Saturday, 30 April 2005

Felt better!

I've felt better! All self-inflicted so sympathy, though welcome, is undeserved. A few friends were round last night for a Trivial Pursuit session and we didn't crawl into bed until 4 in the morning. We actually got to the stage in the game where we lost interest in finishing - plus I think that most of us were too drunk by that point. I was drinking the lovely cider that Thatchers do now (single varieties of apples - really fine) but didn't realise I was on the one which is 7.4% alcohol. A wee bit stronger than the 4%ish ones I'm usually on. Didn't have a headache today - I was just incredibly tired as I never sleep well when I'm pished. Good night though. Graeme and willie wanted to carry on playing cards until 7 in the morning but the girls made them go home. They did turn into Kevin the teenager and by all accounts were totally poutsing in the taxi home, doing secret handsignals to tell each other how pissed off they were about having to go home. Silly boys, you wouldn't think they'll both be 30 this year!

Rhonda and Gus stayed over so we had a very pleasant morning with them in the garden waiting until they were legal to drive. Think George was most upset to see them go as they played with him for ages. New friends were definitely made.

It's been a bit busy this last wee while. I've been doing loads of swotting up on mental health as I did my first presentation on it this week at Rhonda's work. It went really well considering I totally rewrote it after a course I went on Mon/Tues down in Glasgow. Made a few contacts down there as well which was good. Still don't like Glasgow very much though. Far too much of an Edinburgh girl at heart - can't spend 3 years there and change allegiance to "the other side" just like that.

Haven't done much knitting these past few weeks but need to crack on. Lucky clover has a wee bit to go but I need to finish the baby shawl too as Eli is due mid-May. should really have that as my first priority project and Lucky Clover should go on the back burner until it's complete.

Hopefully it's going to be a reasonable day tomorrow and I can get out in the garden. I need to dig over a plot to plant my summer veg (going to try the square metre division thing rather than rows). I only want to use half the plot so I can use the other half as a seed bed for biennals and that for next year. No point going overboard with flowers in the other borders much this year yet as Robert would just trample over them while he rebuilds the walls. He's quite pleaed as our bank statement came through and even after the killer bill for the car's annual MOT and service (£700!) there's enough pennies in the account to buy a cement mixer and a few tons of cement and sand. What a happy boy he will be as he knocks down walls and rebuilds them. I just know he's going to rope me into it whether I want to have anything to do with it or not!

And who can forget the drama for this week?! Wally went out on Monday morning and didn't appear again until late on Thursday. I was just a tad worried about him. He does wander off for about 2 days at a time but once he got past that I didn't know what to think, especially as they both have such a large territory that it would be really difficult to find out where he'd disappeared to. I was a bit upset on Thursday morning when he still hadn't shown so had a cry then for a couple of minutes but I was so relieved when I came across a very tired and hungry Wally curled up on the baler (out of the rain) with George on Thursday teatime. Funnily enough he's stuck really close to the house since then and is making up for lost time on the eating and sleeping front. I think he's a bit relieved he found his way back home again. Thank heaven's that George is a bit more of a homebody already so isn't quite so prone to the wandering.

Friday, 22 April 2005

My first recycled jumper

Had a spending spree at the weekend with the garden centre vouchers we got at Christmas and splurged on things which you get a return from in the form of food - most important. So I had a busy afternoon planting white and redcurrant bushes, raspberry canes, strawberry plants, brussel sprouts (discovered I liked them after all!), and leeks. So what happens to all this hard work - you guessed it! George decides to be as helpful as always and roll over my leeks at every opportunity. What a sacrifice he makes to help with the attainment of food from our garden!

The leeks don't stand a chance!

After reading the tutorial on how to recycle a jumper on Ashley's blog I decided to go for it when I spotted a jumper in the Barnardo's charity shop on Union Street. It had all the right sort of seams and was a reasonably thickish yarn to make a first attempt easier and for £3 it seemed like a bargain. It was a size 12 (I'm an 8 so I reckoned that would give me loads extra than what I need) and a cotton/acrylic mix - I'm no yarn snob, if it's pretty I like it!

The jumper I bought

Here it is outside in about to kick off on the cutting. I did take photos when it was in pieces but as they were woefully out of focus they've been binned.

Inside out - ready to go

Robert hammered some nails in for me to make my fancy skein winder/measuring device. It did the job perfectly.

Figuring out "how much is there?"

I washed it to hopefully get the worst of the kinks out.

Hanging up to dry

And this is it rolled up in skeins before the washing malarky so you can see how much there is - just under 700m. What a bargain. Now the fun begins of thinking what I can make with it. So many ideas so little time. If only I could spend all my days knitting, gardening and cooking I would be happy but unfortunately the big wide world insists that we pay our way on a day-to day basis so I'm screwed like everybody else out there!

Look how much there is!

And what could be better to end off the day than have a cuddle with Wally - the big sook! A total freck o'dirt (to use an Orcadian expression).

Cuddles from Wally

Friday, 15 April 2005

Triffids in my garden...

I love the view out of my kitchen window most of the year but at the moment I find it particularly fascinating. Why? Because I have triffids in my herb garden! Okay, they're not really triffids but watching rhubarb come back to life after the dormancy of winter is pretty cool. It seems to grow so quickly and is just so alien like when it's coming out of the ground. The fact that the more you cut it back (and therefore get to scoff it - what a hardship) the more mental it seems to grow is dead smart.

This is a close-up of the biggest triffid beast. He always seems to grow the best, a bit of the daddy of the gang!

There was a bit of a kerfuffle this week which displeased my boys, George especially. And why was he upset?

Because this guy came to visit - and he definitely didn't have an invitation. My boys stood their ground (probably because I was outside with them). I was most impressed. He eventually ran away again. I did notify the dog warden but he never appeared. Probably ignored me as the Council seems to think we're Aberdeenshire not Aberdeen City because of where we are. If I could pay less council tax I'd definitely move the house but I don't think that's possible. Our fight for recognition with the council continues - someday, just someday, they might actually collect our rubbish. Holding breath until it happens is not an option - might pass out!

I have been progressing with all my knitting bits but nothing worthy of a photo. However I did make my first set of stitchmarkers the other night. It was really nice to get my beads out and play with them again. I can see it happening again quite soon, especially as a friend of mine has a birthday coming up very soon. Delicate playing - that's what it is.

Wednesday, 13 April 2005


That's better! Home alone so feeling a bit lost. Robert's away to Englandshire for a few days with work and it feels ever so quiet in the house without him. The boys will hopefully come in later to distract me but I've really been procrastinating with the best of them today. I did finish off a bit of weeding that needed doing prior to the MIL/FIL visit this weekend. And I did make it up to the recycling bins to get rid of all the bottles and cardboard boxes. Don't forget that I painted a sign for the house today as well - we don't have one and after 2 and a bit years it might be a good idea. Stops it being such guesswork for everybody when they turn up to the house. But I really didn't do as much stuff on any health topics today as I should have. Just no concentration available to me today. Never mind - I've got a conference to distract me all day tomorrow. I'm sure weight management should be scintillating enough for a day's entertainment.

Think I might dig out my beads and make some stitchmarkers. It could end so, so badly!

Friday, 8 April 2005

It's been a while...

I haven't been hiding, just busy with work stuff! My assignment has been emailed off to Heriot-Watt for marking, don't know how long it will take, but at least it's away now. I've got loads of mental health stuff to pull together for a bunch of presentations I'm due to do so that'll keep me going for the next few weeks. A bit more paid work would be nice but there are loads of proposals in - just waiting patiently for them to come to something.

Knitting has been a bit of disaster area. Nothing major - just a reasonable amount of ripping back going on. I started a shawl - did 12 rows and discovered I'd lost 4 stitches. That got ripped back. Then I started the sleeve for the Lucky Clover Wrap and did about 20 rows only to find I'd overlapped my clover pattern. I'd missed out 2 rows and it was easier to rip it back to the beginning and start again from scratch than it would have been to rip it back only to the mistake and attempt to pick up the stitches. The shrug, from the Rowan Cork, is going fine but I've just spotted a cool pattern on the new Spring Knitty that I like even better so I think I'm going to rip it back and start again. Probably all these goofs are something to do with an eclipse somewhere!

It's a really cold day here today. Spring started and then winter has kicked in with one little reminder about what it can do just so we don't get too complacent. Very windy and lots of snow showers. Nothing really lying on the ground but enough to make it uncomfortable.

Think I'll go and do some knitting - relaxation time!