Sunday, 17 May 2015

a non-post


I'm so sick of that Safeway carrier big picture! But I don't really have the time for a proper post so here's a picture from our visit to Greenbank Garden in the rain a couple of weeks ago. Although it was really chucking it down the garden was lovely (if a bit squelchy underfoot).

The jigsaw got finished eventually, slightly hindered by the larger cat who scampered over it one day and tore a whole chunk up again.  I really enjoyed doing it but it's not that convenient having a board with a half-completed jigsaw lying on the floor for days so I'll investigate alternatives.

I'm in the home stretch with my OU course this year - just doing my EMA. I forget what it stands for, but it's a final assignment that counts for half the course, done instead of an exam. Obviously I want it to be good, and at the moment I just can't see beyond it. Another day or two and it'll be done - I have a good essay plan, half a draft and copious notes - but like an exam you can't really imagine it being of the past. See you on the other side!

Saturday, 18 April 2015

Vintage

Dull picture


Today Miss M requested that we do one of my (1000-piece) jigsaws. I haven't done a proper jigsaw for years, for fear of toddlers eating the pieces or some such thing, but it must be admitted that neither of the kids, or indeed the cats, are especially likely to eat jigsaw pieces now, and as Miss M has never done a proper jigsaw it was about time really. So we opened up the box and all the pieces were inside a Safeway carrier bag, which is a bit, ooh, vintage seeing as Morrisons took over most Safeway stores in 2004. That bag is from the days when the Boy was so young that he wouldn't even have attempted to eat a jigsaw piece (he was notoriously reluctant to wean onto solids). Good grief, it even predates Facebook, from the days when people could still distinguish between 'lightening' and 'lightning'. Miaow.

In case you're interested, Miss M's first reaction to the jigsaw was 'Ooh, the pieces are tiny', quickly followed by 'This will take forever' and, after some sorting and the ritual of the Finding of the Corners and the Edge Pieces, by 'I'm going out to jump on the trampoline'.  I've enjoyed it though. I'd forgotten about that calm meditative state of mind I fall into when I'm idly rummaging through the pieces looking for pieces of sky-with-a-bit-of-wall or somebody's-elbow.

Sunday, 5 April 2015

Springy


It was a beautiful day today, sunny and relaxed. Sometimes I feel as if I've been cold for months but today was bliss. We're not talking tropical, just nicely warm for once!  My Beloved was off doing the Yorkhill Easter Egg Run, a motorbike event which raises money for Yorkhill hospital, and the kids and I went to the Museum of Rural Life with my mother-in-law and my brother. We saw my Favourite Tree:


And lots of lambs, these two only about an hour old:


You don't get much more springy than that!

Before we went out I'd done an Easter Egg hunt for the kids again. As usual the clues were in rhyme. Very bad rhyme. I'm rather regretting doing that the first time because if I don't do it now I'll feel I'm not trying hard enough. The kids did say it didn't have to rhyme though. It's just me putting pressure on myself - ridiculous! :-D


They were good bad rhymes though!


Also the sock progresses:


Actually since then I've turned the heel - it's really fun knitting, this. So quick - hurray for small feet! I think this may be my quickest ever sock actually. There's nothing like an instant gratification project..

It's been a lovely weekend. Although I've still been getting some studying in, the pace has been much more leisurely for the last couple of days. I do like a bit of leisure.


Saturday, 4 April 2015

New month, new socks


I'm celebrating because our internet connection seems, today, to be okay for the first time in over a week. It's been up and down, up and down, and disproportionately frustrating, especially as I had an assignment to submit electronically. We had an engineer out from the broadband provider on Wednesday. He was as helpful as he could be, but it's only today it's seemed okay.  No idea why, but I'm so happy I've even posted in my other blog for the first time since *cough* August 2013! I'm not sure if this'll be a regular thing - it really ought to be as it was a post-a-day blog - but we'll see.


The socks for Miss M - no, not pink, that was just the waste yarn for the provisional cast-on 'cos I'm doing her a pair of Elgin socks, like the squishy socks of wonderfulness that I made for myself a few months ago.  I'm very proud of myself because I remembered to use a smooth waste yarn so the COWYAK thing went really smoothly (unintended pun). It's too dark to take a picture now but I'm well up the foot in her chosen colours of purple and blue stripes, picked last week at the Yarn Cake. I'll admit I wasn't sure about the colours but she seems to have a good colour instinct and yet again the colours she's chosen look great together. She's loving the fact that they're toe-up so she can try them on every five minutes!

Sunday, 29 March 2015

British Summer Time


The clocks changed last night. I am completely thrown by it, as usual. In retrospect a trip into the wild West End of Glasgow possibly wasn't the best idea because now I'm completely knackered! However we had a brilliant time. My Beloved was out on the local motorbike club's first spring rideout, so the kids and I met up with my brother and went to The Yarn Cake for coffee, cake (I recommend the Aprikosenwähe) and yarn-squishing. I've been teaching Miss M to knit so for the first time she took her knitting with her and was happy to sit and knit a row, before choosing some DROPS Nepal (from the Wall of DROPS in the picture) for the socks I'm going to make for her. She couldn't decide between bright blue and purple, so naturally they're going to be both. In narrow stripes.


After that we wandered along to the Botanic Gardens and mooched around my favourite greenhouse, the Kibble Palace, for a bit. That's the fabulous roof reflected in a puddle (they'd been watering the tree ferns).


I love the tree ferns.


And a mystery pretty flower!


And then in the Killer Plants section (carnivorous plants) there were these mini-spirals in the moss. I don't what they were, though they looked a bit like the pitcher plants behind them so perhaps they're pitcher plant seedlings.  Or perhaps not!

It was a great day, though by the time we got home it was sleeting and the sky was black and heavy, and we were quite glad to back in the warm. I think I might sleep well tonight!


Tuesday, 24 March 2015

I've finished a thing!


My bit of mindless knitting - a moss-stitch cowl - is finished! Just in time for spring! That there is a very rare Ginny-selfie, and it took something like 20 tries to get something that wasn't completely awful. I didn't know my hair was that red. I did know my nose is that big. In any case it's quite tricky to take a photo of your own neckwear - at this rate I'll have to invest in a selfie stick!

'Needs more cat hair'

This was a fabulously lazy piece of knitting - I knitted it in the round using a circular needle and although it's wider than I'd originally intended, it meant I didn't have to faff around with Annoying Magic Looping, which I hate with a passion. I did lose track at one point and the moss-stitch became rib for a round and a half which took an annoyingly long time time to rip back - the wool is Álafoss Lopi which is quite grippy. Under some circumstances this is good of course but not so much when have 180 stitches to rip back.


On the whole it's been a very enjoyable knit and the end result is very warm and, given its general sheepiness, surprisingly unscratchy now that it's been washed and has softened a little. I'm not sure I'd cope this wool in a garment, or not without a long-sleeved t-shirt underneath, but I'll wear the cowl for a bit and see if I can bear it. Looking through my Ravelry favourites I have favourited Aftur three times over the last couple of years, so perhaps I should actually knit it!

Saturday, 21 March 2015

Ma!


I actually thought I was too sleepy to blog tonight but Cat1 has fallen asleep on my legs as I sit at the computer so I may be here a while. And as I'm here, I'll show you pictures from a walk the Boy and I took this afternoon. It was a really lovely day (and why couldn't we have got weather like this yesterday morning during the eclipse, eh?), one of several lovely days this week and it's definitely feeling spring-like. We'd only been walking for five minutes when we heard bleating and as we came round a corner saw a field of ewes and lambs. The lambs were running around shouting 'Ma! Ma!' ('Look at me Ma!' 'Yeah, whatever' says Ma) and generally having fun.


We stood and watched for a bit then moved on.


The light was beautiful as it was quite late afternoon.


And we stopped and admired the view, noticed interesting things and took photographs. The Boy is excellent company on a walk.


Actually he's excellent company any time! I'm aware I tend to talk more about Miss M because she does more activities and is generally more outgoing, but in his quiet way the Boy is lots of fun too. He has a very quirky sense of humour! One of the best things about this week has been watching Stargazing Live, which they timed this year to coincide with the eclipse, and what's been even better has been watching it snuggled up with the Boy who has been keen on space for years. He'd watched bits of Stargazing Live in previous years but this was the year he started to really enjoy it and understand it - not all of it obviously, some of it's pretty technical and way over my head, but it's the enthusiasm of the presenters that carries it.

Ah, pretty good week! Apart from the bits at the dentist. We won't dwell on that.