Cutest baby video ever.

Addy learns to say 'grandma'.

And yes, I am biased. Why do you ask?


Warping and Wefting

Warping today took a lot longer than I expected; another 4 hours to thread the last 36 threads and work out tension issues, broken threads and more. But it was worth it. Once I got everything going - with lots of help from Deborah - I love how my scarf looks. I tried the green weft first but didn't like the interaction with the brown warp threads. The brown on brown looks much richer and more Fall-like. I'm 36" into the 72" I need for the scarf. I should have a little left on the 4-yard warp to play with other colors of weft. And I bought more chenille - navy, light blue and white - from Deborah so I can tie on another warp (without having to re-thread heddles and re-sley the reed) and weave another couple of scarves.

Chenille deserves its reputation as a pain in the b*** to weave; but the finished product is so soft and pretty. Hope I can master it enough to make something wearable.


Back To Weaving

I haven't done much weaving lately. Actually, I've done nothing since taking the color gamp class back in July (it's still on the loom, half finished.) But I want to get back into it, so this weekend I'm taking a scarf weaving workshop using rayon chenille.

The instructor weaves professionally, and almost exclusively, with chenille - and her stuff is gorgeous. Friday afternoon was an overview and yarn selection. This afternoon was spent winding the warp and putting the fiber on the loom (through the reed and heddles); tomorrow we'll start the actual weaving. Although technically, it's all weaving; maybe I should say tomorrow we'll start 'wefting'*.
Sorry for the crummy cell phone photos.

I wanted something in Fall colors, so my warp colors are chocolate brown, muted orange and a tiny bit of bright yellow. The weft will be a warm green. It will be interesting to see if the color interaction turns out like I'm picturing it.

*For Wenona -


Grand Babysitting

I don't want to jinx it, but after 12 hours it looks like this stuff may be a miracle cure. Dick and I have been grand-babysitting Naia and Leia since Tuesday while Matt and Chris are out of town. Almost the entire time, poor Leia has had terrible gas, with intermittent (constant might be a better word) projectile spit-ups. Tuesday night she was uncomfortable; I got 2 hours of sleep. Wednesday night she was miserable and there was nada sleep.

Acting on Rachel's recommendation, Dick went to the store this morning and came back with Mylicon infant drops. Bingo. It took about 4 hours for most of the gas to get out of her system. Now we're getting normal baby burps, no spit-ups, and a much happier little girl (and grandparents).
Dick and I have been splitting the duty. Since I'm a night person, I'm handling the nighttime feedings and fussings. Dick, being a morning guy, is getting Naia up and to school, then taking care of Leia while I sleep. It's worked out pretty well and the girls seem to have enjoyed their stay. Even if we did tell Naia that yes, she still had to do her homework. (Which she did every day without a fuss. Such a smart kid.)


Happy 34th!

34 years ago today - To celebrate, we went to dinner outdoors at the Music Center - I loved watching the fountains and the people while we waited (and waited) for our dinner - and then to see the new play, "9 to 5, The Musical" at the Ahmanson Theatre. When we bought the tickets we didn't realize this was the opening weekend AND the world premiere.
The play is GREAT. Music and lyrics by Dolly Parton, who has a wicked sense of humor; starring Allison Janney (I loved her in The West Wing), Stephanie Block and Megan Hilty (both of whom had starring roles in Wicked, one of the great musicals of all time. IMHO, of course.) Lots of humor, visual, verbal and musical, including a guy in a hospital gown with his bare backside hanging out and a fantasy sequence using the happy, chirpy birds from Disney's Cinderella. Trust me, it was funny.

Great evening, great company. Can't see what's in store for the next 34.


Saturday With Grands

Grand kids, that is. We went to Naia's soccer game again today; another victory - yeah, Cheetahs! Watching little girls play is so much different from little boys. Gary and his teammates never stopped to apologize and hug an opposing player when they accidentally kicked him/her above the shin guard (and I don't think the boys knew it was supposed to be 'accidental'.) I love the beaded front braids in Naia's hair, with two pony-tails hanging down her back. Very soccer-esque. Leia missed the first quarter of the soccer game. She started 'concentrating' just as the game started and Dad had to take her to the car for a change of everything - diaper, dress, socks and blanket. As Matt so delicately described it, she 'pooped half her body weight.' Such a little angel to be such a mighty stinker.

Miles was again disappointed that he couldn't play. But Chris told him he gets to play 'next year'. He's not sure when 'next year' is, but he's very excited about it.

Boy with powdered donut face.


Time Flies

The past week has flown by - lots of classes and projects but not much blogging. Sunday was a cast-on/bind-off class; Anne is a great teacher and managed to cram twelve different knitting techniques in a 3-hour class. Wednesday night was the second session of the knit sweater class. My front and back are now joined and I'm working in the round, heading for the arm-holes. Still lovin' the yarn and the pattern. And Tuesday I taught the math square (Pi-R-Square; how corny is that??) during the crochet block-a-month class. I think the ladies enjoyed the class and the math concepts, but the big hit of the night was how to do the side-to-side blocks in the top third of the square. Who knew?

I want to make Matt's three kids something in USC colors so they can help Dad cheer on his favorite team. Leia will get a sweater or poncho (quick and easy since she's so small); I've started a beanie-style hat for Miles; and for Naia? A maroon and gold shrug - my own pattern using a simple shell stitch for the body, with Catherine wheels and little picots for trim. I need to try it on her tomorrow to make sure it fits, then finish the sleeve trim and weave in my ends. I like this pattern so much, I'm hoping to teach it as a class in the spring.



Leia came to visit today -

Chris dressed Leia to match her blankie by accident

We couldn't believe how big she's getting. Leia's four and a half weeks now and has moved beyond the newborn look.

Much to our delight, she's also begun experimenting with moving her arms and legs and with facial expressions -
and definitely manages to get her opinions across. My favorite look? A contented, sleeping baby.


Leia's Blanket

All done and ready for gifting. Hope they like it!

Tech specs: Main body pattern is "For Mom & Dad"
(Ravelry link) published in American School of Needlework #2202, Warm Their Hearts Afghans; border is from "Crocheting on the Edge" by Nicky Epstein. Plymouth Encore Worsted yarn (5 skeins), and an "H" crochet hook.


Done and Blocking

Leia's cabled blankie is done and blocking. The pattern is from a full-sized afghan that I've made a couple of times, with a border I adapted from the new "Crocheting on the Edge" book by Nicky Epstein. (Great book, by the way.) I'll get some 'pretty' shots tomorrow.

I'm also making progress on the Basketweave Tee. I need to have 20 rows - 2 repeats of the pattern - done on the front and back by Wednesday night. I've got 16 rows finished on one, and five on the second so I think I'll make it.
Still loving the yarn and the colorway.


Shoppin' and Knittin' The Stash

One of my goals for the year is to make a knit sweater for me. I also wanted to take one of Gloria Tracy's classes at my LYS, but something has always interfered - usually little things like vacations or family gatherings. Last Wednesday the stars finally aligned and I started the first class in a series of 6 - ending in mid-November- to make my sweater.

Another goal is to shop and knit/crochet from my stash. Thanks to the 'stash' feature on Ravelry, I was able to see all the yarns I had in sufficient quantity for this project and pick my favorite 5 or 6 (yep, big stash) to take to class. I'm happy to say that my favorite - Manos del Uruguay Silk Blend - was the hands-down winner. I'm making a basketweave tee from one of the patterns (Rav link) Gloria designed when she owned K1C2 (which is now Knit One Crochet Too; she's not affiliated with the current company). This week's homework is to knit 20 rows each on the front and back; we'll join them in the next class and start knitting in the round from there. So far, it's pretty easy and I'm enjoying basketweave.

Since I saved $ by shopping the stash, I decided to splurge (a whole $7) and treat myself to another pair of Knitpicks Harmony wood needles. They're sharp, pretty and a pleasure to use.
And life's too short to knit with ugly needles.


Soccer Granny

I thought Dick and I were done with soccer when Gary turned 16 and decided he was too 'mature' to play any longer. But today we were back on the sidelines, cheering on the AYSO Cheetahs. Being a soccer granny is a lot more fun than soccer mom; you just show up for the games - no getting the player up and moving on a Saturday morning, no weekly practices and no working the snack bar to support the team. Whoohoo!

Naia loves playing and she's one of the better players on her team. Last week (we missed that game) she scored a couple of goals. This week she played mostly defense; she got a few shots at the goal in the third quarter, missing it by just thissssssssss much. It's so much fun to sit and watch the little girls play in their day-glo bright jerseys.

And just as much fun to watch the other kids on the sidelines.
Little Leia - all of three weeks old now - slept through the game, stirring only when the sun got in her eyes. She is not a fan of bright lights.

Cute little baby feet.

Miles enjoyed the first two quarters but by the middle of the third, he was done. Sitting on the sidelines, not allowed to chase the ball, is not his cup of tea. He spotted a nearby playground, so he and I spent the rest of the game on the monkey bars. Him on the bars; me underneath, trying to catch him before he fell.

Leia's hexagon jacket is done - and it fits her perfectly.
I thought it would be too big, with plenty of growing room. Wrong. Glad I didn't make the newborn size. Naia would have had a sweater for her baby doll.


Santa Barbara and FO!

For date day, Dick and I drove up to Santa Barbara and had lunch on the pier. We'd planned to continue on to the Museum of Natural History and their Giant African Dinosaurs exhibit, but I just couldn't do it. I started getting sick last night during knit class - killer headache and queasy stomach. Thought I was over it until I started eating lunch. Not over it. We'll try for the museum again next week.

The good news is that, once the worst had passed (hee), I was able to finish the
Hexagon Baby Jacket. The ends are woven in, the buttons are sewn on and I even tacked down the collar so it stays in place. A fun, fast, very easy project that I plan to make again, maybe Addy-sized. The pattern I used is here; the original blog post is here; and Ravelry samples are here and here. Enjoy!


FO Progress

I'm making progress on Leia's baby blanket. I'd probably be done with it if I hadn't bought the wrong shade of yarn last time. Swapped it tonight, so I'm back on track.

Found the cutest baby jacket on Ravelry yesterday and had to drop everything and start it NOW.
The body and sleeves are two hexagons, seamed together. So cute. This one is for Leia (of course) but I think I'll be making more for charity. The pattern is adjustible; using heavier yarn and a bigger hook makes a bigger size. Great way to use up yarn stash.


Some Good, Some Bad

Poor Oreo got her third (fourth?) bath today. She's such a sweetie; she sits there and doesn't fight me - except when I pour the rinse water over her back. Then all bets are off. She made it out of the bathtub today, for the first time, but took it pretty well when I plopped her back in again. Afterward, she sat in front of my chair, with her back turned to me, so I'd know exactly how annoyed she is. So cute.
I think I'm starting to loose the battle with Oreo's health. She's still yanking her fur out by the mouthful, and I think she's developing an allergic reaction to the baby food that's about all she can eat. Have call to the vet again tomorrow . . .

The good news . . . . 99% of my weaving and knitting yarns are now on Ravelry. Hooray!
I was so excited when I told Dick - who promptly popped my bubble by asking if that included the stack of bins in our bedroom. And of course it doesn't. Those are spinning fibers. Totally different thing. (I'm working on it, I'm working on it . . . )

Anyone know what yarn this is or who the indie dyer might be? I bought this sock yarn from a website, not eBay or Etsy, a couple of years ago; I know it's a fairly well-known yarn artist but I can't remember who and, of course, the tag is long gone. Help?