It is a poverty to decide that a child must die so that you can live as you wish. Mother Teresa
Andrea from The Train to Crazy recently shared the above quote. She asked what it meant to us. I had responded "Reminds me of the moral bankruptcy with which I can be so comfortable with if I am not careful."
Yesterday, I was not so comfortable.
I am not sure if you are familiar with American Girl Dolls. The original concept was actually a pretty good one. Dolls for girls that related to specific periods of history and come with story books that share that history. However, if you've stepped inside an American Girl store, you know that the concept has moved well beyond the original idea.
The prices for the dolls and accessories are beyond ridiculous. You pay more for a costume for a doll than I would pay for clothing to put my own children.
Why do I allow my daughters to own American Girl Dolls? Why do I support it if I don't like it?. I don't. At least not personally, I am only complicit.
My mother-in-law has paid for every single last bit of American Girl stuff my daughters own.
That doesn't make me feel less guilty and angry. Every time I step into an American Girl store, I am appalled by how much money people are spending on an inanimate object.I am distressed by the fact that none of the children in the store seem happy. They are all whining, complaining or throwing tantrums (including my own little angels).
The worst part is that the amount spent in the store in one hour by one customer for the sake of one doll is often enough to support a Compassion child for a year. A doll - a child. It shouldn't be a hard choice.
I want to say something to my in-laws. But I am afraid that my relationship with them isn't the best. I have reached the point of biting my tongue and smiling so that something like peace exists in our family.
I did pull my eldest child to the side yesterday and told her that what her grandparent's spent in the store yesterday would nearly support both our Compassion girls for a year. I pointed out to her that Lavinia and Yuleidy are real living breathing people and the dolls are just dolls. I told her it wasn't so much that I didn't want her to have the gifts from Grammy so much as I wanted her to realize what was really important. In the scope of eternity, dolls are nothing.
Did I do enough? I don't know. But peace with my husband, children, and in-laws seems an objective worth pursuing for their sakes if not my own. But it doesn't make yesterday any less nauseating to me (yes, it did make me sick to my stomach).
For the record, my in-laws arrived on the 22nd and will be her until the 6th.
I had a tremendous creative high while on vacation. Before vacation, I made these bleached t-shirts with the girls based on an idea from Fireflies and Jellybeans. I let the girl's use foam pieces from foam puzzle books for the imprint.
I liked them so much I decided to do them with my niece (and I hope to do them with my nephew in the next week). I also thought that to facilitate designing for the girls that foam stickers would be awesome.
So here are the little girls with their designs before bleaching.
Here are the girls wearing their special designs.
The high for me was in the fact that because it was vacation my husband, my sister, and my BIL were involved and I think we adults had as much fun and were as fascinated by the process as the kids were.
After my experiences with K's pink and with K's red t-shirts I would suggest that red/pink are not the best colors for this project. The red definitely turned out better than the pink - you could barely see the design on the pink.
If you let the kids help with the bleaching like we did you will want to make sure they are wearing clothes that you don't mind ruining/bleaching. They will also need assistance/supervision.
Let's Party!! The Rules:
Link to your specific post, not the main page of your blog. Link to something you made that shows off your creative genius; something that gave you a creative high kind of like the endorphin rush that runners talk about. It can be an old post or a new post but it needs to be something you made.
Give your entry a descriptive title.
Use my button to link back to the party or add a text link in your post.
I can’t accept links to etsy shops or online stores.
By entering your link, you are giving me permission to use any part of your post including pictures in a spotlight at Those Northern Skies (appropriate credit and links will be given to you and your blog of course).
Every Friday at the next party, I will highlight my favorite posts from the previous week.
My favorite entrant of the week will win an advertisement in my sidebar free of charge for one month (four weeks). If you do not have a shop, I can put your blog button up or if you would rather I can put up a button for your favorite charity.
In addition, for those who make a project inspired by one of my projects or one of my tutorials, I will pick one winner a month and they will get to keep an advertisement in my sidebar for two months. Plus all inspired entrants will be part of a featured post at the end of the month.
I made a few things to take to my sister and her daughter while I visited them. Some you've seen, some you have not. One of the things I made was a fairy hair wreath for my sister's oldest daughter G.
I've made at least a dozen of them. My girls own several. I've made them for friends girls and for my own nieces. I made five of them for the preschool where my girls attended.I know that they are nearly indestructible because my girls are rough on everything. The only thing that happens is that ribbon does end up fraying if you don't finish with with Fraycheck.
They are easy to make.
hook and loop tape
ribbon or tulle
Cut a bunch of ribbon or tulle to use for the streamer behind the wreath. Bundle the top of the ribbon in a scrap of fabric and stitch over it a couple of times to hold the bundle together.
Next you need to measure your child's head. You will need to cut the fleece long enough to go around her head with the addition of about three inches of overlap by about four inches wide.
Fold the band in half lengthwise. Slip the bundle into the folded band near one end and then top stitch around the entire band.
Cut a three inch strip of hook and loop tape. Fix the loop tape to the end of the band on the inside. Fix the hook tape on the opposite end on the outside. (I like to put the hook tape on the side that faces out because I think it is less likely to snag on their hair that way. I also like to make sure that the outside (the end with the hook tape) is the side with the ribbon or tulle so that when the child wears it, it is against the head and the flower band covers the top of it).
I realize now that this picture doesn't really show it. I am sorry.
Dismantle your flowers and stack them together with a button in the middle.
When you sew the flowers to the head band, it is helpful to place the knot of the thread on the top of the head band so it will be under the flowers and then when you finish the thread to finish it under the headband. In this way, the only thing that is on the head side of the band is the stitches and there aren't any knots to irritate their head.
In the past, I've used jingle bells as the center of the flowers. The edges of the bells often fray and snap the thread so after I've sewn the flower down, I also use some glue underneath it to help prevent the jingle bell from breaking the thread.
Here are a few others, I"ve made. I can't seem to find a picture of my favorite one right now.