Friday, August 30, 2013

Pink Raglan dress from Simplicity 7465 copyright 1967 with alterations

Simplicity 7465, copyright 1967
I made this today, with some alterations.

This pattern caught me into buying it because it boasted raglan sleeves or regular looking sleeves in the same pattern.  Do you see how they did it?  They put a yoke on one version of the dress - using the same lower half of the dress, and the raglan sleeves when added to the yoked version turn out looking very normal with set-in shoulder and armhole.  The version without the yoke comes up and finishes like a regular raglan.

I made several alterations to the pattern from the get-go.  I couldn't help myself - plus I had already cut a pair of pants out of the fabric I had bought, and had to 'make up' for not having the entire two yards anymore that I had planned for.  But, I knew I could do it - and with a bit of fiddling here and there, it happened.

Here is Esme pretending a knitting needle is a wand, and goofing off.. she is casting a magic spell.  I love the way the sleeves move, as I said in another post - sewing takes 2D and makes it 3D, then you get to see 3D in motion on a body.  The sizing of this one - size 6 chest 25, is a little large on her, and I made the long version instead of shortening it like I normally do.  But, it works on her - and it will grow with her over the next year or so better for having long sleeves now.

The skirt has some excess planned into it for the tie back, which allows her to both be comfortable in it standing or sitting and run as well.  It is a good design.  I had her try it on to make sure I had put the ties at her waistline before I sewed them down for permanency.   This picture also shows the slightly fallen yellow hairtie ribbons I put in her hair this morning for school.

The dress after it was finished - it really looked too big on the hanger, almost a size 7 or 8... not a 6.  Esme even said when she saw it that it was too big for her!  But the ties (seen below) were not tied tight at that time, either.  I took a second fabric I had and put panels in the front skirt because I had not put the inverted pleat in.. they weren't much, but enough to ensure it would not hang tight.  I've tried the inverted pleat before and been dissatisfied with it.. so I wasn't willing to try it with this fabric, maybe another time to do this pattern 'as it is written'?  Maybe not.. I know what works on her, and I know what my sewing style likes...which is what works on her :)

Pre-wear on the hanger, back ties.  It was supposed to have buttons, but I altered for a zipper.  It stays much better on her.  The other alteration I did is slightly visible here, but not otherwise.  I cut the back pieces apart at the center waist to reposition the fabric and make the most out of my short yardage.  I would not have gotten them out of the fabric in full pieces.  It is seen only as a disturbance in the pattern but the pattern is so all-over eye-dazzling that it doesn't matter much. 

Yay for good sewing projects :)

bit before I sew

Esme told me all about the big alphabet and animal book she gets to read now at school - she passed the letters test to get into reading instruction.  I'm very proud of her, which in a way seems a bit silly because I knew she could do it at the beginning of school.  She said she did not know her alphabet at the beginning of school (which, she did) and now she does, so now she can learn to read.  This is better than saying she could not read at all, when she can.  Good steps - and we will see how that progresses.

She told me about blue and gold hairclips with ribbons that the other girls have for blue and gold day.  I put yellow ribbons up in her hair around the tops of her braids and then braided them together.  I hope it lasts the day.  I need to get to the table and make some more clothes - the need-to-wash pile just keeps becoming more than the available to wear.  One of the two tshirts I bought as school clothes has already come apart in the sleeve, so I had to pull one of her handmade dresses out at the last minute when I saw it.  I have fabric set aside, and a new dress pattern that came in the mail that has a clever option between raglan or regular sleeves.  When I saw it, I had to get it... if you are a sewer a pattern that can choose regular or raglan sleeve construction is a head-tilter.. how did they do that?  I'll show you how.. it was actually fairly simple and elegant.

I should also go out to the garden today and check on the items that are left - lima beans, Daphne beans, Hopi String beans are starting to produce, cowpeas are producing in multitudes, the indian corn, the cucumbers and peppers... eventually we will need to mow much of it down and seed vetch to enrich the soil for next year. 

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Happening around here...

Esme's reading skills are getting much better, and her math skills, as well.  I still don't know what if anything they are working on with her at school but she is diving deeper into her computer games like Starfall and PBS kids after school and calling them 'the best games ever.'  This morning she was standing at our kitchen counter eating her pre-bus snack and staring hard at the contents of the back of the counter while chewing.  I asked her what she was looking at, and she swallowed, then said out loud 'start with clean coffee maker and cold fresh water.'  She was reading the instructions on the coffee can.  She missed the word 'Always' and then said 'Steep by steep' for the 'step by step.'

 But, she can read fairly well - and it has become more and more evident the past few weeks as she notices writing on everything and is paying attention to what it says/could say to her.  She asked me why the drawings in her room from last year had tiny writing on the edges and why I didn't tell her it was there before -- it is my writing her name and date.  She got mad at me for that for several hours.. until I reminded her that she saw me write it back then and wasn't mad - so she shouldn't be mad about it now.  *roll eyes*

We started a chapter book last night on Daddy's half-mocking suggestion - thinking it would make her go to bed quicker.  Nope.. she was bouncing monkey style on her bed hanging from the canopy after the first few pages but I continued reading because she was interested in the story 'Wizard of Oz' and I could catch her eyes and get her to look at pictures or words here and there.  We read through the second chapter - and I asked her recap what had happened.  She told me she wanted Mom to redraw the pictures on new paper with colors, because they were black and white and rather roughly done.... I thwarted that with 'someday, not soon.'  She still doesn't get the concept of 'soon'... asked me about that the other day again - 'what is soon...'  'it is earlier than later, a few minutes, I'll get you out of the bathtub soon, etc..' 

We did some math the other day as well - she knows what the '+' and '=' means.  I think that is from Starfall as she is only getting 'trace the number' and 'draw one more shape' at school.  She piped up in one of our conversations where I had used the word 'addition' to tell me about those signs and that is what that is about, Mama.  She got almost every one of the one digit equations right that I asked her - and wrote me a couple as well including '2 + 20 = ?  Then she argued with me it could not be twenty-two... guess she felt that was cheating putting twenty and two together... then Mark said it really was, and I think I saw the 'light' in her eyes as she realized 'putting together'='addition' twenty-two...

I actually felt like I could start teaching her more about multiplication and other things a while back - she might be ready for it... but it might sabotage what they do at school although I don't know how....  it is so hard to tell because her homework still comes home 'color in the lines' and 'you didn't finish this' etc etc... She has the ability but I don't know how they are coming at her in the group of twenty-five.  I don't know if showing them what she can do will make them ignore what she needs help with (handwriting, by far.. she hates it) or push her harder like we do at home to get past the stubborn layer.   I made her finish one of the sheets that said 'not finished' last night with her homework and Mark thought it could be cruel... to add to her homework as much as I do .. but it doesn't seem cruel to me, because she is smart in those ways, and needs to be responsible as well, learn to complete things, to be neat, to write even if it seems hard, to follow the class rules etc.  That is what Kindergarten is going to be about for her, instead of learning 123 and ABC...

I should have been making her dress today because I close at the store tonight... but all I wanted was sleep...  had to write down a few of these before I forget them and wonder 'when' this happened.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Experimental corn crossings... August third

 This is the first third of the ornamental corn crossing.  This is the Smoke Signals, Pink Hopi and Mandan Bride mixed with last year's corn.  I think the Glass Gem had a hand in the one with the blue kernels, it was in the next plot and because I WANTED mixing, I did not shield any of them from each other.

notes: Pink Hopi and Mandan Bride were flour corns.  The corn from last year was a flint corn with some flour components.  The Smoke Signals, Glass Gem and Japonica were all flinty popcorns.  Most of this crop shows the flint or 'glass' kernel type.  There is one cob not pictured that was pulled a week or so ago that had more of the flour type kernel, larger, flatter and not as shiny.

Pink Hopi is showing through on this set.

 The Smoke Signals was the dark black vs. yellow and it shows up in several of the cobs.
The second cob from the left is nearly ideal, and will be passed through, as well as some of the more pink and purple kernels and some from the flour cob.  The Glass Gem is still to come. we will see how that turns out!

Esme had to show off that she helped me find the corn and shuck it in the field.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Dodecahedron ball and previous attempt

Brain relaxing with platonic solids... highly reccommended.
All finished now... ok actually I'm thinking of making more...
 not sure exactly what, different sizes, maybe a tetrahedron and then an icosohedron...

The second attempt in progress.. looks like it will be as it should.  I did ti all handsewn to avoid the same problem happening as last time.

Esme with the original attempt, made on the sewing machine.   It is still a very fun toy, but shaped more like a two sided star with a circle in the middle.  She likes it a lot and it does bounce well.  As I was making the second one she told Daddy I was 'practicing again.'   Touche.. Touche.

Friday, August 23, 2013

still here...bits

Still here, trying to adjust to the schedule and taking it easy, I guess.  I haven't done much in ways of projects over the week... listened to music on Spotify, mostly Celtic rock, whaler drum rock and other strange mix things...  Seven Nations, The Mahones, Great Big Sea (my old favorite), the Elders, Greenland Whalefishers, Dreadnoughts (the celtic one, not the rap one)...  I guess I didn't know that really was my kind of music - have always listened to Classical and I know the instruments are part of it in that style... unique sounds, beats and rhythyms.  And I was reading and listening to more physics lectures, French lessons... not my usual rush around get stuff done that is 'real' ... brain stretching maybe.. my own way of relaxing?  I know my mom wants me to call her.. had dreams the other night.. my sister sent me an instant message today asking for my phone number again (which has not changed in many years)...

Esme is not really wanting to go ALL week with school every week.. but she is excited about the weekend and not having to go, play Minecraft, watch cartoons etc... we'll see where she is again on Sunday.  That is my next day off... I do have things to get done, clothes to sew, house to clean... sort of just stretching my brain rope out until I get there.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Turtz the turtle pillow

 A turtle pillow I've been working on for her to have in her room.
He needs back legs and a tail - but that will take a bit more of that color yarn.

The good thing is, she likes him.

I didn't get much else done this weekend.  She did a little geography and writing practice.  We went to a local event and met up with her best friend again for a few hours.  She spent time with Grandma.  I watched a lot of DVD television while crocheting and knitting this.  I did a little garden yesterday, but failed to process anything... it is all in bags in the fridge.

Still lots of things to do next week, and another full week of school... she just washed her hair and I'm trying to devise how to get her to go to bed on time after letting her sleep in two days in a row.

I got the firmer stuffing by mistake last week - and she says he is not as comfy as she had hoped he would be.  She really likes my hexagon pillow that is on my bed, and it is full of the really soft stuffing.  I guess Mama lives and learns on which she prefers.  I told her the turtle might not be so good for head sleeping but he would be better for sitting on the floor.  So, she tried to take him into her bed with her and found that was not conducive to sleeping... *roll eyes*.. and I put him back in her tent where he was intended to be.  Maybe I can get the other stuffing and do some turtle surgery on him.. or just have the right track for the next time I am feeling largely crafty for a project.

 Irons in the Fire:

 I have some baby toys in mind for someone at work - a repeat of Esme's 'mimsy' toys... have not gotten myself around to it - barely got my gear on this... have washed and dried four yards of fabric for more clothes and did not touch that all weekend...the school week plus social function took too much out of me.  More than I realized.  I didn't even have Wikipedia or any other science articles open all weekend.  I did discover French in Action  episodes and began to watch them.  I can feel my brain work on that - it threatened to go to sleep thinking about doing more math/science but it was up for language lessons (strange I know....)  Esme asked me about different languages being all Spanish or Chinese and which was where... so we talked about it a bit, and she still doesn't quite understand, but at least she is thinking about it.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

small note

Not that much done today, either - but something.  I finished the washcloth from last night, made Esme a pair of pants and started on a pillow for her room (since I didn't need any, but she obviously does, right?) ha.  She had a disagreement of rules and terms with her teacher today...and the teacher called to find out how we deal with the stubborn streak.  I do appreciate the teacher taking interest and consideration in that way.  Teachers words today : ' I can tell that she is a very smart girl - but there is that stubborn streak, as well.. and she was insistent that I was the one not listening to her (and not that she caused a problem to begin with etc..).  Yes, sounds like our girl... her skill in logic makes for a love of disagreement and picking apart of the rules at the same time. (I think I did exactly that thing when I was her age, too - so can't say this is all from Daddy.  I remember several exasperated teachers in the early years calling my mom and having words...not very nice ones.)  And with her language oddities and possible misunderstandings from them, it is exactly the kind of thing she needs to work on with other people who are not Mom and Dad. 

Back to work tomorrow... I need to make a few more pairs of pants as several 'good' ones now have holes in them and others are just plain missing.  We did her homework page and then for good measure I had her do more handwriting exercises on her lower-case 'e'..

Monday, August 12, 2013

oh my and not much done in the rain

I had the day off.. and Esme had school.  Can't say I did nothing while she was gone... but it doesn't feel like really much to take pictures and blog about.. here it is anyway, because it still feels like a kind of progress I'll be repeating, organization, small projects.   I watched some Khan Academy, perused subjects much too far above my head on Wikipedia and Google books (but liked it), listened to a whole CD of music on the computer (so rare I've done it maybe three times this year) and organized this sewing shelf.  I did not take a before shot.... but it wasn't pretty.  It probably won't stay this way for long and I could have delved into those little drawers a bit more for things to organize..but then I opened up one of the plastic bags on the shelf and found all these little strip fabric things for chandelier chains I had bought on clearance a good while back... so I put them to some experimental sewing recycling and made a mat backed with muslin, which ended up under my clock and journal on my dresser... I didn't need another pillow ;)

Why yes, that is another book box on the shelf - I painted that today, as well.. the inside (not pictured) is a scene of "multiple moons" and stars... in yellow, purple and gray.  I wanted to try that color combo and see how it looked.  The paints are in the handled tin box and the cardboard drum... two large dust-collecting cardboard boxes were thrown away and who knows how much paper that was stacked and not very useful, wrappers,bits and bobs of things I no longer had any plans for etc..

Esme is still napping.. she had a tough day today.  She said school was hard, but some was easy.  She was glad to be home where she could play all day and not 'do the learning, but for a little bit of learning, but not a lot.'  That is the 'oh my'.. third day of school and she realizes she would be rather be playing.  We saw beautiful butterflies on the road on the way home - we all stopped to look at them.  Then she got all of her school things off and did her homework sheet.  She tried to play Skyrim Dragon game and got too scared after a bit... then went for a nap.  I wonder what she will think about having to get ready for school again..

This is a 'bunny in a space helmet' and a birthday cake in some sort of glass box, too.
Esme did this yesterday in Minecraft while I was at work.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

New book holders for childrens room decor out of product boxes from the store

 These boxes once held a kind of tool at my store and were left empty on the shelf.  I picked them up and was impressed by how sturdy and clean feeling they were .. they deserved a second life before they would eventually go to rubbish...  I could see Esme's lighter weight magazines and books going in them on the shelf instead of stacked as she has been want to do.  And, she loves to paint like I do.  I started to paint the blue one myself and she came in from playing outside and volunteered for the second one, with suggestions for decor on the blue one.  She decided to leave the bottom of the sides on her pink box white so they look like clouds in the sky.  That was intentional.

I'll see what she paints on hers for decoration tomorrow... it was late and I put her to bed while the pink layer dries.  We also got a large display board that she has drawn stick figures on, but I hope she will use for writing her sight words on and/or make a landscape in to use as a backdrop screen in her room.  One of my days off next week I'll ask her about it.

Last night I told Esme I still want to be a scientist when I grow up... she did the 'wait what?' look at me and started to argue I was grown up tall already I couldn't grow up anymore.. so we talked about grown ups might still learn things they want to do after they grow up tall... and she told me I needed to go learn in my books, and she would learn too and be a scientist rockstar astronaut cowboy who goes bounce on the moon with a guitar. Ok, then. Let's shoot for that.
All finished with hers with no help from me.  
She is really growing up :)

She is comparing the design pictures and realizing hers is different now, I have four - this has six.  
Me: Yes... but they are both awesome. 
 Esme:  They are!  They match!

We did a little homeschool before I went to work today.  I made her a checklist for what she did on the box and she read the words and checked them off.  Then we made a grocery map of our store and she helped me make a list of things she wanted, we looked at the map to find out where they were in the store and marked numbers on the map and the list so we knew which item was where.

Her list: bananas, strawberries, apples, oranges, juice, chicken soup.  Most of that is in the produce section!

Tootbrush kingdom number two, flag, words and more...

 A rabbit, a 'master' in a chair, and an (supposed to be American) flag with stripes and a blue square.  Fairly good, considering.

A skeleton who has lost his skin.

A basketball hoop and a basketball (piece of wool on the ground)

Lots of things.. the brown square with a blue octopus on top of it is a giftwrapped package with an 'itchy sweater, pants and boots' inside it.  She has written her name, the word POP (end on but it is blue), and the word PET? backwards in green that is asking what is in the other brown box, (another rabbit).  She has been making birthday cakes, presents and lots of rainbow items.  The white thing was supposed to be a sandwich but the bread wasn't finished yet.

Friday, August 09, 2013

New blue shorts set and calico puppies growing up

 This is the matching set she asked for the other day... she needed more playclothes and said she wanted them to match each other like the purple set I made a while back.  She is playing Minecraft on the computer.

Caught a shot here with Daddy and the calico puppies Sweetie (left) and Spud (right).  They are growing up, and so is Esme.  She is getting so tall.  She had written a letter to Gw today and begged me to deliver it to her father at my work.  It was the first thing she asked me about this morning.. and the first thing she asked after I got home from work.

Thursday, August 08, 2013

More of Esme's toothbrush kingdom in Minecraft

  This is the 'second' toothbrush kingdom with lots of new friends and brothers and sisters

 Inside the wooden house.
The blue house below it got full of bats, so she made an 'x' on it and closed it up without doors... but it was furnished almost exactly like the house shown at the end.

 A better view of the green and blue haired people holding the tree.

 The first toothbrush kingdom with lots of improvements and changes.
The bottles with white caps on them are different flavors of toothpaste.  I was told the golden toothbrush is the statue flag for the toothbrush kingdom, and those are pies around it and a bed and a garden of watermelons. 
Inside the toothbrush house she has a huge 'tv' on one wall, a multicolored remote button 'for the tv' on the other, and lots of lights and chests.  She says this is a 'beautiful home.'

OK, I'll just tbe six.. conversation to remember.

Esme yesterday on the way back from the bus.  'It doesn't take 15 time to get down there (to the house)?'  No, minutes - it doesn't take fifteen minutes to get down there, only about five minutes.  'Five minutes - that is my age!'  No, five years.. five years is a long time, five minutes is a small time.  Five years is like.. fifty million minutes (hyperbole but I wanted to get the drift across)... OH... I remember when I was one age.  What?  You remember when you were one years old?  What did you do that you remember?  I had a two year birthday party at Grandma house, and then I was three year age and then four year and now I am five year age and it is five!  And what will you be next - on your next birthday?  *think* Six.  I will be six, and then seven year and then eight year and nine and ten and eleven and twelve... 'Whoa, slow down.. wait, that's a long time.  Let's work on six, ok?'  Oh.  ok.  six. just six.  But.. six is just.. like a child.  It's not big.  I will be scared, and shake... I want to be big - 'dult'..  (adult).  But there are lots of things to learn still - like the difference between five minutes and five years, important things.  And we will help you learn everything and go to school and learn things.   OK.. I'll be six.  *climb stairs dejected hanging head*  It will take a long time.. but... I can play Minecraft!  Yes, yes you can.

She didn't go to school today - and she was bubbling around the house writing signs and a letter to Gwenny and making 'beautiful homes' on Minecraft.  She went to see Grandma a bit ago.. and I'm deciding what to do with my day off.. been picking things up here and there and knitted a bit on a washcloth... read a lot of articles online.

Wednesday, August 07, 2013

Second day of school drawing and a bit of sewing

Esme's coloring today, and a drawn in bus driver because, the children needed one.
When she colored her gingerbread man she gave him a nose and pupils in his eyes that were not in the original drawing, either.  I love seeing her extra details.

Made three pairs of blue shorts today... Esme wants me to make some matching shirts tomorrow - it's possible on the pale blue one, but maybe not quite on the purple one.  Her other requests were rainbow colors or maybe something green?

Tuesday, August 06, 2013

school bus

 Waiting for the school bus (in the wrong place)...

Running for the school bus on the side of the county road... she was nice enough to wait for us to speed up there in the car... but I should have followed my instincts first about where we should be.. and I didn't - because I didn't want to seem too anxious etc etc... instead we almost didn't get her on it at all.  Now of course my Mom worry is that she'll fall out of her seat on the first corner etc etc... but the rest of it I have to leave up to someone else and her own responsibility...

She's off to a real first day of Kindergarten.  So much, all at once.

quotes: 'When I see the bus that is 90 I will stay away from it.. when I see the bus that is 18 one and eight I will go on it and I will sit and say Hi Miss (name), I am Esme.  But not the bus that is 19.. or the 20, or the one hundred!  That is not it.' 

Sunflowers in the garden

Sunday, August 04, 2013

school bus bit

Tried to do the whole run this morning for practice.  Esme got it after the first few minutes - stopped being upset that it wasn't real school and started getting excited it was practice.  She had to go back and check her calendar in her room to make sure it said 'no school'... it was actually blank on today.  Ha!  I tried to explain it as best I can.  As I told Mark - she gets some things so early and so easily.. things I don't expect her to and then am blown away with (like building bat caves and rail systems in Minecraft) and then I have to explain things three or four times a day like 'no we have to practice so we get this right at the time it happens - which is Tuesday.'  But, she WANTED to understand today.  She felt better knowing that tomorrow is a school day.  She wanted to 'know all the things' and get 'practiced.'  And she finally got that Mom has to do all her own things to get ready for work at the same time as I help her do her things to get ready for school -- which is why we are pressing her so hard to do as much as she can for herself.  Mark did another hair brushing and hair tying back lesson.  I explained how LONG she would be on the bus so she needed both a snack and a bathroom break before she would 'normally' leave.  We even got on shoes and coats and went out to discuss where the bus would come and how she would get on and sit down and stay seated. 

Lots of little things.  Mama and Daddy culture shock... and Esme, as well.  For all her furious notes and drawings and Minecraft creations the past few days I can see she wants to be as ready as she can be.  We hope she isn't going to be too disappointed with the place the teacher starts for everyone... but hopefully it will pick up quickly...

Tomorrow, we all go for the half day, and I have that day off to do it with her.

Friday, August 02, 2013


Put Esme to bed last night fuming mad - got her up for 'just like school' this morning tired and wanting to go back to sleep rather than put on clothes... but she had to help take me to work... and she did.  She nearly crashed about 5 pm saying she was so tired, but it is 7 pm now and she has bursts of energy running around the yard screaming and hollering with the dogs.

We bought school supplies (during which she was quite unhappy she didn't get much choice), and some clothing (again, not much choice, I had decided ahead of time one yellow and one blue tshirt each, and underwear, and tennis shoes).  She tried very hard to get Daddy to buy her some other shoes instead.. but it was not going to fly.  I bought four and a half more yards of cloth for nearly as much money - to make more pants, shorts and dresses in the 'right' colors... it will be used, and it will be the same high quality.  I added up on my calculator and we spent almost exactly as much on the cloth and shoes and clothing as we did on the rest of the supplies.

She did get more choice in the snacks - and was happy about that.  She pointed out several items she wanted and they were not a bad idea.

At home this afternoon she had been writing all over sheet after sheet of paper, alphabet, her name, several words.  She was 'getting ready'.

And she did this in Minecraft - building a forest of letters in her forest of 'brothers and sisters and a Daddy.

Esme's alphabet with corrections from Daddy

Toothbrush festival, new ones and old ones, playground swings and a slide
(Saturday work)

Writing work from Saturday morning.  This was an empty tablet I placed on her desk without mention yesterday after school supply shopping.  She has also been drawing all over her easel in her room and trying to erase the marker with her hands only to wipe it on her knees (luckily it is washable!)

We did some work on brushing her hair herself tonight .. lots of tears.. she is really not liking that idea.  But I got her to take a good stab at it.  We'll give her a few weeks before we make a decision about if she can learn from the other little girls just how important it is.

Thursday, August 01, 2013

Striped Triangle shawl started

We have Esme's Kindergarten orientation tonight, in about an hour... have had a day at home as I switched with someone so we could be there.  After I finished Esme's blanket I started on this triangle shawl, which is a very simple pattern.  I cast stitches onto the circular needle as far as I thought it could go - then at every second row I would decrease one at the beginning (the secnod and third stitches) and at the end of the row (same reversed).  I started striping the shawl by changing color at the finish of that second row, carrying the white yarn over as each color goes across one row, across (decreasing) the second row, and then holds in waiting for the white to do the same.  Just pick up the other color at the end of the row and clip and change colors as needed.  It looks very pretty from the front or back (front only shown).

Esme asked if it would be her next pretty blanket for her bed... but I told her what a shawl was - a blanket for your shoulders to go outside in, and that ladies in the past used to feed their chickens or milk their cows while wearing warm shawls, or walk in the woods, or look at the sunset.  She liked that idea.

A few things to remember for her - she is reading more, things on TV, in the store -and she is writing more, as well.  She copied the words 'No Party' in her room to make a sign for when she is not using her boombox.  It says 'Esme's Party with the Beastie Boys' on the front side, which I wrote for her on request.  I was surprised to find her addition to the sign later, but giggled :)  She is also using the word 'future' more.. She's still confused about the word 'graduation', she thinks the American flag is graduation, and we are all living in the graduation place... close, but not quite on the mark.  She said my shawl colors were 'graduation', too.. so we talked about the flag some and what it meant, and that graduations were just a ceremony - a time for the school students - that tells us that the students are going from one class to another, and that yes - they have an American Flag shown at the graduation because we live in the United States.  She still thought I was just misunderstanding her.. and didn't want to talk more about it.  She gets so stubborn!

As the shawl decreases every other row, it shouldn't take too long to finish.  
The longer it gets, the fewer stitches in a row!

Her school supplies list was at the store tonight - and we will round up the items for it this weekend.

We got back from the school orientation a few hours ago... we feel like hipsters among a crowd of jocks.  And Esme is going to be so bored until/if they get some differentation going I think... the first week they focus on reading 'I' and the most common three letter words.  As the teacher said this to the parents she looked at me and said 'I run.. I can read that.  She said I run?'  Yes, child.. she did.. sit and don't squirm so much (play dead on table, pretend to fall asleep).  Well... well... I'm with you kid but I can't help much on that one.  The teacher did say they will find out what level they are at and push to get them higher... they tested her in June as not knowing the letter Q and Y.. which I was quite sure she did know (and can write as well as tell me words they are used in).  So, how well are they 'going to get to know her level' if she decides they have nothing to offer her and decides to play dumb until they give her something easy to finish and go play?

Tonight I decided to get her to start to go to bed earlier, since her bus times will be just after or before sunrise around here...  Even tonight (30-45 minutes earlier) was tough.  She was so mad.. I tucked her into bed with her arms crossed and a wrinkled up nose.  I set her alarm clock.  She told me I was making her madder with all the fun when I tried to cheer her up.  Tenacity.  Do they have any idea what we have on our hands here?  Do we?  Not really even now...

I wish someone had clued me into the school spirit color days during her preschool years.  Every Friday she 'should' wear the school colors.  If I had known that three months ago I would have done my school sewing a bit different maybe... probably have to add a few new things to the wardrobe to account for it, or try to convince her it isn't as important as they said it was going to be.