Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Are we there yet?


OMG what a mountainous task J's room is turning into. Will I ever climb to the summit and emerge the other side, a little dusty and more wise? At this juncture it seems unlikely.

Everything is purchased (except the window dressing), the floor is finally laid - it has taken 4 whole days of effort, not helped by M getting laid low by a 24 hour bug. We are planning to try and finish it completely over the weekend, however, late yesterday afternoon I started to feel really ill and thought I had either the onset of a summer cold or an ear infection (I am prone to these - due to my rhinitis). I feel a bit grotty this morning still and now think I have the same bug that M had - ugh! The best laid plans etc. I intend to take it easy today and hope it passes as swiftly as M's did - fingers crossed. I had intended to start clearing his room of some of the surfeit of plastic crap he has collected today - but I may have to delay this horrid task to later. It will be battle royal to part the lil beastie from his precious plastic crud may come in useful one day.

It will be a job well done when it's completed and it did need to be done, but I do so hate decorating and even more so in J's pit of doom.

Monday, July 28, 2008

I think Leroy has a problem!

This is what I walked into this morning. I was shocked!
A whole bottle of Glenfiddich and another of Bushmills in one night, can't be good for an old bears constitution. He is now back on he bear shelf with an ice pack,a dose of paracetamol and a large hangover, serves him right.

I have collected bears for years (though I don't add to the collection that much these days) and Leroy Brown by Barbara-Ann Bears is one of my most favourites. His saggy, grumpy demeanour calls to me, as like calls to like. He has a face full of character and when J was little Leroy was a favourite comforter after bad dreams and he and I used to make up loads of silly stories about Leroy's degenerate life style - J was convinced Leroy really did get up and night and drink from the Brandy bottle and steal honey from the cupboard.

Decorating continues very slowly - we found the source of the awful damp smell that had appeared in J's room, however this has ledto more work than we first envisaged, so as it stands half of J's room is in the hall, he has no flooring and we still have a massive decorating mountain to climb.

Knitting - I vow never to knit a lacy sock whilst watching a Tour time trial again - I fucked it so bad I had to rip it out to the rib...gaaaaaahhhhhhh! Therefore knitting progress tis weekend = nil. I did crochet about 4 more repeats to the Boteh I am making though.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Incy-wincy spider......

climbed up the glass tank door.. Not really Incy-wincy but Tiny who completed a secret moult under its log this week - look at its booty!
I posted this one so you can see its size in comparison to its tank, definitely getting bigger.
Fangs a lot for the close up Tiny.
And now to introduce Marmite our latest tarantula recruit who is a Brown Birdeater and at the moment could just about fit on a £2 coin, can find out very little about this type other than it is (as far as I can discover) a new world tarantula and should grow to quite a size. It is already a voracious hunter and stalks its dinner in a very determined manner.

Colemans (the Chaco Mustard Brown Tarantula) has shuffled off this mortal coil - he was the youngest of the lot - I hate to watch them die - it takes so long and I have decided next I will take steps about this. Doris is webbing for England, she has tunnels and hammocks all around the top of her tank. Humbug, the other male who was much older than Colemans, is skinny but still going strong.

I can't wait to confirm what sex Tiny is - I need to retrieve its moult - *knees knocking* it is not an easy tarantula to get around. I am not sure if its still juvenile or if this is its final moult and if it is I thinks it may be a she *fingers crossed*.

I know, enough already about the spiders.....knitting content etc on next post.....promise.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Dirty stopout & other stories.

Yes he's home and reunited with his duck. 1.30am he came slinking back. M had camped out in the conservatory to make sure Kittybonkbonk didn't whizz straight off again. He ate loads and crashed out. He's basically been asleep since. Now we have to decide, in the light of his repeated escapes, whether to persevere with him being a house kitty or to see if he'd like to be able to go in the garden.....not an easy choice to make with his history.
Finally the girlies have made peace and are now beddy buddies. Over the last week or so they have calmed down (or Lottie has calmed and Loobles is less grumpy due to this) and started to want to be together. This photo was taken yesterday - they spent 2 hours like this. I am happy.
You Animal! M bought me this to cheer me up after such a shitty start to the week (don't even ask about the shit I went through on Monday) I've always loved Animal. Isn't he great?
Fibre bought at the rare breeds show - 500g merino/silk in blues and greens - so soft, so pretty.
I've been crocheting this week - love these carnation squares all made from sock leftover Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock - I know there is Vera, Water Colour, Irving Park, Huron, Devon and I think Neon, pretty I think. don't know what they will become but I'll carry on till I run out of yarn.

Finally, got myself a funky-do today - Yay Simon Rules OK! No photo's - cos I photo like a pigs bum - but it is funky.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

A little bit of this

and a little bit of that. Singleton Open Air Museum had a rare breeds day this Sunday. It was great. We met up with M's sisters family and of course their border - Ruby. Lottie and Ruby played all day - Lottie then slept all Sunday evening and most of yesterday.
There were sheepies. There was Thai food and tea and cake :-D
I feel like this Highlander - I haven't had my hair cut in almost 4 months - tomorrow I go for a hair raid, hopefully I'll be able to see again.
Who you looking at pal?
I love Shire horses.

I did buy fibre - photo's to follow when I've sorted some out.

This week is manic - so I may be blog awol - we'll see.

So far today. I've reserved J's new furniture for collection, made opticians and orthodontists appointment, done 2 loads of laundry, housework and spent ages in the garden trying to find Conkers who houdini'd this morning - he ripped the mesh off the conservatory window and did a runner between 7.30 & 8.30 - no sign of him yet - I am worried. Silly bugger keeps doing this but when he's out he's terrified and hates it *sighs deeply* - fingers crossed he's ok and comes home soon!!!!!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

It's been a hard days night..

or rather a hard mornings play, so by 10am she's flaked out. That's the life.
Finished sock 1 of my Spring Forward socks last night, just about to cast on for number 2. I started this on Tuesday so a nice quick knit. Yarn is Lorna's Laces S & S in colourway - Vera. I changed the heel - cos I hate heel flaps and gussets.
Cast on for this yesterday afternoon - The February Lady Sweater by Pamela Wynne at it's also on Ravelry as a free pdf download. Am using Sirdar Sublime Cashmerino Aran in a coffee colour and 5mm needles. Nice knit so far, didn't get very far as had guests last night and was talking instead of knitting!

It's being a weird week - family stuff an all. Still got probate going on - my MIL died a year ago this week and today would have been her birthday. It all feels a little strange because we still haven't really had closure, we still have to deal with her stuff and talk about events etc too much, time to heal hasn't really started yet - bizarre.

I am sure this will pass eventually and just looking across the room at Lottie laying splayed out on her back, snoring is enough to lift my mood and make me smile again.

Got a busy few days, so probably won't post again till next week - so have a good weekend.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Socks of despair and doom

A friend (who knits but doesn't get the time to knit socks) asked me to use her yarn to make her some socks - I, who adore making socks, needed no excuse to readily agree. The yarn she proffered included some Regia which I've knitted with loads and some Tofutsies. I've never knitted Tofutsies so decided to use that. Why? Why did I choose that? Whyyyyyyyyyyyyy?

I also decided as it was quite fine, pink and cream with a lovely shimmer that lace socks were the way to go. I wanted to guinea pig a pattern I hadn't got around to knitting for myself - got the needles and cast on......................why?

Nothing wrong with the pattern (the heel flap sucked - but I hate heel flaps - will make next pair with a different heel) - but the yarn OMG I hate to bad mouth stuff, but...never again.

It is splitty - didn't matter whether I used wood or metal dpns - it split. It has NO give, hence my disgust with heel flap.

Sock 1, I whizzed through it - to get it over and done with. Sock 2 has languished, I kept putting off finishing it. Yay - I have putitoffitis. Yesterday I had a sicky migraine and felt all languid etc so I loaded P&P on DVD into the laptop, shut myself in the bedroom and finished the damn sock. They are done. They are pretty and I really hope she likes them - but I will never, ever knit with that stuff (it doesn't deserve the title 'yarn') again.

Pattern - Waving Lace Socks by Evelyn. A. Clark - in 'Favourite Socks' with lace cuff.

Size - UK 4

Yarn - SWTC Tofutsies

Needles - 2.25mm dpns - KnitPicks Harmony

Relief factor at finishing - 200%

Back to my luscious, lovely, knittable Lorna's Laces Shepherd & Sock for the next pair.

Friday, July 11, 2008

A bit of a round-up.

Some spinning, not as much as I planned, the week got away from me and I decided to have a mega dust-polishathon yesterday (though you'd never believe...kid....hubby...pets they all make mess).
I did finish my no-purl Monkey socks (adaption from Cookie A's knitty pattern) and I tried to model them but as this picture shows I had help.
So here is a boring sock blocker picture. KnitPicks Felice, colour Mixed Berries (courtesy of Yorkshire Gal) size 5 UK foot, knit on 2.75mm dpns - for me :-D they are so pretty.
I needed a pick me up - I've been in the doldrums. So I bought me some goodies from Socktopus - I love that shop. It came this morning, beautifully wrapped - it was like getting a present more than a delivery. The book is Cat Bordhi's 'New Pathways for Sock Knitters - book 1'. I have long coveted this book and intend to immerse my brain in it very soon. I also got some yarn wash and a sheepie tape, but the yarn.......
Handmaiden Casbah in Midnight and Origin - OMG so squooshy, so soft, such vivid colours - it needs much petting it is luverly.

Got a quiet weekend planned I have the period from hell, M is on call and we have 'stuff' to get sorted before the massive overhaul of J's bedroom - planned for 2 weekends time - it is a massive overhaul too - new floor, furniture, window dressing, paintwork - the whole kit and kaboodle, J has mixed feelings about loosing 'the J-Enterprise' (his room is like the inside of a space ship) but it was done 5 years ago and is in dire need of redoing. Plus there is a damp smell that has got worse in his room which we need to investigate too - so stripping it out is the only

Have a good weekend.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Wet and windy

Most of yesterday and so far today - but in my book anything is better than hot and sticky.

It was a busy weekend interspersed with little pockets of peace and quiet.

I finished the back (finally) of the flutter sleeved cardigan - I hate st-st, I get so bored, but I settled down to finish my current audio book and although I dozed off once, I managed to castoff 1 chapter into a new audio book - so not too bad.

I also finished 'American Gods' - love it - what a fantastic book. Last night I started 'Fragile Things' but didn't get very far because for once there was TV on that I wanted to watch virtually from 7-11 - unheard of. I just need to get a copy of 'Smoke and Mirrors' and then I will have read the lot - but every time I go to Borders/Waterstones they don't have it in, will have to resort to Amazon I suppose.

M had his cooking head on this weekend - he made so many wonderful dishes - I was spoilt for choice, I love being married to a kitchen genius.

Saturday was Conkers McBonkers 3rd birthday - he spent it asleep, all day and most of the evening, in the suede beanbag.

J and I are looking at philosophy at the moment, we finished up Socrates this morning, it's been enlightening to see how he reasons stuff out - he is far more cluey than I give him credit for sometimes.

Right, am off to finish my chores, then to spin.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

I went shopping and I bought...

538g of Sari Silk from Shabby Cottage - two different colours, destined to become a bag. I am thinking about adjusting the Torvesta bag from Cornelia Tuttle-Hamilton's Book 2 - I love that pattern and two Torvesta are not enough.

I also bought lots of L'Occitane goodies - Green Tea perfume and body gel and my favourite apple/almond oil cleanser and toner. J bought a lucky Chinese cat (right handed) and a SpongeBob to add to the growing throng that live in his bedroom, he's still spending birthday money, M bought some new piercing jewellery from Wildcat - so a good little spree for us all.

I used to love playing 'I went to London and bought...' when I was a kid - so hence the title.

Now a bit of time travelling *imagine tardis-type noises*...........

Yesterday I met up with a lovely bunch of local knitting ladies for a knit in the park, nice nibbles, good company, lovely weather and knitting - what a perfect combo. Looking forward to the next one, with or without safari kit and pith helmet.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Todays lunch.

Two Cheese Scones- with a twist.
Mmmmmmmmm - I made enough for J, Ma and me and they came out fabbo.

The twist???? Well along with mustard powder, cayenne pepper, paprika, oregano, really, really strong mature cheddar and Parmesan cheese you add a liberal dash of Worcestershire sauce!

The whole lot were scoffed down whilst still warm, followed by a very crunchy apple and a hot strong black coffee.....perfect.

Wet, hypnotic zombie dog warning!!

"Look into my eyes, you cannot see the muddy paw prints all over the hard floor, you will not throw my wet, muddy body from your warm lap. You WILL go back into the garden and put the hose back in my paddling pool.....even though it is dark. You will feel compelled to feed me some of those new dog biscuits in the WILL let me rule you!"

Lottie has 3 pools now. A small baby round paddler that was J's first pool when he was about 1, J's old baby bath and a plastic cement mixing tray, she will happily sploosh about in them for hours, interspersed with chasing Loobles, frog hunting and stalking the guinea pig.

Today is gorgeous, clear blue for miles and crisp breeze straight off the sea - you can smell the tang. Although rain is forecast for later, right at this minute it is wonderful. I have some free time today as J has abandoned me :-( in favour of the latest Percy Jackson book - I don't mind really, in fact I love the way he will take himself off somewhere with a book and only resurface at feeding time or when he's finished it.....reminds me of me at that age!

So I'm off to read 'Mary-Jane's Farm Wisdom' which the postie has just delivered and to get some knitting done.

Have a lovely day!

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

A cushion for pins no less.

In fact a slightly tarty patchwork pin cushion. When I took patchwork classes many moons ago this was the first thing the teacher got us to make. Alas, my original one is well knack'd and as I decided, for some strange reason, to tidy and organise all my sewing stuff today (why?????) I thought it was time for a new one. I'd also forgotten how much patchwork stuff I still have...including a 1/2 tied and quilted, double bed sized, hand appliqued quilt that I must finish.

Unleashing the inner farmgirl...whoosh..pop!

Here she is!

I have been wasting time (there's honesty for you) on Plurk and got to reading a post by Miss V about being a farmgirl, it sounded so up my street that I signed up. It's kind of based on this woman's ideas and the blog about can be found here -

I already have a veggie patch out back, would love an allotment but they are like hens teeth round here. I shop as free range/organically as I can, using the local farm shops and farmers markets. We grow fresh herbs as well as tatties and other veg. And we compost and recycle too. I was already inspired after reading 'Off The Grid' so this compliments some of the ideas.

I love to bake (M does the proper cooking on a daily basis) but I bake bread, cakes, soups and stews and this year intend to make preserves and pickles as well.

I have to admit to not wearing an apron - I do own one but it languishes in the draw the most I do is wrap a tea towel round me waste (a large one at that!!). I do have some homey old fashioned ideas - e.g I prefer loose tea, brewed in a teapot and served in bone china - doesn't really suit my image (lol) but I'm a fusspot.

I like a tidy, if a little chaotic, home - pets and boys cause most of the chaos!

I also love to make stuff - I knit etc (doh) but I also sew, do needlepoint, tapestry, spin and weave.

But I wanna do here I am ready to embrace inner farmgirlishness with gusto and glee!