Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Just Getting Ready for Next Year


(from Ravelry's 12 in 2011 group )


January: (WIP) knit dress for the girls - need to restart in a lighter yarn

February: (WIP) Crochet dress for Joan

March: (WIP)Shipwreck Shawl for my sister in law as a wedding present

April: (WIP)Two matching shrugs for my twin daughters (turning 2) who will be participating in said wedding

May: Socks for my son (4) to match the girls’ shrugs (he will also be involved in the wedding)
June: By this point, Daddy will surely need new kilt hose as well for the games in September and I’vebeen dying to make these

July: (WIP) Dollar and a Half Cardigan needs to be finished

August: (WIP) Skew sock needs a second sock

September: (WIP) squishy Noro scarf

October: (WIP) I know it’s kind of lame, but I started a blanket in Lion Homespun and I’d like to finish it. The yarn’s a bear to work with but it makes such snuggly blankets and the only blanket I’ve ever finished with Homespun I gave away.

November: (WIP) my Jeannie shawl that has been languishing for far too long

December: As a present to myself, if I can clear out most or all of this list, I’d like to make this just for me

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Knitting Update

Where I'm At With My Current Projects:
  • Mom's Socks: Yes, I am taking full advantage of the fact that I don't need to have these ready until New Year's Day. Neener neener. Still, all that's left is the leg and cuff, maybe 2-2.5" more overall. Then, we weave in ends and make an attempt at blocking. Then, we go finish wrapping Mom's present.
  • Andy's Sweater: Sleeve one is attached and has a cuff, sleeve 2 is more than halfway done. Yaay!
  • Oh, yeah and in the middle of all this, I did manage a hat and scarf (finished Christmas Day!) for Sarah for her birthday. So that's what's been taking me so long ...
  • I had to restart the shrugs for the girls for the wedding. After seeing fabric samples for the dresses next to the original yarn, we decided it was too pink and I found a nice terra cotta in a sport weight cotton blend, so the jackets will be a bit thicker, but still washable and actually better for the pattern than what I had originally planned to use. Plus, the thicker yarn will knit up faster. Oh, and I broke my size 4 Zephyr tips (knitpicks acrylic needles). These needles do not like being stressed and do not mix well with tense knitting.
  • Added a whole row to the shwal in the past month - I foresee a stint in Detention for the month of April in HPKCHC. Oh, and on that, I got sorted into the Hufflepuff House!! Wheee!

Projects I've Been Ignoring/Avoiding that Will Need to be Done This Year:

  • Beully Dress
  • Jeanie Wrap
  • Skew Sock #2
  • Buck.5 Cardigan
  • Homespun Blanket From Hell

Ok, that's that for now. Time to go be a grown-up.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Post-Christmas Quickie

OK, so I fully intended to post last night, but a little monkey kept jumping out of his bed and I had to chase him back up the stairs. Repeatedly.



So, short version of Christmas - kids had a blast with all the grandparents, made out like bandits. My parents apparently no longer love me, as they got baby dolls that TALK TO EACH OTHER for the girls. (Thank goodness for small miracles like the OFF switch.) Andy has been giving everyone and everything he can get his hands on a checkup and shots with his play-doctor kit.



And I got a new camera!! Yay no more crappy phone pictures!! I did have a chance to take pictures of the socks I'm making for Mom - finished one and almost done with #2.

... AAAnd Flickr is being a beast and won't let me post pics. Here's some links instead

http://www.flickr.com/photos/18832881@N05/5295477980/in/photostream/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/18832881@N05/5295479470/in/photostream/

I will try for a more voluminous update later on, when the internet no longer hates me.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

On The Solstice

When did I let all this crap become more important than the magic? For once last night, I set aside my chores and worries about not being productive enough and I just played with my kids.

When did I let laundry overtake snuggle time? When did crap I dragged home from work out-rate spending time getting to know my family again?

As the sun rises after the longest night of the year, I want the sun to rise in my life as well. I know that I have responsibilites and obligations, sometimes the crap that follows me home needs to be done. Laundry doesn't wash itself, and people need to eat. But I want the magic back. I want to share life with my kids, I want to enjoy time with my husband. I want this "not good enough, not clean enough, not productive enough" to stop following me around.

I want to be a blessing to my family, and enjoy the blessing that they are to me.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Weekend Knitting and Other Stuff

I suppose I owe you all an update on my current projects and whether or not I've been keeping up with my schedule. (That would be ... em, sort of.)

Here we go:
  • Mom's Socks - up to the cuff on Sock 1. I opted to go with a short ankle-type cuff rather than a long section of leg due to the fact that the super-soft and super-light alpaca/silk yarn is utterly floppy and I'd have to knit elastic into the leg to get it to hold like a sock should. So, soft silky slippy ankle socks it is. Up against the schedule, I'm actually a day ahead so I'll pick up the socks again Wednesday.
  • Andy's Sweater - Got more yarn, finished the collar and got the first half of one sleeve done. On this one, I'm about a day behind, as I should be finishing up the second half of that sleeve today. Guess what I'm working on tonight?
  • Shawl: Honestly, I haven't touched it all weekend, as I've been wanting to focus on getting my mom's socks finished for Christmas. It's not like I don't have until April to get this thing done (famous last words, huh?) I readjusted the schedule for this (now expecting to finish mid-March) and I've got Round 63 on my plate today.
  • Girls Jackets: Another one I left go over the weekend. I tinkered with that schedule a bit too and now I'm just due to finish 2"of neck strap tonight. There's less wiggle room in this schedule due to the fact I have to make 2, but still enough that I'm not worried. Plus, as I get closer to finishing Christmas and the shawl, I'll be able to put in more time to finish both jackets.
So, that's where I'm at and what I'm looking forward to getting through tonight. I also entered my socks and the sweater for Andy in Wizard's Chess over at HPKCHC on Ravelry. It's a fun group - you should check it out. It's actually helping me finish projects, especially things like birthday presents. Plus I get to check out what everybody else is working on!

Friday, December 3, 2010

GAAAAHH!

Last night was an exercise in frustration. Andy decided he was going to keep me running up and down the stairs until about 11pm, so I only got a little bit of working time in between trips to put him back in bed. I am now almost halfway through a sleeve, adn dangerously close to out of yarn for his sweater, so it's back in the bag with this one until I can make it out to get more yarn.

Tonight, I'm planning on doing the gusset (up to the heel turn) on the sock, still need to put three rows on the shawl and two inches on the neck strap. If I can get out to get yarn, I'll be finishing the collar and the rest of the first sleeve on the sweater. If not, I'll catch up over the weekend.

Now, to justify to myself why knitting takes precedence over laundry and doing work that I brought home with me ....

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Socks!!

I'm at 6" on the first sock now, planning to work the gusset up to the heel turning tomorrow night. So, tonight I still need to finish the texture section of the first sleeve for Andy's sweater, put two rows on the shawl and add another inch to the neck piece for the first of two sweaters for my ladies. Progress pictures will be forthcoming as soon as I figure out my stupid phone.

Done! Pictures ahoy!












The Sweater for Andy












Girls Jacket (just started!)












Shawl












Socks

Wednesday Night Knitting & Thursday Plan

So, what did I actually get done last night?
  • Mom's socks: up to about 5" overall, one more to go before Friday.
  • Andy's Sweater: nothing last night, still need to pick up more green. Hoping to maybe get the first part of a sleeve done tonight.
  • Shawl: I wanted three rows by Friday and have done none so far.
  • Girls Sweaters: Still need to add 2" to that neck piece.

So, that's where it's at. Tonight might be a good night to knit. Yaay!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Where I'm At and What's On My Plate for Today

Ok, so this crazy schedule. What's on for today?
  • Mom's Socks: Here's the pattern Got the toe done and about 4" into the foot. I want to get 6" overall done today and be ready to start the gusset and heel by Friday
  • Andy's Sweater: Pattern, just for reference. I made some for the girls doing the texture portion of the pattern in one color and the sc sections in another (pink/brown for Jo and black/white for Mags) Andy's will be a sort of avocado green in the sc sections and a variegated green/brown in the texture sections. I've got the main body done and I'm up to the collar section. Ran out of green yarn while I was working the collar last night, so I'll be working the texture portion of the sleeves until I get a chance to go get yarn. I aim to either have one sleeve section or the collar done by Friday, depending on when I go get more green.
  • Shawl: If I do one row a day, I should finish by mid-March. Plenty of time to completely start over in a fit of insanity and still be done by May 1, right?
  • Girls Sweaters (for the Wedding): Pattern - I'm doing these on size 4 needles with a superwash wool sock yarn in pink/yellow and orange tones. It's a KnitPicks yarn, I just don't recall which one at the moment and I'm too lazy to go look. I've got an inch or so of the neck piece done and I'm aiming to add another 2" by Friday.
  • Andy's Socks: (I'll be starting this one sometime in January if all goes well)
So, that's what I'm looking to get done. Well, good news is that Psych is on tonight so I'll most likely be up till 11 knitting after the kids go to bed. Bad news is I have to be up for work by 4.30.

I work under the assumption that sleep is optional most days.

Christmas Knitting!

Yaay! Knitting with a deadline! (aack)

OK, so my kitchen's still not any cleaner. Not even a tiny bit. One could describe these last couple of weeks for me as a wee dip in the foggy pool of depression. And I can't say that I'm entirely out of it again. In fact, with Operation: Impending Christmas and "Attempting To Get Caught Up Before the End of the Year" at work on top of all the regular stress, sometimes it's worse. But it helps to talk. It also helps to run screaming in the other direction and share my brand new Grand Plan for finishing a bunch of knitting projects, some of them even before Christmas. We'll talk about my defective head meat later.

So, completely ignoring my basement (which has gone from a potential Craftopia to something closer to Roswell, what with all the UFO's ..... laugh, dammit.) and just looking at the things I'm knitting that have a deadline (only one real Christmas present), I sort of came up with a plan to do a little every day and hopefully come in under deadline on all the projects.

What's In My Bag Right Now:
  • socks for my mom (that's the christmas present)
  • Andy's green sweater (not a present, I just want to get it done before it's summer again)
  • the shawl I'm sure I've mentioned before
  • matching shrug-type sweaters for the girls
  • possible socks for Andy (depends on how much time I've got left after the other things are done)
The last three things need to be done by the first of May, as they're all for the same wedding. If I stick to my plan, I'll have my mom's socks and Andy's sweater done by Christmas and all the wedding items should be done by early April.

I really want to be able to take the time to update you all on what I've got planned to do and what I've actually accomplished. And I know, if I'm famous for anything at this point, it's my dazzling inability to post regularly, or commit to a schedule. Try to have faith.

Consider it an early New Year's resolution.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Hello, Tuesday

OK, so I finished the hat for my MIL on Sunday, washed it, blocked it and let it dry yesterday. This afternoon, I'll wrap it, and this evening I'll give it to her. Maybe even get some pictures if she brought her camera. If not, I'll get a couple of shots with my phone before I wrap it and post those. The hat turned out really nice, I think, and I'm proud of it.

And then I thought about my kitchen.

I was thinking about cleaning up this morning and I think I've come up with some reasonable expectations of what I'd really like to get done in terms of cleaning up and trying to get more organized.

First, my house will never be perfect. It will be reasonably messy, considering I have three kids and a full time job and I just don't have that kind of time. Things will not always find their way back where they belong, and I'll still find sippies under the cabinet from last week. However, I do not need to hang on to every scrap of paper and it does good to get rid of things I don't use - I joined Freecycle for a reason, dammit. I was also a bit taken aback by the number of things in one cabinet that were expired or rotten. Cleaning is good, obsessing about cleaning is bad.

Second, it will never last. I will mop the floor and ten seconds later, a sippy will explode chocolate milk all over the kitchen. Spahgetti night will always resemble a crime scene. Legos and matchbox cars have a way of traveling as yet undiscovered by modern physicists. God, grant me the soap to clean up what I can, the right tone of eggshell to paint over what I can't, and the wisdom to know when I'm beat and just get rid of it before we move out.

Accepting these two givens, I have two goals. I want to get my kitchen in order. I want things I actually use on the top shelves, not just things I don't know where else they should go. I want a little room to be able to let Andy play with his crafty stuff out of reach of his sisters. I want some space to stow my work bag and set up a laptop and do a little work in relative peace and still keep an eye on the kids.

Second goal - get the basement to a point where I don't have a panic attack thinking about the utility room. Maybe even be able to find a project or two without having to unpack five boxes. Stop tripping over (and feeling guilty about) projects I didn't finish or crafts I'm not as into anymore.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

I Know, It's Been Some Time ...

I've gotten out of the habit of updating and writing about my projects. This has led me back down the road to "my desk runneth over". While some of this madness has been fueled by birthday presents in progress and making sure I finish sweaters for the kids before they grow again, most of it has been just plain disorder and letting my needles (and hook!) run away with me. So, I'm kind of back where I started - a pile of unfinished work and that icky feeling in my stomach every time I pass my desk and its ever-growing pile of projects. (It's best not to remind me that I have a basement at this point, much less remind me what's down *there*)

Oh, and my camera died. Bah.

So, what's on my desk at the moment? Too much.

First, there's another birthday project - a colorwork hat for Jon's mom. She liked the one I made for Andy a couple years ago and asked for that for her birthday this year. Unfortunately, I didn't ask her what she wanted until last weekend, so I just started it and I have three days left to finish. I don't think it's going to be done in time (birthday celebration is Saturday, actual birthday is Tuesday) but it's what I'm working on until it's done.

For the kids, I've got matching hats to go with some super-cute sweaters I finished last month (the girls). Andy is getting his own version of the sweaters in green and brown and has asked for a hat as well, so that's next on the table after I get the birthday present out of the way.

*shiver* I haven't even considered the birthdays coming up - Jon's dad, Sarah, the girls. Or Christmas. Ack. Well, that'll be next then.

After that, I need to get rolling on the wedding present again. I restarted Sarah's shawl with smaller needles and I'm super-happy with the results so far, even if starting over did cost me a ton of lost work. The girls still need short sweaters to go over their dresses and I haven't really finalized the pattern for that yet. (I was hoping to replicate the Madeira lace pattern from the shawl in the body of some short cardigans for my ladies. We shall see ....)

Well, time to acknowledge the outside world and get on with things. Here's to hoping this is the start of me getting back on track and posting on a regular basis. (Once again, we shall see ...)

Friday, September 3, 2010

I Did Promise Pictures, Didn't I?



And here we are. A pile of babies. Also, rejoice with me that a project from my list is done - the Scrap Bag was finished last night, and according to my husband, already claimed by the girls this morning while playing. I snagged it back for pictures during nap time.

Neat, huh? I'm really happy with the way it ended up looking - just slouchy enough. It started as a grocery bag and a way to use up scraps, but I think I might dig it (or one like it - I have tons of scraps) as a purse.
What's next for my project list? Well, when I get my yarn for the Wedding Present and for the girls' sweaters, I'll be casting on for those things and two projects will be temporarily dumped for these until they're done. I absolutely must finish these on time - it's become sort of a personal thing as well, showing myself I can set goals and deadlines for my knitting and come out with something (hopefully) fantastic.

The tea and cookies
were the surprise I'd been working on for my swap-bot buddy. She was very sweet and sent me a ton of postcards, including several just for Andy, so I decided to send a snack that lasts all day. The cup is filled with alpaca roving to look like tea and the cookies, cup and plate are all acrylic. I wish now I'd gotten a better shot of the teacup handle, as I kind of made it up on the fly.


As for my other two projects, they are both coming along just fine. Here's the hat, and yes, I'm working it on a 40" size 1 circular. I swear, all I really need anymore is a set of interchangeable tips and a 40" cable.

Here's my Skew Socks.I tried to get a good shot of the heel of the finished sock, and nearly broke my own leg.






On the second sock, I'm just before the point of finishing the heel and folding it over to join (what the designer calls the "origami moment"). It looks funny, not very sock-like at all. But, trust me, and trust the pattern. Totally going to be a sock.


Well, I need to take a few minutes and let my brain process some things. I may be back later for a discussion on why I need to get off my ass and write some patterns.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Everyone Should Have 12 Projects Going At Once

... Or not. I seem to have fallen back into the pattern of trying to do a little bit on too many projects. While it's been fun to get my hands on some moldy oldies, and I'm all for resurrecting older projects to keep them familiar (plus try and finish them!) while working through new patterns, it's kind of overwhelming me and adding to random anxiety attacks that I Really. Don't. Need. Switching up the lineup occasionally? Good. Constantly bouncing between projects? Bad.

Soooo, here is my solution. I'm going back to working three at a time. I'll add in another WIP or start a new project when one of these 3 is done. Now, I do have one exception - the Wedding Present. As soon as the yarn and needles come in, I have to start it. And, I even have the first 3 up to be completed (by merit of them being the 3 projects sitting next to my computer)
  1. Leverage Hat for Der Hubs. This one now has a deadline - October 2. I'd like it done in time for his birthday.
  2. Scrap Bag. This is such an easy project and so close to completion, I might as well finish.
  3. Skew Socks. One sock is a lonely sock - I just want these done so I can be wearing them.
So, there ya go. I can now identify when a manic episode is coming on by how many knitting (or crochet!) projects I have going at once.

Seasonal Crafting Experiment - 3 Weeks In

I was utterly blindsided by the realization that I am primarily a knitter (and crocheter). I am happiest when I am playing with my yarn, and while it's nice to occasionally take a break and make some cards or draw a bit, my heart is with my yarn. The experiment really only served to highlight how lost I am without knitting. I was getting nervous just thinking about packing away my yarn.

Yay for trying to find some stupid focus for this blog. Changing the name again.

Friday, August 27, 2010

About Last Night and An Itchy Rash

So, last night, seemingly out of nowhere, this giant ball of anxiety just appears and sits on my head, making me cranky and sleepless for the majority of the evening. This has persisted through today and is now polluting my Friday night as well. Bah. I have a glass of wine and a fun project on standby for when I'm done here. The rash is most likely stress - or I'm suddenly allergic to Percocet.

I'm here to see if I can make some sense of my head and let you into my thought processes a bit.

I'm stressing about my house being disorganized. I can feel the clutter coming to get me. Now, granted, my house is cleaner than it's been in years and I've got quite the routine down to keep it mostly picked up around the kids, but I can hear the lost boxes and forgotten closets calling to me. My utility room is waiting patiently to be transformed into Craftopia. I get unseasonably excited at the thought of reorganizing, putting things in their place, even a bit giddy at the prospect of freeing myself from years of moldy possessions weighing me down.

But I'm scared, too. Because I know I have trouble letting go and I know there are things I just need to let go of. Maybe I need to admit defeat and get rid of some of my more ambitious projects. A lot of the fears and indecision that lead to my Seasonal Craftiness in the first place are still apparent. I know that if I want to truly excel at something, I need to focus on the things I love to do and let other things fall away. Same for decluttering and reorganizing - focus on the things that really matter and let everything else go.

The other thing that gets me is knowing that keeping the house from getting recluttered will be a constant battle, and I'm not talking about the kids. I'm a pack rat by nature. My husband is a pack rat, the child of pack rats. I was too. Heck, my grandparents were pack rats. Through my own family, I got to see different aspects and problems of being a pack rat. My mom's mom held on to stuff - things that could be used again, sentimental treasures, craft supplies (always useful!) and furniture. My dad's mom was more of a hoarder - she would buy pretty much anything on sale at the grocery store and her basement was filled with canned goods, cases of soda and a freezer stuffed with food - most of which she never used. An upstairs bedroom housed the soap, cleaning supplies and paper towels. I also saw what happens when a pack rat dies and the kids are left to clean up. My dad and his siblings were left with a huge mess, essentially. Most of what was there couldn't even be donated - many of the canned goods were expired. My mom is coming up to a point, now that her dad is in nursing care, that she has to face the stuff and clean out the house. It terrifies her and I know it. I wouldn't want to sort through a houseful of memories and have to be the one to decide what's worthy of keeping, especially in a house with so much history. There are things from great-grandparents and even further back than that.

But you can't take it with you.

So, I turn my vision on my own family - what do I want to leave my kids with? What kind of home life do I want them to see? Completely organized is so ... sterile. While it would be great to always know where everything is, living in the cover of a magazine is stifling. I want the kids to see rows and rows of books in the living room. I want the kids to be able to poke through Mom's fabric, or yarn, looking for something to make or a request for something to add to my project list. I want my kids to come across the occasional cache of baby clothes, spurring warm memories of what it was like when they were very small. The sweater Mom made for me. The books Dad read as a kid. Andy's first painting. Maggie's first hat. Joan's beloved dinosaur.

Growing up, I loved poking through my mom's stuff. I thrilled to finding some dusty artifact or old photo with a story attached. It gave me a connection to a past I never knew I had. It made people I'd never met real and living relatives more human. The things were a physical representation of the tales - a way to touch the past. Problem was, there wasn't much of it. We moved a lot and my mom was constantly faced with deciding what was worth packing and moving, and what had to go. Things got lost or destroyed in transit. So, I treasured everything. I held onto my own growing collection, in the anticipation of passing my own stories down. I became the next generation of pack rat. Now, I need to deal with it. I need to decide what things are necessary to tell the stories of my life and my family's life.

I just know that I want to leave them with the treasures, and not a reminder of how unhinged I really was.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Starting the Week with an Updated List

  • I need to finish the card kit. I haven't made much progress recently and while the deadline is still a month away, I don't want it to get lost in the shuffle. I really don't have much left to do on it, and I don't want it hanging over me anymore.
  • Amigurumi for my RAK needs to have pictures taken and get in the mail this week!
  • Crochet dress - need to make my Knitpicks order and get more main color yarn - I ran out! Eep!
  • The evil homespun blanket. This thing is gonna haunt me, I can tell already.
  • I need to post pictures and the pattern for the Knit Apron v2. I also need to make a second, blindly following the pattern to test it. Still looking for a way to size it and considering a bottom-up version with ties and a button neck-strap as well.
  • Finish the tea set for the kids
  • Second Skew sock. Made some progress this weekend.
  • $1.5 Cardigan - really wanting to have this done to snuggle up in for the winter.
  • Jeannie Wrap - another one that I haven't picked up in a while. I really need to get my hands on this once some of my deadline-conscious stuff is off my plate.
  • Scrap Bag: closer to being done than one might think. It lacks only a handle and edging - the body of the bag is done.
  • Christmas cards - got some supplies together, as well as my leftovers from last year. Also need to start making the card list and the gift list for family and whatnot.
  • Wedding Present: she likes the alpaca! Time to pick a pattern and order the yarn!
  • Leverage hat for Der Hubs - started this weekend! With a slightly heavier yarn and modified the pattern a bit, it's goung to be a really dense hat, which hairless hubs should like.
  • New projects for kids: girls stockings, new kilt hose for Andy (for next year's games), still need to find a pattern I like for sweaters and hats for all three.
  • Newly discovered moldy oldie: the purple shopping bag.
  • Noro gloves - half testing the pattern making the second glove. Also something I recently resurrected from the basement.
  • Continue on the HUGE task of cleaning out the basement and building my Craftopia in the corner of the utility room. I started this weekend and I don't want to lose momentum.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Coming Up on Wednesday

Trying to put a little balance in my life lately, so I joined the Flylady group online. I started my baby steps, washed my sink last night. I didn't realize how nice it would look and how nice something as simple as a clean sink would make me feel. Now I know today, all it's going to take is getting the dishes done and a quick rinse to get back to pretty. I'll probably post from time to time on how I'm doing with that, too. Wednesday is apparently Anti-Procrastination Day, so I'm going to apply this to my craftiness as well as my housework. After I finish getting my swaps ready to go that need to hit the mail tomorrow, I'll be picking up the card kit that I've been surrepetitiously shuffling to the bottom of the list and try to get that more together. As for housework I've been putting off, it's laundry time. I'm going to hit the basement and get some of that stuff put away for once. I'm tired of having to search the dryer and the baskets for clean clothes.

So, in review - crap I'm not putting off any more today:
  • Getting the laundry folded and put away.
  • My card kit for the swap. Maybe I'll even tackle the big elements first and put those together.
  • After the kids go down for the night, I'll go back to my crochet and make some more progress on the amigurumi RAK I started last night. One piece is already done and it's super cute.
  • If there's time, there will be some stalking about the house with a camera as well.

Onwards to Wednesday!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

The Weekend and Why My Camera Battery Sucks

OK, so I promised I'd tell you a tale of toddlers harassing cows. My parents recently moved to a new house Way Out in the boonies. Their neighbor actually has cattle. (Only a small herd, and Mom confirms that some of them disappear when neighbor's freezer starts to look empty) From my parents' back yard it's just a short trip down the hill and across a narrow lane to see the cows, who apparently like to hang out there and watch people in the yard. The kids spent most of the time at my mom's house playing outside, as it was an uncharacteristically nice day and we don't get out much.

Well, after some time outside, the cows wandered over to see what was going on. I said as much to my dad, who decided to take our poor city babies over and show them the cows (from the other side of the fence - I am well aware of how awesome it would not be had one of the kids decided to go under the fence). Andy thought they were great and interrogated my dad on the diet and lifestyle of cows for some time. Maggie was understandably wary and kept her distance. Joan was fascinated. She wanted to talk to the cows. Even after we brought them back to the yard, she'd stand at the top of the hill and yell at them "Hey! Ka (cow)! Wha-I!"

Let me stop and explain "Wha-I!" This is Joan's multipurpose expression. It means (depending on the context) "What are you doing?" "What's that?" or a toddler version of "What gives?" (or the more grown-up "WTF?" if that's how you see it) If I'm working on the computer, she'll stand next to me and yell "Ma! Wha-I!" Sibling takes a toy from her "Anny! (or Mag!) Wha-I!" I've been known to exclaim at work when something goes wrong "Wha-I!"

So, back to the cows. Eventually, lunch time came and we went inside and ate, then made a mostly unsuccessful attempt to get the kids to lay down for a nap. But, new house + exciting things going on = no nap. We gave up and let everyone back out for more play time. Joan resumed her post at the top of the hill to see what the cows were doing. Of the four cows in the field, three of them were settled down, legs tucked up under them, for all intents and purposes, looking like they were napping. She resumes her yelling. "Hey! Ka! Wha-I!" She keeps doing this until two of the cows rouse themselves and walk away from the fence line, away from the loud little creature disturbing their nap. I comment to Mom. "I guess if Joan's not napping, no one is. Not even the cows."

Now, on to What Mommy Finished in the Car. The knit apron is done. Buttons have been sewn on, ends woven in and as soon as my camera battery recharges, there will be pictures. I missed taking pictures of the kids and my finished swaps (already in the mail) because of a suspiciously dead battery. I have also found the reason my battery seems to run down so quickly, after looking at the most recent round of pictures.

The three year old's been stealing my camera. I now have a table-level picture of his dinner from last week, along with several partial shots of his sisters, his toys, one of his aunt, and about twenty very-close-up pictures of his finger. I need a second battery. Or he needs his own camera.

On to the list:

  • Embroidered bag is going in the mail today. Due to a lack of charged camera battery, there will be no pictures. I may have to ask the recipient to take one for me.
  • Got my trading ATC's picked and planning on getting them ready to mail tonight.
  • G0t my partner for the Tool ATC and I even have a card and envelope made up - just need to write a note, address and send.
  • I need to finish the card kit as well. I haven't made much progress recently and while the deadline is still a month away, I don't want it to get lost in the shuffle. Plan on putting time to it next weekend.
  • Amigurumi for my RAK. I'm planning to start it this week.
  • Crochet dress - it's a few rows bigger now, but slow going. It keeps getting shuffled to the bottom of the list. This is why I'm making the 2T size.
  • The evil homespun blanket. This thing is gonna haunt me, I can tell already.
  • I need to post pictures and the pattern for the Knit Apron v2. I also need to make a second, blindly following the pattern to test it. Still looking for a way to size it and considering a bottom-up version with ties and a button neck-strap as well.
  • Finish the tea set for the kids
  • Second Skew sock. It's just a matter of picking it up on a regular basis.
  • $1.5 Cardigan - really wanting to have this done to snuggle up in for the winter.
  • Jeannie Wrap - another one that I haven't picked up in a while. I really need to get my hands on this once some of my deadline-conscious stuff is off my plate.
  • Scrap Bag: closer to being done than one might think. It lacks only a handle and edging - the body of the bag is done.
  • Christmas cards - got some supplies together, as well as my leftovers from last year. Also need to start making the card list and the gift list for family and whatnot.
  • Wedding Present: I will attempt to win her over to at least a silk/alpaca blend and we'll go from there. I have a couple of patterns in mind - just need to pick the yarn.
  • Leverage hat for Der Hubs - need to find a light weight yarn, as well as my really long size 1 needles.
  • New projects for kids: girls stockings, new kilt hose for Andy (for next year's games), still need to find a pattern I like for sweaters and hats for all three.
  • Newly discovered moldy oldie: the purple shopping bag.
  • Noro gloves - half testing the pattern making the second glove. Also something I recently resurrected from the basement.

So there you have it - now I'm nervous I won't finish anything before my crafty season changes again. Well, I'll always need a carryover project - something to do in the car and when I just need to relax.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Twitchy ...

Feeling a bit twitchy today. My writing time is greatly diminished today as I started off badly, getting up for work 2 hours late. Grraaarr. I will get back with you all later and post the details of my busy weekend, including finishing the Knit Apron and telling tales of my daughter harassing some cows.

Friday, August 13, 2010

The Wedding Present

My sister in law is getting married next May. She's tickled pink (well, salmon, as there will be no pink in her wedding) and I'm happy for her. Sarah has been a good friend and a huge help to us, especially with coming over on Wednesdays to look after the babies. She started this when my son was 18 months old, so I could go to a local knitting group meet-up. When the girls came, she did the same, and even added a day so I could have some more time to rest, run errands or do some housework. Over the past few years, we've gone from not being terribly fond of each other to feeling something more like family. So, I'm anxious to use my crafty goodness to make something useful and pretty for her. After talking to her, I decided on a shawl. She'd like something warm and snuggly, no wool, and I think we're leaning towards orange/yellow/salmon colorways. But she's not a fan of having wool next to her skin. This drastically reduces my options for yarn, as everything I wanted to use is either wool or a wool blend.

Option A: Go for a cotton, bamboo or silk, though it won't be as warm.
Option B: A textured cotton with a simple shawl pattern.
Option C: Win her over to the dark side with this yarn.

More later - patterns and other ideas.

Resting My Back

Ha! Even with the meds, I'm finding it nigh impossible to sit and rest my back like I should. I decided last night, since I'd gotten the kids down fairly early (a trend I hope to continue tonight) that I'd split my time and work on a handful of projects.
  • Got the knit washcloth swap packaged up and ready to go - I'll go to the post office Monday so I can take anything that might get finished over the weekend as well.
  • I am two rows away from finishing the Knit Apron v2. I will skulk about the house with a camera tonight and get pictures of it as well.
  • Finished the main body of the teapot and lid for my crochet tea set. It's entirely too cute so far.
  • Picked up my Skew socks again and got another inch or so on the foot. Most of the time I'd devoted to working on this was spent trying to figure out where I was in the pattern. (There is a sticky note now so I won't have to go through that again)
  • Briefly touched the $1.5 Cardigan - once again, since it's been so long since I picked it up, I had a hard time figuring out where I was and getting going from there.

Still to do:

  • Embroidery on the bag. I need to put some time to this over the weekend, as it needs to be in the mail by Wednesday and I still have to finish the lining and add a handle. Eep. Deadlines.
  • Pick my ATC's to be traded - waiting to get my partner for this so I can pick something they might like.
  • Get my partner for the Tool ATC and get that in the mail. I even have a card and envelope made up already - just need a person to send it to.
  • I need to finish the card kit as well. I haven't made much progress recently and while the deadline is still a month away, I don't want it to get lost in the shuffle. Plan on putting time to it next weekend.
  • Amigurumi for my RAK. Sorry for the lack of details, but I want it to be a surprise. Trust me, it will be adorable.
  • Crochet dress
  • The evil homespun blanket. This thing is gonna haunt me, I can tell already.
  • Finish Knit Apron v2, post pictures and pattern, get some people to test and hopefully come up with a way to size it up as well.
  • Finish the tea set for the kids
  • Second Skew sock. It's just a matter of picking it up on a regular basis.
  • $1.5 Cardigan - really wanting to have this done to snuggle up in for the winter.
  • Jeannie Wrap - another one that I haven't picked up in a while. I really need to get my hands on this once some of my deadline-conscious stuff is off my plate.
  • Scrap Bag: closer to being done than one might think.
  • Christmas cards
  • Wedding Present: looked at yarn online for this last night and finding a non-wool is going to be tough. I want to keep it something warm and snuggly, but my options are silk, cotton and alternative fibers like bamboo. I'm leaning toward a textured cotton or tape-type yarn, but I want a pretty hand-dyed color, not just a plain solid. Messing with the idea of combining silk and cotton. Need to look at more yarn.
  • New potential projects: Mostly stuff for the kids. Hats, sweaters, socks. Plus I want to make Der Hubs a new hat and there was a Leverage-inspired pattern posted on Ravelry the other day. Hrmmmm ... First step I guess is getting the patterns picked out. I'm thinking these for the girls, in a Fall/Winter 2011 appropriate size. I'm really loving the patterns on Petite Purls and I haven't even checked out the Summer 2010 set yet. Oh, boy, I'm in trouble.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

And Again With The Lists ...

I just needed to stop and keep track of where I am with my projects. Some got finished and I have a new project or so to add.

What I Worked on Yesterday:
  • Finished my Tool ATC. It's adorable and my first time woring with illustration board. Michael's now sells a variety of papers cut down to ATC size and while I'll mostly keep making my own, it's nice to experiment.
  • Got a few more rows done on the crochet dress.
  • Finished my knit washcloth - now just to get my partner and send it on its happy way.

Still To Do/New Projects:

  • Finish the embroidery and put a handle on the recycled clothing swap.
  • Pick my ATC's to be traded.
  • Waiting for partners to be assigned for Tool ATC and dishcloth swap, then I need to get those packaged up and sent off.
  • Finish the card kit.
  • Make the amigurumi for my RAK.
  • Crochet Dress
  • Homespun Blanket
  • Finish the knit apron and post the pattern.
  • Crochet tea set.
  • Make second skew sock
  • $1.5 cardigan (I want this finished before winter - I need a new sweater anyway)
  • Noro gloves (before winter)
  • Jeannie Wrap (sometime in the next year would be nice)
  • Scrap Bag
  • Christmas cards for family this year
  • Wedding Present: Make the infinity wrap in a nice yellow/salmon color. I need to order some not-wool from KnitPicks. Also considering picking up a knit lace wrap on the side just for fun. Or the crochet entrelac wrap.
  • Possibly make sweater/hat sets for all the kids (maybe plan this for next christmas)
  • MORE SOCKS!!! I miss making socks and I want to use some of this time focusing on yarny goodness to make some more socks, especially for the kids and I'd like to have some new kilt hose ready for the boy for next year's games.

Today, I'm keeping my focus more on the knitting/crochet side as my back is still wonky and in need of activities that don't require me to stay hunched over a desk/sewing machine/drawing. Tomorrow, however, I need to pick up that embroidery and make some real progress so I can get that finished. So, today - knit apron and start the amigurumi for my RAK.

Yaay - focus. Now, to see what comes along and gets me all sideways today.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

About Last Night

Yeah, yesterday/last night just was not working out for me at all. Back's still bothering me, and the medication I need to take to make it bearable also makes me woogy and sleepy. Fun. The kids were fine until bedtime, where everyone decided to freak out over something all at once. For Joan, it was the toothbrush. She decided that me taking away her toothbrush was an act of war and spent the next twenty minutes screaming her head off. Maggie seems to freak out over going to sleep in general and did her screaming every time I left the room thing. Andy decided he wanted to sit up in bed and play with his toys. Needless to say, the kids didn't go down until after 10. I did, however, have a very helpful little boy at dinnertime - Andy helped make dinner and carried his sisters' plates to the table, and helped rinse the dirty dishes in the sink. How wonderful.

What I Worked on Yesterday:
  • got my postcard together for the PC swap
  • worked on the embroidery some more
  • knit a lot on the dishcloth - I'm into the decreases now and nearly done.

What's Left to Do:

  • Finish the embroidery and put a handle on the recycled clothing swap.
  • Pick my ATC's to be traded.
  • Finish knitting my swap dishcloth
  • Make my tool ATC.
  • Finish the card kit.
  • Make the amigurumi for my RAK.
  • Crochet Dress
  • Homespun Blanket
  • Finish the knit apron and post the pattern.
  • Crochet tea set.
  • Make second skew sock
  • $1.5 cardigan (I want this finished before winter - I need a new sweater anyway)
  • Noro gloves (before winter)
  • Jeannie Wrap (sometime in the next year would be nice)
  • Scrap Bag
  • Christmas cards for family this year
  • Potential wedding present on the horizon (still deciding what I want to make - down to two choices and I need to ask the recipient)
  • Possibly make sweater/hat sets for all the kids (maybe plan this for next christmas)
  • MORE SOCKS!!! I miss making socks and I want to use some of this time focusing on yarny goodness to make some more socks, especially for the kids and I'd like to have some new kilt hose ready for the boy for next year's games.

Today I'll pick up at the Tool ATC and work my way through. I'm trying to rotate getting my hands on each project until everything is done. Obviously, the ones with deadlines will see my hands more often until they are done, but I'm also trying to get in a good mix of knitting and crochet that haven't seen my hands in a while, either. The toughest part of getting this seasonal crafting thing going is getting the back log cleared out first. On to the day.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

What's Going On

First thing, I did screw up my back and after a trip to the doctor, I have brand new shiny pain pills and muscle relaxers. Second, I got them mixed up this morning and took the pain pill before I went to work and now I'm all woogy.

So, on to the list - what I've got on my plate right now (time sensitive stuff first)
  • Send my postcard for the PC swap.
  • Finish the embroidery and put a handle on the recycled clothing swap.
  • Pick my ATC's to be traded.
  • Finish knitting my swap dishcloth (trying Rowan Cotton Tape - it's a neat, soft texture)
  • Make my tool ATC.
  • Finish the card kit.
  • Birthday card for a RAK.
  • Make the amigurumi for my RAK.
  • Crochet Dress
  • Homespun Blanket
  • Finish the knit apron and post the pattern.
  • Crochet tea set.
  • Make second skew sock
  • $1.5 cardigan (I want this finished before winter - I need a new sweater anyway)
  • Noro gloves (before winter)
  • Jeannie Wrap (sometime in the next year would be nice)
  • Scrap Bag
  • Christmas cards for family this year
  • Potential wedding present on the horizon (still deciding what I want to make - down to two choices and I need to ask the recipient)
  • Possibly make sweater/hat sets for all the kids (maybe plan this for next christmas)
  • MORE SOCKS!!! I miss making socks and I want to use some of this time focusing on yarny goodness to make some more socks, especially for the kids and I'd like to have some new kilt hose ready for the boy for next year's games.

Well, time to take my woogy head and do some work.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Thinking Out Loud

Note to self- no heavy lifting tonight. Stretch this to somehow include doing the dishes and picking up the kids' toys.

Things I Should Do:
  1. Finish up all my swaps and take some time off of labor intensive swaps - stick to postcards, crochet and destashing for a while. Maybe do some more random nice things.
  2. Pack up my paper-crafty stuff under the table for the time being. Retire the cricut and the sewing machine to the basement until they are needed again.
  3. Make sure I've got all my current projects on Ravelry. Try to use that more as a tool for keeping track of my projects than here. That *is* what it's for, after all.
Time to go resist the urge to get all crafty and rest. I really did hurt my back and I do not wish to make it worse before naptime's even over.

The Seasonal Crafter - Laying Out the Plan

OK, so here's my plan. Three months at a time, I'm just going to focus on one aspect of my craftiness. This will allow me to work on my skills, really challenge myself and let everything else fade to crafty background noise for a little while, without having to completely give up on anything. Maybe I'll find along the way that I'm not as fond of some things and that I'm fine with just doing the occasional project. Maybe I'll find that once I can settle down and open myself up to just one thing, that my projects will start speaking to me again, and I'll find the thing I was meant to do. Maybe this is all a huge mistake and I should just take up carpentry.

Back to the plan. First the rules. (Gotta have rules, right?)

1. For starters, while I get this going I know I have projects in various veins that are on a time constraint and need to be finished regardless of the season I am in. These will still get done. (Most of them are swaps, because Swap-Bot ate my brain and I can't have it back just yet.)
2. To help with my focus, anything I'm not currently working on gets relegated to the basement. Yes, I know this also means that once every three months, I'll be this crazy unpacking monster while I change gears. This will turn out to be a good thing. Trust me. And it will get the random piles out from under my kitchen table and behind the couch.
3. I'm not going to be uber-strict with this. Just because it's yarn season doesn't mean I can't take a weekend off here and there to make a card for a birthday I forgot about or maybe knit a washcloth during paper season. Just - not so much.

My seasons of crafting:

* Spring (February - April): Fabric. This is perfect because it lets me get started on all the fun summer dresses I'd like to make for the girls.
* Summer (May - July): Paper. Cards, altered books, envelope madness, drawing and painting, all here.
* Fall (August - October): Yarn. Here is where the knitting and crochet go and also where I will start this mad experiment.
* Winter (November - January): Finishing. Here's where it gets kind of weird. This season, with the end of the year approaching and a new year welcoming all sorts of crafty mayhem, I'm going to devote to finishing projects. I'll pick one from each craft (yarn, paper and fabric) and work on finishing it. This would also be a good time for a mass destashing and cleaning out my supplies.

Well, that's it. My plan is laid out and I have a lot of cleaning up to do. Plus, I get to start in Yarn season.

Fragmented

I'd really like to get back into sewing.

I'd also really like to jump wholeheartedly into any one of the things I love to do. My problem is that there are too many things I enjoy doing, and I don't want to let any of them go. Even writing in here. I'd love to say "OK, I'm going to focus my energy on knitting (for instance) and writing a fun and engaging blog about knitting. I'm going to hone my skills, pick up new techniques and start writing patterns. I'm going to become a stellar knitter and let everything else fade to crafty background noise."

Oh, how easy that would be.

So, let's say I become a full-time knitter, so to speak. What of my crochet, then? I've been crocheting much longer than I've been knitting. Right now, even, I've got more crochet on the to-do list than knitting. Do I let my rebuilding drawing and painting skills fall aside again? I used to be able to draw really well - and I enjoyed it! Drawing was once a very calming and centering activity. Do I give up my paper-craftiness to knit more? How about that sewing, too? Sewing seems to be the one thing that I've always wanted to do more of, yet I never seem to find the time to focus and work at becoming a better seamstress. How do I justify focusing on just one thing when I love to do it all?

I wouldn't need a crazy schedule that gets all messed up if I could just focus on one thing at a time.

My fragmented crafting life is affecting my real life as well. I have boxes and piles and stashes all over the house. A box of unfinished knitting and crochet behind the couch. A bag of half-completed sewing sits under the kitchen table, right next to the bin of paper crafts I'm sort of working on. My utility room is monument to my crafty disjointedness. (Is that even a word?)

So, I worked this over in my head last night, hoping that putting some sleep on it would clarify. It did, sort of. I have a bit of a plan, and I'd like to try it out and post about it here. My idea is "The Seasonal Crafter" - I'm going to try just focusing on one aspect at a time, shifting with the seasons. (Or every three months, since summer seems to last for five months around here) Obviously, it will take some time to see if it works and I'd need to really commit to sticking to the plan over a long period. But I want to try. I want this to work, and maybe along the way I'll find out just what it is I was meant to do.

I'll go into the specifics later. For now, just let this sink in and let me know what you all think.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

What I Did Get to Do Last Night

Well, things got marginally better after naptime. I tried a new dish with the kids for dinner and everyone ate pretty well. Sister in law came over to help with the kids so I could get the garbage out, pack up lunch for today and fold some laundry. Bath time went reasonably well, though Andy's started the irritating habit of stalling bedtime from the second he gets in the tub until I'm actually picking him up and putting him in bed. He had to brush his teeth twice last night. Well ... at least he cares about dental hygiene. The girls were a little more active than normal, but everyone was reasonably asleep before ten. Then it was crochet dress and new episode of Psych for Mommy!

Total side question: How the hell does an 18 month old soak their pillow - twice! - in what appeared to be drool alone? I think Joan's licking her pillow at night.

OK, now back to the craftiness. I finally got to work on the crochet dress. The pattern says that the dress is going to end up loose-fitting, but it just seems like it's turning out so wide. Now, my critters are skinny anyway and pretty much anything I make for them in the right size ends up wide on them. But it's been happening a lot more lately, especially with knit and crochet patterns. I had recently finished a knit dress in a size 2T that looked like it would be a leaner fit and long enough for them at two. I'm going to end up remaking it - adding length and getting rid of some stitches across the body. It seems like it's too short and too wide. (I tried it on my son for reference - he's probably still mad at me for that.) Now, this dress. Am I doomed to never be able to pick up a kids pattern without having to alter it from the start? This time, I'm going to trust the pattern and let it go as it is. If it fits, great! If not, we'll just scrap it and make something else.

Now, this is mostly for me and some for you - my current list of WIP (knittting and crochet) and I'm sure there will be more to add as I go on.

- Crochet Dress (the one I've been on about today)
- Hideous Homespun Granny Square
- Knit Girls Apron (nearly through v2!)
- Crochet Tea Set
- Skew sock (one done, still need to finish #2)
- $1.5 Cardigan (no, still not done yet)
- Noro Gloves
- Jeanie wrap with Noro sock yarn
- Scrap Bag

Well, that's all I've got for now. Next time, we just might delve into the wild world of swapping!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Greetings from Helena, HB!!

Wow, so things went to crap pretty fast this afternoon. My back started hurting while I was still at work, which always puts me in a good mood. I called Der Hubs to make sure there was nothing we needed from the store. I was not crazy about stopping on the way home, but I didn't want to go back out during nap, either. I wanted to work on my cards and make happy. He assured me there was nothing we needed. Yaay.

So, I make it home just before two. The remnants of lunch are still on the table. The kids are still in their PJ's and still very wound up. Somebody needs a diaper change. I don't know where anyone's sippies are. Anywho, I get all the babies upstairs and in their cribs - Andy after a ten-minute argument over whether he could take his toys with him. (No.) Naptime started at two o'clock. By three, the girls were asleep and Andy was nearly so, so I slip out of the room and head downstairs to craft. My back is still killing me and I'm debating the wisdom of spending an hour bent over a table working with paper. I go to get a drink and make a quick lunch for myself.

Oh, hey, look. We're out of milk. I tell my husband I'm headed out for milk (he, too, is napping before he goes to work tonight) and suddenly my list has gone from one to four things. I decide to not mention how not two hours ago, he told me we were fine and there was nothing I needed to get from the store. I opt instead to seethe while driving to the grocery store. Sometimes, it's just not worth the trouble to fight about it, even when I'm right.

Well, then, we're back. It is now quarter after 4. I made a quick lunch for the two of us and I'm getting ready to settle in and crochet while I catch up on House on the laptop. At this point, I'm not going to get the garbage done until after dinner. My back hurts too much to work at the table on the cards. I'm just going to let the kids sleep until 5. At least I'll get a little time to myself.

***

OK, I quit. Maggie's up. See, this is why I can never plan anything. The second I know what I'm doing, the universe conspires to make it not happen.

Oh, and I'll get out the Cricut tomorrow.

What I'm Doing This Week

So, it's Wednesday already. Yaay. So, here's what I'll be doing for the rest of the week:

*Wednesday:
Nap Project: Getting out the Cricut to make pieces for a set of cards I'm doing for a swap (there will be pictures, but I won't be able to post them until my partner gets them - I don't do spoilers)
Nap Chores: Trash Day (pickup is Thursday AM)
Night Project: Working on the crochet dress I recently started - I scrapped the lacy dress in favor of this one. I'm liking it much better, though I've learned I really need to count my stitches.

*Thursday:
Nap Project: More working on the crochet dress (remember, I'm taking things one project at a time for a while so I can get my head back together
Nap Chores: Laundry (yuk!)
Night Project: Embroidering a recycled clothing bag for another swap (once again, pics will come but not until my partner sees it first!)

*Friday:
Nap Project: I'm going to sew! I just dusted off the sewing machine for the first time in ages last weekend and I'd like to get back in the habit. If the bag I'm working on is ready to have the lining sewn in, I'll do that. Otherwise, I'm going to finish the dress I started ages ago for the girls (yes, even if it doesn't fit anymore - I'll save it for the next person to have a girl) If there's still time, I'd like to start cutting out another dress from the rest of the fabric - in a bigger size this time!)
Nap Chores: Basement & Living Room (again!), make the grocery list
Night Project: I think I'll split my time between working on the cards some more and finishing that apron so I can finally post the pattern!

So, there it is. I feel a little better already.

Pardon Me While I Get My Head Together

A wonderful thing has happened recently. The kids are sleeping - and well! They all take a decent afternoon nap and go to bed at a reasonable hour - in their own beds! Crazy, huh? Well, this has opened up a fair chunk of what might be called "free time" for yours truly. And it has shown me how utterly incapable I am of putting myself to bed before midnight. Or staying on top of projects. Or not generally freaking out and not knowing what to do with myself when I don't have babies crawling all over me. Eep. So, in an effort to get all that under control and maybe even put this writing thing to good use, I'm coming up with a plan. Now, some of this magical free time will have to be sacrificed in the name of housekeeping and generally not letting things go to crap. But, for the rest of it, I think if I know ahead of time what I'm doing, then maybe I can just settle down and do it. And get to bed before midnight. So, pardon me while I spend some time getting my head together and enjoy watching me go slightly more nuts.

So, first things first - just how much time are we talking about? Well, in the afternoon, the kids nap for about two hours all together. A half hour of this usually gets eaten up in putting them down in the first place and sticking around to make sure everyone gets to sleep. So, an hour and a half. Let's shave off another half hour for stupid housecleaning. I could do more, but I really don't want to. The house isn't bad and I also get a fair bit of stuff done in the afternoon when everyone's up and playing. That leaves an hour in the afternoon for my crafty pursuits. I can use the sewing machine and the cricut in the afternoons - the house is naturally loud enough in the afternoons that these wouldn't disturb the kids upstairs. Bedtime is a bit different. I can reasonably get everyone down by ten, if not nine thirty. So, an hour - sometimes more. Friday nights I don't have to turn in early, so maybe even two hours there. But, I have to keep things quiet.

Now, for the division of projects. Probably the easiest thing to do is divide along type. Hrm - there's the knitting/crochet yarny goodness, I have some embroidery going right now, there's sewing to do, and of course paper craftiness. Paper craftiness and sewing are best done in the afternoon, and the quiet things (yarniness and embroidery) are best done at night. Now, Fridays I may delve into some paper craftiness just because I can. But that's neither here nor there.

Now, as for projects. This is where I tend to lose my mind a bit - what to work on in these bits of happy time. This goes for the housecleaning, too. If I don't already know what I'm doing, I tend to get a little crazy and try to do it all or I freak out and end up doing nothing. Yaay, schedule time. Let me work out a plan here, then I'll let you in on what I'm working on this week.

*Mondays:
Nap Project: Paper Craftiness
Nap Chores: Basement & Living Room (Toy Control)
Night Project: Yarny Goodness

*Tuesdays:
Nap Project: Sewing Machine Fun
Nap Chores: Kitchen Madness
Night Project: Embroidery

*Wednesdays:
Nap Project: Paaapperrrr (Cricut Day)
Nap Chores: Trash Day (pickup is Thursday AM)
Night Project: More Yarn (yay!)

*Thursdays:
Nap Project: Knit in the Afternoon! (I need something nice to make up for having to do laundry)
Nap Chores: Laundry (yuk!)
Night Project: Back to Embroidery

*Fridays:
Nap Project: More Sewing
Nap Chores: Basement & Living Room (again!), make the grocery list
Night Project: Leave this open for now - This can be my whatever's the most pressing issue/whatever I feel like working on most

Well, time to get to work, so I'll get back to this later and we'll talk about what I'm working on this week.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

The Whole Picture

I feel like you're not getting the whole picture if I'm just talking about my knitting. I used to knit a lot more (and I'd like to again), but right now there's so much more going on in here than just knitting. So, I'd like to open my blog up to more than just knitting. I want to show you the things I've been making at the kitchen table. I want to talk about Crafty Night with the kids and show off my own beginning attempts at painting. I want to not feel like I'm cheating discussing my new-found love for crochet on my knitting blog.

And then I remind myself why I started doing this, and it had less to do with knitting and more to do with sharing. And I want you to see the whole picture, the whole me.

So, look forward to more than just knitting. I'm also going to play with formats until I find one that works for me. And, expect more of me stalking around my house with a camera - there's a lot to see in here (plus the kids are friggin' adorable) and I love pictures. Who knows? I could eventually work my way up to posting on a regular basis.

Until next time (which will be sooner than you think)

Eviebits

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

This Week in ... Stuffing?

Yep, so I got very caught up in this whole amigurumi thing. It is officially a problem, as I have ideas for other things, I want to make other things (I want to KNIT again!) but every time I walk past a crochet hook or a ball of acrylic, a toy something or other happens. I have a partner on swap-bot who will be benefiting from my bouts of insanity, as well as my sister. (I won't say more until after the items have arrived at their intended homes, then there will be some pictures) Getting the kids to sleep in not-my-bed has been both awesome and dangerous. The kids are sleeping better, nights are easier to handle (we've even started in on something of an extended bedtime routine, what with pj's and toothbrushes and a story) and even nap time has become nicer. The problem has been that once I get the kids to bed, I tend to forget to go to bed myself. As I get up at 4 am to go to work, this is a problem. Needless to say, I have been wicked tired and am going to bed earlier this week. Now, on to the update, even though I haven't done much on them this week in favor of Hurricane Amigurumi.

Update on the Big Three:
  • Lacy Dress: I only did a few more rows this week, but it's approaching a wearable length. I am currently waffling over "line it or put a onesie under it?" I will post pictures and you can decide.
  • The Homespun Granny Square: a couple rows bigger, but still not impressive.
  • Knit Apron: still one strap shy of done and final fitting. There will be pictures. And a tentative pattern - I'll post them on Ravelry and link here.
OK, now go back and count the times I promised pictures. Plan on next week being highly illustrated. Have fun and see you then!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Project Updates and Other Fun Stuff

Yes, I'm well aware of the fact that several Wednesdays have passed between the last post and now. Well, we had some craziness abound and it got between me and my computer. My husband's grandfather passed away, which necessitated us driving to Ohio with three kids. Met some of the extended family (wished it would have been under better circumstances), crocheted some while on the road, and learned it is very easy, indeed, to pick up speed driving down the side of a mountain (did you know my minivan's speedometer tops out at 110?). Follow that up with our AC breaking in 95+ weather, baby teething and random virus madness and starting the girls in their cribs this week, and you see why I've been away.

Update on the Big Three (to which I have been entirely unfaithful):

  • Moving on to the lacy crochet dress I'm making a test run on: I got tired of the alternating sc/chain rows and dc/shell rows and started doing my own thing. If I were smart, I'd have written it down, but the idea came to me in the car while we were headed to Ohio. I was pushing my luck reading the pattern intermittently (I get car sick when I read in the car) so writing would have been the death of me. By the time I picked it up again at home, it became something else entirely, but I think it looks OK. As for reproducing it, maybe if I can tell from the original, but probably not. Anywho, getting closer to finished and it'll be a nice one-off.
  • Ripple Afghan: Ditched it, wasn't really working on it anyway. My mom brought me a bag of Lion Homespun she picked up at a yard sale, so that and a J hook are forming a new afghan - just a big granny square, really. I liked the way the colors looked together and there's not much else to do with Homespun, other than fluffy scarves, because it splits like a banana (ha!) and the texture makes it hard to see stitches. So, ripple afghan no more! Now, Homespun Granny Square!
  • The Great Owl: Finished! (See pictures here at my Ravelry page) I had originally signed up for the swap, too, but the kids kind of adopted him and I couldn't bear to send him away after that! I also started and finished another amigurumi or two (pictures to come) on the side - Bunnyman (Ravelry link) and the hammer pattern from the same book. The hammer went MIA at Grandma's house, so pictures will be forthcoming when it has been located. Needless to say, me+amigurumi = love!

I also picked up an older project this week, an apron I was making for the girls, writing the pattern as I went along. I'm happy to announce that it is nearly complete (one strap left to go!) and I will be posting pictures and the first draft of the pattern shortly! I'll end up working it through once more (gotta love knitting for twins!) and I'll see if I can get some testers, too, to work on sizing up and whatnot.

Well, time to go be an office schlub. See you next week, kids!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Hey! I'm Ba-ack!

So, here we are again. I came back, just as I said. Now, on to the craftiness!

Update on the Big 3:
  1. Knit Dress - Finished it, now being washed. I know cotton doesn't felt but I'm kind of hoping this one shrinks up in the wash a bit. It was supposed to be a 2T size and came out more like 3 or 4T - it fits my son, who is on the small end of 4T. It seems to be unseasonably wide and if I try the pattern again, I plan to start with less stitches to make a narrower dress. My girls are tiny as it is and I'm afraid even next summer they'll be swimming in it. In the mean time, I have picked up a lacy crochet dress pattern (Crochet Today) and am trying it with a smaller than called for hook (H/8) and a thinner yarn in the largest size the pattern shows. If I get something reasonably nice, I'll redo in a nice cotton or light wool blend and line it.
  2. Ripple Afghan: It's coming along. I went through my stash again and the colors of Simply Sopft I have left are truly hideous, if a bit subdued. We shall see.
  3. The Great Owl: Started the body last night, this really is a fun pattern and I plan to make more - I may even buy the pattern she lists for the Log Carrying Case and make a set for the kids! I didn't realize the fun in making toys and I'd really like to try more after this - oh, crap, I like amigurumi now!

OK, I also realize that I have promised pictures about a hundred times now. I just figured out how to get pictures from my phone to my computer, plus I may have found a substitute USB cable for my regular camera, so I will try to work some time to add pictures either tonight or next week.

Until then, have fun! See you next Wednesday!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Way to Update There, Dingus!

Yeah, I've been out of things for a while. I can't really accurately describe where my head's been since April - that was a lifetime ago, it seems. We were all struck by the Unavoidable Stomach Flu and The Croup. (Aren't kids' germs so cute?) My husband wrecked his car and we somehow ended up with a minivan. We've been working to make some forward motion in our lives, but it's slow going. I started running. I get up a little earlier and bring my clothes to work so I can run for a little while before work. I discovered swap-bot and am now incredibly addicted. My parents bought a house and I made my mom a full complement of kitchen stuff in awesome 70's avocado, rust and gold (potholders, scrubbies and dust mop covers!) to match her newly acquired awesome 70's kitchen. The girls are walking much better, Maggie says her name now. Andy is a daily challenge, but we're working on it. We have to accept little victories and really look at ourselves to find ways to deal with him that work. (hint - yelling doesn't work) I've gotten a bit out of hand with the projects at the moment, but I'll get back on that in a minute. As painful as it is sometimes, I'm trying to simplify my life and really decrap the closet this time, so to speak. I hang on to way too much, physically and emotionally. I hamper all my best efforts to change and grow sometimes, just because I get disorganized and distracted. I'm looking to change that.

Not that this is what you came to read.

So, dear readers, I need your help to stay on track with my projects. I will promise to post weekly, and let you know how my rotating cast of three projects at a time is coming. Hopefully, knowing I need to update you all on these things will help keep me focused on just three projects that will see completion instead of thirty that never get done.

Unfortunately, my time is short at the moment - I will make some time later today to show you my three newest projects. I will say, however, that one of the three I listed back in April is done - Maggie's sweater was completed with enough time for her and Joan to wear them exactly twice before it became too warm and they too big. I will not unravel them - I will save them for my girls when they are bigger and maybe in need of a connection to their babyhood.

**EDIT: Later on ...

I promised an introduction to my new Big Three. Well, here they are!

1. Knit Dress for the girls. Pattern is here. I'm using Sugar & Cream Cotton (yeah I know, dishcloth dress, but I swear it wears like iron and softens so nicely) and making the Size 2. I have heretofore learned my lesson about knitting for the babes and will no longer attempt anything in a size they are currently wearing. Hence, Size 2.

2. Ripple Afghan: I have a ton of Caron Simply Soft acrylic. A TON. It is useless for potholders and kitcheny stuff, as it is very thin and slippery. No bueno for clothes, being acrylic and we are a sweaty bunch as it is. And how many different doll sweaters can I make? So, ripple afghan it is. It will be gloriously hideous.

3. The Great Owl Crochet Along


I'm working on the tummy now, just a little ahead!

OK, time to go herd cats. I promise another post in a week's time - this is just as much for me as for you.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Update on the Big Three

OK, so as I said before, my current Big 3 Projects are:

1. Maggie's Sweater (based on Helena from Knitty.com)
2. Skew Socks (knitty.com)
3. 1.5$ Cardigan (from Interweave Knits)

Agreements have been reached and Mommy has found knitting time. (wheee!) This week, I have good news - Maggie's sweater is nearly complete! I have finished the sleeves and did all the hemming (the pattern has a sleeve and botttom hem that needs to be turned under and sewn down) yesterday at naptime. All that's left now is to go back with a crochet hook and add the trim and ties (today's plan).

I've got one sock done on the Skew pattern and the second sock started. However, the charge on my camera's battery is low and my son has taken it upon himself to HIDE THE CHARGER (!!!) so no pictures until we find the charger again. Bah.

The 1.5$ Cardigan recently got ripped out and restarted. I was working the pattern as written, for separate back and front pieces, but my need to avoid seaming at all costs has caused me to start over, this time working the back and front together, in one flat piece until I get to the arms. It's going much better this way and I even feel like I'm getting more done.

I also figured something out this weekend. For some time, I've been trying to knit in the car when we go on family trips - to give me something to do in the car other than be terrified of my husband's driving, to pass the time on especially long drives, to steal some unexpected knitting time. The problem is, all three of my current projects also require frequent reference to a written pattern. Reading. In the car. Can't do it - never have been able to. So, I put together a teeny bag of yarn and a crochet hook and decided that would be my perfect car project - random crochet bits, free of nausea-making patterns and in-car reading. Saturday, I made daisy chains for the girls for Easter. Sunday, I started a cotton bib with a super-cute flower on the neck-strap. This is working. This we like.

Well, time to return to the wonderful world of work. We're going to try to update more often. Soon, there will be pictures.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Well...

A resolution has been reached in regards to Mommy time. We will see if it holds up to real world testing. Meanwhile, the kids are at grandma's for the morning and Daddy's off to work soon.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Stressed

I got up at quarter after 7, hoping to steal some time to myself. Sounds like the girls are already waking up so this will be short.

I wish I could tell you I've done some more knitting since the last time I posted, but time for those pursuits has been sparse and it shows in my stress levels. I have had maybe two hours combined of time for myself this week - to knit or work on a project, something not work, chores or baby-chasing.

OK,I'm going to catch myself before I walk the fine line between explaining a problem and gratuitous bitching. The problem now is that I feel guilty because I'm not home with the kids during the day and he takes full advantage of that and gets on the computer pretty much the second I walk in the door and stays there all night. This leaves me handling the kids by myself. Even having helping hands over, it's still just enough so I can go get a shower or make dinner - I still have to nurse babies, organize the baths and pj's, and get them to sleep. I feel like I should give him time away from the kids - after all, I've been away all day. But then I also feel like I've got a lot more to do - making meals, housework that gets overlooked, dishes, putting out the trash. And the kicker is he's been out of work this week and I feel like I've worked harder at home with him here than I do when he's working.

I am so tired of this. I am tired of not being able to talk about it without starting a fight. I'm tired of being taken for granted and having my needs ignored. Babies are up. Gotta go. Because, of course, he won't get up and take care of them so I can have some goddamn time to myself.

I miss knitting.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Quickie

I will post more later on when I have a bit more time - even some pictures!

OK, so I lost my voice this weekend and Jon's parents were kind enough to take all 3 kids Saturday night and let me rest Sunday. I had to go into work for a bit, but I ended up with a sizable afternoon to myself for the first time in forever. I missed my babies, but it was incredibly relaxing. I picked up around the house, worked on some paper-craftiness I'd wanted to start, and I knit. Oh, how I knit.

So this sock is almost complete. I finished the swoopy heel (not as hard as it looks, but definitely fun!) and most of the leg - only the ribbing left and it's one sock done! The evil little monkey in me wants to size it down to kid -size and make Andy a pair. The pragmatist in me says finish a pair first, then finish some other projects - then we'll see about these crazy new projects. The inner battles never cease for a knitter.

Off to work and the doctor today. If I get some time later, I promise pictures. Maybe even another post or two. And, even though I know this is my knitting journal - I really want to show you some of the paper stuff I've been working on.

Have Fun!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Rough Road

**This is entirely not knitting-related, it is just something I needed to get out there. Skip if you're just here for the yarn porn.**



I am a firm believer that the universe never throws more at us than we can handle and that bad times are not a punishment for wrongdoing, but rather a test of our convictions and resolve. There is a lesson to be learned even in the darkest nights, and that lesson is different for everyone. Sometimes, the lesson is that you can't do it all yourself and it's OK to ask for help; sometimes it's a reminder to appreciate those around you before it's too late.

This week has run the gamut of highs and lows. I came into this week already stressed - we just had a major snowstorm and there was still lots of cleanup to do, not to mention snow just makes me nervous. Missing so much work had put a dent in our already tight budget. The kids haven't been sleeping well and the only solution I've been able to come up with is to get everyone to sleep in the living room. (Hey, it works! At least we all sleep now.) My knee has been giving me trouble recently and I dread another trip to the orthopedic surgeon, where they throw around words like "surgery" and "recovery time" with little regard for words like "job" and "kids" and "housework". The least of my worries seemed to be my ever-mounting stress levels and lack of dedicated mommy-time.

In a bit of downtime, I decided to go ahead and do our taxes so I could budget for the impending doom of having to pay taxes. Last year was not kind to us and I wanted to avoid the problems we had last year of "Surprise! Taxes!" So I gathered our paperwork and went about the inevitable. Turns out, having twins and being out of work for two months actually works in your favor when it comes to taxes, and the resultant refund (the first we've had since our first year of marriage) will be enough to get us back to a reasonably good place with our bills. This elation was not to last, however, as Tuesday came barrelling down on us.

Tuesday, in the wee hours of the morning, we learned of the sudden and untimely death of one of my husband's oldest friends, Nathan. He was, and still is devastated by the news. I have also known him many years, but the friendship was not as close as my husband, who shared a very deep bond with him since their school days.

I've got to explain some things here - when we were younger, both my husband and I ran with a slightly wilder crowd. We forged several meaningful relationships within the group, but we also did a lot of stupid things. When we chose to walk a different path, to settle down and have a family, we had to leave this part of our lives, and many of these bonds, behind. We did it for the safety and well-being of our young family, not out of any harsh feelings towards those we had to leave behind. We were simply walking a different path.

My husband was a bit more diplomatic about the split than I was, I think. When we first made the decision to move on with our lives in a different direction, I was already pregnant and moody. Going out to have "one last round" with my buddies was not an option for me at that time. I'm also very bad with goodbyes. I withdrew socially and stayed that way. I only really maintained contact with one of my friends, and even she will say that it might be weeks between calls or emails, even now. My husband maintained some contact with his friends, but made it clear that his family came first in all things and that he just couldn't return to the lifestyle we had before. I felt that some of his friends didn't get this and put pressure on him to go back. He stood his ground and lost some friendships over it.

This man was not one of those relationships lost. Whenever we saw him, it was as if time had never passed. He always welcomed my husband with a warm hug and "Brother, I've missed you." When they parted, it was with the same warm words and "I'll see you when I see you." He understood why my husband did what he did and didn't judge, even though it was maybe not a choice he would have made in his own life.

When my husband learned of his passing, and the news really sank in, he felt regret at not making more of an effort to keep contact with him. At first, I kind of took offense to this. I took it as regret that he had chosen us over his friends. I was mistaken, and I see that now. Wednesday brought with it a dificult day at work and a difficult night with the babies. I was in tears by 11 o'clock and my husband, in his less than tactful way, was trying to help, even while still working through his own grief. We argued, and he went to sleep angry. I stayed up with the babies, and Thursday came all too quickly.

I went to work on less sleep than I'd had in awhile, and in the course of an already hard day, learned of the passing of another good friend. Martin had known my brother and I met him when I was young. He always had kind words for Keith's tagalong kid sister. When my brother disappeared, he gave me understanding and support, rather than judgement for my brother's misdeeds.

He became a fairly well-known blogger on financial and political matters, and wrote pieces on a dizzying array of subjects for various publications. I read much of his work, though many times I would not comment or share my appreciation for his contributions. We emailed off and on, though when I dropped out of things socially, I lost contact with him. I still continued to read his work, and admired him from afar as he achieved the things he worked for and fought for the causes he believed in.

Martin brought himself into his work. When he was facing troubles in his life, he shared his story so others could learn from it as well. He put it out there, good and bad, and accepted both praise and criticism graciously and maturely. He answered many of my "stupid kid" questions about finances and politics (not my strongest suits) with the same grace. He never talked down to me; in fact, in my converstaions with him, he took time to explain things to me. I always felt like he wanted more that I understand the issue at hand rather than agree with him.

So, in the face of losing two good friends inside of a week, I wonder what it is the universe is trying to do to me. Surely, it's throwing more at me than I can handle. I mean, there's work and the babies and seven baskets of laundry. There's a sink full of dishes, Andy's drawn on the wall again, and now this? Two friends are gone?

So, I'm sitting here, trying to put it all together, and the answer I've come up with is this: I need to stop being afraid. In my fear - fear of not being accepted, fear of others' criticisms, fear that I really am doing it all wrong, I've pushed so many people away. I need to stop being so critical of people in my life who, in their own way, are trying to help. I need to be more forgiving and understanding, because other people forgive and srtive to understand me better every day, and I don't make it easy. I need to stop being so critical of myself.

Two people have gone from the world this week. Two people who lived the way they wanted, who spoke without fear of judgement or criticism, who opened up their lives to others and accepted what came their way, good and bad. In return, they both got to touch and change more people than they'll ever know, in all ways and all paths.

So, dear readers, hug your kids. Call your best friend. Don't let a day pass without letting your friends and family know how they challenge and change you. Tell your heroes what they mean to you, even if you didn't think they noticed you. Don't be afraid to put yourself out there and don't let those who are quick to judge and slow to understand deter you.

Live the way you want people to remember you.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

New Day, New Project

So, I'd like to start out by apologizing for the pity party that was my last post. I get anxious when I'm stuck in the house, especially because of snow. Just nervous about things that are waay out of my control - like the weather. I'm also very much in need of predictability and routine in my life and being stuck in a snowstorm is anything but.

Dear readers, I did a bad bad thing last Friday night. Being faced with my first Friday night to knit in almost two weeks, I started a new project. See, there was this ball of sock yarn, some Trekking XXL in lovely pink, orange and yellow hues and there was this pattern, and I saw them and I thought, "That would make me happy after all this snow and gloom." Teeny needles, pattern written by a mathematician, and above all - something new. And I was right! It's such a fun pattern and I'm not even up to the super-swoopy heel yet. Reading the author's short bio, she makes me regret temporarily giving up on my math degree. I'd like to go back to school when the kids are older and finish it - I don't really need it for work, but I do so miss pure math - playing with numbers just for fun. And who knows? Maybe it will help with the pattern writing.

As for patterns I'm working on, I have a crochet hat pattern that I'm working the kinks out of. I need to set aside some time to run through it again myself (with a different yarn this time - I love the candy-color Noro but it's just too thick for crochet. I end up with happy-color wooly armor) then once more with my pattern tester. My goal of having a pattern worked out and put up as a free download on Ravelry by the end of March is looming near, and I'd like that to be one of the few resolutions I'm able to keep.

Also - Update on the Big 3 Projects:

Maggie's Sweater: Up to the last repeat of the lace pattern on the skirt. One of these days, I'll post pictures. It's definite now - I used a different size needle on the other one I made - I see gentle felting to get them to the same size. Eep!

Jeanie: Slowly but surely. This one is hard to work on as I can't really stop in the middle of a row and rows where I have to do the cables end up waiting for naptimes and night time because I can't do them while Little Hands are roaming free. But the drop stitch rows are exciting! The Noro is turning out super-pretty, though I will probably need two more balls to get a decent sized wrap.

Placemats: Not really coming along well, so I'm scrapping the idea in favor of just doing some shopping bags with mixed stitch patterns - the thought of all that single crochet was giving me the heebie-jeebies. Either way, I'm using up the plastic bags in a constructive way.

Have fun!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Snowed In ..

Guess who was too tired to knit after cooking and babychasing and hanging up snowy coats?

This is quite possibly the shittiest time I've ever had snowed in. Since Friday, I've knit maybe 40 minutes (it's Sunday now) and my lack of Mommy-time is really making me upset and angry. He absolutely does not see what this is doing to me - or how much free time I don't get.

Well, only one kid up at the moment so I'm gonna be a bad mommy and let her run all over the living room while I knit a little bit, because dammit, I deserve it. Well, nevermind on that now, she's making the "Mommy pick me up"noise.

I am going to lose my mind. This blog is turning from knitting to insanity. I'd like to go back to knitting!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Quick Update While Nursing ...

Just a What I Did post ... skip if you like.

Finished a sippy cup band for each of the girls, but they're too big for the new cups. Up on the shelf they go, and back to the size 3 hook for 2 more.

Worked a bit on my 1.5$ cardigan (name of the pattern not actual cost) and Maggie's sweater. I know, the cardi isn't on my list, but I desperately needed to do something just for me after the birthday party madness for the girls this weekend. Anywho, all said, I've spent maybe two hours out of the past week knitting and it's making me angry. I'm increasingly finding that the only person looking out for my needs is me and I'm not doing a very good job, after the kidsand the job and the hubs and the house - there's just nothing left and it hurts me.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Week in Review

I have barely touched my knitting this week, though I have broken my 3 projects rule to start little crochet button-on bands for the kids' sippy cups, seeing as the girls will be entering the wide wonderful world of whole milk next week. I'm looking forward to tonight, as it seems the only time I get to knit is Friday nights. So, as a treat to you, my poor tortured reader, I'm going to take you through my typical Friday evening.

I get off of work at 1pm, almost invariably need to pick up *something* from the grocery store on the way home, because that's just my luck.

If the nap fairy came early, everyone's asleep and I have a little time to divide between chores and (hopefully) doing some knitting. In that case, I rouse everyone about 2.30pm for lunch.

If the nap fairy came late, I get to jump right in and start lunch. Most days, the girls are in need of a little boob time as well, and Andy needs a trip to the toilet. We'll have lunch on the table by 2pm and we eat, talk and have a little bit of family time before the evening starts.

If there has not been a nap yet, I get to get Andy and the girls down for nap by 3.30 or 4pm. My husband leaves for work about 4.30 and if they're napping, I get some time to knit and do those stupid chores. If they are already well rested, we might do a little craft project with the big guy or watch a movie. I don't have to worry about dinner Friday nights because Grandma and Poppop come to visit and they bring something.

Well, I baby-wrangle and keep everyone happy until the cavalry arrives at 7 or 7.30, dinner in hand. We eat, bathe babies and big guy, and if I have any additional errands to run, I'll do them quickly. Then I get my shower and the grandparents take my son home with them for an overnight. The girls and I may stay up a little longer, but I usually start rocking them to sleep about 9. By 10 or 10.30pm, I'll have two sleeping babies and (finally!) some time to myself. I knit voraciously and maybe have a glass of wine or some ice cream. This goes on until husband gets home at 1 or 2 am, at which point, I pack myself off to bed, as well.

And there you go. Friday Night. The only day I'm pretty much guaranteed to get time to knit - because I stay up all night.