Thursday, December 11, 2008

we're in holiday mode over here

Full-on holiday mode. Decorations are up, gifts are being made/purchased (largely from Etsy - go handmade!), and my daily coffee is coming from a Christmas mug.

I made the mistake (except not really) of adding the Craft magazine blog to my Google Reader, which has resulted in tons of inspiring projects tempting me on a daily basis. I haven't gotten around to trying too many of them yet, but the boys and I did make this advent calendar:

Here are the instructions. It was a lot of fun, and I'm really happy with how it came out, but can you see the issue with it?

Think about it.

Yeah, those little pockets? You have to fill them. I did not want to fill the house with more plastic junk and my kids' heads with present-every-day expectations, so I've been putting in things like small candy canes and puzzles printed off the internet. Next year, though, I think I'll incorporate this advent calendar too. Each pocket will hold one of the little felt lights, and we'll put them on the string each day rather than taking them off. Fun!

Okay, I need to catch up with showing the knitting I have actually been doing, so bear with me. No pun intended:

That's the last Bubby, the one for Jess' baby. The yarn is actually recycled from a store-bought cotton sweater, but it really reminds me of Araucania Nature Cotton. It's very soft and sort of slubby. The gauge on this was a bit bigger than on the other Bubbies, so the bear is too.

I also knit a bag for my brother's guitar picks, at his request. I hope he doesn't mind that I had a little fun with it.

That's the only finished Christmas knit I have to show you - little non-holiday projects keep popping up. First, Baby Sister asked for a cowl (really, she did) after seeing me wearing mine all the time. How could I say no?

I love how happy it makes her. It's a really simple one; just stockinette with ribbing at the top and bottom and the embroidered hearts. The yarn is less than a skein of Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino that's been hanging out in the stash since, well, the very earliest days of the stash. I was happy to let it see the light of day.

Second, Brand-new Niece turned one (!) this weekend, and I realized I hadn't knit anything to mark the occasion. Completely unacceptable! Enter the cupcake!

I made this up as I went along, and not to sound full of myself or anything, but I just about died of cuteness looking at it.

The other non-holiday knitting I've been doing has been related to the new etsy shop I've been playing around with. I didn't want to keep the old one going without Jess, and well, she's a little bit busy. New human being and all. So I started up a new one here. I've been working on it off and on, and trying to learn more about promoting it. I don't, however, plan on doing a lot of promotion here. It drives me a little bit crazy when a blog turns into a repeated sales pitch, so I'm not going to do that. The link over there in the sidebar still works, though. :)

And lest I forget, Big Brother's sweater is still moving along at its glacial pace.

Perhaps this goes without saying (it would certainly be less painful that way), but there's no way the kids will be getting Christmas sweaters. They will, as soon as my slow-knitting ass can possible make it, be getting Just-Because sweaters, but not Christmas sweaters. Raise your hand if you're surprised. Nobody? ETA: I just noticed the sweater looks like it's raising its hand in that picture. Ha! It has too much confidence in me.

AND I haven't forgotten that I've been off-handedly promising a couple of patterns and then not putting them up. They're coming - hopefully next week with the new schedule in place. All hail the new schedule!

Well, that's about it for this dispatch from within the holiday craziness. I'll surface again soon, I hope.