Thursday, January 24, 2008

I'm back AGAIN!

O.K. I am going to post what I have been doing for the past few weeks. This have been busy so I will start with the fun stuff!

This is the beret I made for my aunt's birthday. It was a very easy pattern I found in one of my books. I used the Lion Brand Bordeaux chenille yarn instead of the chunky yarn used in the photo. I made my aunt a boa scarf a few years ago with this yarn and I thought a hat would be a nice addition. I never made a hat before and I am really proud of myself. This project took around two hours to complete. I am very happy with the results and my aunt loves it. I even think my mom became jealous. She mentioned I never made her a hat! What a spoiled mama! LOL!

This is a picture of the top of the beret.

This is how my aunt likes to wear it. Over to the side.

Very chic! I love my first beret! I plan on making many more for the future.
This is my cousin Angie. I thought her some singel crochet stitches and I might have a convert! Whoopie! She was getting the hang of it slowly. I talked to her recently and she was still practicing. I am very happy to have another crocheter in the family!
For January I think I went to at least six different scrapbook/stamping/cardmaking venues. I have begun to sort my photos for my Orlando trip and I am making page kits. I will explain and give examples of my page kits in a future post. Look out! There are some terrific ideas! Anyway here are some of the finished projects.
At one of my crops I decided to finally make a scrapbook page of my new home. I love this layout. It's simple but very beautiful. Please excuse my photos. I was in a hurry! LOL! This is my first home. I had a condo before but I finally got a house I really wanted in 2006. Things are going slowly but I will get it totally together and do a great book of my decorating.
This is a two-page layout I made of my brother Keith. I really love this layout. The title says Photo Time with the subtitle point shoot snap. I love it! It's a scraplift from an idea book I bought for Close to My Heart Stamping Company called Imagine. I made this layout while I was at a crop at a local store. I pulled out a template and marked my page for stitching. The crop area was crowded and someone saw me stitching on my layout and screamed "she's stitching on her layout!" Everyone came running to see what I was doing. LMAO! It was too funny! They all wanted to see my template and watch me make a few stitches. I felt like the cool scrapper at the crop! I loved it! LMAO!
First Page
Second Page
This is a layout I started early this month with the Mocha Memories ladies quarterly crop. It's a scraplift from Creating Keepsakes Easy Patterns by Brenda Arnall. I didn't like how it was coming along. I wanted to try and use white paper as background. This is not a background color I usually enjoy using on my layout but I wanted to try it. It turned out O.K. I was happy I got a lot of pictures on it though. This was a chili cookoff at a campout with friends. I took pictures of everyone making there own chili. It was a lot of fun! I came in a close second! A girl named Amy made the prize winning chili which had shredded beef, cloves and other delicious things. It was very good! She did deserve to win!
This is a prize I won from Barb's Card Creations and Other stuff. She had a "Play It Forward Post". This will be an upcoming blog update so stay tuned.It's a cute little album for some pictures and journaling. I really like it. Check out Barb's blog. She makes the most wonderful cards. I am now addicted to the Stamping Bella stamps! They are so cute! I must have some!


I go to these monthly scrapbook classes at a Close to My Heart (CTMH) consultants home nearby. I wasn't able to make it to the December class but I was able to get the class projects. This is what we made.
Three cards

Two Scrapbook pages

I really like these projects. They are very cute. I need to find some photos for the two scrapbook pages. I really like the colors.
Well that is just a sample of all my projects. I have many more to come. I have been working steadily on my cardigan I am crocheting. For some reason I thought I bought enough yarn but I didn't. I had to go out and buy more to find the colors are off. I will use it for the sleeves and just make due. I really hate this but what I am to do right? I also have started on my shrug and it is working out well. I am about 90% done and I can't wait to finish it. I need to find some contrasting yarn somewhere. Wish me luck!

Monday, January 7, 2008

I've been tagged

Two Names you go by:

1. Cas
2. Kasey

Two Things You Are Wearing Right Now:

1. cream v-neck sweater
2. brown velour pants

Two Things You Would Want (or have) in a Relationship:

1. respect
2. friendship

Two of your favorite things to do:

1. crafts
2. socialize

Two Things you want badly at the moment:

1. To win the lottery
2. a milkshake which I will have as soon as I finish this entry!

Two pets you had/have:

1. Edgar ( my current fur buddy the cat)
2. Gladys (cat)

Two people you think will fill this out:

1. Stacey
2. Sheila

Two things you did last night:

1. I went to visit my friend Lori (the "kitty" as I like to call her)
2. Visited my mom

Two things you ate today:

1. A turkey and cheese sandwich
2. Some leftover fried chicken

Two people you last talked to:

1. James
2. mom

Two things you're doing tomorrow:

1. work
2. scrapbooking with my group at the local scrapbook store

Two Longest car rides:

1. Chicago to Louisiana (to visit my grandparents)
2. Chicago to the Chain of Lakes area in Wisconsin or Chicago to Salem, MO. (they both took about 8 hours and I was going to canoe with my group.)

Two favorite holidays:

1. Christmas
2. Thanksgiving

Favorite beverages:

1. Squirt or 50/50
2. Peach pop

2 People no longer alive who you'd like to talk to:

1. Paternal grandfather ( I never met )
2. Laura Ingalls Wilder ( I loved those books but I have some questions which need answering)

I am tagging a few people and hopefully they will tag others.


How about a quick weekend recap. Saturday I met with the wonderful Mocha Memories Ladies for a crop at Archivers. There were four of us and we had a good time. I completed ten cards and I worked on a 2 page layout. It's about 90% completed and I do not care for it. I tried to step out of my normal style but I do not like the results. I usually do not care for white background paper. But I used it along with some old creative memories papers. I didn't like how the layout turned out. It reminds me too much of a creative memories layout! LOL! But I will try to finish it and see if I can add some pizazz to it. You never know. The cards were from a kit I purchased from Creating Keepsakes. It's one of those we mail you a DVD and a mini kit and if you want it you pay $26.95. I had two of these kits and I am not purchasing anymore since I never watch the DVDs. But I was getting low on cards and felt I needed to at least make those. They are pretty simple but nice. I actually felt as though I got something accomplished.

After the crop I had a 12th night party to attend at a friend's house. We usually go to her home and have some hors d'ouerves, light her tree (she has a Victorian tree with candles), and play games. We played Taboo and Cranium. I enjoyed myself. I really like to play games. They are fun.

Sunday I went to church. Our church is currently holding service at a school due to some renovations. It was pretty crowded in there. It's usual for the beginning of the year. Everyone's resolutions are pretty clear! LOL! Afterward I visited my mom and then went to visit a friend who lives in the downtown Chicagoland area. Finding parking was a pain in the tushy! But I found parking. She made me some delicious lasagna and garlic bread. I didn't get home until late last night. I was exhausted!

So I consider this week getting off to a great start. I hope it ends the same way!


Friday, January 4, 2008

Savory Sunday January 6, 2008

For Christmas, I made this overnight baked french toast dish for my family. Since it is only three of us in the morning I cut the recipe to feed only three people. I used a smaller pan and estimated smaller measurements. This dish was a big hit. My mom really liked it (she's kinda hard to please) and my brother did too.

Back in the day I used to cut all the recipes out of magazines, the food section of the newspaper and whatever else I could find. So I have a pretty serious collection of recipes. Every now and then I browse through my collection to see what might intrigue me. I was looking for an overnight breakfast dish to make (something like overnight french toast) and this one appealed to me. It reminds me of a bread pudding actually since the bread is in cubes. Very delicious. You will not be disappointed.

Sally Jessy Raphael's Famous Baked French Toast

1 loaf white bread cubed

1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, cubed

8 to 12 eggs depending on size

1/2 cup maple syrup

1 cup milk

Line the bottom of an 11 by 13 inch pan with half of the bread cubes. Layer cream cheese cubes on top of bread. Arrange remaining bread cubes on top.

In a large bowl, beat eggs, maple syrup and milk. Pour over bread. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

The next morning, bake in a preheated 350-degree oven until light golden brown, about 45 minutes.

Makes 8 servings.
Bon Appetit'

Just another creative day...

I am pretty excited now. I had a bit of an epiphany yesterday. I have decided to start working on many crochet, sewing and stamping, scrapbooking projects to accumlate items for gifts. I am talking about birthday, Christmas, baby shower, wedding shower, hostess and whatever miscellaneous event comes up! I think this is a great idea because I will work on my crafts while improving my skills and giving some very thoughtful gifts to friends and family. I have already started working on my Christmas list (I have a very short one for now). It feels good to have a plan so early in the year. I already found several projects I can't wait to attempt.

Let's start with a blast from the past. Remember that cardigan I was working on crocheting? Here is a picture of the example.

I have been working on it dilligently for the past few weeks while I was sick and on vacation. I am progressing quite well. I am having issues with tension. I start out loose then it gets tighter as I progress. It's hard for me to maintain a consistent tension. Because of this I was pulling out rows of stitches constantly. Finally I got a bit discouraged and put it to the side. I decided to continue on and I will work on my tension as I make more projects. This way I should get more projects completed. I must remember this is a work in progress. Every project will not be perfect. Here are my current pieces.

This is the back of the sweater. It's pretty wide but I think when finished it will shrink some.
This is the right front. It looks good so far. I started this after Christmas and finished it by New Year's day. I was very proud of myself.
I am currently working on the left front. This is a photo of it next to the right front. I am counting rows until I need to begin shaping. It's coming along well. I worked on it since Wednesday. I think I am doing quite well.

JoAnn's Fabrics and Crafts has a sale on yarn. I found a few patterns I really like so I thought this would be a good time to find some nice yarn to make these projects. I have decided to make my Aunt a beret for her birthday which is on the 8th of January. I found it in one of my crochet books I bought when I was in New York at AC Moore. I's called "So Simple Crochet" by Melody Griffiths. It's an easy project which should take around two hours which is perfect since her birthday is next week and I will see her possibly on Sunday.

Here is the photo of the beret. Pretty easy enough! I am making it using this chenille yarn. I made my Aunt a boa scarf from this yarn a couple of years ago so I thought a matching beret would be nice. The color is bordeax. Very pretty. I started a swatch to test for guage. This is a shrug I found in the Fall 2007 Interweave Crochet magazine. It's a very easy design. I can't wait to start this one. I found some really nice yarn at JoAnn's for $8.99 and I used my 40% off coupon so I am pretty pleased with myself.
I am really like the colors in this yarn. I do need to find another color for the contrast stitching. I am thinking of a nice chocolate. I really have a thing for chocolate colors this season. I also got a late start at looking at my new calendars this year. I didn't get home until later Tuesday night and I wanted to watch the latest episode of Law & Order SVU. After that I was pretty tired and went to bed. I got up the next morning and I remembered my new calendars. I had one for a crochet pattern a day and another for scrapbook idea of the day. I love these calendars. They are so inspirational. I found a pattern I liked on the first two days! I may include them in my projects to do this year. It feels good to have inspiration coming at you everyday.
While I was in JoAnn's on New Year's day I also browsed the magazine wall. This is like major temptation for me since I enjoy magazines so much and I spend a small fortune on them. I was really dancing with the devil at this point. But I didn't buy any! I was so proud of myself. I looked through the latest issue of Interweave Crochet and Crochet today as well as many other magazines. I wanted to buy one but I remembered those 40% off coupons and I didn't have any with me! So that shut that temptation down real quick. Besides my money will be tight this month and I don't need another pattern magazine now since I have so many project patterns at home. I will just wait! I am so glad I did too!

Well this weekend should be a fun one! I will be meeting with the Mocha Memories ladies for a day of scrapbooking. I need to put some page kits together to take with me. I will do that tonight. I also have a 12th night party with at my friends home in the evening. So tomorrow will be a full day. Sunday I plan on going to church and visiting my mother afterward. Then one of my good friends will come by for a visit. All together this should be a wonderful first weekend of the month.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend too!

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Happy New Year! A Day late...

I hope everyone had a wonderful and safe New Year! I did. I didn't want to go out for New Year's Eve this year so I stayed at home and relaxed. I am a bit sick of parties right now. On New Year's my mother wanted to go see "The Great Debaters" at the matinee show and then have dinner. The movie was fabulous! It's was so good! I laughed at a lot and cried some too. It's definitely worth the money.

Afteward I kidnapped my mom and stopped at JoAnn's to browse around. I did very well. I didnt' buy anything. I did want to check the yarn to find something for my next project. But I decided to wait. They have yarn on sale right now and I wanted to see if I could find something. I found some very pretty yarn but I wasn't sure how much I needed. So I left without buying anything. I did want a magazine but since I didn't have a coupon with me I passed on that too. My mom hates going to JoAnn's with me. I love to browse and she has no patience for it! LOL!

Unfortunately on my way home I got stopped by the police. The officer said I didn't stop at the stop sign which was not true. I also did not have my current proof of insurance card with me and I got a ticket. Not good. I now have to go to court next month.

But, I will not let one sour note spoil my New Year's day. I spent time with my mother and watched the plentious television show marathons presented for the day. All in all it was a good day and I hope to continue to find the good in every day this year. I hope you all do the same.

Keep it real everyone!