Sunday, October 28, 2007

Sad news, lunch, & catching up.

My computer lost its internet connection for a few days and the other computer doesn't have my camera software on it, but this afternoon a friend who is a computer genius came and sorted it all out, so everything is back to normal.

But unfortunately I have to start this post with some sad news. On Oct 10th we had to make the heartbreaking decision to say goodbye to our boy Podge. He was almost 16 and had been having lots of falls and couldn't get up again without help. It was all a bit confusing for him and when the vet said there was nothing more we could do, it was time to say goodbye. We had had him since he was about 9 months old, when we rescued him from the RSPCA shelter in Colwyn Bay. He has left a huge hole in our lives and we will miss him dearly. We have had him cremated and so he is now home with us at least.

Yesterday we went out for lunch with some friends we hadn't seen for almost a year, Paul & Scottie. We went to Piccolino's and spent a leisurely 2 hours eating and chatting. After that we met some other friends Graeme, Mandy & Emily for a quick coffee. And tonight we have Gill coming round for dinner. She is the friend who went off to France after Colin did some life coaching with her. She is now back and sorting out what to do next.

I am working on my Drops cardigan but it is very slow going. I have done about 15cm in four days!! The yarn is fine, the needles are small and as it is worked in one piece there are loads of stitches. It looks lovely so far though so I am happy to trudge along with it. I have also finished the present for my mum.

Couldn't resist this from Natural Dye Studio............BFL Dazzle sock yarn in colour Peahen.

Colin is off for a "trial run" for his radiotherapy tomorrow, and then he starts properly on Wednesday for 6 and a half weeks which takes us to 14th December we think. So all done and dusted by Christmas.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

I am Sooooo lucky

I am so lucky to have a wonderful friend. And the daft thing is we have never met. Our first contact was through a bookring that was running on And then we became blogging friends. I won't mention her name as she prefers to stay anonymous if she can but she knows who she is and some of you know her too. Anyway, she sent me this Ilga Leja Diamonds on the Diagonal scarf out of the blue!! Just out of the goodness of her heart because I have had a dodgy time of it lately. What a sweet person she is. Thank you so much.

It is made with Posh Yarn in a wonderful mix of pinky purpley grey colours with a hint of a yellowy green. Gorgeous. And just the right size for this time of year when you don't yet need a really big scarf. In fact I shall wear it today!

No sign of my Lace needle yet so I shall carry on with the other project for the time being.

Mighty Boosh in the Observer

Apparently there was an interview with Noel and Julian in the Obserer Magazine on Sunday. I didn't see it but there is a link to the interview here for everyone else who missed it too. (Thanks to Badger for the link!)

Monday, October 22, 2007

Lavender Scars, Miss Potter and Drops 88-4

I am officially out of Sock Wars. These arrived on Saturday morning, lovely pale lavender Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino. They were knitted by Rooknits (three quarters) and wendyswoolies (finished off). My Yarn Forward magazine came last week. It is much glossier and magazine-like now with some good length articles. As I didn't know if I would be knitting more on Sock Wars I decided to start the Miss Potter Mitts from the front cover. Unfortunately the pattern was not well written and I had to work out a couple of bits myself. But this is what they came out like....
They are knitted in Rowan Tapestry which is lovely and soft, using size 4mm DPNs. I think if I made another pair I would go down a needle size as they are quite roomy. I used one ball of the Tapestry and literally had 4 inches of yarn left over!! More pics on flickr (see link on the left).

Also on Saturday I had a delivery from Bruce at Scandinavian Knitting Design. Six balls of Drops Alpaca to make the Drops Cardigan 88-4. The yarn is wonderfully soft, but is very fine (thinner than sock yarn) and the pattern is knitted on 3.5mm needles. It is going to be a longer term project I think. Here is my progress so far........
After doing a couple of rows of cables with a cable needle I decided there had to be a better way, so googled cabling without a needle. I found this method and it is great apart from the scary bit of dropping stitches off the needle. You need to hold them tight so you don't lose them. Mine is only a four stitch twist so only two stitches to drop and pick up.
The bamboo needle I was using however, is rather blunt so I have ordered one of the Addi Lace needles which are more pointy.

While waiting for the Addi I have started a secret project for my mum for Christmas. I was going to do her a cardigan of some sort but as I don't want to over stretch my hands I have scaled down to something smaller. Can't say what because she reads this. All I'll say is that it is in a colour she likes.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Clapotis finished

I finished my Clapotis scarf last night. I'm not sure about the colour pooling but I'm not worrying enough to frog and do it again. It is Natural Dye Studio hand dyed yarn so there are colour variations between skeins. I used 3 and a quarter skeins (170ish grams) of sock yarn.

I liked getting near the end because you are decreasing at both ends so each row is getting shorter and therefore quicker to knit.

Somehow I am still alive in Sock Wars. Mel declared herself 'dead' yesterday so hopefully I will get her victim's partly made socks to finish in a couple of days. Unless I'm 'killed' first, but I have had no word from my 'assassin' at all. Perhaps they are in stealth mode.

On the TV front, I watched Sunday's Top Gear last night. I can't believe that they managed to sail the English Channel in a pickup truck!! Surely not! Very funny though.

Since I have managed to pick up the needles again recently, my reading has started to suffer. I have started Memnoch the Devil, which is no. 5 of Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles. I did pop into the second hand bookshop on Saturday and got Priestess of the White by Trudi Canavan, and Night Rise by Anthony Horowitz for the grand total of £7, and the Canavan was a hardback. I enjoyed the Black Magician trilogy so I hope I'll like this one too. I'm not usually a big fantasy fiction fan but there you go.

Yay for Russell Brand having Noel Fielding as co-host on his Radio 2 show last week. If you are quick you can listen again or download the podcast here. The show was very funny, but I don't know how he gets away with some of the stuff he talks about, what with it being the BBC n'all. There was a bonkers chap on who wants Russell to stand for mayor of London. You can sign the petition here. Noel & Russell did say that they will be defending their title on The Big Fat Quiz of the Year, which I'm guessing will be on around Christmas/New Year. Not long now then, where is this year going?

Monday, October 15, 2007

WMDs lauched!!!

(Weapons of Mel's Destruction!!!)

Coincidentally it turned out that Mel was my victim for Sock Wars!! I finished the socks and mailed them off this morning so she will probably be dead (Royal Mail willing) by the morning.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Sheepies for Mel

Here are some little sheepie stitch markers for Mel (woolydoodles). Four for her and four for her Secret Pal. Apparently purple and green are her pal's favourite colours. I have to make a batch for the LYS before the weekend too, better get on with those!!

So yesterday we went over to Manchester to Christies. The consultant was very nice and explained all about what was going to happen. The radiotherapy will be 5 days a week for 6 weeks starting on 31st October. There are a couple of appointments before that where they mark out the area they are going to treat and have to make a plastic thingiemajig for the area. The treatments themselves are about 15 minutes, its just a pity it takes an hour each way to get there. It took longer yesterday because it was peak time and the traffic was heavy but hopefully we can arrange more convenient times.

It was hard to imagine that a large number of the people wandering around the corridors had some type of cancer. They all looked so "normal". Of course there were the ones that had lost their hair due to chemo, but it was lovely to see some of these people with smiles, as though they hadn't a care in the world. Good luck to them all.

On the way back we went to Borders (didn't buy anything) and had panini and cappucinos for lunch in Starbucks. Yummy.

3 days to SOCK WARS!!!

Sunday, October 07, 2007

belated thanks, ravelling in it, and foodie friends.

I just wanted to say a belated thanks to my step-dad Bill, who came up to visit with my mum last weekend and washed both our cars and cut the grass. I am ashamed to say that mine hadn't been done since he did it last visit in May. Gulp!

I am having fun on ravelry. I now have 17 "friends" and have uploaded several of my finished projects, books, stashed yarns and queued some patterns I would like to make. AND, a friend and I have started a group called The Coconut Lodge, for all things Booshy, and we have 7 members! One thing I have noticed from putting up pics of my stash is that there is a lot of blue/green there. I need to add some colour desperately.

Less than a week until Sock Wars now. I have 3 possible yarns now. If my victim is female I'm sticking with the Natural Dye Studio BFL sock yarn

If my victim is male, I'm going with garnstudio Fabel
And if either of them are allergic to wool, I have some Rowan Bamboo Soft.
I have 3.25cm DPNs AND Addi circulars, so I'm all set. Let battle commence!!!

I have given up on The Angel Makers. When I bought it I thought it was going to be witchy and a bit supernatural but it has turned into a saga of a woman who gets beaten up by her fiance. No thanks! So I have abandoned it and gone for something I know I will like, Memnoch the Devil by Anne Rice. Its the 5th in the Vampire Chronicles.

Last night we had a couple of friends round for dinner. We hadn't seen them since January. A very nice evening was had by all and my tuna fish pie went down very well. Heather brought some runner beans picked from her garden that day, and they were lovely with it. Colin bought some Stinking Bishop cheese, and I'm afraid it tasted to me like a cowpat, (not that I've ever tasted a cowpat! I came close once but that's another story) so I had some of the goat's cheese and the smoked Lancashire. Colin did a fancy starter of Ciabatta with Asparagus and Poached Egg, mmmm, delish!

On Tuesday we go to Manchester to see the radiotherapy team at Christie's. We should find out when Colin's treatment starts and for how long. Wish us luck.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Ravelry name

Hooray, I got on ravelry yesterday!!!

My username is ElectroGirl

Wow, that is one scary black hole of a place, several hours have just vanished without a trace!! I think I shall have to limit myself, but at the moment it is a HUGE novelty. There are some great resources for seeing what other people have made with yarns you may have in your stash, and also pics of things people have made from patterns you have made. 'Citin'!!!

Oh, and we need people for a Mighty Boosh ravelry group, so leave me a comment with your ravelry name if you are interested.

Thursday, October 04, 2007


Oooo, two posts today!!

You may remember I treated myself to a little iPod nano a couple of weeks ago. I'm not a big music listener, but one thing I have discovered is PODCASTS. I really like listening to Jonathan Ross on a Saturday morning but as we usually go into town then, I only catch bits of it in the car on the way there and back. By downloading the podcast i can listen to it whenever I like and each new episode is automatically downloaded when I open iTunes. I have done the same with Russell Brand. You don't get any of the music (this is probably something to do with copyright laws and stuff) but you get all the chat in between. Russell has about 1hr 15min a week of him rambling on about a load of old twaddle. I think I might give the Chris Moyles one a whirl too.

Apart from radio shows there is a world of ordinary people doing their own free podcast recordings. You can search for anything and find someone has done a podcast on it, knitting, diabetes, reiki, anything you want. I can't vouch for the quality of any of this stuff though. You don't need to have an iPod to listen either, you can just download iTunes (which is free) and listen through your computer. Give it a whirl!

Can you tell what it is yet?

This is (was) my secret project. (Click to enlarge) I have confessed to the "victim" what i was doing and that it won't be in time for her birthday. (And that is despite the postal strike). It is going to take me a lot longer than I thought, and will be interrupted by Sock Wars anyway. So I'm going to send an alternative gift, and keep hold of this myself for now. Phew, I didn't realise you needed 18 stitch markers either. Luckily, thanks to Blossom who sent me 6 in my birthday surprise package, I did have enough in the right size. They are a bit of a mixture though. (BTW if anyone is still trying to figure it out, it is a Clapotis.)

I have just got gauge for Sock Wars in Garnstudio Fabel too, so if my victim is a man I will use that because it is blues/greens and greys. Not sure a man would want Shades of Grapefruit to be honest!

519 ahead of me for ravelry, I reckon I might just get on this evening!!! Now I just have to think of a cool name. A friend is going to start a Mighty Boosh group on there, so if you are interested leave me a comment, we need a couple more people to be able to set it up.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Secret projects

The secret project is a little bit ambitious. It would mean knitting like a demon for a few days, and that is not the best idea with my hands. So a little reassessment is in order. I will complete what I have started but not for the deadline I had intended. A new (smaller) secret project will be underway tomorrow. Watch this space.

1167 ahead of me now, that's about 2 days away!!!!

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Swatching for Sock Wars!, sheep and secret projects

Woohoo, a week and a half to Sock Wars, and I'm in!! The artillery has been posted and the tools of the trade are 3.25mm DPNs and yarn to get a gauge of 25st x 34rows over 10cm. I swatched this this morning and guess what, got gauge first go, brilliant. I have had this yarn for about a year and never got round to using it, so it is perfect. I got it from Natural Dye Studio on ebay. It is their BFL sock yarn if anyone is struggling to find yarn for Sock Wars. I think this was called Sunbeam or Sunrise or something but i think I would call it Fruit Salad (after the chewy sweets) or Shades of Grapefruit. (The darker orange is quite pinky really like in a pink grapefruit.)

I just hope i can part with them when the time comes!

Another woohoo..........only 1876 people ahead of me for ravelry now! I could be on within the week at this rate.

I am working on a secret project too but there are tight time considerations so I'll see how i go, I don't want to overdo it with the hands.

I also have an order for some sheep stitch markers so I'm off to have lunch and get on with those this afternoon.