It’s wonderful to see December again. It still feels a lot like autumn, though. Trees are covered in gold and red leaves, and the days require a light cardigan. But the nights hint of winter. And winters are cold, foggy, and covered with frost. And somewhere in there I’ll get to wear my knit scarves and mittens, so that’s something. Dennis reminds me that once winter arrives, I’ll resume my annual Winter Lamentation, (something about frozen toes and too many bothersome layers of things.) But as of now, I’m still blissfully unaware of what I’ve forgotten, and perfectly pleased to indulge my wintry daydreams.
I’ve made a bit of progress on my crochet table runner, and I must say, every moment of it is lovely. It’s so sweet and simple and the perfect way to relax after a busy day. To note, I’m working with my two favorite yarns: Knitpicks Brava Worsted and Paintbox Aran. (Paintbox Aran is a touch thicker, but they work up well together with a 4.5mm hook.) These yarns are so divinely soft, snuggly, and buttery-smooth to work with, that this former fancy-wools-only snob is completely sold. Wool still has its place (because adorable sheep!) but quality acrylic is pure yarn-confectionery delight. (Did I mention the intense colors? Heaven.)
* * *
Coolba – our sweet, snowy, indoor-only boy cat – has resumed his wintry tendencies. Early in the morning, when the house is still dark and cold, he climbs out of his bed (an oversized, padded shoebox – fancy, I know,) and nestles beside me, under my chin. I pull the blankets up, wrap my arms around him, and like a big warm teddy bear, I hug him ’till wakeup. Because of his size, he takes up a full 1/4 of the bed. You can imagine how this cramps things. But he is our little prince, and I do so love to snuggle with that poofy, soft, furry, purry boy.
* * *
There’s all sorts of decorating going on around here, thanks to the winter holidays. I’ve brought out the bare birch tree and placed it in a corner of the living room. It’s decorated with rustic silver and gold mercury glass baubles, and shiny brass stars. We call it our New Year’s tree. And then there’s the Christmas tree: a darling little faux pine we bought years ago from Pottery Barn. It’s decorated with red and green mercury glass baubles, wooden cottages, golden pinecones, and our Woodland Fox, Owl, and Hedgehog softies. (I must say, the critters feel right at home in this twinkly, woodsy wonderland.)
At nights, I love to brew a hot cup of tea and curl up on the couch with Nigel Slater’s latest, The Christmas Chronicles. Once in a while I’ll look up, admire our little tree and the sparkling decorations, and enjoy the tranquil loveliness of it all.
And then there’s the canal boat. This is one of our favorite little treasures, shipped from the Sylvanian Families shop in London, brought out for the festive season. We can’t resist a bit of English charm. Nor can I resist a lovely new magazine to pour over and admire. I recently discovered Daphne’s Diary – a beautiful, colorful, artistic, cottage-chic feast for the eyes. It’s published in the UK, but you can find it at all fine booksellers here in the States. Along with my usual crafting favorites, it’s become something I truly look forward to. Inspiration is so important to the creative mind (and I would say, to every mind.) So I make it a point to pause during the work day, and allow myself the time to enjoy the art of others. Whether it’s a new favorite magazine, book, or blog, it’s always inspiring, and good for the spirit.
* * *
In between reading and crochet, I’ve been my usual stitchy self. Have I mentioned how much I love festive stitching? I think I have… Dennis thinks it’s cute how I always love our latest design the most. Isn’t that just how it always is? So naturally, Jingle All the Way has all my attention at this moment. It’s just the cheeriest thing. Small samplers are thoroughly enjoyable. We have plans for many more seasonal samplers like this one – relatively quick-stitches with gobs of charm. (I love gobs of charm.)
We hope you’re enjoying this first week of December, wherever you are, whatever the season in your part of the world. ‘Till next time!