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The Genial Hearth
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Archive for May, 2008


Week 5, Block 4, Dorothea Term (Break Week)

We have focused a little on things domestic, especially in the kitchen. I’m also revisiting the jobs I’m getting Puggle to do.


Two children, asleep in their own beds—in their own room!

Tomorrow we dismantle the cot… for a couple of months:-)

Soups, Reprise

Earlier in the year (Northern Winter), there was a flurry of discussion about soups. I mentioned it here. I wanted to refer back to it at a more appropriate time for the Southern hemisphere (me in particular:-) ), because I really liked some of the recipes and ideas:-)


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Walking Therein is hosting the current Homeschooling Carnival, End of the School Year! Or is it?

Lap Rug

Lap RugSome time ago (probably about 10 years:-( ), about a week before my mother’s birthday (in August), I saw on one of those home shows a fabulous looking laprug, made of polar fleece with appliquéd autumn leaves. It looked great, fairly simple, and I was quite sure that mum would like it. So I went ahead and got the material (with a few alterations) and began. I didn’t actually expect to get it done in time for her birthday, but I figured it wouldn’t take me too much longer.

Of course, mum’s birthday is near the end of winter. So shortly afterwards it became too hot to manage polar fleece, so I put it away again. And only remembered to get to it about a week before her next birthday. That continued for a few years:-(

A couple of years ago we were given a polar fleece bunny rug. The construction technique looked like it might be a better solution than appliqué for the leaves (less than half the sewing!)

A couple of weeks ago, in preparation for Craft Sunday, I went looking for material. I quickly decided that I really needed to sort through my stash, which I did. I got rid of a certain amount, but it seemed obvious to me that I needed to get rid of more—and the best option for that was to finish sewing mum’s lap rug (3 metres of polar fleece takes up quite a bit of space!)

And now it’s done:-) I managed to complete it while mum and dad were away, and I’ve just delivered it to their place… it’s out of the house:-)

It’s made of two squares of green polar fleece (1.5m). Onto the wrong side of one of them, I sewed a selection of pairs of coloured leaves (just a straight stitch). I cut through from the right side to remove the green from inside each leaf. I then sewed the two green squares right sides together leaving a gap, turned them right side out and top-stitched. I sewed around the outside of each leaf again (through all layers this time) and then finally cut out the green on the other side. It means that both sides are the same, and (aside from where the seams are) it’s two layers thick across the whole thing.

Most satisfactory:-)

EChO Concert

One of our co-op mums organised for a group outing to one of the Cushion Concerts put on by WASO.
It was fabulous! The kids had a ball (well, it wasn’t the best time of day for Bilby, so she slept for a good deal of it, but she loved the portion for which she was awake!) Puggle has now become a fan of the Can-Can:-) It had a great mix of participation and listening, and the introduction to the instruments has really struck a chord with Puggle:-) He was probably a little bit young to get the most out of the hands-on portion at the end (they were both a bit overwhelmed by the crowds of school kids), but he was rather fascinated by the harp:-)
We made a complete outing of it, by catching the bus and train in, and having a picnic lunch in the Supreme Court Gardens before strolling a bit further to the Perth Concert Hall. Afterwards, we returned to the Supreme Court Gardens with some of our friends, so that the kids could run a bit before we bussed and trained home again.
We’ll be going again:-)

This Week

Our plans for
Week 5, Block 4, Dorothea Term (Break Week)

Singing, we’ll continue with The Cruel War. Revisiting some of our domestic skills…

An Autumn Laprug

laprugSome (maybe six?) years ago, I saw an episode of one of those Home Beautiful programmes on TV one evening (maybe Better Homes and Gardens?). It was a couple of weeks before my mother’s birthday… and they featured a laprug—which I thought she would love:-) The next day (I think… details are lost in the depths of time:-) ) I raced out and got the materials (well… not quite as featured… I had grander plans than that:-)  I think it was meant to only be a single layer.)

I’ve finally finished it!

I found some leaf shapes online, and using a couple of sizes and shapes, cut them out of red, orange and yellow polar fleece. I lay pairs of these out (wrong sides together) on the green background. In the end, I sewed them using a straight stitch, to the wrong side of the fleece. On the right side of the green, I cut out the inside of the coloured leaves, so that they showed through the top. Then I laid the two green pieces of fleece right sides together, sewed almost all the way around, turned it right way out and topstitched the whole way around. I pinned the pieces carefully, and from the ‘colourful’ side, re-stitched around the leaves through all layers. To finish, I cut the inside of the leaves from the other piece of green:-)

I finally finished in time for mum’s return from Canada and Alaska… where she’s been really cold (and it’s not so cold here!) But unlike her birthday time, we’re heading into winter, rather than out of it… so she’ll be able to get a good deal of use from it:-)


As Dada was attempting to determine what was wrong with the toasted sandwich maker…

“The con-fuse might be blown.”


Week 4, Block 4, Dorothea Term

We’ve continued to sing, but that’s about all.

Lawn Mowing

Puggle’s being a lawn-mowing man (he’s loaded the truck—the front porch, with the ‘lawnmower’, the rake, the broom, the ‘whipper-snipper’)… although he came to tell me the lawnmowing man also does gardening.
He’s been doing that most of the time we’ve been home.
Now Bilby has the ‘whipper-snipper’ and from the look of her mouth, she’s making the appropriate sound as she waves it about.

New Niece!

BG has a little sister:-) I’m not surprised my brother has had another girl:-)

I’ll have to see what he ends up calling her before I give her a nom-de-blog. I do like her real name though… it didn’t make my short list for Bilby, but that was mostly because I know a child with the same name (we don’t see her very often at all so I might well have considered adding it again for Cygnet:-) ). And her middle name is one my sister has short-listed for her little one:-)


For his birthday, Puggle recieved a large Solar System Floor jigsaw puzzle. He also got a Dr Seuss Jigsaw Book. We’ve had other jigsaws around for ages, and he’s not been uninterested, but hasn’t really been keen on doing them (he preferred to watch us do them for him:-) ).

Suddenly, he’s mad on them! He did the solar system once with me providing directions (find the edge pieces, find the bumpy pieces, put the edge pieces together etc.), then a second time with occasional reminders as to what he was looking for, and since then he’s been doing it several times a day!

Each time he finishes he calls me delightedly to come and look “Mama, I did it! All by myself!

And now he loves jigsaws… If he sees one when we’re somewhere he’ll stop and do it:-)

Preparing Fruit

Puggle is really enjoying cutting things up. Fortunately, whenever he gets out a plum (or a banana, or an apple:-) ), he is more than happy to cut some up for Bilby as well:-) I’m encouraging this, as the biggest problem I had when Bilby first came home was that I would forget to feed Puggle before I sat down to nurse her—I’m hoping that won’t be a problem with Cygnet!

The best bit is that he thinks to do it himself—I don’t have to ask him!


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