Friday, November 28, 2008

With Thanksgiving just past, I know I've got Christmas shopping on the brain.

Every year, in an attempt to have a less commercial holiday, I try to make as many of my gifts as possible. This year, however, I've been busier than normal and so I've needed a little help to check off everyone on my list. This is where etsy comes in.

If I can't make handmade, than I'll buy handmade. Or some of the amazing vintage finds that have been so carefully culled.
These are just a few of my favorites, which I hope to inspire you towards a homey-er, handmade holiday.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

I have a lot to be thankful for this year.

If you had talked to me a month ago, I probably wouldn't have said that. I probably would have just started crying and ran away, leaving you in stunned silence, but I'm feeling differently right now.

At Thanksgiving, my family has a practice that makes me cringe, but it's sweet in its way. Before we can eat, we go around the table and everyone says what they're thankful for. With nearly 13 of us gathered around the table, it can take awhile, and I usually get all shy and can't think of anything thoughtful to say.

This year. This year, though, they won't be able to shut me up. For real.

I have an adorable new apartment and an amazing roommate and a really, really good job, which I love and a cousin who survived cancer and a soon-to-be sister-in-law who I adore and tons of friends who would do anything to make me smile and THE MOST FANTASTIC FAMILY, who loves me more than I can explain to anyone.

So, yeah, I have a lot to be thankful for this year.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Friday night I shuffled off to The Point for a workshop. I say shuffled because it was bitterly cold and it was a Friday evening after a long, long week. I would have rather been tucked up on my couch with a glass of wine, watching a DVR'd episode of Ugly Betty.

But Jared was going to be there! And wasn't that enough to make the trip worth while? So, of course, I'm glad I went. I've never knit lace more complicated than some Feather & Fan, so I was taking a big step outside my comfort zone with the Hemlock Ring Blanket. But I figured that under the watchful eye of Brooklyn Tweed and the capable folks at The Point, I could get over my fear. Right?

So right!! I caught on right away to the clever cast on Jared taught us and was knitting along in no time at all! We have a two week break for Thanksgiving and we'll be back the first week in December for the second installment. I've knit quite a bit on my own, but after round 35, my eyes were starting to cross, so I put it down for a while. I'm really looking forward to the next class!!

(Had to sneak in this picture of Ms. PassionKNITly with Mr. Brooklyn Tweed. So cute!)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

See? Knitting content. I promised.
This is a sweater that I started back in August, after the Olympics were over.
It's still not finished.

This is Jil Eaton Minnow Merino. It's a superwash merino, because I think it's generally intended for children's garments. The colors offered are crazy bright This hot magenta was the most tame of the bunch.

It's a sort of loose single ply, but sooooo soft. I'm a little annoyed by how the loose ply is already all fuzzy (I know it's going to pill like crazy) but the softness and warmth make up for it.

It still needs sleeves, but I put it on the dress form at work so I could steam block it a little bit. I wanted a soft looking structure and originally planned on letting the stockinette on all the edges roll naturally, but I didn't account for the extra length and width I would need to accommodate the rolling, so I added a simple edge by picking up stitches, knitting one row and binding off. It's still very simple looking but hopefully the edge will keep it from rolling too much.

Monday, November 10, 2008

This was my first real weekend in my new place (real, meaning, it wasn't Moving Weekend or Halloween) and I have to admit, it was a little rough.
Important items are unpacked and tidied away and I'm settling into a routine, but with that routine comes a reminder of all the things that my new life isn't.

It isn't a life that I'm sharing with someone a love. It isn't a life that I'm building with someone else. It may be strange for some of you to hear, but I've never experienced this before. I've never been so completely on my own.

An independent life is something that I'm having trouble adjusting to. I don't know what it's like to make decisions that affect only me. Simple choices like what color to paint a wall or what to buy for dinner seem so daunting, because I'm out there floundering on my own, with no partner to turn to and ask, "What do you think?"
It also feels incredibly indulgent. And risky.
I'm struggling a little bit, but I'm hanging in there. I'll be back with some knitting content really, really soon.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Oy! I've been tagged for a meme by Ms. PassionKNITly, herself!

7 Weird Things You Probably Didn't Know About Me (here we go):

  1. I hate, hate, hate bell peppers. More than a normal person should, probably. I've been known to cry if they appear in my food and I wasn't aware that they would, because that means that the food is entirely inedible. I get teased about this a lot, which I don't understand, because it's the *only* food that I don't like.
  2. I don't like talking on the phone. This includes ordering food for delivery and calling my grandmother. If you don't hear from me often, don't be insulted. (Sorry, grandma!)
  3. I'm incapable of "saving" food that I like. If I have a box of candy, or jar of pickles, or bag of chips, or whatever, I will systematically eat it over a period of no more than two days. I'm am always genuinely shocked when I visit friends and find easter candy in May. Shocked. Consequently, I don't keep snacks in my house.
  4. I fall asleep *really* easily when in transit. Cars, buses, trains, subways. Like, scary easy.
  5. I can't watch TV without knitting and vice versa. Unless there's someone to talk to or something, but I can't just sit an knit - it drives me batty.
  6. I have to take glucosamine for my hip. I call it "my old lady pills".
  7. All my family's pets are named after jazz musicians: Miles (kitty), Parker (kitty) and Ella (doggy)!
I apparently have to tag 7 other peeps: