Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Writing

We have a new writer in the house.


You'd be forgiven for thinking it's the kinder kid.


It's not, it's the not quite 3 year old. He loves it. Helps himself to the wipe off textas and cards and sits for ages writing over the words and then wiping them off :-) Took me ages to actually get a photo because the instant he wrote a word he'd wipe it off. Needless to say I'll be leaving the cards around so he can keep doing it!!

The perfect tea cup

We have had a few breakages recently in the cup realm. We have had the same set of cups/mugs for years now and we only have 3 left. Over time I think we have owned about 10 of the same cup, we got the first set of 6 or 8 as engagement or wedding presents and we replaced broken ones until they stopped making the same design. We have had other cups over time but the most recent ones are terrible. They were passed on to us from Jules' previous work by a friend (thanks Tig) and they were meant as a bit of joke. Well as it turns out they are a lot of a joke. Your cup of tea/coffee/milo is cold in about 2 minutes.

I believe it comes down to two things.
The first being the shape: narrow at the bottom, wide at the top, basically an upside down triangle, lets all the heat out super fast. The old ones were a bit curved at the base but had straight sides.
The second is that while they are made of ceramic I am pretty sure it's not porcelain. Our old ones say "Fine Bone China" but the new ones have nothing on them, that has to be a bad sign!

Do you have good tea cup/mugs??? We both drink tea in mugs not tea cups because honestly there's just not enough tea in a tea cup. I need ideas. Where to find new ones. Ones which hold the heat for longer than two minutes. Ones that are made from something better than the duds we currently have.

I need new cups. Help.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Taking action at last

This year I am not working, I had planned to but it didn't work out. The kids are still going to childcare one day a week and I have been using the "free" day to do stuff around the house.

The early part of the year was spent working on stuff for the Kinder as I am payroll person and there were major changes to the award that needed to be dealt with.

As that started to slow down I started using my "free" days to do some seriously needed gardening out the front. I have had company in my gardening which has kept me motivated. The last few weeks have seen a slow down in the gardening due to various appointments both on my side and my friend's, that and the freezing weather and dripping sky :-) So the garden is a work in progress which is fine. I'm still working on exactly how I want it to be.

The house on the other hand has been a disaster area for something approaching years.....and it has to come under control. How bad has it gotten? Well I can't find two Birth Certificates, the blue ones you use for filling in applications and such. I have the decorative ones I ordered at the same time but not the boring blue ones. So I have been searching...and searching....and searching. The other three Birth Certificates are exactly where they should be which leads me to believe the missing ones have been out for forms and have just not made it back to their usual home. We have a small home: 3 bedrooms, 1 living space, bathroom, toilet, laundry, kitchen. There aren't many places to look or at least I didn't think so until I had to search high and low for these two pieces of paper. What have I found?? About 4 years of filing that has been residing in boxes instead of the filing cabinet. Immunization history statements that also hadn't been returned to their usual spot. So many pieces of children's art. Mother's and Father's day gifts from kinder, childcare and school and all sorts of other papers. I have recycled an awful lot of paper in the last two weeks. I still haven't found the certificates.... Have I given up? Nope. There are still places to look. I have to admit that the search has had some pretty good upside effects: The filing has been done. Need a bank statement from 4 years ago? Give me 30 secs and I've got it. Need anyone else's Birth Certificate? Done. The stash hiding in the wardrobe has been sorted and organised and the knitting books and patterns (more papers that could have been hiding the ones I was looking for) have all been put together in one spot. I haven't finished yet. I still have the other side of the wardrobe and then the other side of our room. This may take a few more weeks yet! The house should look pretty good by the time I'm done.

I'm glad though. I've been putting off the organising, the sorting, the doing but I needed to fill out a school enrolment application for Zac and that required a Birth Certificate. When it wasn't where it should have been it was the beginning of the sorting and organising. Now that I've started I have a reason to keep going at least until I find them. It all needed to happen but it was hard to get started and now the reason to get started has been provided.

It's school holidays here now, we have all three boys home for the next two weeks and it's going to be interesting. Zac has some sort of virus with a sore throat and is completely out of sorts. The doctor says to keep his fluids up and ride it out. Yippeee!! NOT. What a great way to start the break.

I'll be spending the next two weeks searching some more for these silly Birth Certificates because it is completely going to do my head in if I can't find them. I'll be refereeing various disputes between the three boys, feeding them and sending them outside to play in the mud as much as possible.

Best of all, I am now sure that I will finish my Twigs and Leaves cardigan in time for Bendigo. I decided to throw all caution to the wind and cross my fingers that the pieces will not stretch or drop in any unwanted fashion and have pushed on and finished both front pieces. I only have one sleeve and the neck/button band to do.....

In between times I needed some mindless knitting and threw together a bright orange/yellow hat on Thursday while watching an episode of House and then finished later in the evening. Details to follow.

I have lots of new projects flying through my mind that I want to start but still have at least 5 unfinished projects from last year that need to be finished up so maybe one of them will have to be next.....

Friday, June 11, 2010

How far shall I go???

Paranoia is rampant in the House of Bones tonight.

Back story: The last time I made a full sized garment for myself I was about 14 and it was the eighties and it wasn't shaped and I wasn't shaped either!

Present day: I am making a cardigan that is shaped, full size and for me, all the makings of a perfectionists nightmare.

So today's problem is as follows: My Twigs and Leaves Cardigan (Rav link) requires a tension of 22 sts and 24 rows to 10cm, problem is I get 22 sts and 27 rows to 10cm.
Which means that I either add 3 extra rows randomly per 10cm and hope it doesn't mess with the shaping, or I recalculate the whole garment and positions of shaping decreases and increases to preserve the shaping. Nobody will be surprised to hear that I have indeed recalculated the whole lot.
The pattern has reference points like "at this point garment should measure 25cm" which is very helpful so I have been able to check as I go that it's the right length when it needs to be.

So....I have completed the back piece and due to previously mentioned tension issues was unsure whether the sleeve cap would fit after recalculating so I have now just finished the first sleeve. It looks good, it looks like the sleeve cap will fit nicely onto the back piece so Hooray for the calculations.

Paranoia is creeping in though.....should I wash and block the two pieces and check they don't stretch funny and still fit together nicely or should I wing it and hope for the best?

The plan was for this to be finished for Bendigo which is now a whole 5 weeks away and I still haven't done either of the two fronts, the other sleeve or the neckband. If I have to yank and start again it's probably better to do it now.

The yarn I am using is Heirloom Heatherwood otherwise known as Bendigo Rustic. So has anyone knit with it before and did it drop in the wash, etc, etc, etc?

Help the paranoid one please???


2010 FO# 21 - Green hat


I'm obviously very creative in my naming of hats!

This hat was my waiting in the car at school or watching the kids at swimming or tennis knitting for the past few weeks.

Started May 28th, 2010.
Finished June 11th, 2010.
Yarn: Naturally Merino et Soie, 10ply, 1 ball.
Needles: Knitpro circulars 4mm.
Pattern: From my own head. Still tweaking how I want the increases in the crown to work and show up. It is a top down circular knit so only two ends to sew in and a whole 30cm/1ft of yarn left over. I'm going to use the other ball I have of this to make a hat similar to Zac's recent one.

Sized to fit a 6 month old through to an almost three year old. My lovely model was certainly not allowed to touch!!
He had been playing with his biggest brother and when I called him to the door he willingly tipped his head for me to put the hat on to take photos and even waited patiently when I had to dive back inside to retrieve the camera memory card from the laptop :-) When we were all done I said "thank you" and he said "that's ok" what more could you want from a less than three year old model???

Sunday, June 6, 2010

When there's a need....

Recently we misplaced the back door/garage keys, they're here somewhere, we just don't know where. We discovered on Friday that not only had the boys lost one beanie they had lost three in the last two weeks!!! Shortly after that we also couldn't find Hunter's car quilt. At this point my somewhat obsessive personality stepped in and we searched the house, both cars, the house, the garage, the house, the garden by torch light, rang family, searched the house some more. In a moment of inspiration while washing my hands in the bathroom (don't ask me why but this seems to be a place where my thoughts come together and idea and problems become clarified) I wondered where Zac might hide something and went straight to his little metal suitcase and found Hunter's car quilt all stuffed in. Unfortunately none of the hats were there. I have three "Lost and Found" boxes to check on Tuesday and then I will give up on finding the missing hats.

In the meantime it is COLD. Winter has arrived with a vengeance and in a house where the children take years to grow hair thick enough to actually provide some warmth, beanies in Winter are a must. So I raided the stash and found two balls of Naturally Vero 100% Wool in a blues and greens colourway. The first ball was turned into a crocheted hat for Tyler, I used a 5mm hook and Australian single crochet. It felt a bit short but I was out of yarn so I left it. the photo shows it at this point.


The second ball was knit up on 8mm needles into a beautiful soft and fluffy hat for Zac. Ravelled here.


When I finished I had a little yarn left over and so I went back to Tyler's hat and added another 4 rows using a 6mm hook, just enough to make it cover his ears...perfect! Tyler's finished hat Ravelled here.

The boys love their new hats and Hunter wondered why he wasn't getting one. We explained that he still had his hat. He had better not lose it just so he can get a new one!!

When Zac went to bed he had to put his new hat in his "special" box under his bed so I think we have a winner. I got the yarn a couple of years ago at $4 a ball so a big winner there too!

Happy faces all round :-)