Category Archives: Family

Family Weekend

We’re traveling home from a weekend with my parents, and I’m writing this on my phone.please excuse any weird autocorrect mistakes. 🙂 

We’ve all had a good time at my parents’ house. This was Lollypop’s first time to visit them, and he was a little dubious at first, but he warmed up really well. Especially when Papaw was swinging him around and around. 

Jellybean got to play in the dirt, see Papaw’s workshop, read stories with Mimi, and get spoiled with bunny grahams, ice cream, tv and staying up late. 

We’re all tired, of course, as it goes when you travel, but it’s so worth it. 

I got to do a little bit of knitting. I had been participating in a design challenge, but I got stuck on step 3 of 5 and wasn’t able to concentrate on it enough to get past the hump. I will continue on with the challenge this week, thigh, and I may end up with a pattern out of it. 

I managed to finish block 9 of the Knitterati Afghan. This one wasn’t my favorite looking block, but it was actually quite fun to knit. 

There’s a lot going on in this one. Cables around the border, wraps, 5-stitch bobbles, 3-stitch bobbles, a 1-to-7 stitch increase and a 5-stitch decrease. It definitely kept my interest as I was knitting.

It still needs to be blocked, but I wanted at least one picture for my post today. I have blocks 7 and 8 finished and blocked, but of course I didn’t take photos of those before we left. (I was to busy getting us all packed!)

The next big item on my to do list is planning a first birthday party! I’m having so much fun planning this one, but trying to keep it small. I’ll tell you all about it in a few weeks! 

Have a great week, my friends! 

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Filed under Family, Knitting

40

My dad is somewhat of a jokester. I won’t say how many years ago, when my mom turned 40, he and a mischievous buddy of his spray painted a billboard on the highway to announce her birthday. Only they said she was 50, instead of 40. That billboard stayed that way for as long as I can remember, and I don’t even remember when it was painted over or taken down. (I think dad’s partner in crime owned the land or the billboard or something like that, I never really knew if they were actually committing a crime, but there are photos of them in the act.).

Redacted to protect the (not so) innocent. Ha!

Mom went through a whole range of emotions about that billboard, but it is definitely something that our family will never forget.

I remember thinking 40 was old and 50 was grandparent material. If you made it past 60, then you were just ancient.

This past weekend was my own 40th birthday. I didn’t get a billboard announcement. (Thank goodness!) I also don’t feel as old as I thought I would, or should.

I started having kids a decade later than my mom. Sometimes, I wish I had had my kids at a younger age so I could have more energy to play with them and my joints would hold up to the rough housing. But I know I wouldn’t have been the same parent 10 years ago. I lose my shit way more than I’d like to admit (it’s really hard to parent a 3-year-old and stay sane), but overall, I feel like I’m more patient than I was at a younger age.

I’ve had these 10 years to learn some much needed life lessons. Lessons about love, money, compassion, empathy, time management, and judgement. Having my kids when I did enabled me to find a wonderful, supportive group of mama friends, who I still keep in touch with daily, even though I moved away from them.

Being at the point I am, with two small kids at 40 years old, I realize how much age is just a number. I may not have the energy to keep up with my kids for as long as they want me to, but they definitely keep me active and strong.

I turned 40 without much fanfare, and that’s OK. I’m beginning to think that the less excitement you have in your life, the longer you get to live it. So bring on the quiet birthdays, may they keep coming year after year.

P.S. This post is a week belated, as many of my plans that weekend were waylaid by a stomach virus. We were all sick, all at once, and it was awful. Thankfully it was short-lived and we’re all better now and I’m catching back up.

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Filed under Family, Not Knitting

Have Planner, Will Plan

Good Morning and happy Monday to you, my friends.

There’s not much to talk about knitting-wise this week because I’ve not done much knitting. I have made some decent progress on my sweater – I’m working on the shoulders at the moment – but since it’s such a small yarn, it’s not going as fast as my most recent projects. I don’t mind that part, though. It’s very meditative knitting… around and around and around and remember to increase in the right spots and just keep knitting. I’ve very nearly used all of the first skein of yarn and I’m not even down to the sleeves yet.

I did try it on this weekend to see if it was starting out the right way and I’m happy to say it’s going well. The shoulders fit me right the way they should and nothing’s to tight or too loose. It’s exciting.

So, if I haven’t been knitting much this week, what have I been doing?

I’ve been planning a birthday party.

For a *gasp* FOUR year old!

My big kiddo turns four this week and we’re having a party. I usually start planning his parties right after Christmas, but so much stuff was going on this year and I kept putting it off. So I’m trying to put it all together in about a week and a half. It’s coming along, and I think he and his friends will have fun.

I’ve also spent a lot of time this week just trying to get organized. I felt things going off the rails, with work and kids and trying to keep the house in reasonable order, so I am working on making myself a planner. Traditional day planners don’t quite fit my needs – I need more of a prioritized task list than an appointment calendar – so I’ve been searching for free planner pages, printing them and trying to see how they work with my brain. I’ve found a few things that are working and I’m tweaking the pages that don’t quite fit for me, so hopefully I can keep everything more tidy. I am a planner, I like lists and meal plans and organized shelves and everything in its place. The reality is that I don’t always have every little thing organized, and I have several piles of my stuff laying around in places. Plus, living with two kiddos (who prove the chaos theory) and another human (who can buy a week’s worth of groceries in one trip and make a week’s worth of meals without ever thinking about a list) means that it’s a lot of work to keep things from getting out of hand.

Last weekend, I was feeling so much stress about everything I felt was on my plate. This weekend, I am getting it organized and in its place. I have no illusion that I will stay organized forever. When I get comfortable with my routine, I won’t need the detailed planner as much, but for right now, it makes me feel so much better just to have it all written down in one spot.

I am going back to my knitting, now. Have a great week!

P.S. I am anxiously awaiting block 3 of the mystery afghan. I really hope it’s one that I will want to do. I could use a short, easy project to work on as I need a break from the big projects I’ve got on the needles.

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Filed under Family, Knitting, Not Knitting

A Week of False Starts

It’s been a long week.

Oh, it’s been two weeks? Well, yes, that would explain it.

We’ve had to travel, we’ve had sick kiddos, knitting and crocheting have not gone as planned and I’m so irritable I can barely stand to be around myself.

But I made a pie.

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A really beautiful, tasty apple pie.

Thank you, Southern Living magazine!

Thank you, Southern Living magazine!

We’ve had sick kiddos around. I got a call Wednesday morning, before I even left the driveway to go to work, that Jellybean was sick. He got through the stomach issues, took him back on Thursday and I got a call about an hour later that he had a rash. Friday morning, the rash was worse and he had a fever. That afternoon we left the doctor’s office with a positive Flu test, positive strep test, flu shot for me, a prescription for antibiotics and a diagnosis of Scarlet Fever. Jellybean never had a sore throat, the only indication of strep was the rash and fever. We’re convinced the flu test was a false positive. Of course by Saturday morning, he as acting like nothing was ever wrong, but he still had to be out of daycare for more than a week.

Lollypop got to stay home this past Monday, too. He has this habit of not napping well on the weekends. On the one hand, I get it, he’s excited to see his family and doesn’t want to miss any action. But on the other hand, holy moly it makes it tough when he loses his mind along about 4pm. He’d been coughing quite a bit on Sunday night and was congested with runny nose and watery eyes. So, out of an abundance of caution, we all stayed home Monday. I did manage to get a 2-hour nap out of him and a 1-hour nap out of Jellybean that day, so at least I was able to work a bit and he was feeling much better the next day.

Lollypop is starting to get mobile and sit up on his own better. I’m excited about this – he’s less reliant on me for his every need. But it also means I can’t just lay him somewhere and expect him to stay there. We’ve started feeding him rice cereal from a spoon and he LOVES that! Our next step is trying some purees. I think I’ll get some peaches and see if he likes those mixed in with his cereal. He’s curious about everything, and thinks his big brother hung the moon. Jellybean is being so sweet to him, too. They’re starting to play together and JB will read LP books and hug on him. It’s really wonderful to watch their relationship grow.

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It’s impossible to get a non-blurry picture of them.

On the knitting side, I’ve cast on and ripped out so many times I’ve lost count.

I started a Christmas present in crochet. I have no clue about gauge in crochet, so I just had to restart that one three times until I got the size right. That one’s a lap-sized afghan, so it was a bit of work to rip out. Of course I can’t show you yet, it’s that time of the year!

I also made a hat. I used instructions for a hat made with worsted weight yarn, but I was using bulky weight yarn. I ripped that one out once and I’m afraid it still might be too big.

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I’ve redone Jellybean’s sweater at least twice. I’m on the last try. I’m not ripping it out again. He’ll just have to wear it the way it ends up. (It’ll be fine.)

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A little more progress than last time.

I’m working along on the sweater last evening and I’m thinking about how I’m going to do the pockets. My original thought was to double-knit them so I could easily enclose the side next to the zipper. I checked the pattern to see where to start the pockets and I realize I’ve passed the spot. By about two inches. *sigh* (It’ll be fine.)

The pattern’s original design has one pouch pocket on the front of the sweater. You knit up the body to the top of where the pocket would be, pick up stitches near the ribbing and knit the pocket up. Then you work the pocket and sweater stitches together on the next row to close the top. If I had read the pattern fully before starting, I would have known this. I am not ripping out two inches of stockinette. (It’ll be fine.)

Note to self: Read the pattern before beginning!

I am NOT ripping out two inches of stockinette!

IT WILL BE FINE!

There.

I will just pick up stitches for the pockets, knit the pockets and figure out how to close the pocket next to the zipper later. I can use mattress stitch, but it won’t have the same stretch as the rest of the sweater. I can probably do a single crochet or slip stitch crochet thing on the inside of the pocket that would stretch some, but I’m not sure how that will look on the outside. I’ll have to think on that one. Do you have any suggestions?

I’ve paused on the Evenstar shawl for a bit. Fall weather is here this week and I decided I needed to focus on cold-weather wear. I still need to finish Lollypop’s stocking, sew up his sweater and find the perfect buttons for it. I have had to add a few new projects to my list, too. Jellybean came out of his room crying this week because his felted slippers don’t fit anymore. He was so very sad. He said, “Mama, make it go on my foot!” He got really upset with me when I told him they don’t fit anymore, but was better when I told him I would make him a new pair. And a new pair of mittens. Also, Jellybean and Lollypop need winter hats. These kids just keep growing!!

Let’s hope this next week goes better than the last two and I get some projects finished. We all need a break from the craziness!

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Filed under Crochet, Family, Knitting