Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Can You Ever Not Be Knitting?

That's the question my husband asked the other night after he spied me knitting on the floor and playing with the kids, knitting while one was in the bath, knitting during lunch and pushing spoonfuls of food into a baby's mouth.

No, I said. Incredulous.

I'm potentially looking at a lot of knitting time soon. I've got a list of packing for all of us but most on my mind is what to bring to knit. I know, I'm crazy, I should be worrying about other things but worrying about this keeps me sane for the next few weeks. Before the baby was born I couldn't decide what to wear. At a hospital birth, they give you the dress, my main concern was figuring what to wear for labor. Will I want to keep it afterwards? Will it be in photos? Will it be ruined? Should it be a big shirt, a dress, a nightgown, a warrior princess outfit? It turned out fine-soft blue nightgown, no stains, I'm never getting rid of it but I won't make anyone else birth in it!

Okay, back to the knitting, I'll need a dummy project, something in the round, mostly simple knit stitch that I don't have to concentrate on for time with the kids or after a glass of wine or when talking with others. That's easy, a basic pair of socks. Doesn't take up too much space, no pattern needed. Can bring it on the plane.

I need a more complex project for times by myself, in the waiting room during a 5 hour surgery to take my mind off things. Again, shouldn't take up too much space. Lace. The Diamata by French Girl Knits. I didn't buy the yarn I saw on the shop model at Village Yarn and Tea (Louet Kidlin, goregous, I wanted the deep purple, I'll need two skiens if you are the yarn fairy) I dug deep in my stash for the first mohair I ever bought (from Craigslist in Palo Alto, at least 8 years old). I'm weak when it comes to mohair and yet, I rarely actually make anything with it. Perfect, this is a complicated project, but it should be done during the surgery time. I'll make something beautiful and have something to show for my time as an Abigal Adams, waiting for my husband. This is the same pattern from the old post, I knitted it during the last surgery but didn't like how it turned out with the seaweed yarn, it's in the frog pond, this was not a good match. I'll find a perfect mate for both pattern and yarn.

And then, something to wrap around myself for the coming fall, bigger needles, slightly complex but still portable wrap in from the book Poncho in a cashmere (5%) merino blend. This will bring peace to my otherwise crazy trip.

"Central to the appeal of knitting is that it wakes like a meditation. Everything becomes quiet, still and peaceful, and all the turmoil of life seems to succumb to the silent rhythm of the needles and the orderly progression of the stitches. " From The Principles of Knitting, June Hemmons Hiatt, 1988. YES!

Edible Yard

This year we planted edible, native landscaping in our yard. Our first year here, we spent a lot of time and money on a garden and didn't end up with much-failed tomatoes, bug infested broccoli, yellow zukes, but lots and lots of peas. The second summer, we made the front half of our house less of an eyesore with bushes and some flowering plants. This year, we went with what worked-we planted peas along the fence (took less than 5 minutes), and put in raspberry, current and blueberry bushes.

We had enough currents for some snacking and a batch of muffins. The other berries didn't do so hot, but the peas went crazy (nearly 7 feet high) and we eat them almost everyday. Butters has enjoyed snacking from the yard and we are waiting for the day that our plums will ripen.

Don't worry, all the harvesting still leaves plenty of time for spinning.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Family Tradition

I was lucky enough to have known my great grandmother until I was a young adult. Her father was a firefighter when they used to have horse and buggy fire carts! She was born in 1901 and at 16 was told to get married or go to school. She got married, then 'divorsed' and married the same guy again. I didn't know my grandfather, I was told he died of, 'moonshinin.' I never knew if this ment some kind of run in with local law enforcement Boss Hog style or liver failure.

You may remember we have a several plum trees in our yard and we started a batch of plum wine last year. July 1st we got a chance to try the wine and it's excellent! Best served chilled or over ice, it's a dry blush wine with a slightly sweet finish. And, it can get ya drunk! We are carrying on the family tradition! Some of you may find this in your stockings this winter!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Bedtime Story

The other night I was putting Butters to bed. We have a set bedtime routine: bath, playtime, books, then one of us snuggles and tells Butters a story. On this night he said, "Mom, I'm going to tell you a story. Onceaponatime, there was a little boy named.....Daddy. He fell down the stairs and got a booboo on his knee. So his mom put an extra large Snoopy band aid on it and it felt much better. The little boy fell and his mom made him feel better, she put an extra large band aid on it. He felt better. The end."

That's the biggest change lately, I'm Mom now, not mama. He's a big boy. It kills me. I like how the mom comes to the rescue in his story!

Speaking of bedtime, the baby is waking up again, she's been up every half hour tonight. I don't know if it's her teeth or all the injuries she's gotten in the last 48 hours-she bit her lip, smacked her face on the tub, hit her forehead on a wood block toy and sent a tinker toy rod into the back of her throat (bleeding). She's cried and made some of the worst sounds you've ever heard.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Our Public Demands News!

The public wants an update and photos to view! Here's a random post to keep everyone updated and in our daily lives...
You think she's so sweet and innocent, but this the real Baby E.

Boat ride around harbor was complete with boat sounds (yes, he always has food on his face).

I finished the bag I've been avoiding for almost 3 years. I'm going to have a lot of knitting time coming up and decided I can't cast on any thing new until I finish some ancient UFOs.

Also finished my pair of socks-the same size since I knitted them at the same time.

We've figured out who E will be for Halloween-Paul Shaffer!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Finally, Good News

We heard from some of the best doctors in the country, that my DH is a good candidate for a less invasive surgery and they can safely remove all the tumor and bone *ugh* through the nose with the same long term outlook. This feels right and we are excited for the time when all of this will be done with! We've been a bit down lately, but keeping busy as a family. So many people have offered to help and have helped, we are grateful for all the kind words.

We got a new TV a while back, see if you can guess where we put it! They look just like me here, I know!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Berry Pickin'

One great thing about living in the PNW is berries and U-pick farms.

Today we met friends to pick raspberries and tayberries.

The tall vines made it a perfect crop when you've got a baby on your back. We had a nice, relaxing (some more relaxed than others) time picking, walking and eating more than we paid for. After the farm we were dirty and unshowered so off to Value Village for some thrifting. I found some toys for a plane ride, Mercer Mayer Little Critter books and hilarious vintage fabric.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Summer teeth!

The baby has summer teeth. Have you ever heard that joke? "Some are there, some are missin', some are crook'd" She's go such a sweet little face, then she lights up and smiles and....redneck teeth! We think they will straighten out.

Went to the beach this weekend and did a (short) family walk along the river.

Here are a few shots of a pensive little lady. She stood up in the middle of the room yesterday for about .5 seconds then flopped back down on her butt. She'll be walking in no time.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Big Day!

Happy 5 years married to us (photo is from Maui when we got engaged). It always helps to remember what we said to each other on that sunny day:

I promise always to be your friend, lover, confidant and helper and to nurture the bonds that bring us together. I will support you in all of life’s challenges, l hold you gently in thought and in action, laugh with you, cry with you, and delight in your spirit and individuality. I will cherish you, above all others, for as long as we both shall live.

Happy 9 months to this pretty young thing! She's been out for as long as she was in!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Farm Tots and Thoughts

Butters and I got to have a special treat-a morning to ourselves.

We met friends at the Farm Tots program at South 47 farm. It was wonderful (reminiscent) having time with just my boy, my bud. And, much easier to help him use the port-o-potty without a baby on my hip. But, in the back of my mind was the bad news.

The MRI shows residual tumor touching the skull bone, all of it has to be removed including the bone. There are two ways to get to it, and we aren't really comfortable with how they want to get to it. So we are hoping pioneering doctors will take our case in Pittsburgh and we'll take a trip there and take care of it. I was hoping they were in Maui, but Pittsburgh in July sounds fantastic! I'll be closer to my family and it feels like the right thing to do.

I told T I catch myself feeling happy sometimes, and I feel guilty and he said that was ridiculous, he wants to be happy, life should be happy, we shouldn't sit around feeling sad. So, I'm trying to keep the summer as fun for Butters as possible and as normal, but he hears everything so I'm not sure how that's going on his end.

I visited my midwives today as we were in the neighborhood and I got the best hug from Valerie. I told her how empowered and wonderful my birth was and I thanked her for taking care of us. I gave her this wash cloth and a pair of hand warmers. (The washcloth is how long it takes to drive Olympia and back!) She told me it was the nicest thing someone had said and it made her feel good. All the emails and calls and talks with people have been helping us feel better and it was great to give that feeling back to someone.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Happy 4th

Usually I travel back to KY for the July 4th holiday, but since we didn't know what was going to be happening w/DH and I waited too long to book my tickets (they got up $900 and the lessthanhelpful Delta agent taught me all about blackout dates, basically I can't use my companion tickets for months!!), we stayed close by and visited Grandma and Grandpa!

The kids had a blast and the extra help meant some R&R for husband and I as well. The house is on a lake and it's just gorgeous, Husband went fishing and ate the trout he caught for lunch, Butters went swimming (more like almost drowning after not listening to your parents tell you to not walk any farther into the water), B learned to swing by himself (bottomless-pottytraining), we went paddle boating, went to Point Defiance Zoo and rode the carosel, ate outside, practiced standing, stayed up late for fireworks, all the fun summer stuff.

This week, we've got the final appointment before T's second surgery. The Dr. will go over the results of the MRI so we'll know more about what the surgery will look like-either simple and up the nose or....not so simple and involving a neurosurgeon. I think the shock of the Big C has worn off-I stopped making T his favorite cookies, giving him the bigger piece of avocado and just generally being overly nice to him. Things are back to normal.
PS. Yes, I made the fruity flag, it's fruit pizza modified from this recipe, and yes, I included the standing at the stairs photo so you could see the stars and stripes on E's patriotic dress!