Then The Cat Found My Ball of Yarn

I'm planning a small Christmas this year.  A simple Christmas.  I am shunning excessive consumerism.  I am banning over-spending.  I am casting it aside where it can join the ranks of other old-fashioned Christmas items like fruit cake and icicle tinsel.  And Jesus.

That's rather sad, isn't it?  Just thinking about it makes me nostalgic for the olden days - Christmas is definitely not the same without tinsel!  

Sure, icicle tinsel was really messy, static-clung to everything but the tree, clogged up the vacuum cleaner, and was irresistible to cats (as anyone who has ever had to pull a piece out of their cat's butt can attest to), but it made the tree just so gosh darn glittery!

So...no tinsel and no excessive consumerism.  This year I have decided to give hand-made gifts made by my very own two hands.  I looked up some gift ideas on-line that sounded simple enough, bought the supplies, and set to work.  I can't tell you everything I'm working on as my family does (on the rare occasion) read my blog, but I've more than enough flub-ups to keep you entertained.

First, I learned you can't add fresh rose petals to glycerin soap.  I mean, who would have guessed that their pretty pink freshness would instantly turn brown and rotten?  Go figure.

Then I tried my hand at making bath bombs.  You know those things you drop in the bath and they fizz and let off a nice scent while they soften the bath water?  They are supposed to be super easy to make, just one part citric acid to 2 parts baking soda.  Add a scent, some food colouring, then spritz with water until damp and pack into molds.  Voila!  But do you know what happens when you add water to citric acid and baking soda?  You create an endothermic chemical reaction that produces carbon dioxide gas.  In other words, you get a fizzing, bubbling, expanding mess of sweet-scented gunk.

And I dare any one of you to find me a single recipe for home-made bubble bath that actually bubbles.  I dare you.

So, leaving behind a kitchen cluttered with my yucky soaps, messy gunk, and impotent bubble bath,  I got my sewing basket and knitting needles and moved to the living room.

There I sat in my favorite chair, knitting away contentedly in the self-assurance that (finally) this was something within my capabilities.  Then the cat found my ball of yarn.  With a swat of his paw, he sent it rolling across the carpet, darted after it, then tackled it under the coffee table.  Another swat sent the ball rolling off in a different direction.  Then another pounce and tackle.  And on and on he played until my carpet was a complicated web of yarn.

Now, if any of you have experience with knitting, you will know that it's a very relaxing activity.  So, rather than becoming alarmed at the cat and the mess he was making, I was rather enjoying his antics - until I came to a wet break in my yarn.

He had chewed through it!  My cat was chewing the yarn!  There he sat at my feet, (looking deceivingly innocent as only a cat can) as he ate the yarn!

Now I'm back to thinking about icicle tinsel...


  1. We did the handmade gifts last year and it was a hit! So I'm trying it again this year---but I'm running out of time...YIKES!

    I absolutely love the way you write your posts! Fantastic!

  2. Ruth PearsonNovember 29, 2011

    I bake for people. They love it. We don't do the religious part. So, I guess it's a winter solstice celebration a few days late.

  3. Such a homemade effort on my part could only end in disaster. I, too, have a cat. But kudos to you for trying!

  4. This brought back some fond memories of my own. Thank you & good luck.

  5. Good luck with your homemade endeavors young one. I really do think they make the best gifts.:)

  6. susan swiderskiNovember 30, 2011

    Oh, cats DO make every endeavor more enjoyable, don't they? (And more challenging ...) My two helped me wrap presents yesterday. OY! Eh, so what if there's a bit of hair stuck to the tape, right? Good luck with your homemade goodies. It's worth the effort.

  7. I wish I had your talent for creating unique gift items!

  8. Yes? You've also had some mishaps with cats and tinsel?

  9. I've got Christmas baking somewhere on my to-do list. I expect I'll get to it eventually. Happy Winter Solstice!

  10. I know exactly what you mean about running out of time! And thank you for the kind words :)

  11. LOL, cats are such pains sometimes. But, we love them anyway. I had to laugh about the tinsel and the cat's butt, brought back memories of childhood for sure! Both my cat and my dog had great appetites for tinsel.

    Good luck with the rest of your gift-making, I hope the kitty leaves you in peace!

  12. Oh, it's so nice that you tried to do all those lovely gifts though. It's the thought that counts, right?

    I too love the look of tinsel on the tree. I too had a stupid cat....once. You have to find a Christmas store that has antique decorations.....there is actually TIN tinsel. It just hangs on your tree and it comes in different shapes: but I stuck with the long, thin twisted variety. You'd never know until you touch it. I also have small stars - together they look awesome!

  13. Kristy LorenzenNovember 30, 2011

    I used to try to do a lot of homemade gifts, but it gets so stressful! I am only doing ONE this year - a blanket for my best friend and now I'm worried it won't be done in time to get it shipped in time. There's something to be said for online shopping!

  14. I thought a bath bomb happened when you jumped in the tub after eating at the Mexican restaurant?
    My bad.
    Reminds me of a cat joke:
    New book out-"Revenge of Garfield at the Nudist Camp"
    Claude Bahls

  15. David "vanilla" LacyNovember 30, 2011

    A love of cats and a hobby of knitting. Has to make an interesting combination!

  16. Romina GarciaDecember 01, 2011

    Haha!! I'm dying of the flu over here and reading this post has given me the good chuckle I needed. You and I sounds so similar!! Hope something works for you soon x

  17. Blimey, you should tazer the cat or make it into a kebab.

    But I am WAY impressed about you trying to make all the Christmas presents ... respect due there chick!

    And as always ..... your post made me laugh my head off!

  18. Hope you're feeling better soon!

  19. "Appetites for tinsel" lol. You gotta love cats!