Finale & Farewell

December 28th

Remember that stack of yarn cakes?



Well. Fast forward two weeks and the final Christmas gifts are done. I don’t know why I decided the cowl was my 2010 project (and walked around asking people, “Did you know it is the ‘year of the cowl?'” like it was something I hadn’t just made up), but I did.


There is something about how snuggly they are. You can pull them over your mouth when the wind is whipping (say, 300 miles north of my desert home). Or pull them over your head when you want to run outside in the cold. Or wrap it over a cute t-shirt and under a jean jacket for a pop of color. Every fashionable woman should have a cowl.

Christmas Cowl

Christmas Cowl

Christmas Cowl

Christmas Cowl

If you had asked me in November if I’d have 10 of these done by Christmas, I would have laughed. If you’d mentioned the 14 handbags, 9 crayon rolls, three golf towels, two scarves, one hat and a partridge in a pear tree — I would have curled up in the fetal position. Then again, fueled with enough caffeine I think I could manage Everest —  if I didn’t freak myself out beforehand with the stories of how hard it would be.

There is some clever  lesson in this post about how life is so much easier when we take it one project at a time, and eliminate the noise of others who try to distract us from our goals. (I saw a bumper sticker in traffic the other day that read:  Don’t let your dreams be crushed by those who have give up on their own. AMEN.)  Alas, for those in need of a proverb, I got up at 5 am to finish these cowls before work so they would be ready for tonight’s final holiday party and my cleverness  is still under the covers. Instead, I’ll sigh with relief I reached the finish line for this holiday season — minus a couple hours of terrifying icy driving on the way to Santa Fe — stress free. I am so very thankful I managed to escape the grasp of the expectation monster who haunted holidays past.

Now, who is ready for some handmade Valentine card ideas? (chirp. chirp. Is this thing on?) Just kidding. Let’s all just bask in the glow of no pending celebrations for a bit, shall we? I for one will be doing such celebrating on this veranda.

Malawi and Zimbabwe or bust, baby!

See you in three weeks,*


*If there happens to be Internet on the tea estate, I’ll say hi. I for one am hoping for a tech-free holiday. Three weeks without my incessant (and potentially addicted) social media blabbing will do the worldwidewebs some good. I will miss you. But I hope to be occupied with swimming, hiking, exploring, photographing, sleeping in, napping, drinking tea, reading, knitting, day dreaming, chasing the estate’s monkeys, lounging, shopping and perhaps even a bit of writing with an old school pen and notebook.

The best news is — this little blog will be even better come 2011. Be ready for lots of fun, friends.  And know that with all my heart — I wish the very best for you and your loved ones in 2011.

Posted in
Adventathon, Africa, Celebrate!
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14 Responses

  1. !Coooooooooowl!
    Wow – your ability to churn out crafty goodness amazes me every year.
    I hope you have a wonderful, restful, relaxing, and inspirational trip to Africa. In the meantime, I’ll be stealing moments after Josiah’s bedtime to work on my new cowl. I think I’ll have enough yarn left for a matching hat or mitts, too!

  2. Oooo–safe travels and have a blast Kelli…you will have a little belated Christmas waiting for you when you return! XOXO

  3. The cowls look amazing! Whomever is receiving them will be so very happy. I hope they also tell everyone that it is the year of the cowl. 🙂 Have a wonderful journey, and we look forward to your return!

  4. I received a cowl gift for Christmas from a friend, so on behalf of all cowl receivees, I thank you! They are great, especially when made with love. You will have an amazing trip to Africa, can’t wait to hear about it upon your return. Safe travels, walk well.

  5. I handmade a good portion of the gifts I gave this year, and thought of you while I worked away. I embellished approximately 40 kitchen towels, made 19 Christmas pillowcases for kids (SO cute and fun!), some food gifts in cute jars, and 2 quilts. And for the record, I think I might be ready for Valentine’s Day. It’s one of my favorite holidays, and since we didn’t get around to Christmas cards this year, we’re going to send out family Valentines Cards. Enjoy your trip … you deserve it!!

  6. Have a happy, relaxing time in Africa, and my best wishes for a wonderful 2011 to you too!

  7. Beautiful! I hope you had some leftover yarn – I can’t wait to see what you do with that, too!

    Have a wonderful trip! I’ll be thinking about you and wishing I were on the next veranda over! 🙂

  8. Super cute cowls! Enjoy your trip and time away from technology. Travel safely and Happy New Year!

  9. I agree. It is the year of the cowl. My grandmother made one for my mom. You know if grandma is doing it, it’s super cool. 🙂

    Have SO much fun in Africa. Give the continent a big hug for me.

    Looking forward to your return!

    Resolution 2011: Hang out with Kelli. A lot.

  10. Safe travel and have fun! I look forward to some great pictures of your travels. Happy New Year!

  11. Happy New Year, Kelli, and I hope it gets off to a great start in Africa. Have fun, be safe.

  12. Maria Paz December 29, 2010

    You don’t know me but I read you very often. You are super fun! 🙂
    Enjoy your trip. In the meantime, I’ll miss your blog but I’ll be waiting for your adventures. Good luck!

  13. Rohanknitter December 30, 2010

    Have a wonderful and amazing trip!!! (I’m very sure you will) We are venturing to Mexico this winter- just for a few days but it’s our first time there so I’m excited to experience someplace new. I’ve even been trying to cram some espagnol into my brain – learning a few phrases in another language is part of the fun, to me. Anyway, bon voyage (I took French all through school, ha) and I LOVE all the cowls. There really is something special about a cowl – and they are so much quicker to make than a scarf! I didn’t think I was doing any Christmas knitting this year but I ended up making three. Looking forward to seeing some gorgeous pics from your trip on the blog.

  14. I wish you a beautiful and peaceful year in 2011, Kelli.