In the middle of dreary winter I always enjoy the bright spot that is Valentine's Day (the holiday's red, pink and lavender is so cheery, and of course, there's always the chocolate!).
Another especially fun part of Valentine's Day for me this year was participating in a secret handmade gift exchange with other readers of Sanae Ishida's lovely blog.
Sanae and reader friend Ute Stampfer put together a Valentine's version of the Scandinavian Julklapp Christmas secret Santa idea. The main stipulations were that the gifts should be small in order to fit into a mailing envelope, and that they should be handmade (I'm afraid I did not get photos of the Lavande I knitted, or the chocolates I cooked up, for the pal I was gifting).
After I'd mailed off my package, I could hardly wait to see who my exchange pal would be, and was practically hyperventilating when I saw the name on the return address of the package - it was from Ute in Germany!! Ute wrapped the inside package in beautiful pink paper with an adorable heart garland that now adorns my living room.
If you check out Ute's incredible sewing and other crafts you will see why I was so excited. WOW, Ute is extraordinarily talented at many crafts, most especially her sewing. Ute insisted in her note that her knitting skills were limited but I think from looking at some of her projects that she was being overly modest.
My secret pal sent me not only a gorgeous tote (made for me in my favorite large size and grey colors), but also a matching zip case, a fabulous bar of imported, organic chocolate (swoon!) and one of the most darling and thoughtful handmade cards I've ever received. The whole thing brought tears to my eyes.
The attention to detail Ute puts into her work is amazing.
I LOVE this beautiful gift and the thoughtfulness behind it. Thank you Ute, for making my Valentine's Day terrific!
And thank you, my reader friends, for stopping by my virtual studio today, I wish you a very
HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY
and much happy stitching!
A Special Note From Me to You...
Since the day I started this blog I've enjoyed using it as a journal of my life as well as a place to share my knitting, crocheting, spinning and other fiber adventures. I've been determined to keep it a positive, happy place, sharing only good things. But I know that some of my readers have noticed that my knitting, designing, and blogging have tapered off since last year, so I'm going to make a very small exception to my own rule. I promise I will not dwell in this place, nor post about it very often, and I do hope to knit loads and design much, much more in the future!! However, last year I became very sick - including being in the hospital three times within six weeks during the holidays. Unfortunately, although my condition has a very high cure rate and good outlook, it requires months of difficult chemotherapy treatment.
Everything, including work, knitting, daily chores, and even time spent online, has become a huge challenge as I deal with illness and incredible fatigue. Some days I feel like I am walking in slow motion, and every step is hard. Other days it is not so bad. In any case, I am looking forward to the day - hopefully this spring if everything goes as planned - that I will have my last chemo treatment and will come out on the other side feeling well and energetic again. Until then, I hope to keep knitting and posting as much as I can about all the fun crafts we enjoy. I am so thankful for the friendship and encouragement I've received, it means so much to me!