Monday, February 10, 2014

Respect for the Babysitters - Old and New

So, Abigail finished her Red Cross Babysitter Basics course, and passed with flying colors! She had to take a final exam, and they won't pass you unless you score an 80% or higher - she received 96%. I am so proud of her, not only that she passed so well, but that she worked diligently through the various lessons, and really took the whole thing rather seriously, rather than a glorified game.

She's now had several opportunities to serve some families at church as a Mother's Helper, going over for a few hours to play with kids and generally lend a hand in any way necessary so that Mom can get some things done. It's been wonderful - to see her serving in such a practical way, for gaining experience of looking after kiddos and how other families do things, and hearing the feedback of what a big help and great kid she is (I know this, of course, but it's so good to hear!).

If you're at all interested, I would highly recommend the Red Cross Online Babysitter Basics class. It's only $25, and since it's online, you can fit it in around your schedule. They also offer a group class, too, but it didn't seem necessary for us - most of what they would have you practice there (changing diapers, feeding little guys), she already has lots of opportunity to practice at home!

She's really looking forward to growing this new skill into a marketable business, but for now, she's content to take it all one step at a time, getting to know the ropes and working at being the best babysitter she can be. We have been so blessed to have so many wonderful babysitters over the years, she's had lots of models she can borrow from. The babysitters that have cared for and influenced my kids over the years now have the privilege of blessing others they will never even meet, simply because of how they have modeled what a great babysitter should be.

If you've ever watched my kids, thanks for the way you've cared for my family, and how you have influenced my kids to care for others.

Friday, February 7, 2014

A few things about cornhole

  • Did you know there really is a game people actually play, called "cornhole"? The object of the game is to throw your corn-filled bags (your corn bags, if you will) through a hole cut into an inclined board. Corn. Hole. Corn Hole.
  • Did you know that to be regulation weight, each corn bag must be one pound in weight?
  • Did you know that when you've been using a corn hole bag over a number of years, the corn within begins to break down and turns to dust, which means your corn bag gets lighter and lighter?
  • Did you know that when players are playing with bags that are not of equal weight, they will begin to fret, and even consider that they're not winning because there is something wrong with their bags?
  • Did you know that when one man happens to mention that he'd be happy to bring the corn bags up to spec, the other players would get rather excited?
  • Did you know that if you can run a sewing machine and mentioned that it should be no trouble to open a seem, refill the bags and close them up again, that you'd be doing that very thing within 48 hours (like, during the Super Bowl, for instance)?
  • Did you know that once you began this little project, it would instantly become the most interesting thing your children have ever seen and they absolutely must help, until they've covered everything in corn dust?
  • Did you know that when the job was done and the "one man" who began this project takes the corn hole bags back to the office, other men would drop everything (including a lesson, for instance) to come and try them out?
  • Did you know that they would be so happy with their "new and improved" bags, it would be a little concerning?
These are just some of the things I've learned about corn hole. I can only assume more lessons will come in due time... 

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Climbing back in the saddle

It was the first baby shower for the first baby of one of the couples here at the Pastor's College, and you know how us ladies like us a good baby shower!
It appears that I have earned myself something of a reputation - if Kelly's in attendance, people expect something handmade. I wouldn't dream of disappointing...
Pattern: Eyelet Yoke Baby Cardigan (aka Old Faithful)
Yarn: Cascade, some kind of baby yarn, maybe this?
There was also the very clever suggestion that everyone get at lease one onesie and decorate their with a month of the year so that mom and dad can dress the wee babe up in her "month's" onesie and snap a picture for posterity. Everyone did a wonderful job!
 Clearly, I had month number eight. I bought a pack of 4 onesies, and since I had nothing clever planned for the other three, I decided to decorate all of them. Besides, even gorgeous babies poop all over their clothes and will need a change...
 To make, I printed off the number 8 (font size 450, I believe), traced it onto some scrap material I've got, ironed on some interfacing and got to sewing. It was easy enough to do in an evening, though cutting out a "1" or a "7" would have been easier. Just sayin'.
 I'd seen this cute idea on Pinterest for rolling up some onesie's with a sock to make them look like cupcakes. My first attempt looked rather stupid, really - rather like a wad of cloth with a sock sticking out. Perseverance paid off, however - perhaps they didn't exactly look like cupcakes, but they did look cute, instead of dumb.
Sometimes, that's about the best standard I can live up to.