Friday, November 30, 2007

Biting the hand that feeds........

My 12 year old DD is testing me at the moment. Her moods & behaviour have been horrendous recently even more than usual. Her computer & mobile phone have been resident in my office for the past two weeks & she was also grounded from sport for a week but still it continues.

Whilst I was ill last month I asked her to make her own packed lunch for the following day. The reply I received was

"Why should I it's your work!"

I had up to that point made her lunch (along with DH's & mine) the night before & put it in the fridge so that mornings weren't so rushed but since then she has made her own with a lot of complaining.

Last night DH & I attending the first parents evening at her new Secondary school. Thinking that she would be hungry if she didn't eat until afterwards I made her a cheese omelette when she got home but insisted that the kittens were fed & tray cleaned before she ate. This act caused a huge row & objects were thrown & abuse shouted at the cook.

So she's going to have to get self sufficient pretty quickly as this mother has had enough of being treated like something unpleasant on the bottom of her shoe.

Can anybody recommend respite care for 12 year olds?


All her teachers love her & praised her behaviour. She's well mannered, polite, attentive & homework is always handed in on time. We both commented a few times that we didn't recognise the child they were talking about!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Stash musings

Again I can't post information or photos of what I'm knitting due to the pending festive celebrations. So instead I'll talk about something close to many knitters hearts: STASH!

I have a big stash.

There I've said it upfront & am being totally honest with myself & you all.

The last four months on a Ravelry have also taught me just what that 'collection' contains. Some is much loved & others less & the latter has been weeded out & rehomed or is available for 'adoption' on my a Ravelry profile. DH is now fully aware of how big my stash really is & has imposed a yarn purchasing ban which I have to admit is fair enough as we don't live in a massive house. However I put my foot down at a swap ban as I explained to him that over time my 'taste' has changed & this the only way that I could try out a new yarn, fibre or weight without buying the yarn plus of course yarn has to vacate my stash go in exchange to make room. My stash inventory on a Ravelry is up to date apart from a few skeins received recently in swaps which are waiting for some daylight to coincide with DH's presence in the house & the camera being out.

So my Christmas list this year for a change includes NO yarn. That's right, zero skeins of the fibrey kind but instead the means to transpose it into something lovely; patterns that can utilise the yarn that I already have in my stash & that are challenging and interesting.

Also I've signed up to a knitters version of a New Years Resolution Socks from stash club as the following really struck a cord:

Have you ever been tempted to join a yarn shop sock club, even though you already have a stash of beautiful yarns you don't have time to knit?

I have been tempted to join sock clubs quite a few times but as I do have a beautiful collection of sock yarn I have been good & resisted. So I'll be dipping into it each month & creating something worthy. A few teasers include:

Socks That Rock
Socks That Rock in Undertoe

Koigu KPPM
Koigu KPPM

Koigu KPM
Koigu KPM

Regia Silk
Regia Silk

Regia Silk
Regia Silk

Lorna's Laces
Lorna's Laces in Berry

Best of Opal
Best of Opal DK

Knit Picks Essential Tweed
Knit Picks Essential Tweed

Most of the yarns above were presents so I'll be searching for the perfect pattern to do the yarn justice. Is it a bit obvious that I like purple & red?

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

The scurge of gift knitting

Anybody reading this blog recently will think that I've just been busy with cats, kittens & hedgehogs. Whilst they have been taking my time other things have been happening but sadly not all are blog-able at least not yet. With Christmas just a few weeks away I've been planning & casting on projects via Ravelry but none can be revealed here.

However I do a have a few non-Christmassy things that I can show:

First a project which was first seen when I was ill but now I can reveal a much better photo:

Sweater & Stocking Minis
Stripey Jumper dress

Pattern: Mini Sweater
Source: Last-Minute Knitted Gifts by Joelle Hoverson.
Modifications: I wasn't very well when I made this & I'm using this as the excuse for going wrong. I counted the stripes instead of the rows so I made a jumper dress instead of a jumper or sweater But it's still cute.
Yarn: Wendy Cotton Supersoft & Wendy Miami found hiding in my stash.
Needles: 4mm

A second attempt at the pattern fared much better:

Sweater & Stocking Minis
Two tone miniature jumper

Next a truly fiddly knit:

Little Sky Sock
Little Sky Sock

Pattern: Little Sky Sock
Source: New Pathways for Sock Knitters by Cat Bordhi
Yarn: Opal Magic left over from my Garter Rib socks
Needles:2 x 2.5mm addi turbos

I'm glad I've made a miniature version of this sock as I really didn't like the shaping but I did like the next one:

Little Coriolis sock
Little Coriolis sock

and another shot from the other side to show the shaping:

BLittle Coriolis sock
Little Coriolis sock

Pattern: Little Coriolis sock
Source: New Pathways for Sock Knitters by Cat Bordhi
Yarn: Opal Magic left over from my Garter Rib socks
Needles:2 x 2.5mm addi turbos

These little knits will be converted soon with the aid of a tiny bit of pink i-cord & a keyring & will be sent off shortly to a fundraiser to raise money for Breast Cancer Research which is always a worthy cause.

And the kittens?

They're continuing to cause havoc!

We're slowly introducing them to the dogs by bringing one dog into the conservatory at a time & having them lie down so that the kittens can get used to them. Both dogs are big (25.5" & 26" tall at the shoulder) & their heads are bigger than the kittens entire bodies) and are cat friendly & have never hurt a cat in their lives but they're both finding it very interesting to have two manic kittens run around at top speed and want to play.

Ginny looking 'big' because a dog dared to look at her

Wagging dog tails have been 'patted' at & games chasing tin foil balls & catnip mice taking place around the canines but we've got a long way to go before they can all be integrated together. It's made harder partly due to Annie's partial blindness; as she can't always see what's going on, she tends to bark in excitement when she hears a noise, which obviously scares the kittens & they then scoot back to the kitten nursery, aka the conservatory in it's former use, at high speed with tails like Christmas trees!

Sunday, November 04, 2007


Whilst I cast on a christmas present...

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Double Trouble

Thank you everyone for the kind words about Monet. I'm feeling very raw & emotional at the moment but it'll get easier with time.

We have however been brave & added two new members to the household already:

Ginny (l) & Lyra (r)

DH & I have had kittens before but DD never has so, even though we both would have preferred to get an adult cat, we thought that it was only fair to get kittens so that she could have the fun of playing with them & watching them grow up. We promised her some once Monet was gone as she really didn't like other cats & really should have been an 'only' but I already had two cats when I got her as a kitten.


I wanted to wait a couple of weeks but DH is off work for another week due to his surgery & it made a lot of sense to have someone here for at least the first week. I work part time so they won't be on their own all day and it seemed to work out better this way.


They are 12 week old sisters & came from the local animal rescue centre & had to be homed together as they're very close. So when we rang up requesting two kittens of the same gender the staff must have been cheering. We had already had a home check, as it were as the woman who brought us Spike works there, so we just had to have a vet check over the phone & we were allowed to take them home.

Ginny (l) & Lyra (r)

Poor Pam isn't very impressed & retreated to the loft at first but now she's got the rest of the house with her own litter tray. The kittens are currently housed in the conservatory with radiators & a heated bed until she learns to accept them. Hopefully DH can make progress with this next week.

The dogs however love their own cats (sadly they do think it fun to chase other cats that aren't part of their pack but aren't allowed to take part in this sport) & are far keener to spend time with the new recruits:

Airedales & kittens
Annie & Blue watching the kittens

Annie in particular will adore them & spent a good 10 minutes lying by the door with her tail wagging. In time the kittens will learn just like Monet did that these two big hairy things are actually quite good fun & nice & warm to sleep on.

I feel a bit 'unfaithful' getting them so quickly after Monet but they are making me smile!

btw I had a lot of 'help' writing this post & knitting around them is definitely not happening yet!

Friday, November 02, 2007

Goodbye Monet

It's exactly a year to the day that I had to have Tia put to sleep & now it's happened again as Monet was put down earlier this evening. She was suffering from arthritis & kidney failure & had stopped eating so it was the right decision to make albeit a hard one.

I first met her when she was an hour old as my friend owned her mother & she was an ugly kitten who grew into a very beautiful cat.

Monet & her siblings aged 4 weeks

Monet & her brother George aged 5 weeks

She was initially wary of my previous Airedale Terrier Libby but grew to love her & adored both Blue & Annie. She would often greet them with trills & walk between their legs jumping up to scent them with the side of her face.

kitten meeting dog
Monet learning to accept dogs

She has really enjoyed the last 7 months as she loved our new house & garden & spent a lot of time snoozing in the sunshine, catching mice and chasing birds & squirrels:

Snoozing on the lawn

cat sunbathing
Monet enjoying the sunshine

She was a very loving cat but wouldn't tolerate anything that constituted 'fiddling' including flea spray, the giving of tablets or any other unwelcome attention. So I had to smile when she managed to bite the vet as she inserted the 'lethal injection' despite having being given a sedative beforehand


3/5/1991 - 2/11/2007