Baby Jungle Afghan

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Making progress! I have meeting the rest of today, I’m afraid, but here is a sneak peek at my solid granny, some of the animal appliques and just my general advancement in what is surely one of my favorite projects to date.

The square:
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Pattern link here:
https://thesparklytoad.wordpress.com/2014/04/16/super-solid-circle-to-square-granny/

And the borders…
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Then a few baby animals:
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Now some neutral squares for the appliques, for a total blanket count of 25– not including the border:
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I’m ready to join! But probably not until the weekend…sniff…
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Happy Tuesday!!!

Some yummy snacks we made with the little ones this morning:

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Pretty Baby Dress

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I made the sweetest baby dress! I just love this pattern. I’ve used it several times, and it always turns out so simply sweet.

First the yoke…
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Then skip to make the sleeves…
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Then just V-stitch away to desired skirt length…
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Pretty, so sweet, and so simple! Easy enough to make little shoes or a headband/hat as well.
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Here’s my preferred link, though you can find it several places:
http://www.bevscountrycottage.com/baby-pinafore.html

Happy dress-making!
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Super Solid Circle-to-Square Granny

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I have been looking! And I could NOT find a truly solid granny square. They all had holes. Some in the middle. Some in the corners. Some all over!

And I am making a sweet baby blanket (with a jungle theme– so exciting!) I want a nice, soft, no-holes blanket to cover little baby fingers and toes and on which to sew my appliques.

So I wrote my own.

Super-Solid Granny Circle-to-Square
Hook sz 5mm, worsted weight yarn

Circle:
Rnd 1:Ch 3, dc 11 on chain furthest from hook. Join. 12 dc
Pull starting string tight to close center.
Rnd 2:Ch 3, dc in same stitch. Two dc in each stitch around. Join. Finish off. 24 dc
Join next color with slip stitch in any stitch.
Rnd 3:Ch 3, dc in same stitch. One dc in next stitch. Two in next. Repeat around. Join. Finish off. 36 dc
Join next color with slip stitch in any stitch.

Square:
Rnd 4: Ch 2. Hdc in next 3 stitches. *Dc in next. 2 dc in next. (Dc, trp, dc) in next stitch– this is your corner. 2dc in next. Dc in next. 4 hdc in next 4 st. Repeat from * around. Join. Finish off.
Join next color in any stitch except corner stitches.
Rnd 5: Ch 3. Dc across to corner (the corner is the dc, trp, dc from rnd 4). In top of corner dc– dc twice. In top of trp– dc, trp, dc. In top of dc– dc twice. Dc across in each stitch to next corner.

Increase to desired size, repeating Rnd 5.

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Happy hooking!

Winter Dragons

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It is doing the unspeakable today.
Granted, we live in an area typical for long winters.
But this season has been longer than most…by MONTHS…and it did this today:
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Very unusual for this time of year…and rather heartless of mother nature, I think.
I actually had all the snow gear washed up and put away…but out came the snow pants and boots again this morning!

I am watching the ice fall off the power lines as I write this. Thankfully, it is warm enough that the roads are clear, as folks are off to work and school bright and early, regardless.

Now, onto a more cheery subject! I have finished a multitude of WIPs (works in progress) that have been rather hanging over my head…are you ready?

1. The giraffe is done! Ta-da! This guy has been sitting in my work basket for about six months off and on. I am so pleased with the result! His owner-to-be is delighted.
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He was inspired by the giraffes here: http://www.willewopsie.blogspot.com

Now I can begin my next amigurumi with a clear conscience!

And here he is…I need to make at least two, for requests…

Paid pattern from etsy:
https://www.etsy.com/listing/84202578/toothless-dragon-night-fury-pattern

Free pattern:
http://sarselgurumi.blogspot.ca/2011/05/toothless-amigurumi-pattern.html

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We shall see what I come up with…I usually surprise myself!

2. The  Sweetheart Reversible Ripple, yay! Eight weeks, not too shabby a timeframe for an afghan…
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The lace edge was an excellent choice, I think. Want to see it from the beginning? Go here:
https://thesparklytoad.wordpress.com/2014/02/12/sweet-something-for-the-sweet/

3. My bohemian tapestry tablet tote or Spring Stripe Satchel:
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Now I can haul my tablet around town in style and take pictures to my heart’s content this summer. Find the weave pattern here:
https://thesparklytoad.wordpress.com/2014/03/11/spring-stripe-satchel/

4. And…it is certainly not complete…but I have finalized the DESIGN for the Baby Jungle-theme Afghan after four weeks of deliberation. Here are the basic squares…

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Here are several of the trial and errors…
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I have a dozen shades and skeins I considered but only those four colors and pattern made the cut. I used these cute bears from Dada’s place as my starting point…

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http://dada4you.blogspot.com/2014/02/teddy-bear-granny-square-tutorial.html

After the base is finished, the fun will start as I add appliques similar to these:
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Such cuteness!

And up next, later this week…chickie hat cuteness!!! Just in time for Easter.

Happy spring! At least, we hope spring will come, eventually!
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Petit-dejeuner and a couple of chicks

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I have had such pretty meals lately! I think it was the nice weather. Makes a girl feel like a salad. Or a pretty danish.

It is the little things that make life sweet. So here is my gratitude list today.

Last week’s lunch…I do love my pretty blue bowls.
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And my lovely breakfast:
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And a treat over the weekend…our sweet neighbor invited our girls for baking, and they made THESE:
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Delicious! Not to mention they had a lovely visit..and I had a quiet house for several hours. ♡

Now, onto crochet fun!

As you know, there are only a few days left until…Easter!
There are such sweet spring crochet hats out there…here are the two I just made for darling babies.

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So simple, sweet and quick. I used the basic hat pattern from
http://www.repeatcrafterme.com

And a really good free diaper cover pattern here
http://flowerscreations.blogspot.com/2012/05/free-diaper-cover-pattern.html

The bow pattern:
Ch 8 (or desired length for size), turn, start in second ch from hook
Rows 1-3: Hdc 6 (one stitch in each st across), ch 2, turn
Edge: sc around entire rectangle, do not finish off.

Wrap yarn around middle and cut, leaving tail for sewing. You may also crochet a chain and wrap it around, sewing it in place, but I like this look best.

For bigger bows, make a longer starting chain and crochet more rows before edging.

Add some buttons, and there you are!
Chickie cuteness.
Happy spring!

EGG-Straordinary Salt-Dough Bush

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Spring has been so long in coming! We have milder weather this week, but next week’s temperatures are forecast to plummet, again. 😦

Still in just two weeks, Easter will be here! It’s such a pleasure to decorate for spring after the long, gloomy winter. And of course I love the cheery colors that come with spring!

I saw these on Pinterest a bit ago and had to try it out. I’ve been making my own playdough for years, but salt dough? And acrylics…this I had to see for myself.

So with a little help…
http://m.designmom.com/2013/03/diy-salt-dough-eggs/
We made our very first salt-dough Easter tree ornaments.

First, a batch of dough!
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And the clean-up, sigh…the floor did need mopping, anyway…really.
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We had to wait for a fine day to paint, as I wanted to try the spray colors I had bought.
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Then, on yet another cold and rainy day, some hand-painting.
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And finally, this afternoon, it was warm enough to hang some! We gave a few to grandmas, etc, and will send some home with the short peeps, as well.

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A marvelous recipe and lots of crafty fun!

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Wondrous Wool Soakers

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Happy Monday! I am early on the blog this week, the baby is having a good nap!
I have been having an adventure these past few weeks…one I thought I was well-past, as my own are grown and in school, but a dear cousin had a special request.

She is cloth-diapering, and wanted some wool soakers for diaper covers. She sent me several helpful links and I learned all kinds of interesting facts. But more about that in a moment!

Having not yet worked with wool, this was the first hurdle. What kind of yarn to buy, and where? A bit of research pointed to this one:
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The Lion brand Fisherman’s wool is worsted weight and quite reasonably priced– twice perfect! It comes neatly wrapped in individually sealed packages from Amazon.

My next objective? To find a suitable pattern in crochet, as the majority were knit. This one fit the bill nicely:
http://crochetcastle.blogspot.com/2009/04/zoe-soaker-super-easy-and-stretchy-one.html

I had a little issue with guage…I DO crochet rather loosely, and ended up cutting this pattern literally in half. My first attempt resembled an adult size large, ha ha!
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I also found when crocheted as written (it IS a free pattern), one leg came out much tighter than the other, due to the starting chain.

So began challenge number three…learning to do a standing half-double crochet to start, instead of crochet chain.

Thanks to a helpful YouTube tutorial by Mikey of The Crochet Crowd…

that challenge was also met, and conquered!

In fact, the only thing that I DIDN’T manage to learn was to dye with Kool-Aid for a range of vibrant colors…there just hasn’t been enough time in the day. I’ll get there yet.
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So for now, embellishments and ties are colored cotton. Still cute! I look forward to making more as her darling baby grows.

Although much of what I read said the wool will stretch marvelously! I measured, and the waist range for these was 12-18 inches, oh my! Excellent.

They are just cuteness! I do love (other people’s) babies. ♡

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Happy Monday!