Self-made merry

December always seems to sneak up on me a little bit. I know it’s coming, of course, but there’s something about expecting there to be the 31st of November following the 30th and then realizing that no no, actually we roll right into December and it’s the last month of the year now. And it’s a busy month, and the month of realizing ‘OH WAIT there’s all that stuff I still meant to do this year can I still fit all of that into one month and also experience holiday craziness’, and seasonal knitting usually crams itself in there. So, in conclusion, December is a little nutty.


I am fan of advent calendars, though, coming as I do from a Christmas-celebrating household. I often fantasize about being the sort of knitter who plans her time well enough to make a knitted advent calendar (and I know several of you out there are in fact that sort of knitter, which gives you my undying envy) – you know, 24 little hand-knit mittens or pockets or pouches that get hung up with little notes or gifts inside of them. Truthfully, I have the sort of obsessive/impulsive personality that would totally be on board with that, so I haven’t written off the possibility of a future handknit string of advent mittens, but in the mean time I have my own self-made one.


Last year I got resourceful and cut up a bunch of old Christmas cards (which I always save but let’s face it never do anything with except leave them in a box), wrote down 24 tasks of varying sorts – some for other people (donate to charity), some for myself (knit whatever I want for a day), and some for just plain festive activity (have a holiday-ish drink) – and strung them up one day at a time. The other week I was mentioning the whole enterprise to Julie and she was all, “dude, did you blog about that? Because that is the coolest.”

(Edited to add – I haven’t shared my whole list of 24 things here because, well, it’s for me. 😉 But it’s fair to say I’ll be posting of a few of them along the way on my Instagram account.)


So here I am sharing a little bit of the festive season with you, dear knitters – I hope you have time for your own personal celebrations and reflections as the year winds down. And there’s always time to treat one’s self to some personal knitting projects as well! If you’re staring down a long list of gift knitting or gift shopping to get done in the next few weeks, don’t forget some moments for yourself when things are hectic.

Have a great first week of December ahead!




  1. Great idea – I would love to see your list of activities you have on your cards

  2. What a lovely idea!

  3. Hope you get to the mittens. I forced myself to knit little socks a few years ago, and am happy to see the, featured at my daughter’s this year.

  4. I love this idea and am definitely stealing it for future use.

  5. What a wonderful idea! I would love for you to share some of the activities you enjoyed doing because this is definitely an interesting method to making your own advent calendar 🙂

  6. That looks very pretty. Can you just give
    a few examples please?
    And it is indeed unbelievable that it is already December.
    For our calendar i have reused last years sewn 48 small green and red bags for my 2 children. They are filled with tiny things, for example a baloon… And i fixed them with golden ribbon to the handrail of our stairs all the way up. It looks really nice but i wish i could for once plan it better and actually put something knitted into some of the bags.

  7. I don’t do advent stuff with my family (though I remember getting a little piece of chocolate every day with the advent calendars my mom would buy), but the idea of doing a good deed every day of advent seems like a lovely tradition. Maybe next year…

  8. I love this, seems like a great way to get into the spirit!

  9. cindy carpenter · ·

    where are your little cork dudes?

  10. Erin Joan Snyder · ·

    I love this idea enough that I might steal it for myself! 🙂 I’ve always loved advent calendars even though the chocolate inside is always waxy and gross. This year I thought about getting one of those Lego advent calendars with the toys inside, but I can’t really justify the cost or the added clutter, especially since it’s not like I have kids who will play with the legos. I think maybe I’ll make an advent calendar of actions, like you did, with things like “bake christmas cookies,” “make little stocking stuffer gifts for my friends’ kids” and “donate to the food bank”.

  11. I like how simple and still decorative yours is! I’m resigned to needing to knit one of those sets, at this point. The method we’re using this year is too annoying. And I think I need pockets of some sort.

  12. Inventive as always, Glenna. Thanks for posting it. It’s a note of calm in the raucous symphony of December. I like this one, too.

  13. What a lovely idea 😀

  14. Oh this is a wonderful idea! I might have to come up with my own version.

  15. LOVE it! Copying the idea right now… soon…

  16. This is such an awesome idea. I do admit that I wish I could see the ones you don’t want to show us. I’m just nosey, though LOL.

  17. see, it IS totally blog-worthy! What a great idea to make the most of the holiday season.

  18. New is the long-forgotten old .. .. as I have rediscovered knitting, I’m going to be all resourceful and knit a Christmas present. A tiny hand-knit (could that be a word?) could be a great Christmas present for someone else! Tiny stockings? Cute!

  19. I have stolen your idea as monthly resolutions. Just gone through my knitting stuff and wrote a list of all those unfinished projects, sorting out parts of my stash and things I want to do by next Christmas. Stuck them on the back of old birthday cards and will pull out one each month. Thank you!

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