Friday, June 29, 2007

WIP Round Up

It has been a long week. We have had several conversations regarding the use of intelligent, thinking questions rather than the constant use of the word why. This was especially stressed when the word why was used after a certain 4 year old was asked an opinion and why was the reply. We went to a movie Wednesday. It went better than I expected. Andrew didn't demand to be taken out of the theater during scary parts (nor did he cry because upset). Nicholas was fine most of the time, especially when fed goldfish crackers and allowed to examine the bottom step leading to the stadium seating. We did miss the ending because a certain 4 year old had to use the bathroom and then wash his hands very well so we got back to the theater just as the credits were rolling. Oh, and then there was Thursday when he fell and scraped his elbow just a little (it wasn't even bleeding). He was running into the house and tripped. After cleaning him up and applying a bandage Andrew suddenly announced that he wasn't feeling well. I rushed him to the bathroom and then noticed he was very pale and warm. I had him lie down and after a few minutes he felt like he could walk to the living room and lie down on the couch. Eventually, his color returned and he was fine. Tim has a strong aversion to blood/needles and has about the reaction Andrew demonstrated after scraping his elbow. Besides the scraping of the elbow Thursday, I decided to take Nicholas in to catch up on some vaccinations since we should have been in about a month ago. We opted to cut the amount of vaccines given at a time in half - so we have a little catching up to do. The first two he received last time didn't faze him, but he has been really crabby the last couple days. He has also decided that sleeping all night, waking up at 5am, nursing and going back to sleep for an hour or so wasn't working for him. So, he has been up around 3am, nursing, sleeping for an hour, nursing, deciding that 6am was a good time for me to get up. Getting up at 6am isn't that bad, if you have slept well for the three hours prior to getting up. Anyway, long week....We did have funny yogurt man though, which was good for a smile.

I'm Funny Yogurt Man!

Let me get yogurt on the camera too.

Funny Yogurt Man is no laughing matter.

Ok, you got me, it is pretty funny. (look at all those teeth)

Now that you read all of the kids content, here is the fiber content.

I am an enabler. I happened to mention Mystery Stole 3 to Jessica, who signed up, visited Depth of Field for the first time, and then IMed me asking, what should I do about beads for this yarn. To which I responded, we could go to The Bead Monkey, and do you two just want to have dinner with us then. We found beads, I showed Jessica the Yarnery (we had to walk past to get back to the car - honest) and then went back to the circus known as my house and Terry and Jessica ate dinner with us. I joined the Mystery Stole 3 webring and it is in the sidebar. I finally knit my swatch. My pins were all upstairs, so I used some small dpns as blocking wires. Pretty ingenious for midnight (if I do say so myself).

I am using Skacel Merino Lace and size 3 dpns to start. I used both beads and truly didn't really think one was better than the other. So I asked Andrew. He chose the sparkle and Tim liked those last night before I started knitting the swatch so I used the sparkle beads to start the stole. I did knit 40 rows during a bit of nap time. It helped that the rows start with two stitches and add from there.

I finished the shoulder straps on Andrew's gansey and started one sleeve, but I am going to frog the sleeve and start picking up stitches from a different place on the sleeve to keep from having the row jog on one side of the shoulder strap.

Some knitting has been done on the second Step sock.

The Snowflake Hat still sits waiting to be hemmed.

I do plan on entering this in the State Fair, so it will get done (probably the first week of August).

I did some spinning. This fiber has been on the wheel since fall and it is time to finish it. I was going to navajo ply it, but it has more white at the beginning and more blue at the end so I'm not sure now. It is kind of thin to do two ply. I do have some white rambouillet that I could spin to go with, but I would kind of like to be done. I was planning to knit something for Nicholas with this since Andrew got the other dyed fiber I bought at Shepherd's Harvest last year. At least thin yarn still knits up fairly quickly for a little person.

Although while I was spinning the brake line broke again so I have another knot in the line. Someday I need to get some new fishing line to replace that.

I think that I might try to make the WIP round up a fairly regular feature on the blog. Maybe it will encourage me to hem the hat up before the last minute for the fair.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

It's not the heat - it's the lack of A.C,

It's kind of warm here. I own an older house (1909) with a hot water heating system. Unless I want to try to run mini-ducts through the walls and ceilings, we won't be having central air anytime soon. Fortunately, we have found ways to deal with it. We have two window units upstairs on opposite ends of the house. One is in the master bedroom which is expected to cool (i.e. keep below 85 degrees) the front three rooms of our house. The other unit is located in the bedroom at the back of the house that Nicholas is sleeping in (otherwise known as the back bedroom or my room since it contains sewing equipment, fabric, and yarn). This unit is turned off multiple times during the day because Nicholas seems to be kept awake by it. Since we don't spend much time upstairs (other than sleeping - though a cooler room does make it easier to sleep) we find other ways to keep cool. We have an inflatable pool that takes up most of the yard between the deck and the garage. On Monday we used our Children's Museum membership for multiple hours of cool play. Today, Andrew went to the church that regular preschool is held at for their summer camp. This is kind of like a vacation bible school, but it is spread out over the summer by having camp from 10-2 most Tuesdays. Andrew had a blast, I got a few things done and some quiet while Nick was sleeping, so he benefited from their air conditioning - as well as the great program and a chance to see some friends from preschool. Tomorrow, we head to a movie theater to see Happy Feet. AMC (as well as a couple other theater chains) have a kids movie camp. The tickets I picked up today were free, so I don't feel bad if Nicholas is cranky/noisy during the movie. Plus, do you really expect a theater full of kids to be quiet.

We realized today that Nicholas was 9 months yesterday. He has grown so fast. He still takes 2-3 naps a day, which amazes me since I was lucky if Andrew took one nap with out me sleeping next to him. He is working on tooth number eight and has decided that being spoon fed is bad (unless it is yogurt). Tonight he had teriyaki chicken, rice, red peppers and strawberry yogurt. He pulled himself up on a bench at the Children's Museum yesterday and stood there for a minute while I was on the other side of the bench. Yesterday was also the first time he was interested in checking out the exhibits. He also wants to be down pretty much all the time. If I am holding him he will make a nose dive for the floor - this is not all that helpful when shopping for groceries. He has also gotten over some of his fear of other people. At least, he is pretty happy with most of the people we see lately and if he isn't, he can go down to the floor and play and then is okay.

Terry and Jessica were by this evening. They are starting to look into buying a house up here and stopped by after meeting with a loan officer. They had the chance to meet one of our neighbors - who offered me salmon he had caught this morning - while we were across the street talking about a house for sale there. Of course, I took the salmon. I will stop by tomorrow with some raspberries for him from our yard. Yesterday I picked raspberries before we ate dinner, and after eating our dinner we polished a cereal bowl full of raspberries (yes, Nick helped).

On a knitting note --

I should post my knitting goals on the blog more often. Monday evening, when I thought back to the goals written Sunday evening, I realized that the only thing I hadn't accomplished was the swatch for Mystery Stole 3.

Sock Heel


Yoke of Sweater

Check - I am even knitting the second shoulder strap now. Just sleeves and a neck band after this

I also wound some merino/silk singles into balls for plying. Maybe I can do some spinning before the week is done.

This was the sky our our bedroom window this evening. Fair weather tomorrow? (Tim looked at me funny when he saw me taking this picture. I told him the sky was pretty. He said it was grey. Then Andrew walked in, saw the sky and proclaimed it beautiful. Then Tim realized I wasn't crazy taking pictures. Must have something to do with Tim's colorblindness.)

Sunday, June 24, 2007


Pattern: Icarus from Interweave Knits Summer 2006 (also available from Mimknit)
Yarn: Knitpicks Alpaca Cloud in Smoke
Needles: Knitpicks Options size 4 - I used size fours mostly because I don't have a nice pointy size three needle and I didn't think it would matter that much.

Icarus is finished. I started working on it last fall, but put it away for a while to work other things - specifically presents for Christmas. I pulled it back out this spring and started plugging away at it. I would knit two or three rows a day and didn't seem to be making much progress, but then one day it was done. For a few days it felt strange not to be working on the shawl anymore, but I have gotten over that. I was planning to enter this in the State Fair, but due to an inability to count, I had one extra stitch I picked up - resulting in an extra column of stockinette stitches - that when dropped to have the correct number of stitches left a slightly larger column of yarn overs. It isn't noticeable unless you know it is there or look very closely, but probably not going to win me any prizes. The shawl is light, but warm since it is knit from alpaca. It is a little bigger because it is knit with size four needles instead of threes, but it seems to be a good size.

Tim and I had a very nice evening. I think I need to nominate Kathy for best mother-in-law. She called earlier this week to let us know that she would like to watch the kids for us tonight and wondered what time she could come up. Tracey came with and they had a pretty good time and walked over to a local ice cream shop while we were out. Nicholas is finally getting better with other people watching him. We have also been spending more time with Tim's family so I think that helps too. Tim and I went to see Ocean's 13. We don't get to very many movies, so we picked this one knowing that we liked the first two and I knew that Renee gave it a good review. We caught a 4:15 movie - because it is $9 for both of us instead of for one ticket. After the movie we went to Cosetta's for the first time. I had the Cosetta sandwich. It was a thick slice of Italian bread on the bottom, a sausage patty, red sauce, and another slice of Italian bread cut in half. It was very good and filling enough for me to be full, but not stuffed. Tim had a different sausage entree, but decided mine was better. We like trying new places and it is so much easier without the kids. They also had pizza by the slice, so we will probably go back with the kids sometime. After Cosetta's it was still only 8pm, so we went to Cafe Latte for a little desert. We were planning to share something, but Tim saw that they had key lime pie and I saw they had a small slice of chocolate cake left from the people in front of us, so that's what we had. It was a beautiful evening and we enjoyed our walk along Summit Ave back to the car. When we got home both kids were in bed which was wonderful (especially since I was expecting to have to get Nick to bed).

My knitting plan for the next few days is a swatch for the Mystery Stole 3 with this.

I'm not sure if I will use the pearly beads or the clear beads with the silver inside.

I would also like to get the heel knit on the second Step sock and finish the yoke of Andrew's gansey. We will see what happens. Nick has decided he likes to sit on the floor and scoot around on his bottom and play with things, so that could help. Oh the other hand, Andrew has discovered that he recognizes a number of works and likes to work on reading. So, who knows.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

June so far...

What a busy month we have had. It is so nice to have Andrew done with both preschools. We can do fun stuff and not do stuff if we want to. We have gone to the Science Museum, Minnehaha Creek, Ikea's play land, played with legos at MOA, the beach at Snail Lake, the pool at the Y, had a sleepover at Grandma Kathy's (that was just Andrew)and had days where Andrew is still in his pajamas at 2:30pm after sleeping until 10:00am and just playing all day. It is also nice to be able to put Nick down for a nap without trying to plan it around drop offs and pick ups for Andrew. I have opted to not schedule anything for the beginning of summer. We talked about taking more swimming lessons and possibly doing soccer one night a week, but we just needed a break.

We have been having lots of fun on the weekends too. The first weekend in June we went to a dog show. We met up with a breeder and a few Rottweiler puppies that had recently been placed in homes. Seeing Andrew playing with the puppies reminded me of playing with the puppies we had when I was his age. That prompted us to decided that our next dog will be a puppy. I know they are a lot of work, but I want Andrew to have that experience at least once.

Last weekend, on the spur of the moment, we decided to drive out to Hudson, WI and then to Stillwater. Tim wanted to do something fun for Fathers' Day - although we knew it would be easier to do something just for him Saturday than Sunday. We walked along the river for a little bit, then walked near the stores. We happened to find a new kids store, Little Giants, that was having their grand opening. We enjoyed the air conditioning, I fed Nicholas, Andrew played with the toys that were out to play with and got a balloon and lollipop, and we talked with the store owner about the shop and her family's move from Uptown to Hudson. After the store, we discovered the pier that goes out into the river. We walked across and played in the river for a while. I think we will have to go back sometime. Andrew always wants to bring floaty things to play with, but none of the beaches allow them. This area is a bit less regulated. Many people drove over to the sand bars on their boats, although it wasn't very crowded. It was a great thing to do considering it was above 90 degrees. After that we drove to Stillwater, which is on the other side of the river and just a little bit north of Hudson. We ate at a malt shop, looked at some stores, and just enjoyed seeing something different. Sunday we met up with Tim's dad and brothers and sister at a park in Bloomington, grilled and ate hot dogs and brats, and all went for a long walk (with a little wading in 9 mile creek for some).

Today was busy too. We all did the pacemaker 5K in Minneapolis in the morning. The route along the river is great, but we agreed that there were just too many people. We preregistered, but when we got there all the bags were gone. Andrew also did the kids fun across the stone arch bridge that he has been asking about (really the whole reason we were there). I am happy that he likes to run and that we can encourage him by doing active things as a family. This afternoon Andrew and I headed to the pool to work on his swimming while Tim supervised nap time. Then this evening we headed over to Snelling Ave in St. Paul to watch the old cars drive around. The MSRA has their back to the 50's weekend at the state fairgrounds this weekend and we have had "old cars that are in shape" - in shape to differentiate the from the cars that just have rust - sightings since Thursday. Andrew has been somewhat interested in cars since watching the movie Cars. He looked for things like white sidewall tire and cars that looked like Doc Hudson. We brought Steve along, knowing that he just brought his '65 Mustang from WI, and actually knew what some of the cars were. Steve has had the car for 15 years and is going to be responsible and sell it to help pay for the car he bought recently (the one he uses to get to his job and stuff). All in all we have had very fun active weekends and Andrew was very ready to go to bed tonight.

ETA: I don't know how I forgot about the Saints game Tim and Andrew went to and our day at Shepherd's Choice - Andrew even won a door prize at Shepherd's Choice, a little needle felted sheep.

From June 2007

(click on the photo or link to see more pictures of the events)

There has been knitting - although I can't actually call one project finished quite yes since I still have ends to weave in (two), but it is blocked and everything. Maybe I will do it quick tonight. Andrew's gansey is going well. I almost have the front and back done, and still need to knit the sleeves. My step socks get a row or two knit on them every once in a while, but I have been bring more complicated projects when I go places, because otherwise I don't get a whole lot done only knitting at night after the kids go to bed. I also joined the Mystery Stole 3, along with 2000 other people, and have yarn and beads and need to start a swatch. I have also been thinking of doing the tour de fleece, mostly because I really need to spin up the ramboulliet I have on the wheel and get some other stuff spun up that is here. I figure I don't have to spin much in a day, even a couple minutes is something, but I am still thinking about it.

Enough for now....time to watch The Doctor...

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