Thursday, December 30, 2010

quilts of 2010

This year I completed 6 quilts-5 for gifts and one for me. The quilt above I made for my brother's fortieth birthday. It has some Minnesota fabric from the 2009 Minnesota Quilt Shop Hop. I made three different baby quilts-one for a friend (click here for picture), one for my nephew born in August(click here for picture), and one for my cousin's son. I also made a quilt for my aunt's 60th birthday. It is a nine patch in red, white, and a bit of orange. The flannel quilt I made for myself can be seen here. My two favorites are my quilt and my nephew's quilt.

Monday, December 27, 2010


I read 58 books this year. Above is a stack of some of the good books that I read. The ones that have the titles listed below have a link to what I wrote about them after reading them.

Extra Credit by Andrew Clements

Listen by Rene Gutteridge

The Mountain Between Us by Charles Martin

Plain Jayne by Hillary Manton Lodge

Saving Sailor by Renee Riva

I don't think that I could choose just one favorite out of the books, but there is a good chance I would read any of them again.
If you like mysteries read Listen or Anathema or The Thirteenth Tale. If you like adventure, read The Voyage of the Dawn Treader or The Mountain Between Us. I had to read Poetry Matters for one of my classes this summer and would recommend it to anyone that wants to get better at writing.

What good books did you read this year?

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

baby quilt

This is the baby quilt I made this weekend. The front is flannel, so it is nice and soft. Though I am happy with the finished product I don't like working with just pastels. I prefer bright and bold colors for baby quilts, like the one I made for my nephew this summer(click here for picture). Since I didn't know if the baby is a boy or a girl, I put in a little of both blue and pink.

Monday, December 13, 2010

books about Christmas

Voices of Christmas is a book by Nikki Grimes that gives a two pages to each character from the Christmas story. Each character talks about their experiences of the first Christmas. It would be a great book to read with a child and talk about what really happened at Christmas. I enjoyed the pictures.I'm Not Santa by Jonathan Allen is a silly story about Owl and Hare. Hare sees Owl when he is wearing a Santa hat and thinks that Owl is Santa. This one was a fun one to read to my second grade students.
The Little Red Elf by Barbara Barbieri McGrath is a Christmas story that is modeled after the little red hen story. The hare, penguin and reindeer don't want to help Little Red Elf, and always find an excuse to get out of the work. The first time I read it, the last page made me laugh. I really enjoyed the illustrations too.
Duck and Goose, It's Time for Christmas by Tad Hills is a cute board book for young children. If you have liked any of the other Duck and Goose board books, this one would be one to look for. A short simple story with great illustrations that I enjoyed.

If you want even more ideas, you can look at other years suggestions by clicking on any of the links below.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Extra Credit

Extra Credit by Andrew Clements is the book I finished last night. This novel is about Abby Carson. Abby is in danger of having to repeat sixth grade. She is willing to do almost anything so she doesn't have to stay back. Her teacher gives her an extra credit assignment to write to a student in another country. She chooses Afghanistan, and ends up writing letters to Amira and Sadeed. If I still taught fourth grade, I would consider using it as a read aloud and would add it to my bookshelf for students to read. If you haven't read anything by Andrew Clements, this book or Frindle would be a great place to start.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Secrets of Harmony Grove

Secrets of Harmony Grove by Mindy Starns Clark is a novel that I read recently. This is the fourth novel I have read by Clark, and I still like her first one the best. In this book, Clark again does a lot to make the mystery engaging, with many things going on that the main character doesn't know. The primary location of the novel is in Lancaster County, where Sienna owns a bed and breakfast. There are seemingly unrelated stories in the book, but as the novel progressed I could see how some things were related. At the end of this book, it made me wonder how the author could think of such a plot. Anyone read it? If you like fast paced mysteries that keep you guessing, you might enjoy this book.