There is knitting, too, I promise….

Allow me to pour us a beverage and explain. I’m having wine, what will you have?

After my nap, I sewed and then sewed some more, then I ripped out some stitches of misplaced hexies, and went back to sewing them in the right place…darned hexies. I was also sent home disgustingly early on Christmas Eve which left my bank account weeping a bit more than expected this year. The snow arrived early this year, which is better than late, when you are not driving home in it too early on Friday night as well….Alas, let’s get back to the sewing I went right back to with the extra time I now had on my hands. I still had tweaks to sew, hexies to place and part of a border to attach….as well as a letter to type and print which would be delivered explaining the quilt top.


Jamie…wondering what he might do with a planetarium (it’s science, he’ll be fine…).

Where’s the super-secret quilt top? What a great question, I’ll get right on that. About 4AM Christmas morning, I put the quilt top in a huge box with some batting choices, the letter and a small, wrapped package of chocolate and popcorn. The child shouldn’t walk away empty handed,after all. As my dear niece, Jessica, worked to undo all my pretty 4AM wrapping, she guessed there was a dress in the box. Unless it was a ball gown replica (one I’d shown her back in October), it wouldn’t have needed such a large box. It was a good guess on her part, and perhaps success on my part. (I have sewn her dresses before, mostly when she was younger). Once she got the box opened and began to lift the quilt out, I had my sister in law step in and assist with the unveiling and handed Jessica my camera. Forgive the photo, I often forget to direct when I’m not behind the camera. Besides, most of my subjects are cats, dogs, and yarn…they have ears only for food, and the yarn, doesn’t listen at all, much like the cats.


The reveal….there’s more to go….but here’s what I’ve been working on forever….or the last three years…if that isn’t loving someone more, I don’t know what is;-).


That being said, the quilt top is still a wee bit unfinished and my dear Dad was the first to point out the holes left in the quilt top. (I wanted to shout, “You should have seen them yesterday!” I didn’t, I was good.) He suggested the holes were arm-holes…you see them…clever, but not quite. I’m quite aware I have more work to do. But once it was unveiled, and I returned to work Monday to double my normal hours this week, including an extra Tuesday, I decided it was now okay to take a slight break from the quilt top. Besides, there is still more to update.


Said quilt top…Spindly legs, and all…spindly term courtesy of Jessica…

I also presented the cable socks to Lizzie(the younger niece), that I’d been working on for much of fall semester. I promised feet photos and forgot them. I’m torn between you have to wait until my pair is done or I’ll have her pose her feet next time…then we have to figure out the best way to photograph someone else’s feet….


Future footwork…(it’s not as if I have three or more of these irons in the fire;-))…

I also meant to unveil mittens to my dad. They did not get finished, not even the first one. Hence why I was on the naughty bench all week, in addition to the quilt top–’When I’m good, I’m very good, but when I’m bad, I’m better.” –Mae West.


Where the mitts are this week….(they didn’t fit…). I’m glad I got the “alternate” gift…perhaps one day, I or Lizzie will love them;-)….

Luckily, I’d received a generous surprise gift card and snuck off the the J-store (Jo-Ann Fabrics) to purchase some last minute gifts….(yes, I know better). While dear James’ journal came in before the big day, he still appreciated the simple hard-cover journal of a similar size I procured for him which may travel better.


The journals….his is much better–the leather one on the right, but mine travels easier….

Then I presented my dad with his “alternative” gift, a simple Star Wars calendar. I proceeded to test his reaction to the wool I was using by thrusting the entire skein into his hand. If it made him itch, I’d have a positive and he could wash the itch off quickly. I showed him the right mitt and had him try it on. Turns out, it’s better suited for my hand than his, which I feared. He was not fully aware of the mittens, so this gift was not an entire bust, thankfully. I might be able to get off the naughty bench for this year. I’ll be sure to join you ladies (and perhaps some gentlemen) right back there next year!


Bubble gum filled Naughty socks….the Nice sock was hidden in the bottom of the snowman….

Now that the big reveals are done and my nephew enjoyed his bubblegum filled socks… presented naughty one first (because the kids really are a chip off the old aunt block….don’t tell them I admitted to anything near old, but the block is old!), I’ve considered reflecting on the past year, but with all the deaths of legends, whether the returned home as the K theory in Men In Black suggests or they are simply gone, we’re begging for a kindler, gentler 2017, and thinking of sending 2016 off with a big bang…or one heck of a salute. It won’t matter to me, unless the big bang is in the gaming hell where I will hopefully be dealing a Carnival game rather than Black Jack.


My happy break from work(except when I’m talking knitting with a Georgian(U.S.) knitter working on a Detroit Lions cowl before a tournament she attends once a year;-). (Squee moment from work).

Enough about work…there’s a reason Londoners, or Englishmen, in historical novels call it a gaming hell, and I’m not really done being naughty, and therefore am absolutely not prepared for reflection…February will be cold enough for that…. Plus, I’ve picked up some “shelved” projects and had others thrust upon me or requested.


The other side of the socks….I still love this color.

Dear James had to fill my stocking after all, and when he got home from his last minute traditional shopping trip to my local yarn store, he reminded me that I’m expensive and told me he got me a new project…well, the yarn for it anyways….


Dear James told me I didn’t have a matching scarf, hat and mittens…half acrylic…Now I’m left searching for a matching pattern….any suggestions?


Reveal of the second sock for the kid willing to wear my Naughty or Nice stocking hat…;-)

Making It My Own…

December 18, 2015

I like to give handmade gifts of me at Christmas. I like to create something I hope someone will enjoy for time to come. I’m also broke much of the time. Even so, I still enjoy seeing my work come to life before me, as well as the feeling of putting on those hand knit socks the first time, and many times thereafter.


Zeus hasn’t noticed the limb yet…though he looks like he’s snuggling it.

Don’t get me wrong. I don’t make it all…I just can’t–and knit candle holders or hot cocoa mugs are just not good ideas. Perhaps one day I’ll take up ceramics or metal-smithing…but I have to make more money for that first.


Briannag, Begging for her very own stuffed gift from Santa Paws…or “Mom, Is this for me?”

But some days, you just want to do and create. Most days, I do so. My job usually allows for that. While my projects are ambitious, they light a fire in me. I want to keep that fire going, especially around the holidays. I do celebrate Christmas, but more because of tradition and love of the holiday(and I’ve learned to embrace 1 special gift over multiple small ones).  I believe I told you about my stocking traditions last year.


“Mom, I will love him, and hug him and name him George, right before I chew the eyes and nose off and rip the stuffing out of him.” It’s not for Briannag, sorry, Girl. Better get some puppy treats…

This year, I’m beginning a slightly new possibility.   I saw a t-shirt I liked in August, and bought it for my dad(Dad, if you did read this one, stop peeking, you’ll see it Tuesday). My brother posted a t-shirt he liked, but after obtaining other gifts for my nieces and nephews, some of them pricier than planned, I realized it wasn’t feasible if I wanted to keep pretending I was following the broke budget plan for holiday spending.


Putzer, helping me knit the secret gift…

My brother also reminded me that he only wears t-shirts about one day a week. If it’s not going to get use, there isn’t much point in me purchasing this item I’m constantly wondering if it’s a bit over-priced. So, I needed another approach. I realized I still had one canvas left in my basement. I also use acrylic paints (and may move into oils when I have more budgetary freedom), but for now, the most appealing part is that I can make it my own. I’m not limited by some company’s idea of the “correct” phrasing. Now, I just have to figure out which brush will paint the words I need. I believe some will be easy and some a challenge….but it shall be interesting. (I am practising on newsprint first).


If you can guess what it is, please don’t post here. This is the wrong side of the fair isle knitting/color strand work.

Now, you’ve read this far and there’s not near enough said about knitting, except the feeling when you put on a new pair of socks. Well, a few weeks ago, I decided to make a gift for my nephew’s car…(David, quit peeking, I’m not showing this either). Well, I’ve got one finished and need to finish the second. I got a good start on it tonight, but I have some work to do, in the midst of finishing some other plans….oy and vey…Photos will come shortly, so long as I remember to take them. In the meantime, I simply have to make these gifts my own, even if the ideas were generated by that which I could not afford;-). Merry early Christmas for those of you that celebrate. Happy Holidays to the rest of you!