Thursday, 17 August 2017

A day of many parts.

The day dawned fine and bright, just a bit too early for me but I got up as once awake there is no going back to sleep.

  • Ben was all too happy to start his day early, but it was nothing to do with the weather Oh no. He decided that 5:45 was a good time for a spot of breakfast, I had to tell him otherwise.

I did not waste my time but got lots of little jobs sorted.

We had a walk and then it was time to scoop up Rufus for his turn.

I picked up Jess and Ivy and we went off out for a couple of hours, it is good to play hookey once in a while.

I came back to total chaos, the toilet cistern had sprung a leak, there was water running down the hall walls and the carpet was soaking. The plumber was on his way and within an hour order was restored.

Luckily the SO was at home and got the water turned off before any serious damage could happen.

As often happens it never rains but it pours, almost the minute that had I cleaned up the bathroom Ben was sick, poor little dog he slunk on his belly to the door in shame. Another round of cleaning and finally I could think about dinner.

Then to cap it all the heavens opened a few minutes before I was due to take the dogs out.

I threw the towel in, had dinner early, washed up and got into pj's and claimed my corner of the sofa.

I have started the rib on the first Miette sleeve, I added 30 extra rows as I want full length sleeves, bracelet length sleeves on an Aran weight cardigan seems so wrong.

Tomorrow is another day and hopefully it will be less eventful. I intend to finish my sleeve and get the second one started and possibly have an early night, all this excitement is very tiring.

                                             TTFN                                                       Pam

Wednesday, 16 August 2017

It was a Time Warp

Even after checking the post dates and yesterdays date it totally passed by me that it was Tuesday. AKA Knit and natter day.

I missed it, I pottered about the house. Laundry done, line dried and ironed, kitchen sorted, some sewing prep done, quite a bit of knitting. The Miette body is done and I will be starting the first sleeve shortly. Pattern and yarn selected for a small persons sweater, and lots of little bits and bobs tidied away.

The SO found the time to put a floating shelf over the hall mirror, the baskets of hats, scarves and gloves are now there.

Dinner was a simple "Ploughmans plate", neither of us was particularly hungry and there was a fresh loaf of bread. So with a selection of cheese, homemade chutney and some tomatoes and bell peppers we had a scratch meal that was just perfect.

Tonight we are having a baked egg dish that I saw Phyllis Stokes  make. Diced bell peppers and scallions sweated in butter, tipped into a pyrex dish and raw eggs placed on top. Grated cheese and breadcrumbs scattered over and then moistened with a little beer (I used cider) and baked for 20 minutes. I have made crushed roasted garlic potatoes ready to go in the oven, I am looking forward to dinner already.

I forgot to give the recipe for Cauliflower Steaks, it isn't really a recipe, I slice the cauli though into 2" steaks and lay them in a single layer in a baking tin. Then I whisk some oil, salt and pepper and whatever spice I fancy together, last time it was smoked paprika, garlic granules and a squirt of barbecue sauce. Tip it over the steaks and turn them over in it to coat well. Then I just griddle them or pop the tray into the oven for 25 minutes or so. I have made these many times, they are good marinaded in a little Worcestershire sauce and topped with a thick cheese sauce and then baked.

We had a lovely sunny morning and early afternoon but it is raining now and looks to be set in for the night.

The radio has been playing lots of Elvis songs this week, it doesn't seem 40 years ago that he died, I may have a look on NetFlix later and watch one of his films, I enjoyed them at the time but have not seen any of them more than once.

Now I think that it is Tea o'clock, dinner is prepped for the oven and the kitchen is put to rights. All is well in my world.

Weather permitting I will be scooping up Jess and Ivy tomorrow and sliding off for a few hours.  It doesn't look very promising but we will see.

                                         TTFN                                                                    Pam

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

A very senior moment.

Oh Dear, I just had a little read through my blog list and then had a look at the comments for yesterday. One said that it was nice to see me back, back? back from where?I thought Then I saw that I had not posted for a few days, I don't know why, perhaps I was lost in a time warp. It's just a jump to the left....sorry about that.

I had no idea, I thought that I had missed one day. Oops I blame Mary Poppins, she has to be blamed for something.

Anyway, now that that is dealt with I can move forward, onwards and upwards.

I am knitting happily on the Miette, I have 27 rows left on the body before binding off and picking up the sleeves. It has not been an entirely smooth progress, nothing wrong with pattern or yarn, no dropped stitches or anything. My stitchmarkers decided to jump off the needles at every opportunity, they were like Minions determined to escape. I may have to resort to little bits of contrast yarn tied in loops. That was what my Mother used, there were no fancy pants, themed or otherwise, pretties to be had then. Even if there were she would have rather spent the money on more yarn. (only she called it all wool)

I have been sewing, 2 new cushion covers are finished, 2 are waiting for the final seaming and overlocking and 2 are waiting for the back fabric to be selected.

The dress that was cut out at least 6 weeks ago is still in limbo, but it is at the top of the pile. I just have to get the cushion covers done, not to mention the quilt that has been pin basted....Oh and I have an idea for a new play quilt for the grands. Snakes and Ladders on one side and Draughts on the reverse, I aim to make the squares big enough for the children to be the counters on the snakes and ladders side. I will make the dice as well.
What I will change though is the long snake that slides down from square 98 (or 99) to square 2. I can remember sliding down that many, many times and it can be devastating to a small child.

Mmm, just noticed that I have used a smaller sized font than normal, I will leave it and see how it turns out.

I have to dash, it is almost time for walking Rufus, if I am late he stands at the gate a shouts for me.

                                       TTFN                                                            Pam

Monday, 14 August 2017

Technicolour to shades of grey.

Yesterday was a full on technicolour and vista vision day. Bright sun, a warm whispering breeze and hedgerows festooned with glistening berries like fruit gums tipped out of a packet. Black, red, orange(almost) and green, a Kilo was soon gathered and added to a kilo of chopped apples and a pint and a bit of water, boiled up and strained overnight. They have become 4 jars of purple/black jelly, all ready to melt into buttery crumpets or be the jewels in jam tarts. A reminder of late summer days in the gloom of winter.

The sun shone for Ivy, it was a celebration of her first birthday, and it was all about blueberries and cake for her. She delights in her food and although cake is a treat fresh fruit, pepper sticks and plums were pounced upon with glee. She was delighted with the little tote bag filled with a few crocheted flowers and pom poms. The cardigan that I had feared would be a bit on the small side fitted her well, with a little growing room, so another will be on the needles soon.

Today is a shades of grey day, mainly because I have rhubarb wiped and chopped in the maslin pan. It sits there, under a pristine dressing of snowy white sugar, oh so slowly releasing its tart juices. Scattered throughout are a few nuggets of preserved ginger that have been chopped fine, every spoonful of the resulting jam should have at least one, almost fiery nib.

That will be the last pull of rhubarb this year, a sure sign that summer is on its way out. The outer tough stems are softening and bending, like tulips in a vase, and the leaves are crisping and changing colour. In a short time I will be piling the contents of the small compost bin over the plants, after I have lifted and split the bigger ones.

The apple boughs are bent double under the weight of fruit, so much so that I have had to thin them out. The rainfall has caused them to become quite large, even though not fully ripe the flesh is crisp, juicy and sweet.

One is being moved later this year to a more sheltered spot and a Damson will take its place. The area right at the top of the garden, which is scheduled to be cleared this autumn will (fingers crossed) hold another and possibly a Quince, although I have had visions of the dark purple damsons nestled up to some velvety soft greengages. 

There, I have cheered myself up no end writing that, I will have to have a search for the trees a bit later.

The Miette cardigan is growing nicely, I have put the sleeve stitches onto waste yarn and am a few rows into the body. 

I am planning another and will be yarn hunting tomorrow. Luckily Debs has a good stock of Aran weight yarn that I can squidge and squeeze through.

Dinner tonight is Toad in the Hole, the batter mix has been well beaten and is resting. The "sausage toads" are a glorious blend with apple and beetroot taking centre stage and I have some cider flavoured sauce to anoint the finished dish with. Peas and carrots will provide a splash of colour and there is a crumble for pudding, apple and blackerry, of course.

Now I do believe that it is Tea O'clock, with an oaty biscuit perhaps. Not to dunk, yeuk, biscuits should be enjoyed crisp and crumbly, not warm and soggy.

                TTFN                                                 Pam

Wednesday, 9 August 2017

What is that noise?

That noise, my friends, is the death rattle of a Lap top (at least that's what it sounds like to me)
No more listening to my favourite podcasters, I have to put the telly on. Well at least till the lappy goes to the doctors, that will hopefully happen tomorrow. It went west yesterday morning when I was on a call to my sister, but it was Knit and Natter in the afternoon and I had to prioritise.

People come first.

Not to mention the fact that there was cake.

Jammy doughnuts, swoon.

Triple chocolate cookies, drool.

Blueberry muffins, Oh My.

But we are not going to mention cake.

The talented Tina of Loobylou Yarns brought in a basket full of her Homespun, Oh My Word it is drop dead gorgeous (she has a shop so pop on over and have a look. Just don't buy it all)

If I end up able to spin yarn that is half as good I will be a happy bunny.

I must not mention the cake.

The sun has been shining on and off most of the day and now it is glorious, just right for walking Ben and Rufus before dinner.

I finished the socks today and am working on the next WIP in line. That WILL be finished tonight and then there is just my blue cardigan and the SO's Aran weight Flax sweater. I have an Andi Satterlund pattern clamouring to be knit, and the light green yarn to knit it in. I WILL be strong and finish the WIPs first though. I just know that this will be a monogamous knit, it is Miette which is now free on Ravelry, I want one in at least 3 colours.

Most of the prep has been done in the sitting room, fingers crossed it will all be put to rights by the weekend.

I must drink my tea now and get the dogs on their respective leads for a gentle walk in the sunshine. Life is good.

                    TTFN                                                 Pam

PS. I have to mention the cake. I was good only the one doughnut, it was light and fluffy and oozing jam. yummy yum yum.

Tuesday, 8 August 2017

Inertia strikes again

Not really total inertia, just a small fit of the "can't help its, and don't intend to try".
 Two days with nothing much to report, walking, cooking, cleaning, washing and ironing. All the usual activities along with more upheaval in the house. A new blind in the sitting room meant that the window recess had to be modified. The recess sides are angled out, to allow more light in I assume, and this has been sorted. It did lead to much measuring and tutting, quite a bit of muttering and some carpentry, all is now well.
I have been busy making some gifts for a small person, you know how it is you trim the threads off the last item, put everything away, and then think "oh perhaps I should make a ....." and out it all comes again. I just have to find a 20" cushion pad and I have finished, although there is this pattern for an owl.....

I will be at knit and Natter today, I missed the last 2 weeks due to hospital appointments, I will soon have more records there than Elvis ever made.
I will take my snuggly blanket to crochet, I expect to have lots of chatter to catch up on. 

My sister has her parcel of sewing and quilting goodies, I have found a few more things and a pack of yarn to send off. That gives me a bit more space and her lots to do once the nights start drawing in. I know that it is early August but I feel Autumn nipping at my heels. I am hoping for an Indian Summer, 6 weeks worth would be lovely.

Now the clock is ticking away and I need to get a wriggle on.

                 TTFN                                            Pam

Saturday, 5 August 2017

So far, so good.

The weather has done a U turn, let's hope that it lasts, the sun is shining and there is more blue sky than cloud. A load of washing pegged out and another getting ready to join it.

I was busy most of yesterday and no knitting and very little sewing happened.
We went to look at the house that is scheduled for decorating and got a pleasant surprise, it was reasonably clean. The kitchen cupboards had the usual scattering of marks and crumbs. My worse fears regarding the oven were unfounded, it doesn't look as though it has been used.
The garden will need a quick tidy up, weed killing on the drive and front hard standing and a small amount of rubbish to move.

There are 4 bedrooms, a lounge and a dining room plus hall stairs and landing to paint. One wall in the dining room is a deep red and one wall in the lounge has been papered with a dark pattern, they may both stay it just depends on what the owner wants.
The SO will be a busy bee for a while, there is another one lined up already.

We had a scratch dinner last night, neither of us was very hungry. I fished 2 Chicken Kievs from the freezer and cooked in the small oven, with a slice of homemade bread it was just enough and a juicy nectarine was the perfect pudding.
Dinner tonight will be meatloaf, I made a batch and froze them in slices a couple of weeks ago and I am planning a steak and kidney pie for Sunday.

Today I have to knuckle down and get that quilt binding finished and cut out the fabric for the bag. I also need to decide whether to make a little dog or perhaps an elephant to complete the set.

Then there is the new heart pattern that Lucy from Attic24 has just posted, oh boy is that calling to me, I can see a row of them on my wall.

Now I better get that second wash pegged out as it will soon be time to collect Rufus.

                             TTFN                                                      Pam

PS. Have a good weekend.

Friday, 4 August 2017


After several weeks of removing things that I no longer use the house is slowly emerging from it's filled to the gunwales  condition.
 It has been (and still is) a big help that I have a sister who knits (far better than I could aspire to) and would like to try patchwork and quilting.

Several packs of yarn have gone her way and as I said yesterday I have a parcel of the necessary things ready to send to get her started. I am glad of the space and she will be able to try a new craft without any cost. That is more or less how I started quilting, a friend showed me some of her handiwork and when I expressed an interest she stocked me up with all the basics. I am so glad to be able to pass it forward.

I have built up a far too large a selection of quilting notions and it irks me that I am no longer using them. I have used them all at different times but inevitably I have doubles, people have given me various items as presents. 
Along with the rest of the house my goal is to reduce the amount of things here to possibly half. 

I do have an ulterior motive.

There is a list of jobs that I want to get done within the house and once they have been done there is a crafty itch to be dealt with. 

I would love to spin, I have someone who will give me a few lessons. If I find that it is for me then I will need space to house the equipment. The only way that I can generate that space is by letting go of all the things that I no longer use. My mother was a bit of a hoarder but my Granny was of the "if you don't use it get rid of it" type, I need to let that side of me dominate. I do it with the rest of the house and need to apply it to the crafting supplies.

The SO has laid claim to one of my, now emptied, storage units, a very nice hand painted double door cupboard that was designed to hold home office supplies. This now holds some of his more precious drills and tools, these are the ones that are used in the house. All the really heavy duty gear has a home at the top of the garden.

His hand is healing very well, which is a good thing as there is a fairly large job that needs starting ASAP. I will be taking him to see it later. Yes, he could go by himself but I like a nose round the odd house or three, and if there is any cleaning to do I will be doing it. There generally is, some tenants leave the properties in a dreadful state. They don't seem to care that they lose their bond and deposit.

And now for something that is making me very happy.

We spent an hour getting this lot reskeined, well the SO did, I was the tea girl.

These are 2 x 50 gram skeins of what I hope will be self striping, my first attempt at dying stripes, time will tell if I was successful.

These quads are as near as possible identical, there will be some variations but if the skeins are alternated would make a gorgeous sweater.There is more yellow in them than shows and I have called them Dorothy's Dream. The next batch might be linked to the Munchkins or perhaps the Ruby Slippers. On the other hand I may be inspired by something altogether different.

I have skeined up some sock sets and just need to decide what colours to paint them. I love contrasting heels and toes, sometimes I like them to clash. If they are to be a gift then I want a solid that picks up on one of the main colours.

I did not touch my knitting at all and my shoulders and neck are feeling the benefit, my hands are also not at all stiff and achy.
I did manage to sew most of the little quilt binding down and will get that finished today. Then there is just the bag to make and perhaps a soft toy, I haven't made a candy square dog for ages.

Then there are just 3 knitting projects to get finished, the SO has promised to dye me some yarn as a reward for clearing the WIPs. That sounds like a good deal to me. I will have to decide on a pattern and a colour scheme.

Surprisingly we have rain again this morning, I do hope that we have not seen the last of summer. I am hoping to gather as many blackberries as possible and then the elderberries. Hedgerow jelly has been in my mind for a while now and I am hoping to get some in my tum.

I am still on the lookout for a supply of Damsons, they make glorious jam and jelly and add a rich base note to chutney. I should have a few weeks yet but the seasons seem to be rushing along and there is a strong sense of Autumn in the air.
I may have to find room for a tree of my own, I am sure that I can squeeze one in somewhere.

Now I suppose that I ought to get a move on, there is lots to do today.

The cauliflower steaks were absolutely fantastic last night, I served them with mushrooms stuffed with garlic and baby plum tomatoes and cooked on a bed of red onions and more tomatoes. 

Now I really am off to get busy.

                       TTFN                                     Pam

Thursday, 3 August 2017

Splish, splash, splosh

I have just watched the weather report on BBC Breakfast. The lovely Carol was showing the heatwave in Europe and telling holiday makers to be careful and aware of conditions that are potentially very dangerous.

I am green, with either envy or algae after all the rain that we are having.

Still rather wet than living in fear of wild fire. My brother is a fireman in WA and that is an ever present worry down under.

I had an early start today, wide awake before dawn and no inclination to sleep in me. The childs quilt self binding is now pressed and clipped in place ( love Clover wonder clips) and ready to hand sew.
I am taking a day off knitting as my neck and shoulders are a bit stiff and painful.

There are plenty of things clamouring for my time so eating chocolate and watching brain numbing telly is not on the agenda.
I have a parcel to wrap up, goodness only knows where the brown paper is, and get sent off to my sister. She fancies trying some patchwork and quilting and I am only to happy to send a pack of the basics. It is heartbreaking when you buy things for a new hobby only to find that you don't like it. 

I don't think that I will be doing a long walk with Rufus again today although we did manage a half hour at 6:30 yesterday evening. It poured down again minutes after we got back home.

Dinner last night was a curry, tonight is undecided but will feature cauliflower and mushrooms. PING Lightbulb moment. I will marinade some thick slices of cauliflower and cook like steaks. Served with mushrooms and onion rings they will be just the job. I may cook some peas and/or broccoli as well, I like to see green on my plate.

That's all from me, nothing exciting to report. Just same old, same old, like most of us.

                 TTFN                                                         Pam

Wednesday, 2 August 2017

Stitching through the stash

While the rain hammers down and walking turns into paddling I have almost finished the child's quilt.

The colours are much brighter than they show, they come from some charm square packs made from  fabric designed by Kirstie  Allsopp. I bought them a while ago and have only used a few, there are enough left for at least one more small quilt.

I have backed it with this fun print, some of the colours are repeated from the front so I aim to try self binding it. Once the backing is folded round to the front I will see how I feel.

All the threads are pulled through and tied off, the ends will be contained within the binding. I may use some of the backing fabric to make a little bag to hold the quilt. Most small children like a bag to drag around and constantly fill and empty with their treasures.

I considered putting pockets on the front but will leave that idea for the next size up. I made one like that for Junior and he had great fun selecting his favourite little cars to hide in the pockets.

I did a little knitting this morning and the latest sock is almost done, I have started the toe shaping. That will be finished and the next one cast on while telly watching and sofa surfing later. 

I hope to get to see the one armed bandit before the weekend, it all depends on the weather, there is no pleasure in trudging through rain, unless you have a Springer Spaniel of course. My three would get really excited by this weather and demand to go out and then be reluctant to go home.

I did not get to walk the dogs this morning, I am pretty hardy and have waterproof gear but the wind was causing rain whirlpools. It was just a step too far.

Now I am off to trim and press the backing ready to fold round and sew down, I want this finished tonight and will cut the bag out ready for tomorrows sewing.

                        TTFN                                      Pam

Tuesday, 1 August 2017

More of the same, please.

I may as well accept the weather, alternating bands of hot sun and torrential rain. That's what is on offer for a while. The garden will be a jungle when I can finally get out into it.

Knitting socks, as always, dying yarn (lots of fun), pulling fabrics for a small quilt and generally ignoring all but the most pressing housework. As long as kitchen and bathroom are squeaky clean and the bed is made I am happy to lurch around with the vacuum cleaner and flick the duster hither and thither. Once the SO's hand is healed he can go to town.

Another missed Knit and Natter this week, I have to go to the hospital for more Xrays, hopefully it will be the last lot. I will soon glow in the dark.

I did manage to get Ben and Rufus walked in the sunny spells, it was touch and go, I shut the kitchen door after delivering Rufus home and the heavens opened, with a vengeance.

It,s a bit on the skew but here is the yarn that I painted. 4 short skeins for socks, shawls etc and 2 long 50 gram skeins that I hope will knit into matching socks. I rather fancy calling the colour Dorothy's Dream. It is a bit rainbowy, quite yellow and turns into blue green. I put some speckles in just because I like them.

It should be dry and reskeined tomorrow ready for photos.

 This is a short and sweet post as I need to get ready for my "outing" to Swansea.

                  TTFN                                          Pam

Monday, 31 July 2017

More socks than is sensible.

The weather was very not nice yesterday, after a long walk with Rufus, in sunshine, the heavens opened. The rest of the day was made up of alternating 15 minute or so bands of bright sun and thunderingly heavy rain.

A quick trip to the shops for essentials, fruit, veg, milk etc and settling down with some knitting and a little telly was the order of the day.

These stripey socks should have matched but somehow they are a few rows out in the colour, but have the same row count. It doesn't bother me quite as much as it used to.

I cast on another straight away in the Drops Delight sock wool, colour 12, it is a blend of 25% superwash wool and 25% polyamide and has a slight halo. It is a little splitty but my gorgeous Chiaogoo Twist mini circulars are dealing with that nicely.

The day started with more heavy rain but has cleared now, the sky is blue but there is quite a bit of cloud. The first load of laundry is in the tumbler but I hope to get the second load pegged out.

Dinner last night was a hodge podge of left overs, there was pasta sauce, a couple of sausages,a thick slice of garlic sausage (10 p in Tesco, not to be left on the rtc shelf) and some cooked pasta. Mixed together with a glug of  smokey barbecue sauce and reheated it was delicious .

Tonight will be a veggy stir fry followed by cherry pie, mmmmm.

No weight loss to report this week but I am not bothered, my clothes tell me that I am smaller than a month ago.

The SO is suffering, he was washing up on Saturday and managed to break a glass AND cut his hand in 2 places forsooth.

He refused hospital so I used some closure strips  from the first aid kit to hold the cut closed and then a dressing pad and bandage. That first aid training has come in handy several times.
It is healing well and now has a light weight adhesive wound dressing on.
A respite from decorating chaos is now happening.

Ben has a bandage on his front left leg, he manged to scrape it on something on his walk. It was like Emergency ward 10 for a little while.

The once white clouds are now an alarming shade of grey, more tumble drying time I guess.

We have been binge watching Whitechapel on box sets, we are now on series 4. Time to start looking for something else to take its place. I like box sets, you don't have to wait for a week after a cliffhanger and there are no adverts to annoy you.

Any suggestions?

We watched the latest Beauty and the Beast yesterday afternoon, the special effects and animation were great but I think I preferred the Beast to the Prince. He was a little too pretty to my mind.

I have a quilt project in my mind so will be looking through the fabric later, ironing first, a new way of quilt as you go that I saw on a random podcast. I will share that once I get it started.

I think that is all for now, so a cup of tea is next on the agenda then it will be ironing time.

                    TTFN                                                     Pam

Saturday, 29 July 2017

Light bulbs and pies.

The lappy still won't load photos, so I have taken a couple of very dodgy shots with the web cam. Ignore the blurry face,it may not be early but I was concentrating on not dropping anything.(even though I would quite like to launch the lappy through the window)

The SO,s latest sock, the second has been cast on but only a couple of rows knitted so far.

The cropped waistcoat knitted with the Gower yarn, I love it but still have to get the toggles stitched on.

I like it over the bright orange tee, maybe I need to find some similar coloured fabric for a long sleeved dress, or even better dye some yarn for a jumper.

Today was supposed to be mainly dry and sunny, HAH, the forecast now shows most of the country under a blanket of rain.

We are off to the DIY store in a while, the SO has a list of things to get. By a lucky chance we will be driving past a garden centre so a small diversion might happen.

When I come back I want to have a play and see if I can get a video recorded and loaded on the blog, I made one a few weeks ago but can not remember how. It's an age thing, computers should come with unlimited access to a 12 year old.

Ben has had his first walk of the day, in the dry, and is now curled up on the sofa sound asleep.

I was awake early this morning and did a little knitting (finished that sock) while watching some random podcasts. I saw Phyllis Stokes making Mississippi Mud Pie and then Peanut Butter Pie. I put on 2 lbs just watching.  I will be trying those out next time Francesca is here, and yes of course I subscribed. Just had a light bulb moment, I will try using Almond Butter that way I don't have to worry quite so much about allergies, even better I will look for Pecan Butter, I love Pecans.

The SO says that with the amount of flashing on and off of my light bulb it is a miracle that I haven't blown the fuse. Cheek.

Ooh, would you look at the time, I have to get Rufus walked.

                        TTFN                                           Pam

Friday, 28 July 2017

There is no rain falling on the plains of Spain

It is all falling on the UK.

I am not bothered as there is plenty to keep me busy indoors.

The Gower waistcoat is finished but for some reason my lappy won't play ball, I will try to get a photo loaded later.

There was some ironing from yesterday, all done now. I prefer to get it washed and ironed on the same day (there has been too many ironing mountains in my life already) but just couldn't get to the board and iron last night. All is clear and tidy now though.

Nothing much new happening here today, a little sock knitting, a little pod cast watching, some blog reading and comment replying. Dinner will be a veg rich pasta dish, I will either add beans or quinoa for protein (must get some mushrooms out of the freezer).

There is crumble for the SO, I may have a little myself, in the fridge. I can either zap it in the ding oven and make custard or just have it cold with cream.

The shopping list is growing, I have very little fruit and there will be next to no veg once dinner is made. I need bread flour and yeast, cocoa powder for a new vegan chocolate cake recipe to try out. There are a few non food items that have magically appeared, craft knife  and hacksaw blades for two and Gorilla glue ( there's no gorilla around here!)

Such is the excitement here now that the chaos has gone, but then most of us live fairly mundane lives.

There are the odd few who try to live their lives on the backs of others. There are the odd one or two peeps who type long, involved comments on here, if they are relevant I will post them if not I just delete.
I neither need or want anyone to tell me where I am going wrong with my life. I may be making mistakes but I am sure having a ball doing it.

Now it must be tea o'clock, if not I will just wind the clock on.

Have a good weekend everyone, the forecast is for a decent say here tomorrow.

                         TTFN                                            Pam

Thursday, 27 July 2017

Are we nearly there yet?

Well, one job done seems to make two more but it is progressing. The weekend should see most of the final tidying up done.

Trouble is that as soon as the quilting frame goes that room will be getting the Full Monty, then it will be the hall,stairs and landing.

When I moved in here I knew this all needed doing, I had planned to get it done in the first 6 months. As most of you know if you leave these things any longer they just get shoved on a back burner and simmer away till hell freezes over. It froze.

Today has been easier apart from moving one of the sofas back into the sitting room, I would love to have left it in the sewing room but there is just not enough room.

I have a couple more rounds on the last armhole edge and the toggles or buttons to put on and the Gower waistcoat will be done.
I have a little to do on the pale blue cardigan and then it is socks, socks and more socks.

I am planning some fabric bunting, 2 wall hangings and a crochet something for the walls. All in the fullness of time.

We managed a walk early afternoon in between the downpours and now it is quite lovely. There is bright sun and a breeze, one load of washing dry and another just about dry.

Dinner yesterday was chicken breast, butterflied and stuffed with soft cheese and herbs and a good load of spinach and baked in a little bechamel sauce. We had it with roasted carrots, potatoes, both sweet and white, and cauliflower. Very tasty and I did make trifle, lush it was too.

Now I am off to walk the dogs in the sunshine and then get dinner ready, a fast something on toast I think.

                            TTFN                                           Pam

Wednesday, 26 July 2017

The Butterfly Effect

All I did was mention that the skirting board needed painting and BOOM a forest fell in a hurricane.

The sitting room is empty. There is a sofa by the front door, another in the sewing room and a positive "after the storm" appearance everywhere.

Teetering piles of random things, mostly embellished with project bags of knitting either in progress or in waiting.

Francesca's bed has vanished beneath throws and cushions, not to mention the contents of the tall china display cabinet plus the glass shelves of said cabinet.

Skirting is now pristine in it's new coat of brilliant white, 3 walls have had the first coat of paint. 

The fourth is under discussion, contrast paint, feature wall paper, hessian and so on and on.

New carpet has been selected so time is of the essence here.

Add in the latest addition of " I would like to have some wood on that wall" and you may understand the title.

How far will the ripples spread?

Will there be a heat wave in Alaska?

How would the Kilchers cope?

Will snow fall in Vegas?

What would Danny AKA The Count make of that?

Enough of such squit and nonsense.

Back to real life. 

Today I will mainly be hiding in the kitchen, baking and ironing, chopping and slicing goodness knows what for dinner and making trifle to soothe the sore throat that is inevitable after the amount of talking I will be doing. Talking to the wall that is, who remembers Shirley Valentine then?

Please understand that my tongue is firmly in my cheek on this matter. There is no need to throw any bricks at me, the SO reads this, he is leaning over my shoulder and laughing right now.

However there is a grain of truth there, if it was still sunny I wouldn't give a fig. I could be out in the garden busy dead heading the flowers in my window boxes and planters.

I am a duffer at decorating, good enough for me but the SO is a perfectionist. I may be allowed to clean the brushes and rollers but they will be inspected, thoroughly.

The cropped waistcoat is coming to life, I am half way up the left front shaping. I am writing every row down as I need to replicate it on the other front and the back.

By the way, the SO has offered to make me some toggles out of dowelling, he is a handy chap to have around.

I have just been presented with a coffee and a "what time did you say you were going to start in the kitchen". That's my cue to give him the space to get busy.

So me and my coffee are off to our allotted space, see you on the other side.

                          TTFN                                      Pam

PS The nails are s l o w l y looking better, well they were till I ripped 2 almost down to the quick yesterday. I must be more careful when in the garden.

PPS. I forgot to say that another Kilo has slithered off, mostly from my hips. My measurements seem to be reducing faster than the weight, it must be the walking building muscles in my legs. 

Tuesday, 25 July 2017

Home again, home again, jiggedy jig.

Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more. Hopefully next week's appointment will be the last, for a long time if not for good.

Anyhow onto better things, the Gower waistcoat is progressing steadily. I am making this a very cropped 9" side length and will be making the fronts into a v neck. This will be good to slip on over a long sleeved dress or top for that extra layer of warmth, leaving my arms free. I hummed and hahhed about pockets, too short for patch and side seam insertion so am thinking about a little purse type thingy that can have a belt threaded through. Just to carry Poo bags and then it will be perfect for dog walks.

While we are talking about size, yes it does matter, I am happy to tell you that my jeans now pull on and off without being undone. Luckily, due to the shape and construction, I can still wear them. Hopefully not for long.
I put it down to the extra walking as much as what I am (or am not) eating.

The SO is at a loose end so has decided it is the perfect time for a bit of decorating and a small change round.
He is worse than my Mother was for moving furniture about, I wouldn't dare come down in the night without turning the light on as I might end up sitting on the floor, or the coffee table.

I am miffed at missing Knit and Natter but am not going to focus on it.

I need to tell you that the SO has the door off and is doing something very noisy to the hinges. Men and their toys!

There is quite a bit of huffing and puffing and even more deep sighing.
I may be taking refuge in the garden soon, maybe some one else's garden.

The main result of all this upheaval is that I am forced to go through everything properly, not the quick ruffle through that usually happens.
My sister has 2 parcels of yarn on the way to her and there will be a couple of fabric filled ones going off soon.

She likes to make small patchwork items and is fabric poor just now. She has a long trip to get to a good shop so this is a win win situation for both of us. I get space and she gets to sew away.

Ben had a bath this morning and a hair trim and to heap coals on the fire of sufferance and indignities I have some baby powder cologne for dogs. He would probably rather smell of long grass and a few unsavoury things, but not to worry, he will get over it.

I have a hot date with the ironing later, once it has cooled down. I was intending to do it this morning but it was far too hot by the time Ben had been walked and it is still too hot now.

Dinner will be something simple and fast, followed by a raspberry and blueberry crumble, possibly floating in a slick of custard.

In fact that might just be dinner.

Now I am off to enjoy a cuppa before I fetch the doggy towels in.

                      TTFN                                          Pam

PS When I go into preview there are a couple of Photo shop things on the side, can you see them? I have right clicked but can not delete. Any suggestions

Monday, 24 July 2017

Home again, phew.

Hospital appointment 11:00, arrived at 10:45. Got in to see someone at 11:40. Figures.

Worse is the fact that I have to go back tomorrow and next week, at some as yet unspecified day or time for another round of x rays.

At least I had some knitting time, I was about to say guilt free but I never feel guilty about knitting time, even when I steal it from housework time.
It's my housework and my knitting and I will will do them in what ever order (and amounts) that I like.

The SO's hand painted yarn is now a pair of socks.

Because of the heel that he prefers there is always pooling at the ankle.

I am always surprised at how different each sock turns out.

Even the heel pooling is completely different.

Anyhow, I cast on something new for the hospital. I wanted to use the 3 balls of Pulse that I called Gower, 300 grams of chunky doesn't go far but I didn't want a scarf or hat.

This is the beginning of a cropped waistcoat 149 stitches on a size 5mm circular for as many rows of garter stitch as I feel like doing. Then I will change to 6mm and stocking stitch, apart from 6 stitches on each edge which will remain garter stitch. I will divide at the armholes and decide then whether to shape the front as v neck or round. I will edge the armholes and neck with garter stitch as well. Button holes are not an issue as I will make crochet chain loops and add toggles to the front. Pure laziness, my pattern designing skills only stretch so far. As a child I did this all the time for my dolls and teddies, even getting the shape and row count right for raglan sleeves, without even thinking about it. Now it takes a bit of brain ache and a session of putting pen to paper.

I did pick up a pattern from Debs but used it just for the stitch count and general idea. Mind you the SO wants to dye some chunky yarn for a version for himself. I made the stipulation of no dark colours and no grey whatsoever.
He was happy with that, I am beginning to wonder if he was a Cavalier in a former life.

If the next 2 appointments go down the same route I may have a finished garment in no time at all.

We had the sparky here till almost 7:00, apparently the dipstick who put the new boiler in made several mistakes AND there was some work done at some distant time in the past that was not up to spec and had to be removed and replaced.
Needless to say that the dipstick will be footing the bill for all the work as the lovely sparky has put all the time and parts cost down to the boiler installation. He does know and he is not happy, he also declined to argue. So he's not a complete dipstick.

On that note I am going to persuade the SO that it is his turn to get a brew on and then think about feeding Ben. It is far too hot for a walk yet, we will collect Rufus and go a bit later.

                   TTFN                                                Pam

Sunday, 23 July 2017

Woe is me.

Got up this morning to fine the circuit breaker for the socket lines had tripped, unplugged every thing but still wouldn't stay on.

Emergency sparky on his way, why do these things always happen on weekends and bank holidays?
It is so annoying, I had a day of dyeing lined up.

Off to the hospital tomorrow morning, deep and everlasting joy. I will be sure to take some knitting.

Yesterday was a mixed bag for weather and today looks like carrying on in the same way.

Dinner will depend on whether and when the power is restored, I have a gas hob with an electric oven. I am toying with the idea of a bottled gas oven and fridge. My lovely neighbour has let me put an outdoor safe line from his house to run fridge and freezers, and most importantly the kettle. 
My next purchase will be a kettle for the gas hob, I had one in Tydd but left it by mistake.

Ben was full of himself this morning, so eager was he for his walk that we were back home before the time we usually leave.

I am enjoying listening to the pay row at the BBC, now we know how Chris Evans can run a fleet of luxury cars.

On that cheery note I am off to drink my tea and get myself ready for the sparky, whose arrival is imminent.

                          TTFN                                        Pam

Saturday, 22 July 2017

Pick a season, any season.

Well, perhaps not winter but over the past few days ( never mind days the past few hours) we have had April Showers, hot Summer Sun and Autumnal Downpours and wind.

I have been pootling on, a little knitting, a little cooking, some jam making, a little knitting, some cookie baking, quite a lot of tea drinking and some more knitting.

There will soon be  a pair of socks for the SO in the yarn that he painted.

I am planning out (well trying to) some self striping yarn with just a little speckling. A trial run once I have a few essential bits of hardware, hopefully tomorrow.

I have Christmas gift ideas seething round my mindSorry about that but it had to be mentioned. It will include fabric and sewing, colour matching, accessory hunting and dying. That is why I need to start the planning now. No doubt there will be some Quack quack reject moments, just not too many I hope. It is one thing seeing a colour palette in your mind that compliments or contrasts wonderfully, and another altogether replicating it in the flesh, so to speak. I have done that with the odd garment or three.

I have an urge to experiment in the kitchen today, I dug around in the pantry and fridge, I have pulled out, Cous cous, chillies, garlic, peppers, butter beans, red onions, paprika and liquid smoke. Once it has become a meal, rather than an idea, I will stir fresh chopped mint, radish seed heads and a good squeeze of lemon juice to brighten the flavours up.
Wish me luck.

I spent a couple of very cosy hours in Debs wool shop yesterday, chatting and knitting. It flew by and all too soon I had to set off home.

Oops nearly forgot, I had a lovely, and all too short, visit from Jess and Ivy first thing, well more like third thing as it was at least 9.00.
I was still clad in dressing gown before having a shower. After two very disturbed nights I slept very late.
Ivy is walking well now, and running even better, she is as much a delightful little girl as she was a gorgeous baby. Such a fleeting time, I am so pleased that I didn't miss the baby stage even if it was only the tail end. Her first birthday is next month, a serious present hunt has to happen, deep joy. I need to think outside the box for this.

Rufus and I managed a good walk, in the dry, this morning but part of the route was flooded so we took a diversion of our own. Neither of us minded, the air was clean and fresh after all the rain, and Rufus seemed to find lots of exciting scents to enjoy.

I have spent a little time in the garden this afternoon, some plants have been potted up and I took the chance on pegging out a load of washing.

It is greying over now so I am off to haul it in before it gets another rinse.

                        TTFN                                          Pam

Thursday, 20 July 2017

A Sea of Colour.

Happy Thursday,another warm day, some sun, some grey, some blue sky with cotton wool clouds.
The rain has battered the garden but it will all recover, if only partially.

The Pulse yarn has been wound into cakes and I now have to decide what it will become.

The skeins, dry and ready to wind.

Three luscious cakes ready to go. I am calling these Gower, as they remind me of the colours in the marshes there.

I finished the third pair of short socks for the SO, he picked the main colour and the heels and toes solid.
This is a man whose colour palette of choice was dark grey, light grey, mid grey, black and white with mid blue denim for a change.

I am amazed, and delighted, at his new adventurous dive into the world of colour.
He dyed the Pulse yarn while I watched, wide eyed.

I watched Crafty Mandy's podcast this morning, Stitching for Sanity. I have "volunteered" to dye a skein of yarn in pink and a soft mustardy yellow for her. 
I am more than happy to do so, after all she dyed the goldfish yarn for me.

The yarn and dyes are on their way and I look forward to some experimenting.

Of course I will share as I fall (run like the wind) further down this particular rabbit hole.

I have a maslin pan of chopped up rhubarb waiting to be turned into jam, it needs to sit in the sugar for a while to draw some of the water content.

I have to shop later, the only things in the fruit bowl are 3 grapefruit and 4 small bananas, scheduled to become a Black Banana Cake mmmmm.

 Rufus is enjoying his morning walk, and so am I. We will continue this after his owners cast is removed, we had a little chat and it is mutually agreeable.

Now I am off to stir up the rhubarb and sort out a bit of lunch.

                         TTFN                                          Pam

Wednesday, 19 July 2017

Thunder and lightening

It's very very frightening......with apologies to the late great Freddie.

There is rain, more of a monsoon really, it is coming straight down. No watering for me for a day or 2 and full water butts. Win Win.

I may be taking Rufus for a swim rather than a walk, if the rain stops that is.

I am happy to report that I have found the missing fabric, so a parcel will be on it's way later today Sheila, I must have picked it up and put it down about 5 times before having the sense to actually open the bag to see what was in it!!

I am still down the dyeing rabbit hole and am happy to stay here for a while.  My next goal is to sell both the quilting frame and the Janome 1600 P with all the extras and make space for a spinning wheel.
I can not stand and quilt without feeling sea sick and dizzy but the sewing cabinet opens out and I am quilting on that. It is a logical plan, I feel, as I am burning to dye fibre and then spin it ready for knitting.

The latest dyeing experiment is looking good, once it has dried I will be posting photos.

I am right on the cusp of having crochet lessons, I can crochet but am self taught. I am not always happy in what I make, sometimes the edges slope a bit and so on. I am excited to learn control and precision. (doesn't that sound a bit Schoolmarmish and prissy)

The torrential rain has eased off a bit now but the thunder is still rumbling around.

I am off to make a brew and think about tonight's dinner. I can get away with toast once, and very nice it was too we just had scrambled eggs in the end. No ideas for tonight, just Iffit's probably, but certainly another light meal.

                      TTFN                                         Pam

I have this tickle in the back of my mind about matching dyed yarn to a project bag, what do you think?