Kiwiyarns Knits

A blog about New Zealand yarns, knitting and life



Hello folks, just six more sleeps and I get my first proper vacation in several years! I can’t wait.  After a very.long.year I’m hanging out for sleep-ins.  And long evenings.  Perhaps a walk or two along the beach.  Maybe a glass of wine.  Catching up with family and friends.  Hanging out with my kids.  It will be fabulous.  I’m so tired.  It will be good to have a break.

The “C” word is being quietly ignored.  I think that it’s madness and totally counter-intuitive to be celebrating Christmas in summer.  For those of you who don’t know, New Zealand still has a big “summer shutdown” (basically everything except necessities and retail close down for two to three weeks from Christmas and over the new year) and with all the madness of finishing up work (deadlines upon deadlines upon deadlines), getting kids sorted for the long summer break, vacation organisation, and Christmas on top of it… well.

To save my sanity, I keep it simple.  I haven’t even got the tree up yet.  Erk!  Never mind, this weekend will solve all issues and what’s left to be done will be sorted.  It’s a shame really.  We need something in winter to cheer up the spirits and have something to look forward to (Christmas for those in the Northern hemisphere!), but there is nothing culturally traditional for the Southern hemisphere winter/early spring except for the Maori new year (Matariki).  Not being Maori though, it doesn’t mean much to me.  This is what happens when you live in a colonised country!

One of the things I do not to, mainly because it’s not physically possible to accommodate everyone I want to knit for, is Christmas knitting.  However, this year, I have made an exception.  My son’s teacher has been amazing to him this year, so to show my thanks I decided to knit her a couple of hats as she’s admired my knitting and I figure she likes it.  People normally give gifts of wine or chocolate to teachers here, but my neighbour is a teacher, and she gets so much chocolate that she ends up giving it away.  I decided that chocolate might not be such a meaningful gift.

It was meant to be one hat.

Star-crossed slouchy berett

This is the very popular Star Crossed Slouchy Beret.  Only I knitted it on one sized smaller needles than I should have in a moment of inattention.  It feels too small for my head, and so in a fit of insecurity (I hate giving gifts that aren’t quite right), I decided to make one more.  Just in case.


This is Kittiwake, a lovely Alice Starmore pattern.  Funny that it’s the same name as a very gorgeous cardigan in the latest issue of Knitty!  This one feels right.  I hope she likes at least one of them!  Pattern notes are in the link I’ve provided if you want to see more.  It’s knitted in the most fabulous Rowan Fine Tweed.

I’m also busily knitting one other project which I hope to get done before Christmas, but it’s slow going and because I’m so fatigued, I keep falling asleep while I’m knitting.  Not good!!  It might not make the Christmas mail cut-off at this rate.  Never mind.

I hope all your own preparations for Christmas an/or the summer break (depending on which hemisphere you’re in) are going well.


Author: kiwiyarns

Welcome to my blog where I talk about knitting in New Zealand and the beautiful yarns you can find here.

15 thoughts on “Vacation

  1. I do hope you will have a really nice break.
    I’m not one for Christmas either really. In the UK it’s a huge commercial thing plus parties, too much drinking and eating. I don’t like that. I come from the Black Forest and Christmas is a peaceful, reflective time, no big parties and the religious content is clearly felt. Then on New Year’s Eve they celebrate with a bang – all night! And that’s it and the new year starts all over again.
    Maybe you should invent your very own Winter celebration for you and your family at a more appropriate time. Failing that join the Maoris seeing that that is the root of the country. It might be fun!
    Whatever you decide don’t let it stress you.

    Bimbi x

  2. Hi lovely Kiwi, I wish you a relaxing and fun filled holiday with your family. You always have a lot on your plate, so enjoy your much deserved vacation : )
    Gorgeous knitted hats, although all your work is perfection.

  3. You really deserve a vacation and I hope it’s rejuvenating besides fun! I’ve often wondered how you get into the Christmas spirit without freezing weather and snow, but I’d like to try it sometime! I love the idea of shutting down for the season and taking a breath for a few weeks. We go non-stop here in the US, with maybe a day off for Christmas and New Year’s Day.

  4. Sleep? What’s that? I feel exactly as you do … I’m doing a bit of Christmas gift knitting but feeling as tired as I do, it’s not going as quickly (or smoothly) as I’d like. I’ve decided to savor each day and not feel pressured to make the holidays PERFECT. We’re getting our tree up this weekend, too, and like you said, what will get done, will get done. xo

  5. That teacher is one lucky person. I think she’ll love what you give her. And it will last much longer than chocolate.

    Enjoy your vacation!

  6. As a future teacher myself, I can only hope to get gifts that amazing!

  7. Hope you’ll have a nice and relaxing break, you sure deserve it !
    Those hats are awesome, can’t imagine that teacher would not like it..
    Living in the northern hemisphere, I can’t quite imagine what it is like.. x-mas in summer.. is it even dark early enough to get the lights in a tree going.. ?

    • You’re right about the tree. By the time it gets dark enough, it’s about 9pm!! I don’t bother with tree lights. I gave the hats to the teacher today. She looks great in them and they fit! Yay!

  8. enjoy your vacation. Pretty hats!!!
    Sometimes I feel people are doing too much for Christmas, too expensive, too much it’s a bit crazy. The more important thing on this day is, I think to fill it with love, caring and a tiny amount of celebration. For the Christmas’ knitting I keep it to minimal and try to work on it all over the year to avoid the Christmas knitting insanity.
    Did the teacher liked the hats?

    • Your approach sounds perfect to me! The teacher did like the hats, I think. At least they fit her, and she seemed pleased to get them. It’s always hard to say isn’t it!

  9. I think to get such a beautiful hat from you is one of the best gifts to receive. She will know of the time and effort that’s gone into it.
    I always forget how the other countries may have different weather from us here. Summer and Christmas? Trippy! I can’t wait until winter break either. TGIF as it’s the last day.