How to Make a Slip Stitch {Crochet Lesson}

How to Make a Slip Stitch - Crochet Lesson by

Here’s a quick look at how to make a slip stitch.  I use them all the time when I’m making crochet hearts or flowers.  It’s an easy way to create a circle to work with in many projects, but it can be used at anytime to reduce the height of a row.

This is such an easy one…

How to Make a Slip Stitch {Crochet Lesson} by Kimberly Layton 2

When your pattern calls for a slip stitch you insert your hook through the chain or stitch you’re working with next.

How to Make a Slip Stitch {Crochet Lesson} by Kimberly Layton 3

Yarn over {which means to go under the strand of yarn and up to grab the yarn}.

How to Make a Slip Stitch {Crochet Lesson} by Kimberly Layton 4

Bring it back through the chain or stitch to finish your slip stitch.  Easy peasy!

Are you learning to crochet?  You might enjoy these lessons…

Have fun!


How to Make a Chain Stitch {Crochet Lesson}

How to Make a Chain Stitch {Crochet Lesson} on

If you’re learning how to crochet you’ll need to start by making a chain.  It’s super simple and the foundation to cute crochet wash cloths, blankets and even circular projects like coasters.

How to Make a Chain Stitch {Crochet Lesson} by Kimberly Layton 1

Let’s start with how to hold the yarn and hook.  Run the yarn between your little finger and third finger.  Bring it up in front of your fingers and run it under your index finger and come around behind it.  Then over it like you see in the photo.

This should help you control your tension, but really it takes a little practice to get even tension…so keep at it!

You’ll find other ways to hold your yarn online if this doesn’t work for you.

Hold the hook like you see above…pretty easy, right?

On another note…I am left handed but I crochet just like if I was right handed.  That’s the way I was taught.  So, as far as I see it anyone can do it this way.

How to Make a Chain Stitch {Crochet Lesson} by Kimberly Layton 2

Start with a slip knot on your hook.  You can learn how to make a slip knot in this crochet lesson, or you can tie an knot around the hook and begin like that.

The yarn comes up and over your index finger and I hold the tail of the yarn pinched between my fingers to secure it.

How to Make a Chain {Crochet Lesson} by Kimberly Layton 3

Take the hook and go under the yarn and up.  This is known as “yarn over” on many patterns.

How to Make a Chain Stitch {Crochet Lesson} by Kimberly Layton 4

Grab the yarn with your hook and bring in through the slip knot you have on the hook. So, yarn over and pull it through to create a chain stitch.  Got it?

Let’s do it again…

How to Make a Chain Stitch {Crochet Lesson} by Kimberly Layton 5

Continue to hold the tail of the yarn and yarn over. {Place your hook under the yarn and bring it up.}

How to Make a Chain Stitch {Crochet Lesson} by Kimberly Layton 6

Pull the yarn through to finish another stitch.

Was it easier this time?  The first 5 or six stitches are a bit harder because there’s not that much for you to hold and it wiggles around some as you work with it.How to Make a Chain Stitch {Crochet Lesson} by Kimberly Layton 7

Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.

How to Make a Chain Stitch {Crochet Lesson} by Kimberly Layton 8

This is your chain stitch.

Want to know how to count them?  See the little bumps on the top of this chain?  Count each one.  You should count 8 in this photo.

A chain stitch is the foundation of so many crochet projects, but you can also do fun things like use it as a ribbon to wrap a gift.  Get creative and have fun with your new crochet skill!


How to Make a Slip Knot {Crochet Lesson}

How to Make a Slip Knot {Crochet Lesson} on

Learn how to start your crochet projects with a slip knot and never look back.  Once you make a few you’ll wonder why you didn’t learn it right away.

For years and years I just made a simple knot around my hook to start.  That’s he way my Great Grandma taught me…but, I was just a kid.

I never thought too much about it until I started learning more crochet stitches and patterns online.  It seemed like every single one of them was starting off with a slip knot.  I felt like a loser. So, I fixed that by learning this technique for making a slip knot.

You’ll see people do this many different ways.  It may seem like a bunch of little steps at first, but it will become one quick fluid motion.



How to Make a Slip Knot {Crochet Lesson} - by Kimberly Layton 1

Start by wrapping your yarn around your finger from the front to the back.  Cross it over the top of the front and a make a little X with the yarn.

Pinch the yarn with you middle finger and thumb to hold it like you see in the photo.

How to Make a Slip Knot {Crochet Lesson} - by Kimberly Layton 2

Know wrap another loop around your finger from the front to the back. {Do not let go of the yarn you’re holding with your finger and thumb.}

Make sure this loop is closer to the tip of your finger.

Once you wrap it around pinch it together with the yarn you’re already holding between your finger and thumb.


How to Make a Slip Knot {Crochet Lesson} - by Kimberly Layton 3

Grab the first loop you made and pull it up and over the second loop.

How to Make a Slip Knot {Crochet Lesson} - by Kimberly Layton 4

So, you’ll be pulling it either to the very tip of your finger or off the tip of your finger.

How to Make a Slip Knot {Crochet Lesson} - by KimberlyLayton 5

Insert your hook into the loop that you just went over. {This was originally the second loop you made over your finger.

How to Make a Slip Knot {Crochet Lesson} - by KimberlyLayton 6

Pull down on the two strands of yarn you were pinching and you’ll see your slip knot.

How to Make a Slip Knot {Crochet Lesson} - by Kimberly Layton 7

Pull it until your slip knot is secure up against your hook.

That’s all it takes!

Once you do this a few times you’ll have it mastered and will never feel like a loser while reading a crochet pattern. Smile


P.S.  Want to learn more right now?  Check out the next crochet lesson…How to Make a Chain Stitch.

Bible Journaling

Bible Journaling on

What is Bible Journaling?

Have you ever highlighted or written a few notes in your Bible?  I’ve always been one to highlight and underline Scriptures that I found inspiring and didn’t want to forget.  This is along the same lines, but it’s a bit more on the creative side.  It’s kind of like an art journal, a Bible study journal, painting, stamping and scrapbooking all rolled into one amazing Bible!

Everyone will make their Journaling Bible to match their own style.  Just add whatever makes you feel comfortable and more in touch with the Scripture written inside.  There are wide side margins made just for this reason.

Bible Journal - Sweet little tabs -

   Express yourself and create something beautiful!

Journaling Bible Examples on

There’s no right or wrong.  If you can draw, go for it.  I actually can’t draw, but I use lots of stamps and stickers to express myself.

Bible Journaling Supplies on

Washi tape is one of my favorite things to add a splash of color or hold a little tag on a page.  So, pretty tape is a must.


Here’s another look at a page in my Bible.  I really don’t start off with a design in mind.  Sometime I write the verse on the side and other times I make notes.  I usually highlight the verse with a yellow pencil to help it stand out.  I don’t like to cover up any words, so I try to keep my colors light and to the side.

I use watercolors, colored pencils, stamps, stencils and so much more.

I’ll be sharing more about my process soon, and I’ll also have a guide to Bible journaling available to download right here.  Subscribe to my blog in the side bar so you don’t miss it!

Have you tried Bible journaling?


PS – I’ve had lots of questions about the Bible I bought for this purpose. Here it is on Amazon. It’s a simple black cover which makes it much more affordable, and I made a beautiful fabric cover.

Homemade Heart Dog Treat Recipe

Homemade Heart Dog Treat Recipe -

Pamper your pets with some homemade dog treats!

We are those crazy dog people…you know the ones.  We seriously love our dogs and consider them part of the family.

We live right by a cute little doggie boutique that sells homemade treats, but they can really be quite pricey.  I knew I could make my own much cheaper.

I LOVE the way these turned out and I plan on making them on a regular basis.  At least I’ll know exactly what they’re eating, and they jump up and down for them so I’m pretty sure that means they’re yummy!

Sherlock -

Here’s are newest puppy…Sherlock.  We adopted him from a shelter.  He’s so amazing I can’t even express it with words.  So, we spoil him with lots of hugs, walks, car rides and treats.

Homemade Dog Treats - Peanut Butter Hearts -

These smell just like peanut butter cookies as you bake them.  My boys always think I’m making them something…ha!

Homemade Dog Treat Recipe -

Homemade Peanut Butter Dog Treat Recipe


  • 3/4 cup reduced fat milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup peanut butter {smooth}
  • 2 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon of baking soda

Preheat your oven to 325 degrees.

Whisk the milk, one egg and peanut butter together in a large bowl.

Add the flour and baking soda to create a lovely dough.  You may need to use your hands to work in all the flour.

Flour a surface to roll out your dough.  Cut out shapes like dogs, bones or make mini circle peanut butter cookies for small dogs.  1/4” thickness is awesome…but a little thicker works.

Make a quick egg wash by whisking together one egg and a couple teaspoons of water.  Brush a thin coat on your dog treats before putting them in the oven.

I used an Airbake Insulated Cookie Sheet and parchment paper while baking. {These are two of my favorite things!}  They equal perfect baking and no mess…that works!

Bake 15 minutes on one side and flip to bake 10 more minutes on the other side. {Don’t forget to brush on egg wash before baking!}

Remove and cool.

Store them in an airtight container for a week or in the freezer for up to 2 months.

Make Homemade Dog Treats - Recipe at

Now you have no excuse for not making homemade treats for your furry friends.  They’re super easy and bake fast!

Have you ever made your own dog treats?


Looking for more DIY pet ideas?  Check out these…

London Fog Tea Recipe

London Fog Tea Recipe on


When my boys were little we took a trip to London where their love of afternoon tea began.  Since we homeschool I would take time out from school for tea and cookies.  We mainly did this during the few cold months, but it always made everyone happy.  Now I have one grown son and one almost grown…sigh.

There are some advantages to them growing up.  My oldest son makes awesome coffee and my youngest one is quite the tea expert!  Over the last few years we’ve ordered London Fog Tea whenever we can but it’s hard to find around here.

Well, Jacob {my youngest boy}, has learned how to make it to perfection and I thought we’d share his recipe with you.  If you’ve never tried it, you must.

London Fog Tea is more of a sit down and read a book or browse through Pinterest kind of tea to me.  Grabbing one in a to-go cup doesn’t seem quite right.  It deserves to be savored.

You start with these ingredients…

London Fog Tea Supplies - Recipe on

One Earl Gey Tea Bag {we used TAZO}, milk, sugar, vanilla and don’t forget the Lavendar.  Lavender takes this tea over the top…trust me.

Boil your water for the tea.  While you’re doing that go ahead and put the tea bag, sugar and vanilla in your tea cup.  Pour 8 0z of hot water in the cup.  Then add the Lavender in a tea ball strainer or just sprinkle it on top.  It’s best to use a timer {Jacob likes to make sure he gets the perfect tea every single time!} and let it steep for 2 1/2-3 minutes depending on how strong you want it.

While your waiting on the tea go ahead and froth your milk using the cappuccino attachment.  What happens is awesomeness!  Use it right away or it will not be as fluffy.

Remove all the Lavender from the tea {it can be hard to do without the little tea ball strainer}.  Then pour a little milk froth on top and spoon the rest to make it all pretty.

Aroma Froth Maker

This is one of our favorite kitchen gadgets…our milk frother.  It makes everything extra special in minutes!  You can find a newer version of this Hot Froth X-Press right here.

London Fog Tea Recipe -

Here’s the recipe for you to print out and follow…

London Fog Tea Recipe
Recipe type: Drinks
  • 4 oz Milk
  • 2 tsp Sugar
  • ½ tsp Vanilla
  • ¼ tsp Lavender Buds
  • 1 Earl Grey Tea Bag
  1. Boil your water for the tea. While you're doing that go ahead and put the tea bag, sugar and vanilla in your tea cup. Pour 8 0z of hot water in the cup. Then add the Lavender in a tea ball strainer or just sprinkle it on top. Let it steep for 2½-3 minutes depending on how strong you want it.
  2. While your waiting on the tea go ahead and froth your milk using the cappuccino attachment. What happens is awesomeness! Use it right away or it will not be as fluffy.
  3. Remove all the Lavender from the tea {it can be hard to do without the little tea ball strainer}. Then pour a little milk froth on top and spoon the rest to make it all pretty.

Let me know what you think!


Crochet Baby Blanket Pattern

Crochet Baby Blanket Pattern by

I made this cozy crochet baby blanket for a baby gift, but I wish I had a giant one for myself!

Working with this chunky yarn makes it super fast, and it feels so soft and warm!

I love having small crochet projects to do while we watch a movie in the evening.  There’s something so relaxing about the movement of the needle and the knowledge that you’re creating something that will last for years and years.  It’s a good thing!

The pattern is really easy once you get the hang of it, and I think the sweet shell stitch gives the blanket a little extra detail that I love.  This is easy enough for beginners, so don’t shy away from this pattern if your new to crochet.

Baby Blanket Crochet Pattern by

I used 3 skeins of Lion Brand Wool-Ease Thick & Quick…Wheat color.  The hook size is J and the finished size is a 29″ square.

Crochet Baby Blanket Pattern  

  • Start by making a chain of 81 stitches.
  • Row 1 – 1 single crochet in the second chain from the hook.  1 single crochet in each chain to the end.
  • Row 2 – Chain 1 {don’t count it as a stitch}, 1 single crochet in the first stitch, *skip 3 stitches, 5 double crochet in the next stitch to create a shell, skip 3 stitches, 1 single crochet in the next stitch…repeat from the * to the end of the row.
  • Row 3 – Chain 3 {counts as a double stitch}, 1 double crochet in the stitch at the base of the chain, *Chain 2, skip 2 double crochet, 1 single crochet in the next double crochet, 2 double crochet in the next single crochet…repeat from * to the end of the row.
  • Row 4 – Chain 1 {don’t count it as a stitch}, 1 single crochet in the space between the first 2 double crochet, *Miss next chain space, 1 single crochet in space between the next 2 double crochet…repeat from * to the end of the row.
  • Repeat rows 3 & 4 until it measure 29″.

Handmade Baby Crochet Blanket by

This is an awesome gift for a new baby anytime of the year!  If you like to make baby gifts, you’ll love this post of 101 Handmade Baby Gift Tutorials!

Do you make many baby gifts?  Which ones are your favorite?


Mini Apple Bundt Cake Recipe

Mini Apple Bundt Cake Recipe on

Homemade Apple Bundt cakes are great, but Mini Apple Bundt Cakes are even better!  They’re perfect for entertaining or sharing a bit with your neighbors.  Don’t you love how baking up something like this makes you house smell all yummy and cozy?  This recipe will have neighbors knocking on your door as the smell drifts down the road…it’s true.

It’s an easy recipe that looks like a million bucks when your done.  That works for me.

Mini Apple Bundt Cake Recipe from


apples for mini apple bunt cakes on

 Gather a bunch of apples and bake up a batch or two of these today.

Apple Bundt Cake Recipe - Supplies on

Mini Apple Bundt Cake Recipe

Makes 6 Mini Budt Cakes
Prep Time – 20 mins.
Cook Time – 25 mins.
Bake 350 degrees
  • 1 1/2  cup All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 1/2 cup apple or 2 apples
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup walnuts {crushed}
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 cup orange juice
  • 1 1/4 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp salt

baking up a batch of mini bundt cakes on

Cut up the apples into small pieces.  In a small bowl combine the apples, cinnamon and half the sugar.  Stir together and set it aside.

In a large bowl combine the rest of the sugar, vegetable oil, orange juice, vanilla, and eggs.  Mix together until blended.  Stir in flour, baking powder and salt.  Mix well.  Add in apple mixture and crushed walnuts.  Mix again…I used a hand-held mixer.

making bunt cakes -

This recipe works perfectly with my mini bundt pan {that I seriously love}.  This pan makes anything bake up pretty!  You should be just the right amount to make 6 mini bunt cakes.

Do not grease the pan…there’s no need.  Fill to about the 2/3 point in each section.

baking mini bunt cakes on

Bake for about 25 minutes or until the center is springy when you touch it.  {Very professional lingo, right?}

Perfectly bundt - bunt cakes -

Once they cook, let them cool in the pan for 5-7 minutes.  Then just flip them over and they should pop out.  Just awesome!  I use these lovely cooling racks to help out.   Don’t they look pretty just like this?!

Let them cool for a bit and the add some glaze…

making glaze for bunt cakes on

 Glaze Recipe


  • 1 Cup Powdered Sugar
  • 1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
  • 1/4 Cup Unsalted Butter {softened}
  • 3 Tablespoons Milk
  • 1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract

Use a 2 quart sauce pan and bring the brown sugar, milk and butter to a boil over medium heat.  Boil for 2-3 minutes.  Keep whisking it so it doesn’t burn.  Remove it from the heat.  Add the powdered sugar and vanilla.  Mix with an electric mixer on medium speed until smooth and slightly thick.  Pour right away over your Mini Apple Bundt Cakes.  Yum!  Sprinkle extra walnuts on the top if you wish.

Mini Apple Bundt Cake by

 That’s all there is to it…easy & yummy!

Apple Bundt Cake Recipe on

Do you make bundt cakes often?  They always seem so homey and inviting to me.

Let me know how your Mini Apple Bunt Cakes turn out!


Garlic Cauliflower Mash Recipe

Garlic Cauliflower Mash Recipe on

Once you try this Garlic Cauliflower Mash recipe you’ll never look at regular old mashed potatoes the same way.  These were simply amazing, and I plan on making them for every single holiday or special day for the rest of my life.  Seriously.

I grew up with mashed potatoes being one of my all-time favorite things in the world.  When I decided to make Cauliflower Mash I was hoping for something that was a pretty good replacement for all the carbs that make up mashed potatoes.  I can’t even explain how shocked I was when I found out just how amazing cauliflower could really be…it rocks!

Cauliflower to Better than Mashed Potatoes in Minutes

 I started with fresh cauliflower…it’s way better for you than potatoes.

Cauliflower Mash Ingredients on

I gathered up a few yummy ingredients.  My family like some serious flavor, so I add quite a bit to them.  Feel free to change them up to make them perfect for you.  This is a simple recipe that seems pretty hard to mess up…so get creative.

Here’s what I did…

Garlic Cauliflower Mash Recipe
  • 1 Head of Cauliflower or 2 10 oz. packages of fresh Cauliflower
  • ½ cup Chicken Stock {I used Reduced Sodium Chicken Stock}
  • ½ cup Colby/Cheddar Shredded Cheese
  • 1 Tablespoon of Olive Oil
  • 1 teaspoon of Minced Garlic
  • 2 teaspoons of Parmesan Cheese
  • 1 oz Cream Cheese
  • ¼ cup chopped Chives
  1. Start by preparing your cauliflower into small pieces {or florets} and adding them to a large pot of water. Bring them to a boil and cook for 30 minutes or until the cauliflower is soft.
  2. Drain the Cauliflower. Set aside for a minute.
  3. Add the olive oil to your pot along with the minced garlic…over medium heat let it cook for 3-4 minutes. Stir to keep it from burning.
  4. Add the cauliflower back into the pot, stir and let it cook for 3-5 minutes.
  5. Add in the chicken stock and continue to cook and stir for 5 minutes. The cauliflower will start to fall apart. No worries…it’s a good thing.
  6. Remove your cauliflower from the pot and add it to a mixing bowl.
  7. Add in the cream cheese and Parmesan Cheese. Mix with a mixer until it’s smooth. It will look just like mashed potatoes. If it’s too thick you can add in a bit more warm chicken stock, but I didn’t need to do it.
  8. Top it off with shredded Colby/Cheddar Cheese and Chives. You could add sour cream and butter if it would make you happy. This is happy food, for sure!


Amazing Garlic Cauliflower Mash on

It was actually easier than making homemade mashed potatoes because I didn’t have to spend all that time peeling potatoes!

Garlic Cauliflower Mash Recipe by Kimberly Layton

Once you try this it will quickly become one of your favorites…trust me.  TRY IT!

This is the kind of recipe that can be tailored to fit the needs of so many diets.  Low-Carb and Keto diets fans…this is for you.  But it’s hard to tell it’s good for you, it won my teenage son over in one bite!  This is perfect for large crowds and I’m planning to make it this Thanksgiving.

Let me know what you think!


DIY Lime & Coconut Body Scrub

DIY Lime & Coconut Body Scrub by Kimberly Layton

This DIY Lime & Coconut Body Scrub is the perfect gift!  Create a batch and share some.  It makes you skin feel amazing while filling the room with a fresh smell that’s sure to make you happy!

Gather up your supplies and you can make a large batch of these in less than 30 minutes…for real!

Free Lim & Coconut Body Scrub Printable

Print out these simple & sweet labels to top them off.  I love the look of craft paper, but you can print them on any color…get creative and have fun.

{You can download the printable at the bottom of this post.}


  • 2 1/2 cup Epsom Salt
  • 25-30 drops Lime Essential Oil
  • 6 Tablespoons Coconut Oil
  • 3 Tablespoons Vitamin E Oil
  • 1 Lime
  • 1/2 cup Shredded Coconut
  • 4 oz. Mason Jars  {I love these…what a perfect size!}
  • Plain Printable Sheet of Label Paper

The supplies are rather simple and I’ve included links at the bottom of this post to make your shopping easy.

Feel free to add or change things up a bit.  It seems like it would be hard to really mess up.  This recipe will give you a fresh smelling body scrub that leaves you skin feeling amazing!

Making Body Scrub on

You can mix this up in just a few minutes!

Start by adding your Epsom Salt to a large bowl or measuring cup.

There are a million uses for Epsom Salt, and when you read about all the health benefits you’ll decide to add it to everything…lol!

Making Body Scrub by Kimberly Layton

Add the coconut oil and vitamin E to the salt.  Mix it up.


Add your Lime Essential Oil.  Yes, I sell it.  Why? Because it’s awesome and I’ve been using these oils for years.  The quality is amazing, the health benefits are fabulous and you can use so much less than cheaper brands for a project like this.  Trust me!

Add Lime to the body scrub -

Mix it up again.  I added the zest of a lime to the mix for a touch of color.

Bath salt DIY on

Mix it up again and this is what you have…Lime & Coconut Body Scrub.

Lime & Coconut by

Don’t you think they would make a sweet little gift?  I wish you could smell these…the whole office is smells amazing!

Use a 2-3 tablespoons, or use just a tablespoon for hand washing.  Your hands will thank you!

DIY Body Scrub Tutorial on {Lime & Coconut}

Wasn’t that easy??

You can download the printable Lime & Coconut Body Scrub labels right here.


Just trim them or use a large hole punch to make them fit to your container. I’m a major fan of this size mason jar and these little wood scoops.  I feel like they take it to a whole new level of homemade goodness.  Add a ribbon or twine and you are finished!

Have fun creating your own handmade gifts!