It’s Never Too Early

With our current living situation (ahem – tiny apartment covered in white gray carpet that only currently houses about 1/3 of our worldly possessions), sometimes things to do evade both Hazel and I.  I’m nervous about messing up the carpet and having to pay for it, and I hesitate to set up any permanent play stations for several reasons.  After a while, crayons and washable markers, even these window markers I bought, start to pale somewhat.  We are outside everyday, for at least a couple of hours, jumping and swinging and sliding at the playground nearby, but our inside activities needed a boost.  Since Hazel loves to read, I decided we should try our hand at making a book of our very own.

I tend to become more regimented, organized, and clean when I’m feeling stressed, and our current situation stresses me out quite a bit, so I think Hazel sees me only in that role.  I’m constantly cleaning up this apartment; it’s just too small for any mess to exist if we’re going to walk around without breaking our ankles.  She’s too young to see my creative side; my taking photos and knitting are just things Mama does to her, I’m sure, and I don’t know how old she’ll have to be before she can understand the creativity that goes into the work I do at school.  It worries me.  I don’t want her to feel constricted, and so I thought this activity would allow her space to stretch her imagination, draw, work on numbers and letters, and help to focus her attention for a longer time on one activity.

She did not disappoint!  Her story evolves a bit over time, but the words are hers.  She is so proud of her little missive,   but not possibly more than I am!  This is SO going in her keepsake box.  I look forward to the day I can whip this bad boy out…maybe at her Pulitzer Prize award celebration or something 😉



I finally finished those two Christmas decorations that I wanted to do this year.  Here are a couple of quick photos; the door the wreath is hanging on doesn’t really allow for a straight shot, but I think you can still see it fairly well.  That wreath, by the way, took about an hour, while the banner took much longer.  I seriously thought it would be the other way around!

Hazel’s Sweater

I love this sweater.  I love the yarn, I love the colors, I love the pattern, and I love that I got the pattern all the way correct.  This will keep her warm for probably the next 4 years, because it did turn out kind of big (I've since noticed that other people had this same outcome, so I'm still counting it as being correct).

Oh, and the yarn was spun & dyed locally in New Hartford.  Pretty cool!

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Soft, Warm Things for the Winter

I just finished this ribbed baby cardigan for Hazel.  A few weeks ago I picked up this gorgeous, soft, pale green yarn on sale (remember, Momma?) and knew I wanted to make something for Hazel with it.  I found this sweet and easy pattern, and this was the result.

I had to adjust the pattern to accommodate the bulkier yarn, but I think this will be able to fit her all through the winter.  When she wakes up we'll have a mini-fashion show and I'll post of photo of her wearing it.  After making tons of baby things, most of which I won't post photos of just yet since they are Christmas gifts, I'm ready to go in the complete & total opposite direction – I'm knitting a bathmat!  Yep, I'm using three strands of cotton yarn (durable, absorbent) and knitting a rug.  This thing is knit on size 15 needles, pretty huge, so I should be done with it in a day or two.  

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The Amos’s New Clothes

So after suffering through the stenciling on the onesies last week or so, I realized that I had made a crucial error when trying to utilize this form of image reproduction.  I used parchment paper instead of freezer paper to make the stencils. What's the big deal, you ask?  Freezer paper is thicker and has wax on one side, so you can cut out the stencil, then iron it to the fabric, which keeps it in place until the paint dries.  Parchment paper is super thin and wrinkles up when you slop paint all over it.  No wonder I had smudgy stencils!!!

Well not anymore!  I decided to make a shirt for Amos, since I'm almost out of maternity wear but not quite back into regular clothing.  He's always told me about this shirt he had which read, "Waylon F***ing Jennings, That's Who," that some crazy ex-girlfriend threw out while they were dating.  That has always sounded like the coolest shirt ever, so I decided to make Amos a new one!

What?  That's shocking!

I used gold paint to do the f-word and black for everything else.  I used this old photo of him to make the stencil for the front of the shirt.


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I’m Good with my Hands

Now that I'm home all the time I've been catching up on the things I like to do the best – making stuff.  I have been playing around with my new camera, organizing, and knitting up a storm, especially now that my feet get so swollen I can't bend my toes (knitting is easy to do whilst your feet are up higher than your heart!).  So I'm taking time today to show off some of my newest creations for le bebe.

First, here is a little something I whipped up last night while listening to music outside at the Shopper's Stroll.  At my knitting group yesterday (which I have started up again since I'm not at work every Thursday) a lady brought in a pattern for this dishcloth/trivet/pot holder/whatever.  I have made Hazel quite a few washcloths out of cotton yarn, but they are too boring for words – just a plain knit stitch square – so I was super excited to see how pretty these are and how quick they are to knit!
I exaggerated the color a bit so you could see the pattern a little better.

This little cutie I have been working on for a couple of weeks.  May I present my first knitted wearable clothing item!!
I used Lionbrand Microspun yarn, which is 100% acrylic but super slick and smooth.  It really feels wonderful.  In fact, I bought this yarn last year before I was married, way before I thought I would be pregnant, just because it felt so awesome at the store.  It was kind of tricky to work with; if you're familiar with embroidery floss then you understand how loosely this yarn is twisted together.  But I pushed through it and now I have a cute, lightweight, kimono-style sweater for Hazel in a gorgeous color.  I love more adult colors on babies; who says all their stuff has to be ugly neon or pastel??
I have also been experimenting with stenciling onto clothing.  I realized after doing these four that I've been using parchment paper, which is not the same as freezer paper, and infinitely more difficult since parchment curls up and freezer paper sticks to clothing a bit when you iron it.  I can't even blame that on preggo brain!  So here are my slightly smeared baby onesies (with more to come after a trip to the store for freezer paper!).

And this is a sneak preview of a super secret project I'm working on for someone else (you know I can't keep it totally a secret!!!)…

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Felt Name Book for my Dear Daughter <3

Sometimes I hate Vox.  I had to redo this post and lost everything I'd typed, plus I can't get my photos to not be all wonky!

Anyways!  I saw this project on Craftster, a forum I belong to, over a year ago.  I knew when I saw it that I would make one for my child whenever I had one.  I've been working on it off and on for a couple of months, and I finally finished it up tonight.  It's bright and fun and I love it!!

Each page has a letter from her name plus an animal whose name starts with that letter.  Also, on the back of each page I put a shape and its name.  The front cover is flashier than the back, which just has that little tag, but to be honest I couldn't think of anything to put on the back cover!!  I hope she likes it.  It was really fun and easy to make, just took a little while, and I hope we have fun playing with it together.

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