Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Baby Sweater

This is from the book, "Crochet in a Day for Baby." (by Candi Jensen.) I used my own choice of colors, and will get some nice white buttons for the front. Could you do this is a day? I think so, given the free time and little expertise. The pattern is actually quite easy to follow. The book has a lot of cute designs and is well worth the $15-ish investment!

Monday, February 25, 2013

Really Good Vegetable Soup

My mom's vegetable soup

(Note: this is a copy from my original blog, "Creative Thoughts" and was first posted in 2005.  It is worth repeating!)

My mother makes the best vegetable soup in the world. Even people who don't like vegetables like this soup, because it has a nice, mild flavor. We especially like it with Premium Saltine crackers. Here is the recipe:

Grandma McNally’s
Vegetable Soup

Grandma says: “Start with a soup bone and I watch for chuck roast to be on sale and use that for the meat. Boil the bone and meat. Put in jars and refrigerate overnight...this enables you to take all the fat from the top. Then cut up 2 ½ cups celery, 1 large can diced tomatoes, 2 med. onions, 2 med. carrots, ½ head cabbage, 2 med. potatoes. Salt and pepper to taste

Put cabbage and potatoes in last 20 minutes to half hour. Just cook it all up. If the broth doesn’t seem strong enough, I sometimes add some beef cubes or granules. Cut up the meat and put it in at the last minute. Enjoy!

What I do, myself, is buy a chuck steak and cut the meat off and freeze it. I just keep adding the meat to a bag. Then I boil the bones for several hours. I do this several times over several weeks until I have 4 mayonnaise jars of broth. Take the broth and the meat out of the freezer about 2 days ahead to let it thaw in fridge. You can do it with just 2, but I like to make a double-batch because there never seems to be enough, it is soooo good. I also just throw it all together, I don't wait to put the cabbage or potato in.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Nail Care Kit

I have a friend celebrating a birthday in March. I'm going to put some nail polish and other nail-care supplies in this for her.
Obviously, I still have to sew on the button. I am sorry I can't remember where I got the tutorial for this, but there are numerous hits for "manicure kit tutorial" if you want to find one.

You can't see it here, but the fabric has a little bit of silver 'glitter' in it.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Afghan in progress

I think it is a good idea to have some 'mindless' project you can work on where you don't have to keep looking at instructions. Making a granny afghan that just goes round and round is one project. The only time I went 'off track' was to add a little extra on one side at the beginning to turn the shape from square to rectangular. I work on this when I feel like crocheting but don't want to think much about it. It is a nice yarn (Simply Soft, I think) and pleasant to work with. I'll keep working on it until it's big enough to cover me in my chair.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Keeping it Together

I plan to make a little manicure kit and have the pieces cut out. Some of the ironing and initial stitching is done, but there are still all these individual pieces to keep track of. I tend to put things aside and get to them later. There's no rush for this as it will probably be a Christmas gift.
I tied the smaller pieces up in the larger ones and tied them up with a selvage 'ribbon.' The little tag tells me what site to refer to when I want to finish the project. (When I actually do finish it, I will give the link.)

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Notebook Cover

The old-fashioned kind of notebook, I mean.

I've actually finished it by now--took this picture when I still had a bit more to do. Basically, I just crocheted enough chains for the width. On the back I tried various stitches but found this plain chain one, single crochet pattern the best. Each color is two rows. I would say, though, that if I were to make another one I'd add at least 2 more chains. I have to stretch this a bit to get it to fit nicely. Btw, the 'flaps' are about 2 inches folded inside and sewn in place.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Row by Row Crochet Heart

I like that this is crocheted in rows rather than in the round. It's a very easy pattern you can do up in no time!
From "Bella Dia", here's the link:

I originally saw this on Kim Cochran's Pinterest page. These particular hearts are ones I made following Bella Dia's instructions.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Just a thought on Pinterest

If I spent half the time crafting/crocheting/knitting/sewing that I do drooling over things I find on Pinterest, I would hit my 1000th point of creativity in no time.

Pinterest is an addiction.

So today, I went to each person's site I've pinned (I know the parts are boards--what are the sites called?) and picked out one thing to do from each, soon!

For example, I plan to make individual little soaps via an idea from my friend Maryann LaMaster's page.

Nathalie Plumey pinned a super-easy-looking recipe (from for 3-ingredient Three Musketeers bars!

And since avocados are on sale this week, I'm planning to try some Avocado Egg Salad, from, via Pennie Rienas.

Kim Cochran has an easy row-by-row Valentine Heart to crochet.

I actually wrote these out on notebook paper, instead of bookmarking them. I think that this will make it more likely I really will do something with these pins!