Life's Little Details: Knitting, Sewing, Green Living, Frugal Living and Cooking In A Little Corner of Southern French Countryside.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Too Much Busy

Yeah, I'm fully aware that post title doesn't sound very English, but it does describe (very well, actually) my life these days. I've had so little time for anything crafty, and I am in a big mood for craftiness. What I'd really like to do is sew a little, but I can't find the time or energy for it. Between sonogram visits and those end-of-pregnancy doctor visits, I've got little time for fun. All is fine, as we have verified with the mid-wife and the sonogram guy (who, by the way, is the only human being who knows what our baby's sex is - and I didn't even beg him to tell me!). Being tired comes from the fact that I have a slight iron deficiency these days. I stocked up on all sorts of vitamins for that and other end-of-pregnancy needs, so hopefully, the energy will return soon.

I actually do have some knitting-related things to show you but I have no pictures of them to make it more interesting. One of these things is the yarn I bought while in Germany. I'm sure I'll get around to snapping a little shot of it soon enough. Another is a mohair scarf I started. Yeah, I know. What on earth am I thinking? Haven't I been complaining about the hell-fire sort of heat around here? Well, I really want to get it done before the birth, because it's for my midwife. I haven't worked on it much, and I'm about half-way finished, so it's doable. Then, there's the little sweater I've started designing for the new baby. I've got a really fun idea, but I don't have anything but sketches and calculations to show for it yet. We'll see if it comes to fruition any time before the baby is born.

In non-knitting crafty news, I received some fun books the other day. I ordered them online a while back. One is to learn to sew lingerie and the other is to learn to make your own sewing patterns. Being cheap is what prompted me to buy the pattern-making book. It's a small investment when you consider that you pay a pretty penny for a pattern, and buying them over a number of years certainly adds up (plus, I find it fun to design things). The lingerie sewing book is an actual necessity for me (or soon will be). I have this little problem that I don't speak of much here on the blog. Kind of personal, but I guess if someone else could be helped by my experiments in this realm, I should mention it. I'm what you might call well-endowed. That's not so new, though, because many women are.

My real problem is that I've not got a very large frame to support this well-endowedness. It has yet to cause back trouble (knock on wood, I guess, huh?), but it does make looking for something to hold it all a little difficult. Add to this the fact that apparently the French aren't... umm... well... built like us Anglos must be, and I have to literally search the world over for my undergarments. So far, the internet has been my friend, but each pregnancy and baby to nurse adds a bit more to my Pamela Andersonness, and this time is no exception. I realistically fear that once the milk sets in, there'll be nothing that exists in my size. So, I bought a bunch of bra-making supplies and a book about the topic to embark on the endeavor of making my own. Sounds hard, I know, but I've more than once seen the claim that it's really not. I've made a not-so-bad bathingsuit top myself before. So, why not a bra? At least no one will see the flaws in that one. Anyway, I'll keep you posted on how that goes (once the materials come in, that is). The lingerie book is really fun, though, and I'd love to find the time and energy to make some pjs or a lightweight lounging house dress (yes, I've turned into my mother or grandmother or somebody older than I am) to be able to beat this heat more easily.

Some things I have found time for, even if they haven't exactly been what I'd really like to do. I already mentioned the baking frenzy. As promised, I took a picture of it all (minus the mess it created). The cheesecake, though not at all pretty to look at (too many cracks, due to my hard-to-control-freakishly-hot-oven), was absolutely delicious with some homemade, sugar-free apricot jelly. A decent portion of the rest of the baked goods were thrown into the freezer. Handy thing, that freezer. Today, we're invited to a barbeque, and it sure it nice to just whip a bit of zucchini bread out to defrost before leaving. The manicotti didn't get a chance to be frozen. It was delicious, though. Notice the teddybear cake, too. He got eaten up at a family dinner, one limb at a time.

I haven't found much energy in this heat to actually work in the garden, either. The best I can do is go steal from the insects what I thought was rightfully mine after all the work I put in. They seem to want to present a different case for their rights as life-sucking varment (I may be biased). I have, however, gotten a few little yummies here and there. We've had something close to a summer squash per day, which doesn't sound like much compared to how many those plants tend to produce, but many of them have been turning yellow and shriveling up before they get very big (lack of water?? bugs getting at them???). We did get our first melon, though. Pretty tasty looking, ain't it? Turned out to be a huge disappointment, though. It apparently soaked up too much water one night when I accidentally left the drip system running (oops - what a good gardener I am). Oh well. There will be others.

And, the one other important task I found time for was the baking of a very special cake. Next Monday, Lambchop #1 turns 5. Hard to believe it's been that long, but it's true. Five whole years. And, she requested a strawberry cake just after strawberry season (she does this all the time). So, I opted for a white cake with strawberry jellly between the two layers and divinity-style icing (a real weakness of mine) on top. It turned out well, but a little goes a long way. A whole piece was just way to much sugar for my tastes. You can see in the top photo that Lambchop #1 was very happy about her cake and her birthday (made out like a bandit, as usual).

P.S. Sorry, no time to edit or spell-check. Must get ready for party. In a rush, as always.