Monday, July 30, 2012

2000 + You!

Hello out there! How are you? Any rain in your area? None here either. But July is almost over an Fall is around the corner. This morning at breakfast Elliott tried to tell Amelia what Fall is and she would agree and say she hurt her arm or knee when she falls. Haha, I love to hear her talk and figure out just what she's thinking by listening to her.

We've been trying to stay inside and the girls are so bored sometimes. I feel bad for Amelia because I know her legs are aching to run outside. Sorry, kid.

But Alyssa doesn't mind. She's very content on trying to crawl. 9 days shy of her 5 month birthday and she gets up on all fours and pushes with her legs and!... Face plants into the floor. She'll get there though. I just didn't think it would be this soon.

And the dogs have been super naughty today. Shame on them. Just barking at everything and I finally got tired of it and out them in time out, a.k.a the bathroom blocked by a baby gate.

We did go to the pool for the first time (Alyssa's first time!) this year with my sister and my aunt, whom Amelia calls grandma. Alyssa slept the first 20 minutes we were there.

And Amelia took grandma to the water immediately.

Alyssa woke up and played in the water and loved it! We would go more often but Alyssa is still tiny-ish and it's hard to do it by myself. So I'll have to drag grandma and auntie with us again before too long.

Well, I have some stuff that I'm working on and will show you as soon as it's finished but the real reason I'm calling is...

I'm almost to 2000 views! Now that's something. Ok, well means something to me! So, I wanted to say thank you to those of you that read my blog. And in doing so, the first three people who post a comment will receive a handmade crochet item from your's truly! Probably not a blanket though. And sorry, mom, you can't enter, you get my stuff all the time. I love you though! You can leave ideas if you wish or a preference of what you might like, along with your email, and I'll get it finished and shipped to you as soon as I can. So here's to you dear reader, Thank You! <3

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

It's in the Basket

Hello! How are you today? We're about to melt because of our heat wave. I've lost track of how many days and degrees. But I think it's better that way because it would probably depress me if I thought about it too much. But is it fall yet? Today we went and got tires for my car and went walking around in the old Metcalf South mall.

Wearing my little Alyssa in the purple ring sling. Thankfully she slept most the time. And Amelia had to be refueled with sugar twice as to not have a sleep-deprived inducing meltdown.

She was just waking up when I snapped this. Sleepy little eyes. I didn't get any pictures of Amelia this trip. We were too busy trying to distract her from how tired she was. Of course she crashed big time on the way home. We're fighting crying jags from both of our tired girls right now. And as luck would have it, as we were leaving I realized there's a Hancock Fabrics right next to the mall! And guess what I got?

NEW YARN! Oh, joy! And a picture of Mabel's butt... It's so hot I didn't have the heart to make her move just for the shot.

Beautiful, rich colors from Bernat. It's Bernat Great Value yarn. It's 3.99$, just like I Love This Yarn. But I got it for 30% off because of some sale they're having. It's 100% acrylic but oh so soft. Not silky soft like ILTY, but soft. No where near any likeness to Red Heart super saver yarn.

I'm also making a little stroller blankie in different colors with the same yarn. This is the ripple I started because I missed the rippling rippleness of my ripple blanket.

I just want to roll around on the floor with it! And pet it, rub it against my cheek. I've never staged a yarn photo shoot before but I was so excited. I dunno why though. I love new yarn.

And I put it in my project basket! Yay for a new project for the basket! But there's a problem. I got the colors and especially the white because I thought I was going to make a granny square blanket, but as we were driving home images of more ripples and granny stripes danced in my head. Ugh! I asked Elliott and he votes another granny stripe. I'm leaning away from the ripple now though, I don't want to burn out on that beautiful pattern. What do you think? Which way should I go? Help me please?! If you have an idea other than granny square or granny stripe I'd love to hear it too! And if I end up picking your suggestion, I'll make you a little treat to say thank you!

Well, anyway, I felt a little bad about going on about the new scrummy blog I found when I've never mentioned much about one of my favorite blogs and blogger friends, Jennifer, over at It's Just Jennifer/ She's SOOOO creative and has three beautiful and spirited little girls. She challenges herself with each new project she takes on. And she even made me a tutorial on a little tunic-y top she made. Well, I say she did it for me because I asked her to and she made one, so I don't know exactly if she did it for me, but I feel super special that she made it. She's a very loyal web friend and always leaves me such sweet comments. She's always having adventures and has a great sense of humor and a super fun blog. So, cheers to you, my friend Jennifer. I'm glad to "know" you! :-)

Monday, July 23, 2012

Naked No More!!

Hello, friends! How was your weekend? Mine went by fast for a change. See, our "weekend" isn't until Tuesday and Wednesday because of Elliott's work schedule and I often don't care for real Saturday and Sunday much anymore, but the girls and I did some fun things.

I bought Alyssa a Jenny jump up which she is fast figuring out the jumping bit. Her little thunder thighs kick like crazy when she's in her bouncer so I thought she'd like the jumper.

Not so much at first... But each time I put her in it she likes it more. I bought Amelia a gecko sprinkler toy, you hook up the hose to his tail and he shoots water out of his back. She got mad at it when she tried to drink from one of the streams and yelled at him, "you tricked me!" I'm not sure where she picked that up from!

Then while Alyssa was in the jumper, Amelia and I had some girly bonding time. I don't paint my fingers but recently started painting my toes. And of course my shadow had to have some too. I sure do love my girls.

Well, I bet you're wondering who isn't naked anymore. My hooks! They're slowly getting dressed up. If you're a fan of Lucy from attic24 you already know where I got the idea. I've tried several different tutorials for how to do it and none worked out like I had hoped. Or even like the tutorial said it would! So I made up my own way, and I want to share it with you!

They turn out so great and my fingers hurt less. Plus, there's an added little tutorial at the end of this too. Let's get started!

Things you'll need:
•Crochet hook (some kind of metal one, a plastic one could melt)
•Polymer clay (I highly recommend "Bake Shop" oven bake polymer from Sculpey. It's cheaper and easier to work with, found at Hobby Lobby for $1.27 each)
•Alphabet beads (optional)
•Baby wipes
•Bambo skewer
•Baking sheet
•Oven or toaster oven set to 275 F

*before we begin, please do this project at your own risk. I am not responsible for any injuries you may get from doing this. Not that it's dangerous, and if you use common sense and parental supervision, if needed, injuries shouldn't be a problem. :-)

First, take one section of your clay, there should be four little lines of clay per pack.

Smoosh it and work it until it's soft. If you want more than one color for a marbled look half each color, or 1/3 or 1/4 it, depending on how many colors you're going to work together to equal out roughly the same size as one line of clay.

After you've smooshed it, roll it out like a snake, roughly the same thickness throughout. I've found you want to make sure there is extra clay at the end for the letter bead and make sure it comes to just below the shank and where the grip begins. You're clay may spread upward in the next step.

Place your hook about where you want the clay to sit and push it in.

Pull the clay around the hook, it'll form a triangle around the hook. Your clay will stick to the table a little so work it up slowly.

Smooth all seams with your finger using gentle pressure (oxymoron! Haha!) Then roll between your hands or on your work surface to round out clay.

This picture is a little hard to explain. Taking the exposed hook in your hand and work the clay flat with your thumb nail. Creating a lip. If you've found when you do this step that the clay pulls away from your hook, you've got too much clay hanging around. Using your nail or a knife or toothpick, cut away some of the extra clay. Squeeze the clay back around your hook and round it out again. Continue to push the clay down with your thumb nail to make the lip.

I dunno if you can really see it or not but it'll look like that.

Next. You can decorate it or leave it like it is if you decided to do marbled colors or just a solid color. I decided to do stripes on this one.

I did polka dots on a different one that turned out great. Once you have them in position roll it between your hands or work surface. This will smooth out all surfaces. And if you're wondering...

I made the stripes too thick and they all just blended together instead of staying in their own spots! No matter! I still liked it.

Since you're covering the size markings on your hook with your clay I suggest marking the size of your hook somewhere on your clay handle. I just used a bead that was the same letter as my hook, H.

Press your bead into the butt of your clay until all the sides are covered. Rework your clay if needed to round or smooth out. Flatten the bottom with your fingers or on the work surface.

Once you have it like you want it to be it's time to bake! The package and the sculpey's website say to bake on 275 F for 15 minutes per every 1/4 inch thickness. I baked my hooks for 25-30 minutes on a piece of foil. Let cool before you handle after baking.

There you have your new dressed up hooks!

If it turns out you don't like it, this isn't permanent. Just use a sharp knife and CAEFULLY cut the clay off and just try again! I've cut off two handles so far and redid them. Or just cut it off because you found you didn't like it. On a side note, how do you hold your hook?

I hold mine just like that.

And now, time for the bonus tutorial! If you have kids at home for the summer this is a great project for them. Amelia did it even and she's only 2!

Using the same materials as above minus your hook but add the skewer, let your kids combine and mix the clay anyway they wish. Once they've finished combining the clay, shape it into spheres, square, etc.

Take the shape and your skewer and work it into the clay. Remove skewer, pat down the exit hole and work the skewer through the exit hole first. Now you have a potential bead! You just need to bake it. Once you have all your clay skewered place on your foil on your baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes at 275 F. Cool completely before handling.

String it up, tie, and wear! Or gift it. I hope you have fun trying one or both of these projects. Let me know if you have any questions!

Happy crafting! :-)

Friday, July 20, 2012

Much Ado about Things

*To my blogland friends: for whatever reason blogger is not letting me comment on your posts from my phone. I'm really sad about it because I like commenting on your posts as much as I like getting comments. I'm not ignoring you, I just can't comment! :-/


Can you believe how fast time flies? It's incredibly fast! Especially with two instead of one. Alyssa is a month old on the left and 4 1/2 on the right. I told a friend of mine that as first time parents we're ignorant and sometimes wish the time away so they would reach milestones (mostly the sleeping one). Being a second time mom, I realize that and have noticed that Alyssa is trying to do things earlier than Amelia did. As if my dumb wish of "I can't wait until..." from Amelia's babyhood traveled through time and space and whispered in Alyssa's ear. She got the memo and now I'm all but sitting on her to keep her little for longer.

And Amelia is pushing 2 1/2. Ugh! Just stay little please, you fit in my arms so nicely, Alyssa. Amelia, stop growing up! Your were Alyssa's size "yesterday!"

It's also so much easier to get a non- moving/blurred picture of them the younger they are! Think Alyssa will be a dancer? She's already practicing jazz hands! But then again, the outtakes are just as fun to look at as the "good" ones. Well, anywho, guess what I've done?

Finished MY ripple! The ending was a huge let down really, because there was no one to give it to. That's my favorite part is the giving. Plus, I loved rippling more than I though, I've already started another ripple, but baby sized for a friend.

I got all fancy with the pictures because the girls were asleep. At the same time! Side note: if my pictures are ever blurry I sincerely apologize. I was unawares that my iPhone, aka my camera/computer, took random blurry pictures, because they look clear on my phone. I need to get with the times and get my home computer hooked up to the outside world.

Beautiful, right? If you look at it too long, in person anyway, you get kinda dizzy and cross eyed.

The colors are completely random. When I started it back in September '11 I didn't like the red-y orange next to the pink, but a little bit ago I tried it and loved it. Too bad it was almost finished by that point. Somehow I ended up with way more pink and red-y orange left over at the end, naturally that became the border colors.

(ok, I know this one is blurry, sorry!) But then that was too much RO and pink next to each other, and since I already had it all stitched up I just slipped stitches the green between the two colors. Winner, winner! I loved it!

Elliott and I snuggling under our blankets together while watching some B movie on the free movie channel.

I love them together. Bright and mute. Male and female. Ah, so much softness! Elliott said it looks like me, like something I would buy somewhere.

With the left over yarn I made this for Alyssa. Sara posted the link on her blog,, to Naomi's blog,, where she posted her pattern. It's adorable and fun to make.

Alyssa quite enjoys it! :-) I just bought a cheap rattle at wal-mart and cut the rattle insert out and put it in the owl. I felt bad for the rattle so I decided I would stitch him back up sans his rattle parts and give him to Alyssa too.

I have some other stuff I want to talk about but I'm trying not to overload my posts with too much because I always forget to talk about certain things when I do that. So I'll save it for another (soon to come) post. I'm totally into baby wearing though and just got my ring sling I bought from a friend. I think I prefer the wraps but the sling is so much easier to put on and take off. Just gotta get used to it. Maybe I'll make one and see if that helps. Well, anyway, have a great and safe weekend!

P.s. You should check out the delicious new blog I found. Becca at A Hermit's Wish has a lot of beautiful things going on. Plus, she's expecting her first bundle in August.

P.p.s. Jennifer I want to make some granny squares for you! <3