Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Quad Cities, IA

In Sept. we traveled to Davenport, IA for Nathan and Raena's wedding.
 We made a short side trip to the nearby home base of the show American Pickers.

 Lots of history and rust. It was fun.

Also stopped at this excellently named community college.

Filipino Harvest Tour

 Sunday night we hosted a farm tour for about 30 visitors from the Philippines.
 They were soybean meal customers from various companies.

These two ladies were part owners with their husbands of the main company that organized the tour for some of their customers.  They were so lovely and gracious.
They left us with special gifts of pearls from the Philippines, "The Pearl of the Orient."

Monday, September 29, 2014


We had a soybean trade mission team from the Philippines here for a farm tour last night. There were about 30 people on the tour, and we saw fields, some farm equipment, our church and stopped at the corner where the states meet. One of the guests took this panoramic view with the tour bus ready to head up the gravel road to our place and the one intersecting state line road looking like it has been split into two.  Photo credit: Lumikha Studios

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Rear View Sunset

Made a trip to my mom's hometown yesterday with her to attend the funeral of her "second mother," who was 100 years old when she passed away. It was lovely to catch up with her "cousins" and other relatives.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Friday, September 19, 2014

Birthday Trip-W

We took W. along to Minneapolis for a business trip Husband had. It just happened to be on her birthday and just happened to be where her cousin lives. Dad went to meetings, and we visited the candy store next door to the motel.  In the afternoon, we "kidnapped" cousin P. from school and visited the Walker Art Museum.
We were lucky to find this cool heart worn into the cement sidewalk. Cousin love.
 The sculpture garden was fun.

We wandered around inside too.
Some of the galleries were being changed over. We spent most of our time in the modern art section, and the gift shop.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Peg Doll Craftopia

When looking for a craft to bring to family camp each year, I want something with simple, easily accessible materials and lots of opportunity for open-ended crafting creativity. This year I brought peg dolls. Historically, peg dolls were made out of wooden clothes pegs during a time when people had little money to spend on toys.  All of the dolls in this post were made by kids between ages 8-12 years with very little supervision or instruction.  
I usually make an example or two at home and then when we get to camp set it all up, show a couple of kids what to do, and make a suggestion occasionally. Then I leave them alone, and they go at it. They drop by the cabin at random times and work as they wish.

I brought along two types of peg dolls. I bought an assortment of the "legless" ones on Amazon much cheaper than I could find them locally. They came in various sizes of peg dolls, and I thought our kids would like to have the option to make "families." The more traditional pegs I also ordered from Amazon. I wish I had also ordered peg doll stands.

Our peg dolls enjoyed cardboard tree houses (see corner of first picture) and cardboard animals to ride on. We made these before camp. I took cardboard along in case anyone wanted to try to make them, but they just used the ones we had. At the end of the weekend, whoever wanted to took a couple of cardboard animals home with them. The patterns for the cardboard animals and houses came from the Mr. Printables blog.

I brought along ribbons, felt scraps, tulle scraps, lace scraps, glue, tape, scissors and permanent markers. I also took along washi tape. I found some at Wal Mart and discovered that Duck brand makes washi tape.

Many peg dolls are painted with acrylic craft paint, but because I did not want to manage that mess we only brought along markers. Markers can bleed on some pegs, so I was not totally happy with this option until I read on one blog that they sealed their pegs with clear nail polish or ModgePodge before using markers on them. We tried it and it worked great, so my girls did a quick, light coat of Modge Podge on all 165 pegs we took along. By the end of the long weekend, the kids had used nearly all of them up! It was glorious.

I also took along our I-pad with some pictures of finished peg dolls loaded on it, so the kids could look at them for ideas. I think their finished dolls are all really great and appealing.