I was going to take a break from knitting for awhile. Then I realized that not having a creative outlet makes me cranky. I'm already struggling with being more irritable than normal- I think this always happens at the end of pregnancy for me- please tell me I'm not alone. So I decided to knit this little bonnet. It went really fast so I may make another in white. I just need to do an I cord or some braids for the sides.
joining Ginny's Yarn Along-
Knitting- still working on the top down baby cardi and thankfully made some good progress while on vacation. I'm ready to pick up stitches for the sleeves as soon as I get a few moments of quiet.
Reading- just finished The French House by Don Wallace- now back to Tess.
joining Ginny's Yarn Along for the first time in a while...
Knitting- just finished these funny little slippers for Silas. I'm hoping they actually stay on his feet this winter. I started a cardigan for the baby in a really pretty soft gray. I had about 3 or 4 inches done when I realized I had messed up the pattern so I had to rip back almost to the beginning!
Reading- Tess of the d'Urbevilles
At one point a couple of years ago I realized that I am a much more productive and happy person when I try to include most or all of the following in a day (even if it's only 15 minutes!)-
Reading God's Word
Knitting- or some other creative pursuit
I am going to try to get back to that. Back to basics, sort of. I've been very focused on that schedule lately (which all has been working except for the getting up at 5 part!) and I need to be sure to schedule time for me to do those things. They are a part of taking care of me that makes me a better mama- more filled and inspired and equipped and able to do this intense work of raising a house full.
So I have a new plan for including exercise in my days. You have to dress the part, right? There have been days when I suddenly discover I've got 20 minutes that I could use to go to the basement and walk on the treadmill. But then I realize I'd have to change my clothes so I don't bother. Well, yesterday I bought workout clothes and I plan to wear them 3-4 days a week as a reminder and preparation for getting myself moving. I may find that I have 10-15 minutes to do a kettle bell workout or 20 minutes to walk at various times throughout the day and I need to be ready to seize those opportunities!
When I first decided to knit sweaters for Ella and Charlotte I was going to try to have them done by fall. That was a safe goal. Then I got this big idea. Things were going fine until I washed and blocked Charlotte's sweater and the yarn, which I thought would shrink a bit, actually stretched out and got kind of funny. The sleeves are way too long now so I'm going to take them out and shorten them. Then last weekend I was going to begin a knitting marathon in order to get Ella's sweater done for Easter. But the kids started coming down with the stomach flu. Needless to say, my weekend included ZERO knitting. So I have changed my goal for the sweaters to have them done by fall. Then the dresses, which were done super fast by Kate and Nana and are ADORABLE, will last longer with tights and a sweater added. This just isn't a season of life when I can manage lots of knitting. I need to keep my goals attainable!
Many an Easter has gone by without any attention to new dresses and shoes and hair bows and all the rest. Since the day is about so much more, I tend to kind of dread coming up with all the "finery" for four girls. But since I'm knitting Sunday sweaters for the two younger girls and Kate has been learning to sew with my mother in law, I thought new dresses were called for. Here's the pattern and fabric I picked out this week alongside the yarn I'm using for their sweaters. I think it has such a fun, vintage-y look and I'm so excited about it!
Ella's is the purple and yellow and Charlotte's is the teal and coral. Now I'd better get to knitting!
(joining Ginny's yarn along)
Yarning Along with Ginny over at Small Things
Last night I picked up my mystery KAL shawl for the first time in a week. I had to take a break from it and I ordered new (longer) needles so now I can stretch it out and see the pattern. I have some mistakes for sure, but I'm afraid if I rip back several rows to fix them I'll never finish it. My stitch count is right so I'm going to just keep plugging along with it and finish it eventually- and try not to be bothered that I couldn't keep up with the Ravelry group.
On a happier knitting note, I started the Sunday Sweater for Charlotte and plan to make one for Ella as well. I'm using a pretty coral color for Charlotte's called Conch from Knit Picks and I am really enjoying this pattern. It's knitting I can do with my people around and not mess up- quite a relief after the "hunker down in my room late at night or early in the morning when I should be sleeping" knitting of the shawl!
I'll spare you the pictures of my very little progress on my shawl. Last week I had zero time for knitting so I've fallen behind in my mystery knit along. Tonight Pete and the 3 oldest children have church activities so I'm planning to let the younger ones watch a movie so I can hide in my room and make some progress! This is the kind of knitting that requires silence and concentration- both very hard to come by. I'm enjoying the challenge for the most part, but I'll be relieved when it's over with and I can move on to some less stressful knitting. I'm nearly done with Silas' sweater. I just have to either put in a button band or a zipper and I haven't decided yet which I'm going to do. I did buy yarn to make this sweater for Ella and Charlotte which I'm very excited about! I plan to give myself plenty of time, making it my goal to have them done in the fall.
I'm reading this book which is just all a bunch of dreaming for me because Pete says I can't have chickens (and our town agrees) unless we move. So we'll start with a garden and see how I do with that.
Mondays tend to be long days. I call them the school day that never ends. It's a day to get back to routine after a couple of days that are different. And it's a day that we cover all of our subjects, including math meetings with daddy at night for the 2 oldest. We often skip our "for fun" read aloud on Mondays just to be sure we have time for all of our work. Yesterday I felt like we needed that down time though. We're listening to an Anne of Avonlea audiobook right now. Peter got the cd ready as I got cozy with my knitting and the kids got busy drawing. Suddenly I realized I had two other knitters with me in the living room. And they were knitting on their own!! That was a lovely moment for this yarn loving mama!
Maddie is making a cowl and Ella is making a doll scarf.
Shall we call this Death by Lace? I've never done lace before and this mystery knit along is challenging me to say the least. I do not want to give up. But 3 rows forward, 2 rows back is getting old! Tonight I hope to spend some quiet focused time on it after the kids go to bed. I've been doing simple patterns for so long. I know it's time to learn something new and branch out a bit, but this has been frustrating. Knitting is supposed to be calming, right? Well, hopefully I'll get it soon and then I'm sure I'll feel quite accomplished. I do love the support and community on ravelry.com without which I would have surely given up already.
I haven't been reading very much because in my "spare" time I'm obsessed with figuring out my knitting. I did start this book last week though and it's quite fascinating. There is something really attractive about the idea of growing all of our own food. It's made me think we should move out to the country and get some chickens and have a huge garden. It sounds like such a quiet and peaceful life. Until you think about the work of it. And the dirt. And the living farther away from "civilization" again. So I think we'll stay put. We do plan to have a big garden this year though. The chickens will just have to remain a "dream." I think I like being clean to much too become a farmer.