Sunday, August 23, 2009

Back-to-School Blues or Hoorays?

Our baby starts Kindergarten tomorrow. I'm torn . . . . my emotions keep running back and forth from tears to joy and back again.

There are tears because the "baby" chapter of our daughter's life is ending and joy because she is so ready to learn and start the "big girl" chapter of her life. And tomorrow morning, while her Mom is in tears, our daughter will be jumping with joy because the day she has been counting down to since the end of Pre-K is finally here.

We went Friday and met her new teacher and saw her classroom. Demi has been on the waiting list for "Project Friends" -- a multi-age classroom program -- and we didn't know that she was in the program until Friday morning! The basic idea of this program is that the children will have the same teacher and classroom for Kindergarten, 1st and 2nd grades. So the children that start Kindergarten together will be together in the same class for all three years. The advantages to this is that the older kids mentor the younger kids and the younger kids can work at their own speed instead of at the speed of the slowest learners in the class. Which is great for Demi -- we were very worried about her becoming bored and not being challenged. Another concern we had was consistency and transitions - both issues for her with her Sensory Processing Disorder. Her teacher is very sweet, sensitive to Demi's special needs and seems equally as excited for the new school year to begin.

Whether I'm ready or not, Demi is -- ready to learn, ready to explore, ready to make new friends, and ready to jump feet first into a wonderful new world called Elementary School!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009


A very dear friend recently had a birthday . . . OK it was last month! Anyway . . . she loves coffee (she has Starbucks programmed into the autopilot on her car) and she loves cupcakes. She is also a "girly-girl" / Princess-type -- she's all about nails, hair, clothes and accessories (everything we are not)! After debating about her gift I decided to create a couple of hand painted t-shirts for her gift, along with a home-cooked meal and CUPCAKES!

Now I know you are saying to yourself, "Aha! A craft that Jennifer and Dee definitely did NOT use their handy-dandy Cricut to create!!" WRONG! I most definitely used the Cricut. A new t-shirt painting method has been running rampant on the ProvoCraft Cricut message boards -- freezer paper t-shirts.

The short version of how to make these shirts is:

  1. Go to the grocery, buy a roll of freezer paper.
  2. Cut said freezer paper to fit your Cricut cutting mat.
  3. Place freezer paper matte side down on your mat. (The shiny side really doesn't stick well, so if you're doing text you need to reverse it to have it cut properly.)
  4. Choose your design and cut it out.
  5. Iron the freezer paper, shiny-side down, onto your t-shirt.
  6. Iron a second solid piece of freezer paper to the inside of your shirt. (This keeps the paint from bleeding through to the back side of your shirt.)
  7. Paint design with fabric paints.
  8. LET IT DRY! (Don't be tempted to peel it up before it has completely dried. It peels up the edges of your design.)
  9. Carefully peel off the freezer paper from the inner and outer surfaces of the shirt.
  10. Viola! You have a work of art that looks like it was screen-printed!

The shirts created with this method honestly look like they were screen-printed. The only drawback that we have discovered thus far is this . . . they do not like the dryer. You must wash them inside out and hang them to dry or the painted image will begin to crack.

Check out the shirts I made our friend for her birthday. I'll post more later, as I have made our daughter several shirts -- I can't get her to take them off long enough for me to photograph them!

Cup: Joys of the Season; Cupcake: Doodlecharms; Text: George & Basic Shapes.

Text: George & Basic Shapes; Crown: Iron-on design purchased at JoAnn Fabrics.