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Archive for the ‘Gift Giving’ Category

Now that the funky baby quilt is behind me, I am on to my next project. My cousin asked if I could make her some cloth diapers for her baby that is due in July. Evidently, store-bought cloth diapers can be quite pricey, but they are so much better for the environment that I decided that I would go ahead and give it a try.

This is where my readers will hopefully come in. I don’t have a baby to try different patterns on, so I’m praying that some of you have sage advice to give me as I start this adventure in cloth diaper making. As I have googled this topic, I have quickly become overwhelmed in all the different things to consider.

Because the all-in-one diapers are made out of fairly expensive materials, I am hoping to make some covers that have the diaper inserted into it. The other thing that would be handy is that I would really like some real life thoughts on sizing. Each pattern seems like it would only be good on a baby for a couple months. Is there anyway to size them so that they can grow with the baby? I doubt that I am going to be willing to make a set of 20 diapers for my cousin every six months.

This would be much easier if I could make one and then try it out, but I am up to the challenge (hopefully). So if anyone out there has wisdom to share on how to do this, make it cheaper, or make them last longer, I am listening.

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Today, I put the finishing touches on my funky baby quilt, and not a moment too soon.  The baby shower is on Saturday, and we’re leaving tonight to drive down for it.  I’m happy with how it turned out (except that it is still Slightly Askew).

I have to apologize for being a rather flighty blogger for the last couple weeks.  Real life has caught up with me, but I promise that next week I will be back in full swing.

For more on my funky baby quilt:

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In keeping with January being a consumption free zone for me, I have made my thank you cards instead of buying them.  It is amazing how simple it was to make them, once I had a few key materials.  I got a wonderful collection of rubber stamps from a women on freecycle, and I used sheets of card stock cut in half for the note cards.  There are plenty of other ways to make cards, so if you don’t have access to free rubber stamps, please don’t let that stop you.

I love writing thank you notes now.  My mother used to make me sit down and write them after every birthday and Christmas, and I hated it.  But as an adult, I am glad that she taught me the value of being thankful.  It is wonderful to get the creatively spelled notes from my 5 year-old  and 8 year-old cousins.  It is also wonderful to get the notes from many of the adults in our family.

In fact, it is nice to get real mail instead of bills all the time.  My mother-in-law is great about this!  She is always sending me clippings and photos that she thinks I will appreciate.

Now, I know that I’m a bit old-fashioned about thank you notes.  Most of my family doesn’t send them anymore, and I am not always religious about writing them either, but I would hate to see them no longer being sent at all.  Gift giving is fun, getting presents is fun, and I think that it is just as much fun to truly express our gratitude for the presents that we receive.

Homemade note cards

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This afternoon, I was going to go to a coffee shop to work on some writing, but it is not going to happen.

Instead, I am going to cuddle up with my cat on the couch and work some more on my sister’s hat and listen to a good audio book. If you take one look at the picture of my view from the couch, you will understand why. It is beautiful. We are supposed to get about an inch or two of snow, although it has been at it for hours now, and all we have is a dusting. But oh, what a beautiful dusting it is.

There is something magical about knitting Christmas presents while watching the first snowfall of the season. I am fully intending on sitting back and enjoying the afternoon as it comes. How often do we get treats like this?
First Snowfall of of the Season

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It is my perfect fall morning.  The leaves have finally started to change here, and I am sitting on my couch watching the drizzle come down.  I love the way the the brilliant yellows look against the gray sky.  It really makes the colors pop out at you.

I am finally starting to feel the Christmas rush.  I know that many of you probably haven’t given Christmas gifts a second thought yet, but if one is determined to make as many handmade gifts as possible, then one really has to get cracking in November.  So today, I am working on a scarf for one of my favorite people in the world.

She is wonderful and brilliant, and I hope that this scarf suits her personality well.  I know that she will read this blog and wonder if I am speaking of her, but she will probably dismiss it and think that it is for someone else.

My Fall View

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Pretty New Scarf

I’ve finished two knitting projects in the past week!  Both were supposed to be Christmas presents, but one of them is going to happily stay in my possession this winter.  I completely fell in love with the yarn and the lace pattern that I used for one of the scarves, plus it will go perfectly with a jacket that I picked up on sale at the end of the season last year.  It also took forever to finish.  I have been working on it for the last two months, and it feels good to know that I will get to wear it just as it starts to get colder.

I love wearing things that I have made.  It makes me feel all warm and fuzzy when I wrap a scarf around my neck or put on a shirt that I poured my love and creativity into.  Some people say that fibers become infused with the energies around them, and I sincerely hope that this is true, because if it is, then my crafts should radiate all the joy that goes into my work.  I know that I can feel it, and I hope that at least some others will feel it too when they get their lovingly made presents.

Here is my lace scarf that I am so proud of!  You can’t really tell in the photo, but the sparkles in the yarn are really strands of gold thread, which adds a nice touch of girly fun to the scarf.

My lace scarf

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It is stunning here in DC.  Outside it is nice and sunny, which a few puffy clouds ambling their way across the sky.  It is a crisp fall day, and the breeze is quite invigorating.  It truly is the perfect knitting weather, a harbinger that the time to pull out the cozy sweaters and mittens is near.

Today,  I am working on my first Christmas project.  Knitting takes a while, so those on my list that are lucky enough to get handmade scarves, hats, or slippers are quite lucky, because it means that I have been pouring over their project for months, agonizing over who would like what.

This present that I am working on is a lovely black and gold scarf.  I have fallen in love with this yarn, and as always, it is going to be desperately hard to give it up come December.  In fact, this actually should be my second Christmas project of the year, but the first one I loved so much that I decided to keep it.  I will be taking pictures and writing many posts in January dedicated to this year’s handmade presents, but since most of the recipients look at this blog from time to time, I need to maintain the presents’ anonymity for the sake of Christmas surprise.

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