You are currently browsing the monthly archive for January 2011.

It’s the end of an era over here.  The Ziploc bag era.

I know my needles have been a jumbled mess in a freezer baggie for at least five years because it has kanji on it which means I shoved my needles in it in Japan thinking I would have a better solution soon.

It took seeing Adrian’s tackle binder and a snippet in last month’s Martha about storing sewing supplies to finally stop the fishing expedition that was looking for a circular needle every time I started a new project.

If only my pretty, pretty binder was a teensy bit bigger.


Mini Binder: Russell and Hazel

Zippered Envelopes: Knit Picks

Crafty Stickers: Chronicle Books


We had a pretty miserable experience on Boxing Day when, intending to go downtown and eat at a great Mexican restaurant we couldn’t find parking and ended up instead at a suburban mall (we had with us two teenage girls with Christmas money burning holes in their pockets).  Kate’s Sugar Bear was in her lap and it seems that at some point she chucked it out.  That may be the end of me making hats for Kate in luxury yarns or the beginning of me sewing tags with my e-mail address into everything I make.  It did give me a good push to make the hat I had been planning for her already.

Kate got an early Christmas present of a little red sled but her other hats and hoods kept falling in front of her eyes necessitating us  stopping every few steps to fix them. I also was worried about her neck and face getting cold.  When I saw Deb’s photo of her baby’s favourite hat and Austen’s hat here I knew a baby balaclava was what we needed.

The yarn is even more Cascade 220 and pattern is Paton’s Pussy Cat from my vintage pattern stash.  The smallest size is a two so I tried making it with smaller needles and ended up with one that was way too small.

At least I got this photo out of it.

Kate doesn’t seem to mind wearing it at all and now we can go sledding in style.

And now that all the Christmas and emergency noggin knitting is out of the way and I can get back to knitting for myself. Yipee!

After years of wanting it is finally mine!

My parents got us the pasta roller attachment and fettucine cutter for our Kitchenaid mixer for Christmas and I lurve it.  I considered exchanging it for the newer pasta shaper attachment but then I realized that whenever I’ve bought fresh pasta I’ve bought ravioli or fettucine not macaroni and I’m probably not going to make fresh macaroni or rigatoni every time I make soup or a casserole.

I’ve made this recipe twice now, once for us to try the machine out, and once for guests this weekend and it’s been a great success, despite its odd ingredients.

I used jarred pesto because the one in the recipe didn’t get great reviews and I knew it would be a cold day in Manitoba before I found fresh basil and pine nuts at our town grocery store.  This made it beyond easy.

Also, I’m hoping to make these donut muffins as soon as I possibly can. Who says January is for light foods?

I finally made these cheese straws on New Years Eve and they were easy to make, tasty and addictive.

I almost completely forgot that I made three pairs of sleep shorts as Christmas gifts.

My brother and Chris each got a soft, grey pair like these and then Chris also got some stiffer black ones.  The pattern was really quick and easy, especially with the serger. My only problem was finding out that the jersey I’d bought at Marshall Fabrics was too narrow to make the larger sizes.  So, they got medium pairs which are a bit on the slim fitting side but they seem to like them still.  I also ran out of elastic for the waist of the last pair but running out of a notions is a common occurrence these days so Chris had an unfinished pair wrapped under the tree which I finished this week with elastic I bought in Ottawa.

I didn’t get the leg opening in the photo but that was my favourite part.  I used a twin needle and it looks nice and professional.

I also bought Kwik Sew 3793 to make Chris some pajama pants but that was a disaster.  I think my trouble had to do with the finicky flap opening. When I’m over being angry with it I may try them without the flap since I don’t think most men use it anyway.

I think that’s officially all the Christmas gifts I made this year.  That means I made three pairs of shorts, one doll, six embroidered pillow cases, a pair of stranded mittens, a colourwork stocking, and a sweater. That’s crazy! I made so much with the intention of scaling back on the spending and only doing handmade gifts but then I chickened out and ended up buying a bunch of stuff in addition.  This year I should really work on valuing my work enough to not think of it as a second tier gift.  I’d like Kate to grow up being happy with a few small gifts rather than expecting the blowout Christmas we’ve become accustomed to.

Happy 2011 everyone! It’s crazy to think that a year ago I was sitting in this same spot but without the teething, clingy, hilarious little almost-eight-month-old trying to scale my leg so she can jam the keys on the laptop. It’s even crazier to think that a year from now she’ll be walking around, eating pizza and throwing things in the toilet.

While she’s still only capable of getting into mildly terrifying trouble  I was able to knit a whole sweater for Chris for the first time in almost five years.

This was the Christmas gift I had the most panic attacks about finishing.  Chris took a chunk of time off in December which was nice for family time but not so nice for knitting deadlines.

We’re both so pleased with it.  Chris liked my dad’s Seamless Hybrid but I prefer the shirt yoke version so I thought I’d give it a try.  Elizabeth’s “pithy” instructions almost had me pulling my hair out at the shoulder join point but I took a deep breath and did what seemed to make sense and it all worked out.

I originally wanted a tweedy yarn but the yarn shop I went to had none so I went with good ol’ Cascade 220.

I think the saddle shoulders really compliment Chris’s body type (I believe the scientific term is “robust string bean”) and it doesn’t seem so warm that he’ll never wear it.

And if you’ll excuse me Kate is scaling the tv cabinet so that she can pull out the wires on the flat screen.

January 2011
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Please do not copy, repost or in any way distribute my photos, patterns, recipes or text without my permission.