Monday, February 4, 2013

Manly Fingerless Mitts Crochet Pattern

Manly Mitts Crochet Pattern

My hubby was in sore need of a new pair of fingerless mitts to ward off the chilly weather we have been having. The last pair I made him was rather obnoxiously made out of his favorite super bulky yarn, which made them end up looking like a pair of boxing gloves! After looking around for a manly mitt pattern, I decided to just make one up. Here is the result. I have to admit, I love the ribbing texture on these. It is so nice that I might have to make me a pair as well. Please let me know if you have any questions or comments on the pattern.

Supplies Needed:
Yarn – Knit Picks, Chroma in Worsted (I used the Paperback color-way)
Size I crochet hook
Tapestry needle for weaving in yarn ends

Stitches Used:
SL ST – Slip Stitch
CH – Chain
SC – Single Crochet
SCBL – Single Crochet Back Loop
SC2TOG - Single Crochet Two Together (or decrease)

 Body of Mitt:

CH 32, join with SL ST, do not twist chain when joining.
Round 1 – CH 1, SC in joining CH, mark with stitch marker. SC in each CH around. 
Round 2 – SC in first SC of round 1, mark with stitch marker. SC in each SC around.
*From this point on, work in continuous rounds, moving stitch marker each round.
Round 3 to 19 – SCBL in each SC around.
Round 20 - Work 11 SCBL, 9 CH, skip 9 SC, continue SCBL around.
Round 21 – 11 SCBL, SC in each of 9 CH from previous round, continue SCBL around.
Round 22 to 33 – SCBL in each SC around.


* Work through both loops of stitch
Round 1 – Join yarn in thumb opening, SC around (22 SC)
Round 2 – SC around (22 SC)
Round 3 – SC2TOG, 2 SC [repeat 5 times]
Round 4 – SC2TOG, 2 SC [repeat 3 times] (12 SC)
Round 5 to 9 – SC around (12 SC)

Weave in ends with tapestry needle.

Pattern by: Amanda Sanders @
Feel free to use this pattern to create gifts or sell as merchandise, but please give credit where credit is due. Links back to my blog would be greatly appreciated.

Friday, January 25, 2013

The Big Juice Cleanse

As you may already know one of my goals for this year was to do a juice cleanse. I have happy to report that I have met this goal!

My hubby has a friend that started off his weight loss kick with a juice cleanse. Since both me and Mike were wanting to start 2013 off with our annual BATTLE OF THE BULGE, we thought a juice cleanse might just be the way to start as well.

I did a bunch of research online and after talking it over we decided to do a 3-day cleanse, and make all the juices ourselves. Let me warn you if you are planning to do this for yourself, make sure you pick three consecutive days where you have nothing planned in the evening! Why? Because it will take you about one to two hours to prepare the six juices you need each day. We went with doing it ourselves, because to use a cleanse company it would cost us around $500 shipped for a three day program for both of us. By buying the ingredients and doing our own juicing it was only around $125 for the three day stint. Almost a $400 dollars savings!

There are some detailed instructions including grocery shopping lists, recipes, and bottle labels at Juices 101. These basically imitate the Blue Print Cleanse juices. Of the juices she lists we did all of them except the Parsnips, Pear & Celery juice. We substituted a different green juice in for it.

Here is my review of the recipes, and some notes:
  • Green Apple Juice - 3 out of 5 stars - We left out the parsley the second day, & put in less celery
  • Pineapple, Apple, Mint Juice - 5 out of 5 stars - So yummy! I add ice and shake it up, added some Cuties to give it a more tropical taste.
  • Spicy Lemonade - 1 out of 5 stars - So spicy I couldn't drink more than 1/2 a bottle and that took an hour
  • Carrot Apple Beet Lemon Ginger Juice - 4 out of 5 stars - Pretty good stuff
  • Cashew Nut Milk - 5 out of 5 stars - Delicious, add nutmeg, mix with some ice in the blender for a yummy milkshake like dessert

My confession - I didn't make it all three days, but lasted only two! I feel slightly guilty, but not totally. When I don't eat I get cranky, and by the end of the 2nd day I was super cranky. My kids were begging me to not do day three. It was a good first effort and I'm happy that I stuck with it for the second day.

Results - I now have a couple of good recipes for juicing my breakfasts and snacks. I use half  a recipe of the Cashew Nut Milk frequently in the evening to satisfy my urge to eat dessert. I lost 4.4 pounds in 2 days, some of which I'm sure was probably water weight. I am happy with the kick start that it gave me into making my healthy goals.

Tips for your success - 
  • Prepare to bottle your juices by buying/saving bottles. We used 20 oz. Gatorade bottles that I bought in a large pack at Costco.
  • Clean your fridge out before you buy all your fruit and veggies. They will take up a huge amount of space!
  • Do lots of research. There are tons of blogs and informational pages related to this topic, take a couple days to peruse them to find the cleanse that is right for you.
  • Eat lighter than usual for a couple days before you do your cleanse.  
  • Check out some juice cleanse companies. It might be easier to buy your juices for your first cleanse. My sister used CoolerCleanse when she did her cleanse. They were very helpful and substituted out several juices due to dietary restrictions, when Blue Print Cleanse was unwilling to do so. Plus it was less expensive.

Pineapple, Apple, Mint Juice!

Good luck and Happy Juicing!

Sunday, January 6, 2013

New Year, New Plans - 35 in 2013

Happy New Year everyone! As most people do, I started thinking about resolutions for 2013 a couple of weeks ago. I was inspired by Jennifer who writes the It's Just Jennifer blog and her idea of doing 37 things during her 37th year. So I sat down, and starting writing up some goals of my own, or as I am preferring to think of them, action points! Here they are... my list of 35 things to do for the year that I am 35.

35 Things to Do in 2013

Health/Fitness Related
1. Buy an elliptical workout machine - Done!
2. Work out on elliptical 2 times per week
3. Take 2 hikes per month
4. Walk/slow jog a 5k event
5. Do a Mud Run!!! This has been on my to-do list for a couple of years
6. Lose 15 pounds, and keep it off
7. Do a juice cleanse

Crochet Related
8. Finish my sister April's blanket... it's been in the works for over a year now.
9. Finish cute little amigurumi turtle... not sure why it's still sitting there undone!
10. Make crochet items to sell at work art & craft show (10-20 items)
11. Finish flower afghan I started last year

Personal/Spiritual Growth
12. Go to church at least 1 time per month
13. Graduate from Chabot College with AA
14. Apply to Cal State East Bay for college transfer
15.  Do 1 blog post per month
16. Post pictures to Flickr once a month (You can see my Flickr photostream HERE)

17. Take one mini-vacation with my hubby Mike (without kids)
18. Go see a comedy show 3 times
19. Clean the garage with Mike

20. Let Zoie & Lexie sign-up for 1 paid activity/sport each
21. Take a family vacation
22. Plant veggie & flower gardens
23. Take Zoie & Lexie whitewater rafting

24. Go on a birthday trip for my friend Terri's 50th birthday
25. Have a huge campout with friends
26. New Brighton State Beach camping trip
27. Snow trip with friends
28. Host 2 game nights

29. Make 3 types or batches of preserves
30. Try a new preserving recipe
31. Make candied citrus peels (so yummy!!!)
32. See 6 movies in movie theater - with or without kids
33. Rent my grandmothers house
34. Go bowling 4 times - one down on New Years Day
35. Practice stressing less (Take baths, walks, do yoga, etc... as needed for stress reduction)

So, there you have it. My to-do list for 2013. I have already knocked one thing off the list completely and started on another. It's been a good start so far. I will update about them on here.

Wishing you and yours a wonderful New Years and all the luck in keeping to your personal resolutions, action points, or to-do lists.