Monday, September 29, 2008

The Saga Continues....

It all started right before bed last night. I'm diligently working on my beta version of Chunky Monkey, and getting close to where I can start the shaping and the fun stuff! watching Bullit with Dan. Yes, it's a horribly crappy late 60's movie, but ya gotta love the car chase! You haven't seen anything until you've seen that beautiful Mustang in that car chase. Anyway, when I sat down to knit, I asked Dan if he had seen the dog recently because I didn't have to kick her off the couch. (She knows she's not supposed to be up there, but she gets so cold she loves to curl up on the pillows.) Well, we finish watching the movie. I'm feeding the baby, and Dan goes in to find the stupid dog on our bed and had peed on our pillows! So, we had to clean that mess up at 11:30 at night.

Then, at about 5:30 this morning (after I've already been up to feed the baby at 4) Melodie starts screaming and throwing a hissy fit because she wanted to watch TV, and I made her go back to bed. And I mean a FIT! I got so fed up, I took the new Webkinz my aunt and uncle just got her. And of course she woke up the baby, so by the time I fed him, again, and got him back to sleep, again, it was about 10 minutes before I had to get up. After I had my bath and gained some sort of consciousness I, in not so nice terms, informed her if she ever spoke to me the way she did this morning again, I would not only get rid of said Webkinz, but all further Webkinz for her would be banned from the house, and any gotten for her would be promptly gotten rid of, her American Girls would completely leave (I've had them confiscated for about 6 months now because she wasn't taking care of them right), and all Pokemon and Littlest Pet Shop will be banned from the house. I also told her if she keeps up this bath and hair washing crap, that I'll get rid of all of her skirts, and she'll only have jeans to wear. (She has a personal vendetta against jeans. She absolutely cannot stand them. She always wants to wear skirts to school.) Dr. Phil had said before that every kid has their "currency." He hasn't met Melodie! Nothing matters. I have taken every toy from her room, and she still acts this way. The only thing that matters to her is school, and her wonderful principal she had before went to a new district this year, and although the new principal seems very nice, it just doesn't seem like she would work with me as much as the old one did. We had a good plan in place for keeping her behavior in check at home by rewards, etc. at school. That's gone now and all hell has broken loose. I dread thinking about what life is going to be like in 5 years when she is a teenager. I'm just so tired and frustrated.

I wish I could just shipwreck myself on a tropical beach with a gallon of vodka and cranberry juice and sleep for 3 days. Of course, then I'd get sunburned. I can't even win in my dream world!

I just wish I could get through to her. I wish there was something I could do to finally make it click that she's not supposed to act like that. She's so smart. She has an IQ of 134 for cripe's sake! She should be able to figure out how to wash her hair and not jump head first off the furniture. I still think she has to have some form of autism. Maybe it's bipolar or something else like that, I don't know, but there is still and has always been something that just gnaws at the corner of my brain telling me there is something else that has to be going on in that head of hers to make her be like this all the time. I understand kids misbehave. I know kids test boundaries. They're supposed to do that stuff to learn, though. This is much more than that. Just something about her doesn't sit right with me. I think she's got more neurologically / neuropsychologically going on than just an underdeveloped nerve in her lip. If we can ever afford health insurance, maybe we can someday have an absolute answer. Who knows.....

She just gets me so frustrated, but at the same time, I feel so sad for her. I just want her to grow up and live her own happy, safe life. She's got so many dreams and aspirations, I just don't want her to have to give that all up and have to live at home because she can't even take care of her own personal hygiene, let alone be a vet or a teacher! She's also getting to the point in school now where kids start to notice you're differences. She has friends and people generally seem to like her, but the difference between her and the other girls in her class is black and white.....and you can tell the other girls notice it, too. She's just so friendly and outgoing though, she wins everyone over, but I started seeing it last year, certain little ways they look at her when she gets in one of her tangents, that they know she's different. I'm just very glad she's not teacher's pet this year. Her teacher last year was very nice, but she is one of those kids that just gets off on attention. She has to be the center of attention at all times, and she thrives off of it. I'm glad she's being treated just like one of the other kids this year. Hopefully it will help some.....hopefully.

My mom thinks I'm nuts. She thinks there's nothing wrong with the way she acts, and I'm a mean, horrible person because I expect too much from her. I mean, gee, I want her to bathe so kids don't make fun of her for being dirty and smelly and I want her to get a good night's sleep so she doesn't look like a zombie in the morning, and I want her to not nosedive off the furniture so she doesn't break her neck and die....that must make me Adolf freakin' Hitler, right? When I was her age, I had the pressure piled on to get straight A's. That wasn't expecting too much, though. (Sorry, my mom just irked me this morning because I complained. Silly me, I thought I could talk about my problems with my mom and not get dumped upon for it. Thank god I've got wonderful friends who do see how she acts without the rose colored glasses of a grandparent and know that I'm not crazy....thanks guys!!!!)

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Hectic Days

I swear, my days off are always busier than my work days. I just try to cram so much stuff into so little time. Yesterday we ditched the big kids with my mom and went to my friends' house for ribs. I've never had ribs before! (Okay, so I've had ribwiches, but it's just not the same.) They were good, but I'm just too lazy to eat ribs. I also love KFC, hate to eat chicken off the bones. I was so happy when I heard they had the Original Recipe strips! Dan thinks I'm nuts.

Anyway, we had a great time. It was so nice to sit around a fire again. I hate living in the city, not like we're in a big city or anything, but I just miss being out in the country. I can't wait until we can get back out to the country. I want my kids to roast marshmallows around a bonfire. I want them to be able to lay down in the backyard and go stargazing. I want to have a huge garden and can our own food for the year. I want my kids to be able to shoot my Red Ryder anniversary edition BB gun (yup, just like Ralphie's) in the backyard. I want to not hear fire engines ALL....DAY...LONG. (Speaking of, Atley did go get to tour the fire station down the street yesterday. Dan's friend is an EMT, so Atley got an All-Access pass to see all the cool fire stuff. They even had to go on a call, Atley didn't go, but they set of the siren and he got to see the fire trucks take off! He jabbered away about it for half an hour after he got home.) It was nice, though. The baby was so good. He ate, he slept, he played.

As for my knitting....I'm working on a new pattern right now. It's called "Chunky Monkey" because that's what I call my fat little Charlie. It's going to be a fat little monkey. I hope to have it done sometime this week. I'm also hoping to finish a couple more bib designs for Halloween. I've got some plans for Candy Corn with some neat yarn I found last week, a pumpkin, and a witch if I can get it graphed. I know what I want it to look like, I just can't get it worked out. I'm going to have Dan give it a go and see if he can graph it for me.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Squash and patterns and hair, oh my!

Charlie loves squash. He had it for the first time yesterday. I had just bought a single jar of squash baby food to see if he liked it before I put in the effort to make him some. Well, he likes it! He would open his mouth like a little birdie as soon as he saw the spoon! He ate the whole jar in 1 sitting, mixed with cereal! I'm going to have to go buy a butternut squash to roast today (which I've never done before. I'll also be getting at least another jar of food, just in case I screw it up!) Today is also his 5 month birthday. Happy Birthday to my sweet little chunky monkey Charlie.

My patterns are now officially listed for sale on Ravelry! There are buttons to purchase them to the left if you're not a member. If you are, my Ravelry shop is officially open for business!

And hair....well, I knew it was too good to be true. The aliens must have returned the real Melodie last night. She was in prime form this morning! She got out of the tub at 8:30....we have to leave at 8:30. She was in there for over 45 minutes! I made her get dressed and brush her teeth, but I took the brush, a waffle, and her shoes and socks. I told her it's one thing that she makes herself late, but she's not going to make Ari late, too! I dropped Ari off, then pulled into a spot to let Melodie finish getting ready. I think she even might have made it on time, but it was close. They were still walking in when she ran over to get in line.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Such an exciting day....

I'm just blogging my little heart out today! So, so much excitement....or crying....that's the same, right?

So, Ari has not had homework yet this year. Melodie had homework when she was in kindergarten, every night. Tonight, they sent home a word ring (a metal ring with paper words looped on it, I know, very original name) to go over and a piece of lined paper to practice name writing. The word ring did not go over so well. She can read red, green, and yellow. The rest of them, she guessed until she got the right color. I will say 2 weeks ago when she brought home her weekly classroom report and it said they learned to spell red, and I asked her and she did it, I cried. I know, it's a 3 letter word, and they made up a cutesy little song to teach them, but she spelled red. That was the first word, other than her name, that she ever spelled! They were tears of being proud, but they were also tears of sadness. Not for my baby growing up (because I'm very proud of her and how responsible she has become) but because I didn't feel like I did a good job teaching her because she couldn't read. Melodie could read chapter books when she started kindergarten. Ari couldn't even read "red." Granted, she's not always the most cooperative child, but I spent so many hours teaching Melodie how to read and write and count, even in different languages, but poor little Ari couldn't even spell red when she went. I know I only had Melodie to take care of when she was a toddler, and with Ari not only did I still have Melodie, plus her, but also Atley to take care of, so it wasn't humanly possible to spend the same amount of time with her, but I felt I failed her as a parent. I know she doesn't have to read before kindergarten, because that's sort of the purpose of kindergarten, and if she's not the top student in her class, that doesn't mean anything to me(trust me, an average, not gifted, run of the mill, normal, plain old kid is fine by me!) , but did I give her a good enough foundation to build on?

Now, Ari has been writing "ARI" for a couple years. We started working on "Ari" right before school. School wants her to write Arianna. She writes Ari (with a circle over the "i") and the rest is blobs and lines because she doesn't think she should have to write it, especially not more than once a day. God forbid I ask her to write it the 5 times they requested she practice it tonight, on top of her being upset she couldn't read all of the color words! Her wrath was felt, and it was not pretty!

Ready for purchase

Bats in the Belfry is ready for purchase! It is available for $2 USD. Here is a better picture:

Please email me if you're interested. It will be available on Ravelry, too, as soon as I'm set up to sell.

Back to the old grind

Well, the last of our out of town family left last night. It was sad to see them go, but apparently they're looking for a house and hoping to move back up here! (Most of my mom's brothers and sisters had moved to Florida a long time ago, but they're all starting to trickle back now.) We went to Amish Door for dinner.....mmmm mashed potatoes and dressing! Charlie had his first taste of mashed potatoes there. He liked them. Yay! For the longest time, Ari would not eat potato products other than french fries. She might be a clone of me, but her attitude is definitely her daddy through and through. Charlie has also sampled sweet potato baby food the last couple of days, and it has met his approval. It's a good thing I'm working on all these bibs now that he's starting to eat solids!

The girls did pretty good this morning. I'm waiting for the Twilight Zone music to start playing. We were right on time today, but there was no yelling or screaming. I'm scared. Who are these children and where did my real ones go!?! Atley even stayed dry last night, and he had a huge glass of chocolate milk at the restaurant right before bed. I took him to the donut store for breakfast (he woke up about 5 minutes before we went out the door.)

We stopped by my grandparents' Monday because we hadn't seen them in a few weeks. (They feel bad about doing things when the girls are in school because they don't want to hurt anyone's feelings.) They gave us 3 big bags of stuff from the fair. I swear, they must have cleaned people out! There were at least 2 dozen each of pens and pencils. Stacks of coloring books and notepads. A quart sized ziploc bag of candy. It was crazy! It took me 15 minutes to go through everything last night and put it away. (I was doing Flylady to try to fix up the house before Dan's friend and his fiancee stopped by.) Yeah, my poor house has taken a beating the past couple of weeks. With everyone who was up visiting, then the wedding, school, me working on patterns, Dan being on vacation, things went to pot. It feels so nice to be able to walk across the floor and not twist my ankle!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Bats in the Belfry

Pattern #2! I finished up my first Halloween bib last night. It's so cute! I wish I had some Halloween buttons, though. I would have done a different neck band and used a button instead. It is being test knit and will be available for sale very soon! Here's a pic of Charlie wearing it:
Email me if you'd like to purchase the pattern! It is available as a PDF file, or if you need a different format, let me know! I'll put a better photo of just the bib up when my test knitter gives me the thumbs up that the pattern is error free and I officially list it to sell.

Well, Melodie finally got front seat this morning. She was up before me and in the tub. Ari was crushed. Like every other day this year wasn't enough for her. Oh well. We may be getting a new old car tonight. Dan is going to take a look at an old station wagon. He says he'll be happy to go anywhere I want if he has an old station wagon to drive there. We'll see how long that lasts!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Happy Mabon!

Happy Mabon everybody! (That would be Happy Autumnal Equinox for all the muggles out there!) After our big wind storm the other day, the leaves sure have started to change. We need to start setting out food for our feathery and furry friends! Ari dearly loves squirrels and always makes sure they have a special treat.

This morning, we were actually on time, and dare I say it a bit early, for school! Ari still got ready first, but we were there with 15 minutes to spare! Yay! (Okay, it only happened because my aunt and uncle are leaving in the morning and Melodie wanted to say goodbye to her cousin tonight, and I told her if she didn't get moving, she had to stay home. I know, I'm mean, but it got the job done!)

I've got my second bib pattern finished! I started knitting it up last night. I'm about 1/3 of the way done. It's a bib for Samhain (Halloween.) Hopefully I'll be able to finish it up tonight and get a pic up tomorrow! I was going to change the neck band, but I think I'm going to wait. I think it would be so cute to do orange, purple, and green Halloween bibs for a picture. I know Dan would NOT be happy with the baby wearing a purple bib (he's weird about that stuff.) So, I think I'll do the purple one with a different neck band for my cousin's baby, since she can't have stuff that goes over her head. Plus, that will give me some time to look up how to make a buttonhole!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Wedding Time Fun

Well, we went to my cousin's wedding yesterday. The kids had a blast! They all got WAY too much sugar, but at least they had fun. There were the BEST chocolate covered brownies there. I could have eaten the whole tray....mmmm chocolate. Melodie had a great time dancing all night. The bride's brother saw her trying to do a line dance and helped her. It was so sweet. He even gave her a high-5 at the end. She was so tickled. I was also shocked...the girl has some moves! My uncoordinated, tripping, head bumping, knees bruised child could actually dance! I see jazz class in her near future. It was nice because I got to dance with her a little bit and spend some time with her where we weren't fighting over shampoo or following directions. She seemed to have a really good time.

Ari had fun, though a little more reserved. She did keep everyone full of punch. (They had a fountain of punch, so that was just too cool for her to resist.) She was very concerned when she realized it was dark outside and finally, I just couldn't convince her anymore it was okay, and that we could be up late. She wanted to go home.

Poor little Atley crashed big time. He fell asleep around 8:30-9 and slept through everything. My mom, one of my aunts, and I took turns holding him, and he didn't stir once. A party animal, he's not. He had fun eating as many cookies as he could get before he fell asleep, though.

Charlie almost outlast Atley. He fell asleep and quietly snoozed safely under the table in his car seat until we left. His little outfit was 12 months...and it wasn't any big on him! If he keeps this up, the boys will be wearing the same size by the time he's 1. Of course, he was my perfect, sweet baby all night. He likes mashed potatoes and frosting.

The wedding was really pretty. The bride was beautiful, and my cousin looked so nice in his dress uniform. The officiant even talked about his time in Iraq and how lucky he is that he made it home safely as so many in his battalion didn't. He was in the Lima company that suffered such a big loss a couple years ago. It was a great ceremony, everyone in the family actually seemed to get along for a night. We had a great time. Boy, my arms are aching though. Holding a 16 pound baby and a 33 pound preschooler all day and lifting up a 5 and almost 8 year old to dance is hard work!

Friday, September 19, 2008

Hairgate....part deux

Well, Melodie washed her hair today. Too bad she didn't finish brushing it.....and I didn't realize that until we were getting into the truck.....and we were running late........and she didn't even shut the front door of the house when she came out, so anyone could have waltzed right in......and we might have tardy #2 today! What is it about Fridays!?! Oh, and for the Melodie neck-breaking stunt of the day....drumroll please.....standing on the arm of the couch while I'm making breakfast!! All of this before 9 AM. Lori, I'm with ya on that drink! lol

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Purchase "Cash"

Ok, I am ready to put it up for sale! The Cash right hand knitting pattern has been tested. Until I get set up through Ravelry, you can contact me and I can send a PDF directly to you. The pattern is available for $2, payable through Paypal. If you're interested, my email is madams (@) sssnet (.) com (remove parentheses and spaces.) The lefty version is being tested and will be available shortly. Thanks for looking!

rav8 007

Hairgate 2008

The saga continues.......

So, we're getting ready for school this morning. I let Melodie get in the tub first today so she has a snowball's chance in hell to ride up front. (My new ploy to get the kids moving in the morning, first one completely ready gets to ride in the much coveted front seat.) Ari has won every day. Anyway, I instruct Melodie to get moving as fast as she can because I have to take Charlie for his 4 mo shots at 9 this morning. Usually the shot clinics are on Tuesdays (my day off) and you can go between 2-4 (so I can go as soon as I pick the girls up from school.) Of course, this month they changed the day to not my day off and the only time was 9-11 because the nurses were at a conference the first half of the week. Well, Melodie gets out of the tub and comes in with wet hair asking for clothes. I do "the sniff test." (thank god for heavily, nasty scented children's hair products!) Her hair most certainly lacked the scent of dragonfruit. So, she had to get back in the tub because the worst thing you can do for baby fine, thin hair is get it wet and not wash it! We made it to school with about 30 seconds to spare.

Then, the boys and I rush off to get poor Charlie his shots. Atley was more traumatized than Charlie was. Thankfully he only had to get 1 shot today! They were out of the Prevnar, and they came up with a new combination shot like the Pediarix that has Hib instead of hep B, so he got that and didn't need extra shots...yay! He weighed 16 lb 6 oz, which means my mom's scale is off...which means I'm 2 pounds lighter too! woohoo!

I had feedback from my first right handed test knitter on "Cash." She's already done, blocking, and hopes to get me a picture today! I'm so excited! I'm so hoping that this is my take-off and I can get a craft business started. Even if it just gives me enough money to buy the kids' birthday and/or Christmas presents or pay for my own crafting, I'd be happy. In my dreams, I'd love to make it my full time business. We shall see what happens!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Pagan Baby....ideas

I'm hoping to work on a line called Pagan Baby. As a pagan mom, I've always been dismally disappointed in the apparent lack of patterns for pagan babies (and kids! That will come in time too, I hope!) I've got some ideas in the works AKA my brain. If you have any ideas you'd like to see, let me know!

I am.....Charlie Cash

Well, I got the bib done! My first extensive design of my own! (Ok, so it's a bib....but we know me and my math abilities...this is a big accomplishment!) If any left handed knitters are reading this out there who would be willing test this, I'd be thrilled to hear from you! I'm getting a good response from I just have to adjust the pattern! I feel for left handed people. I just knit left handed. I can't imagine having all kinds of stuff in life that is just so downright opposite of what everyone gets. I know Thanksgiving dinner was hard enough growing up with 4 lefties and 3 righties trying to sit around a round table. Ugh.

Anyway, here is a picture, if anyone is interested.....
rav8 007

It will hopefully be available for purchase on Ravelry shortly!

As for the wind clean's still going! We were really, really lucky. I was out and about yesterdy for the first time, and the rest of town didn't fare so well. There were huge trees uprooted. Scary stuff!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Not one toy blew away...

Well, we did get a tardy Friday....hooray for us! I got a reprieve today, though. School was canceled! Apparently the nasty wind we had all evening yesterday really did a number, and all of the schools were canceled around here except my alma mater....sorry Tuslaw! Guess having all the schools on 1 street isn't so good for a power outage day off. Of course, Ari thinks it's my fault and is mad at me. I told her last night she had school today, and they didn't have school. Branches and trees are down all over. All around the neighborhood, I can hear chain saws going. My mom's neighbor had part of a huge tree fall on their house....and we didn't even lose a sand toy or child's sized plastic chair.

As for my knitting, I've been at a standstill on my bib I'm working on. I don't have the attention span to work out patterns! lol Hopefully, I'll get it done tonight so I can get it test knit and rework the pattern for righties. Yes, I'm right handed, but my lefty family members taught me how to knit, so I'm a lefty knitter. Again, thank you KnittedSister for helping me figure out how the heck to purl!

Friday, September 12, 2008

Here we go again....

Well, it's already started. I knew the first few days were too good to be true. We were ready and early for school for about the first week. We're ending week 3....and we may have our first tardy! So, today was picture day. Ari got ready wonderfully. Melodie, not so much. And, to top it all off, she didn't wash her hair this morning! She got it wet, flopped around in the bathtub for 20 minutes, and didn't wash her hair. I told her I'm going to return the pictures and not buy her yearbook if they turned out bad because she was a brat and didn't wash her hair on picture day. The one day of the year she could choose to not wash her hair, and it has to be picture day. She knew it was picture day, too, which makes it even worse. I swear, she is the epitome of gifted savant. So, so smart, but so, so out of synch with the world.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Dr. Phil needs his head checked....

So, I'm on Rav today (of course) and I read a message in one of my forums that Dr. Phil is looking for people with bad outcome homebirth stories. Like homebirth doesn't get enough of a bad rap as it is. Well, he got a well-incensed message from me about a better topic for a show...."Bad hospital births that turn you to homebirthing." He'd find a much larger field of fodder on that one. Of course, that would hurt the medical "biz", so why would he do a ridiculous thing like that? Ugh. For anyone reading this that doesn't know me, I've had 3 wonderful homebirths after an intervention-filled, C-section threatening, horrible experience of a hospital birth with my oldest. My 3 homebirths were wonderful experiences, and I'd do it again any day (much to my poor husband's chagrin.) In fact, with my youngest, this is the first time I've nursed, and he's a tank! He's in the 95% for height and 75% for weight.....the other 3 barely cracked 50% for anything other than head size. He's only 4 months old, and he's as big as they were at almost 9 months. Yay nursing! Yay homebirths!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Baby Mitten Pattern

Here is a pattern for baby first published pattern! These are for my friend's new baby, and I'll be making a pair for mine, too. They are a quick knit. Please feel free to drop me a line with any feedback!

Baby Mittens with Garter Ridge - newborn/infant

Things you need:

  • Size 4 double pointed needles (DPN's) - set of 4
  • Worsted weight yarn, I used acrylic baby yarn
  • Stitch marker
  • Tapestry / yarn needle

This is a great beginner project for learning how to use DPN's and knit in the round. I made these to go with the Garter Ridge Cardigan and Baby Beanie for a friend's baby.

I started this with a long-tail cast on.

Make 2.

Cast on 30 stitches and divide between 3 DPN's (10 per needle.) Join and mark beginning of row with stitch marker. Work in K1, P1 ribbing for 5 rows.

Rows 6 and 7: Knit whole row.
Row 8: *Knit 5, inc 1, knit to end of needle; repeat from * on each needle.
Rows 9-12: Knit whole row.
Row 13: Purl whole row.
Row 14: Knit whole row.
Row 15: Purl whole row.
Rows 16 and 17: Knit whole row.
Row 18: *Knit 5, knit 2 together, knit to end of needle; repeat from * on each needle.
Row 19: Knit whole row.
Row 20: *Knit 4, knit 2 together, knit to end of needle; repeat from * on each needle.
Row 21: Knit whole row.
Row 22: *Knit 3, knit 2 together, knit to end of needle; repeat from * on each needle.
Row 23: Knit whole row.
Row 24: Repeat row 22.
Row 25: Knit whole row.
Row 26: Repeat row 22. There should be 6 stitches left on each needle.
Row 27: Knit whole row.
Row 28: Knit 2 together all around. There should be 9 stitches left total.

Cut a long tail. Thread tapestry / yarn needle with tail and pull through stitches, removing needles. Pull tight and thread through hole to inside of mitten. Weave in ends.
mittens 001

This pattern is not to be sold. Items made from this pattern may not be sold. Please feel free to make these mittens for yourself, a gift, or charity. If you reproduce this pattern, please make sure proper credit is given to me. It's mine, and I'm proud of it! :0)

My first blog!

Well, everyone else is doing it, I'm a lemming, I must do it! Now, I can blog, too. This will probably be mostly about my kids and knitting....that's what I do. I hear my kid adventures make for some good story telling, so hopefully this won't be too boring!