paws-ing for thanks

Posted on 14 CommentsPosted in home and family

my family and i have so much to be thankful for today and after my thanksgiving bath (for which i stood very, very still, even tho it was really, really hard), i persuaded them into a blog takeover to share my thanks with you.

first, believe it or not, i am thankful for being trapped all those months ago. i didn’t know it then, but it was the best thing that ever happened to me. thanks to our friend ramona, who helped my family bring me home, i fall asleep in a safe place each night that’s warm and dry and i have plenty to eat. i am also loved beyond reason.

did you know that ramona’s rescue, jjs ruff roads, is a recipient organization on amazon smile? you can help her bring home other lost dogs like me by designating jjs ruff roads when you make amazon purchases this holiday season.

i’m thankful for our extended family over at “work”. i’m especially thankful for their patience and constant kindnesses as i get more and more used to being near humans. being touched is the hardest thing i’ve ever done and progress is slow. i want to run right up and cuddle, but something always stops me; the best i can do is run in for a quick sniff. i want them all to know that i’m trying and i have big plans for 2018 in this department.

i’m grateful that my family works at home and that we get to go on long, long walks every day, summer and winter, rain or shine. i walked all day when i lived on the street too, but most of that time, i was looking for food or to stay out of trouble.

now i’m making friends all the time—there are SO many dogs in our neighborhood and people to go with them. i don’t have a photo of my best friend casey, but i’ll try to get one to share with you soon—he’s the BOMB, a malinois shepherd, my favorite breed.

on our walks, we also see beautiful things that are not dogs.

like moonrise . . .

i’m thankful for the dog park, where i can tear around with the other guys, rolling and wrestling and chasing til i’m all tired out. i’m thankful for the way it makes my mom laugh and laugh to watch me. i’m thankful that whenever we go there, she always takes me for a long walk on the bike path, too.

i’m grateful that my family—and extended family—are knitters; it creates such a quiet peaceful feeling when they work and also, they know the importance of soft cuddly stuff. if only i had opposable thumbs . . .

i’m thankful for the sofa; while i didn’t notice its beauty much over the summer, now that it’s cold, i am completely smitten with it. added bonus—mom spends most of her knitting time there and if i’m clever, i can kinda verrry slowly scooch in til my nose rests on her hip. you know, just to try out being close.

i’m grateful for fudge pecan pie because even tho i can’t eat it, it made my mom SO HAPPY to spend yesterday afternoon making it.

and my tiny turkey dinner, which is my treat today. my family is eating lasagne because they don’t eat meat.

i’m grateful for the garden because, while i don’t have opposable thumbs to share the work of it, i still get to eat every day from what we grow there—we have enough green beans and sweet potatoes put by to last all winter.

and best of all i’m thankful for all of you, even tho i never met you. you know why?? because THIS.

we are doing so great you guys!! we have passed last year’s red scarf scholarship effort already and with six weeks to go yet, we might even exceed the goal we set for this year. let’s keep up the momentum and drive this puppy home—you know, figuratively—because i’m already home.

click here for details and patterns; please share and give!

thank you all for a wonderfully warm year; we hope each and every one of you is celebrating the day surrounded by love and good cheer.

another round of holiday goodies

Posted on 6 CommentsPosted in Bare Naked Wools, book reviews/events, designing, patterns

it’s wovember and open season for all-out knitting, when work on winter wearables or special holiday gifts begins in earnest.

giving is always on my mind, but especially at this time of year when i ask you to join me in making a young person’s dreams come true. our 2017 red scarf scholarship fundraiser is underway now through january 1, building an opportunity for our student jelissa to complete her degree at FIT, new york city. you may click here to read all the details about the fundraiser and a little bit about jelissa, our recipient.

but on the way we like to make it fun and keep it knitterly and we know that right about now you are—like me—making a list of gifts for knitworthy loved ones as well as for yourself (what?? you don’t do that? c’mon, you can tell us). well hey—whatever your MO, we’ve got you covered from all angles with our next round of red scarf fundraising goodies!

this month we are featuring our festivus 4.0 sport weight in a delicious trio of colorwork accessories by designer mary o’shea of tullymongan designs. mary has created many delightful items using bare naked wools yarns—check out her designer page for alternatives that will also work well with festivus 4.0 sport or worsted.

first up, if you live in a very cold climate and need to be outside frequently, these gorgeous cranberry trellis mittens might be right up your alley. pretty and festive in red, gray, and white, they are also super warm; the stranded colorwork has a secret—it traps air between its layers of yarn to offer a cozy measure of insulation. they feature a turned picot hem, which can be lengthened so that the entire cuff is lined for extra warmth.

i will admit that i’ve never been much of a mitten wearer, preferring to have my fingers free to work, but walking the dog in these early days of frosty weather has got me thinking that i need some. first, they are many times warmer than gloves and secondly, they are far easier to pull off quickly for the finer tasks of dog walking (ahem.).

but i love my fingerless mitts for almost all other purposes—i wear them indoors and out for nine months of the year and i’ve got them in several weights for different seasons. so i was especially pleased to see these cranberry lattice mitts in the box of design samples that mary sent for the fundraiser . . .

aren’t they adorable?? and they are included as a bonus in the mitten pattern—that’s two for one, folks; her present to you (PLUS it’s a donation to the scholarship). also worked in stranded colors with sport weight yarn, this pair is more unisex with a vintage athletic wear look—these are the perfect quick knit to tuck into the “TBD” section of your gift knits stash, ready to pull out when a last minute present is needed.

and oh, but that’s not all . . . if you’re knitting mittens, or mitts, you’ll surely want a coordinating hat, right??

and mary’s got your back here too, with such an awesome little cap. the minute ellen opened mary’s box of samples, she seized on this hat and the fingerless mitts as perfect for her.

the cranberry lattice cap is a match for the cranberry lattice mitts, but also coordinates perfectly with the cranberry trellis mittens—note the pattern in the thumb which matches the hat.

SO, so cute, am i right?

and my favorite thing about this entire set is the pairing of the specTACular cranberry red (by dyer julie asselin) with the soft grey confection sport yarn that mary chose to work with. the medium gray cookies and cream shade along with the white chocolate shade are the perfect foil for that rich, glowing cranberry crush color.

the pieces are shown here in size medium, but adjusting the sizing couldn’t be easier—simply move up or down one needle size to make a larger or smaller set. the lively spring and bounce of the all-natural yarns means they will expand or contract according to need with only a slight difference in fabric density; the color stranding will fill in to support the fabric as well.

festivus 4.0 on patchwork gradient

one skein of each yarn will provide plenty to complete an entire set of all pieces, with spares left over to squeeze in another small something.

david has created a convenient kit containing all the yarns PLUS both patterns; click here to view details and purchase. 100 percent of the pattern price ($7.00 each) will be added to the fund along with 5% of the yarn prices. you may use the pulldown menu on the product page to add an additional donation amount to your purchase.

to view more information or purchase a cranberry trellis/lattice mitts pattern, please click here for the knitspot store listing, where you can also choose to add a donation using the pulldown menu; we will be happy to add it to your ravelry library afterward if you request it with a note at checkout.
OR click here to purchase on ravelry (no extra donation option).

to view more information or purchase a cranberry lattice cap pattern, please click here for the knitspot store listing, where you can also choose to add a donation using the pulldown menu; we will be happy to add it to your ravelry library afterward if you request it with a note at checkout.
OR click here to purchase on ravelry (no extra donation option).

i would also like to thank our friend kerri blumer SO very much for continuing to make her andiron cowl and andiron scarf patterns available for the ENTIRE fundraising period (we only asked for a month of sales, but she’s extending it!); she’s just awesome and she has lots of beautiful designs to share—be sure to check out her ravelry shop.

now, let’s talk about goals . . . after the first month, doug tells me that we have just about reached the $1000.00 mark—woo-hoo!

last year we tried to reach $5000 but unfortunately did not meet it, falling rather short. i would love, love, LOVE to make it up this year and top the charts with the best fundraiser ever. we are trying to exceed last year’s goal and get to $6000 this year.

looks like we still have a ways to go—can you help us get there?? here’s what you can do to help:.

  1. purchase any of our 2017 red scarf fundraiser patterns here, here, here, and here, and/or add an extra donation on our website—use the pulldown menu to increase your gift and we will donate the entire pattern price PLUS that extra amount. we are happy to add the pattern to your rav library if you let us know!! (but we have to do it manually, so please tell us)
  2. purchase a pattern on ravelry here, here, here, and here—the entire retail pattern price will go into the scholarship fund.
  3. purchase a 2017 festivus kit which includes the pattern PLUS enough special edition festivus 4.0, to knit a scarf or cowl. we will add 5% of your yarn purchase price to the fund.
  4. buy one or more skeins of festivus 4.0 for any project and we will add 5% of your purchase price to the fund.
  5. please, please, PLEASE tell everyone you know about the fundraiser—they don’t need to be a knitter to throw $7 (or more!!) at this wonderful cause. please mention it with a link in your favorite ravelry groups, a link and hashtag on your Instagram, Facebook page (and link it), tweet it (with a link!), pin it (yes, with link) and finally just drag your friends over to look at the blog, haha. we’ll even give them a “knit naked sticker badge” if it helps them to help out.
  6. join us for a fun red scarf KAL in our ravelry mothership—we promise a rollicking good time, plenty of support, and of course, neat-o prizes.

cardigan is wondering where her mitts are—but in the meantime, she’s pleading in the cutest way she knows how for you to join us in our holiday giving event.

and from the bottom of our hearts, thank you for all that you do to make this happen each year!