Making + Listening::1/2014

Check out that shorthand up there! This is the first Making + Listening post of 2014, and we’ll see if I can remember I did that next week. Lots of making went on here over the holiday break, including two pairs of flannel jammie pants and two new skirts for the girl. On the afternoon of Christmas Eve, one half of our dining room table was given over to sewing and the other to cookie decoration…not a bad way to spend the day before Christmas. But all that is practically ancient history by now. I have pictures of the more recently created stuff for you instead.

thank you RAK mail art at

Karen at Mail Me Some Art suggested that January be Random Act of Kindness mail art month, and that sounded like a great idea to me. I have some previously made background-only postcards on hand, so I added the elephant and the text and a note to the librarians at our local library and sent it along. If you want to join in, Karen has all the details here.

Right before Christmas, we received a box of nature goodies from Dawn. Sadly, our nature swap partner disappeared after receiving our box, so Dawn and her kids stepped in to make sure my kiddos got a box in return. It included this great sea urchin test, something we’ve never found on our beaches (although they do live in our waters).

sea urchin test at

It’s sitting in the center of our dining room table, which is where all our best nature finds eventually end up, so it was in sight and on hand when I was looking for something to draw. Look at that texture! I had to give it a try.

sea urchin sketch at

Remember the socks I began for my oldest a month ago, and then put aside for some Christmas knitting? They were lingering, and I was feeling guilty, and maybe a little unmotivated. Well, I finished the first one and began the next one right away, as you do. I knit on it steadily while watching playoff football, and this was the progress after one day’s knitting: half a sock.

sock in progress at

The next day, I finished it while watching the BCS Championship Game. It’s extremely convenient that two of my hobbies–watching sports and knitting–are so complementary.

finished socks at

These aren’t everyday socks. He wants warm handknit socks to wear to bed. I told him Tuesday morning that they were done, but I needed to take a picture before he could have them. (He didn’t bat an eyelash. He knows this by now.) They were on his bed when he got home from school. He bounded upstairs to tell me, “Those socks are AMAZING!” I will always knit for him, obviously.

Also this week, I tried out a new zippered pocket size. I have a bunch of 4″ zippers and I wanted to try a vertically oriented pencil pouch. This is the result.

vertical pencil pouch at

It’s a little longer than most pencils and pens, but it’s the perfect size for double-pointed knitting needles still in their original packaging.

DPN pouch at

I often need more than one set of DPNs, for instance, when I’m knitting mittens. I like to keep them in their pouches so I don’t lose any, but then I have them rattling around in my bag. The pouch I use to hold my knitting tools–a purchased one, long ago, in my Early Years of knitting–isn’t long enough to hold DPNs in their pouches. I think this might be a little deep for pens and pencils. I need to actually use it for a while to decide. I think it’s just right for DPNs, however.

I think I’m mostly caught up now, except for letting you know that I’m pleased to be amongst theΒ contributors for the upcoming issue of Kindred: Nest, available for pre-order here. That list looks so impressive, and I can’t wait to hold the magazine in hand.

As for the listening part of this post, I could use suggestions of new music. I seem to be listening to the same five or so albums, interspersed with much older stuff. What’s your favorite, sort-of-recent album or band?

(Linking up with Dawn again this week!)

13 thoughts on “Making + Listening::1/2014

  1. Dawn Suzette

    Lots of really great making over there!
    I LOVE the urchin test drawing. I am always totally amazed by their texture. If you can take a flashlight and try to look inside at the beautiful design inside. So pretty.
    The socks look cozy and his reaction is priceless!
    We are lovin’ Pentatonix lately. A really fun a Capella group. They are amazing.
    Thanks for playing along & sharing.

    1. dawn

      we’ve been listening to pentatonix, too – particularly the christmas album. my kids and i sing along to it all. the. time.

      and my dh is taking me to see them live for my birthday! squee!

    2. amy Post author

      I listened to the link you posted at your blog and it was so bouncy and were his eyes blue?!?! I also listened to the Civil Wars and liked that much better, so I’m going to track some of that down instead!

      Thanks for the tip on the inside of the sea urchin! And for the sea urchin itself, of course. xx

  2. moongirl

    All this sock making I’ve been reading about on the blogs I follow makes me think winter is sock knitting season! My boys so want me to knit socks for them but I’ve made myself the test subject first. πŸ™‚

    Love the pouch for your needles. I’ve had ideas in my mind about making a bag for my needles and many other things. It will come…in time.

    Congratulations on Kindred! How very exciting! I’ve thought of sending in something to contribute but just can’t stuff that idea totally into my head yet. It’s been lulling around since Kindred began. Eesh!

    Love the sea urchin. They are so cool! Dawn rocks. πŸ™‚

    1. amy Post author

      Actually I think summer is perfect sock knitting season because they are small and portable and not too hot, unlike a sweater, which drapes in your lap and makes you gasp for air in the hot summertime. πŸ™‚ But in winter toes NEED wool socks!!

      and thank you, on Kindred. Amanda is so easy to work with. Don’t dismiss the idea of submitting!

  3. dawn

    i learned how to knit hats using one of those plastic looms. my mom taught me and my daughter how to make them over the holiday break, and i’m so happy to have something new to work with using my hands.

    we needed something quiet and calm and gentle after the holidays, so brought back elizabeth mitchell’s “you are my little bird” CD onto our daily playlist. it’s just perfect to sing along to while dd reads, dh makes something with legos, and i knit. it also reminds us of special friends back in california and makes us happy πŸ™‚

    1. amy Post author

      Oh, I LOVE Elizabeth Mitchell. We have “You Are My Sunshine,” except her version of that kind of makes me want to cry. I should get more of her CDs, definitely.

      I don’t know that I’ve ever seen a hat from a loom–very cool!

  4. suburbancorrespondent

    It’s been a knitting fest here lately. Freed from the constraints of gift knitting, we’ve just gone wild. Susie knit her first hat (in the round) and Rachel tackled cowls and earbands. Love it, love it, love it. I’m working on 2 separate pairs of socks and a long linen-stitch scarf. Next up is a new cowl pattern that uses one ball of mini-Mochi.

    I love January.

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