Weekly Update- May 20, 2018

As the past week progressed, I found myself full of ambition and drive to get things done on the blog. Like I keep mentioning, I have so many ideas that I want to implement. I can happily report that those things are (slowly) happening now!

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Weekly Update- May 13, 2018

Happy Mother’s Day! I hope you’re all enjoying this beautiful Sunday with your loved ones!

Well, it’s been a productive week here for Crochet On The Brain. I’ve been implementing some of my ideas, and trying to provide fresh and new content every day.  In case you missed some of the posts, here are a few highlights, as well as some follow-up:

Since my last Weekly Update in which I talked about blog statistics a bit, I’ve noticed there are quite a few more followers. These follows have come from WordPress subscribers as well as visitors who have begun following via email.  In addition to these, there has been a remarkable number of new Monthly Newsletter subscribers. So, I have been working on getting the newsletter up and running, and am planning to send it out to everyone on the subscribers list on June 1st.  If you want to be added to the list just fill out the sign up form that pops up when you visit the website, or, you can submit your email address using the new Contact Me form, which is listed in the menu under the site name at the top of the page,  and I can add your name to the subscriber’s list.

And speaking of the Contact Me form, I’ve decided to add it as a private way to get ahold of me, without having to make public comments on posts. If you have any questions, concerns, suggestions, or need help or advice…whatever…just submit the form and I’ll get back to you as quickly as possible.

In my April 29th Weekly Update I mentioned that I had left Facebook, meaning there was no longer a Crochet On The Brain fan page. Well, two weeks later I am now back on Facebook, and so the fan page is up and running again. I figured that it wasn’t fair to those readers who use Facebook as a way to keep up with this blog. Plus, there has been a bit less traffic to the blog because of it. If you aren’t already a fan of Crochet On The Brain on Facebook, you can click the link on the right sidebar of this page, or you can follow this link here. To be honest, I really am not a fan of Facebook anymore, but being such a huge social media platform it helps to bring the traffic to the blog. So, I have decided to not install the Facebook or Messenger apps on my mobile devices, and just visit the site via laptop.

If you are on Google, I have created a G+ Community called, of course, Crochet On The Brain (please let me know if there are problems with this link, thanks!). It’s purpose is to help promote the blog, but any and all members may post freely anything about crocheting/knitting. At this very moment there are no members, but it’s only a matter of time 🙂

Earlier this week I made the “first” of a new weekly post…WIP Wednesday I put “first” in quotations because a couple of years ago I tried the same thing, but I didn’t stick with it more than a couple of weeks.  So, fingers crossed, every Wednesday I plan to share with you my Work(s) In Progress!

I also reposted an old blog entry on Thursday, Crocheting On A Budget ,which I am also thinking of doing on a weekly basis. Being 3 years old, and getting so many new followers lately, I thought that maybe I could recycle some of my old publications.

Friday, which may just become “Free Pattern Friday”, I published a new original pattern: Pincushion. It works up fast and easy, and is great for using up your left over yarns. It would also be a good first project for someone just learning to crochet in the round.

And finally, yesterday, I published another roundup, 15 Free Sun Hat Patterns. These roundups are so fun to create! That is, when all links work and don’t direct you to only Pinterest, lol. Don’t worry, I always test, and retest, the links that I provide, so that they all lead directly to the patterns 🙂

Again, I hope you have a wonderful Sunday and Mother’s Day.

Keep on hookin’ 😉❤

~Amanda ~

Weekly Update- May 6, 2018

Good Day!  I hope you are all having/did have a fabulous Sunday!

Today I feel like sharing a few of my thoughts and views about blogging with you. This comes about as a result of the approaching third birthday of the “Crochet On The Brain” blog. When I first began writing here I really didn’t think that it would work as well as it has, I only had hope. Three years later I am happy to share that this blog is quickly approaching 25,000 views!

As most bloggers do, I regularly check my page’s statistics. Some days show amazing numbers, other days not so good. My blog receives views from all over the world, from countries I didn’t even know existed, as well as from clicks on websites where I didn’t even know my work was shared! To have my work and blog acknowledged in such a way really encourages me to continue sharing content here. Honestly, there have been some days when I began thinking negatively and considered putting the brakes on the blog, to just let my subscription to WordPress run out and call it quits. But as I think about these circumstances I come to the realization that it’s not the “not so good” statistics that make me feel this way, but rather just my mood of the day. As with most people, my current real-life environment and circumstances influence my mood. I also consider the fact that should I ever give it up and not renew my WordPress subscription, all of the links directing traffic to crochetonthebrain.com would cease to work, which would probably annoy or upset readers who come here regularly (the web address would be different, therefore links to this site wouldn’t work).  Therefore, you will be happy to know (I hope!) that I’ve just renewed my subscription to WordPress and we are good to go for another year 😁.  And while I created this blog,  first and foremost for my own enjoyment, I also created it as a means to share my own designs, vision, and passion with others in the crochet world. It is my own little corner of the internet.

Keeping an eye on the statistics does not mean that I’m blogging to become popular. The numbers simply let me know that out there in the big wide world, there are people just like me who enjoy reading what I have to say, and people who are interested in making one of my designs for themselves!

I know that some bloggers are out to monetize. Me, I am not. I don’t earn a single penny from this blog or any of my designs. All money spent on keeping this blog running, as well as money spent on the supplies to make the designs that I do, all come out of my pocket.  I don’t have adverts cluttering up my page (to be honest, I find it’s really annoying waiting for a page to load because it’s so full of advertising!). This is a hobby, plain and simple. So when I see that others are monetizing, and some are rushing around bending over backwards for it’s readers, I can’t help but wonder if the blogger is truly happy! Maybe this isn’t the right way to think. I mean, the basic points of a blog are to reach out to people who share your interests, and to express your views and opinions. Which I am doing. BUT, this is my blog, and you either like what I’m doing, or you don’t. And the numbers show me that a few people do like what I’m doing here 😁

Despite having said all this, I truly admire those individuals who are profiting from their passion! I think that it’s wonderful that people are actually loving their job and getting paid for it! Too many people, most people I think, dread their job and long for something better.

And to be honest, yes, I do regularly envision what my life would be like if I were to profit from my passion. But I always come to the conclusion that I’m just not energetic enough, both mentally and physically, to turn this hobby into a business. Nor do I really have the time. Between caring for a mischievous toddler and a physically disabled husband, and doing everything else in between, I am tired.  (Hence why some weeks or months you rarely hear from me). In the past I have sold my finished items, but not regularly and not recently. Plus, I am not really a fan of making customized orders, nor am I really a trend follower or even a trendsetter; I much rather just make what like to make. However, this doesn’t mean that if the opportunity arises to make some money from my hobby I’ll turn it down, lol. Maybe one day I’ll, at the very least, sell PDF versions of my patterns. In the meantime my family and my friends have some nice handmade items to enjoy!

So, to everyone reading and visiting this blog, I say “thankyou”! I hope that you’ll continue to stop by and read my posts and try out my original patterns. And should I not post something for awhile, please know that sooner or later I will. Currently I am working on a new amigurumi doll pattern;  it’s just a matter of being able to sit down for more than a few minutes at a time to get it done! With the nice weather here I find that I’m spending a lot more time outdoors. And I’m not one of those multi-taskers who can crochet and run after a three-and-a-half year old at the same time, lol. (I wish!)

Because I can’t always write fresh, regular content (ie. Patterns), I’ve been turning to alternate means of entertaining my readers…round ups! Whoever came up with this idea is brilliant, lol. Last week I created a new round up: 10 Free Baby Bonnet Patterns, and I also added a new page to the blog: Pattern Roundups, where I’ve listed (and will continue to add to the list) all of the pattern round ups I’ve created to date.

Well, it’s been about 9 hours since I began writing this post for today, lol. I’ve sat down about a thousand times today and typed a few words each time. I do hope that you’ve enjoyed this Weekly Update; it’s a bit different, I think, than my normal posts.

Until next time, Happy hookin!

~Amanda~

Weekly Update- April 29, 2018

🎶🎵Oh the weather outside is delightful🎵🎶

(My rendition of a cold weather song in the spring!)

It’s been a beautiful week here in Albuquerque (around 80 degrees F),  and because of it I feel I haven’t gotten a whole lot done indoors! Having a toddler and nice weather at the same time means play, play, play outdoors.

However, I DID accomplish one or two noteworthy things this week.

First, if you’ve been keeping up with the blog, you’ll have noticed that I finished the v-stitch throw. It turned out so nice, I really wish I could take credit for the pattern. The only steps in the process of making it that I can claim as my own is figuring out how big to make it, which yarn and hook to use, and the physical task of actually crocheting it (not much, right? Lol 😉).  Anywho…You can see my post about it Here .

Next, I finally made the decision to leave Facebook. I’ve been contemplating this for quite some time now. Having done this means there is no longer a Crochet On The Brain fan page. I am thinking about what can be done, elsewhere, to replace it (or if I’ll even replace it at all). I have to be honest, I feel like a whole new person without Facebook in my life! I did find a new social media platform where I can keep in touch with fellow crafters. It is called MeWe. If you would like to link up with me there just click Here. Perhaps I will create a Crochet On The Brain group there…hmmm…

Sometime last year, about one year ago I guess, I bought two skeins of Neon Stripes by Red Heart. After trying it out then I was greatly disappointed.  It just doesn’t work up nicely when crocheted (although I’ve seen a few beautiful photos of it crocheted when using the color pooling method). Recently I saw an online comment about how this yarn works up nicer when knitted, so I decided to give it a try a couple of days ago.  Below is a photo of a knitted object (maybe the body of a yet to be determined animal?), and beside it is the same thing (obviously not finished) but crocheted. See how much nicer the knitted object looks?  So now I am pondering what to make with it.

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Lastly, since I mentioned that the weather outside is so delightful, here’s a couple of pics of my daughter enjoying being outdoors! (When she tried to get out of the tree her shoe became wedged and I had to lift her out, lol).

 

And so this wraps up today’s Weekly Update. I’m hoping to get a bit more yarn play in this week, but we will see.

Until next time, Happy Hooking! And don’t forget to get outside and enjoy the fresh air and sunshine 🌸🐞🐛🌻🌳🏄‍♀️🏌️‍♀️☀️

~Amanda~

Winning Ways Throw DONE!

I did it! I did it! I finished the V-Stitch blanket (throw) completely! Even the yarn tails are weaved in! Hurray! lol

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This photo, above, shows the size of it on a queen sized bed.  It is 44 inches wide by 66 inches long. I used 5 cakes of Mandala Baby yarn, in the color Far Far Away, and a 5 mm hook. There was no pattern for it, but I did follow a stitch pattern called “Winning Ways” which I found in a Leisure Arts book (which you can find/buy here, but I bought my copy at Walmart).

In this photo, below, you can see a close-up of the stitching, as well as the color pattern. The pattern consists of chains, sc, and v-stitches. It is very simple and “mindless”. The second and third rows of the pattern are simply repeated until you’ve had enough, lol.

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Here’s Olivia impatiently waiting for photos to be done so that she can use the blanket…

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And last, but not least, here is a photo of the little monkey snuggled up under it on her little roll-a-way bed. I think she’s claimed the blanket for herself 🙂

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I thought about putting a border around it. I saved a small amount of yarn from the end of each cake, just in case, but in the end I decided to just leave it as it is.

And that is it. Now I can move on to other projects 🙂

Amanda

 

Weekly Update- April 22, 2018

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Well, not much has really happened this week to provide a very good read….so….let’s get it over with, lol…

I still haven’t tied in all the yarn tails on the Ripple Blanket I finished last month.

The first Monthly Crochet On The Brain Newsletter hasn’t even been looked at, let alone worked on.

I haven’t begun working on a remake/revision of Olivia’s Chocolate Milk Hoodigan pattern yet.

I have not frogged my knit sweater yet…I’m a bit reluctant, still. I put a lot of hours into it, but I know I’ll never finish it.

The only time I touched the white doily I’ve been working on for the past month or so was just to move it out of the way so I could open up the box that it’s sitting on.

We did not make it to Olivia’s dental check-up this week. We decided to reschedule it for the same day that she has her vision check-up, next month, as it’s all in the same building and will be easier. I really don’t like going out into the world more than I absolutely have to, lol.

Now, for what I DID accomplish this past week:

Having apparently put aside all of my other projects, I worked steadily (as much as I could, anyhow), on my V-Stitch blanket.  Yesterday I started the fifth (and final) cake of Mandala Baby yarn. I figure about another week and it should be done. Maybe sooner if it’s all I do, lol. This is an outdated photo, but it still looks the same…just bigger, lol. I originally wrote about it here on my April 8th Weekly Update post.

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The weather has been pretty awesome lately, so we’ve resumed taking our daily walks again. Here’s a few nature shots from those walks. The Roadrunner,  Bugs & Babs, and a not-so-tumbly tumbleweed.  (I took that left turn at Albuquerque over four years ago and I STILL get excited when I see a Roadrunner, lol.)

So that is all for today, friends. I apologize if I’ve bored you. Hopefully this coming week will provide a bit more entertainment.

Happy Hookin!

Amanda

Weekly Update- April 15, 2018

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Well it’s been a productive week. My biggest accomplishment being that I finished making (designing) Olivia’s Chocolate Milk Hoodigan yesterday, which, in case you missed it,  you can read in detail about HERE. I am still extremely (and perhaps overly) enthusiastic about it! I’m still giving myself a huge pat on the shoulder about that! 🙂 Also, I am pleased that this sweater has received so much positive attention. I included a link to my post about it on my personal Facebook page and I am actually surprised at how many people have “liked” it, or even commented on it. My posts on Facebook usually don’t grab so much attention! I think many people visited the blog to find a pattern for it, but of course, the pattern hasn’t been published, yet. While I was going to wait a bit to re-do the pattern, I am now thinking that I might just start working on it sooner rather than later. I do have a couple of other WIP’s on the go, but nothing overly important.

Last Tuesday I put together a “Lightweight Shawl & Wrap” Pattern Round-up, which you can check out by clicking HERE. Although it was warm here in Albuquerque for a few days this past week, more northerly (and cold) areas will be warming up very soon too. A nice shawl or wrap will be, in my opinion, a welcomed change from the bundles and layers worn for the past few months!

My husband’s birthday was last Sunday, which I did write about in last week’s “Weekly Update”, but that was BEFORE we ate cake, lol. The cake was absolutely delicious and hurt my extra-sensitive teeth so much! But was well worth it 🙂  If you missed that post, and would like to drool over a photo of cake, you can see it here  😛

Mid-week we did went to see the tax lady and got that all out of the way (for another year anyhow). Olivia absolutely loves riding the bus. I can’t keep her sitting down; she just HAS to look out the window (and talk and talk and talk). She’s a very social child and everyone adores her ❤ In a few more days she’ll be doing it all again, as she has a dental check-up on Tuesday morning. However, that’s within walking distance, so if the weather is nice we might just skip the bus altogether.

Newsletter Update- Ah, that newsletter…it’s going nowhere, still, lol. My intentions are good though! Like I said in last week’s update, I need to come up with content.  While I figure that all out, I’ll still be accepting sign-ups, of course.

Well, I hope I didn’t bore you too much with this week’s update, lol. I must get going now and figure out what I’m going to do with the rest of the day. Lazy Sunday. Probably Crochet 🙂 ❤

Enjoy what remains of your weekend!

Until next time,

Amanda