Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The Learning Curve

I am trying to make use of my many crochet books.  The one I am diving into right now is "Beyond The Square, Crochet Motifs" by Edie Eckman.  This book is filled with crocheted triangles, squares, circles, hexagons and more.  It is a granny blanket heaven.  I am just starting to get interested in motifs and granny "squares".  I think they are beautiful, but I am not a fan of weaving in ends and these motifs require a lot of weaving ends in.

Something that I am really enjoying, is learning and practicing stitches that I don't normally do.  I have seen them, but I don't normally incorporate them into my work....but I will from now on.

The squares in the picture above is what I have made so far.  The square on the far left is made of Popcorn stitches.  The square on the far right is the Leaning Tower stitch.  What am I going to do with these?  Well you will just have to wait and see.  (Unless I don't like it, then you may never see.)

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

The After Party....way after the party.

I don't think I will ever get the food blogs posted on the same day each week, but at least I still am writing them.  Everyones' had the "7 Layer Dip" at parties, right?  I love to make it.  It is easy and fast to put together.  Here is a new twist on the traditional "7 Layer Dip".

Mexican Roll Ups

Refried Beans
Shredded Mexican Cheese Blend
Sliced Olives
Serve with Sour Cream

On tortilla, spread a layer of Refried beans, sprinkle a layer of cheese.  Make line of olives, guacamole and chives (refer to picture).  Roll up tortilla, slice, and ENJOY.

Note:  You can heat the beans before you put it on the tortillas, it makes the beans a little easier to spread.  You can also put them in the oven covered with foil to warm them, but do this before you cut them.

* If you try any of the After Party recipes, I would love to know what you think. If you changed them up, I would love to know what you did. Email me or comment on this post.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Don't Forget to Accesssorize

Another attempt at a pattern from one of Leslie Stanfields books, this time from "100 Flowers to Knit & Crochet".  With full knowledge that my ability to follow gauge is...well poor, (mainly because I like to play with different yarns that may not be what the pattern calls for, and I also like to use up my stash instead of buying new yarns)  I still wanted to try some of the flowers in this lovely book.  Hoping to not have a bunch of ends to weave in, I picked a really simple three color flower.

I used bits and pieces of cotton yarn.  Didn't need much.  For some people a little big, but for me, I think it turned out just the right size!  After using a spray starch to shape and stiffen the petals, I used the fabulous E6000 glue to attach a simple hair clip.

This project took absolutely no time at all.  Reading and figuring out the pattern took the most time.  More of these hair clips coming soon.  Maybe I will make all 100 flowers from the book?!?

Friday, August 19, 2011

Success on the 1st Try

It only took me all week to motivate myself to make something...  This week has been a struggle, but with girls night cancelled and my husband out of the house for a few hours, I finally sat down and got my hands busy.  Crafting may be like a drug to me...I get such a satisfaction and joy from making things.  When I am in a blah mood, if I can get myself to craft, I almost always feel better. 

This idea has been bouncing around in my brain for the last week.  A rag rug, using old t-shirts with a crochet mesh backing.  Instead of just jumping in head first and tackling something as big as a rug, I decided to try a 5" x 5" pot holder first. I am so very happy with the way it turned out, I kind of wish I would of just made the rug.

The pot holder turned out exactly as I wanted it to, which I find amazing!  I have written up a pattern and will be sharing very soon if anyone wants it. 

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Left Overs

What do you do with lots of left over chicken strips?  You use them.  The guys must of not been too hungry Friday night or I bought way too much, but have no fear nothing will go to waste. 

I present to you, Crispy Chicken Pot Pies:
Original recipe by Handmade Peace.

Tyson Crispy Chicken Strips
Cream of Potato Condensed Soup
Pepper, Garlic, Dried Onion
Frozen Peas and Carrots
Shredded Medium Cheese

Cook chicken according to package, chop into small cubes.  Heat Cream of Potato and milk on low heat till warm.  Cook peas and carrots till soft (but not mushy) Cut each biscuit into halves, and press into muffin pan.   Mix cream of potato and cooked peas and carrots.  Layer in each biscuit cup...chicken, cream of potato mixture and a pinch of cheese.

Bake at 375 degrees for about 15 minutes.

* If you try any of the After Party recipes, I would love to know what you think. If you changed them up, I would love to know what you did. Email me or comment on this post.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Being Lazy

Not completely lazy though!

This hat has been complete since Sunday, but I have been very lazy with taking pictures and blog posts are more exciting with photos!  I bought this pattern HERE.  This is actually my third attempt at the pattern.  The other two hats came out too small, so I added a row of Double Crochet...and IT FITS.

This two tone hat was complete in two nights.  Made with Peaches and Creme black and white. Using Crochet hooks J and G.  Pattern is really easy to follow and is flawless. 

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Tweet Tweet

This sad little bird house was saved and traveled with me when we moved three years ago into our house.  Many times, while living in the trailer the bird house would fall to the ground in heavy stormy weather.  Every time it would happen, I would pick it up and place it back in the tree.  Hind sight would tell me, that if I wanted it to stay in the tree, I should of just fastened it better.

When we moved, I insisted on bringing it with us.  I am not sure why, it wasn't even mine in the first place, just left by the last renter, but I am sort of attached to it.   For the last three years though, it has been neglected, sitting in the dark, on a shelf in the shop.  It sat there because I wanted to paint it and make it better, but never made the time to just do it.  Till now!

I painted the entire thing with regular house paint.  Added some new sticks and a new perch.  This will be the perfect little home for a family of finches. (and this time I will fasten it better to the tree.)

Back View

Front View

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

One Night Stand

As rewarding as it is to finish a big project like a blanket, or is just as rewarding to start something and finish it all in one night. This last weekend I put my last store bought wet cloth on my swifter to clean my floors. I vowed that once they were all gone, I would only use reusable cloth. That also meant that I needed to start making some. So, I sat down on the couch for the night with a ball of Peaches and Creme cotton yarn, an H hook, a simple pattern and turned on Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew.

This first one is to get a feel for what will work the best.  I want to experiment with different stitches and patterns that will maximize the cleaning power.  I found the pattern HERE, but will be making my own pattern for future ones.
It is a tight to put on, but I think that is a benefit, unless after washing it shrinks to much.  I have not used it to clean the floors yet and that will be the biggest test. 

My swifter sure is pretty now, don't you think?