A friend saw the pillowcases Leia made - yes, I was bragging and yes, she's already made a second case, for Leanne -
and offered to give Leia the rugged, almost indestructible, 3/4 size sewing machine she'd used in her first and second grade classroom before retiring.
Leia is soooooo thrilled. We got it set up tonight, and Leia was off and sewing. She was very good about keeping her hands away from the needle (Me: do you want to see your blood? Leia: no way.) and remembered to always pay attention when the machine was running.
She quickly figured out how to change stitch patterns, raise and lower the presser foot, go in reverse and control the sewing speed. I put the foot pedal on a footstool, which made it the perfect height for her.
Some things I showed her how to do, and some - like turning the handwheel to raise and lower the needle - she discovered on her own.
Tonight was about experimenting and having fun with her new machine. Next time we sew, probably Thursday or Friday, she wants to make something "for real" for her daddy. Sure hope he wants a pillowcase!