Thanks to Laura's suggestion, I joined Jennifer's Holiday Countdown Knitalong in the hopes of having the communal group pressure, uhmm, I mean, KAL camaraderie, freak me out sufficiently to get my butt into gear and my holiday knitting done on time. My plan must be working because 1) I am pretty freaked out and 2) I've actually gotten some holiday knitting crossed off the list. First up, crunchy Ali's Om Yoga Mat Bag from SnB Nation, in Bernat Traffic Cone Orange 100% Cotton. This is me striking my best Ralph Macchio Karate Kid Pose. And yes, I'm showing my age again, both by the '80's movie reference and by how I'm about to topple over striking my best yoga-ish pose. As much as it intellectually and spiritually appeals to me, I'm pretty inept when it comes to yoga. And I'm not even talking about the asanas. At my first (and only) yoga class, I couldn't even get the darned breathing right! It's pretty defeating when you're told that you suck at breathing. Granted, it's a special kind of ujjayi breathing (or so I convinced myself in an effort to reinflate the squashed ego), but just breathing, nonetheless. I kind of thought it was a necessary life function, but apparently, I'm out of the loop on that one. My Darth Vader ujjayi attempts were not met with much amusement by the teacher. The strap is a little long for me so I had to finagle it in the front, hence the odd twisting and curling action. This is actually a good thing (read: design element) as I'm about as tall as a gnome and crunchy Ali is Amazonian at 5'10". So the strap should fit her just fine. Also, being the resourceful ghetto gnome that I am, I used a rolled up hooded baby towel in place of a yoga mat. I'm hoping that the weight and girth of an actual yoga mat will give the bag a more sophisticated contour. I also hoped for the same thing at puberty with the onset of boobs, but that never occurred, either. This was a super fast knit, and the seaming wasn't as bad as I'd anticipated. I just need to find a drawstring cord to weave into the top of the bag and it's as good as done.
I also spent some time with two little piggies this weekend. No, not Bossy and Stinky, although they were around eating us out of house and home quite a bit, too. I mean these two little piggies. Cell phone cozies from SnB Nation, designed by Honolulu SnB's very talented MK Carroll. These are destined to be stocking stuffers for the family. So fast and so fun, they're perfect for completing in an evening. And for quelling the freak-out factor when you suddenly realize that there's less than 40 days till Christmas and you've still got 10 more gifts to knit. I guess they don't really count since they're only stocking stuffers, but let me revel in the placebo effect a while longer, please.
Still on the holiday queue are 3 pairs of socks for dad, BIL and brother, something for my sis, The Mercenary (which I can't reveal because she reads the blog and I'd have to kill her after that), a tote bag for my other sis, Fredo and a bolero for my mom. Add to that one turkey with all the trimmings for a party of 10, Bossy's fourth birthday, school projects from hell, a Stinky practicing to be 2 years old (which, trust me, she does NOT need more practice in!) and a partridge in a pear tree and you've got the makings for a serious hydrocortisone prescription for flaring eczema.
I don't know how all you other talented ladies handle the pressure with such grace! Me, I'm left with my irritable bowel and bad skin. (Don't you feel so close to me now?) Aside from the eczema, I have a lovely, large bullseye target red zit right between my eyes. Ohhh yeah. The kind where you know it's beyond rude to stare but you feel sickly compelled to keep looking at the monstrosity staring back at you. Oh well, I might have sucked at the ujjayi breathing, but hey, at least I've got a third eye!!!
Edited to add: Look what just arrived in the mail from my sweet blog pal, Allison, over at Perknitious!! Allison held a Blogiversary contest a couple of weeks ago and I was lucky enough to win! Thank you sooo much, Allison!! I love this Knit Picks Gossamer in the Caribbean colorway! I've been eyeing it for a while, and I can't wait to knit it up. She also sent some yummy Reese's because I mentioned that it was my favorite Halloween candy. How sweet and thoughtful is this woman? Your package made my day, Allison! Thank you so, so much!! Now go hop on over and check out her great blog!