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3…2…1…Blast Off!

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The last day of school is finally upon us. I don’t care what the calendar says — summer is here!

Of course, not before we cart a few more tokens of our appreciation out the door.

For the “main” teachers:


A patchwork bookmark with a gift card tucked in. The design was very much inspired by this one, but I like bookmarks to be really thin, so I stitched patchwork to card stock instead. Oh, and I very fancily made a buttonhole at the top for the ribbon.

For the many other wonderful teachers, assistants, and our wonderful neighborhood crossing guard, cookies!


Apparently, I lost count in the wee hours of the morning when I was bagging them up, because he was giving them to any teacher he met in the hall on his way out. Hey, fine by me — better than coming home with a bag full of gifts like last year!

And, finally, a little something for his one teacher who is expecting a late summer baby:


I already had some bibs made up, but they needed snaps. This will show you how much I hate attaching snaps: rather than just hammer a couple in, I made up a whole new diaper clutch instead. Yes, last night. Or maybe that just shows how much I like making these, and how quickly they come together. Actually, it’s totally the sum of those parts.

Halfway through construction, I remembered that this was the fabric I’d used to make this same teacher a tissue pack cover at Christmas. Well, won’t she just be voted Most Coordinated Mom!

Also, once it was finished, the square of stitching where the Velcro is attached to the closure was bothering me so much that I couldn’t leave it alone. In the end, I just cut out a tiny patch and glued it right on.



Easy peasy.


And that, as they say, is a wrap. Come on, summer!

Old School

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I can’t be blamed for losing track of the day. Instead of simply celebrating Teacher Appreciation Day at its appointed time, my son’s school instead opts for Teacher Appreciation Week, complete with suggested assignments for exactly who to honor each day. It’s a touch overwhelming for the overthinkers among us. Anyway, the “specials” teachers are — aw gee, was that today? No, wait — that’s tomorrow; today was for the nurse. So art/music/P.E. are tomorrow, but the main teachers are to be honored on Friday, which to my mind meant that I didn’t even need to have my act together til mid-week.

Imagine my surprise when I woke up Tuesday morning and was informed my the morning news that it was the real Teacher Appreciation Day. And I didn’t have anything prepared for my daughter’s teachers. And we really do appreciate them, and I have to admit that it does stress me out a little bit to show up empty-handed after having been treated to years and years of complaints about parents who can’t be bothered to show their appreciation. (Yeah, y’allĀ  — yes, all of you –know who you are. Save the commiserating for your colleagues! I’m one of “them”!)

Nobody panic, though. There’s still time to offer a token of thanks without breaking the bank or having a nervous breakdown:


You mean you don’t hoard glass jars? Well, then you may be out of luck. I, however, had two beautiful olive jars and some tulle. The youngest artist-in-residence decorated the cards with her trademark rainbow, and we were off to the store for the prettiest daisies you ever did see. And we were so pleased with our offering, and so were they. Happiness for all!

Teachers really are a deserving group, and my kids teachers — all ten of them — are terrific. Hopefully, Joey’s won’t hold it against me if they don’t all get something wonderful…or anything at all. [“Specials”, I’m sorry! My act is not yet together as of this printing….]




Better Luck Next Time


There are times when everything comes together, and I really get things done. Then, there are times when it just doesn’t work out; not much gets done.

Well, except these here bags. They got done, but don’t be fooled: they are absolutely not filled with delicious raspberry scones for the kids’ teachers. They should have been, but I didn’t have enough baking powder, and that was that. To quote The Gambler, know when to fold ’em. Happy Valentine’s Day! I figure they’ll be just as tasty on some random Tuesday down the road, no?

I also arbitrarily decided that Valentine’s Day gifts are the responsibility of the man of the house. (Actually, this was my mom’s assertion, and I grabbed hold of it.) Still, I like the little people of this place to feel special, so this morning I went the heart-shaped-breakfast route. PB and J for the boy, and apples spread with PB for the girl. They did everything but carry me on their shoulders around the living room.

Lesson: Don’t be so hard on yourself! Sometimes a little is enough.

Now I’m off to finish cleaning the kitchen before I mess it up again with some chicken and biscuits for my favoritest guy in the world. Lucky for me, that’s gift enough for him. We really do make a good team.

Summer Belongs to Us!

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Whew! That was a crazy week. I don’t exactly know why it was so crazy, but it felt like it was blowing past me.

Well, I guess I do know why: It was the last week of school. There were just so many loose ends that needed to be wrapped up, like — yes, once again — teacher gifts and such. Primary grades are co-taught at our school, so Joey had two main teachers all year, and they were fabulous. We both loved them! During the spring, they instituted something called “Cookie Bookie” day. The kids would bring a beach towel, a bottle of water, a book, and a cookie, and they would spend a half-hour in the afternoon relaxing with their reads. Joey loved this idea (or he might just have loved saying “cookie bookie”; it is fun to say) so much that we did it at home when he was out sick, and now he wants to institute this fine tradition during the summer. Oh, twist my arm! Anyway, in honor of that, we made up Cookie Bookie buckets for his teachers as a little thank you.

I hope they enjoy a nice, relaxing read sometime this summer — they’ve certainly earned it! And, let me tell you, I’ve enjoyed having a little bit of a breather this week, too. Today was the first day that I felt myself starting to think clearly. Ahhhh…so much better.

I’m sure the feeling will be short-lived — June is jam-packed with goodness — but here’s to enjoying it while it lasts!

From My Inner Scout to Yours

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I love to be prepared. In theory — I’m usually not all that prepared anywhere but in my head. My kids are lucky for aunts who always bring snacks, I’m just saying.

We’ll start again.

I love the idea of being prepared; nothing makes my eyes light up more than a kit. Ooh. I loves a good kit. So, along those lines, this handy-dandy little wallet is what we’ll be giving to Joey’s “extra” teachers [you know — P.E., music, art — who don’t see him every day, but help shape him into a well-rounded individual] this year:

Summer-y, right? Wait, it gets better — go ahead and open it!

We’re talking summer in Houston, folks. Imagine the surface of the sun, if the sun were swarming with mosquitoes, and you’ve got the idea. Yet, there’s always that time when you leave the house without your sunscreen or handy can of Off!, and your skin will tell the tale the next day for sure. No longer! Before you head out, get your summer on.


We plan to tuck in a little gift card to our favorite yogurt shop to complete the set. He has had such a great group of teachers this year; I hope they enjoy this little token of our appreciation.


Specs: The wallet itself was greatly inspired by this tea wallet (and by inspired, I mean the only change I made was to the closure). Mosquito repellant wipes are sold in stores — I got mine at Target — and I found the sunscreen towelettes on Amazon.