Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Life interferes with knitting

Well, it's been hard to fit the knitting in. For anyone who is interested in knitting and not potty training (and who could blame you!), scroll down to the pictures.

On Friday, I decided it was time for full-court press potty training of the triplets, who prior to that time were moderately consistent with their alternating use and disregard of the potty. And what a ride it has been! Suffice it to say that we spend pretty much all day in the yard, running in and out of the house to the bathroom. I tried putting the potties outside, but there were too many complaints x3:

"It's too hoooot!" (there was only partial shade in the yard where I put the potties, and at that time, was the only shade)

Boy: "What's that in the potty"
Me: "It's a leaf."
Boy: "I don't liiiike it!"
Me: "It's fine."
Boy: "Noooo it's nooot!"

Need I say more? Plus, they're starting to give up their naps. It's an explosive combination.

Friday, which was Day 1 of the full-court press, nearly gave me a breakdown. For real. It's not hyperbole. Boy E peed every 10 minutes. All the books say to take the child to the potty every 20 minutes. But not Boy E. By the time I got his brothers off the potty, he had already peed through his underwear and/or peed on the floor (he didn't go back outside because he was waiting for his M&M reward). Between his accidents and those of the other boys, we were out of underwear by noon, which meant that I had three boys running in the yard wearing only t-shirts. And I had to use my naptime knitting time for a Target run to buy more underwear. They're getting better, however, the volume of laundry is starting to approach the volume we had when the boys were in the throes of reflux.

Things were so bad that when my husband called to let me know he was stopping on the way to get home and did I need anything, I told him, no, come home. And when he got home, he told me to leave the house. What a gift! I went to my parents, sat in the silence (they were out, too), knit my Colinette Jitterbug socks and listened to Dharmafey's Socks In the City podcast.

Now to the knitting. This is my reward for surviving the first day of the full court press:

YESSSSSS! I scored one of Piddleloop's Collaboration Sock Kits, and it is gorgeous! I can't wait to start--it is my incentive for finishing my Colinette Jitterbug socks. I've turned the heel and am working the gussett of the second sock, so I'm on my way. Actually, here it is inside one of my other Piddleloop project bags, which I love like crazy and think is the best small project bag ever:

I don't always like to be matchy-matchy, so the project bag and notions bag coordinate. And I love 'em! There's a little inside pocket I slip my row counter into, plus loops to hold my sock needles. Now I don't have to stick the ones not being used into the ball of yarn. They're just so cool, and the perfect size for a sock project, or gloves, too.

Piddleloop is a team of two sisters, and I've had a great time emailing with Jen. I had a bunch of questions before I bought my first two project bags, and she was totally cool. Then I ended up emailing her about some needle wallets: the idea is to be able to carry several sizes of sock needles with you when you're starting a project, so you don't have to bring your whole dpn case. Perfect for me! (That's what the flat rectangular thing is in the picture of the contents of the Collaboration Kit). Jen included a few extras: adorable pins, which are also used inside the project bag, a Zer0 stitch marker. And then, I got extra extras:


Perfect timing! One, I love accessories, and have been looking at tissue holders on etsy. Two, I just lost my keys, really lost them (I've had my keyring for 20 years, since I was a freshman in college, so that tells you about how I never lose my keys, and consequently, you can infer how challenging things are here for me to have lost my keys in my house and not found them). Also, my sister tried on the headband and it was just adorable! It's been nothing but a pleasure dealing with Piddleloop/Jen, and their products are fantastic!

On a different note, peony season is finally here. I love peonies, particularly the fragrant old hybrids. Neither my mother nor I have the old hybrids in our garden, but hers are still beautiful:

Mine just opened so hopefully I'll get some pictures.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Button, button, where's my button?

Duuude, I've got buttons! Check 'em out in the left-hand column!

Saturday, May 19, 2007

So much for May Flowers

Yeah, I think that Timberline sock is going on the back burner again. I just about finished the garter stitch wedge toe when I tried it on. (Yes, Ms. Lucy Neatby says to try it on often, but did I think the toe would be nearly finished after doing the three repeats of the decrease on the first row and garter on the other three?) Plus, the toe was just too wide! So now I'm going to take it back into the stockinette and start the toe earlier in the pattern so that the sock isn't too wide. But frankly, I'm not in the mood. I feel Perchance to Knit's Irises calling to me--I've been toting it around in my knitting bag (I have that big Namaste knitting messenger bag with the expandable zipper, perfect if you're like me and not sure which project you'll be in the mood to work on) along with Charlene Schurch's Sensational Knitted Socks (sneaked out of Mom's library, not that she's ever knit socks) and More Sensational Knitted Socks. Maybe I'll give that a try. In fact, I think I'll go now! And...it can still be May Flowers! Irises are in bloom here.

Also, the Knitting Gnome Swap has begun! Gnorm and Gnuman the Gnomes have begun their travels, and it looks like they're having a great time! Check them out here. Now, if only I could save buttons to my blog. I've read a couple of tutorials, but for some reason, it still doesn't work. Can anyone help? Please?!

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Happy Birthday to Me!

Yes, it's my birthday. We kicked off with a massage last night, a gift from the kids--who made me earn every second of that peaceful, relaxing hour! Baby Girl's holding up her end by keeping the fever down (with help from our friend Children's Motrin). I got "happy birthday" from everyone, including Baby Girl (yay!) when I came downstairs this morning.

I pretty much have the day off--woohoo! I had breakfast with Mom and Dad, and spent the morning knitting and catching up on The Office and Dancing With the Stars. I've been working on the Timberline sock and have come to a realization: it's pretty boring knitting roughly 7.5-9 inches of stockinette instep. I definitely need to work patterns in my socks. I'm thinking second sock syndrome is going to hit me, because I think first sock sock syndrome is sneaking up on me (it's probably not really sneaking, considering I started the sock in March).

Oh, and now I'm a Loopy Groupie! I'll have to take photos and post.

Back to the birthday. I returned home for post-children's nap birthday snacktime celebration. I got a yummy Carvel ice cream cake with Thomas the Tank Engine on it. I think only 3 children (maybe 2) cried when everyone sang "Happy Birthday," but it works! Ice cream cake for snack was a big hit! Then, my parents took the children out. So now, it's off for a little bit of knitting before the horde returns for dinner!

Friday, May 11, 2007

Knitting Treats!

After a whirlwind morning (music class + supermarket) with all four children, a truly historic triplet meltdown at lunchtime/naptime, capped by Baby Girl showing off a 102.9 fever at the very same time, I arrived home from my naptime pediatrician run with Baby Girl to find this waiting at the front door, protected from a sudden downpour that gave us 1.5 inches of rain in, oh, 40 minutes:

Aren't I the lucky one! I received two wonderful balls of Socka Color (close-up here: ) and sock-sized Chibis for seaming; an intriguing-looking copy of Simply Knitting from the UK, which includes a project bag (I love accessories!); Lavender Vanilla hand lotion (mmmmm!) and lip balm (I'm also a sucker for hand lotion and lip balm), and a spa candle. Here's the lip balm and lotion:

And isn't this cool: the lip balm and spa candle were locally made! A little taste of Wisconsin sent back East. And for the edibles: white peach tea and lemon creme cookies. How could cookies with that fabulous cockatiel (cockatoo?) on the box be anything but exotically delicious?! I'm definitely going to have me a good birthday/Mother's Day weekend! Thanks, Ann!

P.S. An excerpt from the back label of the hand lotion: "Keep this aromatherapeutic hand cream at your bedside to use whenever you want to feel deeply relaxed." I think I need to keep it in my pocket for continuous use throughout the day. Maybe a dab under the nose? During triplet meltdowns?

Thursday, May 10, 2007

My treat is on its way!

Yes, I just received an e-mail from "Knitting Irene," my Knitters Treat Exchange partner that my treat is coming! I'm so excited! I could sure use a treat--on Sunday, I was felled by a stomach virus, my first in 15 years! I couldn't even knit. I even had to ask my husband to stay home from work on Monday, and Tuesday and Wednesday mornings to help with the kids--boy, was I out of commission. And my parents were total troupers; thank goodness they were able to help out in the afternoons. (Oh, and adding to the fun: Boy J and I went to the allergist on Friday. I had a scratch test and surprised the doctor and myself with all my food allergies. So now I'm toting an epi pen and am worrying a little more about what I eat. On the plus side, I haven't really been able to eat since Sunday, though I'm getting really hungry at this point).

Prior to this, I had picked up some knitting. I went back to the Timberline sock (see March posts). The colorway should work for the Socktopia "May Flowers" theme. I had to completely rip out the heel: when I leave a project for six weeks or so, I tend to forget things like the fact I put it down because I needed to rip out the heel. Of course, I remembered after I did all the heel increases and got to the end and had the wrong number of stitches. The cool thing about the garter stitch heel in the pattern is that I don't have to pick up gusset stitches. It looks really cool, too.

I also started an under the radar project. We're doing family photos in October, and I had this idea that I would knit sweaters for all four children. I didn't post about it because I knew my family (my reading public, for the most part) would think I was insane. I did confide in my youngest sister when she came to visit a few weeks ago, and not only did she help me choose a sweater, she offered to pinch-knit if necessary. Is she totally cool, or what! And when I cast on the sweater, I revealed my intent to mom (hard to hide, since I was winding yarn at her house), and she thought it was cool, too--and told me it was good I picked a bulky yarn because I may need some pinch-knitting! Obviously, we all came out of the same gene pool.

And back to the Knitters Treat Exchange. How 'bout a shout out to Janice for nominating me as a best treater!

Finally, I'm getting ready for my gnome to arrive; did I mention the Knitting Gnome Swap? (I hope I don't repeat myself as often on the blog as I do in person--the memory suffers due to toddler overload and general fatigue) I'm going to have a talk with Crocus (he looks like Willard without the pipe) to be on his best behavior. In the meantime, I'm getting my package together.