Thursday, August 25, 2011

More Bracelets!

I've been playing!  I am lovin' creating with wire.  These designs are not my own, but they've been good practice in getting comfortable with the medium.  Each one is hand-crafted copper wire, artificially aged, and polished. 

This one is made from copper washers that have been hammered, layered, and linked together.  It is finished with a toggle clasp.
The next is a series of spiraled links connected with jump rings and finished with a hook.
Last is a very lightweight piece made up of a variety of spiraled links joined with jump rings and finished with a spiraled hook.
Which is your favorite?

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Our first day (NOT) back to school

Last night we had a mom's meeting for our homeschool group and opened the evening by introducing ourselves and stating how long we've been homeschooling.  I hesitated...5? ...Really?...this is our 5th year?!
I began my homeschool journey assuming that it was what I would do for a year and see how it goes.  I knew that it was the Lord that had laid it on my heart to raise our children this way, but I honestly didn't know how long it would last. 
So, here we are.  My oldest, who was just in Kindergarten when we began homeschooling, is starting 5th, my sassy girl is starting 3rd, and my little man is doing K....sigh....
Today was our first day back....Not back-to-school or even back-to-learning.  That's always going on.  But, it was our first day back on schedule and starting in on our new curriculum.  We had a wonderful first day.  A bit light on the workload to start, but overall productive. 
Happy Homeschooling All!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Cleaning the Classroom

Well, I spent most of the morning doing some more planning, organizing, and cleaning.  Our classroom is just about done, so I thought I'd share my progress.  This room used to be our livingroom, but shortly after deciding to homeschool it turned into our classroom.  We have a familyroom so it's really a blessing to have this space just for us to work in.

The big black desk is mine, but my oldest likes to do most of his work here.  To the left I have all the books we use most frequently, TM's and workbooks.  Next to that, I have manila folders for each week of the homeschool year.  I've gone ahead and put the student sheets from MFWCTG and MFW1st in the corresponding folder.  To the right you can see J-Saurus' orange folders.  We use these like workboxes.  The tall bookcase has all our reference books, word and math games,  and puzzles.  On the wall are two cork boards at either end.  The one on the right is our "Missions" board.  Here we have a photo of our sponsor child, a map of Africa, and photos of missionaries we pray for.

So, at least half of the room is done. I'm waiting for my table to be delivered. It'll go on the other side of the room under the picture window. I can't wait! Right now I have little desks that my 8 and 6 yo have outgrown :( I'm giving them to a friend who has twin 4 yo girls. Just picturing them sitting at those little desks together makes me giggle!

Can't wait to show you the rest!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Preparing for "Not Back to School"

It never ceases to amaze me how looooong winter seems and how lightening fast summer flies by.  We have 1 more week to enjoy summer AND Daddy.  He's off until the 22nd, when we plan on starting our homeschool schedule.

I have all my curriculum together with the exception of a few supplemental materials I hope to order on payday!  So here's what we're using this year:

J-Saurus, age 10  (11 in October):
* MFW CTG (Creation to Greeks)
* First Language Lessons for the Well-Trained Mind
* Writing Strands
* Spelling Power
* A Reason for Handwriting, Cursive
* Singapore Math

M.J., age 8 (9 in October)
* First Language Lessons for the Well-Trained Mind
* Spelling Power
* A Reason for Handwriting, Cursive
* Singapore Math

Buster Brown, age 6
* MFW First Grade

On my Wishlist
* Mystery of History

This weekend I hope to get our "classroom" organized and ready for our first day!

I'll share pics ;)

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Hanging on to summer

 I can feel it slowly slipping away...summer is coming to an end.  We've been so blessed though to have had perfect swimming weather.  On those super hot days, you could find us at MiMi and Papa's, my parents house.  My dad and husband worked their tails off to build a deck that the kids could jump into the pool off of.
Enjoy the rest of your summer!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Copper and Pink Heart Necklace

My second completed project!  I'm pleased with how this necklace turned out.  I started playing with some 16 gauge wire and ended up creating the heart.  I just went from there.  I think I'll keep the original copper finish as opposed to antiquing.  Now I need to get a good inventory of art pieces completed and I'll be ready to sell!

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Copper Bracelet

I'm so excited to share my first completed piece of jewelry art!  I've dabbled in jewelry making and other crafts over the years, but never found a medium that I felt confident in.  Recently, I began playing with copper wire after finding a book at the library.  One of the pieces in Sharilyn Miller's book, Contemporary Copper Jewelry, inspired this bracelet.

The last photo is my favorite.  I love how it looks in natural light.  I'm playing around with the photography a little bit to see what works best.  I wanted to show what the bracelet looks like on the wrist, but I don't think that photot does it justice.  Each of the links and dangles are handmade.  After assembling the bracelet, I gave it a bath in liver of sulfur to get the color I was after.  I cleaned it up with 000 steel wool and polished it with a jewelry cloth. 

 I've been working on other projects all week, but I've run out of wire!  I can't wait to show you my next creation.