December 29, 2013

Year End

Well Christmas has come and gone.  I managed to finish my son's scarf and my mother-in-law's Marin shawl in time.  I used Madelinetosh Tosh DK in Tart.  My mother-in-law wore the shawl on Christmas Day...she seemed to really love it which made me feel great. It was worth all those early hours of knitting before anyone else woke up in the house.  I proved to myself that I can knit fast when under pressure because I basically finished this shawl in about two weeks.  The fringe on this shawl took was supposed to be four inches, but after three inches I was happy with how it looked and cast off.  This pattern makes a cozy shawl that is big enough to snuggle into on a cold day.
Marin in Madelinetosh DK Tart

My son asked for a scarf that was not too long.  I used the pattern called Forever Ribbed, a free pattern by Julie Hoover using a yarn called Mirasol Paqu Pura and combined it with Madelinetosh Prairie in Charcoal.
Forever Ribbed

The one thing I didn't finish in time was my Christmas wreath.  Time just got away from me.  It was very easy to do but just time consuming.  I ended up finishing it on Boxing Day.  I basically took a styrofoam wreath, wrapped a beautiful ribbon around it and then glued some lovely glass ornaments on it. (I bought all those ornaments for $6, a real bargain).  I am very happy with how it turned out and now I will have it ready for next year.

My husband gave me a great gift.  Just look at it below.  It is a circular needle case from Della Q.  Just looking at it makes me happy.  Look how cute the outside is:
Della Q Circular Needle Case
There is so much space to organize a variety of needles.  Usually my needles are kept in a box spilling out all over the place.  The only downfall with this case is there is no velcro to keep the individual pockets closed.  I think I may add velcro will really help keep the pockets closed that have more than one needle.
Look at all those pockets!

I would like to wish everyone a Happy New Year and all the best in 2014. Thanks for visiting my blog this year and I hope you pop by again in 2014.

December 22, 2013

GTA Ice Storm Images

The GTA has been hit with an ice storm.  Many areas are without power.  Here are some photos of my yard:

Most of the damage we sustained is nothing compared to some of our neighbours, a couple streets over:

 The ice is absolutely stunning to look at but oh so destructive.  It will be sad to see the extent of the damage once the ice melts.

December 21, 2013

Christmas Crafts With Children

Now that my own two children are older they have lost interest in Christmas crafting with me.  But, luckily, I am teacher and I have my thirty grade six students.  This year we had lots of fun in my class getting ready for Christmas.  After being inspired by Color 'n Cream's blog I decided I would do the same craft with my class this year.  I was surprised to hear how few had ever sewn on a button or even held a needle before.  I knew I had to do something about it.  I started by working with a small group of students who told me they had a bit of experience.  I can't tell you how many times I had to thread their needles for students told me I had a lot of patience!  We started with the trees so that I could teach them all the fundamentals.   Here's how they turned out:

The next day the rest of the class had their turn to make the trees, assisted by the group that had worked with me.  They were so proud that they were able to help their classmates.

Then this second one was very easy for them:
By this point most of them were able to sew independently.  The best part for me was when I laid out some assorted felt (purchased at Michaels Craft Store last year) and they made their own designs. Here are just a few:

I can't tell you how proud they were that they had learned how to sew. Many of them told me they went home and showed their parents their new skills.  So thank you to Color 'n Cream for the inspiration!

We also had fun making these trees...I wish I had a group picture of them all.  Just using construction paper, marker and glitter can't go wrong!

December 8, 2013


This time of year just whizzes by with all the shopping, baking and preparing.  That's why it is important to have a way to relax and for me that has always been some knitting time.  Even when its knitting that has to be done for Christmas gifts!  I was able to use up some of my yarn stash on the two presents I was making.  My favourite hat I finished was Bough by Leila Raabe in Wool People Vol. 6. Although my yarn was probably a bit too variegated for this pattern I am still very pleased with the outcome.  The pom pom just makes it I think.  I definitely would like to make another Bough with a plainer colour.  Tanis Fiber Arts Green Label yarn really softened up once blocked.

The next pattern I completed was from the Great Oddments Knitdown called the Fairy SnowCap out of some Berroco Ultra Alpaca.  The pom pom was great fun to make.  Romi Hill is going to come out with fifteen to eighteen patterns in the next year using odds and ends of yarn.  That is a good help for me.  When I first became obsessed with knitting I was quick to single skeins of yarns that caught my eye.  Now I seem to have a collection of theses single beauties but I am not always sure what to do with them.  So I am interested to see what ideas Romi comes up with.  I am thinking more and more that in 2014 one of my goals should be to make a dent in my stash.
Fairy SnowCap

Then I finished Julie Crawford's Pemba mittens as part of the final instalment of the TFA 2013 Year in Colour Club.  This pattern was fun to do and kept my interest.  I am looking forward to what Tanis has in mind for the club in 2014.  She has such a wonderful eye for colour and unique patterns.

I have also been knitting a scarf I for my son.  I think I will be knitting it just won't get long enough.  However, it is good for those times when a harder pattern is not doable.  So I plug away.  I am trying to get it done before he returns for Christmas from university.  I will hopefully show you the finished scarf next time.  I still have grandiose ideas of finishing a few more projects before Christmas...we shall see.  How is your Christmas knitting going?