Monday, November 28, 2011

Classic Red

Yay!  A new pattern!  Finally being able to release a new pattern is so exciting.  Makes me giggly like a 12 year old girl :)

Model: Braelyn C. (my niece)

Having a 2 year old niece has added so much to my life. As I hold her in my lap and read her favorite stories over and over again, all of the classic styles of the illustrations beckon to me; begging to be made a part of her wardrobe.
Naturally, I’m listening… 

Classic Red is more than just a new pattern.  It's the first of the Storybook Classic Crochet collection. As of right now, I know this collection will contain 3 patterns, perhaps 5.  The second pattern has already been written and I've made a sample.  Next step is to get it to a tester to ensure there are no errors.  Then, I'll get it released!  I will be selling them individually or as a collection for a discounted price. 

Classic Red is modern take on the typical beret style hat.  It has a slight slouch to it’s shaping, but not overly large so as to be bothersome to tots.  The fabric created is dense enough for warmth without being bulky or stiff.

Size to fit (shown):  2-5 yrs
Yarn:  2.5 oz / 114 yds, light worsted or sport weight yarn
Shown:  1.5 balls, Angora Banboo, by Patons
Hook:  G/6-4mm or size needed for gauge

I hope you all love this hat as much as I do.
You can purchase a digital copy of this pattern HERE.

Oh!  Before you go, if you have something that is "Storybook Classic" style in your mind, and you'd like to see me add it to this collection, do let me know :)

Friday, November 25, 2011

Yep, I'm doing it, too...

No poo.
For those of you who don't know what I'm talking about (although I'm quite certain you have not all been hiding under rocks the past few years and have heard/read of this buzz many times over), no poo means quitting shampoo.
I know, ew, right?  You just shivered at the thought of it, didn't you?  Before you start gagging, I should tell you, I still wash. I'm clean. I just no longer spend $14 on a bottle of chemicals that give the false sense of "cleanliness".
There are many many many sites out there that give the down & dirty (dirty! ha!.. get it? dirty!) of the different chemicals in shampoo.  Not only are they fairly hard on your hair... they most certainly can't be good for our beautiful earth. 
Here are a few links for you to clicky if you're interested in the science-y details:

So, couple of things might happen after you go no poo for the first time:
1.  Holy hair-falling-out, Batman!
2.  Oh.great.Thanks. Now I have the world's worst case of dandruff.
3.  I think I must be allergic to baking soda or something, my head kinda stings.

But, fear not, they don't have to.

Let's talk about my first no poo shower. The internal convo went something like this:
"What the heck am I doing? No shampoo!?! Gross. This is going to be so bad. Okay, fine. I'll do it once. Maybe twice. I'll give it a fair shot. Then, when it really sucks, I can honestly say I tried and go back to my beloved rosemary & mint smelling -yes, ridiculously priced, but I totally love the smell & I buy cheap toilet paper shampoo. Vinegar rinse. Gross. Sooo not rosemary & mint. Fine."
Then I pour the baking soda slurry over my scalp and scrub. And scrub. And scrub.
Scrub like I'm not going to get another shower for forever.  It's okay. I can admit it, it's only you and I here, right? Totally worried & freaked out that my hair is going to be all greasy and gross.  So I do the vinegar rinse (pffttt vinegar. not rosemary & mint!) and step out, dry off, pj's on (I usually prefer to shower at night. See, then I can be uniterrupted. Noone has to come in to tinkle-yes, family of 6, 1 bathroom, or ask if they can let the neighbor kid in, or tell me so&so farted on them, or come ask if it's ok to have a candy, or come to tell because so&so had a candy without asking and that's not fair and can they have a candy now, too) & then... the first test.
I get out my wide-toothed comb (because I'm good and know using a small comb or brush will stretch & damage your hair) and whoa, Nellie! Hair everywhere! Falling out like I've been in a bar fight (not that I have any idea of what it's like to be in a bar fight. But I'm guessing a girl in a bar fight might lose a bit of hair, right?)
Uh, remember all that scrubbing I did?
Hurry, quick! Check the mirror! Exactly how much is falling out, here!?! And then, are you kidding me!? Dandruff!? What?! I've never had a problem with dandruff before!
Pssst, the scrubbing...remember?
After the balding panic and dandruff anger subside, I realize... the tingly sensation. Wait, that's  little more than tingly. That's kinda sting-y. Ow.Why is my head kinda hurty?
Um, scrubbing. All the blasted scrubbing!
So, yeah, I did some online research, because the internets knows everything, and turns out, if you scrub too much, you might have a few side-effects.
Let's face it, the truth is, when you're using shampoo, the wonderful foamy lather (ahem, that's the part that's the worst for your hair) makes you feel likes it's washing away the dirt as we rub our hair.  The bubbles. That's the cleaning part, right?-No. 
We've have gotten out of the habit of cleansing our scalp.  You know how when you go to the beauty shop (that's what we Texans call it, not sure what it is in other parts of the world - hair salon?) and when the person "massages" your head & it feels so good & then your hair looks so full & bouncy after? Um. Yeah. That's because she cleaned your scalp, not just ran detergent through your hair. And then she coated it with silicone to make it all shiny. Uh. What? Yeah. Clicky the "why to make the switch" links above.
Anyhow, the point is, the human body is an amazing creation. If given the opportunity, your natural body oils will keep you hair perfectly conditioned, as long as you keep your scalp clean and hair folicles unclogged, just don't go overboard with the scrubbing.

I've been told/read that there is an adjustment or transition period for your hair to become accustomed to this change of routine. Makes sense. I mean, I've only been using shampoo for 30 someodd years...
Today is day 6 for me. My hair feels a little dry. Also to be noted, my lips are cracking and my hands are flaking and itchy... so weather could be a factor, too.
I'll keep you posted on this experiment, and if I forget, just ask.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Easy & Delicious

So, I told you I'd start adding more of my life details. I think one of those things should definitely include recipes, if they're mine, of course.
Okay, first, you must know that this tomato soup is a total cheat. Delicious. But cheat. 

Super Tomato Soup

1 Family size can of Campbell's tomato soup
1/2 soup can of water
1 can fire roasted diced tomatoes
1 can diced Italian tomatoes

Combine all ingredients in pot, heat thoroughly.

Really, that's it.  It has great flavor and we like the added bits of tomato. If you prefer your soup to be smooth, this can eaily be pureed using a hand (wand) blender- boat motor as Emeril calls it, food processor, whatever you've got. I know, I know... it's all canned & not fresh.... Reality is: sometimes, we have canned dinners around here. And if I can feed my family of 6 happily with this soup and it costs less than $5 (total) and takes 5 minutes (total) to make... well, you do the math. 

It's a fabulously easy "go-to" when you have sudden lunch guests or just want something warm & delicous that is hassel-free.

Uh oh, dtr needs computer for science.  I'll come back with what is in in this glorious sandwich in a bit.

Friday, November 4, 2011

More to life

Hello, dear readers.  I have made a decision about the postings, or lack of, on my wee location of the internets.  I've discovered that one reason I seldomly update is, well, I can't.  Designing is a business of secrets.  I contractually bound to not show my work until it's "reveal time".  So, while I am known to most of you because of my yarny adventures, I've decided to do more posting about the other parts of my world.   So expect to start seeing a little more real-life RV on RV Designs :)

I'm pretty sure you all know I'm a stay-at-home, home-schooling mom of 4.  Having 4 kids means doing as much on the cheap as possible.  For me, I have found one way to save money is on laundry.  Because, wow- do we go through mounds of laundry!

So today, I offer: DIY Dryer Sheets
You will need:
1 no longer worn 100% cotton tee, rubber glove, liquid softener, scissors, shallow dish
Cut tee into squares, soak in liquid softener, squeeze out excess (pour back into jug), hang squares to dry.

Each square can last up to 20 loads! *If you start to notice static, or when it no longer smells as strong as you'd like, switch to a new square.  When all squares are used, soak, squeeze, dry. Repeat from *