Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Girls' Club: Friendship Token

I have not posted much about girls' club. This project, though, was so cute, I wanted to share it. Our most recent American Girl that we are discussing is Kirsten. Kirsten is a Swedish immigrant in 1854 who heads to the American frontier. So we get to discuss Swedish immigrant culture and pioneering. In today's club we talked about "friendship tokens." According to the American Girl books, it was common for girls to give each other small hand-made gifts.

Since we recently had a girl leave the club, we used this meeting to make our own friendship token to give to her. I cut 5"squares from quilting fabric and then marked 1/2" seam from each edge. That will give me a 4" square when everything is sewn together. For a 16" pillow, I needed 16 squares (a 4 square by 4 square grid). I also cut a plain white back 17 inches square (16" after subtracting a 1/2" seam allowance from each edge).

This meeting was particularly fun because we had a picnic. We set up a sheet outside and each of the girls brought a basket which we filled with grapes, some cheese slices, and bread. Without insulated lunch bags, that is how pioneer girls would carry their food. Apple juice for a drink and we also had bread pudding with chocolate chips brought by one of the moms. Yum!

The girls each decorated a square. The idea was to have each of the girls then sew the squares together to make the top. Instead, after working diligently for 40 minutes, it was obvious that they were ready for some downtime. So I took the decorated squares and sewed them together and then finished the pillow. The kids got to blow off steam, fool around, and have friend time.

Even though girls' club officially ends at a certain time, we often have company for a couple of hours afterward. It's a great time for the kids and me. The kids get to play together and I get to chat with other moms. I cannot say enough about what a nice group of moms and girls we have. It is a great relief that there are no odd personality conflicts and we all seem to mesh well. Which is interesting since they are all Christian and even follow Christian curriculums, and I'm atheist. That they are still in girls' club at all after learning that is a good sign.

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