Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Crochet Flower Button Hole Cover Tutorial!!!

Welcome to my first Tutorial Tuesday!! Today I have a tutorial planned that goes perfectly with my "Oh So Sweet" Patchwork Dress tutorial, which you can find at Riley Blakes Cutting Corners HERE. Today's tutorial is a super easy Crochet Button Hole Cover, which just so happens to be in the shape of a flower. I designed this to compliment Riley Blake's Sweet Divinity fabric, which I used in creating my patchwork dress.

SO... Here goes!

Crochet Flower Button Hole Cover (Beginner +)

This crochet button hole cover is a cute way to jazz up any button hole, and create a darling flower for your button to nestle into. The pattern is relatively simple, working with the half-double crochet stitch, as well as simple chain and slip stitches. As long as you are able to work slowly, being able to grab the tiny threads, you will do fine and have beautiful crochet flowers in no time!


• 3mm (D) crochet hook

• Appropriate weight natural fiber thread
  • (I used a doily weight bamboo crochet thread, which called for a 1.5mm crochet hook, and doubled it up for extra thickness. ) As long as you use a 3mm crochet hook, any thread that can work on that hook is fine!
• Yarn needle

 Basic Key Terms:
  • Ch. = Chain
  • St. = Stitch
  • Sl st. = Slip Stitch (although I think I write this one out)
  • Hdc = Half-Double Crochet


Rnd 1: Ch. 10. Sl st into 1st ch. forming a circle.

Rnd 2: Ch. 4.  *Hdc into circle, ch. 2* Repeat from * 7 more times. (You should have a total of 8 hdc’s worked into the circle.) After completing your last ch.2, slip stitch into the top of the first hdc.

Rnd 3:  Work *5 hdc’s into the 1st ch. 2 space. Ch. 1. * Repeat from * 7 more times, working 5 hdc’s in each ch. 2 space around.  After working your last 5 hdc’s into the last ch. 2 space, slip st. into the same space.

Rnd 4: Ch. 1. *Work 6 hdc’s into the 3rd st. from hook (this will be the center st. of the lower “scallop” [5 hdc’s]).  Slip stitch into the ch. 1 space.* Repeat from *, working all the way around the circle.

Rnd 5:  After your final slip st. bind off and weave in ends.


  • Sew button cover around the opening of the button hole opening, right where the button will push through and sit.

  • Push the button through the button hole, and marvel at the adorable creation you have made.

Ta Da!!! You now have a darling flower button hole cover. Easy as pie!

Friday, May 27, 2011


For those of you who stumble upon my blog on a semi-regular basis, you may be wondering why I keep posting about food. I admit that the first few posts were completely random, and based solely on what I happened to be excited about making that day, but today's food post was very deliberate, and is the start of new things to come for my blog. I have decided to create a "schedule" for my blog, so that you - my readers - may know what to expect from me, and when. So, with that said, Fridays will now be "Foodie Friday," and Tuesdays will be "Tutorial Tuesday." Foodie Fridays will highlight a recipe that I love, or stumbled upon and just couldn't resist; and Tutorial Tuesdays will highlight a tutorial - of some craft - either from my own head, or linking a tutorial that I found on the web. I know this is a BIG goal to have, taking on two days worth of ideas and blogging about them, but that's what I'm aiming for. I may fail miserably, and only have tutorials and recipes every other week, but I promise to try my best to get them on here weekly. So far I've got today's Foodie Friday done, and have something planned for this up coming Tutorial Tuesday, and hopefully they keep on coming. I'm keeping my fingers crossed! ;)
Till then... have a wonderful Memorial Day weekend!!

~ Alicia

The Perfect Spaghetti!!

Ok, so I know "The Perfect Spaghetti" is a rather big statement to make, and I realize that everyone's tastes might not run along with mine, but this IS the perfect spaghetti for my family. After years of searching for the right spaghetti recipe to suit my family's desires, I finally came up with my own, after picking and choosing what I liked from others out there on the web. Here's the dilemma I faced... I am a veggie girl, my husband is a plain meat sauce kind of guy, and we both prefer a thicker, more savory (none of the sugar stuff in this recipe) kind of spaghetti. What I came up with was a simple, tasty spaghetti, that even my 3 year old asks for all the time!

So, here it is...

What You Need:

1 pkg (1lb.) Italian Sausage (or 1 lb. from the butchers counter)
1 28 oz. can Crushed Tomatoes
1 28 oz. can Diced Tomatoes
1 Large Onion, finely diced
2 Green Bell Peppers, finely diced
1 pkg Mushrooms, finely diced
1 1/2 Tbsp Garlic, chopped (more if you desire)
1 1/2 Tbsp Oregano (more if you desire)
Salt and Pepper, to taste


1) Heat a large skillet over medium high heat, and drizzle around with evoo.

2) Remove sausage from casing (if you didn't purchase from the butcher), and throw it in the skillet. Break up the sausage with the back of a fork, so that it begins to resemble ground beef. Continue to break up the sausage as it browns.

3) Once the sausage is browned, put it into your slow cooker (if you don't have one, use a big pot)

4) Add your cans of tomatoes, veggies, garlic and oregano, and mix thoroughly.


5) Cover your slow cooker, and turn it to high.

6) Cook for 3 hrs, stirring occasionally.

7) Add salt and pepper to taste, stir to combine. Recover, turn heat to low, and cook an additional 2-3 hrs, or until ready to eat.

8) When ready to serve, brown up another package of Italian sausage to go on top, or make some Italian meatballs (I'll have to post my recipe for that later!). Cook spaghetti or fettuchini noodles, according to package directions. Put your drained noodles in a bowl, and spoon a healthy portion of spaghetti sauce over top, finishing off with your Italian sausage or meatballs. Round out your meal with "The Bread," recipe by, none other than, The Pioneer Woman. Pour yourself a nice glass of wine (I prefer Riesling), and ENJOY!

Sunday, May 15, 2011


So I'm posting about food again... Sorry! ;) BUT I just made the most amazing breakfast EVER this morning, and I just had to share. In my last post I made mention about a couple of my favorite food blogs, and like my last post, I am again singing the praises of the Pioneer Woman.

Last week I found a recipe for Lemon Blueberry Pancakes, and thought, "Oh my, those look good!" My husband is a BIG breakfast person, and I am not, so rarely does he get a good home cooked breakfast from me, however, when I saw these pancakes I knew I had to test them out, and treat my husband to a good morning meal. Now I'm not going to go on and on about how I prepared breakfast this morning, but I will say that these pancakes are AMAZING. So... with that said, I highly suggest that you treat yourself, your significant other, or anyone else you happen to know, and try these pancakes for yourself the next time you make breakfast. You can find the recipe at the Pioneer Woman website by clicking HERE.

Happy Eating!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011


I'm kind of a foodie. Actually, I am a really big foodie. I love food. I love to bake it. I love to cook it. And guiltily, I love to eat it! So, ever since I have retired from school to be a stay at home mom, I cook... and bake... and eat... ALOT. All the while desperately trying to keep a hold of my little figure. I want to cook, and bake, but then I have to eat it. It's kind of an addiction - the cooking - I'm just trying to figure out how to manage the eating part. :(

Anywho, now that I have made my confession, let me tell you about my favorites!! I LOVE all of the many talented food bloggers out there in the world wide web, and enviously wish I could be them. In the meantime, however, I will settle for stealing their ideas, and filling my kitchen with wonderful (and often fatty) aromas! Since I love to bake, I of course stumbled upon bloggers like I Am Baker and Smitten Kitchen; then one day, when talking to my amazing sister-in-law (while having one of our many "baking parties") about my food blog obsession, she suggested a new blog for me to check out. That blog was The Pioneer Woman. What a revelation my life has been since then. If you have not found her website yet, stop what you are doing and check it out now! Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman), is absolutely hilarious, quick witted, and has the life I have always wanted.

So, to get to the point of this whole thing, yesterday while browsing her many tasty recipes, I came upon her recipe for home made flour tortillas. Now I have always wanted to make my own tortillas, but have always been a bit scared. BUT, Ree said that there was no worries, so I said what the heck, and went to work today making 4 dozen flour tortillas. Like Ree mentions in her recipe, there is a learning curve to cooking the tortillas, but after throwing out the first few for being as stiff as a board, I was making A-mazing tortillas like a pro.

(By the way, they're not supposed to be perfectly round... not that I could have gotten them that way even if they were! ;)

Then to make it even better - and because I have a really bad sweet tooth right now - I took my last two tortilla dough balls, rolled them around in sugar before rolling them out on my cutting board, and then sprinkled then with cinnamon and little more sugar. When cooking, the sugar begins to caramelize on the outside, and because I rolled the dough around in sugar before rolling it out, the tortilla was completely laced with sweet sugar on the inside as well. It was just the right amount of sweetness to satisfy my mid-afternoon craving, not too sweet, but just enough... especially that caramelized bit!

So what I say to you now is go check out her blog... it will change your life! And if you want to make your own flour tortillas, you can find the recipe on her site HERE.

Happy Baking. Happy Cooking. Happy Eating.
(Hopefully guilt free!)

Friday, May 6, 2011

The NEW project

Of those of you who know me personally, you know how big of a Braves fan my husband is, so for fathers day/ my husbands birthday this year, I've decided to create a quilt just for him. Let me start off my saying that this quilt is a BIG pain in the butt, like many of my quilts are, but I have high hopes for it's outcome! Unfortunately, my sewing machine likes to give me a ridiculously hard time when it comes to the zig-zag stitch required for applique, but I am trying my best to make due with the machine I have (without ripping my hair out, or throwing my machine across the room in frustration), and thanking God - upon encountering each hiccup in stitching - that my husband is a simple man. Amen for that! Showing my quilting mother-in-law my work is another matter entirely, but my husband... well, he's happy with anything. God bless the simple man!
Anyway, my entire idea was based quite simple around the Braves logo, which I would like to make the main focus of the blanket.

Doing so, I had to blow up and puzzle piece together the logo to be approximately 20"x40", to be the center focal point of a 60"x80" blanket. For relative ease (HA!), I decided to split the logo into 2 parts, the name and the tomahawk. After blowing up the images (a 2 day process) I then traced the logo(s) onto wax paper in 3 parts, the white, the blue, and the red, which is now being appliqued one right on top of the other, using my machines dodgy (yes I just said dodgy! ;) ) zig zag stitch. God help keep me sane! Currently I am working on attaching the red braves logo to the the blue outline, and will post pictures as soon as that phase is finished. While the stitching is far from perfect, and I am not fussing to do any extraordinary applique technique, the effect is still very nice, and eye catching.

Ok, so you may be wondering what is going to make up the remaining 40"x40" of background to fill my 60"x80" blanket, after the main logo is complete. Well.... I pondered this one for a while myself. I knew I wanted to do some kind of border, with the possibility of utilizing square tiles with something significant and relevant, but what? Initially I thought, "wouldn't it be cool if I could get signatures from the players on fabric squares?," but then quickly dismissed that idea, knowing that since I am not a 10 year old boy, the chances of me getting my fabric signed by major league baseball players would be slim to none. So I began thinking of a new idea, equally as amazing. And you know what?? I think I found it!


For those of you who do not know, these are alternative, and in a couple cases, outdated, logos of the Atlanta Braves. My idea is to create a border around my blanket that is comprised of 10"x10" squares, with the center being an alternative logo for the team, and finished off with a 1" mitered border in red. I think it would look pretty neat myself. I am assuming for now that this would be done by applique as well, with the exception of the Indian brave, which would probably be easiest just to print onto fabric paper... not as neat, but would come out looking a heck of a lot better than me trying to applique him to a piece of plain fabric.

In using 10"x10" squares, I would need 24 squares total. For the corners, I also plan on appliqueing hand laced baseballs into those squares, which I think would add a nice touch to the blanket. That would then leave me needing 20 squares of logo applique, which if I just use the five shown above, would repeat 4 times around the border. Additionally, with the border being 10"x10", that takes 20"x20" off the entire blanket, which would then leave a 40"x60" center, the background of which will be blue, with the logo shown at the top of this post being 20"x40"... if my math is correct, that would leave 20"x20" of blanket space. I think that sounds fairly proportional.... I think! ;) lol.

Anywho, that's the plan; I'll keep you updated on the progress of the blanket, and upload some photos as soon as phase one of the logo applique is done.... that is, of course, if you all promise not to make fun or criticize my "dodgy" stitching! :)