Stash, Stash, Go Away

It's hard enough to believe we have finished the first decade of the 21st century, but even harder to believe January is almost over. The holidays felt like they snuck up from nowhere and ambushed us before we knew it. And then they were over.

Mr. Criquette and I went to New Orleans, but everyone was grumpy and out of sorts, so it wasn't one of my family's best celebrations by a long shot. One of my SIL's had to have emergency surgery the day after Christmas and no one knew if she would be able to walk again (fortunately, she will thanks to intensive rehab for the next 3 months). There was some good news, too - one of my nephews is engaged and I will have a new niece before the end of the year. And now it's over, we're back home, and I have started knitting with a vengeance.

I am part of a Ravelry group for Malabrigo lovers and someone started a stash down challenge. Since we got our little lake house, I have put myself on a strict budget, and yarn purchases are one of the victims. Plus, when I had to buy yet another huge Rubbermaid bin for storage, I knew I had reached the "I will never knit this much yarn in my lifetime" stage. And that just made me sad. I managed to donate 2 trash bags full of mostly yarns I had purchased early in my addiction, before I had been introduced to the finer things in knitting life. This freed up one bin and some floor space in the overflowing craft closet, which motivated me even more.

My next step was to borrow Diane's brilliant idea of putting yarn into brown paper sacks, closing them up, and then when she finishes a project, she has one of sweet pups choose her next one. I went through my stash and picked out yarn that had been purchased without specific projects in mind, and paired them up with a pattern and then I put both in a bag together.

The projects:

My new LYS:
I think it's working because I am 2/3 of the way through January and haven't bought a single skein! Destash! Destash! Go Criquette! And I actually have 2 projects that I started and finished so far this year.

A slouchy hat for my hand-knit loving niece:

And a start to my Christmas gifts for 2011:

It's amazing what the girls will do for lamb jerky treats!

Although belated, I wish everyone a new year full of love, health and, of course, good yarn!