Wrinkles

I have wrinkles. 

Not a lot, but enough to be noticeable. Small ones. Mostly around the eyes. They’re starting to intersect each other. Like the road map of a city that has started to expand and grow its own suburbs. 

Wrinkles and the garter stitch- slow and steady. Their progress sneaks up on you…

It’s possible they came from my job, which is an endless cycle of massive deadlines. Just as I’m about to get through a particularly brutal one, another one pops up for the next week. Rinse and repeat. 

It’s possible they came from my husband. By marrying him, I’ve set myself up for an entire lifetime of heckling about my driving and the constant annoyance of dishes piling in the sink. 

It’s possible they came from my son, who has meltdowns over things like his piece of toast tearing into two pieces and me not being able to magically fuse it back together even if IT STILL TASTES THE SAME AND THE END GOAL IS TO EAT IT ALL SO IT WON’T EVEN MATTER.

Sorry guys. Lost myself for a second. We get really passionate about toast around these parts. 

Our issues with toast may be directly related to my coffee consumption. #serenitynow

Anyway, it doesn’t really matter. And since I haven’t quite come around to the idea of botox, the wrinkles are seemingly here to stay. 

So instead I have to find a way to embrace them. Perhaps connect good things that come from the decades of stress. 

With each work deadline comes a sense of accomplishment after I’m done. The wrinkles also represent the promotions I’ve received from hard work and dedication to a company I love. 

I’m now basically too anxious to drive with anyone ever because of the endless jabs, but I also have had 7 years of support and love and a few thank yous for when I decide enough is enough and load the dishwasher myself. 😏

And sure, there are terrible two meltdowns on the regular, but I’ve also got a toddler who grabs my wrinkly face and plants kisses on it *almost* daily (he was really upset with me over the toast thing). 

So yeah. My wrinkles are what they are. I guess I’ll own up to them and accept them as a fact of  life. Same as my upcoming, inevitable dive into the mid-30’s scene happening this summer. 

Or…

Or I’ll continue to assault them with every single serum and treatment I can get my hands on at Sephora for the rest of my life. 

Yeah, I’ll probably do that. 

– Amy 

Quarantine

We took a lovely long weekend trip to Missouri over Easter. 

Given that my child is almost two and a half, it really is a crap shoot of what to expect from him on the 7.5-hour drive. For example, last time we made the trip, he projectile vomited within 5 miles of my parents’ house. 

It could have been worse, I suppose. He could have thrown up in hour 2 and the smell would have destroyed us all. So there’s that. 

But anyway, he did great. Both the ride down and back. Possibly the best road trip we’ve had with him. 

My husband, however, did not fare so well. 

He got the chills the night before we drove back home. 

We still drove back, but turns out it was strep throat. And we had all been trapped in a car together for 7.5 hours. 

Kyle immediately went into quarantine. And while I like to think of myself as a loving wife, there’s only so much nurturing to go around. And when I am doing everything I can to keep my child from getting strep, there’s not much leftover when it comes to looking over his well-being. 

I warmed up a couple of cans of soup. Threw a bottle of NyQuil at him through a slightly opened door. Provided him with some Clorox wipes to wipe down anything he touched between the two rooms he was allowed in – our bedroom and the bathroom. 

And then I slept on our family room couch for two days. 

Because it is all about survival. And sorry, bro, you have fallen and I cannot help you until you are officially no longer contagious. 

That does seem harsh. But to be fair, if I were to get sick, I would expect about the same. One adult being sick is tolerable. But if you take the child down with you, we’re going to have problems. 

He must be protected at all costs. 

So Kyle stayed in quarantine and I caught up on Netflix in the evenings, with crochet in hand. 

I really love the texture, but due to the size of this throw, it’s been slow going. It’s also stalled at the moment, because I need to buy more yarn for it.

With health being restored in our household, I also expect it to stall more because I am desperately behind on my NICU blanket goals. 

This is the last one I worked on. Before the need for quarantine.

Gonna have to partially blame the husband and his germs on that one. 🙂 

-Amy

Royal Obsession

I’m a quirky character, if you haven’t already figured that out.

I crochet, for one thing, which seems normal when you follow like 500 like-minded Instagram accounts, but in real life, my partner in crime Bailey is one of the few people I know who knits/crochets on the reg. I do have a friend who does cross stitch, but if we’re going to be a fiber arts snob, that is not the same thing (seriously. It’s not.).

But anyway, there’s more about me that is a little eccentric. I don’t like most fruit. I also have a strong opinion that dessert should not have fruit in it, but if you want to get super technical, I do like Swedish fish and lemon-flavored starbursts (Yes, the lemon ones. You’re now wondering if I’m a sociopath, I get it.).

I don’t care for riding bikes, not one bit, as I believe I’m better off with both feet touching the ground.

I can’t stand being late, but we’ve already examined that psychological problem in detail.

And…

I’m obsessed with the Royal Family.

It likely stems from the fantasies of being a princess that many little girls grew up with. Or that because I grew up on a farm in the heart of the U.S. versus in a CASTLE, that I’m so fascinated by a life so different than my own.

Either way, obsessed.

Remember when Will and Kate tied the knot? I convinced my friend Monica it would be a good idea to get up at 3am and watch the wedding on the treadmills at the gym. I had the nuptials streaming with my headphones in at work. And then I proceeded to watch coverage of it from the time I got home that night until I went to bed. Literally 5-6 hours of replaying things that I had already watched. Obsessed.

When Harry and Meghan got married? Same thing, but I had a kid, so I tried to convince him the horses on their carriage were fun to watch so I could maximize my news coverage instead of changing to Saturday morning cartoons.

I actually looked up flights to England to get in on the pre-wedding hype. Seriously.

Flights were cheap, lodging was the bigger issue. If you were curious.

I binge watched The Crown, and watched every documentary on the family that Netflix has to offer. Queen Elizabeth is the epitome of boss bitch and I love her for it. Her elegance? Perfection. Her steadfast rule? Legendary. The perfected side eye of disapproval?

YASSSS QUEEN.

So, as you can imagine, waiting around for Harry’s royal spawn has started to get very exciting.

Girl or boy? Will it have red hair? Meghan’s smile? Harry’s care free personality? How many names will they get? SO MANY THINGS TO WONDER ABOUT.

Not a blanket for Harry and Meghan, but a baby blanket nonetheless. They’ve likely got a million already made for them in silk and cashmere, so I’ll just continue making mine for charity and call it a day. 😊

The moral of the story is if I seem distracted this month, this is one of the reasons why.

And for real, Netflix, when do we get a release date for The Crown’s third season?

-Amy

It’s Hard Out There for a Toddler

On a typical day, my husband has already picked up Henry from daycare well before I get home. So when I walk in the door, the dog comes running and I can hear a “mama!!!” from somewhere inside the house. I get about 20 seconds to lose the work bag and winter coat before Henry rams into me at full speed for a big hug.

He’s a good hugger. Not a cuddler. But his hugs are pretty top notch. 

Henry is not at all impressed with his mother’s talents. Nor does he care I was working hard to get this done for a new best friend he hasn’t met yet.

However, the other night was a little different. The same exclamation of “mama!” happened and I walked around the corner to see him climbing the stairs to get to me. He got to the top. Stood up. Looked at me. And started to cry. And then proceeded to slowly cry walk toward me until he just collapsed into my arms. 
It’s amazing how much that can hurt one’s heart.
My husband said he had been having fun literally until that exact moment. This has happened a few times, in various ways, so I tried not to overthink it. And I had obviously googled it in the past. #helicoptermom
From what various discussion boards and mommy sites, it seems kids sometimes do the same things adults do. After working hard to keep himself together all day, following rules and being surrounded by other kids, coming home and being exhausted and within an hour of bedtime… we were all finally there and Henry felt like it was as safe time to just let loose. 

Done! I’ve become obsessed with less traditional colors being used for baby blankets.

I feel ya, bro. 
I really do. I wish I could say it gets easier. But that seems like a lie. Because I definitely have those days where I come home upset or exhausted from a deadline that has made me physically sick. Even though I love my job, it’s fair to still require a place where I feel comfortable enough to decompress and not get judged for it. 
It’s also one of the reasons why my husband can tell the difference between my normal resting knit face and my “OMG do not even think of coming near me or looking in my general direction” knit face. He gets me. 
Henry clearly doesn’t knit/crochet due to the lack of required dexterity at this point in his life, but he and I still share a few things that make us feel better after a long day: 
1. a good hug
2. a long bath
3. a good story
4. snacks on snacks on snacks
And when he turns 21, perhaps he can add wine to that list. 

I know I have.
What’s your go-to after a long day? 

-Amy

Wisconsin Weekend

As previously mentioned, my family was planning for a weekend getaway. 

In Wisconsin, actually. Sheboygan, to be more specific. 

Sheboygan is fun to say.

Shu-boy-gun. 

See? Fun. 

Anyway, it was a trip for the grand kids and mostly revolved around an indoor water park. Because there are not many desirable outdoor activities during winter months in Wisconsin. 

I think you can ski. But unlike my counterpart on this blog, I refuse to even entertain the idea of a hobby like that. 

My feet are better on solid ground. And if not on solid ground, they much prefer floating around a lazy river about 20x in a row with an excited but overwhelmed child chilling in my lap. 

He probably peed in the pool/on me. We’re not going to think about it. 

Anyway, when traveling, it’s always important to have packed correctly. And that includes the right amount of yarn and a good project to keep busy, even if there are only a few opportunities to work on it. That includes time spent in the car. 

My husband is the superior driver, there’s no argument about that, and so I happily keep myself busy and take very seriously my one job of turning on Google maps when we’re close to getting off the highway. 

Important stuff. 

It’s also great to have around for when my child chooses to forgo sleep because he’s not comfortable in a new environment and ends up in bed with us (kicking me in the back throughout the night) and then refuses to sleep past 5:30 am. 

It’d also be nice to have during middle of the day naps, but If we’re being honest, I ended up taking a nap at that time. Because 5:30 am. And tired crochet can be extremely consequential. I’ve yanked out rows upon rows before for simple oversights and it’s always a sad occurrence. 

Anyway, I started a blanket for friends due with their second in June, but probably won’t finish it anytime soon because it’s still a good size to take on the next road trip we have planned in April. 

My focus this month has been mostly on keeping up with my NICU blankets goal for the year. However, my son woke up calling for (i.e. demanding) someone to come wipe his boogers last night. So I suspect I’ll also have to put that away until we have a virus-free household again (rules are rules when it comes to charity guidelines, right?). 

Wisconsin has the best souvenirs!

All this means I’ll be focusing on getting a few other “almost done” projects completed and out the door because my collection of works in progress is starting to get a little overwhelming. And I still haven’t convinced my husband that a craft room is a valid reason for needing to move into a bigger house. 

Sigh. 

– Amy

Punctuality is a Virtue

I like to be punctual.

Screw that. I like to be ridiculously early to things.

And if it requires driving somewhere with traffic being a factor? I will knock on your door 10 minutes early and exclaim, “I’m so sorry I’m early!” when I’ve already spent 10 minutes sitting in my car in front of your house like a creep.

Being late causes extremely large amount of discomfort. It’s always been that way. It’s a thing with me.

This chevron blanket gave me huge anxiety because it’s for some very close friends and I’ve never done chevron before and wanted it to be perfect. That did not happen because I seem to have issues counting. Math is hard.

I jokingly blame my dad. A regular staple in my childhood was being told we were going to leave for something at, say, 4:30. My parents would be sitting in the car, already backed out of our garage and impatiently waiting at 4:15. Honking.

As you can imagine, this has affected many aspects of everyday life. Remember the movie “Superbad”? It was hilarious, right?

NO. I HATED that movie because the majority of the plot was based around getting to a party and they kept getting more and more delayed. They were soooo late for that stupid party.

I could not handle it.

Easily the worst part of making any blanket with more than one color. I’ve started weaving in and securing with a tiny knot because I live in constant fear of being judged if my blanket starts to unravel.

There’s also a Friends episode where they’re all supposed to go to a dinner and the only person ready and trying to get everyone out the door was Ross. No one else seemed to be bothered that they were never going to get there on time. It was terribly rude.

I simply cannot.

But I recognize my problem and am actively trying to overcome it. My husband, for example, will only leave then house at the exact time needed to get us there within a minute of when we’re supposed to arrive. What caused me to have an unnecessary heart attack every time we would leave the house is now starting to dwindle to maybe only a few chest pains here and there.

Baby steps.

And if anything, if we end up late, I can always blame my husband.

The scape goat makes me feel better.

And it’s finished! I have to say, thisis one of my favorite blankets I’ve done. I also have to say, I won’t be doing another one like this any time soon.

So what about the rest of you? Any weird ticks that have just become a part of who you are?

I also can only open the microwave after it’s done, or on a number that ends in 0 or 5. Oh, the oatmeal is going to explode out of the bowl if I don’t open it with 13 seconds left? Too bad. Let’s watch it tidal wave over the top and I’ll open it when the timer gets to 10 seconds when it’s clearly too late.

I’m a mess.

-Amy

Link to pattern used is here.

Chiberia

It’s here.

That time of year. You know… when the temps dip below 0 throughout the entire week. When you question every decision you’ve made about living in this frozen tundra you call home…. or is that just me?

Barf.

My husband, of course, spent the earlier part of the week in Colorado on a ski trip- playing in the snow. The rest of us stayed here. Suffering through all the snow. And cold air.

I’m not bitter. Just freakin’ cold.

My mom came to visit until Tuesday, which was great because I never turn down a set of extra hands. Two-year-olds are exhausting. But it was just me and the kiddo up against the record-setting lows coming our way Tuesday night.

What do I do if the water pipes freeze? What if the heat goes out? At what point do I worry because there is ice INSIDE of the windows? Can our dog even pee in temps this low? Or does it just freeze as it comes out?

All questions I didn’t have the answer to. Everything is seemingly fine (fingers crossed), but I’ll still stand by the decision to double up my child’s pajamas these last two nights when it dipped down to -22 and -24.

Helicopter mom strikes again.

Luckily, working from home is an option. But if we’re being honest, that just makes me even more stir crazy.

Stuck inside for over 36 hours and I’m stuck weaving in ends. My sanity is about to crack.

Anyway, we’re at Thursday morning and have been told by this afternoon things will just be “normal Chicago cold”. So that’s something to look forward to, I guess?

How’s everyone doing out there? Frozen? Sleeping through the whole thing? Scheduling trips to warmer climates at this very moment?

If you have a strategy to keep kids not from going crazy being inside for so long, HIT ME UP. Please and thank you.

-Amy