holidays are still happening here in the alberg household. we have our large family dinner happening tonight, after spending christmas eve and day with just my parents, brother, dog, and visits from my girlfriend and her dog. it's been a lovely slow time so far, and there have been dustings of fat snowflakes each day. i love christmas time, because our family has a lot of traditions and it has always been a time of slowdown for me. once i've finished making gifts, that is. i finished my last gift yesterday afternoon, but it at least wasn't an overly stressful time. i was able to enjoy the making process throughout the season, which i suspect was in large part due to having a much more manageable to-gift list than in past years. that and the fact that my girlfriend did all my baking for me because i threw my back out last week ha.
i always appreciate the gifts i receive at christmas, and my parents in particular are very good at getting lovely and useful gifts. my girlfriend managed to cover cleverly useful, adorably thoughtful, and wonderfully unmentionable all together. she's a clever one. one of her gifts was a drill, which will come in handy for hanging photos, but which i'm also already planning on using for drilling holes into bones for the show later this year. i'm weird like that. this year is actually probably the best one in my memory for thoughtful and meaningful gifts though. three things stand out to me:
-framed photos from my girlfriend from a double date we had with my roommate/life partner back in the fall. (on mum's "santa's workshop" table, which is busier than usual this year.)
-a beautiful, locally made yarn bowl of jointed oak and walnut my mum custom ordered for me from a woodworker we met at fibre fest (she's a sneaky one, that mum of mine). you can order your own here.
-my great-great-aunt's 14k thimble, an item whose beauty i can't even describe. family heirlooms are special in a whole other category to me, and i can feel the history in this little thimble every time i place it on my finger. i absolutely love useful and beautifully made items, and the fact that i know i will be using this thimble soon to work on my show and that it has been used by my mum's family is just…i don't really know how to describe it. but it's wonderful. and heavy, in a beautiful way.
i've been doing a load of knitting and dyeing lately, but a lot of it is under wraps, at least on the knitting side. i've been working on some publication submissions, which is mildly terrifying. it's the first time i've endeavoured to get my knitting designs published elsewhere, although double scoop's publication was kind of along similar lines since it won a design competition. i'm using the experience as an opportunity for learning, and if the patterns don't make it into publications, i'll just release them myself. i'm proud of the designs regardless, and i know from my years in theatre that just because you don't get all the way through an audition doesn't mean you're not talented and worthy. it just means you don't fit the director's/production team's final vision. the same way that every audition is an opportunity for learning and growth and honing your craft, so are these publication submissions in my mind. as for my dyeing adventures (the process of which you can see on instagram, along with a destash that i'm still hosting), i'll be making the yarn available in the new year. given my limited capacity for making large batches (i generally get a couple of skeins done in an evening if i'm home) and the fact that i'm trying to build up stock for my show this spring, i haven't decided yet what yarns, if any, i'll make available online beforehand. or if i'll look into making them available at brick-and-mortar shops before the show. so at this point, spring is the timeline i'm still looking at for yarn release. if you have opinions about what yarns and/or spinning fibres you would like to see me carry, do let me know. i'm loving the experimentation and the process, and am definitely not opposed to doing small custom batches at the very least in the meantime.
i hope you're all having a warm, safe, and happy holiday season, and are spending time with other creatures you love. merry merry, dear ones.