The Rocket

Knitting, pregnancy, and other stuff

Saturday, April 29, 2006

there's many a slip 'twixt wallet and LYS

New Acquisistions and Sock Update

I had a number of pictures with which to illustrate this post, but Blogger didn't want me to upload them this morning and now I'm not in a position to try again. I'll try and use links, and we'll see how that goes. I don't have the yarn ball bands with me either, so I make no promises about accuracy. It's all very edge of the seat here at chez Rocket.

I had a bit of a slip up at the yarn store. I had ordered some 6" 2mm dpns (the 7" ones just seem kinda long for all this sockage. How much precious knitting time am I wasting, sliding the stitches along the extra inch of needle? ;) Besides, one of the 7" ones slipped down into the passenger seat of my mom's car on the way back from Baton Rouge- I can see it, but have thus far been unable to retrieve it.) and had to go pick them up at my LYS (which has no web presence that I can find, but it's called In the Making, if you're visiting Birmingham) so of course I ended up getting some yarn as well. (That may well have been the most parenthetical sentence I have ever written.) They did not have Trekking 100, but I didn't let that stop me, and got some Trekking 107 instead.

I also got some Rowan Kidsilk Haze, because... well, because I wanted to. It looked so pretty, and everything I've seen made of it on other people's blogs has looked so gorgeous. I've also heard some gnarly stories about knitting with it, which make me think perhaps getting it right prior to the delightful (really hot and humid) Alabama summer may not have been the best choice ever, but you know, I have AC. I'm also looking at me needles trying to decide which are the very pointiest, because that seems to have affected some people's enjoyment of it. Anyone have a good recommendation for a pretty lace scarf or something that only requires one ball of KSH? I thought about Birch, but decided that I would only invest in one ball in case actually knitting with it gave me the heebie-jeebies. I think all these plain boy socks are driving me to lace.

Speaking of which, the ends are woven in on BIL1's socks, and I have bravely cast on for BIL2's socks with the Regia Line Steps Color pictured here. The medium grey one. It's knitting up very nicely, it's a great carry along project, blah di blah blah blah. (Lace, mmmm.) I also still have BIL3 and FIL socks to go after this. I sort of did most of the fun girly socks first, which may have been a mistake, in retrospect. Now I have only one pair of girly socks left, my MIL's. And, of course, all the socks I'm going to make for myself when I am released from the Great Sneaky Sock Project of aught-six.

And speaking of the socks for my mother-in-law, I have acquired the pattern for the Eleanora Socks, and I think that is what will end up on her feet. She's a history buff, and I believe an Eleanor (of Aquitaine, not Toledo, but still) is one of her favorite subjects to read about, so that makes the pattern doubly appropriate. I am having some difficulty deciding which yarn to use, but posting about it will have to wait until I can get the photos to upload. And anyway, I have three pairs of boy socks to get through before I make that decision, as I have decided to save the fun socks for last, or at least second to last if I just can't hold out. I'm very excited about making these, but... boy socks. Perseverance! I'm trying to be good and not cast on yet more stuff before I finish a few things first.


MacGyver of knitting

I had a tragic accident with my bamboo dpns. One of them started to split at the tip. It was snagging terribly, and as I am not at home, I didn't have replacements on hand. But I did have a nail file, and I am proud to say I broke off the offending piece and filed that puppy down. I'm not saying it looks perfect. It is, in fact, now shorter than all the others, and a bit misshapen and funky looking, but, and this is the key factor: I am knitting with it. I feel cool.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

it's a boy!

Woo hoo!

We went in for the 20 week ultrasound yesterday, and it's a boy! It's so exciting to know 50% more about this little person than I did yesterday. He was curled up rather modestly, so it took a few tries to identify his gender 100 percent, but we got him to move around eventually. A fly on the wall would have laughed. I got up, jumped up and down, and drank some water- all under the loving eyes of my audience: my husband, my mother, my sister, and my sister-in-law. And the ultrasound lady, of course. And the Future Progeny finally revealed himself.

It's funny, because even though I'm thrilled to know it's a son, it's a little bittersweet to know that it's not a daughter. Up until yesterday, it was almost as though I had two potential children, a boy and a girl. I'm completely happy to know that I have one of them, but that means I don't have the other. It's a funny feeling.

The best part, of course, was hearing the (completely awesome) ultrasound lady say that everything looks completely normal and healthy, and that in fact the FP is tall (she actually said long) for his age. Then the nurse told us baby boy stories. They pee over their heads, y'all. Oy.

I did finish something yesterday:


Socks for my brother-in-law, complete with heels from the other side of the ball of yarn. If it's slow at work today, I'm sewing in the ends.

Anti- woo hoo

The only blight on this time of joy is that my insurance, apparently, sucks ass. I had a few "out of network" procedures done- a biopsy for abnormal cells and the multiple marker test to find out if the FP is likely to have genetic abnormalities (he's not very likely to, thank god) and my insurance is being bitchy about it. My company switched from BCBS to an insurer with a lower monthly premium, and I'm questioning how wise a decision this was if the largest health care provider in the state is "out of network." Arrrgh. It makes me want to tear my hair out. My fingers are crossed that I can make them suck it up and pay what it says in my contract they'll pay. The only thing out of network should mean to me is a slightly higher copay.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

in which I feel cool

While we were in Baton Rouge, I got to feel like quite the knitting bad ass. My aunt used to knit unstoppably. In fact, she used to do all things crafty unstoppably. She could needlepoint like nobody's business, cross-stitch like it was going out of style, and probably a bunch of other stuff that I don't know about. However, it had been several decades since she picked up a needle of any crafting persuasion.

Lately, however, the urge to knit had struck her once more, inspired, I believe, by her grandchildren. She had one afghan on the needles, and one off. As in, it fell off her circular needle, and she couldn't remember how to put the stitches back on. When she told me about it and asked me to help her, I envisioned a horrible, scary mess, with cables ripped back 20 rows in some places. But when I actually saw it, pretty much all the stitches had stayed in their places, hanging out, waiting for someone to come pick them up, and the most complicated action I had to deal with was putting some yarn overs back on the needle correctly.

I know that had I not been coming to see her, she would have messed with it until she remembered how to fix it. But since I was, I got to feel great. I helped somebody who's been knitting since before I was born. It's not every day I get to feel like a bad ass.

Monday, April 24, 2006

a quick knitting update

I started the baby sweater in the car on the way to Baton Rouge. That drive always seems longer than it really is, and at 6-6.5 hours, it's long enough, believe me. Luckily, I didn't have to drive. There's some color work, but that will be revealed post-blocking. Right now, it's not so pretty. Everything I've said about Trekking XXL continues to be true. I would say it again, but I'm aware I'm being repetitive. And I think I'll probably have enough yarn left over for more socks.


The fun thing about the baby sweater it that all of its components are so small. Not that this particular baby sweater is stupendously fast- my gauge is 8 st/in, so I could be making a chunky adult sweater, I suppose. The fun thing is looking down every once in a while and freaking out because the person it's going to fit is so little bitty. (And of course, the hope is that it will fit, because it's hard to measure a person who isn't measurable yet.)

Likewise the smallness of the baby booties being worked on US 000s in Elann's Baby Cashmere. So tiny! I haven't even measured the gauge on these booties yet. I'm pretty sure it's around 10/st in, and I really just wanted to try out the tiny wee needles. You may admire the twee-est photo set up ever. It was better than another picture on my paint-speckled floor which always looks dirty, even when it's not. (Hint: it is now.)

Chris pointed out that I could go ahead and knit myself a pair of socks out of the Trekking XXL 100, even though I already made a pair for my husband, because the yarn is so wildly varying that they wouldn't really match. It's true. The ones I made for him don't even match each other:

So I think I'll leave it up to the yarn gods. If there's a skein of it left at the LYS next time I go there, I'll go ahead and get it. I'm so easy to enable.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

boom

I actually had some pictures to post, but I woke up this morning to a very loud booming sound. It was a transformer blowing, and the end of power in the apartment. If I have both power and time when I get home this evering, I'll try to post then. If not, have a great weekend! I'm going to go watch my cousin get married.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

in which socks are joined by booties

Updating the Saga

With regard to the pregnancy brain of yesterday:

3) The delicious lunch of yesterday was still sitting innocently on the coffee table when I got home. It had not been strewn all over the rug, nor was there cat barf everywhere. I could not have been more thrilled.

2) I resent the file to the client again and we figured out why they didn't get the file before. It wasn't that I didn't send it at all, it was that I mistyped the email address. Three times. (They have it now, by god!)

1) I have no excuse for forgetting an entire letter of the alphabet.


Cool things that have happened today:

1) When I woke up this morning, Ann and Kay were on the local news! I was very excited. It turns out they will be (sort of) close to me, doing a book signing in Helena, but I won't be able to make it. :( Curse this paying job!

2) I remembered my lunch today.


Booties and Stuff

I started a baby bootie last night. It is officially the first thing I have knit* for the future progeny. That's kind of exciting.

*It is not, however, the first thing anyone has made for the future progeny. THE VERY DAY we told my mother in law the news (which was, by the way, the very day we found out the news) she had a catalogue out for our perusal, trying to assess which cross-stitched bibs and baby blankets were most to our taste. This was, I confess, not something I had ever turned my thoughts to. The results of the decision, which are progressing apace despite her threats that these may be wedding gifts for the FP, are very cute.

My mother, not to miss out on the grandmotherly fun, has lifted a needlepoint canvas for the first time in decades so that the FP will not lack a handmade christmas stocking when the yule season hits. My sister in law is considering taking up quilting for the FP. He or she will be starting life out with an abundance of hand made love. It's pretty amazing to think of, actually.

And a week from today, we find out if the FP is a boy or a girl.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

sad socks

Socks, socks, and more socks

Oh, little red socks, you must be so sad. You sit on top of the speakers, forlorn and half-finished. "We're so sassy and lacy and cute!" you cry from across the room. I'm sorry, I really am. I just have so much Trekking XXLove to give right now. It's the plies. They're entrancing. I'll get back to you, I promise. You're not due until I am, right?


I did something a little different on this sock. I used the yarn from the outside of the ball to knit the heel. You see, while the fraternal sock nature of Trekking does not bother me one iota, the break in color I kept getting after beginning rounds again after the heel was seriously bugging me. The color transitions are so gloriously smooth and gradual that the break really stood out to me. No longer!

I am going to a cousin's wedding this weekend, and I'm in the lucky position of not having to drive. Woo hoo! to six hours of knitting each way. As I am 1) unable to knit on the Sneaky Sock Project of 2006 in front of my family members, and 2) unable to step away from the Trekking, this seems like a great opportunity to work on the purple and orange baby sweater I have planned.


Pregnancy Brain

So, I'd heard tell of this "pregnancy brain" and how forgetful it can make a mother to be, but I didn't really believe in it that strongly. Until these events:

1) I sat staring at the cash register for 30 seconds, unable to recall the single letter I had to type into the screen to cause it to Z-out. Half a minute I sat there. The letter is "Z".

2) I really, truly thought I had sent a file to a client two weeks ago, until I got an email asking where the file was. It seems I never sent it.

3) I put together a delicious lunch of leftovers and put it on the coffee table right next to my purse, where I would remember to pick it up this morning and where presumably, it still sits. Until the cats smell the lamb and knock it over. And drag the lamb all over the carpet. And probably throw up later.

Sigh.

Monday, April 17, 2006

weekend roundup

It's fantastic outside right now! Windy and blustery as though it's about to rain, although the weather channel assures me that that's not the case. It really makes me want to be outdoors instead of stuck at work all day. Oh, well.

The Surf Socks are finished and delivered to their intended recipient, my mom, who was very pleased with them. The red socks are still slowly toodling along, and I have cast on and knit bunches on a pair of Trekking XXL socks for my brother-in-law in color 102, which is knitting up so beautifully I may just have to get some more. There is no end to the praise I have been heaping upon this yarn. My husband has been subjected to it, and is now asking me how I really feel about this yarn.

I'm knitting these socks with my replacement Lantern Moon rosewood dpns, and so far, so good. It's kind of exciting, wondering if I'll snap another, or if they're going to hold up.

Easter was full of both family and food, and both were wonderful. The food was delicious, and the family was in rare form. Then we went home and I tripped over a plank of wood and busted up my pinky toe. Why was there a 2"x 4" lying on the floor in our living room? Why, we use it to put behind boards we're drilling holes in. Oh, you mean why was it in the middle of the floor? I have no idea. Some things we're better off not knowing.

Friday, April 14, 2006

a very productive day

Button, Button

I have to say, I really kind of wanted rockin' orange buttons for this wine bag. However, the button gods were not with me when I hit the variety store yesterday. (The craft store does not have buttons. I was kind of shocked. The closest they had was one of those 1/2 pound mixed bags, which, honestly, I didn't need to get for a project which requires only 4 matching buttons.) The variey store had orange buttons, but they did not fulfill my requirements, being neither a) cute, nor b) sassy. The knitting store (well, yes, of course I stopped by, I actually had an errand that required me to go there) had orange buttons which were cute and sassy but flower shaped. Since this is a gift for my dad, I decided a more basic geometric shape is what is wanted. So I got wood buttons, in your basic round. They match the handles, and I think they will do swimmingly.


Swag

Also yesterday, one of those exciting white priority mail boxes came from Elann. It had 3 proto-socks within. I have already mentioned a visit to the craft store. I am putting something together for my husband's place of employment which necessitated a trip there, i.e. it required one metric fuckton of polished river rocks, which I cleverly thought I could carry in a basket rather than in a shopping cart. The volume was correct, but the weight was kinda off. So of course I had to scoot by the fiber aisle. And the bead aisle, because you never know when you might want to slap beads on something. Well, you don't. Anyway, amongst the ginormous scarf needles, I spotted a Susan Bates set of sock needles.


Let's take a closer look. (Also, check out my newly polished toes. It won't last, but it's pretty while it's there.)

I don't know if you can read the packaging, but it says, "Sock Set. 5 of each size. 1.5, 1.75, 2.0, 2.25 mm. 000, 00, 0, 1 US." Yowza! And the cost for all this socky goodness? $9.99. It would have been criminal not to get them. That's $.50 a needle. Let's compare that to another recent acquisition, my Lantern Moon rosewood 2.25 mm dpns, which at $20 for the set were $4 a needle. One of these snapped 3 inches into a stockinette glove (picking up the replacement was why I was at the LYS yesterday. Well, yes, I did buy some yarn while I was there.) Anyway, I'm not usually a fan of aluminum needles relative to my other options, but I will tell you this right now: there is someone who is getting a pair of socks knitted on US 000 needles sometime in the near future. That someone is me.

Meow

I bought this bowl last year

a) because it's pretty darn cute, and

b) because it reminds me of something.


Thursday, April 13, 2006

on the needles


Progress Report:




Here is the Stack o' Socks, cunningly placed on the speaker next to the tv so that no moment of viewing pleasure shall be wasted with idle hands. The red socks pretty much stay there, for programs that don't require all that much attention, while the Surf socks are for programs that require actual looking at the screen. They're also more well-travelled, hopping into my bag to take a jaunt over to my family's houses, or to keep me occupied during the long stretches of boredom at work. Let's take a closer look:




Ah, the Surf socks. Simple. Mindless. Cotton. Bright- one almost might say garish. Spring-y, why not. The safety pin with the arrow indicates how long I had to knit before I got to the end of the yarn that was barfed out of the beginning of the ball. I use little coilless safety pins to mark everything.

The Wildfoote socks. So red! So bright! So lacy! (It kind of just looks like ribbing right now, doesn't it? I promise it looks better on a foot.)

I took these pictures outside to get better light. That's the best representation of the red socks I've gotten yet, on my moniter anyway. I live in an apartment building on a pretty busy road, and right now, folks are headed into work. I bet I would have gotten some funny looks if everyone weren't so caffeine deprived and tired. Now back inside:

Some might say a tv is for watching. While that's certainly true, it's also a good place to display projects both current and future. The pile of white will one day be my husband's very most treasured possession: a beautiful, all-over cabled, shawl-collared cardigan. With pockets. And cool toggle buttons. Completely designed- just for him- by his loving wife. It's been taking a rest for about the last three months. I decided to knit it all in one piece from the neck down, and it has gotten huge and unwieldy, and requires that I be by myself and pretty focused to work on it. So if I don't finish it by the time the baby is born it will not be finished until the kid's in college. Now that's motivation.

To the right of the future Most Treasured Possession is a pile of Trekkiing XXL (love!) in purple and orange, destined to be our progeny's first sweater. It will have intarsia on the front- already graphed out- and buttons atop the sleeves to allow easy access over the kid's huge head. I will get to it soonish.

The blue thing next to it was going to be a felted wine bag until I realized I didn't have nearly enough yarn, and what was I thinking, so I need to frog it. It's also been sitting there for a few months. I'll get to it. I will.

This is a horrible, horrible picture. I am aware of that. However, it will suffice to show you a WIP that's (yay!) almost an FO. This is a wine bag, destined to go to my dad when everyone else is getting socks or gloves because I already gave him his socks, and his feet are really big, so I'm sparing myself knitting him another pair when I have four more pairs of big feet guy socks to go. I got the cute little handles at my LYS, and I'm getting some cute orange buttons today. The buttons will be used to bend the bag to my will, because it didn't quite turn out to be the shape I wanted. That's okay. I'll know what to do next time.

That's Flo in the picture (short for Florence, but we never call her that). She can't resist new stuff on the floor, or not being where stuff's happening. Except when people other than myself or my husband are involved. Then she hides under the bed. Seriously, my family calls her Imaginary Cat, because they never see her. We have another cat, Buckley, but knitting on the floor interests him less. He'll make an appearance, never fear.

Day Off

Woo hoo, it's my day off! I have many plans.

1. Pedicure with SIL

2. Visit to LYS

3. Get bigger trousers, possibly with (ugh) maternity waist. Get bigger bra to stop hideous boob lines.

4. Get sassy orange buttons

5. Clean the house if there's absolutely nothing else to do.

I'm pretty sure they'll all get done except that last one.




Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Hat

I love making hats. They can be intricate and complex, or, as in this case, quick and simple. The best kind of "Hey! I need a gift in a few days. Whoops."


Woo hoo! The finished, multi-fiber hat!


The darker blue is the Cotton Fleece, and the lighter blue is the Lamb's Pride Superwash. I did this on US 6/4 mm needles at a gauge of about 5 1/3 stitches per inch. The pictures were taken by simply holding the camera as high as I could above my head and trying to aim. I did take a picture in the bathroom mirror, but decided it revealed too much of the mess in the bedroom.

And now, back to socks.

FO

Finished hat = woo hoo!

Film at eleven.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

oh, cat hairs

Knitting

I've made a huge mistake. Actually, it's not that bad. It's possible that no one but me will notice it. It's on the red socks for my sister, who is not a knitter, and who really probably won't notice it. And it's on the part that will be in her shoe, so even other knitters, when they accost her on the street and say, "Wow, what fabulous hand-knit socks!", are pretty darn unlikely to notice. I'll photodocument it in all its horror when the socks are finished, so that, rather than it going unnoticed, anyone with access to the internet can point and laugh.

The hat I so recklessly cast on yesterday is progressing apace. I decided that the Cotton Fleece would be insufficient to the hat I wished to make, so I added stripes. Did I have more Cotton Fleece, perhaps in a kicky contrasting color? No. Do either of my LYSs carry Cotton Fleece? No. So I'm using Lamb's Pride Superwash in Misty Blue, also from the stash. If you were here, you could see me smugly patting myself on the back. So now it's a very pretty blue on blue hat, part mostly cotton, part 100% wool, heh heh. It's a study in texture.

I even used the jogless jog for the very first time ever, having read it about it last night in Stephanie Pearl-McPhee's Knitting Rules, which I purchased and then read through last night in lieu of, e.g. doing the dishes. All manner of nice things have been said about this book and author, and probably more eloquently than I could, so let me just say that I really, really enjoyed it. I don't think I've ever read a knitting book from cover to cover until now- I usually flip around. I laughed out loud a few times, and I learned some new things. Either one of those things by itself would garner a recommendation. This book gets you both.


More Pills
(not the kind you find on your sweater)

I have to call the pharmacy to renew my prescription (!) for prenatal vitamins. (The gaggy kind, not the fish burp kind.) I have two questions about this process. First, why do you need a perscription for vitamins? As careful as I'm being about every little thing I put in my body these days, I can't believe that prenatal vitamins would hurt a non-gravid woman. (In case you were wondering, you don't need a prescription to buy the fish burp kind.) Second, and more vexing, why on earth don't they just package the prenatal vitamins in a nice big 9 month jar?

This bothers me.


Gratuitous Pet Shot:

This is why I always have cat hair on my clothes, even though I haven't actually worn said clothes yet.



I thought it was because I need to vacuum the couch.

Monday, April 10, 2006

sadly giraffe-free

Weekend

Those of you who live in the Southeast may have noticed that bad weather was predicted for the weekend. Friday in my area was predicted to be particularly grim, with expected bad weather to begin at 3 p.m., and not to end until the wee hours of the morning. Schools closed early. People cancelled their restaurant reservations. Everyone stocked up on batteries and non-perishable food items, and holed up at home.

When I left work at 6, it was still sunny and beautiful outside.

At about 1:30 in the morning, the wind picked up and rain really started coming down. By 2 a.m., it had passed by, and we all heaved a sigh of "that was it?" (And gratefully, I might add. We were lucky not to get hit like Tennessee did.)

However, between the weather and some unforseen time constraints, our trip to the Zoo was postponed. My fingers are crossed we'll get back there soon, before it gets too hot, and I get too big.

Feet

Both pairs of socks are still kicking along. I'm almost ready to turn the heel on Surf Sock Deux, and both red socks are heeled, on two circs, and about an inch into the leg. They're really looking quite good. Due to the use of flash in the pictures below, the color you're seeing is much darker and less vibrant than the socks are in person. These babies are red. Screamingly red. My sister is going to be all over them.

The Embossed Leaves socks are blocked* and boxed. I used the lavender Eucalan Woolwash to wash them, and they smell great. Eucalan works fine for me, but I'm tempted to try out Soak. I'm a big fan of lavender, and don't really find it old-ladyish (as the copy for Soak suggests some might), but I'm always up to try new things. Plus, I'm curious what Aquae would smell like. I'm kind of a sucker for stuff that smells yummy. Even trips to the drugstore can be fraught with danger. "You're only here to get toothpaste! For the love of god, don't go near the bubble bath!"

*I didn't block the EL socks as rigorously as I would ordinarily block lace. (Which, hee, because I've really only done a few lace projects thus far. But they did involve pins. Lots and lots of pins.) I just blocked them as I would block most non-lace knitted items: I washed them, and then laid them out to dry, pushing and pulling them gently into their desired measurements. They'll stretch when on the leg, and look great, but even just sitting there, they look smoother and better blocked. And now that they're all gorgeous, I'm wondering if it might be a bad idea to leave them curled up in their little tin for the next five months. Perhaps I ought to just stash the tin and let them (and of course, all the rest of the gifty socks and gloves) lie stretched out until September. Opinions?

Head

And, well, um... I started another project. A friend of mine recently visited Scotland and brought me back a bottle of scotch (which of course, I won't be enjoying for quite some time) and a very cute wee kilted teddy bear for the future progeny. Such kindness deserves a hat. So I cast on this morning with some Cotton Fleece in Blue Slate, and am now past the ribbing and into a nice relaxing (and hopefully quick, so I can give him both hat and thank you note post-haste) sea of stockinette. And perhaps the best thing about this hat? The yarn came from my stash. I was so damn proud of myself, I ordered three skeins of Regia 4 Line Steps Color, all in subdued colors suitable to grace the feet of my male relatives (most of whom are lawyers or studying to become lawyers).

(And while googling Regia just now, I came across this. I don't really even know what it is. Besides, of couse, sock yarn in a cute box. With a needle gauge? And a sock leaflet? It's a good thing this isn't in my LYS, or I'd have bought it by now despite needing neither a needle gauge or a sock leaflet. Or for that matter, a cute yarn box.)

Thursday, April 06, 2006

a bit of this, a bit of that

Knitting

I have made some progress on both the red socks and the Surf socks, which I now think are going to be a surprise for my mom. They're bright and cheerful, and definitely spring-y. The Surf socks are my carry-along project and the red ones are stay at homes, for the moment. As it's been ridiculously slow at work, the Surf ones are zooming right along.

I have so many projects I want to be working on right now, it's a bit of an effort of will not to just keep starting and starting more things. And that's not even considering the number of unfinished projects floating around our apartment. I think that needs to the subject of a photo essay.

Pills and Such

I really, really dislike my pre-natal vitamins. Fear not, I'm faithfully popping them every day. I'm not a big pill taker anyhow, and these are decidedly unpleasant. The multi vitamin was described to me by my awesome doctor as "not that big" which makes me bless my mom even more, because if this is "not that big," I hate to think of the elephant sized pills she was forcing down her gullet when she was carrying my sister and me back in the 1970s. As it is, I swish a lot of water around in my mouth, toss the pill in, close my eyes and think of England, and try not to accidentally gag myself as I swallow a pill roughly the size of a camel. Bleah.

And then there's the lipil pill. The box has text which indicates that taking this pill is a gift I can give my baby. The gift this pill gives to me is fishy burps about 30 minutes after I take it. Delightful. At least it's a gel pill, and therefore easy to swallow. What these vitamins really do is make me miss chewable Flinstones.

Another thing going on is that I am in dire need of a bigger bra. I have the equivalent of visible panty line for the chest. I was a busty gal to start with, and now I'm starting to feel a little ridiculous. Also, the baby belly has begun! Right now I don't look so much like incipient mom as terminally bloated. I'm making a trip this weekend to up both bra and jeans sizes. I only have one pair of jeans that still fits well, so I guess it's time to make the dreaded transistion to elastic waisted trousers.

The cool thing about all this is that if I lie flat on my back and press on my stomach with my hand, I can feel where the baby is. I woke up a few mornings ago and made my husband feel my stomach too to make sure I wasn't wishful feeling the whole thing, and either we really can feel it, or we both just want to really badly.

Weekend

I haven't been having many Saturdays off, which sucks, as that's my husband's day off, but I've been trying to work my schedule around to every other Saturday off, and this Saturday is one. I'm very, very excited. The last Saturday I had off, we went to the Botanical Gardens and walked around for a few hours, and it was wonderful. This Saturday, we're going to the Zoo. And not only are we going to the Zoo, we're going with some friends of ours and their little girl. If going to the zoo is fun- and it is- going with a small child is fantastic. The last time we went with a small child was maybe three years ago. He rushed from exhibit to exhibit, while the adults trailed along behind him, moving far too slowly, until he got to the Coolest Thing in the Zoo, and we had a hard time making him leave. What was this Coolest Thing, you wonder, what animal could entrance this little boy?

A tractor. Yes, the wonders of construction kept this child motionless where tigers and zebras and giraffes could not. I'm really looking forward to Saturday.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

trying

We are trying not to eat entire bags of junk food at one sitting.

Failing that, we are trying not to bitch to our husband about how bloated we feel after eating entire bags of junk food at one sitting.

Monday, April 03, 2006

no commitment

While I began and made some progress on the second red sock, I also started another sock. Heh heh. This one is made from Regia Cotton Surf Color, which I purchased from Elann, on US 1/2.5 mm addis. I started out on dpns, but I was concerned about laddering between the needles, so I switched over.

Actually, since I used a Turkish cast on, I started on circs, switched to dpns for a few rounds, and then switched back.

This yarn is 41% superwash wool, 34% cotton, and 25% polyamide. I'm actually quite enjoying knitting with it. My first experience with a cotton content sock yarn was not so much fun. These colors are a bit more neon-y than I would ordinarily wear, but I live in Alabama, and it's getting hot here, so the cotton content sounds pretty fantastic to me. You can see that the center pull ball yakked up a significant portion of yarn when I tried to extricate the end.

So why would I start another sock with these delightful gifty red ones still going strong? Well, we participate in a delightful tradition of Sunday Dinner, in which my husband and I, along with my sister and her husband, get together with my parents over at their house for dinner and the Simpsons. I generally bring my knitting, but as the red socks are intended to surprise their eventual recipient, I needed something else. Hence, the Surf socks.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

now for some knitting

I mentioned that I was working on some socks and gloves. Here is some of my progress. For my mom, I've made some gloves. She's gotten socks from me before, albeit not in a few years. I used Elann's Sock It To Me Puzzle, in a color I've forgotten the name of. Naturally, I've misplaced the ball band. I used US 1, 2.5 mm bamboo dpns, and that article on gloves from Interweave Knits Winter 2003. I think they're very festive and spring-y. The tea tin* next to the gloves will work well for presentation, I think.

Floey thinks so too. She's very helpful during photo shoots.

For my sister-in-law, I've made the Embossed Leaves Socks from IK Winter 2005. The observant will note that sock 2 has yet to have the ends sewn in. (The observant may also notice my unshaven legs, but please be gentle; it's Sunday morning.) Since the heels are stockinette stitch, I'm reinforcing them by weaving in extra yarn, Maggie Righetti style. I used Trekking XXL color 90 (I think!) on US 1/2.5mm dpns. I loved almost everything about this pattern, and I will definitely be making it again, for myself next time. The one thing I didn't like was the cast on. It was extremely tight (or possibly I was doing it incorrectly), so after I frogged it 3 times I said screw it and used a long tail cast on. My SIL wears a size larger shoe than I do, so if it was hard to get over my heel, it would have been brutal to get over hers.


One of the things I loved about the pattern was the heel. The garter stitch border was so pretty with the purl border around the leaves on the top of the foot. Of course, IK had two pictures of the front of the sock, and nary a one of the heel! Let me take a moment while we're looking at the heel to wax rhapsodic about Trekking XXL. I love this yarn so much! This is my 3rd pair of socks made with it. The yarn is made with four plies, each of which slowly shifts color, so the color changes are unpredictible and gradual. Every round is a surprise. It's so my new favorite sock yarn. And yet with all this love, I haven't made a pair of socks with it for myself yet. I assure you, that problem will be rectified.

And finally, my WIP. This is a sock I'm making up my ownself. The yarn is Brown Sheep's Wildfoote in the color Ragtime. This pair is for my sister, whose very most favorite color ever is red. I'm using Arches and Columns from one of Barbara Walker's Treasuries (the exact one escapes me at the moment) and once I have finished knitting the socks, I wil tell you more about the pattern. I am knitting these socks on US 0/2.0 mm Addis. I'm doing one foot at a time, and then I suspect I'll do the legs at once on two circs so as to assure their lengths being consistent even if one skein of yarn is a tad shorter than the other.

Working with the Wildfoote is certainly a change from working with the Trekking. It's a bit harsher on the hands, although experience tells me that once she washes them a few times, they'll be soft as all get out, and wear very well. I made some green Wildfoot socks for myself a few years back, and have machine washed and dried them, and they remain pretty darn fabulous.

I've already made 3 pairs of boy socks, 2 for my husband (the other 2 Trekking pairs) and one for my dad out of Regia with a Trekking heel and toe. Those I'll show you another time. I went ahead and gave my dad his before I decided I was embarking on the Great Pregnancy Hands and Feet Project. All of these other projects will reach their recipients a few weeks before I birth this baby, so sometime in September, if all goes well.

*Speaking of pregnancy (and tea), it's a sad fact that when you're preparing to be a part of the miracle of life etc. etc., you have to give up a number of fun things. On the list are indulgences such as booze, sushi, and staying up past 10 p.m. Sadly for the coffee addicts amonst us, caffeine is on the list of things you must reduce. (However, right now I am indulging in my favorite flavor, which apparently comes in decaf, but not at my grocery store, and I'm lazy, so...) The upshot is that I am drinking much more tea than I did previously. By the time these socks and gloves are finished, I'm pretty sure I'll have enough tea tins for all 10 giftlicious projects, and possibly some to spare. Cute presentation that wraps easily and smells good. What more could a girl ask?