2

Summer Mom Fail

I had a plan.

My child was NOT going to sit around inside all day this summer, rotting his brain on TV and Minecraft. We were going to do a project every day, something that was fun, but also educational. He was going to read to me consistently and do his summer bridge workbook pages. We were going to have a great time together, spend lots of time outdoors, and he was going to love summertime with Mom.

Ha ha ha ho ho ho hee hee hee. Feel free to snort your beverage of choice through your nostrils at my cheerful optimism. Personally, I suggest something not carbonated.

I thought I was so prepared. I made a huge book with all sorts of activities I found on Pinterest. Beginning in May I spent hours looking for the best projects and purchased (little by little) a huge tub of supplies. I grew to love Pinterest (remember when I asked this? What was I thinking?!) with an all-consuming passion that still exists to this day. Ah, adorably naive pre-summer me! How sad that you disappeared so quickly after that last day of Kindergarten.

We are halfway through summer and I have nearly given up. The workbook pages get completed, but intermittently. Uptown has read only 9 books to me, and nearly every one involved crying, cajoling, frustration, and bad feelings all around. We have done maybe 5 of the projects I thought we’d do this summer and most of them were fairly spectacular fails. Whenever I bring up the “busy book” it is met with promising interest, only to fade into lackluster participation.

And I am failing at this Mom thing. I am exhausted, unsure how to engage my child because I am so wiped out, angry that he seems incapable of doing anything that doesn’t involve a screen and disconsolate I can’t make this summer thing work. Someone please tell me that it’s o.k.; that I will not have created a mouth-breather who still lives at home when he’s 32 (there’s one of those just a few doors down!) just because I couldn’t keep us on track this summer.

Sigh.

Meanwhile, very little knitting is getting done. But I did manage to finish one project and add a (insert sarcasm here —›) whopping 198 yds to my Stash Dash 2016 total.

Death Star 2

This is my second of these crazy pillows and it was made for a high school friend who had to have one after seeing the other one I made. If you want specific project details, you can check out my post for the previous pillow, which went to the son of a college friend (incidentally my ex-boyfriend who then married my college roommate, ha ha!).

So here’s the updated Stash Dash 2016 list (all Ravelry links):

The Joker & The Thief and the Embroidered Apron are still in rotation, but I broke The Rule of Two and added in a third project, the Summer 2016 KAL from JLFleckenstein. So far it’s a lot of fairly mindless garter stitch using yarn from my stash (counts for Stash Dash – yesssssss!!) which I really really need right now.

Alright troops. Break’s over.  Back to mom duty!

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1

Mojo-a-gogo 

From Left to Right: Tidbit, Leafy Newborn Beanie & Seventh

 

I’ve been busy. There’s some serious knitting mojo goin’ on up in here. Plus, I’ve been bustin’ me some stash! It’s all good at Chez Funkytown.

These little hats are for my friend at Knitting Up North.  Every spring she knits baby hats for a contest her local Optimist Club holds. I always like to donate a few.  It’s for a worthy cause, I get to help out a knitting pal, and it’s pretty much instant gratification. I’ve actually made 6 already, but have only photographed the 3 above. I mean, these fingers are too busy knittin’ to stop and take photos people! The deadline is April 15th – hint hint. Not only should you check out her blog for some awesome inspiration, I’m sure she’d love to receive a few extra hats to add to her total ;) Just sayin’. Oh and she’s also hosting a knit along beginning March 20th for the Jujika Cowl. I’m in!  If you’re on Ravelry (and you totally should be!) come join us at her group here.

I decided early on this year that I was going to try to keep myself to a strict set of rules for my knitting in 2016. Well, it’s really not a set of rules, more like one big rule.  I have a penchant for getting totally obsessed with any new pattern that comes across my radar, to the complete detriment of whatever else I may be working on.  I have sweaters that have taken me years to complete (if they’ve been completed at all) not because they were difficult, but because I lost momentum and then lost interest in going back to figure out where I’d left off.  I gots me some serious start-itis folks.

This year I plan to end my wayward habits by instituting “The Rule of Two.” The Rule of Two states that I may only have 2 significant projects on the needles at one time: a UFO/WIP that needs finishing and one new project. This rule will remain in place until I have finished all said UFOs/WIPs in which case I will cast on with complete abandon. Or something like that.  Anyway, The Rule of Two has served me well so far this year.  I finished an afghan I’ve had in the works for a year, finished Los Monos Locos socks (picture to come later), am nearly finished with a sweater for Uptown, and finished the Frisson I mentioned last time (pictures later of course). Now if only I could be this successful in reducing my winter’s worth of insulation that has been accumulating underneath all those warm bulky sweaters I’m not knitting/finishing!

IMG_2704

Ribbon Afghan

 

PATTERN:  Ribbon Afghan by Olivia Rainsford

YARN:  Acrylic in Black (Caron One Pound), White (Lion Brand Pound of Love) & Olive (Vintage Bernat)

YARDAGE:  1004 yds

CROCHETING DURATION:  May 16, 2015 – February 15, 2016

PREVIOUSLY MENTIONED:  Briefly, here.

RECIPIENT:  Donation to Warmth for Warriors (Ravelry group here)

DODGY BITS:  None

BLISS FACTOR:  8


This pattern was well written and fun to knit. Definitely pretty mindless & a great stashbuster.  Love that it’s only meant to be lap sized for veterans in wheelchairs to use.  I could see myself making another for sure! Bliss factor of 8 because, well, it’s acrylic (not that I’m a snob or anything, I just don’t love the stuff).

 

0

Happy Maketober!

No, you didn’t miss this on the intrawebz. “Maketober” is not a thing.

Not unless you are me and you are freaking stoked that it’s October!

September was just a blur. Will it feel like this every year when school starts, or is it just because we are first-timers? After weeks of adjustment (on my part and Knittymunchkin’s) I feel like we are finally starting to hit a stride. Just don’t ask me where all the “extra” hours go that I’m supposed to have while he’s in school.  Because I really don’t know. The house isn’t any cleaner, I’m not any more rested, and there is actually little to no knitting being accomplished. The TV is never on, and the dog looks sufficiently un-walked. I just don’t know how moms with jobs do it.  I’m barely keeping up as it is. Then again, I’m writing this post instead of cleaning something……

Yesterday I walked the dog to the bus stop to pick up the kiddo. The warm autumn sun caressed me, the searing electricity of a summer sun having mellowed to the gentle gold of autumn sunshine; everywhere burnished honey. I savored the crunch of leaves underfoot, thinking of potato chips, and wondering how my son could imagine he heard a train in their rustling as he shuffled through them earlier that morning. I love this time of year. It inspires me, turns me inwards towards creativity, and unleashes a nesting instinct always simmering restlessly inside my soul. I want to make things! I want to change things! And that’s why I’ve decided to welcome October as Maketober here at the blog.

This month:

I will make a shawl with friends (Jess & Troy)!

Pattern & image source: Ravelry link

I will make myself healthier…. by continuing with our Back to Fit program (we are ending week 5 today).

I will make someone’s warmer….. by giving away the hats I knit for charity. The original requester has all the hats she needs, so I am left with a stack that do not have homes. My husband is in a unique position to distribute these for me and I plan to always have a few for him to take in his car with him when he goes to work (his idea – and a fantastic one!).

I will make myself breathe…. This is harder than it sounds for someone like me.

I will make my dream a reality…. It may not happen this month, but every small step I take towards opening my Etsy shop has a part in helping me achieve my goals.

I will make food…. I cook every day, but this month I will do the last (most likely) of my canning for the year. Pickled Beets are as precious as the crown jewels in our family.

What do you think?  Will you make-along with me this month?  I’d love the company whether you’re crafting or simply visiting & reading :)

1

One Thing At A Time

There’s a lot to be said for multi-tasking.  Women are supposed to be Jedi Masters of this particular skill.  And of course it’s helpful to be able to accomplish more than one thing at a time. You get so much more done!  Except when you don’t.  I’ve begun to feel that in some areas of my life, multi-tasking has actually caused me to complete less of my to-do lists than ever before.  Because I do just a little bit of each thing, I don’t ever really complete any task in its entirety, leaving me feeling like I’m running in place all the time.  Which, personally, I think pretty much sucks. I want to be able to look back on this year and say to myself, Good job self!  You really did a lot of great stuff this year!, instead of wondering where all the time went and why I have nothing to show for it.

So lets start with the knitting.  I told you last time that I wanted to finish up some UFO’s and complete at least 14 new projects from stash/queue this year.  I finished my first project in four days!  And I credit all of that to monogamous knitting.  Well, that and the fact that kids’ socks in worsted wool are just about the fastest thing out there to knit.

rye socks2

  • Pattern: Rye by tincanknits  (Ravelry link here)
  • Yarn:  Stitch Nation by Debbie Stoller Alpaca Love  in “Espresso” & Elann Peruvian Highland Donegal (blue)
  • Needles:  Sizes 3 & 5 circulars for Magic Loop
  • Mods:  None

I thoroughly enjoyed this pattern!  It’s simple, easy to memorize, & quick, but isn’t boring.  I also love that I can use scraps of worsted wools in my stash to make a few more pairs of these for Knittymunchkin before next fall.  They are a bit big right now, but I’d rather have them be too big than too small. It’s cool enough here even in summer for thick socks sometimes.

And here we go with my second project of the year…..

ruffles caston

This is my cast on photo for Just Enough Ruffles by Laura Chau using Madelinetosh Worsted in “Foxglove”, a yarn I received in 2009 as part of the Magnolia Society when Madelinetosh was still a relative unknown.  In addition to working from stash this year, I’ve decided that this is also the year that I must.knit.all.the.pretties.  I always save the “good stuff” for someday in the future, when I really should be enjoying it now.  What good does it do sitting in a tub for the next 20 years anyway? So I plunged in and dug this out and I’m loving knitting it up.  Maybe that’s the key.  If you knit with yarn you love, you’ll more likely stick to a project until it’s finished instead of relegating it to the UFO pile.  Food for thought.

Next up, I dig through my UFO pile to find my first project for the year…

5

Febru-Very

February was very:

 

Toothy…..

 

Knittymunchkin's 1st Dentist Appointment!

Knittymunchkin’s 1st Dentist Appointment!


 

Valentiney…..

 

Hand Knit Valentines for Knittymunchkin's Prescchool Friends

Hand Knit Valentines for Knittymunchkin’s Prescchool Friends


 

  • Pattern: Little Hearts by Teresa Fox (Ravelry link)
  • Yarn: Random ancient Hot Pink wool from stash & Scraps of Valley Yarns Stockbridge in “Deep Red”
  • Needles: Size 9, 32″ circs for Magic Loop
  • Comments: These came out super cute!  I feel a little guilty because I had the fun of making them and Knittymunchkin really wasn’t that involved, but he had absolutely no interest in making valentines this year.  I had him stick stickers to the gift tags we attached and that was about all I could convince him to do.  I figure his class is getting pretty sick of my hand knits by now, but I did get a very sweet photo e-mail from one of his classmates’ moms telling me that her son had been hugging his heart all day.  Awww!  Gave the teacher the lone red heart and the kids all got dark pink.  I didn’t felt them because I didn’t have time, but maybe next time I’ll give it a try.

 

Swappy……

 

Back in September, I joined a swap group on Ravelry called Ewe LaLa Swap, mainly because the first swap they set up was one in which you swapped a handmade project bag and a ball of yarn and I was hoping to sort of force myself to learn to sew a project bag.  It didn’t come out too badly (I used this free pattern) and my partner seemed to really like it.

 

My First Handmade Project Bag

My First Handmade Project Bag


 
This year I did the January-February Box of Color Swap in which our partner picked a color theme and it was our job to make and send them items to fit this theme.  I amassed a big collection of stuff to send, which was really fun.  But the best part was making some handknits for my partner.  Her colors were a combination of red/orange/pink/ and a little dash of purple (here at design-seeds – which, by the way, is so much fun to browse!).  Of course I went a little heavy on the pink and purple!
 
Hogwarts Express

Hogwarts Express


 

  • Pattern: Hogwarts Express by Susan Ashcroft (Ravelry link)
  • Yarn: Hazel Knits Artisan Sock  in “Blacklight”
  • Needles: Size 6 circ
  • Comments:  I love how this turned out!  One of the things I have always wanted to try, but have never gotten around to, is adding beads to my knitting.  It always seemed so intimidating, but I thought this would be the perfect way to try it out, as you only add beads to the “eyes” of the owls.  My swap partner loved all things owl, so this was the perfect choice.  It was a pretty speedy knit too, and I got to use some beautiful HK Artisan Sock from my stash.  The pattern was a little loosey-goosey for my taste and therefore a bit confusing for me at first, but I got it down eventually and this was a really pleasant knit.  I was actually tempted to make one for myself once I tried it on, but then reminded myself I don’t really “do” shawls (at least not yet) so it would just be silly to make one for myself.  The nice thing about swapping is getting to make things and then give them away!

 

I also made this for my swap partner:

 

Mosaic Pouch

Mosaic Pouch


 

  • Pattern: Mosaic Knitted Pouches by Kate Sharaf (Ravelry link)
  • Yarn: Noro Iro scraps in color #9 & random purple aran weight wool from stash
  • Needles: Size 7 & Size 9
  • Comments:  I am disgustingly pleased with myself for using random scrap stash yarn to make this.  It was a bit tedious to add the zipper and the lining and, in fact, getting up the resolve to do that portion of it took a lot longer than the actual knitting.  I had to seam one of the sides too and that kind of got me kerbobbled, until I actually did it.  And then I had to pat myself on the back for how easily I was able to match everything up.  Not too bad.  I hand sewed the lining and zipper in, figuring I could do a neater job by hand than with my machine.  I’m still a little zipper-phobic.  But it looked nice and it worked!  Bonus.  I almost (almost!) want to make some more of these….

 

Knit-Along-y:

 

Malabrigo Lace in "Continental"

Malabrigo Lace in “Continental”


 
On February 14th my friends Jess, Troy and I bravely began a laceweight sweater knitalong.  I’m knitting the Cloudette Cardigan with this lovely blue Malabrigo Laceweight that I have had in my stash for eons.  It’s actually going a lot faster than I’d expected, but I’ve had to put it down for a couple weeks because the purling is driving me bananas and I’ve been inadvertently pimped out to other knitting recipients by my Mom (more on that later).  I think I’m going to love this when I finally do finish it though!
 
And, as expected, March has come roaring in like the lion it’s supposed to be.  Meaning, I finally have an explanation for the bone-crushing weariness that has been plaguing me since November.  Yep.  I have a nasty little abscess hanging out next to my crown on tooth #30 and I gets to have me a big ole root canal on March 22.  Fun.  I hope this means I can expect March to go out like a lamb…..

6

What Condition My Condition Is In

Just dropped in to see what condition my condition was in….
~ Mickey Newbury

 
I remember my Mom singing this unabashedly tunelessly around the house when I was a kid.  Figures it would be about the LSD experience.  But it’s running through my mind on a loop as I get the urge to blog again.  I attribute this itch to the whole autumn back-to-school vibe that’s floating around.  I get it every autumn with the arrival of tumbling leaves and rumbling school buses.  And this year I have a preschooler on my hands (!).  How and when did that happen?
 
But I’m feeling a bit better, slightly less overwhelmed, and I think it might be time to get back our (somewhat) regularly scheduled dosage of Knittymuggins nonsense.  In keeping with the back-to-school experience I bring you:
 
What I Did On My Summer Vacation

     

  • In June we took our first real family vacation!  We didn’t stray far, just 3 hours to Whistler, B.C., but it was almost like being a world away.  My BFF from college and her whole family were here from Kentucky and we stayed at their time-share with them.  The weather was gloomy (but we’re used to that!) so we just spent a lot of time swimming in the pool, playing on the playground in the village, and catching up.  I hadn’t seen Michele since R. Darling and I got married in 2004, and of her 4 children I had only met the oldest (when he was a mere 6 months old!) so it had definitely been too long.  The amazing thing is how easily we picked up where we had left off, as if I’d seen her only yesterday.  I wish they lived closer!!

 

     

  • I quit Facebook.  I was wasting WAY too much time on it and found myself feeling truly depressed whenever I logged out.  Easy solution: give it up.  I feel guilty that I don’t know what’s happening with many of the people I care about (since everyone uses FB and people don’t seem inclined to communicate any other way anymore), but I also love not feeling bummed out every day.  Besides, I saw “The Social Network” and that Mark Zuckerberg seems like a total a-hole. Just sayin’. I’ve actually been pretty unplugged all summer and I feel much happier and more productive on a lot of levels.
  •  

  • I participated in my first ever Ravellenic Games!  Well, not “officially”, but in spirit for sure.  My friends Jess, Troy, and I had our own personal knitalong conducted mostly via text, and it was so much fun I want to do it again :)  Each of us knit Leftie and though I was sure I wouldn’t finish it in 17 days, I totally did.  That was a huge eye-opener for me and has changed how I feel about my knitting.  It proved that if I stay monogamous with a project (and by now we all know I have a problem with that), it can be finished quickly.  On top of that this was the first project, probably since I was a beginner in 2006, where I picked out specific yarn and colors for this exact project.  Usually I sort of shop my enormous stash and try to fit project to yarn like a puzzle, with sometimes less than stellar results.  But I adore my Leftie and actually plan to wear it a lot this fall.

 

Leftie: In Progress July 2012

     

  • I started Body For Life again about 7 weeks ago and have lost 7 lbs!  I am back to my pre-pregnancy weight and had the utter joy of being able to put my diamond wedding ring back on after not wearing it since about November 2009.  I almost feel like a newlywed because I cannot stop admiring that sparkling chunk of white gold and diamond adorning my left ring finger.  Knittymunchkin was shocked when he caught sight of  it replacing my plain old white gold band that I’ve been wearing since he was in my tummy.  I can’t explain how wonderful it feels to have it back (and a little of my “old” body too!).  I’d ideally like to lose another 5-7 lbs to get back to my pre-pre-pregnancy weight, but the progress I’ve made so far still thrills me on its own.
  •  

  • I have a potty-trained toddler who is also going to preschool in a couple weeks!  I am just stunned he is this big already.  It’s going to be sad, exciting, and so much more, to watch him go off to school.  We weren’t planning on it just yet, but there was a last minute opening in a local co-op preschool that everyone raves about so we jumped on it.  I’m going to miss him like crazy, much as I will appreciate the break and the joy I get from watching him make new friends.  Wish me luck on this new venture!

 
I’m sure there’s much much more that I’m forgetting.  But I’ll be back with more before too long.  I hope you had a wonderful summer as well & look forward to catching up with each and everyone of you just as soon as I can.  Thanks so much for stopping by!  Happy almost-Autumn!

7

Sock Summit 2011 Day 3: July 30, 2011 – Far Afield

Back to our regularly scheduled Sock Summit Update (warning – picture heavy)….
 
Saturday morning found us a little more leisurely than usual.  That’s not to say we slept in, but Jess didn’t have class at all that day and Troy and I didn’t have class until 1:30 PM so there was no rush to get out the door immediately.  We had decided this would be the perfect morning to do a little exploring and we thought the Farmer’s Market would be the perfect thing to do.  Jess was amazing and pretty much figured out exactly where we needed to go and which TriMet route we’d need to take to get there.  Luckily, we were in the free zone for where we wanted to go, so it was super easy.  All I can say is, kudos to Portland for their public transportation!  If only we had something this nice where I live.  Of course, it’s not hard to get around in my town, but there are times where I’d like to not have to worry about driving or parking.
 

Skidmore Fountain


 
We hopped the Trimet to the Skidmore Fountain stop which was a quick 5 minutes or less from the Convention Center block. At our stop, I was initially put off by the group of scruffy looking loiterers shouting obscenities at each other over their shopping cart, but we just walked the other way and I put it out of my mind.  What caught my eye first was the historic architecture surrounding us; buildings with flourishes, and the historic colonnade housing a portion of the market.  I never cease to be fascinated by old structures and their histories.  The stories are there, buried, waiting for me to discover them.  I wonder about the people who lived and worked here. What was life like for them?  Were they happy, sad, indifferent?  As I soaked it in I snapped a few photos for posterity.
 

Architectural Details of The Colonnade


 

The Saturday Market - Portland, OR


 
We wandered, we looked, we soaked it in.  I found a lot of inspiration at the market, seeing all kinds of items that had been re-created from vintage or cast off things; upcycling being the buzz word I presume.  This has always been an interest of mine and seeing examples of this in the marketplace gave me all sorts of ideas for future projects.  I bought a couple of leather cuffs made from old belts.  Because I needed to “toughen up my image” I told Troy.  Couldn’t hurt.  Before long we were getting hungry and we decided we’d all divide up and get the food that sounded best to each of us.  Troy and Jess convinced me I’d love pierogies, which I had never before tried, so I bought my lunch at a cute little cart just across the street from the Portland Saturday Market sign up above.  Mmmmm…. Potato and cheese filling with onions and bacon on top.  I have to say, my first experience with pierogies was a blissful one!  Troy, who was holding a table for us, had to have the same after I came back with mine.
 

My First Pierogies


 
The picture is a bit blurry you see, because I was salivating so hard I could barely hold the camera straight :)  I told Jess and Troy that I did believe my blog was starting to turn into a food blog as most of the pictures I took over the weekend seemed to be of food!  After eating and looking a bit more, we thought we spotted the mecca of doughnut shops – Voodoo doughnuts – on an adjacent corner, and had to have a look for ourselves.  As we got closer, we asked a few people what the situation was and they told us that the line was at least an hour long.  An hour long!  And it was mid-morning, not even breakfast hour anymore.  Of course, there is no bad time for a doughnut.  But none of us was down with waiting an hour just to say we’d been there.  We satisfied ourselves with snapping a picture of the sign and Jess even got a guy sitting outside at a table, about to bite into a doughnut the size of his head, to agree to having his photo taken.  I’m pretty sure one of his friends had one of those specialty maple doughnuts with bacon on top.  Oy.
 

All Hail Voodoo Doughnuts!


 
After that, we wandered around a little longer to see what we could see.  We thought maybe there’d be a fun little shopping district or some such somewhere near all this other goodness, but no such luck.  We did see this, which explained a lot:
 

Keep Portland Weird!


 
Coming up on Chinatown, we thought perhaps there would be something fun to explore here too, but it was all but dead.  I did find the entrance enchanting though, and thought a rather funny sign deserved preservation on film.  Do you think they realized what they were advertising?  Or did they think it was funny too?
 

Entrance To Chinatown


 

Hung Far Low


 
Perhaps this was old Chinatown and there is a new and bustling Chinatown somewhere else in Portland.  By then in our travels, it was getting close to time to head back.  So we boarded the TriMet and were on our way back to the Convention Center.  I’d had a raging headache all day and it wasn’t getting any better.  I think we got some coffee before our class and maybe poked around the Marketplace again and at 1:30 PM Troy and I headed to our Perfect Rib Class with Cookie A.  I have to admit, I wasn’t feeling 100% by the time we got to class, and there was a lot to cram into this one-hour wonder.  Despite Cookie A. being a friendly, knowledgeable, and all around excellent instructor, my brain was at maximum capacity and most definitely not firing on all cylinders.  So I didn’t get much out of it, unfortunately.  Through no one’s fault but my own, of course.  There were lengthy handouts that I brought home and I imagine I will study them later, the next time I get around to trying to design my own sock.  I loved the idea that you can incorporate ribbing into the pattern itself (the main idea of this class) and I think that is perhaps why Cookie A.’s designs are among the most beautiful of all sock patterns.  Her ribs never look just stuck on, in fact, everything flows seamlessly together into a harmonious design.  I know accomplishing this myself with my own pattern, will make much more sense when I can sit down and study it later with my brain in a more receptive state.
 

Cookie A.!


 
After class, we met up with Jess again and decided it was time for another field trip.  We piled into Troy’s car this time (I think yesterday’s trek had taught us that it would be much more relaxing to drive just in case we got lost again) and headed to the nearest LYS, Portland’s Twisted.  What a sweet little shop!  They had all sorts of yarns my LYS doesn’t carry and a lot of local indie dyed stuff that was really fun to see.  The Twisted booth at the Marketplace at Sock Summit had been handing out 10% off coupons for the brick and mortar shop, so of course we had to take advantage.  I bought some beautiful Madelinetosh Tosh Merino in “Grasshopper” for a slouchy hat.  I love slouch hats, but don’t know if they love me back. I’m thinking this is a bit like shawls.  They look funny on you only if you feel funny in them.  You have to work it and just know you are cool and then, in turn, you will be cool.  It’s my new experiment.
 

Twisted Yarn Shop - Portland, OR


 
Jess asked the gals in the shop for a restaurant recommendation and they gave us a few.  Jess and I were thinking sushi, but after driving back and forth a bunch, with no sushi place materializing, we settled for the one place they recommended that we could actually find: Cha! Cha! Cha! Taqueria.  It was cool inside and inviting.  Most of the clientele were seated outside, so it was nice to have the place to ourselves.  The food was billed to be authentic and locally sourced which is apparently a condition for every restaurant in Portland.  But you know, I do believe it makes a difference!  Our meal was delicious.  Troy and Jess got something called Molcajete that Jess says is served at one of her favorite restaurants back home.  All I know is it arrives in a ginormous sizzling bowl of goodness and smells heavenly!  I got poblano chile and cheese tamales and we all got the requisite frosty adult beverage necessary to complete a summer meal such as this.
 

Jess & Troy


 

Mmmm... Tamales & a Margarita!


 
After dinner was consumed, we headed back to the convention center for a “special kind of baby shower” in honor of Ravelry founders Casey and Jess’ new baby Eloise.  Each of us had knitted a hat to donate to the cause and it was astounding to arrive there and see the sheer number of sweet knitted things that people had made.  There were several gift bags on the tables and I was a little confused as to what that was all about until Tina Newton and Stephanie Pearl-McPhee started looking into one of them and exclaiming over the huge amounts of tiny socks nestled inside.  I guess that one knitter had gone sock wild and knit dozens upon dozens of socks for donation.  Kind of made me feel a little subpar with my one measly hat :(  But I guess every little bit helps!
 

My Little Hat for Eloise's Charity Baby Shower


 
We kind of thought that, since it was a baby shower and all, there should have been some cake or something.  But no cake.  We settled for milkshakes from Burgerville (yum!) and some knitting in Troy’s room instead.  I’d all but convinced Troy and Jess to take on the Westknits Mystery Shawl KAL 2011: Earth & Sky with me so we purchased the pattern and discussed color choices while sipping our cool frosty treats.  After a while Jess and I bid Troy goodnight and headed back to our room for some shuteye.  A thoroughly wonderful, totally exhausting day.  And one of the best ever in recent memory! And tomorrow would mean goodbye :(