Sunday, December 28, 2008

Year-End F.O. Round Up

Let's see, how did I do this year? Thanks to Ravelry, I counted:

Baby blankets - 3 (plus 1 quilt)
Baby sweater - 1
Hats - 1
Scarves - 5
Shawls - 2
Socks - 5
Sweaters - 2
19 knit/crocheted FOs for 2008

Can I make it to 20? Which project should I finish?

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Happy holidays, happy family!

It was a push to get it done last Sunday, but I finally finished the Cleite shawl for my MIL. I knew it was going to take a day (or two) for blocking, and since we left on Wednesday for our annual Christmas pilgrimage to the land of the families (SoCal), I needed to finish it by Sunday at the latest.
She loves it!

Pattern: Cleite
Yarn: Panda Silk in the Berry Smoothie colorway, 5.5 skeins
Needles: US size 4
Started Sept. 25, 2008
Finished Dec. 21, 2008

The other Christmas crafting project was for my 4 y.o. niece G. Her mom (my sis) called me Tuesday to say that G's PB (Polar Bear) needed a new pompom for his hat. So I made a tiny pompom (about 1.5 inches across), and in 15 minutes, a little crocheted scarf to match (1 double-crochet row each of red and white). It was wrapped up as a "Santa gift", with a note from The Man himself. When she got to it and she and I read the note together, the joy on her face was priceless: "Mommy, I got a pompom for PB! Santa got a pompom for PB's hat!" (yelled, while jumping up and down...) " I pulled out a tapestry needle and added the pompom to PB's hat while she still jumped up and down in front of me with the scarf. "Auntie Kathy, he can wear 2 scarves! PB, do you want to wear your new scarf?"

Everyone got what he or she wanted: Dork got an iPod Touch, Hubby got a gift cert for some ceramics classes from a potter in Los Gatos, and I got a Flip Mino. Didn't get any videos worth inflicting on anyone when I was trying it out though. But watch out, I may be videotaping you someday!

According to my sis, G's sister S is into making crocheted chain bracelets, so "I thought you might have some scrap yarn to give her, or some thread or something." HEL-LO! Of course I gave her all the leftover yarn I could scrape up, and then happened to see the 1.5 boxes of embroidery floss from my cross-stitching days. See what she made for me? Another crafty kid in the family! (Her mom sews and scrapbooks, as well as tries to corral her 3 kids...)

The next day, my dad and his youngest grandson, 1 y.o. Baby I, had to take a nap, and I had to take their picture!

Wishing you and your families a wonderful holiday season, whatever your choice of holidays!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Tag, you're it!

Thanks to Jasmin, I have a post, even though it's not related to knitting at all. Which is fine, because nothing is all that new in my knitting life, except the slog through the final 1.5 repeats of my MIL's Cleite shawl.

What I’m supposed to do is find the 4th picture folder on my computer. I’m to put the 4th picture from that folder
on my blog and tell 4 facts about it.

Fact 1: Taken at one of my dad's closest friend's son's wedding in China, October 2001. Brian (standing, 2nd from the left next to his bride, and his brother (Curtis), seated on the left) might as well be my cousins.
Fact 2: We were able to go because it was about 4 days before my brother's wedding reception in Singapore. As long as we were going to be in Asia anyway...
Fact 3: Dad is standing behind my mom, seated on the right.
Fact 4: Chinese weddings in China aren't much different from Chinese weddings here - lots of people, tons of food and lots of red clothing. There's just more people speaking a language that I completely mangle and maybe understand about 10% of what they say.

This was also a wonderful trip on many fronts. The Dork was 9 years old and he got to skip 10 days of 4th grade. Everyone agreed that it would be waaaay more educational for him to go on a family history trip than just hang out doing the same stuff every day at school. So the Dork and I traveled with my parents, 2 aunts and uncles on my mom's side, my sister, my "uncle" and "aunt" and another "uncle". My dad was
able to travel with 2 of his best friends.

We went to the house my dad grew up in until he was about 9 or so. The house still belongs to him and my cousins. This is Dork, me, Dad & my sister in front of the family altar. The photos are of my grandparents.

We also found the villages that my maternal grandparents came from. In my grandfather's village, we found a woman who remembered him and his brothers - and they left the village in the early 1920s! She showed us the house that she said the family lived in. Of course, a lot of the rural construction is adobe bricks, and the house had fallen down a few years before and was completely overgrown. This woman just clambered into the rubble and pulled up a couple huge earthenware containers and told us to take whatever dishes we wanted. We have no proof that these items belonged to my grandfather's family, but all of us took a few pieces home anyway.

The Hubby met us in Hong Kong to join us for the Singapore portion of the trip. He was working on his Masters' degree and couldn't take a full 10 days off from school. My brother's wedding was a complete contrast to the China part of the trip. This is my brother and SIL in her 2nd of 3 wedding outfits.

This is one of my favorite photos from the trip.

Hmmm, who should I tag? How about No-blog-Rachel, Stacie, Marie and Nathania?

Monday, December 15, 2008


Okay, as promised, here is a picture of the Secret Pal scarf referred to last night:
I finished it early this afternoon, realized that the sun was out, and ran outside to take pictures. We got some much needed rain last night and today. Between rain showers, however, our gardener showed up, and I got some pictures!

And yes, I'm feeling better. I'm glad I didn't worry about getting out first thing this morning in the cold, as my lungs weren't happy with the cold air yesterday. My sweetie took The Dork to school this morning and I turned over and buried my head in the covers. I'm going to head out to pick him up soon though. Finals begin for him tomorrow, so the studying needs to continue!

Only a few more presents more to buy, but several to make...wish me luck!

Saturday, December 13, 2008


Yes, I'm finished - in more ways than one:

The bad: my respiratory system - 2nd cold in 3 months, which is very unlike my usual illness cycle. I'm taking tomorrow off from work and hibernating.

The good:
Finished a baby blanket:

Luca baby blanket
Yarn: Plymouth Jeanne in light green and white. The stripes are each exactly one skein wide, with the top and bottom border the only exception.
Needle: US Size 9 (5.5 mm)
Size: 24" x 32" (but very stretchy)

Almost finished a scarf for my secret pal:

Yarn Harlot's One Row Handspun Scarf
Yarn: Baby Twist (alpaca with a twist) in a steel blue color
Needle: size 7 dpn
Size: about 4" wide, projected to be 60" long
Pictures tomorrow.

I "finished" off one of my former students, who is currently in 8th grade (my campus only goes up to 5th grade). She comes to hang out in the library while waiting for her younger sister. Two days in a row, she tells me I have to read a YA novel called Tunnels by Roderick Gordon and Brian Williams. Haven't had a chance to get to the bookstore yet... Then she sees a ceramic pitcher I have on my desk with a picture of Babar on it. "Who's Babar?"

"What, you don't know who Babar is? You have to read about Babar!"
"No, it's a kid's book!"
"Okay, let's make a deal - you read Babar, and I'll read Tunnels."

So she starts to read Babar, and I get an idea. There is another book called Tunnels, by Gail Gibbons, non-fiction easy reader, about the process of building tunnels for transportation.

"I'm done with Babar - not bad."
"I'm done with Tunnels too!"

Her mother, sister and I had a great laugh over the one I pulled on K. And yes, I now have a copy of the real book she wants me to read.

Off to hibernate...