Christmas Cards

Bear with me with me on this little blog post.

I miss getting Christmas Cards.  Oh, I get plenty on social media, you know, the generic ones with snow and a dancing snowman.  What I miss is real, paper, delivered by the postman, Christmas Cards.  I miss birthday cards, letters and stuff in the mail other than bills and ‘junk’ mail.  I miss Carolers coming to the house and singing.  I miss singing traditional songs at Christmas.  In fact, here lately I cringe at some of the Christmas songs I hear on the radio.

carolers

I miss the celebration, the deliberation and the honesty behind all of the things now deemed old-fashioned or out-dated.  Perhaps I’m out-dated, don’t care, I am am who I am.   I admit I have fallen into the techno mentality myself, I’m working on a computer as I write this right now.  But what really hit me was when I sent a text to my husband, who was downstairs, last night as I was upstairs in my office.  REALLY???? NO!  At that moment I wanted to throw my cell phone out the window.   Honestly, I almost cried.  Why?  Because I consider myself very blessed to have a very close, honest and loving relationship with my husband, and the last thing I want is to put technology between us.

I woke up early this morning, with a lot on my heart and mind.  I spent extra time in prayer over a morning cup of coffee and I am almost finished with my Christmas Cards.  I sat this morning putting in a letter in each one to be sent to family and friends who I rarely hear from anymore, but still, it’s a Christmas Card and it will be delivered through the postal service and I hope it brings a smile.

Take the time to sit down and play a game WITH a person AT a table and enjoy each other’s company.  Take the time to write a letter and send a smile to someone.  Most of all, unplug.

Until Next Time,

Mrs. Kay L. Rice

A Basic Sunburst Granny Square

I’m starting a new section here since I’ve had so much recent interest.  Tonight I’m going to share with you a pattern for a Sunburst Granny Square.  Granny Squares are great because they finish quickly and can be stitched together like a quilt to make blankets, baby blankets, scarfs, bags, ponchos, lots of cool things.

Ready? Here we go!

Your crochet hook size depends on the yarn and size you want for the square. I think a 4mm works best. I used a bit larger hook for the one in the picture so you could see the stitches best.  As for yarn I like Red Heart or Big Twist economy.

Stitches

Half double crochet (hdc): yarn over, insert hook in next stitch, yarn over and pull loop through stitch (3 loops on hook). Yarn over and pull through all 3 loops on hook.

Double Crochet (dc): yarn over, insert hook in next stitch, yarn over and pull loop through stitch (3 loops on hook). Yarn over and pull through two loops on hook (2 loops on hook). Yarn over and pull through 2 remaining loops on hook.

Puff Stitch (ps): *Yarn over, insert hook in indicated stitch and draw yarn through stitch* 3 times (7 loops on hook). Yarn over and pull through all loops on hook. Chain 1 to lock.

Cluster Stitch (cs): *Yarn over, insert hook in next stitch and pull up a loop, yarn over and pull through 2 loops* 4 times (5 loops on hook).  Yarn over and pull through all loops on hook.

Treble Stitch (trbl): Yarn over hook twice, insert hook in next stitch.  Yarn over hook and draw yarn through stitch (4 loops on hook).  Pull yarn through 2 loops (3 loops remaining on hook). Yarn over and draw through 2 loops (2 loops remaining).  Yarn over and pull through last 2 loops on hook.

Round 1:

Chain 5 join with a slip stitch.  Gives you a ‘magic circle’.  Chain 3 to count as your first double crochet.  Work 15 more double crochet stitches around the ring. Join with a slip stitch.  You can fasten off to change colors here if you want, I didn’t in my sample.

Round 2:

Attach the next color with a slip stitch to any dc, chain 1, puff stitch in the same stitch and in each dc. Join with a slip stitch to the first puff stitch. 16 puff stitches in all.  Fasten off.

Round 3:

Attach the next color with a slip stitch in the chain 1 space of any puff stitch, chain 2, (cluster stitch, chain 2) in the same space and in each chain 1 spaces around. Join with a slip stitch in the beginning cluster stitch. 16 cluster stitches in all.  Fasten.

Round 4:

Use the same color for round four on all your squares if making a blanket.  Attach your color with a slip stitch in any chain 2 space.  Chain 4 to count as the first treble stitch and then 2 more treble stitches. Chain 1 now on the same stitch create 3 more treble stitches. This creates a corner. We are changing the circle into a square.  In your next 2 chain space crochet 3 treble stitches, chain 1.  Do this 2 more times. Create a corner ( 2 sets of treble in the same stitch) repeat until you have 4 corners.

Round 5: 

Repeat Round 4. Fasten off.

Now you can stitch your granny squares together.

Here is another one with a smaller size hook and thicker yarn. A huge difference in the outcome.


Until next time,

Mrs. Kay L. Rice

The Secret to Happiness

There is one simple step that I have found that leads to happiness.  Acknowledge that happiness does not rely on a person, place, thing or even a circumstance.  It depends on your choice.  Yup, its that simple.  It all depends on how you look at everything, how you react to situations and people.

It seems more and more the ‘world’ pushes that happiness can only be gained by being tied to things, people, position and money.  Prestige and placement in life are preached to our children so heavily at a young age that it’s no wonder we are seeing so much depression and and stress in our youngins.  The constant flood of being plugged in is always screaming at us what the world says we have to be, have to do, have to go.  It’s time to turn it off.  School is important but college is not a necessity.  There is nothing wrong with having a career based on skill and talents, working with your hands or with the land.  Technology has its uses, but more often than not, it seems to have more misuses.

Here are some basic rules for embracing the now, for finding happiness.

  • Live well beneath your means.
  • Don’t give away what you can’t give at home.
  • Return everything you borrow.
  • Serve with your talents and your heart, not out of obligation or guilt.
  • Stop blaming other people for your bad choices.
  • Pray Daily (sometimes every second if need be).
  • Have daily walks and talk with God.
  • Admit it when you make a mistake.
  • Give unworn clothes to charity.
  • Give outsized clothes to charity.
  • Do something nice for a total stranger (and don’t post it on social media).
  • Listen more; talk less.
  • Find a reason to be outside.
  • Strive for excellence, but not perfection.
  • Be on time.
  • Don’t make excuses.
  • Organize your day in the morning.
  • Don’t argue or insist on being right or having the last word.
  • Be kind to unkind people.
  • Let someone ahead of you in line.
  • Take time to be alone with God.
  • Always incorporate good manners.
  • Don’t lie.
  • Be humble.
  • Realize and accept that life is not fair, but it is all in God’s plan.
  • Enjoy your time for rest and sleep.
  • Know when to keep your mouth shut.
  • Practice not criticizing others.
  • Turn the TV/Computer/phone off.
  • Learn from the past.
  • Live every day to its fullest.
  • Always give a kind word.
  • Make due with what you have.
  • Focus on the good, not the bad.

Happiness is how you view your life.  I like to tell people that every day is a good day as long as I wake up and my feet hit the floor and my face doesn’t.  I figure that leaves the rest of the day wide open for great things to happen.

Until Next Time,

Mrs. Kay L. Rice