Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Heated Love

I really love the Stash and Burn pod cast. Knitting, food, TV, Star Wars and most important our relationship with yarn. It's perfect. Nicole might be the power behind the episodes but Jenny and I are the same person.

Jenny loves her hot water bottle.

She loved it last year, she still loves it this year. She, like me, has a sleeping sweater and hat. She even has sleeping mittens. Or maybe that's Nicole but their places are cold enough that sleeping mittens are a good idea. So is my place.

I searched for a hot water bottle of my own but all the ones I find at the drug stores and Walmart are stinky red rubber enema bags. Um, No.

Amazon reviews say I need a Fashy brand water bottle.

I email Jenny (yes, I'm creepy like that) and ask her what she has. She is nice enough to reply that she has a Fashy.

Fashy are made in Germany and run about $20 plus shipping on Amazon.

I mull this over for a while and then I email a Doctor Who swapping knitter in Germany. She is sad that our favorite $4 China Glaze nail polish is €8 over there. Does she want to trade nail polish for hot water bottle? Sure! Fashy hot water bottles are only € 5.50.

Whatever € 5.50 is, but I do know it's less than a bottle of nail polish.

She can't wrap her mind around how I don't already own a hot water bottle and why a Fashy since they are on every grocery store, convenience store, and drug store shelf. I tell her Americana's aren't cool like that and does she want our nail polish or not?

3 bottles of polish later I get this in the mail.
I love it so much. It's a million times better than I expected. I fill it with hot tap water at night and it's still hot in the morning. It heats the whole bed and is warm and heavy and squishy and wonderful.
I love it so much I'm even knitting it a sweater.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Small Things

Another highlight of 2011 has been nail polish. It all started with the Doctor Who swap and finding the right TARDIS blue nail polish color*. And then there was Amy and the search for all the colors she wears. But it's much more than that. It's a chance to spend small amounts on colorful things in small packages. A pick-me-up that doesn't strain the budget or overfill my apartment. It also satisfies my craving for picking out and playing with colors.

The polish that Kiddo gifted me for Christmas.

I love it and I'm wearing it now.

*China Glaze First Mate is my favorite David Tenant TARDIS blue. China Glaze Bermuda Breakaway is even closer but it's a streaky mess.

For a Matt Smith TARDIS blue I recommended China Glaze Calypso Blue or Barielle Berry Blue.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Winter Madness

2011 has been a good year and one of the highlight of the year has been secret pal swapping.

The most recent swap was Winter Madness. In the madness of the holidays we didn't have to make the gifts along a theme. Who has the time with Christmas knitting? Instead we all sent a care package with everything needed for our secret pal to make something.

Confusing, right? However knitters understand that the best part is the making it our self so to receive a package of knitting bag, yarn, pattern, and needles is wonderful.

Mmmmmm tissue paper goodness.

Joey and I tear into tissue paper like children at Christmas.

The group shot is wonderful but it all ways looks so small and doesn't do it justice. There is much awesomeness packed into these small packages.

Cheery winter mitten pattern on project tote bag.
Yummy yummy yarn in my favorite shades of blue.

About this point I realize the theme might be mittens. Mitten stitch markers, mitten covered tape measure, mitten project bag, double pointed needles..... could my pattern be for MITTENS? It is! IT IS! Plum Blossom Mittens

I've already knit and blogged the mittens. Photoshop was holding these photos hostage. I'm thankful I have a computer and that I can access them again but not so thankful I'm stopped wishing for a new computer.

Knowing that tradition is important and that branching out is not done at the holidays my spoiler gave me exactly what I listed as my favorites-

Dark chocolate covered caramels, chai tea, and cocoa

And she still made something for me too, mitten magnets. Amazing.

For the hands in the mittens, nail polish and lotion.

Such a pretty color. My camera didn't capture it at all. It's the aqua of a 1957 Chevy. One with fins. A Bell Air Coupe. I didn't ask for polish or mention looking for aqua in Winter Madness. I did mention back in May that I really really really wanted this shade of color. So either she has a memory like a steel trap, dug through lots of posts, or has the ability to read minds. However it was done, it was a very thorough bit of spoiling.

Thank you, sprucegoose87, everything is perfect. but I bet you already know that.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Secret Something

Last night I finished all the knitting for today and tomorrow and I was even in bed by midnight.

That leaves me free to knit whatever I want today. I think I'll cast on a secret something* for my dad. Knitting for family today makes me feel closer to them. I want them to have the love in physical form and to make him something special. Never mind that his Christmas gift was knit and finished last January so I knit him something else in July and that is finished too. Something special and new.

December hasn't been all deadline knitting. I've done some decedent knitting for me too. Plum Blossom Mittens in Valley Yarns Berkshire Bulky a wool/alpaca blend. They are wonderfully toasty warm. Colors Light Blue and Navy and I love the way they look with my new coat.

*oops almost said what I would be casting on- waves at family

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Christmas Eve

Christmas eve, the culminating of a year worth of gift knitting. I'm down to the crunch but I'm telling myself I have plenty of time as I lay out my unfinished projects in the order I will be gifting them.

I've spent the day knitting on a project that needs to be done for the 26th. Now it's time to set it aside and pick up the one that will be opened tomorrow. Then tomorrow finish the one for the 26th. 26 through the end of the week work on the ones that will be opened on the 29th. Then 29th and 30 is for finishing the ones that will be opened on the 1st. The 1st I can start on the presents for the 12th.

I have a plan and faith that I can pull it off. However, next year I'm shopping the mall like a normal person.

Friday, December 02, 2011


I've picked my next project, a toddler sweater our of Mission Falls 1820 cotton. Cotton isn't really a decadent fiber but with the cost you would think this yarn is made out of pure gold.

This sweater just does not want to be knit. I've cast on seven time and ripped out inches of knitting more than once. I stayed up late trying to get the kinks out and as I was setting it down I realized that half of the sweater had two more rows than the rest.

How is that even possible while knitting in the round? That is a rhetorical questing. I know how that happens but it's such a noob mistake it's hard to believe I made it. I've never had a 100 stitches in K2P2 ribbing give me so much trouble. I've ripped it all out again and giving it a new go this morning.

Some knits are just trouble but I think this is a sure sign that I need more sleep. I also need some dedicated knitting time. 3 min at a time is not working out.

Maybe I need to cast on a simple hat. Maybe 100 stitches in K2P2 ribbing.

Thursday, December 01, 2011

Decadent December

This is the last month of my very own knitters almanac. Decadent December is for taking it easy and knitting those too special skeins of cashmere and silk. Instead I'm afraid it will be another Deadline December because I still have 4 projects to finish for Christmas.

Knitting in November was fabulous. Very freeing to just knit on whatever I wanted.

I knit hats for Operation Breakthrough.

The most notable is Nine Dwindling Cables knit in Brown Sheep Lanaloft Worsted, Violet Shimmer. I love the yarn. A nice hearty robust wool without mohair so it isn't itchy. It cables well. As I said, it's robust so it has body not drape. Maybe not the best choice for a slouchy cabled hat but it will be wonderful for mittens and weekend sweaters. I can't wait to get more.

I did finish a super secret boys sweater. I'm thinking of trying on the boy to be sure it fits before wrapping it up to give to him. I know that is completely weird but then again I know, and I'm pretty sure the boy knows too, that hand knit kid sweaters are really for the moms.