Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Hello, from Michigan

Lake Michigan

Thunderstorms, down-pours, and electrical outages, OH MY! Well, you wouldn't know about it looking at the pictures, but our 2 hour trip turned into a 4ish hour one and our family reunion got jump-started by having no power for the first couple of days. It wouldn't have been so bad if the family size was smaller, and we didn't have to buy so much food all the time and store it into a fridge that didn't have power, and also if the whole town wasn't under either for a few days. We had to travel far to buy food, and lucky for us, the stove ran on gas.

Lake Michigan

However, it has been fun having "me time"...reading, knitting, walking along Lake Michigan and such. I can get used to this whole no work thing real fast.

Lake michigan

The sign above is a little snipit of what we saw on the beach: do not enter signs. It was really hilarious. You get to the beach, and you have like 100 feet of actual beach front where you can do as you please and to your left and right are all of these "keep off" signs. We did learn that you were allowed to walk along the beach, as long as you keep the rule "wet sand=green, dry sand=red."

Mal reunion flowers

We had several cabins to hold our generously-sized family. Joe and I practically had a cabin to our selves (it was a one-room one, but had a kitchen and bathroom with a washer and dryer in it). The scenery and decor was amazing, and the whole theme was "Elephant Walk" after the movie and book. Elephants littered the premises.

bsj3 preview

Here is a preview of the BSJ 3, for baby boy, if there is such a gender residing inside of me. Here's the thing, I first had trouble getting my hands on the pattern, but when I did, I happily knit and followed the predictable decreases until halfway through the pattern when I noticed that the back had more stitches than it should have (like in the double digits). I thought to myself, that can't be right...I did all of the decreases in all of the right spots and timings...until I looked through the pattern one more time in the beginning and noticed that on row 11 or so I was supposed to increase the sleeve stitches, thus adding many more decrease rows. The piece was not salvageable, and I had to frog the whole darn thing after two days of knitting it with color-switching and love. That really set me back, but I restarted it the next day and I am currently (and very tiredly so) am approaching the home-stretch. The sweater is cute, and I am loving the color scheme and natural alpaca quality to the yarn.

bsj3 yarn

I used my Frog Tree yarn in sport that I had from the LYS that recently went under. It looks like I put a lot of work into color-switching...and I did, but not with lots of strands on the edging. Every row twists the 4 yarns together, and unwinding the tangles takes up a good percentage of the knitting process. However, it's worth it. The little tyke, or tomboy, will look cute in it.

I think I'm starting to feel the babies kick some. I put my hand on the spots, though, and the kicking stops. Meanies. 29th is the next ultra sound...will they let me find out what they are?

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Family Reunion

Hey guys. Just giving you a tiny update before I leave for a week-long reunion with Joe's family in Michigan. I've finally got my hands on the EZ BSJ pattern that I was so desperate for (and I thanked the person repeatedly, what a goddess of the knitting fortunes), because I casted on for it before I found that the pattern was MIA. And the only library book in our county is checked out. And our local bookstores don't have it in stock. The Kimono jacket is about done. I have stopped short of one sleeve to do the next because I am still very worried about how much yarn is left. I hate fretting about that kind of stuff. I'll meet you back with some picture of my well-needed vacation and hopefully two finished (boy) sweaters! Babies seem to be doing fine, and boy am I getting bigger....
The next ultra sound is on the 29th, and maybe I'll find out the sexes? 16.5 weeks by then! I'm still waiting for my first undeniable kick!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Baby Kimono

I have searched high and low for that darn BSJ pattern to no avail. I have made two of them, and somehow the pattern managed to slip away from my hands. I really was hoping to start the jacket so I could bring it to my week-long reunion coming up next week. Now I just have to pray that the patron who currently is checking out The Opinionated Knitter book returns it early. Not likely though, since it's due back on the 22nd.
In the meantime, I have started the Harvey Kimono Jacket to calm my freaking nerves. I'm really nervous about how much yarn I have for this project. I'm using an Italian yarn that I purchased my last year of college, and I can't remember the name of the brand unless I search my blog because I removed both of the labels. I only have two 100 or 150yd skeins, and the pattern almost calls for 300yds. I'm hoping the designer over-shot the yardage requirement. I am making the smallest size.

I casted-on yesterday and finished the back, now I'm working on the left flap before I have to teach today. Meanwhile, I started dinner; I made a Caesar noodle salad, and chicken breasts spiced with Cajun and lime seasonings is currently marinating until I get back home later on in the evening to grill on those handy grill pans. (The other night I made a really scrumptious pork roast with potatoes and carrots that simmered in the crockpot for 6 hours. I even made a pumpkin pie that day, since it felt like Fall again.) I'm hoping the chicken turns out as successful. It seemed like a yummy idea.

Sunday, June 06, 2010

The start of something new

sweet as candy

Well, I am now offially in my second trimester! My bump is getting larger, and yet I still feel the need for small, manageable projects. I pulled this "Sweet as Candy" Cardi out of the hibernation bin and knitted away at it. Well, ok, it served as two purposes...because I needed my size 7 circ's too.

sweet as candy

But, I feel great having finished another project after a long lull of startitis. I am craving to knit another baby cardi in sportweight yarn with lots of wonderful bright colors. I think I have been watching way too much Ravelry projects done with those wonderful assortments of colors as shawls and cardi's.

sweet as candy

Really, this entire cardi was improv, and I don't mean in the general sort of way that I normally knit and design. This is a no-real-vision type of improv. It was started 2 or 3 years ago in just a top-down raglan fashion when I had that sort of kick, and was hibernating ever since until a few days ago when I just decided that instead of a boring 1x1 edging, I'll try some simple frilly-frill garter lacing. Heck, it's meant for a girl (if I have at least one), and you can get away with that sort of thing when they're babies.

I think it's cute, overall. I just have to knit away at a boy version now. No frills. I'm thinking maybe another BSJ.

By the way, I'm tres excited about this year's Midwest Fiber Fair. Anyone planning on attending that? I used to think that the other ones were close to me (30-45 mins), but now!'s 12 minutes away, and would have been 5 minutes if they hadn't relocated Lake County Fairgrounds this year. I'm super-duper excited to buy some bright shades, maybe some STR for some more baby things.


I've been tending to my balcony garden, and am waiting with much anticipation for my tomatoes to pop up. Ever since my Snowpeas and radishes came up, I splurged some more for my garden (which I only have a few types of plants to show you, since these photos are a couple weeks old).


The first to really be fruitful is of course my snowpea plant. I have yet to see the string beans pop up, but it's still the beginning of June.



My lovely radish plant that overgrew, and didn't come with the instructions that once it flowers, the radishes diminish to support it. Yowzers. I decided to dig them up and make Radish Leaf Potato Soup. It was interesting, and wholesome. I'm not sure how much vitamins are retained after cooking it, but as a raw product, radishes are one of the most vitamin-rich plants. So I've read.


My cherry/beef tomato plant that looks totally different now. It's flowering everywhere, and I watch every day for some tomatoes to form.

If anyone's interested, my plant inventory now seems to be: snowpea, string bean, cherry, beef and roma tomatoes, green onion, radishes, jalepeno, rasberry, green pepper, cilantro, basil and a couple flowering plants.


Lastly, Joe and I spent last Saturday at Kalahari, as a last-minute attempt to have a vacation before we don't have a life anymore. We do have a week-long reunion that's coming up in the middle of June, but this was just about us. I couldn't do much (really, just the lazy river, eatting, getting a little sun and drinking virgin drinks), but it was nice to say we tried to have a little vacation in the Dells.