Saturday, December 29, 2007
I tried to convince my Mom that she should model her own hat, but by the time I remembered to take the photo her hair was "done". Since I wouldn't be seeing the hat for a while I succumbed to modeling it myself. Here is the Twiggy Bobble Hat, courtesy of Andrea Tung of Fable Handknit. This was the first time I've made bobbles, and I admit, they were fun. I knit this for my Mom as a Christmas gift while catching up on old Heroes episodes (Jay and I had to sit at the computer to do so - not comfortable, and therefore, quite memorable.) The yarn is Rowan Cashcotton because I knew my Mom would appreciate the softness, and I enjoy knitting with it (the yardage for the price is also a big plus). It makes for a soft, lightweight hat and I hope my Mom likes it.
The dilemma of the day involves the fabric above. It's the "Holiday" pattern by Shinzi Katoh and I'm just smitten by it. Jay and I have been catching up on all things house this week (which is a whole post in itself), and we're focusing a lot on our kitchen. This fabric would work - I mean really work - in the space. Unfortunately, it seems that ordering right from Japan is the only way I can get it, but the instructions are a bit unusual and I'm so used to Paypal and direct ordering that I'm a little hesitant. I may try contacting Superbuzzy directly to see if this fabric is on their radar, but otherwise I may have to go without. Perhaps it's been too long since I've had a Shinzi Katoh fix?
Wednesday, December 26, 2007
1) Sadie's drawings. One day all she could manage were scribbles, then a day later she knew how to make faces with arms and legs. This guy above doesn't actually have legs, but Sadie claims it's a tiger, hence the pattern on the body. Pattern on the body? How did she jump into this realm of undertsanding? (And I think I'll have to embroider him on something - how can I resist?)
2) Scarbiedoll's honesty. This post struck a chord with me, and I adore Nadine for sharing her experiences so candidly, allowing us to feel like we're not alone. 'Cause we're not.
3) This book. I asked Jay the other day if he ever thought I would become such a knitter, and he honestly answered "no." Deep down I know the turn happened after Sadie was born - it's the one thing I can pick up and put down quickly, and no sharp (well, not really sharp) implements are used so I can leave it around. Everywhere. But I mainly knit functional things from patterns so this book is a real inspiration. Nothing helps more than seeing a community of people pushing the limits of the craft, and I'm always stoked to hear the backgrounds of these artists - how they got here, what lifestyle they lead now, what future they are dreaming of. It's a great book to end the year reading, cosied up on the couch thinking about a whole new year of possibilities.
Saturday, December 15, 2007
After seeing The Golden Compass Wednesday morning, I stepped off the streetcar one stop later than usual. I thought I could walk through our local park and see if any branches were lying around. There were two streets I could have walked up; I chose the one furthest away. I wasn't quite to the park when I almost walked past three piles of perfectly shaped, perfectly cut tree branches. I smirked at my luck and started digging through the pile. Finding four great branches among the bounty, I set off with them in my arms. One woman asked me what I was going to do with them and I happily answered, "they are going to be my Christmas tree".
One bucket, eight bricks and a length of jute later, the tree was up. Sadie helped me unpack the ornaments while I told her the story of my cardboard stars. We plugged in the lights and decided this was a good tree. Charlie Brown in style, sure, but a tree that met with the criteria I was given. Jay even likes it. The only downfall? It really doesn't photograph well, especially when there are paint-by-numbers behind it.
The other photo is my smaller tree endeavour. A late night inspiration from this blog had me dreaming of paper possibilities. Mine may not be as colourful, but drawing and cutting it was pretty fun and I think there might be more paper ideas to come. But speaking of inspiration, check out this fantastic advent calendar! It's a great blog and that robin's egg blue wall is awesome.
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Every year on Christmas Eve, my Mom would give us one gift to unwrap - a new pair of pajamas. It didn't matter that we knew what would be inside the box, it only mattered that it was tradition and that we would go to bed in something new and warm. In my attempt to figure out how Christmas might work in our house, I've decided to keep up this tradition with Sadie. Of course, I've also pledged to be as "handmade" as possible, so I sat down this week and made a wee nightgown. I didn't use a pattern, so I probably took longer than I needed to, but in the end I think it worked out. The heart buttons are just an extra detail, and the entire back is regular buttons (this is what happens when you sew freestyle - you get stuck and sometimes button plackets are the only solution).
We'll see if it passes the Sadie test; she has a quirky habit of not liking anything I make her. My new plan? Don't tell her that Mommy had anything to do with it.
Monday, December 03, 2007
So another Monday, another gift made. Not quite as inspiring or as relaxing a day as last Monday, but oh well. At least I got a belated thank you gift almost finished and spent some quality time humming along to Johnny Cash. Perhaps spending the previous night in Sadie's bed being kicked incessantly by little feet had something to do with my mood?
And man, do I ever wish we had some natural light in this house. Winter equals dark, muddy photos...and apologies from me.
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
But why cookies? Well, Sadie likes to bake banana bread with me, so I thought a baking theme might be fun. She's very good at stirring and she doesn't get bored anytime during the process. Now I've started a purple apron ("purple's my fravrite colour Mommy!") so she can dress the part too.
Sunday, November 25, 2007
Sunday, November 04, 2007
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
Sunday, October 14, 2007
Time flying aside, I am most shocked by how seamlessly our relationship has welcomed real conversation. The two of us take the subway home everyday, which is almost an hour trip, and we fill each moment with words. Words that come out right, words that are strung together into sentences, words that communicate exactly what my three-year-old is thinking. I recently finished The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion and in it she reveals that when her daughter Quintana was young her husband would write down the things Quintana said on little scraps of paper. He put each scrap into a box partly for nostalgia, but mainly for when he wrote future novels that had children in them. As adults, there is simply no way we can recapture what comes out of a three-year-old's mouth without actually documenting the source. Inspired by this I have only written down one fragment (and mostly for Jay's benefit - I wanted to have a Sadie moment to share with him on the phone while he was in LA). Sadie was talking to Glen Miller, our cat, through the glass of our front door and she said: "stay back, you have to be safe and you not have shoes". Since then Sadie has explained to me that the whole reason why our cats stay inside is because they are shoeless. Of course. And it took a three-year-old to say it so clearly.
(At this very moment Sadie is piling her birthday cards, one by one, on Glen Miller as he sleeps on a stool. They are the funniest pair - not too long ago she bent down to within 1cm of his face and asked, "Are you sad? Are you sad? Are you sad?" Who wouldn't be when you are trying to sleep and a toddler is forcing you to study the poetry of Hallmark?)
So, a baby Sadie is not. A charming, unpredictable, inquisitive three-year-old is my girl today. And I have to say, I'm pretty stoked by that.
Wednesday, October 03, 2007
Sunday, September 30, 2007
Friday, September 28, 2007
It would have been great to join him, but I just got home from a lovely break in New York with Ragdoll and couldn't stand being away from Sadie that long. Although I was in NY for a work conference, I was a total girl and shopped like mad (Ragdoll inspires me that way, though she did laugh when I bought a pair of red shoes similar to ones I already have. My response: I like variations on a theme.) But being away from home was good for my soul, truly. These are uncertain times at my workplace, the summer, frankly, was a bummer, and I have a real need for change right now. My mother, bless her, tried to help me move all our furniture around today just to make some change, but with a cumbersome TV, nothing worked. Stupid TV - and to add insult to injury, we don't even have cable.
So while Jay is doing his art thing I just need to sit down and knit, send him happy Hollywood thoughts, and consider this whole cable ridiculousness. Maybe signing up could count as change? At the very least I could finally watch Mad Men.
Sunday, September 16, 2007
Truth be told, I learned how to crochet way before I ever knit. The women in my family were more of the doily-making variety instead of knitters; perhaps they preferred keeping track of only one needle or they liked the humour of being called a "hooker". I imagine the latter is the case, as crochet reminds me most of my Gramma Vi, who passed away two weeks ago. Sure, this summer has been absolutely crappy for losing loved ones, but at least remembering my Gramma makes me laugh. She was a crazy, one-of-a-kind lady. You could not leave her house without sparkles attaching themselves mysteriously to your body and she was a crochet queen. So finishing a crochet project is not only timely, but also therapeutic.
It turns out that crocheting is also easier to do on the subway when I'm standing behind Sadie's stroller. We only go 4 stops, but I suffer from having to always do something with my hands, so I make use of the time. This scarf is a simple fan pattern I found somewhere online and I like that it feels lacy without the task of having to memorize a lace knitting pattern, plus it looks the same on both sides. I used Rowan cashcotton, which is lovely to work with, and a 4.5mm hook. It's about 9 degrees outside right now, so I'd say I finished the scarf just in time.
See Gramma? I'm a hooker now too.
Thursday, August 30, 2007
I was incredibly slow to discover the wonder of Japanese crafting books, but wow, how inspiring they are! One in the Handmade Zakka series arrived at my door last week and the very same day I heard that Nadine had had her baby. So, eager to sew for a little baby girl I started picking fabric for the baby shoe pattern. The construction was surprising, and the hand sewing intense, but I should have known that to make something so tiny and sweet requires special processes. Now I just have to get my act together and deliver the little package before baby Lucine's feet get too big! Three years down the road and I have no idea what size newborn feet are. I may already be too late.
P.S. Nadine - if you're reading this pretend that by "Nadine" I mean Georgette. And if you find a wee package hanging on your door, it's from the Baby Shoe Faery. But most of all, congratulations and I can't wait to meet your little lady.
Friday, August 24, 2007
Sunday, August 19, 2007
Tuesday, July 24, 2007
Monday, July 09, 2007
Photo courtesy of our local thrift store - when Sadie was about the same age we found this beauty framed. It's quite large, about 22" x 30". He/she has been hanging in our bedroom ever since.
Wednesday, July 04, 2007
Saturday, June 09, 2007
Saturday, May 26, 2007
On an unrelated note, a colleague yesterday stated that folks who lean far to the left are often the ones who only have one child. Being 100% sure that I haven't decided where I stand on the second child decision, it was a curious thought. It was only an opinion of course, but still intriguing. All I do know for now is that I'm going to enjoy every little big grrr moment I can. This whole growing up thing happens way too fast.