Last night we watched a quintessential Christmas movie - Home Alone. As I was watching it this time, one thing stood out to me. Throughout the whole movie - the snow sparkles. In both nighttime and daytime scenes, the snow looks like a glitter bomb burst (not unlike the old Marshall Fields Christmas window and walk-through displays). I’m not sure whether the glimmer of snow indicates whether it was fake or real, all I know is that it caught my eye and I have never noticed it before.
I wonder if my state of mind has something to do with this. This year has been a tough one with lots of chronic sickness - especially for the kiddos. In my anniversary card to Nic, I wrote that I wonder if we will remember 2018 as the year of specialist appointments. A couple of weeks ago, Nic took Mr. 6 to the doctor because we had to pick him up from school again. His tummy was in a lot of pain. The doctor ran a couple of tests and I didn’t think much of it until we got a call back. It turns out that he likely has celiac (can’t eat gluten) - which would explain so. many. things. We saw a gastroenterologist earlier this week and we need a biopsy to confirm this diagnosis or to indicate if something else is going on. So, we’re waiting. If this whole year has felt like a slog, then this month in particular has felt painted in tar (imagery fresh in my mind thanks to Home Alone).
But in the tarry slog, some things sparkle through. I have found myself noticing more and appreciating more of the things that bring light and joy this season. In January of this year, I started Gray Day Crochet and this has brought me to some of the biggest sparkles in this Christmas season. One of my Facebook crochet groups did a crochet secret Santa and it stunned me with awesomeness. I’ve never gotten gifts from a fellow crocheter before and it is like if you could buy gifts for yourself, but keep it a total surprise. Squee! I just want to squish and snuggle everything.
But the biggest crochet highlight this year has been tapping into the creativity extravaganza called Gift-Along 2018. On Ravelry, 349 designers have joined together for crochet and knit frivolity. Sales, prizes, inspiration- but mostly - encouragement. Everyone is sharing their fun new discoveries and giving all kinds of new things a try at the most giving and gifty time of year. There’s even a ridiculously cute challenge called an Oopadoo for participants who complete at least 1 of the 6,000+ patterns in each of the 8 categories: Hats & Head Things, Baby Things, Arm & Hand Things, Foot & Leg Things, Shawls & Stoles, Cowls/Scarves & Other Neck Things, Toys/Home Things and Sweaters & Other Garments.
GAL2018 is the thing I look forward to at the end of a long day. The fun/funny discussion forums are an antidote to all the waiting and help keep me out of other medical research wormholes. I’ve already planned about 50 projects I want to do next year from all the fantastic new ideas. It has helped me to look for the sparkle around me. I find myself looking for things that twinkle without realizing it. GAL2018 is helping me to accentuate the positive and latch on to the affirmative.
Having these moments of glitter and brightness help so much. I’m big on Christmas, but the light is the thing I keep coming back to. It’s in the darkness and uncertainty that the light pierces through, giving focus, hope and direction.
So, as a reminder of all this sparkle and light, this is my 2018 Christmas ornament pattern. I hope it brings smiles, light and joy to the people you share it with.
With sport weight yarn in green, red and white
Hook: G/6 (4.25mm)
Foundation: ch 3, sl st in first ch to form ring.
Rnd 1: (With green) ch 2 (counts as sc) 11 sc in ring, sl st in top of 2nd ch of first st to join (12 sc)
Rnd 2: ch 3 (counts as dc) *ch 3, sl st in next st, ch 3, dc in next st* rep from * to * 4 times, sl st in top of 3rd ch of first st to join (6 points)
Rnd 3: ch 1, *sc in top of dc, ch 5, (sk ch 3, sl st, ch 3) sc in top of dc of next point* rep from * to * 5 times, sl st in top of first sc to join, fo (6x ch 5, sc reps)
Rnd 4: (With red) ch 2 (counts as sc) *5 sc in ch 5 sp, sc in sc* rep from * to * 4 times, 5 sc in ch 5 sp, sl st in top of first sc to join, fo (6x sc, 5 sc reps)
Rnd 5: (With white) ch 2 (counts as sc) sc in each sc around, fo (36 sc)
Finishing: Weave in ends. Tie 8” piece of yarn through one stitch to hang ornament.