Friday, 14 October 2016

Lies Knitters Tell Themselves

A little over a year ago, Blacker Yarns, a small wool producer with their own mill known for championing wool from British breeds of sheep, put out their limited edition 10th anniversary wool, Cornish Tin. It's a blend of their favourite things, and to say it went like hot cakes is to vastly overinflate the popularity of hot cakes. I was lucky enough to get two skeins of the DK, one in a beautiful rich blue and  the other in the undyed silver-grey in the hopes of knitting a stranded colourwork hat, Pleiades by Ann Kingstone. I knew that the yarn she used was a "light" DK - which is to say more of a sport weight except the UK is only just starting to acknowledge a sportweight category - but I was okay with having a large beret. Unfortunately, what I knew I would have a different stitch gauge, I hadn't thought through the implications of the different row gauges and my beautiful beret came out as a pixi hat. It was, ah, unfortunate. 

So I frogged it and put it back in my stash while I looked for just the right project for my two very special skeins of Cornish Tin. Two-colour, two-skein projects for fingering weight, the other weight Cornish Tin came in, are a dime a dozen but DK projects are a bit thinner on the ground. Then, just about a month ago (around the same time Blacker yarns announced their 11th anniversary blend, Tin II and this time I bought a sweater quantity in a soft teal), Ann Kingstone released another stranded colourwork collection featuring sheep, and I pounced on the Dewlap cowl pattern with a not-too-dissimilar meterage/weight ratio. Yeah. My stitch gauge is not too far off, but my row gauge...well, instead of being 24"x9.5", my cowl is more like 25"x24". That's a, um, slight difference. I can use it as a cowl if I don't mind either smooshing it up so no-one can see the sheepies or having it stretched out proudly and completely cover my head. Neither option is ideal.


So I've changed my search criteria and I'm going to think of my Cornish Tin as being a light worsted rather than a heavy DK (there's no standard for categories and it's more an art than a science) and I think I found The Pattern this time - third time lucky, right? It's a split-brim beanie with a snowflake design and pompom and while beanies and pompoms aren't my usual cup of tea, Wooly Wormhead's MKAL last year, Skelter, turned out to be a split-brim beanie with a pompom and I will admit that I spent most of last winter borrowing it every time I was going out and he wasn't. Cross your fingers and wish me luck!

Tuesday, 11 October 2016

28 weeks (and definitely counting)

Today I am 28 weeks, officially in the third trimester, and because I'm fat and old, today I got the special experience of a fasting blood glucose test. My understanding is that in the US they're fairly deriguere but in the UK you only have to do it if you have 3 ticks on a list and last time I wasn't old (my other ticks are for being fat and extra fat respectively) so I've not had the, uh, pleasure before. 

The good news is that my results are "within normal parameters" which means I don't have gestational diabetes. There's no bad news, although highlights include my alarm going off at 7am but not being able to eat (anything) breakfast until 1pm, having exploratory phlebotomy - 3 midwives had a go at me (twice!) to actually find my veins, getting to drink Lucazode for the first time ever (a friend described it as 'Gatorade distilled x10, mixed with Sprite'), finding out I had to stay there and sit quietly for 2hrs or I would "compromise the results" meaning I couldn't go home and get Kristina so Chris could go to work and just return for the second blood draw as planned, and finally being left in the exam room for half an hour after the second draw because the (third) midwife said she'd be right back....and never came back to say I was done. Or bring me the promised plaster/band-aid. So, um, yeah. Fun. Much recommend. 

I am a bit miffed that I told the (technically fourth, but "first") for the next go-round) that this puncture was where the second midwife missed my vein and that puncture is where the third midwife found it and she stuck the needle pretty much exactly in the first puncture and - surprise - couldn't find a vein there, either. Other than that (and not bringing me my notes and telling me I could go home until I went looking for someone half an hour later), everything else is what it is.

In other news, the new single/twin bed we ordered for the nursery arrived just in time for Miss Amy to come for a visit and attend the Loch Ness Knit Fest with me weekend before last. We put it in Kristina's room for now in the hopes that we could get her sleeping in her own bed again if I am sleeping in the same room with a further hope to have me out of the room when her sibling comes.

So Sunday night, a week being how long it took me to wash the sheets and remake the bed and not be going to work and thus needing a decent night's sleep, we got ready for bed. Kristina ran to get her pillows (she has two so that I can share her pillow without making my heartburn particularly bed) and very excitedly put them in my bed. No, no, I explained, this is my bed, that's your bed. Absolute hysteria. I offered to switch beds with her, she could have the new bad and I would have the old bed, but no, the problem was that in separate beds I wouldn't be able to "body cuddle" (spooning) her all night. Well, no. I knew when she discovered spooning as an alternative to cuddling on top of me (no longer an option with the pregnancy) that it was going to be a problem. Used to be we'd cuddle for a bit, then she'd slide off and roll over and sleep on her side of the bed. Now she wants me to have my arm around her all night.

Needless to say we wound up moving back to the big bed in the middle of the night. I can't roll over with only a fraction of a single bed to work with and my abdominal muscles out of commission. Being pregnant is also why she moved into the big bed with me in the first place - I kept falling asleep with her at 8 o'clock in the first trimester and waking up 4 or 5 hours later, cold, stiff and cranky, sleeping on the edge of her bed. Much easier to move her into the big bed with me and just go to sleep. 

So on Monday I folded up the sofa bed, moved my knitting stuff from the nursery into the sofa bedroom and put the new bed in the nursery. Chris can sleep in there in a real bed and grandma can have Kristina's room when she comes and the baby, Kristina, and I will have to share the master bedroom. But no spooning after the baby comes.