Archive for the ‘parenting’ Category

Getting Back to….Normal??

Well at least my new version of normal. Gone are the days of doing mostly what I want when I want (albeit around my teenage girls, work, and Craig). After 9 almost 10 months of “new” motherhood I feel like we’ve turned a corner. Isabelle is sleeping through the night, napping on her own, eating solid food,  and nursing about half as often as she was a month ago.

I am taking full advantage of all my “free” time.  In the past week I have planted all my baskets and containers, weeded my porch garden, gone for a ride on my horse with my girls, (the first in 18 months), dyed 15   skeins of yarn, and made Isabelle 3 skirties.

Even with all the extra demands of an infant I can honestly say we are having a blast. I don’t know if it’s the fact that we are older or that we only have one little one, but this time around we are marveling at each new milestone. And sharing all her delightful antics with anyone and everyone who will listen. To Craig’s absolute delight she loves, loves, loves anything with wheels. When she hears the four-wheeler start-up her legs start going and she squeals in delight. I have been known to track down the person on the 4-wheeler to take her for a ride, because she is so worked up. This past weekend Craig brought home the tractor-backhoe from work. He said it was to do some clean-up around the farm, but I honestly believe it was to take Isabelle for a ride. She spent about 4 hours off and on in it and couldn’t have been happier. Ashlyn also got to drive and move dirt. (she is now rethinking her hairdressing career, maybe playing with big equipment all day would be more fun).

Catching Up

I’m still here! Contrary to what it might look like, I have not fallen off the face of the earth. So this is what happened. Back in October I was spending so much time nursing the wee one,  and feeling unproductive. I decided to do something about that.  It has been pointed out to me that giving life and sustaining that life is a productive use of ones time, but still, I decided it wasn’t enough soooooo, I started another Etsy shop WeeWoolieKnitz.  This has been quite a bit of fun, albeit hectic through the holidays. Now it’s evened out a bit so I’ll try to post more regularly.

Some hats!!

As babies will do Isabelle has been growing like a weed. At 6 months she is still a little mite, 13lbs  05oz. She makes up for her small size in personality.

Hanging out with daddy. I believe Craig enjoyed it as much/more than Isabelle!

She loves to “talk” and makes sure that we all know her feelings on…  well,  everything. Between Craig, the girls and myself she gets what I’m sure is more attention than she should.  Physically she is learning to sit up unassisted, but will topple over if she forgets to concentrate. Rolling over is a favorite and makes diaper changing a challenge. She loves her jumperoo, and since our weather is beginning to soften we have been able to get out for some walks in her new stroller.

This makes me extremely happy. I am craving the exercise. Some women can give birth and look fantastic afterwards, I sadly am not one of them. My body is soft and mushy and looks like I just had a baby. While I’m sure my babies love the pillowy feel, I do not. The reality of my new body was driven home when we decided to take a mini-vacation to a waterpark.

I thought of deleting myself out of this but, decided a dose of reality is good for the soul. The wave pool was a big hit with all the girls.

 

Lots of knitting has been getting done, though most of it has been hats. I made A sweet jumper and leg warmers. I’ll take pics and post it soon.

Mail

 

New dyes and rovings put to good use

I love to get mail, well maybe not bills, ok definitely not bills. But packages are great, and this week kinda felt like Christmas. It all started with my box from Motherwear. I believe I’ve mentioned my dislike loathing for shopping, you couple that with an infant who has similar opinions on car riding, and hitting the mall has about as much appeal as a barefoot trek through the Himalayas. Even in the best of times I will put off shopping until my attire is on the verge of a public offense. I realized I had again hit that point when we decided to visit some friends and all I could find to wear left me looking more like a homeless person than a reasonably functional adult . I’m not looking the greatest right now as it is. I’m tired, my face seems to think it is going through a second puberty, and my body, well lets just say that  having a baby after 40 and having it be your fifth means recovering your preconception figure is going to take a considerably longer time than it did when you were in your twenties. This means that the only thing I can really control  are my clothes. So shopping I must go. My jeans actually fit. All right so they are a little snug over my  baby bulge, but close enough that at least I don’t have to go jean shopping, which in my personal opinion is almost as bad as bathing suit shopping. An activity best prepared for with a few stiff drinks, an anti-depressant, and an appointment with your counselor.  So really all I need to get are tops.  I need tops that offer two things A). easy nursing access, and B). good, discreet coverage.  I’m tickled pink with my order and also with the fact I didn’t have to hit the mall to get them. This is my kind of shopping.

 

My next packages arrived on the same day. A Big box full of rovings and dye to dye the big box of rovings. This means that if Issy cooperates I can get back to dyeing my yarns and fiber a couple of times a week like I did before hurricane Isabelle arrived.

On that very same day I received an email letting me know that my yarn (that I ordered in the beginning of September) has finally been released from customs. It will be arriving late this week or early next week. Now I’m all for national security but how in the name of all things woolly can yarn look in any way like a national threat. It’s soft and squishy with a lovely earthy scent, how long could it possibly take to determine that if it looks like yarn and smells like yarn it probably is yarn. Approximately 29 days that’s how long. But I digress, so I now have that long overdue desperately needed package to look forward to.

House Bound

All children are unique and a true blessing. That said I kinda wish some features came standard on newborns. For instance sleeping mostly through the night. A block of uninterrupted sleep puts a whole different perspective on the day. When you can actually comprehend what someone is saying to you, and not just see their lips moving and vaguely wonder if they are speaking English or a foreign tongue, but basically not caring either way. Another bonus feature would be to enjoy  riding in the car. I know most babies do, but mine did not come with this option standard. This makes going anywhere difficult a living hell. We have a 20+ minute ride to go anywhere. She can do maybe 5 minutes. That leaves 15+ minutes of ear-splitting, teeth rattling screeching. She was blessed with a remarkable set of pipes. This means I limit our outings to Dr. appointments and times when the walls start closing in on me. When we do venture out what used to be a simple trip to the store now takes about 3 hours. (seriously)

I’m trying to use all this home time to best advantage. I have mentally redecorated my living room, numerous times. I’m catching up on my reading, but that too requires a trip to the library. Mostly since we still spend so much time nursing, I’m exploring Ravelries fantastic pattern collection. There are patterns for every conceivable project one would ever feel compelled to make.  Since my knitting time is still in short supply, my fantasy knitting life is in full swing. And let me tell you what an accomplished knitter I am in this life. Not only do I crank out the requisite cold weather woollens for my family, but my mother has two intricate lace shawls for Christmas, Alexandra has a new Debbie Bliss cabled cardigan (knitted on size 4 needles) that she will treasure for eternity, (and then  hand  down to her children thus becoming a family heirloom) and Craig has a Fair Isle sweater that encompasses all the  love and devotion that went into each tiny size 2 stitch.  And since he is color blind he doesn’t even mind the wee bit of purple I put in to make it “pop”.

At least all this time at home isn’t being wasted.

Knitting Time

Merino/silk. It's also superwash!

My knitting time these days is a precious commodity, actually any me time is in short supply.  So I’m trying to use what time I have to the utmost potential. Our weather has gone from quite warm to suddenly very cool.  I started a simple rolled brim stocking hat for the baby a couple of weeks ago from my hand painted merino/silk. I managed to get the knitting finished now all I need to do is add the embellishment and a tassel.

Since the hat used such a small amount of yarn I casted on for a pair of mittens. These are to cute for words and went really quickly. I especially like not having to put in thumbs, that is  my least favorite part of knitting mittens. Ashlyn wants me to make her a pair as well, I wonder if she would notice/mind if I skipped the thumbs on her pair. Probably.

Too cute!

I also started another soaker . I’ve never used these with my other children, but I have to say I absolutely love them. They hold in moisture and leaks but are still breathable. I’ve had two leaks so far with her and they were both in disposables. I’m using the Curly Purly Soaker pattern and my Blue faced leicester in dk weight. They recommend worsted weight (I have some of those too) but I’m finding no difference in their containment abilities. Maybe this will change as she grows, but she could be an Olympic contender in the urinating department.

When I finish the embellishments on the hat I’ll post the pattern.

Snippets of Time

2 1/2 weeks

Going home from the hospital

Our brains have a way of insulating us from unpleasant experiences from the past. We remember them but just not as vividly as when they were actually happening. I’ll give you a few examples:

1). Childbirth (this is still fresh in my mind). We all know it hurts, but our minds tend to blur the intensity of the pain and instead we remember the moment we first touched our babies.

2). Difficult financial times. Whether in college or just starting married life, we tend to laugh and describe how we had meat once a week, or we rode our bike everywhere we could to save gas,  or we had $50 for groceries not $50.01. It’s a lot funnier when we look back at it then when it was happening.

3). Life with a newborn.

This of course is the purpose of this post. I’ve had newborns before, I know they are time-consuming, but my mind played its tricks and I forgot just how much time goes into caring for a wee wonder.  I am breastfeeding. I think it is easier once it is established, which does take a little while, we aren’t there yet. At 3 weeks she is still eating, well almost constantly. I was joking the other day about our nursing chair having the imprint of my arse end, when I went to sit down at the next session I happened to glance down  and all joking aside there was a big ole imprint of my derriere. I’m trying to be all zen about how much time I’m spending in that chair. I know it is a temporary thing and she will grow very quickly and I will miss it, but when I see all the things I should/could be doing, well lets just say I doubt the Dalia Lama will be calling anytime soon.

Before Issy came I decided not to temporarily close my etsy shop, after all I had a little stock done ahead of time, I was trying for more but had a busy sales month in July. I’m not complaining:) Also not only would my two teenage girls be home, but my oldest daughter was staying for a week. I figured I had this covered. I can hear the Gods of  motherhood doubled over in laughter.  Since when do we ever have it “covered” ? Issy though a very good baby, doesn’t like to get to far away from the uhm.. food source. She likes constant contact when she is asleep. When she’s awake  she will sit in her wiggle chair as Craig calls it ( we thought her vibrator wasn’t exactly appropriate) or lay in her bassinet. This leaves precious little time to actually dye, take pictures, and post new colorways. So I’ve had to get creative. Cate my oldest daughter mad me a Moby wrap. This has been a life saver! Issy loves it and I get the use of my hands. When I dye I throw an apron on over it. I can do my computer work with two hands. Since my typing skills leave something to be desired two hands is a real plus.   So this is how life is at the moment. 5 minutes hear, 15 minutes there, it took me 7 hours to dye 5 skeins of yarn. Two of them where identical. This is a  stocking hat I started on Saturday for the baby, I should have it done by Christmas of 2011. It will never cease to amaze me how  lives can be so upturned by a wee being smaller than a watermelon, but so it is.

Isabelle Grace

Minutes old!

I realize it has been awhile since I have posted, but this time I have an excellent excuse. Isabelle Grace arrived on August 9 at 2:27 pm. ( that makes her birthday 8-9-10, kinda cool huh). She was 7lbs 6ozs.  We are all totally in love!! She was 8 days late, and I ended up having to be induced. I really wanted her to come on her own, but she had other ideas. We went in for the induction at 7:30 but by the time they started the Pitocin it was 9:00. From 9 until 1 they upped the pit every 20 minutes and although the contractions were somewhat stronger they were not much more than what I’d been having for the last 3 weeks.  My Dr. came back at 1 to break my water and I had dilated 1/2 a centimeter. I was a whopping 1 and 1/2 centimeters. I was getting a little scared, thinking my body may have forgotten how to do this, and I would end up having a c-section. I apparently had some cervical scaring (who knew there was such a thing?) so when she broke my water she did a little manual dilating. This was not as bad as it sounds. The contractions got extremely intense very quickly. With in 10 minutes I was in full-blown labor. At this point I just want to say that HOLY CRAP does that hurt. Some one needs to come up with a better system. Maybe an escape hatch or something. Since I hadn’t been dilating I thought they would check me and I’d be 4 centimeters, this was about the time I decided that an epidural was just about the best idea since Diary Queen.  The nurse checked and all hell broke loose. I realized I needed push, when I looked up again there were 8-10 people in the room (not one of which was my dr). And a very large spot light had descended from the ceiling. Now maybe it’s just me but what on earth do we need a light that big for? We are not cave diving here. But I digress, when I looked up again there was an OB Dr talking to me,  and I swear to God he looked like he was 12 years old. Not that I really cared at that point.  Any body who was able to catch was good enough. A couple of really good pushes later and she was out. My Dr. did end up making it for most of the delivery. Craig was absolutely wonderful! I couldn’t have asked for anything more. But everything happened so fast that by the time the girls got to the hospital she had arrived.

3 days old

It’s hard to remember how really small they are. Even her newborn things are large on her.  She nursed very quickly and has been a pro ever since. Our first  two nights were challenging to say the least. She slept a grand total of 2 hours. But it is getting better. The last 3 nights she’s slept 5 hours, which I think is fantastic for a baby who isn’t even 2 weeks old. I’m starting to feel like a functioning adult again. I was even able to get some hand dyeing done. Craig and the  girls have been absolutely fantastic about keeping everything clean and organized around the house. Which makes it feel like things are still running relatively smoothly, even when my participation is minimal. Every new mom should have this amount of help.

11 days old