Wednesday, June 18, 2014

School’s Out! Drop the Books and Make a Bracelet

This is an easy-made bracelet, perfect for summers.  Made of hemp, it completes the summertime beach look.  


  • One 60 inch strand of hemp (or any type of string/yarn)
  • One 24 inch strand of hemp (or any type of string/yarn)
  • Clipboard
  • Glue (optional)

Step 1

Take both strands of hemp and fold them in half.  Tie a loop at the midpoints, so that the loop has four strands coming out of it.

Step 2

Put the loop under the clipboard to keep it in place.  Set up the strands so the two short ones are in the middle, with a long strand on either side.

Step 3

Take the long strand on the right, and put it loosely over the top of the two middle strands, so it looks like a backwards 4.

Step 4

Leaving the strand on the right in place, take the long strand on the left and loop it over the end of the backwards 4, under the two middle strands, and up through the loop of the backwards 4.

Step 5

Pull gently on the end of both long strands, until the knot reaches the top of the bracelet  and becomes tight.

Step 6

Now we do the same thing, except for in reverse.

Take the strand on the left, and put it loosely over the two middle strands so it creates the figure of a 4.

Step 7

Leave that strand in place, and take the strand on the right, looping it over the other long strand in the end of the 4, under the two middle strands, and up through the loop of the 4.

Step 8

Pull the two ends of the long strands until the knot becomes tight at the top.  Your bracelet so far should look something like this:

Step 9

Repeat steps 3-8, until the bracelet is long enough.

Step 10 (optional)

Tie off the bracelet in a big knot, small enough that it can fit through the loop, but big enough that it wont fall out easily.  Put a bit of glue on the loose end of the knot.  After the glue dries, cut off the loose ends close to the knot.

Tada! Your perfect summer bracelet is complete!

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Alliance - Mark Frost

After his mishap with Lyle Ogilvy, Will West is confused; the more he found out about the Paladin Prophecy and the Knights of Charlemagne the less he understood.  He and his roommates had figured out that they were all test-tube babies, and the scientists performing the operations altered their genetics to give them different powers and abilities.  Then at the end of their sophomore year of high school at the Center, the five roommates are once again plunged into the mystery of how the Knights of Charlemagne, the Center, the  Paladin Prophecy, and Will’s father fit into the puzzle.  They are sent on a quest a mile underground, where the teens figure out the truth about the horrible genetic mutations occurring.  All along, Will, Elise, Ajay, Brooke, and Nick discover more about their own abilities and their past.

In many series, the first book is the best; but I liked Alliance more than the Paladin Prophecy.  I was submerged in the world of Will West, living out his story as if it were my own.  I felt what he was feeling, pictured what he was seeing.  At times, my pulse started racing, as if I was stuck in the cavern a mile underground, attempting to escape while fighting off demons.  I was not just a reader, I became part of the story.  When I finished I had to stand up, shake my head, and tell myself, “Will West does not actually exist.” There is no evil scientist out there to mutilate the next generation.  While reading this book, I was convinced that somewhere in the middle of nowhere, everything Frost described was happening.  Or perhaps it was just wishful thinking that maybe there was a group of superhuman teenagers protecting mankind.  

Read more at Goodreads: The Alliance.

Monday, June 9, 2014

Kid Zillionaire Business Fair

Last year, my sister’s friend came up with the idea of setting aside a day where kids ages five to fourteen could market their businesses and sell their wares.  She and her mom decided to call this the Kid Zillionaire Business Fair.  I participated last year, excited about selling hand-painted converse, which I called TGIF shoes (Toes Go In First).  I had my own table to set up my merchandise, signs, and posters and TGIF Shoes received the award for the most business potential.  

Instead of participating this year, I volunteered and judged the businesses in two categories, the most creative and the best presented.  Among baked goods, rainbow looms, dog treats, and hairbands, there was a table with little on it and a table with a lot on it.  On the first was a 3D printer and a small sign, with a well dressed boy standing behind his MacBook, explaining his designs and how the printer worked.  He sold out of the red printed dice he designed.  

On the other there were numerous signs, a huge one suspended on two poles advertising their logo, Crafts for Cancer.  This table was full of potted plants, home-made magnets, and wood pencil holders.  When I approached this table, a small girl came up to me and launched into an explanation of her business, what she was selling, and where the idea came from.  She looked about eleven years old.  The other judge and I decided that Crafts for Cancer had the best presentation, and that the 3D printer table was the most creative.

The 3D Printer Table
In addition to providing a market place for crafts, the Kid Zillionaire Business Fair teaches kids the advantages of advertising and marketing.  They learn that not everyone who shows interest will buy something.  The kids experience the effort that goes into running a business; they found that if they were not paying attention and enthusiastic, they may miss customers.  The Kid Zillionaire Business Fair prepares the entrepreneurs of the next generation.

Learn more about 3D printing on another post, A Bit on 3D Printing.