Thursday, March 24, 2016

Vacation... You're Kidding Me, Right?!

The last couple weeks have been spent in a fluffy flurry
of bunny making busyness around here.

Scott was on vacation last week, 
which means he didn't go to work
but I continued to knit and knit and knit 
and when I wasn't knitting ...
I was crocheting...
Because in the midst of my bunny making madness
I had a custom order for these.
They're Vintage Dress Potholders
that I crocheted large enough to be used as placemats or trivets
as the customer requested.
I actually had one already on my Esty Shop
in Raspberry Pink & Ivory, that she purchased.
She wanted three more.
They were so much fun to make!

But getting back to those bunnies...
I have another customer in Chicago who orders things from time to time.
Last year her first grandchild was four months old at Easter time.
So she ordered a Flop Ear Bunny Hat.
This year she contacted me again.
Her daughter, once again, is in need of ... not one but TWO 
Flop Ear Bunny Hats
She has a set of Twin Girls who, once again, are four months old at
 Easter time.
Can you even imagine?!
It would be like having three little triplet girls really.
God Bless that Mommy... and Daddy... and whoever else helps that household out!
These hats are made from Knit Picks Organic Cotton, which I absolutely LOVE.
This particular customer loves this organic cotton as well.
Last year I made hats, bibs, shoes... all sorts of baby goodies for her,
 using this same fiber.
If you've never used it, you have to give it a try.
It' so soft and has great yardage and, of course, has never been dyed or processed in any way,
 making it perfect for delicate baby skin or anyone with sensitivities.
There is, however, some slight shrinkage that you have to factor in when you are working with it.

And with all that being said...
Once more ...
I am back to MORE bunnies...
I still have one more bunny to make in time for Easter.
Remember the bunnies I started making for my grandchildren?
Well I got two finished then had to set them aside to fill orders,
plus I've been quite busy teaching private crochet lessons the last few weeks.
{not that I'm complaining about the work :-))) }

I have another whole bunny to make.
This is what it looks like this very moment...

This is what it has to look like by the time I go to bed 
Saturday night.
I have a ways to go.
So you know what I will be doing.
If I don't check back in here until next week, 
I wish you all 
Happy Easter

With Love

Thursday, March 10, 2016

A Bunny for Gabriella

I finally finished the bunny for my granddaughter
Of our four grandchildren, 
she is the only girl.
Therefore I wanted a nice feminine
bunny for her.
The yarn I used can be purchased at Hobby Lobby...
Yarn Bee
Andes Alpaca
I held it double stranded on size 7 needles throughout so it would be nice and tight and there would be no stuffing playing peek-a-boo.
Wanting just an extra bit of foo~foo,
I crocheted a tiny rose using embroidery floss.
For an added touch of charm I dug around in my button and bead stash and came up with these 
heart shaped hematite beads for her eyes.
And of course she needed a soft pink embroidered nose.
The rose covered ribbon was discovered on my recent trip to Hobby Lobby as well.
Much to my delight all of their ribbon was on sale...
50% off.
You know I did a tiny bit of restocking the stash on this one.
She also has a fluffy tail to show off her cute little backside.

Gabby will turn 9 in early April.
She has taken tremendous interest in every stitch I've made all of her life.
By the time she was 6 months old I had her on my lap,
chubby hands and fingers wrapped around my
knitting needles
crochet hook,
feeling the yarn,
 so she would develop a natural love for it.
We are slowly, but surely working on her simple crochet skills.
Eventually we will add knitting as well.
She loves everything I make for her.
I'm excited to give her this for Easter...
I know the look on her face won't disappoint my heart.



Added Note ~
One reason this Bunny required a little more time in the making is because about half way through the process she needed some
repair work...
After picking Gabby up from school one day,
I took her to the library.
This is something we have done together since she was in a stroller.
I live walking distance and the added bonus is my eldest daughter,
her beloved Aunt Hil {Hilary}
is a Librarian there.
So, not only does Gabby share my love of books and reading,
we get to have a visit also.
Anyway, back to the scene of the crime....
We returned home just in the nick of time for my son in law 
to pick Gabby up from my house,
which was a very good thing for more reasons than I first realized.
He had her whisked out the door before she saw what I discovered,
which would have ruined the surprise of her Easter gift from me.
I had rather absentmindedly left my knitting basket,
holding the already knitted and stuffed body of this bunny and two comlpleted bunnies
in the floor by my chair...
And Miss Phoebe the Naughty Weenie Dog,
who really loves her "babies" and really hates for mommy to be gone...
Had a Hay Day!!!
Archer's was untouched, thankfully.
But the other two were finally located underneath my bed 
on a bid dog pillow
where Phoebe hides all contraband.
It's the very first place I always look.
One bunny had just a loose stitch and needed a new tail.
Gabby's bunny had some chewing around the nose area that I was able to
 snip and tuck in due to the fact
I had used two strands throughout.
Plus I was able to tack it down and hide it with the embroidered nose.
So, at least she chose a good spot for her chomping...
I guess.

Friday, March 4, 2016

Sunshine Through Lace

I'm just popping in for a quick 
Good Morning 
to all of you before I get on with my Friday.
I wasn't planning to do a blog post today but then I woke up to a morning full of
Yesterday was cold, grey, wet, windy and even snowy.
Not the kind of snow that made a pretty blanket on the ground.
Just the kind that drizzled through the air all day and melted as soon as it landed.
But it went on all day long with not a single ray of sunshine in sight, not once.
It was however, a cozy day around here, for me.
I had my dear friend Amy for an afternoon of tea and knitting.
She comes at least once a week
{and twice if we can squeeze it in}
and spends whole lovely afternoons with me.
In the colder months we stay tucked in my warm kitchen with the kettle going,
a pot of tea always under a cozy,
my dogs napping contentedly in their bed together
and my little fireplace glowing.
Mack & Phoebe

Then as Winter finally gives up the ghost and Spring is reborn,
with my beloved Summer fresh on its heels,
we settle ourselves on my porch
{me on my swing, Amy on my vintage wicker settee}
and drink our tea and knit and crochet the afternoons away in the glorious fresh air.
On those days there's a smaller dog bed that is dragged out to the porch so the doggies 
can nap and "visit" with passersby.
I live on Main Street in a small town.
We have lots and lots of people strolling by all day long to have wonderful chats with.
When the weather is warm enough we're also joined by my song birds in their cages.
{Noah the Cockatiel and Spencer the White Dove}
 I carry them out and set them on the porch and they sing for the pure
 of it all afternoon...
and doze in the sunshine that trickles through the leaves on the big ancient maple tree shading the whole of my front lawn.

On this morning drenched in beautiful 
there are so many things I am so thankful for...
Small, constant, homely, warm, every day, cozy things...

My simple yet "perfect for ME in every way" home
My Husband... Can't even say it all here.
My beautiful, wonderful children and grandchildren... God is so GOOD.
My entire whole family {you know who you are}
My dogs, birds, kitty cat and squirrels and bunnies I feed in the yard.

My knitting group who keeps me steady through life all through each season, rain or shine, in and out of my house every Monday night week after week, year after year.
A special friend who comes to my home to share a cup of tea and play with yarn and make the gloomy days seem cozy and the sunny days even shinier. 
The many friends, so close to my heart. I am blessed with an abundance of friends.
A very, very dear friend God brought to me right here through this blog
{you know who YOU are... we are spiritual sisters... talking, texting, praying, sharing all of life}
And finally...
I really, really am 
So thankful
for days of 
Sunshine through Lace
When I open my front door and see this sight
my heart knows Spring is just as anxious
to enjoy my front porch swing as I am.

Wishing you days filled with 
Abundant Sunshine of the Heart


"Why do you spend money for what is not bread,
And your wages for what does not satisfy?
Listen carefully to Me, and eat what is good,
And delight yourself in abundance."
Isaiah 55:2

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Basic Butter Cookies

When I had my Valentine Tea Party with my Monday night knitting group a couple of weeks ago, 
I made the most delightful cookies that were so very easy to mix up and bake but... 
anything but "basic" when it comes to taste.
They were absolutely, melt in your mouth,
"I think I just died and went to Cookie Heaven"
The recipe is in one of my favorite books
and I've had it for quite some time
but I'd never made these lovely little cookies before.
{I will certainly make them the next time I need some cutouts however.}
After refrigerating the dough for an hour it rolls out like a dream come true... perfect every time.
So here's the recipe for those of you who might like to try it and don't have a copy of this book:

Basic Butter Cookies

2 1/4 Sticks Butter, softened
1 1/4 Cups Confectioners' Sugar, sifted
1 Teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract
1 Large Free Range Egg Yolk
2 2/3 Cups All - Purpose Flour

1. Beat the butter and sugar together in a large bowl until very pale and fluffy. Add the vanilla and egg yolk and mix well. Sift in the flour and mix until it forms a firm dough. You may need to get your hands in here and work it into a smooth ball. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and put it in the refrigerator for an hour. You can freeze it at this stage if you wish.

2. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F and line two baking sheets with a silicone liner.
 {I use my beloved Parchment Paper instead!}

3. Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface until it is about 1/8" thick, then cut out the shapes you require and place on the lined baking sheets. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the cookies are pale golden. Transfer the cookies to a wire rack where they will harden as they cool.

As I was rolling out the final bit of dough, enjoying the smoothness of the motion and losing myself in a daydream I suddenly looked down and saw this happening on its own...
I did not roll that into a heart intentionally.
I could not believe it myself.
So, of course, I had to take a picture...
Or two
I mean, How fun is that?! 

And with some Pink Frosting and sparkly sugar they turned out rather pretty too.

<3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3