Running, Biking, Crafting, Living

Cirlces in Squares Blanket

I did it!  It wasn’t just a fluke, I finished blanket number 2!  When I saw a picture of this blanket on Debi Y’s blog I fell in love.  I just loved the colors and thought it would be the perfect blanket to keep at my house for when my grandson visited.

I only had to re-do two blocks this time, so maybe that means I’m getting a little better at this.  I have my third blanket well under way, and this one is a creation of my own.  Crazy I know, but I’ll just have to wait and see how it turns out.  This will be my first non-baby blanket!

Thanks again to Debi for sharing her pattern!

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Crocheted Lego Blanket

In my typical fashion of getting an idea in my head and deciding that “I can do that!”, several years ago I decided to teach myself how to crochet.  I bought a few books, made a few pot holders, attempted other projects, but I don’t think I actually ever finished anything bigger than a pot holder.  I would pick it up every couple of years, play a little and then move on to something else. 

So doesn’t it make perfect sense that years later, when I find out I’m going to be a grandmother for the first time, that I decide I have to crochet a blanket for my new grandbaby?  I raised two boys, so legos were a big deal in our house, so when I came across a picture of a crocheted lego blanket on Pintest I just knew I had to make it for my grandson. 

Off I went to find my craftbox full of crochet hooks and unused yarn.  A quick glance at my old books to remember how to do the stitches and I was ready to go!  I decided that once I figured it out and could make one block I was set, all I had to do was make 99 more – serioulsy 99 more!  What was I thinking?!  There were times I thought I would never finish making those little lego blocks.  I ended up making way more than 100 blocks, when one block wasn’t quite the size as all the other I would do it over.  When I joined the first two rows together I figured out I could do it better so I had to remake the first row of blocks.   The baby shower had seemed so far away, but soon I was in major countdown mode!  I crocheted everywhere, and in all my spare time, as my husband would be happy to attest to! 

I thought I was so clever by organizing each row in ziplock baggies with the row number written on the outside and the order they were to be added, so the finished blanket would have a nice consistent pattern. Of course it wasn’t until I was about halfway through joining the blocks together that I discovered I got off my pattern!  Oh well, I think I like the new pattern better anyway!

I finished the blanket three days before the baby shower!  I look forward to my sweet little grandson sitting in the middle of the blanket playing.  I’m now working on two more blankets, and have the next project in mind when these are done. 

Thanks to Andrea Baker for sharing this cute pattern and sparking my passion for crochet!

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Christmas in July!

So I may be in the minority here, but Christmas isn’t necessarily my favorite time of year.  I know, I’m supposed to remember and focus on “the reason for the season”, but doesn’t it get harder every year to do that?  Everyone seems overscheduled with parties, shopping, decorating and baking.  The decision on what to buy the people you love, how much to spend, and who all do you have to buy for can just be too much.  It’s not about the gift, I know that, but doesn’t it always seem to come down to that?  So I thought, wouldn’t it be fun to have a Christmas in July party and celebrate the season with family and friends just because I wanted to and not because I had to?

I have to say I had so much fun planning and plotting for this party.  Having a Christmas party in the middle of summer is a little crazy anyway, so why not go all the way with it?  It wasn’t a huge party, pretty much just our immediate family, but with everyone living close by we could have lots of fun with the invitations!

We started out by hand delivering a “Save the Date” invitation.  We packaged up each invitation in a box with four melted snowman cookies.  Pinterest was amazing for ideas.  I found the melted snowman cookie on Crazy Domestic, and it couldn’t have been more perfect –it is July after all! 


 Next came the actual party invitation.  My husband and I had a blast with this.  I picked up some accounting boxes (large size box with a lid).  I wrapped the box and lid separately so you didn’t actually have to unwrap the box, just lift the lid.  Added some ribbon to the top and a gift card.  In the box we put one helium filled balloon, with a ribbon attached and the invitation rolled and tied to the end of the ribbon.  So off we went – my husband and I and our trunk full of boxes.  We sang along to Christmas music and delivered each box.  At each house I would leave the box at the front door, ring the doorbell and run like a mad woman to the car, where my husband was waiting to make our get-away. 

All of our guests loved it.  One person said the balloon went all the way up to their vaulted ceiling, and one of our nieces got bonked on the head by the balloon because she was leaning over to see what was inside the box.  She made her parents close the box and do it again.  One of my son’s called me absolutely cracking up.  My get-away wasn’t as smooth from his house and when he opened the door all he saw was his mom running through the front yard, to jump in the car and speed away.  It was a lot of fun, but my favorite part was being with my husband and us laughing historically in the car together.

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Santa and Snow!

This party was a great excuse to get crafty and creative!  My invitation promised Santa and snow, which caused my husband some concern, but what’s Christmas without Santa? And snow in Texas in July, well that’s a must!  I also wanted the house to look different, I didn’t want to use any of my regular Christmas decorations, but I also didn’t want to spend a fortune on new ones, so the only thing left to do is make them, right? 

I ordered “snow” from SnoWonder and filled a baby pool with it.  This is some of the coolest stuff!  It’s a powder type substance that when you add water makes it expand and grow, and it really does feel like snow.  The kids loved playing in it!  I made sure I had little individual party bags of the SnoWonder that everyone could take home.

Santa cut his vacation short and made it to the party.  He forgot to change out of his bathing suit trunks and was wore a lei along with his red coat, beard and hat!  His bag of presents was a suitcase and he had to get through lots of odd things packed in there before he got to the gifts for the kids.  Have I mentioned how much I love my husband – he was such a good sport with all my craziness!

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Christmas Crafts

Because I wanted this “Christmas” to be different, I didn’t want to use any of my regular Christmas decorations, so in order not to spend a lot of money I made almost everything. It gave me a great excuse to be crafty and I loved knowing that everything was hand made.  Here are a few of the ways I decorated.

Ornaments” in the fire place.  These are rubber balls bought from Wal-Mart for $1.50.  I covered them with Mod Podge and added colored glitter, I also sprinkled some of them with epsom salt.



Here’s the fireplace mantel of Christmas Trees.  This was so fun and easy.  I started with waffle cones and sugar cones.  I covered some of them with melted white chocolate candy (the discs you can get at a hobby store, not real white chocolate – it hardens nicely and doesnt get melty), and then dipped them in epsom salt.  I also spray painted the cones a color and sprinkled them with glitter or epsom salt.  Then I spray painted the white paper cone that was wrapped around the waffle cones.  To make some height I just rolled white paper into a cone shape, glued it, and spray painted them.  A couple of the sugar cones got wrapped in pipe cleaners. 

The waffle cones won’t stand up on their own.  I happened to have different size dowels that I had previously cut down to about 2 inches tall.  The cones sat on the dowels really nicely. You can also sit them on small spice jars, or paint bottles.

Next I made three dimensional ornaments to hang on the wall.  These are styrofoam balls that I cut in half, spray painted and added glitter.  The ornament hanger is a toilet paper roll cut in half and painted, and a piece of wire.  It turned out to be an easy way to fill an empty wall.


I bought a Cricut machine a couple of months ago and you know I was determined to find a use for it with this party.  What else but a snowflake table runner?!  I used a glue stick to glue them together, sprayed it with a Clear Coat and sprinkled a little glitter over it (can’t ever go wrong with a little glitter!)  It was a one-time use table runner, but that’s ok – it added some needed color to the drink area. 

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More Christmas Crafts

I’m a wanna be artist.  I really want to be able to paint, but it just doesn’t come easy. Abstract is more my style – who can say if what’s right or wrong with an abstract painting.  But I do love to paint and create, and really wanted to do something for the party.  I had gone to one of those painting classes, you know, where everyone in the class paints the same painting, and there’s lots of wine drinking!  I had a great time at the class, but the painting we did wasn’t really something I wanted to hang.  My daughter-in-law suggested I paint over it.  Love it!  It’s the perfect way to have some fun painting, add another decoration to the house, and not spend much money.  I just needed paint!  I had so much fun painting Santa’s coat I wanted to paint more.

I remembered I had three oval canvases I had picked up a couple of years ago for a project that never actually happened.  I pulled them out from under the bed, dusted them off (seriously dusty), and off to the store I went for a few more paint colors. 

Here’s what I came up with.  Poor frosty, melting in the snow!  Obviously not high quality painting going on it, but I had fun and it filled the space in my hallway! 








At the last minute I decided I needed to add one more element in my living room.  I had promised my husband that I would be done decorating the day before the party so we could focus on the food, but I just couldn’t resist!  I have three pictures hanging vertically on the wall and I decided it would make the perfect snowman.  I quickly covered the frames with white paper, cut out some shapes with my Cricut and a snowman appeared!  It was just what was needed in the room! 

Speaking of snowmen… I had a little surprise for everyone in the guest bathroom! 

It was fun hearing the first whispers of “you have to go see the bathroom”!  One of our nieces gave him a kiss every time she went in there, the other niece checked to see if his whole body was in the tub. So fun!

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Christmas Tree

Have you seen that Christmas Tree Mobile that’s on Pinterest?  It’s so cool! I fell in love with it last year and wanted to make one to be our tree for Christmas, but it never happened.  So I was determined to get it done for our Christmas in July party.  Megan was amazingly generous on her blog Not Martha, sharing the details on how she did it.  I put my husband in charge and I was his helper. 

Once we really understood the process it really wasn’t that hard.  We had our routine and we worked on it a few hours at a time over three days.  We only broke three ornaments in the process!  We also got to learn a new skill using jewelry crimpers – we had to watch a YouTube video to understand how they work, but we got it!  Is jewelry making in our future?  Probably not, but you never know!

Here’s our tree – during the party we had a spotlight on it to give it lots of shimmer! Everyone was very impressed.  With Christmas (the real Christmas) being only a few months off we’re going to hang it in one of the guest rooms and then bring it back out.  I may add glitter to the inside of the ornaments to change it up a bit, but we’ll see what I’m in the mood for when the time comes.










Here’s another tree that greeted our guests at the front door.  It’s a tomato cage wrapped in shimmery garland.  I happened to have red pom poms for a game we decided not to play, so I set the pom poms in the garland to make it look a little like lights.  A little cheesy I know, but kind of cute.

One more tree.  Before heading out to work one morning I had this idea.  I had purchased a couple of styrofoam cones that were screaming to be used.  So I thought, what if… I wrapped the cone in twine, instered push pins all around, and set it on the bathroom counter.  Done!  I love a project that uses stuff I have in the house!

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A Little About Me

Hi, my name is Pattie.  I love an adventure and a challenge.  Running, biking, crafting, and traveling are a few of the things I love.  “I can do that!” is usually the thought that starts the adventure.  Things don’t always work out, and craziness often ensues, but I love to try and sometimes I even succeed.

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