12 December 2012

A Gift, a Date, and a Rant

A Gift

Once upon a time, there was a knitter whose niece had a little baby boy, born on Cinco de Mayo.  The knitter wanted to knit something for her new great-nephew, but a couple of things held her back: 1) the baby lived in San Francisco, so really heavy duty items like sweaters were not totally necessary, and 2) this niece did not say "thank you," "drop dead," or even "UGLY" when she was sent a pair of hand knit socks for Christmas a few years ago.  However, the knitter had always made something for any new babies in the family, ever since she had learned to knit.  So she thought about making one thing, then something else, another thing, a failed project.  Finally she just gave up.

But as Christmastime arrived, and she wasn't knitting any other gifts, she started to rethink the whole thing.  She found a pattern that she liked, and could use some yarn that she already had, and figured, what the heck, one more try couldn't hurt, right?

A week later, she had finished the knitting, and it was actually pretty CUTE!  Sure, she had to fiddle a little bit with the pattern, which was challenging for her, but her  calculations worked (a Christmas miracle in and of itself), and that was encouraging as well.  Hopefully, the gift will fit the recipient.  And maybe she'll never know, and maybe the parents will hate it.  But the knitter decided that she wouldn't care what happened once the gift was given, because then it was all out of her hands.

And so, I give you the finished item:

Parker's Owl Vest

and a closeup of the owls that go across the front:

Parker's Owl Vest closeup

Project: Owls for Parker
Pattern:  Owl Baby Vest by Jodi Haraldson (a freebie on Ravelry!)
Yarn:  Berrocco Vintage Colors, colorway 5220 (1 skein and a teeny bit of another)
Needles:  US4, US5, US6
Modifications:  When I was starting the rows above the owls that turn into the sleeves, I noticed that the owl on the left (as you are looking at it) would be under the left arm, when following the pattern as written.  It looked weird, so I ripped it out and redid it, after fooling with some numbers.  (These details will appear soon on my Ravelry project page for this item.)  I was pleased and surprised when it worked, and the finished piece looked so cute!
Other comments:  I can recommend this pattern.  It's easy, quick, and the result is just adorable!

A Date

Today is 12-12-12!  How cool is that?  Did you know it is the last symmetrical date we will see in our lifetimes?  I hope you will do/did something special or treated yourself to mark the day.  Being "numerically aware" (as my niece referred to me), I couldn't let the day pass without noting it!


A Rant

If you have read this blog for more than three seconds at any given time, you know that I love holidays in general, and Christmastime in particular.  And this year, more than others, I'm really tired of the Scrooges who are everywhere: in person, in print, on Facebook and Twitter.  

The latest is the discussion of Christmas carols.  Granted, I have ones that drive me nuts, or that I think are wrong (i.e., "Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer," "Dominic the Donkey), but I ignore them when I can, and sigh loudly when I can't.  And a lot of people don't like any Christmas song that isn't a hymn, which I can understand, but find to be personally limiting.

However, I MUST take exception with two discussions that I have come across recently that in my opinion are completely ridiculous.  Apparently, for years, we've all been listening to the song "Baby, It's Cold Outside," and not realizing that it is all about date rape.  And, the song, "Santa Baby"?  Well, that's about prostitution.  

REALLY?  Give me a break, people!  Why can't they just be amusing or silly holiday songs?  Every single thing in the world does not lead to some morally questionable result.  At least not in my world.  I just feel like these people need a sense of humor, you know?

In the meantime, there are now only THIRTEEN DAYS left until Christmas Day, and I sincerely hope that you will do everything within your power to enjoy them, and the rest of Christmastime that follows.  

And now?  I'm finally signing off ... :-)


Nancy said...

The vest is darling and a wonderful gift for a little guy.

I've battled with myself on gift knitting and the exact issues that you have. Hand-knits are so personal and time-consuming, but they are a labor of love. I know that you knit love into the vest, and I hope Parker's parents appreciate it. If not, it is their loss.

Mereknits said...

First the sweater is perfect, even if you never get any thanks you, it is a perfect sweater for a little boy. I agree with you on the songs, cards, or any other Holiday ridiculous issue, Silly songs are part of what makes the Holidays fun.

knitseashore said...

The vest is so cute; I hope that the little boy will get to wear it at least once or twice when you visit him. I don't knit gifts very much myself, unless I know the person appreciates them, because I have so little time to knit lately. I have some knitted ornaments in progress, and a baby blanket I desperately need to finish.

It's so nice to discover another person who loves Christmas. I am so tired of people complaining about Christmas preparations as if they were having a root canal. Everything's a hassle, and it really takes the fun out of it for those who enjoy the season. I am obsessed with lights especially, and love seeing the displays. Truth be told, I'm not much for Christmas music, but what you've shared about those old timey songs is just crazy. Times were different, and the songwriters would be appalled if they knew their lyrics were being interpreted that way.

Brigitte said...

Huh, what? Prostitution? Date rape? Well. OK then. What next? Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer's really about a reindeer who's just come off a 3 day bender?

Yeah. I've had my fill of knitting for others. But, I love the vest. You'd better get a thank you...

Lorraine said...

Bridget- The vest is adorable.

Date rape? Really?

garret said...

As a mean cynic, I am really opposed to Christmas. At least this year. (Love life woes, finiacial stress, and family issues don't really equal a merry Chritmas.)

Though I really am sick of people reading too much into things -- myself included. "Baby it's cold outside" is about a victorian era coulpe who are in love and want to talk by the fire. "Santa Baby" that's about well, someone who has thing for beards.

Marie said...

Love the vest, especially the owls! And those Christmas songs... why don't people just get their minds out of the gutter. Good grief!

Merry Christmas to you and The Tim and all the furry ones!! I hope it's fabulous.


Kathleen Dames said...

I love Baby, It's Cold Outside. People just get weirder all the time. I'm going to go listen to my Christmas mix with all those classic jazz standard songs and not think about the nutters :)