Adventures in Unschooling

Posts Tagged ‘sign language

First off I really want to apologize for this next stream of pictures. I had fully intended on taking pictures of each step but the doll whipped itself up so quickly I just forgot. I will try to fill in the gaps.

The head is made of stuffing. I would rip the stuffing into strips and lay they across from each other (like how you draw one of these stars: *) When I had a big pile I grabbed the ends and pulled them into a bag then I stuffed it into a small mesh tube that had one end sewn off already.

Then I poked a needle through the head with some embroidery thread (hard to do by yourself FYI) and tied it off in the front. That makes a crease in the face. I also grabbed a small wad of wool and sewed that onto the face to make a nose.


Then I sewed a tube of skin fabric and stuff that into it. Then you bind off the top with a needle. Mine isn’t pretty but it will all get covered by hair so I didn’t bother being dainty.

The bottom is harder. You want to bunch it together without making a dozen creases in the face. Once I got it pretty smooth I used an elastic band for the closure. Then I sewed it together a bunch of times over. I left the elastic in. What will it hurt I ask?

Then I sewed the arm pieces and the body pieces leaving a couple or inches (or more) undone at the ends.

The first thing you add is the arms. I wrapped one arm’s open ends around the nubbin leftover from the head and sewed it on securely. Then you do the same with the other arm. Make sure your arms are facing the way you want them too (especially if you have thumbs on her).

DSC06604Then the body slips on like this:

You secure the top layer at the shoulders and very strongly at the head (which bobbles a lot right now). Then you stitch it into the rest of the arms etc.

I think I made the head a wee bit too peanut shaped but I think the distinction will be less prominent with a full head of hair.

I am most nervous about the eyes and mouth to be honest and I haven’t figured how I want to do the hair yet. I am leaning towards crocheting each strand into it individually I just want to make sure it won’t pull out or rip out damaging the “skull.”

If anyone has any advice???

And before we got an unwelcome dump of snow here my hubby was doing work in the yard. Here is a picture of the boys having a root beer break:


And this is a tiny bowl I dry felted:DSC06520

I think I will save it for Anna when she gets her own space.

In my personal life we are still having toilet training troubles. My four and three year olds both refuse to use the potty! I am considering putting them in some kid of activity where other kids will notice and point out the improper behaviour. This might correct. We have realized that they must want to do it for themselves (after well over a year of trying to get Trey to re-potty train) but they aren’t getting any desire to do so around us. Arg! Sometimes I swear their baby sister will train before they do.

And we still haven’t figured out what the next couple months to a year will look like for us. My husband did pass his entrance exam but there has been a delay in getting his package. Once he get that we can proceed again. We have been waiting for this for so long. I would really love to see it moving a little bit more.

I also had my wisdom teeth out recently and that has made for a rough week. My gums are feeling OK overall but I can’t wait to be able to open my jaw enough to fit some of my favorite foods in.

My baby has learned a couple words in sign language. She says, albeit inconsistently, milk and more. She is also standing up on everything and will likely be walking before her first birthday! Yippee!


My little Anna hit the six month hump this weekend. She now wiggles to get to toys she wants to reach, likes her rice cereal and demands lots of attention.

We are thinking it is time to get serious about the baby sign language because she is getting harder to read. She has the same screech for a plethora of needs and this gets confusing and irritating very quickly!

We used sign language with our oldest and it worked really well for helping us meet his needs before the fit starts. It is a very useful tool. There are “experts” who say that using baby sign language doesn’t help babies develop speaking skills any faster (or slower) than not using it.

I think these people are missing the point entirely. It’s not about having a super-advanced baby, it’s just about learning how to communicate more effectively with your child while you are waiting for the verbal skills to catch up.

New babies are easy to read. They have only a three or four basic needs. The older they get the more complex their needs become and the harder it is to discern whether they are hungry, want a change of scenery or just want some floor time.

The sign language helps to bridge that gap. I loved it and I really need to get crackin’ on showing Anna how to use it.

I also wanted to show you all this:

DSC05437 Seasoned potatoes and tofu steak! This is my husband’s home cooked meal for last Friday’s lunch. As I wrote before, my husband is home with the kids and this is one of his first attempts at a real meal since taking over the duties at home. It was very good and I am very pleased. I asked him to make it again tonight for supper. Besides, these are one of the few dishes my kids will actually eat.

Can you believe that he actually got them eating raw veggies? It took some salad dressing but I can make my peace that.

Anyways, he is starting to get into a routine at home now and life is getting easier for us all. I have also received a three dollar an hour raise and that does make being away from home more worthwhile financially. I still miss being home but the kids are in good hands! 

It is harder for me to find time to read, paint and sew etc. though. My scrapbooks are getting pretty behind. 😦


    • withoutloveweallperish: 50 books for $10!! As a book lover, that sounds like Christmas come early! Lovely library set up, need to set up one of those for myself!
    • theworldismysoyster: Sure. Just none of my kids. :)
    • goobrobinson: Hi! I'd like to seek your permission if I can reuse one of your pictures for my next post? Specifically the second picture.