Thursday, January 31, 2019

A Fitting End

We've finally made it to the last day of January, and it seems fitting that it's leaving in a deep freeze. I've spent the past two days pretty much confined to my house with Rainbow, who school has been closed due to insanely cold temperatures (yesterday it was between 20 and 30 below with wind chills). Luckily my boss has been really flexible and allowed me to work from home, so I've been able to keep an eye on my e-mail and do the work that needed to be done from the comfort of my home and without having to get dressed up. Tomorrow, though, we begin a new month, and the weather should be more typical for this time of year, so we'll both be going back to our routines.

I'm still working on some secret knitting that I can't share, but I made a point of casting on something new so that I don't have to keep alluding to secret things. When I released my Elodia Mitts, it was my intention to design a hat to match, and I'm very happy to have finally gotten the sample on the needles.


There's not much to it just yet (just a bit of the brim at this point), but I'm hoping to give it some attention over the next couple of days so that I can get to the point that it's suitable theater knitting. Rainbow, my brother, my future sister-in-law, and I are going to see Charlie and the Chocolate Factory on Saturday afternoon, and I will need a project! My plan for this hat is to have just a small amount of the lace pattern near the brim and then transition to all stockinette, so provided I can get to that point, I should be good -- otherwise, I will be forced to cast on a sock or other plain stockinette-in-the-round project.

The start of a new month tomorrow also means the start of a fun KAL I'll be participating in as both a knitter and a designer. A couple of months ago, I was approached by Lisa Ross of Paper Daisy Creations, who I met last summer at the TNNA show in Cleveland, about being a designer for a KAL and fundraiser she was planning for Down Syndrome International. I enthusiastically said yes, and I'm thrilled to be part of what it's become. DSi has an annual Lots of Socks campaign on World Down Syndrome Day, March 21, and traditionally those celebrating the event wear two mismatched, brightly colored socks on that day to bring awareness to Down syndrome. So Lisa has organized a fabulous KAL running February 1-March 21 in which every single sock you knit (that's right -- you don't need to knit a matching pair!) is an entry for some amazing prizes. In addition, she has recruited a wonderful group of designers (including yours truly) who will each offer one of their sock patterns for 50% off on one day between February 1 and 15. The designer and pattern featured each day will be a surprise, and all sales of the featured pattern each day will be donated to DSi. I'm really excited to be taking part in this event, and I hope you'll join me! You can find all the details about the participating designers and the rules for the KAL in this thread in Lisa's Ravelry group.

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

A Diversion

My two current WIPs are both secret design projects, which makes for some rather boring blog fodder. It also makes for somewhat monotonous knitting time, and this past weekend, I decided I needed a little palate cleanser with something quick and easy.

Rainbow has started a small collection of pins, but she hasn't found a good place to put them or store them. Her backpack isn't the best place, as she's not exactly careful with it and the likelihood of anything pinned to it getting lost is high. So I decided to knit up a felted pennant for her that she can put her pins on and hang in her room. The idea was to create something kind of like this:


We dug through my non-superwash wool stash and found a skein of Cascade 220 in a bright purple and nearly complete skein of Knit Picks Wool of the Andes in a muted blue. I pulled out some large needles and was off to the races!

Because I had 220 yards of the Cascade and maybe 100 yards of the WotA, I cast on with just the purple and worked maybe a dozen rows in stockinette, keeping the five stitches on each end in garter. Then I joined the cast-on edge to the live stitches to create a little channel/tube for a dowel to go through. I then joined in the blue and held both strands together for the rest of the piece, working straight for a bit and then decreasing every right-side row at each end to form the point. Here's what it looked like right after I finished (in the late afternoon on Sunday, hence the bad lighting):


The white you see poking out at the ends is a strip of a piece of rag that I put through the channel to keep the sides from felting together.

We got this thing good and wet (along with our collection of dryer balls, which were starting to fall apart a bit) and then ran them through several cycles in the dryer. (As an aside, I can tell you that my dryer is plenty good at felting, and I haven't even bothered trying to felt in my front-loader since I discovered I could do it in the dryer.) After about three short cycles, we ended up with this:


It's not quite that glaringly bright, but again, winter light. It's now done except for getting a dowel to run through the top and some pretty ribbon (or yarn?) to tie it up. While it's smaller than it was before felting, it's probably a bit larger than it needed to be, but I'd say it's not bad for having improvised the whole thing. Overall, I used a bit more than 220 yards of yarn from my stash, and knitting with size 10 and 10.5 needles was a fun change from my usual 0's!

Sunday, January 27, 2019

Combo Spin? Nearly Spun

Spinning up 12 oz. of fiber into three-ply fingering weight yarn seems a like it will take a lot of time at the outset. In practice, I've found that if I just sit down and do the spinning, it's really not that bad. I'm not quite done, but I'm getting really close.

I finished up the second bobbin on Friday night.


It's fitting that the first and second bobbins both ended with this same pinky purple, as it's the one color that's common to all three braids I split up for this project and that I think ties the three colorways together.

The third bobbin is well under way, I'd estimate about a third of the way done at this point.


My hope is to finish the singles by midweek so I can ply toward the end of it and have a second (and final) finished skein by the weekend. As excited as I am by the prospect of having my combo spin, I'll admit I'm equally excited by the prospect of spinning something new (and perhaps a bit thicker)! Don't get me wrong, these three braids of fiber from Gale's Art have been a dream to spin, but my fingers are itching for something a little different. And I certainly have plenty of fiber in the stash waiting to be spun!

Thursday, January 24, 2019

On Finishing and Not

Have I mentioned recently how much I hate January? I think I have. One of the things about it that displeases me is that it seems to move at a snail's pace. At least we only have a week left!

In the past week or so, I've been focused on finishing up some WIPs. My first finished pair of socks for the year were completed over the long weekend, and I couldn't be happier with them.


Pattern: My regular stockinette recipe, worked over 68 stitches
Yarn: Fibernymph Dye Works Bounce in Dyer's Favorites 2018, with coordinating speckled mini skein for contrasting heels and toes
Needles: US 0/2.0 mm Addi Sock Rockets, magic loop
Started/Completed: December 22, 2018/January 20, 2019

There's not much to say about these socks; I let the yarn do all the work. They did do a lot of traveling, though: They were cast on in the car on the way to the airport to catch our flight down to Florida, got a bit of action while we were away, and then went to see Hamilton with me. The colors in the stripes are wonderful, and this photo doesn't do them justice (this terrible winter light is another reason to hate January!). I haven't worn these yet, but they'll be going into regular rotation soon.

Next, I finished up what I thought was going to be a charity hat:


Pattern: Alder by Faye Kennington
Yarn: Knit Picks Swish Worsted (100% superwash merino) in Peapod and Squirrel Heather, less than one skein each
Needles: US 4/3.5 mm for the brim and US 5/3.75 mm for the body and crown
Started/Completed: January 15/January 21

If you can already tell from the eerie glow of the green yarn in the above picture, I've edited the photo so that you can see the colorwork. In real life, the contrast is much more subtle, to the point that from far away it's probably close to impossible to tell that there's a colorwork pattern in the hat. While in the end I didn't make any modifications to the pattern, I very nearly had an unintentional mod. As I was finishing up the last round of the crown, I looked at the colorwork and thought, "Hmm, that doesn't look right." Then I reread the pattern and realized I'd totally misread one key instruction. So I had to rip back and redo it all, which fortunately took only an evening. Fresh off the needles, it seemed a little shallow, but a good blocking evened out the stranded work and gave the hat a little more depth. I originally intended this hat to be for me but quickly changed that when I saw the lack of strong contrast between the colors, so I figured it would be added to the charity pile. But then Rainbow got her hands on it and declared that it was hers, so I guess now it is. She wore it to school today (though she's informed me that it still need a pompom).

While I work to finish up other WIPs, I have been reading as much as possible. I was in the middle of a book when I got an e-mail that a hold had come up at the library, so I rushed to finish that and get started on The Overstory, which I have been reading all this week and thoroughly enjoying. It's a great book with beautiful writing, but at 500+ pages, it's not exactly a quick read. This morning when I checked my e-mail over breakfast, I found that my hold on Where the Crawdads Sing has come up, so now I'm in that annoying situation where I have more to read than time to read it. Here's hoping I don't get a third book off my holds list or I'll have to take a day off from work just to get caught up!

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Pattern Release: Elodia Mitts

I realize the great irony that is publishing a pattern for fingerless mitts when it's so cold outside that frostbite can happen very quickly, but nevertheless, here it is!


It's amazing how little changes can make such a big difference: I originally used this stitch pattern in a sock design. When that was released, I heard nothing but crickets. Perhaps the yarn I used wasn't ideal for showing off the lace; perhaps there were more popular patterns released at the same time that were grabbing all the attention. Whatever it was, the socks have never sold well or gotten much love, but I still love the stitch pattern. I thought it might make sense to use it again on an item that would be more visible, and you can imagine my surprise at how popular my teaser photos were on Instagram. (My tech editor joked that perhaps the socks might've sold better if I'd modeled them on my hands!) I like to think that this gorgeous yarn has something to do with it. This is Murky Depths Deep Sock in a colorway called Salted Caramel -- a colorway that can look so different depending on the light. It had an almost greenish tint when we took the photo above in the dining room, but it's more of a caramel brown in our bedroom:


See? I think it's a bit magic.

These mitts come in three hand sizes, roughly a woman's small, medium, and large. You'll need 170 yards/155.5 meters or less (depending on the size you make) of fingering weight yarn, plus three stitch markers, a yarn needle, and a bit of waste yarn. The lace pattern is both written and charted, and the whole thing has been tech edited. You can find all the details over on the pattern page on Ravelry.

Eventually I'm planning a hat to match the mitts (that will likely be the next new project on the needles), but for now you can get this pattern on its own:

Sunday, January 20, 2019

Comfort Spinning

I was promised a snowstorm this weekend, and I made plans to pretty much hibernate indoors while it lasted. What was forecast, however, didn't quite end up happening. We got a ton of rain yesterday afternoon and then evening, and then overnight the temperature dropped and it turned to snow. We woke up to cold and messy roads. Unfortunately we had to go out in it to do our weekly grocery shopping, but we've been staying inside since then.

My spinning wheels are set up in the corner of our bedroom that's right next to our radiator, so between that, wool socks, and a thick sweater, I've been staying nice and toasty. And I'm making good progress on the second skein of my combo spin!

I finished up the first bobbin earlier this week:


And over the past couple of days, I've made it about halfway through the second:


This evening I've got some knitting to do, but I have another day off tomorrow and plan to spend at least part of it at the wheel!

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Three on Thursday

It has been a long week that seems to be dragging by, and I'm very much looking forward to the long weekend (all of us are off on Monday for Martin Luther King Jr. Day).

I've continued to spend a little time here and a little time there on my WIPs. My socks are moving right along, thanks to some bonus daytime knitting. I usually only work on them during my lunch break, but thanks to a webinar and a conference call this week, I was able to sneak in some extra time (my door is closed and I'm paying attention, and no one is the wiser).


I also have a new WIP, a hat I cast on Tuesday night with the hopes of replacing the brioche hat I've been wearing this winter. It's a hat I like but that has turned out to not be too warm when it's been really cold here, so I decided something with stranded colorwork would be a better option. I am knitting my friend Fay (aka UkeeKnits)'s Alder pattern using two skeins of Knit Picks Swish Worsted, one skein leftover from the Mister's sweater and one that I ordered for making charity hats.


The photo isn't great (thanks, gloomy weather!), but I think it's good enough to see that the contrast isn't great. If I finish and I'm not wild about it, then this'll go in the charity pile and I'll knit something else for me.

My third WIP of the week (if you can call it that) has been my reading. Toward the beginning of the week, I finished up The Ragged Edge of Night, which I'd bought on a whim thanks to an Amazon recommendation. I actually really enjoyed it. It's a World War II story from a perspective I haven't read very often, that of a German citizen who opposes Hitler. While the writing is beautiful, I thought the story was a little far-fetched until I read the author's note at the end and found out that it is largely a true story. I ended up giving the book five stars.

Now I've moved onto some more difficult, thoughtful reading, in the form of Michael Eric Dyson's What Truth Sounds Like: Robert F. Kennedy, James Baldwin, and Our Unfinished Conversation About Race in America. I saw that Kat had recommended it in the wake about the discussion of racism within the fiber arts community, and my library hold on it came up surprisingly quickly. I'm hoping to finish it later today, though I expect it will take me longer to fully digest what I've read. I'll admit that there are many sections in this book where I haven't felt smart enough to fully understand what Dyson is saying, but I feel like I've expanded my understanding and gain some much-needed perspective.

We're expecting a big winter storm to hit us this weekend, so I plan to curl up with my reading, my knitting, and my spinning and relax. If you're in the storm's path as well, stay warm and stay safe!

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

WIP Skipping

While crafting mojo is high these days, project monogamy is not. I've been skipping from one WIP to another lately -- not so much because I'm bored but because I like the variety.

Over the weekend, it was all about small circumference knitting. First, because there was such a great response to the first one on Instagram, I knit up my second fingerless mitt to finish the pair.


Obviously they are not yet blocked, but that will happen this evening, and then a proper photo shoot (in real daylight) needs to happen. These are my own design and are already with my tech editor, who has promised to get the pattern back to me ASAP as she wants to knit a pair herself! I don't think I mentioned when I discussed my intentions for the year that my goal for my designing was to reach 100 published patterns by year's end. I'm currently at 87, so that means 13 new designs or roughly one a month. If the timing works out, these mitts will be my release for January.

On Saturday, we had the great luck/good fortune to be able to go see a performance of Hamilton here in Pittsburgh. As excited as I was to see the show, I know that I am not able to sit through anything without something to do with my hands (without knitting, that inevitably means I end up biting my nails), so I took a sock in progress with me. This sock is the one I started on the way to Florida back at the end of December; I hadn't touched it since finishing the gusset decreases on the flight home more than a week ago. It turned out to be the perfect project to bring along, and by the end of the show, I was only half an inch shy of being able to start the toe. I finished up the rest of it during my lunch break yesterday (so please excuse the industrial carpet backdrop):


The yarn is Fibernymph Dye Works Bounce in the colorway Dyer's Favorites 2018; the stripes are the colors Lisa used most often in her dyeing last year. The skein came with a mini skein of white with speckles of the same colors used in the stripes, and I opted to use it for the heel and toe. The second sock was cast on this morning.

Finally, I'm still slogging away at my Floozy, and I've come to accept that it's just going to be a long-term WIP that will get finished someday. While the knitting right now isn't terribly exciting, it is easy and mindless, so I put in a few (long) rows last night while reading.


I've still got quite a long way to go on the body, but that's okay. It will get done when it gets done, even if it's the middle of the summer.

Sunday, January 13, 2019

Spinning Thoughts

For once this post isn't about my thoughts about my spinning; rather it's about the thoughts that have been spinning through my head the past few days.


I know we like to think of the fiber arts community as one in which everyone is kind, helpful, and accepting. Sadly, as many of us have discovered in the past week, that is not the case. Just as it does everywhere, racism exists in the fiber arts community. Many BIPOC who are fiber artists have spoken out in the past week about their experiences and have called out racism where they have seen it. If you don't know what I'm talking about, I suggest you start by googling "Karen Templer India blog post" and see what comes up. There's a lot to read and a lot to take in.

I've been thinking about how to respond, if at all, to this discussion and to the larger issue. On the one hand, I am a white woman, with all the privilege that entails, and in a general way, I am part of the problem. It doesn't feel like my place to say anything because it's not my story to tell. On the other hand, I also feel like it is my duty to use the privilege I do have to raise up and amplify the voices of those who don't have it and who are hurt by racism, intentional or not.

What it comes down to for me is this: I want to live in a world where everyone is respected for their inherent value, regardless of what they look like, where they come from, who they love, or what they believe. And part of respecting people is believing them when they say they feel victimized, discriminated against, or upset. It is not my job to lead or steer the conversation; my job is to listen, to take the words to heart, to learn, and to grow. I didn't earn the privilege I have, but if I do have it, at least I can use it to help those who struggle to get their voices heard, who are taken for granted, who are misjudged and mistreated.

I don't pretend to know everything there is to know about this situation or that I am without fault. I'm sure I have unfairly judged people based on some aspect of who they are, whether that is their skin color, how they speak, or even what yarn they use. I am constantly working on myself and trying to be a better ally and advocate. So please do call me out if I do or say someone that is offensive. Please do tell me what I can do to make our community more inclusive for all. Please do suggest books or articles or blog posts I can read to continue to educate myself. And please do continue to share your experiences if you've been a victim of racism in our community. We can only change if we are honest and open and if we are actively seeking the change. And I truly hope we will be.

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Knitting Season

I woke up this morning to a cold, snowy day. Though earlier in the week we had unseasonably warm weather and, if you can believe it, thunderstorms, it seems nature has remembered that it's January and returned us to winter. My skin has remembered as well, so I'm back to slathering on the lotion multiple times a day after getting a brief reprieve thanks to the humidity in Florida. (As an aside, I was complaining the other night about how dry my skin was, and the Mister asked me if there was a pill I could take to fix that. If only!)

While I don't enjoy feeling cold, dry, and itchy all the time, this weather is very good for my knitting mojo! I'm really not content to just wear my handknits during the winter; I also want to have a lap full of wool whenever possible. And I've been working on my WIPs and casting on new projects as a result.

I'm closing in on a finished mitt thanks to my lunchtime knitting at work this week, and I'm very pleased with how it's turning out.


I cast on a new project on Tuesday night that unfortunately I can't show you (it's a new design for a third-party publisher, so it has to stay secret until it's been released), but it's moving along rather quickly, too.

Then there is the sock in progress that got a good amount of attention on the flight home last weekend but hasn't been touched since. It will get a fair amount added to the foot this weekend, though, because we are going to see Hamilton!


Some of the knitting this week has happened while reading, and as a result, I managed to finish Warlight last night. I'm still processing my feelings about it, but for now I'll say that while I thought it was good, it was nowhere near as good as I expected it to be. So it's back to Michelle Obama's Becoming for my bedtime reading and a new book, The Ragged Edge of Night, for when I'm out and about.

Tuesday, January 08, 2019

Back to Work

I am back to work in my full-time job and back to work at designing. Though I took two skeins of yarn meant for future designs on vacation with me, I never did anything with them beyond unpacking and then repacking them. So on Sunday night, I finally pulled one of the skeins out and cast on for the next pattern sample, and I've been working on it during my lunch break at the office the last two days.


This pattern is for a pair of fingerless mitts, and I've adapted a stitch pattern from a previous design. I'll be making a hat to match as well. The yarn is from Murky Depths Dyeworks, a new-to-me dyer. Debbie contacted me last year on Instagram to see if I would be interested in using her yarn to design with. I looked at her Etsy shop and fell in love with this colorway. It's called Salted Caramel and is much prettier in real life -- and pretty much impossible to capture accurately on camera. The above picture was taken in the middle of the day when it was sunny, but not in direct light. Here's what it looks like in full sun:


I'd describe it as a golden brown with greenish undertones. It's delicious, quite frankly, and I'm very pleased with how this sample is knitting up so far.

Before we left Florida, I did manage to finish the yoke of my Floozy cardigan and split off the sleeve stitches, so now I'm in the long slog of the body. I've spent at least a couple hours on it since the split and only have a little more than an inch or so of fabric to show for it, so I may have to designate this my 2019 Rhinebeck sweater to ensure it'll get done.

Though I haven't had much time for reading the past few days, I finally did get to the top of the wait list for Warlight at the library and am about 10% in. I'm not yet far enough along to evaluate the story itself, but the writing is lovely and I'm certainly enjoying it. I just hope I can squeeze in a few extra hours to read this week so I can get through it before the library snatches it back!

Sunday, January 06, 2019

Hello, Old Friend

One of the good side effects of being away from home for two weeks is that it definitely reignites my spinning mojo. I have contemplated taking a spindle and fiber on more than one occasion, but I've never actually done it. So usually by the time we get back home I'm desperate to get back to my wheel. We got back in town yesterday afternoon, and once the things I had to do (unpack, clean the bathroom, start the laundry) were complete, I sat down at my Lendrum and got started on the second skein of my combo spin. I put in a little more time today, too. There's not much on the bobbin, but it feels good to be back in my happy place and under way.


My last finished skein of 2018 was left on the radiator in our bedroom to finish drying while we were away, and it was lovely to come home to a fluffy skein that I could finally look at in daylight (the photo I snapped of it the day we left town was taken before the sun was fully up and while it was still slightly damp). I'm quite pleased with this one.


While that neon-y green is really standing out, there are some truly beautiful muted shades in here. I think I've decided to knit it up into another brioche infinity cowl, as I have a friend who has been very vocal in her admiration of mine, and it would make a nice gift.

On our last night away, I did manage to finish up my first finished book of 2018: Beartown by Fredrik Bachman. This is third Bachman novel I've read, and it was unlike the previous two but still an excellent 5-star read. The writing (or perhaps I should say the translation) is wonderful, and the story is one that really makes you think. I will note that there is a rape in this story, so if that's a trigger for you, you may want to avoid this one.

Thursday, January 03, 2019

Lingering WIPs

I know that the start of a new year is when many knitters take stock of their works in progress and determine whether to finish or frog them. It's rare for me to let a WIP linger too long, so I've started 2019 with only two projects on the needles. The first is the pair of socks I started on the way to the airport to catch our flight to Florida, so while they haven't gotten a ton of attention recently, they're still a relatively new WIP.


This is the special Dyer's Favorites 2018 colorway from Fibernymph Dye Works that Lisa sent me as a holiday gift. The seven colors that form the stripes are the colors she used most often in 2018, and I just love it. There's also a mini contrast skein (white with speckles of the seven colors) that I may use for the heel; I'm still deciding. I'm just knitting a basic stockinette sock with this yarn, so I know they'll be done before too long.

The other WIP is a bit older. It's my Floozy cardigan, which I started on the drive on the way to Rhinebeck back in October. I brought it with me to Florida because I had grand delusions about getting a ton of knitting done, but the reality is that it's fingering weight yarn on size 2/2.75 mm needles, so even with a lot of knitting time, it's not going to be a fast knit. But I have put in some time on it, and I'm hopeful that before we leave, I'll have finished all the yoke colorwork and separated the body and sleeve stitches.


Meanwhile, I have been reading what should be my first finished book of the year (I want to finish it before we leave, as it's my parents' book and I don't want to take it home). It's called Beartown, and it's by Fredrik Backman, the man who wrote A Man Called Ove. This one is about a down-on-its-luck hockey town, and so far I'm enjoying it, though perhaps not as much as the other two Backman books I've read. Still, it's enjoyable to be able to spend more time reading than I usually get, and if I finish before we leave on Saturday, I will have read four books in our two weeks away.

Tuesday, January 01, 2019

A Day of Intention

Happy new year! Though I didn't plan it to work out this way, it's a happy accident that the first day of the new year falls on a blog day. The start of a new year is a time when many people make resolutions; me, I find that resolutions are quickly broken, so I prefer to start off January with intentions for the new year, as it's always easier to move forward with intent and hope that you will accomplish something and not feel any guilt if you don't.

I have three main intentions for 2019. The first, as you will expect, is an intention to craft a lot over the coming year. I want to be more mindful about using up my stash and not buying more yarn or fiber just for the sake of buying it. With that in mind, I've hopped on the bandwagon of a creating a Make Nine grid for the coming year. These aren't necessarily the only things I'm planning to make in the next 12 months, but I certainly hope that they will be among my finished projects by this time next year.


From top to bottom, left to right:
  • Little Boxy by Joji Locatelli: This will be for Rainbow, and I already bought the yarn for it: three skeins of Fibernymph Dye Works Bounce in Peacock Blue.
  • Cailleach-Oidche by Liz Corke: This was a Giftalong pattern purchase, and I think it will look lovely in the two skeins of Dusty Tree Dyeworks Root that I purchased this past fall at Indie Knit & Spin.
  • Tegna by Caitlin Hunter: This one has been planned for a while, and my first spinning order of business when we get home is to get started on the second skein of handspun to make it.
  • Archer by Elizabeth Doherty: I've got three skeins of Stranded Dyeworks fingering weight already in the stash for this one.
  • Cathedral Grove by Faye Kennington: I might make more than one of these, one for me and one (or more) for charity.
  • Boxy by Joji Locatelli: I love my handspun Boxy so much that I'm planning another one (likely in a smaller size) in FDW Bounce.
  • Coronal by Allison Janocha: This will be another charity knit. I really want to see how that crown is created!
  • Darkwater by Jennifer Steingass: This was my first impulse purchase of the year, and I think that despite the fact that it's written for fingering weight, I might be able to make it work with the HipStrings Buoy DK I have (it's more a sport weight in my opinion anyway).
  • Edinburgh by Kate Bostwick: This is the pattern my brother picked out when he asked me to knit him a sweater, and I conveniently already owned the pattern. I ordered yarn from Knit Picks on Cyber Monday and it's waiting patiently at home. 
I'm sure there are other patterns I've been wanting to make that I've forgotten, but as I said, this isn't an exhaustive list.

My second intention for 2019 is to read more. I really surprised myself by how much I read in 2018 (70 books -- even more impressive when you consider that my initial goal was only 25!). I've set my reading challenge on Goodreads for this year at 50 books, which seems reasonable without being too lofty. If I have the same pace as I did last year, I'm sure I'll exceed that, but reading time is tough to predict. (If you're also on Goodreads and would like to connect with me there, you can find my profile here.)

My third and final intention for 2019 is to continue to be good to myself. Last spring I made some pretty major changes in my diet and my habits to make a difference in my health; as a result, I'm starting this year weighing less, in better shape, and with significantly reduced cholesterol (which was the main objective). I feel better and stronger, and I want to continue to feel that way, so I intended to keep up the good habits I've started.

A phrase I've been thinking about and reading a lot today is "Start as you mean to go on." I think that's a good mantra in general and for the first day of a new year specifically. So this morning I took a long walk before brunch, I spent some time with an old WIP this afternoon, and later on I'll spend some time with a good book.


Here's to a healthy, happy, crafty 2019!