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January 26, 2015

Not Baklava

harriet-hatThis is not a post apologizing for a lack of updates. If you’ve ever learned anything about blogging from me, it’s probably that such posts are a waste of everybody’s time. What this post is, however, is an apology for my inability to blog while knitting. I can read while knitting; I can do this like a champion. I hold the book open with my feet, or employ my bookstand, and I basically knit this entire balaclava this way, while reading The Inconvenient Indian (and probably looked a bit curious and occupied as I did this during the hour I was waiting for Harriet to finish her dance class on Saturday). I have my limits though: I cannot read while knitting AND drink my tea, which is terrible. And I have yet to figure out how to knit and blog, which is why I have a completed balaclava to show for my Sunday evening instead of a freshly minted blog post. Alas, I think I made the right call, as it’s freezing this morning, and full facial covering goes a long long way.

It all went a bit wrong, however, once the balaclava was finished. It was 11:30 and everybody was asleep, but I was too excited to keep my success to myself. So I put the balaclava on myself and ran upstairs to wake up Stuart and show him. And I didn’t realize until I’d shaken him awake that it might be unnerving to be pulled from sleep in a darkened room by someone wearing a balaclava… The look of terror in his eyes was like nothing I’ve ever seen before. This morning I tried to reason with him: You knew your spouse was downstairs nearly finished knitting a balaclava. Surely it would be a crazy coincidence if the balaclava-wearer before you was somebody different?

But he insisted such rationales were beyond his mental capacity at that time. He is still a wee bit traumatized.

May 14, 2013

Baby Blankets and Mini Monsters

IMG_20130514_193912We sure hope our baby doesn’t end up with jaundice because this blanket/cap combo really isn’t going to flatter if that happens. Blanket and cap are yellow as per Big Sister’s instructions, as yellow is the colour she most reveres, and basically the baby is welcome to be born at any time because Harriet has had her birthday party and the blanket is done. This is the Big Bad Baby Blanket, which I’ve knit many times before, and I made a little hat with the leftover wool. The blanket is pretty lovely with just enough errors that you’d know it was handmade if you went looking for problems, but none that stand out too much. Strange that it won’t be too long before we meet the wee person these knitted things are meant for. At this point, it’s still quite unbelievable to suppose that it’s really going to happen. It feels like these are ordinary days–who’d go and throw a newborn into the midst of that?

The little monster is Harriet’s gift for the baby. For months, she’s been determined that she was saving the money in her piggy bank to buy a present for the baby. A few weeks ago, we gathered funds (and were grateful to whomever had once given her a ten dollar bill) and went to the Intergalactic Travel Authority to purchase Maggie the Monster, Harriet’s chosen companion for her own Colin, and our baby’s future crib-mate. For all my deriding of consumption (book buying aside, naturally), it was quite adorable to watch Harriet make her first purchase in a shop. They told her the total and then she handed them a nickel and asked if it was enough. I had to help her with the rest, but was quite proud of her and the spirit of generosity behind the project. I really do think that Harriet is going to take to the Big Sister life with aplomb, and that our baby who is not yet even born is already incredibly lucky.

January 30, 2013

On yarn, yarns and Extra Yarn

9780061953385I’ve been knitting a baby blanket this last while, its colour yellow as selected by Harriet for whom yellowness is a sacred thing. And perhaps it was my current knitting project that got me thinking about the CanLit/Knitting Connection recently, about knitting in books and knitting about books. Then I thought about it more yesterday when we took out Extra Yarn by Mac Barnett and Jon Klassen from the library. What a spectacular book, about a little girl whose magical yarn stash never seems to run-0ut (and I know a lot of knitters, actually, with a similar affliction). I don’t know that Jon Klassen has ever gone wrong, and we loved this story with its splashes of colour, amusing prose, and sinister archduke (plus, SPOILERS, happy ending). Of course, you probably know all about this book already, especially since it was selected as a Caldecott Honour Book on Monday. Which was a particularly good day for Jon Klassen who also won the Caldecott Medal proper for the wonderful This is Not My Hat. I imagine this exciting news has changed Klassen’s whole life a little bit, but it’s changed mine too, because now I get to say that my website features an interview with a Caldecott winner.

March 20, 2010

My shumi blog

We became obsessed with hobbies back when we lived in Japan, mainly because the Japanese have institutionalized hobbying and because we were often bored back then. And so that was why I started my “hobby blog”, Ever Projecting. I’d encourage you to check it out if you want to see a craft blog that will make you feel better about yourself. Unlike most craft blogs, this one is rarely updated, decorated with unflattering photography, and features crafts that are poorly executed (the one exception being the incredible baby blanket I finished last spring). I am terrible at making things, but I go on doing it anyway– wonky cardigans, ugly aghans, pickles that shrivelled up in their jar, unmatching mittens (which I thought was so clever at the time), rainbow socks, reusable baby wipes (my first and probably last foray into sewing, but they’ve turned out to be very useful). I hope my blog will inspire other untalented people either not to let lack of talent get in the way of production, or to continue not bothering to try anything at all. Or you could just take a look at the sweater I just finished knitting for Harriet.

Mitzi Bytes

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