Friday, September 22, 2006


I'm still feeling ill & generally very deflated. I went back to work as I've had so much time off this year my wages were due to be cut if I had more time off & to be honest I can cope with my part time hours. I feel totally drained & don't have any energy to cope with this lot:

1 - A bad tempered work colleague who his vented his anger & frustrations at me

2 - A stroppy pre-teen who is worried about her secondary school allocation (decision not known until March next year)

3 - Our housing situation - Do we stay here or move closer to a good school so that DD can be guaranteed to avoid the bullies who made her life hell in her previous school? But if we move our mortgage will increase massively.

4 - Either way the house needs to be finished once & for all as I'm fed up with bare floorboards on the stairs.

5 - Sick cats - Pam is going to the vets on Monday. Does she have cancer & how much will it cost? Tia is perkier now she's on tablets so she's not so worrying.

Sorry for rambling on. I'll be back when I've got something more interesting to share.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Give us yur booty....

DH & his work colleagues went into work dressed up today for International Talk like a Pirate Day. Apart from the obvious fun of dressing up & demanding cash from amused shoppers they had a more serious reason.

Another colleagues' relative has a baby who was seriously injured at birth & needs Stem Cell Surgery in China which will cost £250,000!

So they all took a days holiday, dressed up in their finest & hit the streets demanding booty, pieces of eight & treasure:

Local Pirates raid the City Centre

They raised £266 which will hopefully take her a bit closer to China.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Knitting content + some horrible news

Finally some details of what I've been doing recently. Firstly the headband which I started when we were on holiday:

Molly's headband
Red headband

Pattern:Molly's Headband from Interweave Knits
Yarn: Debbie Bliss Cotton DK
Amount of yarn used: 31g
Needle size: 4mm
Started: 14th August2006
Finished: 24th August 2006

This should have only taken a couple of days but I'm still knitting the boring Poncho from baby cashmerino 2 so it didn't get my full attention.

Next up another of my own design mobile phone covers:

mobile phone cover
Zebra mobile phone cover

Yarn: Opal Rainforest Zebra
Time taken: 1 day
The pattern is here. I changed this slightly as the cast off is too girly for the recipent & instead knitted 3 rounds after the eyelets & then did the stretchy bind off that I used for my Oriel toe up socks. It's going to a friends daughter who shares the same birthday as DD but is 3 years older. We went to their house yesterday for a party & had a great time. She's a bit of a goth but has lots of zebra accessories in her bedroom & very usefully, the same phone as mine so it was easy to make again. So I had to cast on last night & made sure that I used black yarn for the cast on row so that it centered the stripes.

When I started to recover from being ill I played around with the fine-spun mohair that I bought when I visited Crookabeck Farm:

Beaded rib sock
Fine-spun Mohair Beaded rib sock

Pattern: Beaded rib from Sensational Knitted Socks

However I'm not sure about it so have halted its' progress for now. It's beautiful yarn & is very soft but I'm not sure if I want fluffy socks & I think they might be too warm to wear. What do you think?

So I've now started something else:

mystery project
mystery project

Now for the horrible bit. Our friends 17 year old cat was torn apart yesterday morning by a dog. Mossup didn't stand a chance & died of his injuries. The dog was on a flexi-lead & the owner had walked behind a row of houses into an area which is a dead-end & she had no reason to be there. The police are interested as the dog was leashed but clearly not under control. IMHO it should be destroyed.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Thanks again Devon Knitter

I also had the pleasure of being spoilt by my One Skein Pal Devon Knitter - have you got a blog?

Firstly a book I've been dying to read for ages & a beautiful card:

Knits End & North Ronaldsay Sheep card
Knits End & North Ronaldsay Sheep card

My pal has family in the Orkneys & she bought the card & yarn for the following gift whilst up there seeing her Grandparents.

North Ronaldsay lace
Cat Paw lace scarf made from handspun North Ronaldsay yarn

Isn't it beautiful! We put a red backdrop in so that you could hopefully see the stitch detail & get an idea of how wonderful it is.

Thank you so much DK I've really enjoyed being spoiled by you

Friday, September 15, 2006

Belated thanks to pals

Before I can rattle on about what is or isn't otn at the moment I owe two very special people a thank you & recognition for spoiling me rotten

Now in the order that they arrived - let the first parcel be revealed!

Firstly from Dee of Princess Deia who was my SP8:

Secret Pal 8 cardSecret Pal 8 reveal card

I actually found out who she was before I received this last parcel. It had been sent to my office but I really didn't want to go in when I wasn't working but I opened it as soon as I went in & found this:

Stripey Mag Bag
Stripey Mag Bag

filled with these:

Secret Pal 8 gifts
beautifully wrapped presents

However I resisted & was good & waited until I got home before I opened them.

Undyed Opal sock yarn
Undyed Opal sock yarn & Kool aid

& then more stripey things to go with the bag:

sp 8 gifts
stripey gifts + wrist band for DD

Dee also included a special treat for DD in the form of a lilac MaryElla which can be seen in the above photo.

Finally another beautiful handmade card which explained all the pressies & matched the stripes:

handmade card
stripey handmade card

Thanks so much Dee - I love it all & you've done a fantastic job of spoiling me

I'll post tomorrow about the parcel from my OSP Devon Knitter as it deserves a post of it's own.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Sick cats

I'm not the only one who has been ill here recently.


Tia (nearly 19) has been diagnosed with an over active thyroid gland coupled with liver + kidney failure. She's been on medication for nearly a week & is a lot perkier. She's lost a lot of weight in the past few months & is now really boney but just as squeeky as ever - she's always been a talker. She's having another blood test in a few weeks to see if the medication needs adjusting.

Pam hasn't had a mention on her before. She's a bit of a shy cat & lives in the garage. They've got heated beds, a radiator & a cat tray in there so it's not as bad as it first sounds. She moved out of the house when DD was born as she couldn't stand the noise


If you look carefully at the above photo you can just see a lump on her chest - the vet thinks it might be cancer She'll be 16 next May so an operation may be a problem but my vet is open to not operationing on her if he isn't satisfied that she's up to it. We also had her brother Morris until last year when he decided to move out & found a new home further down the street

Monday, September 11, 2006

Celebration at the blueadt house!

I haven't got Glandular Fever

I started to feel a bit more alive yesterday & even got some yarn out to play with which is a good sign. I'm not sure about what I've created so have put it down for now - photos will be shared & opinions asked for in due course.

Thanks to everyone for the lovely comments & a special thanks to Susoolu who arrived bearing homemade soup. Poor DH worked really hard to manage everything but couldn't get his head around bland food which is all I could stomach.

I'm still absolutely knackered but am going back to work tomorrow as I've had a lot of time off this year. So DH is still on swimming duty much to his dismay

Thursday, September 07, 2006

I'm sick (again) + thanks Pals

I woke up on Monday morning with a really sore throat & it's got worse. My GP thinks I have Glandular Fever & I had a blood test this morning. I'm feeling absolutely crap & am really tired. I'm not even knitting which proves how rough I feel.

The awful thing is that I've had this before when I was 19. I then went on to develop M E. I eventually recovered but it took a long time & messed up my life.

Last time I got GF I was single & living in a shared student house & my only responsibility was a dog & 2 cats. My dog ended up being rehomed for 6 months as I couldn't look after her. I don't know how I'm going to cope with DD & her schooling + swimming. DH is doing his best but always gets upset with me when I'm sick. He doesn't mean to & apologises afterwards but isn't a good nurse.

I'm hoping that I recover after a couple of weeks & it doesn't linger like before.....

I've received the last parcel from my SP & always Dee had put a lot of effort & thought into it. I also received the last parcel from Devon Knitter this morning - I love the scarf! Thanks so much. Photos will be shared when I'm feeling a bit more lively.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Exchanges - a partial reveal

My Secret Pal finally revealed herself to me a few days ago; she is Dee of Princess Deia & has spoilt me rotten. My last parcel is waiting for me at work & I'll get it tomorrow. So I'll no doubt be in torture all day as she always wraps things so beautifully that I'll have to be good & wait until DH has taken pics before I open the gifts. I've enjoyed our emails over the last few months & hope to keep in touch with her.

I also did the One Skein Pal Exchange & sent to Mariyarn in Denmark. You can view her last parcel here. For a closer look this is what I sent her as a handmade gift:

Fetching - cabled fingerless gloves
Fetching in Debbie Bliss Merino Aran

My own OSP has also spoilt me but so far hasn't revealed herself. An email that I sent to her hotmail account has bounced back so if you're reading this Devon Knitter please get in touch.

Some of you may remember that I also gained a 'Not So Secret Pal' as my own spoilee was a bit 'unappreciative' to put it mildly. How much effort does it take to send someone an email to acknowledge reciept of a parcel???? It was nice to have someone appreciate the effort that goes into chosing gifts for someone else after my first match. Anyway this also meant that I totally ruined with 3 different people spoiling me

Saturday, September 02, 2006

exhausted & puzzled

I've spent ALL day with DD at a swimming gala. We got up at 5.30 a.m. & got collected at 6.15 by another parent as we'd agreed a car share. 12 hours were spent in the Sports Complex & she competed in 7 events. I'm totally shattered & she took herself off to bed an hour ago.

It was worth every minute. She beat an old PB (Personal Best) set in June '05 by 14 seconds & another set in November '05 by 9 seconds plus achieved another less dramatic PB. So she's a very happy little girl (or rather not so little as she's now 5ft & only 10 years old). She didn't make medals this time as it was a HUGE meet & had approx 400 competitors doing over 2500 swims!

She came home to a fantastic reward as DH had made his wonderful pizzas & we're all stuffed now. DH & I have also opened a bottle of red so I'm starting to feel a bit merry as well as shattered.

To make this knitting related - I was naughty last night

I'm totally bored by the Poncho that I'm knitting from baby cashmerino 2 so cast on for a new pair of socks for DH with the Lana Grossa Boot Stretch that I bought a few months ago.

I had a nightmare getting gauge as per instructions in Sensational Knitted Socks as I only have small addis in 2mm, 2.5mm + 3mm which leads to to a question for all my US readers:

Can you obtain addis in the following sizes - 2.25mm & 2.75mm in 40cm lengths?

I'm a bit confused regarding the different sizes & have got my tired brain in loops over this -I don't suppose the glass of wine has helped either

If you can - is anybody willing to do a swap with me? I'd like a pair in each size & in return could send you yarn, books, magazines or even needle sizes that you can't get eg 4mm.

Please have a think about it.....

Friday, September 01, 2006

Bank Holiday break

We went to North Yorkshire last weekend for our last trip in the caravan this season. Due to swimming galas & other commitments we can't go away again this year so made the most of our last trip. The site was near Richmond and whilst the area was beautiful the campsite was a total nightmare. I'm going to focus on the positives first & DH took loads of great photos again.

On our first full day we went to Fountains Abbey which is jointly run by the National Trust & English Heritage. We spent a lot of time at the Abbey itself which is an amazing ruin of a 12th Centrury Cistercian Abbey:

Fountains Abbey
View approaching Fountains Abbey with DD running in the foreground

We went on a guided tour which really brought the Abbey to life:

Fountains Abbey
Fountains Abbey Refrectory

Fountains Abbey
Fountains Abbey

Fountains Abbey
Fountains Abbey - doorway to the Tower

On another day we went to Brimham Rocks & the kids had a great time in the natural playground:

Brimham Rocks

Brimham Rocks

Brimham Rocks
Dancing Bear at Brimham Rocks

However the campsite itself which a nightmare. Full of chavs! DH regulary found cigarette butts in the showers, the noise was horrendous - have any of you ever heard a karaoke competition on a campsite before?

Plus the carvanner behind us had a thing about Country & Western & in particular loved Dolly Parton - enough said

Whilst taking a shower for the first time on the site I noticed hair shavings on the tiles & was sick twice due to the smell in the shower blocks. There was no ventilation apart from an open door & it ponged!

So if you're planning on going camping to this part of the world let me know & I'll steer you clear of this awful site - we won't be going back there again!