27 June 2008

The sewing machine sees some action

With all the knitting (and spinning) I do these days, the sewing machine has been feeling a little neglected. So I decided to do a quick little project for the house. I'm making cloth napkins. I went to my local box store and got 3 yards of fabric and found some fabric in my stash and made these:
So far I've only made one of each pattern. I've got 15 or so left to sew. The part that takes the longest is ironing down the edges. For those of you interested, I cut squares 14" x 14" and folded over the edges a little more than 1/4" (just eyeballed it) and ironed it, the folded again and ironed it. I did this on all 4 edges then just sewed using a straight stitch on the machine. I think I may try the next few with a zig zag, but then the corners always look a bit wonky. We have about 50 or so paper napkins left in the house and then we're not buying anymore ever again!! I spent about $8 on fabric and will have 20 or so napkins that should last a few years, even with my feral sweetie. Yay going green!!!

In knitting news, I finished the presto chango baby sweater:
The center panel can be taken off and replaced with another panel.
I made a straight stockinette center panel as well. This is a gift for a friend from grad school who's having a baby very very soon. I'm going to babies R Us on my way back from dropping my sweetie off at the airport so I think I'll pick up a rattle or something and send the package out early next week. All in all I'm pretty happy with the sweater, it looks like it's supposed to look, but I didn't really enjoy knitting it and it seems a bit stiff and thick for a baby sweater.

The other thing I've been knitting on is my nursing cover up.
I like this project a lot. It's coming out really nice. I just don't have a comfy place to sit and knit on it where I can place the chart somewhere I can see it. It's a bit of a balancing act right now with putting it on one of my legs and hoping no dogs tails knock it over. We desperately need some end tables! I just finished the first ball of hempathy (you can see the ends coming off the left side) and I think I have 4 or 5 more. It should make a decent size shawl/cover-up.

Usually I like to include some sort of cute picture of the dogs if I have one. Today though we have a somewhat disturbing picture of my sweetie with our younger dog, Trapper. Trapper used to be scared of my sweetie. I got Trapper just after my sweetie left for a year in Iraq. He's a nervous dog in general and it took a while for him to get used to being pet or touched at all. When my sweetie came home it took a good 6 months before Trapper started to realize that my sweetie was here to stay. Now, just over a year since my sweetie has been home, they're best buds. Trapper is still a mama's boy and follows me everywhere. But if the seat next to me is taken by Cooper, which it usually is at night, Trapper is more than willing to be a puppy pillow for my sweetie:

23 June 2008

Where did my knitting mojo go?

I've lost my knitting mojo! I have no desire to work on any of the projects sitting next to the couch right now. And I've got so many things on the needles that I don't want to start another one. I did go look at my stash though just in case something popped out at me and I didn't even see anything I desperately wanted to knit. I think I just need to soldier on and finish some of these projects. Maybe if I clear a bag or two away from the clutter next to the couch then I'll feel more in the mood to knit. I think I'll start working full force on the nursing shawl and try to get that partway done. I think my problem is that I don't have anything mindless going on and I'm not so great at keeping the concentration going right now.

20 June 2008

Say Cheese!

Here are the pictures I promised, along with some pictures of my new obsession!

First off lets have some pictures of the baby's room filled with stuff! It still needs a rug, a dresser, and a bookcase. We're going shopping for a rug this weekend and I may break down and get a cheapo dresser and/or bookcase. I really wanted to save up until we could get a nice one, but our driveway is in major need of paving and we're gonna have to save for that first. Anyway, here's the little girl's room:
Then we have all the handmade stuff I got at the shower and in the mail afterwards.
First the blankets from Grandma and a sweater she crocheted:
The blanket from Aunt Glory:
The tie dyed onesies and sweater and hat from Aunt Val:
The quilt from Grammy:
Then we have my new obsession, SPINNING! Val gave me a lesson on spinning and plying on a drop spindle while I was visiting and I'm obsessed now! I had a drop spindle and a bunch of roving but couldn't get the hang of it, I'm still learning, but I'm getting much better. I spun a bit while I was visiting, but here's the first thing I spun at home:
I had 3 small things of roving in different colors that I'm using as my practice spinning before I move onto the big bats of roving. I started the second color too:
This one is weird, it feels like I'm holding a bunch of someone's hair, it's so smooth. There's also a light brown that I have to do then I'll decide if I want to ply 2 together to get a bit more length or just ply them to themselves to keep an even color.

Don't worry, there's still more pictures. This was the craft that the guests did at the baby shower:
My mom and I dyed the clothes the night before then people drew on them with markers and crayons. Apparently once you iron the crayon on it becomes permanent.

And now for the best thing about being a stay at home wife. . . PUPPY NAP TIME!!!
Cooper has been keeping me, my sweetie, and Trapper up the last few nights from about 11 to 3 am. He runs around the house whining at another dog down the street that barks his head off all night. He also likes to bark at anything he sees outside like raccoons, squirrels, deer. Last night we had to close the bedroom doors to keep him from running up and down the stairs and then close the windows and blinds to finally get him to settle down. Needless to say, we've all been a bit tired and exhausted the last few days and around 3pm we have puppy nap time. I've never really been one for naps, but this is the best part of my day now!

18 June 2008

The Final Trip

Well, I'm back from my last trip I'll take for the next 3 years that I won't have to worry about car seats and bottles and diapers. All in all it was a good trip. The only bad part being that I was sick. Just a little head cold but enough to knock me on my butt for a few days. If only I could have taken a sudafed to relieve the pressure in my head. I was close at one point to take one despite being told by the doctor that no decongestants are allowed. The baby won out and I dealt with the headache and all the other pleasant cold symptoms. I unfortunately don't have many pictures to share from my baby shower because my nephew had my camera and I forgot to tell him to press down half way to focus first so most of the pictures look like this:
But it was a blast. It was probably the worst day for my cold so I was feeling pretty miserable and then I think having clogged ears messed with me a little and I was getting car sick just getting to the place so I wasn't in the best of moods at first, but how can you feel miserable when all those presents, I mean people, arrive! We got so much good stuff for the baby. Lots and lots of little baby girl outfits. I shipped all the small stuff home and all the big stuff had to be returned and bought again at my local-ish Babies R Us. I've already put most of the stuff away and assembled everything that needs assembly. Except for the high chair. I figure I don't need that until she's a few months old anyway, but I may do it anyway since the playyard was missing pieces and I'm worried if the high chair is and I wait 5 months to even take it out of the box then I'll never find the receipt and be able to get the missing pieces. Plus I just like putting stuff together, I feel like I'm actually don't something to get ready for this kid.

So, some of the highlights of presents were everything from my sisters and mom. My mom made a gorgeous quilt in bright pinks and greens. Gloria made a pinwheel blanket in pastels. Valerie tie dyed a bunch of onesies and made washcloths, a hat, and a sweater out of yarn she dyed. Another highlight was a seahorse teether, I don't know why, but I love it. And one of my mom's friends that I've known my whole like put along with her present a framed picture of me when I was 6 or 7. My sweetie took it and put it on our dresser already. I promise I'll post pictures of all this stuff soon, I've just been so busy the last 2 days catching up with housework and finding home for all the baby stuff.

During the shower we skipped all the silly games and did a craft instead. While I was opening the presents, everyone was decorating clothes. Some came out pretty good. I can't quite do it justice in writing so you'll have to wait for pictures.

Here is a picture that I've been meaning to post for a while, the latest February sweater:
You can never make too many of these!

So, while I enjoyed spending many an hour on the couch cuddling with this little thing:
It's nice to be back home.

Stay tuned for pictures of lots of baby stuff in a few days!!

05 June 2008

I'm Off to See the Wizard. . .

Not really, but it feels like I'm about to leave Kansas and not see Aunty Em for a long time! I'm leaving the house, my sweetie, and the pups for 10 days!! I left them a week ago to go to the wedding, but it was just for 4 and a half days and it was only the second time I had left the pups since we got Trapper almost 2 years ago. My sweetie is very good with them and takes as good of care as he can, but he does have to work full time so he can't spend every second with them like I do. To add insult to injury, we're going to have our first Ohio heat wave. Not too hot, about mid 90s for the next week or so. We're still not sure if the AC works or not. I really hope it does cause I don't want my boys roasting while I'm gone! I turned it on for a few minutes today and the outside unit turned on and I felt some pretty cold air coming out of some of the vents, but I didn't leave it on long enough to see if it actually cools the place down. It was low 90s today and we didn't have any problem keeping cool in the house as long as I kept all the windows and doors closed. I think the money we spent on insulating the attic is starting to pay off already! Plus the canopy of tree cover keeps the sun off the house almost all day, great for conserving energy in the summer, horrible for trying to get a garden to grow!!

So, off to New York for the week. I'm going to have my shower (yay for baby stuff!) then I'm going to vegetate for a week on my parents couch and eat pizza, bagels, and italian food (they just can't get any of those things right in Ohio) then I have my very best friend's bridal shower, then I go home. I'm hoping to get some knitting time with my sisters and some time with my niece and nephew, but my sisters work and the kids will still be in school. I'm sure I'll manage with sitting on the couch and knitting and reading!! My mom wanted to take time off and go to NH for a few days so I could see what they're doing with my Grandpa's house, but I told her to save her time off for when the baby comes cause I'm gonna need some help!

On the knitting front, I just finished another February Sweater, this one for my college friend Jenny, so I need to find a new small project to take with me to NY. I'll be taking the nursing shawl, but that's a lace project and I need a no-brainer to work on as well. I think some stash diving and cruising of my ravelry queue is in order for tonight!

And just so we're not completely picture free this blog post, here's a picture of the baby's closet:
I put away all the goodies I got when I was in Virginia and all the other stuff I've bought so far. I felt like I bought so much, but put away it looks like nothing! The little cubbies on the left are meant for shoes so they're a bit to small for most anything, but I did manage to fit the burp clothes and mittens and booties in there. There's another closet right next to this one that has 2 rods for hanging clothes. Right now all my clothes that don't fit me and my sweeties old uniforms are in there, I'm thinking of clearing it out and putting a closet organizer thing in there. I'm also thinking that my sweetie and I need a walk in closet in our bedroom since our closet now only holds his stuff and I'm gonna need some closet space if I ever fit back into my clothes! He's not so convinced of that though! I think I'll just get a quote from the contractors when they do the windows and secretly save up money (although there are a million other things we need to spend our money on right now, like paving our driveway that is quickly becoming part of our lawn!)

OK, that was some massive babbling. Can you tell I'm tired and bored?! My next post will be post baby shower so get ready for some intense cuteness!

02 June 2008

Home at last!

OK, get ready for a long one, but there are plenty of fun pictures! It's been an eventful week here. A neighbor stopped by early in the week with a present for the baby:
You probably can't tell the detail here, but it's little embroidered flamingos!!! Wednesday I left for a wedding in Virginia for a good friend of mine. I was one of the bridesmaids.

The trip started off great with a few flights that let me get lots of knitting done. I finished my section of a charity blanket for the Stitch It! Podcast listeners group.
It's called Tip Toe Through the Tulips, so I did a bright tulipy color. I did the yellow basketweave part. It's on its way to the next knitter and I can't wait to see what it looks like when it's done.

Wednesday night was the bridal shower, then Thursday I took the opportunity to visit some people from my lab from grad school and was greeted with a familiar sight:
AHH! The drawbridge was open for almost 30 minutes and I didn't even have knitting or a book with me. I had a great visit with everyone from the lab though. And then I went off to visit my neighbor from when I lived in VA. She's preggers too so we had a good baby chat while we went for a walk with her son. And she gave me a gift for the baby, how cute is this:
It's an orange outfit (she said I'll be overwhelmed with pink at the shower and she wanted to be different. . . it's greatly appreciated!!), and a teether that plays music. The teether was immediately tested by her son and was given rave reviews!!

Thursday night we had the bachelorette party. I went to dinner with everyone then out to the first bar for a bit but then had to call it quits for the night at about 10 cause I really needed some sleep and people started smoking.

Friday was our day to spend with the bride. She took us (some of the bridesmaids) out to get mani/pedis (although I skipped that part and knit in the salon cause I hate people touching my feet!), then we all went out to lunch where we had a very impromptu baby shower. The bride gave me this:
It's a package of cloth diapers, some bath towels with mermaids and other sea creatures on them, and 5 organic cotton outfits (hopefully you can see it on the center one - there are ruffles on the butt!!) Then from the girl I was staying with I got this:
She had gone to a baby boutique shop and got a growth chart, a bunny blankee, a burp cloth with the baby's first initial embroidered on, a silver spoon and a pair of booties with a bunny on the front and cottontail on the back. This baby is already so spoiled!!

Friday night we had the rehearsal dinner. I seemed to have overdone it on Friday and woke up Saturday with enormous feet! I hadn't had a problem with swollen feet yet this pregnancy so I didn't have a clue what to do. I had to rush around Saturday morning getting my hair and makeup done, but once I got to the church I spent an hour or so with my feet elevated. I didn't do much good though so we had a little shoe emergency and I had to borrow someone else's shoes and then tie them with a ribbon to keep them on my feet! It was quite the extravaganza! But the wedding went off without a hitch and the two most disgustingly in love people you will ever meet are now married!

Here's me and my Virginia friends. I look like a whale, but what do you expect from a 27 week pregnant lady in a maternity bridesmaid dress!

I got home from my trip to discover a few great packages. One was a few stuffed animals for the baby from my Aunt. The next was the stroller and car seat we registered for from my mom's Aunt and cousin. And the last was the bouncy seat we registered for. I immediately assembled the bouncy seat:
It has to be stored in the crib because Trapper quickly got over his fear of this new thing once he saw stuffed animals hanging from it. He slowly walked up and stared at it for a long time, then tried biting the zebra but couldn't grab it, it was like watching kids play bobbing for apples!

This morning I assembled the stroller and car seat and played around with them a little, I forgot to take a picture. It's great, I can fold the stroller up with one hand!! I'm going to wait another month or so then I'm going to figure out how to put the car seat in the car so the dogs can start getting used to it.

Well that's all for now. No new knitting news, I did about 4 rows on the nursing shawl in the salon and that's all I got done the whole trip! I'm seriously knitting deprived right now and I really want to cast on some major project, maybe the Starsky jacket.

Oh, and as of last Friday, I am officially in my last trimester!! The baby is gonna be here in no time. Get ready for many posts about back pain, trouble sleeping, and swollen feet!!