Most every year we get our Christmas tree at a little place in Fryeburg, Maine, called Westons. They cut the trees fresh almost every day and it's always easy to find a beautifully shaped one. Last year however, I remembered that our tree seemed dry and the ones that were cut here felt a bit dry as well, so this year we opted to head down to their tree grove to cut one down ourselves. We never realized that this was an option until my oldest daughter and her family did this last weekend.
When the kids were little we always cut our tree fresh. I used to be very picky about our tree, so we would traipse around the grove for what felt like forever until the perfect tree would jump out at me. We would then head inside for some hot mulled cider while we paid the bill. That little tree place closed a number of years ago, which is why we stopped cutting down our own.
What you see on Ken's face is pure happiness. Happy that it took me only a few minutes to find just the right tree instead of the anticipated hour. Yes, I would have liked it to be bigger and fuller, but with our ever growing family, we need space to fit them all in the living room along with the tree..ha! This is the first year that we have hunted for a tree without the kids. It felt strange and a bit sad, but it was SOO cold, we didn't linger long enough to get too nostalgic.
After we got the tree into the stand to settle it's branches down before decorating, we headed out once again, this time to find winterberries. Remember now, it was pretty darn cold and winterberries seem to like boggy areas that are not always easy to get to without getting pretty wet. Here's Ken struggling not to fall knee deep into the barely frozen bog.
You know your man loves you when he will go to these lengths to get something that you want, when all the while you are snapping off pictures. We weren't sure if picking berries like this on the side of the road was totally legal, so we didn't waste too much time here either. The irony of it all.....I noticed a patch of them on the side of the pond right across our road....go figure..sheesh!
We had a fun adventure Saturday. It felt different without children with us, but we made it fun and that's what counts in the end, right?
So, on to the next thing I have been working on...the on going Sweater Saga. You may remember that I worked as a vendor at Amy Herzog's make.wear.love retreat back in September. As a vendor I was also able to attend her classes which were great and was introduced to her new CustomFit software, which will customize a pattern just for you. Your measurements and your yarn swatch.
In my excitement, I quickly cast on the Birch Bark sweater, which Amy had previously knit in my Frolic yarn. I tweaked the custom measurements a bit because I knew I wanted the sweater and the sleeves to be a little longer, but other than that, I just sailed along. Finished the back and the sleeves fairly fast. Then it was on to the front, which slowed me down a bit as there was a good amount of cabling and I tried my best to pay attention. Usually if I make a mistake, it's having the cables going the same way as in "SS", so it was with a little bit of apprehension when I proudly put up a picture of my front cables. Apprehension because I was afraid there was a mistake, but if there was one I couldn't readily see it......well, you know where this story is going, right?
Yep....a more experienced knitting friend of mine pointed out my error. If you look at where the arrow is in the first picture, there it is. I went over instead of under...aggh! It actually took me a while to "see" it and when I showed it to a number of friends and family, most of them didn't notice it either. I went back and forth...do I live with it or do I rip it out? Me, I could live with it, really...but, I use sweaters like this at shows for yarn displays and I know experienced knitters would see it as well, so in the end, I knew what I had to do.
My friend who had pointed out the error had actually come up with a fix that would not have me pulling the entire front out, but we just couldn't find the right time to get together with the birth of the baby and the holidays. Knowing that I really want this sweater finished so I can move onto new things, I took that plunge and that pesky cable is now fixed. (actually, I had to pull this back even further after I took this picture because I hadn't gone down far enough..blech) I don't think I will make that same mistake again...here's hoping that I won't make a different one! You have to love that ADD brain..or NOT..ha!
I am finally getting caught up and coming up for air, which means I am going to share some of what has been happening here at The Woolen Rabbit, instead of the drive by posts of late.
Many of you are my facebook or ravelry friends and know that we welcomed a new little family member into our lives and hearts, but I wanted to share this here with you all as well.
Little Mr. Finley Allen Louis Spalding made his appearance on November 22nd, which also happens to be my youngest daughter Hannah's birthday. She is so happy to share her birthday with this little guy.
Finley arrived 2 weeks sooner than expected and his delivery was a slow one, but what a sweet treat he is. Such a calm little baby and look at all of that hair! Amazing! Our little babies are usually pretty darn bald...so it was such a surprise to see.
I traveled back and forth to Southern NH to be with them and because my middle daughter, Courtney is so close at UNH, she was able to come and get to know her newest little nephew. I think she was smitten with him, even though she thinks all babies look like little raisins..ha!
We all feel so happy and blessed to have started off the holiday season with such a little treasure. Welcome to this crazy family, little Finley!!
...to be so busy! I have a few different posts that I want to share with you this week, but I haven't had time to process the pictures, so I thought I would leave you all with a song from another one of my talented girls. They never cease to amaze me! Thank you Ashley!
Oh my, I have so much to share with you...it's been a crazy few weeks, but I thought I would share this sweet video of my youngest daughter singing. The words and the video don't always line up well, but it's still so beautiful. Where these kids ever inherited with their beautiful voices is still a mystery to this croaking frog. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do. :)
I will catch up on some other special events this week, now that I have recovered.
Hmm...I'm sorry, I didn't mean to just disappear like that, but you know how life goes Sometimes you have lots of time and then you hardly have any, but it's nice to be back for a visit or two.
There was a time when I was going to create a separate Blythe doll page because I realize that it is not everyone's thing, but then I thought...it's a part of who I am, just like my family, knitting, spinning, quilting and dogs.
So in saying that, I am introducing a doll that I had custom made for me. Now mind you, I have learned how to customize (not nearly as well as this), and I could have knit the hat made by Andie or the Jacket made by Abi, but I have made some wonderful Blythe friends along the way and am happy to support their endeavors too.
(Almond Doll photo)
A year or so ago when I first discovered Blythe dolls (thanks a lot Betzie!), I discovered Almond Doll. Fiona makes the most lovely dolls, and I fell in love with the girl that she called Brownie. The resemblance to my middle daughter Ashley was uncanny, even she, who hates dolls, had to admit it. We all had a good laugh that day.
So I thought on it a bit and asked Fiona if she could make me a version of this doll if I sent her the head. I have another girl from Fiona and knew that her work is exquisite in person as well as in pictures. She agreed thankfully. I have to admit that I had the head sitting around for a few months, just not finding time to squeeze in the work of putting it all together, that was until I saw my friend Andie's sweet little hats and a particular girl that she once owned named Jet. Andie's photography skills are wonderful, so with all of that, I was determined to get back at it, and get back to working at photography again. (read...too.many.hobbies, says Ken)
I named this little one Cinder, as we frequently refer to Ashley as just Ash... You won't see them too often here....but I am happy that I have new challenges everyday to keep my brain engaged and hopefully young. It's what keeps life interesting, right?