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December 04, 2006: Friends and yarn

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Aside from caramel apples and apple pie and braving scary shopping malls to find black jackets, and rearranging furniture, this weekend was also about spending time with friends and exchanging ornaments and also, which I am sure will surprise no one, about yarn.

Friday was First Friday Craft Night at my knitting mom's house, so my mom and I headed off to join in the fun. Since this is the December gathering, we had our annual ornament exchange, so Friday afternoon I zipped off to Michael's to find two reasonably priced ornaments for my mom and I to contribute. I also decided that, now that it is December and Christmas is looming, I should stop with the rabid knitting of socks already, and actually start on the lace shawl that I am supposed to be making for my little sister. She picked out the pattern and she picked out the yarn, so it's not going to be a surprise (and I prefer it that way because if I am going to spend a huge amount of time knitting lace out of slippery laceweight alpaca on tiny needles, I would prefer it be something she actually *wants*), but it would be nice if it was actually finished in time for the gift giving event, and even better, it would be good if, just once, I was not staying up until the wee hours of Christmas morning frantically finishing my gift knitting. So I stuffed both ornaments into gift bags and I hastily printed out the pattern charts, and I picked up my mom and we drove off to my knitting mom's house and then, because I am ever so slightly insane, I cast on for a fiddly lace project while at a noisy gathering of about a dozen women, and somehow did not manage to screw up for at least four rows. The fact that I had to rip out a few rows on Saturday morning because I did not bother to read the pattern all the way through does not count.

Anyway. The ornament exchange was fun, even though I ended up with something that I would never in a million years buy for myself because it is not remotely my style (so I suspect it will eventually end up brightening someone else's day, after they have purchased it for a ridiculously low sum from Goodwill), but that is okay, because the point wasn't about the ornaments at all; it was about the chatting and laughing and eating of cookies, and the fun.

Sunday afternoon was another holiday exchange, although this time it was an exchange of yarn. In the spirit of holiday fun, the new yarn shop hosted a white elephant yarn swap, where we were all to rummage through our stash and wrap up something we didn't want, then bring it in and see if we'd end up with something we liked better. Conveniently, they also set aside a bag for any yarn that ended up unclaimed, to be donated to local schools, or somewhere else that might be in need of some free crafting supplies.

We sat around for a few hours and we chatted and laughed and met new people and ate cookies, and checked out what everyone else was working on, and had a wonderful time with the yarn swap. The price range was $10, but I suspect that every bag on the table was worth quite a bit more than that. It was obvious people had had fun going through their stash, pulling out the things they had bought at one time, but never ended up using. And for the most part, I think almost everyone ended up going home with something they liked much better than what they'd come with. After all, it is always fun to acquire new yarn for the stash, and it is even better when that new yarn comes completely free.

Tis the season for Holidailies

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