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diversification

Replanted and still alive

I dug up a clump of agapanthus. The wisdom has it you should thin them every five years. We’ve been here more than three times that and I haven’t done it once. It likely hadn’t been done for a while before, either. So it was a big clump. I managed to divide it and replant about 60, The green bin was full. I also dug up and replanted lots of irises. There might not have been 60 of those, but they’re so prolific when given a chance that there might be that many next year. I also replanted a geranium of which the best you could say was that it was alive. The aim with relocation is that it now might thrive. I’m not a gardener, and have been known to kill plastic plants, so this will be an interesting journey. There’s also a tub of mysterious bulbs. I’ve no idea what they are, because they’d been so choked by the agapanthus that they never bloomed.

In other news, I have knitted a blue beanie. Dark colours and plain fabric don’t photograph well, but I think you get the general idea.It’s meant to have been my commute knitting, but more often ended up as my lunchtime knitting. No matter. This is a progress shot from a previous, rainy weekend. Yarn is Bendigo Woollen Mills’ Classic 8 ply, colour Ensign. Knitted on UK 10s, I think, because they were readily to hand. There wasn’t much science in this one, it simply happened to be all I could find when I was desperately looking for something to knit 🙂

Actually finished knitting this today. I have only to sew the back seam and block it, then it will be ready for its recipient 🙂

 
 

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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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…and another week

It's called an Aran design, though as a cabled number it's definitely understated

It’s called an Aran design, though as a cabled number it’s definitely understated

That was another week’s effort, achieved not so much by knitting on the bus, tram or train – or even in the lunchroom at work – as at home in the evenings. Only 11 rows remain, each of them of decreasing length, then it’s a matter of sewing up the back seam, tidying up those ends and blocking it and, voila, YoungB will have a new beanie. For once, he might have it before the cold weather really starts nipping.

So it’s back to the last 11 rows I go while the house cleans itself 🙂

 
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Posted by on April 17, 2016 in Knitting

 

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that was last week’s effort

Almost done with the ribbing

Almost done with the ribbing

The beanie is progressing. That’s reasonably accurate with regard to colour and, yes, I often knit at the table with a glass of wine readily to hand 🙂 I have also managed some steady commuter knitting, mostly on the train and one of my longer bus trips. I don’t know if it’s having the desired effect of keeping me sane, but it’s keeping me busy and perhaps that’s enough.

How’s your knitting coming along?

 
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Posted by on April 12, 2016 in Knitting

 

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it might be winter, but snow?

Mt Hotham in the Australian Alps. Image from Wikipedia

We had some today, apparently. I know we had lots of rain and some hail because I happened to be out at the time: driving YoungB to training on the other side of town. Training was cancelled, so the coach messaged when we were only about 10 minutes from home, which meant we could turn around and come home again. We did. The dilemma then is, do I stay up and capitalise on being mostly awake by bowling over a stack of housework? Or do I go back to bed and get some more shuteye? I opted to take my knitting to bed. I know, it was neither one thing nor the other and the best choice would certainly have been more sleep. However, I felt at least a little bit productive. And then it snowed up in the Hills. It was more like sleet, some reports have it; but the photos I’ve seen suggest it really was snow, however light a covering it generated for a little while. It’s a big deal for us to have snow. We get out and build ridiculously small snowmen and have a great time. Whether snow or sleet, it’s certainly been a cold day.

YoungB is on his way to what might well be some serious snow (heavier falls are forecast in the very near future, I gather; something like 60 cm in the next couple of days) for a week of fun. It wouldn’t be fun to me – I hate the cold; snow is lovely on postcards and Christmas cards but not in real life, thank you – but he’s young and doesn’t mind the cold TOO much, so I think he’ll have a good time. He elected not to go with the pillowcase option for one of his dress-up costumes, which saved me from a fair amount of head-scratching. We settled on a large garbage bag which would provide protection of all sorts, we reckoned! For the Cops and Robbers night, he’s taken his black balaclava. Like I said, they’re popular items, those black balaclavas. He’s taken his red beanie and his black toob, too. Oh, and the grey sweatshirt I made was on his back. So even if I didn’t refashion a pillowcase, my handiwork has gone with him.

Whatever your weather is doing, I hope you’re having a productive weekend. I think I’ll go and stand in front of the fire for a bit and then? Then it’s back to the knitting.

 
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Posted by on July 20, 2013 in Knitting, Sewing

 

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party pooper

The last time Karen hosted a Pyjama Party Sewalong, I finished mine in time but was defeated by technology when it came to showcasing photos of same. This year? I was going so well! All cameras charged and functioning, computers working OK most of the time. I’d bought the fabric, laundered it and even ironed it (yes, that’s quite possibly what caused any recent seismic disturbances in this part of the world). I had it laid out on my sewing table with the pattern and everything, all ready to cut out. It’s a pattern I’ve used on numerous previous occasions, so I knew the actual sewing wouldn’t take long at all. But then? Then we had unexpected visitors from interstate – a delightful couple of busy days, but although some knitting might have happened when I wasn’t driving, I certainly wasn’t able to do any sewing – and that was that. So, really, I think that had better be that. No more parties for me. I obviously can’t be relied on to do anything in time!

That’s not to say that, in between feeling very glum about the whole employment scene and not wanting to waste blog time moaning about same, I haven’t been busy. I’ve finally finished Youngest Uncle’s fingered mitts/fingerless gloves (at this time of year, good, natural light for sewing can be in short supply but the need for the finished article quite pressing, especially now that Youngest Uncle is home from a tropical holiday). I’ve knitted a beanie for myself. And I really am about 99% done with Middle Niece’s Easy Lace Cowl.

I ended up making Youngest Uncle’s fingerless gloves/fingered mitts using a knit-it-flat-then-sew-it-up pattern from the Patons Winter Warmers Book 483. It’s pattern 37, Knitted Family Gloves or Mitts. I used Cleckheaton Country Tartan yarn, which knits up beautifully, and made the Man’s size. I’m happy with the results and I’m sure Youngest Uncle will be too (I’ll be delivering them tomorrow).

Test-driven by Dr B, whose hands are very large. They'll certainly fit Youngest Uncle.

Test-driven by Dr B, whose hands are very large. They’ll certainly fit Youngest Uncle.

And, as I said, I knitted a beanie for myself. Strictly speaking, when I said the colours of that balaclava weren’t my colours, I was wrong. The colours are fine but those particular shades are perhaps not quite dark enough for me. On the other hand, although the beanie sports a similar colour palette, the shades are much darker; in fact, a little too dark for me. But let me remind you of YoungB’s witty wisdom that any colour is your colour when you’re cold. I’ve been wearing this beanie and loving how warm it is.

Cheerful, self-striping yarn again but this time a slightly flatter crown than my previous beanie

Cheerful, self-striping yarn again but this time a slightly flatter crown than my previous beanie

You won’t be surprised to hear that this pattern also comes from the Patons Winter Warmers Book 483. This time I used pattern 15, Knitted Cap and Scarf. I made the Lady’s size, used Bendigo Woollen Mills’ Murano and didn’t bother with the striping (given that the yarn provided that anyway). Once again, I loved the yarn but was disappointed that there was a knot. And this time, I didn’t see the knot coming, so ended up having to tink half a row. Oh, well, no biggie. At least I wasn’t knitting anything complex.

So that’s what I’ve been doing. I hope you’ve been keeping busy, too?

 
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Posted by on June 26, 2013 in Knitting, Sewing

 

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but this one was never for me

Of course I didn’t finish the beanie, even minus the pompom. So there I was this morning with the temperature close to zero – the Canadian coach admitted to feeling cold so we reckoned we were allowed to as well – and no woollen beanie. What to do? Borrow Dr C’s? No, that would never do. I might fall and it might end up in the lake. We wouldn’t want such a fate for a harmless piece of headwear.

So I ended up wearing this instead!

So I ended up wearing this instead! It’s my trusty old favourite, Patons Book 483, pattern 26, Knitted Family Helmet

A long time ago I was making a balaclava for a then-colleague. Loss of a major contract and resulting diminution of workflow saw her move to the opposition. Somehow, we lost touch and, despite my best efforts, I was never able to get the completed balaclava to her. it has languished in my FO box for a few years now, awaiting its moment. These are not my colours, having been chosen specifically for the colleague whose colours they are. But, as YoungB pointed out, any colour is your colour when you’re cold. True, that. So I rolled up the balaclava and used it as a beanie.

As it happened, I tripped on some uneven paving and over I went. The balaclava/beanie remained firmly in place, keeping my head warm. I admit that I was very, very tempted to roll it down and use it as a balaclava, because my face was uncomfortably chill. I thought that might be too wimpish altogether and, well, you know, too embarrassing for YoungB who was out there on the lake putting in some good work in a single scull. Besides, I have some pride!

Now that there’s less urgency about a beanie for me, I shall push on with the last few rows of Middle Niece’s Easy Lace Cowl – which remains my commuting knitting and of which I managed a few rounds on the way home from rowing this morning – and then, but only then, finish the beanie. Famous last words? Could I finish the beanie by Wednesday (rowing training again) AND the cowl so that I could deliver it to Middle Aunt for delivery to Middle Niece? Stay tuned. 🙂

 
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Posted by on June 17, 2013 in Knitting, Rowing

 

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