Dead end.

I’m currently not packing for a weekend trip to Colorado. This trip will technically be five full days, I’m going to a convention that I’m really not all that interested in, and I have no other plans. I plugged those factors into my knitting calculator (available at most local yarn stores in the invisible-but-totally-necessary section) and the calculator replied that under these conditions, I should travel armed with at least five knitting projects. Which would normally be easy, as I have chronic cast-on-itis.

However, I’ve completely run out of knitting and crocheting mojo. Bullets:

  • I had the mojo once. I had a whole basket full of mojo.
  • I then got really into recycling yarn, which is very labor-intensive and time-consuming when you don’t own a swift. So I pushed the mojo to the side for the sake of the sweaters.
  • I started Frou Frou (ravelry link), and was loving it. I was doing it in the Oatmeal colorway of Lion Brand Fisherman’s Wool, which is the softest colorway of the bunch. And I love the drape of granite stitch on a large hook. I got through the back, sleeves, and one half of the front when I realized that the monster I was creating in no way resembled a sweater. If I attempted to seam it it would perhaps look like a sweater for an amputee in a distorted mirror if the person looking at it was polite. I knew my stitch count was off. I adjusted for it. I counted again and again. I want to rip the whole damn thing, divorce it, take all it’s money, and then cut the brake lines in it’s car.
  • I want to make this shawl (as inspired by Oiyi) with the red skein of Shetland that I dyed. But it’s too itchy. And to stiff? I don’t know.
  • I started some baby socks, which are a great pleasure to knit. But then I lost one of my four US size 1 dpn’s. You need at least four to make socks.
  • I’m working on some worsted-weight socks for me, but I would need my computer with me as I’m making huge modifications to the pattern and I don’t trust the modifications to be remembered or well documented with my phone or a notebook.

Dammit! I’m so frustrated by this. I brought some needlework, but I know that as soon as I get there I’ll get my mojo back. It’s been that kind of week. Screw it. I’m packing these things and making it work:

  • 2 sweaters to rip – both laceweight nylon/alpaca/wool blends.
  • 260 yards of vintage worsted weight bright yellow wool
  • The three leftover skeins of worsted weight hand-dyed shetland
  • One spool of size 20 crochet cotton
  • Two small skeins of worsted kitchen cotton
  • One skein laceweight wool
  • One skein Berroco Ultra Alpaca
  • One two three skeins of various variegated/self-striping sock yarn.
  • Two skeins of random wool/acrylic worsteds, one grey and one bright orange (hidden in my clothes bag because this is getting kind of ridiculous.
  • 101 Designer One-Skein Wonders and 101 Luxury One-Skein Wonders
  • Super Stitches Knitting (a stitch dictionary)
  • Crochet hooks: sizes N, I, H, G, 00, and 5
  • Dpn’s: 5 size US 7′s
  • Straights: US sizes 11, 10 1/2, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 4, 3, and 2.
  • Other essentials, such as a measuring tape and gauge/needle size calculator
  • I don’t have the awesomest circular collection, so I’ll maybe not bring any.
  • Also, I have some US 6 straights just sitting here, might as well bring them, too.

Wow. Sorry for this post. Terribly boring. I’ll let you know if I’ve run out of mojo permanently.

Oh. Also, we’re taking the Porsche. So I’ll let you know how on earth I fit all this damn yarn (which has no damn purpose) in the damn car. Thank goodness for cross stitch.

Conversations with my cat.

Me: “Winston, do you want to feel the baby kick?”
Winston: “If by ‘kick’ you mean ‘scratch mah belly’ then yes.”

Cherries aren’t very tasty.

We have a big magnificent perfect-for-climbing cherry tree in the back yard. In previous years we’ve slaved over this tree to earn a good harvest and I think that’s only worked … once? Like six years ago? There were always worms. So many worms.

This year, we completely ignored the tree. It doesn’t deserve our attention because it doesn’t treat us nicely. (Soon I’ll publish a children’s book about this to teach young girls about young boys. College students use metaphors.)

Since we stopped fawning over the tree, it realized that it has to pull it’s own weight, and this year we have an impressive harvest. Not very many birds, no worms at all (that I’ve seen), and the fruit is just beautiful. I haven’t seen any mutant cherry siamese-twins, which is nice because those are icky.

Then we realized that we don’t really like the taste of cherries. They’re actually kind of disappointing. Totally unacceptable!

I think I’m going to make this pie sometime this week, but if any of you a) have ideas about what I should do with the cherries, or b) want to come over and pick yourselves some free fruit, feel free to comment. With all the rain we’ve been having, I’m thinking cherry-time is only going to last another weekish. They’re at their reddest right this second.

6.19.09

6.19.09

Everything is thrifted

2nd visit to the chiropractor was today, and I feel much much better now. I got dressed yesterday as well, but it was basically the exact same outfit. The pendant is a sliced up geode. Because I’m from Utah, and we love our geodes.

6.19.09

6.19.09

Today makes 24 weeks! It isn’t much different than 23 weeks. But the baby weighs almost a pound and kicks all the time, and is about 8 1/2′ from crown to rump, if books are to be trusted.

6.19.09

Lovefest: Pastels, quotes, and a pregnant chick

As usual, the photos are the links.

I really love this. I want to get some white tights and find my missing oxford, and wear pretty dresses. Found at The Fashionist.

No picture for this one, but I love Gala Darling and I love Jonathan Safran Foer. Beautiful convergence here.

Coolest pregnancy photos ever! She’s over 30 weeks, now, but today marks the beginning of my 24th weeks. Found at Pacing the Panic Room via I *Heart* You.

Lovefest: Leethal, flowers, and a monster

As usual, the pictures are the links.

I kind of have a huge, long-lasting craft crush on Lee Meredith, also known as Leethal, of Do Stuff! Click the picture for a link to a post filled with the most amazing things. Seriously, every picture makes me die a little, it’s so good.

These light-bulb vases (found via Dollar Store Crafts, who found it via a couple other people) are so very lovely. However, since I live in a very Republican state, I’m afraid I can’t pull them off without being white trash. Screw it, I’m okay with that. We have scores of Hollyhocks in my yard, and they’re terribly difficult to display in vases, but these would be perfect.

Monsters are about the most fun things to sew. And this one (found via Dooce, who just had the baby this was intended for) is just delicious. I want to use it as inspiration to make one of my own, but I’m thinking it should be made of a patchwork fabric. And have a bow on it’s head. And a crocheted curly-que tail. I don’t know who made the monster, because Dooce’s post is more about the custom onesie.

6.16.09

6.16.09

Vest: Thrifted (same as yesterday); Necklace: Thrifted; Tank: Gift from mom, bought at Target; Jeans: Thrifted (and unbuttoned); Sandals: Thrifted

Last night was awful and I want to complain about it. Feel free to skip over all the text here – I probably would.

I’ve always had back/neck problems (I went to a physical therapist every week for almost six months for my neck and it didn’t fix it), and being pregnant has really aggravated them. I can’t sleep on my back, and I can’t use my neck-stretcher long enough or often enough to make much of a difference. The neck-stretcher is pretty self explanatory – I strap my head in, lay down on the floor, and pump it until there is about 15 pounds pulling my head away from my body. This separates the vertebra and stretches the muscles/tendons/everything else. Yes, it is sexy. Usually works pretty well, but right now I can’t lie on my back without cutting off circulation because of my big fat belly.

Anyway. On to last night. I put off going to the chiropractor for too long, and it caught up with me. I felt uncomfortable but functional at a late-night breakfast at Denny’s, but about 45 minutes after coming home my neck became insufferable. I couldn’t lie down, I couldn’t sit or stand because holding my head up made it worse. I took a couple Tylenol, tweeted about it, and hopped in the shower. Doctor says the only pain relievers I can use are acetaminophen, caffeine, and heat. After the shower I tried to get back to bed, but really it had only gotten worse. So I walked around the back yard for about half an hour, trying to think of solutions that didn’t involve me having to wake up my dad – we live in the same house, he in the main home and I in an attached mother-in-law apartment. This was at about 2:30 a.m.

6.16.09

So, by that time I couldn’t stop crying, which was just making it worse, and I couldn’t think of any good solutions – there are no 24-hour chiropractors in Utah Valley, and it seemed silly to go to the hospital because of neck pain that I should have fixed days ago. So, I woke up my dad.

My 60-year-old father is really the best man I’ve ever met. I like him more than I like Harry Truman, Barack Obama, and Winston combined. Even though he shouldn’t have to be the guy who has to wake up because the pregnant lady can’t sleep, he didn’t complain once. In fact he encouraged me to inconvenience him as much as possible whenever I feel like it. He massaged my neck by hand for at least 20 minutes, even though it’s a pain in the ass and I know he hates it. And he did this with a recently severely injured hand.

Since my apartment was out of hot water, he let me use up all of his, which helped a bit more because his shower has great water pressure. Afterward he offered to give me another massage, but I said I could just go to bed. I was totally wrong. Without any heat or pressure it just got worse, and I had to wake him up again about an hour later. This time he used a device specifically made to massage backs (thank goodness he can’t turn down a good clearance), and it helped so much. It was kind of cool because the baby would kick a lot when he was using the massager – I think she could feel or at least hear the vibrations. Dad then loaned me a heating pad and vibrating pillow, and with the help of these two things I was able to get two precious hours of sleep.

6.16.09

After the two hours, I took another shower in the apartment, and another in the house. Then I was at least able to lay still in bed without crying or fidgeting until dad got me out of bed and drove me to the chiropractor.

The chiropractor – a wonderful, polite, to-the-point old man whom I would recommend to anyone – scolded me slightly for not coming in earlier, and then twisted me up like Emily Rose. And now I’m feeling much better.

Being pregnant really sucks sometimes. Any tips would be appreciated.

6.15.09

6-15-09

Everything is thrifted.

Eh, boring. I’ll probably stay home all day, so I mainly got dressed for the sake of the blog.

6-15-09

Yikes. That’s a terrible angle. But yes – the belly’s still big. Especially when I dress it in bright yellow. (Remember this dress? See me looking much better in it here.)

6-15-09

6-15-09

A word on sleeveless skirt-dresses: It’s difficult to find a bra that works with sleveless skirt-dresses, because often even if you’re willing to let some straps show, the bra becomes very obvious under the dress. Wearing a skirt as a dress opens up your wardrobe in wonderful ways, but the elastic just above the bustline really makes everything bunch in odd ways. My solutions:

  • Vest it. It really makes the silhouette less worrysome. Your boobs can go basically wherever they please and the vest covers it.
  • Buy a bandeau. This gets rid of the weird bra-cup drama, which you can witness in the post I linked to earlier. However, unless your body is extremely obedient, the girls will seep a bit further from center than you want. This is especially heinous if you want to belt it. I’m sure there are some bandeau bras with underwire out there, but … they’re not usually in thrift stores. So I have no idea.
  • Get a bodyslip. This is what I’m wearing above – it’s basically a cylinder of spandex, with a bit of shaping between the boobs. You still have the side-seepage problem, hence the vest. And of course this would only work if you’re relatively small-chested.

Mess.

Mess, enumerated

This is just one corner of my craft/work/television/dining space. But I figured it’s the easiest way to show you what I’m most often working on lately. (Also I have a post coming up about mountains and mountains of recycled yarn … just you wait, it will be wonderful.)

Mess, enumerated