Archive for November, 2009

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Normal Service will return soon

November 25, 2009

I’ve been very ill the last couple of days hence no posts but am hopefully going to resuming normality soon.

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Sad news and personal quandries

November 20, 2009

That sweet little newborn donkey I posted a link to on Monday didn’t survive the week. She was named Flitta for she flitted in and out of her lovely owners lives, and I can’t imagine how hard it must have been to lose an animal who’s birth had been so looked forward to and anticipated.

I’ve only ever lost my beloved childhood tabby cat (it was a mixture of old age and a tumour) called Pudding (her brother was called Pie – a ginger tom who fathered a whole host of ginger cats who live in the cemetery near my parents house). My parents had had her since before I was born. She and her brother were found as stray kittens. She was a glorious grumpy beautiful cat who moved into the outhouse by choice when I was bought home from the hospital. The tumour meant she had to be put to sleep, but it was starving her to death and she was odviously in pain. I still miss her, and I was sure for a long time I could still spot her out of the corner of my eye.
I got such a fright one day when a new tabby cat from down the road, who looked just like her had wandered into the garden and decided to sit on the windowsill in puddings favourite spot – it was an old wooden sill so it must have been in the sun a lot of the day.

She was an old cat and it was her time unlike poor Flitta.

When I live somewhere I can have a pet I really really do want to have a cat again.

I know cats and knitting probably don’t mix but still, I still want one – another tabby, silver or tortie.

I was originally going to write this post purely to help myself decide on whether to carry on the toe up sock I’m knitting.

I’m enjoying the process but I really don’t like the fabric the yarn is producing. I’m using King Cole Zig Zag and the fabric it produces is thin and has no smoosh to it, and smoosh is important in socks. Plus, I don’t have the energy these days to make things I may never wear.

So, do I frog it?
Does anyone want the yarn?
Or do I just pull the needles out and throw the yarn away?

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Things I’m working on.

November 18, 2009

Before I launch into the promised update on the things I’ve been working on I just wanted to say that my blood tests are all clear, which means I am a step closer to getting my M.E. diagnosis moved from provisional to official.

Anyway, onto the knitting 😉

I’ve made an executive decision that, in light of my current health problems I need to limit the number of projects I’m working on at any one time.

I’ve worked it out to 4.

  • 1 ongoing project – my hexagon blanket
  • 1 large project – like bloomers, a jumper/sweater etc.
  • 1 sock project – self explanatory really.
  • 1 portable project – hats, mitts, scarves etc.

Tsuki has kindly offered to teach me some crochet stitches so I may be adding a crochet project to the list.

Hexagon Blanket
I’m up to 60 hexagons now, which is a respectable amount but not enough. I have lots to go, obviously. This blanket is going to be big and snuggly so I need to make more, but I like marking off these milestones of 10 hexagons.

I tried pinning a few of them out the other day and it gives you a bit of an idea how they will look when blocked. The photo is a bit odd as they are pinned to a cushion, but I wanted to see how they looked.

I’ve decided how I am going to join them all. I want to crochet around the edges of them all with black country style DK and then crochet them together. I found a really useful tutorial.

Yes, I’m crazy and this is most definitely a labour of love but I can see it in my mind and it will be finished eventually 🙂

Bloomers
This yarn is gorgeous. Seriously.
The legs are complete and I’ve joined for the body, and am working the decrease rows for the waist section. Its a slow knit due to how many stitches are needed to go round my enormous behind, but when they are done they are gonna be beautiful.

Although the legs and body are almost done, I think the ruffle and lace are going to take just as long as the legs and body.

Swap parcel
I joined a Journal swap on Ravelry a month or so back. It was my first swap on there, so I wasn’t sure what to expect but  I got paired with a very cool lady in the wonderfully named Berryville, Virginia, USA. My swap partner Bette really spoilt me rotten. She runs a really cool yarn company called Beyond Basic Knits.

In my parcel, carefully wrapped in that wine coloured tissue paper,  there was:  2 notebooks one of which is made from something called sweet-paper that’s made from leftovers from sugar processing, some green tea (hidden), some Chai tea, and some Christmas tea (yum!), a pink pen, a smiley card (not in the photo), a book called Creative Journal Writing which I’ve hardly been able to put down and the most gorgeous purple sock weight yarn.

The yarn is the most AMAZING purple. Its sitting there, in its twist, whispering sweet nothings to me, just wanting to be made into something.

Trouble is, I can’t decide. I want more mitts and a hat and a cowl, and there might be just enough there…or socks obviously..but what kind? Toe socks because I want to make some and it would make Thene squee?…Plain to show off the gorgeous yarn?….ankle socks?… Its just going to wait till I can decide!Damn my indecisiveness!

If you want to see what I sent her she’s posted a photo over at her blog here.

Socks

I’ve finished my Industrial Rose Socklets and will photo them when I’m not wearing them. They are so comfy! I may use the design again when I can work out the loose stitch issue when changing from purl to knit.

And I’m still working on my toe up socks. Actually I need to put some needle time in on those. and photograph them.

Other Stuff

Now, in the kitchen I have bulgar wheat, pomegranate seeds, and a butternut squash and am going to try and make that lovely salad I mentioned the other day. Then its time for another nap.

So, what do you think of what I’ve been making?

 

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Monday Musings

November 16, 2009

The weather in my neck of the woods:

Wet, and cold,. There has been much rain this morning, and if the weather people are to be believed, more to come this week.

One of my simple pleasures:

The softness of my blankets and the warmth of my wheatbag.

On my bedside table:

I’m still reading Court of The Air by Stephen Hunt. I’m working through it as energy allows and am really enjoying it. It has wonderful edges of steampunk, penny dreadfuls and daring adventures. Perfect escapism.

And I’ve just discovered he’s written  more books! Oh me, oh my!

On my TV:

Last night, it was Dr Who; The Waters of Mars. I make no attempt to hide the fact that I am a huge Dr Who fan and I am sadly watching the run up to the leaving of my favourite of the modern Doctors, but I am interested in seeing where they go with the New doctor.

We watch a lot of vintage Who in this household and I find Peter Davidson’s oddly comforting, Sylvester McCoy’s amusing, and Tom Baker’s is just great.

On the menu for tonight:

Garlic Crumb Chicken with Lemon and Coriander Couscous, Peas and Carrots.

On my To Do List:

Get blood test results.
Make some more hexagons.
Iron patchwork fabric.
Take some photos for the blog.

Done from last weeks To Do List:

Make some hexagons towards the blanket.
Work on my rag doll. I’ve neglected her too long.
Get better.

New Recipe I tried last week:

None this week. Its been a getting from day to day week.

New Recipe I’m trying this week:

Last week, in one of my foraging trips to my little street of shops, I went to the amazing little deli we have The Good Food Shop and bought some Bulgar Wheat with Butternut Squash and Pomegranate. I’ve never tasted anything like it. It was amazing; nutty bulgar wheat, butternut squash that was cooked to perfection – cooked through, but still maintaining its texture and the amazing and unique flavour of the juicy little pomegranate seeds/kernels…what do you call them?!

I want to try and make some myself 🙂

In the craft basket:

Hexagons, hexagons, and more hexagons.

Knitted ones. 2 more to go and thats 60 done 🙂 Only another 100 or so to go after that! More on that tomorrow 🙂

Paper ones to cut out for patchwork. I had to rip out all the ones I’d already done as most of them weren’t true hexagons, and then I can restart once I’ve ironed all the little squares of fabric.

Looking forward to:

Getting my blood test results back.

Favorite photo from last week:

posygetscozycoycrochet

This one from Posie Gets Cozy. Shes one of the blogs I read regularly.

I just love the colours, and intricate but still simple texture of the crocheted motif.

Favourite blog post from the last week:

Farmgirl Fare posts a weekly dose of cute and this Sunday posted an extreme dose of cute ; A new born donkey.

I’ve loved donkeys for years. They have such personality. Go look. It really is adorable.

Lesson learned the past few days

I’ve learnt two:

Blood tests can give bad bruises – I forget everytime. This time, she was digging around for a vein so have a huge bruise.

That if I want to learn crochet I need proper lessons; saving up has commenced.

TTFN!

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The brain and blogging

November 13, 2009

image

My blogging fu hasn’t been working properly the last week or so.

I’ve still not been well,and so very tired, and this week has been busy with doctors, assessments and blood tests.

On Monday, after a lot of thought, I went to see my doctor about the fact my current illness wasn’t going away and I went armed with a list of my symptoms and how long I’ve had them.

After some discussion with my doctor He’s given me a provisional diagnosis for M.E.

I have to admit that I’d thought about my having it several times and that it could be the underlying issue under my other health problems.

Yesterday, I went for a reassessment for therapy and am being referred for Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, and today I’ve been for blood tests to rule out other causes of my symptoms. I left feeling a bit like a pincushion and have those odd bruises you get on the inside of your elbows that do nothing but ache.

I’ll get my results next week, and see the doctor after that and in time I will get an official diagnosis and start learning how to manage the illness.

All this has been very tiring; both physically and mentally which means I’ve been sleeping a lot, and not really been in the headspace to blog but I do so want to get back to it. I just need to work out how to take better photos and what I want to take pictures of.

I have a swap parcel to show you (such lovely things), there has been some progress on my bloomers, and have managed a few more of my hexagons for my blanket.

Does anyone know any good photo tutorials?

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Unavoidable delays and Monday musings.

November 8, 2009

Sorry for not posting last week my lovelies, but I’ve had a hell of a week; I’m still unwell and have seen the doctor again. I’m having blood tests done on Friday to check for underlying issues, like thyroid and kidneys and then the diagnosis will go from there.

I’ve been struggling this week with foggyheadedness and energy levels that seemed to evaporate as soon as I tried to do anything more substantial than sleep.

I did manage to knit a couple of hexagons though.

The weather in my neck of the woods:

Cold…really clear and really cold. The sky is a beautiful blue and you can see your breath in the air. Hot water bottle time I think.

One of my simple pleasures:

Will be leafing through the Cath Kidston catalogue that arrived this morning with a hot chocolate.

On my bedside table:

A new book (to me) bought at the charity shop; Court of The Air by Stephen Hunt. I’ve not read much but am enjoying it so far.

courtoftheair

On my TV:

Am rather enjoying Round the World in 80 Days and have the oddest yearnings to watch Michael Palin’s various adventures, Long Way Round, Long Way Down and By Any Means.

At the moment I’m also missing All Creatures Great and Small and The Hairy Bikers.

On the menu for tonight:

Not sure..something simple probably. It may be a cupboard special – something made from the packets, tins, and dried stuff in the cupboard.

On my To Do List:
Knit a hexagon or two for my blanket.
Do a couple of rows on my bloomers – I have joined for the body now, so there’s more stitches.
Rest.

Done from last weeks To Do List:
I managed a couple of hexagons and then have been very slowly working through the 58 I’ve got done, weaving in the ends so I don’t have to do it down the line.

New Recipe I tried last week:
I tried Little Italy Chicken and Spinach last week and this weekend there was a remake of the lovely Autumn Sausage Casserole I made a few weeks ago: and again he pilfered the leftovers for lunch!

New Recipe I’m trying this week:

No idea!

In the craft basket:

Only really have energy to focus on one thing so am focusing on my blanket.

Looking forward to:

Getting blood test results back and getting some answers.

Lesson learned the past few days

Sometimes sleep is the best medicine, and sometimes laughter is.

No pictures or links this week. I’ve not been organised enough. Will try for next week though.

TTFN!

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Monday Musings

November 2, 2009

The weather in my neck of the woods:

Cold…I’ve resorted to a second pair of socks and a hat and mitts indoors….Might be time to put the central heating on!

One of my simple pleasures:

Warming my fingers on a mug of rose tea while  sat on the step in the hallway.Its a good step for thinking.

On my bedside table:

The  “exploding pink fluff” of the Last Herald Mage trilogy. My concentration is shot at the moment so its taking me time to get through it. I’m 3/4 of the way through the first book so far.

On my TV:

Flashforward still. I am finding James May’s Toy Stories cool, and I want a giant airfix model now.

On the menu for tonight:

Leftovers from last night – waste not, want not!

On my To Do List:

Make some hexagons towards the blanket.
Work on my rag doll. I’ve neglected her too long.
Get better.

Done from last weeks To Do List:
With the help of the fella’s mum much of the laundry mountain was sorted out.
Getting better dammit – am still working on this one but I twisted my knee on Thursday.

New Recipe I tried last week:

Little Italy Chicken and Spinach. I shall tell you all about it on Friday.

New Recipe I’m trying this week:

I may finally make the cookies I’ve been talking about for weeks!

In the craft basket:

Other than focusing on the blanket and my doll, there’s plans in the cauldron but nothing concrete yet.

Looking forward to:

Feeling up to planting the bulbs for spring flowers in my container garden. I want daffodils, hyacinths, crocuses and anenomes.

Favorite photo from last week:

Farmgirl Fare put up this beautiful photo of a little brown bat – a mouse eared bat found in North America.

Farmgirl Fare - bat 7

I know not everyone is a fan of bats but I am.

Favourite blog post from the last week:

I’ve rather fallen behind in my blog reading. Shall get back up to speed for next week.

Lesson learned the past few days

That sometimes you just have to take it one day at a time.

TTFN!