Friday, April 26, 2024

Can't Help Overthinking...

Sometime in the last month or so, I started making a sort of scrappy Dahlia Blanket (another pattern designed by Lucy of Attic 21).   I've pulled from my massive stash of unused skeins of yarns as well as scrap balls leftover from past projects to make this colorful blanket. I have hopes of burning through a lot of yarn by the time I'm finished. 

Random stripes of various colors is not completely in my comfort zone, but I'm trying to not overthink this.  

At the point the picture above was taken, I was seriously second guessing the noisy colors I had chosen.  I tried to console my busy brain by thinking, as long as I don't weave in the ends, I can always change my mind and reclaim the yarn for something else.  And change my mind, I did.  Over and over again.  

The first time I changed my mind was early on, but after about 20 rows were completed.  I decided more white rows interspersed among the random colors would look a little more, I don't know... intentional?  balanced?  Yes!  I needed a balance between something that looked intentional and random. I fought the idea of ripping out most of those rows and crocheting them all over again, but once I did, I was relieved.  It did look better.  Or so I thought.  And then before long, once again, I wasn't sure.  But at this point, I'm committed to my intentional randomness, and am starting to feel more confident it will be a cheerful, fun blanket.  

I'll be over the moon happy if it turns out anywhere close to whimsical (which was what I was originally hoping for when I picked out all these colors), but after so much angst, I'll settle for not awful, and to be done with it already.  Hopefully, it won't be much longer before I'm out of my misery and the verdict is in.

Until then, some amount of overthinking will, no doubt, continue.

It's what I do.  

It looked better at this earlier stage than it does now. 
But it gives me hope.

Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Minimalism Challenge 2024 - Craft Edition, Days 3-10...

While I've made good progress, choosing to do a 30-day minimalism challenge in only one room is proving to be harder than I thought it would be.   It's not that I wouldn't be able to come up with 465 things to rehome from this space in 30 days - I'm sure that is entirely possible.  But some challenges have become evident that I didn't anticipate:

  • Emotional ties to old visions I had for making some things have been renewed.  And along with that, there is a very real sense of inspiration being stirred up again as I see things that I haven't encountered since unpacking them from moving boxes over two years ago.  Not only do I not want to let some old things go, I'm finding myself wanting to make new projects, too!

  •  A boredom factor of focusing on only one room for so long has begun to set in.  

  • For reasons explained below, it's getting confusing to take photos of things for a weekly post.

The emotional aspect of being unsure about getting rid of things is dealt with by pulling out and setting aside those items for a few days.  Letting these things "cool off", sometimes helps me see clearer what to let go of, and what makes sense to keep - at least until another sort.  Encountering these feelings reminds me that downsizing one's stuff is often easier done in layers.

In terms of the boredom factor, and the confusion aspect, I've decided some change is needed.   

Some days I don't have the time to work on this, and some days I simply don't want to sort through things.  So I've hit upon an obvious solution.  I simply sort through as much as I have the time, energy and motivation for on any given day.  That means I may remove twenty things one day, and 2 things another day.  At first, I started putting things together in numbered lots and planned to account for them as "Day 3 things, Day 4 things, etc.  That's what was going on in the photos below.  

But I have found that cumbersome to keep straight.  Sometimes I'd forget where I was, and I'd photograph 2 or 3 groups of 8 things, for example.  Ugh.  I don't want to devote that kind of time and attention to carefully creating a photograph record of everything leaving by the day, so that stops here.  After this post, I will simply photograph items that leave the room on any given day. And those pictures will show up in their weekly post. 

To be clear, when I've done this challenge in the past, and posted a photograph each day of the month, I found it easy enough to do.  I would pull together a specific number of items for each day, photograph those items, and then they were out the door in short order.  Aside from the confusion that's been happening this time around, as I collect stuff for photographing in specific numbers for different days, leaving stuff in a pile waiting to be counted and photographed is sometimes counterproductive in that after contemplating stuff over a period of a week, I change my mind about getting rid of some things.  In retrospect, doing this challenge with a weekly posting isn't nearly as effective as posting every day.

So, I'm just going to photograph things as I set them aside to leave - regardless of how many items are in the picture.  I am going to continue counting items leaving, and record the number in each (probably weekly) post.  Though, if something deserves a post of its own, you already know I'll be all over that. 😄

Also, I plan to continue with the sorting in this room for a period of 30 days from when I started.  Whether or not I sort every day, finishing on May 11th is my plan.  I may or may not end up rehoming 465 things, or maybe I'll surpass that number.  It doesn't matter.  My success in this challenge will be counted differently than I set out to consider it in the beginning.   

So... all that said, here is the next haul of items leaving the room where I store most of the craft supplies:

The "Houses" quilt, I purchased at a fund raiser over 4 years ago.  It's cute, but it's not really my style as something I'd want to hang on the wall, and I don't have a young child around who might enjoy it as a dolly blanket.  It's okay to let it go.  It's not in any way precious to me. The other two items are pre-printed panels I think my mother-in-law had started quilting.  After her passing, I thought I might enjoy finishing them off, but now, nearly 4 years later, I can honestly say I have no motivation to finish these things.  Maybe someone else will like to finish them, though!   (3 things)

Inexpensive pillows purchased once upon a time to serve as pillow inserts I was excited about crocheting at the time.  I have other inserts if I want to make more pillows.  I'm tired of shifting these things around, so they can go.  (4 things)

A Bible puzzle book that was gifted to me when I felt too sick to work in it, and now am too busy to - someone else will love to have it.  Here is also an extra seed catalog that someone else will benefit from, and three embroidery transfer packets that I no longer have any interest in using.  (5 things)

Crocheted stars that were fun to make - just to learn how to make them, but I haven't used them, and don't foresee using them.  Out they go!  (6 things)

A few years ago, a friend handed me a bag of yarn she didn't want anymore.  This week, I pulled out some skeins I might offer to knit her something with, but it's time these yarns find someone who'll love them.  (7 things)

Clockwise:  A lace panel that would make a nice table covering for someone else. Three colored sheer curtain panels I used in our other house (of 23 years) - I am over them. Two pillow covers I bought on clearance at Hobby Lobby and never used. Shabby, tabbed curtain panels that were in this house when we moved in, and I replaced relatively quickly.   I will not miss any of these things when they go.  (8 things)

Years ago, in the early 90's, a friend and I made crafts to sell at craft fairs.  I don't remember if we did this for more than a couple of fairs, but was fun however long it lasted.  It was also hard work, and we probably only made enough to cover our expenses - because, I'm sure, we were afraid to charge too much for our hand-made items.  My friend made adorable large-ish stuffed bunnies and I made large-ish sort of rag dolls wearing pinafores - why oh why did I not take pictures of those?!?   There were also smaller sewn crafts made.  These little baby ornaments above, were (surprisingly) kind of popular and sold readily, but here are nine leftover and forgotten ones I had stashed away - for what purpose I don't know.  When I uncovered them, I toyed with the idea of keeping them and tying them onto baby gifts, but even I think they're a little weird now, and I don't imagine giving nine baby gifts anytime soon.  Don't know whether to toss them, or donate them, but they are leaving.  (9 things)

And lastly...  some miscellaneous fabrics, and pre-printed panels for pillows and ornaments.  All of this came from my mother-in-law's stash.  (10 things)

At this point, I think I've gone through every space and container in the room I am working in and have brought a better order to things overall.  From here on out, I'll be focusing on specific containers/shelves/drawers and doing a deeper sort.  The goal will be to consolidate even more, and whittle down the number of containers.  I have found deciding to own no more than an allotted container can hold is a very effective rule in helping one choose what needs to go, so at this point, Dana White's Container Concept will be my guiding principle.  

Thanks for stopping by!  If you're doing some spring decluttering, I'd love to hear about it!

Minimalism Challenge 2024 - Craft Edition 
Tally:   55 things gone.

Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Minimalism Challenge 2024 - Craft Edition, Day 2 ...

I'm already breaking my rules.  It turns out I had way too much to do over the weekend (until now) to do much sorting through craft stuff and getting rid of things.  But I did come across something with a bit of a story and I decided it's worthy of a post.  

For Day 2, I got rid of these two very sorry looking potholders:

And here is the story (in a roundabout sort of way):

On Sunday, we celebrated our firstborn's 35th birthday (as well as my 65th, and Greg's 70th - we have three April birthdays in the family). Me thinking of my oldest being 35, it just now occurs to me how old these tattered potholders are. They are made from tracings of our now 35 year-old son's 20 month-old hands.  I think that makes these vintage!

Way back in 1992 it must have been, I had the great idea to make some Christmas gifts using our first-born's handprints.  The grandmothers got sweatshirts with his handprints on them, and some cute saying - at least I thought it cute at the time - though I can't remember what the saying was.  And all the adults in the family got potholders that looked something like the above.

That's not quite true.  Actually, they looked like the potholder below:

The above pristine potholder (with a photo button of 20 month-old eldest son) was found amongst my mother-in-law's things when we were cleaning out her house after her passing in 2020.

While it strikes me kind of funny now that I thought everyone would want a potholder with our son's handprints on it back then, it was very sweet to come upon the above potholder and realize that my mother-in-law never used hers.  It was tucked away with the photo pin attached to it.  

And, with this brand-new-looking potholder in my possession now since 2020, what do you think I have done with it for the past 3 3/4 years?  I've tucked it away.   I'm not sure what I'm saving it for, but I'm not about to use it.  I think I will put it in oldest son's memorabilia box where he'll see it one day and probably at least "awww" over it before wondering what he should do with it.

So what does this have to do with the whittling down of my craft supplies?  

It's like this... 

I am going through every single box/container/bag/what-have-you, that is in the room where most of my craft stuff is stored.  It's the best way to take an informal inventory, and the best way to find things I no longer want and can rehome.

In this going through every container, I came across a box that holds crocheted potholders that I started crocheting for posterity some years back.  Don't ask why I am (or was) crocheting potholders for posterity.  It sounded fun at the time.  Truth be told, "for the fun of it" is the only reason I crochet anything.

Anyway...  I decided to take two of these cute chicken potholders out the potholders for posterity box that was in the closet of the room where most of my craft stuff is stored.

... and replace the tattered handprint potholders that have been in my kitchen for the past nearly 33 years.  

Two things came out of the room where my my craft stuff is stored, but perhaps more importantly, two very old potholders are leaving the premises.  

I still have one mildly tattered 33 year-old handprint potholder in the kitchen, but I will deal with that another day.  Or not.  It still has some use left in it, so maybe it will be found among the kitchen things when I'm gone...  

Minimalism Challenge 2024 - Craft Edition 
Tally:   3 things gone.

Friday, April 12, 2024

Taming the craft monster, Day 1...

Being nearly the middle of April, and having made little progress on taming the room I keep the majority of my craft supplies in, I've decided to challenge myself with another 30-day Minimalism Game - only this time, I've decided to focus only on craft items, as opposed to the whole house being fair game.  And since I tamed my paper craft supplies a month or so ago, I'm going to mainly focus on textile craft supplies this time:  yarn, fabric, books and anything else related to textile crafts, and anything currently stored in the room where these things reside.  So maybe some non-crafty things will make their way into this challenge, too.

It's hard to believe it's been a few years since I've done a minimalism challenge with our whole house.  I've done it twice, in fact.  While it feels a little scary to limit myself to craft supplies, I have reminded myself for all self-imposed challenges, I get to make (and even break) the rules.  It's reassuring to remind myself that I can make a challenge work for me anyway I want or need it to.   

That said...  I am starting out with expectations, and goals (which I may write about in future posts), and for the next 30-31 days I plan to post my progress once a week, as opposed to posting daily as I've done in the past.  I'm not sure what day those posts will land on - maybe it will change each week.  It doesn't matter. Whatever day I post, I will include a picture for each day's purge since the last challenge posting, and in the end we'll see how much progress I can make in a month's time.  

In case you don't know the drill, and don't want to click the link above, the way the challenge works is to purge 1 item on Day 1, 2 items on Day 2, 3 items on Day 3 and so on.  While, at the end of 30 days, I should have purged at least 465 things, I will decide each day what constitute a thing. Somedays a "thing" might be a collection of the same thing.  It's easy to see how more than 465 actual things typically leave the house in this challenge, but at least 465 things gone is the goal. I know to the uninitiated, that 465 things sounds like a crazy number of things being purged, but the really crazy thing is...  it isn't.  I've proven it several times. 

I'm motivated to get started on this, so I'm not waiting for a new month to come around.  I'm starting today.  

On Day 1, I'm rehoming a laminator, and I expect I'll send some laminator sheets along with it.  

Surprisingly, I have found a laminator to be handy to have over the years, and I've had the one pictured for close to 20 years, I'm guessing.  Then, when clearing out my mother-in-law's house in 2020, I brought home a laminator they had.   I'm thinking no one else wanted it and my thought process must have been I'll have a spare if the one I have dies. Well, the first one hasn't died and honestly...  laminators are inexpensive enough if the one I have dies, and I actually decide I need to replace it, I can do that.  I also think it's highly possibly if I find myself laminator-less, I'll just do without.  A laminator is kind of cool and handy to have, but I have to admit, in my current life it is not even close to being a necessity.


So you can see how this challenge will roll.  From here on out, I'll post once a week with a picture of each day's items purged, and I imagine many of these posts will be short and sweet.  Since you can't divide 30 or 31 days evenly by 7, I may get creative on what a week looks like.  It will be my plan to not make this last beyond 5 weeks, let's say 6 posts total - including this one.   Unless I need more...  I'm winging this.  Just go with it.

If you're inspired to join me, I'd love to know.  If you just want to follow along and encourage me on my endeavor, I'll be grateful.  

I'm curious...  do you have a laminator?  If so, what sorts of things do you use one for?

Tuesday, April 9, 2024

Solar Eclipse...

It finally happened!  And just like that, it was over.  I know eclipse devotees make plans to travel years in advance, and, I assume, wait with great anticipation to view total eclipses.  I imagine for them each eclipse must be filled with excitement and awe.  Over and over again.  Having now experienced a total eclipse, I kind of get their enthusiasm.   

The center line of totality of the April 8th solar eclipse came through our backyard and we didn't have to travel anywhere.  I don't know when we became aware of this eclipse, but we'd been looking forward to the day since getting our eclipse glasses a few months ago.  It was exciting going to bed Sunday night knowing the event we'd been waiting for was finally going to happen in just a few more hours!  My brain would not turn off, and I could barely sleep.  To be honest, it wasn't until the weekend prior to the eclipse and we began seeing signs of the small town we live near preparing itself for the expected hoard of incoming eclipse watchers that I even began giving it much thought.  Other than knowing we had a very cool opportunity to view it from our own yard, that is.

Long time friends (friends before marriage) drove about a hundred miles to celebrate and observe the once in our lifetimes eclipse with us.  With insane predictions of traffic in the area, two sons who live in the path of totality stayed close to home and observed the occasion with local friends, and another son who lives near the Indiana/Michigan border drove a few hours south a day early to meet with some friends to make it a group celebration.  

When traffic on the interstate became gridlocked 20 miles north of Indianapolis, our friends got off at the earliest opportunity and made record time taking lesser highways and back roads to our place south of Indy.  Middle son's girlfriend was driving back home from a vacation trip, and was able to experience to some degree the eclipse in Ohio.  I'm surprised to feel this way, but it means a lot that we all experienced the eclipse in totality and, even though our experiences are a bit different, we will have something of a common understanding when the topic comes up.  It will be interesting next weekend when we meet up for April birthdays to see what everyone has to say.

It was impossible to capture how eerie the lighting was in the minutes before the total eclipse.  And my phone camera couldn't do justice to how quickly it became dark and cool just before totality. 

ly hard for you to see, but Venus and Jupiter were captured in the above photo of the partial phase of the eclipse.  Venus below and to the right of the sun, a little lower than half-way down the picture, above the tree branches.  Jupiter is above and left of the sun - just to the right and slightly lower than the top left-hand corner of the picture.

This was the best picture of totality I could manage with my phone camera.  During totality, it was remarkable to view with uncovered eyes the dark side of the moon with the glow of the sun behind it.  Totality lasted approximately 4 minutes here.  We had the best seats in the house!

And then, with the moon continuing on its path, suddenly the sun's rays peeked out from the bottom right hand side of the moon, making it impossible to view the eclipse anymore with uncovered eyes.  As the sliver of light grew, we quickly began to feel the powerful heat of the sun on our skin again.  And within minutes, everything returned to normal. 

Some say they feel deeply spiritual things during eclipses.  I've experienced such when standing at the edge of the ocean, or driven into a vast mountainous landscape, or even sometimes when a dark sky roils with voluminous and contrasting clouds.  In those moments, I have felt a sense of God being near, or have felt like I sensed something of God's greatness.  Which I imagine must make Him smile at us as a parent smiles at a child's simple pleasures and understandings.  God's greatness is far more vast than a mountain range or the yet unmeasured deepest depths of the ocean.

Maybe it was because of being with people, and hearing some cheering and clapping, and even firecrackers going off nearby, I personally didn't feel anything deeply spiritual at the time of the eclipse, but I felt a sense of thankfulness in that moment for being able to have the experience.  I still feel thankful - and a kind of deep satisfaction.

Thankfulness, satisfaction...  these, are of course types of spiritual experiences.  But it was later, when I was alone with my thoughts, and even now a day after the event that I feel and think more about these things.

I am thankful to believe in our Creator God, who made the universe and all natural things within it.  Perhaps for no other reason than for His good and perfect pleasure.  That He shares this marvelous creation, and has given humans the capacity to learn and discover and understand things about how the world, even the universe, works should give us some idea of how generously He takes thought of us.   

Thankful. Even as I head out in a bit for such a mundane thing as getting a root canaled tooth capped finally.  A tooth that's given me fits off and on for over a month, and I hope that is soon to be all over.  I marvel at the skill of the dentist who can do such delicate work as a root canal.

I want to remain thankful and satisfied as I do some more weeding between and after rain showers in the upcoming days and weekend.  So many weeds!  While I am always dismayed at how prolific weeds are, they are among the first hopeful signs of spring. 

Weeds grow and irritate us, teeth crack and pain us, and eclipses happen in the natural course of our solar system's workings and completely awe us.  The mundane and the awe-inspiring all exist at the same time.  As I look outside right now, two young robins are hop-racing each other across the grass under the redbud tree that's bursting forth in glorious purple blossoms.  And behind them are two bigger robins - maybe mom and dad keeping an eye out?  

If the previous three paragraphs seem random, well, that's how life seems to roll sometimes, doesn't it.  What I perceive as random is God's wonderful creation working as He designed it to.  While made imperfect by man's endeavors and foibles, this globe we live on is still a marvelous thing - giving evidence of a Creator, not random chance.

These three photos were taken by middle son, Joel, about an hour south of us.

"For in him all things were created: 
things in heaven and on earth, 
visible and invisible, 
whether thrones or powers 
or rulers or authorities; 
all things have been created 
through him and for him."
Colossians 1:16  NIV

Friday, April 5, 2024

Strawberry muffins...

With a new strawberry season approaching in a month and a half (or so), I've suddenly woken up to the fact that we need to get serious about using up a bunch of frozen strawberries in our freezer!

Last June, with me having a major surgery scheduled in the middle of the month,  we picked strawberries and ate them 'till we couldn't anymore.  I imagine we may have given some away as well, but by the time I submitted myself to the surgery center and the subsequent weeks of healing, the freezer was stocked with a dozen or more quart-sized frozen bags of beautiful red berries. 

All that picking and freezing would be so nice come summer, I thought.  I couldn't have planned it any better.  I did worry a bit about how we would manage picking the cherries and peaches we expected the next two months. 

Then, surprisingly, neither the cherry tree nor the peach tree produced anything in June and July.  We don't know if it was weather related or if we had pruned the trees too much the fall before, but in the end it felt like a mercy that we didn't have any fruit to deal with during the weeks I was healing from surgery.  

And then, when chemo started in the late summer, and my taste buds immediately became affected, I discovered that fruit (especially strawberries) tasted like soap.  Blech.  It became clear that none of the frozen strawberries were going to get eaten for the duration of that unpleasantness.  I think it was Thanksgiving before food started tasting in the neighborhood of normal, and the tastebuds were only fully back as Christmas started to approach.  

Then winter set in and I was decidedly not into eating frozen strawberries, or making smoothies or fruit popsicles (my other frozen strawberry treats)  once it turned cold outside.   And even though we've had an unseasonably warm late winter and early spring, by that time the frozen strawberries had pretty much slid off my radar.  

All of that is to explain how more than nine months could go by and very few of the frozen strawberries picked in the early weeks of June last year got eaten.

So recently, I've gone online looking for what to make with them - because it's become chilly again and I still don't want to eat frozen strawberries. 

Having no desire to make jam and, not caring much for fruity desserts, my options seemed severely limited. But then I was a little intrigued  when I came upon recipes for strawberry muffins. I wasn't 100% sure they sounded good, but everyone who had a recipe blog seemed to be in love with strawberry muffins.  The thing that held me back at first was that almost all the recipes I found said to use fresh strawberries - with the explanation that frozen strawberries would do if fresh wasn't available.  The vibe I got was frozen strawberries might make subpar strawberry muffins.  And that notion got in my way for several weeks, I'm sad to say.

Finally, I decided I wouldn't know if I didn't try, so I took the plunge.  And I am so glad I did.  I decided to use this recipe at Once Upon A Chef and I have decided I need look no further. I did forego putting sugar on top of the muffins (ack!  too sweet for me), and I don't have any almond extract, but other than those two things, I followed the recipe exactly - chopping up still partially frozen strawberries, tossing them in flour as suggested, and these strawberry muffins were superb, in my book.

I may try making them with a bit less sugar - not because they are too sweet, but less sugar would be - well... less sugar.  

Warm and slathered with butter, these were just heavenly.  I honestly, I love them every bit as much as I love blueberry muffins.  And I LOVE blueberry muffins.

At room temperature, they are a tasty quick treat.  I skipped the butter. 

I'm thinking for my next batch I'll try substituting whole wheat flour for some of the all-purpose flour.  I've been meaning to grind some wheat.  Now I have a perfect reason to stop dragging my feet and get that done.  Oooh... and some flax seed.  I need to try ground flax seed in these, too.  

If I could get these a bit healthier, and they still taste good, wouldn't that be nice.

Maybe I can tweak the recipe enough to make it my own and post it here.  I'll try, but until then, I highly recommend the recipe I followed.

To be honest, the website I've linked to is monetized to the point of annoyance.  Normally, I try not to link to such websites, but one can go in, click on "jump to recipe" and print it out without too much headache.  Unless pop-up ads, and constantly changing videos give you a headache - in which case, I am sorry. This is the best I can offer for now.

If you give this recipe a try, I hope you enjoy them as much as we do!

Are you hungry yet?

Tuesday, April 2, 2024

April showers and a Moorland Blanket...

I'm thinking most of Indiana is seeing showers and storms usher in the month of April.  After last night's storm passed through, and as we wait for more over the next couple of days, there is a welcome cleanness to the air.  And the grass is suddenly and brilliantly verdant.  In the city park, where a creek cuts through in several directions, spring flooding is a pretty normal sight.  

Never mind for a moment how clean the air seems.  There's a lot of mud in that water, and every spring I imagine how tedious, and hopefully satisfying, it must be to clean up the mess. Every spring when I see this park under water, I think through how the clean-up would be accomplished - as if I had to do it myself. 

I remember a couple of years ago walking through the park on a beautiful spring day and seeing the grounds keepers working hard shoveling and raking mulch on all the unpaved walking places and around all the trees and bushes. The very next day we got a heavy rain and the park flooded like pictured above.  I imagined how discouraging the whole thing must have been to all the workers who had made it beautiful and ready for the public to enjoy.  But when I took a walk soon after the water receded, there they were - seemingly fine, working at it again.  I suppose it's all in a day's work, and that means a paycheck, so maybe it wasn't as discouraging to them as I thought it should be.

As long as no one is hurt, and property damage is minimal, these heavy spring rains and floods feel like little more than a rite of passage each spring in the Midwest (or at least, that's how I experience it).  And the ground moisture, even a bit of flooding this early, is welcome for all growing things. 

That said, our county (and our little town) did experience a devastating flood in June of 2008.  While our personal misfortune in that flood seemed minor compared to others' losses, our house at the time took on some water in the half basement family room.  The account of that experience is here, herehere, and here.  Even our limited damage was an expensive mess to clean up and repair.  Something like that leaves its mark, to be sure.  Now, when the rains come down and the floods come up, we breathe a sigh of relief when the storms pass and our house remains high and dry.

The sedum are looking lush

I seem to remember that last year I wanted to transplant some of these sedum plants to the sunny side of the house come spring - just to see if the flowers would be a different shade, or vividness, or something like that.  Now that spring is here, this seems like a lot of unnecessary work.  I hate that I'm questioning my strength and energy.  If not this spring, perhaps another...


On a different note, I'm realizing I never posted a finished blanket I crocheted a while back.  It's a baby or toddler size Moorland Blanket, pattern by Lucy at Attic 21. 

It's an easy pattern that provides many opportunities for playing with colors.  I chose the safe route of staying (somewhat) in the same color family. 

Doing a rough (but probably close) estimate on the amount of yarn I used,  I figured this blanket took about 3 1/2 skeins worth of worsted weight yarn that comes in 355 yards/skein.  Or 1,274 yards total - approximately.   That information is probably not that interesting to you, but for me, who's currently on a quest to work through yarn, every yard counts! 

Happy April!