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Backyard Fun

April 23, 2011


Before I was a parent, I used to pooh-pooh Little Tykes’ obnoxiously colored play structures. I used to think that parents who had them were tacky and weird and why on earth would you choose to have some neon colored, hideous thing in your yard if you could have a lovely natural wood one. Or a painted wood one. Or even a plastic one in neutral colors.

Yeah.

This was all before I was a parent. This was all before I was a stay at home mom (lucky me!) whose family is on one income and has to watch the budget very, very carefully. Before baby, there would have been room for a $300-$400 plus play structure with swing set, slide and all sorts of awesomeness. Again, yeah.

When I was pregnant, my next door neighbor offered me a play structure her six year old had outgrown. It was big, plastic and neon. It was obnoxious and ugly. I smiled sweetly and kindly said we would think about it – afterall, I didn’t want MY baby playing on a hand me down play structure, much less a PLASTIC one.

And today, at eighteen months old there is a happy toddler climbing all over the neighbor’s play structure that was relocated into my yard. Today, there is a Momma who has exhausted her hunt on Craigslist for inexpensive play structures and slides, unable to find anything that would fit the budget (minimal!) or space in the Poot Mobile (as our lovely Passat Wagon has recently been nicknamed!). There was a text message to the neighbor’s, a Mom of an older kid happy to get rid of the thing, and a happy Momma of a toddler who is thrilled to not have to shell out ANY cash for a fabulous, neon structure that keeps the kiddo happy while I garden.

Or while I plant.

Or while I sit in the sun and knit to my heart’s content.

Isn’t it funny how parenthood changes the way you see things?

Backyard Fun

April 22, 2011


Backyard Fun.

Pebble!

April 22, 2011


The truth? THIS might be the reason I started knitting. Seriously, I saw it on one of my favorite blogs and I was smitten. Kept thinking, gee, wouldn’t Gerhard look smashing in it? Yup, I thought so too!

So here’s the finished piece! It’s called Pebble, a manly baby vest. The pattern came from Thrifty Knitter, and I have to say it is meant for a 12-18 month old skinny baby. My son is fairly thin but very long torsoed and seriously, it JUST FITS. While I do love the pattern and style of it, I think we need another one a bit bigger to get through the fall and winter, and just because I loved knitting it.

Who wouldn’t love to knit this (provided you love to knit like I do otherwise it will seriously be long and tedious!) since it knits up in a couple of days and is super easy!

I used one skein of Patton’s classic wool in Chestnut Tweed. Would I use it again? You betcha. Am I anxiously waiting for Joann’s to have some on sale again so I can pick more up? Oh yeah! Next time though, I think I will double the strands and add two inches width and about three inches length. Unless you can think of some way to make the kid stop growing.

Anyone?

Anyone?

Nope, didn’t think so.

Spring

April 21, 2011


Spring is a magical time in our small house. There is an intoxication of flowers, blooming trees, grasses and vines. The garden centers open and all around us friends and neighbors reemerge to dig, shovel, mow and pull. Talk shifts from last night’s frost and how cold it was to how early we will see the first tomatoes, whether we will have a long hot summer or who’s lawn will look best this year.

We live to garden in this house. All winter is spent dreaming of this moment, the days when hanging baskets are put out, flowers are laid to seed, and vegetable gardens are getting ready to be put to use.  The days are *finally* warming up around here, well, they are drying out at the very least and how exciting it is to warm up, get out, run and play in the yard without fear of the cold Oregon rains.

We might have to wait a little longer to plant our garden as the warmth is a bit late in coming, but it will be planted soon.

Aprons

April 20, 2011


Recently, a Momma friend of mine asked if I would make her little ones some aprons for the kitchen.  It appears that the little ones love Mommy’s apron and wanted to dress up just like Mom when they “help” in the kitchen.

Well, what does a soon to be Momma of three need more than some Montessori Aprons!! So named because they enforce the Montessori School adage of teaching children to be independent and self sufficient, this fabulous pattern comes complete with an elastic neck and a velcro waist strap. No need for a busy Momma to “help” put it on when she’s wrestling with a newborn, the older kids can do it themselves and help their siblings.

Yes, I am in *love* with this pattern and I believe there might be birthday and Christmas apron presents in my future!

Name tags are a must, of course!

{Early Rising}

April 18, 2011


After a long and lovely weekend filled with friends, food, more friends and more food, the male members of my family have decided to sleep in.  But for this Momma, the sun beckons and I just could not sleep any more.

So, I’m up! I’m up and showered and it’s barely six a.m. I’m looking at the pile of projects to fix and tinker with – an apron to adjust (more on that later!), a knitting to partially unravel ( again, later!!) and of course, we need breakfast. Yes, let’s start with breakfast.

Scones, it must be scones!

So, after some mixing and kneading…

Cutting into four…

Five…

Eight…

And place on baking sheet…

And allow the magic in the oven to take place. Go little oven gnomes, do your thing!

Viola!!

Scones!

And know what’s better than scones?

Scones piled high on a pretty plate!

I’m pretty sure once the little guy wakes up I’ll be seeing some of this:

Gimme!! Gimme!!

Hope your Monday morning is as happy as ours!!

{Just off my needles}

April 13, 2011


A new baby is alway cause for celebration and for this newly knitter it meant an attempt at something a little more complex than a hat. I began this baby sweater two days before the baby shower, but having knitted non stop for two days my hands began to cramp and I just had to stop!

A few days off and I was back at it, ready to finish and see this darling creation come to life.

My pattern was the Easy Baby Cardigan from More Last Minute Knitted Gifts by Joelle Hoverson. If you have never had a chance to look through this book and it predecessor, Last Minute Knitted Gifts, I highly recommend it. I believe I want to make ever single thing in them!!

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