You are currently browsing the monthly archive for December 2009.

Last night was our annual Schi dinner, and the story of that soup ritual can be read here.  For the past few years I’ve been making my own akvavit to serve with the Schi, and I’m sharing that  recipe with you this year. 

It began when I thought I had some akvavit in the freezer one year, and turned out to be wrong.  Now,  here in Washington state, it’s not so easy to rush out and buy hard liquor.  It has to bought at a state store — the groceries and wine shops can only carry beer, wine, and fortified wines. And it was a Sunday, so the local state store was closed.  What to do? I had vodka on hand, and caraway seeds, caraway being the flavoring for akvavit.  So I poured a cup of vodka into a pitcher and added about two tablespoons of  caraway seeds. I let that steep for a couple of hours at room temperature, strained it into a serving carafe, and put it in the freezer, as akvavit is best served very cold.  The result was a pale golden elixir that tasted just right. Crisis averted, a new tradition born.

 Skål!  And Happy New Year!

I made this Jacob’s Ladder Seaman’s Scarf for a friend of ours who is a captain on tugboats along the Pacific Coast.

I knit scarves and hats for the Seaman’ s Church Institute ‘s Christmas at Sea program, which gives them to merchant mariners in US ports during December.  It was nice to knit  seaman’s scarf for a seaman I actually knew!

I love the way the cables twist up the sides.  This was a good opportunity to use the cabling without a cable needle technique, as explained by Grumperina.  It is brilliant, give it a try!

If you look closely at the picture of the whole scarf, you’ll see that there are two different colors of yarn.  I truly did not notice this until well along on the second color! So the neck ribbing and  one front panel are reddish brown and the other panel is plain brown for the bottom half.  In self defense, I can only say that I grabbed the yarn balls out of the basket quickly, and did much of the knitting while traveling with Greg on his book tour, so indifferent light conditions much of the time.  But the scarf  is still warm to wear.

Here’s what I’ve been up to lately fiber art-wise.

I’ve made three pairs of these adorable, comfy, warm, cute, and stylish French Press Felted Slippers, pattern available for purchase here.  They knit up pretty quickly and felt easily.  Sew on the  buttons and straps and you have something wonderful!  Also adorable, cute, comfy,  warm, etc.  They grey ones were for me,

the purple ones for a friend, and there’s also a burgundy  pair I haven’t quite finished yet or decided who to give to.

More tomorrow  . .

And all through the house, cookies were baking . . .

Slippers were drying  . . .

And the lonely little blog looked up and said, “Is it Christmas time?”

Yes, it is, my dear, and I’m here to wish you a merry one.  I know I’ve been busy, and not come to see you lately, but I’ve thought of you often.  So let’s  raise a glass together and move into the New Year resolved to enjoy each other’s company more.



PS — The slippers are French Press felted slippers, and the pattern is available here.  I see that she is shipping PDFs today, so if you, dear Reader, work really fast you might be able to get pair of these babies done in time for giving tomorrow morning.  And the recipient will love you, because they are warm, cozy, and oh, so stylish. I’ve made one pair for me and two more for gifts, and they are great.