Wednesday, August 30, 2006

A return to Speech Notebook Wednesday

For most of the first semester of last year I was doing Speech Notebook Wednesday. For some reason it never kicked off again after the first of the year, but now I'm starting it up again.

If you want to catch up, the ones from the past two weeks are on flickr.

A birthday present

Three years ago today Hattie was born.

It's absolutely incredible how much of a difference in our lives she's made already, even at this young age. We figured out fairly early on that she is one of those people whose personality just will not quit.

We have a full day today -- Open House at her school, a school-sponsored Ice Cream Social after everyone else gets out of school, and then a family celebration at dinner. I'll post pictures of that later.

In the meantime, here's her present from Tim and me:

My first foray into the world of two-color freezer paper stenciling. I got the idea from Knitting Iris here, who said she saw them originally here at chrysanthemum. Perfect for a butterfly birthday, I thought. This is the back of the shirt.

But I had a lot more trouble with this one than I've had with others I've done. There was a noticeable amount of bleeding from the freezer paper not sticking as securely. Not sure what caused that. Maybe ironing freezer paper to a painted surface doesn't work as well. But a few touch-ups later and I think it will be fine.

Happy Birthday, Sweetie!

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

A cautionary tale

Haven't posted in a while because things have been crazier than usual, mostly due to this:

A week ago Friday we were at a Back-to-School event celebrating the end of the first week of school. There was a DJ in a funny hat, a limbo contest, hamburgers and hot dogs, and lots of kids. In short, it was bedlam.

The kids were all running around playing on the playground equipment, including (dun-dun-DUN) the monkey bars. Following a cute little girl who was in his class last year, Nate jumped up on the monkey bars, missed his grab on the third bar, and fell down flat on his chest. Tim and I were both within 5-10 feet of him at the time.

Tim picked him up and we could see immediately that he'd broken his arm. As the emergency room nurse noted, there was an "obvious deformity." Or as I call it, he had an S-shaped arm. People's forearms are not supposed to bend at a 45 degree angle.

So we ditched the girls with the first neighbor we encountered and took off for the emergency room.

Nate was extremely brave throughout the whole ordeal. It took us half an hour or so to get to the hospital and although he was very pale under his freckles, he didn't cry at all. They took us right in and gave him a painkiller. By the time we got home at 1:30 a.m., he had a bunch of x-rays and a new, blue cast. As it turned out he had broken both the bones in his right forearm.

I am glad to say that he says he hasn't been in any pain since he got to the hospital. We are very thankful for that. And after a little swelling for the first few days, it's been more of a hassle than anything else. Bathing is a challenge when you can't get your arm wet from the shoulder down.

It's worth noting that the doctor who set Nate's arm said that most of the broken arms he sees are the result of falls from monkey bars (or "donkey bars" as Hattie calls them).

So BEWARE of the monkey bars!!!

(Please also note that in the picture above Nate is showing us where he lost a tooth a couple of days ago -- bottom, just right of center.)

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Summer's End

This past weekend we introduced our kids to the beach. We'd been there in the winter, but we had just never gotten around to making the 5-6 hour trek in the summer. As expected, it was a big hit.

Charlotte liked playing in the sand, Nate ran around for 3 hours straight, and Hattie enjoyed going in the water, but only when carried.

We had a good time, made a sand castle, ate lots of watermelon, and relaxed just a little. Which turned out to be a good thing, because we got back late Sunday night (not the original plan) and the next morning was the first day of school for Nate and Charlotte -- 1st grade and Pre-K, respectively.

As it turned out, we had such a hectic morning on Monday that I forgot to get the first-day-of-school photo, and had to take a second-day-of-school one instead. But you get the idea.

I am only just now, 942 loads of laundry later, getting around to posting about both the beach and school.

In exciting knitting news, while I was at the beach I made a giant washcloth and a first draft of a sweater for some lucky stuffed animal to be named later. Fortunately I made the sweater out of the cheap cotton yarn I've been using for the washcloths, because I did a few things that I plan to do differently the next time I do it (like not set in the sleeves backwards).

Monday, August 07, 2006

Weekend Projects

This weekend somehow I actually completed not one, but two projects. On Saturday I tried my hand at travel tissue holders, since I'm sick and tired of reaching into my purse only to find a linty ball of formerly clean tissues with their accompanying cellophane wrapper off and out having a good time somewhere on its own.

For my first attempt I used Bella Dia's tutorial found here. The tutorial was great, but unfortunately I printed off the pattern and didn't look at the dimensions, so I ended up with a doll-sized travel tissue holder. So I tried again after looking at little birds' but I had a little problem with spatial orientation and so the different fabrics are vertical rather than horizontal. Always a learning process. But I like it anyway. WAY better than the wrappers they come in, worthless things.

Then I saw these gorgeous washcloths over at Bad Fortune Cookie, who I've been trading e-mails with on a regular basis. She was kind enough to not only give me the pattern, but also tell me where she got her yarn and voila, I've been doing nothing else since yesterday and I've finished two of these great washcloths! I really love them and can't wait to try them out. I got the variegated blue yarn because I momentarily forgot that I was making washcloths and thought I was making dishcloths, but now that it's knitted up, it reminds me of Irish Spring soap, thereby rendering itself bath-worthy. The cotton in these really feels great and I love the weight the stockinette garter stitch gives them.

And finally, the gratuitous family shot for family members, taken on Tim's birthday last week when I gave him an authentic Italian soccer jersey, procured for me by a dear friend in Rome, in honor of Italy's World Cup win. And since we were going to the trouble, Nate got one too. #10 is Totti's number for anyone keeping score.

And now on to the things I should have been doing all day instead of knitting washcloths!