Monday, November 21, 2011

Looking for a handmade gift? Crochet for Hire!

Crochet is very versatile and makes for great gifts. Not just scarves and hats for winter, either! I've been crocheting since I learned at the age of 10 and I couldn't have learned a better craft. I love making just about anything for babies, including covers for cloth diapers. I make all sorts of things for the house as well as wearable items and accessories, great for yourself or as gifts.

I prefer to use PayPal for transactions but if time is on your side, I will accept cash or check with the understanding that your order won't be started until the money arrives or the check clears. If you have any questions or want to make a purchase, contact me at
For all of those quiet window-shoppers and anyone who wants to see what kind of work I produce, I've put together an album of things I've made (the ones that I remembered to take pictures of) Anyone who's made a purchase from me and wishes to share pictures, I'd love to add them to my album. Enjoy!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Cough Syrup recipe results!


I tried the Cough Syrup recipe and the kids approve. Smelled so yummy being made... like a Christmas dinner.

FLAVOR: Personally, I had trouble with the honey and onion combo being cold. Oddly, when it was warm I could think of it like a really great glazed ham with onions and veggies and I could be ok with it. Cold was harder on me. The kids didn't blink an eye, they thought it was great... especially the youngest who hate hate hates cough syrup.

EFFECTIVENESS: Very good. The kids coughing almost disappeared after using it for a day (every 3-4 hours)and since there was no fuss over the flavor, I didn't have to coax or cajole. Using it myself, once I got past the intense onion it was great. I added ginger root and cloves which is why there is such a dark color to it. Ginger never fails to make me feel better and I love the numbing cloves bring. In the syrup, the ginger was warming, the honey soothing, and the cloves numbed it just enough. The onion smell/flavor wasn't too bad, but it lingered. In about 20 seconds the warm feeling spread and I lost the tickle in my throat. By the 3rd dose, the rattle in my chest was diminished as well and I slept well since I could breathe clear. I could get used to onion for that!

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Sunday, October 30, 2011

How I got addicted to reclaimed yarn.

Now settle down kids, and let me tell you a story. Once upon a time.... no, I won't keep going in that vein, you can unclench.

BUT -I do have a story. A boring and fibery one at that. I love yarn. Seems a weird thing to be addicted to but I fully admit it. I'm just a step past recreational use, barely in control. In in attempt to save a little money I started looking up cheaper yarn on eBay and Etsy. There was a lot to sift through and much of it was labeled 'reclaimed'. Now THAT caught my attention, I had to investigate further. People could buy sweaters at thrift stores and take them apart for the yarn? is this possible?! When I figured out how to do it myself I was in yarny heaven. So many possibilities! Merino, angora, and silk, oh, my! I spent my weekends hitting thrift stores, secondhand stores, and garage sales... it felt like treasure hunting.

When my pile of yarny booty began overflowing it's bounds in my closet and started taking up residence in the living room, my darling husband used my own words about his tech habit against me- "income needs to equal output". Something comes in, something goes out... do you know how painful it is to get RID of yarn?!?!

In the midst of my discovery-of-reclaiming buzz I shared the knowledge with my mom since she loves knitting and crochet, too. Oh, me, oh, my. Who could have known exactly how much yarn and sweaters she would collect in such a short time?

Tonight I went to JoAnn's in search of some materials that I needed, it was necessary that they be new. Our local JoAnn's recently moved into a former Gottschalk's and I was a little awed when I walked in. So. Much. Fabric. I was fairly dizzy with the bright lights and colors of all of the different crafting mediums and thankful I had a limited amount of money to spend in one place.

Now, I'll have to disappear off the interwebs again for a short period of time while I make good use of the new crafty things I picked up. :) See you when I come up to breathe!

P.S. I have been curing the rosemary soap I made and it finally appears to be hardening up. Thank goodness for that, I was worried I had wasted a bunch of ingredients. It works well, too, though the scent is pretty faint after rebatching so many times.I think it was 4... maybe 5?

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Cold and Flu season, Ho!

Today my youngest started getting a runny nose and acting whiny and petulant. Sigh, the signs that he's getting sick. By this afternoon a very mild fever and sleepiness joined the team so now I'm playing defense.
I found a couple of recipes on a blog recently and I'm dying to try them, this is a perfect opportunity. I stumbled on Keeper of the Home Cold Kicker recipe to help kick it in the bud right as it starts - forewarning, it's supposed to steep for a couple of weeks so plan ahead. It was simple to put together since I had just about everything on hand and wow, was that ever a potent mix. My breathing is VERY clear now, lol. I have high hopes for it's effectiveness, but doubts about my children opening their mouths for it. Crossing my fingers that the honey added after it's finished will make a big difference in the flavor.
Next I made a more immediately gratifying recipe from the same blog, the Cough and Cold syrup. It was even simpler and smells much more appealing. Thank goodness for generous bloggers sharing their recipes! I'm always looking for good home remedies so I can avoid the ingredients in store bought stuff. I'll be sure to share how this works for my family.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Coffee syrup, crochet, and hair care

Not really an auspicious beginning, but I'm not feeling that clever and it's what I'm up to.
I've been crocheting a lot lately and thankfully most of it's paid. I love crocheting for money and I hope I never have to stop, who knew yarn could be so addicting? Had someone told me before.... No, no, I'd still have gotten into it. Scarf and hat and mitten season is coming and guess who's excited? This girl. Yes, I'm a super duper dork but I'm happy and that's what counts.
Since I cut my hair I've worn kerchiefs and headbands and barrettes, but not hats. I tried on a hat for funzies, one of my old faces and wow, having short hair REALLY changes how that looks! March to now, it grew from 1/4 long on the back of my neck to brushing my shoulders. New hats for a new style. This got me thinking about my hair care routine.
I developed an ... What's the right word, intolerance? Allergy? Anyway, I had awful reactions to my beloved brand of hair care and began a search for the solution, which turned out to be sulfate/wax/silicone free products. It works so well that I have to be an idiot to go back to my off-the-shelf habits but I do. Every so often I try it and then get all disappointed that it's still a failure. Sigh. I'm even having reactions to some of my tried and true stuff now, so back to baking soda scrubs, co washing, and flax seed gel. It's just so boring and I miss the yummy fragrances. A nice recipe of salt scrub or sugar scrub makes up for that, I'm in love with brown sugar scrub with a vanilla orange scent or a salt scrub with lemon and ginger. I'm never going to have skin like a Hollywood starlet but a scrub with olive oil gives me a nice healthy, soft, glow.
I admit it, I'm one of those people, the irritating ones who make their own .... Everything. I make lipgloss, hair gel, hats, bread, and today, coffee syrup. It's stupidly simple to make all of those things if you practice so it's not as though this makes me feel accomplished or special. The syrup turned out well,


1 cup water 1 cup sugar and whatever flavors your might want. Medium heat til it boils then turn it down and simmer for 5 minutes.

yeah, that easy. I added a teaspoon of vanilla, a shake of cinnamon and a pinch of grains of paradise. Smells heavenly, like homed apple pie. So very good.