Saturday, 24 September 2016

Ooh post!

Yay, the Shetland wool week annual arrived - time to sit back with a mug of coffee and a chocolate biscuit!

Monday, 19 September 2016

It's spaghetti time

Spaghetti time is when you cast on a million stitches (okay, 307, but that's bad enough) and your knitting looks like bedraggled spaghetti for the first eight or nine rows. At least the circular needle makes it curl up in a pleasing shape!

Things have been busy at Casa Peeriemoot and there hasn't been a lot of time for knitting, or not for the kind of knitting that requires concentration which is a little unfortunate because this particular pattern has a lace row every fourth row, and being me, I need to concentrate on this. And count. Very, very carefully. However yesterday I got a bit of time so the first lace row is Done. Yay! This will be a shawlette somewhat like the turquoise one I made in June, though it might take a little longer as I rashly threw caution to the wind and chose dark blue yarn. It's lovely actually - dark blue with flecks of turquoise and purple - but I really need to get the lace bit done before the equinox because this will require natural light and plenty of it! Remind me to pick a light colour next time..

Thursday, 1 September 2016

Very minor acts of creativity

Sometimes there's not a lot of time for being creative, but occasionally I can cram a very minor act of creativity into five minutes. Ages ago I bought a shopping-list notebook that had a magnet on the back. It lived on the freezer and was very useful but far too big. I think it was designed for people who do one massive weekly shop, but as I live within a five minute drive of a Lidl and a Morrison's, I'm more likely to do a smaller shop several times a week, and consequently my shopping lists are a lot shorter. The notebook was handy though because I could jot things down as soon as I realised we were running low on something. When it eventually ran out I got a very small (A7?) notebook and used that instead, tearing the magnet off the back of the old notebook and sticking it onto the new. I'm onto my third tiny notebook now and I really disliked the cover of the latest one. They're just cheap notebooks from the supermarket so they're ripe for a smidge of personalisation.

The kids had just had to cover some school jotters (notebooks, exercise books, whatever you want to call them - in Scotland a school notebook is always a 'jotter') and I had some gorgeous map-print wrapping paper left over from this so I made the boring, practical notebook a bit prettier. And transferred the magnet yet again - eventually there'll be so many layers of giftwrap attached to it that it'll be thicker than the notebook!

The trouble with a spiral bound notebook of course is that I can't get the cover completely, well, covered. But I like to tell myself that the blue strip behind the spiral binding almost matches the sea on the map..

Friday, 26 August 2016


Some flowers I saw today when I went for a quick walk after a slightly tedious trip to the retail park - ridiculous to sublime in one fell swoop!

Thursday, 25 August 2016

The Stealth shawl

Large, triangular and almost invisible.  Which just goes to show how lush my garden was looking yesterday afternoon!

So this is my Boneyardish shawl, which started off as a Boneyard shawl, but I completely forgot the garter ridges until way too late. I don't think it matters though. The wool is Colorimetry (dyed by my friend Purplejen) and I'm pretty sure it's 'Shetland Jumper'. Although I have a number of her hand-dyed wools I actually got this from another friend who wound it all into very neat little cakes (I really must get a ballwinder) and then decided the colours weren't really her after all. They are however very me, so that worked out well!

Miss M modelling again, because I'm rubbish at selfies. And really because she's a much better model than me.

This was a very quick summer project, an easy knit-until-the-wool-runs-out effort, which I actually finished while we were in St. Andrews so when I'm wearing it in the middle of winter I'll have some sunny, summery memories associated with it. I'll probably wear it neckerchief-style with the point at the front when I'm wearing my stupidly v-necked winter coat. Not going to think about winter now though, the sun is still shining, just!

Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Well, that was a long day!

Starting with being rudely awoken by two alarm clocks half an hour apart, only one of which was mine. I'm just not a morning person. But the sun shone (somewhat surprisingly - the forecast was for 100% cloud cover), and I even got out into garden briefly in the afternoon to take a few pictures, so not all bad!

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

creeping back in

St. Andrews  - East Sands, pier and cathedral

That's been a long break - almost five months..

Things have been hectic and there have been family (and cat) illnesses, and blogging just fell by the wayside. Luckily things are calming down now, so here's the update!

I've finished my Open University degree and will be graduating at the end of October. I got a 2.1 (Upper Second). Again. I already have a 2.1 in Social Anthropology from the Olden Days of my youth. I was very close to getting a First with the OU degree but not quite. And if I hadn't taken that pesky Literature in the Modern World course partway through, maybe I'd have got it, but it turns out I hate 20th century literature. I blame Mrs Dalloway. I'm sure I'm not the first to say that. I am, of course, very happy with a 2.1, but I admit to being just slightly wistful about not getting that First.

The kids are back at school now but we had a pleasant summer - a week in St. Andrews again, a few days in the Highlands visiting Mum and Dad, a lot of lazing around reading.

St.Andrews - North Street at sunset

Falls of Pattack, near Loch Laggan

I started knitting again! I did hardly any knitting over the winter, probably because I was studying a lot, but as soon as I submitted my last assignment at the end of May I picked up the needles again to knit a present for a teacher at Miss M's school who was retiring after 40 years at that school. She's a lovely person who's done so much for the school and the kids, and taught both my children, so I wanted to make her something special. But as she announced her retirement quite suddenly we were all a bit taken by surprise and there wasn't much time! Luckily I'd come across the pattern for this shawlette (Sunburnt by Nidhi Kansal) which is quite quick and straightforward to knit up, even for me. I think I only messed up the lace section once, which is pretty good going for me!

Cat assistance
Modelled by Miss M

I was really pleased with how it turned out, so the next time I'm at the Yarn Cake I'll get some more of the yarn (DROPS Alpaca) in another colour and start one for myself. I also knitted another Boneyard shawl over the summer but I've totally failed to get a photograph of that. Actually it's more Boneyard-esque - I used yarn-overs instead of the left- and right-leaning increases and I completely forgot about the garter ridges.

Okay, none of that sounds very exciting! But the main thing is that everybody is healthy again.