Saturday, December 26, 2009

Mr. Popper

Levi didn't get a ton of gifts for Christmas, but we tried to stick with the classics. Along with a Rolf Harris CD set (he loves this guy; if you don't, go look him up on YouTube), he got a Farmer See-n-Say, and a Fisher Price Corn Popper. You had one, remember?

He is completely delighted with the noise it makes (Also the fact that is filled with balls. Ball? Ball? Ball?), and when he gets it to work, he cackles with glee. Sadly, he hasn't quite figured it out yet - he doesn't get that he has to push it out along in front of him. So it's a little frustrating right now. He's keeping at it, though. Pop. Poppoppoppoppoppop.

Just for fun: no one seems to know the official name of this toy (I had to look on the label). What did you think yours was called?

And bonus points to anyone - except my sister - who can guess what the title of today's post is an homage to. (Bad sentence. Oh well. Not on the clock.)

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Santa Baby

Been an awful good girl

Santa baby, so hurry down the chimney tonight ...


Monday, December 14, 2009

Aaah. There it is.

I confess I haven't been feeling very Christmasy. I'd like to say it's because I've been so busy these last few months. I have, but I feel this way every year. In my own defense, I think I'd do better if the Christmas pushers didn't start right after the back-to-school sales get cleared away.

That's not going to change, so I usually just keep bobbing along and trying to fake it until something clicks for me. Pretty often, it's a song. Sometimes it's snow. One year, I reread The Very Best Christmas Pageant Ever and that did it.

Tonight, I came in late from a Christmas party, and all the lights were off, but Paul had left the lights on the tree lit. So I came in and sat in the dark and looked at it for awhile, and there it was.

The Christmas spirit, big as life.

I'm finally ready.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Vested Interest

When Levi was about three weeks old, we found out that he has cystic fibrosis (CF). There are a number of daily meds and therapies that come with the diagnosis, one of which is chest percussion and drainage (PD). Till now, we've been doing PD by hand, but have been waiting until Levi was big enough for a therapy vest. It came last week, and it was an exciting day for a couple of reasons. We won't be doing it by hand anymore (I know I'm a wimp, but it's kind of tiring), and the vest will do a better, more consistent job than we ever could.

It's a pretty funny contraption - the vest itself is black canvas, and contains an air bladder inside. Two hoses run from the vest to a little machine, and when it runs, the air bladder inflates, and then the vest deflates and inflates at a rapid rate - up to 25 times per second. The technical name is high-frequency chest wall oscillation. To an ignorant layman (that would be me), it just looks like the vest is jiggling.

We were warned that Levi might really hate this until he got used to it, so we were geared up for a fight. He did cry a little bit the first time, right at the beginning, but he recovered quickly and really doesn't seem to mind at all. I'm so thankful! Paul has worked out that we can put him in his highchair if we take the tray off, pull the highchair up to the computer, and let him watch Rolf Harris videos (if you've never heard of Jake the Peg, do yourself a favor and go watch this).

Bonus: The vest makes you sound funny when you talk. Good for cracking yourself up and amusing your mother.

P.S. I have about one half project remaining for the Christmas knitting. I'm taking a quick break to knit Levi a pair of good old-fashioned wool mittens with a string attaching them so he can continue to go outside with his papa. We can currently only find one glove at a time, and it is cold out there. Here they are without the string.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Going Into a Skid

So earlier this year I decided to knit a bunch of Christmas presents. Every niece and nephew on my side of the family is getting the same thing in different colors. I don't love the nieces and nephews on the other side any less, by the way. It just didn't seem appropriate. Maybe because my family is measurably weirder*.

Anyway, it's a blessing, because I couldn't handle knitting 14 of the same thing. I'm doing seven as it is. I started in April, fell apart over the summer, picked back up in September and made good progress. During November, I cranked out two complete projects in two weeks. I have about one and one-tenth left, and I have gone into a serious skid.

I seem to have a cycle on knit Christmas gifts. I do it every other year. So next year, I'll still remember that I hate knitting on a deadline (It's supposed to be fun. Deadlines are Not Fun.). Then in 2011, I'll decide that it will be fun, and if I start early and stay organized, it will be be easy. And I'll post this very same thing in December.

Are there any carols about knitting? I need some inspiration!

*That will make more sense after Christmas when I can post a picture. Though if you know us, it probably makes a whole lot of sense right now.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

A Brown Howler Monkey

Here are some belated Halloween pictures. Courtesy of Jill, who took a few shots for me when I discovered I had forgotten to check the battery pack in my camera. Whoops. Thanks, Jill!

Levi was blissfully unaware of why he was dressed as a monkey (possibly he was even unaware that he was dressed as anything in particular), but enjoyed himself anyway. He even scored a miniature pumpkin from someone after pointing at it and saying "Ball!" with great joy.

In the meantime, he's progressed from the single word to "Whuz za ball?" which means anything from "Where's the ball?" to "More milk, please!" and, possibly, "Good morning!"

I know I've been AWOL. We've been busy! Doctor appointments, the county fair, spiky fevers, Tamiflu, just-appearing molars, bonfires, more doctors ... and I got a job. It's 20 hours a week from home (in other words, perfect), but adjusting to it has taken a little longer than I thought. I think I'm settling in, though.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009


Paul's family had a family picture session a couple of weeks ago. Levi was not so good at smiling that morning, and more of the pictures had little squinchy-faces in them than smiles, but the photographer got a few. When we got the digital files, she also sent some cropped photos of Levi sitting on his grandpa's lap. Very cute. Here's my favorite:

Isn't that sweet?

Saturday, August 15, 2009

There's a Joke In Here Somewhere

I got a notice from the library this morning that a book I have out is due in two days. I haven't read it, so I tried renewing it online, but I've already renewed it once, and the system won't allow me to do it again.

It's called Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity.

Oh well.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

A Brush With Fame

So Levi met a celebrity while we were in North Carolina.

Shortly after Levi was diagnosed* with CF my friend Tiffany, who is an avid blog reader (and has her own blog as well), told me about a blog she followed called Confessions of a CF Husband. I googled and found it, and started following too. In fact, the whole family got sucked in. Paul and Levi took to hanging out at the computer and watching videos of the sweet baby girl at the other end of the DSL connection. (We've gone over the difficulties of long-distance relationships with Levi, but he remains entranced.)

Turns out we got to meet the CF Husband himself a couple of weeks ago. We had a great time, and Levi even gave him a kiss on the cheek before we left. Here they are together, with grins matching in intensity if not in toothiness.

Thanks for letting us drop by, Nathan! It was one of the highlights of our trip. We hope to see you again.

*Hooray for newborn screening - bringing longer, healthier lives to CF babies everywhere!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Digging Out

Wow. I was out of town, then I had houseguests, and I'm working some this week, which I usually don't. It's been a little wild around here. I'm currently digging through all of the papers on my desk and hoping that none of them are badly past their expiration date. Or that I am unable to decipher some of the notes I wrote myself. (Like when I put something valuable in a "safe place." Our passports, for example. I'm sure they'll turn up.)

The smallest person in the house has produced four teeth on the top in the last few days, though not without suffering. I feel a little sad about it (and not just because of the grouchiness). I will miss his enormous gummy grin, and I was just getting used to the two on the bottom. I probably need to get a grip, or I'll never survive preschool graduation.

I have finally uncovered the camera, and it has lots of really fun pictures on it. I'm sure I'll post some of them soon. Here's one to hold you over.

Ice cream. It's what's for dinner.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day, Papa!

When can I go on the road, you think?

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

A Strange Kind of Sense

My mom called the other day, and, after saying hi, asked, "Do you know where my turkey baster is?"

After a split-second struggle with a wildly inappropriate joke (I refrained), I said, "Um. No?"

She explained. When she's in my kitchen and she's looking for something specific, she can almost always find it. So our kitchens must be organized the same way. So maybe, she said, if I remembered where my turkey baster was, I could tell her where hers was.

It makes a certain kind of sense.

Unfortunately, she'd already looked in the places I thought of. No dice. When she came over this evening to watch The Bean, I forgot to ask whether she'd found it.

When I got home, though, the stovetop had been cleaned, which I am pretty sure was not Paul's handiwork, and for which I am willing to buy her a new turkey baster every time she loses it for the rest of her days.

And, because I am not over it yet: look what else my image software can do.

I can't believe I didn't know any of these features existed. I'm not even going to tell you how long I've had this program. It's embarrassing.

Friday, June 12, 2009

About That Tooth

It's been quite a while since I mentioned it. I never did get a very good snapshot of it, but Levi did get pictures taken at nine months, and one of them shows it off really well. Here you go.

He now has a tooth and a half - the second of the bottom center two has come in. He seems to suffer the most about 10-14 days before the teeth appear. I gotta say, I hope not all of them come in as hard as these two. We've had some miserable days and fevers up to 104 with each tooth. Yikes.

He's a pretty mobile little dude now - above you can see him motoring across the lawn. He's not walking, but he's trying to let go of stuff and balance, with varying degrees of success. Typically, he lands on his bottom. Yesterday morning, he went over like a tower. Sadness ensued. He'll get it one of these days.

I've actually been knitting a bit, but everything I'm working on is a surprise, so I can't share. Some are for Christmas, and some are for happy events a little sooner than that. (Hint: the latter are very small and soft.)

People keep telling me he's going to hate us for all these bath pictures someday. I'll take my chances. Also, I can tell him with a clear conscience that all those funny hairdos are not my fault. (Auntie, I'm lookin' at YOU.)

Paul goes to an old-fashioned barbershop - red and white pole, inappropriate jokes, and everything - for his haircuts. (I am chicken and won't try a flattop; I'm afraid I'll make his head look funny. Er.) He sort of begged me to let Levi go last time. He was having pictures taken the next day, so I relented. Note that I'm not opposed to barbershops as such. I am opposed to paying for haircuts on tiny people who aren't yet mortified that their mothers cut their hair. (I might even be opposed once they are mortified. We'll see.) Anyway, he went just this once. They had a great time, and I have to admit, his hair looked really nice.

Isn't he cute on his papa's lap in that great big cape? And isn't that a lovely toilet in the background with the seat up? I might need to work on my photo composition.

One last story before I go - a few days ago, the boys went on a walk while I cooked supper. They were going to see the baby chickens, they said. Half an hour later, I get this picture on my cell phone:

Apparently they (I use this term loosely) decided to walk up to the community center next door to us, which has a pond. Nobody was there except two tween* boys who a) wouldn't pay attention and b) couldn't care less anyway, so Paul rolled up his pant legs and the baby stripped off, and in they went.

The pond does not in fact have lovely vivid autumn leaves floating in it this spring. I didn't want to post the original photo and face child pornography charges, so I decided to blur it in my photo editing software. Instead, I discovered a feature that allows you paste random things all over your pictures. I have not wasted any time with this at all. Why do you ask?

The spider one frankly freaks me out more than it should, but who doesn't love a giant donut? Also, don't believe any of the photos you see in the Enquirer. Because we do not really have miniature elephants, even though that would be lots of fun.

*I'm deciding whether to leave that in. It has a specific meaning, but I'm not so fond of the word. I can't decide whether it sounds like Tinkerbell on speed or a painful muscle twitch.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

A Tooth!

Levi has a tooth! (Finally. These teeth have been coming in forever.)

Pictures to follow when I can catch a smile.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Yes It's True ... We Are Happy to Be Stuck With You

Apologies to Huey Lewis.

On April 27, our family went to court and finalized Levi's adoption. Woohoo! It was, as we had hoped, a total non-event, except that Levi burped really loudly during the actual decree part, so we don't know what the judge really said. (The papers are all in order, though. We're not worried.)

Here's a picture of our family with the judge. Her name is Dixie, which I found completely incongruous with her appearance. I don't know why, but I expected a judge named Dixie to be at least 55 with smoker's voice. Hah!

I don't know if you can see it, but Levi is holding a little pencil with two erasers, shaped like a gavel. The judge gave them as souvenirs. He was allowed to chew on one, but the other is saved for his memory box.

I think I told pretty much everyone I've ever met that the finalization was done, so it didn't surprise me at all the the staff at the CF center knew about it (the social worker up there had in fact asked for a call when it was over). I was surprised, though, when we went up for our regular checkup, the door opened, and everybody on our team came in all at once ... with cake! We saved Levi's for later, and here he is enjoying it at home.

Our little piggy ate about 2/3 of the slice. I didn't let him eat it himself, but I did promise him a nice smash cake on his first birthday.

I've been impressed from the beginning with the Cystic Fibrosis team at the hospital, but they just keep getting better and better. Cake was not necessary, but I was very touched that they wanted to celebrate with us. (Has anyone else had a problem as they age with leaky eyes? I think mine are defective.)

And speaking of CF ... if you haven't had a chance, take a look at my Great Strides site and considering donating if you're able. I'm walking on Sunday May 17 to raise money for CF research. I hope that someday soon CF will stand for Cure Found.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

We All Scream For Ice Cream

Paul's current favorite baby video. He's asked several times for this one to make it to blog-dom.

No, I was not around to supervise bite size. Good heavens!

Hmm. I can't figure out what's up with the sound. It's not quite as fun without it. Basically, though, it goes like this:

Paul: Hey Beanie. Do you want some ice cream? Do you like ice cream? Here. Ugh, we dropped it. Here. Are you ready? Mmmm. Do you like Papa's ice cream? Hmm? You must have a papa that loooves you to share his ice cream. Huh? Mmmm. Tell Mama, "I like it! I like the ice cream." (fade to "I like the ice cream" song)

Friday, April 24, 2009

Big Boy Haircut

I held off for a long time (he's too little to get a haircut!), but I finally had to cave. His hair really was in his eyes most of the time.

Here he is before the big moment. Note suspicious presence of combover, and little flyaway wings over ears. Papa really hated those wings.

And now, in his hillbilly barber cape, with all the hair combed down for display. Yeah, it's probably time.

Hooray! Stylin' new big boy hair do, and no tears. At least from him.

Yes, I saved the hair, because I am a sentimental goob. I never used to be. What has happened to me?

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Puppies and Beards and Hay Bales, Oh My!

The neighbors brought the new puppy over to say hello. His name is Hobo. He's just four weeks old (and shouldn't be away from his mama yet - he's a rescue). He is just adorable, and Levi loved meeting a puppy.

And ... there's a goofy bearded man in the house. ("Don't you mean," said my sister, "another goofy bearded man?")

It's always a good time when the big boys come around.

That's Matthew, Levi, Logan, and Orin.

New Babies

Ain't they cute? (Too bad they grow up to be chickens.)

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Wedding Shawl

I kept promising pictures of the completed wedding shawl. (I'm sure you've been holding your breath.) Here you go.

Pinned and being blocked on the spare bed. If I knit anything much bigger than this, I'm going to need a better blocking system.

Closeup of the pattern after blocking.

I like this picture because the model is wearing black, which shows off how the pattern looks on an actual person.

Wedding day!

This doesn't have anything to do with the shawl, really, but isn't a cute picture of the bride and the baby?

I am proud to say that I finished the shawl a week before the wedding, giving me plenty of time for weaving in ends and blocking. The bride received it on Tuesday before a Saturday wedding. At no point did I have to pull an all-nighter. (Which is good, because in college I could bounce back from those pretty quickly. Not so much anymore.)

Special thanks to Gina and Mary Lou for extended knitting time provided by excellent babysitting services. It would not have happened without you.

Info for knitters who might want it: this is a Tuscany shawl from No Sheep For You - pattern by Amy Singer of Yarn is Luscious Silk in Narikama (part of the Spirits collection) from Blue Moon Fiber Arts, who hold the current honor of Biggest Single Threat to the Household Budget. Knit on Harmony wood needles from Knit Picks - part of the interchangeable circular set.

Happiness is ...

... a papa who shares his ice cream.


One of our cows had twins yesterday. It's the first time since we've been married that we've had twins, so I'm a bit excited. The cow is mostly Black Angus, and she was bred by a Milking Devon bull. The babies reflect their parentage - one is black and one is red. The black calf is a bull calf, and the red one a heifer.

The video is 22 seconds long and zooms in for a better look at about 13 seconds. If you DO NOT want to see a very clear picture of bovine afterbirth, you should click "pause" at 17 seconds. (I don't have video editing software. Sorry.) If you have young boys, though, and want them to go EEEEEEEEWWWWWWWWW, watch on!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Best Cornbread Ever

Last night, I pulled chili from the freezer for supper and decided to make cornbread to go with it. I found a recipe I'd printed off the internet a few weeks ago and decided to try it.

Oh. My. Goodness.

Best cornbread I've ever had. Paul said it's the second best cornbread he's ever had. The best was years ago, made by Grandma Kate (not his grandma, the neighbor's) and from freshly ground field corn plucked from the stalk at just the right time. I can't compete with that and I'm not even going to try.

But anyway, good cornbread. Here's the recipe if you'd like to try it yourself.

Sweet Cornbread

1 c. flour
1 c. cornmeal
2/3 c. sugar
1 tsp. salt
3 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 egg
1 c. milk
1/3 c. vegetable oil

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease a 9" round cake pan. (I used a deep dish pie pan.)

Combine all dry ingredients. Stir in egg, milk, and oil until well combined. Pour into prepared pan.

Bake at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes.

P.S. If you happen see the shirt that the baby is wearing in the video below, let me know. It has entered the Great Laundry Vortex, and I'm bummed. I like that shirt.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

We're In Trouble Now

Levi has, just now, figured out the one-leg-at-a-time principle of crawling. There'll be no stopping him now! Also, he's finally figured out how to get his socks off. Thank goodness warm weather is coming. I read somewhere about a mom in Alaska who had to duct tape her baby's socks and boots to his pants because he wouldn't leave them on, and in sub-zero weather, it's not cute so much as it is frightfully dangerous.

I haven't been remiss in taking pictures, but I've been terrible about uploading them. Soon. In the meantime, enjoy this video of Levi and his uncle cracking each other up.

(The wedding shawl is finished!!! Yes, it deserves several exclamation points. Pictures soon.)

Friday, February 27, 2009

How do I order a safety bubble?

So last Friday, I dropped a pan on my toe. After a couple of days it looked, as someone said, as if it was about to fall off. Happily it is healing well, and I can wear shoes again.

Today, I opened the car door into my forehead. I have gotten in and out of this car countless times without incident. I'm really not sure what happened. Anyway, there was a temporary dent in my forehead which has been replaced by a puffy place. I'm hoping for a really nasty bruise.

A few moments ago, I was slicing bread and got my finger instead. Fairly badly, though not badly enough for an ER visit.

So if anyone knows where I can find a safety bubble, I think I probably need one. Or I could just stay in bed on Fridays.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Readings from Ephesians. Sort of.

Paul has a habit of doing his Bible reading for the day while he's giving the baby a bottle, and he reads aloud. He also works in statements that pertain to what's going on with the feeding.

So I'll be sitting here typing and hearing things like, "And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grab your bottle and throw it down. What was that about?" and then later, "...until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature ... Then we will no longer be infants, crying and filling our pants."

It's pretty funny stuff.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

I Want To Do It Myself!

So last night I was running late (yeah, yeah) and I needed to feed the baby, but I also needed to get dressed. I decided to see if he could hold a bottle well yet. Laid him down on the floor and let him try, and the little booger went to town.

Excuse the quality. It's a cell phone picture that I took to send to Paul.

This morning, he woke up and wanted a bottle, but he did NOT want me to hold it for him. He wanted to hold it himself. Turns out he did the same thing for Paul early this morning.

What have I done?

Monday, February 9, 2009

Splish Splash, Baby

That boy, he does love a bath. Here he is in The Big Tub with mama.

And here he is by himself (not by himself, exactly, but he was the only one that was actually in the water), swimming after his bath. We're not sure what exactly is so much fun, but we're glad he enjoys it!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Needles Afire

I had been meaning to make another wool hat for Paul, who runs outside into the cold a lot at work, and I finally finished it. Below, you can see it modeled on its intended recipient, and also on the baby, who looks rather like a mushroom.

I think they're both quite cute, but obviously I'm biased.

Also, the yarn arrived for my next Big Project, and I started working. It's a wedding shawl for the neighbor, who is getting married sometime in the spring or early summer. (Date TBA.) This is the Tuscany shawl by Amy Singer, from No Sheep For You. It's a lovely pattern, and I'm using lovely yarn - Luscious Silk from Blue Moon Fiber Arts in Narikama (part of the Spirits collection, if you're going to look). This yarn is a delight to work with, and knit up, it is soft and has excellent stitch definition to show off the pattern. This pattern is worked from the tip and widens as you go.

Non-knitters (which will be most of you, undoubtedly): Those orange lines running through it are not a part of the pattern. They are lifelines - used when knitting lace or something else which might make you weep if you had to rip it out. At certain points in a pattern - usually the end of a repeated set of rows - you run a thin yarn in a contrasting color through the work. Then, when you make an irretrievable mistake six rows later, you only have to rip out six rows, instead of all of them (in this pattern, all of them can be anywhere up to 200), and thread the needle back into the stitches that are captured on the contrasting yarn. Lifelines are removed when you're done knitting.

Also, since I am incapable of even serial monogamy when it comes to knitting, I am working on a pair of fingerless gloves for myself. Just a few rows to finish the top, and then I'll complete the thumb and have one done.

This is a new pattern, picked up at Lettuce Knit in Toronto, and I like it, though I may shorten the ribbed cuff by an inch or so if I make it again. It's my first time creating a thumb gusset, and like most things, it's a lot easier than I thought it would be. There's probably a metaphor for life in there somewhere, but I'm too distracted to figure it out this morning.

Stay warm out there!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Bath Head, Feet, and Bread

I think Don King could learn a thing or two. (As perhaps I could about my camera. I don't know why that picture is grainy.)

Oh, and we have discovered our feet. Haven't quite figured out how to gnaw on them yet, but it can't be far off. (Look at those chunky thighs! I can't wait to show them off at his next appointment. See, I AM feeding him!)

I've been making bread lately. Mostly traditional whole wheat loaves with a little wheat bran thrown in for texture, but I've also been experimenting with no-knead bread. The whole wheat loaves have been coming out consistently tasty, but I'd like a little more loft to the loaf; I have short little pieces of bread when I slice. The no-knead has always been delicious, but I can't quite get the second rise to work correctly. I experimented a little with the batch I made today, so I'll let it sit in the fridge overnight and make a loaf tomorrow to see if it made any difference.

More importantly, I promised myself that I am not going to go bonkers with the bread. I have a bad habit of figuring out something new, deciding that this is the best new thing EVAH, and burning myself out in a while. So usually, this is how it would go:

I can bake bread! And it tastes good! Oh my goodness! I will bake bread every day. My family will eat only homebaked whole grain nutritiony goodness that has been formed with my loving hands. Commercial bread will never cross the threshold of this house again. Never, I say! Would you like me to list the advantages of homemade bread for you? Here you go. (I'll spare you the lecture. People who see me in person regularly are unfortunately not so lucky.) I am so excited about baking bread for my family! La la la la la. (Sung with dough on the hands and flour on the shirt.)

Then I would get busy one week and not have time to bake bread, and this would happen:

I am a terrible mother. I am a terrible wife. I can't even manage to bake bread for my family. *sob* What is wrong with me? Why am I such a mess? Why can't I get anything right? Why can't I accomplish a simple task like baking a loaf of bread?

Repeat a couple of times, and soon the decision comes that baking bread is causing me too much stress and I am clearly not good at it anyway, and so I am giving it up. We will buy our bread.

(Also, I suspect that the perpetual student that lives inside me gets really engaged while I'm learning about something and perfecting the process, and then gets bored once I've figured it out. "Another flaw in the human character is that everybody wants to build and nobody wants to do maintenance." - Kurt Vonnegut)

All of that is what I am trying hard NOT to do this time around. I told Paul, who really likes the bread and seemed to get just ever-so-slightly panicky today when there was just a crust left, that I will keep up with baking bread whenever I can, but I am not going to have a heart attack about it if I can't. I have a couple of loaves of our favorite store-bought in the freezer, and they'll get pulled out as necessary and used occasionally anyway for rotation. I am trying very hard to change my ways.

In fact, I am so enamored of my new way of approaching projects that I am sure I will never go back to the old way. Did you hear me? I am a changed woman! I am so excited about my new way of doing things and how I'm never going back, and I'd like to tell you about how it's changed my life. Are you ready? Are you excited to hear about my new ...

See? I have to watch myself every minute.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

A New Trick

After a few weeks of lying on his side and looking up at us as if to say, "Well? What now?" baby boy has achieved rollover. He especially likes to try on the changing table, which makes him both more dangerous and harder to dress.

In case you're wondering, that picture has nothing to do with rolling over. I just thought it was funny. And for the record, it was papa that did that to him.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Moebiuses (Mobeii?)

More than one of them, at any rate.

I cast on a moebius on Election Day 2008 (see why here if you like), and finished in the run up to Christmas. It wasn't intended as a Christmas present - in the interests of sanity, I do not knit very many Christmas presents - but I gave it to my sister when it was done. It seemed fitting. I bought the yarn when I was with her, it was much more in her color palette than mine, and it may have convinced her that not all wool is Brillo-like. Here are a couple of pictures of the finished product. They aren't fantastic pictures, and my hair wasn't really feeling it that day, but it does give you an idea of how a moebius scarf/hood works.

The pattern alternates knit and purl ridges. If you are a math geek, you might like to know that the rows of knit/purl in this particular piece follow the Fibonacci sequence. The yarn is Malabrigo merino worsted in the loro barranquero colorway, purchased at Lettuce Knit in Toronto.

I really enjoyed knitting this - I find the construction of the moebius fascinating. The cast on is slightly fiddly but not hard at all (see the first link for a step-by-step video), and does not create an edge, but the very middle row of the moebius. So you begin knitting a thin piece of fabric, and it grows not longer but wider. I think Cat Bordhi, who invented the cast on, can see an extra dimension.

Anyway, I had so much fun with it that I cast on another yesterday evening. This one is probably for me, and I'm using stash yarn - some Malabrigo merino worsted that didn't know what it wanted to be when it grew up. It's a yummy warm red (yeah, I know) and I'm loving working with it.

A Young Card Shark

He doesn't have much of a poker face, though.