30 While I’m 30 – or 31

First things first – I didn’t finish my list.  Is anyone surprised really?  I doubt it.

I did okay. Probably better than I thought I would truth be told.

  1. Take Gordon for 30 walks – little Gordon and I didn’t make it to 30.  We both blame Mother Nature.  Snow in late April?! Come on! What we did do is get back to a daily walk schedule.  Puppy is happy and so am I.
  2. 1 week moratorium on Starbucks I made it more than 1 week, 10 days in fact… but then I had training.  And turning 1 week into 3 all went to hell.
  3. 2 week moratorium on Starbucks – HA! The Boy and I agreed that this really isn’t the worst vice.  I had one yesterday for my free birthday drink… it wasn’t very good.  Whenever that happens I think I should just cut it out for good… but then the 2 o’clock sleepies kick in and I’m screwed.  Meh.
  4. Finish the ottoman
  5. Make a jewelry solution – I have the solution AND I have actually purchased part of the materials…  I still have not made it.
  6. Unpack my backpack (the last “real” box from our move) – the backpack is full of jewelry… see #5.
  7. Organize purses/purge for easier rotation
  8. Build a desk – HA! It might be changing to build a sewing table… we’ll see!
  9. Clean/organize office – Everyone needs a disaster room right?
  10. Take wedding dress to be cleaned
  11. Update resume – there are some jobs that have been posted, so this actually is going to happen this weekend.
  12. Take a long walk on the Tom Taylor Trail with my camera – Didn’t take the camera but we did go on a birthday walk.  It’s a lovely trail and we’ll definitely be back.
  13. Organize photos on new computer
  14. Frame canvases from Sista I’m picking them up from the framer today – I’ll post a picture when we hang them this weekend. They definitely deserve their own post.
  15. Decorate bathroom
  16. Go to a spin class – still thinking about it.
  17. Set up a regular RRSP contribution plan – I’m pretty sure this makes me an adult.
  18. Have Kristyn, John and Logan for dinner – or bring dinner to them – We split dinner and had it at Kristyn and John’s so that little Logan could go to bed.  Turns out he’s not interested in missing the party no matter where he is – so everyone had a great night! :)
  19. Organize knitting patterns
  20. Finish Tanis sweater
  21. Finish cowl
  22. Finish baby girl sweater
  23. Stencil bedroom
  24. Clean hall closet
  25. Surprise The Boy with a present
  26. Clean and shelf paper linen closet
  27. Vacuum and clean both cars – What is it that they say about good intentions?
  28. Plan a front garden
  29. Get kitchen table and chairs
  30. Make cupcakes – just because.

13/30… that’s not great but not bad.  I’m thinking about the year ahead and contemplating another list.  I like lists.  They ground me.  I never get through them, mostly because I move on to a new list before the first one is done.  Alas earwax.

As for the knitting on the list – I haven’t finished what I wanted to… because in my head those things are done so I have moved on to other things (are you seeing the theme).  But I did finish a pair of converse boots for a baby shower I went to recently.  They might have been shown up by a GORGEOUS stuffed hand knit elephant that was opened shortly afterward – but I still think they’re cute.

If you’re a knitter and looking for an easy baby gift I highly recommend them.  If you’re not a knitter you should either become one or befriend one and sweet talk them into making them for you.  I suggest flowers or chocolate…. or yarn, yarn would definitely work.

Yes I did take this picture while wrapping the gift in the car 2 minutes before going into the party.  What's your point

And finally, the Boy restrained himself from eating 1/4 of an ice cream cake that was left over in one sitting and instead had a normal size piece on Monday night and saved a piece for each of us for my birthday.  He gave it to me and said “This is better than any birthday gift I could ever give you.  I saved you some cake. That’s love because it was REALLY hard not to eat it.” So thanks buddy.  You’re right… that is true love.

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The littlest Gramps

See this little man?

 Image

He just (well not just, like 2 months ago) turned 1.

I decided I would knit for all our little people for their birthdays.  This was a decision to try and save my Christmas knitting sanity – why set myself up to frantically knit small people sweaters for Christmas when I can spread the knitting throughout the year?!  It was a brilliant plan especially since I ended up going to the other extreme with Christmas knitting and not knitting a single gift. I know. Shocking.

But I digress, back to this face.

 Image

He turned 1 in November, and his mom may have mentioned something about him needing a new toque.  It seems he had long out grown the infant toque I knit for him and he definitely needed to maintain his status as the coolest baby in daycare.

Hunter Toque  

Of course, I couldn’t just knit him a toque. So I knit a set.  Matching trim to pompom the Gramps sweater and Hunter toque are too cute if I do say so myself.

 Gramps Sweater

The best part? Both are made with Comfort yarn which I love for littles because it’s chunky size knits up super quick and the acrylic blend makes it soft and completely laundry safe. Washing machine and dryer this baby – you will not hurt it.

 Happy Birthday Little Man!

Love the elbow patches and big collar – this little guy is a true sophisticate.

Love the Collar and the elbow patches!

 

Obsessive Knitting

I’ve had a little unscheduled hiatus from knitting. It wasn’t planned, I just found myself exhausted after work and more interested in cuddling a small puppy face who was more interested in eating the eknitting than sitting nicely and letting me multitask (cuddling + knitting = best of two really great worlds).

The puppy is getting bigger and after much success with puppy school I have found myself able to multitask once again with knitting and making her practice “leave it”

And I’ve become obsessed.

I have multiple projects on the go of course, like any sensible knitter, but instead I found myself starting something new. And starting something big.

A sweater.

Not just any sweater. A Tanis sweater. A sweater I’ve been obsessing about since I first saw it online. A sweater I have the pleasure of knitting in Tanis Green Label Aran weight yarn.

And I’ve become obsessed.

Maybe it’s because I’m doing the back, which is largely plain stocking stitch, and is super quick with this chunky yarn. Maybe it’s because I have been obsessing with it for well over a year, should I knit it, shouldn’t I knit it. Maybe it’s because it’s cold outside, and I would like nothing more than to wrap myself up in this lovely warm sweater. Maybe with jeans. Maybe with jeggings (my other new obsession).

Yes, that’s probably it. The gratification of a big project is delayed – big projects take more time of course. But it’s so great when they’re done that they make me obsessively power through.

My prediction, Gordon is going to be very good at “Leave it” by the time I’m wrapped in the warmth and squishyness of Green Label.

Maybe if she’s lucky I’ll have just enough left over for her….. maybe, but not likely.

Ginger Knits

gingerknitsbutton2
Like the new button? And the new name? I’m working on a series of them that will just take you to the list of all posts related to the topic.  Some will be just me – the Ginger.  Some will be the boy – the Giant.  Some will be both – G&G.  I can’t say when they’ll be ready – I just don’t know.  But I can tell you I’m working on it in my little brain.
So this edition of Ginger Knits – The Beast that was a beauty.
I tend to go in phases.  I knit my brains out.  Or I don’t.  I blog my brains out. Or I don’t.  With this blanket it required A LOT of knitting and since babies make their own deadlines – that meant very little blogging while I tried desperately to make progress.
But it was worth it.
The pattern may look a little complicated but it’s an illusion – it’s actually fairly simple – and it turned out beautifully if I do say so myself.  I made it with baby bamboo and it is REALLY heavy and will definitely keep the wee one warm in a nice breathable way. But man, did it eat the yarn. This bad boy took me 10 balls. Granted they were mini little 50g balls, but it still took 10 of them and when it was all said and done – I could have easily kept knitting.
Do you know what’s not fun? Knitting a heavy blanket in the summer.
Our Elegant Country friends have had a healthy baby boy.  And named him Logan – same as BFF Kristyn’s baby.  We are affectionately referring to him as Logan 2.0 (mostly me, and mostly in my head – this should not be taken to mean that the second Logan is an improved version of the first – impossible.  They are both adorable and perfection in diapers).  Logan 2.0 arrived less than 24 hours after I cast-off. I knew he was waiting for me to finish.
The reaction? Wonderful.  I wrapped it up with a book for a card, with a message to baby, mom and dad. And included in the package a 6-pack of freshly baked muffins.  When the new Dad opened the bag the first thing he saw was the muffins and he was over the moon.  The Boy and I weren’t paying attention so we both thought he was gushing over the blanket.  Nope. Muffins.  Note to self, bring all new parents something to eat.
He kept digging and was pleasantly surprised.
For the knitters out there – I blocked it to try and make it a bit less squishy – which did help. Let it dry and took it outside to really show it is in fact green not grey.
Logan 2.0 is pretty darn cute. The Boy even held him – though complained bitterly for the rest of the night that his arm had cramped up.  That’s the littlest baby he’s held yet – and he’s getting better wouldn’t you agree?
Anyway, enough jabber – here’s that sweet face and some details on a sweet blanket.
Time: Probably about an hour(ish)  per stripe = long enough.

There’s a baby coming

Calm down. Of course it is not a giant ginger baby.  Although we did recently go on our honeymoon – or did we? More on that tomorrow.

No.  There is a perfectly wonderful friend baby coming in just a few short weeks and do you know what that means? I should stop knitting socks and start making some progress on the projects I started in January!

So that’s what I’ve been up to.  Knitting until my hands cramp.  And not blogging.

Nothing like a deadline.

Now, I obviously don’t want to give away the surprises but I will tell you this – every time my mom and grandmother look at what I’m knitting they say “I hope this is for you!” No it is not.  Calm down.

It is for a soon to be born, sure to be perfect little someone.  The perfect kind of baby for a newly married Ginger and Giant.


One you get to give back.

Send speed and agility to my needles.  And patience.  I’m getting bored and I’m pretty sure this baby is getting ready to make his/her appearance regardless.

Under the Tree

Somehow I managed to make mad progress on the knitted gifts this Christmas.  Not only did I make cowls, mittens, toques, socks and my very first pom-pom… I did it all with time to spare.
I give you the knitted round-up

Like the cowls? Various simple patterns found on Ravelry by searching the yarn – Estelle Drake you can find the blue and orange one modeled by Miss Erin here, the pink one I also found on Ravelry but I’ll be damned if I can find it again – basically alternate squares of knit and purl.  The one in the middle is simple moss 60 stitches in the round.  Mittens for The Boy were too small so I ended up with new mittens. But The Physicist’s mittens fit perfectly! I made Sista’s toque (which she loves BTW – just doesn’t look like it in the picture) from the same pattern as the ones I made for the little ones this fall – but added a pompom for good measure. And the FIL (Father-in-Law) loved his socks so much last year – I made him a second pair (he has requested 7 pairs).

What did you knit for Christmas?

The reason I knit

How can you not want to knit beautiful things for these beautiful new people?

Baby toques are my new thing – they are SO easy and quick and ADORABLE because they are so little!!!

That means they make great little gifts when you’ve been a tad busy doing other things while the little ones were busy baking.

Plus if you knit – you usually get to squeeze the little. (It kinda goes without saying)

And the best part? If it’s too small their parents will be thrilled that their baby is so healthy, and a stranger you haven’t even met will love your toque your friends who leave it behind at the hospital for babies smaller than theirs.

That’s just a win/win/win

3 Minutes Early

Starbucks on Briggate

Image via Wikipedia

Have you heard the news? Tazo Tea Time is back at Starbucks. From 2-5pm February 11 – 20, you can get your favourite Tazo Tea for half price.

Oh it’s a great promotion – if you disregard the fact that Starbucks is probably still making money on their half-price tea.  Curse it’s deliciousness!

My favourite as you know is Chai Tea Latte, Soy, Extra Hot, No Water, No Foam

But I digress… this is not a post about my love of Starbucks.

Today I was out of the office at just about the right time.  Knowing I was going back for an exhilarating staff meeting I thought I deserved a half-price treat.

I made my way into my local Starbucks.

Me – “Is it 2:00 yet?”

Starbucks Guy – “Not yet.”

Me – “Drat, do I have to wait or can you just do it?”

SG – “Yeah you have to wait, it won’t let me take half off until 2:00.”

Me – Okay

Mystery voice – “I’m waiting too!”

I turned to discover a fellow half-price tea lover, who was also a few minutes early.  A chatty tea lover at that.

At first I thought I was in for a repeat of the over-sharer from the waiting room.  But instead I found myself a Tea Loving Knitter!

We talked about my mittens – she’s made the same ones for her kids and LOVES them. I suggested the Kitchener Knitting Fair, she said being around that much yarn is too tempting, it could be disastrous.  I told her it most certainly would be – but that’s the BEST part!

It occurred to me that I was being one of the crazies. Talking to strangers, Talking about knitting with strangers. But I couldn’t help myself.

Maybe it was my desperation for delicious half-price tea.

Maybe it was my love of knitting.

I think it was a little bit of both.

Adventures in Blocking

So yesterday you’ll recall I was determined to find a new pattern for the yarn I have already knit with for my sista.  I think I have committed to not reknitting the same sweater.  Since I didn’t hear an outcry from her along the lines of “NO! I loved it please knit it again.” I think she’s okay with it too.

But before I tear anything apart my friend over at ahandmadestory said – “Just block it first before you do anything.”

Well, I haven’t blocked it. But I’m getting closer.  I had my very first adventure in blocking and I’m 98% certain the results are going to be amazing.  That’s right, I’ve been knitting for years, 8 years to be exact and I have never, NOT ONCE blocked anything. Shocking I know.

If it works with this shrug, I think it might work with the too small sweater.  I’m not SUPER confident in the ability of water and T-pins to grow a sweater from big enough for a 10-year-old to big enough for an adult… but thinking about thinking about getting on the blocking bandwagon.