Happy Leap Day!

February 29, 2012

Hello and Happy Leap Day!  I feel like I should do something special to take advantage of this “extra” day, but I don’t know what.  I think I read in one of my magazines that it’s a great day to take stock of things and set an intention for the year.  That doesn’t feel special to me.  I do that every year.  And at the beginning of most months.  Maybe I’ll just go have a donut.

Good morning sunshine

This is the first “normal” week that the blueberry and I have had.  I’m starting to feel a little bit of a rhythm with him.  I’ve actually gotten some things done around the house (amen!).  Yesterday I worked in Bill’s room and it is looking really nice if I do say so myself.  Actually, both of us worked on it Saturday, hanging pictures, putting stuff away.  We still need to set up his tv and arrange the stuff in the armoire, and he’s gotten some stuff in the closet that needs to be gone through, but it looks pretty darn nice.  My big contribution was arranging his bookshelves, displaying some of his treasures.  Still some stuff to be finished here too…  need a 2×4 to raise up the second row of Star Wars bobbleheads, set up his stereo.  I also bought a rug for his room and he needs different pillows.  The current ones are too flowery.  Pillows are low down on the to do list.  A big improvement though!

Bill's room

Bill's room the wrestling side

Bill's shelves

I’ve been doing a lot of reading this year.  I just finished my 12th book.  Now two of those were Nancy Drew books which are super easy reads (but so fun and they bring me back to my childhood).  Still, 10 books so far is a good start to the year.  I think it’s because I read before I go to sleep, instead of watching tv which is what I used to do.  But we are trying not to have the tv on around the baby, even when he’s sleeping.  Except for sports.  We read an article that says babies should have minimal exposure to the tv in their first two years.  I don’t remember why but it was in the New York Times so it must be right.  More importantly, if I’m watching tv, I’m not interacting with him.  My logic about the sports is that I can listen to it and I don’t have to watch it (constantly).  And I love my sports (on tv).  Anyway, less tv is more reading.  I’ve also realized that most of my books are set in England.  Of the 81 books in my queue, 20 are set across the pond.  Interesting.

The other big excitement of here is that I start my new job this week!  I am going to be working at my local yarn store, Green Planet Yarn.  I’m very excited, though not that excited about Saturdays away from my boys, but it’s only 2 Saturdays a month (so far) and it will be good bonding time for them.  I also do not need to buy, and most definitely should not buy, more yarn.  We’ll see how that goes.  I think Bill is already resigned to the fact that this opportunity of mine is going to cost him money.  In all honesty, this is a dream job.  I’m looking forward to meeting people, talking about something I love doing, being surrounded by all that beautiful (tempting) yarn.  There’s so much to learn and I’ve never worked retail (except the summer I was 16).  We will see how it goes!

Today my goal is to make some headway in my craft room.  And to move some fabric that I ironed over the weekend that is currently decorating a chair in my living room.  And to go to the library to pick up some books I requested otherwise I will be dinged $3 apiece.  And to figure out how to make leap day extra special (ie pick up a donut).

Kitters

But first, the kitters has joined me on the bed.  (Please ignore the mess in the background.  It’s also on my to do list.)  This is the evil kitters who found three balls of cashmere yarn that I forgot were on my craft table and who batted them all over the floor of the craft room and living room.  (Thank goodness I vacuumed and swept recently.)  I think I should have been mad but I was really more amused.  This does not bode well for me as a mom.


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This Crazy Thing Called Life

February 23, 2012

I keep meaning to blog, but life keeps getting in the way.  Bill went back to work and we’re trying to get into a little routine.  My dad was just here for a visit which interrupts the routine (in a good way).  It was fun to see him get to know his grandson.  We had a very nice visit.  I think he was meant to stay longer.  I think that is what the universe was trying to tell us when it sent a metal pipe and piece of plywood at the car, in separate instances, on our way to the airport.  Sort of a cosmic “please don’t go”.  Thankfully nothing bad happened and the damage to the car was minimal but it was a little scary.  The metal pipe went off the windshield and the plywood hit the front of Bill’s car.  Both items were kicked up at me from the car in front of us.  Totally crazy.  I’m just glad I was driving Bill’s car and not my own.  His car sits up higher and my car has a soft top so it could have been a lot more serious.  But it wasn’t and everyone is a-ok.

dad and joshua in santa cruz

I’m so proud of myself because I’ve gotten up two Tuesdays in a row at 5am to go to Yoga!  Let me tell you, I have to be pretty darn motivated to get up at 5am, voluntarily.  I really like the instructor for that class, and it works with our schedules (ie Bill’s getting to work at a reasonable hour).  The only bad thing is that I’m a zombie for the rest of the day.  I think that getting to bed before midnight would help.  Thankfully my little potato sleeps a lot so I get to nap too.

Nappingks

In my free time, I’ve been working on my granny stripe blanket.  It’s coming along slowly.

Granny stripe blanket

And because I don’t have enough to do, I’ve joined the hex craze.  I’m working on a decoration for my kitchen.  It’s not exactly a table runner, but like that.  We’ll see how it comes out.  In the meantime, my little guy is ready for a midnight snack.

Hexes


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An Outdoor Project

February 8, 2012

Bill’s parents were just here for a visit.  They helped us soooo much.  Oh, and they got to know their grandson too!  But they helped us soooo much.  It’s a lot easier to get things done with four extra hands.  Bill and his dad installed two ceiling fans, put up curtain rods, his mom ironed all the curtains for me, and they cooked and swept and were awesomely helpful!  I got to spend some time working in the garage which is my never ending project.  I’m pretty close to being able to pull my car in.  We just have some furniture to get rid of – two tables, a headboard, two sets of shelves, a book case, a kitchen cart and a coffee table.  Oh, and two hanging lamp fixtures.  And some stained glass supplies.  Okay, there’s still a lot to deal with but we’re getting closer.

the house

One of the big projects that Bill and his dad worked on was pulling out some of the existing landscaping.  It was low maintenance, desert landscaping and totally not our style.  Also, it wasn’t good for the foundation because it didn’t help retain moisture in the soil.  The extreme wetness in winter and dryness in summer can cause foundation problems.

landscapingFront of house without iron fencing

So out came the plants.  I feel kinda bad about pulling out perfectly healthy plants.  Especially the poinsettia to the left of the doorway  which was beautiful, but crowding the gardenia and blocking our view.  Anyway, we went to a nursery over the weekend and bought some new trees and bushes.  I wanted to put topiary trees on each side of the window, and a flowering bush in the middle.  I also want things at different levels, lots of layers.

our new landscaping

This is our start.  I saw this tree and really loved it.  It needed (needs) some cleaning up because it’s hard to see the shape, but trust me, it was pretty.  And it was $240!  And I needed two!  For a little more than the cost of that one tree, we got all our plants for the front.  I told Bill I’d rather have some patience and get a smaller tree for much less money, and when it grows I’ll shape it myself.  (My neighbor told me how to do it.)  I do not have a green thumb and am not good with landscaping.  I hope that everything grows into the vision I have in my head.  And I hope we don’t kill these beautiful plants!  Anyway, this is phase 1 and I’m excited!


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Life With a Baby

February 1, 2012

…does not leave much time for non-baby related activities.  It took me an entire day to clean off a desk.  Every time I got to it, the baby started crying.  I don’t really mind because he’s my primary responsibility, and he’s just so darn cute.  How bad is it that his crying face makes me smile?  Not his super intense crying face because that breaks my heart, but his moderately unhappy easy to fix crying face is very precious.

Most evenings, there’s a couple of hours where Bill and I relax and watch tv.  I started a new project because none of my WIPs were doing it for me.  I’m loving how it is turning out.

IMG_20120123_170210

This is the Cheques Shawl and it’s an easy pattern to memorize.  I absolutely love the yarn by Becoming Art.  The colors are so beautiful and it’s awesome to work with.  This is the Agave Sport in Sanguine Sky.  It is my second time knitting with the Agave base yarn.  I did a drop stitch scarf in the fingering weight and it is amazing.

This is my second time working this pattern.  I started a shawl in Madelinetosh Tosh Merino DK.  I love the yarn and colorway.  Love it.  And I love the pattern.  But I’m not happy with the two together.  The fabric is turning out heavier than I want.

cheques shawl

I’m pretty sure I’m going to frog it.  Don’t get me wrong, I think it looks great, it’s just not what I want.  I have my eye on another pattern for this yarn.  As much as I know frogging it is the right thing to do, I haven’t done it yet.  I’m having trouble undoing all that work.  Oh well, there’s no hurry.

That’s the extent of my crafting.  It’s just the right amount for now.


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About Me

Welcome to my spot on the web where I talk about needlework, crafts, and [many] other random things.

A few tidbits about me: I met my husband in college, flirting over tuba letters in the Penn Band. Our dog, CJ, and our cat, Sabrina, round out our family. I'm a sewist, knitter and needlepointer, and an occasional scrapbooker. I love organizing, reading, making jewelry, and hiking. A Chicago girl at heart, I am an avid follower the Cubs, Bears, and Blackhawks.

You can email me at mlynapier [at] pobox [dot] com. Thank you for stopping by!

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