cocoa purl

Chocolate Covered Misadventures (knitting, childrearing, surviving) of a Passable Mind

FOs and Flying off the Handle August 13, 2008

Filed under: knitting,LG,rambling — cocoapurl @ 9:10 pm

I finished not one, but TWO projects this past week. In fact, I got so carried away by Finish-itis (which I NEVER have had before, mind you) that I stayed up far past my bedtime to get the second projecxt done in the SAME day, just so I could say I did. Ask BG how personable I was the next day, but I have TWO FOs, people. Did I mention that this was heretofore unheard of?

Pattern: Liesl by Ysolda Teague
: Debbie Bliss Cotton Silk Aran, 10 skeins (I didn’t use that many, I don’t think)
: US 7 KnitPicks Options
: July 7, 2008
: July 31, 2008
: Changed to stockinette after bodice, continued garter stitch edging, bound off after about 2.5 inches of garter stitch.

Liesl is done – and she’s purty, and wearable (gasp)! I changed to stockinette under the girls to give a sort of empire waist look (but in reality, between the weight of the cotton/silk and the fact that my waist is a scant inch from my ribs, its more like my actual waist). Truth is, this was a bit of a leap for me, as I have been very much a married-to-the-pattern knitter thus far, but having the whole thing feather-and-fan would have been just too busy for me. After consulting my knitting group about my plan (thanks, ladies!) I modified. And wonder of wonders, it actually worked. Hooray!

Now I’m in search of a button to work with it – I’m in no hurry, as I inherited some cool clasps (the giant safety pin type) that are working just fine. I’ve worn it twice already, and it isn’t even blocked yet. Is that wrong?

I also finished my Jaywalker socks – finally. I’m not sure why these have taken so long – maybe its knitting wool socks in the summer, maybe this yarn, however gorgeous, has worn on my last nerve with no pattern being quite good enough for it. (You see, its NOT me, its the yarn. This beautiful, demanding yarn.) I am happy with the final result, and am already electronically window shopping for just the right shoe for them. What about these? Or maybe these? Doesn’t everyone dress around their socks?

Jaywalker Socks out of Koigu - a little loud, but I love em

Jaywalker Socks out of Koigu - a little loud, but I love 'em

Pattern: Jaywalker, by Grumperina
Yarn: Koigu KPPPM, 2 skein
Needles: US 1 KnitPicks Harmony DPNs
Started: May 27, 2008
Completed: July 31, 2008
Modifications: None, I don’t think

I’ve started two more projects, following my new rule: One mindless project (in this case, a pair of vanilla stockinette socks), and one more challenging project. I’m hoping this will keep me in my new mode of FINISHING things.

If you use your imagination, you can see a sweater.

If you use your imagination, you can see a sweater.

The challenging project is the February Lady Sweater – well, it is for me, since there will be lace, and you know how I feel about lace. Its not that I can’t do it, its that I can’t have ANYTHING else going on when I do. Like television. Or conversation. Or breathing.

OOOOH - Stripes!

OOOOH - Stripes!

The second project is a pair of plain, vanilla stockinette socks. Am I the only person who is endlessly entertained by self-striping, self-patterning socks? Completely rhetorical question. The yarn is Sockotta, and I’m using my size 1 KnitPicks Harmony DPNs. Because I refuse to use a size 0 – so there.

So it was the perfect opportunity to cast on for the FLS during our garage sale this past Saturday. Before you’re impressed by my ability to knit AND handle the swarm of people wanting to buy my wares, let me clear that up right now – there was NO ONE. It rained. It rained hard, and it rained often. So I knit, and took the fact that I had worked on setting this dumb sale up for the last week and a half in stride. (In other words, I swallowed my frustration like a good repressive does.) I knit under stress. Probably better than drinking.

No – I didn’t fly off the handle then. It was today, when it hit me – THERE ARE THREE MORE WEEKS UNTIL THE FALL, AND I HAVEN’T FIGURED OUT WHAT TO DO FOR PRESCHOOL YET. After beating myself up for a good couple of hours (lousy mother, what have I been doing with my time, knitting! instead of researching my child’s future, etc.), I’ve made several appointments to see a few schools. To be fair, I did the same thing a few months ago, only to discover that the one we had sort of settled on was mucho expensive. I mean, second-job expensive. So to plan B.

But I have a bone to pick and a bit of a rant to go on, since I have no idea how women people (sorry, that was sexist) who work full time (i.e. all year round, unlike me, academic slacker that I am, who only works ten months out of the year) are supposed to juggle most preschool programs given they are a HALF DAY. I completely understand that its probably the most academically responsible approach, given that most 3 year-olds wouldn’t do with a full day of school. What I don’t get is how I’m supposed to make that work, AND go to work so I can pay for said preschool, AND provide for the best educational prep for LG.

Did I mention that guilt is a huge motivator to this rant?

Ahh, MommyGuilt. Guilt is huge for me – its in my genes and in my upbringing. I can’t escape it. And now, I’m being told in order for my son to get the best start in school (which could ultimately color his perception of school in general, and cause him to either love it or hate it, and if he hated it he would end up living in the basement into his forties – you see what I mean about the guilt?) I have to make it work somehow to drop him off at noon and pick him up at three. While I’m working all day.

Is there something I’m not getting? Is there a transporter available? Or some sort of manipulation of the fabric of time and space?

Please don’t get me wrong – I WISH I were a stay-at-home mom. I do. If I could take a time-out from working, I would. But I can’t – that’s pretty simple and obvious. So, I need to make it work.

The last time I felt this level of MommyGuilt was dropping LG off to daycare for the first time. Nothing will make you question every decision leading up to that moment as leaving your 8 month old with a veritable stranger. He was completely fine – I was, however, a mess. For months – in fact, I don’t remember being anything but miserable for that first year. I still have a twinge of it EVERY time I leave him to go to work. It gets easier only because I know he has fun.

This is a different sort of guilt, because I know he’ll have fun and I know that its best for him. Its not so much “I’m abandoning my child” guilt as it is “I need to do what’s best for my child” guilt (You see? I have categories). What I don’t know is how everyone else in the same position makes this work.

/rant  (That’s end rant, for those not web geeky enough.)

Sigh. Please, someone who’s smarter than me, clue me in. ‘Cause I don’t get it. I guess its a lot to ask for the answer to the ultimate Mommy/work balance, but ya’ll are smart people. Throw me a bone.

And in response to the stress, I knit. Or spin. Or pretend to shop for shoes online.

I’m off to do all three of those things before I have to shower for work, and do laundry – LG and I are going on a road trip to see YaYa the day after tomorrow. I’ve decided that 8 hours in a car – with just me and a three year old, ought to cure me of any guilt – I may want to sell him to the circus by the time we get there.