This is my fourth prayer shawl for our new ministry at our parish. We felt there was a need to begin this ministry due to the fact that we serve a large amount of seniors in assisted living facilities. This shawl was done in Phentex Worsted(oh so soft for acrylic) in Neopolitan. I lucked out and got it on sale at Zeller's for $4.00 for 10.5 oz, enough to make a shawl that is 49" long. I used the pattern from Prayer Shawl Ministry website. The only thing I did different was an extra stitch at the beginning and end. I CO 59 sts. This gave it a bit of a border. I have another skein of the same yarn but in Chocolate Covered Cherry, for this one I'm doing a double Moss stitch pattern and I CO 58, this gives a three stitch border of garter on each side.
After hearing how moved the recipients were at receiving the shawls I'm even more committed to knitting these on an ongoing basis. I have a bit of Christmas knitting and some for myself but they generally require daylight and more concentration so the prayer shawls are perfect for evening knitting. I make sure to say a prayer before I begin and off and on during, pausing to think of the recipient and as I do so I knit loving prayers into the shawl.
We had a blessing service for the shawls at Mass last weekend and all the shawls were immediately taken by those who knew someone who could use one, we were really shocked by how great the interest/need was for the shawls - I'm sure this ministry will be going strong for some time.
Here is my latest addiction, well there are two in the picture. I'm still going strong with knitting. The current project is an Irish Hiking Scarf for my DH. I'm using Knit Picks Swish Worsted in Merlot. He chose the colour.The way our Fall is going I better speed up the knitting. He may need this very soon! I've made this scarf before some years ago for myself and I fell in love with the pattern. I am going to knit myself one to replace my old one using the same yarn but in Hollyberry.
As you can see I'm the proud owner of an iPad, I have to say I fell in love with the concept when I first saw the commercials and then I hummed and hawed about it a bit. I was lucky enough to be able to purchase one about a week ago and I'm very happy with it. I didn't get the 3G rather than just the wi-fi. I have wireless internet at home and work so it's quite handy. I've put it to use quite a bit. It never fails I have a question about knitting or a pattern and I want an answer sooner rather than later, pop open this and I'm off and running. I'm not going app crazy but I'm having fun having the internet literally in the palm of my hand.
Some Christmas gift knitting. My first FO, this is the Rib and Cable Quartet, single cable. I like the asymmetrical look of a single cable running up the side. I used Paton's SWS in Raisin. My little Blessings Bear loves to try on new projects, I think she's jealous that she can't knit ;)
As I watched it rain the last couple of days I couldn't help but think of the poor farmers. We had a very wet spring and a lot of crops didn't get put in. What did get put in was their hope. Summer storms were hard on them and now when they need to get what they have left off of the fields we get yet more rain. It reminded me just how precious the grain really is. I felt called to work with bread dough and the precious wheat that got to the local store through the blood, sweat and tears of a farmer.
I hadn't baked bread by hand in some time as I got a bread machine about 7 years ago. But this time the bread machine just wouldn't do. I wanted, or needed rather to knead the dough by hand. I wanted to feel the dough and work my blessings into it.
After searching a bit online I found this recipe at RobinHood Flour and I am not disappointed! In fact, this is simply the best bread I've ever made or eaten - it is THAT good! It's a great multiseed bread with lot's of seeds and nuts and uses all whole wheat flour. The end result is a nice loaf with great consistency, not too heavy. I kneaded it just as the recipe called for, a full ten minutes. I have to say it was that much easier to make since I got my Kitchenaid mixer - the only real work I had to do was knead it at the end.
For anyone like my family who loves a nice loaf of whole wheat bread with lots of seeds and nuts, this is a must to make. Here it is toasted up for this mornings breakfast of tea and toast! The sesame seeds on top get toasted up even more when you toast the bread and it's quite nummy!
Yes, it's been some time since I actually posted. I really stayed off my computer on my holidays for the most part. I work on a computer Mon-Fri so I was ready for a break.
Now why the Christmas post in September you ask? Well for the first time in my life that I remember I will spending Christmas with my Dad(his new wife), older sister(and her family) and two younger brothers!
My mom and dad divorced when I was about one year old and my Mom moved back to the city she grew up in and my Dad stayed in Vancouver. A few years later when I was 6 my older sister went to live with my Dad. I have no memories prior to this so I don't remember a Christmas with her in it.
The family grew over the years there were marriages, births and divorces. I have two brothers, whom I adore very much and my sister has a great husband and two boys whom I love to spend time with. Unfortunately the distance between us means this doesn't happen very often. At the most the visits are a couple of years apart.
I've always dreamed of having a Christmas with this other side of the family but thought it likely wouldn't happen until my kids both moved away, and then I thought not even then as where do kids go for Christmas but back to their parents home.
I'm not going to get into all the reasons why the family we do have here and us aren't on great terms, but it's been a rough year for my DH and I. All my family lives elsewhere so when the other side of the family all of a sudden has issues with you and begins to question you parenting, things get ugly fast. As for our DS he's decided he likes his GF's family better and it's not a concern if we aren't here.
When I was down this summer for my Dad's wedding to Judy we casually mentioned how nice it would be together for Christmas. It kept repeating itself over and over in my mind and I knew what Christmas would be like here at home, probably just the three of us. Here was an opportunity to have the Christmas I've always wanted to experience and not be home alone. Not only that but they don't just 'have Christmas dinner' - they really have some good times, play some Improv games and a talent contest and it all sounded like so much fun - too much fun to resist!
The crux was getting time off. We both work at a church and in years past we've had a staff/volunteer lunch on Christmas Eve and of course getting Oliver into a kennel. Thankfully our new pastor had no problems with us having the extra time off and although the first kennel and our preferred kennel of choice was already booked up in August for Christmas, it's true! I did find another kennel in our city who had space and booked him in. I don't like to leave him in a kennel or be away from him at Christmas but I'm sure he'll be nice and safe and as for the day of the year, he doesn't know which is which anyway.
So for the first time since 1975 I will have Christmas with my big sis and for the very first time I'll have Christmas with my Dad and Judy and my two brothers and my sisters husband and her two sons and I couldn't be more happy! We are all really excited around here. I didn't have to ask DH or my DD twice we are more than happy to pack up our gifts and send them off ahead book a flight and create some new Christmas memories. The only drawback that I can see thus far is that we may really, really like it and I know that I can't do it every year. For now though we'll be happy with this one and hopefully the memories last a long, long time!