Merry Christmas!

Christmas Family1a

Merry Christmas from our family to yours!  We hope you had a joyous holiday and are looking forward to a New Year filled with peace & love!

A little Christmas gift I thought I’d share with you…..

Tin Can Knits (Ravelry Designer link here) is gifting people with one free pattern from their collection until January 1st 2013.  Check out the details here!  I’ve been admiring their patterns for a little while now, so here’s the chance to tell all of you about it and get to try something new at the same time :)  The pattern I chose to download is Snowflake, so hopefully that will appear in 2013’s FO’s somewhere.  Thanks so very much Tin Can Knits, for sharing your lovely patterns with all of us!  And be sure to pass this on to your friends too for a little holiday/New Year goodness :)

Happy Knitting, Happy Holidays, Happy New Year, & much love,



Merry Chunkmas!

And Happy Winter Solstice too!

Today was always one of my Dad’s favorite days of the year.  Though the first official day of winter, my Dad made a point of focusing on the best part of this day, instead of the fact that there are several long months of cold ahead.  The Winter Solstice falls on the shortest day of the year and that means that from now on the days are getting longer.  Something special to hold onto when it seems like the dreary dark days of winter will never end.  I love that I have another occasion to remember my Dad and how special he was.  We always had Christmas together too, seeing as we were both complete and total Christmas freaks. I’ve been thinking about him now that it’s the holiday season and I miss him more than ever.

There’s been some intrawebs silence from me for a while because I have been on a freakishly frantic Christmas knitting blitz, the likes of which are rarely witnessed here at Chez Knittymuggins.  Many of you long time readers know that I don’t knit for Christmas.  After many failed attempts to engage my family members in the joy I feel gifting them handmade lovelies, I decided it wasn’t worth the trauma I was causing myself when my gifts were rejected.  But this year, with our budget in a state of crisis, I decided it was time to break out the needles.  I may not have cash, but I’ve got stash!

It actually started with preschool.  My son’s class has nine darling little kids in it (including Knittymunchkin) and I thought it would be sweet to gift them all something for Christmas.  Of course I decided this about 2 weeks before I had to have 9 things knit.  But such is the mania of Christmas knitting.  You figure you can rest on the 26th when all gifts have been delivered safely out of your hands.  I had originally planned to knit something for each of the mamas too, but that didn’t materialize when I realized it was about all I could do to knit for the kids & the teacher, and whatever else I had planned.  I chose the Monster Chunks pattern by Rebecca Danger & with a pile of brightly colored superwash wool gifted to me several years back by my sweet friend Kathy, I set to work.  What fun!  As I knit each little monster I tried to envision which child would like which combination best & each little creature took on its own personality.  I let Knittymunchkin pick out his favorite body (a red one) and then let him choose the color for the feet (purple).  I think he liked being involved in the creation process, though he was quite strenuously against gifting the rest to his preschool friends, saying “I no want to share with preschool friends!”  I used this opportunity to instruct him that Christmas is about giving & not getting, and then sneakily distributed these to his classmates in their cubbies so he wouldn’t have to deal with the sight of his little monsters being given away.  Counter productive?  Maybe.  But a meltdown was avoided and sometimes that matters just a little bit more.

Monster Chunks!

Monster Chunks!

I also knit a little something for his sweet preschool teacher.  The Stacked Eyelet Cowl is probably one of the fastest gifts I’ve ever knit (in fact, I made another for gift giving this year, but more on that later).  I knit it with Elsebeth Lavold Silky Wool which I’d bought at my LYS’ annual Stashbusting sale a couple years back.  It was my first time using this yarn and I really liked it, though I encountered at least 2 knots which never fails to disappoint me in a high end yarn.  I liked the yarn even more after blocking it, as it made the cowl drape quite nicely.  Interestingly, the silk in this doesn’t impart a sheen as I expected it would, it’s more tweedy like I imagine raw silk would be.  Also, I found it suprisingly itchy around my neck after a short amount of wear (but then again, my neck is a bit sensitive to wools).

Self Portrait!

Self Portrait!

Normally I have the unparalleled luxury of a personal photographer for my hand knits (thank you R. Darling!), so I have not perfected the blogger’s unique talent of photographing themselves successfully in a mirror.  As you can see, I need a lot more practice.  This is the result of at least 45 photos with closeups of my hair, my ear, or unrecognizable blue and red blobs.  Thank goodness for digital!

Hope your holiday knitting is going well too & your needles are ablaze with Christmas spirit!


The Candyman

Who can take a rainbow, wrap it in a sigh
Soak it in the sun and make a groovy lemon pie
The Candy Man, the Candy Man can
The Candy Man can ’cause he mixes it with love and makes the world taste good…..
The Candyman!

The Candyman!

I can’t help but think of those lyrics when I look at my little guy in this hat.  He doesn’t typically like hats, but I saw this pattern and knew that the yarn my friend Jess sent me a few years back (which she suggested I use to knit Knittymunchkin a hat!) would be perfect for it.  It’s appropriately titled “Rainbow” and when I showed it to Knittymunchkin after I’d wound it into a cake, and asked him what he thought, he said, “Pretty!”  I knew it would be a winner from that moment on.  The pattern was super easy, though I was a bit intimidated by having to graft the top of it in three separate directions.  I have to toot my horn for a just a second here when I say that I think I did a pretty kick a$$ job grafting the top of this.  Good skillz to have for all those infinity scarves I plan on making come January when my Christmas knitting is all done.  I think it looks a little plain without the pom poms on top, but hubby nixed the pom pom idea, so I left them off.  More scraps for my sock yarn blanket I guess, so I still win ;)  Knittymunchkin wears this sometimes, but I think it’s mainly because he knows his mama knit it especially for him and that makes it special.  He still doesn’t like hats and usually rips it off, saying it’s itchy, after about 5 minutes.  But those 5 minutes sure make this mama happy!
Speaking of candy….  We took Knittymunchkin trick-0r-treating for the first time this Halloween.  He’d had a cold and missed preschool that day, but we decided to take him to the 4 or 5 houses in our neighborhood that belonged to people we’re friendly with.  He loved it!  It was really precious to watch him running ahead of us in his Elmo costume, swinging his trick-or-treat pail and telling us how much fun he was having.  Unfortunately, he takes after his mama and we have a bona fide candy freak on our hands now!  I swear he asks me for M&M’s every single day.  I suppose it could be worse.  At least he hasn’t discovered Dad’s vice yet – beer.  Although, since R. Darling started brewing beer himself I find Knittymunchkin in the kitchen sometimes and when I ask him what he’s doing, he says he’s brewing beer (!).  At least he likes (to pretend) to cook :)
Halloween 2012

Halloween 2012

So Elmo is probably not very PC these days, after all that has happened with his creator, but still.  We dressed him up like this before all the fallout occurred.  You have to admit, Knittymunchkin makes a pretty cute Elmo! Happy (very) belated Halloween!