Wednesday, February 28, 2007

sleeping like a baby

It is pretty common for babies around 6-12 months to experience a deterioration in their sleeping habits. Teething, their bodies' need to practice newly developing skills like crawling and standing, and burgeoning separation anxiety conspire to keep them up at night. Oh yeah, and their parents. And let me tell you, it sucks.

I feel kind of guilty complaining about this, because for the first few months of her life, when most babies are having difficulty with the difference between day and night, and their sleeping is erratic at best, Baby Sister was an excellent sleeper. I am, of course, going to complain anyway, because I am tired. She was very reliable - she would go down about 7:30, wake at about 2:00 to nurse, go back down and sleep until about 6:30. It was beautiful. I guess I must have gloated about it or something - although I swear I have no recollection of that - because ever since the appearance of the teeth (she cut the first two in November, and it was over pretty quickly, but now all the rest, including her adult teeth and wisdon teeth, are all coming in at once) she just doesn't want to sleep. Instead of drifting back off to dreamland after nursing in the wee hours, she will pull her head back, look up at me, and say "Hi!" very charmingly and enthusiastically. It is significantly less charming at 3:00 AM than, say, 3:00 PM.
Well, I'll quit whining now. Anybody reading this who has kids knows what I am talking about. And anybody who does not yet have kids can sympathize, but not completely. I will just drink my coffee and daydream (not actually dream, because you have to be asleep for that) of better days.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

knitting group, etc.

So, I'm really liking this knitting group thing. I figured I would, but now I've gone twice and I've really had a good time. Thursday the RI In Stitches group met, and we had a Yankee-style swap of stash yarn. I didn't think I would get to participate because I seem to be one of those rare knitters who doesn't really have a stash. At least not one that contains anything I could bring for a swap. Leftover half-skein of purple Wool-ease, anyone? Teeny-weeny bit of the merino I made some Fetchings out of? Gee, why isn't anybody choosing the yarn I brought? Luckily, the very generous Kimberley had brought lots, and I got to play. I came away with some very nice gray-blue angora/wool, from which I intend to make some mittens.

I also finished swatching for, and cast on the hourglass sweater from Last-Minute Knitted Gifts. It's a really pretty, simple pattern, and it will be my second adult sweater. The first ended up being frogged, and quite frankly I don't really like to talk about it. Many hours of my life wasted. Anyway, I am making the hourglass sweater out of Brown Sheep's Cotton Fleece cotton/wool yarn in the provincial rose colorway. I have some worries about running out of yarn, but we shall see.

The sweater is being postponed, however, because Big Brother's 9th birthday is coming up in a couple of weeks. Being a burgeoning rock fan, he told me he wanted an inflatable guitar. An inflatable guitar?? Pooh-pooh on your inflatable guitar, you shall have a knitted guitar! Courtesy of New Knits on the Block. This is the third pattern I have made from this book, and I do not even own the darn thing. I just keep taking it out from the library. I love the library.

So that is everything knitting-related at the moment. Neither of the projects have gotten very far yet, but I'll post more pictures when they are done. You know, in the next decade or so.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

finished presents

Here are the FO's I mentioned previously. Previously meaning a week ago -oops. Anyway, the blocks are for Magic Baby's first birthday this weekend. I'm pretty pleased with how they turned out. The first couple of times I stuffed them, they were more ball-y than block-y, but I found some fairly stiff foam blocks and that seemed to work well.

This is a hat I made for J, for Valentine's day. I usually have issues with hats coming out too small, but this one did not. Gotta keep those ears warm on those early morning runs. I knit this out of chunky Wool-ease on size 9 circulars, so the fabric is really thick, and I just kind of made it up as I went along. I especially like how the decreases came out. I had only ever done them by doing a round of k6, k2tog all the way around, then a round of plain knit, then k5, k2tog, etc. and coming out with a star shape. I wanted to try something different, so I divided the hat into four sections and decreased at the beginning and end of each, using ssk and k2tog so the decreases would face each other. I realize this is not exactly revolutionary, but it was new to me and I liked it!

Saturday, February 17, 2007

I knew it.

You Are Bert

Extremely serious and a little eccentric, people find you loveable - even if you don't love them!

You are usually feeling: Logical - you rarely let your emotions rule you

You are famous for: Being smart, a total neat freak, and maybe just a little evil

How you life your life: With passion, even if your odd passions (like bottle caps and pigeons) are baffling to others


I don't think I have ever been quite so glad to see the end of a week as this one. The weather, viruses, and even the very circle of life conspired to keep me from knitting, from blogging, from keeping my sanity.

First the teacher for whom I have been covering had her baby. Yay! So now I am covering some of her husband's classes as well. This would be totally fine if he had left something for me to, say, do with his students. I mean, he had to know the baby thing was coming, right? I realize that the time just before the birth of your firstborn is not a period of particularly clear thinking, but still.

So when I heard the forecast of a big storm for Wednesday, I was pretty psyched. A snow day! Perfect timing! But no. Instead of powdery white goodness, there fell from the sky slushy wet crap that flash-froze when the sun went down, turning all the world (or at least, my little corner of the world) into a skating rink. And there was still school.

But wait, there's more! Since I last posted, the boys have been sick, I have been sick, J has been sick, Old Friend has been sick and Magic Baby has been sick. The boys got it first and were getting better just in time for me to start working a much longer schedule and the person who normally picks them up from school to catch the bug. Thank goodness for grandparents willing to jump in at a moment's notice. Several times in the same week.

So now it's Saturday, and in a word - whew.

There are some FO's to speak of, and I will get around to taking pictures and posting them ASAP.

Wednesday, February 7, 2007


Because nothing says "I love you" like math problems!

And, completely unrelated, how do you know we are truly living in a digital age? I overheard a student asking his teacher, his teacher in honors physics, to write a letter of recommendation for his college applications, and the student didn't know where to put the stamp. Good grief.

Tuesday, February 6, 2007

the parade of WIP's

And a sad little procession it is. Going back to work has seriously slowed down the knitting. You wouldn't think this would be true for a job that is essentially two hours a day, but a teaching job is not really like that. There's a lot of prep, a lot of correcting, plus a drive of about 45 minutes each way. I'm enjoying it, though.

Anyway, the first WIP is actually somewhat of an FO, or an ex-FO. I had mentioned before about frogging the calorimetry headband/hat thingy after cutting off all my hair, and that I was using the yarn, a lovely soy/wool blend in pinks and purples, for a hat. Well, here's the hat, modeled by an oh-so-enthusiastic-looking Big Brother:

I still wasn't really happy with it; I'm not sure why. So I ripped it out, again, and gave the yarn a bath. Its true calling will reveal itself to me eventually.

I'm also working on this, a knitting bag made from recycled sari silk and some red cheapo acrylic yarn. I put the red in for thicker fabric, more durability, and because the sari silk has so many colors it was a little overwhelming by itself. I've got very little done, and, as I said, the going's been slow.

Next off the needles will be these, mitered square blocks from Vickie Howell's New Knits on the Block book, in three different colors of Wool-ease. These are for Magic Baby's first birthday in a couple of weeks. This pattern was really cool because each side of the block is attached as you knit it. In the end there are only two seams to sew up. I just need to finish the last one and stuff them with foam.

Baby Sister seems to like them!

And finally, because I've been on a tear about eradicating disposable products from my life (although toilet paper will always be welcome), this will become a sponge once finished and stuffed with a piece of foam. It's plain cotton, leftover from knitting diaper liners for Baby Sister, half stockinette and half garter stitch so each side will have a different texture. I'm not quite sure how well the sponge will work, but the diaper liners have been great so I'm pretty optimistic.

I need to be a less schizophrenic knitter!!

Thursday, February 1, 2007

Is it something in the water?

The weirdness has invaded my house. Witness this scene:

J (looking at the screen of his computer game): Does this look like it's got too much pink and purple? Guy at Work said it looked like My Little Pony land.
Me: Well, the sky looks kind of purple.
Little Brother: And the leaves on that tree look pink.
Big Brother: Plus, he would have seen the chimpanzees, if there were any.