patterns!
For this project I used a beautiful new line from Poppie Cotton called GooseCreek Garden. I love the soft pinks and florals in this line, and I think it made my pin cushions extra cute, don’t you?
These pin cushions finish at about 4.5″ x 4.5″ before stuffing and I just think they’re the perfect size!
As I mentioned, I show you how to create the mini-star pin cushion in the video, and I also wrote up a Mini Pin Cushion PDF Pattern which includes instructions for the star, patchwork, and mini-strawberry as well!
These are perfect stash busters as well, the supplies are super simple:
And I’m not sure what it is, but I just think anything mini is so cute and fun!
And here’s a little humor to end our post, filming with Jax is… shall we say, challenging! He always likes to wait until I have everything set up just right before stepping in. As I was getting my camera ready, he made himself comfy on my set and proceeded to eat my wonder clips just as was trying to take photos of the finished pin cushions!
By the way! We have a fun NEW Merch Shop! We do get some proceeds from your purchases there, we hope you like the items, and thank you so much for helping support my blog in this way!
Hi everyone! I’m excited to kick off 2021 with a fun giveaway for you all! I’ve teamed up with Friends & Heroes and What’s in the Bible to bring you some great homeschooling curriculum!
If you haven’t heard of them before, the What’s in the Bible DVDs feature Buck Denver and his friends, who take your children through the WHOLE Bible. They’re perfect for the entire family to laugh and learn together. In his first new project since VeggieTales®, Phil Vischer has set out to teach kids (and parents!) the story of the Bible, God’s great rescue plan! They share the stories of Moses, Noah, David, and Jesus, and in this groundbreaking new series, kids will learn how they all fit together to tell one big, redemptive story. This is one journey through the Bible you won’t want to miss!
Each week includes 30 minute to an hour of video viewing (approximately)
Fun interactive lessons that dig deeper into many of the Bibles most important stories
Approximately 10 minute devotional to help apply the themes of the week’s Bible study.
Optional interactive games, puzzles to reinforce each weeks lessons.
CD-ROM printables that can be used with multiple children
Parent’s/Teacher’s Lesson Guide including answer keys and certificates of completion
Student Workbook of activities
Friends and Heroes DVD containing full length adventure episodes
Multi-Language Version including 10 different languages and subtitles!
Kids will learn to apply God’s truth from timeless Bible stories such as Daniel in the Lions’ Den, Jesus and the Miraculous Catch of Fish, Ruth and Naomi, Saul on the Road to Damascus, and Jonah and the Big Fish.