B left on the 26th to join Eldest in Europe ... they spent several days in Florence, are currently in Munich, and will see Vienna, Brno and Prague before they come home ... so the other three kids and I have been holding down the fort. Her Ladyship started a new job this week, after one of the most drawn-out hiring processes I have ever seen. She's come home from her shifts exhausted, but happy to be doing something after a year of illness. Young'un and I had an evening out on Saturday; he had some Christmas cash burning a hole in his pocket, so he and I went to the mall for a little shopping and dinner, then went to see Into the Woods. It was wonderful ... both the movie, and the time with my boy.
So, as is my habit, I have put together a review of the year just past. It's been a busy one for our family.
Created with flickr slideshow.
The first line of the first post for each month in 2014 (no posts in April):
January: I am typing on my laptop, eating my lunch, which consists of cottage cheese with a little freshly ground black pepper on top, and a handful of Wheat Thins on the side.
February: Carole gave us an intriguing prompt for this week's 10 on Tuesday. Just two words:
March: Despite multiple requests to pick up her toys, WB's "laboratory" (the area behind the sofa where she plays/her toys are stored) has become a horrible mess.
May: A few weeks ago my mother and I were visiting at the kitchen table when yet another squabble erupted between my two youngest children.
June: It is fair to say that Her Ladyship has not enjoyed her senior year one little bit.
July: It began when I decided that since Her Ladyship's illness meant that she spent a large part of every day in bed, we should upgrade her to a new, bigger, mattress, and give her twin bed to WB.
August: Summer is winding down.
September: At 8:00 this morning WB twirled into the room to show off her birthday ensemble.
October: I am ashamed to admit that I fell behind on my baby knitting a few years back.
November: It has been a cold and rainy Saturday, after a very successful Halloween.
December: You may consider yourself warned.
From a knitting perspective, it wasn't a great year. Frankly, I lost my mojo for months there ... despite realizing that I needed a sock or two on the needles to help me through some of the worst of it ... it wasn't until this fall that I felt the desire to create something more than a hat and some socks return.
As the FO mosaic shows, 2014 ended with a flurry of sweaters, the most recent being a yellow Welcome to the Flock, knit as a gift for the new sister of the little girl for whom I made this sweater several years back.
It was a most satisfying project ... I made only one little change to the pattern, by reversing the direction of the sheep in the second row. Some knitters have used garter stitch for the "wool", which is brilliant, I will likely do the same if I knit the pattern again. I may also try leaving a straight row or two above the first stranded section, instead of decreasing immediately, to see if it reduces the slight puckering I saw -- it resolved with blocking, but I worry it will come back when the sweater is washed. I like to make things as easy-care as possible for the families of the babies I knit for -- only machine washable yarn (DROPS Baby Merino, in this case, YUM), and ideally they shouldn't have to steam the sweater to keep it looking nice.
I am taking the advice I was given by the (slightly terrifying) German woman who managed the restaurant I where I worked during the summer of 1982 and beginning as I hope to go on. I have spent the last few days happily knitting away at another baby sweater ... for a baby who isn't even a month old, what a refreshing change THAT is!
I had to rip out an entire day's knitting after misreading the instructions (CO means "cast on", not "cast off"), but after a little bit of pouting, I am back in the chase. The stripe changes are keeping me going, and while the pattern is written for two colors I am planning to use one or two more, which I am finding pretty exciting. I tried to convey this to my children and all I got back was some side eye, a few polite smiles, and a "that'll be nice, Mom", said in a tone I recognize from all the times I feigned enthusiasm for Pokemon and too many dinosaur facts, MY how the worm has turned.
And with that, 2014 is done. Happy New Year, everyone! Thank you for reading and sharing the ride.
Sending you all my best wishes for 2015 ....