After two years of pandemic, we finally got to go back to Disneyland/California Adventure. I dusted off my Baby Yoda, put him in his harness and loaded him into the car.
I also made a crochet lovey and he got to go too.
My husband got us a reservation at Paradise Point, a Disney hotel, and we were super excited. He said every room had a nice view, either of the pool area or the parks. We packed our bags and were off on our adventure.
When we arrived, I carried my doll in his sling to check in, and the nice lady who helped us loved my Baby Yoda. That was a really nice start to our day.
During the check in process, she informed us of some “things”. She let us know that none of the hotel’s restaurants were open, but we could have room service from the other hotels. We probably weren’t going to eat there anyway, so no big deal. She then proceeded to let us know that the pool was under construction and that we could use the pool at the Disneyland Hotel instead and could take a shuttle. We probably weren’t going to use the pool anyway and certainly not if we had to take a shuttle to get to it.
I’ve had a crochet focused Instagram account for quite a few years (@yochetcrochet), but then my friend had to go and introduce me to Bookstagram. I had to decide if I wanted to create a new account dedicated to my love of books and reading or combine it with an account I already had. I currently have a succulents account and a hiking account (@yolihikingandoutdoors) and I definitely didn’t want to create a fourth account!
In my infinite wisdom, I combined it with my crochet account since I sometimes post about the crochet book I wrote. Books and crochet seemed to go hand in hand. Right off the bat, I got involved with book challenges and of course, I wanted to include crochet. Mostly I used crochet pieces and dolls I had on hand, but occasionally I created something new for a challenge. This little devil was born because of Instagram.
I can’t even remember what the book challenge was, but the book I wanted to use was titled Devil’s Desire. It was a book I loved as a teenager and still owned. Making a little crochet devil seemed perfect.
I still use him in some of my Insta posts and he’s probably one I’ll keep.
After a year-and-a-half, I came back to work running an after-school program at an elementary school. I have students from Kinder to 5th grade. One of the things I love about my job is that, if they want to learn, I get teach the students how to crochet. In the process, I make them all sorts of items for the prize-box and ultimate prize-box (larger or more expensive toys).
The things I make are often based on what interests the students at the time. But sometimes, my creations are based on what yarn I have on hand. I checked our yarn drawer and decided to make a doll out of scraps. I had one little girl who had MANY opinions, and the doll reflects that. She was that same little girl who loved telling me about her brother’s SpongeBob crochet hat that I made.
And when my little Kinder helper made it to ultimate prize-box, she picked the doll. I was surprised because I didn’t know how invested she was in the doll. Helping me create it didn’t necessarily mean that she would want to get it. In fact, she kept telling me how she wanted a mermaid backpack that was available. When she made it to the prize-box, I automatically reached for the backpack. I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised when she snatched the doll instead. After all, She was so excited about her bro-bro and his crochet hat. She was so happy to have her very own crochet toy, just like her brother. The fact that she had a hand in making her was just extra special.
She was so excited about it that she took a picture of herself at home, with her doll and her brother’s doll…that he still has! It was soooooo cute and it touched my heart that she wanted me to see them together in her home.
I had one of the sweetest things happen at work. One of my students in my after-school program brought back a blast from the past in the form of one of my crochet pieces that was out in the wild.
Back in 2015, I made a SpongeBob SquarePants crochet hat. That year, I was going to participate at the school’s annual craft fair and I decided to include the hat. I had a student boy who loved the hat, and when the fair came around, his mom sneakily bought him the hat for Christmas. I remember how happy he was when he got it.
This year, I have his little sister (Kinder) in my after-school program, and my former student is now 16 and in high school. She loves telling me all about her bro bro and how he has the crochet hat of SpongeBob that I made. Apparently he also has other toys I had made for him.
That was cute enough, but imagine my surprise when she walked in on crazy hat day wearing that hat! More surprising was that it still was in excellent condition! She was bouncing off the walls, she was so happy. She told everyone she could about how that was her brother’s hat and that I made it, AND that he let her use it. It was so sweet.
I have made so many many crochet items for my students over the 11 years I’ve worked in the after-school program, I don’t remember the half of what has gone out. It’s really nice to hear about the items the recipients still treasure. It’s even more wonderful when I get the chance to see it again!
What I have here is a post I was going to publish in October. Better late than never!
I’m back at work and making toys again for the kids. After being gone for over a year and a half, I peeked in the yarn drawer to see what I had to work with. It wasn’t much. The kids helped me decide what to make (as usual). I had a lot of orange in the drawer, so something Halloweeny was in order. They also liked my Baby Yodas so that’s what we would start with.
I thought I could pull this off with the colors I had. After all, my Darth Maul themed Baby Yoda for my brother was a huge success. How hard could it be to make him pumpkin themed? Well, not hard, but also, I’m not sure I succeeded. Ah well, the kids liked it anyway as a toy for the prize box, and that’s all that counts, right?
No matter how much time has passed, and even though I was dealing with a new batch of kids, they have an abundance of opinions and suggestions for my work. It’s not always favorable either. Things like, “Baby Yoda’s not orange. His eye is funny. What the heck is that?”
That’s what makes it fun. In that spirit, here he is from start (in the classroom) to finish (in my garden).
What do you think? Would you recognize him as a Baby Yoda? Or is he just a wannabe?
One of the things I love about crochet is being able to create something meaningful out of my own vision or someone else’s. My daughter wanted an octopus hat she had seen all over the internet. She asked if I could make her one. After seeing a few different variations, I felt confident I could come up with something.
Of course, she had her own design in mind. It made it both more challenging to meet her vision, and easier because I had a road map to follow. She is an artist and drew up exactly what she wanted. It was VERY specific. Most of the time, she ends up creating works of art herself just trying to show me what she wants. Do I sound like a proud mama? I definitely I sound like a proud mama.
And the final product! Since I don’t have this pieces any longer, I had to borrow from my account on Instagram (@yochetcrochet). The big doll wore the hat beautifully.
Conclusion: I was very happy with the outcome, but there are things I would do differently if I ever make it again.
I went traipsing through my drafts here on WordPress and one of my drafts was from 2019! I wanted to write about a blue mermaid doll I made as a stash buster at work. I had a lot of blue yarn and decided a mermaid would be perfect.
Well, as I stared at that old draft, which was just a title and a description, I pondered whether it was worth the effort to dig up the old pictures, try to retrieve the old memories, and actually try to write it up now that the doll is long gone (a student picked her from the prize box for his little sister).
The answers is yes, she deserves her moment in the sun, or in this case, blog. I guess there isn’t much to tell. I had a lot of blue yarn I had received when my mom passed away. I had unraveled some unfinished pieces that were destined for the trash. A doll was a perfect way to save all that yarn and honor my mom at the same time.
I don’t have many pictures of her but here she is in all her glory.
When I first imagined what she could be.
I took her to the Renaissance Fair!
Umm, that’s all I have! I guess I didn’t think much about taking her picture at the time, but you get the idea. 🙂
So what do you do when your bed squeaks? And I’m not talking about an ordinary squeak. It’s a squeak so annoying, it drove some people insane (and by people, I mean me). This squeak started almost immediately upon installation of the aforementioned bed. It’s a pinewood sleigh bed and any movement caused it to squeak.
At first, it wasn’t so bad, but over time, it got worse and worse. Just sitting or shifting on the bed caused all kinds of noises. Almost driven to madness, I tried all kinds of remedies, like oil lubricants at the joints, but nothing worked. Eventually, I realized if I shoved something between the headboard and the wall, it would help.
Turns out the squeak was mostly caused by the headboard moving. The pillows I used were supposed to be a temporary solution. They were big and ugly, but they worked and so with time, they became invisible to us and became permanent! I don’t know why I finally decided to try something less ugly to put in the place of the pillows, but it was time to get rid of them! Wait, I do know why. My hubs and I were talking about replacing our bedroom set. We’ve had it for over 20 years. I like the set, aside from the squeak, and am good either way. But all that talk got me thinking about the bed and the ugly, ‘temporary’ solution I had and wanted to change it.
An idea was born. I rummaged through my yarn stash and found a color that matched the wood of my bed. It was yarn I wasn’t very fond of, (it was an ugly color) and it was rough to boot. I probably figured it would make good doll hair. Perfect!
I decided I would make four crochet balls that would be just big enough to put pressure on the headboard but small enough to disappear into the background.
I stuffed the balls with old cut-up t-shirts and leggings. I wasn’t sure it was going to work, but it did! I have two so far.
Two more to go! They will go at the top of that curve there that you see on the bed. 🤞🏼