Good riddance, January

All three of us were sick at various times for most of the entire month of January, stuck inside for long periods and generally feeling exhausted and crappy, and I feel like we’re just now able to start settling into some kind of routine.

I saw this rainbow salt tray described on a blog a while back and decided to give it a try one morning to keep us busy. This is one of those things that provides a ridiculous amount of entertainment given how cheap and simple as it is. I used a printer paper box lid (remember to tape off the corners to keep salt from leaking out, oops). The fact that salt is used makes it cheap, safe (it’s edible, yet a kid will only try to eat it once, if they are so inclined) and it will certainly kill off any pesky house-slugs wandering nearby.

Griff made a bunch of various abstract designs and then decided that the three paintbrushes were Bash, Dash and Ferdinand (“the wogging wocos!”) from Thomas and made up various adventures for them.

Griff enjoying the salt tray

Hands on in the salt tray

Mommy couldn’t keep herself from drawing something every time she walked by. It really is addictive.

Salt rocket

Salt flower

Salt sun

Salt kitty

There’s been a bit of knitting around here as well. I ran out of things to sew for Griff, so I cast on this mildly cabled hooded vest for him. I don’t know if I’ll finish it before it gets too warm to wear it, but I’m making it big (in bigger yarn than the pattern calls for) so it will work well for the fall. I’m finding that vests are a good choice for toddlers; they’re less likely to overheat in them, and the lack of sleeves means no restriction of movement.

Griff's in-progress vest

I also cast on and finished a new hat for Sean in less than a week. I’m a pretty slow knitter, so this was good progress for me. I used The Natural pattern and the same Malabrigo worsted yarn/colorway that I used to knit him his scarf, lo these many years ago. (January 2008, to be specific. Wow.) You can see in the photos below that the scarf has faded, pilled and fluffed up, as Malabrigo will, so I’m expecting the hat to be a featureless ball of fuzz within 6 months. Still, it turned out nice and looks good with Sean’s beard. 🙂

Sean's new hat

Sean's new hat

Here’s what the scarf looked like 5 years ago (and Sean, too).

Jag in his new scarf

I’m constantly amazed that Griff can manage to get so much food on his face with so little effort. Captain Blueberrybeard here just finished his smoothie.
Captain Blueberrybeard

Potty training is going much better now, and we’re also working on letters and numbers. It should come as no surprise that Griff summoned me into the bathroom today to demonstrate his growing mastery of both skills. “Mommy, I pooped a letter! It a ‘J’!” (It really did look like a ‘J’).

A few other projects: I’m making garden markers for the veggie garden with popsicle sticks, permanent marker and a couple coats of Outdoor Mod Podge to try and protect the writing. I bet you didn’t know there was an Outdoor Mod Podge. My friend, there is a Mod Podge for every occasion. The Podge abides.

Garden markers

I’m also working on a very very simple scrap quilt for me and Sean’s bed. We currently have a cheapo plain blue comforter from Target and it offends my sense that we should have handmade stuff wherever possible (and also, it’s not very warm). I’m going through my entire stash and if a fabric is vaguely blueish and I like it, I cut a 10″ square or two and stick it on the pile. Once I have 90 squares cut I’ll sew them together, add a border and do the same fleece backing I did on my last quilt.

Makin' another quilt

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