Finished BSJ (almost) and Struck Down By Shawl Fever

After more than a few false starts I finally finished a BSJ.  It really is an amazing; almost magical, knit.  I still find it hard to believe that the wonky little oddly shaped rectangle or so of knitting turned out to be this really cute jacket.  I don’t have pictures yet to put up.  I will take pictures before giving to its recipient.  I used Rayon Sparkle from Over the Rainbow Yarns on E-Bay and I love, love, love most of her stuff.  This yarn is so soft that I can’t think of a good way to describe it.  I have three different colorways of it varying from a white to lightest pink variegation  (the main color of the BSJ) to darkest pink with some carmel colors mixed in variegation and a mid-shades of pink variegation. All three of them have a bit of Angelina or Fire Star in it that give it its sparkle and shine in the light.  Just beautiful yarns all the way around.

When I finished the BSJ I was struck by a problem I hadn’t had before; there was nothing on the needles to pick up and start knitting.  So out came the laptop, on went Ravelry and somehow I ended up in the shawl category.  I have tons of lace and fingering weight yarn in gorgeous variegated colors as well as solids and everything in between.  The problem:  I mostly have only one skein of each.  I used to just wander around my LYS and pick up one skein here and there of everything I thought was pretty; that, my friends is the danger of going to the yarn shop without a clear idea of what you want the yarn for.  So I have yarn for lots of shawlettes or scarves, but I’m finding myself more and more taken by the full-sized, lacy shawls.  I spent countless hours on Ravelry looking at yarns, patterns, other people’s images of their projects etc.  In the end, I’ve cast on a Forest Canopy shawl using Socks That Rock Lightweight in the Grimm’s Willow Wren (I think that’s the name, I always screw it up) colorway and the Vortex Pi shawl (knitting and math together – my dad would have been proud) in Jojoland Melody.  It’s a red/purple/greenish colorway and I think the really long repeats of Melody and the way they blend and feather together is going to look wonderful, I hope.

There are also several shawls on deck for Christmas presents this year to people  have been extremely nice.  A Birthday Pi, a Lady Eleanor and an Enchanted Forest (again, not sure about a name).  There are also a ton of socks that I want to knit and I’d really like to get back into spinning for relaxation.  We’ll see how it all goes.  Will keep you updated, gentle friends.

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BSJ progress

The BSJ project is coming along nicely.  I’m using two colors rather than just one; I thought a deeper red in random stripes making up less than a third of the design would be a nice contrast.  So far I like the way it looks.  I’ve been reading a lot in the Ravelry group about Baby Surprise Jackets as well as a few other sites/KALs that have been giving me tons of great information.  I couldn’t have done it without them going before me.  I’m a little less than 1/2 way done right now.  It’s coming out really well and I really like it.  I’m not finding as much time to work on it as I’d like to, but It will be finished soon and given to the happy couple/new parents.  What they chose to do with it from there I have no control over.  I hope they like it.

7 months old

Today, technically yesterday I guess Connor turned 7 months old. I can’t believe how quickly the time has flown by nor can I believe that the tiny preemie I brought home in July is this amazing huge baby I hold and rock to sleep every night.
So much has changed in this time. He

Connor Franklin Coming Home

This is so backwards.  I still owe everyone, myself included, several posts re: Connor’s very early birth and his time in the NICU.  I plan to add these posts soon.  It’s just been too hard and too raw to bring myself to put thought to paper, or screen as the case may be.  I think I needed a little bit of time and space to process everything before writing it all out.

I did start to post from my hospital room the day after my c-section, but I was far to drugged to know what I was saying and I don’t even know where the draft that I thought I had saved was.

Short version (to be followed in detail very soon):  Connor was born June 3, 2010 at 2:47 pm after I was rushed to the hospital the night before.  I was just barely past 33 weeks when he was born.  He was HUGE for his gestational age, weighing in at 5 lbs 15.4 oz. and 19.7 inches long.  He didn’t really look like a preemie for the most part except for his skin was still very thin and he had very little fat on his back and almost no butt at all.  He was whisked straight to the NICU and I was taken to recovery.  I only saw him for a VERY short time in his incubator later that day.  My recovery was uneventful if a lot more painful that c-section #1 was.  I was admitted on Wednesday night and discharged on Monday night.  The stay in the hospital was actually very peaceful for me; a nice buffer zone between me and the reality that I was going to have to go home  WITHOUT MY BABY.  I survived that horror – barely, I must say – and have made it though all the tough times since.

Jumping ahead to now:  Connor is about a week from being able to come home and I couldn’t be more thrilled.  He’s the most beautiful, sweet, wonderful baby there has ever been (other than Jacob of course who was just as sweet and wonderful) and I’m absolutely in love with him.  I can’t wait to have him in my arms whenever I want him.  Unlike Jacob, Connor wants to nurse – all the time it seems.  I’m thinking that once we get him home exclusively breast feeding (he has bottles in the hospital) won’t be a problem at all.  Sure there will be some kinks to work out, but I know he’ll get there.  My mother is here for 2 months to help us out and we wouldn’t have been able to handle this NICU nightmare without her and her help.  My health has been a series of ups and downs since Connor came, mostly downs.  Right now my blood pressure is higher than it’s ever been in my life and I”m not sure what is causing it or what can be done.  I’ve put off any real medical intervention b/c anything they give me will be contraindicated for breast feeding and that’s not something I’m willing to give up on.  We’ll see what can be done.  Must get some sleep for now…wanted to share the news and promise a more in depth series of posts re: the beginning of Connor’s life in the next week or so.  XOXO

7 months old

I’m starting to think if it wasn’t for bad luck I wouldn’t
have any luck at all. The G.D. is not getting better, in fact
we started insulin today. 3x a day I have to jab myself in
the stomach with a needle to help keep my blood sugar down. I
know I shouldn’t complain, it’s keeping Connor healthy as well as
myself, but it makes me feel like I’ve failed in some way. Today
was my 30 week prenatal appointment. I was a bit nervous
about it b/c it was with the OB as opposed to the midwife that I’m
used to. This is the same doctor that I dealt with for my
fertility treatments and for some reason I thought I didn’t care
for his bedside manner, or him to be honest, too much when I saw
him late last year. I’m not sure where that judgement came
from (maybe I was just down on everything during that period of
time b/c of my fear that I would never be able to get pregnant
again) b/c after my appointment today, I couldn’t love the man
more. It was NOT a good appointment, unfortunately, but his
bedside manner, jokes, and just generally good attitude made things
that much easier to take. My blood pressure was through the
roof compared to what it’s been lately (140/100) and I’ve had
visual disturbances, headaches and swelling for the last week or
so. So now we’re thinking pre-eclampsia as well as the G.D.
and that is not good. I had to have blood work done to check
my liver and kidney function (both are good thank God) and I have
to come in for ultrasounds every week between now and when I give
birth to keep an eye on how Connor is doing. Today’s
ultrasound was good, so I guess I do have some good luck afterall.
I’m also going to be seeing the perinatologist at the office
that’s dealing with the G.D. for an in-depth ultrasound (seeing
Connor so much these days) but that will just be the one time I
think. Dr. H (my OB) said he would be happy to be the doctor
that does my c-section which thrills me b/c I think he’ll be a very
calming presence in the O.R. When I asked him about a date
for the section, he didn’t give me one, but did say that he doubted
I would make it to 39 weeks due to the symptoms I’m having now and
the fact that Jake was a 37 week baby and so big (just under 9
lbs.) So I don’t know when Connor will be here at this point.
I’m 30 weeks + 1 today and I’d be happy to make it to 36/37
weeks. As long as Connor is big enough (shouldn’t be a
problem) and his lungs are developed enough for him not to need the
NICU I’m fine with whatever they decide to do. I am on a modified
version of bedrest right now. I don’t have to stay in bed all
the time, but I also can’t be running around doing things.
I’m supposed to laze around on the couch, take care of myself
etc. I can do things around here as I feel up to it, but he
doesn’t want me running off to the mall, grocery shopping etc. for
the time being. Maybe if my blood pressure goes down it will
change. The only really bad part about all of this is that
there is a field trip for Jake’s class in a few weeks that I wanted
to go on and a carnival that the PTO is throwing for the elementary
school kids that I really wanted to be a part of that I’m
going to have to miss. I told TJ, though, that I don’t care
what my BP or the doctors say there is no way I’m missing Jake’s
Kindergarten graduation on June 9th (unless I’m in the hospital
having the baby, of course). He understood and said he didn’t
think that counted as strenuous activity. Fingers crossed
that BP just goes down and other pre-e symptoms get under control
so that life can be semi-normal until the baby is here. All
of this puts so much pressure on TJ and it makes me feel so guilty.
I know that he knows that it’s not my fault and this isn’t a
choice I”m making, but for so much of our marriage – through all of
my depression etc. – I have made the choice to lay all the work at
his feet that it doesn’t seem to make a difference in my
head/heart. It doesn’t feel fair that he has to take on
getting Connor’s room ready, figuring out how to get up north
without leaving Jake and I alone overnight so he can get the
crib/baby clothes etc. that are stored up there from when Jake was
a baby etc. It’s a nightmare. One happyish note, though…the
insulin needle in the belly isn’t painful at all and it’s not quite
as icky as I anticipated. It’s all a mental thing, I guess.
I actually don’t even feel the needle going in; I just jab it
in there fast and hard and get it over with…so yay for no pain, I
guess. On the knitting front: I think the Hot Flash STR yarn
is cursed. I really liked the Tresse
socks when I started them, and I still really like the pattern, but
I don’t like the way it’s coming out with this yarn. I think
I’m knitting it a little too tightly – even though I got gauge –
and it just doesn’t work for me. This is the second pair of
socks I’ve frogged in this yarn. I’ve decided that this
particular skein doesn’t want to be socks at all. So now I’m
looking for a good shawlette pattern for it. I think I
might have found it but we’ll see after swatching etc. is done.
I’m kind of off the sock kick (that didn’t last long) a bit
and itching to make something different. I still have a few
pairs of socks that I will work on: the HandMaiden (or is it Fleece
Artist? I can never remember) BFL Sock in Stone
diagonal lace toe up socks for one, but I just feel like I need to
have something else on the needles as well. Since the yarn
bins are in a bit of a clutter right now and I’m limited to what I
can get my hands on yarn-wise, I’m limited but I’ll make due.
There are several shawl patterns that I want to play with and
the yarn that goes with them is accessable. There is also all
that fiber I have to spin up for various things that I could really
get into. I should really use this “rest” time I’m being
given (read forced into) for being fiberly productive. Have a great
rest of the week everyone…I’m going to try. I say that like
there is really anyone at all reading this LMAO!!