Thursday, April 26, 2012

Put on your foul weather gear and ride out the storm

Put on your foul weather gear and ride out the storm. The calm left behind is usually worth the ride.

I have belonged to a private group comprised of mothers with children on the autism spectrum for four years come May 2nd.  I checked my enroll date :D

During that time, we have rolled a wild ride through diagnosis, Early Intervention, IEP Drama and stress, mental health issues (our children and ours), marital problems, weight problems and a whole range of the gambit.  We even contributed to a published book  Screw attending a support group once a week!  I have had a support group available to me almost 24-7.

In the last 5 months, we have had a bit of a storm. 

First, we had two members leave after allegations that their children were not ever diagnosised nor did they present any symptoms during a CA meet- up when our Aussie friend and mom traveled to our West Coast.  (Honestly, she will be hunted down if she never comes and visits us moms in the Northeast! Fair warning, Val!!!!)  But honestly, there was more relief than turmoil as many of us had internally questioned these people. 

But recently there was a discussion over a polorized topic among families with autistic children and autistic people themselves(or families with children with autism and people with autism if you roll that way.....see how polorized the community can be?)  But this topic was Neurodiversity.    I have my own opinions on this topic but that is not the subject of this post.  Someone weighed in strongly with their opinion against Neurodiversity which another person took personally as they believe strongly in Neurodiversity.   Differences of opinions, really.  So what does an adult do?  THEY LEAVE THE GROUP!  Nonsense really.  Nonsense, to coin a phrase.  As that was the word that caused the split.

Following these episode has been some drama......resulting in more people leaving to avoid drama.  Thus, in reality, causing more drama.  And some very hurt feelings.  And some anger. 

How can four years of supporting each other be FLUSHED down the drain? I am left feeling like a little girl whose best friend just up and decided to no longer be friends.  I am really hurt by this.....

I know that this turmoil is normal when you are dealing with as many personalities, especially all women.  And growth can only be acheived if you prune.  But I am still left feeling hurt.  And left behind....

So seriously, Life is a storm.  Put on your foul weather gear and ride out the storm.  Look forward to the calm left behind. 
It is usually worth the ride.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

To Knit, or not to Knit, that is the question

To knit, or not to knit, that is the question that plagues my mind. (with many apologies to the Bard for butchering his prose...)

I love to work with yarn.  I have taught myself to crochet and to knit basic items.  I love the way that knit baby caps look with their little top knots and rolling brims.  But I am much better at crocheting.  I am doing intermediate works such as these Christening gowns below:

Double Love Knot Dress
Tiny Blossom Dress
 These will be available on my Etsy site:  Giggles, Kisses and Love

 But I just love the way that the little knit cap look with the jacquard pattern Bernat yarns.   You can only see the patterns if you knit the yarn like below: 

 So I practiced and practiced.  Frogged and frogged again.  Tried circular knitting needles and DPN needles.   The circular needs stretched to little hats too much.  Never mind frogging, I just cut the yarn and started again.

I also tried Magic Loop method of knitting.  Worked well until I would put it down and it would end up turning itself inside out and I ended up purling the knits because it was facing the wrong way.  Sigh.  Cut yarn and try again.

At first, I was leary of knitting with DPNS. I thought that it would be akin to knitting with a porcupine. The biggest help was switching from metal needles to bamboo needles. The bamboo prevents the stitches from slipping off as easily.

Knit cap with DPNs(Double-pointed needles)
 But as scary as it looks to knit with five needles, the improvement was worth it.  I have four caps completed.
Four knitted caps

But caps are not really special unless they come with a set of matching booties.  And there I ran into another problem.  Finding a cute but easy knitted bootie pattern.  I have tons of cute crochet booties patterns but knit was not going well.

Bleh....not pleased......
Off to my crochet patterns.  Decided on "My Angel Booties" pattern from The Lovely Crow, leaving out the embellishments.  Very quick and rewarding pattern, especially to donate to charity.

My Angel Booties with knit cap
So for now, I am knitting the caps so that the patterns show up and it has the lovely rolled brims but will stay with the crochet booties, unless someone can give me a cute knit pattern.  And is able to convince me that it is worth the switch.

Monday, April 23, 2012

A lazy rainy Sunday

Sunday, we got some much needed rain.

After our obligatory weekly visit to Craig's parents, we went home for lunch.  Took Amanda for a quick errand to get material to make her a weighted blanket for her bed.  But the rest of the Sunday was spent in leisurely repose.
Sad that it is raining and unable to play outside

Buggy took advantage of the rain with a much needed snooze. I tired him out while we were napping together.

Tessa found a spot to read a comic book
Amanda fiercely working on her gaming skills

Craig worked hard in the basement getting the wiring completed on the finished basement.  We did get laundry done.  I worked on the baby hat for charity and planned out the new weighted blanket for Ms Panda.

What a lovely day to spend in quiet activities.  Too bad it is ruined by a Monday........

Monday, April 16, 2012

My sweet-hearted little girl

Tessa is my older daughter. She is 8 going on 80. She has the biggest heart and sweetest soul. And up until last Saturday had the longest hair on any 8 year old that I knew.

I had been trying to get her to cut her hair for awhile. It snarled incredibly. Every morning involved tears as I brushed and braided her hair.

Two weeks, I told her the story of a little boy from Cranston who had Alopecia. He is 8 years old, same age as Tessa, and he lost all his hair including eyebrows and eyelashes. I told her about Locks of Love donation. She thought about it for a bit and asked how much she needed to donate. So I searched online and found about they wanted 10 inches.

So this past Wednesday, after her shower, I brushed her hair and then put it in an elastic at 10 inches to show her. Tessa burst into tears and said it was too short. That she could not lose that much hair. I told her that there was no reason to cry as I was not cutting it. That her hair was still there.

She mulled it over. Told my assistant leader on Thursday night that she was going to be a good Girl Scout and donate her hair……Kept talking about it Friday morning. Saturday, she asked her daddy if she would look like a boy if her hair was short. Craig told her absolutely not!

So Saturday morning, we stopped at Snipits on our way to the market. She went in and hopped up on the chair.

The hairdresser said that they would need close to 11 inches as they did not count the first inch. She put Tessa’s hair into the ponytail and then we both asked if she was okay with it.

She nodded and said she wanted to give her hair to boys and girls who needed it.

The hairdresser cut.

The only tears were mine. I did get choked up to see all my baby’s hair get cut off.

But she had a radiant smile. She tossed her new hair back and forth. She was so excited that she wiggled all through her trim.

And she looks so grown up!!! She no longer looks like such a little girl.

She spent all day Saturday checking herself out in the mirror and flipping her hair over her shoulders.  She loves her new cut.  And I just love her heart and soul.......

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Oh my goodness!  Look at me trying to blog again.  I know...I is really rather amusing to see me try again.  But here goes.  My theory is if I can post updates on Facebook, I really should be able to keep up with a blog.....

Got a new crochet hook last week!  It is Sharp Crochet Hook and it is for crocheting borders on fabric.  It is IDEAL for crocheting a border onto a flannel blanket.  I  am currently working on my 5th blanket since last week!!!

Look at how pretty they look!!!! 

I am going to send them with the package for CHERUBS that my Girl Scout Troop is working on.  The girls are going to cut out eye masks from felt and foam picture frames to send for the CHERUBS H.O.P.E. Tote bag program.

They are so cute that I will be adding this type of blanket to my Etsy store,  GIGGLES, KISSES AND LOVE
Close up of the pretty border on this sweet blanket.  It is a nice way to take a store-bought blanket and turn it into a wonderful gift or donation for charity.

Here is a link to the hook:  Not getting paid for endorsing but it is a nice tool.  I cannot wait to do some cute little girl socks or glove edges next year!!!