Friday, December 28, 2007

Back to the grind

I keep thinking the holidays are over and the break is over and that we're all back to normal on Monday.  Not so.  Another week off, which we plan to keep as quiet as possible.

We've had family from both sides in town and it's been hectic to say the least.  Throw in a funeral and the planning headache becomes a little too much.  Poor PeeWee is so off her schedule that Marky Mark is passing on the visitation this afternoon and going to be home with her, until the next round of baby sitters this evening.  It's been a very busy week.

Not much time for knitting here at mom's house.  Just trying to clear out the old to make way for the new.  PeeWee scored and the loot from Santa is a bit much.  But she's happy and you are only three once.  Big Brother is still in New York City! for the next few days, returning to us Monday, just in time for the New Year.  For which I never ever make a plan.  I'm the in bed at 10 type.  I just don't get the hype.  I usually hop up out of bed when I hear the fireworks begin though, those are fun!  But I'm not into crowds and noise and drunks so I tend to hang at home and watch from there.  Better view anyway.

Today I hope to pick up the needles again, at least for a short time.  A few minutes might improve my mood just a smidge.  Funny how doing anything creative lifts the mood.  I get cranky if I am not creating something.  Anything will do.  I sewed up a little heart pin to add to my stash of things that need to be photographed so they can be listed on etsy.  I have a few things to add over there.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas!

I hope everyone who celebrates Christmas has a great day!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

I must post about kids

Just a little update on PeeWee and our life-long love affair with the doctor's office.  This time the cardiologist.  You can see she waits patiently.

We went in had the checkup, they did some different thing with her echo and EKG which worried me, of course, anything different will do that to a mother.  We waited for the doctor to come in and as soon as he walked in the door another nurse brought him an emergent EKG.  This poor little kid was having big problems, and PeeWee's doctor called the doctor who faxed the EKG and gave him some info then told him he'd call him back in 2 minutes.  Yes!  Two minutes meant there was no way they were going to tell us we needed to do her repeat surgery.  Huge relief, we go back again in 6 months, with some extra testing and a more likely to be needing the surgery visit.

Weird thing?  That EKG turned out to be my cousin's child, very sick and in the hospital.  (what are the odds of that?) With HIPPA I had no idea who it could have been, blacked out name and all, but when my sister in law told me about my cousin's child having this "thing" with his heart, I called my cousin and sure enough we were sitting in the appointment when our cardiologist was called into his situation by the doctor they were seeing.  It's a weird small world.

Both kids are fine, I am glad to say.  I for one am thankful for medical science and all its advances.

I knocked out the headbands for the teacher gifts and have started more to put up in the shop.  Which is being neglected since there has been virtually no free time around here.  I have a plan for some phone covers too, it's all in my head until I have a chunk of time to devote to making things.
Crafty Wednesdays went on vacation until kids are back in school, we start up again mid-January.  I miss those few hours a week to sit and just be creative.  My sewing machine is under our couch slip cover, which I need to bring in to be dry cleaned, the annual 'show off the red couch' weeks are here.  I have been itching to use it.  I have big plans (again, these plans are in my head).
I wrapped things up and realized I am a little short.  I have a sitter this morning and am going off to a few big box stores for a few last minute things.  Glad I got a chance to check early.
Can someone please tell me where I stashed the Koigu mittens I made for my niece!?!  I have looked in all logical hiding spots.  I have no idea why I even hid them, she's in college across the country.  Instead, I think I put them away.  Kinder way of saying I lost them.  Darnit.  Any ideas?
And since PeeWee was so silly last night...

Tuesday, December 18, 2007


First, just so you don't think I have given up knitting (or documenting it) completely...

An ornament that is knit from some Kool Aid dyed yarn from a sweater for PeeWee, little leftovers.  
In this picture I can pick out 8 ornaments we made, and one that's been decorated after the fact by us.  We have an eclectic tree and I like it that way.

The tree trimmers in action.

And this weekend I did something really dumb.  I went to bring PeeWee to a birthday party on the wrong day.  It was a friend of mine, whose child is a classmate of PeeWee, and boy was I embarrassed.  After an impromptu playdate at their house, we had a small meltdown leaving because there had been no birthday cake.  I was feeling like a pretty awful mom at this point so I pulled out some mix we'd been saving and whipped up a Christmas Cake to satisfy the three year old sweet tooth.


Saturday, December 15, 2007

Time Warp

I am not one of the unlucky who stress about the holidays.  Christmas is fun for me.  I usually start out with grand plans then they dwindle and we do something a little less dramatic.

This year Big Brother is leaving on Christmas Day.  In fact, I think he's on the same flight my sister and her family arrive to visit us, the turn-around plane thing airports do.  So he'll get to see his cousins for exactly 5 minutes until he boards and goes back to where they live.  He's excited about this trip but I am not.  At least they got a few extra days off for the break since they didn't have to use any hurricane days in the school calendar.  Planning them in seems to be almost enough to keep those guys away.

I had all these plans today to bake and deliver cookies to the neighbors and all that great stuff today then I realized there's still another weekend before Christmas.  Yes, I just publicly announced what a ding-a-ling I really am.  So I'm totally relaxed about Christmas, I have a whole week I found!  We live on one of those blocks where everyone bakes for each other, it's a friendly group, and this year we are making Joy of Cooking's Butterscotch Brownies.  

Here's the recipe:
preheat the oven to 350, grease a 9x9 pan
melt in a saucepan:
1/4c butter
stir in until dissolved:
1c brown sugar
cool these ingredients then add:
1 egg
1t vanilla
sift then measure: 
1/2 c all purpose flour
1t double acting baking powder
1/2t salt
stir these into the butter/sugar mixture
I never do but you can add 
1/2 to 1c chopped nuts
or 3/4 c grated coconut
I like them just plain
*whoops, you do bake these for 20-25 minutes, the oven's not on for just fun!

I am including the recipe here because my Joy is the old, unhealthy version.  Somehow miraculously spared from the floodwaters.  It is dirty and crumbly and marked with sticky notes and scraps of paper, little pencilled in instructions in the margins, all that.  The pages I use most open up on their own, which makes me happy.

I have finished two of the four headbands I wanted to make.  PeeWee has decided there's no knitting time allowed while she is anywhere in range.  These are a super quick knit so I am not too worried about getting them wrapped up by Tuesday.  

Thursday, December 13, 2007

I went, I saw, I conquered.

I went to Target.  I managed to get that elusive gift Big Brother wanted, purely by chance.  One of those high tech gadgets that's on the 'endangered until the holidays are over' list.  I thought... it can't hurt to check if it's here can it? ... and was rewarded for my patience.

I went to the other mall.  I parked.  I found gifts.  I wish I had thought to go back in but I was beginning to panic.  I'm not big on crowds and as 11:30 was coming up on the clock the people were starting to fill the aisles of the stores and I was done.  Walking back to the car I was accosted by a woman who wanted to follow me to my car so she could park.  Well, lady, do what I did and get here when they open and you should have no problem.  But don't follow me in your car like some kind of freak.  Because I will do what I did today and tell you I am parked way on the other side and turn and head that way.  So you can take your colorful language over in that direction.  Besides, when I got to my car there were three hopeful parkers waiting.  It was insanity.  I am done for this year.

I came home and finished filling up a box and I am off to the post office shortly.  I feel so accomplished today.

I am casting on today for a few of those headbands for PeeWee's teachers.  But no knitting to show today.  An inch of progress on that sleeve just doesn't cut it.  So scroll down and look at yesterday's picture for excitement.  Because I must recover from the mall now.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Two posts in two days?

Yes, it's me, I haven't been taken over by aliens or anything.  Just showing off today's handy work.  

I made a headband. It was some leftover yarn from some socks from ages ago, shipped off to Kathleen in a Rowan yarn exchange. It's Cherry Tree Hill yarn and I love the colors.  A little i-cord widened into a little 'V' which went into seed stitch band and back down into another 'V' and finishing with an i-cord which ties nicely into a headband.  Simple as pie!  I wore it all afternoon and forgot it was there, a nice thing with a headband.  They usually bug the heck out of me and end up in PeeWee's playbox.

I also started a mitten with the prize yarn.  Not that we need mittens around here, but they are light enough that when it's chilly and I walk to go get coffee I can keep my hands warm.  The self-striping is making me happy.  The colors are so me.  And they match the house, an all important thing in my world.  I was going to make socks, but I wanted to be able to look at them when I wear them.  I am easily amused.  These may take a while because they will be my traveling knitting.  And on DPN's they must be hidden when PeeWee is in range.

I am down to only huge home bound projects so I really did need to start something portable.  They say it's going to get cold so I need to pick up the pace with my sleeve.  I'm about 3 inches into it, so I have some work left.  It may be the next cold snap when I get to wear this sweater.

Tomorrow I am going out into the world to do some shopping.  I need to gather some storage containers for the yarn closet organizing I am doing so I am going to brave the world of holiday shoppers and leave the house.  I figured I will hit the mall too while I am in the neighborhood.  It depends on if I find a parking spot though.  My main criteria this time of year.  I usually avoid any shopping unless it's really required but some twisted part of me wants to go to the mall.  Huh.  I must be coming down with something.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Once upon a time

I used to actually consider myself an artist, way back before Big Brother came on the scene.  I haven't done much at all in the last few years, especially since PeeWee made her entrance.  Mark was out in the shed (yeah, nice) and came across a bundle of drawings and a few prints, the most recent being 1991.  Which says a lot about how little work I have done in recent years.

I'd love to have a studio but we're short on space and it's not in the budget to rent one.  Someday I'll get to have a space to play in where I can leave things out and go back to my real life.

I have to now do things which are portable and also easily picked up when the kids enter my zone.  I spent a few hours today making our Christmas cards, something I usually have done around Thanksgiving, but which I put off for a while this year.  I had trouble getting motivated but I ordered some goodies from Christina's shop and am really happy with what I got.  The cards have a smooth finish which I really liked working with.  I got the cards done quickly, I thought it was going to be a two day event but they are wrapped up now and all I have to do is get them addressed and out in the mail!  And all this before I picked up PeeWee!  

Since I have been either decorating or sorting through old bundles of paper or making cards I have done very little knitting.  I finished the first new sleeve on the cabled sweater I am chugging away on and got a little worried because I was down to one ball of yarn.  I'm not sure where my brain was because I forgot I have an entire sleeve to tink and work with.  Phew!  I immediately cast on for sleeve two and am done with the ribbing, working my way up!  If we get the least bit of cold weather I'll slap this baby on.  It has only a ribbed edging to do for finishing when I get this sleeve knocked out.  Of course no pictures, this is one long lasting knit.  If you've forgotten, it doesn't look much different from this.  I love the Cashmerino Aran, it's so nice to have in your hands, especially after working with a bunch of cotton for the preemie stuff.

And just because...

This is the yarn I won from Rhonda.  I have been meaning to post a picture.  I have about 6 things in mind I would like to make with it, so now I have to narrow it down.  I've got an appointment tomorrow with some knitting time so I plan to bring it along and get something started.  I'm thinking a simple ankle sock with a ruffle at the cuff.  Something fun just for me.  

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Other ways to use yarn

This is cool.

I made several ornaments for The Green Project's auction this weekend.  It felt good making them even though I really pushed it back to the last minute.  I may be on time getting places but I really procrastinate.  I meant to take pictures but I got sidetracked.  Since I am getting good at asking you to use your imagination, I knit up some balls and stuffed them with polyfill so they look like a glass ornament, complete with the curved loop on top.  Used leftover sock yarns.  Part of the recycle theme they so fully support, in a way.

I think we've all recovered around here.  It was an exciting day Sunday.  PeeWee's refusal to eat or drink anything the whole weekend landed her in the ER getting an IV at 4 in the morning Sunday.  She perked up completely and has been herself but we are still recovering from the exhaustion of a sick toddler.  She likes to scare us to death.

We have her cardiology appointments coming up soon and all I kept thinking about as I watched her feel worse and worse the weekend through was that dehydration can really mess with your heart rhythm.  It made me one anxious mama.  The ER staff was wonderful, helpful and very nice to us.  I think the appearance of a 3 year old at 4AM was an unusual event for them.  And when she started wailing so loud you could hear her practically out on the street everyone stuck their head in to see how they could calm her down.  They were a nice bunch.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

We have a winner!

Actually we have three.  But first allow me to apologize for the delay in announcing the winners.  I know a contest that ended two days ago with no prizes announced yet is a serious offense.  But we've been up to our eyeballs in sick kids here and this afternoon I finally got a chance to get photographs and get online for more than a millisecond.  

PeeWee picked names for me in two groups, those who knit and shared their knitted items with me and everyone together.

Monique, who also happened to also be the busiest knitter, won the big prize of the Cherry Tree Hill yarn, it is luscious.  Scrumptious.  I hope she can turn it into something absolutely beautiful.

The second name PeeWee picked from the active knitters was Christina who wins this lovely lace weight yarn.  This stuff is seriously soft.  It should turn itself into something gorgeous.

The third winner is from the entire group and PeeWee picked... Kenyetta!  She wins these really nifty See Jayne Knit stitch markers.  I want to keep them for myself.  They are darn cute.

I am very fond of all these prizes and am glad to send them off to their new homes.  They are things I want to knit with someday so I hope they are well loved!

I had a lot of fun with this one and I am going to try to keep doing the contest.  Hopefully we'll have even more participants in the future.  I made the commitment to be making preemie things this time of year when PeeWee was released from the hospital and I know I will keep making them for a long time.  If you have any preemie knitting that needs a home and you would like to send it to me email me. I'll be happy to wash and deliver things through out the year. I bring them in a few times a year, when I have enough to wash and pack up. I'll be bringing these in next week, since I am going in for a meeting at the hospital.

Thanks again to all of you who made someone's day a little brighter by making a tiny little hat or other goodie for the littlest babies we ever get to meet!