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Wednesday, March 29, 2006

One More Thing

Elijah turned four on Saturday. We sang to him and gave him presents at breakfast. He was absolutely thrilled and enjoyed having his brothers and sister wishing him a happy birthday all day. I made a flourless chocolate cake (flavored with Chambord) that night to take to church with us the next day, so he got to have everyone sing to him again and eat a lovely cake. He seems to be taking his being a big four year old really seriously. We've seen some progress in areas that we've been working on for some time.

Four Great Things About Elijah

1. His laughter. He has the most cheerful disposition of all of our children. Nothing gets him down for very long.

2. How affectionate he is. He is the first to climb into your lap and give you a hug.

3. His energy. If we could bottle it and sell it, we'd never have to work for money again.

4. His desire to be a responsible "big boy." He loves to help, and he takes his small responsibilities seriously (as long as you give them to him in small increments).


Back to Knitting

I finally finished something! I finished the one skein wonder on Sunday and gave it to our priest's eldest daughter. She was delighted, and I even got photos.

I'm back on track with the sleeve on Dominic's sweater, about 22 rounds in, no mistakes. I will post pictures of both the OSW and the partial sweater as soon as I load the photos on the computer. I also have a picture of Alexander in his snowball hat, and a picture of me in Lara that need to be posted so I can retire the 2005 FO list.

Friday, March 24, 2006

Say it with a Straight Face

"When you take things to the courts you don't have the opportunity to engage the public in the process. You don't have the ability to build a movement," said Planned Parenthood spokeswoman Kate Looby.

Did the interviewer laugh? Did Kate Looby? Maybe they were making a joke.

Read the full Reuters article regarding South Dakota's ban on abortion.


Thursday, March 23, 2006

Contraceptive Culture

I do not think that Griswold vs Conneticut has preserved the privacy of the marital bedroom. In fact, I think the contraceptive culture in which we live has emboldened people to scrutinize other people's spacing of, number of, lack of children. Since contraception is assumed, there is a deficiency in those who don't use it, or who choose to use it sparingly. Since infertility treatments are available, a couple's sexual habits are now something that can be discussed in common society. There is also a sense, that since there is contraception, and people should use it both to limit their family size and to keep children from being "too close," that if people have larger families or their children are spaced closely that somehow this was an accident, or a misfortune.

I especially like the people who think that the "population explosion" is being worsened by larger families and feel the need to inform said larger families. Malthus was wrong, so was Erlich. Now, even the UN is admitting that no, there won't be any surge of 10 children families any time soon to make up for the below replacement level child bearing in all developed countries and the rapidly reducing family size in developing and undeveloped countries. There is no boom, there is a bust. Two interesting books on the subject of population size, from rather different perspectives: The Empty Cradle by Philip Longman and Fewer by Ben Watternberg. I just finished the former book, read the latter sometime last year.

We at the Arabian Knits household are doing our part to pay for other people's retirement, by producing far above the normal replacement level for our family. We're trying to make up for our parents who had one child each (Rich's brother is adopted), and our kids' godparents who adopted their son. So, if you start collecting Social Security in about 10-15 years, please remember to thank us, and our children, who will be paying for it.


Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Slowly Knitting Away

I have done about two more rounds on Dominic's sleeve. I have picked up the edging and done one and a half rounds of seed st on the one skein wonder. I have yet to rip back on the seascape shawl.

The in-laws came up for a couple days this week. We didn't really get to visit with them very much between Rich's work, and them sending us to go out without the kids two nights in a row. It was nice to see them, though. Our niece came up with them, so we were able to talk to her and see how she is doing.

Please be in prayer for us, as it looks like we're entering another round of illness. We do not know when this will end.

Friday, March 17, 2006

Promised Photos

Here are the closest to birthday photos you're going to get.

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Here is Amira being found in a cupboard at the boys' school open house in January.

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This is of Dominic and Amira at the end of February, playing around before bed.

These next two are of her helping to put the chairs away after church.

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Here she is waiting for snack at the coffee hour at church.

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And this is her "making rocks" last weekend, the day after her birthday, while the men and youth of our church dug trenches and helped put up a fence in our yard. Laudate, our youth group, had such a good time doing it, they asked if they could come this weekend to help with the finishing touches.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Happy Birthday Amira!

I meant to post on her birthday, but didn't get a chance to do so. Our little baby turned two on Friday. Two of our kids have birthdays that almost always fall during Lent (Elijah has a chance in some rare years), so we usually push their celebrations to Sunday and enjoy the cake and such then. That is what we did this year for Amira. She got a lot of clothes and some sandals to fit her this summer. We still need to find her some black dress shoes and some boots.

We forgot our camera on Sunday, so there are no photos of the fun from that, but we have a picture of her pushing a chair around after church the week before, and some pictures of her "making cement" in our yard as our church family held a work day to help us put up a fence.

As soon as I upload those shots, I'll get them posted, you won't believe how big she is.

The two best things about her are her laugh and the way she puts her hand in yours.

Knitting Content:

I managed to get all but the body border finished on the one skein wonder, and am making better progress on the Zig Zag sweater for Dominic. I'll bring it with me to bible study tonight. A family from church has loaned us their van while ours is being repaired.


Thursday, March 09, 2006

Cursed Knitting

I don't know if it's the sickness, or being exhausted (thank you Elijah for the 2:30-4:30 a.m. updates on what your dreams are about) so much lately, or something else entirely, but every time I pick up my knitting I make dumb mistakes. So, I got out an old UFO out of Kitchen Cotton that is mindless and small. I had started a one skein wonder in this yarn to match the gauge of the original. I still changed the shaping, I really don't know why designers don't put more elegant shaping and finishing details in their patterns, and I don't know if I'll use the ribbing or just do seed st all the way around. So far, no mistakes. I have a shawl to fix and the sleeve to return to and the sewing up of Amira's bolero, but I wasn't going to try to cast on for that second sock with my cursed fingers.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Prayer Request

We have been battling various illnesses over the past several weeks. Rich was sick with three different things in three weeks, all of the kids have been sick, and over the last two weeks, we've had two separate bouts of some sort of stomach illness. Also, yesterday the transmission on our van went out. We are surprisingly not that stressed out about it, but it is one more thing to have to deal with. Our mechanic can't get to it until Monday, so Rich is taking the boys to school in his work truck and we only have two things going on this week that require us to be able to drive something else, so we'll see what we can work out.

I seem to be getting out of my knitting funk, though. I ripped out the sleeve on Dominic's sweater last night. I found a mistake and decided it would take less time to reknit the entire thing than to try to tink back and fix it. I fell asleep before I made too much progress on it, but it's nice to be working on it knowing it should be correct this time.


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