I've started a second Branching Out for my MIL's Xmas. I'm using larger needles this time, (#8 US, the recommended size) and the Blue Sky Alpaca & Silk in a dark purple. It's harder to knit with the darker color, the decreases especially. But it is coming along. I really like this pattern and want to double it in the future (ie: 2 motifs instead of one) and make a wrap out of it. I am becoming more familiar with the pattern and know a few of the rows by heart.
I'm happy to be getting some Xmas stuff done. I am always so busy at the end of the semester, and I have #1's BD to take care of 3 days after the 25th. It's always a huge pain to buy and wrap presents for folks at that time of year, so I'm killing 2 birds, and don't feel guilty about spending so much time and money on knitting.
I've finally gotten a little painting done. #1 really wanted me to paint his portrait, so we started it on Monday. I'm using acrylic because it's so hot, and I don't want to open the windows for the fumes of oil paint. Talk about a pain. I've got to find some kind of way to use acrylic that doesn't drive me crazy. All I can think is, "If this was oil, I could do this or that." I had the same problem when I was pregnant & didn't want to deal with all the chemicals of oil.
Anyway. #1 doesn't make such a good sitter. OMG he won't sit still! But what did I expect. I knew that would be the case. He's sweet though, every 10 seconds, getting up and saying "It's really coming along with the other pictures, Mom." He's referring to all the portraits I painted of him from photos when he was a baby. I don't usually paint from photos, but I really wanted some paintings of the kids. At least I DID get some painting done. It's kind of addictive. When I start painting, I really don't want to do anything else. That's a good thing and a bad thing I guess. Maybe I'll go back to the studio and paint a still life this afternoon. Something that CAN'T move.