Saturday, July 25, 2015

sweet peas

As soon as I found out my friend was expecting (twins!), I told her that I wanted to crochet something for the babies. She told me that because her last name starts with a "P" she and her husband call the babies, "Baby Ps." She shared a picture of a photograph of newborn baby twins in a cocoon in the shape of a pea pod. Get it? Two peas in a pod!

I scoured the internet to find a pattern for a pea pod prop and finally found one on etsy.com.




I crocheted the pea pod in Lion Brand's Homespun yarn with two strands together using a "P" hook. The hats and the stem are made with a worsted weight yarn. Since my friend is having a boy and a girl, I decided to crochet a flower on the one hat to tell the babies apart.

Of course, I made a card, too; I had to go with the theme!



Maddie and Tom, I am so happy for you and am excited to see your two peas in a pod. <3



Sunday, July 19, 2015

Summer Update

Friday is always pizza night at our house, but because it gets so hot in the Summer, we didn't want to use to oven. (However, I was baking bread and had the oven on anyways...) Our friend had posted a picture of his grilled pizza and we thought we'd give it a try.
I made my pizza dough like usual (1 c. warm water, scant T. yeast, drizzle of maple syrup, pinch of salt, drizzle of olive oil, 2 c. whole wheat and 1 c. unbleached white flour) and let it rise. I prepared my pizza peel with cornmeal and spread the dough out. My husband slipped it on the grill, let it cook, flipped it, then flipped it once more, so the cornmeal was again on the bottom.
We took the dough off the grill, put on our toppings and put the dough back on indirect heat, just to melt the cheese. Delish!



Just a few minutes ago I was talking to my Mom on the phone. When I hung up, I decided to go out and walk around the garden. I went passed our yellow zucchini plants and saw three that were ready to pick (not too big, less than eight inches), but I didn't grab the harvesting knife. Oh well. I walked over to the green beans because I knew that they were almost ready and to my surprise- there were some beans! I didn't grab a basket to harvest them in... nuts! I'll use my skirt to put them in. I heard some thunder and then some more with skies getting darker. Drop. Drop. Drop. Quickly, I picked beans. More thunder, more rain. I saw a bolt of lightning and ran to the house, making sure I didn't lose one bean. Too bad I didn't go out earlier. Maybe this will be enough for dinner.


Hold on, one more thing to share! Over a month ago a lady at the store I work at, donated a couple pieces of leather. I don't know what she had in mind when she was dropping them off, but I noticed them under the counter below the register. I asked my manager what the story was with them and she didn't know what we'd do with them. I asked if I could have them and I was given permission. For a while, my intent has been to make myself a new purse. Many cute purses have been donated to the store that I passed up on buying because I really wanted to make something myself. After searching for ideas, I finally came up with a game plan. I would use the leather as a base for my bag and crochet the top part of the bag. I bought some hardware at Joann Fabrics for the strap. It will be a cross-body type purse. The crocheted part will be the opening, but also hang over to look like a flap. Here's what I have so far.




Of course, I didn't have a leather hole punch, so to my husband's suggestion, I used a paper punch. Word to the wise: don't use a paper punch. My hand hurt SO bad after punching the almost forty holes across the top. Note to self: invest in a leather hole punch.
This project will have to be put on pause because I have another project started that has a deadline. How is your Summer growing, I mean going? <3

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Good Morning


So this is how my husband said Good Morning to me today.

I have to say, that I really like getting things that are functional or that I can use via crafting or eating. (As a side note: Food gifts are so great. I'm going to need to eat, so thank you for getting me something that I really need! People need to gift with food more often.) Flowers, as they don't contain any usefulness, are wonderful and I love them. I love fresh flowers. They are vibrant, delicate and beautiful. These are more of the snapdragons from our garden. These colors are beautiful and I particularly like the peachy ones.

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I don't know if you caught at the end of a couple posts ago that I was working on a poncho. My mother-in-law had started one and unbeknownst to her, I had been looking for a pattern online, too. She and I are now in the poncho club. Only requirement for membership is that you make yourself a poncho. Open enrollment. C'mon, you know you want to join.

I found a picture on pinterest and did my best to copy it.
This was my inspiration.

 
This is a very easy pattern. You need to make three granny squares and sew them together. From there, you make a long rectangle. This poncho doesn't have a point in the back. The rectangle is wrapped around your shoulders and then sewn to the granny squares.
 


 
I decided to make my granny squares using similar colors, but in a different order. It was definitely helpful to have my dress form, to know how long to make the rectangle. The yarn in my inspiration picture must have been a sport weight because the granny squares are four rounds like mine, but aren't as big. I also single crocheted around my granny squares to make it more cohesive with the main color.
(I really was trying to think of a good pun with the word poncho for this post, but I couldn't find one. Waah, waah...)
 
Now I'm working on sewing a quilt top for the sewing group I'm in at church. At our next sewing day, I'm going to learn how to hand quilt! I am very excited! Are you doing anything exciting or learning something new? <3 

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

new things and open spaces

Recently, some of my family came to visit us on our farm. It was a surreal moment for sure. My husband and I were married just down the road from our house (a little over five years ago) and that's the only time my sister, Alice, and her family have been here. She lives in Boston and has three little kids; she's far away and has three kids. Enough said! We get to see them maybe twice a year and that's in New York state at my parents' house.

There are definitely things that kids from the city of Boston don't get to see regularly: cows, chickens, tractors, green grass... Our nieces and nephews enjoyed these new things and open spaces.

Another sister, Juliet, and her family came to visit, along with our parents. We were blessed with a beautiful day of feeding the chickens, walking around the garden, picking black raspberries, feeding the heifers in the barn and then making chocolate ice cream.

When our brother-in-law saw our garden for the first time, he couldn't believe how big it was. They live in a second floor brownstone with no green grass to claim as their own. Like I said in my last post, our worlds are polar opposites. Although I prefer a dusty, dirt road to that of a city, I still appreciate the city and what it has to offer. My husband and I lived in a city right after we got married and loved being able to walk places and to do different things. Here, I don't walk as far, but have things to do in my backyard.

Here are some pictures from when we went to see the cows in the barn.

Waiting for the cows to come into the barn.
 

Myself and my sister, Juliet, with our wide brimmed hats. Our Irish skin can't handle the sun.

Anna is always posing for a picture!
 
The boys had to feed the heifers.

Alice and my niece, Nora.
Alice said, "Oh wow! This smells just like Grandma and Grandpa's farm growing up!"

Our nephews asking questions about the cows.

It was loud in the barn when the cows were being milked.

Anna, posing again.

It was even louder in the milk house...


Checking things out in the milk house and asking more questions.


And the visit wouldn't be complete without going on a tractor.
 
I hope my family knows, there's an open invitation to come visit again anytime. <3


Tuesday, July 7, 2015

oh, snap!

Our garden is starting to fill in and that means lots of fresh food to eat! I made Quinoa Summer Salad yesterday and I added steamed snap peas and sliced radishes. As I said before, I love this salad because it's different every time you make it. Hopefully soon, I'll get to add zucchini, cucumbers and tomatoes.
 
 
Oh, snap!  This year, my husband ordered a double petal snap dragon and they are starting to bloom. Last year, our snap dragons won a blue ribbon at the fair. I think these beauties have a good chance of doing that again.



We have lots of green things in the garden: snap peas, kale, chard, broccoli, cauliflower, lettuces, beets...

 

 
 
 

 
 
And some new things this year are purple and blue... kohlrabi, Indigo Cherry Drops and Indigo Rose tomatoes.
 


 



 
Some of my family visited  our farm last week (which I'm going to blog about next!) My sister, Alice, who lives in the city of Boston-- the total opposite of my life here-- was taking lots of pictures of the garden and our chickens. She said, "If I lived here, I would want to do watercolors everyday!" If she lived here, she'd be weeding everyday... Maybe one of these days, when there isn't any weeding to do, I'll get out my watercolors. Yeah, right- like such a day exists! I can dream though. <3
 

Thursday, July 2, 2015

perfect little shrug

I had been in the search for a cute (and easy) shrug pattern to crochet. This pattern was particularly easy because you make a long rectangle and sew it together in two places to make arm holes.

I was crocheting this shrug during the prelude at church one Sunday and a couple ladies behind me asked what I was doing. They didn't know what a shrug was. Let me enlighten you.

A shrug is defined as:
a woman's close-fitting cardigan or jacket, cut short at the front and back so that only the arms and shoulders are covered.

Then there is a bolero which is a woman's short open jacket. I hope I set you straight and that you learned something new!

The pattern I used, I found via ravelry.com. It's a free pattern by Cindy Coleman called,  "Perfect Little Shrug."




 
I hope you weren't offended by my topless dress form and I can assure you, that this shrug, when worn, will be accompanied with clothes. I probably should've paired the shrug with something.
I'm trying to get better about finishing one project before starting another. I would like to get to sewing again, but I just started a poncho the other day. I also have a baby gift I need to start crocheting. What projects are you working on?