Friday, September 7, 2012

Seven Quick Takes (2)

1. Here is what I've been learning to do the past two days. 

I am quite pleased with them, except for the fact that they don't lie flat. Do granny squares need blocking? Anyway, I am learning from this book, although I learned to crochet the basic stitches from this blog, and I think videos are always more useful than pictures when learning stitches.

2. Speaking of learning new things, look at what happened yesterday!

He stayed like this for almost five minutes while Mama freaked out, ran and got her cell phone, took pictures, and sent them to Papa and the grandparents. I had been holding him up so he could look at his bird-friends at eye-level, and I noticed his hands were on the ground, and thought--what if I let him go? And he supported himself. 

I have been so excited for a milestone like sitting on his own, but as I lay in bed the other day, I realized that in another month or two, we will enter an entirely different world of babyhood. Sitting, regular solid foods, and mobility an ever-nearing landmark ... I can't wrap my mind around it. 

3. I don't know if this is something indicative of Michael's personality or something universal to babies at a certain age, but he really, really loves music. His two favorite toys are a music box that plays "Toyland" and a giraffe that sings the ABCs. He smiles when he sees them, and smiles even bigger when they start playing. One of the ways I get him to calm down while I do other things is to play La Valse d'Amelie, which is one of his favorite songs. He grins whenever he hears the opening notes. 

4. Today I finished The Long Winter. I've been rereading the Little House books, and am amazed by how much people used to know and do, and how much work living took. Doing the dishes this morning, I had to wash the cheese grater (I don't generally mind dishes but I hate washing the cheese grater), and I thought, THIS is one of the things that make me wish for a dishwasher. But really? It's crazy to think of how many machines we have to do our daily work for us. (I mean, we're not churning our own butter here, and most of us aren't baking our own bread and hunting down meat for our tables.) We have so much free time, comparatively speaking. And yet we--or at least I--so seldom think about how we use it. What a resource, and how little we do with it!

5. This morning I spilled half a cup of coffee all over the keyboard, laser mouse, and myself. Luckily the computer parts still seem to be functioning, and I was wearing old pajamas that probably need to get thrown out anyway. To make up for it, I've brewed myself another cup. Decaf. It doesn't taste the same, but oh well. :( 

6. Check out this blog post. It is amazing and smart and wonderfully indignant. 

7. A few days ago I had a phone conversation with my two-and-a-half year old godson which was really simple yet thrilled me to pieces. It went something like this: 

"Hi, Bobby." 
"Where's Mi-kul?" 
"Michael's in his swing." 
"Where's Uncle Leaf?" (Last time it was "Aunt Keith;" Keith prefers Uncle Leaf.) 
"Uncle Keith is at work. He works on science." 
Michael starts crying.
"Why's Mi-kul crying?" 
"Because he wants me to hold him. Do you want to say hi to him?" 
"Hi, Mi-kul!" 

And I swear that Michael grinned at the phone. 


  1. I had a similar thought about self-sustaining living just last night. I made pollock with Italian herbs, mac-n-cheese, and steamed green beans for dinner. It's a fairly simple meal, but I kept staring at it and realizing that despite the mac-n-cheese being the only thing that came from a box, the meal wasn't exactly homemade. I didn't catch, debone, deskin, and clean and dress the fish myself. I didn't grow and cut the green beans myself... Yet those would have been the easy things, with dried herbs from a garden. But the mac-n-cheese... that would have required purchasing flour from a mill, combining it with whatever else is used to create noodles, twisting and drying them into shapes (if that's how it's done), mixing and aging the cheese... so much work for a side-dish! I don't know why I considered all that... Maybe we were on the same wavelength.

    1. I think homemade pasta isn't dried. :) But yeah ... pasta especially is crazy! (We once ate dinner at a friend's house whose family was Italian, and they made the pasta ... it's a lot of work.)

      I don't think I'll use the squares for anything particular, at least not these ones ... just for practice. :)

  2. Oh yeah, congrats to Michael! And those shapes are pretty. What will you use them for?

  3. way to go, michael! claire is also a music lover, but her taste is not nearly as dignified as michael's. she's more of a "wheels on the bus" type of girl!