Kindergarten Powerband

Power Mama Loves Knitting power_band_knit_mama_loves_knitting babes_mama_loves_knitting

I cried myself to sleep last night, you know that silent cry, so not even your husband knows you are crying? I didn't think that would happen this time around, but who was I kidding, really? I never have dry eyes through a parent teacher conference, I never have dry eyes through a choir concert, hell I barely have dry eyes through dinner most nights, so when I thought I was unaffected by my baby starting Kindergarten today I was really just kidding myself. He didn't know I was sad, nor will he know tomorrow when I don't even get to go inside the school with him. I got teary leaving Simon in his 3rd grade classroom and he barely even wanted me to set foot in the door with him.

sleeping_kindergarten_eve

We sprinkled magic dust under his pillow last night to help him peacefully sleep. I always check on my kids before bed, but there was something "right of passage y" about last night. Tomorrow will be the first full day elementary school for both of my kids - under the same roof - without me. They've grown into kids, officially. I know I'll enjoy the change, just as soon as the newness wears off. I feel comforted knowing they are together at school, even if they don't see one another throughout the entire day. I'm comforted knowing they'll watch out for each other on the bus ride home tomorrow afternoon.

voss_tradition_mama_loves_knitting first_day_lunch_mama_loves_knitting power_band_kid_mama_loves_knitting

When Simon started Kindergarten he needed a little bit of extra love through the day, or a reminder that I was with him, even when I wasn't right there. My heart was still with him. I stitched up a little cloth heart and we pinned it inside his pants each morning before school, until he didn't need it anymore. My heart wasn't really mine anymore after he was born.

simon_heart_kindergarten_mama_loves_knitting Tired Kindergarten Power Mama Loves Knitting

And I wouldn't have it any other way.

morning sunflower mama loves knitting

To make the power band I used Shepard's Wool Yarn, which is probably my favorite yarn ever. I used size 8 dpns. I cast on 32 stitches and passed 8 onto each needle. I k2, p2 the entire way around - changing colors for the different powers that needed to be incorporated into the band and did 3 rows of each color combo. Ta Da - it was done and I am going to be happy to wear it just as soon as Gus doesn't need it anymore.

Sick Day Amigurumi Carrot

Amigurumi Carrot Pattern

What is Amigurumi? If you ask me it is a pretty pleasing way to fill an Easter basket or give your kiddos something to play with that is safe. I mean of course you could always shop at a store like this one to accomplish the same thing, but making something for someone you love is so gratifying. You might remember the chickens that filled the baskets last Easter or the Sock Monkey that I just finished up for my little Valentine's. Those are both examples of Amigurumi. Knit toys.

I happen to be spending the day on the couch, just as I have been for a week, one kid gets sick, then my husband, then the other kid and leaving their sides isn't really an option.

Mama and Gus Sick Baby

Instead of making yet another ribbed hat...oh wait I did start one last night...

Knitting and Holding Gus Papa's Hat Raven Ridge Yarn

It just seemed like the easiest thing to knit with a kid on my lap. This yarn is Raven Ridge handpainted worsted weight yarn made by the woman that taught me to knit. And, yet another ribbed hat...boring...so onto today's project.

To pass the time I'm attempting to knit a carrot from this book.

Amigurumi Knits: Patterns for 20 Cute Mini Knits Amigurumi Knits: Patterns for 20 Cute Mini Knits
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It was a gift and I haven't attempted to make a thing from it yet and of course I'm on the first row of the carrot and 'wrapping and turning' (w&t) is in the pattern. There is a pretty great description of how to wrap and turn right in the book, but I'm not sure if I wrap and turn this whole lot of stitches that is left or just wrap and turn one of them? I just need a little bit more explanation. So I turn to You Tube. You pretty much never need to take another knitting class in your life these days. Funny thing is I'm signed up for one that starts on Tuesday to make that god forsaken sweater I started a coon's age ago. I'm most likely going to be tearing apart everything I've accomplished so far, but it actually makes way more sense to me to knit on circular needles so I'm hoping that is what I will be instructed to do.

Back to that carrot. This w&t video seemed to be the most useful one I found. I'm hoping by the end of this sick day I'll have a carrot to show off. I figured out that I just do one wrap and turn, not the stretch of remaining stitches. At least based on how my carrot is coming together that seems to be the right solution.

I chose this leftover Shepard's Wool Yarn that I have, since I have a plethora of colors. Orange and Green (looks like a carrot to me).

Orange and Green Shepard's Wool

The carrot in progress didn't look anything like a carrot - and really when it was complete (sans the fronds) it looks more like Gwing (which is the name courtesy of my good friends Syd/Chris) that they named some mutant carrots a while back. We had carrots that looked like THIS and worse in our harvest 2010.

Gwing

Mutants

So I thought it fitting that the carrot I knit up looked really similar. The encouraging family surrounding me the night I grafted it together reassured me it looked like a *real* carrot. Indeed.

Reminder

Oh before I show you the finished product - well nearly finished product I thought this was pretty brilliant. I went to bed one evening and since I have plenty of things to remember I took a photo of the row # (#5) I left off on. Gwing won't be missing any rows, she's just got some tiny holes where we (me and Gwing) did the w&t. Still mastering that whole thing. That is Sloane's Blanket (still in progress) and Gwing sitting atop before I called it a night.

And TA DA! Here she is...Gwing sans her greens (I think those will really make her beauty shine).

Knit Gwing

Gus and Gwing

Gus thinks Gwing is good enough to eat - and he feels better - that's all that is important to this Mama.

Happy Knitting!

New Year Knits

Colored Shepard's Wool

Happy morn of 2011 - I'm still working on some of the same projects into our brand spankin' new year. That baby blanket isn't quite complete - but that baby isn't either - still waiting on her arrival. Grandpa Jeff loved his new Packers Christmas hat & from the photos it looks like I could have made it a bit bigger/longer. Looks like you need to plan a trip to Lambeau.

Grandpa's Knit Hat Grandpa's Profile

We had/have a houseful of family and friends and all that love I keep talking about. We had a wonderful Christmas and we've had a pretty relaxing week...playing with our new treasures and knitting. My boys scored with Santa - man that guy is gracious, not to mention a whole mess of gifts from other family members and full stockings! Shane got me that amazing game I'd discovered about a month ago and although everyone poo pooed the idea of playing it on Christmas day we had everyone in the vicinity entertained after we powered the Wii up. The whole room full of Aunties, Uncles, Grandpas and Grandmas were passing Wii remotes between one another, sometimes arguing about whose turn it was.

Yarn Kirby

Every character in the game is made from yarn (grossly adorable) and all of the scenery is made from pieces of fabric that you can go behind, between and pull buttons to gather. It is seriously RIGHT up my video game alley!

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Even though you all might be tired of my hats...I've got another ribbed hat I've been working on...and I think it might be my favorite. I started it only a few nights ago, and have made progress amongst our company. In fact the knitting seems to be contagious around here. Grandma Melinda (my mother in law) has been knitting since Christmas night, my sister in law (waiting for the newest babe) has been crocheting, and on Christmas night I had the privilege to teach my sister in law Sarah how to cast on and do the knit stitch.

Auntie Sarah Christmas Knitting

Back to that hat - I also drew my little sister's (Melissa's) name for Christmas and she put in an order for a hat to match these mittens. (That I did not knit - but I wish I could say that I had.)

rainbow mittens

In the past I've used size 8 16" circular needles to knit my famous ribbed hat. With this particular hat I cast on 88 and k2, p2 the entire way around until I reached the decreasing zone.

Cozy Stripes

I decided this time I'd like to switch up the top a bit, and make it a little bit more fun. I'm definitely going to do a pom pom again (because I love rainbows more than most things on earth) and I think a rainbow pom pom will be incredible eye candy. I hope my sister doesn't think she looks like Rainbow freakin' Bright when this arrives in her mailbox. As the decrease began I kept my work on my circular needles and k2, p2, k2, p2tog the whole way around.

Double Pointed Needles Place Marker Pretty Colorful

I put a place markers when the first round was complete and then I transitioned to double pointed size 8 needles while I k2tog, p2, k2tog,  p1 (the second time around). The third time around I just knit the knits and purled the purls. The next round I k1, p1, k1, and p2tog (the two purls that weren't already purled together). The next time around I k2tog, p2tog. Then I knit the knits and purled the purls over and over again until I thought the hat was looking elf-tastic.

Elf Model Elf Gus

I finished it off by just k2tog until I only had a few stitches remaining and then I pulled the remaining yarn through. I hid all of the yarn I'd tied together from changing colors so many times. I always just use a crochet hook to weave it all in. No sign of the transitions and I love the way it turned out.

Mama Elf

I used my favorite yarn since I already had such a selection of colors. I only had to add three more colors to the mix to complete this project and now I want to make 10 more of these. The yarn is from Joseph's Coat and it is called Shepard's Wool. It is not superwash wool, but it is so incredibly soft and warm. * Hand wash only Mrs. gift recipient. * Since I ended up adding several inches to the top before closing it off, I got a little bit nervous about the appearance of the top of the hat. Not to be crass but it looked a bit like a striped wool condom attached to a beanie. Nobody wants to walk around with a phallic looking woolen good atop their noggin. Cindy Lou Who might be cool with it I guess, or any of the Whos for that matter. The pom pom addition really sealed the deal for me! I made the pom pom with a houseful of friends last night and a glass of wine nearby.

Elf Simon Simon Elf

So we happily ring in another beautiful year, and I'm grateful for the 2 degree weather today. I can knit all day, play games in our cozy house, and watch Return of the Jedi without an ounce of guilt creeping in. Happy Peaceful New Year to all! Ooh and I can't wait to show off my next project! I'll give you a little hint - it has a tail!

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