Archive - July 2010

1
Final Batch
2
About the Bear
3
More Tasty Treats
4
Mountain Lions, Coyotes and Bears…
5
Quick Crochet Projects

Final Batch

Well, final batch for now.

This little cupcake really isn’t so little, but it’s tasty looking and really cute!

I used good ol’ Red Heart Super Saver white for the cake and Berrocco Plush for the frosting. The pattern is available here for free: Cupcake.  I made some changes to the original pattern, but my notes are downstairs and I’m too lazy to go get them.  If you’re interested, let me know in the comments and I’ll post them. (The cupcake is knit, not crochet.)

Next up is a strawberry ice cream cone!

Another free pattern from the same designer as the cupcake:  Ice Cream Cone. It’s important to note that there is no hook size listed, but I ended up using a G.  If you’re going to make this, I suggest getting the Starbucks sample cup that goes in the base first so you can check the size of the cone as you go.  I had to add more height to my cone to make it fit.   I don’t think I even wrote down what I did exactly, but if you need help, let me know and I’ll walk you through it.

And continuing with our theme of pink  food, here is a frosted donut.  Mmm…donut!

Another free pattern, of course:  Donut. It’s supposed to be a pincushion, but I left off the sprinkles/pins so it can be a toy instead.  Maybe I’ll make myself one for my sewing basket.

One more from the designer of the ice cream cone and cupcake, it’s a Bakewell Tart.

I’d never heard of a Bakewell Tart, but it was too cute not to make.  Here’s the pattern (scroll down past the kitties):  Crochet Bakewell Tart. And click over here to find out all about these little goodies:  Bakewell Tart.  No modifications on this one.  It did have to wait a while to be stuffed while I figured out what to use on the bottom to give it structure.  In the end I used a clean fast-food drink lid, cut down to size.  I also taped over the straw slit so it wouldn’t be an issue later.  Oh wait!  I didn’t use a button for the cherry (?) on top.  Instead I crocheted 4 single crochets in a loop and sewed it to the top before stuffing.

Ok, so that does it for now on my toy food.  Quick, easy and portable plus using cheap yarn makes them affordable and gives you a ton of left-over yarn for the inevitable requests that you make them for friends.   Personally, I love the instant gratification that comes from a finished product after only a couple hours of work.  As opposed to that sock that stares at me accusingly from its’ project bag.

The rest of my craft projects can be found under the category Getting Crafty.  That’ll give you the first part of each post.  To read the whole thing and see the pictures, just click the title of each post.

About the Bear

He was a hairy bear, he was a scary bear.

(Ha! Did you see what I just did?  I described him with adjectives!)

The children and I had been at the park across the street and on our way home I saw that bear investigating our neighbor’s tree.  He was three houses from ours, so he wasn’t exactly between us and safety. Still, he was cause for concern.

We stayed on the park side of the street and as we came directly across from him, I waved and said, “Hi!”.  I was hoping to install a “friends, not food” attitude in him.  Well, he took one look at us and took off behind the house.  Before we reached home, we saw him re-emerge from behind another house about two doors down from ours on the other side.  He crossed the street and disappeared behind those houses.

Once  home, I did a little bear safety research.  Turns out that I did the exact right thing in waving my arms and making noise.  That’s when I found out that bears can open lever-handled doors and get in windows.  But generally, they’ll only do that if they smell food, but not humans.

Tami Nomad asked me what to do if a hairy, scary bear is lurking around your door. Beats me!  There are lots of things to do to make your home less inviting to bears, mainly keeping your garbage out of reach, keeping pet food inside, and cleaning your grill clean.  If they don’t smell it, they won’t bother you.

At least in theory.

More Tasty Treats

I just can’t seem to stop making these tasty treats!  Do you think it counts as my daily dose of fiber?

First up – a lopsided apple.  I don’t know why it’s lopsided, but Bip doesn’t seem to notice and he’s the one who asked me to make it.

And now, some cherry tomatoes on the vine –

These were requested by Pumpkin Girl who eats cherry tomatoes like chips.

Now for the far less healthy food. Like an ice cream sandwich –

Yum!! Ice cream sandwiches are like my most favorite things ever.  Too bad I’m lactose intolerant.

I’m also a fan of chocolate cake.

In real life, this is about the biggest, fattest, tastiest looking piece of cake you could wish for.

These projects came from the book Tasty Crochet.  Love this book!! Out of 33 patterns, I want to make 32 of them, which is pretty rare for any kind of pattern or craft book.  At least for me.  You just need basic crochet skills and there is a small glossary in the back if you’re like me and can’t remember how to double crochet from one project to the next.  The crochet instructions are clear, though a couple of times the assembly instructions made me scratch my head.  But if you look at the picture of the finished project, you can figure out what to do.

Mountain Lions, Coyotes and Bears…

We’ve been living in Colorado for one year now, can you believe it?  It’s a little different, living  in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, especially for someone who grew up near the ocean.

Here are some of the things we’ve learned this year:

1.  Do not leave your trash cans out on the curb the night before pick-up or bears will get into them.

2.  Only mountain newbies forget to drag the trashcans back to the house after trash pick-up and leave them out over night.  Bears will check to make sure they are really empty.

3.  Don’t forget to close your garage door at night, especially if you have a chest freezer full of deer meat.  Bears will get at your freezer and steal your meat.  This happened to a neighbor.

4.  The police are very reluctant to come and assist with the removal of a bear eating deer meat in your tree.

5.  That lovely rubbed-oil lever-handled door knob you just installed in your back door?  Bears can open it to get at the kitty treats inside.  And by kitty treats, I mean the actual cats.  Keep yer backdoor locked, ya flatlander!

6.  The dry creek behind the house is not actually dry and is a great attractor of wildlife.  Like a spotted fawn and it’s mother…

and a raccoon out late at dawn and needing a nap.

7.  Where there are deer, there are mountain lions.

8.  Did I mention the bears? Here’s one at our neighbor’s house a couple of months ago.

9.  The dogs we hear howling at night sometimes are not dogs.  They are coyotes.  They live in the bluff across the street.  This one:

All these wildlife spottings have sparked this daily conversation in our house:

Boo: I’m going to get the mail.

Pumpkin Girl and Bip, without hint of irony, sarcasm or emotion: Don’t get eaten by bears!

That’s love, right there.

—–

This post was brought to you by Mittens the Cat, who wants to remind you to keep your lever-handled doors locked.

Cats are friends, not food.

Quick Crochet Projects

We finally got our a/c units put in last week.  What a difference!  We put a spot cooling a/c into each of the upstairs bedrooms and they each have their own remotes to control temperature and fan settings.   The bedrooms are now comfortable retreats while the rest of the house is easily cooled by ceiling fans and open windows.

I’m not doing much blogging lately because with the warmer weather and my growing belly, my feet start to swell if I sit too long without propping them up.  Nothing to worry about, just need to keep them up.  So I’ve actually gotten more fiber crafting done lately.  I dug through my patterns and cheap, acrylic yarn and made a bunch of little projects.

These little guys are kitchen scrubbies, made with the cheapest, scratchiest acrylic yarn I had.   Nothing wrong with inexpensive, acrylic – it can be wonderfully soft and easy to care for,  but normally I only use the extra-cheap stuff for kids crafts.  And when it comes to dish scrubbies, the cheaper and scratchier, the better.  These are really easy to make and they work great at scrubbing the dishes.  The pattern is free and can be found here: Spiral Scrubbies.

I also made these tasty treats –

Oreo Cookies!!! At first glance these actually look real and then you feel let down because they are just yarn.  Good thing there aren’t any real Oreo’s in the cupboard or the fake ones could incite a riot of Oreo bingeing.  But they are incredibly easy and fast to make, too.  I used whatever white acrylic yarn I had stashed away but I had to go out and buy the brown.  I went to Michaels because I kept seeing or hearing ads about their new, expanded yarn department.  Well, apparently by “new and expanded” they mean “greatly reduced, with many of their long-time brands, colors and yarn weights gone.”  Not impressed at all.  I did however, find the brown I needed, so all was not lost.  At least I no longer need to travel to a different state to get to my closest Michaels.

Anyway, back to the crochet cookies.  That pattern is also free and can be found here:  Crochet Oreo Cookies.

I’ve got other tasty treats that are mostly finished, but are waiting for the perfect plastic base and/or to be stuffed.  The fiberfill is w-a-y down in the basement, so hopefully I can make it down there soon.  I’ll post pictures when I finally do finish.

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