Saturday, April 30, 2011

Yep, I was one of those people who got up early to watch The Royal Wedding

Friday morning I set my alarm for 5:30am so I could shower, get cozy, and watch the Royal Wedding. Lewis watched with me, too. Ricky preferred sleeping.

I'm not reinventing the wheel when I say that I really enjoyed watching, it seemed grand and understated, Kate and William seem like a good team and couple, and that Kate definitely channeled deep into that "Grace Kelly marrying Prince Ranier" aesthetic. Which is probably smart, because far wiser to steer the conversation from "Diana 2.0" to "The Modern Day Grace".

Ever since I was a wee little thing, I've loved a good TV wedding. When I was a kid, my friend Emma and I dressed up, had sandwiches, and watched Maria and Luis get married on Sesame Street. I enjoyed watching all the Friends weddings. I voted on every Today Throws a Wedding every summer. Seeing bitches duking it out on Four Weddings is equally as enjoyable to mentally critiquing their weddings myself. I like ceremony and pretty things on tv.

Once I found out when The Royal Wedding was, I planned my morning. I'd get up early, drink tea and eat the Dunkin Donuts Royal Wedding doughnut, and wear a fun headband. Not a bad way to start a Friday, right?

The doughnut was... well, I had hoped for better. While it was a heart and had a formal effect to it, the jelly inside was only in the center... come on, Dunks! A little more jelly would have been much appreciated to cut the cakiness down.

The tea didn't happen, because Lewis was playing a lot, and I was worried about boiling up some tea with him running around. I did have some Earl Gray later on at work, though. (part of this was to continue with the spirit of the day, the other was for the needed caffeine after getting up at 5:30am)

I wore a headband I had with flowers on one side, since it was as close as I could get to a fastener. I almost wore it to work, but glasses and headband always feels like too much going on on my head. The Royals probably would have poo-pooed my headgear, but it worked for my apartment viewing party. (me and my cat)

It was neat being part of a cultural moment live as it was happening, and knowing that millions of people were doing the same thing as me. Like The Olympics and The Tour and The World Cup. It's also interesting to think that we've seen William grow up and now take this big step, and to think that we'll watching this couple grow through the years and eventually become King and Queen of England. The argument can be made that this is a waste of tax money and the relevancy of The Royals in a modern age, but at that moment it was nice to see two people in love take this step.

I wish them both well and hope that theirs is one of love and happiness.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

A fun finished object

Wanted to show off my latest FO! I made my friend Jaime a baby blanket for her future kid and the shower was yesterday. I've known Jaime since 5th grade, so it's very exciting that she's having her first baby. I wanted something simple and gender neutral (she's going to be surprised as to what she's having) along with something that was a touch nicer than normal and machine washable. This brought me to my first love... Rowan.

I went with Rowan Cashsoft DK for two reasons: one, I love the colors. It has that softness for baby gear, but it's not a "baby" yarn where it's scant with color. It's bright but not too bright. The second is that it's machine washable. I try to make baby gear like blankets machine washable so it's not a pain for the mom.

I found on Ravelry a free pattern from the fine people at Rowan for a block blanket with trees. I've always loved the motif of The Tree of Life, so this was an easy choice. I also liked how most of the pattern was pretty easy (for time's sake) but that there was some visual interest for the tree squares. It could be a quick project but not a boring project.

The pattern said to make it in just one color, but I wanted to use different colors to make it interesting and to match any colors that were in the baby's room. My first choice was the spring green, then went with cream, and finally picked a light blue to tie them all together.

What's great is that this blanket was knit continuously and didn't involve sewing... just changing colors for the blocks. I also managed to figure out a way so you couldn't see a color change on the front of the blanket for the tree blocks by starting the green color for those sections on the last row of the prior block. It made it look a lot cleaner, I felt.

I gave Jaime her blanket yesterday and she liked it a lot! It's exciting to think that in 6 weeks, a little baby will be wrapped up in my blanket. It's also surreal and bittersweet that this project is over, since it took awhile to finish up and it means that Jaime's pregnancy is winding down.

Here are some pics of the finished blanket the night before, along with Jaime posing with it, and then me and my friend Amanda posing with the blankets we each made for the shower. Amanda's, which I find cool, is made from a collection of yarn that her grandmother had and left to her when Amanda was in high school.

All in all, I'm very pleased with how it turned out. While knitting it, I kept imaging Jaime wrapping her kid up in it when it was a little chilly, and then him/her hugging it while napping as a toddler, and growing up with it. It has that classic look that I hope that's what happens.