Author Archives: homemaderenata

About homemaderenata

I'm a homeschooling mother of three in Louisville, Kentucky. I love doing things for myself when I can, making things from scratch when it's fun, my family, my dog, and traveling.

Cricut duffel embellishment


I got a Cricut machine last year, and the kids and I have had a lot of fun with it. This week I embellished an inexpensive duffel bag I found on Amazon, and a $1.99 pencil case I found at Target. I used metallic heat transfer vinyl on the duffel and regular peel and stick on the pencil case. Both are inspired by folk art designs I found on the internet and played around with in Photoshop.

In which I become Batmom


So it’s been a couple years. Lately I’ve been feeling bloggy again. Some compulsion to catalog and keep things that otherwise may go by the wayside, I think. We’ll see if it sticks, but in the meantime, I’m going to come back with the amusing story of how I became Batmom a couple years ago. I’ll even include the keepsake unflattering picture of me and a bat because it’s worth it to me to give you a laugh!

2 years ago this week, while I was out walking my dog at dusk, a bat staggered through the sky and landed on my shoulder, whereupon it decided it would be more comfortable INSIDE MY SHIRT, and thus I “cuddled” a bat and also basically undressed by a busy road. Then I learned that rabies is saliva-born and always fatal once symptoms develop, and given that the bat I cuddled was clearly not behaving normally and we may very well have swapped spit in the exchange, I got 7 shots over the next two weeks and accumulated $2000+ in medical bills. Because it all happened right before my 40th birthday and also because I’m generally inclined to laugh at things, it somehow came to pass that I adopted the bat as my spirit animal, and am now known as a person who loves bats. And hey, I do. Why not? So please join me in celebrating my 2nd bativersary! I hope a bat eats a mosquito near you today in my honor.

A knights and dragons birthday



Worth turned six in February. He requested a “knights and dragons” birthday.worthInspired by Pinterest, I cut flames from a sheet of red poster board. Stuck to the door with painter’s tape, it became an opportunity for Worth’s guests to “breathe fire” and get their photos taken.


Worth wanted a dragon hat, so I used a basic hat pattern to sew a black hat from fleece, then added fleece ears and spikes and some greenish-yellow felt eyes. Worth has worn his Toothless-inspired hat in both cold and warm places (like to bed) quite frequently since I made it, so I felt good about his its reception. dragon-cake

My mother totally outdid herself with an enormous, amazing dragon cake!cannonballs

And what’s a knights and dragons party without some castle-storming food? Or something. I also cut shields out of cardboard and spray-painted them silver, then let Worth’s friends decorate them with paint as a party activity. I thought these turned out cute but I somehow never managed to get a photograph of them.

Notice my oldest daughter (above) is wearing a tiara. Apparently she felt that her role at a knights-and-dragons party should be royal princess, subtly outranking Sir Worth at his own event. We did manage to talk her down to lady-in-waiting, however, with the help of paid duties involving the herding of six-year-old boys and shield paint cleanup. Shew!

A spring scarf


2016-04-03 11.14.54 saroyan saroyan2

Sometimes projects come about in odd ways. For example, last year I bought a shirt I liked, then immediately got a stain I cannot lift up by the neckline. Fast forward to this spring, when a knitting friend and I did a yarn swap and I ended up with a pretty ball of Cotlin by Knitpicks, in whisper. I decided I wanted to make some sort of springy neck thing to wear over the shirt to cover up the stain. Of course once I found the perfect pattern, Saroyan by Liz Abanante, I realized I needed to buy more than one ball of yarn. So I bought two more balls of yarn, knitted the project, then put it on and decided I no longer liked that shirt with the stain. Or at least not with the pants I was wearing. Which might eventually mean that I need to buy new pants, but today it just meant that I wore the scarf with a different shirt. A happy ending!

A pom-pom hat


hat-back hat-front

I’ve never done much colorwork. It is intimidating to me to juggle multiple balls of yarn since I have a toddler who may jump in the middle of whatever I’m doing at any time. I did brave it for this hat, and fortunately it went quick enough that no children had time to get too tangled in. I didn’t use a pattern but got the motif from the Knitting Stitches Visual Encyclopedia. I should have taken a photo of the inside of the hat because that was what I was most proud of. I sewed a basic beanie out of white fleece, then knitted the hat and stitched it to the fleece beanie. Now I have an extra-warm fleece-lined hat!