Saturday, 8 July 2017

Psalm 58 - Snail Quiet Book Page

In Psalm 58, David asks God to make the wicked like snails that melt away as they go along!

Memory Verse: "May they [the wicked] be like snails that dissolve into slime" Psalm 58:8a

Materials needed to create the Snail quiet book page:

  • A4 felt background sheet. I used sky blue.
  • felt scraps
  • rik rak
  • sheer printed organza or other colourful sheer material
  • embroidered flower motifs or other hide-able object
  • glass stone or marble, button, bead etc
  • sewing threads to match 
  • this snail colouring page from Coloring Pages for Kids (and a printer)

On your background sheet, arrange some green felt in the foreground to make grass and sew down.

Cut out a double layer of the same green felt in the shape of a bush. Sew the two bush pieces back to back. Then sew them down along the right top edge of the grass, ensuring you leave enough room to fit the snail along the rest of the grass.

Fold back the bush and sew/iron on your motif underneath.

Print and cut out your snail colouring page and use as a template. If you need a more detailed explanation, you could read how I used a colouring page as a template in my post on Jacob's Ladder.

Cut out the snail body and sew down, then add the eye pieces on top.

Measure how much rik rak you need by laying it over the snail outline. Cut a little extra to tuck underneath at each end. Melt the ends with a match so they don't fray.


Lay your organza or sheer fabric over the area where the snail shell will be. Pin your rik rak down in a spiral pattern over the top and slip in a glass stone or other item underneath the organza. Make sure there is enough room to move the stone around while it is still pinned. That way you can adjust it before sewing if needed. I started from the outside edge and went in towards the middle, then turned around a stitched all the way back out again. That will help to make it tough and be able to withstand being played with. Then trim the organza back.


Finished!

Difficulty Level = Intermediate

The tricky part is lining up the rik rak. Also, make sure you cut out the snail shape after sewing it down and not before - I had to re-do it as I missed catching a section and there was a hole that the glass stone kept slipping out of.



This is Tahlia with her three pages of sewing on paper that we did after finishing the snail. She often sits on my lap while I sew and has been dying to test out the fancy stitches on the machine that I never use. So I let her.

Key Learning Areas and Skills

  • Psalm 58 - This page tells about how ultimately the wicked will be like the snail - they will melt away and dissolve into slime!
  • Imaginative Play - Garden play perhaps, imagine how big everything is when you are as small as a snail.
  • Button/stone/marble maze - push the stone around the track.
  • Shapes - learn all about spirals.
  • Peek-a-boo - lift the flap to reveal the (half) hidden flowers.
  • Fine Motor Skills - all quiet books encourage fine motor skills through turning pages, and on this page, through moving the glass stone around the spiral maze, and lifting and closing the peek-a-boo flap.

Read the Chapter

Psalm 58

Devotional

All too often, those in authority use their power to take advantage of others. Sometimes they are scary and they scare people into obedience. Sometimes they seem too difficult to stand up to. I guess David knew how that felt. The king of Israel was supposed to be looking after God's sheep, but instead he was hunting one of them down to try to kill him. David.

In a way this verse reminds me of the story of the Wicked Witch of the West in The Wizard of Oz story.  She seems formidable until a simple bucket of water causes her great concern and she cries "I'm melting!" as she dissolves into nothing.

I guess my point is that the bucket of water is like a tiny bit of good or a tiny bit of faith. God and goodness are infinitely stronger than evil. In fact, wickedness is self-destructive. It cannot prevail against goodness.

This point was taken to heart by Desmond Tutu in his opposition to apartheid in South Africa. He knew he was on the winning side, because goodness always prevails in the end. Although living in a very volatile situation, he led his country to a war-less end to systematic racial discrimination and segregation, and advocated reconciliation through forgiveness. The country underwent a transition to democracy, and apartheid rule that had lasted over forty years was broken. It melted away because of goodness.

David had experience with that too. Everyone else could only see a giant problem when they looked at Goliath. But David knew that a little stone in the hands of faith could melt that problem. He trusted God to deal with his problems. Our problems might look insurmountable to us, but when you know how good and powerful God is, suddenly you have a way to dissolve them. Just ask Him.

“Good is stronger than evil; love is stronger than hate; light is stronger than darkness; life is stronger than death. Victory is ours, through him who loves us.” Desmond Tutu.

Saturday, 17 June 2017

Genesis 8 - In The Ark Quiet Book Page

In Genesis chapter 8, the Flood recedes and Noah checks by sending out a raven and a dove through a window in the ark.


Memory Verse: "When the dove returned to him in the evening, there in its beak was a freshly plucked olive leaf! Then Noah knew that the water had receded from the earth." Genesis 8:11

Materials needed to create the In The Ark quiet book page:

  • A4 felt background sheet, I used navy.
  • felt scrap for pocket
  • Betty Lukens Felt book 07 Noah's Ark available at Koorong.
  • sewing thread to best match the page and pocket
  • scissors!
Cut out all the pieces for this page, and the two ark pages from the set leaving as much margin as possible. You want enough to make it easy to sew back to back and also to leave a flap on the respective sides so you can sew it down to the page along that and it can flip open. The Betty Lukens FAQ section has posted a cutting tips PDF.

Cut out the three sides of the window and door so they can open. Hot glue (or sew) the pictures behind the window and door.

Sew the two pages back to back, sewing around the top along the shape of the ark. They should line up fairly well. Trim the excess, remembering to leave a flap down one side to sew it onto the page with so it flips open.



Make a pocket by folding down the top edge of a rectangular piece of felt and sewing along that edge to reinforce it. Then sew it onto the middle of the page where it will be hidden by the ark.

Sew the ark onto the page along the flap, going over it twice so it is strong.

Pop the pieces inside the pocket (or better yet, play with them)!

Finished!

Difficulty Level = Intermediate.

Double check everything when sewing the pages back to back and ensure you leave enough margin to form a flap for the ark to flip open.

Key Learning Areas and Skills

  • Genesis 8 - This page tells the story of how the Flood receded and Noah tested this by sending out a raven and a dove through a window in the ark.
  • Imaginative Play - Open the window to let the raven and dove in and out. 
  • Matching - Check on the animals inside and match the pairs.
  • Fine Motor Skills - all quiet books encourage fine motor skills through turning pages, and on this page, through matching the pairs of animals and opening the window and door.


Read the Chapter

Genesis 8

Devotional

I always wondered what Noah and his family filled the ark with besides all the food they and the animals would need for a year or so. If I was planning a new life in a new world, what would I bring?
My sewing machine would be high on the list of wants, but how much good would it do me without electricity at the other end? Did they have items like this that they just had to leave behind because it would no longer be useful? I imagine they packed as much as they could to make setting up a new life as easy as possible.

I also imagined one of Noah's sons' wives being pregnant on the ark. When I was a child I guess I didn't consider things like sea sickness getting in the way of that, or the enormous amount of work looking after all those animals must have been. The first child to be born after the flood was born two years after the flood (Genesis 11:10). So I guess it didn't take them long to get organised enough to feel that getting pregnant was OK.

I recently had a dream where it was my family entering the ark, and as I was busily packing forgotten items, it suddenly hit me that all my debt was gone. I couldn't stop hugging my family and celebrating! In the morning there would be no more bank! I'm sure you can extrapolate this to mean Jesus paid our debts. But what really hit me was the physical debts gone. And that is also coming with Jesus' return. Money will become useless once again!



Sunday, 14 May 2017

Felt Board in a Fabric Quiet Book

Last year I went in another quiet book swap. This one was outer space themed, and since I had previously bought a space themed felt board play set, I wanted to include it in the book.




The pages of the book are fabric. Adding felt pages would have posed a problem when putting the book together. Felt is rather thick and would have made turning the pages right side out difficult. So this was my solution: I simply cut felt squares slightly smaller than the page and sewed them onto it, allowing room for a fabric border and the seam allowance.




Since I wanted a larger amount of room for the felt board set than one page allowed, I repeated the process on another page. This created another problem of how to store the felt board set pieces in a pocket without creating a large bump behind the felt board. Also, I wanted to be able to access the pocket without turning the page and having all the pieces fall off whilst playing with it. I solved this problem, but it needed it's own post to explain, so stay tuned!




I used a striped fabric for the felt board pages, and I purposely laid the stripes in opposite directions on the border. I think it looks good that way. A plain felt page would have looked rather boring if I had not included enough space between the felt and seam allowance for a border. I don't think the border puts a border on the imagination. At least I hope it doesn't. I probably would not have liked it as a child. I was a very fussy child and liked everything to be as close to real as possible. Happily, Tahlia does not seem to share my quips about toys and realism.



Saturday, 6 May 2017

Genesis 7 - The Flood Quiet Book Page

In Genesis chapter 7, the Flood rages, but Noah and his wife and his three sons and their wives, along with the animals are all kept safe inside the ark.



Memory Verse: "The waters prevailed and increased greatly on the earth, and the ark floated on the face of the waters." Genesis 7:18

Materials needed to create The Flood quiet book page:

  • A4 felt background sheet. I used a bright blue.
  • Betty Lukens Felt book 07 Noah's Ark available at Koorong.
  • sewing thread to best match the page
  • scissors!
Cut out all the pieces for this page, and the page itself from the set. Cut it out as it is, not in the shape of an ark as suggested in the instructions. The Betty Lukens FAQ section has posted a cutting tips PDF.

Sew the page onto the background felt along three sides, leaving the top edge open to form a pocket. Pop the pieces inside (or better yet, play with them)!

Finished!



Difficulty Level = Easy, plus No Sew version.

One of the easiest quiet book pages ever!
Just use hot glue wherever sewing is recommended for a no sew version.

Key Learning Areas and Skills

  • Genesis 7 - This page tells the story of how Noah and his family were kept safe in the ark during the Flood.
  • Imaginative Play - Toss Noah's ark around on the wild waters and create a storm.
  • Fine Motor Skills - all quiet books encourage fine motor skills through turning pages, and on this page, through rearranging the pieces.



Read the Chapter

Genesis 7

Devotional

What scientists teach about how fossils were created has always bothered me. When a sheep dies in a paddock or a kangaroo becomes roadkill, they don't become fossils. Very special circumstances have to exist for a fossil to form, and the fact that fossils are found all over Earth suggests that a global flood is likely responsible. Often, fossils will form of animals in the process of doing things, such as this fish in the process of swallowing another fish for dinner. They were caught completely unaware and buried instantly. Sounds like evidence of a catastrophic flood to me.

Image Source

Sunday, 30 April 2017

Pillowcase Quiet Book Closure

I am always trying to think of imaginative ways to keep a quiet book closed that don't take a lot of effort to sew. If it also helps to keep stray pieces inside it's a big bonus. So here is my next quiet book closure idea which I have named the "Pillowcase"!




It is easy to see that I got the idea from a pillowcase... I made a flap on the back page from rib knit fabric which folds over to enclose the pages and front cover and helps to keep small pieces from falling out (Heaven forbid). I used a folded piece of rib knit so that there would be no need for a seam along the turning edge that might impede the ability to fold it over (and might look unattractive). I did put a pin tuck close to either corner, but I don't think I would recommend it. Since the rib fabric was already doubled it made it rather hard to sew due to it's thickness, and because rib knit is stretchy and the whole reason I used it, I'm pretty sure it wouldn't be necessary. Although if your quiet book is very thick, maybe it would be an idea to try. It might work better if you put a separate pin tuck slightly over from each other in the top and bottom layers of the rib knit fabric instead of pin tucking the two layers together like I did - who knows why.




This method is really easy for kids to open. That may be a positive or negative depending on the children you are designing a quiet book for! I don't like Tahlia to play with them without my supervision yet, so I store them out of reach.




I like the look of it and it saved me from having to do any decoration on the front cover. You could easily put the flap on the front cover instead so it folds over the back if you preferred.