Thursday, July 31, 2008

The meanings of words.

I love the way children understand words. They are so literal-minded. (I lead in like this so I can share examples. I think it's called a segway. ;D) The other day, ES was talking to DD about coffee. They wanted to know why only Papa drinks it in our house. ES finally informed his sister that it's "called coffee because it makes you cough". That would make sense, I suppose. Do you know why it's called coffee?? Short of the fact that it's made from the coffee bean? B/c why is it called "coffee" bean?? We really didn't have an explanation for him.
Then yesterday, they got to have a wee bit of soda- uncaffienated. And they got to talking about the "brown" soda (Coca Cola). ES was very emphatic to his sister: "You can't have the brown soda." "Yes, I can." "No, you can't, you're allergic to it!!" "I am NOT allergic to it!" "Yes, you are! It has caffeine in it, and caffeine comes from calves!!!" (really I should spell it calfs-that's how he said it) At this point they both looked at me- one for verification and the other for assurance that that was NOT true. So of course I had to explain that it does not come from calves- but I have no idea where it does come from......there seems to be a lot of those kinds of explanations lately.............

On the knitting scene, I have recently realized that my SIL is going to be having her baby very soon, and I have yet to make anything for little "Critter". So, instead of whipping out the baby yarn, I get out sock yarn to make socks for my MIL. My reasoning being that I have promised socks to MIL and she will be coming for the birth of "Critter" and I need to prove that I am doing what I promised (since I promised her 2 pairs of socks and a jacket). So I have been frantically knitting socks so I can get to the baby knitting I need to get done! I finally finished them last night--can I just say I am thrilled with them?? I don't have a digital camera (I know you've heard it before) so don't have pic's yet, but be assured that when I do get pics I will post them. I used Panda Cotton. Ever heard of it? Amazing yarn. Definitely must get some whenever I get around to making socks for me. I LOVE this yarn. It is almost a rival against Unique Sheep yarn--only because it has no wool, and I can't wear wool on my skin. .....Although, the Unique Sheep has a new yarn out: Pima Petite. I got to design some bath sets with it, and I can tell you, it is some of the softest, nicest cotton I have EVER used. Gorgeous yarn. And in Laura's colors.......oh, luscious!! Seriously, 2 new yarns you need to check out: Panda Cotton, and Unique Sheep's Pima Petite.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Free-- a good 4-letter word

We are getting a free piano. I am so amazed at what we get for free sometimes. Really, one doesn't need to spend a lot of money to furnish their house--unless you have a really specific color plan or something like that. ;) We have been fortunate lately to have gotten 2 free couches (thank you Freecyle!) and Joel was able to pay for a large, solid oak roll-top desk with 2 days of work! (I can't remember if I posted this before, but I have wanted a roll-top since I was a skinny wee girl. So this was very exciting!) Now, someone at Joel's job is offering us a free piano! Really, we shouldn't take it-- we don't have any more room in our small (1000sqft) home---but I have wanted a piano for a long time too; and the kids (at least the older 2) are at an age I would really like them to have lessons. So for now, it will go in our garage (which is full of Joel's work-out stuff and tools, and mold which he has no time to clean up). I am hoping to get it out of there quickly, before anything bad happens to it. For sure I will have to find a better place for it before the Fall rains bring the mold battle back. But for now, it will be in the garage, and we will try to talk Grandma into lessons whenever we get to see her. :-)

Monday, July 21, 2008


Today I took my DD to the ophthamologist and we got Good News!! We've been dealing with some inflammation in her left eye for about 8 months now--although it was probably there for a lot longer as we only found out about it when she started getting scar tissue in her iris. It affected her vision; but there wasn't anything really visible-no redness, etc. Anyway, today her vision was the same in both eyes (around 20/25, I think), and the retina specialist said there were no actively inflamed cells and it looks really good. We are so happy!! No more eye patches for the rest of the summer. She is thrilled! God is so good! :D :D
A great big Thank You to those of you who have been praying for her. Your prayers have blessed us!
Her next visit to monitor the state of her eye is in late September. We will have to make regular visits to be sure that the inflammation doesn't pop up again--and her vision continues to improve. But at this point, we are just so thankful. The Dr's were worried about cataracts and permanent vision impairment, but none of that happened. Again, God is so good!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Hurray for Friday!

It's Friday already! I am so glad. It means I get to hang out with my husband this evening and see him more tomorrow and the day after!! He's been working a LOT lately. He has his normal 7-6 job (that includes drive time), and has been working after work trying to finish some side jobs he accepted. He's also been working Saturdays, so we haven't seen him as much as we want to. But since Friday is our "date night" he'll come home after his normal job and not do any extra work. Even if our date is just playing chess after the kids go to sleep, it sure is nice!!

Yesterday, my sister-in-law came over and taught me and some of my friends how to make Blueberry Soup. Sounds wild, huh? (It was actually good! My DD liked it and she's a picky eater.) Apparently it's quite normal in Poland to have fruit soups during the summer. I guess the Polish eat soup every day, so they have to have quite a variety of soup--and who wants to eat hot food when it's hot? So they have cold soup--fruity kind.
This is the 2nd time my SIL has come to teach us about Polish soups. One of my friends suggested it, and it has been such a great idea! The cooking part really only takes about an hour, but the talking and having fun part takes at least 3 hours. ;-) I'm telling you, you're missing out!! ;)

I've recently switched my youngest son to cloth diapers instead of disposable. I figure he's almost done with them anyway, but the price of everything is going up so much--if I spend on cloth diapers in one month what I spend on disposable--it'll save me $35-50 on each following month. So I did. I bought hemp diapers. Ever heard of them? I used cotton on DD when she was wee, and I am so impressed with these hemp ones! They are way softer, more absorbent, and apparently easy on the environment. This is where I got them. This is a place with some more info on them. I'm only using them at nap and night time now (we're potty training!! I can't believe I am so close to having no children in diapers after 6 1/2 years of changing diapers!!), but they are much nicer than spending so much money on disposable!!

Not much I can say about knitting today. I am doing some secret knitting and it is coming along well, and I can hardly wait until I can share it. Other than that-- well, I really haven't had much time for it. As it is, I need to go clean my house and take my kids for a bike ride.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

How fast goes the time!

I am so amazed at how quickly the time goes by. Especially in the summer with 3 busy kids. I am finding that there just isn't as much knitting time anymore! I used to be able to whip out a baby hat in a day, a sock in a week, fingerless mitts in 2 days. Now a sock is taking 3 weeks, a baby hat 4 days, and if I tried to do mitts- probably a week. So what am I doing at the computer?? I'm not sure. I do know I wanted to share some of the funny things the kids have said lately.......but of course, now that I'm here, I can't remember most of them.

I do remember that the kids were sitting at the table the other night, very excited about the meal (one of their favorites-I like those nights; no arguments about eating), and ES asked DD what it tasted like. She responded, "like 60 hundred cakes with sugar and salt and chocolate chips on top!" Really that sounds awful to me. I think she was so excited about food (summer busy-ness helps this too), that she just named off some of her very favorite things. :-)

My Elder Son has been in great need of a haircut lately. I wish I had a good picture to show you. This one was taken a good while ago, but you can still get a good idea about how very curly his hair is. At least, I think you can. Through the dirt. Maybe?
(This is after he and his brother had a particularily good time playing in the dirt after having been asked not to. He was very sad he was in trouble for having a good time. Hence the amazing chocolate brown puppy dog eyes that he so effectively levels at his parents.)

Anyway, we had gone to the paternal grandparents church on the 4th of July weekend, and a great number of ladies commented on how very cute the little boy with the excessively curly hair was. A few days after getting home, I asked him if he wanted a hair cut. "NO!!" "Oh," I said, "I know why- you want more people to say how cute the little boy with all the curly hair is!" He immediately responded, "Mama, I need a haircut."
He got one last night.

On the topic of knitting, I really have been knitting- just (as I mentioned) not as much as during the winter. I have finished some baby gifts:

Sorry about the blurriness, I forget how I cannot get close-ups with the 35mm camera we got for a wedding present. It's a baby hat with elf-like leaf edging. Really very cute.

The other is a baby blanket. I like having these things available for baby showers as there seems to be so many of them lately.:-)
These hats are preemie sized. I intend to see if the local neonatal care unit would be interested in them. I actually made them accidentally, but just couldn't bring myself to frog them. After all 4 weeks of double knitting on size 2 dpns is just too hard to give up!!Really, I was trying to make myself a pair of self-striping socks, but once again discovered the wisdom of swatching by NOT doing it. One would think I had learned by now. Let me reassure anybody who cares: I always swatch and block for my designing! (At least for those patterns I intend to sell!! I confess to not swatching a hat I designed recently- but it worked perfectly anyway. At least, the recipient liked it.)

Speaking of designing, I'm afraid I will not be able to post pictures of my current knitting projects as I am in the midst of some very fun and exciting designing for the Unique Sheep. The designs are secret, so I cannot share photos until they are posted on the Unique Sheep site. But I promise to share them as soon as I can. For now, I'll just say I am extremely excited about them, and I hope you will be too. :-)

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Home Again

It is true: there is no place like home. I am so glad to be back!! We had a good time, and it was a nice break; but there just is nothing like your own home.
We got to the Grandparent's at 1:30am Friday. Of course my daughter woke up with the sun as usual, so sleep was a bit scarce that day. We got to go to the parade in town---the kid's first parade! They were so excited! They couldn't believe it when they had candy thrown at them. "You mean we can just go pick up all the candy we see and keep it and eat it!!!!!!!??" We came away with a plastic shopping bag half full. Yes, half full. We have enough candy to last us until next year, thank you!
Then we went back to the Grandparent's so YS and Mama could try to get some sleep. The kids played baseball in the yard with Grandpa, picked up the pears that fell off the tree, watched a movie, and had a lovely weekend.
Joel did some handyman work around for his folks and got to spend some time chatting with his Grandma. Yes, his Grandma. The kid's Great-Grandma. She'll be 91 this month. :-)
I had a fairly relaxing weekend. Which was good, b/c I just now feel recovered from the through-the-night driving. ;) I didn't have to cook, I didn't have to clean-much, and I got to enjoy the family. I even got some good knitting time in!! I have been completing quite a few small projects lately, but the pictures are all on 35mm film- so you have to wait until I get it developed. I am working on some more designs for the Unique Sheep, as well as some designs for family gifts. I am hoping to submit some of the family designs to Knitty or to some magazine, so I won't be able to show you new designs, but only patterns followed.
I am hoping to introduce to you some of the Unique Sheep designs in the very near future. More about that another time. :-)

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Crazy Monday

Oh my! Yesterday was absolutely overwhelming!! I am sitting here typing this because I am determined to take it a bit slower and calmer today.
I have been having really bad allergies lately, so yesterday I set out to eliminate some problems. At least I hoped so, b/c I really didn't know the source of the problems! Anyway, I decided to start in my bedroom. So I did my usual Monday work--vacuumed and mopped all the floors (we have all wood and vinyl flooring); then started on the bedroom. I took out everything from the shelf and floor of the closet, cleaned and reorganized it. Pulled all the bedding off--including the mattress allergy cover---and washed it all and replaced it. Pulled everything away from all the walls, wiped down the lower part of the walls and baseboards, vacuumed and mopped the entire floor (which of course necessitated moving everything). Put the whole room back together. And discovered that I was allergic to the floor cleaner. Seriously. It was ridiculous. Then I fed the kids and put them to bed.
I was so stressed out, I had to work out even though I was also very tired. The workout was good--it actually gave me some energy. Which was very needed for the rest of my day.....In which I washed everyone's bedding except YS'; folded all the laundry and put it away(7+loads); sorted through the kids clothes, putting away winter stuff, so they could close their drawers; set up the pool for them outside; cleaned the kitchen and did dishes at least twice; dragged the children back in the house to scrub all the dirt off them; fed them; and decided that was enough!
I sat and knit and read silly novels for the rest of the evening that I wasn't talking with Joel and making snack for the kids.

I am not doing that today. I did discover that part of the allergy problem is that I am REALLY allergic to the soap Joel uses. To the store for new soap today. I intend to take it easy today and only clean the kitchen and bathroom. ;D

We have also started the fun process of toilet training YS. I got some cloth diapers to try to speed up the process as well as try to save some cash on diapers. He's doing ok. It's very new and hard to remember for him right now.

Well, I am off to call my naturopath and see what can be done about my allergies before we go to Eastern Oregon and visit the paternal Grandparents for the 4th of July. Hope you have a happy 4th!! And that it is quiet when you want to sleep ;D. I for one am looking forward to being in the country for the loudest night of the year!!