I’m back!

I’m back from my trip to Ireland and England, and boy did I have some catching up to do in the blogging world!  I’ve been reading for at least an hour, but now it’s time to write, because I have so much to share with you!

First, I met Rachel from The Little Room of Rachell while I was on my trip!  It was my first time meeting a fellow blogger, and it was hers, too.  We met up in Oxford and spent a lovely afternoon strolling around and chatting (about lots of stuff, not just blogging and crochet) and eating and drinking.  We visited some yarn/craft shops, but not everything was open due to the holidays.  I’m still exceedingly jealous that there are so many little yarn shops in England!  At least, there are compared to South Carolina, where there is only one that I can semi-easily get to.  We saw some of the tourist-y attractions as well, and I kept saying how sort of mind boggling it is to visit places that are older than my country.  The places we stopped at for foodstuffs were very tasty and they felt very authentic — I believe Rachel told me that one of the pubs had been on the same site since the 1400s and I was in total awe.  It was so much fun and it was so lovely to meet Rachel, and I hope I can meet her again some time!  Oh and she gave me a little gift she made herself (thank you Rachel!):

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isn’t this little crochet stocking the cutest thing?

While I was in Oxford, I had to stop at the Cath Kidston store.  We don’t have them in the US, and the shipping costs are ridiculous, so I tried to stock up on some cute little items that would fit in my suitcase.  I got some melamine storage bowls, a nice face mitt, and a couple of other picture-worthy items:

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a lovely new tape measure

a knitting needle roll (on sale)

a knitting needle roll (on sale)

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a new collar for my baby girl, who was trying to lick me as I took pictures

Can I share some other pictures from my trip with you?

tree at Christ Church in Dublin

tree at Christ Church in Dublin

at the Guinness Storehouse, with the pint I poured

at the Guinness Storehouse, with the pint I poured

cool bottle chandelier at the Old Jameson's Distillery

cool bottle chandelier at the Old Jameson’s Distillery

chapel of King's College, where we attended the Christmas Eve Lessons and Carols service

chapel of King’s College, where we attended the Christmas Eve Lessons and Carols service

Christ Church, Oxford, where some Harry Potter scenes were filmed

Christ Church, Oxford, where some Harry Potter scenes were filmed

And guess what my grandma got me for Christmas?  Two new crochet books:

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These are going to teach me so much!

And my parents got me, among some lovely other things, this magazine which I thought might interest you:

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Not only does it have 31 knitting projects inspired by Jane Austen’s books — it also has some really interesting articles about materials and clothes during her lifetime.  Here are the titles of the articles:

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It was so interesting I read it all in one sitting!

OK, I think that’s all for now.  Unfortunately, even though I took my needles and hooks and some yarn with me on the trip, I didn’t do a thing — I was too tired to pick anything up.  I’ve got nothing new to show at this time, but I’m sure I’ll get back to business soon.  Also, I may do a “review of 2012” post, like so many others are doing.  It’s a nice way to remember all the good crafty moments, don’t you think?

Thanks for stopping by, I hope you drop in again soon!

not much to show

I haven’t done much yarn stuff in the past few days,  I’ve just finished these mitts:

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They’re so soft and warm!  I may yet add that crocheted trim on the top, it just depends on how much time I have.

Boy has it been busy!  Shopping for Christmas presents, hanging out with school friends, studying with school friends, studying by myself, shopping for my Ireland/England trip, and baking for Christmas parties.  You may say, “studying?  Why, it’s the holidays!” but I’ve got to study hard the whole time because I’ve got my comprehensive examination that I have to pass to graduate coming up on January 7.  I think it’s stupid to give us the test before we’ve even finished all our classes, much less to test us over those classes that we won’t have completed until May.  But what can I say, that’s just another of the growing list of annoyances and griefs that my program is giving me.

The shopping has been much more fun, although I admit I’m waaaaay over budget.  I’ve dipped into January’s money already.  I just hope my loan money comes in before January 5th so that I can pay rent and bills.  At least I didn’t make everybody gifts — that probably would have been more expensive than just buying them the things I did.  Of course, my parents got some really good presents because they’ve been so good to me and they deserve awesome gifts, and I didn’t skimp on my boyfriend, either.  I guess the real hurt has been the necessity to buy lots of items for my trip.  Here are some of my new things:

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Since I live in South Carolina, I have minimal winter gear.  Therefore a sweater with some wool in it was required, along with some wool socks.  I also had to get another pair of pants because I only have  2 (I just wash them a lot, but I won’t have access to a washer on the trip).  A neck pillow for the plane and a bag to take as my carry-on were also purchased.  These things pictured here were actually purchased for me by my wonderful mom, but trust me, I’ve had to buy quite a few other things, including more socks, a sweater/popover,  and lots of other little things that have just added up.  I hope that I will now be fully prepared for the cold weather.

Also, I have to say thanks to Patricia from DaniellaJoe’s Blog — I won one of her lovely giveaway packs!  It’s the first time I’ve ever won a giveaway, and I just love the items!  I think the package is actually at the post office already, I just have to go pick it up on Monday.  So thank you so much, Patricia, you’re so generous!

So everybody knows, I’m leaving on my trip this Tuesday (the 18th), and I will not be returning home until the 29th.   I doubt that I will be able to blog much, if at all, while in Ireland or England because I’m not taking my computer.  My phone could do it, but it would probably be really complicated, and there’s a good chance I won’t actually be knitting/crocheting much while there anyway.  I’ll be busy taking pictures, exploring towns and cities, and like I said earlier, studying for my exit exam.  This will probably be my last post until January.  I will be back though, I promise.

I wish you all the very best of holidays!

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