Thursday, July 27, 2006


*fanfare please - oh and a drumroll*

Here is the single remaining Triop (he ate the other two) known to us as ......wait for it......highly original name..............Triopy. He's an active little son of a gun, very hard to photograph but M managed this one. He has already had one moult (the Triop not M). J is ecstatic that one actually hatched this time and checks on him regularly throughout the day. We are using him for ease as I am informed by M that they are both - but as he has already turned cannibal I felt he had a more masculine energy about him *hehe*.

ps; the spell check wants to change Triop to tripe!

Knitting, kitties and new friends

Only a cat can sleep this soundly in such overwhelming heat - but why choose the computer chair?
This is my test scarf for the lace pattern I'm adapting to use in a shawl. The yarn is from BlueSky Alpacas and is 50/50 mix of alpaca and silk (I think).
Close up of the pattern and stitch definition. The lace weight shawl version in coming along but very slowly due to my inability to cope with the heat.

Earlier this week my SIL introduced us to the two girls who are spending the summer with them from Belarus. SIL does this most summers and spends a good part of the rest of the year fund raising etc for the charity that organizes this. We all did a sponsored walk for them in April. Anyway, I digress, the two girls who are 12 came for a visit. One speaks a little English the other doesn't. J and I had looked up Belarus on Google and also had found a Russian translator so we could say 'Hi' and 'Bye' in their language if nothing else (SIL has a good smattering of Russian as she is learning the language). I know these kids come from great poverty and suffer all sorts of health problems - Chenoybl, but I have to say these two girls are great. Sweet, pleasant and oh so polite. J was a stunner - he found ways to communicate which led to a riotous game of basket ball - he was helpful and friendly and made M and I very proud (yet again). The girls love animals and met the whole L family menagerie - spiders included - I had to draw a picture as SIL didn't know Russian for Spider (shame on her).

The next day J decided to make them a card and we found how to write the message in Russian - he worked really hard designing it so it had a picture of all the pets - including stick insects and Triop.

Hopefully, we will meet them again before they head home.

Other's just too dang hot! I hate people who moan about the weather...but enough is enough. On the plus side saw the most amazing lightening storm last night, out over the sea. Never seen it like that before, spectacular!

Lots of swimming - lilo wars (supplemented with water guns) continues.

Lots of reading - me and J. He's discovered James Bond - films and the novels by Charlie Higson on Bond as a kid (Bloodfever), he is engrossed. As for me, I'm reading a book by Kate Hickson about Courtesans - from late 1700's to Edwardian era. Very well written and a fascinating read. I'd forgotten I'd bought it - found it hidden away - like lost treasure.

Very little else - housework is minimal - I don't do 'sweat/chores' in this heat. Still did the ironing though - phew I had to have a 2nd shower.

So that's me up to date. Life continues is a quiet phase, which is appearing to suit all 3 of us. J in engrossed in allsorts of stuff and seems quite content to potter about, interspersed with swimming. He and I have been playing Shuttles - he's very good - I struggle to out-think him these days and winning is not a foregone conclusion anymore. I also don't have to let him win - he does that all by himself ;0)

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Picture catch up.

Blogger just won't upload picture for me today. So either go to Flickr thingy at bottom of blogg or use the following links.


Cat, spider, and knitting content!

All up to date now.

Life abounds.

I've been weaving quite a bit recently. What is being made is still on the loom. So I thought I'd put up this piccie of the throw/wrap I made for Gundel (Susann) when she was my SP.

We have babies :0)

Baby stick insects. Two to be precise, number three has either escaped and Conkers has got it or the adults turned cannibal before we got them out into a separate tank. We have loads of eggs, I've put some by for Sis as she fancies some stickies but the rest will get flushed as we have decided that once ours live out their natural lives than it's a big bye-bye to stickies.

Baby Triops! On our 2nd attempt we hatched out some Triops (we can see 3 at the moment). J and M are over the moon as this has been a joint HE science project. We also hatched out some Daphnia and Fairy Shrimp (by accident - in 1st Triop attempt) these will become Triop grub. Once they are big enough to see clearly I'll attempt to post pictures.

It's been a quiet week. I just don't do heat. M sorted out the swimming pool (which has been abandoned for the last 2 summers) which is lovely to flop about in and cool down. Lilo wars have commenced - J & M battle it out for lilo supremacy.

J knitted his 1st complete object this week (with a little help) he made a little blue knitted fish - very cute. He's called him Fishy and he eats chips! This inspired me to knit a piglet (photo to follow) who I've called Figgus. I've also started on a new lace pattern - which will be for a shawl eventually - but I am trying it out on a scarf 1st to see if I've got the math right and the pattern works. So far so good.

Feeling a bit more cheerful -thanks to my Bunny - chief problem solver and shoulder-to-sob-oner.

Yesterday we went to friends for a long afternoon/evening scoff and socialize - very jolly, very good company. The boys played nicely and the grownups sat in the garden, eating, drinking and making music. Lovely.

This week is another a quiet one - they are the kind I like best.

Today is whiz through the chores then chill and knit.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006


Back from camping. The site we intended to go to was full. So we went further along the coast a bit and camped at a fantastic site in West Wittering. We got a pitch with lots of shade (phew). The site was CLEAN - so clean, great toilets/showers, clean level pitches and friendly people. There was a big play area (not slides and stuff) but just space for footie, frisbees and kites, safe space, the kidlets could run free and they did. There were farm animals for petting - goats and their kid, big fat piggies, wonkies, ponies and Dexter Cattle (I love them).

So where do you go on a very hot sunny Saturday with 3 kidlets? Here all I can say is "Wow!" I saw fish in the sea, swimming around my legs - never seen that before in the UK. The sea was 3/4 of a mile away when we hit the sand (soft silky sand - not bloomin great pebbles) we walked down to it through the tidal puddles, fossiling as we went (found a few as well). The water was clear and warm......yes warm. We spent most of the afternoon swimming by the time we left the sea was about 15ft from our base up near the top of the beach. The kids and Mike made sand sculptures - including a very impressive beach crocodile. It was a bonza day and although we were sticky, sandy and hot the walk back to the site went quickly. We all indulged in refreshing showers and a huge hot chicken salad tea - yummy.

As we left the beach - all sorts of rescue crews - incl helicopters arrived. We later discovered a little girl had gone missing - it was busy and the current was deceptively strong. She was found still on her lilo at Hayling Island - she was alive. I don't like kids and inflatables on a beach - it's so dangerous. If J plays with something like that one of us is always with him and holding on to it so it doesn't drift. This kind of thing brings home the dangers found on the beach.

A nice early start Sunday - I love the quiet mornings camping when everyone else is asleep. We stayed on site and the kids played whilst we did a gradual pack - a large picnic lunch and then home. You didn't have to leave your pitch until 6.00pm. It was nice (as it was so hot) to do the pack up at your leisure and the kids enjoyed the extra time to rampage.

Not much knitting took place. I finished a sock and a wristwarmer and that was about it. Still it really was a great weekend. We fully intend to go back there soon - the beach and the site.

The cat and dog were pleased to see us and M did the unpack and started the laundry as he knows how I flag in the heat. Yesterday was spent recovering and chillin, today well who knows....

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Clap hands for Clapotis

Here it last. It must be about a year since I cast on for this. I got fed up in the middle section and abandoned it for a good few months. Also although I lurve HipKnits silk, this particular colour sheds, like crazy. I wear a lot of black - so this project could only be knit on non-black days - few and far between.

It's a lot bigger than I realised, but I am pleased with it. It won't be blocked (I did block my smaller version) this one is too big for any blocking surface we have.

So, in 2 days I have finished 3 projects....not bad. This is due to having a week off from study (I need a break - have a large, boring essay looming in my very near future). And as I'm still in the doldrums. I thought I would utilize my down time into 'finish-it-off' time. What shall I tackle today.......packing actually *rolls eyes*. I'm sure I will still find a itsy-bitsy smidge of knitting time as well.

PS - the spell check just suggested replacing the word 'Clapotis' with 'slapdash' - hmmm is its opinion of my work? *hehe*

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Here is the late news.

I decided a change was as good as a rest and now have red hair, bright red hair.
Here is the Snuffalator- still lop-sided after his ear infection in the winter. But he is healthy in every other way and is happy, squeaky little piggle.
Deep, down in a dark corner there lurks a newly moulted Boris. This is his 1st appearance in over a month. His colours are amazing, bright red layered with purple on his abdomen and legs and bright light green on his carapace or cephalothorax.

Knitting news. See Flickr at bottom of blog for two...yes 2 new FO's. Both completed yesterday. This was my Tour De France marathon knit yesterday.

We're off camping again, with the cousins, this weekend. Forecast looks good and we're camping close to the sea. I could do with some R & R as still not feeling just the ticket. Have decided to go and see Doc in the next couple of weeks, because this kind of 'down lethargy' is not normal for me.

Loving this years Tour. Robbie McEwan is sprinting like a dream, everyday out of nowhere he hits the Tour moves to the mountains for the 1st time today, can't wait, love the mountain stages.

That's about it for now. Sonny Jim needs my attention. We are looking at monarchs this week with a local focus on George lV and William the Conqueror.

Saturday, July 08, 2006

How to kill by Keith Douglas (1920-1944)

Under the parabola of a ball,
a child turning into a man,
I looked into the air too long.
The ball fell in my hand, it sang
in the closed fist: Open Open
Behold a gift designed to kill.

Now in my dial of glass appears
the soldier who is going to die.
He smiles, and moves about in ways
his mother knows, habits of his.
The wires touch his face: I cry
Now. Death like a familiar, hears

and look, has made a man of dust
of a man of flesh. This sorcery
I do. Being damned, I am amused
to see the centre of love diffused
and the waves of love travel into vacancy.
How easy it is to make a ghost.

The weightless mosquito touches
her tiny shadow on the stone,
and with how like, how infinite
a lightness, man and shadow meet.
They fuse. A shadow is a man
when the mosquito death approaches.

Monday, July 03, 2006


Here is Mr Sleepy-Head - M and I had been up since 6 - sluggabed here didn't appear until 7 - how lazy can you get? (He's cuddling a Giant Microbe of HIV - don't ask.) Very early morning campsite - about 6.15am - most quiet the site was all weekend.
Ahhhh the babbling brook. M & J had mega fun racing twig boats and paddling - where was I? Reclining in the shade with a good book.

We had a fabbo time. Miles too hot for my liking. I miss the sea breeze. Great site, a bit regimented but very clean. We were lucky that our pitch had a good deal of shade because it was sweltering.

We walked in to Bath. The site map said 40 mins - Hah! We walk at a good pace and it took us at least and hour and half. We were melting. The towpath needs some love and attention as does the river. I counted at least a dozen sunken shopping carts.

Bath was beautiful , hot and packed. We went to the cathedral square etc. Did the tourist bit. I missed the Jane Austen Museum (again) because it was sooooooo hot and we were soooooooo tired by then. We revistied the lock of doom but I forget to take a piccie. It still made me shudder though. Caught a bus back to the campsite (now that was fun - our bus driver almost crashed the bus 4 times and spoke no English). Lucky for us a kindly gent told us which stop we needed - proves there are decent people still alive then.

The people on the camp were a friendly bunch which was nice. We cracked open a bottle of wine, retired to the brook bank and chilled.

Very hot journey home but no traffic problems. Most of the unpacking is done. Now it's just the giant mound of laundry - yuck!!

Off to Bracklesham in a couple of weeks for the next jolly camping jaunt.

Other news;

Both Humbug and Boris have moulted over the weekend. Not seen Boris yet but little Bumhug is not little any more!

Yay Tour De France Time - come on Big Maggy win a sprint for me! No Lance Armstrong this year so the race is wide open. Tres exciting.

I've been claimed by my Summerfling SP - woohoot.

Purlpower rocks.
She sent me a RAK cos I couldn't make it to Woolfest 2006 and she didn't want me to feel left out. Lovely soft, muted colour sock yarn from The Natural Dye Studio
Thank you so much sweetie, you put a big smile on my mug!