Monday, December 31, 2007

Christmas 2007 Projects

As I've mentioned before, this year our family tried out Homemade Christmas for the first time. Perhaps I'll do a post soon of some of the things family made for me (no photos have yet been taken). As is, this post is still picture heavy.

As far as what I gave, socks sum up almost everything. To the right you can see all the pairs of socks given to friends and family. My sisters received the three identical striping socks, my grandma received the blue striping, and dad, grandpa, and almost-brother-in-law received the solid ribbed socks. The pink striping pair is still wrapped and will be mailed, since we didn't see the friend they were meant for.

I used only two different patterns. While I don't mind reusing a pattern, I have learned that the same color yarn and size can borderline on taxing.

Mom received the mittens she requested, in white:

The cuffs can be folded up, as seen on the left one, or rolled down if the wind and cold are fierce, as seen on the right.

My nephew was pleased with his snake and mice:

My younger niece kept asking me to remove Sheldon's shell, then put it back again:

My oldest niece had requested handwarmers, "because it gets cold on the bus."

I saw her practice her penmanship as she asked for directions on how to use the rice packets inside and dutifully transcribed what I said, with only periodic help needed with the words "microwave" and "freezer." She was disappointed to learn that they wouldn't stay warm all day, for she has three recesses.

Lest you worry that I have tired of socks, do not fear. While traveling, I finished grafting the stitches to the pair of socks I'm sporting today.

And at the end of last week, I cast on a pair of gray ribbed socks for me. I'm hoping to wear them when I return to work Wednesday, and since I'm already working on the leg of the second, that might actually happen. These might be a little tight in shoes since they're a heavier yarn, but they will sure be warm.

And because Rachel does not tire of kitty news, this is for her: Augustine did great with the drive (no carsick episodes like last year) and she behaved well in the homes of family, provided cats (and the occasional dog) steered clear. As you see here, however, her idea of comfort does not align with ours.

She would lay like this, suspended between our armrests, when she wasn't sprawled in (or on) her carrier.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Wherein I Mainly Talk About Our Cat and Then Proceed to Apologize for Doing So

I have been a terrible blogger. I can't believe this page has been silent since Thanksgiving. To remedy this, I will update on miscellaneous topics, none really involving knitting since I have to remain mum just a couple more days until gifts are revealed. But they're all done and they make me happy!

The last few weeks have been filled with me being sick (nearly everyone in the office has been passing around a sore throat/nasty cough for the last couple weeks). I took a sick day for the worst of it, wherein my cat and I were nearly identical in our sleeping habits.

A couple weeks back I attended a local art studio that was selling pieces for the holidays, and I grabbed up this bowl. It is happily containing leftover yarn that has no other home and yet is too small for my tastes to be wound up into a center-pull ball.

Early in the month I finished reading Middlemarch, and if I return to blogging, I may very well share my thoughts on it, provided they don't fade too drastically.

And in other news, our cat loves snow. We allowed her to be on our screened-in porch periodically during the spring and summer, and she adored it. She could crouch for hours at the screens, and would hide behind my plants when we tried to get her to come back in (she's like a petulant child).

Knowing this, we dreaded the onset of colder weather. Even though the temperatures have dropped, she still thinks she wants to check out the scenery. So we let her out and stand at the door until she quickly returns to us. Unless there's snow blown in, like there was a week ago. I think she scampered around and did the following in under five minutes. And then wanted back out nearly as soon as we brought her in (we didn't indulge her). Those markings that almost look like human footprints? Not so. She slid around in it, and pounced on the snow clumps when they snuck up on her.

And I'll close with yet another cat anecdote. But first, an apology to you people who despise felines and cannot understand the turn this blog has taken: I'm sorry. Since I'm no longer teaching, I'm stuck when it comes to amusing stories, and this will likely remain the case until we have children. Alas, summon that patience from deep somewhere, for this, too, shall pass. Now, back to my closing story.

When Eric was home this week, he heard Augustine bolt for the front window. Eric figured the mail carrier was at our door, since our cat has sensitive ears and takes pride in serving as our guard. This was the case, so Eric stepped out to retrieve our letters, only to find our mailwoman stopped in our yard, standing in snow and staring at our front window. When she saw she'd been caught, she gushed, "I just love your cat!" I am amused to imagine our cat and mail carrier bonding over the year, watching each other through the glass.