I have had a fiber-filled Christmas so far! Last night I opened presents with my mom and I got some GREAT stuff.

As y’all know, my mom doesn’t knit. But our friend M does, and mom always goes to her to find out what I want fiber-wise. My mom always gets the perfect gifts. So this year, in addition to my many MANY Christmas ornaments this year (she picks them up for me when she travels), she also bought me a Swift and Ball Winder!!! YAY! I used to use M’s, and as “payment” I’d always wind a couple balls of her yarn, too. Now that I have a set, I told her she’d have to wind her own! She replied that now I have a set, she can just send it home with me. LOLOLOL

From M I got some ADORABLE Christmas ornaments of snowmen wearing knitted garments, a bunch of other knitting related things like the Spinner’s Companion. And she gave me a skein of Cherry Tree Hill’s Melange. Gorgeous. Just gorgeous. Oh, and a sheep windchime! He’s ADORABLE.

But the big news…I finished my mother’s Christmas present in time. I can’t tell you how much I was sweating that. LOL. I knit her a Lady Eleanor in Noro. I started it Halloween weekend and finished it at 3:30 p.m. Christmas Eve. She loved it. I had a mental breakdown at one point and thought “What if she doesn’t like it?” But then the brain kicked back in and I realized how stupid that was. LOLOL. First of all, she bought the yarn! And she knew I was going to make that for her, but I had told her that she wasn’t getting hers until I finished mine. And mine is a LONG WAY from being finished. LONG LONG WAY. And because all my knitting buddies were sworn to secrecy, she had no idea I had even STARTED it, much less was going to finish by Christmas. When I told both her and our friend M that bit about her not liking it, they both gave me identical stares that very clearly said “Oh, no! She’s finally snapped.”

So last night I gave her a “gift certificate” to take her shopping for silk, as she wants to line it. I also gave her the last ball of yarn for the fringe, and then she opened the box. She was stunned. Absolutely stunned. And another friend of mine makes jewelry, and I had ‘commissioned’ her to make a shawl pin and she came up with a really pretty one in hammered copper that’s PERFECT. I’m hoping to have pictures next week or the week after depending on how it goes.

So that’s been my Christmas so far. All in all a good one, if a bit bittersweet as it’s the first without my grandmother.

Off to dad’s now to make pierogi. Hope your holidays are fun, festive, and filled with the company of those you love. Stay safe.

The Guppy
aka the Fish with Sticks

Ok, where to start…

First off, no pictures this time. Sorry. I have a bunch on my laptop, however the laptop is at home and I’ve put this post off long enough, frankly. LOL.

1. The Olympic Knitting Scarf has been located and completed. While I really like it, I wish I had gone with a drapey-er gauge. Although I don’t know that cable scarves ever really DRAPE per se.

2. Super Secret Christmas projects are in the works! If I get them finished by Christmas (You there, Yes, you…Stop laughing! I can hear you!) I’ll post pictures. Lots of fun.

3. I’m taking a class at A Mano Yarn Center. It’s two socks on one circular. It’s…Interesting. I think the classes were too close together. While the Yarn Harlot may be able to knit a sock a day I’m just not that talented. The first class was just confusing. The instructor was late because of traffic, we didn’t know what yarn to get, so no one got their yarn before class, so it all had to be bought and wound before we could start, and then the cast-on is fairly complicated and new to most of the class. And I was having major gauge issues, so I didn’t actually start really working on my sock until Wednesday, and by Friday we were to have finished the ribbing so we could do the leg shaping. So while it was interesting learning Magic Loop for two socks (or even Magic Loop at all) I don’t think I got my money’s worth.

When I left the first class, I had cast on the first half of both socks, and I knew how to complete the cast-on, but I had no idea how to join or how to actually knit it. Where do my needles go? How do the socks slide around the cables? It was very confusing and it took my friend and I several days before we could figure it out. Frankly, she figured it out on Saturday and I sat on her couch all Sunday until I could wrap my head around it. even then it was really hard until I got a number of rows done.

So we basically all had to teach ourselves the Loop method. Then the next class, no one was at the point to turn the heel, so we talked leg shaping and sat and knit. Then the third class we were supposed to be at the heel, and about half of us were (not me, of course). So people started their heel flap, but as far as I know, no one got as far as actually turning the heel or the gusset or anything like that. The last class is tonight, and it should be toes. We’ll see how far along people are.

I like the teacher, and I think she’s a good teacher, and I LOVE the store, but I think the classes were too closely set (a week apart) and this time of year it’s especially hard to commit to X amount of knitting a week. I would have been happier if they had been spaced 2 weeks apart or if we were making slipper-socks and using a heavier gauge than sock yarn. Then it might have been more realistic to expect us to get to a certain point by each class.

Ok. Rant over. Moving on….

4. The socks are coming along very nicely, and I’m loving doing two at once. Although I think the next pair will be toe-up.

5. I’m headed to the Yarn lady tomorrow for the bag sale. YIPPEE!!! This is the yarn shop that’s so fabulous that my mother (who doesn’t knit) bought 9 balls of yarn.

6. Speaking of those 9 balls of yarn, 3 of them are for a scarf for her for her birthday (yes, I know I’m late). The yarn is Rowan Tapestry (in blues and grays) and I’m doing Karen Baumer’s Multidirectional Diagonal Scarf and it looks great. And the yarn drapes beautifully.

7. And finally…I have Venezia yarn by Lang that I want to knit up into a lacy something or other (I only have 3 balls) but I need a super-easy pattern. Anyone have any ideas?

Well, I think that’s it for now.

The Guppy
aka The Fish with Sticks

*Thanks to the Jamie Jack & Stench show on KYSR for the idea.

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