Tuesday, August 26, 2008


I am working on a new shirt for Ruby (Ottobre 04/2008 #11, size 110, modified so the sleeves are one piece). I've used fold-over-elastic (FOE) for the neck binding. It is the first time I've used FOE, and it seems to have worked quite well. Very quick to do.

The Oops occurred while I was attaching the sleeves to the shirt. I completed one seam and then realised that the left needle on my overlocker had jumped out of the tension dial. Result: right-side of the fabric has a "ladder" effect, similar to the reverse side of a flat-lock. I poked and prodded at the seam and decided to use the effect as a 'feature'. I then did the other sleeve and side-seams with the same effect.

Now I'm not so sure. I probably should unpick the lot and start again. Part of me says 'no, it is fine ... it looks like it is meant to be that way' ..... and the other half of me is cursing my stupidity for not unpicking the initial error immediately.

I might take a photo tonight and post it so I can get other opinions.

Monday, August 25, 2008

My First Sewing Book

I am quite excited ... the Winky Cherry sewing books (aimed at ages 5 yrs up) have arrived. See http://www.palmerpletsch.com/childrenbooks.htm for details. The books are published by PalmerPletch. I have some brilliant sewing books authored by Patti Palmer and ??? Pletch, so have very high hopes for the Winky Cherry books.

Of the books available, I ordered "My First Sewing Book - Hand Sewing", "My First Embroidery Book" and "My First Doll Book". The material indicates that a 5 year-old would take about a year to master the "My First Sewing Book". In "My First Sewing Book", the child is taught an overcast stitch, which they use to create a stuffed toy. Once they've mastered that they then move on to the Embroidery Book and then the Doll Book.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Toilet training

The ongoing saga of toilet training... The problems that we had with Ruby now seem to be repeating with Robert.

Robert has been in jocks since late February. He has self-toileted sporadically in the past. However, at the moment we are at a complete standoff. He won't take himself to the toilet. Any suggestion that he may need to go is met with a very defiant "I don't need to", even if he really does. Every day when he has his 'rest time' he does a poo in his jocks. We've tried coaxing him. We've tried growling. We've tried sticker rewards etc etc etc

When we were going through this with Ruby (who would wet her knickers 6 times a day), I sought advice from a Child Health Nurse who specialises in continence issues. Her suggestion worked with Ruby, so we are taking that approach with Robert. The approach involves:
- increasing fluid intake (the bladder needs to get 'full' to strengthen the message from the bladder to the brain).
- ignoring accidents. No comments. No flinching/sighing etc. Just cleanup and get on with other things.
- sticker chart and praise for any move in the right direction, however small.
- reinforce the sticker chart by providing another reward after x number of stickers have been earned. Our extra reward involves a lucky dip.

We've been doing this for a week now. Progress is slow and it is hard not to be impatient. I think there was a slight glimmer of hope at 'rest time' today. He wet his jocks, but on my suggestion managed to get the poo in the toilet.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Fe2h2o - How do you do it??

Fe2h2o, a question about homeschooling for you. (Well, multiple questions if you have the time...)

How do you fit it into your day? How do you keep Bilby entertained whilst educating Puggle? How do you structure your day ... obviously flexibly ... but which components do you try to fit into each day?

We're getting a lot of challenging behaviour at the moment, some of which I am sure is due to boredom. Plus I am feeling that I'm not teaching the kids much (other than cooking and cleaning). I am trying to work out how on earth I can get more structure into our days whilst staying on top of the housework.

I am also trying desperately to get some routines into place so that the kids are contributing to the clean-up and not just the mess-up!!!

Sorry about all the questions - I can imagine how busy you are and how tired you are too!!! How is cygnet going. Hopefully giving you sufficient sleep....?

Monday, August 11, 2008

A new skirt for Ruby

Here is the new skirt which I completed on the weekend. As you can see, it is a bit big in the waist. I might add some elastic to make it more immediately wearable.

I'm very happy with how the skirt turned out. I'll definitely be making it again.

Pattern Description: Ottobre 01/2008 #13 "Misty Skirt"
Fully lined tiered skirt gathered into a waistband. Closure is an invisible zip and press-stud. The middle tier is gathered at both the top and bottom of the tier.

Sizing: I made size 110. Ottobre uses European sizing. A size 110 is designed for a 110cm tall child. Ruby is only 102cm tall, however the size 104 shirt (worn in the photo) was a bit too short and a bit tight ... hence my decision to make the skirt in size 110.

Does the completed project look like the pattern drawing/photo? Yes

How were the instructions: OK. Was a little confusing when attaching the lining to the skirt.

Fabric used: Cotton from Spotlight

Any changes: Next time around I will modify it by removing the zipper and making the waist elasticated.

Likes/dislikes: Love it. Very girly.

Would you do it again / Would you recommend it? Yes
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