Thursday, October 31, 2013

One Week To Go!

Oh my Goodness! We leave for Japan a week from today and I have just realized that I have nothing ready! The suitcases came up to the bedroom from the garage this morning. It's always an interesting challenge as Hubby allows only carry-on, no checked luggage. This comes from his years and years of traveling the world for work. His luggage was lost one too many time and he learned to pack light. If need be, he would wash underwear in the bathroom sink and hang it overnight to dry. When he, Mandy and I visited Alex 4 years ago for 16 days I didn't think I could do it. But we all took only our wheeled carry on and a personal bag. I was SO GLAD. We were on so many trains, planes and boats during that trip. Dragging our bags along everywhere with us. I can't imagine dragging a big suitcase all over and up and down the escalators in the subway system. All over the streets of Tokyo, Kyoto, Hiroshima to name a few.

Anyway, he has taught me the value of packing light. The main thing is enough underwear to get by!!!! Then a few mix and match pieces and you're done. The challenge right now is the changing seasons. It should be around 60F during the day there so I think we can get by with no winter wear. I am taking Alex's Christmas gifts along with a few of his childhood possessions that I think he would like to have with him. I always think it's an impossible task to pack everything into one bag, but it always manages to fit!

The weather here is decidedly cooler this week and it's been sprinkling off and on all morning. So the pictures of the knitting that I wanted to take are kind of shadowy and dark but I guess you'll get the idea.

Here is the last batch of mittens!!!! Hurray! Yippee Skippy! There are officially 101 pair! I still have some yarn left so later when I can stand the thought of another mitten, I'll make more for the children's shelter here in town or wherever there is a need.

Thank you to all who prayed for this project and who generously donated for the yarn. It is much appreciated and I know will go a long way towards keeping some children warm this winter.

I've been working on socks the past couple of weeks as my "purse project". The mittens have just too many parts to carry along without losing something. (Needles, scissors, stitch markers, stitch holders, etc.) I lost too many things at first so I switched to dishcloths in my purse and then socks. Now that the mittens are on done, I've been able to knit last night on socks exclusively. I'm also taking yarn with me to make a pair for myself while traveling. Socks are a nice small, portable project and I like to make them when I'm flying. My favorite pattern for adults is in Stephanie Pearl-McFee aka the Yarn Harlots book, "Knitting Rules". It's such an easy, easy pattern. I didn't use it on any of these until the pair that I'm actually working on right now, (the green ones). I don't know why. They fit better. The pattern is much easier to follow. Now I know why I always go back to it.

These first two pair look like baby socks but they will actually fit a 4-7 year old, or so the patterns say. The brown pair knitted up in about 2 hours with size 6 needles using worsted weight yarn. The multi-colored ones use the usual size 1 double points that I use for socks and sock yarn. Can you believe how well the stripes match on these? nice!

Don't mind the white, white legs of the model on these. The strips didn't match up for some reason but I still like the color.

These are my current pair. I finished one sock last night and started the second a few minutes ago.

I don't remember if I told you last time who all of these socks are for. I recently found out about a family who live in the mountains about 2 hours from here in a log cabin they built themselves. The Dad is a preacher and Mom is a homemaker who also homeschools all 9 of their children, (well 7 now, two recently married and moved out!) I am so inspired by this family and their work and life ethics. I found out that they love wool hand knit socks to keep warm in the log house, but she doesn't knit, (yet!) I offered to make them some socks so here I am. Knitting lots of socks. I'm not sure of the sizes since I've never met them but I'm making a variety of sizes so something should fit don't you think?

I went to the grocery store this morning to stock up on things for Ellen who stays at our house with Chloe when we travel. She is a dear friend and we can always count on her willing spirit to take care of things for us and love on Chloe too. :-)

I have a roast in the crockpot for dinner so I should be able to sneak a few hours of knitting in today along with a start on packing.
Lots and lots of onions. Just the way we like it. Mmmmm. Sourdough bread to go along with it. Just the thing for a chilly autumn dinner.

Have a lovely day my friends and smile.




  1. So exciting how close the time is getting to head to Japan. :)

    Love all the lovely things you made.

    Blessings always sweet friend

  2. How exciting that your trip is so near!

    The socks you're making are lovely and you're so kind making them for all the family too :)

    And your dinner looks delicious! I love autumn and enjoy the cool weather and snuggly nights in eating comfort food xoxo

  3. What a homey fun post! You be careful on your trip, and have a great time. Congrats on finishing all those mittens.. you are an amazing knitter, my friend. I could just smell the beef and onions in your pot.. we're heading off for Chinese for lunch then shopping a bit. Have a great day! ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

  4. One week to go, I am so excited for you Betsy. Love all your beautiful socks and your giving spirit.

  5. I just found your blog by clicking on your name where you commented on a post on another blog! So glad I did! I loved your post and pictures. I have never learned to knit, but I dearly love to crochet. May God bless your trip and your time together with your dear husband! Life is so precious. Love, Cheryl

  6. Your dinner looks terrific! I can taste it just looking at that picture. Looks like you've been very busy with the socks! I know you can't wait for your trip. How exciting for you!

  7. What a lovely rainbow of mittens and socks, Betsy! Your productivity inspires me.

    You are so smart to pack light. I am excited for you as I think about you planning for "the trip."


  8. Mmm! Your roast photo has me hungry for some! Congrats on meeting your mitten challenge--so much love in those:)
    Seven days go really fast and soon you'll be headed eastward...have a wonderful and very blessed time there.
    PS: LOVE the socks!

  9. Oh~ that is so sweet. Your socks are just beautiful. Wish I lived close enough to learn from you. What a wonderful hobby~ that blesses others.

    How hard it must be to have your boy so far away. I will stop my complaining!

    I so enjoy all your pictures from Japan and would love to see more.