Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Cookies & Stockings

It has been a busy week! We received some much needed snow and are expecting even more in the next few days. We will definitely have a white Christmas in the Wasatch Mountains!! One thing about living so far away from family is sending the nieces and nephews their Christmas presents and goodies. It takes close to 7 days for a shipment from me to them to arrive so that means I have to begin Christmas shopping and baking early. That is what I have been up to this week, baking cookies for all the kiddos!

Decided to go with the Ugly Christmas Sweater theme this year since the kids are becoming older. I must say next year they might just receive kits to do themselves! A lot of work went into these since I had to prepare them to ship. It was worth the time and effort though.
I'm definitely no Martha Stewart, but my daughter and I gave it our all. 
I also had to make a few batches of cookies for the adults as well. I also sent some to my son who cannot come home for the holidays this year. He is busy doing his duty for our country in the Air Force and I could not be more proud and understanding.
The Top Hat is resting on top of our Christmas tree and the stockings have all been hung. I can now relax until Christmas dinner and enjoy some egg nog and Christmas music.

I know it is a little early, but to everyone have a Merry Christmas!!

Friday, December 11, 2015

Catching Up!!

Sorry for the long absence from blogging.... I didn't realize how many months it has been..... This year is almost over and I feel as if I didn't do as much crocheting. Maybe I did but this year has just flown by. I have a few projects still going but I haven't picked my hook up in over a month.

Just a few pictures showing you what I have been up to of late.

Fresh Pomegranate Juice!! Took some time but got a whole mason jar out of 4 pomegranates.

Decorating for Christmas

A trip to Pigeon Forge, TN to visit the family!

Hiking the Smokey Mountains with niece, nephew, and daughter! Oh the hubs was there too!!

Smokey Mountain National Forest in Gatlinburg, TN

Monday, September 21, 2015

Wasatch Autumn Shawl

Hello everyone! Hopefully everyone is being blessed with some cooler weather with cool crisp Autumn in the air. I must say that Autumn is my favorite season of the year. I just love the changing colors that surrounds me here in the Wasatch Mountains. All the vibrant reds, burnt oranges, and bright yellows!! So I had to make a shawl that represented the Autumn Foliage this time of year.

I used Lion Brand Heartland yarn which is 100% Acrylic but has a very soft feel to it. I used the vibrant yellow colorway of Yellowstone; the burnt orange colorway of Yosemite; a pretty bark colorway of Big Bend; and then finished it off with the deep dark earth brown colorway of Sequoia. I will admit the Sequoia was a happy mistake. I had ran out of the Big Bend and thought I had purchased the yarn at Michael's but instead I had ordered it from Craftsy. So of course Michael's did not have the Big Bend colorway but the Sequoia and I decided to take the chance of using the darker brown. I only had a couple of more rows that needed the brown. I decided to border the complete Triangle Shawl in the darker brown and then added a couple of rows of it also in the edging. I loved how it turned out. To me it has a little bit of a 70's vibe to it with the yellow and dark brown, but it represents the colors of my Autumn.

In the process of blocking...because the yarn is 100% acrylic I just pinned it out and sprayed some
 water on it in order to set the edging. And yes I was cheap and used card board as my base to block on.
I'm happy with this one and feel that it showcases the colors of the Wasatch Mountains in Autumn. Just a little collage of our Autumn colors here in the Wasatch!

I went with the Beginner's Triangle Shawl pattern that you can find for free on Lion Brand's website. For the edging I used Doris Chan's edging pattern from her All Shawl pattern. I did have to do some modifications to the tip/bottom portion of my shawl because her shawl is worked top to bottom and the Beginner's Triangle Shawl pattern is worked bottom to top. I think it turned out great and love the extra umph the tip has.

Love the end result and very happy with the colors!!

Until next time!! Enjoy the cooler weather!

Friday, September 4, 2015

Linen Stitch Afghan

I finally completed my Linen Stitch Afghan!! I can say that this was a fun project and it turned out so comfy and cozy!

For the border I kept it simple with the oatmeal white as single crochet all around then the heather gray in a half double crochet and the denim blue I did in a crab stitch to keep the border from unraveling. The afghan ended up measuring 56 inches X 69 inches. The perfect size for curling up on the couch watching a good movie or reading a great book not to mention for working up a new crochet project as well!!

Enjoy your weekend! We have a long weekend for Labor Day and my son is in town for a visit. We will be heading out for some golf soon so I need to go start getting ready!!

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Completed Projects!!

I don't know what got into me this summer but I really dove into a lot of projects. First off I had been eye balling a lot of crochet bag patterns ever since I picked my hook and yarn back up 6 years ago. When I was able to actually work up a crochet bag that allowed me access to so many other hookers to ask questions along the way, I definitely jumped at the opportunity. After completing my first crochet bag, my daughter asked me to do one up for her plus I just wanted to do a smaller version as well.

My daughter loved the oceanspray blue color I used in my bag but wanted a gray color as her main color. So I used Stone and Oceanspray as her colors. I did the shell stitching in alternate colors to give a striping effect. I also did the base with some striping as well. I couldn't believe my luck when I found a chevron print in the exact matching blue! I added some silver buttons to each of the flower centers. To add a little extra color I used a very colorful button as the closure button. I added a strip of fabric to the strap to keep it from stretching and also did a border of crab stitch to give it a cord like look around the strap. My daughter loves it and has unpacked her batman bag that she used everyday and is now using this one. I don't know how long that will last because how can you give up Batman!!

I decided to try just using 4 flower squares on this one. It worked up so quickly because I didn't make a separate base but instead whip stitched the bottom together. So it is more like a messenger bag. I also decided to make two straps. I embellished the top with a stripe of white single crochet and added a cute butterfly button.

While waiting on fabric order and the nerve to finally sew in the liners for the bags, I decided to work up a quick Fall Cowl. I used the All Grown Up Cowl pattern by Tamara Kelly. I had the recommended yarn on hand since it was the same as I used on the Wildflower Shoulder Bag. I just made my colors more Fall. I loved how it turned out and it is large enough to also pull down over my shoulders as a shoulder wrap.

I then decided I needed a nice wrap for this Fall as well and set out working up a triangle shawl. The pattern was a solid color but I wanted some pops of color so I improvised and added a few rows here and there of different colors. I also doubled the size so it would be a nice warm and cozy wrap. For the border I decided on a cute picot edge that I found by Attic 24 on her Granny Stripe Blanket. A very simple stitch but adds just enough to the edge to make it not so boring! I think my colors are more reflective of Winter!
I used Lion Brand Heartland yarn in Glacier Bay and Olympic as well as Red Heart Soft in Heather Gray. I still have some of this yarn in each color left and might make a slouchy beanie to go with it. Believe it or not this was a really quick project. It is such a non-thinking pattern that you can actually watch TV and crochet at the same time! My daughter is eyeing it for herself and I might get to use it maybe one time once the cooler air arrives! It is a pretty easy project that I might have to work one up in more fall colors. I do love some burnt orange and yellow!!

I can say that I did experiment with some new crochet stitches on these projects. Learning how to crochet a base on a bag was great. I also learned a couple of new stitches while working on the cowl. I learned the half double crochet foundation stitch. This stitch has become such a great one to have. I now use it to begin almost all of the my projects that call for a chain and foundation stitch. I also learned the shallow post stitch. This stitch really gives a cool stitch line effect to your work. I then learned the picot stitch. I do love learning new techniques that boost the average to just a little more!

I became reacquainted with my sewing machine as well. I have to tell ya that bad boy had been put away for so long that I had to look up a tutorial on how to thread it!! Then I had to look up a tutorial on how to reset my tension. Let's put it this way my google search on my touchpad is filled with Brother XL-2600i tutorials!! But I figured it out and am so glad I took the extra time and steps to add liners to all of my bags. I even added a liner to my bag. I need to add fabric to my strap as well and plan on doing that this week.

That gorgeous ball of yarn is for a new CAL I have signed up for. More about that in a later post!!
It is September and the leaves on the mountains are starting to change. Enjoy your week and check back later this week for an update on my Linen Stitch Afghan!!

Monday, August 31, 2015

Solid Granny Square Tote

Since finishing my Wildflower Shoulder Bag CAL, I have been bitten by the crochet bag bug! I started on another smaller WSB but it is in hibernation until the fabric I have ordered for the lining is delivered. So I began working on my own version of a tote. I wanted the granny square look so I found a great tutorial on Ravelry for a solid granny square. The tutorial is by Tamara Kelly and can be found over on her blog, Moogly.

I take my hat off to all the wonderful crochet pattern designers out there.  Coming up with a design and figuring out the stitches per inch needed and what not is no easy task. For the first time I actually crocheted a swatch to give me the stitch count I needed to figure out the bottom and side of my tote.

I can say I am not the most organized person when I begin a project. I like to dive in and begin without having to think too much about what I am working on. So this project has me thinking more and really making it my own. I am sure there is a well written pattern for this type of tote, but I thought it can't be that hard. (yeah right) I've enjoyed the process though and really love the creative side of it. Yeah it's not fancy with a lot of bells and whistles but it is my own creation.

The solid granny square by Tamara Kelly came out to be 5 inches by 5 inches and I wanted 6 inches by 6 inches. I ended up doing two extra rows of single crochet to make it the size I needed.
My Granny prior to being blocked.
To achieve the size I wanted in this tote I needed six solid granny squares for each side. This would give me a width of 18 inches and a depth of 12 inches. Of course this is what the pure calculations would be, but you always have to factor in the seaming allowance so I had to go back and re-calculate my base and sides. Glad I decided to work up the front and back sides before I crocheted the base and attaching sides.

I joined the squares with a whip stitch join which gives almost no extra seaming width.

I really love the way the join looks on the front side of the joined squares.

Once I had all 12 squares joined I decided to block both sides again. This gives me a true 12 x 18 inch measurement.

I decided on a really cute houndstooth print cloth for the liner. I also decided for the handles I would use rope cord. This meant using grommets and I had never done a grommet before. It turned out pretty easy and fun because I got to hammer away. How often do you use a hammer on a crochet project?! I found the white rope cording on clearance at Michael's! I was ready to checkout when I realized I had not picked up the cord. As I was walking over to the area of the store that the cord should be I passed a clearance rack and that sweet white cord package stood out and I was able to nab it for under $3!!

I loved how it turned out. It measures 18" x 12" and is a perfect size for a Farmer's Market Tote or even a picnic tote.

I will be back later this week with an update on all my projects. I was very productive this weekend and finished up 4 WIPs!! Have a great week!!

Monday, July 20, 2015

Completed CAL - Wildflower Shoulder Bag

Rebecca Langford over at Little Monkeys Crochet did an outstanding job with this CAL. She had over 4000 in her group and she kept the group fun and very respectful of one another. That is a feat of itself. I so enjoyed this CAL. There are so many talented fellow crocheters and I think my like button on Facebook has broken. My home feed was and still is filled with such beautiful and creative pictures of this great shoulder bag.

The first week of the CAL was making the flower squares and I must say I finished them up very quickly and was anxious for the next part to be published. We had to hook up 6 total. I used some really cute bicycle buttons for my centers. This picture shows a mess up, I guess I was so excited that I did a hdc (half double crochet) row for the last row instead of sc (single crochet). I had to frog the last rows on all 6 squares and correct this problem.

Week two was the joining of the squares and making the top portion of the bag. As well as attaching the slip rings for the bag strap. Many other members of the CAL really showed their creativity at this point. Some did different color stripes. Just the color combos were so amazing to see. I stuck with a taupe and seaspray blue color scheme.

Part three was the toughest part for me. You had to make the bottom of the bag and the strap. I kept coming up with the wrong count in stitches. It might had to do with me watching Hell on Wheels while doing this part. I was distracted by Anston Mount and his character Bohaneen. But I got it done and worked up the strap.

I can say that I am totally in love with this bag. I am now using it as my project bag. 

And what is inside this project bag you may ask? Well I have begun another bag but making it slightly smaller by only using 4 squares. I started on it yesterday!

My very first CAL and my very first crocheted bag was a great experience. I hope Rebecca at Little Monkeys Crochet plans another one in the future. This was such a positive and supportive group of crocheters. If someone had a question there was always many others that could answer it. And again seeing all the varieties of color combos, bag straps and embellishments was so inspiring.

Monday, July 6, 2015

4th of July and a CAL

We have had some really hot weather lately! Yep we went from rainy and cold to no rain and crazy hot!! Oh how I can't wait for Fall & Winter!! But the 4th of July festivities are wonderful here in the Wasatch Mountains and we are lucky enough to either sit in our drive or make the short walk across the street to the resort and watch the wonderful fireworks display.

I have decided to do a Crochet Along project!! I have always looked at different CALs but just never made the commitment. I found this CAL on facebook and joined the group the moment I saw it! She has over 2000 members now from all over the world. I think it will be fun plus I have never crocheted a bag before.

Picture courtesy of littlemonkeyscrochet

My linen stitch afghan has gone into hibernation these past couple of weeks. It is just too hot to crochet with wool right now. Once the weather begins to cool down again I will get back to it.

Other than biking and hiking the trails around town, it has been a rather relaxing summer. Hope everyone enjoyed their 4th of July here in America.

Monday, June 15, 2015


Well our June has been a mix of rain, hail, and beautiful sunshine!! We have finally got a break in all the rain these past couple of weeks. We have been enjoying graduation ceremonies, hiking, biking, and DIYing!! Plus some extra fun time crocheting outdoors while listening to the laughter of kids playing in the park close to our townhome and the song birds in our shady trees.

First off my daughter graduated from high school this month!! She was doing the online virtual high school program and decided not to walk for graduation. She did go and support her friends at her old high school. She is a low key type of person and didn't want a big fuss made over it.

So a picture of a graduation bouquet that one of her friend's gave her. It was very sweet and thoughtful of her. My daughter said for us to save the big celebration when she graduates from college! Wow, I'm not ready to think about that just yet!!

We have enjoyed some great off the beaten path hiking up around the Provo Falls area near Mirror Lake! It was raining most of the time while we were hiking, but it didn't deter us at all!! I am loving the wildflowers that are blooming all around us. Here are a few we captured along our hikes and a hiking selfie!! :))

I was able to go on a nice long bike ride this weekend. I started on the rail trail then jumped onto Round Valley which then I biked through the Kimball Junction area to Willow Creek Park where I followed the trail path onto McPollin Farms. It ended up being a 20 mile loop. It was so sunny and warm. A lot of other bikers were out enjoying the pleasant weather along with lots of hikers with their four legged pals!

I finally finished up my futon bed frame transformation project! My husband made a nice large lawn chair that I painted a vibrant teal. I then painted the other half of the futon frame and the husband mounted my planters that I had painted vibrant plum, teal, and yellow! I have some strawberries, onion chives, burpee onions, and lemon thyme planted in a couple of the planters and they are growing and blooming! I planted some petunias, verbana, and lobelia in the other two. The planter trellis can hold even more plants and by the end of summer and fall I am hoping it is busting from all the flowers and plants it can bear. I also have some marigolds in another planter that the husband mounted on the privacy fence. I am also attempting to grow a blue hydrangea in a planter. I am hoping it survives.

My chair needs a cushion made for it. I haven't had the chance to go to Joann's in Salt Lake City as of yet. But I can't wait to tackle that project. Any ideas on the color I should choose? I was thinking either a plum or a cream to match the painted planters.

So with the new chair made and my courtyard filled with pretty plants and herbs I have been enjoying some outdoor crocheting. I am almost to the point on my linen stitch afghan where I need to begin weaving in the ends and start the border!!

I hope everyone's summer has been filled with lots of fun activities and the sweet smells of blooming flowers!!


Friday, May 22, 2015

Finished Linen Stitch Cushion!!

It is so nice to finally complete a project for a change!! I am loving how it turned out as well. This project should not have taken me so long to complete, but creativity sometimes takes a backseat. I think the main reason it took longer is the weaving in the ends and deciding on what type of border to do. I really think the right border is essential. It is like the picture frame to your work. :))

Excuse the picture quality, it has been dark and gloomy so no good light to take the pics.

I worked the entire body as one and then connected each end. Then I closed up each of the smaller ends with 2 rows of grey single crochet with an accent of one row of red single crochet. The last row of the border is a picot stitch where I single crocheted into one of the single crochet stitches, chained 3, and single crocheted back into the same single crochet stitch from previous row. I skipped a stitch in between each picot stitch. It matches up so lovely with my chevron blanket that I completed last year.

Now it has found a happy home along side my other crochet items!
Wishing everyone a wonderful weekend! We have been bombarded with rain for the full month of May and our 3 day weekend is going to be a wet one! Hopefully in between rain showers the husband and I can get some biking in.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015


This weekend was filled with fun DIY projects that the daughter and I worked on. One of our projects was up-cycling an old night stand.

We did a light sanding over the old varnish and then painted it a vibrant teal color. Added some cute drawer knobs we found at World Market and then modge podged the large bottom opening with some loose scrap paper we purchased from Michael's Craft Store. Now it is an updated happy looking piece of furniture! Ready to go into my WIP craft room!! I am in the process of refurbishing my son's old room into a craft room. We have a long ways to go still, but each little step gets me closer to the end result!!

Did anyone work on some DIYs this weekend as well? Let me know in the comments!



Monday, April 27, 2015

Another WIP Linen Stitch Cushion

Hello! Hope everyone is doing well and enjoying some Spring time weather. We are going through a crazy weather pattern! It snowed yesterday!!

Snow on the tree and powerline outside my kitchen window.

So no outside fun this weekend. Instead I pulled out a project that has been waiting to be finished. I had ran out of charcoal yarn and had to end up ordering it. No local shops carried this particular color!!

My first plans were to make a small throw pillow, but I have decided to double the size and make a large pillow. I am reversing the red and white on the opposite side. I have 3/4 of it completed and hope to finish up and assemble it tonight!! It will feel so gratifying to finally have a completed project!!

So yesterday was full of crocheting and sipping on a nice hot cups of tea!