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6.27.2016

Summer of Sewing--Satya Romper

Rompers are simply adorable. And they are easy to sew. When rompers first started coming back into style, I had horrible flashbacks to my childhood of hideous styles and impossible to get off rompers when I had to go to the bathroom. Thankfully the Satya romper is not one of these styles! 

I'm honored to be participating in the Poolside Beach Party blog tour with lots of awesome bloggers. Check in each day on the Sprouting JubeJube blog for links to all the posts. Enter the different giveaways. And don't forget to read to the very end of my post for the discount coupon codes from a few generous shops! (This post contains affiliate links. When you make a purchase through my affiliate links, I earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. Thank you for supporting my creative efforts!)
The Satya romper pattern was created by (affiliate link) Jennuine Designs. I first sewed this pattern last year when I was in her tester group. That was this bitty girl was a wee few months old. She was so tiny, that I made her the newborn size. This summer she is just over a year old and I was able to make her a 9-12 month. 

I chose to make the romper and didn't include any snaps in the crotch. The romper is easy to remove for diaper changes, but really I think it would be more convenient to have snaps. So next time I will add the snaps.
I also chose to put elastic in the legs of the romper. I adore the little bubble look that it adds to the outfit. 
This gorgeous romper would be perfect to put on after a day at the pool or beach. It's cool and breezy and easy to put on when you are finished swimming. Use those adorable pockets for collecting shells or other treasures while you take a break from the water.
The back of the romper is just as cute as the front. Those straps are made out of fold-over elastic (FOE), which really has excellent stretch and recovery. FOE used to be a bit of a challenge to find, but I have noticed in recent years that many of the local shops are carrying a very nice selection. If you don't want to use FOE, instructions are given in the pattern for fabric covered elastic straps, which look equally adorable. Those FOE straps are what makes the romper easy to put on and easy to remove.
This pattern is available in sizes newborn through 12 years. I love sewing clothes in smaller sizes. They take very little fabric and sew up so quickly that you can easily have a new outfit in no time at all! Other options include:

  • playsuit length
  • romper length
  • optional snaps added to the crotch
  • FOE straps
  • fabric covered elastic straps
I love to purchase my PDF patterns through the (affiliate link) UpCraft Club. Are you a member yet? There are 3 levels of membership available, so you can choose the one that best applies to your situation. You also receive free pattern credit to use each month as well as a convenient discount on any additional patterns you wish to purchase. And did I mention webinars? That's a fabulous perk to the membership. I adore that free pattern credit each month (and who can resist a discount anyway?). 
This little cutie thinks you should run (don't walk) and purchase your Satya romper soon! I would love to see what fabric you use for your romper. 

Now for the discounts: I'm giving all of my readers a 50% discount in my Etsy shop. Use the coupon code PoolSideParty16 to receive half off your pattern order. Code is valid until July 4, 2016. You can also receive a very generous 25% discount on any patterns in the Modkid shop using the code POOLSIDE2016. I have my eye on a couple patterns over there too.
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Veritas Bible--A Rose Academy Review

Old and New Testament Online Self-Paced Bible Veritas Review
Old and New Testament Online Self-Paced Bible Veritas Review
My son has been very excited to be working through the Veritas Press one-year family subscription to VeritasBible.com The family subscription allows more all students in the family to work through the programs at their own pace. My son is the only one working on this at the time. He has access to all of the lessons currently available, but chose to start at the beginning with Genesis through Joshua.
I wasn't sure what to think of this online curriculum at first. I have held off on using online curriculum for a couple of reasons. One of those is that I prefer to have a real book in my hands. Another reason is that if it's online, we most likely forget about using it. I haven't had either of these concerns with this program. It is engaging and fun. So much so that the kids want to use it. We simply write a reminder in his planner to complete a lesson.
We have the slowest high speed internet connection that is available to us. I was concerned that the internet speed would be a problem with this interactive curriculum. No need to worry. It hasn't been a problem at all. I feel like the videos stream just fine and there is no lag. We did receive a slow connection warning as seen in the picture below, but it did not affect the videos or the activities.
My son does enjoy working through the lessons. I have found myself enjoying watching along with him as well. A few times I've caught an older sister watching and learning too, but shhhhh don't tell! 
I also like that the lessons encourage him to look up verses in the Bible. This is so important for many reasons! It's important for him to be able to find passages in the Bible and read and comprehend them. It's also important for kids to know that the Bible is true. By having them look up certain passages, they are able to see that yes, indeed, what the lessons are teaching is absolutely true.
Each lesson teaches new concepts and reviews old concepts with maps, matching, ordering, etc. The timeline is taught with an awesome song. The Veritas Press cards are not necessary to successfully use this curriculum, but I can see how they would be a nice concrete addition. The activities are completed online. The students cannot advance to a new section of lessons until they earn at least 1 star (out of 3). So far my guy hasn't had any trouble with passing the lessons. 
I have been very impressed with this curriculum and have even checked out their self-paced online history classes. Since this Bible curriculum is so engaging and easy to use, I'm really considering more digital learning for my son. We do live in a digital age, and he seems to respond well to online curriculum.


Would you like to read what other reviewers had to say about Veritas Press? Check out the Review Crew Blog for more!

Crew Disclaimer

6.20.2016

Summer of Sewing--Project Organization

One thing that I like to do is cut out several projects at one time. Because sometimes I'm in the mood to sew, but I don't want to spend the time gathering the fabric, deciding on accent fabrics, coordinating zippers, buttons, and snaps. So in order to remedy that, I cut out several projects in one session and keep them by my sewing machine to be ready to sew.
I'm sure there are lots of really great and elaborate ways to organize your sewing projects, but I'm aiming for simplicity here. Also I like to use what I have on hand. I was also getting ready to go out of town and considered taking my sewing machine and projects with me. Since I knew I wouldn't have all of my sewing supplies with me, I wanted to be sure that I would have everything needed to finish each project that I took with me.


After I cut out each project, I stored the pattern pieces and the fabric that I had cut into a gallon size zip top bag. Since these are digital sewing patterns, I made sure that each pattern was loaded on my iPad so I would have access to the sewing instructions as well. I also added notions to the bags that would be needed to finish each project--buttons, snaps, snap tool, elastic, interfacing, etc. 
As I was packing up my sewing machine, I made sure that I also packed coordinating thread for each project and extra bobbins and needles. Sure there would probably be a local shop nearby to purchase anything that I had forgotten, but my goal was to be totally prepared and not need to waste precious sewing time by needing to find a local shop.
(This post contains affiliate links. When you purchase through my affiliate links, I earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. Thank you for supporting my site.)
These are the projects that I prepped in advance of my trip (many of these patterns can be purchased at UpCraft Club):
I didn't end up taking my sewing machine on my weekend trip. But now I have several projects ready to go, and I can't wait to finish each project. Now I have everything together. The only problem I have now is choosing which project to sew next! What projects do you have on your sewing table?

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6.13.2016

Forbrain--A Rose Academy Review



Forbrain - Sound For Life Ltd sent us their award winning Forbrain bone conduction head set. This is a really cool device that can help improve attention, speech, memory, and reading difficulties through brain stimulation and sensory integration. This award winning technology, called bone conduction, enhances both language and learning. The headset is essentially a set of bone conduction transducers, which rest just in front of your ears, a high quality microphone, and a dynamic filter. Your voice is processed by the filter and transmitted to your brain through bone conduction. Forbrain works simultaneously on all aspects of the audio-vocal loop and gives the nervous system a solid sensory workout. 

Summer of Sewing--A New Bag

I have decided that it is time to do a little bit of sewing for me this summer. Also I needed a new bag. I almost always carry a cross body bag. I like to have my hands free and since I carry my purse everywhere, it's convenient to just wear it rather than find a safe place to keep it where it won't be bothered.

(This post contains affiliate links. When you purchase through my affiliate links, I earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. Thank you for supporting my site.)
For this summer's bag of choice, I sewed the Sandra Saddle Bag pattern by Swoon Sewing Patterns. I like that Swoon sewing patterns help me produce a high end and quality product that looks like it was bought in a store. People who don't know me, don't know and can't tell that I made my own bag. I like that. I have learned how to produce high quality bags and have also learned a thing or two about hardware and interfacing.

For this bag, I worked with a new type of fabric--vinyl. This particular vinyl happened to be in the remnant bin at my local JoAnn's. Of course I can never pass up a bargain in the remnant bin! One trick that I learned while sewing with vinyl is that in order for the presser foot to glide across the vinyl, you need either a teflon foot or a walking foot. I chose to use my walking foot, and I am very pleased to report how well it worked on the vinyl. In fact I love my walking foot so much that I have used it on almost every other project that I've sewn since this one!

Changes that I made to the pattern: 

  • I placed the zipper pocket on the back of the bag instead of in the inside. I wanted to be able to have quick and easy access to my cell phone. With this pocket on the back of the bag, I knew that it would be secure since it would be worn against my body and zipped shut. But I also didn't want to hassle with having to lift the front flap and dig through my purse to find my phone.
  • I added 2 slip pockets into the inside of the purse. I made these to face the front of the bag so that the bulk from the items in the pockets wouldn't add to the bulk from the back zipper pocket.
  • I didn't have the required hardware for this project on hand. Since I wanted to sew it right away, I improvised and placed the strap into the top seam instead of on the side of the bag.
I'm really pleased with my bag and have gotten several compliments on this one. Next I want to try to sew with cork. Which pattern should I use for that project?



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6.08.2016

Summer of Sewing--Let's Talk About Laundry

OK. Here's my story about the laundry thing. I mean, seriously, who likes to do laundry anyway? In the middle of packing for an overnight camp out, I decided to sew this pair of shorts for my son. 
(Some links in this post are affiliate links. When you purchase through my affiliate links, I earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. Thanks for supporting my site!)

The Domi Sweatpants by Sofilantjes, which I got from UpCraft Club, are so quick to sew. UpCraft Club has all the latest (affiliate link) PDF sewing patterns. Being a member of the club allows you to receive a free pattern every month plus discounts on other pattern purchases. There are 3 different levels of membership, so choose the one that best fits your current sewing needs. And anyway who doesn't like free patterns?!
Several weeks ago, I cut these shorts out. I like to cut out sewing projects in batches, that way when it's time to sew, I just choose a project and go with it. Since the shorts were already cut out, all I had to do was stitch them up. It took me 30 minutes tops--using just my sewing machine instead of my serger. I love the stretch stitch on my machine and since my serger was set up with white thread for another project, I just really didn't feel like switching it out. I really like the style of these shorts. The knit fabric that I used to make them is soft and comfy--a slate gray ponte knit. I sewed a size 12 for my guy. You can see the size 12 months that I also sewed for my niece with a different pocket style. I can't wait to make this pattern in pants length come fall. 

Pattern features:
  • unisex pattern is perfect for girls or boys 
  • sizing ranges from 12 months through 14 year
  • two pocket styles
  • three pant lengths--shorts, 3/4 length, and pants--perfect for all seasons
  • cuffs or folded hem options for 3/4 and pant lengths

Anyway, on to the laundry topic. I actually do have a system for laundry at my house. Everyone does their own! A very good friend told me about her system and I tweaked it just a bit to fit our current situation.