Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Snomaggedon!!! (not really)

We're under a Winter Storm Warning here in the Cities, but so far it's been mostly rain with a little snow thrown in for sloppy driving and beautiful trees.  

The kids and I waited for 25 minutes at the bus stop this morning, but we made good use of our time by building a whole family of snow people.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Bus Knitting and Yarn Along

Joining Ginny.
One major bonus of a road trip is all of the knitting time on the bus.
I cast on the Morrison Cardigan on Thursday, and was able to finish up the back on Saturday.
I didn't get very far on the front while on my trip, but I made up for that catching up on the Oscars last night.

The yarn is super-soft and yummy Tracie from Imperial Yarn.
I have had the lighter color for a year, and I just got the darker green this week.
It's knitting up pretty easily, though being a perfectionist (in knitting alone, I assure you) I did have to make a couple of adjustments so there wouldn't be yarn carried up the exposed side of the right front.
Since I have cut back on my daytime commitments I have a little more knitting time between kiddo drop-off and pickup, so I may be able make some more headway this week.
If, that is, I am not too distracted reading Game of Thrones, which is awesome!
I didn't get a shot of my knitting with my book, but I'm reading on the kindle, so that's kind of boring to look at anyway.
Game of Thrones is so engaging!
I have been a fan of the show, and was a little wary of reading the book, since I already have a concrete idea of the characters; how they should look, sound, etc... but this is one of the only instances where reading the book is only making the show better.
For the most part the show is taken almost verbatim from the book, but what you get when you read it is more fully fleshed-out background characters and the history of Westeros which is the fictional land where the story takes place.
What are you reading and knitting these days?

Singing with The Singers

This weekend I went on a very fun, though emotional, bus trip with The Singers on a tour of Northern Minnesota.
We began in Staples, MN which is a small town with a huge community of musicians. We're only about a quarter of the singers you see in this awesome photo above (borrowed from facebook).
We collaborated with the Staples Area Women's Chorus, Staples Area Men's Chorus and Staples Motley High School A Capella Choir along with some local instrumentalists performing Morten Lauridsen's Lux Aeterna.
It was such a great concert! Singing with so many people is an indescribable experience.
Being in the middle of all that music-making is truly the best way to spend a Saturday evening.

Then on Sunday we drove up to Duluth to sing another concert, this one a very meaningful and at times quite emotional sing.
We were premiering a new work dedicated to the life and tragic death of a seminary student who died in the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, Ben Larson.
He was a Luther Alumni and there are folks who sing in The Singers who knew him well. We sang the new work "He Was Singing" by Joshua Shank at the church in Duluth where Ben's parents are the co-pastors.

Our tour continues this weekend with a visit to Carleton College in Northfield, MN, which I think will be a little difficult for me. One of the only people I know who went to Carleton was a childhood friend, we were Sunday school and high school classmates, and he was killed in a car accident about 6 years ago.
The theme of this concert is Love, Loss and Healing, and I will be thinking a lot about Andy while we're down there.

We end our tour on Sunday at First Lutheran Church in Columbia Heights, just north of Saint Paul.
I would love if you could come and join us, our Artistic Director and Music Advisor chose some wonderful, transcendent music to accompany "He Was Singing" and you really are carried through Love, Loss and Healing when you hear it.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

It's beginning to look a lot like...


We have been enjoying a very balmy winter thus far, and so any substantial snowfall is a bit of an oddity.
These two slug-a-beds even got up early and had a pre-busride snowball fight.

As for me, I spent the morning finishing up a project that brings a little more color into the house, just as we're blanketed in white outside.
This is my completed rag-rug. It was a very quick and satisfying project, except for the cutting the strips part, which was boring.
The crochet-ing was quick, and the rug worked up in no time.
I ripped almost the whole thing last Thursday.
The original plan was to have 3 rows of each color, but I was left with enough extra that it seemed wasteful not to go back and make each strip a little wider.
I am pretty happy with the results.
After we paint the baby's nook white, this rainbow rug will bring in some color, as well as a cozy place for bare feet while changing diapers.

You should pop over to the Rag-Rug-Along flickr page and check out the other offerings. I could see myself making lots more of these, such fun!

Monday, February 20, 2012


Yesterday I finished up my button search for the sweater I have been knitting for Threetus.
It was quite a difficult decision. The white ones were too bright, the yellow ones were too dull, the green ones never quite matched, but then my co-worker suggested these ladybugs.
I was a little wary, since this sweater is cute beyond reason already, I was afraid that ladybugs might just put it over the top into ridiculous. But it turns out that I love them :)
Like a little row of bugs travelling through a berry patch.
Anyway, that's one more project to cross of the list!

Counting Down

I am finding new ways to count down to the big change that is coming in our lives this April.
This weekend I sang the first two of 8 performances that are on my schedule through March 18th.
They both went quite well.
Caritas sang for a mass at the Basilica of Saint Mary in Minneapolis on Saturday night, and it was truly a joy to perform in that room. The architect must have been an acoustical genius.
Our 9-voice group filled the entire sanctuary, even singing pianissimo, it was really exhilarating.
Yesterday's concert was a benefit for a local women's shelter, and even though we didn't have a huge audience, they were warm and generous.
The first concert of the year can be a little daunting but it really helped to have a warm-up the night before, and  all in all we had a successful day.

My singing friends are starting to get nervous that the baby won't want to wait until her due date and they'll have to go on a man down for our last couple of concerts, but I have decided that I am giving up going into labor for Lent.
Lent is another easy way to count down until the big day, since I am due on Easter.
What better way to celebrate the coming of spring and budding life outside than with a little budding life inside the house?

Lastly, I have a list of projects to finish up for the baby: paint the walls in the baby area, get a crib mattress, finish up the rug, maybe a little more knitting for coming home from the hospital hat/booties...
Checking off these to-dos will be very satisfying, as well as a concrete way to count down to getting the house and all of us ready to welcome our new arrival.

I'll have another post later, once I get some photos of the knitting that I was able to finish up this weekend. I may have gone a little over the edge with the cuteness of the baby sweater, but I'll let you be the judge.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Beautiful Afternoon

Just a bit of snow on the ground, mid 40 degree temps, peeks of blue sky;
All of this added up to a quick bike-ride (for the kids, I chose to walk) to the playground.
It got pretty nippy just after we arrived, but we still had a great time playing tag, and swinging on the tire swing.

What I Made in 2011

There have been many days in these past few months when I have felt like I am not accomplishing anything of great import beyond gestating a baby. It seems like all I do is travel from home to work to home and when I am at home I spend a lot of time sitting, feeling sleepy and under-productive.
The laundry isn't getting done, the dishes are piling up, the sewing table is a frightful pile of unfinished projects, you see what I mean? But then I was invited to join a flickr group called What I Made in 2011. 
It was a little empowering to see that I actually did accomplish some small things, like I knitted 8 sweaters, 2 pairs of socks, at least 4 hats, sewed some outfits for the Elder, built a doll cradle... 
Truly, all of these things were accomplished before I was 8 months pregnant and feeling more whale-like than girlish, but it's nice to see them all in one place and imagine a future when I'll have the energy to work on projects again.

It's a day off for the kids today, so we can look forward to some fun time with friends and a concerted effort to get through the dishes.
What's on your agenda?

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Just a glimpse

I got to have a glimpse at wee Threetus today.
She's doing quite well and it looks like I have another very large baby on my hands.
She's already about 5 pounds and 11 ounces and I still have 8 more weeks until the due date.

In other family news, the Elder had her first violin recital yesterday, and it was a roaring success.
 The Younger took these during the recital, I liked the motion in this one.
Tonight I can look forward to a quiet night in, finishing up a sleeve and catching up on Game of Thrones.
The new season starts in April! Just in time for long sleepless nights :)

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Sad Day for Music-Lovers

The voice that sang me through junior high and high school was silenced today.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Yarn Along

Yarn Along! My favorite day of the week.
This has been a good knitting and crocheting week for me.
I finished the hat I started last week, (also, as I typed that sentence just now I got this in my head ) and I have made some good progress on the matching sweater for She-Who-Has-Not-Been-Named, and I also have been working on a crocheted rag-rug project with my daughter.
It started out as a pile of t-shirts, but now it's a fun rainbow-y rug-to-be!
Can you tell it's been kind of cloudy and grey here lately? lots of colors coming from those needles of mine :)

This week I started reading Treasure Island, but I got about as far as I did the last time I tried to read it, when I was in High School, which is about 3 pages.
There's been a lot of late-night belly dancing from a certain Threetus the Fetus, and so I am waking up in the morning not feeling all that rested.
This has the cascading effect of the kids being sent to school without a home lunch most days (the lunches at school are much healthier than when I was a kid) and also I don't really have the attention span for reading.
It is an interesting story, though, so I'll sally forth.

What's on your needles/hooks/nightstand this week?

Sunday, February 5, 2012


I have made some good progress this week on my list of projects from Monday.
This is the hat to match the booties that I finished up on Tuesday, and I cast on for the sweater yesterday. 
That little flower is so sweet, and it was a breeze to whip up. Maybe the Elder needs some matching barrettes? 

I made some good progress on my t-shirt rag-rug too.
The Elder was able to help out with the crocheting, which was super fun. She ran out of yellow, and I haven't cut the orange or red strips yet, so we're in a holding pattern on this one. It's coming out just like I had planned, though, so that's a bonus.

Since I was able to get so much knitting and crocheting done this week, it highlights the fact that I may have the time to finally start sorting the Baby Area, and perhaps clean off my sewing work table. 
We'll see how that comes along...
Anything fun on your to-do list this weekend?