We do the best we can to make ends meet. When our hearts are open, inspiration unfolds.
I call this Simply Collectible because I am looking to cherish every breath, every tear, every drop of rain, every bit of laughter and every morsel of life.
This isn't about me. It's about my son, Seth, and the therapies and education that will help him flourish!


12.23.2011

Who wants to know where to buy Beard Beanies?

I keep hearing this over and over. "Where can I purchase one of these?" "Who sells these beard hats?"



Well, I do, but I keep selling out! There is a handful of people who keep thinking they will come back to commit when I'm "not busy", but the wait is still about 4 weeks- consistently.

My Beards are handmade using the softest yarn that would look genuine at a glance. Not to mention, I have 3 different styles- 2 chin curtains and 1 full beard with moustache.

The Beards themselves are so popular, in fact, that I will begin to offer them with machine knitted beanies. At the moment, I am crocheting the beanies by hand which makes this a 4 hr item. This Christmas, they were listed at an introductory price and I got pummeled having to pull over 30 listings from my store. That was nuts!

Nonetheless, I want to continue making the Beards. It seems most are more interested in the Beards than the actual Beanie, while some only like them as a pair. The option will definitely be available.

I really appreciate your support! All proceeds benefit my son's therapies.

11.26.2011

My Beard Beanie Hat Love

I've said this already, but the Beard Beanie Hats and Crochet Patterns are selling insanely in my Etsy store. I am almost to the point of not being able to promise them for Christmas as I can't hardly focus on anything else. Honestly, it's hard to say if I will be able to keep up with production.

Another side to this is the St. Patrick's Day Celebration. Thinking Irish hats, yes? Ireland, here we come!


Hundreds of people are going through my Etsy store every day and most are loving my Beards! The nice part is that I offer the Beards Only option which is so much easier to produce right now. In some ways, that is all that matters, right? Who even sees the hat when that delicious beard walks in.

My favorite part about my Beard and Beanie design would have to be that the beanie is very, very, very nice and warm as it doubles over the ears. With the beard, it's triple protection on the ears.

Though I don't typically care much for the moustache/ mustache/ stash tickling my nose, it does block cold air a bit.


Now... The Ninja Hat! THAT one has blocking power! Yes, the Crochet Pattern is available for the Ninja Hat and practice Nunchucks.


Practice without Fractures
Amigurumi will never be the same.

11.18.2011

Beard Beanie Hats

My beard beanie crochet pattern is among many out in the sea of colors and yarns and it is one of my most popular items. I can't even say how popular it is right now. I have one pattern that is a reversible chin curtain and a Santa beard that just rocks, if I do say so myself! Check it out.
The obviously Irish Beard Beanie Hat.

The Santa Beard Beanie version.

The Fisherman Beard Beanie



































The all stem from the same pattern and work up within the hour. The ski mask alternative. LOVE it.

9.22.2011

Was I just on Biggest Loser Hidden Camera Punk'd Edition?

Huge, nice, shiny screw in my tire. No problem! We'll just take the all-terrain stroller to the grocer's 1.5 miles along the hiking trail and get some fresh air (allergies) and exercise. All we need is rice milk and blueberries. It's only about 80 degrees after all and it won't take more than an hour and 1/2. Seth can walk (scoot) along the trail and we'll get back and watch a movie and let the stress of the last few weeks just flow right off our backs!
By the time we got to the store, it was so humid and close to 90. We'll rush through the store, back out and we're back into the trees before we know it.
Nope. We were so miserably hot by the time we were to cross Wm Cannon on to the trail and it took nearly 5 minutes for the light to turn. Seth was melting, I was starting to getting really hungry.... Let's cut through the church lot and come out by the storm drain right by the entrance to the property. We were 1/4 mile from my door.
Nope. Wrong church parking lot that cuts through. We'll go through those trees because there is a street on the other side that goes up to the other side of the property.
Nope. That's someone's backyard. Down around that house is the street that leads up there.
NOPE. That's Woodcreek! Now we either walk the 1/2 mile home with partial shade or turn around and walk back 1/2 mile without shade. DUH.
We finally got by the storm drain across the street from the property and Seth shouts, "There it is! There's our HOME!" As if we had been out in the desert for weeks, killing rattlesnakes for dinner, drinking the dew of the morning off the cactus and riding in a stage coach camping out in the dust storms.
Now he's out of cheerios and there is still a screw in the tire.

7.27.2011

"Viper" Cat Toy

FREE Crochet Pattern~ "Viper" Cat Toy inspired by Seth's imagination of Kung Fu Panda's Furious 5. (I think it looks like a grass snake.)
Materials needed:          
  •  Worsted weight yarn                      
  •  I-hook
  •  Scrap Yarn

magic circle or ch 2

R1 sc 6
R2 sc 2 in each stich around
R3-4 *sc8, dec1* repeating from * to * around
stuff with scrap yarn
R5 sc in front loop around and around until you get to the desired length
fasten off & sew in the end if you desire.
Personally, I think leaving the tail out could add intensity for Kitty.
OR even stick a tassle on the end!

Doing this in the front loop only allows it to stretch out and it gets really skinny.


All the crochet patterns I have here are FREE. I have an Etsy store where I offer many more patterns for a suggested donation. 100% of proceeds go to benefit my son's therapies. 
If you feel lead to leave a donation, there is a secure Donation button in the right hand margin. It is secured by Paypal. THANK YOU!

7.18.2011

Changes for Seth's Schedule

Seth still doesn't have a diagnosis and we are still not concerned about it. He is 5 now and showing more signs of being GT (gifted and talented).

We had him at the fantastic private school (CSA) which busted him out of his shell and he began speaking more and following instruction. His "report card" was 100%. We couldn't be surprised because it was about recognizing letters and shapes. He has been reading since he was 2 and learned the basics of geometry at 3.
It's now time to focus on individual speech & occupational therapy.
CSA was group therapy- 4 hour intensive each day, 5 days a week.

We found a school for GT children. He needs to be speaking well enough to be evaluated for entry.
I don't even know the costs for this new school but I have an answer on the individual speech.

I need to sell about $400 a week to make this happen while Seth is at home. WOW.
If you are looking for my free patterns, please check the left margin and consider donating a dollar or 2 to our cause.

This is a new series of baby afghans coming in to play and I'm just waiting on the photographer to post those new images. I took this one in home because I just couldn't wait.
Ps. 37 is on my heart today!

7.15.2011

The Sun- Solar System Crochet Amigurumi Series- Free Patterns to Share

This pattern is from a Free Crochet Pattern Series for the Solar System.
My name is Celina and I operate Simply Collectible to raise money for my son's therapies. (There is a donate button to the right of this post if you wish to donate $2 or $3 to help us out? Thank you!

This is definitely a series. Go to the left margin to find other FREE patterns and posts including the patterns for Uranus & Neptune. Use these for a mobile, hang from the ceiling or just toss around. If you stuff them lightly, they will not roll very far and help encourage babies to walk, crawl and strengthen their upper bodies and core. 

I will be updating my notes as I add planets or satellites- per my son's request. Join my page. Join us. Share them. Pull out the scraps. Really, it's just a crochet pattern for a ball! I'm just changing the colors up and doing different sizes while I share my "experiment".

This was unbelievably fast and proving to be a great way to use up scraps. I actually increased my scrap stash with this one. See the picture below.

The characteristics of the Sun are such that with so many colors and so much movement it is difficult to imagine duplicating. I stuck with yellows, though I really wanted to add that "magma like" color. This is NOT to scale. Making it to scale would have been the size of a large beach ball. At this point, I'm throwing scale out the window. Hahaha

This one is the size of a large grapefruit. Not quite a medicine ball for a baby, but I think the large stitches would make it easier to hold. It might weigh as much as a burger.

Here are the colors I used for the sun. These were from random scraps so I can't tell you brand. I can only say they were all worsted weight yarn.
  • 2 strands of bright yellow with a tinge of orange
  • 2 strands of bright yellow on the lemon side.
  • 1 strand of off white
Once I started, Seth instantly said, "Sun spots!" and started bouncing about.

This ball hardly needs stuffing because it is as stiff as a rug. I joked with my husband that it could break a window. If you want to do this with one strand, see my suggestion that follows.

Essentially, follow the same size hook & succession as the patterns for Uranus and Neptune while increasing to Row 20, 25 or 30. (The link follows.) You will probably need about 10-15 rows of "single crochet around" before you start the decrease and it will probably take as long as a baby blanket. I only say that so you know your commitment. This 5 strand is stiff and a single strand would be very flexible.
http://www.facebook.com/note.php?note_id=239971539360235&comments

The Sun Crochet Pattern:

5 Strands of Worsted weight of your color preference
N-hook
Yarn Needle

magic circle or chain (ch) 2
R1  sc6 into the circle or first ch
R2  sc2 in each st around
R3  *sc1, inc*
R4  *sc2, inc*
R5-6 sc around
(Now work backwards.)
R7  *sc2, dec*
R8  *sc1, dec*
Decrease around until you can slip stitch shut, fasten off & sew in the tail.

These patterns are all free. If you feel lead to leave a small donation, we would gratefully appreciate it, but it is not necessary.
Thank you for having fun with me!
Visit my Etsy shop for fun patterns.

This is only 2 rows and it worked up in about 2 minutes.


I set aside WAY too much yarn for this. I barely got through 1/2 of this.

 A little blurry, but it turned out really cool! It is as thick as a rug and as heavy as a burger. GOOD workout for baby and their little fingers fit nicely between the stitches.

7.13.2011

Rockets, Planets & Stars. Oh My! Seth loves his new room.

For the last 3 mornings- around 4am- Seth wakes up chatting and laughing. He finally mentioned this morning that it's because he loves his new room. (I can't tell you how good that makes us feel.) He doesn't even want to go anywhere. Yesterday, I introduced latitude, longitude, degrees, the Equator & Prime Meridian while reviewing the different countries. I think we'll get him a globe today and a science workbook.
This is the rocket we put up in his room & in the other picture, he is holding Uranus.I sell these Rocket Kits, by the way. I just haven't posted them in my online store. Please contact me on Facebook. I will post the Rocket Kit online this week and come back to add the link here.
 

7.12.2011

Uranus & Neptune- Solar System Series Free Crochet Pattern

 
If you feel lead to donate toward my son's therapies- for which I sell my goods and patterns- you may add a donation using the donation button on this blog page to the right. This support assists us in so many ways. Seth will soon be taking individual speech/language & occupational therapy.

Recently, he was in a private school which, through group therapy, supplied those needs for 4 hours a day, 5 days a week. We will be selecting from 2 different schools and continuing with individual therapy within this next semester as he busted out of that shell and is needing a lot more information.

Thank you for your support!

Gratefully, 
Celina


It's taking a little time to get this down, but I think it will be so cute, it's worth sharing. There just aren't that many things out there to crochet for boys. This will be good for any age.

Stuff them slightly so they don't roll very far. That will encourage babies to strengthen their core, back, arms, legs... as they are forced to reach for it. Also, they don't roll so far that you have to worry about chasing it under the sofa or other furniture. PLEASE make sure they cannot fit in to Baby's mouth.

Uranus & Neptune
  • These planets are essentially the same size.
  • I made them both differently and they did not turn out the same size. No biggie as these will be for my son to play with. If they were for a customer, I would be more exact and use exactly the same method for both with different blues.
  • Uranus took some time- 2 days- using only one strand, but appears tighter.
  • Neptune, using 2 strands, was finished in 30 minutes.
  • The actual patterns will be in bold.
  • Suggestions or instructions will be in italics.

You can decide which suits you and your project better. If I use more than one strand on any given planet, I will give my recommendations to modify the pattern to be worked with a single strand for each of those planets. The main difference is that tighter look and like I said, it may not be important depending on your project. For my project, my son wants it now and I want it finished now. In the future, I will probably make the tighter ones for most planets as I would love to see how it looks.

PLEASE share your photos with us, on my Facebook page, of your completed planets or tag me when you post it. This is going to be too cute!

Pick one of the following for uniformity or do them differently. The idea was to get them the same size, but ultimately, it doesn't matter that much when it is a toy. Abbreviations are in the first note on my Facebook page: Solar System Amigurumi- Starting Tips.

Materials:
Worsted Weight Yarn
F-hook
Yarn Needle
Stitch Marker or Scrap Yarn 

Work in the round using your stitch marker to mark the beginning of your row. The asterisk (*) means to repeat that grouping until given another instruction.

The Pattern for tighter stitches:

magic circle or chain (ch) 2
R1  sc6 into the circle or first ch
R2  sc2 in each st around
R3  *sc1, inc*
R4  *sc2, inc*
R5  *sc3, inc*
R6  *sc4, inc*
R7  *sc5, inc*
R8  *sc6, inc*
R9  *sc7, inc*
R10-17  sc around
(Now work backwards.)
R18  *sc7, dec*
R19  *sc6, dec*
R20  *sc5, dec*
R21  *sc4, dec*
R22  *sc3, dec*
R23  *sc2, dec*
R24  *sc1, dec*
Decrease around until you can slip stitch shut, fasten off & sew in the tail.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Fast Method- Pattern using 2 strands of yarn:

Use an H-hook, hold 2 strands together.

magic circle or chain (ch) 2
R1  sc6
R2  sc2 in each st around
R3  *sc1, inc*
R4  *sc2, inc*
R5  *sc3, inc*
R6  *sc4, inc*
R7  *sc5, inc*
R8-11 sc around
R12  *sc5, dec*
R13  *sc4, dec*
R14  *sc3, dec*
R15  *sc2, dec*
R16  *sc1, dec*
Decrease around until you can slip stitch shut, fasten off & sew in the tail.

There it is!

Please share this pattern and continue the series as long as you like.

If you feel lead to donate toward my son's therapies- for which I sell my goods and patterns- you may add a donation using the donation button on this blog page to the right. This support assists us in so many ways. Seth will soon be taking individual speech/language & occupational therapy.

Thank you for your support!

   

6.05.2011

GOD Provides

Tomorrow, Seth starts Summer Enrichment Camp. He has had one week off and is bored. He started at Capitol School of Austin (group therapy) in mid February and is a very different child with confidence and much more speech.

For those of you that don't know, Seth was avoiding speech and spiraling into a world of tantrums and anger. I was getting extremely sick from being worn down and I gained 30 lbs. I simply couldn't focus enough to accomplish any tasks, much less find help.

Every single day, I was searching the internet for answers- Asperger's, PDD-NOS... all over the spectrum. It was about to be too late. I couldn't have my son- my kind-hearted, gentle, intelligent son- turn out to be violent and angry and defensive.

GOD did that crazy thing HE does when HE throws something in your face and you aren't even sure how it happened. Searching for summer camps last year, for children with autism, I happened upon the summer camp web page for Capitol School. I couldn't even focus on what it was about as I had been researching for hours already and it was nearing 3am. Since it wasn't making sense, I decided to go straight to the testimonies page and I read stories so similar to mine, Will's & Seth's.

I read every story on there and just cried and cried and cried. Here were stories about real children, real mommies and daddies crying out about their babies and how well they were doing and what a blessing it was. I had been crying for months, but these tears were different. They were filled with hope. I always had faith but I had felt this was all slipping away and taking my son with it. Now my grip on finding an answer became strong again.

I looked at the tuition costs. $25,000 for 2 semesters?!? How is that even possible? I don't work. My husband is already working full time. Austin is so expensive. So many thoughts flooded my mind. I HAD TO MAKE THIS HAPPEN. I didn't know how, but if I didn't ask- Shame on me!

The very next day, I started making calls. They were out for the summer. No admins were present so I started emailing. Several days passed and I finally got some info and set an appointment to visit the school. The whole time, I'm thinking, "There isn't any possible way I can do this, but my GOD can! HE is in charge of all the money in the world and HE can channel it wherever HE wants." That was all I had to hold on to.

I have to preface this by telling you a little bit about the way my wedding and honeymoon went. We weren't broke, but I was already extremely frugal. I had just retired from theatre/film/production and was working a simple little job behind a jewelry counter not getting paid very much but with top notch benefits. I rode my bike to work and rode the city bus and walked everywhere. I LOVED IT! I felt so much freedom and the pace was so much slower.

I started singing again & writing music. During this time, I was invited to help a gentleman & his partner tighten up some music they were working on and that is how I met Will. (That is another great story!) Long story short, we got engaged a year later and married at Bannockburn. With my frugal nature, I found a beautiful dress for $34. I was so proud not to waste anything for a single day.

My something borrowed was a gorgeous tiara from my sweet friend and bridesmaid, Brenda Hannan Hughes. Yes, this is the same Brenda whose daughter was tragically killed last weekend. She also provided my beautiful bouquet she made from her garden.

For our honeymoon, I desperately wanted to go back to Puerto Vallarta, but GOD kept saying we were going to The Tourists Trap. "Cancun it is." We were not excited about it, but we were excited to run away and do something different. Not 3 days into our 9 day trip, we were out of money. What?!?! How does that happen? We hadn't spent any except my frugal butt made us go to Sam's Club for groceries. That's it! Where did it go? It seemed impossible and was. At that moment, GOD said, "Trust me." What choice did we have?

Long story short, the money came from here and there in very unexpected ways. That is a story for another day. But during those days, GOD was very clear with us that HE was always going to provide and our marriage was going to be about this dependence to HIM. HE got us through those days and got us home safely.

So... I get the date wrong for the tour to Capitol School. I'm a month early. I'm walking up the walkway and remembering GOD's promise. If it is HIS will, HE will provide. I start getting excited and nervous because what I am doing is so contrary to how we normally make decisions. I don't have $25,000.

I get inside and a teacher is working with a student in the motor room. It's summer enrichment camp and I watched for about 20 minutes fighting back tears as I know Seth would thrive in that environment. We realize I have the date wrong and I leave. I sit in the car crying & asking GOD why HE allowed me to go in and watch that and read the testimonies on the wall and read about the teachers. It doesn't make sense. My heart is so filled with faith that I feel like I'm going to burst.

Fast forward- I tour the school and find out they have financial assistance and I start my extremely long fight for assistance.

Many of you know how that played out as I was so engulfed in it that it was every word I spoke and it just oozed out of every pore. I lived and breathed getting Seth in to this school. I had exhausted options, but GOD did not show me Capitol School until I had no other place to turn.

It has been almost a year since I walked in to the school that day- so tired and emotional. I was a wreck. Seth is on a road to growth!

With your prayers, your donations, your love and support, your purchase of products along with the financial assistance provided by the school, not to mention our tax return, we paid the last 3 months of the 2010-11 school year up front. We cracked the seal! He was in!

Since he started in mid-February, he has moved up 3 levels and is speaking in complete sentences. Tantrums have decreased dramatically and I will be able to start working my jobby-job this coming year.

This was not going to be a long note. I appreciate you hearing me out.

This is just an example of how each of you has played a huge role in our lives and I wanted to express that before I got super busy again.

We love you, All! THANK YOU!
If you are looking for the free patterns, please go to the left margin and search for them. They are absolutely free but I do accept donations for Seth's therapies with a single click through Paypal in the right margin.

4.28.2011

Seth is officially enrolled!

Thank  you, Everyone, for your support! Details to come soon. First, I need to let the dust in my brain settle. I just had to come on to announce that Seth is officially enrolled in the Summer Enrichment Camp (Level 2- Paid in Full) & a deposit has been left to secure his position in Level 3 for next year.

He is so changed since we started him at this school and the Speech Therapists have been the main help in all of this. He has access to 6 Speech Therapists throughout the course of his 4 hour day- not to mention all the teacher's assistants. More to come later! (AND more free patterns!)

To view the free patterns, please go to the left margin and click on the months to get the breakdown of posts in which you will find a few free patterns. Thank you for your support! I do sell some patterns on Etsy & Storenvy, but you can know that all donations (button to the right) and all proceeds go to his therapies. This is all for my family!

4.15.2011

A little note about progress with Seth

With deadlines drawing nearer, GOD shows HIMself more & more each day. I spoke to the school admin today & left a deposit. They were not aware that I wanted Seth in summer camp?? Nonetheless, there is one spot left in each class.

I sold a baby afghan, a cat, some patterns... in just 4 days. In faith, I took all the money we had collected with the application and said, "I don't expect you to save his spot, but this goes toward whatever he qualifies for next." They smiled and said, "Don't worry. It will all work out fine."

Next week, Seth evaluates in a class of 10 children with 2 teachers- the lead being a Speech Pathologist. The same week, 4 other children his age- not already enrolled at the school- are evaluating for the summer program & next year. I am not worried at all. GOD has given me so much peace. Whatever happens at this point is HIS will.

Aside from continuing to kick out product, Seth's birthday is coming up. He wants his room decorated in a solar system theme and is excited to be the big 5! I am dumbfounded by the contributions that continue to trickle in from family & friends along with the free patterns I have posted on my blog.

Thank you ALL for your support & prayers. In 15 days, Will gets paid and we are just going on faith to give them everything they need to secure this spot for Seth. I believe in my heart that if he were not in this school, he would be very violent at this point & possibly hurting himself & others.

GOD's mercy has saved us from the lion's den.

If you are looking for the Free Patterns posted on All Free Crochet, please click the Blog Archive to the left and search through the postings. Thank you, all, for your support! (These patterns were being sold to raise money for my son's therapies. If you would like to contribute, there is a donation button to the right. It is not necessary, of course.)

4.11.2011

So Close & Yet So Far

Approximately $400 away from summer camp for my sweet boy. His ITP (Individual Treatment Plan) from the school got to me today. It states that he is improving with the one-on-one assistance, but requires outside individual OT. 

The company we evaluated with last, wants $110/hr. There isn't any way possible we can do that. That is why we have him in this school. We cannot afford Speech Therapy and the school is less expensive than the actual Speech Therapy even though classes are taught by Speech Pathologists. For the school, it is $15 an hour. You can't beat that for Speech Therapy!

I meet with his teacher tomorrow. Amazing how nervous we can get about things that are beyond our control. 


If you are looking for the Free Patterns posted on All Free Crochet, please click the Blog Archive to the left and search through the postings. Thank you, all, for your support! (These patterns were being sold to raise money for my son's therapies. If you would like to contribute, there is a donation button to the right. It is not necessary, of course.)

4.04.2011

Thank You, Donors!

~My hope is rising~ $620 away from goal for Summer Enrichment Camp! Every penny counts, now. If you are looking for the Free Patterns posted on All Free Crochet, please read the margin to the left for the list. Thank you, all, for your support! (These patterns were being sold to raise money for my son's therapies. If you would like to contribute, there is a donation button to the right. It is not necessary, of course.)

3.31.2011

~Thank You for your Donations~

We are $800 away from getting Seth in to the summer school program and we need $3000 to enroll him for next year. This week, he is showing improvement with his peers and actually inviting them to play! THANK YOU!

3.23.2011

FREE Teeny Kitty Crochet Pattern- Inspired by Hello Kitty

 
I am delighted to share this pattern with you. It works up easily. There are modifications available for different looks- like my Spanish Dancer & Superhero/Vampire. Please join my Facebook page and message me for those modifications. The original pattern is much longer, so if you have any questions about abbreviations or instructions, feel free to contact me as many times as you need through Facebook.
Hello Kitty Inspired Teeny Ballerina Kitty

You will need:
  • F hook, E hook
  • Worsted weight- white and another color for outfit
  • Embroidery thread- pink/yellow & black
  • Black Tool for veil, if necessary
  • Felt for any emblem work
  • Glue for bows, emblems, etc…

Tips for making amigurumi: When working up amigurumi, the stitches should be tight in order to contain the polyfill. You will stuff the critters pretty tightly by using rolled up, small pieces of polyfill to really get it firm and it doesn’t lose its shape.


Head: (Using F Hook and white yarn)
R1: ch 2, 6 sc in second ch from hook
R2: 2 sc in each sc around  (12 sts)
R3: *sc 1, 2 sc in next sc*, rep 6 times (18 sts)
R4: *sc 2, 2 sc in next sc*, rep 6 times (24 sts)
R5-9: sc 24
R10: dec in every stitch around

Embroider the facial features:
Using black embroidery floss, sew the eyes on to R7 with 4 stitches between them.
Using pink or yellow embroidery floss, sew the nose on to R8.
Use black floss for whiskers.

Stuff the head to shape of an oval
Note: Row 11 helps to retain oval shape of head
R11: dec 1, sc, sk1, sc, dec1, sc, sc, sk1, sc, sl st.
Fasten off. You may sew shut at this point or wait to see
how it will fit on the body.


Ears: (Using E hook and white yarn- Make 2)
R1: ch 2, sc 6 in second ch from hook
R2: sc 6
R3: sc 2 in each sc around. (12 sts)
Fasten off, leaving a tail for sewing.
                                                           
                                                             
Body: (Using F hook and outfit yarn)
R1: ch 2, 5 sc in second ch from hook.  
R2: 2 sc in each sc around. (10 sts)
R3: *1 sc, 2 sc in next sc*, rep 5 times. (15 sts)
R4: sc 15
R5: sc in back loop only.
(This leaves the front loop to add the skirt.)
R6-7: sc 15
R8: *sc 1, dec 1*, rep 5 times (10 sts)
Fasten off, leaving a tail for sewing.
Stuff the body.                                                                                                                        

 
Arms and Legs: 
(Using E hook and white yarn w/ outfit yarn optional- Make 4 total)
Note: If you are going to give her sleeves/bloomers,
change to outfit yarn at row 2 or 3.
R1: ch 2, 3 sc in second ch from hook.
R2: 2 sc in each sc around (6 sts)
R3-4: sc 6
Fasten off, leaving a tail for sewing on to body.
It’s not necessary to stuff these.


Bow: (Using E hook and outfit color)
You may do this any way you wish. I’ve chosen to use other items instead of the bow to go with the theme. One bow was a ch 2 and I flipped it over and did 5 sc in the first loop, flipped it again and 4 sc in the other and end with a slip stitch. Then I wrap the tail around and tie it in a knot on the back and sew it on.

Attach all pieces together. If you cannot get the legs and arms perfect, it will look as though Kitty is dancing. For Cheerleader Kitty, set the legs so she is doing the splits, if you wish. I usually end by wrapping the yarn around her neck like a collar and the waist to distract from the joining.




Ballerina/Cheerleader Skirt:

Hold Kitty upside down and sew into loops on body that were left 
in the front. Crochet in the round.

R1: *2 sc in the next sc, 1 sc* (repeat * around)                                           
R2: *2 sc in the next sc, 2 sc* (repeat * around)
R3: *2 sc in the next sc, 3 sc* (repeat * around)
Slip stich and fasten off sewing the end in.

Spanish Dancer
 

3.21.2011

Seth is doing so well in school!

Very soon, Seth will be evaluated for a classroom for next year. We are still on qualifying for financial assistance, but we are still looking at $1200 for summer camp- which he very much needs- and the large sum to commit to next year.

Here's the lowdown. The school doesn't go by grades. They go by levels. Seth is in Level A (Low-Ratio of 5 students to 3 teachers with the lead having a Masters in Speech Pathology, Preschool Curriculum). Level B is the Low-Ratio, Kindergarten Curriculum. 

The school wants to evaluate Seth for the Level 3 & Level 4 classrooms which are no longer low-ratio and are on Kindergarten Curriculum. They are 10 students to 2 teachers with the lead having a Masters in Speech Pathology.

This school is amazing. Seth's confidence has shot up and he no longer seems to be exhibiting any signs of anxiety around the other children. He has almost been there 3 weeks and is speaking in complex sentences and able to tell the other children what his needs are. This is nothing short of a miracle! All of the goals set through the evaluation with occupational therapists 2 days before he started school, were met the first week he was in school. 

Spring break sent Seth into a spiral of anxiety and depression. He stopped singing for 4 days and wasn't wanting to communicate very much. He even went back to speaking in fragments. That 9 days was an eternity for all of us. My heart was breaking.

He cannot be out of school for the summer. He just can't. Everything he has accomplished could be seriously compromised. 

If you hear of anyone that can help us, please don't hesitate to contact me. I am desperately trying to work up patterns to sell. Some of my friends don't crochet and want to help so they have clicked the donation button above. I'm not ashamed to ask for help because I help when I can. Can you spare $5 today? 

We are so frugal and have made it so far. With GOD's help, anything can be accomplished!

3.05.2011

Buy one item, Get a FREE Pattern

When you purchase any one item, you get a free pattern. Go to my Etsy page and take a look around!

All proceeds benefit Seth's therapies. Thank you for your support. I also have a donate button here on the top right where you could donate $1 or more to purchase supplies.

2.26.2011

FREE Crochet Pattern- Baby Rattle Blocks

FREE Crochet Pattern for Baby Rattle Blocks. Super easy. Great for beginners or a quick gift. I wanted to share it with you because they are adorable! Please share this with your friends. 
Baby Rattle Blocks Crochet Pattern
by Simply Collectible

This pattern is for two different sized blocks.                         
4” and 3”
You will need:
F-hook
Worsted weight yarn of any colors (I used primary colors for babies eyes.)
Polyfill
Felt- if you want to sew or glue letters on
Container to hold beads, beans, coins, clips or anything that will move around inside.
Hot Glue or other strong adhesive to glue the container shut and add felt.
Toothpicks or safety pins to hold the blocks together while you sew them so you don’t accidentally grab a side that doesn’t belong.

NOTE: You definitely want them to be squares so test it out. As you are crocheting, stop periodically and fold the square into a triangle. When the sides are even, you have a square. Tension is going to determine whether or not you go to the exact row I went to. This makes it to where you don’t have to check your gauge and they will match up when you sew them together!  

Small block- Make 6      
R1  ch13, sc 12, ch1 & turn
R2  sc across, ch 1 & turn
R3- 10  repeat R2 (sc across, ch 1 & turn)
Total of approx. 11 rows
To check that it is a square, fold it into a triangle, putting the opposite corners together and laying it flat. If the sides are not equal, you will need to remove or add rows. Fasten off. Sew in tails, sew over them or tuck them in when you are stuffing the blocks.

Large block- Make 6
R1  ch21, sc 20, ch1 & turn
R2 sc across, ch1 & turn
R3-R17  repeat R2 (sc across, ch 1 & turn)
Total of approx. 18 rows.
To check that it is a square, fold it into a triangle, putting the opposite corners together and laying it flat. If the sides are not equal, you will need to remove or add rows. Fasten off. Sew in tails, sew over them or tuck them in when you are stuffing the blocks.

Sewing the squares together:
First of all, get your rattle glued and drying first.
Remember not to sew your block shut before you stuff it! (Yes, I did that twice.)
You may use a slip stitch to put the pieces together, but I found that single crocheting them together makes them appear more square and keeps them from turning into a ball when baby starts playing with them. I also recommend you hold a couple of squares together with a pin or tie while you put this puzzle together.
You will not need to stuff these very tightly as it may turn them in to balls.
Once you have sewn them together, tuck your tails in and you may glue any letters or embroider smiley faces.... Hope you enjoy this!

Any questions or suggestions? Email me at simplycollectible@yahoo.com  or see me on Facebook at http://tinyurl.com/simplycollectibledesigns

See my other designs and patterns there as well or visit my Etsy Shop.

2.23.2011

Today was Seth's first day at Capitol School- Praise GOD!

I am so happy and Seth is so proud to be a student. His confidence has shot up and he really has the desire to speak more and be part of a group.

On the other hand, I am suffering from anxiety. It seems that I have been programmed to go straight into "adrenal dump" mode. No matter which way I turn, there is anxiety. The only way to combat this is to start exercising on a regular basis, take extra supplementation and focus on breathing techniques. Not to mention, get back in to a bible study! I miss the word, bird!

Here is a picture of my latest amigurumi critter. Is this amigurumi an alien or a monster? Seth helped me draw it up and insisted it be red. It took several weeks to complete, but I am quite happy with it. The moment it was finished, Seth said, "Love Baby!" So, I present to you... Love Baby.


This little alien or monster amigurumi crochet pattern is available at My Etsy Shop.

2.15.2011

Seth went for his first (of three) day evaluation for class placement today for Capitol School.


It went very well. They were impressed at how prepared he was to handle everything and he was very eager to do everything that was presented. Will wanted to see his face when I picked him up so I went to get Will from work and we picked Seth up together.

Seth was walking out holding his artwork and chatting with the teacher's assistant. He NEVER chatters with people! They cut construction paper and glued it down. He made a happy girl. (He loves the girls.)

I got the packet turned in for the board to review for scholarship. We don't know when they meet or which class Seth will be accepted in to. What we DO know... Seth has 2 more evaluation days for class placement. For him to enroll immediately, we would have to pay the full tuition and supplies fees. That won't happen. We are about $2000 short. THAT is if he is required to go in to the Low Ratio class. If they say he can be admitted in to the Level 1 class, we can enroll him immediately, I think.

I need to sell about 250 patterns. *whew*

1.15.2011

Teaching Crochet in Austin TX

It seems that I will begin teaching introduction to crochet within the next few days. This will be a great opportunity to raise money for my son's therapies.

I will be teaching various places around town and I am getting pretty excited.

1.14.2011

Up Too Late...

conjuring ideas of how to honestly raise money for my sweet Seth's therapies. 

The amount needed increases every day with every question. I refuse to feel as though it is unreachable. I refuse to feel defeated. Sometimes, I want to cry out of sheer relief that I know it isn't about me. Other days, I tell my emotions that the only way to see GOD is to talk to Seth and Will... not to retreat... not to be alone. 

LOVE is here. 
TRUST is here. 
GUIDANCE is here. 

Prayer oozes from my heart.


But if I say, "I will not mention HIS Word or speak any more in HIS Name," HIS word is in my heart like a fire. It's like a fire shut up in my bones! I am weary of holding it in; indeed, I cannot!
Jeremiah 20:9

1.13.2011

I Feel a Master Cleanse Coming On

It's been a while, but my body only lets me go for a day or two and I am just done. The first time I did it, I went 9 days. The second time was 4 days. By the 3rd time, I was only able to go a full day. Well, it's been 2 years since the last so I am hopeful I can go 3 days because it just feels SO GOOD. Fortunately, you know you go until your body is clean. Once it's clean, your body tells you to "get some food"!
I haven't been eating much meat these last few months, but nitrous oxide and other "dental treatment".... Frankly, my pancreas and liver need a break. I've been suffering from allergies this season and I know that means my body is in overload.
I think I'll get the ingredients tonight. But, what's my husband gonna eat? hehe

1.12.2011

Free Pom-Pom Beanie Crochet Pattern when you join my Facebook Page

This hat is an over-sized beanie with a large overlapping brim. This hat was inspired by a sweet friend. It is very easy to make. Like Simply Collectible on Facebook and message me your email address for this free crochet pattern.

1.11.2011

Commissioned Recreations and Crochet Patterns

In order to fund Seth's therapies, I've had to be creative- no pun intended, I assure you. I've tried many avenues and this is what has worked so far. I've been recreating lovable characters that have touched our hearts over the years. They are not licensed products. I've been selling my original amigurumi patterns online and have made extra critters during the pattern proofing process. There are so many ways to modify a pattern as crochet is extremely flexible.



Hello Kitty inspired Amigurumi

 She is such a classic amongst young girls and women alike. Hello Kitty represents so many different things to different people that I had to reproduce her.

I call her Teeny Kitty because she is not stocky like Hello Kitty and stands only 4 inches tall. I make a Teeny Cheerleader Kitty that stands 3-3/4  inches doing the splits. Perhaps tomorrow I can post her or you can go to my Facebook page.

This Kitty Amigurumi Pattern is sent out with modifications for all skirt designs and even a cape for a Teeny Superhero Kitty. Oh, no, I haven't added the cape yet, but will.




This is Teeny Ballerina



And now, back to work on a commissioned Pom-Pom Beanie. I will definitely get pictures of that and post the pattern. I am working on an Amigurumi Alien, but can't figure out where to start the head so I am walking away from it for a day or so.

1.10.2011

Work, Work, Work

My sweet Seth. He is such a joy! 

It seems we are getting closer and closer to getting him in to Capitol School. These are low-ratio classrooms taught by Speech Pathologists. Seth exhibits classic Asperger's symptoms and he is so ready for school. We visited Capitol School back in October and he has consistently asked about them, specifically. They are such a caring, compassionate group of people that really care about their families.

We haven't had Seth diagnosed because it costs hundreds of dollars and we are more concerned with getting his education underway. In 2 to 3 weeks, we are attending an evaluation for Occupational Therapy and Speech- almost $500. Yikes! That is just the evaluation. The sessions are $110/hr for an average of 2 hours a week. It is required that he be evaluated for services in order to be fully accepted in to Capitol School. (They are not tolerant of outbursts.)

So, today, I plug away. Work, work, work. Yes, I am home with Seth and there isn't a single place I would rather be! I am working on a crochet pattern for an alien today which he said needed to be red. We drew it out on paper and he just smiled! I sell my patterns on Etsy and make amigurumi critters and custom items. The patterns for the original items are posted for sale with pictures of the finished items. I typically make a second or third item to proof the pattern and place it for sale. 

Every penny, from the sales, goes to pay for Seth's therapies and school. I need a lot of pennies.

1.05.2011

Here we go!

How exciting is this! I don't know what this will turn into, but I want very much to document what I am doing for Seth. He will be 5 yrs old in April and is getting a little bored with me. He requires so much stimulation that Will (my husband) and I cannot keep up.

I thought I would continue to homeschool, but once he turned 3 and was sounding out words when he thought we weren't in the room, we knew we were in trouble. You see, Seth didn't start "speaking" until he was 3 & 1/2 yrs old. Not to us, anyway. We are pretty certain he is on the autism spectrum as all his evaluations have come up pointing in that direction- no biggie. (We haven't seen the neurologist because we are more concerned with getting him in school first.) My husband and I are self-diagnosed Asperger's and we believe Seth is also. Fortunately, we enjoy the same things- music, physics, puzzles, hiking, low-lighting, quiet surroundings and plenty of time to "contemplate".

Seth is perfect!

The only thing is... he is almost reading at a 2nd grade level and can recite just about anything about the solar system. Not to mention, children make him nervous. They used to make me nervous, too. HAHaHa! Nonetheless, public school is not an option.

Seth needs extremely special attention. I am doing what I can to ensure he gets that. I feel like we are running out of time, but this is all GOD's timing.

Will works full-time and I am retired working part-time weekends to help out. I'm retired from working in Theatre and Film for over 17 yrs. Suffice it to say, for 4 yrs or so, I didn't have a creative outlet. Once Seth was born, I had to stop singing for a very short time- or so I thought, a very short time. (Will and I met in the studio and... well... life started happening.)

I had to find something to do and picked up crocheting again about 2 yrs ago. (When I was 6 or 7, I was taught to knit and crochet by my grandmother. For an aspie, this is perfect!) It brought me a little sanity when I felt that everything was spiraling out of control. The demands of a baby/toddler coupled with the lack of outlets and the extreme tantrums, spelled disaster. I felt myself further and further from my faith and didn't know anything but what was directly in front of me. Until... crochet.

Once I started to create, I felt the freedom I needed to ask questions again and look to the light. I had a desire to grow- not just survive.

So here I am. Seeking growth and freedom, not for me- for my family. At this moment, I am at the very center of it all- an advocate for my family. This is not about me. (I think it's easier that way.)