Saturday, December 24, 2011

New Scrapbooking Class

Just a short post today to give a little shout out about Kirsty of Curiouser and Curiouser.  If you haven't already checked out her blog you're missing out on some very inspirational scrapbooking.  I adore her scrapping style and she always has amazing and entertaining stories to tell as well.

Kirsty has put together a scrapbooking class called Just One Sketch which is set to begin in January.   The cost is very reasonable and the best part is that all proceeds are going towards her efforts to fundraise for Girl Guides UK.  It doesn't get better than that.  I'm really looking forward to seeing what Kirsty has in store for us.

I'd also like to wish everyone a safe and happy holiday.

Until next time...
Susan :-)

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Rockin' Socks

My scrapbooking may have taken a bit of a hiatus lately but that doesn't mean that I haven't been busy being creative.  After our somewhat disappointing first attempt at sock-making, Jen and I decided to give it another try and that is what we've been working on during our weekly crafting get-togethers.

This next pair knit up with relatively few problems, the main one being that we ran out of yarn just before finishing up the toe!  This left us scrambling to find more of the same wool and I was lucky enough to find another ball at the ridiculously low price of 79 cents!  Unfortunately Jen had to substitute another colour but we finally got our socks knit and had only to finish closing up the toes.

Last week we began with our first sock using a "magical" knitting technique called the Kitchener Stitch in which you sew the final stitches in a series of knits and purls and then pull up the yarn to tighten everything and get a seamless finish to the toe.  Mine worked without a hitch and I have to say it was truly a thing of beauty.  Jen's...not so much.  She ended up with a loopy, knotted-up mess but with a lot of patience, some trial and error, then a break for lunch, we eventually got it all sorted out and she finished her first sock too.  We didn't have it in us to tackle the second toe and put the socks aside until this past week.

Part two of toe-closing and the tables were turned - Jen conquered that kitchener stitch and had her sock finished up in no time at all.  Me...not so much.  I got confused, messed up, had to back-track and ended up with a knotted loopy mess.   I wasn't able to completely fix the problem but eventually managed to make it good enough.  I was happy that things went so well for Jen second time around because it sort of restored her faith in her ability to make a sock and maybe, just maybe, she'll want to knit another pair with me sometime. :-)

These socks still do not have the refined look I'm aiming for but they are definitely a big improvement and they actually fit me. 

I'm really excited with the idea of making more socks and improving my skills and can't wait to use up some of this yummy yarn in the process!

Until next time...
Susan :-)

Monday, December 19, 2011

O Christmas Tree...

I have to admit I'm not a big fan of Christmas.  I struggle with it.  I'm not religious in the bible/Jesus sort of way so there's nothing for me to celebrate as far as that's concerned, which usually leaves me to wonder what it is I'm supposed to be celebrating.  I can certainly see the people that I want to see any time of year - I don't need Christmas for a get-together.  And I can certainly give gifts to people throughout the year if that's what I choose to do so I don't need the insanity of the Christmas shopping season for that either. 

Christmas was easier when my kids were little and got caught up in the excitement of the season but they're grown now and slightly less than enthusiastic about the whole thing themselves.  I noticed this year that Christmas merchandise showed up in the stores about the same time that the Halloween stuff did.  That's early!  It's hard to maintain excitement for an occasion when we're bombarded with it months in advance.  I'm tired of the advertisements telling me that a brand new car or an 80" TV are what my family really wants for Christmas.  Or my personal favourite - the jewellery store which is suggesting that the perfect stocking stuffer is a diamond ring.  How ridiculous is that?  Stocking stuffers should be candy canes, chocolate bars, a bottle of bubble bath.

Last year, because we had just moved to Alberta and into our new place on December 17th, I got away with not putting up the Christmas tree.  This year there was only one thing that encouraged me to get that chore done and that's the fact that Jen wanted to see it.  Throughout our adult lives, until last year, we had never been together at Christmas so she hadn't seen my tree.  Richard and I dragged everything out of storage over a week ago and finally finished decorating this past Saturday morning since Jen and Rob were coming over for supper that night.

Now that it's gracing a corner of the livingroom I'm happy to look at the ornaments which have sentimental value to me but you can be sure that come December 26th I'll be taking it all down and putting everything away - and it won't take me a week to get it done!

Until next time...

PS: bah humbug  ;-)