Tuesday, January 12, 2010


Remember that Celebrate banner I was working on during the crazed days of pre-Christmas hustle and bustle? Well I did give it as a gift, but before we wrapped it up we had to tape it up real quick to see just how great it looked. Saoirse was particularly amused by it all....


Poor Oscar seems to have inherited some of his father's less desirable traits (not like there are many to choose from).

Just respiratory issues.

All day long yesterday he was struggling with a chronic cough and a faucet nose. By 3pm I was starting to have concerns about his breathing, he was beginning to have retractions (this is when you can see your skin getting pulled in between each individual rib every time you inhale). I called the dr. but it was already close to 4pm and practically impossible for me to cross the city before the office closed (did I mention we're switching practices?). I really just wanted some advice anyways, although I already knew everything the triage nurse offered, sometimes it's just comforting talking it out, ya know?

Long story short, he did not end up needing a trip to urgent care last night, just another breathing treatment and a bunch of cuddles.

Not to mention about 100 check in's from his mom last night as he coughed his way through dreamland.


You know when I first ordered the Sunday paper Brendan made a big deal about what a complete WASTE it would be........

But these pictures tell a different story.....

And it appears that the paper has served a purpose after all!

I keep dragging her away from the headlines but she keeps racing back for more.

*For what it's worth the Sunday paper is pretty much useless in our house, aside from the comics, but it does come in handy when we light up the fireplace. *


Our first family sledding trip of 2010!

Even the twins came along this time and loved every second of it (who wouldn't love sledding when you don't have to walk back up the hill?).

Check out the triple decker, Jason, Sidhe and Micah.....

Brendan, Finn and the twins.....

Lost Finn on the way down....

Jason and Nuala.....

Finn, Maija, Ruari, Micah, Brendan and the twins.....

Ruari and Sidhe.....

The twins only lasted for a handful of runs, but the older kids stayed on the slope long after the sunset.

Friday, January 8, 2010


Ok, I know that I just did a LONG post about knitting, but I just have to add something....
I just discovered this site like one second ago, have I been knitting under a rock or what? It is an online community of......you guessed it, KNITTERS.

If you never hear from me again it is because I have been swallowed whole by Ravelry.

So I better give a couple of updates before diving in to my new knitting network.
Hmmmm.......Today I finally caved and bought some new winter boots so that I could play in the snow with Heckle and Jeckle. And of course I simply couldn't do it last night when the babies were asleep, could I? Absolutely not, which is why in order for us to even get to the fun snow play part of the morning we first had to go to Target, where I once again forgot to buy toilet paper, and this type of outing takes at least one full hour, even when I know exactly what I want, even when I DO NOT browse. One hour gone.

When we made it back home I was greeted by the furnace guy's truck in the drive, which was a welcome sight as we've been battling it out with the furnace for the past few days and the furnace has of course been winning. However, furnace guy's truck in the drive meant that I had to park on the street and unload 3 babes from the curb, the orchestration of which must have been rather amusing to watch.

Because there is so much snow piled up along the curb, I left the van parked in front of the drive and got Nuala out, she had boots on, and told her to walk up to the front porch. She was confused but shrugged it off and toddled along the walk. I then got Oscar out of the trunk (no, no, he wasn't IN the trunk, but we access his car seat through the back of the van), he only had shoes on, but I still sent him plodding along through the snow up to the porch. When I went to get Saoirse out I realized that her door was still too close to the snow bank and so I had to get back in and reverse a tad, at which point Oscar began howling at the top of his lungs, which of course would scare the living heebers out of anyone driving in reverse. I jumped out of the car only to realize he was simply alarmed that I was leaving him and was not in fact stuck under any of the tires. Ok.
Now for the fun part.

I grabbed Saoirse out of the car and set her seat down on the sidewalk so that I could move the car out of the drive way, which naturally prompted some more screaming from the boy, and I don't know about you, but around here screaming of this particular intensity can easily spread like wild fire. So when I finally got the car parked and joined Oscar and Saoirse on the sidewalk (we're talking like all of 9 seconds here folks) they were having a screaming match of sorts to see who could cry the loudest. Nuala was by this point already on the porch wondering what the big deal was.

The porch had been shoveled, well the path up to the door had been shoveled. The other side, which hadn't been shoveled, and had in fact become the new home of all the shoveled snow, had nice big fluffy snow banks on it. Snow banks just perfect for little girls to jump in. Little, mitten less, snowsuit less, girls to jump in.
Good thing she had on those boots.

So by the time I got from the walk to the porch (we're talking all of 10 seconds this time) Nuala, the good one, the one who hadn't thrown a fit, or feared for her future, or even just lallygagged, the one who 10 seconds earlier was standing by the door waiting to go inside, was up to her pretty little pink neck in snow, was in fact quite STUCK in the snow and had joined the chorus of crying children.

This is how Nuala learned the hard way that snow hurts, and how I learned that I love my driveway and also perhaps that I should shovel off the entire porch.

Now harm done, I got everyone inside and calmed down and re-bundled in appropriate snow gear and we took a 45 minute walk around the neighborhood. I wore the baby and the twins trudged along in their obnoxiously puffy snowsuits and moon boots (think Ralphie's kid brother from A Christmas Story). I brought along a sled so that once they grew too tired of the trudge I could easily pull them home. It was a wonderful morning.

In other news I have made a renewed vow to start implementing some morning art into our routine. I cleaned out a drawer in the dining room to house some supplies (I've always used the fact that all the art supplies are upstairs as an excuse to never bring them out) and it is time to start some projects. I've already got some old tricks up my sleeve, but I am on the hunt for some new age appropriate ideas. The next few months of winter are always difficult to get through, but I've got a plan, an idea, a vision of sorts, and I think we can make it through paintbrush in hand.

Remember how I said that sitting babies are the best right up until they start crawling? Well, she's not crawling yet, but Saoirse is rolling and doing the reverse scoot. So leaving her on the blanket and expecting her to still be there when you return is not really happening anymore. It's more like leaving and HOPING and then coming back to find her under the tree or approaching the fire place (and I wondered why we never had fires last winter, duh). Don't worry, I'm on it. I just thought it was funny that I was boasting about it yesterday and then last night she had to show me that I have no idea what I'm talking about. Like, "Ha, in your face mama, sit on the blanket what????"

Ok, so there are no pictures again, but I think I just earned a long venture into Ravelry. Well for as long as the babies continue to sleep at least, so maybe like, 8 minutes? Free patterns here I come!!!!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Martha Vs. Gourmet

There are only two things that I can actually cook better than Brendan.
Eggs and quesadilla.
And since neither one requires much culinary skill, that should pretty much clue you in on who does most of the cooking around here and why.

Brendan likes to say that he is the chef and I am the baker, and while I do make a mean loaf of homemade bread (no bread machines involved) and some delicious pizza dough, part of me wonders if he is just trying to make me feel better about being such a lousy cook. Especially when he then turns around and makes homemade pie crusts, galettes and pecan bars. Even when he bakes he has to crank it up a notch. Sure my M&M bars are a family favorite, but even those were born out of my need to cut corners and who really wants to worry about individual cookies when you can spread the dough out in a pan and bake them all at once? I guess you could say that when it comes to the kitchen I'm a little bit less than Martha and he's a whole lot of Gourmet.
Just in case you were ever wondering.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010


I have been knitting like mad lately.
Which is funny because for practically the entire month of December, in those last weeks leading up to Christmas, I was juggling so many projects, knitting projects, that I swore once the hustle and bustle of homemade gifts was over I would take a long break from the needles and let my yarn wind for a while.

I have projects, more projects, and ideas, fun ideas, and so for the time being the yarn and I are unwinding together.

This is my first attempt at a simple cable pattern, and after wrestling with a complicated basket weave over the holidays this was a walk in the park. I absolutely adore this pattern, and recognition must be given to this cute little blog I stumbled upon last winter when I first started making hats.

Too bad it doesn't fit my baby's GIGANTIC melon head.

Fortunately I was not going to let one giant head bring me down.
Instead I simply cast on again and added a dozen extra rows to the length (while also omitting the ear flaps) and TAH DAH......

*We have a "sitter" here people, an actual sitter camping out in the living room playing with toys on a blanket like a BIG baby. Saoirse decided right after Christmas that laying around all day long was no longer enough and has been upright ever since. Oh how I adore the sitting time, right up until it turns into the crawling time, but we've got a few weeks until then (she says hopefully)!

Here's another hat I recently finished, it has pom poms on both sides and is made out of the softest baby alpaca you have ever felt.

Another post holiday project is a sweater that I am making for Nuala. I'm a little bit hesitant about the color scheme though, not sure about the green, and so I have put it on hold for the moment to ponder. The only thing worse than pulling out 500 hard worked stitches is finishing 10,000 hard worked stitches in the WRONG colors.

These were fun holiday gifts, cute little hand warmers, these were practice pieces and neither one has a partner yet.

And some mittens for Oscar....

MY favorite gift this Christmas (and santa was VERY GOOD to me this year, so narrowing it down was not easy) is THIS little guy....

I hinted around to Brendan that I really wanted some small circular needles, and then I even emailed him a link to the exact set I had in mind, which is something I usually don't do. I never have to buy my own gifts from him or show him what I want, he is an excellent gift giver all on his own, but knitting needles are tricky, so, long story short, I was very specific about which needles I wanted and didn't mind the fact that there would be something under the tree holding little surprise.

Yet, in true Brendan form, he still found a way to go above and beyond. Aside from ordering the needles, he also took the time to shop around for a nice little case thereby adding his own personal touch to a gift I all but bought for myself.
Isn't it darling?

It unfolds to reveal little pockets....

Which help to keep all your various sized needles organized. Anyone who knits knows just how valuable this carry all is, because the more you knit the more needles you acquire and they wind up laying all over the place if you're not careful! I am thinking about making one of these myself, it can't be that hard, right?

Here's the site he ordered it from, this cute little patch is sewn in on the inner flap and greets me every time I reach in for new needles.

So there you have it, a decent dose of our latest crafts.
Ruari is working on something really beautiful right now that I can't wait to show you, it's almost finished and I am so proud of her (it's a knitting project, but that's your only hint) for putting so much time and energy into her creation. More on this soon....