Just keep it nice in the comments :D
You scored as Rita Hayworth. You're the one who has the most fun. People are attracted to you because you don't pretend to be anything but what you are. You know you are attractive and like to play on that - which makes you even sexier. However, when it calls for you to be serious, like Rita, you need to know that only hard work will get success.
Which Classic Screen Goddess are you? (pics)
created with QuizFarm.com
Merry Christmas to all, if I don't get back to the blog in the next few days. Presents are all bought but need wrapping, the tree is up, food shopping is done, no Christmas knitting remains undone, it just remains to decide if I'm going to bake bread as my Christmas Day contribution to the extended family gathering, or just go to the bakery on Sunday and freeze them for a day. Yep, sounds like a plan...
Look out, Stash
I think Wendy Knits!
might be onto something here.
Dare I say it? I'm seriously considering joining up. I certainly need to do something to harness this relentless beast of mine (no, DH, not you lol).
The first step - once Christmas is over - will be to take a proper inventory of said stash and divest myself of all the stuff I'm not realistically going to knit in my near future.
Next I need to reassess all of the WIPS - knitting or otherwise - and work out what won't be finished (by me, anyway). Then these WIPs need to be set in some sort of priority. Then finished. Obviously. Otherwise what's the point?
Then the remaining stash needs to be put into some sort of order. I'm going to allow myself the spinning exemption, as well as two Get Out of Jail Free cards: Australian Sheep & Wool Show at Bendigo in July, and the Guild weekend away at Harrietville in March.
Phew. This might take me most of 2007. Anyone else got plans?
Merry and not so merry
Yesterday I went to my Mum's place to help her sort through and destash "a bit". Five hours later we had made some progress but not completed the job. Later yesterday I took four archive boxes of fabric and a box full of zippers over to Nichola's
place. Boy, did she think Santa had made his rounds early :D
Seriously, I'm glad Mum is destashing now and sorting through what's important or not. I'd hate to have to do it without her in many years' (I hope) time. The funniest moment was finding an unopened packet of bias binding from Kingsway Stores (anyone remember them?), labelled July 1962 and costing 2/3 (2 shillings and threepence)!! I told Mum I could show it to Mr ConnexWhinger
as proof that my hoarding habits are genetically imprinted and way beyond my control. Actually, it's probably nature and nurture!!
In a not so merry episode, one of Melbourne's quilt shops has experienced a number of thefts lately. Go and look here
for the details and what to look out for. These scummy cretins have no concept of the hours and hours that go into a work of art like this. It's almost as if they'd ripped it right out of your hands.
More knitting going on but not much to show ... yet :)
That Time of Year
Here's an extract from an email I just sent to A, who has been "hosting" my Ashford Traveller wheel (with woollee winder) this year:"No rush on the wheel, if you need to keep it until January, that's fine. It's not as if I have time to spin on my Joy at present, let alone the Traveller *boo-hoo* Although I'm hoping for more time after Christmas - yeah, I should ask Santa for an extra hour in my day. Imagine how much more you could get done with an extra 365 hours per year. That's ..... 15 days and 5 hours, or just over two weeks."
It's true, I don't think I've had the Joy out spinning for a good three months now. The knitting is certainly bowling along; I've finished my teachers' gifts (well, two out of three ain't bad), but my spinning time budget seems to be eaten up by time doing stuff for the Guild. Not complaining, just observing the irony.
So Santa, dear, if you're listening, a little wrinkle in the space-time continuum wouldn't hurt anybody really, would it?
Not Much to Say
...and how unusual is that? I hear several voices ask :)
The reason is that I've temporarily lost my voice with a summer cold. (As another school mum said to me this morning, "If you were a man, you'd have been in bed for three days!") Not lost, exactly, but I sound like a teenage boy whose voice is breaking, very squeaky. If I start sprouting hairs on my chest, I'll be seriously freaked out.
Speaking of being SFO, check out Yarn Harlot's
latest experience with her new neighbour. Now is probably a good time to warn you not to eat or drink while reading this post. You'll work out why for yourself.
Also waiting for DH to come back from Perth (again) tomorrow night. He's expressed an interest in seeing this play
, so I might have a review to post here before long. The last time I went to the theatre - not counting kinder concerts? A Christmas panto in the UK, but I guess that doesn't count, either. God, it was so much fun, though; gotta love shouting out "Oh, no, you're not!" and "Behind you!" like all the other kids :D The last serious theatre was probably a production (John Bell?) of Richard III in Canberra in 1997/98 with my brother, who was visiting from Melbourne.
Oh, and check out my friend Michelle's blog and gallery
. My favourite painting this time around? This one
Totally Lazy Sunday
Thanks for all of your lovely comments about the shawl. It's not actually for me, but as I haven't given it away yet, I can't say any more. I must say, I went to the Guild yesterday and bought the other three skeins of this Merino; it's so lush, I couldn't help myself :D
Meanwhile, here's a lazy way to enjoy your Sunday:
|You Belong in Winter|
Quiet, calm, and totally at peace...
You're happy to be at home, wrapped in a blanket, completely snowed in
Whether you're lighting a fire or having a snowball fight, you always feel best in the winter.
Sssshh ... Another FO
OK, here it is, dressing for your enjoyment (sounds vaguely tarty, doesn't it?) The ceiling fan is your friend; this dried in about two hours.
The yarn is from Andyle Farms
(just outside Melbourne); it's a 2 ply fingering weight Merino. It took less than the 150g skein to make the whole shawl.
I must say, I'm totally smitten by the idea of using ravel cord (machine knitters all nodding in unison sagely here) threaded through the straight edge to - well, get a straight edge. Saves all those scallopy points where you don't really want them.
Unlike this part, where you *do* want it to go all wavy and scallopy. (See, it even sounds like I meant it to do this.)
Here's a better view of the point of the shawl. I think this is the best part of the whole design.
Oh, sorry, haven't I told you what the pattern is yet? It's Seraphim
by Miriam Felton
, she of the Icarus shawl fame, among others.
I highly recommend Miriam's patterns, not just because they're beautiful designs, but because the presentation is so professional and easy to understand.
Unlike Dash's photographic skills. This is his idea of showing the shawl (and his mother) to advantage.
This is Goose's idea of photography - and Dash's idea of being a good photographer's assistant *sigh*
Maybe I can get Goose to stand still long enough for me to show the drape of the shawl over her shoulders. OK, yes, that is my shadow in the foreground; can't have everything. At least the shawl turned out right.
FO - only it's not mine
Go and have a look at Nikki-shell's
Beats me how a busy girl like her has time to knit or otherwise craft so stylishly, let alone blog about it all.
Sorry I've gone AWOL again, but I had some sad family news over the last couple of weeks. I don't even want to blog about it; it just feels too raw and sensitive. The main reason I don't want to blog is that I'm not the primary one affected, so it's not my life I'd be exposing to all and sundry.
I was about to say that I'll be really glad when this year is over, but that's not strictly true. Goose has had a red-hot start to school this year, and has coped with everything she's been asked to do beautifully. But I shouldn't be surprised; she is a beautiful, mature six-year-old. DH and I are still trying to work out where she gets it from; maybe it skipped a generation...
Dash has also really grown and matured this year, while enjoying his four-year-old kinder. He can now read nearly as well as his sister (who seems to be reading well beyond her year level) and is looking forward to starting school in a little over two months.
Wow. I keep asking the kids what I'll do with myself when they're both at school, but it's yet to sink in that I'll be on my own for most of the school day. DH thinks I'll be in the job market, but I keep saying I'm too busy to get a job. Seriously.
All joking aside, I'm not sure I want to put that sort of pressure on the kids (and us) before and after school. I'd be happy to hear from working parents, on themes like when do you get to hear their reading, talk about their day, etc? How does it work when you don't pick them up from aftercare until nearly 6pm? What do you do about school holidays or when the kids are sick?
I know I'm a really lucky mum. I don't have to work; I've had the last six years out of the paid workforce, and while we haven't achieved all of our financial goals, we do feel especially blessed that we've been able to give our two a home-based start to life. I'm sorry if I sound complacent or smug in any way. I'm not putting down anyone who has made other choices or taken other paths in their childrearing journey.
Hopefully I'll have a knitting FO to show next week, but it's a secret for now. Funny how I started this blog as a record of my knitting...
The things you find on your clothesline at night...
Quite cute, really. Here's some more info
on the little critters. Hope you're enjoying your Wednesday evening.
Secret Knitting Revealed!
Finally, I can reveal one of the secret knits.
OK, so it hasn't really been a secret for about 6 weeks, but I figured you wouldn't really be interested without photos, and it's taken a while to upload these pics.
The pattern is called "Rambling Rows" and I first saw this pattern four or five years ago, when John was just a baby. How do I know this? Because I made a cot-sized blanket for him, which he now uses as his kinder rest blankie.
It comes from a company in the US called Cottage Creations. No website, sorry, but if you Google for it, you'll probably find a retailer somewhere. Oh look, there's one!
Scroll down to see the afghan, as this designer - Carol Anderson - has quite a few patterns out there.
I've also bought the Paddy & Bridget dolls pattern to try (one day), the Rambling Rows Jacket, and the community knitting booklet as well. They're good additions to my reference library. Please don't email asking for copies, as a refusal may offend :D
The colours in this shot are the most accurate. You need five colours for this pattern, and it can be made in any size you like. I used Cleckheaton Machine Washable 8 ply. My inspiration for the colours came from the Handknitters Expo at Coburg Town Hall in June. Busy Bee had packs of ten balls for a substantial discount, and the burgundy, asparagus-green and denim blue were in one pack together. All I had to do was add the natural white and charcoal-grey and off we went!
First of all, the reason I love this blanket is that it's a join-as-you-go pattern, so when the body of it is finished, all you need to do is weave in the ends. This isn't too bad if you stop now and then and weave in a few at a time as you go. I do have a secret unvented method for weaving ends into garter stitch, which I may post about another time.
I finagled the edging myself. Usually I pick up stitches all around the edge of the blanket, work garter stitch in the round, increasing twice at each corner every second row and then cast off. Since this blanket is designed to be really handy for the carseat or stroller, I wanted a firmer edge for it. No reason I can articulate, I just did. (As one of Goose's T-shirts says: "Because I'm a Princess. That's why."
This time, I made the edge as usual, but when I got to the edge, I knitted a picot row (yo, K2tog all the way around) then worked garter stitch in the reverse colour order, decreasing two stitches at each corner every second row, then performed a three-needle cast-off around, having picked up the base of the original picked-up row to cast off with the live stitches. I cast off with a larger needle (5mm instead of the 4mm I used for the blanket) to make sure the edge wasn't too tight and puckery. The last photo shows the "wrong" side of the edge; you can see how neat this treatment is.
OK, I started this post this morning, sitting up in bed while I had my first coffee, and I've finished it while waiting to put the kids to bed. Hopefully tomorrow I will have permission from Cupcake's mum to post her photo, so you can see who all this work was for :D
I was browsing at the s'n'b Melbourne
Yahoo Group today, and there was a post from a newly arrived knitter, asking for local yarn sources. Here's my answer:
Hey Claire -
You don't mention where in Melbourne you are.
Your fairly ordinary yarns can be found at Spotlight
stores throughout Melbourne; they stock Cleckheaton wool which is dependable and one label can be machine-washable, as well as Panda Woolbale which can be felted, not to mention a good selection of acrylics, if that floats your boat :)
If you're east of the CBD, try Sunspun
in Canterbury, pricy but most Rowanettes end up there sooner or later. Wondoflex
in Malvern has a wide range of wool, as well as some weird and wonderful yarns. They stock Filatura di Crosa, too. Wool Baa
in Albert Park is a lovely store (probably my first choice) and has an excellent range of yarns, patterns and needles. Marta's
in Waverley Rd, East Malvern (near Caulfield station) is an Aladdin's Cave. Try to stuff your ears with cotton wool before you go in, or the yarns will all whisper to you, calling for you to take them home :D AK Traditions
in Malvern Rd, Prahran/Hawksburn has a good range of Rowan, although their main focus is their amazing range of felted handcrafts from one of the formerly-Russian republics (Kyrgyz Republic).
Wool Shop Direct (no apparent website) has a store in the city (upstairs at the cnr of Russell and Bourke) and also near Moorabbin station and in Surrey Hills. Williamstown in the inner west has Stitchery Blue
, knitting yarn and needlework generally.
I believe there's a shop out east, Doncaster/Knox way, who sells Brown Sheep and Red Heart yarns, as well as Classic Elite. Anyone know the name of this one - it seems to be one I haven't been to, odd as that may seem...
For something one-off and unusual, try the Handweavers and Spinners Guild's
Gallery in North Carlton. Guild members sell their handspun yarn there for not much more than standard 8 ply ($5.50 for 50g, roughly). You can get anything from one skein to a sweater/jumper's worth. Also in the north is Knitter's Workshop
in Brunswick, again a good range of quality yarns (last time I looked).
Most of the festivals are over for the year, except for the Textile Fibre Forum
's open day in Geelong this Saturday. WHY must it be on Grand Final day??? Sooo not fair when passions collide (go Swans!). If you go to this, say hi to Sarah Durrant
, who sells Colinette yarns in the same way that the targets of the Purana taskforce sell illicit substances.... (hi Sarah *waves cheekily and ducks for cover*)
Another out of town destination is Bendigo Woollen Mills. They give great mail order, no website. Call (03) 5442 4600 and ask for a shade card. They usually give you 10% off within a certain timeframe for new customers, just to tempt you that little bit more. Quality is excellent, and comes in 200g balls (fewer ends to darn in)
Did I forget anyone?
Welcome; hopefully we'll see you tomorrow night (and/or any last Wednesday of the month) at the meet at Prahran Market in Commercial Road, 7pm at Mojito's, licensed and great dinners!
Lots Going On
Here I am again. If I'm not careful, this blog could become a regular thing ;D
I was all so excited about my brand new Annie Accord
this week. I took her everywhere and she behaved impeccably. Tonight, however, she blotted her copybook. While reversing into my own driveway (oh the humiliation), I failed to spot the car round the corner in my neighbour's spot.
Now, in my defence, my neighbour does not drive and doesn't own a car. She has had maybe five visitors park there in the last six years we've been living here. In these circumstance the reverse parking sensors do not help, as I hit the side of my car against the bumper of the visiting car. This just after missing my neighbour's visitor, as he ducked into her front gate after I had started my reverse maneouvre. Maybe he and his car have a death wish?
Ouch and air-turned-blue for a good while. Luckily there is no discernible damage to the other car (can you damage a Datsun Stanza any more than it is at its age?), so it's just the insurance excess and DH to get over. At least now I can stop wondering when the first blemish will appear on my perfect (sob) car.
Just when I thought life was improving, as I got my knitting groove back today.....
Steve Bracks? SEXy??
Who'd have thought it? Relax, I haven't suddenly parked my taste in men in my backside :D
Yesterday I received a cheque in the mail. A cheque for $150. Apparently this supposedly covers the cost of Goose starting school this year. Here's a newsflash, Bracksy: we outlaid our dosh at the start of the year, when Goose needed her uniform, shoes, and a backpack the size of most small European principalities.
Hang on ... you mean, there's a state election coming up? And that's why we get a cheque now, so we'll theoretically remember it on voting day, come November? No chance.
Tell you what, Bracksy. I'll spend mine on yarn (hence the SEX), thanks all the same. You can take your chances in November.....
PS: Didn't Goose look ready to start school?
OK, not quite the same as Secret Pal stuff :)
I'm working on something I can't talk about at present, so I can't show you - yet. Instead, here's a photo of Dash wearing his Elephant Vest:
This photo was taken last year on our trip to the UK. We're in a field near DH's childhood home in South Gloucestershire, where he and his brothers used to go and play. There's a gentle stream through it, it's very peaceful (apart from the constant traffic - not like the old days, apparently) and the kids loved learning to throw rocks into the water. It's like a talisman of DH's past.
Anyway, the vest is from Alice and Jade Starmore's Children's Collection and I knitted it in Jamieson's Shetland 4 ply. I'm really proud of this one, as it was my first foray into Fair Isle in the round and steeking. It was one of the scariest things I've ever done, taking scissors to my knitting. You'd better believe I knitted a sample square and cut that up, first!! I used the crochet steek method, which I found in Meg Swansen's book, "Handkintting". Crochet just seemed to to be a better fit than getting out my sewing machine, although I would have done that without hesitation if the sample steek hadn't held together.
In the interests of equality, I should also show you some knitting I did for Goose. These are her Mermaid socks in Opal yarn, from Lucy Neatby's "Cool Socks, Warm Feet" (altered at Goose's request to be knee-high). I love this book, and this is the second pair I made from it. The first pair was "Crenellated Toe-Up Socks", which were my holiday knitting last year - something actually for me. Maybe one day I'll get a photo up of those.
There's some spinning going on, too, but I can't really talk about that, yet, either. Quite the secretive type, aren't I?
Mouths of Babes
Sitting here on the couch with Dash. I'm too brain-dead to knit, after a succession of bad nights' sleep. You know how it is, the kids are unwell and DH is out-of-town, so you only sleep lightly so you'll hear them if they wake.
First off, Dash asks me if the last Teletubbie is called Ho or Po. Can you imagine a little red figure, lounging seductively against a lamp post down Grey Street, babbling to the kerb-crawlers? Too funny. I'm almost certain that they don't make fishnets for that figure type. No, I do not
want to know the URL if there is such a website lol.
Next, we're watching kids gathering blackberries and Dash asks me whether, if you eat poison, you die. Yes, I answer, you'd at least get very sick.
"So why do they have poison berry yoghurt at the supermarket?"
It took me a few seconds to realise he meant boysenberry...
Anyone Remember Muttley?
Does anyone remember Muttley
, the muttering, snickering dog from the Wacky Races cartoon?
I was doing a pretty fair imitation of his cursing and muttering last night, sitting on my couch. The plan had been, with DH in Perth this week, as follows:
5pm Take Dash and Goose to my parents, bath and settle them in
7pm Go to Nichola and Kevin's lounge
and have something to eat
8pm Relax with a glass of something and listen to Pat Ashforth and Steve Plummer share their woolly thoughts
11pmish Return to parents and sleep over
Sat am Drop Goose to schoolfriend for the day to attend mutual pirate party
Sat am Drop Dash to brother's place for the day with his cousins and attend pirate storytime at Reading's
Sat am Go to Guild
for the day (bliss)
Sat pm Pick up Dash and Goose, home, baths, dinner, bed (for them) and an evening of my choice on TV
I knew this wasn't going to go to plan when Goose woke early Friday morning with a high temperature. She has always spiked a temperature quickly as a baby and hasn't really outgrown it yet. So, no school for her. I hastily arranged an alternative babysitter (16yo nephew) who could come to my place to mind the kids (Hi, Moo!) and went out to buy fish and chips for all of them. So far, so good, until at 7:30 Dash turned to me with his eyes full of tears and uttered the fateful words: "I don't want you to go out tonight", followed by wrapping himself around me and hanging on like a koala in a cyclone.
Tell me, what choice did I have after that?
So, we drove Moo home, dropped in at the Nectar Lounge to at least meet Pat and Steve and get my books autographed and then home to pop the kids into bed, just in time to see Richmond get beaten by Melbourne. At least they're putting up a fight this year.
Good to see that all the usual suspects turned up for the workshop; just a shame we couldn't catch up over a glass of something pleasant.
Maybe I should be offering this up on behalf of Lee Ann
The Road to Hell is Paved with Good Intentions...
... and abandoned WIPs :D
I had every intention of posting on this blog on a regular, *frequent* basis. Suffice to say, life has gotten in my way again. Three hour committee meetings don't help, nor does Dash with his it-might-be-a-cold-but-you-don't-look-sick-enough-to-take-to-the-doctor syndrome.
On that topic, man-oh-man do I put myself through the hoops before lifting the phone to make a doctor's appointment for the kids. I hate sitting there being patronised for being a hypochondriac-mum-by-proxy, yet I've also had to sit there and be gently chided for not bringing them in soon enough. A rock and a hard place? The devil and the deep blue sea? You bet your arse ;-S
On top of all that, DH is away in Perth for 9 days; he's only been gone since yesterday morning but we all miss him like mad already - only seven sleeps to go :^C
Hmm, my keyboard seems to have run out of hyphens ... plenty of dots left though ... and cliches, reading back through ...
Maybe some knitting content will be inserted this weekend ... I can hear the suspense killing you from here (...)
It's all about balance
DH has been interstate this week for 4 days, and the two kids really miss him - as do I!
Last night I went to my local S'n'B
meet at the Prahran Market, and my 16yo nephew babysat for me - hi Moo! It was a good meet, with around 9 or 10 of us there, but it finished up just before 9pm. As Moo was staying the night, it seemed a waste of a night of freedom to go home so early - almost ungrateful :)
So I popped around to Nic's place
, and we spent a good couple of hours chatting about families, what to do with our limited free time and - of course - lots of knitting and crafting.
I got home at a very respectable midnight.
This morning I went down to the supermarket while Moo looked after the kids. It was heaving; why do I always tend to go on pension day?* I was very grateful to not have had the kids with me. Later in the day I thought I'd take the kids to meet DH's plane at 7pm, so I took them down to a beach cafe
for fish and chips lunch and a good play in the playground afterwards. It was glorious sitting in the sunshine and knitting while Goose and Dash worked off some energy. It may seem hard to believe, but there were kids running around in T-shirts and bare feet - and we're supposed to be in the middle of winter! The bare feet weren't even blue; it must have been around 17 degrees Celsius and just lovely.
Sorry, but it was too lovely to get my camera out for photos, just take my word for it :D
* Pension cheques in Australia were traditionally always mailed out on Wednesdays to be received on Thursdays, so lots of the pension-collecting members of our community tend to go shopping and run all of their errands on this day. These days I believe it's force of habit, as all pensions are nowadays credited directly to bank accounts on different days.
Has anyone else seen this Knitalong SamplerM
"Knit the - probably Dutch - knitting sampler with the letter M from the beginning of the 20th century with 29 wonderful stitch patterns. The patterns will be posted in this group one by one. Knit along and see your sampler grow!
Start: July 1th 2006"
It looks like fun. It's based in Utrecht, Holland, but they're actively recruiting English-speakers.
Gotta run; helping my parents move today after 35 years - definitely a day of mixed emotions ;)
I am so excited, I can't put words to it.
Oh, OK, since you insist...
I had a phone call today from one of the organisers of the Handweaving and Spinners' Guild of Victoria
Summer School, asking me if I'd be prepared to teach a class next January. The topic is fairly fluid at present but we have certainly reached "in principle agreement" that I will be able to teach something, probably about knitting. Can't say more at this stage, but stay tuned.
Sssshh, don't tell them I'd probably pay them
to be able to teach what I love...