Monday, April 7, 2008

Sunshine is my friend

Thanks to everyone for the great response to my 100th post. It was really fun to read everyone's comments. I think more people I know from non-Internet life read this post than any other in my blog history. That's a little scary, but exciting at the same time.
Spring weather has finally come to Northeast Ohio and we are spending a lot of time outdoors--despite the fact that our backyard is a mudpit from all the rain and melted snow. Sunshine is my friend and I feel happier after just a few days of it. We went to the park on Saturday and John has gotten a lot more independent since last fall. He went down some of the big slides without even a pause. Very exciting!
Anyway, John and I are home alone this week while Brian travels to Portland, Oregon to see his sister and Olympia, Washington for a job interview. Brian left Sunday morning and returns Thursday around 8PM. It's the longest he's been out of town since John was born, but so far so good. The hardest part is that John has no concept of days of the week so to tell him that he will see Daddy on Friday does no good. Oh well. Meanwhile, I'm just trying to make myself go to bed early so I'm well rested. With this pregnancy, if I get tired, I start feeling sick--and with Brian gone I do not have the luxury of resting on the sofa in the evening if I'm feeling gross.
Despite my early bedtimes and lack of time to myself during the day, I'm still getting some knitting done. I finished the sweater for my next little guy. It's a one year old size since he's due right when the weather should be getting nice. I figure this way he should be able to wear it next fall, winter and spring.
The pattern was a new one for me, but one I really enjoyed: Kid's Top-down Raglan by Gail Tanquary (published by Ann Norling: Pattern #53). I generally like raglan styles because the sleeves are knit onto the yoke and not added later. I also liked the flexibility of this pattern. It gives the directions for sizes 1-12 in 4 different gauges (3.5, 4.5, 5, 5.5 st/in). It also includes directions for both cardigans and pullovers and for both crewnecks and v-necks. Talk about flexibility! Sleeves can be knit flat or in the round. Anyway, I will definitely do this pattern again. In fact, I already have the yarn to make John a rainbow cardigan using this pattern.
This pattern has you pick up stitches to add the neckband and button band after the rest of the sweater is done. That was a first for me, but I enjoyed it. Picking up the stitches was pretty easy and it was great to not have to worry about button hole placement while knitting the rest of the sweater. It definitely made the rest of the sweater go faster. Plus, I didn't like my first set of buttonholes (I used a YO-k2tog and they were too big), so I very easily undid that part of the buttonband and redid them (using a BO 1 stitch, and then kfb the next row).
My only other commentary on this pattern is that if you are a beginner, you might need a little support. The pattern writer assumes that you have some knitting experience. For example, there are no instructions on what type of increases to use or how to make the buttonholes.
Sweater details (on Ravelry):
Pattern: Kid's Top-down Raglan by Gail Tanquary (Ann Norling #53)
Pattern Style I used: Crewneck Cardigan
Yarn: Kraemer Yarns Little Lehigh Pebbles (45% Cotton/55% Acrylic) (3.5 oz/approx. 250yd)
I used about 1 1/2 skeins.
Gauge (for me): 5 stitches/inch on Size 6 needles
Needles: Size 6 and Size 4 (24" circular)
Buttons: from JoAnn's
I'm also making progress on my sister's Rusted Root. I just hope the shaping turns out to be a good fit. Keep your fingers crossed that I keep the good knitting karma going on this one. I really want it to fit my sister well so she really enjoys it!
In other news, John continues to grow up before my eyes. He's doing great sleeping in his big boy bed although we are not making any progress on potty training. He was asking to pee in the potty once or twice a day, but after our week in Virginia he seemed to loose all interest. As he just turned 2, I'm not concerned. But it would have been nice to get this done before his baby brother arrived. Oh well. Double diaper duty it will be.
John's birthday present from us is a set of 4 simple, 12-piece jigsaw puzzles. He really likes them and can already do all four on his own. A few days ago, he dumped out the box and had all 48 pieces piled together on the floor. I left the room and when I came back, he had one of the puzzles finished. Then I left and came back again and he had another one done. I took this picture:
Eventually he got all 4 puzzles done on his own. My favorite part is that they keep him entertained while I actually get something done. Crazy! Life is good.
Hope you all are doing well. Have a great week!


sophanne said...

Your knitting looks great and your mood sounds lifted. Very good. Very Good

Anonymous said...

Clarabel had a brief interest in potty training when she was 2 too. Didn't happen until she was 3, well I told her we had to do it for her birthday. (Is that bad?)

The sun has been shining here too and we are loving biking up and down the driveway.

janet said...

Potty training little boys can be a challenge. Seal off the tile or floor around your toilet, trust me it will never be the same.

Yarnhog said...

I had several sets of those wooden puzzles that come four to a box. My younger son loved them more than anything. Great brain development toys! I see he hasn't learned to get the tops off the play-doh yet. Once he does, you'll be scraping it off the carpet for years.