Happy New Year (just a little late)!

My last post was on December 30  – I don’t think I’ve ever taken such a long break!  So I’ll start off with a little belated Happy New Year!  We had a busy New Year’s Eve, a very quiet New Year’s Day.  This holiday season went so fast this year – seemed like it just flew by – and yet, I was ready to get back to normal by last Monday.  I love the holidays, and enjoyed this year’s  – but I am pretty happy living in my scheduled, routine world and miss it when I’m out of it! 

So although this is a little late, and you are probably tired of reading resolution posts, I want to share my knitting goals for 2010.  I always do, and its something that I refer back to at the end of the year.   I had one undone goal from 2009 – to knit a fair isle sweater.  I am going to carry this one over for 2010.  I have the vest started and need to just get back to it and do it.  

I was going to have a stash goal for 2010 – not crazy enough to say that I won’t buy yarn, but I was thinking of doing the “for every skein I buy, I have to use two out of the stash” thing.  I do want to use my stash – I have a lot of great yarn, and I tend to use the last yarn I bought rather than looking through stash.  But really – who am I kidding?  I wouldn’t do this – I’m not even sure I’d make it out of January without blowing this one.  And then I read Denise’s blog  post on resolutions  –  and I agree –  I like buying yarn, it makes me happy – so no resolution to stop doing that!

My mother visited us over the holidays.  She’s going to be 90 next week, and has been knitting since she was a very little girl.  She was taught by her grandmother, who always had knitting in her hand.   My mother taught me to knit a few years ago – she was so excited that she was sharing something she loved with me.   She is a passionate knitter  – I knew she loved knitting but I didn’t realize how much until this visit.  We were sitting and knitting and she told me about a technique she had seen at her LYS.  It was double knitting  – and she was so excited about it that she bought the book and swatched a little square to see how it was done.   Listening to her, and hearing how excited she was to find a new technique I realized that my 90 year old mother is more adventurous than I am when it comes to knitting.    She has macular degeneration, and her eye sight is starting to get in the way of her knitting.  She can’t knit with fine yarn anymore, and it really makes her sad – she doesn’t knit as much as she used to and she really misses it.  But still  – she was watching me do socks and wants to learn to do them toe up.    So my only other goal for knitting this year is to be a little more fearless and step out of my knitting comfort zone more.  In knitting, just as in my life, I really get stuck on routines, and doing things the way I always do them.  I use one cast on, two cast off, one heel.  And yet – sometimes when I’m forced out of my narrow little knitting world, it really is wonderful!  I was stuck on doing socks cuff down for years – and yet when I started doing toe up this year, I found that I love doing them this way – and now don’t like to do them any other way (new rut!).  So I need to push myself to pick projects and patterns that are different, use techniques that I don’t know, and that challenge me.  In short, be a little bit more like my mother!

Speaking of my mother, and turning 90 – I started the Springtime Bandit shawl for her birthday – I’m using Malabrigo Sock (Velvet Grapes colorway).  I love this pattern!  I really think its nice – very hard to photograph in this colorway.  I know you are sitting there thinking “I need to stop reading this blog – her projects are really ugly!  I swear it is so much nicer in person.  (Look at this version done in the same colorway if you’d like to see why I chose it!)


I wasn’t able to knit on it while she was visiting us, so I am not going to make the birthday deadline  – I finished the body on Friday, and just need to do the edging.  But I am not taking the train next week and have to drive in to work, so I won’t have my normal knitting time.  I finally accepted that I won’t have it done for her birthday – so she’ll get flowers and a promise and I’ll get it to her within a week or two.  Anyway, great pattern and I think I’ll make one for me this year. 

I needed a project to knit while she was here since she wouldn’t believe I didn’t have anything on the needles.    I wanted something that didn’t require a lot of attention.    So of course – socks.


This is Lacey Rib from Socks from the Toe Up, and the yarn is Lorna’s Laces.  I think I should have done a smaller cast on to make it stripe and not pool – but was too lazy to rib them back.  And they are for my sister and she didn’t seem to mind the pooling, so I just kept going.  Love this yarn, though. 

I took a complete break over the holidays while my mother was visiting and wasn’t online.  It was really sort of nice – no email, Facebook, Ravelry or blogs.  I spent the time knitting, spending time with my family, eating, watching movies, playing games.  It was a nice break and a nice way to start the year.  But that means I’m completely behind on blogs – I’m catching up now, and its so much fun to read everyone’s holiday posts and see what you are all up to! 

I have a really busy week ahead of me, but then I have a long weekend – Monday is a holiday here in the US, and I took Friday off.   I know – what does that say that I’m taking days off already so early in the year?  But I have a good reason – and that reason, in part, may be a trip to Webs!  See why I didn’t want to set any limits on stash buying?  Have you been there?  Any advice?  I’m very excited about it – I have wanted to go for a long time and it just came together for next weekend.

OK, well, I suppose that I should wrap this up and get going.  Have a great week!


22 Responses to Happy New Year (just a little late)!

  1. Janet says:

    Your knitting is lovely and blog is very entertaining, so I won’t be stopping watching your blog any time soon!

  2. Rachel says:

    Congratulations to your mother! the pattern you chose for her is lovely. I actually have a yarn meant for it in my stash, I saw it knitted in a yarn store and fell in love on the spot!

  3. donna lee says:

    You know what the coolest thing in your post was? That your mother who is 90 is still eager to learn new things! So many older people don’t. What a lucky person you are.

    I love the shawl and the colors you’re using. And the pink/brown sock yarn. What a nice way to start the year, all those gorgeous colors.

  4. Anna says:

    Happy New Year! How inspirational to hear of a 90 year old who still has a desire to learn new things. My theory is that is we do nothing to expand our horizons they will shrink gradually year by year. So we need to keep challenging ourselves just to stand still.
    The shawl looks lovely – how funny you are about your projects looking ugly – they don’t at all!

  5. katie m. says:

    Happy New Year to you too! Good luck on your resolutions … I know I could stand to be a bit more adventurous in my knitting.

  6. Denise says:

    Bandit shawl, toe up socks – that’s a rockin start to 2010.

  7. Rebekah says:

    lovely projects. Hope you are having a nice weekend. Is it 2011 yet?

  8. hakucho says:

    Happy belated new year to you too!! Sounds like you had a wonderful time with your mom. She’ll love your shawl. Being a knitter herself it will be very special to her and worth the extra wait 🙂

  9. Rhonda says:

    Excellent projects for the beginning of 2010. I love Velvet Grapes too.

  10. Valerie says:

    I don’t think your knits are ugly at all! I always love the colours you choose

  11. Jeannie says:

    That’s cool that your mom is so excited about double knitting. I think she’ll love the shawl and understand why it was a little late. It’s going to be so pretty in that color.

  12. Kim says:

    What a lovely post. It sounds like you had a wonderful visit with your mother and I loved reading about your knitting experience.

    I used Velvet Grapes for a wrap that was gifted to someone and it truely is a beautiful colorway, even if it doesn’t photograph well.

    Hope you get to go to Webs, that is a trip I would love to make!

  13. Those sound like great 2010 goals! My Nana taught me to knit and can’t anymore but she asks me almost everyday about my knitting. I’m pretty sure she gets her knitting fix though me. I would love to be able to sit and knit with her again.

  14. Steven says:

    Going to Webs? Exciting! Love reading about your mother and her enthusiasm for knitting. I encourage you to knit outside your comfort zone. I always learn so much about knitting (and more!) when I do so myself. I highly encourage it.

  15. Lorraine says:

    Jeanne- Happy 2010.

    Webs is fantastic- great staff and you get discounts. The little town is lovely too.

  16. Shea says:

    Isn’t it funny that the older we get, the smarter and cooler our moms get? It wasn’t until I had kids that I found that my Mom was pretty smart after all. 🙂

    Love how the shawl is coming along!

  17. Robby says:

    Missed you! So, can you tell us what book your mom is using for her double knitting? This was on my ‘to do’ list for last year and had trouble finding info on it (so I kept knitting other things). Maybe this year?

  18. Since when does anyone think your projects are ugly?? I certainly don’t.

    Your mom sounds amazing. I am the only knitter in my family. Sigh.

    I’m stuck on Ishbel. Is the Springtime Bandit any easier?

  19. Kim says:

    Happy New Year. I hope you enjoy your long weekend and do all the fun things you enjoy. Lovely knitting as always…

  20. Oiyi says:

    Happy New Year! Your mom sounds so cool and she has inspired me after reading what you wrote.

    Thank you for shawl idea. I have been wanting to knit that bandit shawl for a while. I happen to have 1 skein of Malabrigo Sock that I didn’t know what to make with it.

    Some of the girls in my knitting group decided to do a yarn diet. They are forcing me to be part of the diet, so I am a honorary forced member. For every skein I buy for the next 5 months, I will have to put $3 into the pot. At the end, the winners will divide the money.

  21. opal says:

    what an amazing mother you have! she sounds like such an inspiration!

  22. rhoda says:

    that is awesome that your mom is such a passionate knitter and i hope that you are able to be a bit more adventurous with your knitting choices like your mom. 🙂

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