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Sunday, January 19, 2014

My Lord says ... John 1:29-34


*SUNDAY GOSPEL

John the Baptist saw Jesus coming toward him and said,  

“Behold, the Lamb of God, 
who takes away the sin of the world."

He is the one of whom I said, ‘A man is coming after me who ranks ahead of me because He existed before me.’  I did not know Him, but the reason why I came baptizing with water was that He might be made known to Israel.”  John testified further, saying, “I saw the Spirit come down like a dove from heaven and remain upon Him.  I did not know Him, but the One who sent me to baptize with water told me, 


"On whomever you see the Spirit come down and remain, 
He is the One who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.’  
Now I have seen and testified that He is the Son of God.”



Where Jesus, my Lord, is
When I was still small, one of my aunts usually would take me to the Church to attend the Sunday Mass.  This aunt, who took care of me whenever my mother was out working, taught me how to pray the Holy Rosary. She was the one who opened my eyes and brought me close to who God is.  I would kneel down and pray the Holy Rosary while the Mass was going on.  I was told that Jesus is present in the Holy Eucharist. So I always look at the Holy Eucharist as the priest raises it to let people see it. I get distracted with my praying the Holy Rosary when people line up to receive it. With my young mind getting curious, I asked this, “When can I receive it also? How does it taste?” I got familiar with going to the church every Sunday.  But one time, my aunt didn’t take me with her to church and  I cried. My thinking then was that Jesus was just there inside a tabernacle in the church and I didn’t like to miss seeing Him during Sunday mass. But that was many years ago…..

As I get older, my thinking about Jesus became different. I still pray, but not daily the Holy Rosary. I’ve been through ups and downs in my life.  I never complained to Him where was He during those times, only until when my eldest brother died more than 2 years ago.  I begun questioning why He let these things happened to us and said this – “Because You took my father away from me even before I was born and then You’ve taken my eldest brother away, too, who’s going to be the next one in the family to be taken away from me?   Why? Why? Why? That was all I cried out…


At the end, I realized that I should not have questioned Him about His will.  I came to realize that my grief and sufferings couldn’t even equal His own sufferings when He became human and lived on this earth.  Because of this realization,  the more I become prayerful and always say the Holy Rosary everyday.  Unlike before, I become more open to Him about what’s in my heart and mind – more like having personal relationship with Him and not just having a ritual prayer.  And I still cry and cry a lot when I’m whole being is getting disturbed emotionally again and again.  The difference now is I know where  Jesus, my Lord, is and not just inside a tabernacle in a church. 


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" I will sing of your salvation. In you, O Lord, I take refuge; let me never be put to shame. In your justice rescue me and deliver me; incline your ear to me, and save me. Be my rock of refuge, a stronghold to give me safety, for you are rock and my fortress. O my God, rescue me from the hand of the wicked. For you are my hope, O Lord, my trust, O God from my youth. On you I depend my birth; from my mother's womb, you are my strength. My mouth shall declare your justice, day by day your salvation. O God, you have taught me from my youth, and till the present I proclaim your wondrous deeds."


Psalm 71:1-2, 3-4a


Tuesday, January 14, 2014

My heart says --- Happy Happy Me - Top Blogger



Though I have a plan to travel this month, this is not for my travel write up yet.  There’s something more to my feeling very happy today.   I didn’t expect this, but I really feel elated about it.  I’ve been working hard on every project I post in this blog.  What made me start making a blog about greencrafts? -- COFFEE CANS. This first project I made came to my mind when my husband run out of brewed coffee one time.  He didn’t know that I had an extra small coffee can reserved in our cabinet.  I'm always prepared, just in case of emergency like this happens. He can't live without a coffee (-.-) He can consume more than 12 cups of coffee a day. One big coffee can will last for more than two weeks only. Imagine having lots of coffee cans in our house!  I really don’t have a big place to keep them, but I have many usages for them, just like any other items I’ve reused also. That’s why I’ve made a "Home Saving Tips" page for this purpose.  So when I decided to make this "Coffee Can Flower Pot,."  I asked him to cut some dried sticks for me and then started on this project.  



Coffee Can Flower Pot


Coffee Can Flower Pot (with Wally, the worm)

It’s really an honor to have my project be included in the Most Popular Crafts-100 Craft Ideas 2013 of Fave Crafts. It is posted as “Coffee Jug Planter” under Recycled Crafts Ideas. This is something great to remember. Thank you very much to Fave Crafts for giving me a great space to create my craft designer profile and show my projects. Thank you very much to all the viewers.  



This is really very awesome!!! (-.-)  Another recognition button from Fave Crafts for the same project.  I really have a  "Wow-Wow" feeling now, as if I'm in heaven.  I'm inspired and I love it. Thank you very much again to all viewers of Fave Crafts.  I wish to have more and more recognitions (-.-)

Having an inspiration in life is very important to keep a person moving towards achieving his or her goal thereby, increasing efficiency and enhancing the creativeness, as well as, the productivity.




Please see also my other Coffee Can projects:
Coffee Can Birdhouse
Coffee Can Hanging Planters
Coffee Can Hanging Planters with Upside-down Tomato Plant 
Nativity Scene in a Coffee Can                       
    


Sunday, January 12, 2014

My Lord says ... Matthew 3:13-17


THE BAPTISM OF THE LORD

*Sunday Gospel

Jesus came from Galilee to John at the Jordan to be baptized by him.  John tried to prevent Him, saying,  “I need to be baptized by you, and yet you are coming to me?”  Jesus said to him in reply,  “Allow it now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.”  Then he allowed Him.  After Jesus was baptized, He came up from the water and behold, the heavens were opened for Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming upon Him.  And a voice came from the heavens, saying, 

“This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.”



LATE BAPTISM
When I was young, I happened to look at my old pictures showing me in between my mother and a woman. While my mother was fixing her hair in front of a mirror, I came  towards her and showed her the picture.  I asked her why I have a picture taken like that.   She said,  “That was when you were baptized.”  I was becoming nosy and asked her again,  “Why was I baptized at that age?  She responded,  “Actually, you’re supposed to be baptized at a younger age, but I have been so busy working for the family.  I lost time doing that.”  I know the woman standing in the picture, but I still asked her, “Why is the aunt of my playmate in the picture?”  Then she replied,  “She is your godmother.”  I was getting nosier and asked her again, “Why do I need a godmother?”  She answered,  “In case something happens to me,  she will take care of you.” The woman whom she was referring to is the aunt of my childhood best friend and playmate.  Their house was just beside our house.  I would always  go to their house to play with her niece.  To my young mind, my godmother was nice to me because she gave me two dolls during my childhood years and even kept them till I was 17 years old.  Then I stopped questioning her anymore because my young mind could not grasp yet the meaning of baptism and its purpose.  My mother told me that I was  more than 5 years old at the time I was baptized in a Catholic Church….  

That was many years ago and it didn’t matter to me, even if I had a late baptism.  Our Lord was also baptized late when He was in His 30’s. What is more important are these -- what I believe in and  how I put into practice my Christian faith.     

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"I will sing of your salvation. In you, O Lord, I take refuge; let me never be put to shame. In your justice rescue me and deliver me; incline your ear to me, and save me. Be my rock of refuge, a stronghold to give me safety, for you are rock and my fortress. O my God, rescue me from the hand of the wicked. For you are my hope, O Lord, my trust, O God from my youth. On you I depend my birth; from my mother's womb, you are my strength. My mouth shall declare your justice, day by day your salvation. O God, you have taught me from my youth, and till the present I proclaim your wondrous deeds."


Psalm 71:1-2, 3-4a



Monday, January 6, 2014

My hands can do this --- Soft Lei Scarf


So soft on skin as you tie it around your neck, this scarf is stylishly designed like a lei.  It's a knitting pattern, but uses a little of simple crocheting pattern for the flower only.  It’s for everyday use or any special occasion to match  your best winter attire.  You will be a stand out when you wear this in any occasion you like to attend or simply wear it everyday during winter season.  



*SOFT LEI SCARF

Materials:
(1)  Caron Simply Soft 6oz/170g (soft pink 9719)
(1)  Caron Simply Soft 6oz/170g (baby brights ombre 9801)
      straight knitting needles, size 10
      crochet hook size 1/ 2.75mm
      cable needle
      cardboard 9(L) X 4(W)
      scissor
       
Level of Difficultyeasy

Stitch Abbreviations:
(K)              knit
(P)             purl
(st /s)         stitch /es
(K2/3 tog) knit 2 or 3 stitches  together
(P2/3 tog)  purl 2 or 3 stitches together
(WFC)       work  front Cable
(WBC)      work back Cable
(KI)           knit increase
(PI)            purl increase
(ch)           chain
(sl st)        slip stitch
(sp)           space
(sc)           single crochet
(hdc)         half double crochet  
(pc)           popcorn
(YO)         yarn over


Special Instructions:
(K2/3 tog) – (K) 2 or 3 (sts) together– Insert the right needle into the front of the 1st two [or three as directed] (sts) on the left needle as if to (k) and (k) them together as if they are one (st).

(P2/3 tog) – (P) 2 or 3 (sts) together – Insert the right needle into the front of the 1st two [ or three as directed] (sts) on the left needle as if to (p) and (p) them together as if they are one (st).

(WFC) – Work Front Cable - Slip the next 3 (sts) onto a cable needle as if to (p) and hold them in front of  your work.  (K) the next 3 (sts) on the left needle.  (K) the 3 (sts) from the cable needle onto your right needle.  Be sure the 1st (st) you (k) is the 1st one you slipped onto the cable needle.

(WBC) – Work Back Cable - Slip the next 3 (sts) onto a cable needle as if to (p) and hold them behind your work.  (K) the next 3 (sts) on the left needle.  (K) the 3 (sts) from the cable needle onto your right needle.  Be sure the 1st (st) you (k) is the 1st one you slipped onto the cable needle.

(KI) - Knit Increase – (K) the next (st), but do not slip it off the left needle. (K) into the back of the same (st) and then slip it off the left needle.

(PI) – Purl Increase – (P) the next (st), but do not slip it off the  left needle.  (P) into the back loop of the same (st) from back to front and  then slip it off the left needle.

(hdc) – Half-double Crochet – (YO) once, insert hook, pull the loop through, (YO) and  pull through all 3 loops on hook.

(pc) – Popcorn – Make 5 (hdc) in next (sc).   Remove hook from loop and insert in 1st (hdc).  Pull up loop of last (hdc) and draw through 1st  (hdc).  Press sideward and pull yarn to tighten (pc).

Note: Always count the number of stitches in each row to avoid committing mistakes.


Instructions:
Cast on 30 (sts) loosely.
1st Row – K34
2nd Row – P 34
3rd Row – K34
4th Row – P34
5th Row – K5, P3, K6, P6, K6, P3, K5
Result – 34 (sts)

6th Row – P5, K3, P6, K6, P6, K3, P5
Result – 34 (sts)

7th Row – K5, P3, WBC, P6, WFC, P3, K5.
(Note: This row with cable (sts) will always be the Right/Front Side.)
Result – 34 (sts)

8th Row –  P5, K3, P6, K6, P6, K3, P5
Result – 34 (sts)

9th Row – K5, P3, K6, P6, K6, P3, K5
Result – 34 (sts)

10th Row – P5, K3, P6,  K6, P6, K3, P5
Result – 34 (sts)

11th Row – Repeat Rows 7th to 10th (3X) more.
  
12th Row – K5, P3. WFC, (P3 tog) 2X, WBC, P3, K5.
(Note: You can use the cable needle to make it easier to do the (P3 tog). Just insert one pointed end into 3 (sts) under the left yarn needle and move them nearer its pointed end. Then insert the right needle to that (sp) where the cable needle is and do the purl decrease. Remove the cable needle and then slip off the (sts) to the right needle. This will make sure the 3 (sts) will be hold together as you do the purl decrease.)
Result – 30 (sts)

13th Row – P5, K7, (P2 tog) 3X, K7, P5
Result – 27 (sts)

14th Row – K5, P7, K3 tog, P7, K5.  This is the completion of the twisted oval-shaped design.  It will look like as shown in the picture below.
Result – 25 (sts)


 Twisted Oval-Shaped Design 

15th Row – P5, K6, (PI) 3X,  K6, P5.
Result – 28 (sts)  

16th Row – K5, P5, K3, (PI) 2X, K3, P5, K5.
Result – 30 (sts)

17th Row – P5, K4,  P4,  (KI) 4X, P4, K4, P5.  
(Note: Don’t mind the big holes formed out of loose (sts) after repeating the 18th Row below.  This will be covered with a crocheted flower at the end.)
Result – 34 (sts)

18th Row – Repeat Rows 5th to 17th till you make 13 complete twisted oval-shaped designs .   
(Note:  Excluding the two incomplete twisted oval-shaped designs at both ends.)

19th Row – K5, P3, K6, P6, K6, P3, K5
Result – 34 (sts)

20th Row – P5, K3, P6, K6, P6, K3, P5
Result – 34 (sts)

21st Row – K5, P3, WBC, P6, WFC, P3, K5.
Result – 34 (sts)

22nd Row –  P5, K3, P6, K6, P6, K3, P5
Result – 34 (sts)

23rd Row – K5, P3, K6, P6, K6, P3, K5
Result – 34 (sts)

24th Row – P5, K3, P6,  K6, P6, K3, P5
Result – 34 (sts)

25th Row – Repeat Rows 21st to 24th (3X) more.

26th Row – K5, P3, WFC, P6, WBC, P3, K5.
Result – 34 (sts)

27th Row – Repeat Rows 4th to 1st .  Bind off all (sts)  tightly in purl pattern.
(Note:  Binding Off – Purl 2 (sts).  Insert the left needle into the 1st (st), bring it over the 2nd (st), and  off the needle.  Repeat the procedure until only one (st) remains on the right needle. Cut the yarn leaving a long end and bring it up through the last stitch to lock the last (st).  Pull to tighten it and hide the excess yarn when making the tassel.)



Making of Flower – Baby Brights Ombre                   
1st Row – Leave 6 inches excess yarn before crocheting.  This will be used for attaching the flower to the project.  Using a crochet hook, make 6 (ch).   (Sl st) to beginning (ch) to form a ring.  (Ch) and make 10 (sc) around the ring.  (Sl st) to beginning (sc).  
Result – 10 (sc)

2nd Row – Make 3 (ch) on 1st (sc).  4 (Hdc) on same (sp) to make the 1st  (pc).  8 (Ch) and (sl st) on next (sc).  8 (Ch).  [(Pc) on next (sc).  8 (Ch) and (sl st) on next (sc).  8 (Ch)] 3X.   (Pc) on next (sc). 8 (Ch) and (sl st) on last (sc).   8 (Ch) and (sl st) on top of beginning (pc).  Leave 6 inches excess yarn before cutting.  The excess yarn will be used for attaching the flower to the project.  Tie it once. Work at the back to hide the excess yarn in the (sts) going down the center.  To put the 1st excess yarn to other side, insert it around through some (sts), so it will face the 2nd excess yarn.  These excess yarns should be positioned to each other like north and south. This will make it easy to tie it  to the project.  Make 14 more flowers. 
Result – 5 (pc) and 10 (8 ch)


Making of Flower  Center – Baby Brights Ombre
Leave 6 inches excess yarn before making the first (ch).  This excess yarn will be used to attach it to the flower.  Make loose 6 (ch).  (Hdc) on 4th (ch) from hook. 4 (Hdc) on same (sp).  [5 (Hdc) on next (ch)] 2X.  (Sl st) at the back bottom of  the 4th (ch).   Leave 8 inches excess yarn, cut, and then tie tightly both excess yarns twice. 


Attaching the Flower and its Flower Center
1)  Flower Center
Using a crochet hook, pull the two excess yarns into the center of the flower.  In a crisscross manner, insert the excess yarn ends into the 3 (sts) at the center where big holes can be seen as mentioned in Row 17.  Set them aside, but don’t tie or cut the excess yarns yet. Turn the project on the other side.  

2)  Flower 
Using a crochet hook again, insert  each excess yarn end of the flower sideways through (sts) adjacent to the area where the flower center is attached.  Tie it tightly once only. Look at the back of the project first if the colored excess yarns are not visible.  If they are not, then tie again the excess yarns twice tightly. Otherwise, untie the excess yarns again and insert them to another (sts) and tie them again. Tie tightly the excess yarn ends of the flower center thrice also.  Using a crochet hook again, pull each one out from underneath of the center of the flower.  Pull them together into the slit of the flower center while at the time your fingers are pressing the slit together. Cut leaving a very short excess yarns only.  These small excess yarns will serve as  pistils of the flower.  The result will look like as shown in the picture below.


Attaching the Flower and its Flower Center

Making of Fringe – Baby Brights Ombre
1).  Tie the yarn end together at the end of the cardboard. This will prevent the yarn from getting loose as you begin winding the yarn around the cardboard. Have this knot situated at the bottom as you begin winding the yarn. Wind the yarn loosely and evenly around the cardboard 96X. When the card is filled, lay it flat on the table with your hand on top of it, and evenly cut across one end.   


  Making of Fringe (a)

2)  Hold first 6 strands of yarn together and fold in half.  With wrong side facing and using a crochet hook, draw the folded end up through the first stitch of one end (the one with the hanging yarn). This will look like as shown in picture (a) above.  Pull the loose ends as well as the 2 excess yarns through the folded end. Draw the knot up tightly.  Further pull each strands tightly.  The outcome showing the back side will look like as shown in picture (b) below.


Making of Fringe (b)

3)  Hold 7 strands of yarn together and fold again.  Skip 4 (sts)  Draw the folded end up through the next (st). Pull the loose ends through the folded end and draw the knot up tightly.  Further pull each strands tightly.  The outcome showing the front side will look like as shown in picture (c) below.



Making of Fringe (c)

4)  Repeat instruction #3 (5X) till you reach the end of one side. Go to the other side and repeat the instructions from 2 to 3.  Fold the project sideways, hold the fringes together and then trim its ends. Lay the project flat on the table  and check its evenness, if both ends still need an  additional trim. 



*SOFT LEI SCARF
*This project was featured also in my crochet designer’s profiles at All Free Knitting as “Pink HibiscusScarf”.