"No matter how terrified you may be, own your fear and take that leap anyway because whether you land on your feet or on your butt, the journey is well worth it."
-- Laurie Laliberte
"If your dreams do not scare you, they are not big enough."
-- Ellen Johnson Sirleaf
"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage."
-- Anais Nin

Saturday, July 25, 2015

I'm Posting a Day Early Because. . .

It's Christmas in July! that time of year when some of us are panicking because we only have five months left to make all those homemade gifts. Others are just beginning to make them and completely relaxed. So who will still be hooking away on Christmas Eve?

My advice? I tend to go by the KISS rule: Keep It Sweet and Simple. Along that vein, I leave you with a Christmas in July present for those oft forgotten fur babies. My roommate's kitten loves these things. So much so, that she keeps stealing my samples before I can photograph them.

Keep it Simple Cat Toy
by Laurie Laliberte Designs

This fun and simple project is a great pick-up gift to sell at craft bazaars or just to make for your favorite fur babies. I use a single plastic grocery bag to stuff the ball*, but a small amount of polyester stuffing works well too.

The design includes a reinforced chain with a finger loop at the end to make it an interactive toy, but many cats are just as happy to knock it around the house without any prompting from the people they own.

Finished Measurements:

ball, approximately 2" in diameter
string, approximately 12" long

Supplies Needed:

size G-6 (4.0mm) crochet hook
small amount of worsted weight yarn
small amount of polyfil or one plastic grocery bag for stuffing
small hook or yarn needle for weaving in ends

All instructions use American Terminology.


Round 1:  sc 6 in magic loop (6 sts)

Round 2:  2sc in each st around (12 sts)

Round 3:  [2sc in next st, sc in next st] around (18 sts)

Round 4:  [2sc in next st, sc in each of next 2 sts] around (24 sts)

Rounds 5-9:  sc around (24 sts)

Round 10:  [sc dec in next 2 sts, sc in each of next 2 sts] around (18 sts)

Note:  Now is the best time to stuff the ball, just be careful that you keep your stuffing inside as you close the ball.

Round 11:  [sc dec in next 2 sts, sc in next st] around (12 sts)

Round 12: [sc dec in next 2 sts] around (6 sts)

Continue sc dec until the top of the ball is closed OR close by stitching with a yarn needle.

Optional play string:  

chain 50, sl st in 10th st from chain and in each chain back to the top of the ball, end with sl st to top of ball, fo, weave in ends

*While this item is machine washable, if you choose to stuff it with a grocery bag, make sure you wash it in cold water and DO NOT tumble dry it.

Missy the Toy Thief keeps swiping my samples. I think I've made seven so far.

Merry Christmas in July!

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Getting My Feet Wet Again

I walked away from blogging for a while. I was overwhelmed at the time. Work, home, health issues, were all taking up time and blogging was just an added stress I didn't need. Anyhow, most of the crazy is done with and I'm more motivated to blog since I recently jumped over the 500,000 page views hurdle. (I can't believe it.) I never expected my little blog to get so many hits. Granted, I'm no Bloggess; she probably gets that in a month, but I'm grateful for everyone who pays me a visit. 

Okay, ego stroking aside, let me drop off my poem (not suitable for children) and get back to real life for a bit until I can hit you again with a free pattern my newest roommate absolutely adores. 

Working for Free 
good enough to be your bitch
but not your whore
whores get paid
dangle that carrot and I follow
like a good little pony
shiny coat and obedient
but most important
willing to drop everything
to serve at your side
no matter what the cost

See you next week!