Saturday, March 28, 2009

A Newborn BSJ

On the needles right now is the start of another Baby Surprise Jacket in fingering weight, possibly for a friend's baby due in the summer. I'm just lovin' the Addi-turbos while knitting up another ingenious Zimmermann design. The needles are so quiet when I'm able to knit after baby sleeps. I keep expecting to hear the click-clacking of the needles, but just don't.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Thanks To Cherry and Grape Kool-Aid!

So, I eventually took a break from knitting baby socks after knitting up this last pair at the end of 2008, a pair I'm highlighting, because I knit it from yarn that I finally love after dyeing it twice!

The yarn started as Spunky Eclectic's undyed superwash wool sock yarn. Back in 2007, I experimented with acid dyes and handpainted a skein along with some fibre. Unfortunately, I didn't like how the colors came out on the skein, so I let it get buried in my stash and didn't do anything with it until this past November when I got this crazy urge to do some dyeing. So, I dug out the offensive sock yarn and the Kool-Aid packets and found my recycled containers to do some simple overdyeing. I wish I had a "before" picture of this skein, but lazy me didn't take one. Anyhow, on one end of the skein, I dip-dyed the skein (prepped and pre-soaked with cold water and a glug of vinegar) with two packages of cherry mixed with about a cup of water, and on the other end, with a package of cherry and a package of grape mixed with a cup of water. After dip dyeing and placing the colours on either end of the skein, I just pushed the entire skein into the dye jar to absorb every last bit of dye before heat setting in the microwave.

It's amazing how the vinegar helps the wool to just suck up every last bit of dye from the Kool-Aid liquid. (How anyone can ingest this "drink", after using this as a dye, is beyond me.)

After the skein came out of the microwave and air dried, the skein completely transformed from a loud, ugly mix of teal blue, navy blue, white, canary yellow, and grass green to a glorious mix of warm, autumn colors that blend well together. I don't think I'll ever be able to reproduce this skein again, but that's ok, I really love the serendipity of the dyeing process! I'll have to carefully choose the rest of my projects for this single yummy skein, but I'm thinking Jaywalkers or a baby sweater at this point... For now, I can enjoy the baby socks on K, which almost fit perfectly on her curling, tiny feet!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Our Baby Girl is a Month Old!

Yesterday marked the one-month birthday of our sweet baby girl! Some things we've learned about her so far... She has a good appetite and is beginning to sleep longer stretches of time, especially in the mornings. Tummy time is a frustration for her, but her neck is getting stronger every day. She can be very alert at five in the morning, refusing to tire out and sleep. She cries the loudest when having her diaper changed at night and tolerates having two curious brothers who like to analyze, touch or kiss her.

And look at the display of affection between siblings that's become more and more common around here...

from another kind of affection that we're used to!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

A Pair of Red Booties

A pair of red Mary Janes is definitely in order with all K's hand knit socks not fitting just yet. This pair knit up in no time and is most adorable, like its recipient. I knit the 0-3M size using Elann's Sock It To Me 4-ply yarn and 2.25mm DPNs (not the 3.25mm needles suggested in the pattern), which produced a perfect fitting newborn bootie for our smaller K. K's been settling into a nice little morning routine lately where she sleeps from the time D leaves for school until about lunch time, so I have some "catch-up" time with R or housework or all my knitting projects! Hopefully, this isn't a short-lived sleeping routine. If interested, the sweet, vintage-inspired pattern for the Mary Jane Booties is here, courtesy of Hadley Fierlinger.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

We Proudly Introduce...

the newest member of our family, Kaitlyn! Born just a little over two weeks ago at six pounds, two ounces on February 22, we are overjoyed and thrilled to receive our little girl whom we had no idea was a little girl until she decided it was her time to meet us all out here. We're all still on a "high" with her arrival and even more in shock that she turned out to be a girl. We were just used to "Mama" being the only girl in the household and resigned to the fact that this pregnancy would produce us a boy, as boys run in both Mama and Papa's families. Then, as my pregnancy continued, I increasingly felt that I was carrying more and more similar to my first pregnancy--the belly being high, straight out and round with similar abnormal triple screen worries. So, although the intuition isn't too sharp during pregnancy, we're extremely grateful for a healthy baby!

And as it has turned out, K's two older brothers have been absolutely wonderful and tolerant during this sudden transition and shift in focus at home. R's been kissing her everyday throughout the past two weeks, and D's been asking to hold her whenever possible. So, I guess it's now okay for me to dive into the pink and red yarn stash, as K's wardrobe is severely short of anything in this color range. In fact, she's wearing a beloved D and R hand-me-down in the above pic! Nevertheless, we know that K will be one spoiled and protected member of our family.