Friday, 10 December 2010

Speed Knitting for Express Post

Christmas is coming, time is ticking too fast, and I have a thousand things to finish knitting!
But after having had my needles dormant for so long, it feels great to be back at it! So I'm not complaining, it's actually kind of exciting for me. Especially since everything coming off my needles ends up looking good and getting great reactions from my gift recipients. What has been on my needles?

A few weeks ago I was wandering around Ravelry, when I saw a project that I just had to do. It was a pair of Alice Cullen inspired fingerless mittens. OH, I wish I had that hand dyed yarn! I am a yarn addict. I've somehow managed to not have an entire basement overflowing with yarn, probably because it has too much other junk in it. My husband doesn't realize what a blessing that is. :)

My friend has been encouraging me to only purchase yarn that I am about to use. But when I see yarn, I can either picture a project that I don't end up getting to... or it's so delightful that I am determined to find a project later for it. So she has been coming with me to the yarn stores when I need to get a 'now project' supply of yarn. This has been helpful in keeping me accountable to my budget - what a true friend. I try to return the favour, but I'm not sure it helps as last time we went shopping, both of us ended up purchasing one of those eReaders. For my friend, I'm certain it was a good deal as she reads at least 2 books each week. This will very quickly pay for itself for her; for me, I think it will encourage me to read more often as this is something I've been wanting to do but haven't. These eReaders come with over 100 classic books, which I love. Especially Jane Austen. I've also been reading Jane Eyre, Wuthering Heights, and Tess of the D'Urbervilles.

Anyways, I've been knitting a few mini projects for this kids to get my gauge steady enough before knitting my sister's Christmas gift, as it has cables in it, and slippery silk/cotton yarn. The pattern is so lovely, I can't wait for the whole thing to be finished. If you want to check it out, and know my username on ravelry, go there to see what I'm knitting. I can't post a photo here yet, as my family sometimes reads this blog. But when she gets it in the mail, I will for sure post a photo of it.

One of the things I've been knitting to warm up to this project has been such a success with my clients, that I'm now making a pair of "Little Thumb Suckers" for each of the kids I take care of during the day. My kids are also requesting a pair, as well as one for each of their friends - in army camouflage yarn of course. They are so adorable, and great for when I am taking kids to school. The kids in the stroller don't like to wear mitts. But with these, they still have most of their hands covered and have their little fingers sticking out to play with toys. I got the pattern over on ravelry. Here is a link if you want to make your own pair. Please let me know if the link becomes broken.

small moments

I was sure I'd written more often than this. In fact, I remember writing a post that didn't get published, most likely I was led away from the computer and someone else started using it... my DH assures me that he always opens a new tab when I am working on something.

But here we are, and I am typing this up as my toddler sits beside me at the kitchen table gluing Christmas foamy shapes onto her green construction paper. It will later be proudly displayed on our wall for everyone to see. Her favourite part is lifting the foam shapes off the paper to watch the glue smear all over. Oh no. Now she is gluing shapes onto the table. Small interruption here and there... eventually this will get done.

Monday, 26 July 2010

Has it really been so long?

This Friday, my baby will be 18 months old. She's healthy, sleeps mostly through the night, and gets into everything! My oldest son, who will turn 14 years old next month, says she is such a trouble maker now because she will be a goodie-goodie later... we can only hope. :)

She has us all wrapped around her pinky, even her big brothers. At first, her older brother thought she would be just the same as any other baby he's seen. He has since realized that her personality is one-of-a-kind. He is crazy about her! He will go out of his way to be goofy, or do anything to get her to laugh. She has such a great laugh.

All the smiles make up for the trouble she gets herself into when asserting her independence. She has learned so well (like her brothers before her) how to climb up on things she shouldn't. She climbs up on the dining chairs, but refuses to climb from the front - always from the side... today she found the consequence of that when she found out she was just heavy enough to make it tip over on top of her. Poor thing. :(

She has also learned how to climb over the baby gate, just like a fence. I can't believe she would put her little toes into those small holes and dig in, but she does. None of the other children I've watched have even tried to climb that high; but she does. Emma will climb up high enough that she can fall onto the other side, but doesn't go over - she just yells out to anyone who will come and rescue her and act like it was our fault for letting her climb up on the gate! I'm going to have to get one of those baby gates with the plexi-glass sides so there is nothing to grip her little toes on.

Then there's the table, both under it and over it. Emma likes to hide under the table, but is always trying to stand up straight when she's underneath. Then screams when she hits her head on the wood, or the holts underneath that hold the extension leaf together. I'm always reminding her to stay out of there, but curious minds will explore... and yesterday she decided to climb all the way on top of the table and sit right on the edge with that proud smile of hers. She sure knows how to get my heart racing!

Having three beautiful children is full of both blessings and sacrifices, as any parent can tell you. There are days when my life is so fulfilling that I'm 100% content to have my complete identity be "mom". When watching all the little things my children do is worth giving up (or putting aside) all my hobbies, accomplishments, or things I would still like to accomplish for myself... like my photography, scrapbooking, volunteering, or just sleep. Even those little things like household chores get put aside if I'm needed, then keep piling up. I was so blessed this weekend when my old college friend came by for a visit - she stayed the whole weekend and helped me sort through the children's outgrown clothes to give away. It feels so nice to get things done, especially after feeling like I've been drowning in housework. Not that I'm complaining, it's such a funny way that things have gotten undone. My little Emma likes to help with all the chores. When I'm unloading the dishwasher, she likes to help by passing me dishes. Of course, when I'm loading the dishwasher, she still likes to unload and pass me dishes... same thing for the laundry. She follows me around and likes to unload all the clean, folded laundry out of the laundry hamper before I get a chance to put away the clothes. She has so much fun with that, you should see how she giggles when I say, "No Emma!" and then she tosses the clothes out of the basket.

But there are times when I feel so tired, and really miss doing something for myself. I haven't finished (or started) a knitting project for so long... but I'm determined to get back some of
'me'. I was inspired by my sister, who is mother to my adorable nephew! She gets up every morning before he is awake to do some Wii Fit exercises. Since it feels like I don't have a waking moment to myself, I decided to do the same thing by claiming some time before anyone else is awake in the morning. I bought a new Nintendo Wii system off Ebay (great deal, I was happy to save some money) and a fitness program for it called Jenny McCarthy's Your Shape. I think the term "Wii Workout" would have been more catchy and fun, so that's what I call it at home. Well, it's been only one week since we've had it, and I feel great! I don't mean that I've lost any weight yet, but I feel like I have more energy, and I'm happier. It feels nice to do something for me again.

And tonight I'm going to a beginner Zumba class at the Community Centre... I keep hearing how fun these classes are, so I signed up for a summer session. I'm not going to put pressure on myself to do all the moves I know I can't do yet, but I will be going there to have a good time working out with other moms. As FlyLady says, "Progress, not perfection".