Monday, February 26, 2007

Knitting Olympics, only one year late!

Last year I bit off more than I could chew. Quelle surprise! A mere two months postpartum, facing a return to working motherhood, I signed up for the Yarn Harlot's Knitting Olympics. I opted to make Claire a lace baby jacket based on a general recipe from Heirloom Knitting. I say general recipe because the instructions give you the stitch count and basic dimensions, but I chose a different (more complex) lace pattern than the one suggested. That's what I like best about this book - it's a great tool for design it yourselfers who like guidelines but don't want to adhere to a strict pattern.
I didn't finish in time. Duh. In fact, it was intended to be part of Claire's Easter dress, and I didn't make that deadline, either. But I did finish. I finally dug the knitted cardigan out and seamed it and put a button on it back in October. I just now got around to releasing the pictures from their captivity on the memory card.
It's sort of hard to see how the lace pattern worked out, as my model was being less than professional, but I'm happy with it. (and fortunately it's very stretchy since it was 8 months late!)

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Some assembly required

Hrm. Remember that project afoot that I declined to mention? I'll understand if you don't. I'm sure you've got a lot on your mind. By the way, you spouse told me to remind you to get milk on the way home. Anyway, the project was operation find a bigger house. It appears to have been successful.
We've made an offer on a house in the same municipality. It has been accepted. Now I actually have to finish the kitchen. Rats. (no, there are no vermin in the kitchen unless you count the cat)
Lets compare the two houses:
Current house-
Bedrooms: 3 Sort of. You see, the 3rd one is "captive" to the 2nd one, which means you have to go through one to get to the other, which means that no matter what we do the girls will be waking each other up at 2 a.m. Like last night. Oh, and again at 3 a.m. And then at 5:30.
Dining room: Just big enough for a small table and my piano. DH points out we'd have room for a great china cabinet if we didn't have that piano taking up space. The piano is non-negotiable.
Kitchen: Miniscule.
Garage: The house has a garage. It is 9' wide. You could, theoretically, put a car in it. You'd have to stay in the car though, because there'd be no room to open the car door.
Closets: Two. Well, more like 1.5. The second one is in the captive bedroom, and is halfway up the wall. It's an odd house.
Bathroom: One. Not for tall persons. It's squeezed under the cape cod roof, so we had to get creative putting in a shower. Most people do not have to cut portions of their shower curtains off to account for the ceiling.
Basement: Good for storage and laundry, but not big enough to bother finishing.
Yard: Mostly level, standard suburban lot
Age: House was built in the mid 30's.

"New" house-
Bedrooms: Four at the moment, subject to change when the master bath goes in. * Three of them have fireplaces. **
Dining room: half of a big, open, sunny greatroom that is open to the living room and perfect for entertaining. Plenty of room for both a piano and a china cabinet. And a buffet. And a big table. And a desk.
Kitchen: Nice and big. Not eat-in per se, though there's room for a small breakfast table. Currently missing a ceiling. ***
Garage: two car detached. Needs a new door. I don't care. For the first time in my life, I would have a roof over my car in the winter.
Closets: The house has closets! What a concept!
Bathroom: Here's where this one fall short in the near term. There is one functioning bathroom. By functioning, I mean it has no tub, which is sort of a must for washing small people. However, eventually* the house could have 3.5 bathrooms.
Basement: Big enough to stand up in. Big enough to finish.**** Has a laundry shoot.
Yard: Big enough to possibly merit a riding mower, but small enough to manage.
Age: According to the info in the posting, it's approximately 197 yrs old in spots.

Remember that post I wrote about liking old, fixer upper houses? Oh, maybe you didn't read this blog back then. I could link to it, but that would require effort. It appears I may be getting my wish in spades. And yet I have a very strong sense of ohcrapwhatarewegettingourselvesinto. Not that that has ever stopped me.

The whole thing isn't a done deal until we've sold the little casa. I've got a soft spot for this house even though we've always known we'd be leaving it. It's going to be an emotional ride no matter what happens.

*Two bathrooms have been gutted to the studs and need reinstalling. A half bath is half installed on the main floor. There is a great clawfoot tub in the basement that is intended for the upstairs gutted bathroom, and the current homeowners planned to build a large master bath in the fourth (tiny) bedroom.
**The house has six fireplaces, some of which work. At least two of them need their mantles replaced, but mantles are included with the house.
***A dropped ceiling was removed from the kitchen and allows access to the plumbing for the planned master bath
****There was a finished room and a full bath in the basement, but it's gutted at the moment.
Gutted is a running theme in this house.

I like to think of myself as not superstitious, but I've got a thing against February. Bad things happen in February. In an ideal world, this house wouldn't have been listed until spring. Spring when I could get a look at the yard without 4" of snow on it. Spring when our house is at its cutest for listing, with the crabapple and cherry trees in bloom looking all quaint and cottage-like. Spring when it's not so frigging cold and dark and dreary. I'm having a hard time accepting that this whole situation may happen and that, theoretically, we could be living in a new house before summer. I'm afraid February will mean things will go wrong. Or that things will go right, we'll move in, and decide we made a terrible mistake.

So hey! La la la! I can't hear February! I'm on row 25 of Cromarty!

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Come again?

Anna, being three years old, and perhaps more importantly being my daughter, is chatty by nature. Go figure.
Last week, Anna was sharing one of her rambling monologues with DH:
Anna: See the tree outside? There was a cock in the tree!
DH: What?
A: There was a cock! In the tree!
D: Um....
A: It was sitting on the branch! The cock was on the branch!
D: [translation light bulb going on] Do you mean a hawk?
A: Yes! The hawk was in the tree!


The wisdom of small people
A few weeks ago, Anna and Claire were at the grandparents' for an overnight. They had popcorn for a snack. Since then Anna has developed some interesting theories regarding unpopped kernnals -
They are eggs. You put them in a nest and a bird will hatch out of them.
They are popcorn seeds. If you put them in the ground, a popcorn tree will grow out of it, and
popcorn will grow on the tree.
It's not just any bird that will hatch from popcorn "eggs". Turkeys come from popcorn eggs.
Which explains why she claimed she found a bone in one popped piece. Must've been a
turkey bone.


I've typed this entire entry with Anna "the cat" rubbing her head against my arm. That's fine, I just hope she doesn't start yakking up hairballs like the regular cat.


This Saturday is the Pittsburgh Knitting (and crochet) Festival.
If you're an area knitter, it's worth the trip! This is their third year. The first year they had very little advertising and got at least four times the number of expected attendees. Last year the festival was much larger. None of the classes really appeal to me (I don't consider myself a "class" type knitter anyway - I'd rather screw things up 15 times first while teaching myself) but it's a great chance to experience lots of local and not so local yarn shops in one spot.
Restraint will be a must, however, as a) I've yet to knit the yarn I picked up last year b) we've got plans to attend Maryland Sheep & Wool this May. Woot!

Saturday, February 03, 2007

I'm still here...

You know how sometimes you think, "Hm, I should update my blog."
Then your brother points out that you haven't updated in a while. (not that he updates that frequently - pot/kettle anyone?)
And you think maybe you'll post, but you've got to upload those pictures off the camera and find that sweater you've been meaning to take a picture of and just where did I put the camera anyway I think it's in the desk and oh look! Here's something completely unrelated and interesting and all of a sudden it's 11:30 at night and other people would like you to turn off the light in the bedroom so they can go to sleep.
Then your mother mentions you haven't updated.
And so you plan to update the next time you're on the computer, right after you check your e-mail accounts and make sure you haven't missed anything good on Craigslist and you see an interesting house posted so you jump onto the multilist and start digging around to see if it's worthwhile but that site is slow so you check your bloglines while you're waiting for the page to load and by the time you've checked everything you notice Letterman is on and if you don't go to bed soon you're going to regret it the next day.
While you're at work the next day you come up with a BRILLIANT idea for a post, but you enforce your self impmosed no blogging at lunch rule and by the time you get home and eat dinner and get the girls their bath and clean up the bathroom and get three bed snacks and read 12 stories and put Claire back down to sleep for the second time and you finally sit down you think it might be nice to knit on your sock for a bit instead of computing and besides you can't remember that brilliant idea for the life of you.

So here I am with a quick, meaningless, contentless post full of excuses, as if there's some sort of obligation to this whole blogging thing anyway. As if I have to write X posts a month or what? I won't get paid for it? I'll never get that lucrative book deal? My many minions will protest lack of entertaining content and seek greener pastures?

I was just stopping by while grabbing some more podcasts with which to entertain myself while I go scrub down the kitchen walls. There are projects afoot, but of them I will not speak for fear of jinxing things.

About me

  • I'm Sarah
  • From Pittsburgh, United States
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