Monday, December 22, 2008

Peace on Earth, Goodwill to All

These days we are so caught up in the rounds of parties and gift-giving, that the meaning of Christmas gets lost.

Thank you Lord for the following (and more!):

1) gatherings full of good food, music and laughter
2) the enjoyable company of good friends and loved ones
3) peace to the troubled
4) rest for the weary
5) forgiveness and understanding from the people whose items I have not finished knitting
6) the ability to surprise people in a good way
7) patience when planning for successful events
8) good cheer in trying times
9) strength, good health and safe conduct for all
10) abundant love all around

There's more, but they'll come to mind later.

Special prayers go out to my college friend Margie E, who is recuperating from her operation in New Delhi. As Amy says, we're storming the gates of Heaven for this one :)

Have a wonderful Christmas!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Customizable Needle Sets

Got this interesting link from my friend Jinky (lyfasastitcher over at Plurk) who discovered Kinki Amibari bamboo circular interchangeable needles!

I know for a fact that Clover brand Japanese-made bamboo crochet hooks and knitting needles are very expensive here in Manila. It's a preferred brand on eBay as well, and priced accordingly. However, the interchangeable mechanism on these Kinki Amibari needles look pretty well-engineered. They even have 9" circulars for small circumference projects!

Must warn you though: I tried accessing the downloadable Knitting Accessories pdf catalogs, and this caused my Firefox 3 to crash. Three times. I can't imagine why, but then I'm only using a modest-processor netbook and not a core 2 duo machine. Anyway, FF3 filed a report and they'll probably look into it.

God is telling me that I have enough (cheaper, made in China) bamboo fixed circulars and (lifetime warranty, made in Germany) Addi Turbos from pre-recession era and that I shouldn't forget to give thanks! I do, I do! I make useful stuff using them! Laborare est orare! (To work is to pray.)

Time was when the Knitpicks nickel-plated interchangeables and their Harmony wood interchangeables were the relatively affordable must-haves. (They still are, based on price points. But I am a fixed circulars girl.)

Trust Jinky to find more new knitting items to drool over. She also referred to me Signature Needle Arts, who offer interchangeable knitting needle points (talk about customization!), and I can bet the "stiletto point" will be one of her must-haves, since she is very brave and does bigger lace projects. However my knitting budget for this year is way done, and I must knit more stuff to show for everything I have bought.

Yes, Jenny. THIS is the reason why I haven't been spending on my fountain pens.

Knitting is joy. Joy to the world!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Mimicat's Cappuccino Socks

I think these are supposed to be called Caramel Macchiatto socks but that's way too long. The color way is Cannon mercerized cotton MB073, a nice tan-khaki shade with a nice sheen that is in Mimi A's list of personal favorites. Again, the pattern is based on Ann Budd's basic socks, but can be made using the Yarn Harlot's basic pattern as well. These were made with Magic Loop, with a 32+32 stitch cast on, 2 x 2 ribbing, using US 1 or 2.25mm carbonized bamboo circular needles 40" long (you can use 32" as well).

They're for Mimi's birthday, which was sometime last November. I was supposed to have met up with her around then to give her these, but work got in the way and you all know how the season makes schedules crazy. In exchange, I asked for some pink Cannon thread, which I am using in turn for something for Gene's baby. Mimi and Gene are my Ravelry friends here in Manila that I've been communicating with on a semi-regular basis, via our blogs and other social networks. I'm sorry the socks are a little late, Mimi, but they're here, finally. Belated happy birthday!

Note: The carbonized bamboo needles are sooo nice and easy to work with! Honestly, there's not much difference in feel between the carbonized and the blonde bamboo needles, but I can see that the carbonized ones are not as likely to break easily. Worth the slight difference in price.