Sunday, December 30, 2012

Winter Wonderland

Hi, Knitters,
This morning we woke to a true winter wonderland. Overnight, a crystal frost formed covering every limb and tiny branch on all of the trees. The sun was shining and the snow was blindingly bright. The best part of it was that the gentle wind was blowing the snow off the trees in our front yard and it seriously looked like a real-life snow globe out there. My husband and I just sat and watched out the front window for few minutes. It was fantastic and dreamy.

I snapped the pine tree above on my run later in the morning. The pines are so beautiful right now as they are coated with heavy snow and it is simply breathtaking. On the down side of this picturesque snowfall there are broken tree branches littering yards and entire trees uprooted from the weight of the heavy snow. In our neighborhood I've seen a couple of huge pine trees that uprooted and tipped right over. That is sad. The snowstorm was the second biggest 1-day snowfall total (around 18-inches) in Madison's history.

I can't get over the beauty of it all even with the tree issues.

One good thing with the cold temperatures and snow is that the outdoor skating season has arrived. Last year we didn't get to skate at all due to the warm temperatures and that was disappointing. Madison has many gorgeous maintained outdoor skating venues. We have a few favorites. Today we hit Tenney Park with its brand new warming house. This is actually a frozen lake area, well maybe it's more of a lagoon. There are bridges and windy areas to explore.

Here is my husband skating away. He is surprisingly good considering he hasn't skated all that much in his lifetime. He is just coordinated that way. He just had a birthday, too. We have lots of birthdays at this time of year in my family, the celebrations don't end on Christmas. My dad's birthday was right on Christmas but I don't ever remember a big to-do about it. We usually gave him a card and said happy birthday but then went on with Christmas. He never seemed to care much about it or was used to it anyway. My niece was born on the 26th of December and my husband on the 29th. My sister's anniversary is on the 27th and my parents' anniversary was on the 18th. It has always been a big month for lots of reasons.

TC has gotten to be a good little skater. She can jump and spin and do foot work. Those lessons have really paid off for her. My son bought her those pants for Christmas. They are her new favorite. They are like a waffle shirt fabric with snowflakes. She is so cute.

I love looking at everyone's knitwear at the rink, hats, scarves, cowls, mittens, sweaters. It is a feast for the knitter's eyes. I even got a couple of inspirations for a new hat pattern.

Here is my son and his girlfriend, Miss Molly. She has been knitting up a storm lately. She is almost finished with some new socks for her sister and she knit a bunch of my tree ornaments and tiny sweater ornaments for the season. She is enjoying the time off from college at semester break.

Tenny Park is such a great place to skate. It is lined by adorable old houses, some quite colorful. I love to skate here.

Now for a bit of knitting, I picked up a mere 384 stitches for the button bands on my Belfast Hoodie. I have worked 3 long rows in rib and now I am on the buttonhole row. I think I am going to add a fourth button, it is written for three. Then I have two pockets to work and it is finito! I'm so close.... it's exciting.

I got my son a new bread baking cookbook for Christmas. Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day was recommended to me by a neighbor who is an expert bread maker so I took his advice. My son has been making bread ever since. It smells like heaven in our house, and tastes like it, too. I gave my sister, who is an excellent cook and baker, this same book. I think she will enjoy it.

It has been so busy in our house but we even snuck in a Badger basketball game yesterday to boot. We were gifted 6 tickets to the game so we couldn't resist gathering everyone up to head to the game. We had fun even though it wasn't an exciting game. I think the Badgers won by 30 points or something like that.

Well, happy new year to you all! I will be back with a review and giveaway on January 2nd, 2013. And then I'm considering doing a year in review-type post later in the week (we'll see if I can get that together or not) and then the Waiting for Winter Mitt-along ends on January 5th. Prize drawings for that will come shortly after. There are over 120 finished pairs of mittens and mitts already posted for the knitalong. I can't believe that number considering we did the knitalong right over the holiday season.

There is much to look forward to in the upcoming year and I thank you, as always, for sharing your time and knitting with me on this blog year after year. It is such a place of comfort for me and that's mainly because of all of you! I love it here.

Take care, dear Knitters.
best, susie