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Monthly Archives: July 2016

today the memories, tomorrow the tears

Sprigs of rosemary for remembering

Sprigs of rosemary for remembering

Today Dr B and I attended my cousin’s memorial gathering. Tomorrow YoungB and I will attend his interment. There were some laughs today and will doubtless be a few tomorrow, too. But on the whole, it will be real as we watch the coffin descending in a way it wasn’t today when our attention was focused on poor speakers and funny photos of a much younger man. Death is like that. It’s not only a great leveller, its (nowadays all-but mandatory) accompanying slideshow brings hilarity and heartache in about equal measure: a particular t-shirt, a wildly 70’s set of (naturally) auburn-coloured sideburns – they were impressive, I must say! – and children you never knew as children now young adults with whom you share a blood tie, the experience of grief, and little else.

In the photos I have – few enough, for all the years, because, when we were younger, photos were things for occasions not the everyday; and this particular occasion was my 21st birthday – he’s wearing a cardigan I know to have been handknitted by his mother. I can guarantee there was love in every cabled stitch 🙂

As to progress on my own knitting for an hour a day, either the socks for Dr B or the beanie for middle Uncle? Yeah, no. I’ll get there. Just not yet awhile.

 

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totally tinked

Next time it won't look messy like this. Promise :)

Next time it won’t look messy like this. Promise 🙂

During a trip to the Hills today, because I wasn’t driving I managed to tink the entirety of the tension square. Now it’s a matter of dividing my yarn so I can do both socks at once, then on with the actual knitting. This would be some of the fiddliest prep work I’ve done in a long time, but I’m sure the resulting socks will be worth every bit of effort.

With regard to time, even doing a tidy job of the yarn division, it won’t come in at an hour’s worth. All the same, there’s a good chance I might spend more time on it later in the evening. I think that’s progress, however slow.

 
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Posted by on July 24, 2016 in Knitting

 

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the unexpected, sideways wallop

Looking the goods in a nicely masculine colourway.

Seems as if it’s looking the goods, in a nicely masculine colourway.

Day 3 saw the tension square arrive at the point where I thought I’d done enough to check it. Then Life did one of those, “You’re getting too complacent. I think it’s time I walloped you with a bit of four be six,” numbers in the shape of news of the sudden, unexpected death of a close cousin: not only close by blood and near in age, but one with whom I’d remained in contact as we’d both wandered across the globe and through life. Yeah. Not truly conducive to knitting for a couple of days, that’s for sure. Sorry, Meredithe; I know you’ll understand.

However, given the restorative power of creativity, I’ve checked the tension and it does look the goods, so I’m now tinking that to reuse the yarn and get cracking on the socks. Straight knitting is going to be easier than the tricky stuff involved in doing a circular sample with a straight technique. You get lots of dangles at the back and it’s messy. Goodbye to all that and on with magically looping both socks at once. That will have its own mess, I dare say, but I should at least hit a good rhythm with genuine circular knitting and the wonderful Old Joe pattern.

So it’s on with the knitting and on with life; and may all your news be good.

 
 

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knitting for an hour – days 1 and 2

So the hour on the first day was about this:

Pattern purchased, yarn tracked down, needles ditto, and now? Tension square.

Pattern purchased, yarn tracked down, needles ditto, and now? Tension square.

And the hour on the second day was about this:

Still on the tension square. Gauge swatch, if you prefer.

Still on the tension square. Gauge swatch, if you prefer.

Today I’ve done a few more rows, so it’s slow and not very exciting in spite of how much time it’s taking. I’m not prepared to leap into this without making sure the tension is correct. I’ve had too many nasty surprises this year 🙂

 
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Posted by on July 20, 2016 in Knitting

 

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there’s the injured nephew

Eldest Nephew recently fell and damaged his elbow. It’s in a backslab plaster now but expected to improve to a hinged brace by the end of the week. I asked Middle Aunt if there was anything I could do for him; like maybe knit him an arm warmer? She laughed. But she did ask if I would make Middle Uncle a pure-wool beanie, please, in a nice, sober shade of blue. I suggested a mix with alpaca to ensure softness on his not-very-hirsute pate. The outcome was that, as long as the fibres were natural, that would be fine. Luckily for me, this limited release yarn is a wool/alpaca mix and has a couple of shades of blue. I can do that. I’ve sent off the order.

And then I’ve decided to join Meredithe in doing an hour of knitting a day – in my case – and I’d already said socks. I’ve bitten the bullet and finally purchased the Yarn Harlot‘s lovely Old Joe pattern (of which Dr B approves, and that’s good because this pair will be for him). I’m now about to fossick around in the sewing room to find the sock yarn. I’m a little late starting the hour-a-day effort, but I’m sure to be able to catch up by dint of putting in some dedicated commuter knitting in the next few days.

The other beanie I’d begun (for Dr B)? It’s been back-burnered but not frogged. You see? Plans are always flexible. Happy knitting!

 
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Posted by on July 18, 2016 in Health, Knitting

 

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never mind the fingers, find the feet

I did it last year, over tougher terrain. I can do it again.

I did it last year, over tougher terrain. I can do it again.

YoungB has appointed himself my personal trainer for this year’s Bloody Long Walk. So far we’re both failing spectacularly. Even more than last year, Life seems to be getting in the way of our best intentions. For example, he’s just returned from a donation at the Blood Bank with orders to sleep. That won’t provide motivation or training tips for his poor old mother, will it?

But the clock is ticking and 21 August is, gulp, entirely too close. I’m planning to do a walk today, while the sun is shining and before I find too much housework whose screams for attention can no longer be ignored. So it will be a matter of not minding my fingers, finding my feet – on longer walks than those I manage daily – and, if I can pull it off, pretending to a fair amount of deafness. My tinnitus is about the same pitch as many of the appliances, so it might just be my ears buzzing. Right?

If you’ve done your bit for personal fitness today, then happy knitting, crochet, sewing, tatting or whatever your activity of choice might be, everyone. If you could manage a row or two for me while I’m out acquiring some blisters (I hope not; but best to be prepared, don’t you think?), that would be heaps good 🙂

 
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Posted by on July 16, 2016 in Health, Knitting

 

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let it snow

Had there been snow, this would have dealt with it :)

Had there been snow, this would have dealt with it 🙂

YoungB and I had a few days away on the New England (Australia) Tablelands. It was meant to be colder there than here, but we struck it lucky: fabulous, crisp, typical New England winter gorgeousness while we were there, and uncharacteristically Antarctic conditions here on our return.

That’s YoungB’s beanie. I was knitting till the last minute – not entirely my fault, though I accept responsibility for my choices – but finish it I did, altering the top a smidge to give him the slightly flatter look that he favours; and he wore it all weekend. It looks warm and he says it is. The threatened sleet and snow didn’t eventuate, but he was well prepared.

So now I’m exhausted from late-night knitting, travel, holidaying and having a good time; and an appalling week at work! Should I knit to wind down??

 
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Posted by on July 15, 2016 in Knitting

 

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