Bis zum nächsten Mal, January! But, in actuality – you weren’t so bad! I was inspired by Katie to track A Year of Temperatures and I started on January 1 and I am really stunned at how warm it has been! In these past 31 days we had 2 days in the 60’s, 6 days in the 50’s, only 2 days in the 20’s, and the rest of the month rested easily in the 30’s to 40’s. A January Thaw on Global Warming! (Also, we did not have much sun in January… sigh.)
It’s Super Bowl Ad Weekend (for those of you who only watch for that aspect of the game!) Carole shared a great one this week and I am jumping right on that band wagon with one that I chuckled over. I live in an extremely Alexa-fied house and this really hit home!
I heard this fascinating piece on NPR this week and in case you don’t like either football or ads – streaming on Amazon Prime, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel is so binge-worthy and yes… her outfits are to die for and I love every.single.thing.she.wears! It is truly a wonderful series and I highly recommend it!
In the I did not have enough to knit category – I have been oogling my daughters hat with some serious Hat Envy and I had enough of the main yarn to knit another one, but not enough KSH, but I did have some grey so I cast on and knit myself a hat in one day. Yes, yes, I did! It needs a bit of a soak and a pompom and it will be done. I really love how they are a warm and cool version of the same hat! Never fear, I have now returned to my Pheasant Pullover and will be dividing for the sleeves this morning!
Are you wondering what caught my eye in the knitting world this week? There were a few things that I did like:
Winter has returned with a vengeance here in Pittsburgh! Most of the week our temperatures have been in the 50’s and this morning we have a dusting of snow covering that is covering a rather nasty bit of ice and it appears my YakTrax will get their inaugural use today!
If you are heading outside today, I hope you have lots of warm woolens to wear!
And, speaking of woolens – I got the loveliest package from Lerwick yesterday. I was amazed by the heady sheepy aroma of these yarns and this is the first time Sherman has ever been remotely interested in yarn! While that odor might put some off, I love the minimal processing of this yarn. I can feel the lanolin, and this will be a lovely wintery treat to knit with! I am not good at all at putting together colors for colorwork, so I defaulted to the colors that Amy Christoffers used for her Pheasant Pullover. Wow, I am so glad I did! This brown has the most incredible depth! As you can see, swatching has begun and I plan to cast on this weekend!
Do you ever feel “multi-project guilt”? You are not alone and I read the most interesting work around for multi-project rotation this morning – The Gideon Method!
Christmas is a season not only of rejoicing but of reflection. — Winston Churchill
As I write this post, I am watching the gentle fall of snowflakes out my “office” window. Occasionally, the wind swirls them as if my neighborhood is a huge snow globe and as the wind subsides, the flakes swirl lazily until they return to gently float from the grey sky. I am wearing a warm, woolly sweater and I have hand knit socks on my feet while I sip a steaming hot cup of coffee. Life is indeed so very good – I have way more than I need. We do not have money struggles and our big debate is how we should “cut the cable cord” next year – we are fortunate beyond belief.
I have my Christmas gifts wrapped and under the tree. I have done all the baking I intend on doing this year. And, I am really looking forward to Steve being home a couple of extra days for the next two weeks – thanks to the holidays!
AND!! I have selected my word for next year – or rather, I think it selected me!
I am fortunate to return to my “regular knitting because I finished my holiday making with time to spare! Yes, I have settled back into my Evening Dew Cardigan! Each row brings me closer to needing my second ball of mohair silk, which I carefully wound yesterday. There is something quite reflective about hand winding a skein of yarn – you can’t rush it, there is no pause to go do something else – it requires your presence as you wind the yarn into a ball.
Perhaps one of these patterns will inspire you to to wind up some yarn and do some “selfish” knitting for yourself over the coming days! Added bonus, these things are **free** – at least for the next few days!
Isabell Kraemer’s Leni dropped this week and it is a gift from her to us through December 31! From Isabell: “Let me shout out a big THANK YOU for your love, your ongoing support, your trust, your understanding, your patience…for being by my side on this journey…hope you enjoy this little hat pattern!”
Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth, for the touch of a friendly hand and for a talk beside the fire: it is the time for home. — Edith Sitwell
Sometimes English is, well, so lacking. Other languages have words that are just so more descriptive of conveying something deeper. Gemütlichkeit is one of those words – it is sort of the German equivalent of Hygge. The word reminds me of the feeling that would wash over me when I went to my Nana’s house: cozy and inviting, there was always something good to eat, it was full of love and listening ears – a safe, warm, welcoming place! And with those thoughts in mind, gemütlichkeit seems the perfect word for where I want to go on Friday’s… at least for the winter season!
It feels like we are racing into winter with these dark, cold days. It is so easy to wish the season away, longing for sunnier, warmer weather. But perhaps in the wishing the season away, I am missing the quiet, dark beauty that is unfolding around me.
So welcome to Gemütlichkeit for Friday’s! Grab a cuppa and let’s get started!
First, perhaps you are wondering how to pronounce gemütlichkeit… wonder no longer:
Yes, it’s a mouthful, but say it a few times and it really rolls off your tongue!
How about some knitting? I might be heading off to Ravelry shortly to see what *other* slippers I might find. I am on the “edge” of admitting defeat with these babies. I have knit one slipper unsuccessfully twice! I am giving it one more try this morning using German short-rows instead of the prescribed W&T method with the hopes that in doing that the gemütlichkeit will radiate from these slippers and the stitches will be knit with love rather than the frustration and bad language that filled previous two attempts!
I am a year around wool-knitter, but this time of year it is especially nice to fill your lap with some cozy knitting. And, in case you are looking for some cozy knitting to fill your lap with I found some things on Ravelry that scream cozy! First up, an “oldie” but so much goodness: Anne Hanson’s Cluaranach! I have knit Cluraranach and it is my go-to winter wrap. Bonus points for filling your lap quickly as this really is an easy and fast knit!
Next up are a few things that have been on my radar for a while! Love Note, Savage Heart Cardigan, and Felix (or Felix Cardigan). A lap full of a cardigan is the coziest thing ever – and these are some quick, cozy knits! The gemütlichkeit practically oozes from these beauties, amirite?
A couple of years ago, I put up fairy lights in January to help those dark winter nights. But last year I left them up – little bits of light certainly help ease the dark winter nights and they are also nice on warm summer nights! I have a strand of them on the mantle, but my favorite way I am using them is in this pitcher! It is the nicest “light” and gives off the coziest glow. For the holidays I have added a few Christmas baubles.
It can become challenging to keep Friday Night Snacks from feeling rote so when I saw this recipe in a Smitten Kitchen email I thought it would be the perfect wintry addition! I love the idea of serving them warm as well – the perfect cozy addition to our Friday table!
Finally, for all of us who *don’t* wash our hair every day – the morning bed head blues can be challenging – no? I have tried dozens of tips and tricks but this little twitter thread yesterday was a new one! I gave it a trial run last night and this morning my bed head blues were somehow transformed into an ode to joy! I am going to give this a few more tries to validate the results – but holy cow peeps! It was exactly as the tweeter described – “a shield against the next 8 hours…It’s like pressing pause on your hair…”
I wish you all a weekend full of Gemütlichkeit and I will you back here on Monday!