Friday, March 30, 2007

Pooper Scooper

This week has been an unexpected experience of being a Stay At Home Mom.

As you may recall, I spent 4 months of maternity confinement last year after the birth of little Karalyn. At the end I was a little relieved to go back to work and start talking to adults again.

This week Karalyn stayed home due to another bout of stomach flu (the third for her, thus the third for me). I must say, in annoying 20/20 hindsight, those 4 months after she was born couldn't hold a candle to this one week.

Maybe it was because I was sick too. Maybe it was because the time was so unexpected. But geez, I am really not cut out to be a SAHM. Kudos and more power to the ones who are because it's a hard job. Especially so when your offspring is ill.

I managed to get some knitting done during Karalyn's naps although no photos yet. I'm working on the Santa Cruz Hoodie from Knit2Together for a friend's new baby and it's so cute. I'm done with everything except the hood itself, but it will be done and gifted up nice this weekend. I'll post photos.

Oh, and about the pooper scooper. Well I took Karalyn to the doctor. I managed to spend $20 and an hour of my time for nothing except to be told to scoop poop! He didn't diagnose Karalyn's illness, just vaguely said the stomach flu was going around and to give her lots of fluids. Then he handed me 5 frickin' sterilized vials for poop samples. I was supposed to collect the samples and send them to the lab. Do you know how hard it is to collect poop from a baby with diarhhea??

OK. Now that I've sickened you all with this little tale I'll stop. May you have a wonderful weekend.

Happy Knitting.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

What Season Are You?

There's a lot to catch up on so let's begin. This is going to be a photo-heavy post so prepare yourself. Get a cup of coffee while you wait for the pictures to appear.

Very first and foremost, I want to thank each one of you who responded to my knitting poll. I received many more answers than I ever expected. My paper, or at least the draft, was well-received by my writing workshop. My instructor thinks it is definitely publishable; the problem is where. It's very intimidating to submit it to newspapers and magazines and I'm just scared.

Last Saturday I visited a yarn store in the area (Elk Grove) that I'd never been to before, Knitique. Wow, what a place - a feast for the knitter who loves color and texture. As Cyndi said, it's the hippest LYS so far. Speaking of Cyndi, here she is (middle) with Caitlyn and Ruth on either side of her. This gives you a sense of how stuffed the store was, but so cute. Danielle, the LYSO, had such pretty displays all over. I especially liked how she had unwound skeins like Manos Cotton Stria and hung them from pegs on the wall.


Most of the walls were painted apple green but the back wall, where Danielle had placed the class table, was painted fuschia. Such a happy bright place!

Now notice how the gals are happily knitting in the picture. BTW, they all happened to be knitting socks that day. We brought goodies to eat and drink which you can't see from my vantage point. I would've joined the ladies in their knitting but I was distracted by


who would've terrorized the entire store if I hadn't held her the entire time. My childless knitting pals got a glimpse of my world that morning...Karalyn preoccupied all of my time at Knitique. I couldn't put her down to play (uh, did you notice how much stuff there was in the store?) so I walked around showing her all the yarn and letting her feel different textures.

There is one confession though...towards the end, I walked her to the back wall and was looking at some very pretty magenta cotton yarn. I was holding two skeins against my chest and holding on to Karalyn while I rummaged in the bin to find more. I only found one additional ball. So I put the other two down on the table and that's when I noticed that Karalyn had spit up on them. Ahh, that was an unexpected purchase.

In actual knitting news, I finished the Purple Sweater by Blue Alvarez Designs. OK people, what's wrong with this picture?

manos sweater

It is so unshapely it's not even funny. In fact, I was so disgusted by the way it turned out that I blocked out the shaping as much as I could. The sweater is still very wearable but not the way it was supposed to be. The pattern is an excellent candidate for resizing, which I plan to do. It didn't include a schematic but I should've drawn one out because I would've realized the sweater wouldn't be fitted. Lots of things had to be done, like cast on less stitches, shorten the yoke and recalculate the shaping.

Now none of that is rocket science but I didn't realize it until after I had finished the yoke and tried it on. I can tell you that I was in denial at that point. Oh, I thought, it's not too bad that the eyelets are below the armhole. Uh, earth to Lynette! Hell-o? I compromised with myself and started the shaping the body right away because otherwise the shaping would've occurred around my hips. That didn't fix it the problem either and in retrospect I shouldn't have done any shaping at all and just knit an oversized sweater to salvage the project.

Silly, silly girl. I'm tired of knitting sweaters that don't fit. This project really underscored the fact that I'm smaller than the regular size small. I must work through commercial patterns and resize them, period. Caitlyn, who is even teenier than me, said, "But don't you have Sweater Wizard?" Yes I do but I haven't figured out how to take a commercial pattern and translate it into Sweater Wizard. However, the above circular raglan should be easy to re-do so that's what I'm going to try. Just not immediately. I need to step away from knitting sweaters for me.

For the next few weeks or maybe even months I'm just going to knit small items, socks. And I'm going to read my knitting books. It's ridiculous that I have so many and have never really read them. I've been reading Maggie Righetti's Sweater Design in Plain English and enjoying it a lot, although Righetti's humorous/judgemental tone sometimes annoys me. I have a lot of EZ to read too. Reading about knitting is surprisingly very relaxing. For fluff, I finished A Good Yarn by Debbie Macomber. I'm not a romance novel kind of gal but it got to me. I fnished The Shop on Blossom Street a few months ago and I was shocked that I liked it.

On a somewhat knitting-related note, two weekends ago I went with a friend to a color analysis class through Learning Exchange. Well, for the money it was disappointing. I expected to have "my colors done" and come home with a little book of personalized colors. That didn't happen but what we learned in class was intriguing enough that I found myself critiquing my closet.

I didn't know that I am a Winter!! I figured I was a Fall or maybe even Summer but I was very wrong. We took fabric swatches and held them up against us. It was very obvious I am Winter - strong, saturated but bright colors. Think teal and indigo, deep burgundy, magenta, fuschia, black, white and walnut brown (I wailed about pink). It has affected the way I look at my stash, but I was happy to note that most of the colorways are appropriate. Whew. The one thing that bothers me is that I have some orange.

This is a long post so I'll end it here, but I'll leave you with a little bit of spring. A couple of my indoor orchids are blooming. This is Jerry

jerry phal

and the other one in bloom is Vanda White...

vanda white

Have a wonderful week! Let me know what season YOU are!