Monday, January 14, 2008

Recovery and Re-entry

Some pretty photos first:

My Jaywalker socks, done in Fleece Artist Merino (yep, another Mosaic acquistion). Why, yes, that high instep does cause me headaches when it comes to sock calculations and buying shoes that don't kill my feet. They're a major reason I rarely buy shoes. I stopped the pattern at the ankle, leaving the foot plain so I could do some arch shaping without having to think about the pattern at the same time.

The finished Red Sox socks. Yes, I left out the corrugated ribbing that's traditional for their socks, I just didn't like it, even after I had knit it several times in an attempt to like it. I used a stitch pattern from Vogue Knitting (pg. 122) they called the "triangle" stitch pattern that I adapted a tiny bit and I refer to as a "pennant" pattern since the Red Sox won the pennant. I used Reynold's Soft Sea Wool and I have to say that I adore this yarn. It's got a tight enough twist to wear well, it's actually plush to knit with, and the colors are clear and hold stitch textures well. It is 100% wool and will require hand washing but I don't consider that a burden, especially with all the nice wool washes out there that don't even require rinsing. I rate this yarn highly. I will say that if you're using it for socks, totally ignore the label recommendations for needle size/gauge (well, you really ought to be doing that anyhow and going with your own personal gauge for things but we know how that goes, don't we?). I used a size 2 (US) needle and it made a nice, smooshy, stretchy (the pattern contributed to this, too) sock. Lots of love for these socks, oh, yeah.
Did I mention my husband even wanted them? He's never wanted knitted socks before.
And now for the catch-up portion:
It was an interesting visit from the daughter and grandkids, to say the least.

VT lost their game. (note: it's as hard to be a VT fan as it is to be a Red Sox fan or a Mark Martin fan. Doesn't matter that the Red Sox have won the World Series twice now, have you ever suffered through all the games getting there?)

Tech Gal and both the kids came down with a horrendous case of what was probably a norovirus. This resulted in an ER visit. Mike had to take them, with my mom assisting, due to my having been laid out for the entire day before with a respiratory bug. After being filled to the brim with IV fluids and various drugs, they came staggering back home, where I myself had been staggering about, washing the tons of laundry that comes with the 3 P's: pee, poo, and puke.

Mom promptly added her bit to the day by falling into my doorway.

She then refused to let me and Tech Gal help her up, crawling from the entryway to my dining table to pull herself up (and almost pulling a chair on top of her fool self in the process). I don't think words can suffice to explain to you how I felt watching my mom crawl around in my floor. It didn't help that Bridget chose this moment to throw up (again!) in the background.
Mike, who had been doing an Academy Award winning performance as Helpful Husband to that point, suddenly decided he absolutely had to go to work and left. Tech Gal promptly fell over on the futon and was dead to the world--anti-nausea drugs do that to a person. (Now I know it aggravates some people when I don't name my daughter. I simply have always thought of her as Tech Gal since I started blogging because she's been my tech support. She's handy and smart at this tech stuff plus she now has a college degree that even lists some tech stuff as her minor. When I'm blogging, she is simply my beloved Tech Gal.)
That left me with poor Bridget and Josie. Both were exceedingly good, considering how sick they were but it also left me with a lasting deep impression of what an excellent mother and person my daughter is. She never yells at her kids, she never seems totally overwhelmed outwardly, though I know there have been times she's wanted to just fall over. She doesn't get that opportunity due to being a stay-at-home mom. She's on duty 24/7 365 days a year. She has managed to complete her bachelor's degree with a high GPA while giving birth to and caring for 2 babies under the age of 3 years old, including having complicated pregnancies. She takes the most amazing photographs I have ever seen. And she manages to be friendly to almost everyone.
So when Josie had diarrhea YET again and I needed to stick her in the bathtub because her poor rump simply had deteriorated past the point of tolerating baby wipes and Bridget was whining and I was afraid of what she'd get into while I had Josie in the tub, I let her sleep.
Besides, I don't think I could have gotten her awake in any case. :-)
By the next day, everyone was staggering about blearily and Bridget had learned that illness=popsicles. Josie still wasn't impressed with her rump situation but I could totally understand that. I remember sitting there with Tech gal and remarking "Gee, I can't believe this is what I asked for for my Christmas present."
See, when asked by Mike and others what my perfect Christmas present would be, I had, without exception, answered: "Seeing my girls." Be careful what you wish for. I will be more specific about this request next time and include something along the lines of "Seeing my girls and we'll all, the entire family, be healthy and happy."
Speaking of healthy and happy, remember the impending arrival of the next baby? Maddy made her appearance on Tuesday, January 8th, weighing in at a healthy 9 lbs, 1 oz. She and her mommy are doing very well although her Grandma Bev still sounds very giddy when I talk to her, due to the lingering effect of those Grandkid Arrival Fumes. I find that the onset of teething seems to help the effect of these fumes abate a bit but otherwise, they've pretty much ensnared you for life. GAF isn't something that previous exposure to abates either. One grandkid or twenty, you're pretty well sunk. I haven't gotten to meet Maddy in person yet--we don't dare until we're certain we're not still contagious.
This was made for Maddy:
La Bebe from MinnowKnits, Too by Jil Eaton. My second time knitting it but I did the full collar the pattern called for this time. I added a pair of booties. I used KnitPicks superwash merino Bare for the outfit. It's very soft and was okay to knit with. I'll be interested to see how it holds up in the wash. The pattern does make a very beautiful little outfit and is easy to follow. I've knit several items from this book and it's been the one I've used most for baby outfits. It has several cute rompers in it but I did avoid using stripes. They just looked too much like jail overalls to me.
Mike and I drove Tech Gal and the grandkids to Charlotte, NC to the airport on Sat. morning (and we're talking very early Sat. morning, as in needing to be up by 3 am). The good part was the lack of Charlotte rush-hour traffic, which rates right up there as horrendous. The bad part was the fact everyone was sick and sleep-deprived. I did feel badly about Kel flying back with those kids alone. (Yet another point there in her favor, she's racked more frequent flyer miles with babies than most I know and I would put her up against anyone else in ability to cope with babies while dealing with TSA and the way airports like to mess with you.) It took us longer to drive back home than it did for them to fly home, due to the fact we had to keep stopping frequently at exit ramps to change off driving. You just should not drive when you're bleary and definitely should not drive Fancy Gap mountain without all wits about you.
By Sunday, I managed to succumb totally to the bug I'd first gotten Wednesday but refused to acknowledge due to everyone else being so spectacularly sick. Somehow coughing and sneezing doesn't hold a candle to projectile vomiting, now does it? After a night of hacking and chilling, I did live long enough to call for an antibiotic and am finally getting better. I even attempted a bit of spinning:
Jacob wool, obtained from Little Barn Inc. Very nice wool and I was doing fairly well after having to fiddle about with adjusting the Lendrum again. I'd just finished up some roving on the Louet and it takes my hands and head awhile to go from one wheel to the other. I am now in a great quandry due to the fact that the wheels give me such different results so I love them both. I had justified buying the Lendrum by saying I'd sell the Louet and now realize my ignorance in this due to not having experienced how different wheels can be from each other and how you can use them to achieve such a broader range than just one wheel will give. (Okay, all of you spinners out there, does that sound like a good argument? Cause one day very soon, Mike is going to comment on the fact that it's been x number of months since SAFF and there are 2 spinning wheels still in residence here.)
I'm observing the political scene here in the USA in a kind of wonderment. McCain resurgent? Obama and Clinton sniping about racial issues? Why do I get this sinking feeling that once again I'm going to be going to the polls thinking, gee, I don't want any one of these candidates?
I'm off to pay some attention to my very neglected loom. It's silent presence rebukes me everytime I pass it. Which is one of the reasons I set it up in the living room-so I'd actually get some weaving done.


AlisonH said...

I love those socks. I have laceweight from Blue Moon in that color, and it's supposed to become a particular shawl in mind. But I'm looking at your socks, I'm seeing that yarn, and I'm wishing I could put my feet in those--maybe, in part, because there's this feeling on the side of, someone else with feet like mine! Except mine are also EE width.

Which is why I live in Birkenstocks. (Good thing I like them. And that I live in California, right?)

Susan said...

Beautiful baby outfit!