Saturday, January 31, 2009

Show Me the Pictures

I do of course realize there haven't been any recent pics here. There are two reasons for this:

1. The camera is filled with 3 videos of E being cute, cute, cute. But the videos are long, long, long, so iPhoto can't quite figure them out. So they have to be downloaded a special way. I don't know this special way and I'm currently having a moratorium on learning new things. It's just going to have to wait for Sarah to do it. But she's a busy gal.

2. The light in Chicago has been crapsville for taking pictures of anything crafty anyway, all gloom and doom and snow. So it hardly matters that the camera is full. Oh, how I yearn for Spring. In all fairness to Chicago, it's actually kind of sunny today. Maybe today's the day!

So I guess you'll just have to settle for words, which sucks for you. Frankly, am way more wooed by pictures in blogs than text, which makes me a horrible person and a horrible writer.

I am 12 rows from the end of the middle section of my Clapotis. That leaves just the decrease rows and the end part. I'm cruisin'. This will totally be done by the time my parents visit in February for E's first birthday. (What?!? First birthday? How is it that I am nearly the mother of a one year old? Impossible. It seems like only yesterday he was a teeny, tiny peanut and now here he is walking and babbling and eating food. I can't believe it.)

The dining room renovation marches on. The Brown Elephant guys came on Thursday to take away the table and buffet. They were supernice. I'm so glad we decided to donate to them. What a lark! What a plunge! I feel good about myself and the world. It's for a good cause and other people without lots of money need dining room tables and buffets, so it's win-win. And I'm also glad that my dining room is open and inviting. E has been having a blast racing around in here--so much space! I am definitely hating my apartment less.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Where to Next?

We're still working on our dining room. We tried to sell the table and buffet on Craig's List, but it didn't generate much interest. So we are donating it to the Brown Elephant. We feel pretty good about it. It'll go to a good cause, and the set was given to us by friends, so maybe from a karma perspective, it was wrong to sell it. It's getting picked up on Thursday along with our other miscellaneous things we don't need at all. We were able to sell some other items, though, which provided the "budget" for our little remodeling project. I'm going to be putting some maternity/nursing things up on eBay, and hopefully that'll pay for paint. We're keeping the chairs to the dining room set and planning to paint and reupholster them. In my mind's eye, they will look awesome. Our goal for the new space is to make it functional, cheery, and fun to be in, which will be a big change from what it is now: useless, cluttered, and upsetting.

I had a successful thrifting mission today. $9 bought me shoes, a poncho, a sweater vesty thing, a sweater for E, a turtleneck for E, and a button-down shirt for E, as well as some nursery material. Everything I wanted was half off. A total score.

In crafting news, the Clapotis marches on. I'm about out of the my stashed yarn, so I did have to buy more. I didn't want to pay for shipping, so I went searching locally and discovered a new yarn store: Loopy Yarns. It's in the South Loop and stocked to the gills with Lorna's Laces, Cascade everything, and all kinds of wooly goodness. On top of that, their prices were great and their staff was nice. It's not exactly close to my house, but it's really close to Sarah's work. Anywho, Clapotis is over half-way there. It's definitely on schedule for being done when my mom comes to visit for E's first birthday.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Knitted Dishcloths, because I am that girl

Yep. I'm going to knit some dishcloths. I don't know why. It seems like the thing to do when you're penny pinching and a knitter. I feel like it's part of the category that also includes things like darning socks and hauling water and canning pickles or whatever. I may also just be thinking of things you do on a prairie. Maybe I should also plant some crops.

I blame Ravelry, of course. I mean, only Ravelry could make knitted dishcloths cool. But if I start knitting, say, doorknob covers, then I must be stopped.

In other news, E learned to walk. Guess that's then end of the baby and the beginning of the toddler. I love that he's growing up but I also really, really hate it. Where'd my tiny baby go?

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Dining Room Redux

We've just about had it with the dining room--a room constantly filled with piles of stuff, stuff, and more stuff. From mail to craft supplies to broken printers to the computer and sewing machine that live on the table, we've got it all. And mostly, it's all inaccessible and annoying. It's hard to sew a quick craft when your supplies are all on top of each other.

Part of the problem is that our furniture never really fit in this room and the overflow from all of the other rooms ended up here. The table is too big, the bookshelves are all wrong and the pieces that do work just get lost in the shuffle.

So we're fixing it. We're selling our table and buffet. I've already jettisoned a fair amount of crafty goodies and I'm going to get rid of more. And we're working on finding just the right replacements. It's going to be great.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Raveling In It

So this week-end I discovered Ravelry. Wow. It is amazing. It is like the mothership is calling me home. And I don't believe I've seen a bigger timesuck since Facebook. If you haven't been there yet, go now. It is a veritable cornucopia of knitty and crochety goodness. You may never leave. Luckily I have a baby to call me back to reality or I'd still be there, reading sock pattern after sock pattern, imagining them with this yarn or that yarn, almost feeling the lovely sockness on my feet. Of course, like all things internet, it's one more thing to keep from actually knitting (or crocheting or crafting) anything.

I did manage to make serious progress on mom's non-birthday Clapotis. I'm at about the halfway mark. I will need some more yarn, but not for a while yet. My new Valentine's Day deadline is definitely within reach. And I'm working to put some unused craft supplies together for a craft swap and playdate with some fellow mom friends tomorrow. If I'm serious about decluttering, I'll just bring a ton of materials and I'll leave with nothing. But we all know I'm bringing something home. As the pile of clutter I'm sitting amongst is my witness, stuff is my weakness.

In other news, we have discontinued our cable tv. I know. It's crazy. It's wild. I sort of hate it and sort of love it. The main reason we did it was it was just plain way too expensive when most of what we watch is on network tv and/or is available online. But also, I was watching way too much tv, and that's just not the example I want to set for my son. We are using Netflix and are currently watching Smallville (Love it!) but it isn't like I'm watching hour after hour of MSNBC or Animal Planet or Law & Order reruns. I've read a lot and listened to a lot of NPR and basically, I do feel good about the choice. Plus, we'll be saving like a bazillion dollars, and that's good, too.

Chicago is mid-blizzard right now, so I have no good light to take good pictures of the Clapotis. Here's hoping for sun this week as we dig out!