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Showing posts from April, 2014

Twin Blankies: Pink & Blue Tonal Stripe

I made these blankets with the Bubbles Baby Blanket pattern that I have used many, many times before. It's a very simple pattern stitch, and the sides are always very straight and even. I also love the texture it creates -- these nice bubbles -- and the thickness of the finished blankie. This is the first time I worked longways to create stripes, rather than back and forth down the length of the blankie, and before always in a single yarn.

After seeing an image on Pinterest that led to an Etsy listing (I love to browse the "crochet baby" search term) I wanted to make a tonal blue blanket for someone having a baby boy. When I found out my friend was having twins -- a girl and a boy -- I decided to do a pink version too. Winning set! (Despite the 96 ends I had to weave in!)

I used mostly Red Heart Super Saver yarn, which while economical for the number of colors I needed doesn't give the softest finished product. Some of the pinks were Red Heart Love, which is signif…

Reading Lately: The Goldfinch, American Pastoral & The Racketeer

I stayed up way too late a couple nights ago finishing The Racketeer -- a John Grisham novel. It isn't high-quality literature, but it was a story that made me want to know what was going to happen and it was written in an easy-to-read way that wasn't trying to show off. It also wasn't a typical Southern lawyer facing big business in a huge trial storyline. But it was a satisfying read, and I liked it. I have tried recently to read a couple Pulitzer Prize-winning books, and neither really floated my boat. I'm not sure what that says about me, but I thought I'd record it here anyway.

I actually read all of The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt, and I didn't like it much at all. It wasn't necessarily hard to get through, but it just didn't interest me. I was more interested in the beginning half of the book, which seems to be a theme running through other reviews that have shown up in my feed reader. But a lot of the time I didn't like the main character and t…

Other Back Yard Scenes

We've been playing outside as much as we can before the heat of the summer sets in. Here are a couple of the flowers that are blooming now. That's the kind of plant I like -- no effort and very pretty. Anyway, we also had a scare when Jane got bit by something -- probably a caterpillar sting. It made a big welt and some swelling on the inside of her right foot. About 5 hours after the sting she cried when I put her down and wouldn't walk on it. I called the pediatrician, who said to ice it, put a paste of baking soda and water, and take Advil. It's still a little sore and pink, but overall she is back to normal. Stressful, especially because it happened while Shawn was out of town. Good grief.

A Trip to the Strawberry Patch

In an effort to be more social in general and specifically to provide more opportunities for Jane to practice socializing I've joined an attachment parenting group in town. It's mostly a Facebook page and group, and today's trip to a nearby strawberry patch was only the second event we went to. (The first was an Easter egg hunt and brunch this past Saturday.) It is what it is, I guess.

Anyway, thanks to my lack of smart phone and how many people were at the patch Jane and I never found the group or anyone we knew. That was a bummer, but Jane still had an amazing time. Here are some pictures.

I thought it was a great place, and worth the 40-minute drive (each way!). The little town it's in -- Albany, LA -- reminded me of places in Oklahoma. There were a LOT of kids there, but not so many that I couldn't keep up with Jane. I wished she'd been more into picking berries, the whole point, but I know this is something we'll be talking about for a long…

Sandy Toddler Toes

Seen & Not Heard

Easter Sunday was lovely for our family. We went to church as per usual, and despite a "NO! I WANT TO BE LOUD!" comment from Jane when I requested she be quiet things went OK. Up until last Sunday she had stayed in the nursery during the church service, but we decided to test the waters and find out if she's ready for full-time attendance. (We are decidedly mixed so far.)

During Sunday school we set aside our lesson (starting in Hebrews) to talk about the Easter story -- the differences among the Gospels, the importance of Jesus first appearing to women, etc. It was interesting, although I don't think I learned anything I didn't know. (And I have questions about the evolution of Easter as a church celebration that somehow didn't seem appropriate to ask -- or that those I was with would have the answers.)

Eventually the discussion devolved into parenting advice disguised as general children-today-are-horrible lamenting. Our class is a bunch of retired people a…

Crocheting Through the Years

I've been crocheting regularly for a solid decade.

I learned when I was 16, when my Gran taught me during the long hours in the hospital while she was recovering from a broken ankle. But I never did much until after a heartbreak in late 2003. I started crocheting scarves for all my friends and then my friends started having babies. So I've made dozens of baby blankets over the years. I've kept track of them -- at first in a small notebook like Gran told me to, and then in Ravelry, which allows me to include pictures, specifics and notes as well as connect with other crocheters and find more pattern ideas.

I go on crochet binges (just like I sometimes go on reading binges). And other times I don't pick up a hook for months. (I don't think I crocheted at all while I was pregnant.)

Here's my latest FO, which I made with yarn I had on hand. I found out a friend is pregnant, but I didn't know the gender and thought this would be a good gender-neutral pattern an…

Louisiana Springtime

These few pictures of flowers don't do justice to the beauty I've seen in Baton Rouge these last couple weeks. After several rain storms the flowers have fallen off most of the plants, but a few hang on in gorgeous resolve. I like to point them out while we're driving and say "gorgeous flowers" to hear Jane repeat after me. Sometimes a mimicking toddler is a very nice thing to have around.

Crochet: Brown Ribbed Toddler Sweater

I bought this sock yarn on ridiculous sale at JoAnn’s -- probably about a buck a skein for stuff that was normally four or five times that. I was looking for a pattern to use it up, and this one was supposed to. I have a skein and then some left, so miscalculation on my part I’m sure.

The yoke of the sweater is made of floral motifs (basically granny squares), but my motifs seemed smaller than they needed to be to line up with the body and sleeves. I made it work with careful stretching and whip stitching. I sewed on one of the sleeves backwards, basically not paying attention.

I made 12-18 months, although the sweater seems bigger than that to me. It's hard to say though. Jane is too big for it, so I’m not sure who will receive it. It’s not my favorite, although it was pretty easy to make and has a pretty cute border on the sleeves and body.

Edit: I let Jane try it on, and it technically fits her, but just badly. The arms and body are short, but the body itself is way too …