Friday, May 29, 2009

TGIF Bitches.

With all the rain this week I haven't gotten out to engage with the world. At all. Like not outside of the yard. We did have a couple of neighbors over for breakfast for dinner night on Wednesday but I have not been physically outside of the yard in 4 days.

In terms of weekly goals (of which I set almost a dozen) getting out for exercise and social grown up time is always in the top 5. If I don't make it a priority I can go days working from home, getting dinner on, putting Fenner down, cleaning up, and watching a movie or catching up with Jason.

This shut-in'ness in combination with a baby who is not sleeping so hot in any of the beds (hers nor ours) is turning my inner monologue into a little bit of a Hitchcock movie.

In case you're wondering what introversion can do to an extroverted Gemini. Come - look through this window to my mind last night while J and I played Scrabble and I tried to finish a birthday gift for today:

Jason: [eating Miss Vickie's with gusto] Wow, there are a lot of consonants in my tiles. [Blows nose because he has a cold] crunch crunch crunch

Me: [out loud] That's because all of the vowels are in my tiles. Seriously, look at them all not a single consonant.


Jason: What don't you try [insert word] or [insert word]? [crunch crunch crunch]

Me: Because then I'd open up a triple word score for you.


Perspective is always the first thing to go. This morning, Jason strongly suggested I go to the mommy's lunch and out for a drink (or 18 tonight after work) He's no fool - my Partner in Crime.

I went outside the second the sun came out and look what I found in my exploding garden! A Jess Hutchison special for our neighbour Violet's first birthday.
I may be the nutbar on the street but even I knew enough not to give an uncontained snake to a baby so I ran in and grabbed the first available jar I could find.

All in all the snake was a hit and I felt pretty impressed that I'd managed to pull it off in fact, knitting this snake may have saved my sanity last night - what with giving me something to focus on while the hamster in my head had seizures.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Good neighbours gotcher back yo.

I'm not sure how we lucked out on moving to this particular street. Not only is chock full of kids around the same age but it's full of parents who share similar styles of parenting. Specifically, folks who are the parental equivalent of the political spectrum. Left through to right. The only thing we all agree on is that wine and beer are mana from heaven.

Normally, we would never be caught dead in the same parenting groups but on this street the tolerance runs deep. We all look after each other and each others children when needed. Date nights, nursing shifts, first days of work or just having a couple of hours in the house alone to get things done.

It's a good deal. Eva and Nancy will often take care of each other's kids to facilitate life and Fenner reaps the benefits. Since Eva and Debbers are actually in love they often play all day and as such the three little beasties are quite the pod.

Debra sent this picture to me today with the heading "Free grazing babies" - to which I replied - Delicious!

Another neighbourhood beasty is turning one tomorrow and I have to finish her gift or her mom will feed me a warm beer at the party. Can you IMAGINE the horror????

This post has been brought to you by my inner medicated desperate housewife.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Perils of working from home.

This morning our neighbour Eva came over with Ella to pick Debbers and Fenner up for a music store adventures. I was upstairs working when I heard Ella walk in and Fenner squeal with delight. The proceeded to run back and forth squealing at each other for the next 30 minutes.

I had to come down to witness the fun. Ella was dress like a French Revolutionary and Fenner the bombs expert today. I love it.
This house was gifted to us from my brother's family and Fenner loves to play in it with whoever is around - Ella needed as much coersion as Grandpa Hendriks here did.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

5 stages of the "Easy" Project

Elisabeth Kubler-Ross' 5 stages of grief as it applies to my knitting.

Stage 1: Denial

Without this stage most knitters would stop before they had even started new knitting projects. Take for instance this Simple but Effective Shawl that I started - I decided to double the project because I like them big. It's a super easy pattern so it would go super fast right? Right??

Friday afternoon: "I'm sure I'll finish this f&*(er on the trip to or from Smith's Falls. Then I can finish my Bonnie sweater - REWARD!"

Stage 2: Anger (where I was in the car on Sunday night)

340 stitches on 16" circular needles. I'm shocked that the 2 balls of Kureyon sock yarn are as big as they are. I've blamed Laura Chau for creating this monstrosity, Jason for breathing wrong and distorting the time/space continuum and Noro for making yarn that needs to be washed in order to be pleasant. It will be years before I'm done this fucking thing and I will hate it and everyone in it's gravitational pull until then.

Stage 3: Bargaining

In which I recognize that clearly I won't live long enough to finish all the yarn so I negotiated myself down to casting off when I hit the orange/red patch in the ball.....but then I got there and negotiated to knit more because if I ever had to knit with this yarn again I would probably never touch the needles again.

Then I realized I was talking out loud (again) and there were witnesses.
Stage 4: Depression.

Sigh. It just took me 20 minutes to knit 344 stitches.

O futility.
bad haikus help the passage
of time spent knitting5. Acceptance.

"This final stage comes with peace and understanding of the death that is approaching. Generally, the person in the fifth stage will want to be left alone. Additionally, feelings and physical pain may be non-existent. This stage has also been described as the end of the dying struggle" Wikipedia

Sometimes it really does feel like this doesn't it?

Monday, May 25, 2009

Welcome to the Dandelion Patch.

Spent the weekend in Smith's Falls last weekend. It was so warm that Gramma and Granpa Gemmill cracked out Fenner's Splash Pad and Water Emporium to the great delight of the little Miss.
It took her all of 5 minutes to get used to the icy cold water and proceed to run amok through the fountains. Figuring how to put the ring toss rings on the palm tree and to use the bicycle pump to spray anyone who would come within a 2 metre radius.

It was a hot day but there is something in the genetic makeup of kids that allows them to play in the icy waters without going hyperthermic. When my family moved from British Columbia to New Brunswick we camped the whole way.

I'm not sure how we all survived to enjoy camping or how my folks are as sane as they are now. Dad insists that while we were driving through Ontario he used to take us all to Lake Superior and watch us swim ourselves exhausted in the frigid water so that he and Mom could have some quiet time.

The energy it took to keep our core temperature above hyperthermic in that water ensured no energy for squabbling and a full night sleep for everyone.

Sure enough, after playing for 2 hours in the spring sun, Fenner was asleep before we'd been in the car for 5 minutes on the way home.

Stomping Dandelions in fine Bloom County fashion.

A great weekend knitting, drinking wine and visiting. Always worth playing catch up on Monday for it.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Baby Surprise Redux

A few weeks ago I embarked on a time driven project. I was feeling punchy from deadline driven projects at work and in life and decided to bite the bullet -Baby Surprise Jacket, cast on Sunday night May 4th for a baby shower on Saturday, May 9th.

This is my fourth or fifth BSG and I love it more and more. I knit this puppy out of some Noro Kureyon Sock Yarn after seeing Jen's sample at the Purl.

Traditionally, I have a heinous time counting the requisite 160 stitch cast on and this time was no different. By Sunday night, after 3 attempts, I had successfully cast on and marked the appropriate decrease stitches. Monday morning I had 3 rows completed.

Tuesday morning - the decreases were completed: First goal complete.
Tuesday night Fenner decided that independant play thing that I love about her - the thing that allows me to talk to my family, knit, spin and generally be a dimensional human being. She also gave up letting Jason put her to sleep in favour of me (which puts me to sleep).

Anyway all things considered I knit when I could which was much less that it would have been had Fenner not being growth spurting all over me.

By 1 hour after the baby shower on Saturday I had a fully knit BSG.
By Sunday, it was lightly felted and soft as a dream. I may have found the best way to love Kureyon - felted but buttonless. So close but yet so far.This weekend's goal is to finish my Simple Yet Effective Shawl and the back of my Bonnie sweater on the drive to and from Smith's Falls this weekend. If I can do those I'll have a new sweater just in time for the heat of the summer.

Fenner and her friend River, hangin'. They look vaguely threatening here - even the bershon teens next door were uncomfortable.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Cottage Milestones

Ah, Queen Victoria, somehow your birth has become the milestone for cottagers everywhere. Bloody cold milestone at that!

We opened Six Mile last weekend and if there were any doubts my offspring would be meek in the face of busted pipes, power outages and freezing cold temperatures this weekend dispelled them. I only wish I'd taken more pictures but alas, pusted pipes and power outages.

Fenner's Fairy Godmother Coco (of whom I have *no* decent pictures) took care to play with Fenner while her dad and I opened the little cottage and made sure the beds were usable. Throwing rocks into the lake and exploring all the rocks and hills were the order of the first cold day.

On Sunday the sun came out though the wind was bitter cold - Fenner promptly followed our lead and started her first season of twigging and wood collection.
Lots of windstormse over the winter ensured that the wood pile will get stocked early in the year to prep for the fall. The turtle wheelbarrow came in extremely handy.
Fenner hit a lot more of the "cottage kid" milestones then we had expected. She crossed the bridge for the first time to visit her Aunt Teppy and experience the joy (and suspense) of fireworks with Uncle Lawrence, wine with Aunt Anita and general carrousing with the cousins. Smart kid knows which names to learn first and proceeded to say "Hi Aunt Teppy" from the canoe the next day.

First canoe ride on the first warm sunny day at the cottage. I find the sound of the paddle and the sun sparkling off the water hypnotic too.


It's going to be a good summer.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Belated Mother's Day

What day is it today?

In case you were wondering, I finished the sweater....TWO HOURS AFTER THE BABY SHOWER whatevs man - I'm still employed, dressed (barely) and Fenner is not in a box by the side of the road. Pictures lined up with an enormously amusing and titillating yarn post.

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Bending the space/time continuum

I finished these socks on Thursday, plain old socks, Sock That Rock Lightweight - colourway hiding in my stack of paper. I love the colours that are not represented well in this picture - they are so vivd. I remember starting them before Christmas - November maybe? At best it's taken me 5 months to knit them and at worst, I fear, 6 months.

Am dwelling on these numbers because I have a baby shower coming up on Saturday that I was thinking about knitting a Baby Surprise Jacket for. It all seemed so very doable when I cast it on and finished the first couple of rows on Saturday. I did a very scientific poll of my professional knitters and it was 2 (No fucking ways) vs 1 historically ambitious (Of course you can - it's all garter!).

It wasn't until I put these socks on my feet that I thought...hmm...maybe it's ambitious, maybe it's unlikely...but (I checked my schedule this week) I have NO PLANS THAT CANNOT BE KNIT THROUGH. Yoga on Wednesday is the exception.

It's on Bitches....well it was until I realized that somehow I didn't count the number of stitches I cast on that first time and then decreased incorrectly the second time. But I just finished row three and, OH - IT'S ON again!

It was a beautiful Sunday here in TDot. We met our friends Zoe and Joyce in the park for some crazy climbing time (during which I did not knit but took bad sock pictures). We biked down and then I walked the kids over to the Purl for a cuppa joe and yarn fondling. These kids are too cute. I could eat them.... Speaking of eating, we received a message from his holiness tonight. Lil Pig indeed! SHE'S BEEN CHOSEN YO!