one week to go . . .

well, it finally stopped snowing here and we’ve even had some sun over the last couple of days, but wow, it continues to be frosty cold—more like january and february than december. at least the temps have climbed into the 20s now, from near zero earlier in the week.

beckie and i are heavy into planning our annual christmas eve dinner, which will be at her house this year. back when we first moved to ohio, we started celebrating christmas eve together by sharing my family’s traditional feast of fishes on that night. and every year since, we’ve managed to get together with beckie and mark some variation of it.

this year, we’re cooking paella, using this recipe—paella is one of my favorite dishes and i haven’t had it in years. not since we lived in brooklyn, i think, where we sometimes stopped into la mancha on atlantic avenue for one of their delicious paella combinations.

one week from today, i’ll be chowing down on our own version, mmm.

on the knitting front, i’m making great progress on a couple of christmas projects and not so much on others.

the whitfield shorties are done, except for a final steaming of the seams and sewing on the buttons. i just love the way they turned out. the yarn—briar rose anne (i KNOW!)—lends them a deliciously cozy depth (the yarn isn’t listed on chris’s website yet, but we’ll let you know when it is).

they feel sturdy and super comfortable at the same time (the very thing i love about my jackie jacket, knit in fourth of july).

david did me a big favor yesterday and stopped at jo-ann fabrics while he was running errands, to pick up the buttons i needed. we picked out something we liked ahead of time from my button box and he matched them in the store.

i can’t wait to see how the boys like them. i’m going to knit another one after the holidays for our third whitfield nephew, who lives in NYC and has a january birthday; then ALL the whitfield boys will have one (no girls on that side of the family . . . yet).

meanwhile, my secret project for another whitfield boy is growing. i still can’t tell if i’m going to finish it in time for christmas, but maybe . . . if i can knit for several more hours each day than i usually manage, i just might make it (i also have a sleeve underway, so i’m knitting pieces in tandem)

this is the project i’ll be focused on between now and the big day, even though i’d like to also crank out six or seven pairs of handsies for the nieces and nephews in texas and finish a couple more cabled keyhole scarves for some girlfriends (i’ll stay on course though—i’ll resort to those projects only if and when i can’t knit another stitch on the sweater).

BTW, there are a whole bunch of finished cabled scarf projects popping up in our ravelry group’s project page, knit in all manner of DK yarns—if you’re wondering what it looks like in different colors, check it out.

this week’s knitting classes were a-buzz with gift knitting—looks like everyone is making neckwarmer and mitt sets of one kind or another. debby’s wearing the ivy vines neckwarmer here, knit by anne c. in great norther yarns mink/cashmere DK

anne took the opportunity to photograph her FOs in class before posting to her ravelry projects page before giving them away (anne is so organized). she also had a hot waffles set, knit for her son in oh-so-cozy briar rose nate

she knit the mitts and had plenty of yarn left over, so she winged it and cast on a neckwarmer, using the same stitch pattern and knitting a simple tube. it turned out SO yummy that now we all want one! (i should make one of those for david . . )

she also recently completed a very beautiful curling neckwarmer and mitts set in cherry tree hill sock yarn, that she brought to class last week.

i know you’re all rushing off to ravelry to “friend” her this very minute . . .
i’ll wait.

debby is knitting juerga in briar rose wistful, left over from a shawl project. i love that colorway, which susie had custom dyed as a gift for debby last christmas.

i know it looks like we knit with nothing but briar rose yarn around here, haha, but it’s true that we love chris’s yarns. and since she comes to our local fiber show each year, she makes it easy for everyone to stock up. and chris wants to spread the love to all of our readers—she will give a 10% discount on any yarn purchase made by you through january 8, 2011—just use the code work knitspot.

a few yarns arrived during the last week that i’d like to share, too

from studio june yarns, silky meri, a lovely 50/50 merino/silk fingering yarn that is one of my favorite blends. i knit the original spiraluscious neckwarmer from such a yarn (cathy, are you reading this??), which was subsequently discontinued and have been searching ever since for a replacement, as it has such a perfect balance of drape and substance. i was there fore terribly excited when jill emailed to let me know about it and sent along these two skeins in the celery flats colorway. what a beautiful green, eh? AND it also comes in a worsted weight for luxurious sweater knitting, yay.

also included in the package was a skein of jill’s silky alpaca lace in soft purple (sorry, i can’t seem to find a link to this yarn!). though at the moment i am deep into projects for DK and worsted yarns (it could be the weather), as happens every year, the seasons will turn warmer and before long, i’ll be scouting my stash to cull these lace yarns for spring and summer projects (seriously, it’s right around the corner, nipping at my heels).

and then there is this absolutely deLISH skein of sadie lace that arrived from poshdee—i know that many of you know who she is (courtesy of the yarn ho thread in our ravelry group, i happen to know that we have a large contingent of posh yarn addicts fans among us. or maybe it’s the adrenalne rush during the sunday shop updates they’re addicted to . . .).

anyway . . . sadie is a merino/tencel blend laceweight that is gorgeous—especially in the memoirs colorway pictured above—and indescribable pink/red color, something like raspberry lip gloss. i love it.

ok, i just realized that i need to rush off for a much-needed haircut now—where the heck did the whole morning disappear to?? i’m not even going to proofread this til later, so forgive my typos. i’ll be thinking of you this weekend while i knit my fingers to the bone on that big gift.

18 Responses to “one week to go . . .”

  1. Jody says:

    Good luck getting your secret sweater done on time Anne! I will definitely be checking out that Paella recipe. Maybe something to make next week when I’m on vacation. We’re 17F right now–one of our coldest Decembers on record. I hope it’s not a portent of things to come. I have memories of -75 windchills and have no wish for a reprise!

  2. Claudine says:

    The shorties are amazing! So cute. It will be fun to get photos of those three sweaters, side-by-side!
    And I love how the secret project is working up. I have a feeling it is going to be one of those that David gets super attached to and will wear for eons.

  3. Ellen Norman says:

    I just love your shorties!!! I want one for myself!!! Can’t wait to see the handspun creation!

  4. nancy schwartz sternoff says:

    mmm cannot wait to make a shortie for my grandson!
    and of course love that posh yarn you got.
    sincerely,
    nancy the quintessential yarn ho

  5. I love the shorties too! What a great little sweater.
    Good luck with the big Whitfield sweater – you can do it!
    Poshalicious!

  6. Cathy says:

    Anne, you wicked enabler! You know a yarn ho like me can’t resist that gorgeous merino/silk, especially when it feeds my Spiraluscious addiction.

  7. Liz in Missouri says:

    Once again – I hope these people stock up on their yarn after some of your posts because really – they are GORGEOUS! (lusting!)
    I’m with you – there’s just something about the sheen and feel of merino/silk that can’t be beat. The jackets are wonderful – can’t wait to see the gray project completed – and also what ever you make out of the “Celery Flats”. Love that color.

  8. Claudine says:

    Cabled Keyhole is a runway hit with 50 projects on Ravelry and on the “most popular recent patterns” list.

    http://www.ravelry.com/patterns

    In fact you have THREE patterns on it with Leaving and Aria Delicato on there too!
    ;-)

  9. Vicki says:

    Beautiful Knitting and gorgeous yarns! I feel the knitting mojo returning. I believe you will finish the knitting on time – you always do. Thank you for sharing such lovely yarn, it just makes me want to knit!

  10. Kim says:

    Oh I just love those little sweaters!! I think I may have to make onefor my grandson. :-)

  11. Christine says:

    I was just thinking paella a few days ago–still haven’t located my paella pan since the move. My Dad always made me paella when I was growing up (he was from Seville).

    I have a skein of DK mink/cashmere and had not thought of using it for Ivy Vines….till now. I may have to tweak the pattern to get it small enough for my ostrich-sized neck, lol.

    Enjoy the cold, snowy weather!

  12. Kim says:

    Those little Whitfields are really cute Anne. I bet the boys will love ‘em.

  13. i adore the little Whitfield jacket!! and what a doll David is for stopping at JoAnn’s for you to get the buttons.

  14. Sandy says:

    The recipe for paella looks just great. I haven’t had it since we were in Mexico three years ago and I know I couldn’t find everything I need here in Green Bay, WI. A friend’s sister made it for us when we were in NYC many years ago. I hope you enjoy this wonderful dish.

  15. Jocelyn says:

    The whitfield jackets are adorable!! I hope the weekend’s worth of knitting on the big sweater went well – it’s looking gorgeous on the needles. I’m looking forward to the modelling shots on that one – the color’s going to look great!

  16. Eleanor says:

    You get me in a lot of trouble, Anne!

    I promised 5 all the staff at an office I do contract work, the leafprints set of neckwarmer and mitts. I ordered the mink-cashmere and started yesterday with one set done. Some will be getting a promisary note.

    I was about to start Alice Starmore’s “Irish Moss” from her Aran Knitting book, but think I will just wait to see what David’s sweater looks like. I like the extension of the cable into the ribbing. Nothing beats grey tweed.

    I received a gift of some bulky cashmere and would like to try a substantial throw in something very Ralph Lauren-ish, thinking straight garter like Eliz. Zimmerman’s or something with cable. Looking for inspiration and few hundred hours to myself? Ha!

  17. Rachel Erin says:

    we’re going to make paella for Christmas Eve too!

  18. Tara says:

    Love the shot of the Whitfield shorties! They look like they should be enjoying tea/coffee and scones :)