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Showing posts from April, 2014

Crochet Pattern: Princess Fleurette of Cork

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A few weeks ago, I fell in love with this adorable and easy pattern for Cork and Crochet Knights by LucyRavenscar. Immediately, I decided that they needed some princesses to protect!
I am very happy with what I came up with: with a few scraps of yarn and little practice you'll be able to crochet one up during a single episode of your favorite show, and the shape and size of the finished item is just perfect for little fingers - not to mention just plain fun!
The designer was kind enough to give me her go-ahead to publish my pattern, which is derived directly from her knights. Like her patterns, please feel free to make for your own use, or to raise money for a good cause.
Materials:  Small amounts of medium-weight yarn in two colors, designated "Hair" and "Dress" in the pattern
Crochet Hook (The original designer suggests an F / 4 mm hook; I found I needed to use an E)
Wine Cork
Permanent marker for drawing features
(Optional) Scraps of narrow ribbon or tulle, …

Practical Lacing Activities for Boys

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My almost 5-year-old has been asking me to teach him to sew lately. It started when his little sister got a "build-a-bear" project for her birthday in which the kid was supposed to sew up several seams on the animal. Both kids got quite a kick out of helping to make something actually functional, but for James it really made an impression.
I've tried a couple of ideas I found online with plastic canvas and safety needles, but our materials haven't been ideal, and neither of us has been quite patient enough. More to the point, I suspect, there was no actual product produced.  Sewing a line for the sake of a line simply isn't that exciting.
This afternoon he grabbed a shallow cardboard box that had been kicking around and asked for tape in order to make the flaps stand up. This proved frustrating: he just isn't coordinated enough to get everything in the right place before the tape goes on. He asked for another solution, and to make a long story short, I ende…

Cooties Revisited - Simplified Rules for Sanity

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What is it with those classic childhood Milton Bradley games? They're terrible! Seriously, what's more frustrating than setting up "Hi-Ho Cherry-O," trying to hammer out those pieces in "Don't Break the Ice," or roll all those sixes in "Cooties?" And "Don't Spill the Beans?" Arrgh!
Honestly, I don't think I liked these games when I Was a kid, even though we had them all.  As an adult, I shudder and try every avoidance tactic I know when the kids ask for one.  "Oh, you want to play Hi-Ho Cherry-O? Well... uh... Hey, look! Ice Cream!"
Well, I think I can at least help you with "Cooties." My almost 5-year-old was so excited when he found the game at a garage sale this morning that I just didn't have the heart to refuse him the opportunity to spend two of his hard-earned quarters on it.

But I did have a brainstorm to make it less tedious.  All I did was add a second die. (We rolled both inside a small, c…