29 January 2008

Shopping Spree!

Yesterday I had a doctor's appointment. It went great. It was basically just a meet and greet with the doctor and ask him any questions about the pregnancy. I was really hoping to hear a heartbeat or something, but no such luck. But, he will be doing an ultrasound at the next appointment in the middle of February!! My doctor is in Columbus, which is about an hour from my house and is also where the closest non-Walmart shopping is. I prepped for the shopping trip, mapping out my stores, writing down directions from one store to another, and making a list of all the yarn I wanted to buy. Unfortunately I quickly cleaned out my purse of the millions of Lowe's receipts I had in it and took out the directions and yarn list as well. As I left the doctor's office I realized it was going to be a fly by the seat of my pants trip.

I did some shopping for a friend's baby shower, but the rest was for me and it was fun! I got a new mirror for the bathroom that passed approval with my sweetie. I went to Whole Foods for the first time ever, that store is fantastic. I went to get this:
It's the diapers I want to use, gDiapers. I wanted to buy the starter kit to make sure it's really what I want to use. It's a very soft cloth outer wrap, with a plastic snap in liner that you put an absorbent pad in.
I'll probably buy them online since the store is so far away, but they are a great alternative to disposables. We can't use cloth because of our tiny septic tank and the lack of diaper service in Mount Vernon, but this is great because the part you throw away has no plastic and is completely biodegradable, as long as you don't wrap it in plastic.

After that was a trip to Babies R Us to get a baby shower present for a high school friend of my sweetie. I really wasn't going to buy anything for myself, but I couldn't help it! I got 2 outfits:
My sweetie's name is Joshua and we have a bit of a giraffe obsession since my niece had a CD with the song "Joshua Giraffe" woo hoo! So, I just had to get this and I think it's gender neutral since it's green and yellow.

Then I just couldn't avoid this:
As I'm sure you all know, we're quite obsessed with our dogs and they dominate the majority of our conversations! The latest thing is fighting over whether they had "puppy butts", which I think is much cuter than my sweetie's phrase "dog butt". Now the baby have have a little puppy butt of his/her own!

I almost didn't go to the yarn store since I didn't have the list, but somehow I just wound up there! I was hoping they would have the book the patterns were in so I could just look up the yarn amounts, but they didn't. This is what I needed from the store to make a teddy bear, a hat, and 2 sweaters:
2 balls each of 2 colors Debbie Bliss (DB) Cotton Cashmere - sweater #1
2 balls DB Baby Cashmerino - teddy bear
1 ball each of 2 colors DB Baby Cashmerino - hat
4 balls DB Cotton Cashmere - sweater #2

This is what I wound up buying:
3 balls of 1 color DB Cotton Cashmere
2 balls each of 2 colors of DB Baby Cashmerino

I think I can make sweater #2 (I think the 4th ball was for a matching hat), a multicolored teddy bear, and the hat. Or sweater #2, the teddy bear, and a solid colored hat.

And finally, look at the fantastic breakfast I had today! I finally remembered to get some yogurt so I could have the granola Val handmade for everyone for Christmas. It was soooo good! (hint, hint Val!)

25 January 2008

We've got walls!

This week has been very crazy in this house! The guys working on the bathroom have been here every day from about 9 in the morning until 8 or so at night. They're really starting to make progress.
We've got walls again!! On the right is our tub and on the left is our separate shower. How cools is that! Nothing exciting on the other wall since the toilet and vanity have to wait until the tile is laid on the floor. About everything that could go wrong has so far, by no fault of the workers, the bathroom has just been remodeled a few times in the past and it was not done well. I've had plenty of time to sit around and knit while they're working. I'd love to be able to go out and run errands, but I'm just not comfortable leaving the house with people working in it. Plus I can't leave the dogs at home cause one of them is a bit too protective and it's way too cold to leave them in the car while I run in and out of stores. The pups are desperate for some exercise. By the time the guys leave at night it's way too late, dark, and cold to take the pups out for a walk so they're getting some serious cabin fever. They do burn off some energy barking at the guys when they walk in and out of the house though.

The temperature and precipitation was just right on Monday to have an abandoned septic tank in our backyard destroyed, which means we can finally move ahead with getting a fence built. Hopefully they'll be able to start next week. Although that means we have to go out this weekend, in the snow, and clear all the leaves out of the way. It's not much, but they're frozen which I'm guessing will make it a little harder.

We've also had the joy of a leaking dishwasher, which will hopefully be fixed today, and a leaking pipe in the basement that I think will be a disaster to fix! Oh, isn't home ownership grand! The first year is always the worst. I'm hoping to replace all the windows too, there's frost on the INSIDE of our kitchen windows, that just doesn't seem right!

We really did move into the money pit!!

On a happier note, I finished my first jaywalker. I finished it almost a week ago.
I haven't cast on the second one yet. I've been working full tilt on the latest secret project. I'm really enjoying it. Plus there is only a pattern every 5th row. So I can sit and knit around and around and around without thinking. Just the kind of pattern I need when there is constant sawing, drilling, hammering, and puppy whining!!

OK, well I think that's more than enough for everyone to read. Hopefully I'll have some pictures of a finished fence or bathroom in the next few weeks!!

17 January 2008

A woolly problem

I got some Cascade Eco Wool in the mail today for yet another super secret project (I may actually finish this one though!) I'm still waiting for the needles to start the project and I just can't wait any longer! Anyway, the second I open the bag the pups come a-runnin'. They ran over and one dog took a big bite and the other started nibbling on it. This is going to be a very hard project to work on!

14 January 2008

Let the Demo Begin!

This morning our bathroom looked like this:
Now it looks like this:
It is the end of day one of construction in the bath. We started out saying we just wanted a new toilet and tub/shower. As of this morning we were going to replace the tub with a new one and put up a tile surround, put a separate shower next to the tub with a tiled wall, put down new flooring, move the toilet to where one sink was and replace the vanity. It seemed simple enough, tear out all the pieces and replace them. Oh, and we are using a contractor, we are not handy people!

Mid day the plans changed. When one wall was torn down to be able to fit the tub in, it was discovered that many many electrical boxes and wires were left behind the wall when a sheet rock wall was put up over the plaster that was riddled with holes. To somewhat decrease the risk of a fire (although who knows what's behind the walls in the other rooms of the house!), we've decided on a full gut job. Along with all the new drywall and whatnot that will have to be done a new window is now needed since the old one won't fit in when they remove the layers of drywall and plaster. It was also discovered that the tub was sitting on a piece of plywood and that's it! The floors will have to be redone, we were planning on replacing the vinyl with tile, but now the whole thing has to be torn up to the floor joists and new subfloor laid down. It's becoming a much bigger and more expensive job than we planned on, but I'm still optimistic and hope it will look fantastic when it's done.

Keep your fingers crossed that nothing else goes wrong!!

12 January 2008

First cravings and new stitch markers!

All this baby wants me to eat is bread and sherbert! I get really hungry and yet can't even imagine eating anything else (although I had a fantastic salad bar and chicken pot pie at Ruby Tuesday's tonight that really hit the spot!) My sweetie wanted Buffalo Joe last night (which is Sloppy Joe made with Buffalo meat). I made it for him but I couldn't even think about tasting it. I've always hated ketchup though and that's what it smelled like. Instead I had an apple and some sherbert. Luckily I'm not sick yet, I just don't want anything to do with non-bread products!

So, I think I may have had my first craving, it may be far too early in the pregnancy to have cravings, but I'm still blaming this on the baby! For the past 3 days all I could think about was this bread my Grandma makes every Easter. We call it sweet bread and I've never heard of anyone making anything similar. At some point I went to visit my Grandma for the weekend with the sole purpose of learning how to make sweet bread. She did all the important stuff, like making sure the milk mixture was heated to the right temperature and adding the flour until it became dough. But enough of it stuck cause look what I made:
The best part is where the bread crosses and it is slightly less cooked than the rest of the bread. It's just doughy goodness!
I love me some sweet bread!! Although I have made it successfully before and my Grandma is aware of that, I still get a loaf mailed to me whenever I can't make it home for Easter. Isn't she the best!!!

I promised Val I would post a picture of my jaywalker. It's coming along slowly, I never realized just how exhausted the baby would make me, all I do is walk the dogs and sleep, knitting time has unfortunately been sacrificed! Anyway, here's jaywalker #1:
The blues showed up really well in this picture, but the purples are much richer than they look here. It's coming out fantastic! I got very jealous when I saw Val's progress on the socks she's making for her husband and threw caution to the wind and knit a few rows as a picker. Man is it faster. I think I finally found a way to hold my yarn too that keeps some tension. It's very hard not to knit the rest of the sock as a picker, but I am the gauge swatch queen and that would go against everything I stand for!

Knitting on the sock has been made even more enjoyable by the addition of some sock bling:
I bought these stitch markers from a Knit Sibs listener with an etsy shop, Fiddle Knits. I was desperately searching for an alternative to the horrible locking stitch markers that are just so ugly to look at. With the millions of hand made stitch markers I knew someone had to come up with another option. Along came Fiddle Knits to save the day! So, I ordered these little beauts:
And they arrived with a great gift:
It's a stitch marker bracelet!! The stitch markers, perfectly sized for lace or socks are attached with a clasp to the bracelet. How smart is that! No more digging through the knitting bag to find that last stitch marker that you know you have somewhere!! It was given to me as a gift or to use as a prize for a Knit Sibs contest. As much as I'd love to keep it for myself, all the Knit Sibs think that fellow-Long-Islander-Fiddle Knits deserves some free publicity (you know, to all 10 of our listeners!!)

Some sad news is that Super Secret Project #2 may go into hibernation. I really have to come to terms with the fact that it won't be done for the special event I wanted it for. But I have something else in mind!

That's it for now. With temperatures likely to be in the 20s for the next week or so here in Ohio, the boys say, "Cuddle up next to something warm and wait for Spring!"

11 January 2008

A big announcement!

My sweetie and I are having a baby!!! I officially start week 7 of pregnancy today. It's been great so far (I probably just jinxed myself and will start throwing up once I post this!). So far I've just been real tired and don't want to eat anything other than bread. Of course I force myself to eat my veggies and some meat once and a while.

If you're a normal reader of my blog then you probably guessed correctly that the baby bolero is actually for my little one! It's the baby's first knitted cardigan. There will be many many baby projects over then next 9 months (well, probably the next 4 or 5 years, however long I can get away with making clothes and toys for the kid before he/she gets embarrassed.)

All knitting goals I posted around the new year have flown out the window. I'm going to try to work on the secret project #2 because that still has a serious deadline. And I think I am starting that whole nesting thing and really want to get all the other UFOs done before the baby gets here. I do have a few things planned for the baby though:
1. A blanket or two. I'd like to make one quilt, which will probably wait until we find out if it's a boy or a girl. I've got a great quilt picked out for a girl but it's not boy appropriate. I can start right away on the knitted blanket though. I'm making a pinwheel blanket. I just need to order the yarn from knit picks.
2. Lots of little baby socks from the sock leftovers. We're going to have matching socks!!
3. A few little sweaters from the Debbie Bliss baby knitting book (I can't remember the name of it.)

I'll keep everyone updated in excruciating detail!!

06 January 2008


I've blocked the clapotis Gloria made me! It's ready to wear, now if I only had somewhere to go.
So she can see just how long it is now, here's a picture of me holding it up, it's a self portrait so I couldn't get my whole self in the picture but trust me the other end is touching the floor!
I'm jumping on the Lime and Violet bandwagon and joining their finishalongapalooza (Ravelry link). I don't think it's anything official with prizes and stuff, it's just a chance to finish all your UFOs in 2008. I posted my UFOs but I doubt I'll post again, just cause I rarely keep up with message boards. But I have jumped head first into this challenge and have finished my longest standing UFO, the Irish hiking scarf!
It needs to be blocked, but I need to iron some shirts and pants before I can pin this out on the ironing board.

Since I still have this much yarn left:
I might make a Koolhaas hat from it. We'll see though, I already have a matching calorimetry that Val made me last Christmas, but I really want to use up the rest of this yarn and it's far too scratchy to make gloves out of.

Up next:
Decide something to do with the rest of the hiking scarf yarn and knit it
Finish one of the sleeves for my sweetie's sweater (I'm keeping my goals manageable!)

01 January 2008

Some new things for the house

My sweetie and I had a long weekend at home since he has both New Years Eve and New Years Day off. We're sick so that put a big damper on the weekend. We did make it out to an Amish furniture store where we got a dresser and a cedar chest. The dresser is being delivered later this week, but we took the chest with us.I need to make a pad to put on top of it.
We also got a new rug for our den:
It's about twice the size of the old one and looks great. We can lay on the floor now and the dogs can play without sliding all over the place. We now need to replace the chaise lounge (that my sweetie and Cooper are on) with a leather sofa. That will have to wait until our bathroom remodel is done!

Since we were sick, I allowed myself a day and a half of vegging on the couch, watching a Jon and Kate Plus 8 marathon, and knitting. The result:
Pattern: Baby Bolero from One Skein
Yarn: Blue Sky Dyed Cotton
Needles: US 8 and 9
Notes: Very quick knit. The pattern was pretty easy to understand except for the back of the neck area that I think I messed up a little. You're supposed to knit the back shoulders separately and put the neck on a holder. Then you bind off all stitches. I think maybe they should have been bound off separately, but I bound them all off with one piece of yarn and there are two little holes by the back of the neck (in the top right and left of the picture below). It doesn't look bad, I think I just interpreted the instructions wrong.
I think that the design in the back is supposed to look like a heart. It so doesn't. Whatever, it's still cute.

Working on the baby bolero pushed the jaywalkers I was working on to the side for a bit, but I'll be working on it again tonight. This is from the yarn that Val dyed for me for Christmas.
I'm getting about a row out of each color repeat.
It's looking great so far. I think just a blue and purple single row repeat would look a little dizzying, but the white really helps to break the pattern up a little.

I'm also S L O W L Y adding rows to my Irish hiking scarf. I'd say it's about halfway done now. I just want to get the damn thing finished! I'm still enjoying working on it, but I want to use it already!!