Monday, October 18, 2010

oops, i've done it again...

yeah. it's been awhile. I could tell you all about the kitchen flood, or the progress I have made on mom's vest... or even how Squiggly's new favorite activity is crawling onto the dining room table... but, instead, right now I leave you with a couple of pictures.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010


yeah. this is a knitting and crocheting blog... yeah... I haven't posted much stuff lately.... here is some eye candy for you...

love this hat - it's soft, it's colorful... and it matches a lot in my wardrobe - a quick crochet - really all the details are on Rav...

this is a knit/crochet project that I was really excited to be able to test for the pattern designer. The center is knit and can either be a kerchief/scarf size, or a shawl size - which is my plan - it is still in progress... I am a much slower knitter than I thought - plus if I was to start over again I would have used a much larger needle to get a much airier look in the center. It doesn't matter, though, because I love the way it is coming out. Too bad it's totally not my colors as it will now end up being a wonderful gift for a wonderful friend.

in this detail you can see the crochet border... love how this is turning out. Normally one would knit the entire body then crochet the entire border on, but since I was testing the pattern, I had a deadline and needed to just get it done, so I will now finish the ball of yarn on the center to increase the size of the shawl (and have already begun using a larger needle, so it will gradually get airier) and then I will go back and figure out how to best add on the crochet edge. Because the designer did such a great job writing it, I should have no trouble... again, this will be a gift, but it inspires me to think about the shawl I want to make for myself.... Multnomah which I will not be doing in greens, although I do love what the designer used, I have a handpainted yarn that was a gift that I think will look amazing...

Dance! and Elul

Both Smush and Squiggly seem to be very musically inclined. Is it because we listen to a lot of music in the house? Probably not. Is is because I started to take Smush to Mommy, Music and Me starting when she was maybe 8months old? Probably not. Is it because FIL plays an organ and we dance a lot in their living room? Probably not. Is it all of the above? Possibly. It doesn't really matter. The result is the same. Both of them love to move to the music, whether it's Squiggly conducting the music or Smush jumping around under the guise of dance, they love music.

While we aren't sending Smush to school yet (more on that in another post,)we do want her to be able to spend time with children her age. We signed Smush up for her first dance class. There are many other girls in the neighborhood in the class and so even though they might be coming from school, these are girls that she will see in shul each week, so they will be familiar to her. The class doesn't start until the middle of September, but she is already SOOOOOO excited. Every day since I told her she was going to take a dance class she has asked if today is the day it meets. This is very similar to her feelings on Pajama Storytime at the library. Each time she gets signed up and knows about it she asks about it every day from sign up until it actually happens, and then each day after she asks if it's time for another Pajama Storytime. I am really enjoying this stage!

As for the dance class, we need to prepare, so I am hoping that preparing will help her understand time and preparations. She will need ballet shoes and tap shoes, a leotard and tights. The shoes will most likely be the most difficult. I have posted on our shul list to see if anyone has any we can have, and have several offers, however, she has a wide foot and so I am not sure if any of the shoes offered will fit. A bunch of people recommended Payless as they are in their BOGO, which would be fine, except that none of their dance shoes seem to come in wide. Ah! The challenges of footwear. (another post idea is forming.... but this is about dance!)

I am also hoping to use the idea of preparing to help her better understand just the idea of preparing for an event or events and in turn using that to help her to prepare for Rosh Hashanah. Most likely she is too young to fully understand why we prepare for Elul, but it's worth a shot. At three she surprises us to no end (did you know that dead people are in cemeteries buried in the dirt and that the monster fish doesn't really swim so much?) and I am actually pretty confident that she will "get" it on some level. While I am not sure what type of preparations a three year old should be making in Elul, I certainly need to be preparing. The past couple of years have been life changing, with having children, and my own preparations have been limited in a way that I am not thrilled with. I need to reclaim some time for myself and prepare for the new year and I have decided that Smush will help me do that. She is ready to help me cook for the holidays, she is ready to help me decorate for the holidays, she will be helping me to prepare spiritually for the holidays, whether she knows it or not!

A blogging friend, (and long time real life friend) Ima2Seven has written about teshuvah being hard, and about taking an accounting of our lives to be prepared for our audit by Hashem. (my synopsis, not hers) Does a three year old have anything to take account of? Probably not, but I know that if we start preparing early, then it will be second nature as she gets older. I hope to do the same with Squiggly when he is older. If we learn as we grow about how hard teshuvah is, perhaps we can also learn to make better choices throughout the year, and ultimately not have as much to make amends for.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

BIgger kids... bigger problems...

not that I would call my kids "bigger" because I know that most people who say things like this mean older kids, however, in my case bigger is the correct term... as in Squiggly got a little bigger... and now he can reach the door knob to the bathroom... and has the strength to open the door... and can now freely go in and dip his hands in the toilet bowl whenever he pleases... and, don't bother suggesting that we keep the lid down, this child knows how to lift the seat...I wonder if he'll be potty trained before Smush.... now I need to get some hooks and eyes on the those doors... that's going to hamper the potty training... yikes.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

and Squiggly is ONE!!!!!!!

I can't believe it!!!!!!! Life is never dull. While he isn't walking yet, it is only time before we are in serious trouble. He gets into everything his sister didn't. We thought we were childproofed. HAH! More on that later. Right now it is all about the celebration. Have some cake!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Pay no attention to the boy in pink...

he's only modeling something his sister would not... athough... isn't he cute!

This new sweater is a crochet design of my own making... I am planning on writing up the pattern and seeing if there is any interest in it. I belong to a group called Free Pattern Testers on Ravelry where you can ask people to edit and test your patterns for you before you publish them. You can also self-publish on Ravelry. That is what I would intend to do. I might also link it here... We'll see - I have never done the pattern distribution thing...

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Smush is THREEEEEEEEE!!!!!

all I can say is, WOW... where did the time go...???????
(actually her birthday was Sunday - not sure why I didn't post this then - I certainly planned on it!)

Thursday, April 29, 2010

an early Mother's Day

I got quite the surprise today... Me and the little ones took a little trip and came back to the homestead today. I walked in to the kitchen to see some paper towels covering my computer, only it wasn't my regular little ibookster computer... I nearly fell on the floor as it was a brand spanking new MacBook Pro which I am writing this one, right now!!!!!!! Say goodbye Ibookster, hello Macbookster... Happy Mother's Day to me!!!!!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

I should have taken a picture...

Smush decided to draw... I gave her paper... She decided to use herself and Squiggly instead of the paper... thankfully I recently replaced her markers with washable ones. Thank you Crayola!!!!!

Friday, April 23, 2010

talk speak

I've lost my voice and sound like a frog. Or like a relation by marriage Reva G. if you ask my CuteBoy. Smush wants to know why I lost my "talk speak. Gotta love the logic of an almost 3 year old!"

Thursday, April 22, 2010

School Days...

Smush is going to be 3. I can't even begin to believe this. 3. WOW!!!! Not so long ago she was just an idea and now she is 3. I am hoping that certain things will happen soon, by being a BIG girl... first of which is potty learning. She certainly knows how to use the toilet, it's just a matter of doing it. Of course, out of the mouths of babes... the other day I manage to get her to sit on her little red potty to take care of some business and as she is sitting there she says, with a twinkle in her eye and a huge grin, "Can I have a present?" Basically meaning, okay, I sat on the potty, I didn't use my diaper, what are you planning on giving me. We are prepared for this. For peeing on the toilet or potty she has been getting pieces of a clock puzzle toy. She has the base, and numbers 1-4. But, this was big, it was #2, so I gave her a book that I had bought a while back that I had wanted to give her but wanted to save for an occasion. This was that occasion.

Smush now has the book "Knitting Nell" in her collection. This is the third of 3 knitting or yarn/fiber based books that I have found and given to her for different reasons. The first was "Flusi and the Sock Yarn" which is put out by Regia Yarn Company. Lastly we have a really cute version of Baa Baa Black Sheep that shows the sheep knitting gifts for all the other farm animals, as well as providing wool for the master, the dame and the little boy who lives down the lane. Whenever I see books like this I buy them for her, put them away and then give them so her as new books need to be added to the rotation. I haven't figured out yet what types of books to be looking for for Squiggly. I'll have to work on that.

Anyway, back to the topic at hand. I had an interesting phone call tonight and thought it was a good opportunity to share some thought on schooling. Smush is still home with me. Many people ask us when she is going to start school. As if she won't be spending enough time in school when the time comes! I don't really understand this pushing kids into school earlier and earlier. When we went to school we started w/ Nursery School which was a few times a week for a morning or an afternoon and we were 5, I think. Then we went to Kindergarten. Smush will be 3 in 2 weeks. There are people who can't understand why she hasn't already been in school this past year. Ummmm... so someone else can change her diapers and watch her hit milestones? So she loses the joy of free playing and no set schedule to prevent us from going into the city or the zoo, or the carousel?

I tell you, the looks we get when it comes out that she isn't signed up to go someplace in the fall... Whoa, you'd think we were going to be messing her up for the rest of her life by not sending her to an expensive pre-school program where she might be told what colors to draw with and which page to draw on. I don't think so. Not yet, at least.

The phone call, thought, was intriguing. We haven't really discussed what school we will be sending her to when the time comes. I suppose we should start talking about it as the fall of 2011 is out there and usually signups are the spring before... Anyway, our local Yeshiva (religious school) has been holding some focus groups to see what parents are looking for in an elementary school education for their children. There are many different types of yeshiva schools, including co-ed and separate gender. Then, within the co-ed schools there are some separations when the children get a little older for different subjects.

I had often thought that the joy of an all girls school would be that not just for the Judaic subjects (which is why schools in the yeshiva world are separate gender) but for the math/science classes. I struggled mightily in math all through school and I wonder what might have been different, or if it would have been different, had I been in an all girls environment. Who knows. However, the literature does point to stronger math and science skills in those separate schools. But, it would mean busing to a school outside our little community here and I don't know if I want to do that. Of course busing is a whole other issue that I hope to write about soon as it is going to be on our local school budget ballot. More on that later. It's late and I need to get going!

dollars and sense

You may notice a couple of changes here to the blog... besides the new color scheme. The dots just weren't doing anything for me, so they had to go... buh bye... Also, something me and the Cute Boy had been discussing was the addition of AdSense to my blog. We have no idea how much traffic I actually get, but we figured if we get any traffic that might help put a few cents into out pockets that it can't hurt...

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Thursday, March 25, 2010

clean, clean, then clean some more...

It's time for Passover. That means lots of cleaning. I mean, lots. And I am not talking about the "spring cleaning" aspect of it. My Rabbi always talks about how shmutz is not chametz, meaning dirt is not what we are cleaning for Passover, rather just the leaving products. For me, practically speaking this means just the kitchen and other areas where we have food.

We do not bring any food upstairs in our house because unless you are bedridden we don't eat in our bedrooms, and the only time anyone was bedridden in recent years it was from vomiting and so there was no eating involved. I think maybe once or twice I ate crackers to avoid nausea when I was pregnant with Smush. So, since that is long ago, and we have vacuumed up there since then, there is no risk of crumbs. That leaves our downstairs.

Our downstairs is the pretty typical layout with a formal living room, a formal dining room and small den and then the kitchen with it's eat in area. When it was just the two of us, cleaning for Passover took a couple of hours, vacuuming got most of the crumbs, and then a little more work in the kitchen, done. With two little ones, lets just say it's a little more complicated.

There is still no food upstairs, but there is food that gets tracked EVERYWHERE. Squiggly just started eating solids so he is not the neatest eater in the world. As a matter of fact he is down right messy. That means there are Joe's Ohs all over the place. In his sleeves, in his diapers (somehow - not sure how those got there) and, most of all, all over the floor. Those are not dirt, those are chametz.

It's a good thing there is the annulling of ownership of chametz that happens right before Passover, of all you know about and that which you do not. I am relying on that statement to cover me for the Joe's Ohs that I am sure are under the baseboard molding in my kitchen. I know it's there. I tried to get it out with my vacuum wand tool. They are still be taunting me, but come Monday morning I will cast them out as dust in the wind. See you later, bye. Now, about cleaning my bathrooms....

Monday, March 8, 2010

one + one = 4, or, our little family...

well, I think the last time I was consistent about writing this blog there were 3 of us, making our way in the universe... and now there is more laundry than I seem to ever be able to truly catch up on. But, on the flip side, there are more laughs, more tears and much more to be thankful for. I never know exactly how much time I will have to do anything, but well, I suppose that is life for you. I guess I am not really a new mom anymore, so I suppose I should change my heading up there. I haven't done any filmmaking, other than taking little video clips of my adorable little ones so maybe I am not so much of a filmmaker anymore? What hasn't changed... my love for my darling husband. Our dreams of owning our own business. Our commitment to Judaism. My complete inability to keep on top of the housework... and so, our little story for today....

Something smelled. I don't mean just smelled, I mean SMELLED. Really bad. In the kitchen. I thought it was the trash. I mean, we don't take it out every day, I try to cram as much in as possible. And, yes, sometimes diaper wipes go in there... I keep thinking I will switch to the cloth wipes, then I don't, then I reconsider, however, for now we are using the disposable wipes with the cloth diapers, ANYWAY, I digress... Something smelled and it smelled really bad, so I closed up the bag and put it on the stoop for DH to take out to the can. After awhile, when the smell should have disapeared, I realized it still smelled. Bad. Possibly worse. So, I resorted to smelling inside each of my kitchen drawers, in the refrigerator, under the table, (I mean, you never know where the kids might have left something.) behind the sofa in the living room, and yet, I couldn't tell where it was coming from. I left the house. Came back. Determined it still smelled. Continued to try to find the odor...

Then I walked over to the sink. In it was the broiler pan from dinner on Wednesday, when I made meatballs in the oven. It had sat on the stove for Wed. night, Thursday, and Friday morning. Then I decided the kitchen needed some cleaning up. After I emptied the sink of the dirty dishes, etc. that were there, I put the broiler pan in, started to wash it, and realized it needed to soak. So, I put in some soap, ran the water really hot, and left it. For most of Friday, all of Saturday, all of Sunday... and into Monday. Guess how much mold can grow in water in a soapy pan in the sink... Yep. That was my smell. I am happy to say it is now all scoured out, hot water, lots of soap and our kitchen smells fine again. Maybe I should clean up more often.

BTW- for those of you wondering how we didn't need to use the kitchen sink all that time, we have 2 sinks in our kitchen, one for meat and one for dairy. We eat a lot more dairy than meat so there can be days when we don't venture anywhere near the meat sink.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

shifted world view

so to say that a lot has happened since my last real post would be a huge understatement. huge. let's see... I could just list the stuff that has happened, show the things I have made and move on, but that wouldn't get to the root of all that has changed. Do a lot of people follow me here, well, I might have had a following, but by not really posting for a year, I am sure people have moved on. So here goes... I will be trying to focus here a bit more. Why? Because I miss the writing. It helps me get ideas out of my head and lets me clarify my thoughts. I haven't even begun to tell you the readers about some of the things I ultimately planned to tell and I still want to say it, so... I'm back.

I won't be posting all of the crocheting and knitting from the past year because, well, there's a lot of that that was done and if you really want to see something and you are on Ravelry, check me out = hockeyrachel. I will start to show newly completed items and will link to them in my sidebar (I'm going to redesign shortly to have a listing) But, I will show you the newest finished object that is not knitting related other than he wears knits...

yep.... there's been an addition to the family... looking mighty fine in a good friend's handknit Baby Surprise Sweater designed by Elizabeth Zimmermann... Squiggly (his blog name, obviously not his real name) was born on June 26th. Our lives will never be the same. Smush (his big sister) has a love/hate relationship with him which we hope will become all love.

My biggest challenge is that I have a lot I want to say and so little time so I am going to publish smaller blurbs, more often and rather than ignoring my little ICAL reminder, I will embrace it and I hope to see you here.... the laundry chime just went and so I must change loads... enjoy the eye candy above....

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Stay tuned....

big updates on the way...