Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Run out!

Arrrggghhhh, I've run out of yarn!!! I've already used an extra ball to what the pattern quoted (I always order an extra one just in case) but now I need another one. I have ordered it, and maybe a little of something else fell in my shopping cart while I wasn't looking!!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Sharp Objects

Sharp Objects Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I bought this book after an ad on Goodreads for the author's second book. I think I will be getting that one at some point too.
The main character is Camille, a newspaper reporter in Chicago who is sent back to her home town of Wind Gap to cover the story of the murders of two little girls. She left over 10 years ago to escape the clutches of an overbearing mother after the death of her sister from illness.
When she returns, she is not particularly welcomed, especially when she goes to visit old school friends on the pretext of getting quotes for her story.
Her family are totally screwed up, everybody in town knows everyone else and all their business, at least they think they do, but who knows what goes on behind people's closed doors.
The first part of the book I wasn't overly enamoured with but it picked up and I raced through the second half as the twists and turns drew to the conclusion.
I can't really say any more about it without giving anything away, but if you like a good thriller and damaged characters then this is a book for you.

View all my reviews >>

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Toe Ups and Twisty progress

At the last knit group, Karen brought in a book called Socks from the Toe Up by Wendy Johnson. When I saw some of the lovely patterns in this book I had to have it so with a 10% discount code for the book depository I now have my own copy. (It arrived before I made my rash decision yesterday!) It shows you several different toe cast-ons, different types of toe increases and different heels so that you can mix and match if you wish. There are also about 20 patterns.

These are my 3 favourite patterns from the book. I think the colour of the yarns used makes the photos look gorgeous.

I started on my "Twisty" last night. I've called in that because "Drops 115-24" just doesn't have a ring to it really. After misreading the pattern for the centre cable and having to go back two rows this morning, I'm back on track. The main body is knit from the bottom up but in the round, before splitting for the arm holes and neck.

The yarn is almost the same colour as my living room carpet!

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Super socks and yummy yarn

My first Finished Object since May!!! They didn't take that long to do though. I started them a couple of weeks ago when we went to Ireland for a couple of days and finished them last night.

Pattern: Conwy Socks from Knitting on the Road by Nancy Bush. I got this book free from
Yarn: Knitwitches Superwash sock yarn, colour Warm Earth which I got at Woolfest last year.
Needles: 2.5 Addi Lace using magic loop.
Mods: The pattern has calf decreases but I didn't do these so I cast on 60sts instead of 72 and just worked 48 rows of pattern straight. I did a standard toe too.

This morning my Drops Eskimo arrived for my short sleeve top. It is lovely and soft and squishy. I'm going to start this today.

I'm going to say the next bit quietly. I'm not going to buy any more books this year. I got two more this morning and my TBR shelf on goodreads now has 48 books on it, and not all of the ones I have beside my bed are listed on there yet. My book pile fell over yesterday and it wasn't pretty so I'm going to try to get through it a bit before adding any more.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Yarn and zombies

I have just ordered the exact yarn for the top in the second picture below and in the same colour. The pattern looks ok, a couple of odd bits. I am not keen on the way that Drops patterns are written, they can be confusing as they are all laid out in huge paragraphs. Probably because they are translations. I usually re-write bits of them to make them easier to follow and so I don't miss something.

Anyway, hopefully my yarn should arrive tomorrow - SKD are pretty good at next day delivery. I have the second foot of my Conwy socks to finish and then I can start on this top. I'm actually excited about a knitting project for the first time in a while!

Check out this etsy seller cheezombies - she sells patterns for little knitted creatures, really cute and funny!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Drops for Autumn/Winter 2009

There are some lovely patterns in the Drops Autumn/Winter collection.

I have queued 6 of them to my ravelry queue. These are my two favourites I think, especially the second one.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

A Thousand Splendid Suns

A Thousand Splendid Suns A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini

My rating: 3 of 5 stars
I read this book on a recommendation as it is not something I would normally choose.

I thought there would be more detail about the war in Afghanistan but am kind of glad there wasn't. It was there in the background and I did learn a bit about it, how it started and the factions involved but it didn't take over the book. I did find at the end - the book finishes in 2003 - that it gave the impression that Kabul was peaceful, although there were UN troops there and also that certain "warlords" had been given positions of power. So why in 2009 is it not resolved? (My knowledge of world affairs is VERY limited, I apologise, I'm just not interested in politics at all!)

I felt for the women in the story and the oppression that they suffered. The circumstances of Mariam's birth affect her throughout her whole life, and she makes many sacrifices. The women's lives change dramatically depending on who is running the country at the time. Having to completely cover themselves and only leave the house if accompanied by a male relative seems unthinkable to those of us who have such liberty in our lives, and yet a lot of them just accept it as how things are. Mariam and Laila however, do not, and push against the rules to some degree of success in the end, even though they do go through some harrowing life experiences along the way.

I liked it but I wouldn't say I loved it, but I'm glad that I read something different for a change. Now back to grizzly murders..........!!!

View all my reviews >>

Wednesday, July 15, 2009


Have any of you been watching what's going on on the Plinth. Apparently there was knitter up there yesterday but I missed it. I haven't seen anyone really interesting yet but then I only discovered it yesterday!

The Plinth

So what have I been up to?

Oh dear, I really need to update don't I? Well here goes........

On July 3rd Colin travelled up to Fort William in torrential rain to climb Ben Nevis the next day for his 365challenge. His usual travel companion Dave went with him and they were met up there by several others, who all managed to make it to the summit in about 4 and a half hours.

One of our oldest uni friends, Paul, who lives near Edinburgh also travelled up for the day and joined them too. (Nice legs, boys!)

When they made it back down to the bottom, Paul's wife had been off to buy champagne for them all to celebrate completing the 3 highest peaks in the UK.

In the meantime, not being into climbing mountains, or any kind of exercise for that matter, I had a houseguest to keep me company. My mum!

We didn't really do much, just pottered around, and treated Susie to a lovely juicy bone which she was very chuffed with.

On the Sunday was the thrilling Wimbledon men's final. I decided to support Roddick as he was the underdog and because he had beaten Murray so if he won it would mean Murray had been beaten by the eventual winner and he would be excused, hahah! Dave and Colin arrived back during the 4th set and Dave is a big Federer fan so there was good rivalry going on there. Poor Dave needed to drive back to Reading but hung on to the bitter end.

In books, I have just finished One Good Turn by Kate Atkinson, (see review below) and have decided to try A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini next as several people have recommended it to me.

In knitting, I still have several WIPs but that hasn't stopped me casting on a pair of Conwy socks from the book Knitting on the Road by Nancy Bush. The photos in this book do the socks no justice at all, it is much better to look at the finished ones on ravelry to get a better idea of how they turn out. I am using a variegated red/orange/dark red yarn that I got at Woolfest last year from KnitWitches yarns.

Hopefully in a couple of hours I will be able to hear properly again after at least 5 weeks of having blocked ears. Since the infection I had, my left ear has never "popped" and then a couple of days ago my right one got blocked with wax. I am going to get them syringed this afternoon, so hopefiully I will be back to normal.

One Good Turn

One Good Turn: A Jolly Murder Mystery One Good Turn: A Jolly Murder Mystery by Kate Atkinson

My rating: 3 of 5 stars
I do like Kate Atkinson, I find that her books do flow easily.

This is the second in the trilogy featuring private detective Jackson Brodie but is not really based around him. There are lots of characters which at first seem separate but all tie in together at the end. I'm not sure if it all quite made sense but that might be just me.

This is the third Atkinson I have read in a relatively short space of time and I think I need to take a break from her. Sometimes the way she goes into the background of her characters' lives feels too much, and although it really gives you an insight into their characters it can sometimes feel like it is just filling space. (Although if you asked me now what could have been left out I couldn't really tell you!).

The ending gives an idea of what may happen to Jackson in the third book, but I think it is not necessarily going to turn out that way.

I did like it, but I didn't love it.

View all my reviews >>

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

sock club

This is the latest installment from the Wild Fire Fibres sock club. I asked for an "orangutan in the trees" colourway when Vikki asked what forest animal each of us liked. This is what she came up with, isn't it clever? Go on over to her etsy shop, she has some gorgeous colours in stock at the moment.

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Seth Grahame-Smith

My review

rating: 1 of 5 stars
I didn't like the original Pride & Prejudice so I thought this may be a good laugh by taking the mickey out of it.

I was disappointed. The joke of zombies is funny at first but then it just gets boring. I have worked in a path lab and am not particularly squeamish but some of the blatant descriptions of pus and vomit made me feel a bit sick. I only made it to page 123, then I abandoned it.

I feel bad because I suggested this for a book group read and it won the vote so I have subjected other people to this rubbish. But some peole may enjoy it, you never know.

View all my reviews.


Wasn't Wimbledon great in the 80s? McEnroe, Connors, Borg, Lendl - my mum used to reckon Lendl didn't wear any underpants but surely he couldn't have gotten away with that with the short shorts they wore then?

Then came Agassi the showman, and after that it all got a bit boring, with the big servers and no rallies to speak of. I stopped watching.

But this year I am really enjoying it again. The fact that we have someone with a real chance of winning helps. But can Murray do it? I think he will get to the final but up against Federer I'm not sure he can actually win. Yes he's beaten him before but we'll have to see. If it is a Murray - Federer final I shall be glued to my seat like I was in the 80s. Come on Andy!!