Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Little Boy Blue

Well, here it first attempt at designing my own knitted garment. A teeny, tiny little boy's first sweater. It is stockinette and feather and fan stitches, with a garter stitch collar. It opens assymetrically in the front, mostly because I couldn't figure out (being such a new knitter) how to divide the pattern up midway through. It is cute being different though, I like it. It ties closed with a ribbon at the neckline instead of buttons.

I was so happy with how it turned out, that I decided to be even braver and try something I had never made before, much less designed myself.

It's a itsy bitsy baby bonnet. The feather and fan stitch makes such a pretty scalloped edge on the front and sides of the bonnet...It's really lovely.

Both of these pieces are knit from Bernat Baby Softee in the Baby Denim color which is such a nice rich shade of blue, not that typical baby blue color associated with little baby boys. It's more of a cornflower color. This yarn is a sport weight acrylic, but it is so incredibly soft and most importantly...WASHABLE! I know my friend Erin's little man will look handsome in it.

The sweater is knit on US #6s and the hat on US #9s...both Clover Bamboo needles (I adore bamboo needles!)

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Baby Blues

I don't know if it's because the Bug is getting bigger, or the fact that his BB#1 started junior high this year and his BB#2 is in 3rd grade already...but I find myself feeling the Baby Blues. Not the kind you suffer from post-partum. God, I could really write a gut-wrenching entry on those kind, believe me! I'm talking more about baby lust. If you have children, you know of what I speak. That uncontrollable urge to smell that smell just one more time. Nothing smells like a newborn baby. Maybe it's the Johnson's Baby Lotion, or the powder...but I don't think so. I put both on Bug last night after his bath, and it wasn't the same at all.

I had Open House at work on Tuesday night, and there was a baby there being watched by her older sister while Mom was at Open House, and I was transfixed. I swear if I could have walked right out of the school with that baby, I would didn't help that it was of the pink flavor. That foreign concept, that mystical gender that I cannot seem to produce.

Just before this, I had almost made up my mind to tell my husband that the baby machine is shut down permanently and he should go get "el snippo". But...

I would love to have a daughter. Sometimes, in quiet honest moments...I don't know if I can live without one. I am close to my mom and I've always just assumed that I would have a little girl and we would be buddies while she is small and I would hate her during the teenage years as she would hate me, but that when she worked her way out of that inhuman phase, that we would be buddies again.

I just don't know if it is in the cards for me. I absolutely am crazy in love with my three boys...don't get me wrong. I just feel some small, pinkly deocrated corner of my heart is empty. It doesn't help that some friends are having a little pink one any day, or that a girl at work is too. (She brought in pictures of the most gorgeous frilly nursery the other day, and I swear? The pangs of envy were physical...)

So...another baby on our horizon? I always pretended to have four when my sister and I played house.

And what if Number 4 was also of the Blue variety? Why, I'd love him just as crazily as his three brothers and call myself lucky to have him...and admit defeat to the Gods Who Will Not Grace Me With a Daughter. Maybe, just maybe, they know something I don't...

On a Knitting Note, I am working on a sweater for my friend at work who is having a little blue boy herself here in November. Her shower is next Thursday, I don't think it will be done in time, but it is going to be so pretty. I'm designing it myself. Here is what I have done so far on the back panel:

I am going to start the rest of the back (top) in stockinette and then the front panels and sleeves will be the same...more pictures to follow.

Sunday, September 18, 2005

So Busy...

Okay, so I totally forgot (as I do every single year) how crazy busy the first two or three weeks of school are. There is all the paperwork to complete, and the classes to get straightened out, and the books to issue, the first faculty meeting, the first union meeting...and on and on and on. Oh, and they always decide to have Open House in there too! (Ours is this coming Tuesday night). So there is the room cleaning and straightening and the bulletin boards to decorate so they look nice for the kids and the parents. the midst of all this craziness, there has been some knitting. I am still checking away at the checkerboard scarf. It is coming along and getting longer by the day. I also began another baby sweater. This one for a co-worker who is having a little boy in November. Her baby shower is coming up in 2 weeks and I'd like to have it done by then, but I am also being realistic...probably not.

I am being very brave on this one, and designing it myself! Yes, I know, I know, what the hell am I thinking? I have only been knitting for about one year. I have only made one other baby sweater before in that time. I must be insane.

I am using the measurements from the last baby sweater I knit (Debbie Bliss Cardigan with Seed Stitch Bands) and am improvising my own design using feather and fan and stockinette. When it gets to the point where it has something to show for itself, I will post pictures, but for now, you'll just have to wonder.

Saturday, September 10, 2005

Busy Week

Well, this was my first week back at school. Tuesday was just for faculty and staff and then the children came on Wednesday. Tuesday was difficult, being in the building without my friend Toni for the first time, seeing a new teacher in her room, going to a faculty meeting and not having her there with her pointed commentary and frankness. There were a few moments that I got weepy, and they hit me at strange times, but somehow I made it through. Wednesday was just too hectic to really think about anything much at all. I also found out what caused Toni's sudden tragic death. A brain aneurysm. Not very comforting to hear for someone like me who suffers from headaches on a weekly, sometimes daily, basis. It just goes to show...every day is really a gift.

I say this every year on the first weekend, but I really like my classes this year. The kids seem nice and as well behaved as I could rationally expect. Give them a bit, and I'll be eating those words. They are ninth graders mostly (I also have one section of English 11) and so they are dramatic and hormonal and cranky, and basically, different every single day. It keeps you on your toes, that is for sure! By November, I am certain I will strongly dislike at least one of them, and if it weren't terribly mean and rude, not to mention a legal issue, I would even predict which one...yes, he has a name. No, I will not publish it here... : )

I haven't been knitting much this week, for obvious reasons. (Who knew my feet could be so tired??) But I know a post with no pictures is boring, so here you go:

This is my latest stash-busting scarf. It is knit in Bernat Satin yarn in the colorway Banana. It is a checkerboard pattern of five knits then five purls for five rows, then you switch and do the opposite for the next five rows. It's mindless and goes fast, both of which are good for me right now. It does lead to sloppy side edges, although mine are usually sloppy anyways (any ideas or tips for me to neaten them up would be greatly appreciated by the way). I plan to do a crochet border all around the edges when I am done to hide the slovenly edges. I think I might give this one to my mother...she loves yellow.

I escaped by myself today to Borders to look at knitting books and came away with three new ones:

The brand new Wrap Style by Pam Allen--the sequel to Scarf Style. I have to say, it's every bit as good, I love it. I also got one called Knit Baby Blankets! which is edited by Gwen Steege.

It is sooo cute and I can't wait to knit almost all of the blankets in there at some point in the next few years...they have a gorgeous one that is a pond with lily pads and froggies and everything! I also got Zen and the Art of Knitting by Bernadette Murphy.

I love the Knit Lit series of books, and this one seems similar. (By the way, Knit Lit the Third comes out on September 27, 2005. I have already pre-ordered!) I was actually wanting to get 50 Baby Booties to Knit by Zoe Mellor, but they didn't have one. I will have to keep looking.

Well, tonight is the Big Game in our house...Ohio State vs. University of Texas. My DH is a huge Buckeyes fan, so we will be glued to the TV. Well, he will...I'll be making more checkerboards...

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Some Finished Objects...

Well, it seems kind of frivolous to be posting about knitting given what is happening on the Gulf Coast. But I have to take my mind off the horrendous pictures the news was broadcasting of little babies who by now may be no more. Please, if you can...donate money to the Red Cross to help those poor people who it seems most people have forsaken, especially the children who need milk, baby formula, diapers, juice, and the basic necessities. Even if you can only spare a few dollars, it will help out. Thank you.

I finally finished the Debbie Bliss baby sweater.

Of course, you can't see it well, because it is white. It is a simple stockinette sweater with seed stitch bands. It is knit in Bernat Softee Baby so that it will wear well and be washable. I decided to forego the buttons and buttonholes and instead knit the front bands solid. I just threaded a ribbon tie through the seed stitch neck band to close the sweater. There are a blue and a pink ribbon, so that my friend can just pull out the wrong color when the time comes. It knit up very quickly, even on US 2 and 3s. I wasn't sure how it was going to come together in the finishing process because it had very little shaping, but it was very simple. All in all, a perfect first sweater for me. I will probably make another in the future. It used very little yarn...of course this is the newborn size, but still...maybe half a skein?

I also knit up this while watching all the devastation on the TV:

This is an elongated stitch scarf knit out of Katia Damasco yarn in colorway #905. You can't really see it well from the photo, but it is a gorgeous blend of a deep garnet red, dark plum, and charcoal gray. I added the garnet red fringe, but am not sure if it will stay or not. I plan to add alternating bands of the dark plum color and the charcoal gray fringe as well to tone the brightness of the red down to match the scarf more closely, but I have to go to my LYS to get some of the plum color. If it doesn't work out, I will just take the fringe off. This scarf is yet another in my effort to stash bust some of my yarns to make room for new stash.

I am still working on the Besotted Scarf out of the Araucania Nature Wool, but to be honest, the pattern is totally kicking my ass. I need to put a row counter on my needles, because I keep losing track. I'm just not feeling it. I've needed some more mindless knitting lately as I try to decompress from being sick and shift into back to work gear before school starts again next week.