KasSnippets - November 2014

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KasSnippets - November 2014

 

REPORTS FROM SOUTH AFRICA

The Good Hope Day Care Centre

It was unusually warm (almost stuffy and airless) inside the corrugated iron shelter that day although there was a distinct chill in the air outside.  We bundled the group of children in their blankets and beanies and handed out the lovely toys you have sent us.  We also gave the principal warm tops for the children and asked her to kindly size them correctly for each of the children.  It is not fair to subject these little ones to undressing in the cold and trying on of new tops while they shiver and shake, so we prefer to request that the teachers choose an appropriate top for each child to take home.  It is amazingly difficult to differentiate between the boys and girls, too, and we do not wish to offend by getting things wrong! 

Full Report : The Good Hope Day Care Centre

Other recent reports :

THE BUCCLEUCH PRIMARY SCHOOL BLANKET DRIVE !

A KAS ROAD TRIP - DAY TWO !

 A KAS ROAD TRIP - DAY ONE !

KNIT-A-SQUARE SHOP

 

 

PRODUCT OF THE MONTH

Set of 4 Christmas Cards - $4.95

Spread the word of your ongoing commitment to the vulnerable children of South Africa by sending “Season’s Greetings” with a KAS Christmas card.

Sending a KAS Christmas card is a wonderful way to greet your friends and raise awareness of Knit-a-Square at the same time.

These cards are blank in the middle for your personal message. The cards are laid out two-to-a-page, with beautiful colour photos of the children on the front.

Please note that these cards are a digital product, which will be emailed to you shortly after purchase. They are in a format which is ready to be printed at most local printing shops or on your home printer.

After receiving the download, you are permitted to print unlimited copies


Link to KasShop item KAS Christmas Cards

THE GREAT KAS-KARD KONTEST

101 (or more) uses for Knit-a-Square Donation Cards

The Kontest ended October 31 with 539 views and many wonderful suggestions for using these cards. They are a terrific way to give a gift in someone's name by making a cash donation to KAS or choosing an item from the KAS shop to be sent in their name.

We are really hoping that many of our members will make use of these cards as we enter the gift-giving season.

Just think about the possibilities - the postmaster who patiently deals with our parcels, your pastor, the ladies who knit and donate squares to you, Aunt Murgatroyd, who dosn't need another bottle of hand lotion but has a soft spot in her heart for vulnerable children,,,, the list goes on

You can purchase these Donation Cards here : Link to Cards

All eligible suggestions were put in a jar and we had a random draw.

THE WINNER is Maria Ryder #10 

who came up with this marvelous idea

"Insert a card in my childrens' Christmas sock to let them know Santa has sent a gift from them to kids in S. Africa"

Congratulations, Maria! You will be receiving a pdf. for the cards by email.

THE GREAT KAS-KARD KONTEST

 

 KAS REACHES GREAT HEIGHTS FOR CHILDREN

    

A JOURNEY AROUND THE WORLD !

This challenge is going to take us around the planet whilst reaching great heights & piles of squares - 178,000 to be precise, in order to reach the top of Table Mountain, Cape Town in South Africa!

We are going to need 50 squares for every foot climbed!

Currently the challenge has stalled due to the postal strike, and, our pile has reached 104,170 ! 

We left California and visited Hong Kong and Japan, currently we are climbing a peak in Australia for which the pile needs to grow to

106,600 squares 

Here is our 155th target - Bluff Knoll Peak - Western Australia

Here is the link to KAS Reaches Great Heights for Children

 

Andrea Palmatier's KasBlog

The Knit (a-square) Retreat

I’ve been crocheting practically my entire life but I’ve only been knitting consistently for the past six months. Last year at this time, my friend Fi hosted her first knitting retreat. I considered going but because I didn’t knit, I didn’t think it would prove very interesting. A short 12 months later, I was graciously invited to join my friends Fi and Andrea (she’s Big A and I’m little A) for the second annual

Pines & Needles Knit Retreat.

To read the rest of the blog click : Link to the KasBlog

WHAT'S GOING ON IN

SOUTH AFRICA?

SORTED IN SOUTH AFRICA

- THE OFFICE

Estelle with one delivery that got through!

Sorted in Africa

At the time of writing, sadly the Postal Strike is still not over. The situation is the two postal unions have settled,  but one more is still negotiating.

We are aware that quite a number of members are worried that the children will be deprived, but please do relax as most of the distributions have been completed for this year. There is a backlog of parcels from the past 3 months in the pipeline, and, seamail from the UK and Australia will arriving soon. Also, the USA members have to send by airmail, so once the strike is over their goodies will reach

South Africa very swiftly.

Please do not be tempted to switch to a fast delivery courier as this will cause KAS no end of problems and could suck all our cash reserves away. Until next year, when we hopefully receive our SARs certification and processes can be put in place, please use your normal postal services. We have created a special discussion to cover the problems we experience with couriers : Courier Services

 

The JBay Recycling Project for Children 

& Stitch Witch News

Sonneblomgebedsgroep (Sunflower prayer group) of Jeffreysrus Retirement Village gave us a generous donation and spent some time visiting.

 

Brilliant news! Some of the girls have requested that the Swop Shop stocks crochet hooks and knitting needles! No doubt the Stitch Witches will be giving them a helping hand!

To see more of the photos from the various Monday sessions please click on

JBay Recycling Project for Children

JAM - Joint Aid Management South Africa

through the recommendation of Knit-a-Square, linked up with

Mama Ntombi Community Projects !

MNCP is therefore grateful to the partnership with Joint Aid Management (JAM) who provide us with the CSS+ fortified porridge which takes care of 75% of a child's daily nutritional requirement. 
Solomon Qadi, MNCP Community Care Worker facilitates this project. He has to get up very early to start preparations by 6.15a.m. From 6.30a.m. onwards children begin to arrive to have their breakfast before heading off to school. We will be monitoring the children's progress who are on this nutritious porridge. We are also thankful to the Grannies from the community who assist Solomon. Currently we are feeding on average 125 children a day, and the numbers are growing!

 

 

To read and see more photographs of this development

 please click here

As well as supplying Mama Ntombi with their nutritious porridge, JAM Switzerland Team have continued their makeovers - two more centres, refreshed and replenished! Click on the links below :

Rise Up Day Care Centre

Kganya Day Care Centre

  

 SPREADING THE WORD,

MEMBERS & GROUP NEWS!

News from Sandy McDonald

(co-founder of Knit-a-Square)

Sandy is preparing the Knit-a-Square Calendar 2015 and we hope it will be in the KAS Shop by the end of December. However, the main news is that Sandy gave a TEDx Talk Melbourne which was videoed and is available on YouTube : http://youtu.be/YtuYmwKtiDE

In the talk Sandy, talks about her development and journey through the business world to helping to develop Knit-a-Square. Through the use of the internet Sandy has shown that we, as individuals, are more than capable of creating changes that ripple across the oceans.

In recent times Sandy has had to focus on the needs of her family, but it is well worth watching the video to understand how KAS developed and evolved into the active and life-changing organisation that it has become!
Sandy is preparing a discussion to go on the forum, when we embed the film into the video category.

by Anne Powell

As you all know, we have two Pinterest pages.

The page at http://www.pinterest.com/anne1464/ is devoted to our Monthly Themes and we have 87 followers who are repinning to their own pages some of the squares you have made

Our second page, Knit-a-Square South Africahttp://www.pinterest.com/warmkids/, is devoted to news about KAS - distributions, the team, emergency outreach, the KAS Shop KasSnippets etc.

This is the page that is so very important in spreading-the-word about what we are doing.

We have 97 followers on this page and those people have a grand total of 37394 followers!! If each of the 97 repinned just one of our pins to their page, the KAS website address would appear 37,394 times on Pinterest.

Approximately 30 of the 97 followers are KAS members. Some of you are already repinning from Knit-a-Square South Africa - Thank you!

If you are aready a follower and have a Pinterest page, please consider adding a Board and pinning an item from KAS SA now and then so all of your followers will see it.

If you are not already a Follower, please go to the main page at http://www.pinterest.com/warmkids and click Follow before you start exploring the various Boards so that you will be notified everytime there is something new on the page

 

Knit-a-Square Song

Thanks to the finale of last months October Challenge lead by Gloria Grandy (Nova Scotia, Canada), KAS now has its very own musical!

This really was a 'family production'! The lyrics, music, vocals, instrumentation, video and engineering involved Gloria, her brothers Dale & Dwight Mallory with Stephanie Drury adding the harmonies!

If you have not had a chance to listen to it yet, here is the link : 

 

It has been viewed 1,763 times since it was revealed on 

27th October !!!!

 

 As well as introducing Knit-a-Square and spreading-the-word around the world, Gloria included a special 'thank you' to all the contributors who have helped children these past six years!

The video can be used as an inspiring tool for anyone who plans to give a talk about Knit-a-Square. Its jaunty tune and uplifting message will relax and help an audience to feel comfortable!

We'd love as many members as possible to comment on the Video discussion page to ensure that all the compliments are kept in one archive.

Click to go to the KAS Song Video

 

GROUP FOCUS

 

             CLEAR LAKE UNITED METHODIST CHURCH, HOUSTON, TEXAS

 

This very active group, organized by Helen Flagg, has been sending parcels to KAS since September 2009

.

To date the Clear Lake KAS group is approaching 10,000 squares sent to South Africa. They have also contributed sweaters, vests, KASCuddles, hundreds of hats, socks, underwear, soft toys, school supplies, books, yarn, hand-warmers, and needlework tools.  Helen developed the pattern for our very popular knitted KasCuddle.

The group of about 21 meets once a month. They have a small nucleus of 7 or 8 that comes to meetings constantly, plus they also have community knitters and some mystery knitters who contribute and leave their completed donations in a box in the church office each month

As with any group sending large numbers of parcels to KAS, postage costs can be a problem.  This group at Clear Lake is a positive inspiration for all of us and shows just what can be done.

The group’s postage runs anywhere from $200.00 to $250.00 per month. They use mailing bags where possible to cut down on the postage weight. They have received support from the church through fundraisers during Missions week such as Sponsor-a-Square with examples of their work on display. The United Methodist Women’s group has been very kind in donating funds from their Christmas bazaar at the church, . Some Sunday School classes have donated and the group also received permission to have donations come from checks in the collection plate in Sunday services. They also have had many donations from outside the church.

Another source of postage funding came in a very thoughtful way. On the death of one of our longtime knitters, her husband requested that memorial donations in her name be sent to our Knit-a-square group for postage costs. We were touched that this type of memorial not only honored the memory of her faithful contributions, but also benefited the children in need.

One of the stalwarts of the Clear Lake group is Evelyne Martin. She was born in Germany, and her grandmother taught her to crochet when she was five or six years old. Her mother taught her to knit when she was nine or ten years old. She married an American Airman and came to the United States in 1966. They have four children: three girls and a boy. They have seven grandchildren and one beautiful great granddaughter.

Evelyne contributes many squares, hats, KASCuddles, handwarmers, sweaters, and vests to the KAS church group every month.

Helen has this to say about the Clear Lake Group: “It is amazing what can be accomplished to further Knit-a-Square’s goals by coming together in a group. And it is not simply the children in South Africa who benefit.

Some of our members have been through illnesses including chemo and have reported that their knitting and crocheting have seen them through some dark times and given them a worthwhile project to focus their minds on when they have had daily difficulties with illness. There is camaraderie as well as a sense of fulfillment in the division of labor in a group and working together in a common goal of service. It is a privilege to have the opportunity to serve the children with love through Knit-a-Square.”

 

THE BLANKET ROOM COLLECTION !

The variety of blankets is wonderful to behold and lots more added this month, please visit and see if you can spot your own squares! 


The Blanket Room Collection

 KAS MONTHLY THEMES

November Theme - Bugs, Slugs and Hugs

lead by Linda Maltby

Linda kicked off the Theme for November with this beautiful yellow and black rimmed square to represent a Swallowtail Butterfly!

The children of South Africa miss out on so much. 

Shall we have some November fun and wrap each child

“As Snug as a Bug in a Rug”

 

   To see Linda's introduction to this unusual theme, please do go to 

Theme for November

 

Blue-faced Wiggle-squiggle Bug November 2014 KASNov14Squares November - Beetle 'BUG HUGS' THEME- Rosy Maple Moth   NOVEMBER 2014 THEME - Ladybug The Very Hungry Catterpillar NOVEMBER 2014 THEME - BUGS, SLUGS AND HUGS November - Hugs Nov. Challenge 5 November - Field of Wildflowers NOVEMBER 2014 THEME - BUGS, SLUGS AND HUGS Snails Nov 14 NOVEMBER 2014 THEME - Hug Nov. themeNovember Theme 2014 - Bugs, Slugs and Hugs.November 2014. Bookworm #2NOVEMBER THEME - Bee on a flowerNOVEMBER 2014 THEME - Fantasy snail15/11/14Ladybird mitre square

Here is a selection of the recent single colour squares - which are the backbone of KAS blankets and provide a wonderful frame for the above more exotic squares: 

    

October challenge 2014 - Favourites My first Square!!! :)Double moss stitch blanketNovember - Tunisian HoneycombNovember Theme 2014 - Bugs, Slugs and Hugs.

 
and here are some of the November goodies!
       

KAS Stripes & Triangles GOKAS CuddleHoney CombZanny's T Sweater No.5Scarf & Handwarmers

2014 Challenge Themes

and the final theme of the year is :

DECEMBER - UN-CHALLENGE - time to relax, have fun, and get ready for the holidays - Susan Haines

NAVY BLUE SCARF CHALLENGE

For those of you who like to prepare, or even start before the gun goes off, here are the details of this forthcoming challenge!

We are asking for NAVY BLUE scarves measuring 100-120cm (40-47 inches) long, with 10cm (4 inch) tassels on either end. The yarn can be double knit or chunky. Gina is developing a pattern, or feel free to find one off the internet. They can be knitted in various stitches as long as the scarf will lay flat.

Knit-a-Square is linking up with a South African company for this particular project and we will have more details of this and other projects in the pipeline to share with you very soon.

MONTHLY THEMES FOR 2015

Following the discussion on the Forum and amongst the Moderator Team, we have come up with an outline list for 2015. This year two members have volunteered to help the Mod Team host the Themes, Elaine Jones (Colour Collison!) and Susan Donaldson (Queen of the Grannies!) - and very much appreciated!

As time passes the titles will be refined, but at least we can give you a taster of the areas covered and give members an opportunity to add to their stashes!

JANUARY - The Garden - anything from the garden - Christine Chiplin supported by Linda Maltby

FEBRUARY - Think like a Kid - Four legged friends, Counting Squares, Word Squares - all with African Flavour, - Anne Powell

MARCH - Colour Collision - Rainbows, Kaleidoscope, Nifty Neons - Elaine Jones

APRIL - One-Color Squares - PJs and Textures [Including Autumn Glory, Pretty Pinks, Ruby Reds ... and so on.] - Gloria Grandy

MAY - Variegated Yarn - this is one of the most popular and is enjoyed by the members - Bev

JUNE - Stripes & Zig Zags - another popular item - Pam Antink

JULY  - Christmas - Glorious Greens & Reds - Debbie Posmontier and Sue Gillman

AUGUST -  "Flags - the international KAS community" - Heather Mensah

SEPTEMBER Fabulous Faces - Smiley faces, Animal & People faces - Robin Monsees

OCTOBER - Grannies & Garters - Susan Donaldson

NOVEMBER - Oceans/Land/Sky/Space Valerie Zalewski supported by Linda Maltby

DECEMBER - Year End UFOs, Stash Busters, Plain Janes, Easy Peezies and other Favorites - Susan Haines

 

TALLY  or ITEM COUNT NEWS

by Linda Maltby

The South African Postal Strike is in its third month.  Because of the strike, the Knit-a-Square team did not report an

October Squares tally.    

Although there have been some positive negotiations, please do not send any parcels until notified. 

Sorting the backlog of international mail at Bryanston Post Office will be a difficult task and parcels will not be received by the S.A. team in mailing order….do not despair if your parcel, sent months ago, isn't on the next list. 

 

 

DECEMBER PATTERN OF THE MONTH

by Linda Maltby 

  

Checkerboard Square - a knit pattern by Helen Flagg(USA)

 

This stitch pattern creates a gently textured square, and can easily be adapted for any yarn or gauge.

The square will give the child a tactile experience as they explore the ‘bumps and hollows’ created with this stitch.

 

The checkerboard pattern provides an opportunity to experiment with colours as well as providing texture and warmth.

The Checkerboard square

 is available in

The KAS Pattern Book

If you find another pattern in the book you would like to try,

please do !

 

THE KAS CUDDLE BUG !

Elaine Jones

This delightful toy has been designed as the mascot for KAS. It will give hours of fun to the child who receives it. 

 

 Baby KasCuddle Bug - Crochet Pattern

KAS PATTERN BOOK - THE NEXT STEP

We are excited to announce the expansion of the

KAS Pattern Book

 

The KAS Pattern Book has a new category for sewing patterns !

Our very first pattern is the fabulous Fleece Cuddle 

by Lillian White (UK). 

Like the knit and crochet versions, the Fleece Cuddle will keep a little one warm and cozy as she sleeps on the cold, damp ground.

Lillian has provided detailed instructions along with photographs to help you sew your own beautiful Cuddle.

More sewing patterns will be added in the new year .

Click on the KAS Pattern Book for this lovely pattern.

    


 

SQUARE HEART OF THE MONTH AWARD

Edited this month by Gloria Gandy

The Square Heart Award for November 2014 is for

Joan Anthony - Harrow Weald, UK

   


Don't you just want to hug this adorable little teddy!!!

Joan has been a member of the Square Circle Forum since March 2012.  She was the lucky winner of a die machine and in her words, "I have a new toy to play with."

 

To read the rest of the award please click here !

 

 KAS FACEBOOK PAGE

      

3 amigos    CUDDLE FISH FROM LADY A    IMG_0831    Cuddle fish from Lady A   Fish Double Square

     

We have received an additional and astonishing 307 Likes on the Facebook page so far during October-November taking our total to 8,262 !    We also copy the messages etc received on Facebook to the Forum for anyone who is not a member of FB.

 

FINAL THOUGHTS

THE BIG CUT

Knit-a-Square member, Maddie Murray decided to donate almost 10" of her locks to be made into a wig for a Cancer victim.  She chose the Pantene Shampoo Company because they make the wigs and donate them free to people who could not otherwise afford to buy them.

Pantene suggests that asking a Cancer survivor to "make the cut" is a good idea, so grannie Anne Powell volunteered to do the deed...... with pruning shears no less, and a diabolical look in her eye!!!  Actually we resorted to scissors in the end and Maddie looks great with her new hairdo.

 

Is he excited, or what !!!! 


Photograph from the Santa Shoebox Project