28 February 2011

Knitting for Better--Final Tally

It's been 2 months since the beginning of my Knitting for Better project. I set a goal to deliver 20 hats to Yarning for You by February 28, 2011. Many of you helped out either knitting-wise or with donations. I am so grateful to all of you who helped! I was able to get $40 worth of money donated and bought tons of yarn with it. In fact I still have money and yarn left over so this will not be the end of my charity knitting projects!

So to the total: I am proud to say that we met our goal of 20! Two of my friends and I knitted the hats thanks to the yarn money donation of others!

A heartfelt THANK YOU! to all those that helped. 

Since I have so much supplies left over I will continue knitting hats for people in need. In our local area we have the North County Interfaith Community and other local shelters that I will contact to see if they are in need of any thing like this. Who doesn't need a hat??

23 February 2011

I'm going to be a gardener!

I like growing things. I'm not very good at it, but I love seeing life sprout out of the soil into a living plant. There have been many a potted plant that has came to it's end on my porch, but they are beautiful while they live. I've only really grown flowers because we live in an apartment, but I've really been longing to grow food. I've heard about the square-foot gardening thing, but it just never seemed the right thing. I know you don't need a ton of space to plant certain things, but I wanted a garden. A real, in the ground garden.  So imagine my pure delight when a few months ago there was an email that went around our community about the possibility of putting in community garden plots for the residents!

I jumped on that right away and shared my desire to be a part of it. A few months later they are done and my family gets to have one! It's not huge--10x5--but I think it's perfect. We are so thrilled to be able to grow some food. Big Sister is especially excited and I'm really excited about the opportunity to teach her my limited knowledge of gardening.  I grew up with a garden in our backyard for many years. My mom was an avid gardener. She grew blackberries, corn, beans, peas, lettuce, tomatoes, squash, carrots, strawberries--you name it. And that's not including the fruit trees either. We had an abundance of fresh food when I was growing up. I loved it! I want to have my kids working next to me in my garden.

The problem is, I have no idea how to garden! What have I gotten myself into?? I helped my mom weed, plant seeds and water the plants, but it was always under her direction. We bought a few seed packets last weekend and will see how much space we have after really getting to do some spacial planning this weekend.  Despite not knowing anything, I really am excited about the adventure. Now to go get a copy of Gardening for Dummies. Does that book really exist??

Do you know a lot about gardening? Any tips you can give me?

19 February 2011

Slightly Ribbed Baby Hat

I made this hat the other day and made up the pattern as I went along. I thought I'd share it!

I made this for a newborn but you could change the needle size or add stitches in multiples of 8 to get whatever size you want.

I used size US 6 4.25mm dpns and Loops & Threads Snuggly Wuggly baby sport yarn. Again, if you want a bigger hat, use a heavier yarn.

Here is the pattern:

Cast on 72 st
Divide them on 4 dpns and join in the round. (I find that the "ladder effect" from using dpns is not as noticeable if you start with a purl stitch on each needle.)

Starting with a purl stitch do a p1 k3 ribbing for about an inch.
Knit in the round *p1, k7* until piece measures 4" for a newborn.
Decrease round 1: *p1, k6, k2tog*
Round 2 and all even rounds: Knit
Round 3: *p1, k5, k2tog*
Round 5: *p1, k4, k2tog*
Round 7: *p1, k3, k2tog*

Continue in this way (alternating a decrease round with a knit round) the last round. Then k2tog for the round.

Cut yarn and weave through remaining stitches on needles the pull tight. Weave edges in to secure and you're done!

George is modeling so that the "slightly ribbed"design is shown.

16 February 2011

etsy and Other Exciting Happenings

My etsy store is now stocked again! It has much better things than it did the first time. I'm actually quite embarrassed that I posted the things I did. I'm glad most of them didn't sell. Here is the link Jamie's Knits. Yep, for those that don't know that is my real name. I have been knitting and crocheting nonstop pretty much the last few months and I'm happy to say I really love it. I also love to make custom things for people, so please ask if there is anything you want. And now that I'm shamelessly done promoting myself I'll move on to other topics.

My body hurts. My thighs are bruised, my back is bruised, my sides are achy and bruised. No I haven't been abused. I went Indoor Go-Kart racing last night. A couple months ago T-Bone found a Groupon for basically buy one, get one free so we bought one and so did his brother. We had a one-day-past-Valentine's Day double date last night and that's where we went. It really was fun but it's pretty brutal. Before racing we were planning on going to this restaurant in Cardiff by the Sea but we drove around and around trying to find it. The guys were looking at the map on their phones and they said it looked like it should be in the San Elijo campgrounds but we didn't know how that would be possible. We called them and no one answered. Finally T-Bone pulled up their website and sure enough it was in the campgrounds and it closed at 6:00pm. Who ever heard of a restaurant closing at 6? So we went to another place and it was delicious. We decided to go to Las Olas accidentally again.

The other thing that hurts is my tooth. I'm pretty sure I need a root canal. I'm really no happy about this because it seems like as soon as we get any money (we just filed out tax return) we need to spend it on something worthless--like, say, teeth. I am grateful though, that the pain didn't come when we didn't have the money. The other day I had what felt like a sinus headache. I took some Tylenol and it subdued it but the pressure was still there. Then yesterday the pain pinpointed itself to the side of my face right above my jaw line. You know, where the roots are? Yeah, right there. Luckily there is a dentist right around the corner that I will be visiting today to make an appointment.

Last weekend I survived the climbing out of the crib debacle. Mr. Smiley can indeed get out of his crib. I ended up turning it around so the taller side is in front and taking out his crib bumper which he was using as a boost. That seemed to stop the climbing periodically, until he figured out how to get out again. The good thing is he doesn't do it regularly. When he is legitimately tired he will stay in his crib like this morning when I put him down for his nap. We are going to get Big Sister a regular twin bed--instead of the loft bunk bed she has (She has been sleeping in her sleeping bag on the floor the last few nights)--so that the room is safer if he gets out at night and probably have to get Mr. Smiley a toddler bed within the month if he keeps doing this. At least he can't open doors....yet.

In lighter news, Big Sister and I had a funny conversation today. To preface, Mr. Smiley's new favorite thing is to close doors. If any happen to be open, they won't be for long.
BS: Why is my bedroom door closed?
Me: Mr. Smiley did it.
BS: (frustrated) Why does he have to close all the doors? Then I have to open it every time I want to go in there!
**Life is really hard when your six and can't even summon the energy to open a door.

She can be pretty charming sometimes too. Last month we were driving home from somewhere and she said, "You know how much I love you Mom? The whole universe. I only love Daddy the earth."

Well that's all for this Wednesday of Flip Flop Mama. I hope you have a wonderful day.

11 February 2011

5:30 in the morning

It's 5:30 in the morning and I can't sleep. I've been laying here for 15 minutes with this story running circles in my mind and I know I won't be able to relax until I get it down. Why am I awake at this hour of the morning? Half an hour ago I was woken up by the sweet happy sounds of Mr. Smiley. Looking at the clock I rolled over and tried to go back to sleep.  Nature calling, I had to get up and as I walked down the hallway I noticed the light on in the kid's room. I opened the door and there is Mr. Smiley playing on the floor and Big Sister sitting up in bed reading like it was the middle of the day.

"What is going on?" I ask.
"I was just reading."
I'm bewildered. "Do you know what time it is?"
Looks at her clock, "It's 5:08."
"Yes its the middle of the night. Go back to sleep."

I put Mr. Smiley back in his crib, turn the light off and go to the bathroom.  When I come out there is singing and noises other than what I should of heard which is an unhappy toddler put back in his crib after waking to early. I open the door and Mr. Smiley is back on the floor playing.

I am really getting upset now. "What is going on here? Keep your brother in his crib! And no more singing!"
"I didn't get him out."

Not believing her, I put him back in the crib, shut the door and go back to bed. Which brings me to now.  Only while writing this I heard door rattling sounds coming from down the hall. Which could only mean one thing-Mr. Smiley was back out of his crib.  This time I sent T-bone to deal with it.  Sure enough Mr. Smiley was out again. Big sister denied getting him out again and if that is true we have a serious problem on our hands.

I was really hoping to get a good night's sleep last night. On what is potentially the most emotional day of the month and after the last two roller-coaster emotional days I need it. Guess the kids will be watching a lot of tv today while I hide out in my room trying to make up lost sleep and not kill them. Did I mention that there is no school today? Yeah, I'm already crying.

**The good news is I was able to fall back asleep at about 6:30 and slept for 45 minutes or so.  The bad news is while I was sleeping, T-bone did discover that Mr. Smiley can indeed climb out of his crib. Anyone have a crib tent I can have? This is not good.**