Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Exercise can be fun!

Phew, I've just finished a gruelling 45 minute tennis match!! I haven't done so much exercise in years! You may be wondering how I managed to play tennis in the dark - I did it in my living room. No I don't live in a huge mansion with a lounge the size of a tennis court, I used the new Wii. Colin got it for us for Christmas and it is proving very popular. We got Wii Sports and Wii Fit with it and then we got Mario Kart and Tomb Raider as well. I haven't had a go at Mario yet, but Lara Croft is currently near the end of level 2.

The first time I tried the Wii Fit we were in hysterics, at one point I nearly passed out from lack of breath I was laughing so much. It told me my WiiFit age was 56 for a start! Then I tried a bit of skiing where you move from side to side on the Fit Board to make yourself turn left and right. I screamed and laughed the whole way down the hill!

There are lots of balance games, and aerobic things, yoga and stregth exercises on the WiiFit but I think I prefer the Sports where you can do tennis, bowling, baseball, golf and boxing. The boxing is brilliant cos you can beat the crap out of the other guy!

My Wii Fit age is currently 41.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Am I really related to these two?

This is what greeted us when the webcam fired up this morning!!! At least they like their hats! Ain't modern technology wonderful!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Johnny Two Hats.

This will probably be my last post before Christmas Day so..................


I have been quite industrious over the last few days and finished two hats.

The first is the Koolhaas, knitted in Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran, and the second is called A Hat Fit for a Boyfriend, made with Istex Lett Lopi 100% Icelandic wool, but seeing as I don't have a boyfriend I have called it something else. Can't tell you what as otherwise its recipient will guess it is for them. This one took less than a skein of yarn (about 84 metres) to make so I have another ball left over to make another, and the two skeins in brown.

I am really pleased with the Koolhaas, it is a lovely pattern and I love how it finishes in the middle with that perfect little circle like the underneath of a starfish (click pictures for extreme close-up). Thanks go to my lovely glamorous assistant for modelling them!

Friday, December 19, 2008

A celebrity in our midst.........

..........well a celebrity in the world of knitting anyway. Jeni from Fyberspates has just moved to the area from Cardiff and she and her partner Andy from bluefaced.com joined us for a select gathering at Stash yesterday. And she has said that she will come to the knitting group at Borders.

Becca was working on a mitts pattern which Jeni had written so it was handy for her to have her on hand to clarify some of the instructions. In the meantime I spent at least an hour unpicking an extremely tight cast off that she had done on a pair of toe-up socks, which wouldn't fit a mouse's leg let alone the human recipient's. The cast off she had used was supposedly called "a super stretchy cast off" but I think that should be reported to Trading Standards! Anyway I got it sorted and did a loose rib cast off and she was happy with that.

I managed to add 3 rows to my hat and bought some Lopi Aran to make a couple more. Not Koolhaas but some simple ribbed hats, probably using this pattern. Ruth had brought along a lovely book of vintage knitting patterns which she bought at the Harrogate Knitting & Stitching Show - a show she wasn't overly impressed with due to the lack of knitting stands. Anne had Inspired to Knit and Glam Knits which we all had a look at. I think I preferred the first one.

I'd like to thank Anne for her hospitality and for providing tea, coffee and yummy edible goodies.

Have a look at the photos on this amazing blog. I found it through "Blogs of Note" on the blogger dashboard. Wouldn't fancy that hobby myself!

Thursday, December 18, 2008


A little something I'm working on at the moment is a Koolhaas hat. Karen was kind enough to give me this pattern and I chose some Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran to do it in. I have a bit of a thing for red at the moment so I am using this lovely wine red colour.

I started off using a cable needle but it got very fiddly so I am now using the method where you don't use the cable needle. It takes a bit of concentration but I have got the hang of it now.

This afternoon is the extra knitting group meeting which we are having at Stash. This is going to be very tempting with all their lovely yarns around. I may get some for another hat!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Yummy socks!

Here are the socks I finished last night.

Pattern: 9 to 5 socks
Yarn: Wild Fire Fibres Manyana Merino/Tencel sock yarn
Needles: Addi lace 2.5mm using magic loop
Mods: none

One of those meme things!

I got tagged by Sarah. I haven't done one of these for ages so I'll do it.

The rules of the game get posted at the beginning. Each player answers the questions about themselves. At the end of the post, the player then tags 5-6 people and posts their names, then goes to their blogs and leaves them a comment, letting them know they’ve been tagged and asking them to read your blog.Let the person who tagged you know when you’ve posted your answer.

1) What was I doing 10 years ago?
I was working in a small independent bookshop, part time.

2)What are 5 things on my to-do list for today (not in any particular order):
- go into work and update the bookkeeping
- figure out which yarn I am going to use for a Koolhaas hat
- take photos of the socks I finished last night and post them on ravelry
- try not to fall asleep for most of the afternoon like I did yesterday!
- check the tyre pressures on my car

3) Snacks I enjoy:
Pringles, pistachio nuts, chocolate, chocolate chip Yumbles.

4) Things I would do if I were a billionaire:
I am very bad at spending, but I would pay off my family's mortgages and give them some to play with, get myself some decent clothes, get a big house with room for lots of dogs to run around. And probably just save the rest!!

5) Places I have lived
Southampton, England
Bangor, Wales
Wrexham, Wales
Chester, England

7) 5 people I want to know more about

Don't ask me what happened to number 6, it was like that when I copied it o

Saturday, December 13, 2008


On a whim on Wednesday I ordered some Moo mini cards. You get 100 for £9.99 + P+P. You can have any text you like on the back and you can get quite a lot on them. I have my name, address, phone, blog address and email address on mine. I painstakingly went through and chose 100 different designs from the thousands available but you can also upload your own pictures or designs. You can have minicards, postcards, greeting cards & stickers.
(click pic for close up)

These are some of my favourite ones from the ones I chose

Cute eh? They said that they would take 7-14 days to dispatch but they arrived in 3, great service!

Looky looky what I've got.

Friday, December 12, 2008

New knitty

Wahey, I'm getting my new car tomorrow! Happy Christmas to me!

The last knitting group of the year was on Tuesday evening. It was a smallish turnout, only 8 of us but nice. J and I took some goodies - she brought mince pies and I brought choccies. Needless to say with so few people we took the leftovers home, but we are having a mini meeting at Stash on 18th December so I'll take what's left (ahem, the amount is getting less each day!) to that.

I am working on my 9 to 5 (Dolly Parton) socks at the moment, I have half of the second one to go having just picked up the stitches around the heel flap. This is done from the back on this pair so the stitches show down the edge on the outside of the sock. A photo would be better to show this so I'll do that when they are finished.

The new Knitty is up! I like Amused and Surface without the extra bit. Gwynedd is nice too.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Second Fetchings

My second pair of Fetching gloves finished last night

Pattern: Fetching from knitty.com
Yarn: Debbie Bliss Pure Cashmere from Stash Fine Yarns in Chester
Needles: 4mm KnitPicks Harmony interchangeables using magic loop
Mods: cast on 40 stitches instead of 45 and did plain cast off instead of picot.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Bit of catching up

I've got a bit of catching up to do. Somehow, since the end of the frantic NaNo month I have lost the desire to write anything. I need to get back into the habit of blogging rather than novelling.

As for "the novel", I haven't even read it myself yet. I am going to do what they say and not look at it until January. Then I will read it and decide if I am going to work on it further (- I can hear Colin shouting "you must, you must" from here!) We'll see. Now that the month has finished I can look back on it and say that I enjoyed the challenge and the satisfaction of winning, and will probably do it again next year. But it was a struggle some days.

So what do I need to catch up on? Oh yeah, we went to see The Mighty Boosh again last Tuesday at the Manchester Apollo. When I ordered the tickets back in December 2007(!) I got four and up to a few weeks ago there were three of us going. But number three dropped out so I asked Becca and Mark if they wanted to come. Apparently Mark was pretty excited about it but Becca hadn't really seen the Boosh before and wasn't sure what to expect. Anyway, we went and got there despite the stupid sat nav sending us the wrong way. I think I enjoyed it more this time because the seats were much better (row M in the stalls and I was on the end on the aisle so the Hitcher walked right past me) and we could see everything on the stage. Becca was clapping, shouting and laughing in all the right places so I'm happy that she enjoyed it. During the interval, Paul King, the TV series director was talking to the guy in front of me but I didn't realise it was him 'til he was walking away!

I know Nina likes a book review every now and again so here is my latest. Angels of 9/11 by Caitlin Walsh. This is the story of a man who died in 1980 and has been watching over his son ever since. He knows that his son is going to die in the Twin Towers and he helps him to cross over. Then it all gets a bit evangelical about doing good while you are on earth, and sort of becomes a self help book in novel form. Its okay if you believe in life after death etc, but I'm not sure I really liked it.

On Saturday I am getting a new car. The one I wanted a few months ago, a Mazda 2.

On the needles I have another pair of Fetching. Can't show them though, shhhh!! It is knitting group tomorrow night and myself and my co-organiser are taking mince pies and sweeties for everyone to wish them a Merry Christmas. Think I might take some photos too!

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Knitting content at last

My first pair of Fetching gloves. These only took a couple of evenings work so I am going to make some more.

Pattern: Fetching from knitty.com
Yarn: Mirasol Miski - one and a half skeins (approx 75g)
Needles: KnitPicks interchangeables 4mm using magic loop.
Mods: added an extra cable at the knuckles, and one extra row on the thumb.

They are quite fluffy and I am a bit concerned they will pill easily but the next ones are going to be in this........Debbie Bliss pure cashmere which was on offer in Stash. I treated myself because it was a reward for finishing NaNo.

I also got some KnitPicks DPNs in 4mm, 20cm long but when I used them I found that I definitely prefer two circs or magic loop so I'm happy to sell them on if anyone wants them. Leave a comment and I'll get back to you. If not I'll put them on ebay!

Monday, December 01, 2008

Reality bites

Today I go back to the real world. I have to stop slacking off and thinking I am a "writer" and pull my finger out at the office. But first a couple of statistics.

Out of 119,390 NaNoWriMo participants, 17.9% passed the finishing line.
There are now 21,400 first draft novels in the world which didn't exist 30 days ago.
A total of 1,429,996,336 words were written in the month of November.