Dale & Dolly – Deck the Halls

Dale and Dolly trim the tree

“Dale and Dolly” is the collaborative work of The Bookworm and I. After I sketch out my idea in goofy little stick figures and scrawled lines of dialog, I hand it over to my thirteen year old daughter who works her magic. Her attention to detail and sense of humor make this comic strip what it is and I give her all the credit for this amazing series.  

Nativity

I absolutely adore the nativity set that we use (Evi Nativity Set found here). I have been collecting it piece by piece over the last couple of years and still don’t have all of it. What I do have, though, gets lots of love. And I enjoy finding it in the interesting arrangements that the kids are known to leave it in. Like this one that I entitled “Joseph, Mary, and Angel are all really into Jesus!”

IMGP1324All kidding aside, I think that this set is awesome because it is a toy that can be played with and loved

IMGP1350

yet still looks gorgeous on the coffee table.

IMGP1351

I need to knit some better sheep, though. 

 

Trimming the Tree

I love Christmas time! We get out the box of ornaments, each with it’s memories, and hang them on the tree with Christmas music playing, and hot cocoa sipping, and new memory making.

IMGP1285 IMGP1286 IMGP1294Then we sit down and watch “White Christmas” while we string popcorn and cranberries.

IMGP1302 IMGP1305 IMGP1306‘Tis the season to be jolly.

 

 

This Moment – Ho, Ho, Ho

A Friday ritual inspired by SouleMama. A single photo – no words – capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

IMGP1300I’d like to quickly point out that The Princess is now wearing, loving, and looking awesome in the sweater that I made for The Boy three years ago!

 

Feeties!

Adding feeties to the bottoms of baby pants and longies may be a new hobby of mine.

IMGP1273

 

Picky Pants with my regular mods plus feeties! in Mosaic Moon Gaia Worsted in Selkie and Selkie Blurple trim (Rav page here)

It is a nice challenge to taper the legs down to the right stitch count for socks, while getting the legs long enough (but not too long) and wide enough. It is a special treat when they come out on the first try, which these didn’t. I frogged back several times and started thinking that I should just spring for a pattern, but I finally came up with a formula that worked.

IMGP1269Then I tried to add feeties to the chunky overalls that I was working on and had a slice of humble pie. Nevertheless, these turned out awesome.

IMGP1265

Said formula looks like this – decrease to approximately 22 stitches (depending on gauge of course); switch to 1×1 rib; work rib for about 1.5″; knit heel flap about 1.5″; pick up gusset stitches (two stitches every three rows); work standard gusset decrease to 2 or 4 stitches less than original amount; work to about 1″ shorter than desired length; decrease toe to approximately 10 st; kitchner graft toe.

A few tips if you want to try it -

Decrease the legs either gradually along the length or all at once and then work a few rows of ribbing. Continue the ribbing on the heel flap. This will help it fit right on the actual baby.

When decreasing for the gusset on the foot, work an extra decrease round or two so that the foot is not as wide as the leg.

Knit the foot a little longer than you would a normal sock or bootie to allow for growth. Same goes for leg length.

Don’t be afraid to play with it. It doesn’t hurt that bad to rip back because you are working with so few stitches, so try it and see what happens.

It really helps if you have a baby to try on the first leg before you make the second!

 

 

Let it Snow!

It is not very often that we get snow at our house. And even less often that it comes in December.

 

IMGP1310We awoke to a blanket of snow on Saturday. The kids were dressed and out the door before I could pull myself out of my bed. They were so excited!

IMGP1308To add to their pleasure, it has been cold enough that it has stuck around in pockets and shady spots all over the property so that the fun goes on and on.

IMGP1315It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas! 

 

 

 

Dale & Dolly – Dolly’s Gift

Dale and Dolly Christmas Wheel

“Dale and Dolly” is the collaborative work of The Bookworm and I. After I sketch out my idea in goofy little stick figures and scrawled lines of dialog, I hand it over to my thirteen year old daughter who works her magic. Her attention to detail and sense of humor make this comic strip what it is and I give her all the credit for this amazing series.  

The Stockings Were Hung

No. I still haven’t knitted stockings for the last two kids, but I did knit these four for someone else…

IMGP1349Kristen’s Creative Christmas Stockings in Wool of the Andes (colors used are listed on my Ravelry project page here)

Three things about this knit -

1) The pattern page on Ravelry says that one of these stockings takes 95 yards. That is a bald faced lie. This is very important to know if you are a) going to order yarn to make them and b) charging by yards knit and c) booking your holiday knitting extremely tightly. I was doing all of these things, so the huge discrepancy cost me time, money, and yarn. Accordingly, I took detailed notes of my yarn usage and listed it by stocking and color on my project page.

2) This pattern is so cool, yardage lies aside. Versatile, customizable, and creative, it was a fun project. I had to make some changes to keep them all the same size, but it was easily done.

3) Wool of the Andes is an excellent yarn for a project like this. It comes in over 100 colors, knits up beautifully with lovely stitch definition, and is quite economical.

I am pleased and proud as I pack up these four stockings and send them off to their new home. I am also keenly aware of the looming holiday and the lack of two more stockings hanging over our fireplace. So, back to knitting I go.

 

Will Work For Yarn

In a wonderful arrangement with a friend on Ravelry I traded some labor for some yarn. This is what she asked for -

IMGP1256

Saroyan in O Wool Classic 2-ply, Evergreen
My Ravelry project page here

IMGP1259

The pattern is written for worsted weight, but easily adjusted for any weight by weighing the yarn as you go. In this case, I was working with 150 grams of fingering weight yarn; a gorgeous, drapey, super soft merino fingering weight yarn. I used 37g for the increase and decrease segments and the remaining 80 grams for the main body. It worked out to be about 80″ long and 17″ wide at the center. IMGP1260In return for this lovely piece of work, I received some Mosaic Moon treats.

IMGP1024_medium2

Purple Mountains on Mountain Meadow Worsted
IMGP1020_mediumButterscotch on High Twist MCN

And there was another skein of Mountain Meadow that I forgot to photograph before I gifted it to another Ravelry pal.

YUM!

I am also knitting a pair of longies with feeties for this sweet mama. I’ll let you know how that goes when it is done. I can’t seem to get the feet right and have ripped back a few times.

Knitting for cash is fun and all, and I appreciate the opportuniy to make a little money. But knitting for yarn is really awesome. Because, who do I think I am kidding? The cash goes towards yarn anyway!