It's not what you gather, but what you scatter, that tells what kind of a life you have lived.

Monday, May 11, 2009

ABC book 101

I seem to get so busy that I forget to blog! It's crazy, really, because I'm not working right now and should have lots of time to blog. I need to work on my time management, obviously. The flower girl's dresses got done and turned out pretty cute. These two little ones are some of my "other" grandchildren. My daughter's best friend growing up called me mom and now her little ones call me grandma, and I love it! They are darling at two and four. They had nice full petticoats to wear under the dresses for the wedding, but we didn't have them when we tried them on. They also had a nice wide black ribbon sash and a pink and white flower at the front. If Shelley brings me a picture from the wedding, (which was in Georgia, by the way) I'll post it later. Unfortunately, sewing is getting really hard for me, as are most other persuits. My hands are getting worse by the day, and I can't always even tell if I have something between my fingers because of the lack of feeling. My fingers are clumsy, too, and I wind up hitting two keys at a time more often than not when I'm typing, so I have to do a lot of correction. I don't like getting old, and if I could go back and do it all again, I think I would stay about 40 all my life. The early 40's were good. Too bad it doesn't work that way. Oh, well.

Now it's time to get started on that ABC book. We'll start with the title page and A and B. The title page is totally up to you. Actually the whole book is, but I will give you ideas and guidelines and patterns for what I did. From there you go where you want. My pages are sheets of white card stock (you can buy it cheapest at Wal*Mart) cut in half to make 8 1/2 x5 1/2" pages. I cut the corners of the outside edge to look kind of like a tag. Be sure to leave a wide enough border at the inside edge of the pages for the binding. You wouldn't want to be punching holes in your pictures. I like to use comb bindings, which you can have done at Kinko's or somewhere like that. You can also use notebook rings, which can be purchased at Wal*Mart or office supply stores. My title page is purple because the child who is getting the book loves purple. I like to use different fonts, textures, sizes and colors to keep things interesting. It also stimulates the little ones who will be looking at it. I tore the edges of the purple to add another texture and glued it to the page. Easy, huh? I don't think things need to be too complicated, although I got a little carried away on some of the pages.

The A page is Ants carrying Aunts. I tried to put at least two words for each letter, and I wanted them to be fun for the kids, too. I collected photos of all the aunts on both sides of the family, sized them small enough to fit on the strawberries, and put them in the ant's hands. My grandchildren have 5 aunts from my children, plus however many they get from the other side of the family, so I had to really squeeze them in in this particular book, because their daddy has 6 siblings, plus all but two have spouses. I don't have all the aunts there, yet, but they all have a place. I haven't learned how to make and link a PDF file yet, so I have just put in a picture of the pattern. I tried to do the PDF thing, but it didn't work. Sorry. The ant on the left has its hands up over its head, so the strawberry goes up there. The berry goes is front of the other ant, as his hands are outstretched. The berries are red, or dark pink, and the tops are dark green. I used some scrapbook paper that looks like grass for the foreground, and rubbed some light blue chalk in the sky.

The B page is a bunch of little windows with doors that open so you can see inside. I used a lot of bright colors for the doors and the buttons. Under each little door is a sticker. I use butterflies for the girls and bugs for the boys. I used a piece of colored cardstock for the background. Cut the windows in it, being sure to leave enough room in between each one, because the door flap is wider than the opening. Cut a door flap for each window and stitch it on with your sewing machine. This makes the flaps much sturdier than just glue or 2-sided tape. After the flaps are stitched on, glue the background pieces to the pages. Then lift the flaps and put the stickers in the openings. You can decorate the outside of the flaps, too, if you want.
The C and D pages will be the next post, hopefully tomorrow. I will try to keep up with my blogging at least until the book is finished, so come back and check it out.
Now, it's time for me to go. Remember, life is brief and very fragile, so follow your heart wherever it takes you, and be happy. 'Night, Gramma G.
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