Tag Archives: bear

Three Down

It’s a little sadder today than yesterday… the Olympics are over.  No more curling, or alpine skiing, or hockey on TV.  Not even any more figure skating or biathlon.  I guess I’ve just got to go back to my usual TV diet of Law and Order and cooking shows… sigh.

But, I did get one more big project done!  My bears from last year!

A dozen bears!  They’ve been stuffed, assembled, sewn up and appliqued/embroidered (which always takes more time than I expect).  I’m pleased with how they turned out, and more than pleased with the fact that they’re finally done! They’ve been sitting staring at me, unfinished, for months.  (OK, they weren’t staring, because I hadn’t gotten it together enough to give them eyes until this weekend, but you understand.)Three big projects done during the Olympics- a nice, big baby blanket, a cozy scarf (that had been haunting me for years) and a dozen lovely bears.  Not bad for two weeks!

I think I might be on a finishing things roll.  I should probably keep this momentum going and finish something else…

How did your Ravellenic Games turn out?

Two Down

It’s been a bit of slow going on my knitting, if I’m being honest.

There’s a project that has always been my Achilles Heel, and I have no clue why.


I don’t know why, but I absolutely detest making scarves.  They always seem like a good idea.  I mean, what’s more classic than a lovely knit scarf?  I start off strong, then about 6 inches in I get totally bored and wander off to work on another project.

Which is bananas, because I just knit an all-garter-stitch baby blanket in about three weeks without any trouble.  There’s no reason a scarf should take me as long as it does, but here we are.

This weird scarf hang-up probably explains why I’ve had this scarf on my needles in one shape or another for (according to Ravelry), more than three years.  I’d get a bee in my bonnet to finish the scarf, but then decide I didn’t like what I was doing with it, so I’d rip it out, knit about a foot, then loose steam and put it away again.  (And again, and again.)

But!  I managed to push through this time and I’ve finished!  I’ve completed a whole scarf!

Sure, it’s just a big ol’ garter stitch rectangle, and it hasn’t been blocked or anything, but hey!  It’s done!

And I kind of love it.The colors are bright and cheerful (sorry about the picture.  It’s real cloudy here today-surprise surprise.  But I promise you the colors are really pretty!)  I like the fact that the colors pooled to make cute little stripes.  I even like the thick-and-thin texture of the yarn, which I definitely did on purpose when I spun up the yarn all those years ago (*wink*).  All in all, I think this was a very successful scarf project!

Next, I’m off to tackle this box of bears.  Wish me luck!How are your Ravellenic projects going?

One Last Bear

Waaaay back at the beginning of the year, I promised I’d finish 12 Mother Bears this year- one for each month this year.

Well.  I got close.

None of them are officially “finished,” but, I’ve got a half dozen knit up and stuffed, and five that have been knitted, but still need to be assembled.

And I’ve got one bear still on the needles.  I’m just about to the legs… and I’m just about to run out of the pants color.I guess this bear is going to be wearing shorts… and a scarf.  I suppose that makes sense.

I still have a couple days until the official end of the year- if I work like the wind (and get some more stuffing; I’m just about out), maybe I’ll be able to make it through and finish off all 12 bears.

Fingers crossed!

What If?

Sometimes when I’m working on a particularly slog-y project, I start playing “What If” with my knitting.  (When I was an office drone I also played “What If” with my job.  What if I was a barista?  What if I started working for the postal service?  What if I went back to school?)

I’ve been thinking “What If” I didn’t have to finish the Vampire project?  What would I be doing instead?

And, since my calculations tell me that I’ve got a little over a week left before I finish (assuming I haven’t made any major mistakes/don’t have to rip back the whole thing/am able to stay on schedule), it’s just about time to start thinking about the next thing I’m going to do.

First, I think I’m going to finish up my Papaya Sweater.  It’s been sitting, abandoned, on an end table in my studio for more than a month now.  Poor thing.  I’m really looking forward to getting it finished.  (And I’m really looking forward to a simple project that doesn’t involve any cables.)I’ll probably work up a handful more Christmas Balls, or at least take some time away from actual knitting to finish up the ones I’ve already knit.  I’ve got a stack that still need to be stuffed, and almost all of them need their tails woven in and their hangers added.  (I feel like “hangers” isn’t quite right, but I can’t think of the right word.  I mean the dangly loop they’ll hang on the tree from.)I also need to spend a weekend finishing up my Mother Bears before the end of the year.  I’ve got 4.5 bears that need to be stuffed and assembled, plus another 6 more that need their faces sewn on.  Maybe that’ll be a Christmas Vacation project?And, I think I want to do something new, something fun, and something that uses up some of the yarn I’ve already got in my stash.  Maybe a new pair of socks, or some sort of shawl that uses the last few mini-skeins of fancy yarn I got last year for Christmas.  Options!What are you working on now?

Mother Bear Update

So, I’m not doing a great job with my New Year’s Resolution to complete one mother bear every month this year.  So far my MO has been to do nothing with my bears for a good three or four months, then panic and knit up a bunch of bears in a weekend.

And this month has been no different.

I spent last weekend sewing up the half-dozen bears I had knit and stuffed back in June, and the first half of this week has been focused on knitting up three more bear bodies (I still owe an arm and a half to finish my September bear).

None of my bears have faces yet, but that’s OK.  I’m currently planning on doing all the faces in one fell swoop over the holidays.  That seems like a nice Chrismassy activity- sewing faces onto charity teddy bears while listening to Christmas carols and munching on gingerbread.  It feels very much like something out of a book from the 1940s.

Have you been making any Mother Bears?  Or are you busy doing other charity knitting?

Too Many Bears


These bears are going to be the death of me.  There’s just so many!

I thought I’d done this before, but I must not have made this many all at once.  Because stuffing and finishing six bears takes. For. Ev. Er.

I put on a nice long movie last night and sat down with my box of bears and a big bag of fluff.  I figured two and a half, maybe three hours would be plenty to get all the bears put together- maybe even enough to put on faces.

Well.  I was wrong

It literally took TWO HOURS to stuff all six bears- I didn’t even get to start sewing them up during that time.So now I have a big box of bears/bear arms with stuffing popping out the tops.  (It’s actually kind of morbid… like I can see the bears’ brains!  Zombie bears!  Aah!)

It took another half hour to sew up one bear- closing the top of the head, attaching the arms and making the neck.  That means I’ve got another two-plus hours of work ahead of me before I even start sewing on faces.  Ugh!

I wish I could just send in the un-stuffed bears to the Mother Bear Project and have them finish them up.  I could make so many more bears that way!  (Although, then the Mother Bear folks would have to spend all their time stuffing them… They probably have better things to be doing.)

Have you been working on anything lately that’s taken longer than expected?

Bare Bears

It’s been a minute since I talked about my bears!

And… that’s mostly because I have kind of been slacking…

Well, not slacking exactly, but getting busy with other things, so I haven’t been working on my bears as much as I had hoped to.

If you remember, I resolved to make one bear every month, so that I would end up with a nice even dozen to send in at the end of the year.  So far, unfortunately, I’ve more or less been doing one bear every other month, then three bears last week when I realized how far behind I was.

So, at least now I’ve got six bears all knit up (except for one arm, but I’ll take care of that this afternoon) and ready for stuffing.

It feels good to be more or less back on schedule.  Unfortunately, now I’ve got to do all the finishing still…

I guess it’s time for a good TV binge-watch and marathon stuffing/arm attaching/face embroidering session this evening.  Oh, but they’ll be so cute when they’re done!

Are you making any Mother Bears?  How many have you got going this year?

Bears in the Air!

It’s time.

(OK, actually I had meant to take these guys to the post office before Christmas… but the post office at Christmas should be avoided at all costs, so I procrastinated like a champ.)

It’s time for my bears to get all packed up and head up north, then to be sent out to all the corners of the world to meet up with their kids.

I’ve managed to finish 11 bears this year, all with leftover yarn and sweet little (grumpy) faces made out of felt.  I’ve tied the little tags onto their wrists, and they’re packed up snug to fly to Mother Bear HQ in Minnesota.img_4480Once they get there, I’ll keep my eye out on their photo gallery to see if I can spot these little guys when they finally get where they’re going.img_4493Now I have to find another box and start making more bears for next year!

Bears (Almost) in the Air

I’ve got bears coming out of my ears over here!

I spent the weekend finishing up about one million bears.  (OK, it was 4 bears, and I’m not totally done yet.  A few of them still need faces.)

I  was up to my elbows in stuffing, and my couch is covered in little bits of leftover yarn from weaving in all those ends.img_4455That’s the problem with knitting up a bunch of bears at once to “finish later.”  It seems like a great idea as the bears pile up.  But, then you have to spend six hours stuffing and seaming, which I do not love doing.

And this morning I’m putting on faces.  Cute little faces with bits of felt and embroidery floss.  I’m dozens of bears in, and I still can’t figure out how to make a non-grumpy bear.  Oh well, what can you do?  They’re still pretty cute.img_4438When these guys are finished, I think my bear box will be full and ready to send off.  I’ll be sad to see them go, but happy knowing they’re going to be well appreciated.

Have you been making any bears? I’d love to see yours, too!

Christmas Bears


My goal was to finish my Christmas knitting this weekend, and after a weekend-long knitting marathon, I did just that.  Barely.  I may have been up on Sunday night until 11:00 weaving in ends and blocking.  And the last piece of knitting might still be quite damp, and sitting in front of a heater with a fan blowing on it (behind closed doors so that Ollie won’t decide to take a nap on it).  But, other than that- everything is done!

And that means one thing:

It’s bear time again!

My goal was to make at least 10 bears this winter, and I’ve been so busy with presents for my family, my bears have been neglected until now- I think I have 8 or so in my bear box in the closet. (What? You don’t have a bear box in your closet?)  So, I’ve got to get cranking.

Luckily, since I just finished up my Christmas knitting, I’ve got lots of half-skeins of yarn laying around, perfect for making bears.  And, sure, you could use whatever worsted weight yarn you have at hand, but I like using Knit Pick’s Swish Worsted.  It’s pretty inexpensive (especially if you wait for one of Knit Pick’s big sales), it comes in a ton of colors, it’s lovely and soft, yet is surprisingly strong and washable.  Also, I happen to have a bunch hanging out in my stash.

This morning I got on a roll, and I worked up this grey bear (with a pink top and purple pants) from the top of his head, almost to the leg split.  (That’s why this post is up a little later than usual- I got distracted.  Also, the couch was very comfy.) img_4381

How have your bears been coming along?  Have you been using up your leftover Christmas yarn, too?