Here we are again at holiday celebrating time. Despite my most earnest efforts to slow the passing of time by pretending it does not exist (here you see the firsthand the wacky consequences of a southern upbringing), a whole year has indeed passed yet again. My children are one year older, and my mermaid, who appears to have had the longest 10th going on 13th year ever, is finally, almost in the middle of her sixth grade school year, going to turn 11. Shouldn't she be 14 by now? She has been a pre-teen FOREVER, if you know what i mean. And to celebrate her hard work (well, sometimes she works hard, when she can't ignore it away. Sound familiar?), her dad is taking her to the National swimming finals meet in Atlanta this weekend.

They will have a wonderful time. They are staying in the posh hotel with all the other swimmers, will go to the Georgia Aquarium, where there is a fabulous new baby Beluga whale, and will visit with our very dear friend and best man, Bob. The awesome Uncle Bob was Jack's best friend growing up and is a very cool professional violist. That's him with my kids; he came to visit us this weekend when he was in town.

I know Jack is hoping for a Michael Phelps citing, going so far as to suggest that she jump in the lane next to him and start her best breast stroke, so she can say she warmed up with him. I think she's more interested in Katie Hoff, Natalie Coughlin, or Margaret Hoeltzer, though. Good thing we have that new lens!

I must report we had a lovely Thanksgiving this year. My sweet adorable little brother Tommy came to see us from New Orleans. unfortuneately for him, just as I was suggesting we do some thing cool, the boy and I both got sick and Tom wound up playing nursemaid and mommy. Something he's all too experienced with as he is the primary caretaker guy for my parents. Who have required ALOT of care this year. Something that is not going to change much. I still haven't been able to figure out how, short of moving back to Nola, to help him with this huge job. Any thoughts?
I took off most of the week from work, but went in on Turkey Day morning for a bit. We all cooked dinner. The mermaid handled the pies, in fact:) My favorite part was the oyster dressing. Mmm... A bunch of families got together for the best Thanksgiving day Kick ball game ever. Hopefully the first of many! And a harbinger of more great holiday moments this year, both here in Maryland and in Nola with my family.
Of course, there has been knitting, and even spinning! Mostly for holiday gifts (an excuse to knit alot, right?) This lustrous gorgeousness is undyed merino silk handspun, destined for a scarf for my mother, who prefers "cream" color around her face.

Hopefully to compliment a hat I started last New Year in undyed handspun merino, that needs to be reworked cause it's too short. It's a very cute adaptation of Madge, from Knitty.
I started a sock with a one of my fabulous Stitches spoils: Malabrigio Sock yarn! Now, i have my problems with Malabrigio singles yarns. It is truly a soft, beautiful yarn that dyes amazingly. However, as one who bought some when it first came out and immediately knit a sweater with it, the stuff is NOT sturdy. The poor sweater started pilling before it was finished and now is covered entirely with a fuzzy halo of pills. Granted, i wear it like a sweatshirt, all the time. And I will continue to do so until it begins to disintigrate. Now I know better, and use it for hats for the wool-sensitive. Someday, i'll do a Clapotis with it. I've seen one, knit by Jess/BunnySquirrel. Lovely.
Oh, but Malabrigio sock yarn is another thing entirely. I'm in love all over again. Same gorgeous colors. Same soft hand, but in a plied yarn. Not as tightly twisted as Dragon Sock, and maybe not as tough. But magical nevertheless.
I have started a simple toe up sock. Wendy's recipe, because I have it memorized and I needed to start right away.

Also, remember the Maggie's Farm roving that I bought at New Jersey Sheep and Wool? I spun it into fairly eztreme thick and thin singles and knit straight from the yarn balls i wound from the bobbin. No twist setting here. I was looking for something a little wild and textured to compliment the tweedy yarn I was spinning. Complete with plenty of veggie matter, which I am still picking out as I knit. Good thing this stuff is, with its angora, mohair, and bfl content, wonderful to touch.

I'm working up a simple, loose vest that I plan to wear with anything. Long sleeve t-shirts, collared shirts, even jackets. The fabric is knitting up quite biased, and i curious to see what t will do once made up and blocked. This is the front.

The back is finished, and I've reached the armholes on the front. I'm doing my best to focus on holiday knitting, as I have definite plans. But it's hard.

I'm off to bed, so I'll share the Sideways Sweater another time, along with other present and future projects.