Friday, December 30, 2011

All Better


Sorry to be such a Debbie Downer about Christmas. Things did get better once we went to spend time with my inlaws; we had good food, good company, and just a good time visiting and exchanging gifts. I tend to dread things before they actually happen, then realize that it isn't as bad as I thought when it comes down to it. I was really worried about the gifts we got for everyone... we tried to get things we thought they'd like, but we weren't really able to go all out for anyone. However, they seemed to like everything well enough. We really came out good this year: a new 32" tv from my FIL and step-MIL (we had a 55" from Texas we never got to use since we traded it for Charlie's motorcycle right before we left and it got smashed in the drive to Michigan) and a bunch of really needed giftcards (Old Navy Maternity, here I come! I really need some big-belly clothes as you can tell from my 22 week pic!).




Above is a before and after on a pair of mitts I made myself. The yarn is my handspun. One ply is part of the giant bag of fall-colored mystery wool and the other ply is some wool mix I spun into a fine singles back in, oh, 2007. I really like the resulting fingering weight yarn and got about 330 yards total. I made the mitts in a day and made it up as I went along. I had tried a few other patterns, but none worked out for some reason or another. These mitts are long and roomy for holding in heat and so I can tuck my fingers into them if I need to.

We don't really have big New Year's plans, but that's fine with me. I'm more of a staying-in girl anyway. I've never done anything special to bring in the New Year (the last one was spent working at Walgreens on the overnight shift, for example) and I'm ok with keeping up that tradition. When I was living with my parents, my mom would always make a bunch of finger foods like pigs-in-the-blanket, some Korean goodies, etc. and we'd watch the ball drop on tv. This year Charlie and I are going to his dad's to hang out with his step-sister, Talia. She's going to cook nachos (yum!) and dessert and we'll just hang there. Sounds like a good plan to me. New Year's Day was supposed to be sort of a Christmas for Charlie and me together, but it's not looking like it's in the budget, so we'll likely just spend some time together at home. I'm perfectly happy with that; there's nothing better than spending time with the perfect man for me :)

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Christmas?

It just doesn't feel like Christmas. I thought this year it really would since I'm in snowy Michigan. Michigan likes to disappoint. It hasn't really snown much... at all. My first white Christmas isn't looking like it's going to be all that white. This state has disappointed me all around so far. I really miss Georgia and Texas.

Also, I just don't feel the holiday cheer this year. Maybe it's because we're hurting for money so bad and we can't find jobs (thanks again, Michigan!) and we aren't able to really give good gifts this year. We picked up a few small things for family, but it's not really the thoughtful type of gift... mainly just the kind like, "Here's a present. Merry Christmas." Gift-giving isn't really happening between Charlie and me. I go him a 10.00 set of Nerf guns and he got me a 2.00 self defense key chain. We already gave them to each other and we both really liked our gifts, but it's a far cry from last year's PS3, trip to Michigan from Georgia to visit, blueray movies, etc.

We are going to my father-in-law's house today to have dinner and maybe do gifts (that might wait for tomorrow, not sure). Tomorrow is my sister-in-law's and everyone will be there. I think it's also that this is my second Christmas in a row without my family. Charlie is my family, my most important family, and I'm happy to be spending our first Christmas as husband and wife together and in good health, but it's just hard to be away from everything that's familiar to me all the time. I hate the part of the country I'm living in and things are just not very festive for me right now.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Spun

I did some marathon spinning last night to get some little batches of fiber spun up. Above is 1 ounce of bamboo dyed by Dawning Dreams (received this in a swap). It's 2-ply, 46 yards, heavy fingering/sport weight.

38 yards Navajo-plied sport weight alpaca. Had the singles on a bobbin for about 6 years.

58 yards 2-ply fingering weight angora. This was terrible prepared and hell to spin. Soooo many second cuts. It was a gifted fiber so I guess I can't really complain, but I threw out the remaining 2.2 ounces or so I had left.

This is the one I love most and the one I have the least of. Only 15 yards, alpaca/silk blend, light fingering 2-ply. Gorgeous!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

FOs


We'll get the baby stuff outta the way before moving onto the FOs. This is my 21 week belly! I feel Arthur kicking all the time and we can even feel and see the kicks from the outside.


I have a few FOs to show you and a few other things OTN, which I will not show you since I haven't taken pics yet. Above is a pair of Happy Feet made from an ancient skein of Kraemer Yarns Mauch Chunky (used most of it) and some handspun leftovers (the Australian wool singles I spun in September). They aren't by any means beautiful, but they do keep my feet warm in this ridiculously cold Michigan weather.


Here's a baby hat for Arthur; it's the Easy Peasy Newborn Sock Hat. I used Knit Picks Stroll in Mermaid (I had a leftover skein from the Kissing Koi Mittens I made last year). I roughly half a skein and am using those leftovers to make a matching Scrappy Socky Stripey Cardi. These will be part of Arthur's going-home outfit!

My Mustard Scarf using the Australian wool singles. I really love this scarf! It's so warm and looks great under my jacket.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Arthur

Sucking his thumb!!!
Profile view.
Footprint.
It's definitely a boy!!!
Looking at us.

All his measurements and organ development were normal and he weighs 9 ounces now!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Outta The Stash, Into Use


I'm newly motivated to get stuff out of the stash and am happy to have all that cotton already used up. Above is a bib for Arthur using the I-Love-Stockinette Baby Bib pattern (modified for my heavier weight yarn). LOVE LOVE LOVE this and will be making more using this pattern.

These are just some bath/beauty rounds I whipped up to use the leftovers from the bib. They'll be good for makeup removal, washing my face, etc, not to mention being reusable so I'm not constantly buying cotton rounds at the store.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Still Here


I'm still alive, just been busy/distracted with Thanksgiving (we went to Georgia to see my family and it was a great trip) and money woes (I knew Michigan's job market sucked, but, seriously?!). I have been crafting a little, though.

Above is about 92 yards of cotton I spun up yesterday night. I had spun some of this before, but set it aside for 3 years and finally got the itch to finish up what I had left. My Traddy isn't the ideal wheel for spinning cotton, but it really isn't too difficult and I love the slightly thick/thin and oh-so-soft outcome! Still not sure on what to do with this, but I'm thinking a bib or burp cloth would be nice. I know it has to be something usable since I love it so!


Progress on my Knit Picks Chroma ripple blanket. I love this project. It's quick, mindless, and, well, just look at it! I did lose the hook, so need to pick up another before I can work on this more.

I'm also working on the body of a February Lady Sweater, but no pics yet. I leave that project in the car for travel and waiting room knitting. It's going by quickly enough and is pretty simple.


Update belly shot. This was taken yesterday at 19 weeks. I'm showing so much more than just 2 weeks ago and baby Arthur kicks all day long now. We can even feel it from the outside with our hands! It's so sweet, but also distracting and sometimes really unpleasant feeling if he just lays against my belly, putting a weird pressure, or if he rolls around in there (kinda feels like my stomach is getting taken away). I better enjoy it now, though, since soon enough he'll be practicing real tae kwon do in there and I'll really be complaining then!

We have our anatomy scan on Tuesday and I'm really looking forward to seeing him again, bigger and more developed this time, as well as having a more in depth and longer look since they'll be looking for all kinds of things and measurements. We'll also get sure confirmation on gender... I really hope he's still a little boy since my family bought a ton of oh-so-cute baby boy clothes!!!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Baby Arthur and a Beardhat


First pictures! We finally got to see our SON today!!! The ultrasound tech didn't get the best view of the goods, but she's confident it's a little boy. So, this is baby Arthur.

He was kicking and moving so much; it was the cutest thing!

This is a Christmas gift for my brother Arthur. He's going to love it.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Bump!


14 weeks, 4 days! I finally feel like I'm actually starting to show some now. Not just look fat. I guess to strangers I probably do just look a little fat, but to people I know, it's getting noticeable I'm prego! Yay! Can't comfortably button my jeans anymore, so I'm having to use either a bellyband or the rubberband trick to keep them up.

We went for a quick check up at the doctor's today since I was concerned over some spotting this weekend. Everything looks good (apparently it's common and usually nothing to be alarmed about) and we got to hear the heartbeat again! It was so much louder, stronger, and higher than last time! At 12 weeks, it was really low in my pelvis. Today, it was about 2 inches below my bellybutton! Knolly has grown and moved up soooo much.

We still have our ultrasound and appointment on the 11th, a week and a half from now, and we're so hoping baby cooperates and shows us the goods! We're dying to know what we're having. We both still want a little boy, but we'd be just as thrilled with a little girl.

We chose names (did I already go through this? I don't think I've posted about names yet.). A boy will be Arthur Charles (Arthur is a family name on my side (and my brother's name, who I'm very close with) and Charlie is like the eighth generation Charles so we have to keep that going). Sounds very British, like he's going to invite you over for a spot of tea, but we like it anyway.

A girl will be Harper Reagan. Harper is my maiden name and one I love for a first name. Reagan is another favorite name of mine and is for the former President. My sister-in-law, who is going to start trying for a baby with her hubby after the new year, was a little bummed we chose Harper since she wanted to use it one day.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Friday, October 28, 2011

Pumpkin Carving!



So Charlie has been going on and on about how he's an expert pumpkin carver, way better than I am. So we got 2 pumpkins from Walmart night before last (I had this romantic idea of going to a pumpkin farm and going on a hayride with my love and drinking apple cider together, blah blah blah... Charlie and his idea of Walmart won out) and we chose to carve them at 4am today. We have really messed up sleep right now due to unemployment and video games.

Anyway, Charlie chose to go with a biohazard symbol and I went with a rat (in honor of the litter of 12 that Grendel blessed us with today! Kel is a proud daddy). I drew out a baby rat, but we only had steak knives to work with, so I chose not to carve it out.

I think we did a pretty good job.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

It's here!

My order came in yesterday! I was soooo exhausted, though, that I didn't open it until today. Above is the Hearthwarming Stockings kit. Will get started on them once I finish the granny square blanket and at least get a good start on the Chroma blanket.
The Chroma!!! I've been interested in this yarn since KP offered it, but I have little use for self-striping stuff (Noro and the like are gorgeous, but not practical for the knitting I do). I'm very excited to have a good use for this (check out some of blankets done in Chroma on Ravelry...). It's pretty soft and I love this colorway. Not girly, but doesn't strictly say boy either.
The US 2 and 3 24" circs I needed so badly.
Extra yarn for a stocking. Looking at it now, I may have over-purchased. Oh well... leftovers will be incorporated into soakers for little Knolly.
The Swish yarn for the Rhino Romper. Love it! I made a mistake, though, and must have accidentally deleted the CC for the project before purchasing... not in the box and not on the invoice. Oh well. I'm sure I have something complimentary in the stash anyway.

Today is Charlie and my's 6 month wedding anniversary. We spent it sleeping in waaaaayyyyy late and then going to eat Mexican (a challenge since I can't have that yummy unpasteurized queso). Now he's gaming and I'm about to start working on the granny square (ready to be finished so I can cast on for the Ten Stitch!).

Monday, October 17, 2011

More Baby Stuff...

I don't want to make this the baby blog, but Knolly is what's on my mind these days and has been on the receiving end of my knitting. This is the RHSS blanket wip. Just a simple granny square. Plan on going until the camo runs out, then I'll pick up with either dc or sc with a complimentary color (a "tweedy" tan).

Still waiting for the KP order (hopefully it'll get here by this weekend) so I can start the Chroma blanket. That's going to be soooo nice.

The biggest news of the day is our first doctor's appointment! We are waiting for Tricare to kick in on the 1st, so we were going in planning on paying out of pocket. Fortunately, our doctor is amazing and did this visit on the house. He got my history and, since I'm not high-risk for anything, he said we could wait until my Nov 11 appointment for all the labs and such. We did get to hear Knolly's heartbeat! It was really neat. It was so kind of the doc to let us wait until the next appointment for the expensive stuff. I'm so ready for that appointment... I'll be 16 weeks by then and we'll see a good ultrasound (maybe even be lucky enough to tell the gender!).

Also, we're going to Georgia for Thanksgiving!!! I'm soooo excited about this. I haven't seen my parents in over a year and my extended family for even longer. Thanksgiving was always a big deal in my family; it was the one time a year we all got together (I have a lot of aunts, uncles, and cousins, so it's always a lot of fun). We think this is going to be my paternal grandmother's last Thanksgiving, unfortunately, so the whole family is making sure to come to Georgia for it. We were a little worried over the cost of travel, but my parents said that they can cover our gas to and from so we're all set to go. I'll be 17 weeks prego then, so it'll be neat to see everyone and show off my belly :)

Friday, October 14, 2011

Sweater Number Two

This Maile Sweater took me exactly one week to make. It is knit bottom-up and the sleeves are attached in an interesting and slightly annoying way, but in the end it wasn't all that difficult and I love the resulting sweater. I used Knit Picks Stroll Tonal yarn in the Gypsy colorway. The lighting is so terrible in our house and it's been overcast the past few days, so the colors are WAY off in the picture. It's actually a very deep dark tonal red. Used less than one skein. I actually have plenty left over for a few pairs of baby socks, a baby hat (or several), etc. I know lace is kinda girly, but I think this is gender-neutral enough. Charlie thinks red is a boy color, I think it's a girl color, so there ya go.


I started a simple granny square blanket using, gasp, Red Heart Super Saver. I know, but it's cheap, washable, readily available, and it comes in camo, which Charlie really wanted for the blanket. Washing RHSS really does soften it up a bit so I'm not too worried or ashamed. It'll more than likely be the kind of blanket you lay baby down on for nap or play, not the kind it'll be wrapped up in and such. I ordered yarn for that...


Charlie gave me a 100.00 allowance for yarn today! How sweet, right?! I went on Knit Picks and spent 119.00. I can't wait for it to get here. I got 5 balls of Chroma Worsted in the Mesa colorway for a Ten Stitch Blanket, the Hearthwarming Stocking Kit (plus extra yarn to make a third stocking since the kit comes with enough to make two), and yarn for a Rhino Romper in the 6 month size (I'm really excited about this adorable and useful knit! I got a gorgeous tonal blue for the MC and a bright grassy green for the CC). I also got 2 sets of 24" circs (US 2 and 3).


I have my first ob/gyn appointment on Monday! Hopefully we get to see little Knolly on an ultrasound...

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Baby Knit Number One

First knit for Knolly! Concentric Stripes Cardigan, my handspun yarn, modded for short sleeves and to add color to the edging.

Friday, September 30, 2011

So, I Really Think It's Time For Baby Knitting...

...because we're having a baby!

Ok, this is totally unplanned. We knew we wanted kids, but LATER, like when we're 30. But, these things happen, I guess, and what can you do but be thrilled? There is nothing more special than knowing I'm prego with my husband's baby. I'll admit, I was a bit devastated and I cried last night when I took the tests, but now I'm happy and excited. I was mainly worried that Charlie would be upset at how "the plan" was being pushed up by about 5 years, but he wasn't. Of course, this was a shock and surprise to us, but we're really happy. The LPN in him is coming out and I've already been briefed on what I can and cannot do :) Haven't been to the doc yet for the blood test, but I've taken 3 tests (all say prego), have been throwing up the past week, and have been sooooo fatigued. Oh, and I missed the littled friend this time around. Soooo, we think it's safe to say that the pets will have a new brother or sister (we're hoping for a brother!) around April or May of next year.

My parents are beyond excited (ok, my dad is excited about the baby, not so much on how the baby got here, lol) and Charlie's parents are too. My brother is so freaking happy he's going to be an uncle.

It's a little scary since I have no clue on what to do, but we have a great family of support and we have each other, so we'll be fine. It'll be an adventure, that's for sure!

Now, just gotta get on the baby knits. Good thing I've been queueing them forever since they're so cute and quick.



In other less exciting news, here's my latest FO, a simple hdc crochet hat in some of my handspun and some farm wool. Colors are much more muted in real life. Partner likes wearing hats.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

All Spun Up



I finally spun up this corriedale/angora blend... I'd been dreaming about it (literally!) and finally sat down and did it. I bought the tweedy yellow corriedale roving at either SAFF or Stitches South in 2009 from Miss Babs (also got a pinkish one that I spun up soon after purchasing... loved it as well) and I ran it through my drumcarder with angora I got off the rabbits I had then. It was in 9 small fluffy batts, begging to be spun. Of course, I let the fiber decide what it wanted to be and this wanted to be a soft worsted weight yarn. I love it! According to my method of figuring yardage (which, by the way, I believe is very flawed), it's only about 140 yards or so. I think it's more than that, honestly. I have a 5 ft niddy noddy, so I count how many times around the yarn goes. Multiply by 5, divide by 3. Should be the yardage, right? The math makes sense to me, but I really think I'm getting a lower number than I really have. I need to get another fishing line yardage thingy and use that. Or even a scale would probably be better. Either way, I loved spinning this and love the resulting yarn. It was also the first time Charlie has seen me spin, so it was neat having him watch a little and ask questions and stuff. Love that boy to pieces.

Monday, September 26, 2011

I Won I Won I Won!!!

I won one of the prizes for the TTL Shawl KAL! My prize is a skein of Tempted Yarns Good Grrl in the Deviant Behavior... isn't it gorgeous? I've been sick this week and this was just the thing to brighten my day. Also, I haven't knit a pair of socks in forever (I don't think I've completed a pair all year... my attempts have all been frogged), so this will get me out of the sock knitting slump. Yay!

(picture taken from the TTL forum)

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Roma

I actually finished the Roma Shawl for the TTL Summer Shawl KAL on time! I made it a little smaller by using laceweight and omitting a few stripe repeats. Really like it as a scarf... there might be another one in fingering weight in my future!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Finally, an update

The move was loooooonnnnnggggg, but not too bad. We were so glad to finally be up here. We don't get internet until Friday (we're at my FIL's right now), so updates will be more regular after that.




This is my favorite little corner of the house! It's our little country corner. My saddles, all my fiber stuff, the gun case. The skins on the wall are deer (my birthday gift from Charlie) and lynx, a gift from my uncle (he killed it and prepared the pelt himself).


I finally have a yarn dresser!!! This was part of a three-piece set we picked up at the Salvation Army. One dresser for the clothes, the nightstand by the bed, and this one for me! The overflow fiber is in a box next to the wheel.





Barrett. Took this today. She's grown up so much!


Partner, Charlie, and Kel, his rat. I've had Partner for 9 years, since he was a month-old pup being given away at Walmart. He was my brother's dog, but since Arty is in San Antonio for Army training Charlie and I decided to bring him up here with us. I missed this old boy and it's nice having him again. He's a great protection dog.


Red LOVES Gideon! She's always with him, playing with his tail, cuddling him, etc. He isn't as thrilled about her being around, but he's good and tolerates her.


Sleepyhead.




~168.3 yards of Australian Wool singles. I bought the fiber back in 2009 at a fiber festival... Stitches South maybe? I can't remember now which one/exactly when.



~121.5 yards of Australian Wool. Bought at the same time as the other yarn. This is a 2-ply.


That's it for now. I'm working as hard as I can on my Roma Shawl... only have 2 days before I have to have the FO pic up on the forum! Yikes! I really hope I finish it. I would definitely have time, but I can't knit on Friday... I started a job at a dog grooming place and have to work Friday. Maybe tomorrow I can get a good day of knitting in between running some errands.