Tuesday, March 15, 2011

MARKING TIME AND SAVING MY SANITY WITH CRAFTING


Crochet is my present mode of marking time and sanity saving. As with a lot of you, crafting has been my therapy whether it was crochet, quilting, sewing, mosaics, beadwork, papier mache or whatever I was involved in at the time. Crafting is my way of keeping busy and working through instead of wringing my hands and pacing. In some instances I would have no skin left on my hands and no floor left under my feet.
  
The impetus to set aside quilting for a while and drag out my hooks and yarn  was fueled a couple of months ago by a young lady named Meghan when I read about her and her friends who were making blankets for underprivileged and sending them with missionaries on the mission field. You can read about  them in "Meghan's Ministry" at wwwTheAlabasterBox.blogspot.com.

Much has been crocheted in the last several weeks that normally would not have been finished because much has occurred-much pain, much waiting, much concern, much prayer. I have actually finished: 2 baby  blankets, 3 little girls' sweaters, 3 matching dresses, 4 hats, 3 granny square purses to complete the sweater/dress ensembles, 2 pairs of knee high foot warmers  and since this post was started a week or so ago, another toddler dress. Under normal circumstances, I would have been hard pressed to have one sweater done. Handwork like this is usually done as my Granny used to say in "snatches and grabs" instead of almost full time as recently.

One of the blankets was done as I sat with my sister-in-law who  was found to have a tumor on her brain and was rushed to have emergency surgery.  She did really well but has to have care 24/7. The squares that were brought out with coordinating yarn after I met Meghan and troop were put to use because they were so handy. These were finished in a granny square. I do a lot of granny square-it is kind of a mindless pattern that I don't have to think much about as I work.

The foot warmers were crocheted for my 2 oldest grandchildren to keep them from taking my pair that my sister, Jackie, had made for me for my birthday. Both were threatening to take them.  These were also done as I sat with my sister-in-law.

The second blanket was completed a week or so later as we  waited all day for word on grand nephew, Ayden, who is only 9 months old. A brain tumor had been found and he was having a scan and mri. They were expecting to have to do emergency surgery but that was scheduled for a week later. Prayers went into each stitch. I made sure the blanket got to him several days before  his surgery.

The day before Ayden's surgery my son, Jeff, had surgery on his shoulder. One of the sweaters was worked on as I waited during his surgery. The matching pieces were also worked on as I cared for him after his surgery during the waiting week for Ayden's surgery.

In all this,  news came that niece, Debbie, has breast cancer. More intense crocheting, crocheting, crocheting-something to keep busy, something productive to do, something of beauty to create for 4 beautiful little girls.

Having the girls' outfits done,  I had been searching for sweater patterns for my great grandsons so they won't feel left out when their sisters get their new outfits. An email arrived announcing new hard to find crochet patterns for boys from Hooked On Crochet at AllFreeCrochet. I will be using one of the new vest patterns-it is just what I was looking for.

You see, Debbie's surgery won't be for a couple of weeks and I need the calm of handwork. I started one of the boys sweaters earlier today.

Being busy is a blessing, being able to be busy is a blessing.

Below are photos of the 3 sweater outfits and granny square dress that I have been able to make for my great granddaughters-Hannah, Jenna,  Ashlynn and Maizin and the site where I got the inspiration and patterns.  My friend, Valerie, sent me the link that I have looked over almost every day. 

It is a site for all kinds of crafts with patterns and even video tutorials and instructions. If you work with children's groups, there are a lot of crafts for reclyclables and all of this is free. From that site, I have gone to several others that I didn't know about.

I have downloaded enough patterns to keep me busy for the next 200 years even if I work 24/7 and they are all gorgeous. 

The original site Val sent me is: wwwfavecraft.com and from that I have visited:
AllFreeCrochet-Hooked on Crochet
Redheart.com
crochettoday.com
knittingtodaymag.com
LionBrand.com
Caron.com
Annie's Attic
and there are many more

On favcraft, I seem to pick patterns designed by "doublestitch twins" [see photos-sweaters/newsboy hat, below] and Vintage Creations [see photos-dresses, below. There is also a beautiful crochet lacy duster that one day I may get to for myself].  

I so admire the people who have designed the wonderful patterns available. Robin Murphy on the Red Heart site has some of the most beautiful little girls' dresses I have ever seen-they are breathtaking.

For Hannah-size 6, Jenna-size 4-5, Ashlynn-size 2-3
BIG & LITTLE DRESSES by Groovy Crochet
NEWSBOY CAP PATTERN BY "DOUBLESTITCHTWINS"
Flower Child's Sweater by doublestitch twins-FAVECRAFTS
Vintage Rose Pattern-FAVECRAFTS
Granny Square Purse-use any Granny Square pattern to size desired
For Maizin-size 18 months
Granny Square Yoke Dress Pattern by Valerie Moffitt on RedHeart.com
I have really enjoyed working on these outfits for the girls in the light coral, yellow and white. 

Two of each pattern-one for me and one for my sister were printed,  put into page protectors and into notebooks. The extra set made a nice gift for my sister who is an avid crocheter and I keep adding to our collections.




HERE IS THE LINK FOR YOU TO GO TO FAVECRAFTS AND LOOK FOR YOUR FAVORITE CRAFT-I HOPE YOU GET AS MUCH ENJOYMENT AS I DO FROM THE SITE:
Blog Hop Button Finished on the 15th: FaveCrafts Blog Hop for February

HAPPY CRAFTING!!