Tackling the Old Photo Albums

Chirped by Cass

Since I have some extra “at home” time due to the Coronavirus, I decided to tackle the three plastic totes full of old pictures and photo albums from my parents and grandparents. I have two siblings, so I wanted to divide up the photos between all of us. That meant figuring out what photos I needed scanned, so that we each have copies of these precious family memories. It also meant figuring out how to extract photos from damaging old albums, in order to better preserve them. And that was a project worth chirping about all by itself!

 

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Easter Gatherings – From a Distance!

Chirped by Tina

The stay-at-home orders can’t keep the holidays from arriving on schedule, and it’s Easter weekend already! While we can’t do our big family get-togethers in person this year, here are a few last minute tips for enjoying a fun Easter gathering – from a distance!

Zoom It!

Whatever your preferred virtual meeting platform is, schedule a big family meetup on Easter Sunday! Where else do they all need to be this weekend, right? Zoom, WebEx, Skype, FaceTime… whatever works and can handle multiple families joining in. We’ve been having a great time doing Zoom and FaceTime happy hours with friends and family. Facetime is easy if everyone has an iPhone, but for the Android users, sign up for one of the other services. We successfully hosted 14 people on a book club Zoom meeting a couple of weeks ago, and it worked quite well! A lot of students have upgraded Zoom accounts that will allow unlimited meeting lengths, unlike the free version, that cuts you off at 40 minutes. Continue reading

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March’s Cheep Trills – 10 Ways to Keep Busy at Home

Chirped by Cass and Tina

We hope that all of you and your family and friends are doing well during this crazy time. So many of us had to adjust our work, school and lifestyles due to this virus. This month’s Cheep Trills post details how we are keeping busy at home in this new norm. We have listed five things we are doing for others, and five things we are doing for ourselves.

For Others:

Homemade Masks

Homemade MasksTina and her crafting groups have been researching and sewing homemade cloth masks for health care and other essential workers, as well as friends and family. There is some research that questions the utility of cloth masks. However, healthcare and safety specialists that they’ve talked to say that at the very least, the homemade masks:

  1. physically remind people not to touch their faces,
  2. visually remind people to give each other a wide berth, and
  3. protect other people from the bulk of any cough or sneeze that the wearer might project into the air.

If you want to join the cause, check online for local Mask Makers groups – we have a really well-organized Facebook group near us: Mask Makers of Doylestown, PA, but there are others out there. Ours has a porch pick-up/drop-off spot where you can donate materials, grab more supplies, or drop off finished masks. Also check out this Continue reading

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February’s Cheep Trills

Chirped by Cass and Tina

Oh February! Even though it had an extra day this year, it still seemed to fly by. The weather didn’t help, being very mild, warm and wet here in PA – hurrying us along towards spring. Our shortest month did, however, yield some efficient days of crafting, blogging and catching up. We squeezed a lot in! Here are our top ten favorites from this productive month…

Favorite Books

February’s choices for both book clubs had mixed reviews from our members. Cass’s book club read Keeping Lucy by T. Greenwood. It describes a mother in the ’70s trying to save her daughter (born with Downs Syndrome) from a cruel institution and manipulative in-laws. The novel is based loosely on a 1971 exposé of horrific care inside a Massachusetts “school for the feeble-minded”. A guest speaker came to talk about her adult son, who has severe autism. The writing was good, the discussion interesting. Some of us were dubious about how quickly Lucy adapted and rebounded from her first two neglected years. But hey, kids are resilient, right? Continue reading

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Frugal Fibers for Budget Crafters

Chirped by Tina

Any devoted fiber artist or crafter probably has an overflowing stash of yarn for new projects. But let’s assume for the moment that you don’t, or that you’re new to crochet, knitting, etc. Maybe you want to test the waters with some small beginner projects – without breaking your budget on materials. Or perhaps you’d like to help a non-profit with a crafting cause, but can’t afford skeins of expensive wool? Sure, you can find discount bins at the craft store. But why not give the Earth a high five and try some of these upcycling ideas instead?

Thrift Store Gems

For many projects, used or re-purposed supplies may be perfect. If you’re making things like rescue nests or a potholder, you don’t need brand new yarn. You also don’t need perfect technique, so it’s a great way to learn and practice! Allow me, therefore, to introduce you to the Goodwill Outlet Store! These and other pay-by-the-pound-type thrift Continue reading

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