She’s here! She’s two weeks old, and I’m just now getting a chance to write about her arrival. That’s pretty normal, right? Everything taking about 10 times longer when you have a newborn in your arms?
The last few weeks were a blur. My due date came with little fanfare. However, a few days after that we had 5 days of intense contractions, no sleep, and a drastically altered birth plan. Finally we had her in our arms. I never knew that you could be completely exhausted, and on an adrenaline high all at the same time. Well, at least, I’d never experienced it.
I struggle to find a word to adequately describe Mark’s devotion to me through the whole event. He was so patient and supportive through everything. Through the whole nine months. I still can’t quite believe we have a daughter. A daughter.
I’ll never forget Mark announcing It’s a girl! I looked at him and said ” It’s an Iris?” with tears in my eyes, so relieved that she was finally here.
“Do you still want to use that name?” I asked
” Yes” he said.
So we named her Iris. Not a family name. We just liked it because it was simple, pretty and classic. I hope she likes it as she grows up. I hope she has a childhood filled with sunny days, bike rides, sandboxes, and finger-paints. I hope she never gets her heart broken, or gets picked on by a mean girl. I hope she never IS the mean girl. I hope she never feels ashamed of her body, or wishes she were someone else. I hope that her mother can come to terms with the fact that disappointment and pain will be inevitable in her life. But there is plenty of time for worrying about that. Now is the time to stumble around in my PJ’s, let the dishes pile up, and admire the miracle of a new life in the spring. Not a bad gig. Not bad at all.
April has been the strangest month. All of us Minnesotans had such high hopes for some spring weather, but we’ve been slammed with snowstorms almost every week! To top it off, I spend a good 3 weeks feeling really sick. I won’t go into detail, but for this normally super healthy girl, I had a cold that turned into all sorts of super painful, uncomfortable other things, and more trips to the doctor and midwife than ever! I feel like I am an expert on natural remedies that are safe during pregnancy. Not sure how many of them actually worked. I think the only thing that truly helped was rest and time. Luckily, nothing I’ve experienced over the last three weeks has been dangerous to me or the baby, and I count my blessings for that. Every time I had a little pity party with my box(es) of kleenex, feeling like I’d never feel well again, I tried to remember how many other Mama’s would gladly trade their pregnancy complications for any combination of my ailments. Perspective can dish out a healthy dose of reality.
However, I am glad to finally becoming out of the haze of feeling sick, and welcoming the sun and warm temps that have finally decided to arrive. I supposed the cocktail of sickness and blizzards really does make me appreciate normalcy even more. My sewing and knitting and making has literally remained untouched until this last week. Boy, does it feel good to get back at my routine again, just in time for my “normal” to be completely flipped upside-down by Baby Joesting. Our due date is Sunday!
The nursery is ready to go, complete with a hand made origami mobile made by Daddy Joesting. I absolutely love it, and it makes me smile every time I look at it. I also took a little time to make a cosmetic bag, and eyeglass case for myself. A special little something to pack in the hospital bag with my personal items. It’s been so long since I’ve made something for myself, but I am pretty smitten with this little bag. I feel like writing up a simple pattern and set of instructions for this little bag for you all. Not promising, but if this baby comes late, I might have some time on my hands.
I guess I must be back into the nesting/domestic kick, because I saw this lemon cake recipe on pinterest, and I couldn’t get it out of my head! It was sooo good, and looked so sweet and summery! I highly recommend giving it a try.
I also included one of our maternity photos with the amazing Emily Steffen Photography. I know my facebook friends have seen these already, but I thought I’d include one here to. I debated whether or not to have some pictures taken of the baby belly. It’s an odd thing to have your appearance change so drastically, some changes are fun, some cause you to pause at your reflection and think, “oh dear, is that really me?”. But after dealing with my fear of being photographed, Emily makes us feel so at ease in front of the camera, and snapped away so many great shots so quickly! She is a magical combination of artist/friend/miracle worker. Anything she takes a photo of turns to gold! I’m so glad we did the photos, and that Emily squeezed in my last minute request. It’s such a fleeting moment. Now it’s just time to hurry up and wait.
Little projects are everywhere these days, “decorating” our house. I’m attempting to tackle an embroidered alphabet pillow for the rocker in the baby’s room. One of those totally unnecessary projects, but a nice little something to work on in the evenings. I was inspired by my world traveling/living abroad friend Bethany, who decided to take up embroidery as the perfect little transportable art form. So far, it has me a little smitten.
I’ve been knitting this little cotton romper for Baby J. I am hoping it will be the perfect thing to bring our little one home in. I debated long or short sleeves/legs, but remembered newborns generally need to stay warm, and it will only be late April or Early May when we bring this kid home. I LOVED this pattern by the way. It’s raveled HERE. I think I will end up knitting the sweather verison at some point too.
I had to trick myself into thinking it was spring today. Because with a temp hanging in the teens, it sure didn’t feel like the first day of spring.
With the huge mountains of snow still filling my yard, it hardly feels that way. It seems as though most of my posts mention the weather. Is that silly? Well, when you live in Minnesota,the weather really defines your days. That’s why we relish spring so much. It’s glorious, when it finally decides to come around.
Luckily today did bring a healthy dose of sunshine, which led to an incredible craving for a smoothie, and for blueberry muffins. I needed some summery fruits. I chopped up a pineapple and threw it in with strawberries and a banana for the smoothie. I attempted a blueberry/orange zest/banana muffin. I used a new recipe that I found and tweaked. I of course added some sugary glaze, because what is pregnancy, if not an excuse to take something healthy, and make it a dessert? While the flavor was great, and they looked fantastic, they were rather, um, dense. In a way that they seemed underdone, but weren’t. I don’t know what happened. Baking is a fickle beast, I’ve found. I give a lot of credit to anyone that can make up their own baking recipes. You really have to know your chemistry!
How have you been tricking your mind into spring thoughts? What do you knit/make as the weather gets warmer?
These photos are now two weeks old, but I have to prove that I do more than sit around and knit, right? In Actuality, I knit while Mark drove the 6 hours to Chicago, but once we got there, I didn’t touch my yarn. I thought I would, but it was nice to keep it all in my knitting basket for once. Nice to walk around the Windy City for hours, and collapse into a giant fluffy hotel bed at the end of the day, bellies full of food, minds full of art. No “to do” lists in sight. Exactly what the doctor ordered for a pre-baby getaway.
We were there for just four days, and the only productive thing we did was go to the Art Institute. For two art majors, it was like wondering through the streets of Beverly Hills. Everywhere we looked we were starstruck by images we’d only seen in textbooks. Lots of Dali, Monet, and the famous pointillism painting by George Seurat. Mark’s mind is like a steel trap for art facts. Well, many facts actually. I’d jokingly say ” Mr. Joesting? What does this one mean?”, and he’d launch fully into art teacher mode and describe the time the artist worked, the colors they chose, etc. Just the intellectual stimulation our brains needed, before our heads are filled with feeding schedules and memorizing good night moon. Not that those things don’t hold their own importance of course, but I hope we can always remember to talk to each other, and not forget the interests and passions that brought us together in the first place.
We did a lot of walking, and even more eating. Lots of eating. I guess I should have taken some pictures of the delicious things we ate, but I was just too busy enjoying it! Don’t worry, I have lots of knitting to show you soon. It has been two weeks since we’ve been back, so of course I’ve launched into a new project and finished some things I’d like to share.
One last announcement, I have a sock knitting class scheduled at the amazing Digs Studio coming up next week! If you’d like to learn to knit socks, this is your chance! I will hold your hand through the steps of sock knitting, and you will feel empowered declaring ” I MADE these!” to all how comment on your adorable socks! go HERE for more details!
Lots of Preparations being made around here. Two blankets in the works (one knitted, one quilted, of course), and a paint color being pondered. I’m going for a very etherial blue that doesn’t scream ” baby blue”. No this is not a clue into the gender ( that I know of).
Kitty has taken to her favorite past time. grabbing balls of yarn from the stash in the attic and dragging them all around the house, creating a life size cat’s craddle. Makes for interesting installation art to come home to. Must remember to shut attic door.
And of course, a picture of my progress at 28 weeks. Still fairly comfortable, and very thankful for what seems to be a very healthy and happy baby Joesting. Trying not to take anything for granted. Like passing the glucose test, or getting a full night’s sleep.
Feeling the desire to start designing some knitting projects myself, as all the things I have been making lately have been from other’s patterns. Sometimes It’s nice to just pick up a pattern and knit ( or sew).
More details on these projects soon. Lots of irons in the fire. I’m sure I’m not the only one, right?
A red duffle coat for baby Baby J. I imagine this little number worn with either train conductor pin stripe pants, or over a polka dot dress and leggings. No?
I made the 9 month size I believe, hoping it will fit next fall/winter/spring sometime. It seems a little large, but I’ve learned it’s much better to make something a little big, and than too small. Although I do feel the need to knit up a few tiny spring sweater that baby can wear right away.
The whole “waiting to find out the gender” thing hasn’t really squelched my knitting ideas, in fact I think it’s made me knit more, but it has certainly helped restrain me at the Baby Gap. Perfect situation in my opinion!
I love the days between Christmas and New Years. The stress and hussle of getting ready for Christmas is over, but there is still a festive attitude in the air, with the upcoming new year. I also gave myself permission to do selfish knitting and baby knitting, instead of filling my to do list with knitted gifts. I never got around to posting my last knitting projects, which is a shame, because I think I’m hitting my winter knitting stride. Oh, well, I’m here now, right?
First of all, Molly got a stocking this year. Yes, the cat got a handmade stocking.I know I know, this propelled me into crazy cat lady status, as if i haven’t done that already. I couldn’t help myself! Her name looks so cute knit into a little stocking! You may be wondering why I’m not getting a head start on Baby Joesting’s stocking. Well, the way I knit stockings, I knit the name into it it right away, and since we won’t know the gender or the name till at least April, I’ve bought myself a little time. Smart, huh?
For those interested, I don’t really have a pattern for the stockings I’ve made. I just knit them with a basic sock recipe, but I shorten to instep area of course. And I knit with worsted weight yarn, using needles much smaller than called for, like size 3 and 4. Maybe next time I will write down a pattern, because I will want to match Mark and I’s stockings better than Molly’s. I wanted Molly’s to be smaller than ours.
Next, I conquered my mitten curse! I have never completed a pair of mittens for myself, (I’ve come close before) and I knew what I needed to do. I have to crank them out, from start to finish, with little interruption. Whenever I put a mitten project on hold, that is when the curse would go into effect. I used The warmest mitten pattern from Ravelry. I knit very tight, and thought they would end up way to snug, which is how they felt when I first completed them, but after a few wears, they have stretched into the perfect size, yet still fitted enough. I have to remember that handknit wool ALWAYS stretches.
And on the needles right now, An adorable little wool soaker for cloth diapers. We are going to give cloth the old college try. I think I will use the wool soaker for more of a decorative cover, but I guess you can use it for an actual diaper cover, with those white cloth diapers that you mostly see used for burp cloths now. You know what I mean? we will probably use the kinda that come with their own water proof cover. I love the look of a cloth diaper, and love the cost savings, as well as many other benefits. Time will tell if I love washing a million diapers…
Another baby sweater is sooo close to completion too. This baby is already to spoiled! What are the rest of you knitting/making?