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Sometimes, it seems like the third child really gets the short end of the stick.  All the things we were so careful and meticulous about with #1 have long since been relegated to the back burner with #3.  For example:

Staring solids:

  • Lizzie started solids on the day she turned 5 months old.  I took nearly a full roll of film’s worth of pictures.
  • Sarah started solids sometime before she turned 1 year.  When?  Couldn’t tell you.  I did take a couple of pictures.  If I could find those, I’m sure I could tell you when it was.

Age:

  • I could tell you how old Lizzie was in months until she turned two.  Without missing a beat.
  • I’m lucky if I can tell you Sarah’s birth date without stammering.

Well Child Check Ups:

  • I kept careful records of when Lizzie’s appointments should be, which immunizations she’d had and the various percentiles in which she fell by height, weight, etc.
  • Turns out, not only did I forget an appointment for Sarah’s immunizations, I forgot two of them.  Doh!

Although Sarah has definitely suffered the fate of 3rd child syndrome, there do seem to be advantages to being #3.  After years of accumulating enough toys, puzzles, books and games to fill a store, I have learned to be more prescriptive when it comes to gifts from family.   I’m trying to be more intentional about what comes into our house.  I think about where it comes from, how it is made, how long it will be used and where it will live in our wee, little house.  Some might question my sanity, with all the thought and research that goes into gifts for a two year old.  I will defend myself and argue that the results are quite lovely.

I’ve been wanting Sarah to have Waldorf doll for a while.  I was planning to make her one.  I had priced kits and even considered signing up for a class.  Then, reality set in.  With relatives asking what they could get for her birthday, I let go a little and decided that a doll lovingly made by someone else would be just as good, if not better, than one made by me.

I’m sure I read about The Q’ewar Project somewhere in the craft blogosphere.  Between the mission of the project, the fact that they are made by hand and the wonderful materials that are used, I was 100% convinced.  The turn around from Tiny Bird Organics was amazing.  The doll is also amazing.  The body is stuffed with wool and is dense, with a nice heft to it.  The outer clothes are all handspun, handknit alpaca.  As Lizzie said repeatedly, “she’s beautiful”.

The best part about the doll?  Sarah loves her!  She opened up the package last night after dinner and said, “wow, da-wee”.  She then spent the better part of the night undressing, dressing and cuddling her.   Sarah went to sleep holding her new “da-wee”.  This morning, Lizzie brought up her doll bed from the basement, so Sarah has been very busy tucking da-wee into bed.  She’s also made sure all of her favorite books have been read to da-wee.  So very, very sweet!

See, being #3 isn’t all that bad.

In an unprecedented show of deference to the conventions of knitting, I actually did a gauge swatch today.

Not just one, I knit two.  Possibly more shocking than the swatch itself was the fact that I had to go down a needle size to get gauge.  It must be the yarn I’m using, because I am an infamously tight knitter.  For example, Brad finally had to give up wearing the first hat I knit for him.  I think it was cutting off the circulation to his head.  Did I mention that I am a tight knitter?

What’s the swatch for?  I’m starting my February Lady Sweater.  (Me and half the knitting bloggers in the blogosphere.)  I have been itching to knit it since the pattern debuted.  I bought a sweater’s worth of yarn at a going out of business sale a few months ago with the original intention of knitting the KPS hooded tunic.  I’ve since decided this would be way more fun.

I finished knitting my shawl last night!  I have yet to block it, though.  Maybe I’ll wait to give all the specs once I’ve done that and have some photos.  Now, I just have to find a space to block it.  Yikes.

Other, completely random, tidbits:

I feel the need to start wearing lipstick regularly.  An attempt to show the world that lipstick isn’t just for the socially conservative, pit bull types.  Even flaming liberal, Macalester College alumna can wear lipstick proudly.  I may be wearing clogs and jeans at the time, but nonetheless.  Come on ladies, grab your cruelty-free, vegan, organic lipstick tubes (100% post-consumer recycled plastic, of course) and wave them high!

I have been living in a house under siege by the plague.  Ok, not the plague, just a fever-inducing infection of some sort.  Two kids, two trips to the doctor and two antibiotic prescriptions, all in 4 days.  Woo-hoo.  Crossing my fingers we don’t make it 3.  Sarah has a well-child on Thursday, so if she does get it, maybe they’ll find it then and I’ll save on a co-pay.

Last Sunday, the youth group held a bake sale at the church potluck. While talking to one of the moms, I found out that her daughter had wanted to make fried pies for the sale. The mom discouraged the thought, assuming no one in Minnesota would know what they were or appreciate them.

Um, hello?!?! There are a handful of transplanted Southerners in the congregation and I am quite sure we would have been elbowing each other to get to the front of the line for fried pies. Now, I can hear you Yankees thinking, “is a fried pie like those things from McDonalds or Hostess fruit pies?” Blasphemer!!! Fried pies are the flaky, warm and delicious treat that transports me right back to a kitchen in southeast Texas with my grandma and great aunt. Sweet and syrupy, like their Texas drawl. Like a big, warm hug from my grandma, saying, “I luv you, sugar”.

When we received peaches from the CSA on Monday, the first thing that came to mind were fried pies. During the week Brad and I peeled, cut and froze many of the peaches. Saturday morning I started cooking some peaches for the pie filling.

I made the crust, going all the way with the Texas tradition, using lard. I was so excited. I had been dreaming of this moment all week.

The crust was no good. I’m pretty sure I had both added too much water and overworked the dough. ARGH! Now, let’s be honest, the best fried pies are not necessarily the prettiest. These, however, were falling apart in the oil.

I am dreadfully disappointed. Fortunately, the resident optimist picked up some vanilla ice cream. Brad’s summation? It’s nothing a scoop of ice cream on the side can’t fix.

With plenty of peach filling left, I’m working up the nerve to try again. Perhaps a package of Pillsbury pie crust in reserve isn’t a bad idea.

Writer’s block.  Knitter’s block.  Sewer’s block.  Life block.

You would think that I would be feeling footloose and fancy-free these days.  The bigs went back to school last Tuesday and I managed to survive the start of the Sunday school year without major catastrophe.  The catastrophe came this week when my babysitter flaked out.  To be fair, she made a necessary addition to her class schedule that made watching Sarah while I work impossible.   Needless to say, this week has been a flurry of childcare inquiries.  Not much fun.  Not much work getting done either.  I’ll have to remedy that soon.

In some ways the creative flow has been very active.  The problem is that I am brimming with ideas but lacking the energy, when I can make the time, to do anything with those ideas.  The sewing machine is woefully neglected even though my to-sew list grows daily.

I have been enjoying the crisp fall weather.  When our CSA share arrived with the last few ears of corn and some more potatoes, I immediately thought to make corn chowder for dinner the next night.  With a double batch of biscuits as accompaniment, it made for a delicious meal.

I suppose I’ll take inspiration and follow-through wherever it may come.

Today, I went with a friend to pick up her CSA share. We took the two toddlers with us, hoping they would sleep. We stopped and got some icy coffee drinks and headed to the farm. She picked out her veggies while I stayed in the car chatting with her daughter, happy that mine was snoozing.

On the drive back, we noticed a large number of police blocking the street we would normally take to get to her house. Not entirely surprising given the relative proximity to the site of the RNC. We had seen multiple police on every corner earlier.

This was different though. Very different. Police in riot gear. At least one on his knee with some sort of weapon drawn. Facing off with a gathering group of protesters across the street. Some yelling.

More streets were blocked by riot police. We did eventually, make it to her house after a long detour and several minutes of animated chatter about what we’d just seen. We had goosebumps. Creepy, to say the least, with our sleepy babes in the back seat.

Turns out we missed the real action by mere moments. Watch the video. We are the white van that drives by right before the protesters start to cross the street.  Right before the police start firing tear gas.