gnomes


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The other day I was scrolling through Etsy, and a few items fell into my cart (as so often happens)! I saw the cutest little gnome stitch marker in the Vintage Rose Shop that I decided I really needed.

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I mean, he is just so cute! He was clearly made for me. I didn’t want to pay more in shipping than I had payed for that little cutie, so I scrolled a bit more. I found the cutest little Tardis. Perfect for a swap partner (if I don’t keep it, but it probably will go to my partner….probably).

These stitch markers were adorable! I have a few others on my wish list too! The shipping was fast. I can’t wait to add my little gnome to a project!!

As you might have guessed, I kind of love gnomes. They make me so happy. My grandma is from Norway, so they are kind of a family obsession. My mom had big ceramic gnomes all over our house growing up.  They were our doorstops and toys.  I have them all over my house too.

When I first married my husband, he was freaked out by gnomes.  All of my gnomes were forced to live outside or in boxes. I very slowly snuck them in one by one.  He gradually got less freaked out and realized living with me means living with gnomes.  Now, he buys them for me and knows they will be everywhere!

The only problem is that I didn’t have any  in my office.  The other day, I went to the Dollar General to hunt for Cadbury Creme Eggs.  While I was wandering in the Easter candy aisle, I spotted some little, tiny gnomes. They were perfect for my office and only $1 each!

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You have seen this little guy before.  He lives on my standing desk.  He has a sweet little bunny and a spade!

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This little guy and his froggy friend live on my file cabinet next to some wedding and family photos. He has a basket of apples and a few little mushrooms.

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These two little guys live in my window sill among pictures of my kiddos. One has a basket of apples and a little bird. His brother has a bunny and a little net.

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My newest addition is a bookmark on my bulletin board from my boys. All these sweet little gnomes make my office feel like home!

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I got a little money from my Grandma for my birthday. I decided I needed a big project bag for my sock yarn blankie. I wanted it to be big enough for my blankie as it grows to a blankie size.

My sock yarn blankie had been living in a sock project bag. It had outgrown it, but I was still shoving it in there.

I found this bag on the Star Knits shop on Etsy. This is her XL bag. It is large enough for a sweater project (or a blankie). The inside has two good size pockets.

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The fabrics are so cute! The gnome fabric is adorable! I love it so much. I really wanted a gnome print, bit some are just not my style! This is perfect! It is a little bit traditional and vintage. The gnomes are so cute too!  The floral fabric is so pretty. It is used on the outside as an accent and for the strap. The rainbow fabric of the pockets is so fun!

My sock blankie seems happy inside. I also can now carry more than one or two little balls of yarn! That means I can travel with it now.

My mom had a really neat tradition of giving us at least one ornament per year.  That way, when we moved out, we would have a tree full of ornaments.  We have continued that with our kids.  We also have some “family” ornaments that my husband and I have collected during our marriage.  We have enough family and kid ornaments, that I only hang out some of my most special ornaments each year.  I rotate some ornaments, but I have a few that must go on the tree each year.

Row 1 (from left to right):

1. This ornament was given to me by my grandmother the year I was born.  It was the first ornament that I received.  She bought it in a Norwegian shop in Iowa (my grandma was born in Norway).  This ornament has hung on my tree every year since I was born. Just looking at it brings back a hundred memories!

2. This ornament is the Little Book of Gnomes.  My aunt Pat gave this to me in 1985.  I love gnomes and have always had a fascination with them. I blame my Norwegian roots.  I read this book every year.  My kids love this little book too!

3. This angel ornament is also from the year I was born. My grandmother also bought me this ornament.  This ornament is very heavy and has an artist signature on the back. My grandmother told me that she bought it at a craft fair.  It has also been on the tree every year since the year I was born.  This ornament is what I picture when I hear Hark the Herald Angels Sing (since I was tiny).

Row 2 (from left to right):

1 and 2.  These are handmade ornaments made by my childhood babysitter (Aunt Barb…not my real aunt, but an honorary aunt). She made a whole bunch of these for the annual church craft fair each year.  I don’t remember what year I got these (although I remember it was the same year). I would have been between 5 and 8 years old.  I was fascinated by both. They are really well made, and always make me think of Aunt Barb.  They also remind me of how much I loved that craft fair!

3. This is a little angel with a tree in a thimble.  This was given to me by my paternal grandmother.  She collected spoons and thimbles.  I was less than 5 years old when she gave this to me.  I love the angel’s little chubby face!  She is really tiny, so she hides in the tree.  I used to like to move her around and make a game of having my younger siblings find her.

4. This little angel was also from a craft fair. I think she was also made by Aunt Barb.  She was one of the first ornaments I ever bought myself.  Some years later, I helped Aunt Barb make a bunch of these (that is why I think she made this one).  These make me nostalgic for that craft fair and the fun of preparing for it.

Each of these ornaments brings back memories of decorating the tree with my family, tucking presents under the tree, cuddling with various family members while studying the tree, and (most recently) telling my kids stories about Christmases past!  It wouldn’t feel like my tree without them.  To me, they symbolize what is important: family, making special memories, and love. That is why these ornaments are my favorite things!

Yesterday was Christmas, but today was the day when I got all kinds of new yarn!  Critter Bug and I went out today to hit the sales (and spend some Christmas money).  After the obligitory mall stop for new (badly needed) clothes, we went to Jo-Ann’s.  They had all their yarn on sale.  I got 7 skeins of yarn for gnomes and such (ornaments and other small stuff).  They had all their yarn on sale. I got three skeins of Vanna’s Choice (Dusty blue, black, and taupe mist), two skeins of Wool-Ease (Cranberry and Forest Green Heather), and a skein of Patons (white) (Ravelry links).  When I got home, I had my Christmas gift to myself in the mail!

Mountain Colors Winter Lace yarn in Wild Horse!  Yes, lace yarn. I decided that I wanted a shawl.  I am going to be making the Forest Canopy Shawl (Ravelry link) with this yarn.  I am so excited. I want to have it done in time to wear it to Wicked in April.  DH is buying me tickets for my birthday!  This yarn is a wool silk blend. It is so soft.  The colors are so pretty too. I can’t wait! It is going to be lovely. I had to pick up a couple of circs in size 4 and 5 for this shawl (not sure what size needle I am going to use…I will swatch some with each and see tonight).

I decided to really limit my Christmas knitting this year.  I only knitted one item.  An Alan Dart Yuletide Gnome.  This gnome was knitted in the round.  I used DPNs in size 2 1/2.  Here are the adaptations:

All P rows in instructions become K rounds (that is the beauty of knitting in the round).  The only P rounds are noted below in the changes.  Any time cast on sts noted below are less than in the original instructions, all of the st counts are reduced by two.

Head and Body: Cast on 9 sts.  I did some stuffing as I went.  I added the bean bag before the final three rows on the body.

Boot and Leg: Cast on 2o sts. Where instructions say “Cast off 6 sts at beg of next 2 rows” I cast off 6 sts at the end of the first round and 6 sts at the beginning of the next round. Then did the next row as instructed.  Then K 7 rounds, P 1 round.  Then follow remaining instructions.  I had to do a small seam at the top of the foot (I made it look like lacing).  I 

also had to do a seam at the bottom of the foot.  I did the seam at the bottom first, then stuffed the foot, and then seamed the top of the foot.  Then I stuffed the leg (using a pencil).

Arm and Mitten: Cast on 10 sts.  After changing yarn, I K 3 rounds, P 1 round.  Then I cast on 4 sts at the end of next round, then cast on 4 sts at the beginning of the next round.  When it is time to cast off, I cast off 3 sts at the end of first round, then 3 sts at the beginning of the next round.  Then followed instructions.  I had to seam the top and bottoms of 

the thumbs.  I seamed the bottom of the thumb, stuffed the thumb, and then seamed the top of the thumb. Then I stuffed the mitten and arm using a pencil.

Hat: Cast on as instructed.  P 7 rounds, K 7 rounds.  Pick up where instructions say “Next row (K2, k2tog, K2) to end”. Follow instructions to the end.

Nose and Beard are knitted flat as instructed.

 

I used this gnome to hold a gift card for my secretary at work. She is a UGA fan, so he is in Bulldog colors.  The lack of seaming and pearling made this gnome go so fast!!  I plan to do several others.  I need to shop for some Gator colors by request!

I feel like I have been gone for so long. I have been here. I just haven’t been knitting much or blogging at all. I didn’t even log onto Ravelry for over a month!!

Work has been crazy. The kidlets are growing too fast. Home is a wreck. I just haven’t had time for me. I am officially reclaiming me time. I am having frequent migraines and am frazzled beyond belief. Time for me to do things I love. My house is going to be an even bigger wreck. I won’t ever catch up at work. At least, I can be a good mommy if I take care of myself. So, I am officially back!

I am doing only a small amount of holiday knitting. I am making another yuletide gnome (I will post a picture later) for my secret pal at work! He is cute. This time I am knitting it in the round. That is so much easier than knitting flat and seaming. I will post how I did it later, once I am sure it will work for the boots and mittens (that is an experiment).

I have also picked back up the monkeys I was working on. I have also done a few more squares on my blankie. Eventually, I hope to get back involved in some swaps!

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