Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Started packing

There is a pile of things to take with us to the hospital. The next
challenge is figuring out what bag it will all fit in. It really isn't
a ton of stuff, but the robe is very bulky. Plus, R will need to bring
the birthing ball, too, I don't want to make it all too awkward for
him. Though I assume he'll leave the ball in the car until I move from
triage to L&D.

The car seat is still a small issue, since we don't have our car back
yet. But I assume, worst case scenerio, R and my dad can install the
seat in whatever car we have during my 48 hour stay in the hospital. We
just hope it doesn't have to come to that. Last time R talked to the
dealer it sounded like the needed parts would be in let's all
cross our fingers that we get the car back before we have to go to the

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

One Week

I didn't intend to go a week without posting. I think last week was just pretty uneventful (when I could have made time to post) and the weekend didn't involve a lot of time spent at the computer.

But the real reason for the title of the post is because my birthday is in one week. Normally, I would start counting down to the big day about a month before. (And I did take notice of January 6th, both because of it's proximity to my birthday and because I know 3 people whose birthdays fall on that day.) But for fairly obvious reasons I haven't been very focused on my birthday this year. :-) There is a part of me that would like her to come early. I wouldn't mind giving up a relaxing birthday in order to share it with her. But, I also wouldn't mind her being a little late so we can have a few more quiet weekends to prepare and I could get more done at work before going on leave.

It helps that I am not miserable physically. I moan and groan here and there, and changing position in bed and getting out of bed are growing more noticeably difficult. But I am not so unhappy that I am dying for her to show up. Which I think is pretty good for 37 weeks, 3 days. And the knowledge that her arrival is going to change our lives forever makes it that much easier to enjoy a quiet night watching TV and knitting while it lasts... (I also like the fact that there is no guilt associated with eating. I'm going to miss that!)

My next appointment is Friday morning. We shall see if there is any progress. Last week, the doctor was pretty positive that the baby is facing the right way and I don't have any signs of pre-eclampsia, so we don't expect another ultrasound or any interventions, other than the weekly check-ups.

On the knitting front, the first three log cabin squares of the blanket are done and I've started the fourth. I'm still going through options in my head of how to attach them and what to put between them. I did a garter row of accent color around each block and I definitely want some purple between the blocks. I just have to figure out what the "in between" stitch pattern is and what direction it runs.

I haven't done any more weaving in or sewing on the hat or the booties I started. I've been pretty focused on the blanket. Although I did take a quick break from it this weekend to make a double knitted washcloth. I watched an episode of knitty gritty that demonstrated double knitting, and I wanted to give it a try before forgetting what I had learned. I put the first letter of our last name on the washcloth, and I'm pretty happy with the result. I don't think it is a technique I'll use a lot, since it is a little awkward and slow, but it is a nice tool in the arsenal. I could see where it would make REALLY cozy gloves or a reversible hat. Maybe I'll try that when I get back to Dulaan knitting.

Lastly, I had my first ever pedicure on Saturday. Very lovely. And I managed not laugh or flinch - impressive with my ticklish feet. :-)

Tuesday, January 23, 2007


At lunchtime, I needed a little distraction and a little time on my feet, so I wandered around the yarn shop across the street for a little while.

The advantages of having a shop so close to work is that I can pick up a set of needles, some sock yarn, yarn for a small present, etc with little planning. I've even rarely gone there to buy yarn at lunch because I finished my bus project on the way to work.

The disadvantage is that temptation is so close. There are many days that I don't leave the office for lunch (especially in the winter), but when I do it is difficult not to go browse. And I find that I can rarely browse and walk out empty-handed.

But today was an exception. I browsed and I didn't buy. I think this primarily a result of the products the shop carries and not any amazing power on my part. (I was in Jo-ann over the weekend and couldn't resist buying two skeins of kitchen cotton that I will use for baby stuff but don't immediately need. Even less so now that I have a car to drive and don't have to stock up on yarn because I don't know when I will next be in a yarn shop...)

Don't get me wrong, the shop has nice yarn. But when it comes to "basics" their options are not extensive. My other primary yarn shop has a large section of wall filled with Cascade 220 and Lamb's Pride in a variety of colors. This shop has a wall of wool in a variety of colors, but there are more brands and thicknesses, and many of them only come in 3-4 colors. This shop also doesn't have any basic cotton - It's all significantly blended (50 cotton, 50 nylon) or mercerized - which isn't great for bibs and washcloths. Lastly, the shop carries a lot more funky yarns than I think a shop of such a small size should have. I've seen a lot of women in there buying novelty yarn and big needles, so I assume it serves them well...I just have no interest in it.

Anyway, the current possible project I'm mulling over is the circle of fun rug from Mason Dixon Knitting. It would be for the baby's room. I really should do so stash diving before I make any purchases to see if I have the beginnings of possible yarn for this project. Partially, I need to find a cost-effective means of obtaining the yarn, and at the same time I'm not really sure what colors from the room I want to pull into the rug. I might need to wait until we have the glider to see what's what.

(For those who know our registry - yes, there is a rug on there. And yes, I would still like to have it. I'm just not assuming that we're actually going to get it. And even if we did, the room is big enough that we could easily use two rugs.)

Monday, January 22, 2007

Less than a month to go (probably) - My back, a party and TV catch-up

I hit 36 weeks this weekend. On Saturday, this pregnancy will be full term.

Our child will likely be born 2-6 weeks from now.

The most popular question at the moment is whether we are ready. Honestly, I don't know that anyone is really ever ready, so I just keep saying that we're about as ready as we're going to be. There are a few more chapters of a couple more books that I would like to read. There is a little more painting and knitting I'd like to get done. There are a few more things we plan to buy during the next credit card period. But really, if she arrived tomorrow we wouldn't be caught totally off guard.

(Okay, I haven't packed my hospital bag yet, and I have tickets to a show tomorrow night that I'd like to see...but otherwise we wouldn't be caught off guard. ;-)

I had a back relapse on Thursday afternoon. It never got quite as bad as it did Thanksgiving weekend, but it lasted longer and required tylenol and heat to totally go away. In this case I blame vacuuming and mopping from Wednesday night - so those are off-limits tasks for a while. Hopefully the house won't get too bad...or if it does I will be able to convince R to deal with it.

In order to continue using the heating pad and to take multiple breaks, I worked a half day from home on Friday. I completed the task I had intended and got a little straightening up done in preparation for Saturday. I had considered going into work in the afternoon if I was feeling okay, but I took a surprising 1 1/2 hour nap at 10:30 (I didn't think I was that tired...) and the possibility of going in went out the window. Especially as I sat in the cozy house watching the snow fall outside...

Saturday was the "Meet Marcus and Max Party" at our house. It was a lovely time and we actually had four small children in attendance - Finn @ 8 weeks, Max @ 5 months, Marcus @ 9 months and Vivian @ 1 year. They were all well-behaved and fun to watch. It was great to spend the afternoon with some of my favorite ladies and get to see their little ones in action. I was a little worried that it would be overwhelming and put some fear in to me about what we have to expect, but it was actually pretty reassuring. I realize that our newborn might not sleep as much as Finn seemed to or be as content being held by others as Marcus is...but even the occasional crying and fussiness didn't freak me out too much, especially since they all seemed to be so "easily" calmed by their mothers. (I put that in quotes because it might not seem so easy to all of the mothers, but it seemed like it to me!) All I had to do was straighten up the house (which has the added bonus of leaving us with a mostly clean house afterward), make the Stouffer's lasagna and clean-up afterward. Very easy, even at 8 months pregnant. ;-)

Between my recovery time on Thursday evening and last night, R and I got "caught up" on LOST and Battlestar Galactica. We finished watching Season 2 of LOST and rewatched all but one of the Season 3 episodes from the DVR (finally, we have space again!). For BSG, we had recorded the Season 3.0 marathon from 1/15, although somehow it didn't record the first three. :-( We read the episode synopses and I'll be on the lookout for them. The Season 3.5 premiere of BSG was last night, and we finished the last episode of 3.0 20 minutes before it aired. Timing is everything. :-) I didn't stay up to watch it, though I did watch the opening sequence before going up to get ready for bed just to make sure that Adama wasn't going to nuke the planet.

Both for the sake of the DVR and our sanity, it is nice to be caught up on both series. It wasn't even too confusing when we were watching alternate episodes of each one. :-) I realize I am not a "typical" female for enjoying Science Fiction, but I think it is really the genre that R and I enjoy the most together. We're each willing to watch other things that the other enjoys (TV and movies), but I think Science Fiction (a over the top comedies by Mel Brooks, Steve Martin, etc) are where we have the most interest in common. Although I'm a bit more dis-interested by series I haven't seen from the beginning. I really didn't get into BSG until we watched from the beginning, and I had a similar reaction to Firefly and LOST (though not really science fiction, I think it has elements in common).

I also think the DVR is going to be a savior when we have an infant in the house!

Wednesday, January 17, 2007


I don't think the mural will be totally done by Saturday, as I had hoped, but it will certainly be far enough along that my guests will be able to get the gist. All that is left to do of the first coat is the dark green around the vines. Then all of the medium and dark green needs a second coat and the light needs a bit of touching up where there is pencil showing.

I'm not going to start the bugs and insects until the rest is done. It was just too hard to see where they should go when the letters and vines were drawn in pencil. I also need to look at my acrylic paint stash and see if I need any colors!

I think I'm going to do a light green background for each insect first, so I won't have to work so hard to get them to show up on the dark green background. I'm also still debating about whether I'm going to add any veining on the vines or just leave them solid.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

One more positive

If I would have been in drive instead of reverse when I made my pedal mistake I would have hit our neighbor's car who has the annoying habit of parking in the alley directly opposite our garage. Probably would have done less damage to our car, but much damage to hers.

It could have been worse...much worse...

And yes, I will stop obsessing over this soon and get back to fun topics like babies and knitting.

2 steps forward, one back

Yesterday was better than I expected, although there are still obvious residual issues from Sunday night's "event".

Positives for the car - the repairs are covered by insurance, including most of the cost of a rental car during repairs, and the car has been received by the dealer.

Negatives for the car - we don't know how long the repairs will take and they won't start them until the insurance company looks at the car and approves the estimated cost.

Positives for the garage - R and I made the repairs to the frame of the garage door yesterday. Before we put up the last piece of trim, we ran the garage door and it was running better than it had been before our repairs.

Negatives for the garage - After putting up the last of the trim, the garage door refused to operate. R took it off of the automatic opener, and it moved along it's track just fine. So it is apparently just an issue of tension or sensitivity. (It shouldn't be a major repair, but it will require us to call someone...)
Also, in the semi-negative category, our frame repair was really just a band-aid job. It is stronger than it was, but the frame really needs to be disassembled and rebuilt properly, which is not something we really had the time or inclination for yesterday. It's also unclear when it will be warm and dry enough to prime, paint and caulk the new trim...but given what this winter has been like, it seems likely that we'll get the opportunity before spring

Other positives:

Though yesterday's constant wetness and rain made the job less fun, the temperature's in the 50s weren't bad. Especially when you consider that today's temps are in the 30s and it has been snowing all morning...

We finished before it got dark, and R was able to spend the evening with a friend as planned and I was able to work on the mural in the nursery.

Despite the downsides and unplanned nature of our work, it has been a while since R and I have worked on a home improvement project together, and it is nice to work together as a team. It was as fun as it could be, under the circumstances.

I still feel kind of crappy about the whole thing, but the emotional response to talking and thinking about it seems to have passed. I don't think I'll really stop feeling bad until the car is fixed and the garage door is working again.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Feeling Crappy

After a great day, I didn't take enough care while pulling the car into
the garage, and I swiped the driver's side and side mirror into the
frame of the garage door. I had my foot on the wrong pedal and
accelerated into the "hit". Both are damaged. At least, we can
probably do the garage repairs ourselves. But dealing with both
tomorrow will take time away from time I had planned to spend on the
baby's room.

We will take pictures tomorrow for insurance purposes (that will be our
first phone call in the morning to see if the repairs are covered and
what they want us to do first), but I doubt I will be posting them. At
the moment, even thinking about it makes me feel bad all over again, so
I won't be sharing photos. Someday I'll be able to laugh about it I'm
sure, but at the moment I just feel like an idiot and I'm cursing myself
for not being more careful and taking my time.


Saturday, January 13, 2007

Lots of Shopping

We're getting there.

Two hours in IKEA resulted in:
A 42" high Billy bookcase + an extension (baby's room)
A RAST drawer unit (for the bathroom for the baby's bathtub)
Four Ekarp lamps, two with Arden Bloom shades (our bedroom) and two with Alfhild Fagel shades (baby's room)
Four Jarpen shelves with Eight Hall brackets (2 sets for baby's room, 2 sets for my room)
And a cutting board for the kitchen (I don't remember the name)

Then we went to Target:
We returned the car seat that just failed Consumer Reports' tests

They didn't have the seat we wanted in stock, so we used the gift card to get:
3 hooded towels
A Boppy and 2 Boppy slipcovers
A thermometer
A baby grooming kit
Lanisoh cream
2 nursing bras and 2 nursing camisoles (you probably don't really need to know that, but I mention it for completeness :-)

At Home Depot we bought:
A new cordless drill (mine stopped recharging)
Green paint and roller covers for Rudy's room
drywall screws for hanging the shelves

After some time spent putting together and installing some of our purchases, we settled down to watch some episodes of LOST. During which time I browsed the internet for the car seat we want. I found the one I wanted at, and I ordered it to pick it up at the store. Which saves me from going from store to store to find the one we want. Plus, I was able to look at all of the fabrics available from Graco, and choose the one I like the best. Having been prepared to take whatever I could get, this makes me happy.

It might not be totally finished, but i think the baby's room will be in great shape by the time people come next Saturday and we have almost everything on the "must purchase before the baby's born" list.

Tomorrow - completion of shelf construction, painting, knitting with friends and more painting

Wednesday, January 10, 2007


I made last night's post very close to my I was rather hurried trying to get it all up quickly. A few additional notes:

1 - The baby's room obviously isn't done yet. We need to hang pictures and two doors, I plan to do a painting over the crib, the painting materials need to be removed and we need to buy a bookcase. Also, we don't have the glider yet.

Also, note all of the "blue things" in the doorway. Stewart continues to enjoy this room a lot - the wood floor is great for playing soccer with his little plastic toys.

2 - The snowdrop shawl was made with a 95% merino wool, 5% cashmere laceweight that I bought at The Wool Gathering in September. The skein was very tangled in several spots, to the point that I had to cut the yarn twice to avoid spend hours untangling it.

3 - Marcus' blanket was made with a superwash wool from Brown Sheep in Grass Green. I used *every* bit of yarn I had. I had to spit splice a few cuttings on at the end to finish the bind off.

4 - The cabled vest was made with Swish superwash from Knit Picks. The color in real life is less washed out than it looks, but the flash photo made the green look like Marcus' blanket...

5 - The felted slippers were made with Wool of the Andes by Knit Picks.

6 - The three solid colored fetching gloves were made with Andean Silk from Knit Picks. Also, I made a 5th pair for my SIL that didn't get photographed. Those were similar to the blue-purple ones, but made with a rusty orange and black alpaca yarn. The cables were also not as twisted...I move the stitches to left in two moves rather than one.

7 - The corazon mittens were made with Cascade superwash. I'm a big fan of this pattern and there will probably be a pair of these for me in the future.

There are still things I've made for myself that need to be photographed - but I feel so much more "caught up" now!

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Photos, and lots of 'em

Okay, so Stewart curled up in my lap and the R put in Season 2 episodes of LOST that we didn't finish watching before Season 3 began. (The goal is to finish watching them and rewatch the Season 3 fall episodes before the rest of Season 3 begins.)

With one arm trapped under Stewart for much of the time (so no knitting), I finally installed Photoshop Elements on my new laptop and uploaded a bunch of photos to our online gallery. Making it easy for me to post them here.

First, the baby's room:

Then, knitting:

A very belated picture of a catnip mouse made in 2006 and Effie being the first to test it out.

Fingerless gloves for my cousin, Christmas 2006 - Fiesta yarn - Wool/Mohair blend

Here is the secret Christmas knitting. The snowdrop shawl (designed by The Yarn Harlot) made for Mom. Here it is blocking.

Here is a close-up.

A belated picture of the blanket I made for Marcus - finished this summer and gifted at his mom's shower this fall. The design was made up by me.

Close-up of Marcus' blanket

Cabled Vest for Grandma for Christmas 2006. I made up the cable pattern.

Close-up of Cabled Vest

Cabled mittens for my other Grandma for Christmas 2006. My first project made with Koigu PPPM - lovely. I started with a vogue pattern for gloves and turned them into mittens since I knitted much of the first one in the dark on the way to Ohio. :-)

Felted slippers for my cousin for Christmas 2006. The base pattern is Fuzzy Feet from Knitty. I added the Bengal Stripes (improvised).

The myriad of Fetching gloves made for Christmas 2006. The only pair made exactly as the pattern calls for are the ones in the upper right. Upper left are two color and longer at the beginning and end. Lower left are longer and I added beads between the cables. Lower right is a different cable pattern and is the longest pair.

Close-up of the Fetching pair that has beads.

mittens for our niece for Christmas 2006. The pattern was shortened because I wasn't really knitting to the gauge the pattern called for.

Rewind to 30 weeks

This picture is mostly to show you the sweater I mentioned in my previous post, but also so that you can see that this pregnancy really hasn't resulted in a huge belly. I'm more obviously pregnant not, but several "belly pictures" I've seen of other women at 34 weeks look much bigger than I do. Maybe I'll post another picture before this is over. We'll see.

(I'm also posting because I know I owe lots of knitting photos, and that probably won't be happening until the baby's room is done...)

I should also mention that the cute purple bunny was knitted by Katie and the cake was made by my MIL.

34 weeks

That means that the due date is less than 6 weeks away. Describing how I feel about that with one word is impossible. It's the end of 9 months of waiting, but the beginning of the rest of our life as a family and the beginning of lots of work and joy and challenges and learning and dirty diapers. :-)

I'm wearing my ribbed maternity sweater today. I think it might be one of the best sweaters I've made for myself. After the first blocking, the sleeves were a little long, but today they seem to be just right. Today is the coldest day we've had this year (there was snow in the air this morning and the temp isn't supposed to leave the 30s), so it was a good day for wool. I'm not convinced that this more-convincing winter weather is going to stick around, but it feels appropriate while it lasts.

I didn't work on the mural in the baby's room over the weekend. Instead I worked on the overhaul of my office. Though this might seem like it could wait, I realized that it was important to get that work done in order to have the ability to put my stuff away that has been littering other parts of the house. There is still more to do, but the room is much less scary and most importantly the extra table can come back up there and be removed from the dining room where it will soon be in the way of space needed for baby stuff like the pack'n'play.

I'm working on a Dale of Norway designed fair isle baby hat, and I love it. The ends to weave it will be annoying, but it is so adorable (and warm) that it will be worth it. I think there will be enough Baby Ull left over for more DoN projects, though I think the next will be limited to 2 or 3 colors...instead of 7. :-)

Thursday, January 04, 2007


I've finally explored the new template and editing options in the new version of Blogger. The new color scheme is closer to what I wanted all along, but I didn't want to spend the time editing the HTML before. My changes still required a little HTML work to get the image I wanted at the top and not the standard template header. I will probably do some more work on the image at some point and maybe even figure out how to do a continuous band of color behind it. But it's not bad for someone who got her main HTML "training" in 1994...

My back bothered me almost all day yesterday, and therefore I spent the evening on the couch. I began sewing up the sheep bootees (I think it is taking longer to sew up the pieces than it took to knit them - ugh) and we watched more Battlestar Galactica. We're now into Season 2.5 and the ruthlessness and cruelty of Admiral Kane has me astounded. It makes me somewhat glad that we've seen bits and pieces of Season 3, so I know that Commander Adama has to survive somehow...

For the bus this week, I've picked up an old pair of socks that were "finished" but need reworking. I had the yardage to make pretty tall socks (toe-up) and I waited too long to add calf shaping the first time around. So I frogged back to the ankle and am working up the first leg again. It's nice to be making something for me that I don't have to worry whether or not it will fit post-pregnancy. (I don't have the impression that my feet have gotten bigger as a result of the pregnancy, although I should probably put on an old pair of shoes to see for sure.

Tonight is our infant care class. I am surpriseingly excited about it. I think because it is the last big thing we need to "learn" before Baby M joins us, and because I am anxious to see how R responds to it. I'm sure he will be a great Dad, but I'm glad he was interested in going to the class, too. I'm not going to be the only one changing diapers around here!

Wednesday, January 03, 2007


I didn't get quite as much done over the week off as I had wanted to, but given my lack of physical stamina I probably shouldn't be surprised. I also did things like watching TV while writing thank you notes, which slows down the process considerably.

I finished writing all of the thank you notes for baby-related items. This includes everything that Miss M got for the shower and for christmas. This, in itself, is a big just isn't one that is visible in the house...

I finished all of the non-mural painting in the baby's room. The closet door, closet shelf, window sill and door to my office are all now painted.

Most of the things that don't belong on the first floor have been moved to their proper locations. The "clutter" began to develop the weekend of the shower and only got worse after christmas. There are still some empty boxes, old laptops and miscellaneous items that don't belong where they are, but the situation is under much better control than it was on December 26th. :-)

Two knitted hats to donate to "Caps to the Capitol". They'll be in the mail as of lunchtime today - which is the submission deadline.

The watching of many episodes of Battlestar Gallactica. We watched all of Season One and I think we're nearing the midpoint of Season Two. I'm enjoying it much more now that we've started from the beginning. Watching random Season Two and Season Three episodes wasn't doing much for me. The show is too serialized and there are too many characters for me to get into it later on.

Lastly, some errands were run. I got a few more baby items with a coupon that expired at the end of the year and some christmas money. We still have more needs, but we will at least wait until the next credit card period to make another dent. And some things can wait until February, too. I don't think we'll need the stroller from day one...especially in winter. Although when you consider the warm winter we've been having, it certainly doesn't seem impossible that Miss M and I could go out for walks before spring.