Saturday, 10 January 2009

Whatever wool be wool be

Apparently I don't have enough to do with my spare time. Or I'm not quite obsessed enough with just knitting. And sewing. Because when given the opportunity, I gleefully signed up for the Canberra Spinners and Weavers Guild's Beginners Spinning course.

I've done a teeny bit of spinning before. And I've had a wheel (thanks Othlon!) for ages, but just not the time to apply myself. And being largely self-taught, I'm not confident at all. I need to get some formal teaching. This course is the perfect opportunity.

I turned up on Thursday evening with several other local bloggers and Ravelers (big thanks to Carrie for getting us all there via Rav too!), wheel in hand, for the first session.

Two hours, lots of treadling and a lovely supper later, I departed with my "homework":

A great hunk of raw fleece that needs to be prepped for next week.

I spent a lovely (albeit greasy and dirty) couple of hours on the back today today combing.

And wound up with what I thought was a big pile of nice combed locks (see I'm jiggy with the lingo already!). I'm about halfway through that pile of fleece.

Sadly, that's only about 80 g (2 3/4 oz), so I've got a big more to go (I reckon I need about 150g if its going to worth knittting when I'm done). I ran out of puff today though.

I'm resisting the urge to start spinning it. I'll be good and wait til next week. After all, I'm doing the course so I can learn stuff, not continue on with my dodge-o-rama, haphazard approach.

It's a good thing I've got lots of other projects that need to be done rather soon, so the temptation is diminished.

But roll on next Thursday!

Tuesday, 6 January 2009

Day Two: It's oh so quiet....

I have to admit I'm at a bit of a loose end. I'm the only person in the house. Just me, all alone. Don't get me wrong, it's not like I don't have a million things to do, it's just that I don't want to really start anything because I keep expecting childcare to call.

The plan, you see, is that I go to the centre around lunchtime to feed (nurse) the Princess; they'll call me when she wakes up from her late-morning sleep. She was going down to sleep when I left her at 8:45 this morning, and I expected the call about 1230 or so. Except it's nearly 2:00 and they haven't called!

Yep, my phone is still working. Just called it from the landline to check.

I raced out this morning to the supermarket - how novel, to do a week's shop entirely unfettered by little people! - and a couple of other errands, then raced home again by 11:30. I was afraid I'd get The Call in the checkout line at the supermarket, or some other place where I couldn't just grab my keys and walk out.

But now I've been killing time at home, waiting, not wanting to start anything in case I have to leave. I've got cooking to do, sewing projects, major clearing out of cupboards, phone calls to Government departments to make. All things that can't really be abandoned instantly. Instead, I've caught on some blog reading (Bloglines had 450+ posts when I opened it, I am dreadfully behind), and I've got the cricket on the telly (in the middle of the day! Naughty!).

Yep, phone still working.

I'm happy, because this means Gracie has slept and eaten lunch. Otherwise I'd have been summoned ages ago.

Looks like there's nothing else for it - I think I might just have to sit on the couch and watch the cricket and wait. Some crochet might just accidentally fall into my hands.

How nice is this quiet though?

Monday, 5 January 2009

Day One

Thanks so much for all your wishes for today. It went.....OK. Not really well, not too bad, just OK. Gracie has crashed, she's exhausted, and I'm feeling quite drained too. I didn't sleep so well last night, worrying about how we would cope, if I am a bad mother for putting my baby in the care of others.

I guess it was always going to be a little chaotic, today being the first day that the centre is open following the holidays. So even the kids who have been going there for months or years might be a little hesitant or fragile going back after 2 weeks in a different routine at home.

Grace was very interested in the new environment - she loves looking at other children, and there were of course new toys. I arrived around 830, and by the time I chatted with the carers about her routine and did some paperwork, she was getting cranky and tired. I was never going to just dump her and run, I always planned to spend most of the morning there with her, so I put her down to sleep myself.

Except that she didn't much like the different bed, in a different room, with different light, sounds and smells. So she screamed. For about 40 minutes. I couldn't even rock her to sleep, which is usually a sure-fire trick. If I haven't mentioned it before, Gracie is a champion sleeper, a great self-settler, just wrap her up and away she goes. I could count on one hand the number of times we've been unable to settle her. So it was pretty upsetting that I couldn't soothe her, on today of all days.

I kept thinking "that's it, I'll take her home. Just home to her own bed". I was so close to walking out with her. But we hung in there, and in the end gave up on sleeping (even though she was so tired she was falling asleep between howls! She just wouldn't stay asleep), and fed her instead.

After that she was fine (yes, arguably she was hungry in the first place, but initially she was more tired than hungry. I still get those signals wrong sometimes). I handed her over to the primary carer and she was all smiles and ready to play. I took myself off to the kitchen for a cup of tea to soothe my nerves (parents are encouraged to do this if they feel like it), and after half an hour looked in the window and she was happy and playing.

I checked in at lunch-time and she had just woken from a sleep and finished a bottle, and was ready for lunch.

When I picked her up this afternoon, she had only had an hour's sleep all day, and refused to settle for her afternoon sleep, but had eaten a big lunch, drunk both her bottles of milk and charmed both the carers and other kids. She was sitting in a swing chair surrounded by other children, looking for all the world like she holding court!

So today was OK. I'm sure tomorrow will be better, and next week better again. On the up side, they have agreed to try using her cloth nappies this week. (Normal practice is to supply your own disposables.) That made me very happy!

Sunday, 4 January 2009


The sound of 2008 rushing by and receeding into the past. It seems to have flown; it feels like just weeks ago that the Department I work for took up residence in our new building (January 08), we moved to our new house (April), Princess Grace was born (June)....she's six months old already, where did it go??

And now, with the new year, a new phase is about to begin for us. Tomorrow the Princess has her first day at childcare. I can't even begin to describe my feelings at this event - my brain and stomach are both churning. PJ loves it there, and can't wait to go back and see his mates. But he's 3 and a half - the Princess is just 6 months old. Yes, he did start childcare at 4 and a half months, but the circumstances were somewhat different.

This week is practice week - I don't start back at work until next week. We've been practicing giving her expressed milk in a cup a couple of times a day, and she's taken to it really well (and Beloved loves the special calm time feeding her too). I hate sitting there watching her drink while expressing away with the electric pump. And I know I'll hate sitting in a closed room at work expressing as well. I'll still visit her for one feed a day, but still....enough of that. I'm sure we will all adjust, and everyone will be fine.

Happy New Year to you all! I hope you enjoyed yourself, however you chose to celebrate. We had a lovely break at my parents' home over Christmas and an equally lovely time schlepping around home these last days.

I am such a doofus at the mosaic maker thingy, so sorry, no captions!

There's been lots of reviewing of 2008 and looking forward to 2009. I've got nothing much to show for 2008, in a crafting sense, unlike some people I know. (And that's only the handful of blogs I've caught up on today - I'm scared to see more examples of outstanding productiveness that will make me feel terribly unorganised and slack!). And I'm not quite ready to look forward yet (let me get through this week and next).

I've got one or two little FOs to share to finish off the old year, but they're for future posts. Yes, I know I've said that before, but I promise I will share!

In the meantime, my knitting calls. I've got a rather big deadline looming (that's for another post too), so I need to get some serious time with the sticks.

May 2009 bring joy, peace, happiness and all good thing to your house.

G x