knit at nite

some entries about knitting and family to keep myself motivated at projects and the daily grin, i mean grind.


goody, two shoes!

project adapted from rosebud shoes pattern by debbie bliss in nursery knits.

yarn: endless summer collection lara. 100% cotton. purchased from elann

pattern refigured to accomodate smaller size than written for.

tulip embroidery in place of rosebud intarsia.

the embroidery is by no means polished which is why knitted embelishments is fast moving to the top of my knitting library wish list. any recommendations for a similar title/resource? i'd like to have something on hand to consult when i want to add that extra flourish.

thanks for all the baby shoe book loans snbers! i'm very happy with what i made. v, i hope you still stop by here from time to time so that you see the cute shoes i made to go with the laura ashley outfit you passed on to bea; look for them in person at jonathan's baptism. bises to all who influenced this uplifting little project.

and sock progress; this is its 'good side'. i need to drop a stitch down (again, i tried once but didn't twist) and discipline the hole at the top of the heel:
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it was the best year, it was the worst year...
fibertribe's tuscan love posts have been haunting me. they remind me of a year we spent in france when i was growing up. i was a 4th grader which was cm1 or cm2 in the school i attended. here's the thing. the village of valaurie was so small, the ecole grammaire was one room for the ce1, ce2, cm1, and cm2, that made 16 of us, all together. i knew i was not a ce, but i didn't know which of the cm i was. and i was too shy to ask my teacher. i was the world's shiest child -i actually remember sitting under my mother's chair when company came when i was still small enough to do so.

if you click on the link above, the roof shadow on the right is being cast by the house we lived in. it had frontage on the main street and used to be a butcher's shop and house. mom converted the meat coldroom into a bathroom. first the floors had to be ground and polished free of what i imagined to be blood dried over years of dripping and pooling under the various hanging mammals and fowl. hefty hooks had to be chipped out of the walls and ceiling. even after major renovation, the house remained pretty crude. crude but cool. there were three wine cellars underneath complete with a press, and a chicken house behind it, that i converted into a playhouse for myself and my dolls.

one memory i have of those times goes like this. there was a celebrity french pop singer at the time by the name of claude francois. this was just before he died of an electrocution in the bathtub sort of accident. my friend sylvie and i went around writing 'cf' for claude francois all over the village walls in chalk. i had another friend, a boy, named frederic, fredo for short. so, wherever my brothers and their cronies saw 'cf', they inserted '+' between the letters so it would read 'c+f' for corine loves fredo. just another instance in a myriad, alternating between abuse and adoration, at the whim of my good bros.

what else? did you know my brothers invented sailboarding? as are many of these villages, this one is situated on a hill and features country lanes switching back and forth up its flanks. my brothers considered these to be prime skateboarding terrain. they had these early skateboards, primitive by today's standards. most french people in the area had not seen or heard of skateboards before. the thrill of wheels alone wasn't enough for my brothers though, they fashioned sails out of scrap wood and plastic sheeting to harness the mistral. i was as cautious as my brothers were crazy. my skateboard ride consisted of my parking my narrow ten year old buttom on the board and gripping the sides, gritting my teeth at the thought of the pavement grinding my knuckles around a sharp turn. i only ever ventured on one if trekking beyond the village, like to roussas, with 'les garcons', the pace requiring extra effort on my part to keep up.

the earth has truly beautiful places on it, what nostalgia is gripping you this winter?


pretty maid's [booties] all in a row

one of these is not like the others. i gauge swatched this debbie bliss bootie in the form of a first bootie. now, i know db's philosophy behind knitting oversized garments for kids. they're meant to be worn with plenty of ease for freedom of movement, and they can grow into the size over a couple of years, yada yada. ok for sweaters. but for a baby bootie??? does that make any sense at all? what child will wear a bootie after she learns to walk? making this item oversized is not going to stretch the window for wearing it--unless you decide it looks good on your german shepherd.

i pretty much assumed the booties would fit the age given. wrong. after knitting this zeppelin for my daughter's dainty foot, i decided to peruse some pictures in some of db's other books to see how her booties looked on (note that the picture of the one i was knitting was of the booties hanging seductively from a crib rail). sure enough, the kids who have them on their feet probably used a diving board to get into them. so lovely though. her books make me want to have barrels of babies just to knit for them...

at any rate, i love the booties. after some adjustments, they are just what i was trying for. and, a couple of aspects to this project make it all the more enjoyable. first, i have an fo to show for my effort rather quickly. more importantly, is that i used left over yarn from my stash. originally, i went to the lys and purchased some navy cotton because the dress she needs these with is dark and plaid and velour. then, i decided to return that yarn and purchase more in it's place, but... for someone else! (yay! no extra yarn in my house!) because i remembered i had perfectly lovely blue yarn already. you may remember this stylin' item knit for aidan while i was pregnant with bea (also adapted form debbie bliss, btw). i had a couple skeins left, some of which went into the pitcher for annie modesitt's famous fiesta tea set. and now i have booties for my three legged baby. it's all good.

what remains for me is to purchase buttons for the booties and embroider some little flowers on the tops to match the ones that pepper the velour bodice of the dress. also, i need to knit the lid to the pitcher, and some tea cups, and some saucers, and the creamer and sugar bowl... that was the first and last knit along i ever joined, can anyone tell me why?



here are the hoodie colors all swatched up in the form of the back of each sweater. aidan's blue is montana sky, desmond's florida keys green, bea's is delft. this picture doesn't show the color gradations of the yarn; for cheap stuff it is fun to knit up for the kids.

the largest sweater is pretty far along. the hood is completed, after binding it off and trying it on, i found that the pattern is not written for a child's head as big as the one mine has. so, ripped out the bind off, added a couple inches and have now completed the hood. tees me off a little as it adds a couple of ends to weave in. what remains now are the sleeves and the finishing. lots of ends too, no spit joining on this acrylic. boo.

aidan rather likes the sweater at this stage. the hooded tunic styling of it has him pretending he is a knight, and then when he is tired of that he is an ewok. there he goes with the dress up again. given this penchant, i am wondering, is this what his future holds?

what will you do with the moment you find to yourself today?



a minor disappointment this weekend. i was all excited to visit a friend in belchertown as it would bring me within dropping in distance of webs. i went online for the exit number and discovered that it was closed on sundays, boo. the consolation prize was a slightly more out of the way jaunt to the yankee candle factory for their 50% off sale.

we (i had a friend along) showed restraint i think. i came out with a couple of candles and some burt's bees almond and beeswax hand cream and some diaper ointment for bea. i love burt's bees. it smells delicious and works quite well for me. bea's cream is lavender scent and it reminds me of my grandmother's eau de toilette. i like when i find one generation all wrapped in with another like that. i once told my mom how much soft boiled eggs reminded me of her and she said they reminded her of her own mom.

speaking of soft boiled eggs, as much as i hate accumulating stuff, i have a couple of egg cups that i love and would like to start a collection around. what is wrong with me? this completely goes against my constant urge to purge. hmm.

wondering about boogie? well the balls did arrive from miami (thanks caroline!) and they are being knit up in between all the hoodie pieces, the dah socks, plus i want to sneak in a pair of navy booties for bea to wear with a plaid and velvet dress to a friend's baptism on sunday.


seized and confiscated

we're well into january and it's still christmas around here; the cousins were a visitin' and a bearin' gifts. the latest acquisition to the boys' toy trove? some fabulous dress up municipal service persons outfits; policeman and firefighter. i had to do a little editing of the costumes; axe, billy club and whistles were added to the toy chopsticks and wooden hammer currently in the evidence locker (conveniently located behind the couch where 'oops' things accidentally get lost).

the locker holds mostly artifacts that have accumulated there in an attempt to prevent potential criminal activities. alternative to these items in the costume kit? i suggest a straight jacket in a soothing shade for the parents, perhaps some rubber wall tiles?

in spite of the weapons being stashed away, the boys are managing to clobber each other over possession of the fireman's belt; apparently it has more desirable sound effects than the police variety. press the button and sing the catchy tune with me:
in a fire or emergency
i am on the job
you can count on me.

the police one has sirens.
resourceful chaps that they are, one will assault the other with a 3 inch piece of string if that is all he has at his disposal.

actually the outfits are a great fit for the boys. aidan is particularly fond of dress up and will accesorize himself with a receiving blanket, pot lid and paper towel tube, for lack of - even in spite of - better accoutrements. one minute superman, the next rough rider cowboy, but always protector of his sister fair.

what fever resides in your cabin this season?


it's like watching teeth grow

the problem with all these projects going on at once is that so little progress is being made on each that there is nothing to show on any.

i am nearing the heel of the first sock. dah likes them; the ribbing made an impression. he told me that he might feel bad about wearing them for all the time and effort they require to make. i countered that he had better wear them every chance he gets... for all the time and effort they require to make... duh.

there are nearly two pieces done of the largest hoodie and one complete for the middle sized one. i wanted to make a piece of the smallest as well to see all the colorways knit up. but, i may go and see what other hue i can scare up for bea. something feminine, as these others will get handed down to her and they are decidedly not. it's funny how my color choices have been swayed. if i were making a different sweater for each child i would be choosing differently. when selecting for these however, i find myself picturing all the togs being worn together and so there are second and third thoughts.

boogie sits and waits for more yarn. cg was kind enough to send reinforcements promptly but our post office is lax lately. one day our mail didn't arrive until after dark. and i recieved a package around the 7th that was post marked the 23rd! i'm watching that pot of a mailbox and it is not boiling.

bea is working hard making teeth. two have popped out of her bottom gums in the last week. even teething, she remains the ideal, sweetly dispositioned baby. be jealous. i have one easy child on my hands here folks. pray that i'm still singing this tune in the teen years...? here is what she can do with a cookie...


too much?

back of boogie is complete. front is started, accomplished my first cable ever. ran out of yarn, eye kept on mailbox for reprovisions (thanks cg).

began swatching for lionbrand family of hooded sweaters using dah's christmas gift yarn. planning one for each kidlet. going to exchange some for different colors as i would like each to be a different hue. if poor bea is going to get these things handed down to her for the rest of her life, they might as well be different colors. i know, i've complained about knitting the same thing twice, i'm not sure what i am thinking. i do know what i am thinking, how cute they will be wearing matching hoodies as it gets chillier on the beach when the sun goes down. and how snuggly they will be when we're hauling their monkey bodies over the sand dunes to get back to the car. - a little alternate season fantasy to get me through january, thank you.

speaking of knitting things twice, i've started a toe up sock (you all have the pattern in the knitting pattern a day calendar someone got you for christmas ;) for dah. there was a provisional cast on with the toe done in short rows down to the tips and then back up the other side before the stitches were joined with the cast on row to begin the tube up the instep. so technical (for me) and so cool. new year, new skills. i said that already, it's still true or it's true again, whichever.


2005, have a good one

i've completed my first ever cable. i'm so proud and excited by such a small tidbit. no pics of the accomplishment. but i will give you this, a new year's greeting from our fun nye party.

i had a choice of pictures; you could see our stylin' hats, or you could see our smilin' faces uncontorted. best in '05 to you.