And a Happy New Year

Ah. The holidays are so, so lovely. I’ve been sleeping until embarrassingly late hours, wearing my (new) pajamas all day, and knitting constantly. One of the perks of a university job is that the university is closed the last week in December, so I’ve got lots of time off. It’s a wonderful thing. Luckily, Jacob works with schools as well, so we’re both at home relaxing. It’s given us lots of time to put the house in some kind of order and play with our Christmas presents.
Christmas was totally awesome. We got all kinds of great stuff for the house, loads of gift cards (LOWES! HOME DEPOT! BEDBATHANDBEYOND!) and lots of other fun things. I got some great Sephora stuff and the perfect jewelry box. So much good stuff.
The Pants gave me two ultimately awesome presents: this necklace


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SchmooTag.

and… a camcorder!

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I’m gonna video you.

That one was a bit of a surprise. So. Excited. About. Video. I have a feeling that videos of Bella, Chili, and other adorable thingsin my house may be making a more regular appearance on this here blog. Woo-hoo! I also taped ridiculous amounts of nephew cuteness on Christmas Day — the child has gotten SO. BIG. I got to feed him a bottle, which was really fun and also kind of scary at the same time.
Here’s the BigHeadSchmoo:

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I’m the king of this blanket.

The sis finally got her Central Park Hoodie, for keeps:

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Finally!

And there was also some intense game playing: both Texas Hold ‘Em:

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Jacob won. Again.

And Clue DVD:

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Wes is a sleuth. He had the time ALL NARROWED DOWN.

Good. Times.
Now? I’m going to sit on my butt some more and surf blogs and knit and not have any responsibilities. We are having folks over for New Year’s, so at some point I need to clean a little more, but NOT NOW. Now is for lounging. And building a swift…more on that later.
Hope everyone is having a happyhappy with their family and friends. This is the FOURTH Christmas I’ve celebrated with my blog, can you believe it? I can’t. Time flies when you’re having fun. And other cliches.
Happy New Year from our house to yours!!

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Give and Receive.

Aw, I got tagged! I feel special. My answers are in the extended entry. We’re all weirdos…
The holidays are a time for giving and receiving, and I’ve done a little of both this week. I made a scarf for my friend Roxanne:


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The Purl Scarf, Pattern from Last Minute Knitted Gifts.


Here’s a close up of the yarny goodness:

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Manos + Silky Wool + Kidsilk Haze = yummy.

I was happy with the result. I think I might have to make one for myself!
Then. I received this from a dear sweet friend:

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It’s Maggie. Hot damn.

This yarn is so yummy to knit with…I’m about 1/3 done with a sleeve. Lovelovelove.
And. I may have randomly started some colorwork. Now. I’ve never really done much before, but I decided to throw caution to the wind and just knit these Endpaper Mitts. They’re cute, right? Here’s what I learned about Fair Isle:
1. It’s tricksy.
2. I am crappy at holding yarn in my left hand.
3. It makes a difference which yarn you pull from underneath (see yarn dominance)
4. However impressed you are with your own First Fair Isle knitting, your fiance/spouse/partner/friend will not be as impressed. Even if you show them twice.
5. It’s addictive.
Number 5 would be why I went from this:

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A little bit of a mitt.

to this:

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One mitt finished. I even wove in my ends.

…in a very short amount of time. There are many issues with My First Colorwork, including gauge, some weirdness where the rounds meet, yarn choice (hello, Cotton Fine?) and my complete lack of ability to do a Turkish cast on/ cast off. But ya know what? I love my Endpaper Mitt sooooo much. I’ve already cast on for Mitt 2, and after this pair, I might try my hand at some more colorwork. So. Fun.
By the way, that picture is purposely dim and moody so you can’t see all my mistakes. And the bags under my eyes are NOT from a week of non-stop partying, as it may appear. I just drove to North Carolina and back to pick up my dad for the holidays, so I’m a little tired. I almost Photoshopped the bags out, but I figured you’d still love me with bags under my eyes. Right?
Meme answers in the extended entry if you like…

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Items of Note

First of all: the keys WERE in my car. Hooray! I made it back to the office and got some work in.
Now. I dare you not to squeal (or at least exclaim loudly) from the cuteness of this picture:


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My mom and my nephew are SO CUTE.

I haven’t seen either of them in a while, so I can’t wait to hang out over Christmas.
Then. I bought a wedding dress. !!! They had this one-day sale at the Foundry Park Inn in Athens, and it was literally called “The Dream Dress Sale.” Hee. It was a bunch of super pricey dresses WAY marked down, so I had to go, at least to check things out.
And I found THE dress. And I love it so. My sister Cathy was so patient with me while I tried on every dress possible, and then I got the first one I tried on. Hee.

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Here we are.

It was super fun, but it was SO HARD for me to make a decision. I was deciding between two, and through the magic of wireless internets and very nice friends who had their laptops with them, I was able to send a couple of pictures to my mom for her opinion. Even though I KNEW I wanted it, it’s so strange to buy something to wear for an event that’s still practically a year away.
Wedding dress. Oh my lord. I really want to show you, but I don’t trust the Pants to avert his eyes….It’s hanging in my closet right now, so I’m hoping he’ll be a good schmoo and not look.
Our first Christmas show was last night, and it was cheesy and cute and all that. There may have been some technical difficulties (coughcoughThe CD stopping in the middle of a song!coughcough), I think the audience was still entertained. Hopefully.
In the interest of being entertaining, I have an old picture to share with you. I’ve been scanning some pictures for a few Christmas presents, and this one is too hilarious to keep to myself. This is a Rockin’ New Year’s Eve from back in the day…

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I’m on the left. Cathy’s on the right.

Notice our handmade hats, our fabulous tie-dyed t-shirts, and the large pile of confetti we were making to throw in the air at midnight. Hells yes. (The other girl is our friend Sarah, who I’ve known since I was born.)
And just so you know I was a cute child at some point, here’s me and Cathy in the spring of 1982:

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I’m in the yellow. Cathy’s in the green.

Cathy looks really excited, and I look timid. Awwwww.
Now, I’ve got to finish up Christmas shopping, clean the house, and relax. Sounds good to me.

Funny!

I have gotten early morning phone calls from the Pants on several occasions when he’s accidentally locked his keys in his car. It happens fairly often. I grumble … but I always bring him his keys. What else can you do?
Today, he gets to return the favor. I have locked my keys in my car. I THINK. If they aren’t in my car, I have no idea where they are and I am a sad, sad schmoo. Keys, if you’re listening: pleasepleaseplease be in my car.
Anyways, this unexpected break in the middle of the day + having my laptop + wireless cloud in downtown Athens = blog post. And there are things to talk about, actually. For example: High Energy Jenny had a BABY!!!! I can’t believe it! I’m so happy for the High Energys and their new TinyHeadSchmoo. Go on and give her some love! Dude, that kid is lucky – he has pretty kickass parents. I can’t wait to give him a squeeze.
In non baby-related news, I’ve been knitting several different things. I started a Headline News cabled newsboy cap, and it turned out a little large:


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Trust me, it was too big.

(Look at that yarn, by the way. HEJ gave that to me last Christmas – she recycled and dyed it herself. It’s a beautiful angora wool blend and it’s lovely to knit with. She’s multitalented, that one.)
So, seeing as how it was too big, I ripped that, and started just a plain rollbrim hat using some Manos I recently added to the stash. Here’s a look…

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Basic Rollbrim Hat.

That one is actually done now, and I’ve worn it a couple of times. It could be longer, but it works. I just needed some plain old circular stockinette to keep my hands busy.
Now, I’m back to my pretty HEJ yarn, and I’m making a little mini Clapotis. It might be for a present…I’ll never tell…

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Do you like my grainy coffeeshop picture?
It’s the best I can do right now.

And how does one make a mini Clapotis? Well, I googled “mini clapotis” and got this handy little recipe : [ mini clapotis ] Thanks, kpixie! It seems to be working perfectly for this yarn.
No matter how many times I knit a Clapotis, I just can’t memorize the pattern. I always try, and I always end up screwing something up. I will be a good girl and bring my pattern with me every where I go this time around.
Other news? Eh, not much, really. I’m in a Christmas musical extravaganza called “Deck the Halls” — I couldn’t resist volunteering for it — and I’m singing the lead on two Christmas songs. Are you ready? It’s “Rockin’ Around The Christmas Tree”, and “Last Christmas”. Yes, the one by Wham! I was going to resist inviting anyone because it’s going to be super cheesy, but then I thought: when else will they get to see their friend perform a Wham! song for an audience? MAYBE NEVER. So I invited my friends. And you, if you’re in Athens. It’s through Athens Creative Theatre – the website has ticket info.
And that’s my story right now. I decided to make some creative Christmas presents, so I’ve been working on those – not knitting – and just relaxing by the fire when I can. I’m readyreadyready for Christmas break. And also ready for my car keys. Hopefully, by the time this is posted, I’m in my car, driving back to the office. We shall see…

Winding Down

So, the Pants had a birthday was November 28, and we did lots of fun things : went to the casino, hung out with his family, ate yummy food in Athens. We also got up at 5:30 on a Sunday the weekend before his birthday to obtain the best birthday present EVER: a Nintendo Wii (pronounced Wheeeeeeeeeeeeee!).


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The man loves his Wii.

We managed to get one on release day even though we didn’t camp out or pre-order. We just got lucky. Wiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii. And dude, I was not all about getting up early that morning, but I am all about the Wii. It is SO MUCH fun. One of my favorite parts is that you can create a little character called a ‘Mii’ (hee) that you play the games with, and you can make them look like you. So, when Jacob and I play Boxing, it’s a tiny Jacob on the screen boxing a little tiny Carrieoke. funfunfun.
Here’s Jacob’s:

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Tiny cartoon Jacob.

Doesn’t it look like him? I heart technology. And I heart my Jacob.
Anyways, now that things are starting to slow down at work and my schoolwork is done for the semester, I am really looking forward to more nights like this: right now, I’m sitting on the floor in my den with Jacob and Bella watching Tivoed Studio 60 by a roaring fireplace. Seriously. Jacob had to clean the chimney before we started using it and I’m so glad he did. Chim chim chireeeeeeeee.

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Cute. Schmoos.

I’m feeling all warm and fuzzy and Christmas-y tonight, so I think I’m going to go knit and relax with my schmoos. Ya’ll have a good night, and go give your loved ones a squeeze.
To the family: I added a link to my holiday wish list on the left sidebar (under the Carrieoke cartoon).