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Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Day 30 and yo

Well forget about the pictures of my knitting in the last blog, the work was all wrong.

Because I thought I knew how to do 'yo' the whole of my first attempt at knitting lace has been scrapped. Instead of simply bringing the yarn to the front and then knitting the next stitch, I had been taking the yarn over the needle instead and this process did not create a hole. I was so angry with myself for not realising earlier, thank goodness for U-tube to show the error of my ways. No way will I give up, learning new skills is for life!

I had assumed the knitting needed to be dampened and blocked to create the design I'd seen in many examples of this pattern, however once it had grown I realised this wasn't so, it took a while for me to realise where I had gone wrong. The variegated yarn didn't help, so I chose another yarn from my stash, a gift from Tee, a Canadian knitter.


Ian helped me to wind the Tanis Fiber Art  hand dyed yarn - merino (70%), cashmere (20%) and nylon (10%) -  into a ball and I've now made a successful start. According to the label the colour is Atlantic.

Will report on progress, well there is just one day of knitting blog left.

Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Domestic report

Day 29 of knitting so just two more to go. So a start with the pictures of the lace shawl that I mentioned before.

I think the colour is more accurate for the top picture, also this knitting will need to be blocked and spread out to see a pattern design, assuming I have not misread the instructions all the way!

Now marmalade. I'm aware in my previous blog the photos didn't appear always, however those jars of marmalade have been put away so I have taken pictures of the latest batch, made Monday and today. We have used up all our jars now, have a few to match lids to jars, then it is the fun of designing labels.

Just a couple more pictures of the hyacinths we were given for Christmas from different sources, both pots are highly scented and have brought thoughts of Spring in this chilly weather.

In the top pictures the snow, now melted, is visible. Am looking forward to venturing forth tomorrow, haven't been out of the house since Tuesday of last week. Am enjoying reading group book, The vanishing act of Esme Lennox, so with reading that, making marmalade, conquering the lace knitting and making more hexipuffs all is well at Pixie Towers.

Thursday, 17 January 2013

Simple Woman's Daybook: 16th January 2013

Outside my window ... Now dark, clear and bitterly cold so haven't been outside the house all day. No danger of cabin fever, plenty to do, plus knitting and all those books to read.

From the learning rooms ...  Big learning for me was being able to take the photos below with my iPad and work out how to use them on my lap top. Why didn't I consider using the copy and paste facility before? Wouldn't have learnt a new skill if my camera hadn't hidden under my printer paper feed.

 From the kitchen ...

View photo.JPG in slide show

View photo.JPG in slide show

Yes, we're making marmalade again, not sure whether there has been a slight over estimate of our needs as twenty pounds of oranges and six pounds of lemons were purchased. We decided that this amount was slightly too much so have given some fruit to friend. The first picture shows this evening's effort, the second the previous two batches.  Think another cut and cook session tomorrow or Friday. 

I am wearing ...  blue trousers, Navy blue cable jumper, cream warm shirt.
I am creating ... lace shawl and hexipuffs. Day 28 here of knitting blog.
I am going ... by train to see darling daughter on Saturday   ....hums I do like to be beside the seaside ... cos I can as I'm home alone. Bit concerned about the weather forecast, become very breathless in the cold weather, yesterday in Richmond when it wasn't so cold my face hurt with the cold so don't want to risk if it is even colder.
I am reading .. well, will be reading,The vanishing act of Esme Lennox, by Maggie O'Farrell. Received this on Monday when the reading group met for lunch in the local pub. The ten of us managed to discuss the previous book too, Before I go to sleep, which I enjoyed from the second half onwards, although I appreciate one had a slightly repetitive first part ot set the scene. After I had finished the book was surprised to learn the author was male as he wrote very well from a female perspective.

Around the house ...  still finding odds and ends from Christmas, a bag of wrapping paper, ribbon and unused cards to be stored away. After a while I find I don't 'see' items, they become part of the landscape.

One of my favourite things ...  Evensong, preferably in traditional language, the words in Common Worship don't flow in the same way, even reading it we stumbled. Maybe the BCP version is familiar but I find the rhythm of the words make me consider the meaning. Another interesting thought, why was the Gospel reading the same, ie the Wedding at Cana, on two consecutive Sundays at different churches. I thought readings were handed down just as Moses handed down the Commandments so like the National Curriculum one would have the same reading on the same Sunday in all Churches. 

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week ...   try to visit the Building our Borough exhibition again at Orleans House Gallery, it closes 3rd February so not much time. Although the plans are available on line it is lovely to see them framed and full size, along with other artefacts

Note, although wrote this on Wednesday evening, didn't post it as preview came out with acres of white screen so tidied it up, I hope. Realise still haven't listed my 'haven't done this yet' list. Will add in day of knitting, must be near 31 now.

Thursday, 10 January 2013

January Ninth

Today is a special date in my calendar, it started 100 years ago today when my father was born, the youngest of seven children, of whom five made it to adult hood. His eldest sibling was 17 years older than him, he was far closer to that brother's son who was just 7 years younger. The generations are so mixed up in a widely spread family.

My father was delighted when Martha was baptised on his 70th birthday, which was on a Sunday that year, she was the only grand daughter so he felt he could spoil her, sadly he died when she was just four years old. Her baptism was special that she wore the gown in which my mother, uncle, my sister and I were baptised. It was made from a bridesmaid's dress worn at my grandparents' marriage on  25th April 1914. the dress looks like white cotton broderie anglais.

A slightly sadder aspect of today is that it's the 18th anniversary of my mother's death, consoling that she died on this day, she was frail, suffered from Parkinsons with all its attendant problems. Her pride in 'the girls' as she thought of her daughters meant she never stopped worrying about us but there was a pride in her concerns too. She was modern in her thinking, insisting that my sister and I were qualified in something so we could earn our own living.

A happier memory is that 15 years ago we moved into our present home from just about 100 yards around the corner on a very warm 9th January. It was a good move, we had never felt settled in the previous house, during the 12 years we lived there we were looking at other properties.

Sorry about no pictures, will need to look out pre digital ones and scan them in.  Went off to Richmond to pick up Ian from the station, he returned from his OU tutorial by Underground from central London. Trains in and out of Waterloo delayed, it took me one and a half hours to get back from Richmond earlier this evening, problem is that buses are on a long diversion because of repairs to sewers have resulted in a short stretch of road closure. Hence I travel to and from Richmond by train, it's a six minute journey usually. Daytime traffic is bad, the closed road appeared on local traffic reports during Breakfast TV this morning.

Monday, 7 January 2013

This Week: 7th January 2013

The weather ... Mild, but grey cloud. 

I am wearing ... Maroon cords, cream Thomas Pink shirt, cream hand knitted cardigan. (The one I finished after a 20 year gap)

I am reading ... Before I go to sleep, by S. J. Watson. Have a week to finish it, as I awoke early this morning read some more before Ian woke up. 

I am creating ... a shawl, first time I have attempted lace knitting. Was doing ok, but have one extra stitch on the last row so some undoing will be necessary. Hexipuffs have not been neglected, much knitting was done on the District Line last week when we went to the V and A museum to see the Ballgowns exhibition.

I am listening ... to the clock ticking, otherwise it is very quiet here, Ian studying in the next room.

I am watching ... the new series of train journeys presented by Michael Portillo, have set  up to record the series as I miss programmes otherwise, Still upset that I didn't record the programme about Canterbury cathedral, watched part of i-player but time ran out before I could finish it. Why is i-player just one week? Also missed the programmes about Queen Victoria, really I should look at the programme schedules more.

I enjoyed  ...  yesterday evening. We had the radio on, Classic FM after Sunday Half Hour, again hadn't even checked what was on TV, I was catching up on the weekend papers, Ian was reading and enjoying Wolf Hall, his Christmas gift from daughter. It was such a calm, companionable and relaxing interlude, just unwinding in the warmth of the lounge/drawing room/sitting room/back room. It came to me that this was heaven at that moment. No alcohol had been consumed, little was said except to read nuggets of interest from one publication to the other. A little of that peace that the world cannot give.
Amongst the dross of holiday and sport features was an article about the London Underground and its 150 year celebrations. Now this will sound nerdy, but on the whole I enjoy train travel, more relaxing than driving or being driven, one can knit, read, look at scenery and townscape whilst travelling reasonably smoothly. Except for between Barnes and Putney I think that South West trains tracks are smoother than the Southern route we take to Sussex. Things I don't like about trains are passengers who put their feet on the seats, shout or speak loudly or eat smelly food, short trains and fewer trains on Sundays.

Learning notes ...  well I suppose it is the lace knitting and Ian's OU.
This crib sheet gives me the opportunity to add our menu plans for the week but as I haven't made any for more than today I shall spare my readers.
Also, I intended to convey my thoughts about things I haven't done, copied shamelessly from Z's blog but it will wait another time.
Need to get on with thinking about lunch, drying laundry and reading today's papers. Some mornings I read the paper on my iPad whilst using my nebuliser, I feel I'm making good use of my time as there is a limit what can be done with one hand. 

Friday, 4 January 2013

Day 27.

About time I returned to the challenge of 31 days of blogging on a topic, as you know I have chosen to ignore the word consecutive. Well, my blog, my rules :)

So, knitting. Working on the principle that I wish to keep learning, both skills and knowledge I'm making a shawl so I can learn lace knitting. I started on size 5 straight needles, when I realised the total should be 195 stitches I searched out magic loop needles, fortunately had size 5, Ian helped me switch a long cable from other needles. Works better, especially as these Knit-Pro needles have a sharper point. The pattern I'm using is Forest Canopy Shawl.

The yarn is actually a sock yarn Stylecraft Aviemore 4ply, bought at Squires Garden Centre for just £6.00, .the colours should go with quite a few of my clothes.

To add to the knitting, did quite a few rows of Hexipuff whilst waiting at the Doctor's surgery for two steroid injections in my shoulder, decided exercise wasn't for me after that. To be fair, I expected the jab to be more painful than it was, even so to have full movement back will be good. Knitting doesn't cause any pain at all.