Thursday, January 10, 2013

The Itch

So I have only just joined Pinterest. It was probably for the best that I waited so long! Right now, after a grocery run today, I'm prepared to make shampoo, floor cleaner, laundry detergent, and I'm sure at least one other thing I can't remember at the moment. Browsing Pinterest has got me DYING to craft! Right now, our stuff that we had freight shipped from Alaska is sitting at the shipping company until we can pick it up on Saturday. We have to rent a U-Haul because our vehicle is a Ford Focus coupe and we don't want to make 50 trips. I want my yarn! I want my sewing machines! I want the rest of my clothes and shoes and hair stuff and makeup and nail polish! I'm trying to be patient, it's just a couple more days.
Another thing; I can sometimes be a little narcissistic. I love looking at Ravelry to see all the things people have made with my patterns. So I searched socktopus on Pinterest. They're in there a few times, I was happy to see another way of getting people to make the little guy, but I saw a couple of the links were for socktopi for sale on Etsy. I don't really have an official policy, I should probably make one, and I think Knitty technically owns the rights to him, they paid me, but it kinda bothers me. I love the knitting community and how respectful people have been of my patterns. I've had people contact me about selling items made from my patterns on Etsy and seem to take it well when I ask them not to. I do have a goal of getting an Etsy store open, especially now that we are on one income and things are pretty tight, and I want to sell my stuff. I guess if I'm not asked, I can't say no. Anyway, many thanks to those of you out there who have contacted me and respected my wishes on this. I'm not going to go after anyone on this, I'm sure there are many people in a more difficult place than me and I try not to make assumptions. I'm going to let it go, I just had to say my piece.
Meanwhile, in Texas... today was beautiful! It was sunny and warm and I took the kids to a park in our neighborhood and got some good play time. As we were leaving, I looked across the bayou at the back of the park and notices a couple cows grazing. This amuses me to no end and my new dear Texas friend doesn't understand why this is funny.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Blogging as Therapy?

Hello, empty room! Well, I see that there are some of you hanging on in case I have anything new on my needles.
Right now, all of my yarn and all of my needles and all of my notions are packed in boxes being freighted to me in Houston, Texas. Ayup. We moved.
My husband and I have been together for about 10 years, married 8 in April, and have spend the entire time and most/all of our lives in Alaska. With my family. Most of his extended family is down here in Texas, so we're spending a few years here and not sure what we're doing after that.
We moved during sweater season though, so that's good. I packed my Hourglass Sweater (from Last Minute Knitted Gifts) and I've actually needed it! I've been knitting very little since my other little guy was born, but I'm itching to get back into something. I'm staying home with the kids since I don't want to pay someone to watch them so I can make just enough money to pay someone to watch them. I'm homeschooling because I wasn't sure where we would land. It's working out pretty well so far.
We moved into the house we're renting a few weeks ago and I'm super excited because we have a room that can be used as a media/project room! I'm setting up a table for my knitting and sewing stuff and I can get my craft on without losing my living room! I know I sound like a broken record, but I hope this is what I need to finally get my ass on Etsy. I also hope to be on here a little more, if only to have someone to talk to (sort of). The only people in Houston I know are my husband and two kids and one new friend (thanks, Craigslist!) who seems pretty awesome so far.
It's been pretty damn hard leaving everything and everyone I know, but the new family has been great to us and I can't say I have a lack of stuff to do/see in the city.
I feel like we're in a crappy relationship here, followers, but I'm going to try my best to be here for you. I want to bring you more free stash-buster patterns and convince you to buy stuff from my hypothetical Etsy store.
We'll see how it goes this time around.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Not Knitting

So, I haven't knit anything since my last post, but I have discovered freezer paper stenciling. I loves it! Fun for the whole family!
It's the 90 minute shirt I mentioned in the last post, but I cheat and it works out to about a 30-45 minute shirt and doesn't look quite so fancy.
I picked up a bunch of shirts at the thrift store for more projects.
It is getting pretty chilly here in the mornings. We've had one frost day already. Which means I'm gearing up to being inspired to find the perfect sweater pattern. Again. I have a couple sweaters worth of yarn in my stash and I'm wanting to find something I love before I commit to knitting an entire sweater in the little free time I have. I'm imagining something loose-knit and drapey but still stylish and layerable. Maybe a deep v-neck. I'm not sure. Cardigans are always nice to layer too. I'm impressionable, any ideas?

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Slowly, slowly

Okay, I have been getting a little knitting done. Just some small stuff, but it's getting me back into the swing of things.
Things have been going okay, but I'm having some pretty alone moments. For anyone who still reads my sparse posts, thank you, it helps to know I'm not just screaming into the void. It also helps to check on Ravelry and see that there are people using my patterns. Seeing all the Socktopi and Lillie Cardigans out there makes me feel a little better. I'm trying not to use the kids as my emotional crutch, they don't need that fuel for their therapy sessions later in life.
Milo just turned six, it's totally blowing my mind! His birthday is just a couple weeks past the age cut-off for starting kindergarten, so he's pretty much the oldest kid in his class. He's having a blast, though. I put us in the lottery drawings for a few of the alternative schools in the city and he got into a small school that is half-day German immersion. Yeah, yeah, why German? Because it's a stand-alone school with a lot of parent involvement and learning any language uses that part of the brain. It's not about where he's going to be in the future, it's about using that amazing young child sponge brain now!
Ash is coming up on 6 months, and the kid is a little chunky monkey. At his 4 month check up, he was the size of an average 8 month old and his head size was off the chart for his age. Huge. But pretty darned awesome. I need to start making some baby hats and taking pictures since I have the built in model. (Hey, kid, wipe that drool of your face!)
I spoke with the owner of a local baby boutique about making hats, she was receptive to the idea. As ever, though, I need to get myself together enough to have some samples I feel are worth showing (and that Etsy shop...?) so we'll see how that goes.
We actually did quite a bit this summer, despite being bogged down by the baby (that was a joke). We had a super fun tie-dye party, there ended up being 14 kids in all, I think. I love the Internet, I found out about the good dye and how to make a few basic designs. I even dyed one of Ash's diapers!
Milo had soccer the first half of summer and ice skating lessons the last six weeks before school.
I've also been revisiting some quicker crafts. Sewing is pretty instant gratification. I'm loving the 90 minute shirt! The pictures I have of the ones I've made are on a friend's daughter and I don't want to post without their permission. It's stinkin' adorable, though! I've also revisited my love for nail polish, since discovering quick dry top coat. Giving myself a simple or artsy manicure is fast, cheap and easy and a good pick-me up. I know, I bite my cuticles, it's gross, whatever. Pay attention to the pretties!
We had a pretty nice summer, but it's fading fast. We're still getting some beautiful days, but there's definitely a chill in the air. Oh, Alaska, I don't think I'll miss your six month winters. I don't think I'll be keen on killer Texas summers, but it's only temporary. Yeah, we're planning on moving to Texas for a couple years. I'm really interested to see what the hell people in Texas knit! I can't imaging anything, no matter how lacy, that could be appropriate for Texas except a month or two in the dead of winter. Any Texans out there care to weigh in? I can't accessory knit forever. Or maybe I'll adjust and 70 degrees will feel like cardigan weather.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Blogger Failure

Hey, if anyone is still with me, I'm sorry. I'm totally done making resolutions and getting my hopes up about writing regularly, it never seems to work. Only now I have an excuse. He's warm and tiny and mumbly and currently sleeping on my chest as I'm typing.
This is Ash. Just Ash. Not Ashton, Asher, Ashley or anything else.
He's the reason I'm sleep deprived and not getting much done these days. Totally worth it.
My knitting has been pretty minimal in the last few months, even before he was born. I'll talk about that in a minute. But first, I'm sure you all want to hear the story of the day Ash came into the world. Or not, but I'm telling it anyway. For posterity, right?
So, the official due date (which means pretty much nothing) was March 28. I was really hoping for 2 weeks early (totally unlikely) because my dad and I share a birthday and three generations would be pretty awesome. But I was still waiting on the 28th, and the 29th...and the 31st.
On April 1st, I got up, took Milo to his last day of preschool and went to work. Having Braxton-Hicks contractions all day, and totally ignoring them because I'd been having them for the last few months. Took cupcakes to preschool as a special last day treat. Back to work. Talked to the hubby on the phone about my day, it was our anniversary so we were talking about going to a movie that night. Went to pick up Milo from school, gathered all his stuff to take home, last little bit of chatting with teachers and other parents. Aaaand my water broke. So they helped me get everything to the car, I called Hubby, Mom, Dad (who was 2 hours away at his cabin and was going to watch Milo), midwives, and Friend-who-bakes. Made it to the birth center parking lot before I had another contraction and it wasn't much. So it's about 5:45 at that point, and I'm in soaking pants with none of my stuff and a bored 5 year old. (Ash just snorted really loudly)
My midwife wanted me to hang out and walk the halls and stairs for at least an hour to see how things were progressing. So my mom came and picked up Milo and I wandered around calling and texting everyone to let them know what was going on. Oh, technology. Around 7:00 the midwife checked me out, only at 5cm, but the contractions were getting stronger so we decided it would be best for me to stay. Called and texted everyone again and decided to sit on the floor instead of walking around. I really like the birth center experience, I want to sit on the floor, fine. I want to sit on the ball, fine. I hate the ball and roll it into the spare room, fine. Couch, fine. Back to floor, fine. Just before 8:00 Hubby shows up with friend-who-bakes. Mom arrives with Milo. Dad arrives to pick up Milo, Mom stays. Good timing because the next 4 contractions take me from concentrated breathing while standing and swaying, to gutteral screaming on the floor. So they help me up and to a bed. I only vaguely remember, but friend-who-bakes tells me, the student midwife was feeling bad that it was happening so fast and was trying to comfort me, telling me, "That's your baby's head..." and I yelled, "I KNOW!" Friend-who-bakes laughed, then felt bad for laughing.
So Ash was born at 8:31 pm. 9lbs 4oz, 21 inches long. Again, Friend-who-bakes tells me as he was coming out the midwives were kind of going "woah!" at the giant baby, but I was just trying to get him out.
This was a totally different experience than my long, slow, totally in control labor I had with Milo. I would prefer that one over short, super-intense and emotionally jarring any day.
So, that's how it went down, and now we're a family of 4 and it's pretty great.
If you've stuck with me til now, I have my tiny bit of knitting news. On my last trip to the yarn shop when I was still pregnant, Milo found Rebecca Danger's Big Book of Knitted Monsters on a bottom shelf where it caught his attention. Since he's always so patient with me when I'm yarn browsing, we got it and he picked out some monsters he wanted. I have to say, they're pretty addicting! I've made 4 so far, but I only have a picture of one.
This is Coco, the canister monster. All the monsters have names and stories to go with them. Sometimes Milo picks out this book as one of his before bed stories. Pretty dang cute, monsters and kiddo.
The boys also got me an awesome gift card to my favorite yarn store for Mothers' Day. I went in a few days ago and they just got in a ton of new yarn. I didn't buy anything yet, I need something I really want to knit. Any suggestions on a pattern? I'd really like to have a perfect cardigan, but I'm not sure I've found what I'm looking for just yet.
Well, I'm off to get a couple hours off sleep before it's baby feedin' time again. I'd like to say I'll write again soon, but no guarantees.
Thanks for sticking with me!

Friday, January 21, 2011

It's Love

If I had to pick one brand of yarn to knit with forever (because people routinely hold guns to knitters' heads and force them to do this...) it would probably be Malabrigo. For the colors and the texture. Sentence fragment.
I went to my favorite local yarn shop for the first time in MONTHS a couple days ago. The only yarn I've purchased in the past 4 months has come from a craft store, was purchased for specific projects and has been used for those projects. I needed something for me, and I found it. If you haven't seen Malabrigo's Rasta in person yet, don't bother looking it up online. All the pictures I've found don't do it justice. And you can't FEEL it through the internet. I could feel this running through my fingers and watch the colors flowing together and be content with my life. The colors are like Koigu KPPPM on a macro scale. I really love KPPPM, but it's so damn tiny. Rasta made me a headband (kind of like Calorimetry, and for the same purpose) in an evening, easily.
For me, it's definitely a splurge yarn. I'm broke and we're about to have two kids. But I went back and bought more. I don't know what for yet, but I don't care. If I could afford it, I would make a loose guage sweater with wide cables to cuddle up in because January in Alaska is sub-zero.
SPEAKING OF WHICH! I'm going to Hawai'i on Tuesday, screw this sub-zero weather! Speaking of being broke, too... My mom has generously bought my ticket and said I can pay her back. It's a family trip with my mom, my aunt and uncle, and my grandmother. And a couple friends of mine said that it sounded like a good trip, so they'll be there too. There will be pictures. I wish the internet was more than just sight and sound, I'd share some warmth and sand with my friends who are still in the dead of winter.
I hope most of you are looking toward the end of winter. We still have a few months to go, but I'm fantasizing about gardening with a baby on my back and a 5 year old running around the yard, knitting something in cotton on the deck, keeping up with an Etsy shop. *POP* That's my bubble, I really should prepare stuff for an Etsy shop.
Okay, I feel good about two posts in less than a month! Hope I can keep this up, hope you keep sticking around.

Friday, December 24, 2010

HA! Made you look!

I know, I completely failed at keeping up with that blog thing for the last six months. In my defense, I'm pregnant...? Does that count as an excuse? Due March 28-ish, another boy! Oh boy... Also, I'm open to name suggestions, we're totally stumped.
The other little guy turned FIVE in September. It's blowing me away watching him grow and become his own person. I may be biased, but I think he's pretty awesome.
I have been getting a little knitting done, mostly small stuff. A few hats, a couple shrugs, that sort of thing. The only thing I have a picture of right now is the Double Cap (Kat Coyle, KnitScene, Fall 2008) that I made a while back. They yarn I used was a little finer than called for in the pattern, but I think it still makes for a darn cute hat. These pictures are from our camping trip in Homer in July. It was colder there in July than it is some places now in December. Alaska is still pretty amazing.
So, I really hope to keep up with this. Maybe a New Year's resolution. Did I do that last year...? Probably. We'll see.
I also really want to kick my butt into gear and get an Etsy shop opened up. I want to have a little something coming in when I'm taking time off from my real job with the new baby.
I hope everyone has a lovely holiday season, whatever you're celebrating.