Wednesday, November 9, 2016

November Notes

Hey! It's November! This morning my son counted out that there are only 46 days until Christmas. That's a little over 6 weeks. We're both freaking out. For completely different reasons. While October was Socktober: the month of socks, November for me (and probably for the majority of knitters and crafters out there) is the month of frantic maniacal crawl into the corner and cry fervorous gift knitting. I thought I had all my gift knits sorted out but I realized over the past couple of weeks that it truly isn't. I think I'm positive on only a few items if that. Ok, maybe not.

Anyhoo, while my brain tries desperately to comprehend exactly what had transpired last night with the US presidential election (honestly, let's not go there), here's some point-form stuff that's been going on:

The Fall #CraftyBlissChallenge concluded last Sunday. I'm a little sad that the challenge is over as I was truly inspired by so many people. I absolutely loved seeing everyone's photos and the beautiful stories behind them. I am also so happy to see new crafters join in on the fun, of learning that it was their first time doing a photo challenge, and that they were pleased to have actually been able to complete a challenge. Warm feelings all around! I'll have a recap post up soon!

 I've cast on a bunch of selfish knits recently but will have to set them aside so that I can concentrate on gift knitting. I really like my kiddo's teacher this year and find her VERY knit-worthy. Thing is, I have no idea what to knit her. It's been weighing on me for weeks. Seriously. Anyone have any ideas??

 I've also been wondering if I should knit my kiddo's EA a gift or not. He has been super lucky in that he's had the same EA since kindergarten and each year I've knit her a little something-something. I feel like I've run out of things to knit her since I've already gifted her a shawl and a matching hat and mittens set. I'm completely at a loss as to what I can gift her. Again, anyone have any ideas?

 Even though I'm totally clueless as to what to gift my kiddo's teacher, I haven't let that stop me from casting on a potential gift. I've decided to cast on a couple of Arika Cowls (by the lovely Jane Richmond) just in case. One of the yarns used in the pattern was on sale at my LYS (hey, I bought them before I announced that I was going cold sheep for the rest of the year! Settle down) so I bought 2 skeins. Truthfully, I'll most likely keep one of them cause well, I really love it. The other, more colourful one, I had my son's teacher in mind. But can't decide if it's her style or not. I'll make a final decision once I sew them up and get the fringe on, until then I probably won't post about them until after Christmas. Or when the winter break rolls around and the teachers have been given their gifts.

 My family and I have unofficially adopted a cat. He was left behind when his owners moved and decided that since he was no longer a cute kitten, they didn't want him anymore. We had seen him around the hood over the summer but had assumed he was a neighbour's cat until another neighbour told us the real deal. The Mister felt bad one particular night back in October when our city had a cold snap and decided that we needed to give him a warm place to stay for the night. Well, needless to say, he won over our hearts. My family and I collectively re-named him (no one is truly sure what his original name was) and he seems to really like being called Winston Power Cathill (I started calling him Winston, the Kiddo wanted to call him Power, and the Mister added Cathill cause he loves the pun of it all). 

 A few weeks after taking Winston in, we discovered that we actually co-own him. Another three-member family in our complex have also taken pity on the kitty and offered up their home to him too. Since cats do what they want to do and both homes enjoy both the companionship and being cat-less at times (re: when no one is home but want to make sure kitty is being taken care of), we all decided that yes, we will share cat duties. The other family has even taken to calling him Winston too! So Winston comes and goes when he pleases and both homes take solace in the fact that if he's not around then he's most likely at the other house and not under some parked car freezing to death out in the rain. 

Due to the outcome of the US presidential election, several knit wear designers are offering discounts on their patterns or offering to give all proceeds (for a certain amount of time) of their pattern sales to specific organizations (like Planned Parenthood). Like Andrea Mowry of Drea Renee Knits, Alex Tinsley, and Woolly Wormhead, to name a few. Check out either their Twitter feed or Facebook page for coupon codes and details.

➳ Ok, so I said that I needed to put aside any selfish knitting so that I can concentrate on gift knitting. Well, that doesn't mean I can't think about selfish knits. For the past few weeks I've been seriously obsessed with the idea of knitting myself some leggings. While going through my stash to take photos for the Instagram challenge I put aside several skeins of fingering weight yarn that could potentially become a pair of cozy leggings perfect for the winter months. I'm itching to cast on now but won't. I can't. Gifts need to be knit. And I have way too many projects on the needles as it is. 

➳ I'm going to have to put up some notes around my house to remind myself to take breaks. I've won a giveaway for the book DIY Woven Art by Rachel Denbow, which is totally awesome in two ways: one, I've always wanted to learn this kind of weaving; and two; perfect timing as I'll need something to do during those times and days when I'm taking a break from knitting. Since the book arrived a few weeks ago I've made a cardboard loom and have warped it up to practice rya knots with and maybe be able to create a funky wall hanging at the same time. Only time will tell.

➳ I also won a super cool watercolour kit from a local art studio. It's Halloween and cat themed but that's ok. Again, it's something creative to do when I take those much needed breaks from knitting. And it's been well over a decade since I've last used watercolour paints. I prefer acrylics so this will be an interesting experience. 

What's your plans for November?


  1. You have good plans for this month. Thanks for sharing Winston's story. What a lucky cat he is. I'm workin' on my NaKniSweMo and my Frankie socks this month for sure. I'm also trying to get done my SIL's second Christmas sock so I'll be free of the knitting guillotine.

    1. Hopefully I can stick to my plans!! ;)

      Good luck on your NaKniSweMo and Frankie socks (which I totally want to make too!), and you're so lucky that you're almost free of the knitting guillotine! :p

  2. Every time I read about knitters doing rad things like donating to Planned Parenthood I get goosebumps. The knitting community is absolutely amazing and full of bad-ass women supporting women! So much love!
    I'm getting really bad cast-on-itus lately and really want to start in on a pair of Woodstack mittens. They look so lovely and appropriate for the winter weather, they might be a good project for a knitworthy teacher Christmas gift. Not over the top but might leave the door open for a year end thank you gift shawl 😊

    1. Me too! Or when I see designers donate the proceeds of a sale or of a specific pattern sale to an organization that really needs it, since every single sale counts for a designer. It definitely makes me proud to be part of such a caring and thoughtful community!

      Oohh...Woodstack mittens would be such a lovely gift! They look so cozy and perfect for gifting! I'm still on the fence as to what to make for my son's teacher. I'm starting to stress out because I should cast it on very soon! Eep!

  3. Yay for rescuing Winston! or co-rescuing him! I can never understand how people can abandon animals, it is so cruel. it isn't like they can go get cat food in the cat food forest or anything. The knitters pay it forward thing is interesting, I'm really impressed with those that are donating the discounts or proceeds to charities, but there are loads that seem to be missing the point and just giving coupon codes, which means the only people benefiting are the knitters getting a deal and the sellers lining their own pockets.


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