Monday, October 30, 2006

Blu progress

Here's the right leg as far as I have it done. I didn't have a lighter color of yarn for the cuff so I did mine all the same color. They will still look like jeans with all the stitching when I am done. This is the part where you have to drop one stitch and unravel it all the way down, then pick up the stitch ladders by 1 and by 2 back up to create a faux outside seam. I did that part with a crochet hook, peace of cake :)

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Crochet doily charts

I doodled these a few years ago and just found them and scanned them in. I know I have a bunch more somewhere, but no clue where. Anyway, for what it's worth, here they are.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Little jeans for my little guy

Well, I finally scored a sweater, the yarn of which will make terrific Blu jeans (maybe even 2 or 3 :). It's an American Eagle Outfitters sweater, a really nice blend of 80% wool, 20% nylon. I hope that much nylon won't be a problem. I don't plan for them to be nighttime longies so I think they will be fine. The resulting yarn is very soft, they will be so nice and comfy! The color is a dark blue with lighter blue/gray specks which gives it a nice denim appearance. I know it looks almost black here, but it's more of a blue in real life. Here are the pics of the sweater and then after it's reincarnation (at least till it's reincarnated into longies :).

This is as many balls of yarn that I was able to roll tonight. I have one more sleeve to go so probably 2 more balls.

Here is my improvised nostepinde (in my case a 18" length or so of 1/2"-3/4" PVC pipe). It actually worked really nicely and I think I was able to wrap more balls than I would have been able to otherwise. Also, I was able to wrap them flat on top and bottoms so they will stack nicely (for what it's worth, lol).

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

New teeth create such drama

It would be on the night that DH asks me to keep Eli quiet (or as much as possible) as he has to get up at 5 in the a.m. that Eli choses to cut his first tooth. It started with him being very vocal and not wanting to go to sleep. Then the last few times he's woken up he's been downright desperate and crazy acting. He doesn't have a fever or anything like that, but I think I could see a little redness in his gum where the tooth is coming in. I don't have any Hyland's teething tablets, but I do have some Bach's rescue remedy and some Belladona homeopathic so I will try those if it's extreme the next time he wakes up. I ended up moving into the living room so DH can get the sleep he needs. It's cold so I have a nice fire going, that bit's kinda nice.

On a side note (equally important tho), Eli sat up by himself for at least a minute today. He was on the floor and DH got him started, but he didn't waver for the longest time. I think we'll probably see more of that in the near future.

Monday, October 23, 2006

I feel like a new woman

I have been running on too little sleep lately so today, DH gave me one of the greatest gifts possible, about 4 hours of a nap! For the first time in a looooooooonnnnng time I didn't wake up feeling drugged. I had forgotten what it felt like to be rested. I feel infinitely better! Thanks hon!

I learn new things every day

I recently learned what spinning swifts are for and then today learned about Nostepinne, Scandinavian yarn ball winders. I just recently learned how to wrap a center-pull ball, but the I bet a Nostepinne would make them look purt-near perfect. I am trying to figure out how to make one since I can't buy one. Someone mentioned you could use a fat marker which I do have so next time I need to wind some yarn, I'm going to try this. Ah, just found a gal who used a plastic part from a Play-Doh set as a Nostepinne and turned out a lovely ball, see, it can be done, lol.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Fantastic finger puppets

I was searching for knitted finger puppet patterns and came across these cuties. Boy, do I wish I could knit like this! (or rather wish I had patterns).

Friday, October 20, 2006

Ok, now I'm done... really.

I ended up cutting off the old waist band and the next two rows where I made all the increases, put it back on circs and knitted up to the waistband, then hand stitched the last row down to the inside of the pants. I left a little hole where I could add the elastic. Now I just need to put them on Eli and see how tight the elastic needs to be.

Eli has been very vocal when he nurses over the last day or two. He makes growling, grunting noises, almost like he's trying to poop, but he doesn't. I'm wondering if he might be a little constipated or if he's reacting to the dairy in my diet. Last night we had what I feel to be successes. When I went to bed around 1 a.m., I went to change Eli's diaper and it was only slightly damp so I took and peed him in the shower which he did right away and without complaint. Then when he woke up again around 7 a.m. I checked it again and it was a little wetter, but still not soaked so I took him again and he went almost immediately and again without complaint. So that was very encouraging to me. I hope we can keep that up in the nights to come. That would be very nice. It would be awesome if he could get to the place where he could stay dry (with potty trips) all night.

Eli's getting really good about sitting on his little potty, his balance is getting much better. He is starting to grab things and reach out for things. He wants the phones, remotes, anything he shouldn't have, lol. He spits up a lot and I'm a little worried that he has acid reflux. He doesn't spit up much if at all at night time tho.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006


I guess it's par for the course that the pants won't even go above Eli's chunky thighs. Sigh. I guess that means I'll have no choice but to rip out the waistband and do that over. At least it won't be too much, but I was really hoping I was DONE.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Cargo ... done.

Whew, finally... thought this day would never get here. But, I'm done with the pants. I think the legs are too long and I really don't like how the grafting came out, also not so sure about the short rows, but do you think I'm going to take them apart and do it over again? Not on your life. I think I might do this pattern again [or a variation on it anyway], but next time, I'll do it from the top down, no kitchnering (well, the gusset, but not the legs anyway) and it'll just be easier for me. I'll have to hand sew the cuff seams, but that really doesn't bother me. I'll probably do the waistband bigger next time too, I cast on 80, then increased to 100 in the first 2 rows after I closed the waistband and I think it made the waistband a little too snug and also I don't like the puckering. So I'll just cast on 100 (or whatever number gets me gauge) on smaller needles, then go up in size, rather than increasing stitches. I'll have to try the new dipe and the pants on Eli tomorrow and see if they fit.

Prefold 2 Fitted

I just learned how to turn prefold diapers into fitted diapers (more Daddy friendly) and I'm excited to try my first one. I don't have any snap tape (yet) and don't want to do velcro, so I'm just going to make them without and keep using them with Snappis for now. I'd seen other directions on how to do it at, but I am too chicken to cut up any of my prefolds yet. Then I saw this way to do them, but it still seemed too simplistic to me for some reason. Finally one of the newbie CDers on the Yahoo group BTLdiapering shared her way of doing them (also doesn't require cutting like the 2nd option) and I think this one or some variation of the theme will be what I'll go with.

Well, I'm done and I decided to go with a mixture of the last two ways. Since Eli is not pooping in his diapers, I really don't need a super gusset like the 3rd way, but I also like the folded over front and elastic in the back of the 3rd one so ... here's what I came up with:

Here is the inside view of the diaper upside down. I left the middle part of the inside/front open so I can stuff an insert in there under the side flaps.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Little pink boy

I left Eli sitting on his Baby Bjorn little potty long enough to go to the restroom while G1 watched his baby brother. When I came out, this is what I found:

Fall fun

The kids wanted to do a craft today so I went to the Family Fun website and we did these. I think they turned out cute. G1 made the 4 on the top/left and middle column, Gigi, made the girl (bottom right) and the butterfly, and I made the leaf covered tree out of leaves :)

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Longies that won't die

Not that I want them to die, mind you, but I can't seem to finish them. I had to frog them back down to cast on again because I decided that I really should single strand the elastic casing part because the front and back of the casing will equal double stranding. Then I'll pick up the 2nd strand when I start the main soaker part. I think I'll probably add 20 stitches to bring it back up to 100 as that works better with 50 stitches per leg plus an added gusset when I get closer. I might just stay on my tiny (like 2's I think) needles if it looks like my gauge is going to be too big on larger needles. I'd really love to finish these so I could start working on other things!

Monday, October 09, 2006

Longies in reverse

I frogged the Cargo longies down to the legs last night. I decided I'd try knitting down from the top, meeting the legs and Kitchnering the legs on. I sure hope that's going to work! I cast on 100 because I thought (from the gauge I was getting before I frogged), that that would be the right number for gauge, but it was still coming out too big (I'm aiming for 10" across) so I am trying it with 80 stitches. I also started on really small needles, but I'm ready to switch to the bigger ones now (4s I think) because my fingers are cramping up something fierce. I hope that works itself out soon!

Favorite/Useful Links

Here's a honkin' list of some of my favorite links or pages I visit frequently. I know that's probably pretty annoying for a post, but I can bookmark this post and have easy access to these sites. Pretty useful for me and maybe you'll find something you like too.

Computer stuff:
Color Scheme Generator 2
Color Blender
Zefrank Flower Generator - feed your creativity
Cool Effects:
Jonathan Yuen Graphic Design
Human Clock
Jackson Pollock by Miltos Manetas - my kids have fun with this one
Elastic Tightrope Girl - a fun time waster
Fluid Effect - Photo enhancement that'll knock your socks off
Cheat Sheet Roundup - cheat sheets for developers
Webpage Dev Best Practices - good stuff for me to try to remember
Forestasia Screen Resolution Preview
Seamless Tile Tutorial - make your own wallpaper/backgrounds
Leaves of Time - pretty pen & ink wallpaper & seamless tile tutorial
Photoshop Matte Painting - neat effect
The Web Developer's List
Resources For Web Design
Ohloh beta - Open Source
OSSwin project Open Source
Open Source Wiki
The X20 Dimension - Open Source
Open Source Windows

Florida Bird Flu
Chalk Drawings
Human Camera
Virtual Bubble Wrap
Dodecahedron calendar
The Cool Hunter
Web 2.0 computer parody
Strange and funny gadgets
Build Your Memory

Knitting Help - how I learned to knit Continental
Recycling Yarn - tons of great patterns
Marnie MacLean
Craft Ideas

Teacher Xpress
Hunkin's Home Experiments

Thrifty Living/Housekeeping:
$10 Grocery List
Thrifty Fun
The House Keeper's Compendium

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Progress Bars

Well, I think I've found something I can be happy with as far as my progress bars go. It's still based on the Bare Naked App code, but I altered the percentage bar image to allow for different images of what I'm working on. I still think it might be possible to get Indigirl's idea to work with CSS using a sliding door technique, but I can't figure out how to make the doors slide up and down as opposed to left and right.

Friday, October 06, 2006

TV free

Well, no more Rachel Ray or Good Eats or Caillou and I won't find out who wins Project Runway... our satellite service has just been cut off. That's the next domino I guess after our phone. Wonder what the next one will be? My company doesn't have work for me right now which isn't great. I'll have to see what else I can come up with.


I'm trying to get some of those nifty knitting progress bars to work on my page. So far I've been able to get the ones from cogknition to sort of work. For some reason Blogger isn't wanting me to move the page elements around or I'd move the status bar to the bottom of the sidebar. It also won't let me embed the javascript into the HTML of the page. I have to host it offsite somewhere. That is less convenient for me. What I'd really like is to get Indigirl's status bars to work in Blogger (anyone know how?). Hmm, it's dawned on me to try hosting Indigirl's script in a .js file offsite and see if that works.

[later that day...] Nope, didn't work, or at least I wasn't able to figure out how to make it work. So for the time being, I'm using the status bar css code from Too-biased. I also have an idea in my head of making progress bars similar to the pregnancy/TTC/children's ages/aniversary ... tracker bars that are out there, except the little knitting project images would move across the bar. I'll have to look at them a little closer to see if I can figure out how they are done. It's probably way over my head, but it sounds cool.

10/7/06 - Ok, well, now I'm on my 3rd experiment, this time going with Bare Naked App's %-age bar. Now just wish I knew what he meant by "In our case a PHP script handles all the math for us." Wish I could figure out an easier way than to figure it out in Excel.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

The Sling Thing

Here's a pic of my 2nd Beth Mei Tai. My first one was quite a bit smaller and also ended up with a lopsided flap so I made sure to make this one big enough for Eli and made sure the top straps are where they are supposed to be. The floral material is some I got from Freecycle and the denim was from a thrift store denim skirt. It's very long, but if I roll it once on the bottom, it fits Eli ok. I really like how it turned out.

First food

Up to this point, we've been waiting for signs of readiness before giving E "real" food (not that breastmilk isn't real) and I think today was it. Up to now we've just let him lick certain fruits (banana, pear, apples), but he never really got more than a taste. I had E on my lap while I was trying to eat my lunch (vegetarian chicken noodle/vegetable soup mostly made by G1 and cornbread fritters made by me) and every time I brought my spoon up to my mouth, E tried to grab my hand and corral it over to his mouth. So I mashed up a little banana (like one slice), added a little breastmilk and started feeding the hungry baby bird. He lasted a few bites before the novelty wore off, but at least he felt like he wasn't missing out on anything.

The fritters turned out ok, were very quick and I'll make them again if I need something to go with soup and don't have time to wait for muffins to bake. I threw together some a.p. flour, corn meal (didn't measure), salt (was closer to 1/4 tsp. but needed to have been 1/2 tsp. at least), 1 tsp. baking powder, some oat milk, oil (a ratio of about 3:1), 1 egg, mixed it all together, added some flour coz it was too thin, didn't want pancakes, and poured into an oil sprayed pan. We had them spread with a little jam and they weren't half bad.

New home away from other home

I think I'm going to give Blogger a try, my free hosting will be running out for my other blog next month so need to find a new home. This is as good as any I suppose :) I'll see if there's any way I can migrate all of my old posts over here for the sake of simplicity. Also curious to see if I can change the look of the page (template). Guess we'll find out. So here goes nothing...

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Cargo woes

I really want to love these pants, and the legs look great, but I haven't enjoyed them much since I switched to circs and started knitting the hips. I'm double stranding this section and now I'm thinking maybe I should have decreased a few stitches at first as it looks like the hips/bottom section is going to be too big. I don't know if I should frog back and do that or if I could just try shrinking the top part of the pants when I'm done... I just don't know. I'll have to take some pics of them. I'm really thinking that if I did these again, I might like to try knitting them from the top down. I know I'd have to hand stitch the leg hems, but that is the least of my concerns. Yup, I think I just decided it for myself, there's frogging in my future (grumble grumble). The pants legs are measuring at the medium size, but the hips are measuring extra large. Oh sad... I'll see what gauge I'm getting on my needles double stranding (just checked, it's 4.5 stitches / inch as opposed to 6/inch of single stranding... quite a difference!) and figure it out from there. I'd rather that than get them finished and end up hating them. I know this sounds almost certifiable, but I've actually had the crazy thought of doing the soaker part from the top down and then grafting the legs on. Would that work? I wonder...

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Change in schedule, change in life

E decided a few weeks ago to start waking me up at 7:30 am instead of the usual 8:30. He doesn't want to nurse, but usually needs to go potty and just can't get back to sleep (or can't stay asleep). So one less hour of sleep a night for me. I really must condition myself to go to bed around 10-ish so I can handle the diminished sleep!

Our lives are about to take an interesting turn I think. We have been not even making enough money to qualify as subsistance living for the last few months. Before that (going back 3 years), we've been trying to get our Curves franchise up and running and living on credit/savings/stocks/retirement... till it started to make money. Well, it was starting to do that when Katrina hit. That put a dent in the economy and led to a mass Exodus of our members. Our club started losing money each month and made us bleed red ink at a faster rate. Now, we're at the end of the road. We have no money, are starting to sell anything that we might have with any value (anyone want a dining set, entertainment center, antique dresser & dressing table...?) just so we can eat and pay a few utility bills. We've given up paying our credit cards and our mortgage payments (the house is about to be foreclosed on). Our phone is off, we're behind on our auto insurance, our elec. bill is coming due in a few days and we don't have the $$ to pay it. I'm working part time from home doing data entry and that money would really help if we got to keep any of it, but it has to go into the club. DH stays busy from morning to night trying to make the club work and can't work a 2nd job into his schedule. There are several scenerios that might happen. One is that we'll get foreclosed on, but the foreclosure proceedings will take several months in which time we'll be forced to declare bankrupcy so DH can get out from under the Curves contract and get a regular (paying) job, 2) some friends of ours who run a motor home business might loan us a used motor home which would allow us to sell our house and avoid foreclosure, 3) we're still holding out for a miracle, 4) these same friends might be starting up their weight-loss bar production business in January and if they do, would offer DH a job which would probably lead to us moving up to upstate NY. We'll for sure have to sell off a bunch of stuff (fine by me) and whittle our stuff down to just the necessities. I'm cool with everything as long as we can still manage a place to live and don't ever have to go to a shelter. That I would like to avoid. I wish there was an easier way for DH to get out from under his Curves contract, but I don't think there is. In spite of it all we are at peace, we feel very thankful that we've gotten this far and that we are healthy. I know that no matter what happens, God will still be with us. It could be that He is sharpening us and strengthening us for a greater purpose. Anyhoo, I think I'll end my novel now before it ends up taking up the whole page.

Oh la-la, fritta-ta

We watched Rachel Ray (30-Minute Meals) last night and she was making some kind of veggie soup and an olive frittata and since I didn't have anything else planned, I decided to chop right along with her. Well, needless to say, she's a way better chopper than I'll ever be and I was behind even tho I didn't have zucchini and I wasn't making the fresh ginger tea. Oh well, the frittata turned out not half bad (tho I made my own addidions/omissions) and the soup was pretty good too. Here's a pic of the frittata, fresh out of the oven.

It was basically 6 eggs, 1/2 tsp salt (maybe a little less), a couple handfulls of pitted green (not Spanish! these are homestyle and very mild) olives, sliced, a couple good sized scoops of cottage cheese, and a sprinkle of parsley on top. I cooked it on the stove till it just started to set. Then I transferred it to a 425° oven till puffy and toothpick-done. I don't think the kids were as impressed as I was, but I liked it. Then again I'm fairly easy to please when it comes to food and I do have the added advantave of having adult tastes. Her recipe called for roasted red peppers which would have been really nice if I had had them. Oh well... I have to work with what I have.

Kids' room

(Eli just urped over me big time...yuck!)

Well, something had to be done with the kids room, it was taking my life into my own hands just to go in there at night to check on them before I went to bed. Land mines everywhere, what our housekeeper (from when we lived in Africa '84-'90) called "bombs and missiles"... anyway, the kids and I got down to business yesterday. I had G1 crawl under Gigi's bed and push everything out from under it. Then I was on the outside, chucking things as quickly as I could, putting some things in the "toys" box and other things in the "dirty clothes" or "things that aren't clothes, trash or toys" box. We put all the stuffed animals on their beds. I got the trash out and the dirty clothes out. Then it was time to vacuum. The room looked much better at this point. Then I went and got a bunch of empty shoe boxes and we started sorting their toys into them. Cars into one, animals into another... Then last night I made up some labels for the boxes and their drawers... I hope I can remember to make them stick to it! I also put a box in their closet for them to put their dirty clothes in (instead of strewn all over their room).

These are the boxes under Gigi's bed now. I covered the labels with clear contact paper so that even if the boxes change, the labels won't have to. I used double-sided tape to attach them onto the boxes.

I also labeled G1's drawers so that hopefully he'll be better about putting his clothes away and knowing/remembering where everything is.

Gigi even got a place for her myriad of purses.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Roll over, roll over...

Well, I guess E is now officially a roller-over-er. I haven't actually witnessed it with my own eyes, but DH said that he rolled over two times this morning when I was at Pilates class. How cool is that? Makes me a little sad tho coz it means little boy is growing up. Too fast for my liking!