Friday, August 21, 2009

Happy Birthday

Our middle son, Nils, turned 28 yesterday. On the boys' birthdays I like to get out their photo albums and enjoy the good memories. When they were babies I wanted to remember what they smelled like, knowing that would not happen. Still, these photos are as close as I get except in the rare occasions when I am holding a baby. He was a big baby, 9 lb, 9 oz. I say that he was so strong he delivered himself since the whole process only took a few hours. On the chair in the birthing room, in front of that lovely wallpaper, you can see the lace blanket I knit for him.

In the second photo he is sleeping in a walnut crib that has been in my family for over 110 years. Back then we were taught to put babies on their stomachs to sleep. How things change! He's covered with his lace blanket.
I don't think they are supposed to cover babies anymore either.

The blanket he is lying on in this 7
week photo is one of worsted weight wool from Meg Swansen. Someone told me that the American pioneers knit light colored borders on blankets so babies perceived that as an edge and didn't crawl off. I've tested that theory and it didn't work but it is a nice piece of folklore anyway.
It got him used to wool at a young age.

These plastic punkin' seats look like doll toys compared to the sturdy multipurpose seats the young moms have today. This photo of Nils is one of my faves. You can see that his sleeper doesn't snap over his chubby thigh.

At Christmas he was a 4 month old bruiser, but slowed down the growth after than. Thank goodness!

We celebrated his first birthday at my parents' home. That is older brother Torben on the left. The silly things we will do for our kids! Love those hats.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

A Visit from the Folks

Mom and Dad stopped on their way home from Michigan for a two night visit. While Dad and Bob worked in the shop with the lathe I showed Mom how I bake the artisan bread. She is excited about trying the method. Tuesday afternoon I went to Dixon's for fresh tilapia and stopped at the store for groceries. We made a trip to town and then ran home to cook dinner. We had invited a friend over and it was a great evening. We fixed pan-fried tilapia, a big salad, roasted vegetables and my special roasted sweet potatoes. I was so busy I didn't have time to take many photos but I did remember my camera this morning when we went out to breakfast at a local diner before Mom and Dad left for home.
While Mom and Dad were here we (mainly Mom) had some ideas to rearrange furniture. We brought a table up from the basement and took the one that was in the sunroom downstairs. I like the new look and we can now seat 6 on the porch instead of a crowded 4 at the little round table. I also ordered some new bedding from West Elm, which will update our bedroom a bit.
Mom and Dad are pretty spiffy lookin' for 80 and 83, don't you think?
I am currently reading the fourth book in the Twilight Saga by Stephenie Meyer. I've never been a fan of sci-fi, fantasy, or anything of the kind. Several reviews indicated that the first book was the best but I am enjoying Breaking Dawn at least as much. That I like these books at all is still somewhat of a shock. Vampires? Not me!
In the realm of knitting I started a new small project, against my better judgement as I have 3 currently in the works. (It may be a gift so it is under wraps for the moment.) Usually I have one brainless project and one more challenging in progress--no more but they are all getting too unwieldly to tote around. Saturday we have an all day piping gig in the Quad Cities so I'll need something to keep me busy in the car and during the day when we are not piping. I always overplan these things and never get as much knitting in as I hope.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Back from Two Trips

Life is finally settling down a bit after two trips. The first was to Columbus OH for "The Bee", the national convention for my business. What a blast! I can't imagine any other company having as much fun as we do. It can be silly and fun, but it is also a terrific energizer for all of us who attend. My Bee Buddy was like a professional driver, getting us out there and back quickly and safely. She is a good conversationalist also, so the trip was very enjoyable. Connie also shared a little gadget with me that I LOVE! It is a Reliefband. (She bought hers at The Sharper Image. I have since discovered that they closed all their stores.) This device looks a bit like a watch but the purpose is to relieve motion sickness, to which I am prone. It worked for me! They are a little pricey, around $130, but can be used for a long time. It really helped with being able to knit in the car, which I have trouble doing unless it is pure garter or stocking stitch and I don't have to look at it at all. I also have problems doing something as simple as looking at a map or the GPS. The Reliefband made all these tasks quite easy.

After two days at home Bob and I left for Kansas City to visit Nils. Friday night Nils and Emily took us our for sushi, our first experience. We took our shoes off before entering the little room with benches. Nils and Emily ordered the sushi for all of us and then we shared two entrees. The food was delicious and felt very healthful.

Saturday morning Bob and I went to Nils' apartment since we had not seen this one before. He has a typical batchelor pad with weights in the bedroom, dishes in the sink, and a general untidiness (though not filthy.) Bella has settled down since we last saw her at Christmas. We rode our bicycles on one of the fantastic bike trails that Kansas City has to offer. The bike trail system is amazing. Sometimes you forget that you are riding through a metropolitan area as you pass by open fields, a nut tree planting, and woods. Suddenly the pastoral scene is changed into a corporate building view, not unpleasant at all since the architecture is quite interesting. We rode 11.5 miles in 95 deg weather. Bob and Nils could have gone further but the uphill climb that I knew awaited us on the homeward stretch was looming in my mind. The last mile or so was completely uphill, some of it quite steep. I was determined to NOT be a Mom Wimp so I just shifted to the lowest possible gear on my bike (1/1) and sloughed through. Needless to say, we needed showers after that.

In the afternoon we met Emily and her puppy Emmitt at her little 1920's bungalow in the city. Emmitt is a happy-go-lucky kind of puppy that is bringing out the best in Bella. Bella was orphaned at a young age and did not have the socialization that some dogs have so having a little brother has been great for her. We lounged about for a while, enjoying the wide porch while discussing the possible dinner venues. We finally settled on Gordon Biersch, a microbrewery in the Power and Light District. I had eaten at the Gordon Biersch in Columbs and love the Pecan Crusted Tilapia so I knew it would be a hit. As Nils drove us to that area I was struck by all the green space in Kansas City. It is a beautiful city with a lot of fantastic homes, both large and small. Dinner was delicious and we enjoyed the walk back to Nils' truck.
Connie was so gracious to loan me the Reliefband for the KC trip so I was able to knit most of the way home. Mostly I worked on the Gridded Kitchen Towel which is getting boring. I need to start on the sleeves of Something Red. That will go quickly. We don't have anything much planned for the weekend and it is supposed to be quite hot on Saturday...a good time for knitting inside the cool house!

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