Monday, January 31, 2011

Morning Time...

I'm a morning person...

One of my favorite parts of the day is my first cup of coffee and my devotionals...

I got a new little devotional book at Half Priced Books last week.  It was marked down on clearance for $2.  I recognized some of the names of the contributors, so I picked it up.  

Today's reading was on contentment. 

I really liked what the writer penned so I thought I'd share it with you...

"And that's the secret of life:  living contentedly in the moment - not dwelling on the good ol' days, nor wistfully dreaming about what might be, but living now, today."
(Marabel Morgan)  

"...I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content..."
 - Philippians 4:11 (NKJV) - 

Wishing you contentment in your day and throughout the week.


Friday, January 28, 2011

O Sun, Sun......Wherefore Art Thou Sun?

It's been gloomy this week in southwestern Ohio..........I miss the sun...

Thankfully, I have access to clip art that reminds me of what it is supposed to look skies, fluffy white clouds....ahhh, I can almost feel the warmth on my face.  Isn't this picture bliss?

I really don't mind winter, but I do like to see the sun in the sky from time to time.  :-)

Yesterday I started an afghan called Heritage Afghan from Afghans for All Seasons.  I've been wanting to try this blanket for a while.  It uses a graph and you carry your yarn along changing colors as you go.  It is slow going as my yarn keeps getting twisted as I move from green to cream, cream to green, and then back again....This is the first time I've attempted this type of project.  I do like a challenge, but I may get frustrated with the yarn twisting situation.....time will tell......

I hope you'll have a wonderful evening and the start to a relaxing weekend.

Joy for the day is in my sunny clip art and knowing spring is just around the corner...


Thursday, January 27, 2011

When You Wish Someone Joy...


 “When you wish someone joy, you wish them peace, love, prosperity, happiness... all the good things.”

 - Maya Angelou -

Wishing you joy in your day...


Wednesday, January 26, 2011

SIBOL Squares

I'm sure many of you have heard of Mrs. Twins and SIBOL.  I recently started following her blog and have been touched by the outpouring of support she has received from around the world for her blankets.  The stories of her delivering the blankets and the grateful recipients has been very touching. 

Mrs. Twins, who founded SIBOL or Sunshine International Blankets of Love, collects 6x6 squares from crocheters and knitters from around the world, pieces them together and donates the finished blankets to nursing homes in honor of her Grandmother.  You can read more about SIBOL, Mrs. Twins, and her charity by following the link I've provided. 

I decided to donate my "Flowers on the Green" squares for her Spring Challenge.  And, although she may not use them all in that particular blanket, I'm sure the other squares can be separated and used here or there in different blankets throughout the year. 

Along with the flowers, when you think of spring, you think sun!  So I used the Sunrise/Sunset motif and made a bright yellow sun shinning brightly in a blue sky, and a sun peeking out from the clouds after a spring shower.  :-)

If you haven't made any squares, perhaps you'll think about doing it.  It's a simple way to reach out to others, a way to touch the elderly, and a way show them they have not been forgotten.  

Blessings to you Mrs. Twins...and all those, who have taken a small portion of time to make a square or squares, that will make someone smile and brighten a day.  

My squares will be mailed out by the end of the week.   


Sunday, January 23, 2011

Eugene est Fini!

(sorry, sometimes my high school French kicks in)...

Eugene is finished!


It was a race against time...

I knew if I wanted to get pictures today, it would have to be before the sun set...

I was frantically weaving in ends as I saw the sun going down on the street behind us...

I think I caught the last bit of daylight left in the day...

This is the Eugene Throw that I started about a month ago.  It is a beautifully written pattern.  It does take a bit of concentration as only the odd rows are ever the same throughout.  But it was worth it.  It is so soft and cuddly, I just love it!  

 I used an "N" hook with I Love This Yarn.  I had purchased the yarn more than a year ago when Crafts, Etc. was still around and they would have great sales on yarn. (It might have been longer ago than that...I'm sure some of you crocheters remember the great sales Crafts, Etc. would have.)

 As I mentioned in my original post, this is a blanket I made for dear husband and myself...

Most of the things I make I give away as gifts...

I'm glad I decided to keep this one...

Joy in a completed project...that I get to keep...for me!


Saturday, January 22, 2011

Vintage Valentine Dishcloth

For a little Valentine cheer, I decided to stitch up a couple of dishcloths.  I usually give away the dishcloths I make to accompany a gift I've selected for someone.  I decided to keep these, with their vintage feel, for myself...

These are very easy to make using basic stitches; single crochet, half double crochet, and double crochet.  A simple border completes them and reminds me of days gone by...

Vintage Valentine Dishcloth
by Heather P.

Hook:  I
Worsted Weight 100% cotton yarn (I just used what I had on hand)
Finished size:  9 x 10

Note:  If you prefer a smaller dishcloth, try using a smaller hook such as an "h" or "g", or you could use a dk yarn vs. a worsted weight yarn.

Ch 27
  1. sc in 2nd ch from hook and in each ch across, ch 1, turn.  (26 sts now and throughout)
  2. hdc in 1st sc and in each sc across, ch 2, turn. 
  3. dc in 1st hdc and in each hdc across, ch 1, turn.
  4. hdc in 1st dc and in each dc across, ch 1, turn. 
  5. sc in 1st hdc and in each hdc across, ch 1, turn. 
  6. hdc in 1st sc and in each sc across, ch 1, turn. 
  7. Repeat row 6 to 1" short of desired length. 
  8. sc in 1st hdc and in each hdc across, ch 1, turn. 
  9. hdc in 1st sc and in each sc across, ch 2, turn.
  10. dc in 1st hdc and in each hdc across, ch 1, turn.
  11. hdc in 1st dc and in each dc across, ch 1, turn.
  12. sc in 1st hdc and in each hdc across, ch 1, turn. 
  • sc evenly around cloth with (3 sc) in each corner, sl st in beg sc, fasten off.
  • Attach red in any corner, ch 1, sc evenly around cloth with (3 sc) in each corner, sl st in beg sc, fasten off. 
  • Attach white in any corner, ch 1, *sc, ch 1, sk 1 sc, sc in next sc, repeat from * around placing (sc, ch 1, sc in each corner), sl st in beg sc, fasten off. 
  • Weave in ends. 

Friday, January 21, 2011

Little Bit of This....

...and a little bit of that...

We've had a full week this week.  

Dear son started a tumbling class.  We tried a free class and he absolutely loved it, so I signed him up for the remainder of the session.  Homeschoolers get a discounted price and don't have to pay the initiation fee, so it was a great deal.  It's also a GREAT way for the little one to burn off a lot of that "cabin fever" energy that seems to get pent up during the winter months...

I've gotten back to eating healthy and have been looking through my cookbooks for some different recipes...just trying to liven things up and it's always fun to try something new....

This also seems to be the time of year for "flipping" through catalogs and magazines trying to bring color into my days.  I found this beauty in the new LL Bean catalog.  Very pretty, but "tres cher" as the French say......the colors are gorgeous though...

I've been thinking a lot about my maternal grandparents this week, so I thought I'd leave you with a picture of a lamp they received as a wedding gift some 70 odd years ago.......

May your day be blessed with fullness of heart...


Thursday, January 20, 2011

Molly Trying to Reach the 200 Mark...

Can you help her out?  

Molly at Crocheting My Best with My Worsted is trying to reach 200 Followers.  

Check out her site, she is an avid crocheter and has pretty projects to share. 

26 Rows and a Border...

It's almost done, I can see the end in sight...

 Just 26 rows and the border...

We are supposed to get between 3 - 6 inches of snow starting tonight and into tomorrow.  With that in mind, I'm anticipating some good quality crochet time tomorrow afternoon.  I hope (with fingers crossed) to have my Eugene Throw complete sometime over the weekend.

Joy in the finish my sight.


Wednesday, January 19, 2011


I was looking through my clip art to go with a post I was forming in my head when I came across this...

I know the one lady is knitting, but it brought a smile to my face...

I hope I'll have an enduring love of yarn and enthusiasm for my craft as portrayed by these happy ladies above...aren't they cute!

Just thought I'd pass along the smile...


Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Maple Syrup Corn Bread and Taco Soup...

Monday's are always busy days trying to get caught up from the weekend...With this in mind, I decided yesterday was a good day to put the crock pot to use and made my TACO SOUP that I posted about back in the fall.  To accompany the soup, I made...

Maple Syrup Corn Bread...

This is a very good corn bread recipe that is lower in fat (but you'd never know by tasting it).  A lot of the flavor comes from REAL maple syrup...which does tend to be a little pricey, but I don't make it that often and I think it's worth the splurge...

Courtesy Taste of Home's Light and Tasty Magazine
December/January 2007

12 Servings

1 1/4 C All-Purpose Flour
1 C cornmeal
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 egg
3/4 C fat-free milk
1/2 C maple syrup
3 Tablespoons butter, melted

  • In a large bowl, combine the flour, cornmeal, baking powder and salt.  In a small bowl, whisk together the egg, milk, syrup and butter; stir into dry ingredients just until moistened.
  • Pour into a 9 inch square baking pan coated with nonstick cooking spray.  Bake at 400 degrees for 15 - 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.  Serve warm.

Note:  If you click on the link, you'll find the nutritional value per serving.

Joy in a healthy and tasty dinner...


Monday, January 17, 2011

Walking Through Monday's Door...

 When one door of happiness closes, another opens, but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one that has been opened for us.

- Helen Keller -

Wishing you many open doors of happiness this week...

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Sunday Afternoon...

We've had a busy Sunday afternoon.  

I've been sorting and decluttering the kitchen, office, and family room while my husband has been working in the lower level.  All plans for a quiet afternoon of relaxing in my crochet chair with hook and yarn went quickly out the window.  

Pebbles isn't phased by all the hustle and bustle and tends to take over my chairs when I'm not in them......whether it be in the kitchen nook...

or, in the family room...

As you can see, she has little patience for photo opportunities...

On the crochet front, I'm still working on the Eugene Throw and am at the 2/3 point.  Maybe by next weekend I'll have it complete and ready to show you. 

I'm still "plugging away" on my flowers scrap afghan.  I think I'll make it 7 squares across by 9 rows down.  That should make a decent size blanket to keep someone warm.  

For dinner, I put the ingredients for pizza dough in the bread maker and I can hear it whirling around mechanically kneading the flour, yeast, water, salt and oil into a pliable consistency.  It should be ready to shape and top shortly.  

I'm looking forward to relaxing this evening and making further progress on "Eugene".  Fingers crossed that it falls into place. 

Joy for today is in getting a head start on the week...


Friday, January 14, 2011

Last Night...

Last night, was one of those nights, that just spoke to coziness...hearth...and home...

It's been cold here in the 20's and we have snow on the ground.  All that wintry blustering just makes me want to "nest"...

While dear son and hubby were playing in the lower level, I made a Blackberry Cobbler.  

And, as the cobbler was baking, I enjoyed a little crochet time in front of the warm glow of a fire...

It was one of those moments where you are reminded of your blessings......and count them...

I think that's why I like's not the cold temperatures or even the beauty of the pure's the warmth of the fire, the gathering of family, and creating a place to call "home".

Joy in counted blessings.


Thursday, January 13, 2011

The Sound of Silence

The quiet colors of winter......




speak to...

the sound of silence...

restful breathing....


peaceful slumber...

whispers of...



Tuesday, January 11, 2011

This is Really Good...

With the snow and cold temperatures today, I wanted to serve my family something hot and comforting for dinner. 

Since the holidays, I haven't really felt like spending a lot of time in the kitchen.  So, with that in mind, I started to think of some of our favorites, that don't take a lot of time to prepare. 

First thing this morning, I loaded up the bread machine with the ingredients for French Bread (recipe below) and set out the ingredients for Baked Ziti.  This is a meatless main dish that tastes good and is filling.   

The French Bread couldn't be easier.....

I have a Panasonic (SD-YD250) Automatic Bread Maker, that I bought about two years ago.  This is my third bread maker and by far, my favorite.  My other two died; one from old age, and the other "walked" off the counter during knead mode.  This model loads the dry ingredients first and you don't have to worry about the temperature of the water.  So if you do try this recipe, keep that in mind, as all bread makers are different.

French Bread
Courtesy Panasonic Bread Bakery Operating Instructions and Recipes
(pg 27)

3C Bread Flour (14.75 oz)
1 1/2 teaspoons Salt
1 Tablespoon Butter
10 1/2 fluid oz. Water
1 teaspoon Dry Yeast

Press French Bread Button


You'll have hot delicious French Bread in about 6 hours...

Joy in a hot yummy dinner coming out of the oven!


Let It Snow!

I recently checked the weather report and it looks like we are supposed to get between 3 - 5 inches of the frozen white stuff in the next 24 hours.  I'm looking forward to watching the fluffy white flakes fall from the sky....let it snow!

Yesterday, once I got a few household chores caught up, dear son and I enjoyed a relaxing afternoon of trains, dinosaurs, and.........

...crochet.  That is, I picked up my crochet after we played for a bit...

I have 7 squares made of the 63 needed.....only 56 more to go!  :-)  I like crocheting squares.  It doesn't take long to finish one and it gives me a sense of accomplishment when one's complete. 

Joy in a relaxing, yet productive day and looking forward to SNOW!


Monday, January 10, 2011

Happy Monday!

There are always flowers for those who want to see them.
- Henri Matisse -

Wishing you a bouquet of flowers today... 

Happy Monday!


Friday, January 7, 2011

A Square A Day and a Little Update...

I started working on my scrap afghan.  I decided to use my new Blushing Bride Square instead of a traditional granny square motif.  As I mentioned in a previous post, I'll be working with my Vanna's Choice yarn scraps.  My squares measure 6" with the aran weight yarn and a "K" hook.  I love playing with the different colors and making the pretty flowers.  This is a great winter project that offers a lot of color during this monochrome time of year. 

My Eugene Throw is just about at the half-way point.  I haven't worked on this for a few days and am looking forward to getting back to it this afternoon.  I'm pleased with the way it's turning out.  It's going to be a very warm blanket as each row of the cables has a row of single crochet behind it.  In addition, I think it will look nice on the foot of my bed or on the wing back chair in my bedroom. 

Dear son and I have had a good week following our long Christmas break.  It feels good to get back into our routine and the daily flow of things. 

We got a dusting of snow last night and big white flakes are drifting down now as I type this note.  Not sure how much accumulation we are supposed to get, but it is pretty. 

The weekend should be nice and quiet; I'm looking forward to it. 

Wishing each of you the type of weekend you desire.

Joy in the day.


Thursday, January 6, 2011

An Award!

Debi, from Hooks, Yarns, Crafts and Gardening has given me an award!  Thank you Debi.  :-)

Part of the deal is to share seven things about myself. it goes:
  1. I'm a twin; fraternal, not identical.
  2. I love to crochet (oh, I forgot...I think I'm supposed to tell you things you don't already know).
  3. I'm a descendant of one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence (Samuel Adams).
  4. My husband's family is related to Walter Cronkite (at least that's what I'm told).
  5. I love a good mystery (book or TV show - but no gore please).
  6. Chocolate Chip ice cream is my favorite.
  7. I love winter (when it snows; really I do).
There!  Now, I'd like to award the following blogs with this prestigious award!

I enjoy reading their positive and upbeat blogs, I'm sure you will too! 

Thanks again Debi!  :-)


Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Blushing Bride Square

I'd like to introduce you to something I've been working on for the past several days...

Blushing Bride Square

I'm thinking it would look nice made up in a solid off-white blanket with a picot or shell border.....but that's just me.

I did make this square numerous times trying to work out the kinks and trying to find any errors I may have made in writing it out.  That being said, if you come across something that doesn't make sense, or if you happen to find a mistake, please leave me a comment or send me an e-mail.

So, roll out the white runner, put on Cannon in D and all rise for...

Blushing Bride Square
By Heather P.

Worsted Weight Yarn
J Hook

Beginning Cluster (beg cl) – Chain 3, 2 dc together (see small cluster below for detailed instructions on 2 dc together).

Small Cluster  (sm cl) – 2 dc together [All in the same stitch, you’ll do your double crochet up to the last step (you’ll have two loops on your hook), start next double crochet to the last step (you’ll have three loops on your hook), yarn over and draw through all three loops; one Small Cluster complete.]

Large Cluster (lrg cl) – 3 dc together [All in the same stitch, you’ll do your double crochet to the last step (you’ll have two loops on your hook), start next double crochet to the last step (you’ll have three loops on your hook), start third double crochet to last step (you’ll have four loops on your hook), yarn over and draw through all four loops; one Large Cluster complete.] 

Ch 4; ss in 4th ch from hook; ch 1

Round 1 – 12 sc into ring, ss in 1st sc

Round 2 – beg cl in same sp as ss from previous round, ch 1, *lrg cl, ch 1*, repeat from *to* around, ss in top of beg ch 3 (12 clusters and 12 ch 1 spaces)

Round 3 – skip beg cl, ss in 1st ch 1 sp, beg cl in same sp as ss, ch 2, lrg cl (first corner formed), ch 1, *(sk cl st, lrg cl, ch 1 in next ch 1 sp)2 times*, **sk cl st, lrg cl, ch 2, lrg cl in next ch 1 sp, ch 1**,  repeat *to*, then repeat **to **, alternating * and ** around, ending with *, ss in top of beg ch 3 (4 corners with ch 2 sps, 16 clusters, and 12 ch 1 sps)

Round 4 – skip beg cl, ss in ch 2 sp, ch 1, 2 sc, ch 2, 2 sc in same sp as ss, ch 1, *(sk cl st, sc, ch 1)3 times*, **sk cl st, 2 sc, ch 2, 2 sc in corner ch 2 sp, ch 1** repeat from *to*, then repeat **to**, alternating * and ** around, ending with *, ss in 1st sc

Round 5 – ss in next sc, ss in ch 2 sp, chain 3, 2 dc, ch 2, 3 dc all in the ch 2 sp, ch 1, *(sk next st(s), sm cl, ch 1 in ch 1 sp)4 times*, **sk next 2 sts, 3 dc, ch 2, 3 dc in ch 2 space, ch 1** repeat from *to*, then repeat **to**, alternating * and ** around, ending with *, ss in beg ch 3 space. 

Round 6 – ch 1, sc in each st around with 3 sc in each corner.  Fasten off. 

Weave in ends.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Caution: Bragging Momma Post

The holidays are officially over. 

With that thought in mind, we dove right into our schoolwork this morning; head first into our books. 

I have to tell you, dear son did wonderful! 

He retained the things we'd studied prior to our Christmas break and just had a wonderful attitude toward learning today.  It was a real pleasure for us both.

We picked up with telling time in math, learning the o'clock on the clock.  He had fun with the clock manipulative that came with his curriculum, moving the hands around to show the different times.  We also continued with our counting to 50 by 1's, 2's, 5's, and 10's.  He's one smart cookie (beaming mother smile inserted here).  :-D

We also read one of his early reader books and he did great sounding out his words and asking for help when he needed it.  We played checkers at recess and had an all around GREAT morning!  I couldn't ask for more from him.     

Hip hip hooray!