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Black & Tan progress

This is where I’m at so far with the Black & Tan Striped Baby Sweater. I have completed the facing and am working on the striped body. I know the pale color isn’t really tan, it’s more of an ecru or taupe…but the colors remind me of a Black and Tan (more info here) so that’s the name I’m going with. I’m trying my first jogless stripes, but I need to do a few more rounds before I can tell if the “slip the first stitch” method of avoiding a jog is working. As soon as I know, you’ll know!


the wonders of modern inventions

Since I’ve been home I’ve had a chance to do more cooking than in previous years. Ok, I’m not doing as much as I’d like- the kitchen is only recently unpacked and I am taking care of a newborn- but compared to the last few months of my pregnancy when we ordered in every night, cooking even once in a while is a lot. Also, when I was finishing work at 6:00pm and was faced with a half-hour drive home, it wasn’t often that I looked forwards to cooking a nice meal and sitting down to eat at 8:00pm. I missed the days at my previous job when I finished at 4:30pm and had time to shop for groceries, come home, cook meals from scratch and have it on the table by 6/7 o’clock.

With the kitchen mostly done I’ve been taking the opportunity to use some wedding and shower gifts that had remained packed for the entire last year. We waited after the bridal shower because we had no storage space and wanted to wait until after the wedding to see how much room we’d need, and it wasn’t long after the wedding that we decided to move, so there was no point in unpacking those items.

Last week I played around with our Crock-Pot slow cookers. One night I made a Mexican Strata (like a lasagne but with tortillas and olives and different spices). It was delicious but not really (to me) a slow cooker recipe because I had to cook the meat on the stove first. Last Sunday I made a pot roast with veggies. That was fun! In the morning I put in a bunch of cut up potatoes, carrots and onions, topped with a 3lb boneless beef rump roast that I’d rubbed with salt & pepper. Add a 1/2 cup of water, cover and turn on the machine to low. It was great- Jakob was calm in the morning so I had a chance to prepare it, then all I had to do was wait until it was ready to eat. It took 10-12 hrs to cook and I’d unfortunately waited until 11:00am to prepare, so we had to wait until 9:00pm to have supper, but it was worth it! The meat fell off the bone and the veggies were cooked perfectly. The taste was mild and was almost exactly like eating a stew that had been separated into individual ingredients. Perfect for a Sunday night, and perfect because Jakob fussed at night but all I had to do to get supper ready was to open the lid and serve!

This week I’ve been playing with our food dehydrator. A few nights ago I dried some watermelon slices. I’d heard they get sweet and candy-like when dried. Eh. Either my watermelon wasn’t sweet enough, or its just not to my taste. Two nights ago I used a pound of ground beef and a spice mixture and made a large amount of beef jerky. That came out really well, but I might have let it dry a smidge too long.

Tonight I put in a mixture of corn, peppers and seasonings to try and make corn chips. They should be ready by tomorrow, and then I will attempt some dried fruits.

The big advantage is that I can prepare foods when Jakob is quiet and have them ready to eat when he’s fussy and I don’t have time to cook. I’m really amusing myself with this! 🙂

In other news, we went for lunch this afternoon with Jackie and Bradley. I can’t believe how fast he’s growing up! Almost 2, talking and being such a little man- really a barometer for how much time goes by. I can’t believe soon Jakob will be sitting there on his own, coloring on the table. And Jackie is a friend I’ve known since the early days of high school. To have thought back then that we’d be sitting here over 13 years later, married, with kids…its crazy. I still feel like a kid- how can I have friends that I’ve known over a decade? I’ve been with Yannick almost a decade, and we’ll be married a year in September. And we have a child. When did I grow up?

I took Jakob outside when I got home and he played in his bouncer in the shade while I knit a few rows in the sun. I just finished the hem and turning row of a sweater (sized for 1 year…I think I mentioned it previously) and am about to start the body. It should go fast- its worked in stripes, and colorwork always seems to go fast. I’m afraid to “save as draft” and add a photo later in case I forget and don’t wind up uploading this post at all, so I’m publishing now and I’ll add a photo in a separate post.

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what a week!

Mommy with Jakob at 8 weeks old.

What a week it has been! I took Jakob to his first movie, then on Friday we went up north to Yannick’s parents place and it was Jakob’s first time there. It was fun but we stayed overnight and it is always a bit of a challenge because I need to try extra hard to keep him quiet during the night, so as not to disturb everyone else in the house. I don’t mind waking Yannick up (let him help! LOL) but I didn’t want to wake up anyone else. Luckily Jakob was really well behaved and slept through the night in his usual way. He also slept most of the way home, so I had a chance to cast on and knit one row of a sweater for him. One row might not sound like a lot, but 176 stitches with sock-weight-thin yarn is a lot of knitting for me right now. 🙂

We got home Saturday afternoon and had to get ready because that night we had dinner plans with my family to celebrate my brothers’ birthday (late). We all went to Baton Rouge for supper, so that was another “first” for Jakob. He had been to a restaurant already (Bocaccino’s for lunch with my mom and grandmother) but this was his first dinner out. He was really good and the night went really well.

Yesterday was another first, too. Last night was the first night Jakob slept in his room. It was so tough for me! He’d been sleeping between us to make night feedings easier, but now that he sleeps for a longer stretch at night I wanted to get him into his room before he got too used to our bed. I waited until we had a screen on his door so that our cat wouldn’t get in. Yannick installed the screen in the afternoon, and I very hesitantly put him to bed around 11:30pm. I was afraid that he’d wake up early because usually he stirs around 1:00 and 3:00 am and I jiggle him to help him fall back asleep. I was also really sad to not have him next to me and I actually cried a little. :}

I swaddled him as usual and put him into his crib, shut the screen door and put the baby monitor next to my pillow.

Doesn’t he look lost in that big, empty crib? It nearly broke my heart to leave him!

It seemed like no time at all that I was awakened by his kvetching. I couldn’t believe it- it was 4:00am! He’d slept through from around midnight to 4:00, which doesn’t sound like a lot but for his first night he did a really good stretch in the crib, without crying at all! I fed him and put him back to bed and he went until 6:30. Not his usual times but for his first night I’m not complaining. We’ll see how it goes tonight though. (And, I have to admit that after the 6:30 feed he started to complain at 8:15 so we brought him back to bed with us). All in all, a lot of firsts and a very busy week!

Today we went to look at blind options for our bedrooms, then my friend Debbie came by for a little visit. I’d prepared a pot roast in our slow-cooker earlier in the morning so I didn’t have to worry about supper, and tonight we got to enjoy a really nice, home-cooked meal. I don’t know yet what I’m doing tomorrow but one of my mom’s friends is in from Arizona so I think we’ll be going over there for a visit.

On the knitting front I was able to knit 2 more rows tonight while watching some TV with Yannick holding Jakob. I’m glad I decided to knit the “1 year” size instead of the “6 month” size, because at this rate it will take me that long to finish! Oh- I forgot another “first”- Jakob laughed for the first time! Not a big grin with noise, but an actual giggly laugh. It was so cute! I have some videos I want to put up here but I don’t have my speakers hooked up yet and I want to watch the videos first to make sure I don’t sound obnoxious in them. 🙂

I still haven’t had time to go through anyone’s blogs or even sit at the computer for longer than 5 minutes (it has taken me an hour to type this with the brief snatches I get with my arms free) so I just wanted to say that I hope everyone is doing well and having a great summer. Goodnight!