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Give Thanks

I am still in amazement by how quickly this year has flown by. I think I have said it before but I will say it again, having a kid really gives time new meaning. You can see it go by as you watch your child grow, month after month and year after year. There are moments I want to bottle up forever and wish I could halt time so I could stay in the moment even longer. It’s a good reminder to enjoy the little things. I say this as I sit amongst a messy house because I took some extra time to laugh a little longer with my Oliver. These moments are precious and they won’t last forever. There will come a day I won’t be as funny and tickle time will become a thing of the past so the dishes can wait as we laugh and play a little longer today.

Days like today make me so thankful for the life I have and for my family. With Thanksgiving quickly ahead, if you are Canadian that is, tis the season to stop and give extra thanks. The best way to celebrate, in my opinion, is through sharing food with those you love. I am excited for this time of year once again, we can sit around and share stories of our favourite memories, share good food and make new favourite memories. I feel all warm and fuzzy just thinking about how much I love the holidays, this one especially. The weather is getting colder which also means more inspiration for making all the cozy things. It was these feelings that got me motivated to make this next crochet creation.

I am in love with my little pumpkin patch, they are so much fun to make. Don’t be fooled, if you can crochet in the round then you got this! Give it a try, you won’t regret it. These beauties are the perfect decor to add to the table centrepiece this Thanksgiving. I found the pattern on Pinterest and the best part is that they provide a pattern for two different sizes.

I decided to make two pumpkins in two different sizes. I also opted to make a white pumpkin just for something different.

I love how they turned out and have received lots of compliments. These beauties are also perfect to have out during Halloween as well. You could use some felt and make it a Jack o Lantern, so many creative possibilities.

I may have a couple of these pumpkins at my next craft show on October 14th at W.H. Ford school so if you are in the area come by and say hi! Oh and another thing I am thankful for, you! Thanks for taking a read and following my blog. You all make my heart full of thanks!

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A rug for a bug

I can’t tell you how long I have had this yarn laying around. It has sat so patiently in my yarn stash just waiting to be picked. I bought it with good intentions months ago and as life goes I found myself not having enough time. That’s the thing with hooking, you go into a store and find so many wonderful yarns and ideas come flooding in making your soul smile. You cave and decided okay what’s a few more going to hurt? Plus, I don’t have one like this and I need it….. not sure for what but I just do! You excitedly take it home and then it sits, the longer it does the more it looses the twinkle it once had. The inspiration quickly fades.

I have never worked with such chunky yarn before but I was in love. Plus I had purchased a jumbo sized hook months prior and it had been waiting for this size of yarn. I had originally bought this yarn with the intention of making my little Oliver a rug for his room. He likes to sit by his stuffies and look at his books. I thought a rug would be the perfect accent to complete his reading corner.

I found a very helpful pattern on pinterest. The pattern provided some of the basics on how to crochet a rug, as well as different variations depending on what stitch you wanted to use. It also gave some really good pointers such as, did you know if you are hooking away and your rug starts to curl up you just have to add an extra stitch or two to make it lay flat?! I love helpful tips like this! The pattern had this and a few other helpful pointers that will come in handy should you choose to make yourself a rug.

I worked on this rug while my little bug slept, above is my work station. Gone are the days of an organised craft room and here are the days of crafting anywhere you can, while you can. I was quickly interrupted but I didn’t mind 🙂

The great thing about using a jumbo crochet hook is that it makes for a quick project. I was able to complete this rug all in one day, which made me wonder why I didn’t just get it done from the start, sigh oh wells! The important thing is that I was able to put this beautiful yarn to good use.

It’s perfect for little toes and little bums to sit on while they read or snuggle with their favourite stuffy.

A basket full of love, most of them crocheted for my little guy. My heart is a flutter every time he snuggles one of my creations or sits on the squishy rug I made for him. This is a great project for any level and a perfect way to add a little handmade love to your home. Keep crafting 🙂

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Think spring

I’m not sure where you are located on the map but if you are close to the prairies you will have felt my pain this week. On Monday morning the snow graced us yet again with her presence. Like that clingy friend who just won’t go no matter how direct you are, oh and better yet this time she brought her friends; windy, cold and cloudy. Ugh, it’s been a long week trying to stay positive but try as I might it always takes me back a couple steps when we get our clingy friend in the spring. Unfortunately, it’s not that uncommon to get snow this late in the game and yes being a prairie girl I should be used to it by now but I don’t think I ever will. That’s why when the weather gets me down I need to find my happy place, that being cozy on the couch with a ball of yarn. I decided to make my own friends to fight back against the snow and her gang, meet; cactus, succulent and flower cactus (okay not original but I am still recovering from the white out).

Thankfully as I write this the snow has melted leaving only a few patches of white as evidence that she was just here. Her friends got the memo as well and left so it’s blue skies and sun all around. It truly does make a difference when the sun is shining and you can once again dance the happy dance while you daydream about all the spring things you can’t wait to do. Having my new friends also helped me get my groove back, I just love them and all their tiny goodness.

So you might be wondering how you too can create some friends of your own, well don’t you fret because I’m about to share all the things. Lets start with friend number 1, Cactus;

I found an easy to follow pattern on Pinterest from a site called la casa de crafts (on my crochet Pinterest board). The pattern, as stated above, is simple and easy to follow. The only thing it didn’t provide was the brown base, aka dirt, so if you are looking for that part it can be found with my second friend, succulent;

5 Little Monsters is where I found this awesome pattern. I know you aren’t supposed to say it out loud but this is by far my favourite friend 😉 The blog post shows some really great variations as well it provides a pattern for the the dirt, so you can add that extra touch. I made an extra dirt patch and gave it to my third friend, flower cactus;

This cactus is fun to make as it allows you to add a splash of colour. I love greenery as I am sure you all know but I also love putting flowers on things! I have a matching one that sits on my night stand, it’s the perfect house plant as you never have to give it anything but your admiration. I posted a pattern for this crochet cactus a while back so if you haven’t yet checked it out now is the time. I wrote it myself so if you are struggling or have any questions please let me know (my email is along the side).

So there you have it folks, another great way to fight through some of life’s set backs while creating some beauty with your own two hands.

For some added fun you can mix things up and paint the ceramic pots in a simple white or add a splash of colour. I painted two of mine, one white as you can see and the other white with a hint of green. I have to say it was relaxing to paint for a change and I can’t wait to paint a few more. If you aren’t a hooker and you are in need of some new friends then check out my Etsy shop, BBCraftlandia, as all three are on there and looking for some TLC.

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I say a hip hop….

I’ve been dying to try this jersey style yarn for a while now. I finally got around to picking some up but then it came to deciding what to make. One simply can’t waste good yarn so there it sat for a few weeks as I pondered and dreamed. Then one day the perfect idea hippity hopped into my brain. Yup, it was settled, I was going to attempt to crochet an Easter bunny basket for my baby boy.

I eagerly got on Pinterest and pinned my fav patterns, the only problem being I was using a different weight and style of yarn then recommended by most of the patterns so it would take some patience and thinking to make it work. After several different attempts with different hooks and patterns I finally found one that would fit which I will now share with you. I used the following Easter Bunny Basket Pattern (you can also follow my crochet board on Pinterest) but I changed a few things along the way which I will explain as we go so you too can create this hippity hoppity bunny basket.

To start with I used hook size 8mm instead of the recommended 5mm hook as the yarn I was using was much thicker than what the pattern called for. With my hook in hand I began to follow the pattern starting with the base. I only made one base not two, with the thicker yarn you shouldn’t need to make two bases for the basket. The yarn should be strong enough to hold all their goodies but do what works best for you. I followed the pattern until round 7, I stopped here as the base of my basket was around 9″ which I thought was big enough.

I then moved to the next section of the pattern, the body. Instead of following round 1 (1 sc around) I 1 sc only in the back loop to give the basket a nice edge. I followed round 2 through round 10 but stopped after that. The pattern suggests you go until round 13 but I felt I had enough height in my basket to stop after round 10. The great part of working with thicker yarn is that it tends to builds quickly and really holds its shape.

Are you still with me? If it’s not making sense please send me an email and I will be happy to help. I was really impressed with the jersey yarn and would highly recommend it. It makes a beautiful basket and could be left as is, if it wasn’t for the Easter bunny coming I would have done just that.

Next up are the handles, I opted to only make one handle. Instead of finishing off your yarn at round 10 keep the hook in and proceeded to stitch 3 HDC, turn and do 3 HDC. Continue going back and forth (3 HDC each way) until you get a long enough handle for the basket.

Once you get the length you prefer you can attach it directly across to the other side of the basket using a SS. Then you can finish off the ends and start on the bunny ears. For the ears I followed the pattern and they turned out perfectly. You can attach them once you are done with a SS at the top. I used yarn for the eyes instead of the buttons as I didn’t want my little to try and put them in his mouth. I added a cute yarn nose to match using Charisma Loops and Threads for both.

For the bunny cheeks I followed the pattern with the same yarn, Charisma Loops and Threads, but stopped after round 1. The yarn is a bit thicker then what’s suggested so I found them to be the ideal size after just 1 round.

I was really happy with how it was coming together thus far but something was missing….something fluffy. I decided I needed to add a squishy tail because what’s a bunny without the cute poof. I made a pompom for the tail and here are the end results.

So there you have it folks, a hip hoppity bunny basket. I hope ya’ll have just as much fun making it as I did. You can even add in a cute bowtie or bow, really anything to make it your own and special for your littles.

Happy Easter friends 🙂

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You are 1

They say when you have a baby that time will no longer move at the same speed, that it will start to quicken its pace and before you know it your newborn baby will be turning 5 and heading out the door to their first day of kindergarten. I remember rolling my eyes when I would hear other moms tell me this and think “yes, I know time will move fast just let me know enjoy this and stop telling me how fast it’s going to go by”. Looking back I see it less as an annoyance and more of a warning, a warning to hold them as long as you can, enjoy every struggle and every snuggle. For it’s true, before you know it time will escape you and your newborn baby will be 1. It still amazes me that a year has passed since I got to experience the greatest moment of my life, that moment being when I got to hold my beautiful baby boy for the first time. It was an incredible feeling that I can still feel every time he looks at me and grabs onto my shirt. That’s the first thing he did when the doctor gave him to me, he grabbed onto my robe and held on tight. In that moment I think I felt every human emotion possible, I was scared, excited, happy beyond words, relieved and again scared but as soon as I felt his grip I knew everything was going to be okay and all those emotions turned into pure love. I am now one of those annoying moms that will tell all the other new moms to hold them as long as you can, enjoy every snuggle and every struggle because the struggles will change and the snuggles will fade as they grow so quickly in front of your eyes. It’s honestly unbelievable how fast it all goes, just as soon as you think you have caught up to them they are already onto something new.

Before I had my son time just moved at a different pace, I think because I set the tone of how fast I wanted things to move plus I was way more awake during it so I could remember a lot more. It’s amazing how somebody so small can completely change how you see and feel about everything in your life, your whole perspective on life changes. On March 23, 2016 at 9:47am my life changed for the better and one year from that date I can honestly say it has only gotten better even though time has escaped me.

Here we are one year later, you are 1, my baby boy and I can’t imagine life without you. You have taught me how to truly love, to be patient, to live in the moment and to appreciate every day for every day being your mom is the greatest gift. I never knew how badly I wanted to be your mom until I first held you in my arms, you grabbed on tight as if to say you weren’t going to let go and I gripped back just as tightly to let you know I wouldn’t either. You are such a gentle, kind soul who loves to laugh, fittingly your middle name means “the one who laughs” and it couldn’t be more true. You dance to every musical beat you hear and Sesame Street is your jam. You truly are our greatest adventure and I look forward to making many more wonderful memories as we go along this journey together. I will love you always and forever my little beautiful boy who is now 1.

I chose to make you a gift from my heart and one that will keep you warm and cozy. If you should ever miss your mom you can give your sweater a squeeze and I hope you feel it squeeze right back as it’s made with these two hands that love you so.

*Pattern by Thevelvetacron

*Buttons purchased from Brickbubble

Just when I think you can’t get any cuter I see you in this sweater and my heart melts. I wish so many good things for you my beautiful boy but if I can just speak of a few it would be that I hope you always know how loved you are and that no matter what life throws your way you will know that I will be there holding your hand saying proudly “you got this”. Love mom.

*Photos taken by David Evanochko

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Yellow is the colour

You ever start making something, paying close attention to every detail and step in a new pattern, and think to yourself “this is never going to turn out like the picture”. This thought was going through my head like a broken record even before I started this next project. I hadn’t even attempted the pattern but had already begun to accept defeat, for some reason I just couldn’t envision it. I decided to push away the doubt and pick up my hook…..but the thoughts slowly crept back in. I began to feel even more frustrated as I was making it for a special little girl who was turning 3. Grrrr, but I powered on and just trusted that the pattern wouldn’t leave me astray.

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In case you are wondering what I am trying to make and for whom well that comes next. I have bought a few patterns from The Velvet Acron and I should know from previous experience that they always turn out as beautiful as the pictures in the pattern. They are very well written and I am always impressed with the end results but with anything new there is always doubt and when it is a birthday gift for your niece there is added pressure. First of all I needed to get the right colour and yellow it is. Most people who have been in contact with any 2 going on 3 year old know that they begin to get their own distinct personality which includes likes/dislikes. With this in mind I made a point of making sure I got the colour right because ruining my nieces birthday is not on my list of “to do’s”. The colour of choice was yellow, in fact she loves yellow everything!!! With the colour being on point the rest was up to my fingers and hands to make sure I could crochet an Aura Pullover sweater. Seriously if you haven’t checked out her Etsy shop yet you need to, take a break right now and go take a peek, I’ll wait.

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So on I went, self doubt in tow, and I came to the part that I was just not able to envision. That part being the neck opening, for some reason I just couldn’t envision it. Thinking back it was so plainly obvious and simple but at the time I just wasn’t there. It still amazes me how a ball of yarn can turn into something like this…..if you haven’t started hooking yet what are you waiting for?! It’s truly amazing what you are capable of making. Next up was to finish the cowl like neck opening.

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The bottom photo is how you work the rows all the way around. I’m not going to lie, I did run out of yarn and couldn’t make it as long as the pattern advised but I think once it’s folded down it still looks pretty darn cute. I ordered the yarn online because I couldn’t find any yellow yarn in the right weight at my local stores and as you already know it HAD to be yellow. So I just accepted defeat when I ran out and made the best of it. I still think it came out on point and way cuter than I initially imagined.

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Okay there was one other set back and that was the button choice. I left things too late and didn’t have time to order from my go to button shop, brickbubble, so I had to search high and low at the local stores and this was the best I could come up with. I really wanted a nice earthy toned button but hey sometimes you have to take the good with the bad. Things were turning out so wonderfully that I knew no matter what colour the buttons were it wasn’t going to ruin the overall look of the pull over…..so here goes……the final project…..what we have all been waiting for….

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Oh wait I forgot one last step before the final reveal,attaching one of my BBCraftlandia custom tag 🙂 Also bought from brickbubble. Okay no more foolin, here she be;

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I am so in love with the final product and I hope she is too! At the very least it’s yellow and when you are 2 going on 3 thats all that matters 😉

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Part 2: Frosty the Snowman

“Oh, Frosty the snowman was a jolly happy soul
With a corncob pipe and a button nose
And two eyes made out of coal”

This is the song that was dancing through my head as I eagerly hooked up a storm with this next project. Tis the season and this year I wanted to try my hand at some crochet ornaments while keeping in theme.

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I picked up this book last year and so far the patterns I have attempted have turned out great! Nothing worse than following a pattern that doesn’t have the same results as the finished product shown. If you are looking to get your jolly hook on this season I highly recommend this book. It has everything from stockings, to reindeer baskets, to cozy toques and scarves. I chose to make Frosty himself;

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I wasn’t crazy about the colour choice for the toque and scarf so I went with traditional red and green yarn. I bundled up my yarn in my new yarn basket made by a talented friend;

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You can find her lovely work on Instagram under pammie_sunshine. This basket is the perfect way to keep the projects I’m working on organised and at the ready. As stated above, the pattern was easy to follow and had very clear instructions so I didn’t need to change much besides my colour of yarn. The only other change I made was using some fun squeeshy fluffs instead of the black buttons;

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I had these left over from a kit I had bought at Michaels. It had some googly eyes, piping and lots of fluffs, which also means hours of fun if you have littles at home who like to craft. After finishing my first frosty I decided I wanted to make a few and use them as garland to hang on the tree;

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I am very pleased with how they turned out and I can’t wait to string this on the tree as I dance my pants off to a little Boney M. Other ideas I had; use them as decor in a wreath or centre piece, attach them to gifts, or attach them to bottles of cheer for hostess gifts. Lots of options to spread a little love and joy this holiday season. I mean how can you not smile a little when you see these faces;

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“Oh
Frosty the snowman
Was alive as he could be
And the kids all say he could laugh
And play just the same as you and me”

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*Make sure you are following my blog to receive a special promo code that can be used on my Etsy shop, BBCraftlandia, for one day only on Cyber Monday (Nov. 28/16)*