A little bit of writing, a little bit of knitting...

Friday, April 20, 2007

A Baby-Sized Attention Span

Lately, things have been a little hectic, in case you haven't noticed. There hasn't been a ton of knitting time left over at the end of the day (and with Summer Blockbuster season officially starting next week with our Spider-Man 3 screening, I don't foresee it getting too much better until at least August). Not a lot of time for lounging around, knitting big sweaters and blankets and things. So it's probably a good thing that everyone's pregnant right now -- because my knitting time doesn't really allow for much more than baby-stuff knitting (nor does my attention span allow for it).

So it's been more of the same for me: lots and lots of baby stuff. Bibs and burp cloths galore! Well, there's one sweater that I pick up from time to time -- but I don't exactly love where it's going right now, so I'm procrastinating on that one. And there is one other project -- but it's a gift for someone who happens to read this blog, so, unfortunately, I can't post regular pictures of it.

But, recently, the warm and sunny weather has been pushing me toward lace. I'm getting The Urge. I've been surfing around for lace yarn -- not that I need any more mind you. I just like to browse. But cottage days are coming soon, and I can't think of a better way to spend those cozy cottage evenings than curled up on the porch with a little bit of lace. I think it's almost time for me to start swatching. Time to get out the Treasuries and calendars and other stitch pattern guides and find me some new lace to knit. Yea, lace!

BTW - For some reason, Blogger recently stopped emailing my comments to me, so I just realized that I had a ton just sitting around, unanswered. Sorry about that! Thanks for all of the comments on the skull bib. The new dad was totally thrilled, and he tells me that Garrett can't wait to wear it to day care, so he can be way cooler than all the other babies. Rock on, Garrett!

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Friday, April 13, 2007

Coolest. Baby Gift. Ever.

Okay, so perhaps it's not the coolest baby gift for *every* baby. But for a baby who also owns a Slayer onesie, I would have to say that this is the most brilliant baby bib ever.

It all started on Monday, when I was at the store and Barb showed me the cutest picture of a boys' sweater with a skull on it. Colorwork makes my head hurt, but I was intrigued enough to check out the pattern -- and that's when I discovered that it was just overstitching. Now *that* I could do (or at least I could try). And I knew it would be just the thing for little Garrett. It might go nicely with his Motorhead onesie. So when I got home on Monday night, I got to work. On Wednesday, while I was watching Paul's hockey game, I got started on the stitching (much to the fascination and amusement of the little girl who climbed up to the top of the bleachers, sat down next to me, and said, "Hi. What'cha makin'?").

Since the recipient's dad is a fellow film critic, I brought the mostly finished project along to our screening yesterday. Mark got a good laugh out of it -- because it's both totally me and totally appropriate for the baby in question -- and poor Clay (who's a regular reader and thus knew right away that it was a bib -- Hi Clay!) was shocked and perhaps a bit appalled. "You're giving that to a *baby*?" he asked.

Yes, my dear Clay -- but not just *any* baby. And besides, it's a pretty blue and green, and that makes it all okay, don't you think?

Now all it needs is a button. Despite my ever-growing button box. I'm finding the button thing to be a challenge. Sounds like I may have to take a trip out to JoAnn's this afternoon before we stop in to visit the happy (and somewhat exhausted) parents tonight.

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Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Way Way Way Behind

Where oh where is that lull that I was looking for at the beginning of this year? I still haven’t seen it. Of course, it could have something to do with the fact that Paul’s just returned from his fifth business trip of the year (let’s see…he’s been in Germany, the Netherlands, Dallas, and twice in Malaysia), so our lives seem to be an endless cycle of:

- Preparing for Paul to travel
- Paul away from home
- Recovering from Paul’s travels

Then, on the one weekend that Paul was actually in town, I took off to Cleveland for the film festival. And on Paul’s last trip, my parents came to town for the long weekend and ended up staying over a week. It was a wonderful week—tons of fun—but it meant that I’ve gotten a little bit behind on work…not to mention on my blogging.

Mostly, my knitting has consisted of little baby things. With everyone in some stage of pregnancy, it seems like the right thing to do. So I’ve got a pile of baby stuff, just waiting for the babies to arrive. Some of them, however, will be heading over to our friends, who are still celebrating the arrival of little Garrett James (formerly known as Frodo Skywalker/Orange Banana). In fact, Barb gave me a killer idea while I slowly lost my mind with the Knitastics yesterday (two hours of attention-deficient preteens telling blonde jokes is, I’m convinced, enough to make the sanest person lose his or her mind), and I’m currently trying to whip out The Coolest Baby Bib Ever before I head over to meet the little guy.

Here are the latest FOs in my recent string of baby knitting:

That’s a jumper and a cardi, three burp cloths, seven bibs (two of which are shadow knits), and a pair of booties (two pairs, actually—but the other pair went right off to another new little guy).

The biggest knitting news right now is that my longest-held UFO is now somewhat of a FO. When Mom arrived, she asked about Those Blanket Squares. You see, when I first learned to knit—and after I’d already made scarves for everyone I knew—I decided to make squares for a blanket. It soon became known as my Hockey Blanket—because I was constantly knitting squares while watching hockey. Right around the time that I finished the squares (60-some of them), Paul took the job in Massachusetts. So I packed up the squares in a box and moved them to Massachusetts. Two and a half years later, I moved the box again—to Ohio. And they’ve been sitting in my closet ever since. For some reason, though, Mom became absolutely obsessed with the blanket squares (admittedly, Mom does have a bit of an obsessive personality). So when she showed up, she refused to drop the issue until I produced the box of blanket squares. The next challenge was to try to figure out which pattern I’d planned to sew them into. I had a box full of squares in four different colors—and since it had been more than five years since I first planned the project, I didn’t quite remember. But we came up with something that seemed to make sense, and Mom dove in.

By the end of the week, Mom had sewn the whole thing together. Granted, there are still plenty of little ends that need to be woven in (or perhaps we’ll just sew some fabric on the back and pretend all those little ends don’t exist). But check it out—a finished blanket!

(Note: it’s folded in half. This thing is huge!)

Mom was so excited by the project that she decided to make a blanket of her own. We went running out to the store and picked up four colors that will look great in her new family room.

Besides the square-sewing, Mom and I made daily treks to JoAnn’s (actually, sometimes even more than once a day), looking for yarn, buttons, and fabric. Mom has also become obsessed with floor pillows, and we spent the week looking for the perfect fabric to match the living room. We didn’t find it. We did, however, find some really cute fabric that will make a cool apron.

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