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Sunday, 29 May 2016

Carry on learning

Yesterday was a meeting of the South West London branch of the Knitting & Crochet Guild,  held as usual at Kingston John Lewis where a select group of ladies met to learn about Bavarian crochet.

We were shown a completed square, my it looked complicated, and it was, a new stitch to me was learnt, double treble leading me to realise a petal shape, the process required deep concentration on my part, I kept forgetting the number of chains and double trebles required so progress was slow but I enjoyed learning something new and practical. The time went so quickly, in between there was a quick glance at some of the knitting and crochet magazines brought in, brief chats with my neighbour as I couldn't learn and chat so I didn't even complete the second round or change to another colour.

It didn't matter, I will catch up on the recommended YouTube site but I enjoyed myself so much sitting in a rather warm, stuffy community room. Of course, without the internet I would never have known about the Guild, Ravelry, knitting groups or read knitting and crochet blogs. As John Lewis have free wifi I took my iPad so I was able to find the YouTube site there and then. 

Here is my efforts so far in yellow Stylecraft DK, I took blue for the contrast, bright cheerful colours. No beige. 

Friday, 13 May 2016

May happenings

Yesterday morning on Facebook details popped up about a new British charity, Bronchiectasis Foundation, so of course I looked at the website for more information. So helpful, I never realised that sinusitis and tiredness were  symptoms of Bronchiectasis  but it does explain why some days, fortunately not too often, I feel exhausted shortly after a good night's sleep. Although my symptoms are mild I was breathless yesterday after climbing the stairs from the District Line to the exit at Embankment station. 

Please give details of this charity to anyone who lives with Bronchiectasis, the information in the web site has assisted me to understand what is 'normal' with this.  May I add I do have great support from our GP practice, the borough Respiratory Care Team and the Royal Brompton Hospital. 

Now to knitting, completion and ongoing projects:-  

Noah's jacket has been finished, it is Beyond Puerperium, as a flexible pattern I made it navy and white stripes, size was for 6 to 12 months, Noah was born last December, as can be seen the cardigan fits him perfectly now, it is not as if he is an outsize baby. I should have been more aware of pattern note that it was designed to be worn over a single body hugging layer. Noah's Mother is very happy with the cardigan, but I feel he won't get too much wear if he has a growth spurt. 

Ian's new socks are providing another knitting conundrum, the Opal yarn came in one 100 gram ball so I would the first 50 grams into a round ball, well actually it was 49 & 51 grams to be precise, I like to knit a pair socks simultaneously on two magic loops, so cast on both socks in green, the rib then came out different colours, as I plodded through the leg it became apparent that the pattern was upside down on one sock. 

Ian isn't bothered, he is happy for me to carry on.  I am puzzled as one sock started at the beginning of the original big ball, the other technically started half way through, so was the dyeing pattern reversed half way through?  I have looked through Ravelry, no one seems to have had this difficulty, nor is there any for sale on  Ravelry,  to allow me to make two more socks to make two pairs, each matching. Alternatively one sock could be undone, the wool rewound so I start second sock at the other end.  Does seem a lot of work, although I have kept a record of number of rounds for rib and the leg, not even at the heel yet either. 

Whatever I decide to do in future when shopping for sock yarn the wool will  in 50 gram balls or if in 100 grams will not be multicoloured. 

The date on the top of my blog doesn't reflect the date it was published, which was 23rd May, it was 10days before that I started jottings that became this blog. It will be back to paper and pen for my initial ideas. 

Loose Ends

Today has felt like a day for wrapping up loose ends, the floor was laid in the new bathroom, Builder appeared for snagging and final payment,  dresser drawers were tidied to cries of "Oh, didn't know that was in there" or "Why are we keeping that?" 

So to wrap up a loose end, I had promised a picture of the Hitchhiker scarf being worn, of course now the weather is a bit warm for woolly scarves hence the Summer top:-

The sudden jump in temperatures has meant a quick reappraisal of my wardrobe, lighter weight garments were examined, sighed over in some cases when I realise just how long I have had them. I do have plenty of clothes, some are favourites, some worn occasionally especially if it is a chilly Summer, some are never worn outside the confines of Pixie Towers as they are so ancient and a little dated shall we say. 

When I retired one friend said to me whatever you do, don't get into the habit of slobbing around in jogbots, I haven't for I don't do casual clothes very well, I prefer dresses and cardigans, boosted in winter with thick tights and scarves. This fits our life style, we don't go to dressy events, no one seems to dress smartly for theatre or restaurants. 

What is needed is a decision, do I dump garments I have had a long time and become bored with, then keep a small wardrobe of relatively recent purchases, worn intensely and discarded within two or three years. There will always be classics, like my much loved Burberry trench coat, a white shirt, a handknitted oversized cardigan, jeans that fit sometimes but will stay. Is it noticed if one appears in the same clothes, as a teenager I worried about having enough variety of clothes when I went to work, still haunted by that pointless fear I suspect although I'm not in paid employment now. 

It doesn't seem very green to throw out perfectly wearable clothes, however the hospice charity shop will benefit if I go for the small wardrobe, intense wearing option and have a clear out.  

Another loose end, our push along mower has gone to cut grass in another garden. The mower, a

Husquvarna was bought for £5.00 in the house clearance of a friend's grandmother over 36 years ago, was used regularly until we had a brand new lawn for which we purchased a battery charged mower. A request for a hand push mower was made on our local Freecycle so we let it go.  When our daughter heard she commented the sound of this mower was one of her childhood memories, one rarely hears a hand mower around here in spite of fairly small gardens, it is a pleasant sound of Summer. 

Sunday, 1 May 2016


Ian found the allium stem was broken, popped it into this vase, later I was cutting chives to use in a potato salad, realised quite a few were flowering so added them to their cousin to provide floral decoration to the scullery windowsill.  

Sometimes we put a vase of flowers on the kitchen table, anywhere will add colour and a smile to our lives like these daffodils in a corner of the dining room, the 1930s blue vase which belonged to my great aunt, fits the style and colour scheme of the room.