Crochet flower baby mobile

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Latest crochet creation: a flower mobile, to be given to a friend who has just had a baby.

It was very quick and fun to make and the perfect project to utilize all those scraps of yarn we all have lying around. Also a great hot weather baby gift, when crocheted hats, booties and afghans might be out of season.

I worked with acrylic yarn of varying weight, and crochet hook number 3 or 3.5, depending on size of yarn. I also added a string of rather heavy beads in the cross-section, which adds more variety and stabilizes the mobile by shifting the gravity center to the middle.

I hope I will inspire at least one fellow crocheter to make this cute, fun project.

LoveCrochet

Little gifts

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I’m not a big fan of prickly pears, but I do love the large, bright flowers. A tiny short-lived miracle that one just has to enjoy while it lasts.

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Another piece of beauty from one of our afternoon walks: this little ladybug on a flower. My children always enjoy letting these little guys crawl over their hands and fingers until they inevitably fly away.

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A pile of fresh, juicy lemons from the very generous tree of our lovely neighbor, Jocelyn. Just think of all the jugs of refreshing lemonade we can make from these.

We’ve had a terrible heat wave yesterday and today and I’m extremely thankful for the blessing of air conditioning, because otherwise I literally don’t know how we would be able to breathe. The outdoors were such a furnace that I felt my eyes start to water from the heat as soon as I walked out to water my poor plants. I hope you’re enjoying pleasanter weather, wherever you are.

A year without you

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About a year ago, through many tears, I wrote this post of farewell to my dear friend, Julie Ryan, who had unexpectedly passed away, leaving behind a husband, children, grandchildren, and countless people whose lives she touched with love and tenderness.

I can hardly believe a whole year has already passed by. Perhaps it seemed to just whizz by because it was such an eventful one, with us welcoming a new baby into the family at the end of March, moving at the end of last summer, and two books of mine coming out sometime in between. One of them, The Hourglass, I dedicated to Julie, as she was the one who first made me stop and realize the precious elusiveness of time – and how much we should always try to make the most of it.

I still think about Julie every day. I hadn’t been lucky enough to ever meet her in person, but I know that someday, on the other side of the rainbow, we are going to get together and have that long, long cozy chat I wish we could have had in this life – on the front porch, swing creaking, ice clinking in glasses of lemonade.

Julie was one of those people who, though they are no more in this world, have spread so much of their life and light that their legacy endures forever, multiplying through generations and circles of people like ripples on water.

Rest in peace, dear friend. I will see you in every cozy kitchen, sunny garden, and overflowing bookcase. I will think of you when I make the choice to slow down, spending an hour making playdough with my children rather than answering emails. I wish the world had had the chance to have you longer, but you had lived well and made the most of every day, month and year.

Enjoying the spring

We’ve had delightful weather here recently, which means lots and lots of time spent out of doors, lounging under trees, visiting all our favorite playgrounds, and just enjoying the pleasant spell before the heat that will inevitably come.

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The kittens, now three weeks old, are growing rapidly and becoming playful. Let me just tell you, nobody needs screen time when they can have kitty time! My kids can play with these snuggly fur balls all day long.

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In between, I’m working on a rather ambitious crochet project for Hadassah, who has become a walker and now merits a lot more cute little dresses.

Lately, I have found no more perfect way to unwind than watching videos by this amazing lady living in rural paradise in China. It seems she knows how to make anything with her own two hands and some primitive hand-operated tools. It is both inspiring and humbling. I know that if you watch, you will become enchanted as much as I am.

Happenings here

Now that the holidays are over, we are gradually getting settled back into a more peaceful routine, which feels great. Today I made my first after-Pesach pizza, and we enjoyed it so much!

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The kittens are two weeks old, and have opened their eyes a couple of days ago. Luckily our cat is very laid back and doesn’t mind us playing with them. Guess what my kids would be doing all day long if only I let them?

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We have recently discovered a beautiful local park and had a blast there one afternoon. Doesn’t this little munchkin look like she’s enjoying herself?

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There was this round thatched hut that really gave the feeling of us all being on a trip to Africa. It fascinated my kids, but to their great lament, it was locked.

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The duck pond.

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Some goats with their babies and one friendly alpaca. No, they don’t always keep them in that little pen – they just closed it off while someone was cleaning the yard.

Odds And Ends Crochet Basket

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The existence of such things as crochet baskets is something relatively new to me. I have always admired handmade baskets and was talking to a friend about the possibility of her teaching me. “Oh, there are so many possibilities,” she gushed. “Not just wickerwork, but you can also weave straw baskets… Or even crochet them!”

Crochet? You betcha. This is me, the gal who will crochet anything.

So I started looking into this. And I had this skein of super stiff, coarse yarn sitting in my stash that was just perfect for making a little basket to hold all my yarn odds and ends from different projects.

I ended up with a very satisfying one-hour session, at the end of which I had my basket – a perfect project even for beginners.

Making a crochet basket is not much different from making a hat, crocheting round and round. You’ll use single crochet all around for the tightest weave you can get.

The secret is almost all in the material. You’ll want to choose the chunkiest, sturdiest, thickest yarn you have – think something that’s too coarse to wear.

Then choose the smallest crochet hook you can use to work with the yarn successfully. That’s right, the smallest – it will create a tighter weave. And as you work, pull your stitches tighter than you normally would. This is no loose fluffy hat you’re making, but something that’s supposed to stand on its own, not flop like a jellyfish. I normally hold my hook like I would a pencil, but with this basket, I actually grabbed the hook in my fist and pulled as tight as I could.

The steps to making a round basket are very simple:

First, crochet a flat circle, as you would make a coaster. That’s your basket bottom. Add enough stitches so the circle doesn’t curl like a bowl, but not too many, or it will ruffle like a potato crisp.

Next, slip stitch all around your circle.

Start making the basket wall by stitching into the top of the round before the slip stitch. It will make your basket sturdier and more stable. Sounds confusing? Read more detailed instructions here.

Make the basket as tall as you like. Optional: decorate the top with a row of contrasting color and /or texture. Weave in loose ends. Enjoy your new storage basket!