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Friday, June 29, 2012

Let's Talk About Chives

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Chives are amazing.

They are the first little green thing that pops up in my garden every year, usually very early spring.  I love having them around to snip and throw into mashed potatoes, corn cakes, you name it. 

Plus they look so pretty. 

They're easy to grow too, and will come back year after year.  This is the small section that we have growing on our deck in a rail planter.  They're handy to have right outside our kitchen door.  We even snip them when there's snow on the ground!

 

Chives are hardy, but they need to have good soil, and plenty of water.  Pretty much just plant out some sees and let them grow!  Every couple of years you're supposed to dig them up in the fall, split them apart and space them out a little more, and it will also expand your chive garden. 

 They're also really easy to dry!  All you have to do is lay them out flat on a baking sheet, bake them at a low temperature (like 150) for about 10 min until they're crispy.  They won't feel very hot, just dry.  Then you can take them and put them in a ziploc bag and crunch them up, and store them in a spice container (I use tiny little ball jars)

The flowers are just as good when dried!  They have a semi bitter taste to them but they are equally amazing used with potatoes!
 

Monday, June 18, 2012

The Midorie Blanket {Crochet Pattern}

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I've named this blanket the Midorie Blanket.

It was NOT a planned blanket.  I have this friend at work who had me make a baby blanket a year or two ago when her goddaughter was born, and she came to me in a pinch- Can you have a blanket ready in about a week, she asked....  Not an easy task.  At first, i thought I was going to have to tell her no, but I looked over some of my in-the-works projects and saw some octagons that would be perfect for it.  They were white, which is what she wanted and I thought, I could take these, and form a new blanket out of them!

Thus, the Midorie Blanket was born.  Never would I thought that I would be able to have it done in time!

Copyright 2010-2012 LiLu Studios: This Crafting Life, by Lori Steffens. {http://www.thiscraftinglife.com/} Make it, Wear it, Love it, but above all, Share it, don't Sell it!

 Blanket measures roughly 36" square.

Materials Needed:

About 2 skeins of white Red Heart Yarn
1 skein of Lavender Caron Simply Soft Yarn
"H" hook


Motif 1: 

(Make 5)
Ch 4. Join with sl st to first ch to form ring.
R1: Ch 1. (1 sc. Ch 11) 7 times in ring. 1 sc in ring. Ch 6. Join with dtr to first sc.
R2: Ch 1. 1 sc in first dtr. (Ch 5. 1 sc in next ch-11 sp) 7 times. Ch 5. Join with sl st to first sc.
R3: Ch 6 (counts as 1 dc and ch 3). *1 dc in 3rd ch of next ch-5 sp. Ch 3.** 1 dc in next sc. Ch 3. Rep from * around, ending at **. Join with sl st to 3rd ch of ch 6.
R4: Ch 1. 1 sc in same sp as last sl st. Ch 3. (Yoh and draw up a loop in side of sc just worked. Yoh and draw through 2 loops on hook) twice. Yoh and draw through all loops on hook – cluster made. Miss next ch-3 sp. *1 sc in next dc. Ch 3. Cluster in last sc. Miss next ch-3 sp. Rep from * around. Join with sl st to first sc.
R5: Ch 8 (counts as 1 dc and ch 5). *1 dc in next sc. Ch 5. Rep from * around. Join with sl st to 3rd ch of ch 8.
R6: Ch 1. 1 sc in same sp as last sl st. *Ch 3. Cluster in last sc. 1 sc in 3rd ch of next ch-5 sp. Ch 3. 1 sc in next dc. Rep from * around, omitting sc at end of last rep. Join with sl st to first sc.
R7: Ch 1. 1 sc in same sp as last sl st. *Ch 5. Miss next cluster and sc. (1 dc. Ch 2. 1 dc) in next ch-3 sp. Ch 5.** Miss next cluster and sc. 1 sc in next ch-3 sp. Rep from * around, ending at **. Miss last cluster, sc and ch-3 sp. Join with sl st to first sc.
R8: Sl st in next ch-5 sp. Ch 2 (does not count as hdc). (2 hdc. 3 dc) in same ch-5 sp. *(1 dc. Ch 2. 1 dc) in next ch-2 sp. (3 dc. 2 hdc) in next ch-5 sp.** (2 hdc. 3 dc) in next ch-5 sp. Rep from * around, ending at **. Join with sl st to first hdc. Fasten off.


Motif 2:

(Make 4)
Ch 6. Join with sl st to first ch to form ring.
R1: Ch 1. 16 sc in ring. Join with sl st to first sc.
R2: Ch 1. 1 sc in first sc.*Ch 5. Miss next sc. 1 sc in next sc. Rep from * to last sc. Ch 5. Miss last sc. Join with sl st to
first sc.
R3: Ch 1. *(1 sc. 1 hdc. 5 dc. 1 hdc. 1 sc) in next ch-5 sp. Rep from * around. Join with sl st to first sc. Fasten off.
R4: Join yarn with sl st to any center dc of 5-dc group. Ch 1. 1 sc in same sp as sl st. *Ch 5. 1 sc in center dc of next 5-dc group. Rep from * around. Ch 5. Join with sl st to first sc.
R5: Sl st in first ch-5 sp. Ch 4 (counts as dc and ch 1). [1 dc. Ch 2. (1 dc. Ch 1) twice] in same ch-5 sp. *[1 dc. Ch 1. 1 dc. Ch 2. (1 dc. Ch 1) twice] in next ch-5 sp. Rep from * around. Join with sl st to 3rd ch of ch 4.
R6: Ch 3 (counts as dc). 1 dc in next ch-1 sp. 1 dc in next dc. *(1 dc. Ch 2. 1 dc) in next ch-2 sp. (1 dc in next dc. 1 dc in next ch-1 sp) 3 times. 1 dc in next dc. Rep from * to last ch-2 sp. (1 dc. Ch 2. 1 dc) in last ch-2 sp. (1 dc in next dc. 1 dc in next ch-1 sp) twice. Join with sl st to top of ch 3.
R7: Ch 4 (counts as dc and ch 1). Miss next dc. 1 dc in next dc. Ch 1. Miss next dc. *(1 dc. Ch 2. 1 dc) in next ch-2 sp. (Ch 1. Miss next dc. 1 dc in next dc) 4 times. Ch 1. Miss next dc. Rep from * to last ch-2 sp. (1 dc. Ch 2. 1 dc) in last ch-2 sp. (Ch 1. Miss next dc. 1 dc in next dc) twice. Ch 1. Miss last dc. Join with sl st to 3rd ch of ch 4.
R8: Ch 3 (counts as dc). (1 dc in next ch-1 sp. 1 dc in next dc) twice. *(1 dc. Ch 2. 1 dc) in next ch-2 sp. (1 dc in next dc. 1 dc in next ch-1 sp) 5 times. 1 dc in next dc. Rep from * to last ch-2 sp. (1 dc. Ch 2. 1 dc) in last ch-2. sp. (1 dc in next dc. 1 dc in next ch-1 sp) 3 times. Join with sl st to top of ch 3.


Motif 3:

(Make 4)
Ch 4. Join with sl st to first ch to form ring.
R1: Working into ring: Ch 3. 4 dc. Drop loop from hook. Insert hook from front to back through top of ch 3, then through dropped loop. Yoh and pull through both loops on hook – Beg Popcorn made. Ch 3. *5 dc. Drop loop from hook. Insert hook from front to back through first dc, then through dropped loop. Yoh and pull through both loops on hook – Popcorn made. Ch 3. Rep from * twice more. Join with sl st to top of ch 3. 4 Popcorns.
R2: Beg Popcorn in first Popcorn. *Ch 1. (Popcorn. Ch 4. Popcorn) in next ch-3 sp. Ch 1.** Popcorn in next Popcorn. Rep from * twice more, then rep from * to ** once. Join with sl st to top of first Popcorn.
R3: Ch 3 (counts as dc). 2 dc in next ch-1 sp. 1 dc in next Popcorn. *(3 dc. Ch 3. 3 dc) in next ch-4 sp. (1 dc in next Popcorn. 2 dc in next ch-1 sp) twice. 1 dc in next Popcorn. Rep from * twice more. (3 dc. Ch 3. 3 dc) in next ch-4 sp. 1 dc in next Popcorn. 2 dc in next ch-1 sp. Join with sl st to top of ch-3. Fasten off.

Join them together as shown in the picture.

Border is optional.  In order to do the border that I did, work holding one strand of white and one strand of lavender and work around border working 1 dc in each st, but on corner st do 2 dc and skip the bottommost two st in the valleys (to keep the points and valleys).  Work two rows like this and then fill in the triangle with back and forth rows of dcs(i did this in white).  I did 5 in the lowest part of the valley and added one on each end(2 per row) going up through the triangle.  Then I worked one more row all the way around the piece with the double strand white and purple.

Sorry the border is written so jumbly, I wrote it after the fact and it was hard to capture the idea.  If you have questions or suggestions for how I could modify it, please let me know!  I hope you like my newest blanket!

I'm linking up to this party!!




Monday, June 11, 2012

Update on our Move!

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I realize I haven't made a single post since I announced that we were working on migrating. It was kind of a spur of the moment decision that it was just too hard for me to keep up on writing three entirely different blogs, and that I could just make my life easier by combining the two that were most similar.  I've been mostly working behind the scenes, updating small coding issues, migrating posts together, and on top of all that I've been busy shooting weddings and gallivanting around just as much as I've been working here.

So here's a little bit about what you can expect in the future from This Crafting Life!

Website:
  • Soon will change in appearance.  We'll have a new header, with our new name and a fantastic new design.
  • Will also have new appropriate drop down options that will have combined both websites.
  • Will hopefully be easier to sort and read as you please.

Topics:
  • Where before, LiLu Studios was mainly devoted to crochet and knitting posts, and Fantastic Finds for the Fam{ily} was devoted to children's crafts and deals for the family, now this blog will have it all.
  • We will have a weekly yarn related post, whether it be a pattern, tutorial, or just some ramblings about the craft.
  • Savings Saturday will be your day to find all the great freebies I've found around the web.
  • Scouting Sunday will bring you all the great finds, for crafting, your life and whatever.
  • Other random crafts, musings, and etc. will be put out at random points through the week.

Please don't hesitate to ask if you have any questions, and I hope to be back soon with everything up to date and some new posts for you!!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Pardon Any Errors, We're Migrating!

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Today marks a glorious day! 
I'm bringing my two blogs together, hopefully in harmony. 

You must pardon the next couple days while it most likely doesn't look very nice.

In fact, it might not show up at all for a day.  I'm not sure how it will all work. 

Sometime shortly after change, we'll have a new name, combining the idea behind both of my blogs. 

I hope you'll enjoy my new unified site:

ThisCraftingLife

(remember this link might not work today....)

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