Tuesday, 27 February 2007

Rain and Mist

It rained today - a lot! It stopped briefly at one point, and the clouds lifted from the river to show a bit of the hills behind. Then it started all over again. Still rain is meant to be good for the complexion.
The boys wore their " welly" boots today , to keep their feet dry when splashing in all the huge puddles , unfortunately the small one still managed to get his clothes wet! Two of the Mums at the school gate asked the wee one about the picture on his "top" boots. I hadn't heard that expression in a long time, and I wondered where the expression top boots came from (probably the same origin as welly boots ).
And then the Welly Boot song came back to me - or part of it anyway. I don't think Billy Connolly sings this at his gigs anymore, he didn't at the last one I was at, well here goes:0)
If it wisnae fur yer wellies, where wid ye be, You'd be in the Hospital or Infirmaree, You wid huv a dose of the 'flu or even pleurisee, If it wisnae fur yer wellies ! (Translation provided on request!)
As a girly girl, even in dresses, I would wear my "welly" boots when out playing, but I had to wear knee high socks so I didn't get "ring" marks on my legs!
Talking of socks, have started second one but it is going slowly. My sister has finished her first one and is beating me on the second one, so I need to catch up. I seem to have knit a slightly shorter cuff in the first one, but I'm not as fast a knitter as my sister , so I will be knitting furiously tonight in an attempt to beat her. Thankfully my new bag is large enough to carry sock knitting around, as well as other essentials, so any spare minute I get when out and about, I can try and catch up. .
And if this rain keeps up, who knows, I could be wearing my new socks with my "wellies" (I've progressed to Barbour ones now!)

Sunday, 25 February 2007

Tramway Knitters to the Rescue

The Tramway Venue in Glasgow's South Side started life as a Tramway Depot (Big Shed for Trams!). Then when all the Trams were removed, it became the Transport Museum, when the Transport Museum removed, it became the Tramway Arts Venue. It now has the Hidden Gardens at the back , and I seem to remember when it first opened a Peace Tree had notes hanging from it, in honour of those who try to make the world a better place.
Perhaps I should be hanging a note with my Knitting groups members on it , if that is still the custom. Our Knitting group has had a confusing and upsetting time of late, but I am glad to say that is now all behind , after the very positive meeting they had today.
In all the confusion and distress, I forgot to show outward support for those that got hurt the most, and I am most sorry .
The folks that go to this group are a great bunch of people, and I think they will now get the group they deserve. One of our members has even offered to sponsor the Website page, which is fantastic (wee minty aka nagged2k , see blog links!) Among the group there are Knitters (a given) crocheters, spinners, people who sew (I put sew-ers at first , but that looked wrong!), cross stitch etcetera, etcetera, etcetera. So not only do we learn to knit better from each other, but learn to crochet, spin , sew, craft, you name it !
And talking of knitting - back to the sock!

Saturday, 24 February 2007

Its a Lazy Saturday - Comfort Knitting

Its one of those rainy, hazy, lazy, read the papers, drink tea and lounge about Saturdays. I am reading the John Lewis catalogue and dreaming of how to re-model the interior of my home - except it would never look that perfect, there would be sticky finger marks, Thomas the Tank engine train sets and Dr Who Tardis and characters sprawled everywhere. HWWM&S brought me a pre-birthday present back from Manchester yesterday - Tony Henrys' Modern Arias. I really like it, and its a pleasant surprise because HWWM&S isn't really a Classical/Opera music fan.I shall listen to it as I do some comfort knitting.....talking of....here is another early birthday gift (which I chose....sshhh).
Its the Fyberspates I was talking about yesterday, along with the pattern from Vogue Knitting that I will use the yarn for, but, before I start I'm going to order some more Addi Turbo's, they make knitting with chunky yarn so much easier. This pattern is done in the one piece from the top down, with an abstract lace pattern, basically you do the lace pattern when you get to a thin piece of yarn.
But before I start, I will start the second sock !
I want to keep going before the I get second sock syndrome AND I can't wait to start some socks with the beautiful yarn Lilith sent me too. So much knitting so little time!
Heather, Thank You for the the comments, the little Momiji doll is a little wooden , painted Japanese figurine. There is a little slot in the bottom for putting in a secret note. Each little doll has a name and some character traits listed on a little collectors card. I got mine locally, but I think John Lewis/Frasers do them too.

Friday, 23 February 2007

All I wanna do is have some fun - I get a feeling I'm not the only one

No photo's today - will post some tomorrow. Had a great night last night at Gourock Stitch and Bitch! Margaret joined us all the way from West Kilbride, and brought a beautiful shawl knitted in 2 ply yarn. Jill , the local Minister , was in Cafe Flava and came over to admire all our knitting, but she has still to be persuaded to join us. Moira was still knitting this gorgeous, and very large baby shawl, still only 25cm to go!! Karen had decided to start a new project as her present one was giving her headaches, then she realised that the new one was a bit more complex, so she went back to the original project. Gale and I were on our Mohair sweaters, Gale's is a lovely red colour done in 4mm needles, mine is a variagated pink through to white on 3mm needles (sigh, takes forever). Val and Marion were on sleeves for their sweaters, and appeared to be doing just fine. Gordon ,the manager of the Cafe, is in a band who will be appearing on TV on May 2oth - he embarrassedly admitted it would be "Songs of Praise" ! BBC - good stuff! We were all chatting more than knitting, admiring the new Vogue knitting (Margaret knitting shrug on front cover - the woman is almost Jean Miles!), and the new Rowan Coast book Val had bought. The conversation was fun and funny, and I even repeated a story from Franklins blog, which had us laughing . It was good for the soul.
Today I went to K1yarns and treated myself to Vogue Knitting and some gorgeous blue-faced leicester/silk yarn - can't wait to try it out.
Was reading an article on Sheryl Crow yesterday , and discovered she has had cancer which appears to be in remission. She is 44 years old, the same age a good friend of mine would have been, unfortunately she lost her battle with cancer 5 years ago, last month. She had kept quiet about her illness, and although I knew something had been wrong I didn't push it. After she died we discovered the reason she wouldn't tell people was, she didn't want anyone pitying her. I still laugh when I remember some of her work stories (flying live prawns in Japan) , and I still remember her cooking tips when trying things out, she was someone who believed in being positive and living life to the full . She hated people moaning , and would firmly but politely stick a proverbial toe up folks bottom is she thought they were being too negative! She was great fun, and I still miss her. Gone but never forgotten.

Wednesday, 21 February 2007

In a Jam!

There is a "jam" theme to the post today. The car door lock is jammed at unlock!, cannot turn it at all, so being security conscious, set off to the garage to get it sorted. Their systems were jammed, so they couldn't get the part delivered to them until the systems were fixed. Aaargghhh! Still had made some of these yesterday, which when toasted go very nicely with.....jam! They are of the mini variety, as I've had several disasters before with their bigger cousins. Also made pancakes yesterday - being Shrove Tuesday 'n all, but they don't ever see a plate never mind a camera. Two small boys and a mummy made short work of them plus several mini-scones. And talking of Jam - a young Edinburgh chap, studying for a business degree, has just won an order to supply Waitrose (English supermarket - v.nice) with his healthy Jam. He is having to move production out of his parents kitchen to a facility in Herefordshire in England. The jam uses grape juice and smaller amounts of sugar, which apparently makes it healthier.
These lovely items came in the post today courtesy of Tigerlilith, thank you they are lovely. The sock yarn looks like a work of art even before it is knitted , and there is a wee pattern in the yarn band (unfortunately in German, but my aunt knows German so a wee phone call perhaps). And the Flake is the DARK chocolate flake - fabulous. I am so glad I decided to delurk and give Liliths' quiz a go - happy 100th post.
Now its my sisters' birthday soon so I bought this :0)
...and knitted this, the Artesano waistcoat/vest thingy , which is gorgeous to knit but awful to sew up (4 strands for mattress stitch) as the ends keep showing up. I've done it again, knitted up something for someone else that I'd love to keep myself! I'll have another scone to cheer myself up - Jam anyone ??

Sunday, 18 February 2007

Sunday Meetup and Lunch

It was the Sunday meetup at the Tramway cafe today - there were about 14 of us, all knitting and chatting and eating and drinking. Thankfully the January rush is over so it was not as busy as it had been.
Now, what was everyone knitting - to my right was Lynette, who was knitting a bag to be felted in a lovely autumnal colours, Nan and Anne were next, and they were knitting a lovely green sweater (?), and a sparkly bag respectively. Karen had some beautiful yarn which was manufactured in 1941 (yep, it was 66 years old), and had knit a lovely cabled scarf. Fiona had finished her Hummingbird spiral socks, and they felt gorgeous (no heel was turned in the making of these socks due to the spiral design). Jennifer was on her second pair of socks in a bright self patterning yarn (Opal) . Gloria and Thea, apologies, I couldn't quite see what you had today. Evelyn was knitting a mohair sweater (I think it was Adriafil, in a lovely pink colourway). Maggie was knitting something in blue, next to Julia who was knitting a sweater in a bright orange Colinette yarn. Heather had her fabulous fairisle sweater,colinette hoodie and pink socks with her, and India had her Brooklyntweed design sweater in a lovely blue tweed yarn (along with those fabulous mittens, which she had safely secured with an i-cord!). Our Stephanie, blooming in pregnancy had her baby blanket in a lemon baby yarn, and a cardi in Sirdar Click . And me, I was knitting the Artesano waistcoat - socks were out but not a round was knitted. Phew! Didn't she do well!
Talking of socks - was very excited to discover I had won a prize in the quiz to celebrate the 100th blog post of Tigerliliths'. Its a lovely ball of Opal sock yarn in a limited colourway. Thank you Tigerlilith !
Have just discovered I have a bit of a green theme going on just now - see what you think .
The Rowan ribbon twist , top right is from my finished cardi - thank you Heather for your kind comment! The Debbie Bliss aran is leftover from some hat and mittens I knitted for our God-daughter, the Debbie Bliss chunky I got in a swap from Kathleen, and made a lovely scarf. The Artesano Alpaca is for some baby things - I've started so I'll finish before I post pictures.
The Shipwrecked is from K1 yarns , and is a WIP, hopefully to become a cushion cover very soon.
Nearly forgot - Karen is hoping to start a Knit-a-long for the Shetland Triangle from Scarf style - so I may just have to buy some more KidsilkHaze, or some other laceweight yarn, .....sigh!
Here's the question - should I choose green, or go for another theme ?

Saturday, 17 February 2007

Worst place for Children!

Apparently Britain is the worst place in the developed world to live in if you are a child (ain't that hot for adults, either!). There have been several well publicised deaths of children/teenagers in the papers recently, one being a young lad shot in his own home. Oliver James, columnist and psychologist is touting his theory of "affluenza" - we are all so obsessed with material possessions to the detriment of our mental and spiritual wellbeing.
I write this after having a conversation with Junior about playing with Playstation versus going outside to play. He is in a dilema about which he should do, as "it is a nice day after all!" Perhaps my rantings are getting through after all!
My sister and I share the same birthday, so I have been a hive of activity this week,finishing my knitting (the Ribbon Twist Cardi is live!) and starting the "Birthday knitting". Thankfully its a quick knit and I have only one more side to do - but lots of pressing to ssstttrreeettcchh it into shape.
Is this working - why do I look so bad in the photo ? Boy , do I need to get to a hairdresser FAST Like the detail - made cuffs slightly shorter, don't want them dipping into my soup! And finally the birthday knitting - its a waistcoat (for want of a better word!) knitted in 4 strands of Artesano Alpaca. It feels divine, but I think this is going to be a shorty , close fitted number, so not sure how it will go down with sister. Still she can wear it over a fine sweater.
As for the sock - work has slowed down a little:(
Still, it was a good Valentines Day - look what I got! Although some little (beggars) cherished angels got a hold of the chocolate. Mmmm, Kschocolat organic orange and cardamon dark chocolate , can't get much better. Heres what HWWM&S got - a knitted Heart Card from some remnants of my Mobair mohair! Oh, and he got some DIVINE chocolate too (the Fairtrade chocolate that is..)
And finally.... our friends had their (second) baby girl on Friday, Josephine Margaret MacLean, weighing in at 7 pounds 3 ounces. Well, she may have been born into the worst country for children - but at least she has an auntie who will knit for her!

Tuesday, 13 February 2007

Its a race and a knitalong

My sister is knitting socks too now - she started a couple of weeks ago (unlike my months ago) , and we are almost at the same stage:) First sock, gusset or foot. Now do we race for the first sock only or include the second one too ?
Tomorrow is St Valentines Day, and I have made a little something for HWWM&S - more tomorrow.
Nearly forgot - Ribbon Twist Cardi is DONE. Just the blocking and sewing to do now, phew. Back to the sock!

Sunday, 11 February 2007

One arm down, one arm to go!

I have three "ongoing " projects just now , I feel a bit like a politician juggling the many contradictory demands of government (or opposition). I do hate how the press waste time wittering on about what Politicians did at school (drugs , sex, rock'n'roll, as if they really were THAT interesting at school). I wonder if Conservative Party Leader David Cameron will use the same comment Bill Clinton did - yes I did smoke Pot but I didn't inhale.....mmmm, economies of the truth ? Or to use the "House of Cards" catchphrase so beautifully put by actor Ian Richardson - "You may think so, but I couldn't possibly comment!" . See, its almost there, and if I didn't keep getting distracted by other things I'd be finished by now! Talking of other things, look how I turned a heel, and I'm now knitting up the "gusset".
And do you see that little end of a needle in the left hand corner ? Yep ? It is literally an end. Look what happened!
I have seen broken needles on some other sites - its not a pretty sight - so I should have known that sock knitting was not without its dangers! I shall just have to contact the company and try and get some more.
And the third item ? Well I haven't taken a picture just yet, its for a wee baby who will be delivered on Friday by C-section, so I will wait until Friday before posting that picture. Now to get back to some serious knitting, and not get distracted by socks... well maybe one more round.

Thursday, 8 February 2007

Up for a swap

The Glasgow SnB may be hosting a Yarn Swap soon, and this is what I'm considering swapping, although I haven't decided what for yet! My good friend Karen has some Rowan All Seasons cotton and Addi circulars which are tempting!
I bought this chunky Yarn from Crafty Fingers in Shawlands the other day - the artesano alpaca is going to become some baby things, but the Baba (such an appropriate name) is already this :) Its a little blanket for a Car Seat or Moses basket, the yarn is very soft and slubby, and beautifully bright and colourful for a new baby. It still needs blocked and the ends all sewn in, but that won't take long. Now I am very proud to show this - finally making progress with my first (adult) sock :0)
I should take a better picture in the daylight, but you get the idea, up until now I had only done about 6 rows of rib, the last night 70 rows of stocking stitch! Its like knitting with toothpicks, but it does get addictive since its so .... mobile.
Well I 'd better get on with "turning " that heel!

Wednesday, 7 February 2007

Its Mid-Term! A long lie perhaps?

Tomorrow, there is no school! I do not have to yell, cajole, persuade, negotiate or turn into the Gruffalo to get my kids out to school/toddlers on time. In fact Gran and Grandad came today and spirited my eldest away after dinner time (I don't think they trust I am a good mother). Junior Jnr stays with me as he is too much of the little firebrand for them!
I got to read some papers today - mainly the Times, Guardian and Herald. Its funny reading on the same subjects in different papers, and their different "views" on the same thing. The main article was about the British soldier killed in" friendly fire" - the Guardian was scathing, the Times tried to be understanding, and the Herald steered a path between the two (as usual) . The worst part including the deaths of 4 people was the blatant cover up by those "in charge". And as I read other stories, not related to the above, it emerges that covering things up is a bit of a pastime with those in power.
Qui custodie custodias (my Latin is appalling, Mr Habit would know better).
On the knitting front - I'm just at the shaping of the first sleeve for the Ribbon Twist cardi, and can't wait to start the second one. It really does knit up very quickly, but I keep getting distracted and so it is taking a longer to make than I had anticipated. Got some lovely Adriafil yarn today to make a small baby seat cover, for a little one due next week. (Yet another distraction) Am returning to a sock I started some time ago, its quite frosty and my tootsies are suffering. The only thing is , how quickly can I finish it (them)? (And another distraction)One of my fellow Sn B'rs knitting her first sock - this will be me soon, knitting on cocktail sticks! Plus I promised Junior a red scarf to keep him cosy, plus a hat! At least I'm not in Canada , where according to Yarn Harlot it is -30. Now -20 I could maybe cope with, but -30 or 40, I'd be hibernating along with the Bears (quite literally).

Sunday, 4 February 2007

Rowan 41 has arrived!

It thudded on the doormat yesterday morning , so I had a good look while eating my breakfast. I have chosen at least two "must knits" , one is in the new yarn called damask . There is a beautiful kidsilk haze shawl, and cardi - so much knitting so little time! The little mittens at the corner are the ones I've been knitting for our God-daughter, one was knit when I was on Radio Scotland!
The Ribbon Twist cardi is coming along, have finished cuff on first sleeve this afternoon while at the Glasgow SnB - v. bad photo to follow! Finished the Body while watching (part of) the Calcutta cup rugby match on T.V (Part of the 6 Nations Rugby Tournament, England v Scotland match). England won at home in Twickenham. I only saw 25 mins of the game, as howls of protest at missing Power Rangers were made.
Oh, another cracker of a Front Page from the Greenock Telegraph - 11 year old boy sets himself alight while copying Jackass film! The boy in question covered himself in spray deodorant then set himself alight , giving him severe burns to the upper body (?). This one made a column in the Daily Record AND the Times on Saturday. None sae queer as folk!

Friday, 2 February 2007

Silent Poetry Reading

Visited Anna's sight and discovered its Groundhog day / St Brigids day , and there is silent poerty reading in Cyberspace. Here is my Contribution as written by Robert Burns o:)
To a Kiss
Humid seal of soft affections,
Tenderest pledge of future bliss
Dearest tie of young connexions
Love's first snowdrop, virgin kiss!
Speaking silence, dumb confession
Passion's birth , and infants play,
Dove-like fondness, chaste concessions,
Glowing dawn of brighter day.
Sorrowing joy, adieu's last action,
When lingering lips no more must join,
What words can ever speak affection
So thrilling and sincere as thine!

A Town called Malice

Living in the Inverclyde area if you want to keep up with local goings-on, it is vital to get the Greenock Telegraph... every day...bar Sunday! This is the local equivalent of the London Evening Standard, the Glasgow Evening Times, etc. etc. The other day the Front Page Headline featured an elderly lady who claimed a Taxi driver had been nasty to her! Front Page! Apparently the callous taxi driver told her old people were a waste of resources (?) and should be "put down". Nice. Granted this must have been upsetting for the 80 year old lady in question , and if she had her (old British) size 8's and waved them in a threatening manner, he might not have been so forthcoming with the insults. But Front page news ? I think not. Mind you , it was an excellent way to get back at the Taxi driver.
Last night was Flava knitting night - lots of knitting, drinking,talking,frogging,sorting and persuading Lewis that, No, a Pirate themed wedding was not a good idea! Not if he still wanted to get married to Kimberly, his fiancee. I think a pirate themed party for their friends after the event was mooted as a maybe . Here are the photos (yes I know, I really need a photography masterclass, and new spectacles!) Karens' beautiful cashsoft dK, and beautiful bracelet too. Little mittens for little kittens - can you spot the cherry stitch marker ? Bought from my good friend Elaine of SoCherryknit. Lewis doing a bit of frogging, while trying to persuade Kimberly to have a Pirate themed wedding - ahar me hearties! Its done, its done , its done - Kimberlys' Rowan Spray Cardigan, it will probably be worn to constantly until summer now!
And the good news is - Rowan 41 is in the POST! YIPPEE! Heard from my pal Kathleen yesterday on the website - thanks for your comment.
Susie, from Coastal SC (is that South Carolina, Southern California? , my american geography is appalling) thank you for your comment. Wherever it is, it sounds wonderful - love your other blog too.
Did you see the Rovaniemi Finnish mittens (I know I've got this wrong) over at YarnHarlot - go look at this, it is FABULOUS