I've been cleaning and organizing. As a reward for accomplished deeds, I've been reading blogs. And doing a little knitting.
Gifted in Brown Sheep Lamb's Pride Bulky. Kate's wonderful, free pattern. They're a gift. Sometime after Christmas, the baby knitting will commence (my new niece/nephew was seen sucking his/her thumb on the most recent ultrasound!), and I will definitely be making more of Kate's designs. Gorgeous! Anyway, the new mitts will be packaged using these wonderful labels from FoKnits as seen on Aison's blog -- how's that for linkage? I will use them for two pairs of thrummed mitts and underwear, too. Does Santa bring underwear to your house? He always brings them to ours! Socks, too.
I have started the North Star Mittens from Knit Mittens, a book that I recently purchased for $2 at a used book sale. You also see Latvian Mittens by Lizbeth Upitis, my most recent book addition (part of Christmas bonus expenditures). Having never knit 2-color (or any other number) mitts before, I thought I'd start with this pattern. I like the design and I think I can do it. I wanted to use a new technique from Latvian Mittens, so did a 2-color cast on (I considered adding a braid). Heh, it's not much, but I did it, I love it, and I think it looks great! That's more Brown Sheep Lamb's Pride, but worsted this time and I'm using aubergine (same color as the Gifted mitts) and a creamy white.
Also pictured is the newsletter I downloaded yesterday from the LYS of furthest distance that can still be considered "local." They're announcing the Spring 2005 Midwest Masters classes. Guess what?! Guess who's going to be there?! Lizbeth Upitis! I think it's a sign, don't you? I'm taking it as a sign. I'll be signing up as soon as I can figure out the classes I want to take. Among the other teachers are Lily Chin, Debbie New, and Lorna Miser.
This was the gift for my boss and his wife. It's a bowl filled with a pound of roasted cashews and almost a pound of chocolates; the vessel is from a line of pottery decorated by my lovely and talented sister. Here's a close-up of a different piece. The girl works magic with a slip trail and glaze -- it's green, too, what's not to love? It's hand-thrown stoneware and every piece is decorated by hand -- each and every one is a wonder to behold.
Speaking of said sister, I delivered part of her Christmas present when I visited last week -- a pair of warm, wooly mitts and a warm, wooly scarf. Just in time, too, as the temps have been falling all week!
I'm stalling. Yesterday, I blew the whole morning on the phone, when I should have been cleaning. Today, it's blogging. Yeah. I did get a head start on Friday night, though, by cleaning the upstairs bathroom. While I was scrubbing the sink and all, I was thinking about the Christmas Boot Camp commencing in Canada this weekend that I'd read about earlier in the day. I had left a comment, too, about envisioning a drill sergeant; heh, Stephanie replied that she's her own and it isn't pretty.
I was washing light fixtures and polishing chrome and thinking about what drill sergeants do -- the chanting, marching sing-song thing (Louis Gossett, Jr. comes to mind, though it's been so long since I saw An Officer and A Gentleman that I don't know if they even do it in that movie). I found some inspiration (it's called a "cadence," by the way). I changed a few words and sent it back in an email (I'm not sure she's read it yet, though, because I forgot about the part where if it was something she really needed to see, I was supposed to flag it somehow). Anyway, it was a diversion (one among many) and I thought I'd share it with you.
One sock, no sweat. Two mittens, better yet.
Three concerts, think about it. Four cookies, thought about it.
Five nogs, feeling good, like I should...
Let me tell ya, making up new words to marching songs KIND of made the bathroom cleaning a LITTLE more f... uck, no it didn't! There are lots of longer cadences that one could play with, but I'll have to clean a bigger room to come up with the words.
Have I wasted enough of my time and yours?
Added later: As long as I'm here (fixing a typo in the cadence, for crying out loud), I just have to add that I knit a braid on the mitten -- two colors, where the cuff meets the hand -- and I'm so proud. The directions were very clear and it's like a miracle or something. Awesome; I did that! All in all, I'd say the 2-color mitten is going well (I do have an extra stitch and there's another teensy mistake, but I'm okay with that); I'm just past the thumb gore and I'll snap a pic tomorrow. WooHoo.