Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Tiny Socks Everywhere

In our family, Santa Mouse comes along with Santa. He leaves a present in the tree for each family member. Each is tied with yellow ribbon. The tradition started when my oldest sister read about him in a library book years ago.

The tradition is important to me, and I've introduced it to Andrew's family and some friends. This year, Mom had little wooden sock blockers made, and I told her I'd help her knit socks for them. These became our Santa Mouse gifts.

It ended up that Mom didn't have time to knit the socks, and since I have scrap sock yarn from now until eternity forever and ever amen, I knit them.

It would be fine with me if I never knit another tiny sock again.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Christmas in the Circle City

I feel the need to hit pause. Christmas is happening, and the days seem to be speeding up. We're careening toward the 25th and the moment when I realize I have to undecorate the house and put all that glittery stuff back in boxes. I'm working hard to slow down and enjoy this season where we work to light up the darkness.

I'm trying to squeeze in the important stuff. Last Saturday, we saw Yuletide, the holiday show put on by the Indianapolis Symphony, or, as I like to call it, "my friend, Brandy." Bran is the Line Producer for the show, and the woman knows how to PUT ON A SHOW.

After the show, we walked out to see the lights on the Circle.

I have been lucky enough to watch two other live Christmas shows in addition to Yuletide: The Great American Trailer Park Christmas Musical at Theatre on the Square and Elf at the Murat. The only things those shows have in common is that they're musicals, and they use the word "Christmas" in the dialogue, and I enjoyed them both. (A keg of spiked eggnog that has gone bad plays a prominent role in Trailer Park, as does a song titled, "Fuck It, It's Christmas.") 

I have a list of nostalgic shows I want to rewatch this season. Thus far I've only managed to watch White Christmas and Twas the Night Before Christmas, but I hope to remedy this soon.

Knitting time has decreased, as it always does this time of year. I do have one project I can show you--well, half of it anyway. I didn't get a photo of the whole project before I wrapped them and gave them away.

Fightin' Words (mine ravelled here),
knit in Felici in Rainbow and Stroll Glimmer in Black

I knit these for Bran as a Yuletide present, a yarny declaration that she will make it through the show successfully and soon be eating mushroom dip with me and the rest of our little group.

Mmm, mushroom dip. Now I'm distracted.

Anyway, I've made two pairs of Fightin' Words mitts now, and I'm considering knitting myself a pair of mittens with the same pattern... and probably these same yarns. I love the way these turned out.

Speaking of yarn, Knitpicks brought back a few colors of Felici for a limited time. I assume it was just to taunt me.

I regret nothing.

I hope your holiday season is full of good things, but not so full that you're unable to enjoy it. May we all find a way to hit pause and enjoy the season.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

A Little Christmas

But we need a little Christmas
Right this very minute,

Candles in the window,
Carols at the spinet...

Slice up the fruitcake;
It's time we hung some tinsel on that evergreen bough.

For we need a little music, 
need a little laughter,

Need a little singing
Ringing through the rafter,

And we need a little snappy,
"Happy ever after,"

Need a little Christmas now.

Jerry Herman, Mame

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

I Got Rhythm

Over in the Socks that Rawk group on Ravelry, the powers that be pick a pattern for us to do each quarter. I have Socks that Rock yarn to spare, and I figured this would be a fun way to use it. Last quarter, I made the Zigzagular Socks of Wrath, and this quarter was the House Targaryen socks

Pretty, right? The problem is, it hurts to knit this pattern. The end of each cluster is a k3tog, yo, k3tog all in the same stitch, and it's brutal on the hands. I bought a thimble, guys. A thimble.

I decided this was a pretty pattern, but not pretty enough to justify bloody fingertips.

After contemplating a bit, I decided that the thing to do was to knit a toe-up pattern. I was using a mill end with well under 400 yards, and I was making it for a friend with manly big feet. I did not want to run out of yarn (like I've done before). I weighed the skein and started.

And it was way too big.

Frog again.

The third time was the charm.

They did end up with shorter legs than I would have knit normally, so I'm glad I did toe-up and weighed the yarn.

Syncopation socks (mine ravelled here), 
knit in Blue Moon Fiber Arts Sock that Rock Lightweight, Mill End

I like these, and the stitch pattern is very easy. I think the brown color makes it look like tree bark. I can imagine doing these again top-down.

I probably should be knitting some tiny sock ornaments I'm supposed to be helping my mom make, but I've become enraged by gauge after doing 2 and ending up with wildly different sized ornaments (one of which didn't fit the little blocker Mom wants it to fit on). The whole whack of it is in time out until I figure out what sacrifice I need to make to the yarn gods in order to get it to work. Instead, I think I'd rather make another pair of Fightin' Words mitts. Everyone I know needs a pair of those!