Monday, March 30, 2015

The perfect hat for fall

I knitted the Antler Hat in some nice brown Cascade 220 and now I have a really on-point hat for fall.  Yes, April is almost here.  But I think I'm just really prepared now!  Let's go with that.

I've had the pattern in my Ravelry library for a while now, and I decided to make this for my March hat.  I had a couple of earlier attempts for other hats that didn't quite work out, so I grabbed a skein of the brown yarn and cast this on mostly on a whim.  So many cables.  So. many. cables.

I made this in the largest size because I felt like it.  Seriously.  You cast on 104 stitches for the largest size, and I wanted a project large enough that I could move it around comfortably on a circular needle.  I just wasn't in the mood for double pointed needles.  I made this with all the pattern repeats and now I have a super slouchy hat that's good and woodland-y.

I have 5 more skeins of this yarn left to do something with.  I was going to make a sweater for myself, but then I realized I just don't want to.  I like hats and cowls and sometimes even mittens, but I'm probably not a sweater knitter.  It's fine.  I'm building up a sweet collection of hats.

And!  I have to thank Evelyn for taking some of these pictures of me modeling the hat, like the one at the very top of this post.  She's getting super steady with my camera, and I always appreciate her help.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Dirt, seeds, birthday presents

That's what I've been getting rid of.  On Sunday I went through my craft corner thoroughly.  I pulled out some pattern books I don't want or need, rearranged my baskets and books and folders.  I tossed stuff, set aside stuff to sell, and made another addition to the donate pile.  Then I took Evelyn to see some daffodils.  And we hiked Pinnacle Mountain, because I make terrible choices.

I tossed some papers in my office at some point in the week.  And Tuesday evening, Evelyn and I dumped dirt into pots and poured some seeds in there. They may grow.  They may not.  I think we'll have good luck with the peas and morning glories. We have a couple of hanging pots up now, and our balcony is beautiful.  Evelyn's been a gardening fiend and has to put on her 'gardening hat' every time she even waters some soil. 

I also used up some cotton yarn to make Cody a potholder that looks like Captain America's shield.  I had to fiddle with a couple of patterns and I'm not completely thrilled with that improvised star, but Cody liked it and it's a really thick potholder--three layers of crocheted fabric!  His hands are safe no matter what he does with that potholder.

As it turns out, Evelyn picked out a Captain America watch for him.  So yay!

I know I should say something about Cody's birthday, but he doesn't read here so whatever.  It was a good day, and we are glad he was born.  We're going to have a good year this year!

 And I bought a tent for Cody's birthday. 

It actually doesn't take up that much space in its bag. Which, yes, I was able to smoosh back in there entirely.

We will probably have to bring other things into our home, like a tarp and maybe another sleeping bag (I can't find the one that we do own) and and and. 

But for now, we're excited about getting out more.  Our asthma isn't that rough any more, and Evelyn's a big kid now.  We're pretty pumped!

Thursday, March 19, 2015


This is an old picture from when my stash was cute and manageable.  I have some of this yarn still.

I have been trying to knit and crochet my way through some of the unwanted portions of my yarn stash--and some of the yarns I've been looking forward to using--but the destashing process hasn't been going quite as quickly as I've wanted.  I had gathered up some yarn a few weeks ago and it's been riding around in my car for a while.  I have a friend who works with kids, and I texted her a few nights ago to ask "Hey, would you want some yarn for your kids?"  When she said she did, I got down to some serious business. 

I didn't take a picture of what all I gathered up because Jesus said that's tacky, but I rounded up an extra couple of bags and I finally got to rearrange some of the boxes and packages in my craft area to where things look a bit tidier and I can find more of my stuff.  I'm excited and my friend and her kiddos are (I hope) going to really enjoy doing whatever crafty things kids do with miles upon miles of yarn of every weight, color, and texture.

Monday, March 16, 2015

Baby things

I gathered up some of Evelyn's outgrown clothes and baby toys on Friday night last week.  I wanted to move at least a few items out of the apartment before the influx of birthday gifts.  It didn't make much of a dent, but Evelyn was happy to be the big girl around her baby cousin.  And he loved her little horse toy that took up so much room in our living room. 

We gave him two bibs (I don't know why I still had them. They were adorable and handy, but we don't need them), a pair of blue jeans, and four pairs of pajamas.  There were also some stacking bowls that Sara gave Evelyn that she loved to pieces for a long time, and some stacking cups.  Bright plastic things good for nesting together and counting and naming colors.  They need more use, and I trust that Ellis is the man for the job.
Ellis touching her new big girl toys was slightly stressful for her.

Ellis playing with her new Doc McStuffins bowling pins, which also panicked her maybe a little. We remind her that she can use markers and bicycles and he cannot.  Sometimes it helps?  The sharing is good for her, and Ellis appreciates some good Doc McStuffins merchandising.

Now Evelyn is 4 and can use a pencil sharpener.  I told her a few months ago that she could use one when she was 4 because that seemed really far away at the time.  Whoops.  But a deal's a deal.  So for one of her presents, I gave her a few unsharpened pencils and a pencil sharpener in a Minnie Mouse pouch.  She was pretty happy.  She's sharpened all of her pencils now and we talk a lot about emptying the shavings into the trash and being careful about not sharpening her fingers and which way to turn the pencil and how she's very big.

I bought her a Minnie Mouse nightgown at the mall tonight.  She likes Minnie Mouse a lot and wants to keep wearing her Minnie Mouse fleece footie pajamas.  She's also been wanting a nightgown for a while because a character in a book had one.  I didn't even bother washing the thing.  I just stuck it on her before bedtime because she was so excited about it and it seems like 4 is an okay age to stick clothes on fresh from the store.  Not all the time, but for a special occasion like this.  I held her up so she could see herself completely and she was very pleased that she looked so beautiful.  She also mentioned that maybe someone would want her warm pajamas. I almost told her she could save them for fall, but she'll probably be way too big for them. Ellis probably will be, too.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Evelyn is 4!

Our girl is 4 now.  She's been looking forward to her birthday party for months now.  Her first words upon waking her "Is it my birthday now?" And she was disappointed that she wasn't as big as she thought she'd be. 

 We had a little party at her Grams house.  I took her to pick out some Hello Kitty decorations earlier in the week.  I had jokingly asked her if she wanted a grilled cheese sandwich party, but that's what she decided she wanted!

She wore a princess dress and told everyone to call her Belle.

People ate grilled cheese sandwiches and visited and I got this cute picture of Ellis snuggling with Gram because if Evelyn likes someone, then why wouldn't he?  Plus, he's been sweet enough to share his grandparents with her before so it was more than his turn.

Evelyn sang the birthday song to herself, and then we clapped for her.  Spencer lit the candles she had put in the cake herself, and she blew them out all by herself.

She tried to convince us she was big enough to handle knives, but finally settled for helping Brook cut up and serve cake.

She spent a lot of time picking out jewelry to wear with her dress this morning, so please take a moment to admire her watch.  She likes watches a lot right now.

She loved her presents and remembered  to say "thank you" for each one.  They were lovely.

I got her pictures with most of her family, but a grandma and an aunt got away before we had a chance to thank them or take a picture.

 But she was happy to see her guests.

And we were so happy they were able to come.

And  just like her birthdays from the last three years, and the day she was born, and even from before then, I felt rich in love and grateful for all the ways people have been helped us make Evelyn's little world everything she deserves.

It was a wonderful day.

With wonderful people.

And sometimes I want to act like Cody and I are raising her and no one can love her as much as we do.

But the truth is that most people love her more than I could have ever thought possible when she showed up to the party 4 years ago. 

This precious girl has changed every bit of our lives, and made life so much sweeter and harder and messier and sillier and infinitely more amazing.   Happy, happy, happy birthday, most darling girl.  You are the queen of our hearts and our whole universe.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Evelyn has been taking pictures

She's getting better, and she always puts the strap around her neck.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

March 2

Evelyn and I put some succulents into a new pot and crammed in a bunch of fairy garden things in with them.

See if you can spot both of the plants.

We have already made up 3 stories about the fairy, her garden, and Evelyn.

Cody rearranged the freezer.

Evelyn has been in bed for 30 minutes and is still calling to us to come in her room so she can talk to us. Even she is bored with it.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Sock drawer(s)

Tonight I came home (late) to a house that was just...not something I wanted to come home to after a long, long day full of rough, rough things. So on top of unloading and reloading the dishwasher, rearranging items in the freezer so that the door would close all the way, folding the rest of the clothes Cody had washed, sweeping, vacuuming, and talking to Evelyn about whatever it is I normally talk to her about, I cleaned out my underwear drawer.  And then I cleaned out Evelyn's.

In my case, I needed to get rid of some old underpants and get all of my socks and tights into general areas.  I'm not big on strictly regimented drawers, but it was nice to discover I have more socks than I thought now that they're all in the same corner of my drawer. I also rediscovered that I used to use that drawer to hide anything and everything back when Evelyn was going through a super-nosy time, so it was a good chance to clean out the chocolate and batteries I had.

Seriously, I think there was a cell phone battery in there. Whyyyyyy?

With Evelyn's drawer, I had to go through outgrown socks and pajamas.  She picked out some pajamas to go to Ellis.  I gathered up baby hairbows and pacifier clips and itty bitty socks (socks that, let's be honest, she probably wore last summer) and sorted them into throwaway and donate piles.  I found her bathing suits and she put one on to wear for the rest of the evening.  Backwards.

Okay, really I just needed to exert some control over my environment and enjoy some order and tangible results.  I don't get that a lot and it's probably my very favorite thing. Evelyn found a rattle that she wants to give her baby cousin, Nora, and I'm glad she wants to pass on her baby toys.  This is someone who didn't want to throw away a bottle of baby lotion we haven't put on her in probably a year and now has it sitting in the middle of her train set.  It's a relief to know that can watch me declutter without freaking out about some of her things going away.  Because some of her things did go away, but she knows that she has plenty left for herself (and now I can find it!!) and her things can still be enjoyed by other people.

And really, who wouldn't want to give a little giraffe rattle or something to that little chub face?