Archive for January, 2011

It’s all about the blanket

January 29, 2011

The knitting news, that is.  For the second week running I’ve made very little progress on the shawl I so desperately had to start.  The travel socks have been just that, appearing only while travelling, although two days in Bristol has meant some progress.  Instead it is blanket all the way.  It is going to take a lot more to finish, or even just to finish up the leftover yarn I have lined up. 

Sadly, that makes for some very dull photos, so I haven’t taken any this week 🙂

In fact, there isn’t much news this week, really.  I’ve been working.  I made it to the Knitting in the Library, which was lovely (I took the blanket). 

Last weekend the big event was Gethin’s christening.  Sadly, we forgot to take a camera and I haven’t got hold of anyone else’s yet, so no pictures of that either.  The christening went well, and the shawl I knitted as Gethin’s christening present even featured as part of the service!  I am now officially the boy’s godmother 🙂

That makes a total of three official, christened god-children (as well as various never-christened-but-asked-by-parents-anyway unofficial ones).  My oldest god-daughter is now 18, which I cannot believe.  She has just passed her driving test, is studying A levels and planning to go to university in the autumn. 

Next oldest is Morgan, my niece, who is nearly 13.  Mor is lovely, lovely – a really friendly, open person who gets on with almost everybody.  She’s really sociable and clever and I love that she always fits in. 

Now there is also Gethin, who is the most endearing little guy.  We’ve now arranged with his parents that we’ll look after him overnight once a month, partly to give David and Sam a break, but also because we love to play with the cutie! 

So, this coming week…work I spose.  Two Bristol days, 3 at home.  The boss-lady has gone skiing for the week, so I won’t have an immediate manager, but still plenty of work to get through. 

Next Saturday is our first monthly Gethin night, then Sunday I think we’re off out with Alan and Kat for dinner.

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Freaky Friday

January 21, 2011

Freaky because I’m off work on leave for the day.  Freaky because I’m writing this on Friday instead of Saturday.  Freaky because A is at a work training until this evening some time so I’m completely alone all day. 

Except that I may well be looking after Gethin for a couple of hours, so his Mum can do some housework…tomorrow is Gethin’s re-arranged christening, so Sam wants to make sure the house is tidy.  That’s also why I’m posting today instead of the usual Saturday post – although I’ll probably be around all morning tomorrow, I’ll be getting ready to go out for the rest of the day. 

Anyway, this week was dominated by work.  I made it to Bristol twice (first time since September!), staying until 4pm on Tuesday and 3pm on Thursday.  Not quite full working days, but getting there.  I’m finally starting to accept that it will take a while longer to over my op completely, as I’m exhausted after 4 days of working!  Still, I’m getting there.

I didn’t make it to knitting in the library again this week  as I had work stuff to get done and was tired out. 

I have been knitting though…of course!  My scruffy blanket is my current obsession.  I only started it as an easy, no-concentration-required alternative to the delicate shawl I’m also knitting, so when I’m tired and need a break from the fine stitches and complicated pattern I have something mindless to plod away at.  Instead it has turned into a monster, I don’t want to knit anything else.  This is what it now looks like:

I have started blankets before, but given up on them fairly quickly.  This one, however, has my attention and I’m still enjoying it many hours after I would expect my attention to drift.  It helps that every change of yarn reminds me of something I have knit, especially lots of pairs of socks I have loved.  The colour changes, the corners, the self-patterning/striping yarns, all of it helping to keep me interested. 

Sadly, my other projects have suffered a little.  I have made very little progress on the rosebud shawl, and my current socks have only appeared on train journeys.  Never mind, I can knit whatever takes my fancy, there’s no reason not to do what I feel like at the time 🙂

So…this week coming…Gethin’s christening on Saturday.  Work all week, including two Bristol trips.  And, ummm, not much else!

An Elephant!

January 15, 2011

This has not been the week I expected…I’ve been feeling ill for most of it, with an on-off-on-off stomach bug which has left me exhausted.  I haven’t been to Bristol.  I didn’t make it to Knitting in the Library on Weds.  I’ve hardly left the house all week. 

Still, there has been snooker on the television and lots of knitting. 

I finished this little guy, for example:

He is for Theresa at work’s new baby (currently known as ‘Morph’), when he/she arrives. 

I then cast on two new projects, which is unusual for me.  I generally work on one project at a time, plus the usual travel socks, but this time I wanted to start a delicate lace shawl and knew that my concentration wouldn’t be good enough to work on it solely.  So I also started this monstrosity:

It’s a ten-stitch blanket, available free from Ravelry.    Only, I’m using leftover sock (and other) yarn, which is fairly fine so I started with 20 stitches.  And it is ummmm, odd looking, to be polite 🙂  But I like it, and it’s only to keep me warm on the sofa in winter.  It may have looked less weird if I’d avoided the fluffy pink stuff, but I couldn’t see why I should avoid weird.  Also, I have some funky purple and possibly even some neon green fluffy yarns to add later, so the pink won’t be completely alone in its oddness.  Yes, that’s right…by making it even more strange looking I will decrease the strangeness!  It makes sense to me anyway 😉

On the knitting theme, I had an odd phone call from my step-dad last night.  He called, late, to tell me the teddy bears’ picnic I have knitted for him has a cup of lemonade missing.  I have made him a bear for each of his last few birthdays, finished off last year with a final bear and the picnic set (sandwiches, cakes, drinks, blanket and plates).  It turns out I’ve made 4 bears, 4 sandwiches and only 3 drinks.  Only, I really don’t remember there being 4 bears, I only recall 3.  So I checked on Ravelry (thank goodness for Ravelry!) and yes, I made 4 bears.  Which means I have been making him bears for 4 years!  And also knitting for longer than that! 

Anyway, now the picnic is complete (less one drink), I’ll have to think of something different for his next birthday. 

So, this week coming…dunno really.  Work, I s’pose.  Then Gethin’s christening on Saturday.  That’s it (hopefully).

Back to the real world

January 8, 2011

Meaning back to work, I suppose.  Back to feeling exhausted by the weekend and not wanting to do much. 

Of course, this wasn’t a normal working week.  In fact, it was probably harder, physically!  I didn’t return to work from the xmas break until Thursday, when I plunged in with both feet, going in to the office in Bristol for a team meeting.  The day went fairly fast and wasn’t too bad.  I did start to slow down by about 4pm, when I struggled to get my brain running properly, but that’s not bad on my first full Bristol day since early October! 

Anyway, aside from the work stuff at the end of the week, we were busy throughout the early part of the week too.  On Monday we went for a lovely long walk, then Tuesday spent the day at Slimbridge.  I realised later that Slimbridge is the furthest I have driven since my op. 

On Wednesday I looked after Gethin for the afternoon, even dragged him over to Knitting at the Library with me.  I didn’t get much knitting done, but it was good to get out and catch up.  G fell asleep in the car on the way home, so I clipped the carseat into the pushchair wheels and left him snoozing in the dining room while I made jam tarts for the team meeting at work on Thursday.  The jam tarts went down well, all 24 disappearing rapidly. 

So what with all the walking, driving, baby-carrying, commuting and working this week, I’m exhausted now.  It’s a 3-6 month recovery from a hysterectomy, not just the 6-8 week return-to-work time, and I keep forgetting I’m not at full strength.  Last night I felt really unwell, like I did a few days after surgery when I tried to lift something too heavy or walked too far.  Today I’m a little better, but it will still be a quiet, lazy weekend if I get my way. 

So, in spite of all the activity, there has been knitting.  In fact, I have a little of my knitting mojo back, as I bought a lace knitting book with some of my xmas money.  It’s called ‘Wrapped in Lace’ by Margaret Stove, and has some lovely patterns in it, as well as lots of guidance for designing your own patterns.  I have lots of lace yarn, can’t seem to help buying it, so I could get on with something lovely fairly quickly. 

Not before I’ve finished this little guy though:

That’s one side of the elephant I’m making for Theresa’s baby.  I have already done both sides and started on the smaller sections, so it should be done soon. 

Also this week, I finished my turquoise alpaca socks:

…and I started a new pair.  Now I’m commuting 2 days per week again, the socks should make good progress. 

As well as a knitting book (and some other books, a CD and a selection of e-books for my kindle), I bought myself a set of digital scales with my xmas money, for weighing yarn.  Obviously!  Generally I guess whether I have enough yarn for whatever I want to knit, so it will be useful to be able to actually weigh it.  By using my xmas money, rather than just our usual money, I can keep them exclusively for yarn and we won’t be tempted to use them (ie get them dirty) in the kitchen. 

The other purchases I made were these pretties:

 ‘Emile’ from the Laughing Yaffle

 ‘Zippy’, a sushi sock roll from EasyKnits

The sushi sock roll is pre-knitted, then dyed, and you knit socks (or whatever) directly from the roll, unravelling the fabric as you go.  It’ll be interesting to see how well it works.  I just couldn’t resist the bright colours and frequent changes. 

So, this week coming…just work I’m afraid.  I’ll get over to the library again, work allowing, but other than that it’ll hopefully be peaceful 🙂

Is it really only a week since christmas?

January 1, 2011

Seriously, it feels like Christmas was so long ago!  There has been plenty of chilling and relaxing time, but also lots of stuff has happened. 

Christmas day itself was the predicted round of last-minute plan changes and chaotic family visits.  Lunch was thoroughly disappointing, and we will not be eating at that particular restaurant again.  We paid for restaurant quality food, service and surroundings and found ourselves in a weird package holiday situation with 3 large coach parties in a conference room!  The food was not what we’d signed up for, and as we walked away, A’s Mum remarked that she felt really young all of a sudden.  The average age in the room, excluding us, was at least 75! 

Still, you live and learn, we’ll try somewhere else next year.  Or I should say this year…as it is now 2011!  Happy New Year! 

I’m not actually a big fan of the whole New Year celebration fuss and to-do.  It seems a bit random, somehow.  And it’s always anti-climactic.  As usual, this year A had to be up early for work (and I mean really early) so we stayed up for the whole glass of fizzy wine at midnight ritual, then wandered off to bed soon afterwards. 

Today, I’m exhausted, aching all over.  I’m blaming that on 24 hours of the little monkey called Gethin – that boy is growing so fast, and getting really hard to keep up with.  He isn’t quite crawling yet, but very nearly, and he has a lightning-fast knack of wriggling and rolling.  Right off the edge of the sofa at one stage.  There were 3 people in the room watching him at the time!  He’s fine though, accidents happen, and after a few minutes of howling he went back to licking Madison on the forehead and growling at Morgan.  I don’t know who is strangest, him for doing it, or them for laughing and encouraging him! 

Anyway, Sam got a night out with her friends to celebrate her 30th birthday and we got to play with baby for a while. 

It is nice to hand them all back though 😉

So, on to knitting news…not a great deal really.  I finished a couple of large-ish pocket bunnies to post to my colleague Chloe for her two girls (must get her address and actually send them!).  I have been plugging away at the turquoise alpaca socks which seem to be taking forever and still aren’t finished.  I have also started an elephant for Theresa’s baby, but that is only a few rows in, so not worth taking pictures of. 

Wow, that makes this no-photo Saturday, which doesn’t happen often!  I’m a bit under-inspired with the knitting at the moment, the big burst of enthusiasm I had while recovering from surgery has evaporated since I returned to work and not re-appeared over the christmas break at all.  Never mind, it’ll be around again soon enough. 

This week coming…I’ve got a few more days off, as I’m not back at work until Thursday, when I’m in Bristol for a team meeting.  A has an extra day off on Tuesday, so we’re planning an outing, probably to Slimbridge.  On Wednesday I might be babysitting for a couple of hours, so David and Sam can go to the cinema.  Then back into the work routine until April, when we will hopefully be off on our first holiday of the year.