Monday, May 12, 2008

Notes from the center of the universe

Here at Chez Manfredi-Reeve, we are going through some serious separation anxiety. If I have to leave the room that Vivian is in, she almost always starts to cry. She huffs and puffs, then whines, and if I'm still not back, those big ole tears start to run down her face.

Hearing her cry like that, and knowing she is crying because she wants to be with me, and she's afraid I won't come back, is just heart-wrenching. I have the power to make it all better. But I'm not. Because I'm a big meanie (or because I have to go to work, or the kitchen, or the bathroom). But I need the two hours of "me" time I get after she goes to sleep. Work is stressful, and I just need some time to unwind, whether that's surfing the internet, watching TV, sewing or knitting, or just painting my nails. I need my time, so that I can be a better parent for Vivian when she's awake.

It's hard being the center of her universe. Yesterday (my first official Mother's Day), Vivian had a fever all day, and all she wanted was for me to hold her. She didn't want to be in her swing, she didn't want to play with her toys, she didn't even want Daddy to hold her. Nope, she just wanted to cuddle in my arms and fall asleep on my shoulder. And I let her, because she was sick and I wanted to make her feel better, even just a little bit.

This morning, when I took her to daycare, it was more of the same. Now this is very unusual, because daycare is just about her favorite place in the world. She has been known to push away from Richard and me to get to her teacher, Hilda. But today, when I tried to leave, her face just crumpled up. She crawled over to Hilda, crying, then back to me. I gave her a hug, and then, in a cheery voice, said "I love you baby. Bye-bye. I'll see you after work." I saw her crying as I left. I got teary in the car, and I haven't done that in a long time.

And now, she is crying herself to sleep in her crib. We went through her regular routine: changing into her pajamas, playing quietly with a few toys in her room, reading a story (tonight was "Mr. Brown Can Moo" by Dr. Seuss), and then nursing in the rocking chair. She was fine and calm until I put the side of the crib down to put her in. Then the wailing started.

Now she's quieted down so that she's sort of lustily muttering to herself. And I have a couple of hours all to myself. I think I'll catch up on some TV, while drinking the glass of wine that I have decided is a necessary part of "me time," at least while I'm the center of the universe.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

my crafty eyes are bigger than my... stomach?

I have a very good excuse for not posting in a bajillion days: time seems to slip through my hands. I've worked at two fundraising walks over the last two weekends, written media materials for a press conference this Wednesday, prepped a co-worker for a live radio interview. I've got another event in 2 weeks, and then I'm taking a break.

Despite the fact that my crafting time has shrunk of late, I keep adding to my list of projects to be completed. I keep buying yarn, including full bags of Berroco Love It, Queensland Collection Invito, and South West Trading Co. Bamboo. Great sales that I couldn't pass up, but when the heck am I going to use them? I still haven't made a dint in the yarn I bought at Stitches West. I have started on a vest using the Love It (Classic Elite's Vine Lace Vest), but my eyes are glazing over at the 4x4 ribbing.

There has been another crop of babies in the last few weeks. Please welcome Baby Spencer (born to parents Ryan & Sara), Campbell (daughter of Stephen and Lea, and little sister of James) and Jacob (baby #5 for Ben & Katie!). So the quilting continues! Here is my version of a Stacked Coin Quilt (mostly taken from Last Minute Patchwork and Quilted Gifts, but a bit improvised towards the end):

yes, that is my very messy desk. I told you I was busy.
And yes, that is a mini-fridge under my desk.
I use it so I don't have to keep pumped breast milk in the public fridge in the kitchen.
It just seems more private this way.

Richard picked out the fabrics, as he does for most of my quilting projects (he has a great eye for color). I'm starting on the next one already, an applique quilt - my favorite. Not as complex as the Pumpkin Quilt (still languishing unfinished), but it will hopefully be finished before the baby's 1st birthday.

I just have so many projects that I want to make: a couple of dresses of my own design for Vivian, a few simple tops for me, an Emmeline apron, any one of the several Stitch Diva patterns I have in my collection. And that's not counting those projects started but not finished: my Victoria Bolero, my Crochet Mesh Jacket, my Juliet Sweater (which really just needs to be blocked and have the buttons sewn on).

Grr. Why aren't there enough hours in the day? Why are my crafty eyes bigger than my crafty stomach?