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Archive for the ‘Advent’ Category

I’ve made quite a lot of progress on my “October” socks that I mentioned yesterday.  This is the first installment of yarn and pattern for the DC Walking Tour Sock Club from the Neighborhood Fiber Company.

OK, so I’m late getting started.  The next installment arrives next week.  But I now have a little time to sit back and enjoy this gorgeous yarn.  As usual the picture online doesn’t do the richness of the color justice.  

Karida’s inspiration for the color was a cockscomb blossom she found in a flower box on Q Street in Washington DC.  Thus the name “cockscomb on Q” for the colorway.  I love it, even though it’s somewhat close in color to two other pairs of socks I’ve made.

It’s a great color to be knitting with during this season:  a deep burgundy sort of color that’s great for both Advent and Christmas together.

I’ve gotten through the toe and into the foot, completing the first of three cables that will be on the sock.

This was not without some angst, though, because as I picked up the pattern and yarn to begin, having dpn’s in hand, I discovered that not only is this pattern toe-up, but it’s knit on two circs. Oh no!  I’ve only done one toe-up pair of socks and struggled mightily with those and the last time I tried knitting socks on circs I ended up with a jumble and resorted to adapting the pattern to dpn’s.

Undaunted, however, I proceeded to the internet and lo, and behold, I found Cat Bordhi’s instructional videos on knitting socks on circs.  I love her metaphor of milking goats and the “udder” needle.  You’ll have to watch her videos to see what I mean.  It’s helping me keep the needles straight, although I have to admit that twice I have knitted all the stitches onto one needle and found the other one falling onto the floor.  oops!

Once I saw how to do the circ thing, I discovered that I had to do a figure-eight cast on!  What next?  Typing in “figure eight cast on with circular needles” I found Kristi’s video showing me how to do it.  I did have to watch numerous times, though.  Not because her instructions aren’t great–they are–but because I’m a little slow on the up take.

But this is cool because I’ve now found two new (to me) knitting websites:  Cat’s and Kristi’s

And, Voila!  Here’s where I am.

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If you look really closely at the middle top of the sock as knit so far, you can see the cable.  Very cute.

I get to knit a few inches and then I have to head into the short row heel.  This is territory I am anticipating with fear and trembling since the last toe-up pair had me throwing up my hands in despair at the heels.  

Karida’s instructions look a little more clear, though, so I’m holding out high hopes.  

Could it be that I could finish these socks before the December installment of the sock club arrives?  I rather doubt it, but maybe I’ll have one done and it won’t be February before I can get to the next pair.

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In case anyone has been wondering, yes, I am still alive.  I just haven’t been blogging. 

But I have lots of excuses:

1.  I’ve been completing Christmas presents that I would love to blog about, but some of the people who are getting them actually occasionally read my blog, so it would spoil the surprise.

2.  It’s Advent.  Anyone who knows pastors knows that this is a really busy season for us.  In December my church has scheduled:

The Community Chorus Cantata–We did that last Sunday, but had umpteen rehearsals for the weeks leading up to it.

Children’s Christmas Pageant this week — I actually haven’t had anything to do with this, but it’s still happening.  I get to welcome everyone!

A Living Nativity Trail that I will participate in, but I also don’t have much at this point to do with.

Christmas Caroling — I get to go along.

Christmas Eve services.

Well, it doesn’t sound like those things should have been keeping me too busy to blog, since I realize as I put them down that I haven’t had huge parts in any of them, at least not till I start preparing for Christmas Eve.

But there have still been Sunday services, Confirmation classes (2 each week), Bible Studies (2 each week), and all the normal stuff I do.

3.  I’ve been getting over a long cold/bronchitis and have been forcing myself to rest.

4.  I’ve almost completed the reading for my Doctor of Ministry January term.  Two and a half more books to go before January 5!

I knew it would be hard to keep up with the blog once I started back to work, and it has been, but I hope that now that the Christmas presents are finished–I finished the last one this morning–I’ll be able to work on some stuff that I can post.

Next project:  The October Socks from the Neighborhood Fiber DC Walking Tour Sock Club.

But I’m really wanting to do a jacket or long sweater so I’m on the hunt.  I’m really thinking of the Padma Jacket from Tara Jon Mannings Compassionate Knitting, or something from Knit Kimono.

I’m leaning towards the padma jacket because I’ve been looking at it for a long time and I just love the way the pattern swirls from front to back.  Yarn and color will be a tough choice.  Tara Jon has it in reds which is very tempting.

Hopefully I’ll get something started today that I can blog tomorrow 🙂

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I know, I keep saying there is just enough time for everything we truly want and need to do, but I have to admit that at this time of year I always catch myself wondering where the time has gone.

Can it be that Advent is nearly here? It’s coming.  It’s coming.  It’s Advent, after all.

I’m also rapidly approaching my blogging one year anniversary in early December and I’m not even blogging as much as I want to.  To say nothing of not getting much fiber and textile work done.

But! I have been doing some oh, so, inspirational reading as I prepare for my first Doctor of Ministry classes. I’ve finished Van Gogh and God by Cliff Edwards.  I’ve picked this book up before and thought it looked boring.  No color pictures in a book about an artist?  But it is very interesting and has me now wanting a van Gogh to hang in my house.  Dream on… But there are some nice prints and reproductions available.

Then I read Catherine Kapikian’s Art in Service of the Sacred.  What fun it was to pop the accompanying DVD into my computer and look at some of Cathy’s amazing artwork.  The section on creative process is especially fascinating to me.  Cathy was one of my professors during my Master’s work and will be the professor for my first D.Min. class.  I’m really looking forward to working with her again.

She’s the professor who said we would all be able to draw self portraits at the end of her class, and she was right.  I should dig mine out and post it.  I think I still have it.

Now I’m reading Free Play: Improvisation in Life and Art by Stephen Nachmanovitch.  This book is jam packed with one liners of the type you would like to put after your e-mail signature.  The problem would be how to choose.  His elucidation of improvisation and play in the process of creativity makes me want to get together a group of people to improvise with.  He’s keeping my head popping with ideas, that I’ll probably forget before I get them down, but how exciting is that?

Tonight I went surfing looking for some artwork on the parable of the wise and foolish bridesmaids in Matthew 25, which I’ll be preaching on this Sunday and ran across an old friend.  I don’t actually know Jan Richardson, but one of her books was very formative for me when I was first entering ministry.  She now has a couple of websites, and one especially on Advent.  I will be checking the archives on that one as I think visually about the upcoming season.

‘Started a new project today that cannot be shown…..’tis the season!

Oh!  And I did something new and different yesterday. I worked the election polls; something I’ve wanted to do for a long time.  What fun it was watching people come to vote and helping them get checked in.  It was especially moving to see all the first-time voters.  Very gratifying, but I was definitely tired by the time we finished up and our precinct totals were recorded and reported.  

It felt like being a tiny part of making history.

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Today is the first day of my blog. My daughter who is a specialist in social media says that this is where it’s at for building community (not her words, my interpretation). After jumping onto many blogs as a result of looking for community around fibers and fabric (e.g. quilting, needlework, knitting, etc.) when I couldn’t find that community in my community, I decided it was time to start my own blog. I’m not sure about putting myself out there like this, but I do love to write and most of the time I journal daily (although I’ve recently been taking a break). I’m going to use this blog to keep myself accountable and on-track on creative things, mostly fiber related, but expect I will often stray into other areas. Being a theologian, I can’t help it.

Yesterday was the first day of Advent, and so I’ve chosen this time to start my blog. Advent is (or should be) a time of standing on tiptoe expectation. That anticipation has been woefully replaced by waiting for Santa Claus to come, waiting in line at the shopping mall, and waiting for the bills to arrive in the mail. But Advent is really about waiting for God—and God’s amazing justice that is just so grace-filled.

Several years ago I designed and made a clergy stole entitled Magnificat: The Advent of God’s Justice. I wear it during the Advent season and it reminds me of how often it is the women in our world who do not receive, but work and wait expectantly for justice. The stole depicts Mary from The Gospel of Luke and Hannah from 1 Samuel. They are the white star flowers. They are vining up through bands of deep violet, burgundy, and beige/gold. Those bands represent the women of El Salvador, especially the COMADRES (the Mothers of the Disappeared) whose leaders I met in 1996. Violet represents their tears, burgundy the blood shed by so many of them and their families during the civil war there, and the beige/gold represents the land of El Salvador that is so beautiful and from which so many of these women and their loved ones were pushed. We are all connected.

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There’s a lot of other symbolism in the stole, but I’ll leave it at that for today.

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