Winterland

comments: 43

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I don't want January to end. I don't.

Mimi and I were both fighting low-grade colds this past week. We were lucky, and we never really got that sick. But her nose was running a little bit, and her voice was raspy for a day or two. We had taken her out of school last Thursday to all go out to breakfast together and then take her to her first movie in the theater (Paddington 2 — loved it). Then Andy was off on Friday and he just wanted to hang out with her so we kept her out on Friday. Then on Saturday I had a funny feeling in my eyeballs, which is always my first symptom of sickness — my eyeballs feel hot. By Monday I had called her in yet again and she and I made a poorly bed on the sofa and snuggled in for the day. She played with every toy she had and we ate every meal at home, which trashed the house repeatedly, day after day. She insisted on cleaning up by picking up every mini Lego with a pair of tongs. She got all the pieces in that giant yellow box that makes no sense to me (if you have this thing, you probably know what I'm talking about). I was in the kitchen while she was putting it on her shelf and I just heard this tremendous CRASH and then the cascade of Legos spilling everywhere. And then, you know, HOWLING. Etc. Damn you, Legos. Legos at 5 p.m. So we trashed the house and I (mostly) cleaned it, and then we trashed and then I cleaned and then we trashed, etc. This continued through Wednesday. She went back on Thursday. I missed her terribly but it was nice to finally get to take some deep breaths and relaxxxxxxxxxx.

I love winter so much, even though winter in Portland pretty much sucks. No snow, just gray. The yard is seriously disgusting. Rain. Everything's brown except the sky, which is low and gray. Or kind of white. But I don't care. Be gross, Portland. I don't care. Let it rain. Nothing out there needs me. The garden doesn't need watering, the pool is closed. The evening comes early. The morning starts late. I drink coffee and bake. We stay home. I have things delivered. I knit. Apparently, I don't work. :| Yikes. I should be working, but I don't feel like it. I have so much to do but apparently I don't care about that either [insert freaked-out-looking emoji guy]. I have taxes to do and a doll pattern to design and kits to develop and a spring cross-stitch pattern to work on. I gave myself January. I see daffodil and iris shoots starting to appear and they are making me feel anxious. I'm just not ready to be done with this rest.

January.

I finished my Ranunculus cardigan and I absolutely love it. Love it. It's just perfect for me. I still can't believe it. That's THREE SWEATERS now that I've made and that fit me. This one's big and floppy and airy. It's DK-weight yarn knit on size 10 needles (for you non-knitters, that means this yarn is fairly thin and the needles are fairly big and this results in a fairly porous fabric) and the sweater is meant to be quite wide and oversized to begin with. The sleeves grew quite a bit with blocking, so they are a longer than I would like — full-length on me instead of 3/4-length, which is what I was going for. The yarn is kind of strange. I used Arranmore Light, which is mostly wool with a bit of silk and a bit of cashmere (goat). I loved it in the skein but knit up it almost feels like cotton to me. I guess that's the silk. So it's not, like, the coziest sweater in the world. There's very little halo on this yarn, and that's not exactly what I was going for, either. But I still love the sweater and the whole thing was a great experience.

Thank you ever so much for all of the knitting podcast recommendations. Wow. I'm so excited. I haven't had a chance to watch any because I've been with Mimi almost every minute of the past week, but I can't wait to check them out. Thank you!

I'm thinking more about yarn than I ever have. More and more I realize that I'm partial to a very specific kind of yarn, plain wooly with some halo, fairly soft but with good definition, too. I started yet another sweater yesterday. This one is, once again, based on the Ellen Cardigan. I did some math (I did math!) to figure out how to make it a straight raglan instead of a circular yoke and added the honeybee lace panels to the front. The yarn I'm using for this one is Cascade 220 Heather (and the color is Iridescence). This is a very popular yarn that comes in gobs of colors for nice price and for some reason this is the first time I've ever used it, I think, and I really like it.

Shockingly successful knitting balanced by baking fails. That thing with the swirlies was the Butter Cake from Scandikitchen Fika and Hygge and it blobbed all over the oven and turned into goo in the middle. As I said on Instagram, I should've taken a picture of that but I was in crisis and didn't think to. Womp womp. I need to start making soups. Or, like, any food that isn't dessert would be a good start. That might be a good place to start.

43 comments

Thoroughly enjoy your blog and wait for each edition! We are enjoying winter here in the South. Is there a manufacturer and pattern name of the pretty blue-purplish floral dish/plate?

I love your sweater! It's so classic and beautiful and delicate.

I can hardly believe the rapidity with which these sweaters are coming off your needles! Lovely work on the ranunculus. Lovely writing.

I need to find the love you have for January. I pretty much can't wait for it to be over. I would really rather it be blue skies and bitingly cold than damp, mild and grey. Plus I feel like we've all been low level ill for the whole month. I want to do stuff but have no energy. Yes I need to embrace the cosiness!

Love visiting you . . .
Don’t love so much that you and Mimi were feeling “punky.”
Do love you had January cuddle days together . . .
(yikes on crashing legos . . . I heard it all the way to Michigan!)
Love seeing your cardigan knitting creating . . .
What an exceptional talent you are . . .
I enjoy you, your family, your place, your time . . .

oooh! your photos are the perfect blend of coziness and wintery-ness. I don't know why, but the second to last one makes me feel like crying, something about the time of day and the 'loneliness' of it. Love all that you do, and that you share it in such a sweet way.

Krista Long says: January 28, 2018 at 10:48 AM

We made homemade ice cream this morning and it was very soft serve like. May we have your recipe? It looks delicious! As always, you share the most beautiful stories and photos. Thank You, Kris

Yes, to digging in with winter (even where I am there isn't much difference.) Yes, to trashing the house. I remind my self there will come a day when it will stay exactly as I left it and I will be sad. Yes, to Legos. I miss them. It can be so meditative to pick them up and sort them! Thank you for your beautiful photos and perspective.

Love the dollhouse photo, especially the hider behind the fridge. It reminds me of a very favorite book from childhood, The Wednesday Witch by Ruth Chew. I read it over and over to my daughter who loves it too which thrills me to no end. There is a very entertaining scenario with the tiny witch decorating a dollhouse. Your knitting inspires and intimidates me, I am a faint hearted knitter and haven’t had the guts to try anything fro a very long time.

We had 2 snow days in January. No school! My 13 year old daughter and I snuggled on the couch and watched morning shows and movies. It was wonderful. Good news- they still like to snuggle when they are 13!!

Your images are glorious, Alicia.

Beautiful knitting and photos, as always. You should check out Hinterland Range yarn. 50% wool, 50% alpaca. Rustic, wooly but still very soft. It's a dream to work with.

For anyone interested; the sheep calendar
can be purchased at jimmybeanswool.com. on sale right now for $16.90. I too was fascinated by the beautiful calendar and was excited to find it online -❤

You inspired me to knit something for myself; yours are so beautiful... qn easyish project so far but will it fit?! And I really hope I'll love to wear it. Its quite an investment isn't it?

I love that you have three ballet shoes... just like our house, always having to turn it upside down to find the other one!

I love that sweater! It is beautiful. I am a fairly new knitter and have only made three sweaters and two fit. One I will redo. Hope you are feeling better!

I've tucked in for the month of January as well. I live in North Vancouver BC and it's wet, brown, grey and soggy. I'm fine inside knitting. I missed your request for knitting podcasts somehow! I need to find that posting. Regardless Sweet Georgia from Vancouver has great podcasts and is a local designer both of yarn and patterns and has international status. She is fantastic and quite the business mind as well. As always, thanks for a glimpse into your world. Hope you are all feeling better.

Oh your poor daughter! I can relate as I once ate a handful of sugar-free chocolates. Oh, they were so good - I really tucked into that box. About a half hour later...! Things were so bad that I took another look at the box and there plain as day was a warning about the explosive effects of the sugar substitute. Like Amelia I wailed that I would never eat candy again.

Beautiful peaceful post. Love your attitude about life and home.
I love the calender pictured. Was it an Etsy purchase? Such beautiful drawings.

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About Alicia Paulson

About

My name is Alicia Paulson
and I love to make things. I live with my husband and daughter in Portland, Oregon, and design sewing, embroidery, knitting, and crochet patterns. See more about me at aliciapaulson.com

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Photography

Since August of 2011 I've been using a Canon EOS 60D with an EF 18-200mm kit lens and an EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro lens.