Tuesday, December 29, 2009

A little bit of that and a little bit of this...

I made a pillow for my america-loving nephew, to go with his quilt (which he adores, he told me this holiday. The dog can sleep on it without leaving hair all over! Well, I did make it to survive a big dog...) Different colours - I used Japanese fabric in different textures. Kind of like the outcome.
Used the leftovers for the backing.
And look who snuck in here! My aunt and uncle's new doggie - Odin. He is a Chesapeak Bay Retriever and seven months old. He has a colour that reminds me of a too-lightly baked cookie:) He is still a puppy, though big... He likes to 'taste' people when they come, with the result that your arm is constantly being held in his mouth. Quite gently, but still... lots of teeths... However, he is cute, even when he smiles at you. Again, lots of teeths... They say the smile is a Chesapeake trait?
He is getting company of another one in April. We shall see how he likes being a big brother...
Back to crafts. I knitted socks,
.. a colourful hat,
.. a less colourful hat,
and a pair of very colourful gloves,
for my godchild's birthday this christmas. Just in time for a lot of snow, and a LOT of cold, cold days. I am thinking seriously about hibernating.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Christmas, christmas

This is also a part of Christmas here up north:) though not always. I just returned from celebrating Christmaseve with the family, and ended up having to drive through snow to get home. You get used to driving in snow here, though it is a nuisance at times. However, I do love the colours that comes from snowdrives in streetlights.
Why decorate a tree inside when you get snow and lights outside?
Now I can share some of the gifts I made this year. This is a variation of a pattern from Bente Malm. Instead of a big tablecloth I made it into a table runner instead. This was for my nephew and his girlfriend. Big one to suit a big table:)
Winterroses, as we call them, are pretty new to Norway, and we only get them at Christmas. I do like them.
For my sister-in-law, I made kitchen curtain for her kitchen - two small windows, one for each.
I look forward to seeing them on the window:)
Have a continous good Christmas, all you out there!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Creepiness ensues

I tend to have eyes for the spooky and creepy views these days. Is it my mood or the winter light? I was on my way to visit family on a day with dark wintery skies, snow blowing in gusts over the road and the chill creeping in everywhere, even in the car. Then suddenly, on the end of a 'lonely moore' a single chimney shows up.
These days you seldom see houses burnt down to the ground as the firetrucks are pretty quick, but this house was too far away, with no neighbours, so none of it could be saved. It was incredibly creepy standing out there, with the wind howling around the ears, the light going into grey and not a soul around. Brrr....
And no, no ghosts. Fortunately no one was at home when it burnt down. But creepy, creepy, creepy....

Saturday, December 12, 2009


How to translate that one... pre-christmas thoughts? For once something sounds more poetic in my own language. Huh - who would have thought.

I realise I haven't been good at blogging lately. The only reason I can give is that life hasn't been very easy lately, and from what little I can predict it doesn't look like that is going to change in the nearest future.

But now it is advent, preparation for Christmas season. I love this time of year, all the lights and the expecctations. Christmas for me is all of December, until after Christmas eve. After that, I am done:)
So I have taken out my advent candles (I will be lighting three candles tomorrow).
My advent star is hanging in the window, 'guiding the way' until Christmas eve.
And my little Christmas tree:) I got this in Singapore a few years ago. The stone in the middle looks beautiful in the candle light.

Today I hung my stars in the windows. When it gets dark before 4 pm, lights are a crucial and lifegiving part of the Christmas season. This was taken at 3:30 pm - there are few hours of daylight at this time of year. But you can't beat the colours this season brings us.
It is a perfect time for crafts. I am trying out a new one this year. We call it gimping, I think the Americans call it hairpin something? I am to make four of these and then try to crochete it together. We shall see... I will show you the result, if I am able to make it work.
So the next few weeks will be seeing me finishing a load! of christmas gifts, visiting my aunt and uncle in Sweden again, I hope. They have a new dog! A puppy! And celebrating the season with family. The future will have to worry by itself for a little while. If I can keep the vargs at bay in the middle of the night...:)

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Three stages

Hasn't been a lot to write about lately. Sorry about that. I finally got to take some pictures during day time, though. I am trying out something new - for a christmas gift.I got some linen, flax. It is quite unevenly woven, so difficult to embroider on.
So I got some of what they call 'counting linen', basted it on the background linen and embroider on that one.
And then I pull out the threads from the counting linene, and
voila! It actually works:) I will put up a picture of the final work after christmas:)

We had a short burst of winter a few weeks ago, and I finally got around to finish a sweater I started last winter. I just had to sew it together and knit the neck lining.
I like the way the pattern makes the decreases a part of the shaping.
And finally - a little close up of a christmas gift:) More later.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

How apt!

Not sure what came first, the mood or the weather. However, they both fit together perfectly these days. November is never a good month for me, and this year it is doubly not so.

So when I drove by the lake earlier today and saw this - I had to stop and take a picture. Spooky! And moody.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The story behind

There are a number of these statues along the coast of Norway. The Sailors Wife - in recognition of the ones that were left behind - with all the hard work.
In 1875 in just this little area over 70% of the workforce (men, that is) were sailors, 861 out of a population of 3118 adults and kids. And out of those who were out sailing, 70% were married with kids. That makes for a lot of single parents household in a time where farming were highly manual, to put it mildly.
Diaries and letters from those times does not only tell of the heavy work these women had to do, but also the anxiety and worries of maybe not seeing their husbands, fathers or brothers again.
Considering that every second family in this area during that time lost a family member to the oceans, they had a reason to worry.
Whenever I see one of these statues, I see a long line of women standing along the coast through history - waiting and watching and worrying.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

World's End

I have just been to the world's end. Not the 'four horsemen' type of end, but more like: end of the road. Not sure what made a small Norwegian coastal community think they rated to be called the world's end, though:) However, that is what this place is called: Verdens Ende.
From here the next stop is Denmark, and that is only accessible by boat. It was such a wonderful, quiet fall day today, and the sea was calm and quiet, clear and blue.
During the summer this place is chocablock with screaming kids, loud teenagers and fast boats making a lot of noise. But now it is fall - quiet before the winterstorms. Nature has taken back the space and getting ready to rumble. I think I need to go back there during winter. See the snow and the ice... hmh...
.. worth the thought.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Need I say more?

I may whine about the weather in Norway, but there are times when I am reminded why I did make a consciouse choice about staying here. Like today:)
Need I say more?

Wednesday, October 7, 2009


.. the images that catches your eye. Went for a long walk in the rain by the sea side yesterday, and for some reason this image caught me. An old, rusty drinking fountain, still producing the water streams even in late fall - long after the bathing crowd has left.
Melancholic poetry.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Princess on the pea!

A few years ago I made two wallhangings for two little princesses:) It is from the fairy tale about the princess on the pea. I thought it suited them. On this trip I remembered to take pictures!
A pink princess,
and a purple one.
I loved doing the details, like a golden crown, the tassles on the afghan and the jewlery around her neck and the belt. And of course...
a pea! Or in this case, a pearl. I wonder if that would have made her even more black and blue. A pearl would be harder than a pea, right?

Friday, September 18, 2009

Tonic for the soul

I am currently on my annual 'pilgrimage' to Colorado:) Time spent with good friends in a warm climate and incredible nature just outside the door - it is tonic for the soul at the moment. A couple of days ago we went hiking in Rocky Mountain National Park. This was the view from the parking lot!
We first walked around Bear Lake. The aspen has just started to turn yellow. I was suprised to see it could actually turn orange, too! It was such a fluorescent colour - it almost hurt your eyes.
We kept going up the mountains, past several lakes. The trail had beautiful views going both up and down.
Some of the mountains are so high up that the clouds were hanging around them. I could feel the high altitude as we walked up towards our final destination:
Emerald Lake. By then we were far, far, far higher than the highest mountain in Norway, and the air was pretty thin. But the view was magnificent. Hard to not love this place:)

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Old and new

I wanted to get my friends in Colorado something handmade and Norwegian this time, and found this great idea in one of my many books. These are Hardanger, sewn on linen (flax) with linen thread, how they used to do it originally. I then added some old lace from the stash I got from my grandmother. I kind of like the look.

Kind of bugs me that the small strip of lace is crooked, but hey! it is handmade, OK?
This was a 45 year birthday gift to one of my 'bestest' friends in Colorado. She has four kids, and I admire her ability to handle all those busy lives. So when I saw this: A mothers pocket is filled with love, I thought of her right away.It is a Cinderberry pattern. I love her lines and the amazing amounts of fun details. Aren't the babies cute?

There are slightly more than four kids on this one, though....