Thursday, May 19, 2011

Weather Pattern

It started raining on Saturday, May 14th. It hasn't stopped, and won't stop until at least Friday. It has also been a little bit chilly. Yes, I am a fairly hardy New Englander, but mid-May normally marks the beginning of the "Great Clothes Migration" (you know, the switching of winter to summer clothes) and I was not happy about dragging out my fleece-lined faux suede boots for this morning's commute. OK. I lie. I lie because I love those boots so much I've worn out the heels, so I was happy about putting them on, but annoyed that the weather called for warm boots this morning....but I digress, I digress.

There are some bad things about all this rain. One is that Jam and I awoke at 1:30am on Monday to a persistent "tap....tap....tap....tap..." I rolled over and pretended like the noise was just big fat raindrops hitting our window AC unit. Jam SPRUNG out of bed (sprung as in, FLUNG the covers back dramatically and LEAPED out of bed) and then committed the cardinal sin of all late-night rousings: he turned on the overhead bedroom light (note: when you must get up in the middle of the night and require light, you should use 1. small lamp at bedside, 2. headlamp 3. flashlight or 4. cell phone so as not to wake your bed partner. I'm just SAYIN'). He loudly exclaimed "*expletive* the ceiling is leaking." I played dumb - "really? the ceiling?!" and let him take care of it. Usually I discover the ceiling leak in the morning when I get up to take a shower and step in a puddle that has managed to run down the floor towards the wall and closet (our floors are crooked), and I'm left responsible for bucket-wrangling and clean-up, so I let Jam handle this late-night discovery. So there's that thing.

Another thing is the complete lack of motivation and energy which I choose to blame completely on the weather. This is why I gain "winter weight" every year. I look out the window and see rain/snow/fog/darkness/wet pavement and decide to "exercise" inside, which usually turns into flopping on the couch. This week I've lifted weights and done a Jillian Michaels ab routine, but beyond that, I have been sloth-like.

The constant rain makes the work day draaag. There's no glorious sunshine to escape to, to work towards. Instead I just sit at my computer, bored, sluggishly making my way through a to do list. I don't really care whether or not I complete it because waaahhh wahhhhhhhhhh all I have to look forward to is trudging through the rain.

There are, however, a few perks to the rainy stretch we've been having....

The damp chill is a great excuse to cook comfort food for dinner! We had mini-meatloaves on Monday, shrimp cakes on Tuesday, and a big ol' bowl of spinach pesto chicken pasta last night. The rain is a great excuse to snuggle up together with mugs of tea and watch Netflix movies (though we ventured out to see 'Bridesmaids' which was raunchy but HILARIOUS), bake cookies, nestle in big blankets....I mean, it's not ALL's just that it's been 6 days now, and I really want to see the sun again.

Despite my sloth-like pace at all tasks these days, I did plan for some major crafty time when I saw the extended forecast last week. I managed to visit two of my favorite yarn shops, Windsor Button in Boston and Patternworks in Center Harbor, NH just a few days apart, and between the two shops, I gathered some fabulous yarn to make several sweet baby projects. I finished a "Baby Sophisticate" sweater in just 4 days:

Baby Sophisticate

this one isn't mine, though the colors are the same. I took this pic from Camping Jason's flickr photostream

Since I flew through that sweater, I decided to start two projects at once, an owl hat:

this is from the designer's site. how cute is that baby?!

And another Golden Rose Sundress. I knit this one for my friend's daughter Alexa forever ago:

Alexa's Dress

A friend from high school had a baby girl in February, saw the old picture of Alexa's dress on facebook and offered to buy one off me. I felt funny about it. Yeah, I think I'd totally do custom orders for cashmoney some day, but 1. I'm so not ready for that kind of pressure and 2. this girl was a buddy from the XC team, and we were a tight bunch. I'm not about to charge her for a little sundress!

I think I'll throw in a matching bonnet too, like this one I made for Alexa:

Miss A in her Bonnet

Oh and before I forget, the owl hat and sophisticate sweater are going to the same expecting mama. I can't make it to her baby shower, so I want to send something especially nice. Since her theme is "owls" (and I can hardly resist owls, including this one living near my house:

Eastern Screech Owl)

I bought some owlie fabric on etsy. I mean to make her (or rather, her expected baby, a little boy) a quilt with this cross stitch design in the middle:

which I snagged on ABC Stitch's website. I mean, I LOVE this little cross stitch thing - even though normally I'd gag at something that said "Mommy's Little Prince," I thought this was pretty tasteful and would appeal to the mom-to-be. I imagined subtle blue prints that played off the color scheme in the stitching making up the quilt blocks. But....then I started thinking about the owls... and found this on etsy and suddenly the whole elegant and subtle quilt idea went out the window. Of course I obsessed about whether or not the fabric would match the room decor, but I quickly found a solution. Instead of making a crib quilt, I plan on fashioning a stroller quilt. I stumbled upon this brilliant-ness while googling away, and the pattern is free on flickr. This blogger posted a picture of the one she made:

Towards the top of the quilt are two pieces of twill tape sewn into the binding. This allows you to tie the quilt to your stroller frame. The buttons on the bottom half allow the quilt to be folded and buttoned up out of the way, so the quilt isn't dragging on the ground. How frickin' brilliant is that?! 

So after I get all that done, I plan on making one last gift. Jam's former coworker has had two kids, and both times she was pregnant I told her I'd make something for her baby...and it so didn't happen. With her first, I was just disorganized, in grad school, all that stuff. Her second was born last August, while I was in the throes of wedding planning. This time around, she's having another girl, and in August. I have to make something really sweet to make up for my slacking. The designers at Pickles have made The Most Ridiculously Cute Baby Dress Ever. Yes, it's so cute it needs an official title with caps. Ladies, cross your legs, cause if you didn't want to have a baby girl RIGHT NOW you will when you see this pic:

SERIOUSLY cute. I love the dress and little booties, and the bonnet is to die for! I will, of course, include leggings and a long sleeved shirt in the gift box so baby can wear this outfit into the fall. Gah. Then I'll have to resist making one and stashing it for my non-existent girl child. 

After I get through all this stuff - which might not take too long if the weather patterns continues - I am taking a gift-crafting hiatus. I hate to do it, but I can't commit myself to making new gifts for anyone until I finish up what I owe. I actually have shawls for my bridesmaids that I never finished knitting. Oh the shame :(. Luckily I have an idea for that, so it's not a total disaster. I have quilts I owe, knitted stuff I owe, a stash that could really use some reducing, plus some things I want to make for myself. Oh yeah, plus the Craft Hope stuff I committed to. Maybe after all THAT I'll start taking custom orders. 

Happy crafting! 

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