Monthly Archives: December 2009

Happy Knitmas!

So Knitmas has arrived full force over here. Knitmas for me is the time when I knit and knit and knit and knit and apparently am still knitting up until the last minute before Christmas in order to finish all my knitted gifts. Knitmas is usually a pretty crazy time but I find that I work very well under the pressure of it… though I’m still cutting it very close as I usually do every year. Even with all the stress of it, however, I love being able to knit for my family and friends – especially the ones who appreciate it as the ones that do not either a) don’t get a gift anymore or b) won’t get a gift anymore. I really can’t waste my time and money (we all know how expensive yarn is) on people who don’t appreciate a handknit gift. What’s the point? So of course the first knit gift of the year went to my dear friend, who I have spoken about at length in several other posts.

Sagano Shawl - FINISHED

That is the Sagano Shawl and my friend just received it tonight. She LOVED it and was so excited about it. Her husband told her she will be very stylish wearing it, and I have to agree. 😉 The yarn (Sundara FSM) is amazingly soft and has a wonderful sheen to it. I loved knitting with it!

Sagano Shawl - FINISHED

I know a lot of people have been put off from knitting this shawl due to the myriad of P3tog all over the place. However, I must assuage any fears you may have as they are not bad *at all*. In fact, I found them very easy to knit and amazingly peaceful. If you’re looking for something that will take a little time but will be a fun and addictive knit, look no further. It took me a few of weeks to make, which isn’t that long, but still quite a bit longer than expected for a shawlette.

Sagano Shawl - FINISHED

Pattern – Sagano Shawl by Laura Chau (rav link | project link)
Yarn – Sundara Fingering Silky Merino in Adobe (rav link | store I used)
Needle – US6 (4mm)
Cast on – November 24, 2009
Cast off – December 9, 2009
Modifications – Knit an extra 3 repeats and added two rows to edging.

Now, if instead you are looking for something addictive AND quick, look no further than the Hayworth Shawlette which I just yesterday finished for my dearest mother as a Christmas gift:

Hayworth Shawlette - FINISHED

I made this in just *3* days including blocking, if you can believe it. I had an absolute blast knitting this shawlette and it is SO my mom’s style, I hope she will love it. The pattern is different in pretty much every row, which makes this a non-mindless knit item that is still easy and quick. The best of both worlds if you ask me.

Hayworth Shawlette - FINISHED

Don’t ask me what I was thinking when I took the above picture as I really have absolutely no idea, LOL!

Hayworth Shawlette - FINISHED

Oh and the yarn is Skinny Bugga! from The Sanguine Gryphon, which is a very nice yarn to knit with, though it isn’t as soft as other MCN sock yarns… I’m guessing due to the fact that it’s so skinny. It still makes a nice drapey fabric, though, and the color is, again, perfect for my mom. I really hope she’ll like it!

Hayworth Shawlette - FINISHED

Pattern – Hayworth Shawlette by Victoria Lynn (rav link | project link)
Yarn – The Sanguine Gryphon’s Skinny Bugga! in Blue Metalmark (rav link | store I used)
Needle – US6 (4mm)
Cast on – December 16, 2009
Cast off – December 19, 2009
Modifications – None.

I have plenty of other Knitmas knits to show off but I think I will hold off on those until after Christmas… I always like to keep some thing up my sleeves. 😉 The hubby and I are heading off to California to see both our families (yes, we grew up in the same town and went to the same High School but we never met until we were both in college!). I’m not sure if I will be able to do any updating while there so just in case I can’t, Merry Christmas to all and Happy Holidays to those who don’t celebrate Christmas! My pups (along with Guapo who we’re puppy sitting right now) would like to wish you all the best holiday season ever!

Merry Christmas!

Oh, and, of course, happy knitting from me! 😀

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Australia Part I – Sydney

This post is long overdue, I know… I have been so busy the last few weeks working on my still up-and-coming photography business (have I ever mentioned how much I hate making websites?) and cranking out knitted items for Christmas gifts that I just haven’t had any time to write. So sorry to all of you, though from what I’m reading in the blog world, all of you are as pressed for time as I am! But if you do have a few moments of peace, here are some pictures from out time in Sydney to keep you entertained:

Sydney Aquarium

When we first arrived in Sydney it was raining all day so naturally we decided to do something indoors. We headed for the Aquarium as I always like looking at fish having grown up near the Monterey Bay Aquarium (the largest in the world) and going there often. The Sydney one was nice, but definitely not as nice as Monterey Bay. However, they did have really cool shark exhibits! I didn’t end up with many great pictures, but this one in particular stood out to me:

Finding Nemo?

Do you guys see it? Isn’t that the spitting image of Bruce from Finding Nemo (he’s the shark on the poster)? I couldn’t help but laugh when I saw that picture come up… I think that shark looked like he was planning something!

We then walked around Darling Harbour and Tumbalong Park, which has some absolutely lovely fountains.

Darling Harbour

It was so cool to see that the fountains were actually made to be played in, as there were kids running up and down inside of them! I’ve never seen anything like that in the US and I really enjoyed it.

Darling Harbour

Darling Harbour

We also visited the Chinese Garden, which was so lovely. Both the hubby and I enjoyed strolling around in it!

Chinese Garden in Darling Harbour

Chinese Garden in Darling Harbour

I love this picture of the hubby… doesn’t he look adorable? 😉

Chinese Garden in Darling Harbour

Chinese Garden in Darling Harbour

We did lots of walking around Sydney (it’s great to live in NY… you’re used to lots of walking!) and got to see a lot of the city. Here are a few snapshots of Sydney during out walks:

The Rocks

The Rocks

The Rocks

The Rocks

The Sydney Bridge (of course!)… we climbed all the way to the top of it! Do you see that little flag at the top? We went all the way up there with Bridgeclimb. It was one of the coolest things we did on our trip and if you’re in Sydney you should definitely do it as well! We didn’t get any pictures of our own while up there as they don’t let you take cameras (don’t think I’d want to bring my expensive camera up there anyway!) but they did get a picture of the two of us from their camera. I just need to upload it and then I’ll share it with you all… probably on the next post!

Sydney Bridge

Sydney Bridge

The Sydney Opera House with the ferries going in front of it. We took the ferry one afternoon to Manly and got some nice shots of the city as we were floating by.

Sydney Opera House

From the Ferry

From the Ferry

Sydney Opera House

And some pictures of The Rocks, which is the oldest neighborhood in Sydney. By oldest I mean the 19th century. It was a bit strange to be visiting a place that’s even newer than the Americas! I’m so used to going to places that always have more history, not less, than the US so that was interesting. They still had some great buildings, though!

The Rocks

The Rocks

The Rocks

Queen Victoria Building

This building (Queen Victoria Building) is a *mall* if you can believe it! We were so surprised about this. It turns out that Sydney has some of the prettiest malls I have ever seen – and I’ve seen loads, LOL.

Queen Victoria Building

Queen Victoria Building

I love the old fashioned elevator!

Queen Victoria Building

Of course, they also had more modern escalators:

Queen Victoria Building

Queen Victoria Building

We also spent quite a lot of time in the Botanical Gardens, which is pretty much like our Central Park only with plaques next to trees telling you where they came from – which was definitely fun!

Scary structure

Flower

Botanical Gardens

Macquarie point

Cacti

Cacti

These rock formations were very cool too!

Rock formation

Quintessential picture of Sydney:

Sydney Opera House and Bridge

The other amazing thing about the Gardens was seeing all the wild life there that is considered totally exotic here… like cockatoos!

Wild Cockatoos

Wild Cockatoos

They would get really close too, as you can see in the next picture, and weren’t afraid of humans at all. It was neat to see them so close without being domesticated!

Wild Cockatoos

And just as we’re walking around commenting on how like NY’s Central Park it all is, we run across these:

BATS!

Interesting black things…. here’s a closer look:

BATS!

Have you guessed what they are yet?

BATS!

How about now?

BATS!

Do you see that one taking off on the left? Yes, those are BATS! Thousands upon thousands of the largest bats in the world. They are fruit bats and this was right after their mating season so there were 11,000 bats in the Gardens at that time. Is that crazy or what? It was insane to see them all there just hanging out. I had no idea that bats hung out in open daylight like that. I guess this was naive of me, but I thought they liked to stay in dark places during the day, but I guess not. And they were loud too! Making a ton of noise and going from tree to tree when they got bored. Later during the night we actually saw a bunch of them flying around Sydney Bridge, but I didn’t have my camera on me to take a picture for you. Sorry!

We really did enjoy our time in Sydney and attended a ballet at the Opera House as well, which was really nice. We got to see a lot of the city as well, though I’m sure we would have seen more had we stayed longer. As it is, though, I think we got a fair bit of tourist time in! 🙂

Sydney Tower

I hope you guys enjoyed this little bit of Sydney (sorry for the picture overload!) and stay tuned for the next bit of our travels, which include a bit more of the countryside. In the meantime, good luck to all during this holiday season! I know that I love the holidays but they can also be stressful for many, so I figured “good luck” was in order. 😉

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