Saturday, March 29, 2008

29 March: Happy Birthday!

Will they still need you, will they still feed you....?

Well, there's a cake waiting in the kitchen.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

26 March: Reserve supplies

Just in case there's a need to do some dyeing, or to make a whole jumper in the same yarn, there are a few skeins of BFL in reserve -

These 11 skeins together weigh about 850 gms, or a couple of ounces under 2 lbs in old money.

Not that there's a shortage of other stuff in the stash. And plenty of fibre waiting to be spun.

Friday, March 21, 2008

21 March: Where I'm from

This has been going round; it has so many possibilities, and I have been playing with it for a while - this is one of my versions. I believe the original was by George Ella Lyons - thank you.

I am from tablecloths, Mansion polish and hoovering.
I am from the small front room with its carpet square, and inadequate coal fire.

I am from the clipped hedge, thrift and honesty, the unwrapped crumpled silk of a hollyhock bud.

I am from caravan holidays and library books, from James and Maude, Harry and Mary Ann, William and Agnes.

I am from distance, intelligence, and not getting involved.
From 'not in front of the children', 'what do you want to do that for?', and 'what will the neighbours think?'

I am from absence from church, school prayers, right and wrong without sin.

I am from Hampshire, midland inns, Scottish mills, London and Derry, treacle tart and tea.

From the horse my grandmother rode in Brixton, the family Music Hall acts, the war-time bomb in the London street, my mother's frost-bitten thigh.

I am from neat albums and loose photos, jumbled in boxes and memories, faces once loved and familiar, but now unknown. Which of them gave me the green eyes and the love of making things?

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

18 March: Back in the knitting bag

Well, that was a nasty little interruption.

Back with the knitting, a Moebius scarf (yes, knitted with a complete twist in it, producing a one-sided fabric) is finished -

And a pair of yoga socks has been started. They will have no toes and no heel, to avoid slipping but at the same time keep feet warm -

And a piece of stranded knitting is under way, intended to become a felted bag -

All my handspun yarn, of course. The scarf yarn is Yarn Yard superwash BFL, spun fractally (fibre halved, then halved, then halved, etc), the other yarns, apart from the natural black Shetland, dyed at home.

Monday, March 17, 2008

17 March: Laid low

All activities temporarily suspended, owing to a bad back.

And I was only trying to measure my feet, preparatory to casting on a sock as per Cat Bordhi's book, and my back started hurting. So I've spent much of yesterday and all morning today lying in bed, and have only tottered out now because of boredom (the Ibuprofen have taken effect).

And there's so much to do - a finished Mobius scarf to photograph, the tax office to ring, that sock to cast on....

At least I don't have to drag myself to the doctor's for a sick note!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

11 March: Country Park

This morning was so pleasant and sunny that I was tempted to go out.

On each side of the road, hawthorn hedges are spattered with green as the first leaves open. A patch of grotty scrub amazed me, as it does every year, with a burst of blackthorn blossom.

A local country park is being "developed" - new gravel paths, nicely graded for wheelchair friendliness, red bins for the dog crap, new shrubs and trees planted (some in places where they have cut down trees and bushes to enable this), and all the follies are being renovated. In fact one or two look as if they've been newly built. A huge posh new Visitor Centre and car park are still under construction - I parked in a clearing in the trees.

This statue of Neptune now stands at the corner of the long lake -

Across the broader lake you can make out the temple on top of its little hill -

And looking back through the trees the Hall, now a hotel and conference centre, appears -

And, yes, beside the lake, beneath the trees -

Sunday, March 09, 2008

9 March: Slow digestive transit?

Forget those expensive (and probably fattening) yogurts - an hour's exercise works wonders!

DH went and bought some new running shoes yesterday. I called his bluff this morning.

When we got home, the skylark was singing - the first time I've heard it this year.

Tomorrow I may be unable to get downstairs. Ah well, I've always said that if a thing's worth doing, it's worth overdoing.

Friday, March 07, 2008

7 March: Clanger?

The amusement of the past day or two has been knitting a Clanger.

But not a pink one - a purple one. I used the pattern by Mr and Mrs Oliver Postgate, but the result was not quite like the TV characters.

OK, it's purple, and it's wearing a striped pullover instead of felt armour plates, but the legs don't look right, and the nose points straight up, while the ones I remember on TV were at least able to look at each other.

Mine doesn't stand unaided, either. In the picture above, the wall is holding it up , and in the picture below, lying on the sofa, it looks more like a flying pig than a Clanger.

I didn't wire the ears, and I improvised I-cord fingers and some hair. The eyes should have been "shiny shoe buttons", but I just used a couple of buttons from the box.

Oh well, at least it's individual.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

4 March: Spending money wisely?

The radio news this morning mentioned that the Government is going to issue advice to everyone on how to manage their finances.

But a Mr. C. Dickens gave all the financial advice anyone needs in 1850, via the character of Mr Micawber in his book David Copperfield -

Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds nought and six, result misery.