As the year draws to a close, it's once more time to think of New Year's Resolutions. I'm a big believer in them. Not necessarily in slavishly accomplishing them all, but I think setting some goals at the beginning of the year is a good way to start. I certainly don't end up doing everything, but I think I do a lot more than I would without them!
One of my first goals is to try and keep up more with the blog. At times I do get a little discouraged that my readership is pretty paltry (in quantity, definitely not in quality!), but this is as close to a journal as I will ever get, so I need to keep it up for that at least. Periodically I will go back and reread posts from years past and it's fun to read about meeting Abby for the first time, the wedding and the birth of my two granddaughters. Time flies by so quickly and it's a little astounding to believe that almost 9 years has passed since I started keeping my record!
Next up – I want to try and do better at record keeping for my knitting. I realized in looking at Ravelry that there are several projects that never made it to my project page. I also didn't tag the items I finished in 2012, although I may still try to go back and do that. Just like my "journal", these project pages remind me that I have at least accomplished something.
Knitting goals – this year I'm going to try and knit from my stash as much as possible. I'm not vowing to forgo any and all yarn purchases, but I do want to try and resist the latest bright shiny new thing. If nothing else, I could knit socks all year and still be knitting from stash. I do have two large sweater projects and a shawl already cast on and I'm going to work on finishing those before starting another new project. This has a practical aspect in that I find myself wanting another bright shiny new thing – a sewing machine. My last machine was a major investment, but as with all computers (and it is a computer), it is becoming outdated and has some limitations. I still can do the majority of what I want and this is definitely a want and not a need. But perhaps some money that I would ordinarily put toward yarn purchases can be redirected. Here are my current projects:
This was started as a challenge with my handknitting group. Last January we all started ganseys. Insanely I chose a pattern that is fingering on size 0 needles, but oddly enough, I am not behind the group. Everyone seems to be dragging their feet on this one and only one member has finished hers. I have finished the back and the front is almost done and ready to join at the shoulders.
I have not blogged about this one yet. Faithful readers may remember that this poor yarn has suffered through quite a number of false starts and I was reluctant to post yet another one. I think this one is going to stick as the body is almost completely done and then it's only sleeves and collars. Worst case scenario is that it doesn't fit and then it will be gifted, NOT frogged!
I made one of these several years and ago and absolutely loved both knitting it and the finished shawl. I gave it to my niece for her college graduation and immediatedly
vowed that someday I would make one for myself. Someday is now.
These will be for me to replenish my stash of socks, which is sadly wearing out. These will be finished in the next day or so and then on to some fingerless gloves that I promised my sister for Christmas.
Can you believe it? Only four works in progress. I think that's something of a record for me. There is one other project hibernating that may or may not be resurrected.
And, of course, there are always the same old resolutions to eat better and exercise. I think I may just be getting the exercise part down. I am still running and bit the bullet and signed up for a (gasp!) half marathon in April. I have no doubt I can do it if I keep on track. I'm already up to 7 miles – over halfway there. I am SLOW, but I have no illusions about winning any prizes. I just want to finish in an upright position and hopefully not be last.
Christmas was wonderful this year. Having the granddaughters close by certainly adds a layer of contentment over the whole holiday. This year we started a new "tradition". Ben, Abby and the girls came up from Snohomish on Christmas Eve and we opened our gifts. The plan was for us to go there on Christmas Day for dinner and stockings. The girls begged to stay with us, so we had them overnight. It was so much fun to wake up with them here on Christmas Day.
I made both of the girls sweaters for Christmas. Mei-Mei had actually picked out the pattern for hers, and although I know she was pleased, it was a little overshadowed by a pink sparkly dress given to her by my sister. She immediately put it on and we all knew who had been hugging her because they were covered in pink glitter! She'll come around to the sweater eventually, but in the meantime – no pictures. Isobel, however, made up for it. She adored her sweater, put it on and didn't take it off for two days! Even though it was a worsted weight, she wore it all day Christmas – usually with the hood up. I do need to get better pictures, especially of the hood, but here you can see how cute she looks in it.
I'll leave you with a few more pictures of our Christmas celebrations. We were so pleased to have Abby's aunt and uncle from China with us. They were utterly charming and we had a great time looking at the photographs that Daniel has taken on his travels around the world. They were amazing – think National Geographic quality.
I also close with pictures of some small snowflakes that I've been embroidering. Several of the embroidery sites have encouraged us to make snowflakes to send to the teachers of Sandy Hook so they can decorate their classrooms for the childrens' return. It seems like such a meager contribution, but other than tears there doesn't seem much I can offer. The closeness in age to our own precious granddaughters was so difficult. Here's hoping and praying that the New Year will bring some sense of comfort to the families of those sweet children.