July Birthday Fiasco for the Tiniest Teacup

It was a birthday for the ages.  It started with a simple request.  My [soon to be] nine year old daughter requested that we have a birthday party for her this year.  Simple enough.

She wanted it to be a super girly Unicorn party.  Okay dokie.  Simple enough.

She thought it would be super cool if we could invite a bunch of girls over, swim, maybe do a craft, and create some epic swag bags.  Simple enough.

See where I am going with this?  Yeah.  It was NOT simple.  Next year she gets a birthday cake and a hardy handshake.

I thought, being the overly ambitious and crafty gal I was that I would crochet some bags for the girls, stuff them with some washi tape and a little homemade book (my daughter has inherited my love for all things planner), and maybe a couple pieces of jewelry.  I’m great at crocheting pretty much anything with a pattern, and I’ve gotten fairly skilled at creating my own patterns as well.  Well, I wipped up a sample bag in no time at all and thought- “Wow!  I can totally do this!”.  I was wrong.  Oh, man, was I ever wrong!

See, I overestimated my ability to sew in the liners.

And I also forgot that I have zero foresight.

And I forgot I would have to make 15 of these bags.  FIFTEEN!  For the love of humanity!

But, alas, I finished with… well something.  Not a finished product I’m terribly proud of, but decent enough I suppose!

They are crocheted with Special Stylecraft DK yarn, imported from the United Kingdom (my favorite yarn).  The snaps are KAM snaps.  The fabric liner is from a bundle I bought on Amazon of just random cuts of fabric.  I had planned on writing the pattern out and sharing it with all of you, but..  don’t, just don’t.  Just go buy something shiny and unoriginal.  It’s not worth it y’all!  My fingers were bleeding before I finished!  I was flying by the seat of my pants, did not have time to properly block the crocheted part, and abandoned my hand sewing for a machine after the first one.

P.S. If you didn’t know, you can’t easily machine sew on crochet, as the machine gets caught on the yarn and tangles it with the thread from the bobbin.  That’s if it doesn’t suck it into the great bobbin abyss.  This was lesson number 15 million.  And the worst one.  Nothing like spending hours creating something to have it pulled apart in front of your eyes!  Huzzah!

ROY-G-BIV… that’s a little relaxing.  I loved all the floral and gingham prints.


Oy!  Sigh… lesson learned.  Moving on to happier items.  Birthday party shopping!  Squee!


What Girly Birthday party would be complete without pig-tail hair bows?  Well, not this one!  Every girl was sent home with her choice of a matching homemade (not by me- gosh not by me) pair.

(Don’t mind the great mountain of law books in the background.  It’s my husband’s stack and it could not be moved in time for the party.  I just sat things on top and used them as a kind of shelf, while getting the side-eye from the hubster, te he.)

We ordered some jewelry from China which made it super affordable to get great looking pieces without breaking mom and dad’s checkbook.  What girl’s outfit is complete without her own set of pearls?  And these rings are so AMAZING!  Because I had to order in bulk, I got to select and keep several pieces for myself and I have received so many compliments on them.

Target spot pens and pencils!  Bright colors for a sunny child!

The setup y’all!

So much happy!  But gosh y’all, Mommy is going to need the next few months to recover from this party.  It was so exhausting!

Celebrating the not-so-tiny teacup,

the Colourful Teacup

Postage stamp quilt- a crazy idea

Once upon a time I received these little fabric squares in a magazine bundle.  

I loved them so much that I held onto them, rather than doing the suggested craft that came with them.

You see, I had an idea!  A glorious idea sprang forth from my artistic little creative brain, and the other rational half scarcely had time to recognize that a bad idea was forming before it was out of my head and in my eBay cart!  I mean, just look at these tiny adorable flowers!  What’s not to love?

So I decided, in my infinite wisdom, that I would quilt (something I haven’t done since High School) a postage stamp quilt!  A few years ago my mother gifted me a couple of scrap quilts that my great grandmother made.  They are made of squares of what appear to be random fabric and is just so colorful.  The quilt is happiness to me.  You see, I was the child who would stare at the patterns on wall paper for hours, tracing the pattern around… and around… and around…  And I LOVED color!  So a postage stamp quilt would be a kind of therapy for me.  A busy, busy quilt, for a busy, busy woman, with endless patterns, and colors, and inspiration to excite the mind!

So, let’s recap…  from a free sample of fabric in a magazine, I decided to embark on a project that I haven’t had experience with in nearly 20 years, and a project that maximizes skill level in the very BEST quilters.  Yup!  Sounds about right.  But wait, there’s more folks!

From that small collection of floral squares, the desire for more tiny treasures grew until it overwhelmed my seasonally depressed heart with a NEED for as much color and florally goodness as my budget could reasonably afford. One eBay trip later and I was the proud owner of these AMAZING pieces of art! I bought them from a store appropriately named myfabricaddiction1!

Oh, so nice!

So then from there (I think you can tell where this is going), I found these Kaffe Fassett fabric pieces.  It was a random cutting, and I hoped to get as many colorful options as possible.

Here’s a few of my most favorite squares!

I decided that every few paychecks or so I would grab another random colorful bunch of fabric squares.  This trip Etsy was my enabler!  Courtesy of The Trendy Little Geek.  These are from the Tula Pink line and have little animals blended in with floral patterns.  

Look at that trash panda being so cheeky!


More Tula Pink, this time the animals are a little more difficult to spot, and there’s some polka dots thrown in there, which I just happen to be a huge fan of.

Look at these little snails!img_4992.jpg

And this pack as well, which was cat themed.  My cuts didn’t have cute little cat eyeballs, which I crossed my fingers for, but they are good selections, none-the-less!  

Ok, so if you look closely, these polka dots, are actually kitty cat spots!


And these odd shapes are kitty cat eye balls!


That little cat is so satisfying!  Too bad more will get cut off from the edging.  Maybe I should buy a quarter roll of this fabric?


And no, your eyes are not deceiving you!  That is indeed cat food cans on that fabric square!  Squee!!!


In the course of this grand search all across the kingdom for colorful fabric choices I discovered Liberty Lawn fabric.  And THIS. RIGHT. HERE.

There’s a wheelbarrow…

And a cute house with little birdies, and a field of sheer happiness…

And a garden… there’s a garden with a gardening can and a little brick paved way and a kitten in the flowers…

I ordered two.  And I would buy SO MUCH MORE, if it wasn’t crazy expensive and had to be imported from Britain.  Sigh.

But, wait!  I did buy more Liberty Lawn fabric, in different colors.  Here was my next purchase from a lovely Etsy store called Liberty Charms.

Their business card is so cute, and looks just like it was made from a postage stamp quilt!  And apparently, news to me, there are all kinds of ladies who use Liberty Lawn fabric in their postage stamp quilts!  The fabric has patterns that are so tiny and make it perfect for small squares under 4 inches.

The shop also offered charm packs as well, in the size I had determined I would start with- 2 1/2″  I was not disappointed and will, undoubtably, buy more!  The texture of this fabric cannot be accurately described in words.  It is heavenly!

Here they are all laid out on my kitchen table.

Look at this particular one:


It’s arts and crafts!  It was destiny!  Look closer at those tree branches!


I might have to get a little more of that fabric as well.  Maybe I’ll ask the hubster for some for Christmas?

At this snails pace it will take me forever to gather enough materials to make my quilt.  But I don’t mind!  I love the thrill of finding treasures and selecting exactly the right pieces for my happy little quilt!

Artistically yours,

The Colourful Teacup

Homeschool Time! Back to School!

It’s school time folks!

Every summer I try to evaluate what we loved about the past year, and where we went totally wrong.  I only have a few personal rules about homeschooling and the curriculum that we choose.

Here are my super easy rules!

1.) It must be secular-ish, or at least sincere Christian literature.  I know what you’re thinking, but keep reading!  I think it is important to  introduce my children to and help them develop healthy relationships with Christ.  BUT, if it isn’t fleshed out any further than a superficial attempt at mentioning God in a book to make it “christian” for the homeschool market, then it feels more like a marketing ploy, than a sincere attempt at introducing children to Christ.  Additionally, I doubt that the majority of these authors have degrees in both theology and the subject, doing a disservice to our children in BOTH areas.  Not everyone speaking in HIS name, is furthering HIS mission. 

2.) It MUST be affordable.  We are a single income family with a small business.  That means income is not always stable and fluctuates with the market.  These big box homeschool kits that cost over $600 are not an option.

3.) It must be flexible for children with special needs.  My oldest daughter has dyslexia and synesthesia.  It has been a struggle for us, as her symptoms often leave her with seriously intense migraines.  She struggles with sequencing, small fonts, spelling, and writing. Very little of her problems actually relate to her not being able to read.  Any curriculum we get must be curriculum that I can read or teach her, rather than independent work.  Colorful graphics are helpful in helping her stay focused and keeping her eyes where they need to be, or at least helping her remember how to get back to the same spot.

4.) It must be interesting.  Look, my kids have to listen to me all day long.  And because the youngest is still small and the oldest has dyslexia, I have to work one-on-one with each of them ALL. DAY. LONG.  It’s gotta be interesting for me, as much as them!

And that’s it!  That’s all the “rules” for choosing my homeschool curriculum!

Ready to see what we picked this year?  Here we go!

4th grade

Language Arts:

  • Florida Treasures by Macmillan McGraw-Hill: Grade 4 Grammar Practice book, these workbooks are free online!  Additionally, the textbooks are super cheap to get secondhand on Amazon, Ebay, or other used book stores.
  • Daily Language Review: I have discovered an amazing teacher (group of teachers?) on Teacherspayteachers.com and we are going to use her FOREVER!  The “store” is called Teacher Thrive
  • Language Assessment Quizzes: Teacher Thrive

Reading: Core Knowledge has free Reading units that are a touch harder than normal curriculum at the grade level, which we need as we have a super great reader on our hands!  Some of the units are copyrighted, but luckily do not cost a lot to purchase.  Core Knowledge Reading

Math:  Lessons for a Living Education by Angela O’Dell & Kyrsten Carlson.

I’ve tried so many different math books, and bought this on a wim.   Although sampling the older versions I know that I will not be able to keep with this set as it tries to get more “theological” the higher you go- and I apply the term theological liberally, as I sincerely doubt my Priest would find it to be sound in its scriptural references.  I have no idea how it has a solid 5 star rating, unless of course, the adults aren’t actually reading through it. It’s pretty good in the math department, in all seriousness, so long as I skip the super weird stories spaced throughout that have absolutely very little to do with math and are quasi-racist or at the very least written without sensitivity to a diverse reading base.  I had a friend read it who also homeschools, and is a christian as well, and she agrees that it’s weird.  She wasn’t quite ready to call it racially insensitive like me, but, well… (it totally is).  I will not be buying it again, but next year will totally get the one I choose for my 12 year old (see below). Math Lessons for a Living Education

Social Studies: Core Knowledge has free social studies curriculum online with teacher guides.  You can also buy hard copies, which is what we choose to do since the cost of the book is generally cheaper (and neater) than printing out my own.  Core Knowledge Social Studies

Science: We are a little bored with normal science textbooks repeating the same old thing every year.  So we are mixing it up a little this year.  We’ve decided to dive right in to some chapter books for this littlest, happy reader.  Especially chapter books that target a specific topic at a time.

  • Magic School bus books
  • Magic Tree House Research guides
  • Science Readers that correspond with the Scott Foresman books.
  • Other hodge podge collection of science-y books.  We just got done reading all about Albert Einstein, for example.

Art:Concordia University Chicago has free art classes online, organized via grade level!  Just print with your colored printer and easy peasy art lesson!

7th grade

Language Arts:


  • Targeted Chapter books based upon what we are learning or want to learn.  Currently we are reading No Summit out of Sight: The True Story of the Youngest Person to Climb the Seven Summits which came with one of our deluxe tinker crates.  I hope to read Ender’s Game, A Wrinkle in Time, and The Witch of Blackbird Pond before the end of the semester.
  • We will be reading selections from Realms of Gold, Volumes 1 and 2 for classical examples of literature such as  Shelley, Frost, Angelou, Poe, Twain, Keats and more!


I wish I had found this math curriculum earlier!  I do not think I will deviate from using it in the future for either of my daughters!  It seems both sound and easy to understand (for both her and I- ha!).

I didn’t want to focus entirely on algebra this year, like some middle school math texts do, so I opted for the level 7 book, above, from teaching textbooks, but I did want to touch upon it every now and then.  My daughter has a good grasp on algebra, but struggles with things like fractions and sequencing (dyslexia rears it’s ugly head).  This textbook is exactly what we need for some targeted practice and an introduction to linear equations.

Social Studies: 

This Year we have selected the following titles for my oldest to work through:

-Foundations of Geography –> which she actually started this past year but needs to finish up.

-The Ancient World

-Medieval Times to Today

There are chapter outlines available for free online and Chapter Tests! Best part, the tests are graded automatically!  Huzzah!

  • US Government & Civics Bell Ringer Journal (for an introduction to some serious subjects, and extra writing practice):  The SuperHERO Teacher


For this year I have selected the following titles to work through:

-Human Body Systems (book D)

-Astronomy (book J)

-Chemistry (book L)

The absolute best thing about these books, other than their manageable size, is the fact that the quizzes and tests are all online!  Which means less I have to grade!  Huzzah!

Art: Again we are using the 7th grade packet from Concordia University Chicago

Other Materials and Resources

Duolingo.com This is a free website for learning dozens of languages.  The oldest is currently taking French and the youngest is taking Spanish.

Exploring Handwriting Through U.S. Geography.  Super Successful Cursive edition.  This link, by the way, is to Christianbook.com, a company that I have found has cheap prices and amazing customer service!

Draw Write Now: A great drawing and handwriting course teaching kids to draw everything from pigs to boats.  We all have fun learning to draw together!  They come in installments, and each one is slightly themed (for example, barn animals, autumn, etc).

Minimus Latin: a cute quick latin course with Minimus, a mouse. Slightly expensive though.

It’s So Amazing!  A Book About Eggs, Sperm, Birth, Babies, and Families:  Need a good Birds and Bees book?  I can’t recommend this one enough!  There are good little cartoon dialogues between the two characters ( a bird and bee, appropriately enough), lots of pictures and diagrams, and tasteful discussion about lots of sensitive topics.  I’ve used this with both of my girls and I keep it around just in case anyone has any questions or wants to reference it.

Tinker Crate (for the 12 year old who likes to build things):  Use my link to help me earn $10 toward more crates for my kiddos!  Tinker Crate     You can sign up for the deluxe version which includes a book.  I’ll be using the books throughout the school year to help with her reading.

Doodle Crate (for the 9 year old who likes to create): Use my link to help me earn $10 toward more crates for my kiddos!  Doodle Crate

Atlas Crate (for both of the kiddos to learn about the world around them, and to NOT be those folks on tv who can’t find a country on the map): Use my link to help me earn $10 toward more crates for my kiddos!  Atlas Crate  Like the Tinker Crate, you can sign up for the deluxe version which also includes a book. This is a brand new subscription but so far I have not been disappointed.

Wow!  That was a lot of info y’all!  Hopefully you’ve made it to the bottom and have a lot of new resources for your homeschool!

Let me know your thoughts!  Anyone have an amazing textbook that they can’t live without?


The Colourful Teacup

Simply Gilded

I’ve been trying to get a subscription to Simply Gilded for what seems like forever!  But I’ve been waitlisted!  I HATE being waitlisted.  But, I suppose that’s the price you pay for super cute planner things!  While I waited to be admitted to this super special club, I sought out a couple of past kits on my yard sale site.

Here are a couple of things you need to know about buying Simply Gilded second hand:  1.) You will either a., pay a premium price, or b. luck into finding something that someone obviously wanted to either get rid of or didn’t realize the value of.  2.) The washi tapes are highly collectable and people will pay hundreds for certain kinds.  So don’t get too attached to a particular type of pattern unless you want to fork up over $300!  No… seriously!  3.) Even if you find a kit on a yard sale site or Ebay, it is likely that the seller has removed the bow washi from it to resell separately at a much higher price point.

Lucky for me, I was able to find the last two kits online moderately priced, and one set even included the bow washi!  Huzzah!

Let’s start with May’s box:  Life’s a Peach

I really loved the colors of this box!  The peach with that bright tropical blue is so summery.  It just so happens that the crochet project I was working on this week was also the same color of peach, which led to a crafty kind of bliss.

The washi is packaged like this, in a plastic bag with matching colors.  I know it is just a little plastic bag that will probably rip super easily, but it’s a cute touch.  I’ll have to brainstorm some crafty ideas to use them for.  Hum…

Yum!  I must have ALL the washis!  Look at those peach blossoms!  Special programming note here:  I find that the washis by Simply Gilded are thinner than the washi from The Planner Society.  I’m not sure one is better than the other.  Thinner means that it doesn’t make my notebook puff up quite as bad.  But the thicker washi from TPS feels more substantial.  I like the feeling of TPS more, but the thinness of SG is probably better for my bullet journal.

Luxe stickers and a journaling card are also included. The stickers appear to be reposition-able, which is a super nice touch, especially if you change your mind as much as I do!

Lots of foil all over the Simply Gilded items.  Irene from Simply Gilded markets it as “boutique” planner supplies.   I can see it…  

Also included was a small Journal and a gel pen, which I have put to good use this week and received compliments on.  And I’ve broken open that bag and have begun using my little book as well!  Yay!  Pretty things!  I feel like a little girl opening up a new Lisa Frank kit.  (P.S., and totally off topic, but did y’all see that Lisa Frank is collaborating with Sponge Bob?!?!  Suddenly I NEED to pencil in a clothing allowance to our monthly budget!  I mean who doesn’t need a t-shirt with SpongeBob riding a magical unicorn over a rainbow?  I rest my case.)  

The paperclips I received from The Planner Society are one of my favorite things, so I was super happy to see this set in the May Simply Gilded box.  Now, the bow… I’m not sure what to do with that.  Because I bullet journal, there aren’t really any places to clip on things.  Speaking of bullet journaling, I have almost filled mine up and we are only half way through the year.  Oy!  I’m hoping to get my hands on a jewel colored Leuchtturm 1917 this fall.  I am currently using a lime green one (my favorite color, by the way), but I hope to get a little richer color for my next one.  I’m thinking a nice midnight blue, or a deep mustard yellow.  Who knows.  Next week I might fancy a hot pink one, ya never know!

And now for the June box!  With this box I was not able to find an affordable one for sale with the seaglass blue bow washi tapes.  Boo!  I could have the washi for the low, low price of $35 separately.  <— majorly not amused.  That’s just not in this gal’s budget!  That’s right, people are paying hundreds for these washis and I’m over here like, “$35? No sir!”.   

I love this theme so much that I have barely touched anything.  I just want to keep it boxed up forever and never, ever ruin it!  But, alas, where’s the fun in that?  Ugh, look at that pretty little green bag!  Yeah, I’m the kid who plays with the cardboard box…

Sealife washi!  I’ve ordered a purple mermaid washi as well from Simply Gilded and I simply cannot wait to get it!  No earthly idea what I am going to do with these glorious rolls of happiness, but I shall come up with something!

Another travel notebook and a seriously beautiful pen.  From the picture the pen looks a little gaudy, but in person I feel like the freakin’ Little Mermaid.  It is quite dainty and charming, really.  “Look at my stuff!  Isn’t it neat?  Wouldn’t you think my collection’s complete…”

Sticky notes and seals.  Again, that foil gives them a little sophistication (says this hillbilly).

Diecut stickers.  Cute, but not sure what I’m going to do with them.

June’s stickers are two parts.  Functional and… well, I don’t know what the other part is called.  Regular?  Anywho, they’re cute and I just can’t bring myself to use them.  

And that’s my boxes for May and June from Simply Gilded!  All in all, less items than The Planner Society.  Certainly great quality!  Super obsessed with getting ALL THE WASHI.  And I have to admit, I’m getting excited about all that bow washi energy.  I think that The Planner Society is great for paper working.  And Simply Gilded is great for BUJO, or equivalent journaling.  Similar type of product but a different feel from each.

You can get on your very own waitlist for Simply Gilded by going here:  Simply Gilded

I’ll be posting a post from July’s boxes soon, as they arrive.  The sneak peaks from both companies have been such a tease!

Colorfully yours,

The Colourful Teacup

Planner Society June 2018

Guess what came last week?!?! A new planner box! It’s amazing! It might be one of the best ones I’ve seen yet! Check out these beauties:

First of all, can we talk about how JUNE these colors are?  Christy is amazing!  When you consider that she has to plan these themes probably months in advance, and yet still seems to pick colors and themes that are remarkably on point…  I just can’t believe how awesome it all is!  Just a box of amazing awesomeness!  Unfortunately, I love it so much that it’s difficult to actually use any of these things!  I just want to keep them in my box and horde them away!


Looks at those papers!  SQUEE!!!  Do you hear that sound?  Its the sound of Central Florida dogs everywhere collectively barking at the out of control, high-pitched squee coming from my house!

Specialty papers!

Look at those lemons!

These are a little more difficult to see, so I tried to hold it up over the box and the lemons.  Do you see those cute little birds?

These are bookmarks y’all! BOOKMARKS!  Nerds everywhere unite!  I am absolutely in LOVE with these!  I desperately need dozens of bookmarks so these will get worn out!

And here we have a great pen (seriously getting spoiled with these pens), tabs, a birdie notepad, some metal paperclips, and another delightfully sweet washi tape.

These are also some of my favorite items I received this time around.  Adhesive pockets, labels, and a badge!  A badge y’all!  That’s going on my adult Girl Scout uniform, 100%!


Cute little inspirational cards.

Shout out for the Tolkien quote!  In love!!!

Die Cuts! Oh, so many delicious die cuts!

Another look at that pen.  Those are crystals in there!  So shiny!  Which means, of course,  the loss of at least 15 minutes of me just staring and spinning that dang thing- ha!

That’s a nice badge, I think.

Till next time friends!  

The Colourful Teacup 

Planner tabs

I love my new Planner Society tabs! The problem with bullet journaling is that, despite your best efforts, you loose your pages in this massive book. I’ve tried to use Washi tape to mark sections off and bookmarks, etc, but they all fail. Either they rip off in my purse, or they make certain parts of my planner too bulky, while other parts are too thin. So when I saw how adorable the Planner Society tabs were, I knew that I had found my solution! Check these bad boys out:

A section for my homeschool lesson plans:

This section houses my weekly schedule, appointments, sectioning of my time for school work, grocery shopping etc.  The glue is still little wet on that one!

Personal, for all my quirky little notes, recipes, bill lists, etc.

My Girl Scout troop section- like a boss, a Girl Boss!!!

Community, for my Girl Scout team leadership role.  I’ll have to be careful to not glue the edges together!  This one is a little wet still as well.

Church, of course!  Where else am I going to keep Vestry notes, and Children’s ministry plans?

I pasted them into my planner using my Ranger Glue N’ Seal and my fan brush. Ranger glue NEVER disappoints!

No clue where I bought either of these, its been so long.  But knowing my habits, I am sure it was Michaels or Amazon- ha!



The Colourful Teacup

Planner Society July 2017

Today I received the kit from July 2017 and it did not disappoint!


This one I received second hand as well, but nothing in the kit had been used and it still retained its sparkling brand new quality. Check out its summery goodness:


And the special papers; look at those ladies!  So cute!


And look at all these extras!


I just love these colors!  Nothing says summer quite like those lime green colors and bright purples.

Isn’t this adorable!  That’s going to make for some cute little honey-do notes for my husband.  Ha!


Of course, this was last July’s kit, so we will have to see what amazing things Christy Tomlinson has in store for us this summer!  I have registered to start receiving the kits, and expect to see June’s box sometime soon, which I will immediately snap a hundred pictures of to share with all of you here.  I’ve even gotten an email that it is on the way!

Meanwhile, summer is in full swing in Florida and we are enjoying ourselves immensely.  Now that my daughters have phones, I find all kinds of gems on there, like this one my youngest took at a restaurant on the coast called The Tiny Turtle, which makes the most amazing sofrito bowl EVER.  I’m not lying y’all!


If you fancy a trip, check them out at 249 Minuteman Causeway in Cocoa Beach.  You will not be disappointed.


The Colourful Teacup