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Archive for November 22nd, 2004

Holidays, Already

Monday, November 22nd, 2004

My family always does an early holiday event. We combine my birthday (November 28), Thanksgiving and Christmas. We call it Thanks-Christmas. I get a pumpkin birthday pie and we do presents. We did this last week and really enjoyed ourselves.

I have a very small family. We have Mom, Eric, and I, plus our respective partners/spouses… Fred, Diana, and Brian. That’s it for Michigan in our family! I really enjoy the peacefulness of a small family gathering (hey, six people is a lot to me sometimes). We take turns opening presents, we get to see everyone open what we got them, we get to relax as we go around the room. I have been to larger family gatherings, and it is just plain impossible to take turns with twenty people… you would never get your dinner that way! But I really enjoy the leisurely pace of our events, in an otherwise crazy life that I live.

Last year, Diana could not come up for our holiday gathering, but this year she was there. I really was glad to have her company. Eric and Diana definitely had the best gift of the year. They made up shirts that show Brian’s “Heftone Banjo Orchestra” which is really a composite of about seventeen photos of Brian holding different banjos… some of the photos with long hair, some with short. I took all the photos and then Brian composed the image on his computer. A smaller version of this is the front cover to Brian’s “Music Box Rag” CD, and it sure gets a lot of comments when folks see it.

Here is a photo Fred took of the rest of us wearing our Heftone Banjo Orchestra t-shirts. Now, don’t we look cool? We’re the best, I’m just sure of it. OK, pretty geeky but still very cool with our exclusive shirts!!!

Sock Pair #97, Sara’s Footies

Monday, November 22nd, 2004

Speaking of holidays, this is the week of my Goddaughter Sara’s birthday. She is away at college now but I did get to see her on Saturday. Back last summer she requested another pair of footie socks from me (she has the original socks for my Sherbet Socks, and she is wearing them so much she really wanted another pair).

Considering that when I did laundry today, a “turquoise” (and blue and green) load, I had 17 pair of handknit socks in it between Brian and I, I figured I could make Sara one more pair.

Yet I had to restart this pair SIX times. I just could not get my gauge and the number of stitches to make it the right size. Even doing the math and swatching does not make up for the fact that my gauge changes by the hour. It was very frustrating.

The good news was that I did finish a new pair for her. I got this yarn at Yarn for Ewe, I think in July. Finally I finished these, and about 45 minutes before I met Sara to give her the sox as her birthday gift. I’ve been so busy knitting store samples for classes that I’m going to teach, that I had a hard time finishing Sara’s sox. (The last pair I finished were in mid-August, for my Mother’s birthday. The first year I knit socks, I averaged one pair every 10 days… you can see I’m living a different life now.)

But they are done and she absolutely squealed out loud in delight. She put them on right away. Gotta love it. Makes you want to repeat that action, you know?

Here are pics of the sox up close, and “My Sara” wearing them. I’m glad she likes them so well.

Oh… and since I’m going on this trip, they gave me my birthday/Christmas gifts while I was there (the family did). Sara knit me this wonderful scarf, all by herself. I taught her to knit a few years back and she really was good at figuring it out but didn’t seem too interested, other than doing something with me. I figured she gave it up. But this year she’s making scarves.

This one is very warm, and it’s a really great combination of turquoise, blue and hot green. It’s loopy and textured, and I couldn’t tell at first through the texture if it was knit or crocheted (I would have bet on single crochet). It’s garter stitch but you can’t see the characteristic ridges because of the yarn’s texture.

She’s also working on a scarf right now in rainbow worsted weight yarn, in a K1P1 rib knit. And she says she has one scarf done except for fringe, back at the dorm. I’m glad I showed her a bit of knitting when I did. I sure do treasure this scarf! There have been very few times in my life when someone knit for me, and this is especially sweet because it’s a hug from Sara every time I wear it.

And what about these cool boots? More gifts from my Godchildren (Sara and her big brother, Michael) and their family. They know how much I love color. They said they walked by in the store and then turned around and decided I’d love ’em and they would get them for me. What a very cool present! I would never have splurged on something like this but they are just wonderful and as colorful as ever. Cool, huh?