Monday, July 17, 2006

July Birthday Girl

Today is my birthday. I'm in my second year of the "F" decades, (or the effing decades as I refer to them, depending on my mood). I now stutter when I have to give my age. "Thirty-nine" used to roll so nicely off my tongue. Not so well with f-f-f-f-f-f-ooo-eeee-ahhh-uhhh-bleh.
But I hold no more illusions of youth. My youthful illusions were dashed when someone at my sister's church mistook me for being the older sister, (I'm seven years her junior). The illusions were further pulverised when a car mechanic recently asked me if I was knitting for my grandchild.


The loss of youth is a painful realization, but once that band-aid has been ripped off, it's not so bad. It's like that episode of Seinfeld where Elaine throws George's toupee out the window, and he later tells Jerry that it was the best thing that ever happened to him -- he was back to his old insecure, neurotic self. I am now fairly content with my frumpy, middle-aged self.

And speaking of July birthdays, of which there are many in my family, (my sister Anne, my sister-in-law Jenny, two nieces and myself), Anne was in town Friday evening for the weekend funeral travel, so I was able to finish her gift and give it to her in person.

Soft drawstring pouch from Last Minute Knitted Gifts

Specs are as follows:

Yarn: Debblie Bliss Cotton Silk Aran (bought at Caroden Farm from their dollar bin during SoXperience 2006. Ran out so had to buy more from This is lovely yarn. A little bit splitty, but still a pleasure to knit with, and makes a lovely fabric. Would definitely use it again. I think it would make a lovely and comfortable garment.

Needles: U.S. Size 6 Bamboo DPNs

Buttons: Glass star buttons purchased at The Yarn Lounge.

Pattern Modifications:

* Cast-on fewer stitches (66) for fear of yarn shortage. (Ran out of yarn anyway.)

* Used DPNs instead of circular needles.

* Used buttons instead of tassels.

Things I'd do differently:

* Cast-on more stitches and make a bigger bag.

* Knit more rounds before knitting the eyelet row, so that it's not completely hidden by the rolled edge.

* Knit a shorter i-cord - I got a little carried away on this one. (A two-stitch i-cord goes really fast when knitting during conference calls!)

In my opinion, a knitted bag is not a gift unless there's something fun inside. I was fortunate enough to score some lovely handmade soap at our last TNK knit night. One of the newer members, Robin, brought a variety to show and sell us last Tuesday, and among them she had one that smelled like carrot cake and is actually made with real carrots. Carrot cake happens to be Anne's favorite flavor, and so -- Eureka! A birthday gift is found!

Handmade soap and matching carved wooden soapdish


Anne seemed to like her gifts. And speaking of gifts, I've had a nice birthday myself. My parents had me over to their house for dinner Friday night and dad grilled steaks - yum! Anne gave me a beautiful hand-painted glass window hanger:

My sister Terry sent me the following:

Whoo hoo! I've been wanting this!

Today my brother Tommy took me to lunch at the best sushi place in Richmond, which made me and my tummy verrry happy. And later my brother Pat's family called and sang "Happy Birthday" to me - so cute!

And, although she didn't intend for this to be a birthday gift, I received a package from Krista in today's mail which contained the following:

Leftover bits of sock yarn for this.


Thanks, Krista! I can't wait to get started! And thanks for (unintentionally) adding something special to my birthday!

One of the best birthday gifts I've ever received was given to me a year ago today. You can read a little more about that here. Thanks a million for that, Jenny. It's been a wonderful, surprisingly life-changing hobby, all started thanks to you.

All in all, it's been a very good day. Thanks everyone!


Liz said...

Happy Birthday Mary! Sounds like you have a good bunch of family around you :)

Suzanne said...

Wee sock! good times--and happy birthday!

The gift of knitting....every day is a birthday!

Courtney said...

Happy Birthday!

Bess said...

Happy hapy birthday, dear. I hope you have an entire happy birthday week! I was at Lewis Ginter yesterday and remembered with a happy smile the wonderful day we had there. When my summer rush is over, let's do it again.

hugs to you

knitfriendly said...

Happy Birthday! It sounds like you had a wonderful day. What a beautiful color you choose for your LMG bag. I love the little stars!

Robin said...

Happy Birthday Mary...I wish I could be there to go out for fondue and celebrate your birthday right! If it makes you feel any better..I'm older than you!

Krista said...

Happy Birthday and hope the yarn is useable!

Melanie said...

Happy Birthday!!

jane said...

Happy Birthday!!!!I've found a goodie or two for you at the beach, see you in August! Jane