Monday, November 30, 2009

24 days left...

Thanksgiving was very nice, and quite relaxed. I made green bean casserole:

Green Bean Casserole

there was an abundance of gravy (so much that we used a french press as a pitcher):

French Press Gravy

and the ground was covered in crunchy leaves.

Fall Leaves 2

After a few days to digest, I emerged from the turkey coma ready to plan for the gift-giving season. As I said in the last post, I simply can't afford to purchase presents for everyone this year (thank you state education budget), so it's stash diving for me. Instead of freaking out about the prospect of so much knitting I am trying to embrace my craftiness (isn't this the hobby I love?), choose projects wisely (the fair isle ear flap hat in fingering-weight yarn might be too involved), and stay on task (except when baking). My list is 16 people long, and thanks to a rash of small-item knitting in August and September, I have half that list taken care of already. Nevertheless, I still have at least 6 items to knit between now and Christmas (yes there are a few people who are not getting knits this year), so I am putting the beaded project on hold and I cleared the socks off my needles.

Zer0 Jaywalkers

This is my fourth pair of jaywalkers, and I still say this is one of the best patterns for making socks out of variegated yarn. I went out of my way to make the legs on this pair a little loose by going up a needle size, so they won't be too constricting during a long day. They're soaking now, while I get the gift list yarn together. It was difficult being away from the stash while planning my holiday knitting over the weekend, so I did a pretty thorough sweep this morning. Here's the stuff that will shortly be made into gifts:

Yarn for Gifts

I was pleasantly surprised at the color harmony in all these skeins! Incidentally, all the yarn there is either sporting its natural color, or is naturally dyed (thanks, Kristine!). I will try to keep up with pictures of knitted items, but they will only be teasers until after the recipients open their gifts, since quite a few of them read the blog regularly. (Who am I kidding? I will be lucky to finish knitting everything in time, forget about pictures...) Note to family members: bonus points if you can guess which skein of yarn is intended for your gift!

It was so easy to get caught up in the plan-a-thon while digging through the stash, but I did find a few skeins of yarn that would make nice small gifts, fabulous ornaments, or decoration for presents. But I'm not allowed to knit any of this until the official gift list is done.

Holiday Yarn?

A couple of these skeins have just enough yarn to make a pair of Fetchings. According to Ravelry, I am apparently the last 13,110th knitter on Earth to think about knitting this pattern. The required yardage seems too good to be true! My strategy to keep myself from knitting this stuff is to hide it all in a bag in the closet, while the official gift list yarn sits out in plain view, in a lovely pile in the living room.

What about all of you: are you knitting gifts this year? How much? Care to share any strategies for maintaining your sanity?

P.S. While composing this post, 3 more people on Ravelry have cast on Fetchings. Wow.


Tracey said...

i knit fetchings last year after reading your excellent post on the subject,

i have already cast on all of my intended 2009 holiday gifts. which doesn't really give you an idea of how much knitting i have left but here's a hint: i have a lot of needles. ;)

Karyn said...

I'm maintaining my sanity by only knitting 2 gifts (well, maybe 3) this year. Last year it was only one. Oh, but the year I knit 8 sweater ornaments so every house in our family could have one was painful! My dad is getting a movie. :o)

ps. Is one of those the yarn you got from me at last years stash exchange?

Jodi said...

Oh, I am knitting gifts this year for everyone BUT you and Karen... since you two know well enough how to knit your own items. Therefore, you two will be receiving surprises (!!)


Megan said...

Love the French press/gravy boat!

The yarns you are making presents with are beautiful. I think I'm only going to make some ornaments. I'm debating whether or not to make my brother the socks he asked me for last year. Maybe if I could find some nice sport or dk weight yarn so they'd go more quickly...