We Are a Two-Toddler Household, Now

Jelly Bean (JB for short, on the Internet) is ONE year old. Wow! another year of wild emotions, tears of defeat and laughter, joy, complete exhaustion, and overwhelming love.

He surprises me all of the time. He laughs and smiles all day, excepting the times he is being naughty or has an “oopsy daisy.” He wants his mother first and foremost, but is finally learning to be content in the lap of another. He wants to be bigger and faster like his sister. He adores her. Anything she does astounds and fascinates him, and he wants to be involved in all of her play (even against her wishes).

Pictures describe him better than words ever could.

This is his being silly face:

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And here is his “what’s that?” face:

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This is his eating face:

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And his “sister, push me faster!” face:

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This is his after-nap-crying face:

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And his chose-not-to-nap face:

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This is his favorite place where he makes his most curious face of all:

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He is fun and squishy, soft and lovable, hug-and-kiss-able, and all things wonderful. And I love him all of the time.

Happy birthday, son.

She Stitches: JB’s Birthday Blocks

A certain little boy turns one year old this week and had his party over the weekend. I have no idea what inspired me to make blocks for him, but this is the result.

Progression Info
Started – September 8
Completed – October 4
Duration – 26 days = 3.7 weeks

I worked on this in spurts. I don’t know how many actual labor hours went into them.

Pattern Info
Improvised by me

I just made these up, which is why they aren’t perfect cubes. 😉 I accidentally made the letters 2 stitches taller than they are wide, so the sides are rectangles. Ah, well; they are still cute.

Also, it took a lot of time deciding how to stitch them together so that his name could be made. And also his sister’s name. And our last name. But I managed to figure that out, too.

Yarn Info
Red Heart Super Saver Solids
100% acrylic

Slobber-able. Chew-able. Washable. Ideal for blocks for a one-year-old.

Photos

She Knits: JB’s Winter ’16 Hat

The boy needed a hat to complement his McDreamy sweater.

Progression Info
Started – September 5
Completed – September 11
Duration – 6 days = 0.9 weeks

This was a quick one.

Pattern Info
F679 Hat by Vanessa Ewing
Ravelry

I knit the 12 month size. I used my gauge from the McDreamy sweater (same yarn) to calculate how large it would come out if I used this yarn. I calculated about 1/2″ positive ease (so, about 1/2″ larger than his head measurement). It appears to fit very well, with a bit of growth room for the winter. So my calculations were spot on!

This is a great pattern; would be good for a beginning knitter. The texture looks complicated, but it is created with decreases and increases.

The cast-on method I used was JSSCO, and I substituted a 1×1 twisted rib. I am happy overall, but if I knit it again, I would knit the Icord top about an inch longer, a total of 16-20 rounds (instead of the 12 indicated in the pattern). It was difficult to knot and doesn’t look like the pattern images.

Yarn Info
Knit Picks Comfy Sport
75% cotton, 25% acrylic
Colorway – Seafoam
0.86 skeins = 117.0 yds used

I was concerned about using a cotton yarn for a hat. The ribbing is not as stretchy as it would be if I used wool (cotton has basically no elasticity), but it still fits nicely and hugs his head well, so I think it will be OK.

Photos

She Knits: McDreamy Sweater

I have eyed this pattern since finding out Jelly Bean was a boy. I finally made it. My wonderful husband made the sweet little wooden buttons for me. They are so perfect for this sweater.

Progression
Started – May 15
Completed – June 16
Duration – 32 days = 4.6 weeks

I worked on one other project during this time. If I had knit on this exclusively, I could have finished it in 1-2 weeks, I think.

Pattern Info
B21-15 McDreamy Jumper by DROPS design
Ravelry

Let me preface the next statement by saying this: I love how this sweater turned out. But it was not a fun knit. I have knit DROPS patterns in the past, so I thought I knew what to expect going into this one. Whew! it was tough. Everything went swimmingly until the top of the yoke, where the neckband begins. It simply didn’t make a lick of sense. I ended up doing what I could to make the sweater turn out as the picture showed. Again, I’m happy with the result. I love it, in fact. I may even knit this pattern again someday. But now I know that the neckline instructions can just be ignored.

I did not take notes on my modifications of the neckline, but here’s what I remember. I knit extra raglan decrease rows in order to obtain the desired number of stitches at the front neck. For the “neckline shaping,” I worked two short rows across the front set of stitches, decreasing 2 stitches each row at the center front. I did not do any wrapping; when I came to that little jog on the way back around around, I just knit across it, pulling the stitches snug. I can’t see a hole there, so I suppose it worked out.

I picked up and knit 32 stitches for each button band on the “raglan edge.”

I purled a row around the neck before beginning the ribbing. I did not knit the fold-over ribbing on the neck; it looked too bulky. I knit the neckline ribbing about the same height as the button bands are wide.

I knit the 12/18 month size, and my gauge was spot-on with slightly smaller needles than given in the pattern (size 2.75 mm and 2.0 mm). It fits a little big right now, so I expect it to fit perfectly come colder weather in November-ish.

Yarn Info
Knit Picks Comfy Sport
75% cotton, 25% acrylic
Seafoam colorway
3.22 skeins = 437.9 yds used

I do not enjoy knitting with cotton, especially at such a tight gauge. But this yarn makes such darling baby/kid sweaters, I’m sure I’ll use it again. It is soft, will wash beautifully, and is just warm enough for the climate here. Also, you can’t beat the range of colors available!

I have more than 1.5 skeins left, so I hope to find a hat pattern to go with this sweater.

Photos