Thursday, October 31, 2013

Finished Object! No, not the poncho

I've been knitting a lot lately. I made a red headband kind of thing - still finding new ways to cover up/ distract from my growing badger stripe of grey hair. Can't show you a photo as I'm not sure where I put it! I finished the Purl Ridge Scarf, just have the ends to sew in. I still have a baby washcloth to finish (baby due any moment) and I made myself a second wurm hat, pictured above. My first wurm hat was a bit too baggy and slouchy for me, this time I paid more attention to getting a yarn with a similar gauge to the pattern and it paid off, I like this one much better. I have a skein leftover, so I might buy some more and make wrist warmers or a scarf to match. I'm still putting off finishing the poncho I've been working on for the best part of this year. 

I just finished reading Crossing Places by Elly Griffiths, no picture as it went back to the library Tuesday evening. I read it for book club, not sure I would have picked it up otherwise. It's a psychological thriller, based on the salt marshes area of Norfolk. What I found most interesting was the details of archaeological finds in the area, the author obviously has an interest in the subject and the main character is an archaeologist. I find prehistory fascinating, so I enjoyed it, but probably not enough to read the next in the series. Next up is Homeward Bound: Why Women are Embracing the New Domesticity, by Emily Matchar, and recommended by Cameron

Joining Ginny (and wishing Ginny and family all the best as they wait for the imminent arrival of number seven!) 

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Being Boring

I've nothing much to write about. Things have been quite boring lately. I could write about my health, but that's a constant and depressing annoyance that I do my best to ignore. I could tell you about my current favourite TV programmes, but that really would be scraping the barrel (though since you asked, Under the Dome and The Wrong Mans). So, today I was thinking how nothing exciting is happening, but actually I'm quite happy for the moment watching TV and knitting and reading, and not doing very much of note. Then serendipitiously, over at Wartime Housewife I came across this poem. I have read it before, but had forgotten; it sums things up for me quite perfectly.

Being Boring - by Wendy Cope

If you ask me 'What's new?', I have nothing to say
Except that the garden is growing.
I had a slight cold but it's better today.
I'm content with the way things are going.
Yes, he is the same as he usually is,
Still eating and sleeping and snoring.
I get on with my work. He gets on with his.
I know this is all very boring.
There was drama enough in my turbulent past:
Tears and passion - I've used up a tankful.
No news is good news, and long may it last.
If nothing much happens, I'm thankful.
A happier cabbage you never did see,
My vegetable spirits are soaring.
If you're after excitement, steer well clear of me.
I want to go on being boring.
I don't go to parties. Well, what are they for,
If you don't need to find a new lover?
You drink and you listen and drink a bit more
And you take the next day to recover.
Someone to stay home with was all my desire
And, now that I've found a safe mooring,
I've just one ambition in life: I aspire
To go on and on being boring.

Wednesday, October 02, 2013

Learning curve

I'm making a Purl Ridge Scarf, though in a different yarn than the one specified. I chose Manos del Uruguay Silk Blend in shade 7164. It is a gorgeous hand dyed wool-silk blend. It's my first time working with such a lovely yarn, and my first time having to wind a skein into a ball. Now that was a challenge. I managed on my own with the back of a chair and then got the Prof to finish it once it got tangled - I have zero patience with knots! I didn't do a gauge swatch - yes, I know, I but I thought being a scarf it wouldn't matter. Then I realised in a cowl it did matter, as the specified 200 stitches and the 4 mm needles specified for my yarn, was going to be much shorter than the pattern. I had knitted an inch or so by then, but I ripped it out and started again with bigger needles. I didn't like the effect I was getting after a few rows,  the knitting was too loose, so I ripped it out and started again, this time with 4mm needles again and 300 instead of 200 stitches. A couple of inches in I realised that I had somehow managed to have my rows not lining up. There is a purl ridge in the pattern and on the circular needles I am using, the ridge ended a row above where it started. I was initially baffled, but now I think that after I cast on, I began to knit with the needles the wrong way round. Would that produce the effect I got, Experienced Knitters? Anyway, I ripped it out and am just about to start again. Good job I have until Christmas. 

I am reading The Knitting Circle, by Ann Hood, and am really liking it so far. It is as it sounds, about a group of women who come together once a week for a knitting group. Each of the women have their own story, and these unfold through the book. It is making me think of the craft group I go to, the other women there and how much we learn about each other incidentally, whilst working alongside each other. Often when I get home I have to undo what I've done, as I have been concentrating on the conversation and not my knitting, but that's another story. 

Joining Ginny for Yarn Along