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Thursday, December 18, 2008

Have Yourself a Merry Bleeping Christmas* from a Friend in Chicago

*I've been known to drop a few F-bombs, but seriously, Rod and Patty have set a new bar.

While we are here digging out from snowbanks and political scandals, I thought I'd provide a few pictures of my favorite Chicago holiday event, the Christkindlmarket. Vendors from Germany come to Chicago from just after Thanksgiving to December 24 and offer traditional German wares in (unheated) wooden huts, just as they do in Germany and Austria. There are gluwein booths and sausage stands, hot cinnamon roasted nuts, and other delectable treats. In an effort to be multi-cultural, they also include importers of items from South America (warm, woolly hats come in handy this time of year), Ireland, and a few other countries and regions. These folks are at the mercy of whatever Chicago throws at them. On our annual Christmas date last year, it was brutally, viciously windy and cold. This year it was windy and snowing. (Windy can be a theme here.)
The tree at Daley Plaza is an odd one. It is actually constructed of hundreds of smaller trees wired together to form a big tree. Interesting...
Caroling out in the snow.

After the market, we walk a block over to Macy's (formerly Marshall Field's) to see the holiday windows. After that, it's up to the 7th floor to see the Grand Tree in The Walnut Room, then out for dinner. It's one of my favorite nights of the year.

Now that I've completed all of my holiday deadline knitting and shipped out all of the gifts going east, I'm focusing on decorating the house and setting the menu for Christmas Eve. We've decided to skip the real tree this year. I'm doing the wrought iron tree with the fiber-themed ornaments again. I haven't decided what else is coming out, but I think simple is the game plan.

Speaking of Christmas knitting, here's what was on the needles:

Blu for my cousin's baby, Cora Jane

Hats for Stitches from the Heart

Spring Forward Socks (dyed and knit by me) for my Aunt to gift to someone at work

Cat Hat for my cousin

Plus a Brangelina Hat (forgot to photograph that one) made for a giving tree that my friend, Barb, was doing for charity. (If you decide to make one, my experience is that it comes out rather large--even large enough to fit over our disgraced governor's hair--so you may want to cast on fewer stitches.) It certainly wasn't the metric ton of knitting that some people do for the holidays, but those little jeans were a challenge to my patience. The knitting was easy and the finishing wasn't difficult in terms of skill required, but I took them apart three times until the stitching looked good enough to me. I even re-did the little label twice. I must have stitched one of the pockets four times. (I was obsessed.) In the end, I think they're pretty cute. Hope she can wear them more than once or twice.


sophanne said...

Should I be embarassed that when that pdf opened I searched for the f bomb using "search" to see how many there were.

The A.D.D. Knitter said...

You are hilarious--a new bar indeed!!

Love your Christmas pics,so lovely. And your Christmas knitting is so impressive, love Blu especially:)

carey said...

I love the blue jeans--how cute! I hope you guys made it home ok...I got a bit delayed Sat., but made it home eventually. Thanks again for the awesome necklace--I've gotten so many compliments on it, and i love it! YAY!!! :-) It was so great to see you last week! Happy Holidays!!!!

Dearest Cupcake said...

Such romantic pictures of the city! I do miss winter and Christmas preparations. Next year.