Tuesday, October 23, 2007

finally, a post about knitting

You would think that with my husband home for two weeks I'd have more knitting time than I could handle, and yet that has not been the case. In fact, other than when he was having his surgery, I haven't had a decent chunk of time in which to knit since before he got sick. (This, I assure you, has nothing to do with the hours and hours I've spent in front of my new computer.) Nevertheless, I have managed to nearly complete the Little Star Sweater I've been working on. All that's left is to put the whole thing together and finish the neck. Yeah!!!

Oh, right, and work in the myriad of ends.

But, since the sweater is a Christmas present (and I really, really hate weaving in ends), I don't have to do that right now. Besides, the weather has been beautiful; Magic Baby won't need a sweater until February at this rate! Who says global warming isn't good for something? Warm weather in winter= extended sweater deadlines! You go, Republicans!

In a related note, today was another beautiful one, weather-wise. Overcast in the morning but warm and breezy. Hubby and I took Magic Baby to a local park both to celebrate the nice day and as kind of a last hurrah. Tomorrow Hubby goes back to work, and while having a paycheck coming in will be nice (we all know that more money means more yarn), Magic Baby and I are going to miss having him here all day. Hubby is a bit of a workaholic who literally takes one week and one day off a year, so these two weeks have been quite a treat for us. Especially since he was only recovering from minor surgery; he couldn't pick up the baby, and he was pretty uncomfortable for awhile there, but he's actually been great for about a week now. Not good enough to go back to work or anything (he does construction and we had to wait for the wounds to heal and all that fun stuff before he could go back to lifting heavy objects), but good enough to enjoy (and be enjoyed by) his family. We've had a really nice time together; I hope he has to have his gall bladder out again sometime!

Anyway, we had a really nice time at the park today. Magic Baby enjoyed playing on the swings and the small beach.

He also really liked running a stick along the fence of the tennis court. (Such a boy!)

But then, guess what happened....
Yep, out of nowhere a backhoe drove right onto the beach where we were and went to work cleaning up the remnants of a bonfire. Holy crap, Magic Baby was thrilled. He got to sit maybe fifteen feet from the truck and watch it do its thing and we got to watch his excited little face. It was perfect, the perfect way to end our little "vacation" with Hubby.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

autumn activities

I must say, I'm proud of myself. For the first time ever, Hubby and I have found time to do all the seasonal activities we wanted with the kids. This is especially difficult for us because we only have Big Sister every other weekend and it apparently took me seven and a half years to realize that this means we need to get going on holiday stuff sooner. Usually, we end up dyeing Easter eggs hours before the Bunny is scheduled to arrive or putting up our Christmas tree on the 23rd. This year, though, fall was different. I actually got my butt in gear and made sure we did an ample number of autumn-type things before the snow came. Here's a look at what those things were:

1. About a month ago, we went apple and pumpkin picking at a local orchard. The weather was beautiful, the kids had a great time, and hopefully they have a better understanding of how apples and pumpkins grow. (This has literally been on our To Do list for seven years. It feels great to finally be able to cross it off!)

2. Last week, we went to a corn maze at Escobar's Highland Farm in Portsmouth. Unfortunately, Big Sister was tired and decided at the last minute she didn't want to go. Normally we would have just rescheduled, because of course we wanted to all go as a family, but they were having Harry Potter day. How could I resist? I wore my Gryffindor scarf (knit by my Grandmother six years ago, before you could buy the cheesy replicas they have now) and my Weasley raglan (knit by me over the summer. Yeah, I wore a sweater in 80 degree weather, but as it was the first sweater I've ever knit for myself, I'm sure you understand.). We got sorted into houses (I into Ravenclaw, the baby into Gryffindor and my husband into Slytherin. Tee-hee. He's in Slytherin.), and I took a HP quiz, which I enjoyed way too much. We told Big Sister we'll go again if she wants. I'm sure she'd have a great time. Magic Baby, my 20-month old, absolutely loved being chased through the corn. See?

The tractor ride through the farm was a big hit with him, too. What I'd like to do someday is ditch the kids (or at least the baby) and get a ton of people together, split up into teams, and race through the maze. Hey, I never said I was hip, but you have to admit that would be a lot of fun.

3. Last night we went to Pumpkins in the Park at Pawtucket's Slater Park with my parents, some friends of ours and their two little girls. There were some pretty nice hand-carved pumpkins, a few people in costumes, and a bunch of those inflatable Halloween decorations that my mom keeps buying for Big Sister and I keep "forgetting" to put up. Magic Baby liked looking at everything, but his favorite part was when I took him out of his stroller and let him run around. (Apparently 20 months is the age at which nothing beats a good run.) The pumpkins at Pumpkins in the Park were nowhere near as nice as the ones they had a few years back at Roger Williams' Zoo. Those pumpkins were amazing. They've moved those awesome pumpkins from the zoo to McCoy Stadium. From what I've heard, the pumpkins still look great, but part of the whole experience (in my opinion) was the natural vibe that came from having it at the zoo. They had incorporated the trees and landscape and everything really well, and I just don't think I would like it as much at a baseball stadium. Of course, if you happen to be a baseball fan, you might like the whole being-inside-a-minor-league-stadium aspect of it, but I still think I would miss the trees. Maybe it's me.
Slater Park also has a Haunted Tunnel. Big Sister, being all of seven-and-a-half, felt she was ready to try it, despite repeated warnings on my mother's part. She's tough. She could totally handle it. So, Hubby and my mom bought three tickets and waited 45 minutes with her. (My dad, Magic Baby and I waited outside. I admit to being a total chicken when it comes to these things.) After the long wait, Big Sister was still strutting around like she owned the place, and Hubby thought things were looking good. Then, it was their turn. The lights were dim, there were decapitated bodies all around and some creepy vampirey-looking guy with white contacts opened the door. Big Sister freaked. She started backpeddled into Hubby, pushing him with all her might. (Not unlike I did years ago when he took me to a haunted house, but I digress.) She wouldn't go in. My mom convinced her to try again, but it just wasn't happening. She said it was the white eyes that did it. I don't think my husband "laughing like a hyena" helped, but that just may be me. Needless to say, she has since sworn off all haunted houses, iParty, and a commercial for Prison Break that came on during the Red Sox game. (I'm not sure what Prison Break has to do with vampires. Except that it sucks. Yeah, I went there.) Oh, and she slept in our bed last night.

Overall, a pretty decent variety of activities revolving around the fall, I think. Hubby is going to carve pumpkins with Big Sister on his weekly visitation Thursday, since Magic Baby enjoys in addition to running, taking things that he's not supposed to have and shoving them in his mouth. I'll let him use some nice, non-toxic paint on his own pumpkin next week. And that's about it for fall. I'm always on the lookout for cool things to try, though, so I'm sure we'll keep busy. For now, I'm just glad I remembered to start early and was actually able to fit everything in for once. Next up: Thanksgiving. I wonder if it's too early to bake that pie I always mean to bring to dinner on Turkey Day and never seem to have time for?

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

I'm beginning to think some kind of extraterrestrial beings are controlling my husband... and I'm cool wth it

Okay, so while Hubby isn't exactly Scrooge, he's certainly, let's say, frugal? As in Nearly-Goes-Into-Heart-Failure-Each-And-Every-Time-I-Mention-Yarn-Shopping Frugal. Or Has-Literally-Worn-Holes-In-His-Jeans-Which-He-Has-Then-Duct-Taped-And-Worn-To-Work-Anyway Frugal (and I'm not talking holes in the knees, either). Not that he isn't usually accepting of my constant need to spend money; I can almost always get him to see that the shirt I bought was a great bargain or the merino an absolute steal. But gettng the man to part with his cash can certainly be a challenge at times. (I, on the other hand, can never pass up a sale, but this is clearly not about me.)

"So, he's a bit stingy. How does that make him the victim of mind-controlling aliens?" you ask. Ah, but it is not his tight-wad tendencies that lead me to believe he's posessed; it's his recent lack thereof. I offer the following as proof:

1. Just a few weeks ago, he bought me an ipod. True, it was an aniversary gift, and yes it was an ipod shuffle (the least expensive of the line, but that's totally okay with me because it's perfect for what I need). Still, no ipod can be called cheap and I had only mentioned my desire for the mp3 player a handful of times, nowhere near the hundreds of "hints" I usually toss out there. Needless to say, this off-the-cuff purchase was pretty uncharacteristic of him. Looking back, I see this as the red flag that the little green buggers were beginnng their evil infiltration. (That's buggers not boogers. That would be gross.)

2. Today, we had most of the windows in our house replaced. As you can imagine, this was pretty costly, and while the old windows definitely needed to go (they were the wooden ones from 1933. I'm not kidding.), Hubby's typical approach to household items (and most things, in fact) is along the lines of "Use it 'til it breaks. Then, use it some more." Most of our windows weren't even cracked yet, and he had them replaced them, again without much nagging on my part! Clearly, he is not in his right mind.

Now, here's the biggie...
3. The day before the guys were coming to do the windows... coincidentally the day my Ravelry invite arrived... he let me buy a computer. Did I mention he's out of work at the moment recovering from minor surgery and I'm a stay-at-home mom? Not a lot of money coming in right now and in two days we buy a computer and replace our windows. Come on. This cannot be the man I married.

I don't mean to sound ungrateful. On the contrary, I am pretty psyched by this new attitude of his. And the best part is that the mind-controlling dudes haven't changed anything else about him. He's still the sweet, loveable, imaginative, smart, funny guy I married. Only now, he seems to be as free with money as I am! Okay, it's not that extreme. Yet. If he offers to watch the baby while I take the Platinum AmEx to my LYS, we'll know they've completely taken over his mind. We'll know one other thing too; they're on our side.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

yeah, technology!

Well, it's official. Hubby and I have joined the 20th century (hey, better late than never). How's that? you may ask. Well, today we... bought our first computer. Innovative, I know, but then we always were ahead of our time.

Anyway, I've decided to try my hand at the whole blogging thing. Not that I think my life is uber-exciting or anything, but the world wide web is huge; surely someone must have a less-interesting blog than I do, right?