Best way to spend a Sunday afternoon!

Otis knows how to do it right.

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Crocheters … Don’t throw out those old cassette tapes!

If you can crochet, you can make one-of-a-kind, waterproof coasters.

Just crack open the cassette case, remove the spool of film, and start crocheting.

Here’s the simple pattern I used:

Materials: 6 mm hook, scissors, stitch marker, yarn needle

Terminology: ch = chain; sc = single crochet; dc = double crochet; sl st = slip stitch; st = stitch; pm = place marker; rep = repeat; sp = space; sk = skip 

COASTER

Make a ring: ch 4 and sl st in first ch to join.

Round 1: ch 1 (does not count as a st), sc 9 times in ring (pm in first sc), sl st in first sc to join. (9 sc)

Round 2: ch 1, 2 sc in each sc around (pm in first sc), sl st in first sc to join. (18 sc)

Round 3: ch 1, 2 sc in first sc (pm in first sc), 1 sc in next sc, *(2 sc in next sc, 1 sc in next sc), rep from * around, sl st in first sc to join. (27 sc)

Round 4: ch 2, 4 dc in same sp, ch 1, sk next 4 scs, 5 dc in next sc, ch 1, *skip 4 scs, 5 dc in next sc, ch 1; rep from * around, sk last 4 scs and sl st in top of beginning ch 2. Fasten off and use yarn needle to weave in loose end.

Merry Christmas to all!

Funniest Christmas songs EVER!

Who doesn’t need a good laugh during this crazed season? Don’t be sipping any eggnog while you’re listening to these, or you’ll be spraying it all over the floor.

(1) When you’ve been bad as all get out throughout year, there’s a good chance you’ll get “Nuttin’ for Christmas“:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5cje9uX5rXg

(2) You’re anticipating what’s inside that gift… you open it, and… UGH!… better put on your “Present Face“:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yMWTs0YT928

(3) The Dropkick Murphys nailed the truth about large family gatherings with “The Season’s Upon Us“:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qTx-sdR6Yzk

(4) Tenacious D vs Sum 41 stokes our inner rock diva with “Things I Want“:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qeYzousLJeA

(5) Who doesn’t remember the great Adam Sandler on Saturday Night Live, with his shout out to “Hanukkah“?:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KX5Z-HpHH9g

(6) An oldie but goodie… Spike Jone & his city slickers will crack you up with “All I want for Christmas (is my two front teeth):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I-iFsxSNN2c

(7) Dust off your mullet wig for Jeff Foxworthy’s “Redneck 12 Days of Christmas“:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QuBRBnO_uOQ

(8) A gift you never want to get: “Miss Fogarty’s Christmas Cake” by the Irish Rovers:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O8SfdNBUWVk

Enjoy!

Cat lifestyles of the 21st century

One of Otis’s favourite activities? Watching “Cat TV” on my computer.

I’ve bookmarked a couple of videos made for entertaining cats and dogs–videos that feature birds and squirrels, as well as cats playing with toys–and he will sit and watch for at least 20-30 minutes at a time.

Cats sure have come a long way from chasing mice in the farmyard. If, one of these days, he starts typing on the keyboard, I’ll truly be impressed. 🙂

Zoo Day!

Spent a lovely fall day at the Toronto Zoo yesterday with my grandbabies.

In front of the Toronto Zoo sign in the goat pen

Toucan

Mother giraffe, along with her daughter and little son.
The grounds there are beautiful.
What is he thinking about?
Wouldn’t want to fall into this pen!
Ben and Charlotte
Beautiful male and two female lions
Breed of antelope
Check out the baboon sitting and watching the workmen!
Gorgeous zebras
Mother cheetah
Hippo
Soft-shell turtle
Chameleon
Cute goats
A wonderful way to spend an afternoon!

The most divine gift

My twin grandchildren, Benjamin and Charlotte, will be celebrating their first birthday soon. So lately, I’ve been wondering what I’d like to get for them.

The other day, I went out to run a quick errand. When I was finished and ready to return home, I had a strong feeling that I needed to stop at the Walmart that I would be passing by, even though there was nothing else that I needed.

As I walked through the front doors, the first thing I saw was a display set up with a pile of end-of-season toys on it.

I stopped in my tracks: there on the middle shelf facing me was one lone box containing a pair of twin dolls—that particular shelf was bare of any other toys, and the dolls really had no connection to the rest of the summer yard toys spread around on the other shelves of the display rack. It was as though someone had set the dolls there to personally greet me.

I laughed aloud as I picked up the box. Appropriately enough, one was a boy, the other a girl. 

But what really captured me was the boy doll’s open-mouthed grin—so similar to Ben’s, and the girl doll’s more serious expression, so like Charlotte’s. And that’s not all—the boy doll’s bright blue eyes are a match to Ben’s, and the girl doll’s hazel eyes are a match to Charlotte’s. Now, what are the chances?

Could it be that those dolls were meant to make their way to my dear twin grandbabies? I think so. 

I just couldn’t wipe the grin off my face as I cradled my divine find in the checkout line.

Starring… Otis the Ragdoll Cat

Otis is part of the lineup today at Katzenworld for Tummy Rub Tuesday! Check out all the wonderful cats featured today:

My poem featured today at Katzenworld

Painting on Rocks: Whimsical Owls

Painting on rocks has become one of my favourite crafty pursuits. It’s challenging (and fun!) to transform a plain stone into a decorative keepsake. It’s also one of the most relaxing ways to spend an afternoon.

I went for a walk along Oakville’s Lake Ontario shoreline, where I gathered a treasure trove of smooth rocks in a variety of shapes and sizes. Once back home, I just used soap and water to wash all of the rocks.

After choosing four shapes that suited my project, I roughly penciled a different owl design on each one.

Next, I chose a different colour combination of acrylic paints for each owl. Working on only one owl per day, I painted a couple of coats of the base colours and allowed them to dry overnight. 

Once the base painting was complete, I used a black ultra fineline marker to carefully outline each of the painted areas. After allowing the marker lines to dry, I used a combination of both fineline marker and acrylic paint (with the finest size of paintbrush) to add intricate designs in each section. You need an extremely steady hand and a ton of patience to get it right!

Once I was satisfied with my finished owls, I sprayed them with Krylon Kamar Varnish, a clear, protective sealant. Next, I used black acrylic to paint a plain, leafless tree on an 8.5” x 11” white canvas board. Once that was dry, I used a heavy-duty glue (LePage Carpenter’s Glue) to affix each rock to a branch on the board.

Then, I sanded a light-coloured wood frame that I had in my stash, painted it black, and sprayed it with a protective sealant (Armor Coat Clear Finish Acrylic Spray Paint).

All done!

Here are both of my completed sets. Stay tuned for my next rock project.

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