Saturday, December 29, 2007

Scarf Done!

Hooray Dad's scarf is finished!!

And I want to knit another scarf - FOR ME!! - in Tess Dawson Merino 4 ply in black, using a feather and fan pattern as I don't have a scarf to my name... wahhhh!! I thought that black would look fab with my new camel coat.

I've been rootling through stash this afternoon to locate yarns for the sweaters for the lads as I want to join the Bloke sweater knitalong on the Crafty Threads forum. Starting with small bloke sweaters seemed to be the thing to do I thought, to build myself up to knitting one for Mr Melody. He asked for a vest to play golf in, baggy to hide his tum but gathering somewhat into a rib, with deeper armholes for the arm/shoulder movement of the golf swing.... I did mention that I didn't have a magic wand!! *LOL* I'm knitting him socks to go inside his rigger boots when he's on site, so that'll shut him up for a bit *wink*

A decision has been made today and probably one that I'll regret for the next 12 months - I'm joining Terri and Piglottie to name but a few, knitting from stash for 2008. That made you sit up and take notice, didn't it??!!

Sunday, December 23, 2007

The Season is Upon Us

Today is Christmas Day despite what the date says at the top of the post :? - Happy Christmas to Everyone!

Traditionally, I'm not keen on Christmas :( All the shopping for presents and food drives me to distraction. I'm hopeless at writing Christmas cards, never get them posted on time and run out of enthusiasm half way through my list :( This year, I shall do what I did with the boys last summer for teacher's leaving/thank you presents and donate my Christmas card money to a worthwhile charity. I chose Oxfam last summer, but have to think carefully about which charity to choose this year. We always donate a sum to charity for Lucy's birthday in January anyway, so may combine it with that for this year. We had a tremedously emotionally charged workshop/lecture from two counsellors from The Laura Centre in our last week of term, and I may decide to donate money to them this year.

Anyway - onwards ------

There is progress my friends! Only 90 rows on Dad's scarf until it's completed. We're visiting my parents for the day tomorrow so it needs to be done by then - do you think I'll manage to knit the extra 90 rows on this tedious scarf?! LOL!! Mum and Dad are coming to stay for a few days over New Year to look after the boys when I go back to Uni, so if the scarf isn't finished by tomorrow (which is highly doubtful) then Dad will have it for when they come down to stay.

I decided to do a bit of a Works in Progress round-up yesterday and took a few piccies of the knitting on the needles. So here they are.......

Possibly my favourite current WIP, a one-button jacket which I'm knitting in Patons Diploma Gold DK in a gorgeous plummy shade called Lupin. I'm currently knitting the first sleeve, although it's taken a bit of a back seat because of the scarf:

Progress on the Central Park Hoodie in Sirdar Highlander Aran in a beautiful, snuggly, deep red shade. This is fab to knit as it's relatively easy in terms of cabling, but not as mind numbing as pure stocking stitch!
You can just about see the cabling on this in-yer-face-red picture LOL!!

This cotton jacket is on hold until spring! It's a Garnstudio pattern in Paris aran weight cotton in what looks like red but is in fact a heathery cerise.

And of course, the tedious ribbed scarf... need I say more?? LOL!!

I'm knitting it in 4 ply sock yarn on 4mm needles - the best thing about it is knitting on these fabulous Surina needles - yum!

This New Year I don't want, or need, too many WIPs on the needles as I don't feel that anything is ever accomplished when only a few centimetres are knitted on each item. I'd much rather have one or two projects on the pins and get them finished quicker. It also means that I can cast on something new without feeling guilty!


Maybe next time I'll confess and tell you where I stand with my destashing vs stashing figures.... or I may just leave you to guess.... *wink*

Saturday, December 08, 2007

A Stressful Fortnight

Poor 'Big' Little Melody. He's been through the wringer this past fortnight, with suspected scarlet fever and tonsillitis and, just as he was recovering, he picked up a nasty cold virus that knocked him for six. The poor little lad has had one of those very high temperatures that's lasted for about five days in all and another sore throat along with a bunged up head and nose :( I think we've visited a GP of one sort or another four times in the last two weeks (twice the other Friday when Matt was so poorly with his tonsils/rash) However, this afternoon has see his temp approaching normal and his eyelids don't look so swollen and red - a turn for the better?

Last weekend we did manage to get out of the house as the boys wanted wheels for their Lego builds and we ventured into the middle of Leicester. We passed a Shelter charity shop on the way there and I spotted a fabulous camel coat in the window. As we passed the shop on the way back to the car, I popped in and asked to try it on. I was a bit nervous as I haven't really asked for things to be taken out of shop windows to try on before!

The photograph doesn't do the coat justice as I took the photo with a flash in very poor light... but.....Voila! A wonderful BRAND NEW Marks&Spencer wool and cashmere coat with the tags still on and it fits perfectly. A size 12 petite so I don't even have to shorten the sleeves. It was a pure bargain at thirty quid and helps out Shelter to boot.

I found out later that Shelter often have M&S end-of-line garments for incredible, bargainous prices so I might just have to pop in there again on the way to buy more Lego wheels *wink*

Friday, November 23, 2007

Neglected Blogging

I know I've neglected my blog of late - apologies where they are due! I'm at home today - on a Friday of all days - as the Biggest 'Little' Melody has some sort of virus or could have the start of tonsillitis. I took him to the GP this morning whose first thought was scarlettina (oh boy!!!) as he had developed a rash under his skin this morning as well as high temp, sore throat, swollen glands, headache and vomiting from yesterday.
I must have looked a bit shocked as I said
"I thought it was probably a virus when I saw the rash??"
We have a deferred script for the 'good stuff' from the Doc, so he'll either recover on his own or need antibiotics!

I promise I'll take photos of the projects that I'm 'up to armholes in' over the weekend as I don't have the time just now. Little Melody wants a lettuce and salad cream sandwich.... yeuk!! Only a sick child could order something like that for lunch.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Clothes and Powerpoint

I have to confess! Last weekend I bought *new* clothes with apologies to Wardrobe Refashioning. I needed a few more sweaters for the colder weather we've been having recently, and I just haven't had the time to knit any as quickly as I needed them. I needed some good sweaters for TE1 and I bought a long black skirt as well. I like my long navy skirt a lot, so I bought an equivalent black number that will look good with my suede boots that I bought earlier in the year.

I started Wardrobe Refashioning at the start of September although I joined the WR blog on 1st October. So I have actually completed my two months as I'd completed a month before I started. I think that 'work' clothes are excepted anyway, so I don't think I broke any rules.

Powerpoint. What a Wonderful Creation. I've spent years trying to avoid this software, not having any use for it really before now. I've just made a Powerpoint presentation for my lesson tomorrow and produced resources from it too and all I can say is 'WOW!!' LOL!!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Feeling Ropey

My chest hurts and my voice is so deep it sounds like I'm smoking 40 a day. I think I might have a touch of what the boys had last week *rolls eyes*

I've got tons of planning to do this weekend and I've had some bonkers ideas for lessons while the house was quiet and my mind was on other things this morning (like knitting!) , so I just need to tone them down a bit, make some resources and all will be well.

I found out that my placement school that I'm in at the moment has a knitting club - how cool is that?!! It's held during Tuesday lunchtimes and I thought I'd pop in this coming Tuesday as it will be the last time I can go to it seeing as it's my last week of TE1. But our tutor is coming over on Tuesday to chat to our mentor teachers and watch us teach, so I may not have the opportunity to sit and knit for a while. Which is a shame 'cos I'd love to take my pins, knit and chill with the kids!

Projects ----- I'll take some photos later on and post them up here I promise!

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Fewest Amount of WIPs for Ages

Funny how things change isn't it? Last weekend I was bemoaning the fact that I had become a conscious incompetent, and in the middle of this week I'm high on teaching adrenalin. A few days maybe, but so much change.

Indeed, the profile of my Work-in-Progress count has also been a-changin'. I currently have the fewest WIP count in months with only 4 WIPs and one of those is on-hold until next spring. Things might be getting finished Chez Melody.... but I wouldn't recommend holding your breath......

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Introducing Las Vegas Socks.

Here they are, my latest pair of socks for the Crafty Threads 'n' Yarns Sockamonth challenge:

My socks haven't been produced on a monthly basis at all, I've only managed to complete four pairs this year and that includes two pairs for the Little Melodies.
Mr Melody has ordered a pair of golf socks for the next pair that I knit, so I can't see those being knitted before the end of December can you? Not the long, knee-high, plus fours variety you understand, just a pair of normal length men's socks, but handknitted by moi. I'm seeming to remember that he wants them to be some sort of blue so they will be boring to knit by anyone's standards. Maybe I can inject a touch of colour into them without him noticing *evil grin*

I've done some thinking and reflecting about the first week of TE1 this morning and have come to the conclusion that I'm now at the stage of learning where I have BIG clues as to what I don't know, rather than the blissful ignorance of NOT knowing what I don't know, iyswim? I think it's called something like Conscious Incompetence or something equally derogatory! But I'm happy with the fact that I've taken steps towards Unconscious Competence this week, and that has to be a huge step forward, doesn't it?

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Fireworks, Kinaesthesis and and Las Vegas Socks

Las Vegas socks are finished in time for November draw, we're off to a firework party at Loughborough Uni this evening (the boys want hot dogs... bleugh!) and I went to a Kinaesthetic Maths workshop this morning. Oooh, and I shopped in Loughborough this afternoon as the biggest Melody Child has grown so much and his arms have grown so long that he's outgrown his school sweatshirts and needed all new. It's only when I got home and ripped up my ticket for the Kinaesthetic Maths workshop for recycling that I realised I could have popped it into my Professional File under Development of Subject Knowledge. Bah! I'll have to sellotape it together I s'pose!

What a dangerous life I lead, eh?

Monday, October 29, 2007

Kim Socks Complete

Aha! I *knew* I would do it!

I've had a shedload of trouble trying to upload the photos to the PC. The image program threw a wobbler and wouldn't fire up so my piccies have been trapped in my camera all weekend. Mr Melody is useful sometimes, and just dragged the photos across to the PC directory using Explorer. Who knew you could do that??

Et voila! My pink Kim socks in all their pink loveliness:

Friday, October 26, 2007

Next Step - TE1

The next stage of our PGCE starts in earnest next week with the start of our first teaching experience, lovingly known as TE1. I obviously can't blog about which school I'll be at, or about anything that happens whilst I'm there due to confidentiality policies; but if you see a slightly perturbed student teacher over the next three weeks, frantically knitting a sock, then it could be me... couldn't it?

My pink Kim socks are almost finished, with only the toe shaping to do now. I think I'll be able to finish those by the end of October *wink*

Both the Little Melodies have been suffering with a nasty dose of croup each this week and have both been marched down to to the Out-of-Hours surgery in our local area at unsocial hours of the night/evening. It's unfortunately a common occurrence at this time of the year, both boys appearing to have suffered quite badly this time, with both of them either losing their voices or sounding like Darth Vader without having to wear one of those voice changing masks. Luckily it's been half term this week, so they were able to drink plenty of water, take their time recovering and sleep during the day if they wanted to, which is the best cure for any viral infection I think.

A sure sign of them getting better was earlier this evening, when the littlest one asked
"Could you ask Mattie to stop killing me please?"

Aren't children wonderful? LOL!

Monday, October 22, 2007

Grace Finished

My Grace jacket from Rowan magazine 26 is now completed:

I didn't make any modifications to the pattern at all and I'm fairly pleased with the way it's turned out. I have noticed that there is a fair bit of 'rowing out' occurring within the stocking stitch which I don't like and I'm sure that it's due to me using bamboo needles for this project. I've come to love working with my Brittany Birches and feel spoiled by them in many ways; bamboo needles are just not the same anymore :(

I'm particularly pleased with the collar on this jacket though. For some reason the moss stitch edge to the collar appeals to me. A close-up to show you what I mean:

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Feeling Very Tired

I'm feeling very ratty and tired today - I finally managed to get to sleep at 4am this morning due to the intensely irritating sound of Mr Melody's snoring. There are times when I wish I could stick a DPN into him....

BUT! I have almost sewn my Grace jacket together that I finished knitting in the summer/ spring/a long time ago and it will be ready for showing on my blog this week I hope.

I've made more progress on my Kim socks too and the gussett decreases are done. Only 10cm more to knit on the foot and the toe shaping and I'll have those completed as well.

I realised last week on my TE1 visit (to my first teaching placement) that I really don't have enough decent jackets or cardigans to wear in the classroom. I have enough trousers (okay, they do need shortening I'll admit) and skirts that I can wear, plus an abundance of tops. But very few cardigans, sweaters or jackets. My aim is to knit myself a 4 ply fusion knit cardigan or long sleeved top this week or next weekend, but in the meantime - any suggestions for a nice, casual but smart jacket or cardigan that would be suitable for the primary classroom?

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Still Wearing Pink

I'm still managing to wear an item of pink clothing per day in October for Breast Cancer Awareness month, although for those who know me in real life the pink may not always be that obvious. Did I mention pink underwear? LOL!

I was very pleased with myself I managed to achieve a 96% score in a Maths Audit this week and I think I might choose Maths as a specialist option on the course. I would be bonkers not to after all.

Knitting News:
I decided that since Natalie of The Yarn Yard was offering no one but TWO prizes for the October Sockamonth Challenge, I should try to knit a pink pair of socks and finish them in October. Natalie is offering the standard 'finish the socks' prize and an extra prize if your socks are pink. How could I refuse? So the Kim socks from back in February have been resurrected, and here's the progress so far:

Funny how it took over six months to finish the lace cuff on the first sock but just over a week on the second..... *shrugs* I think that knitting on two circulars is a bit of an acquired 'feel' though; at first it feels really awkward and ungainly, but on going back to the circulars to knit the second sock, I knew instinctively how the needles should feel and what I should do with them, so maybe this is the reason for the seemingly speedier second sock. And I want to get the pair finished for the 31st October deadline obviously. How's your pink sock knitting going?

Friday, October 12, 2007

Three Hours of PE This Morning

That's all I'm saying.... LOL!

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Rippit, rippit, rippit!

The first assignment has been finished and handed in. *sighs of relief all round*

There hasn’t been a huge amount of knitting done at Chez Melody but this week has seen me going for a haircut. I was beginning to look like a Yorkshire Terrier my fringe was so long! I've also been making costumes for the boys for Book Day, when all the children at the boys’ school were invited to dress up as their favourite book character. Lots of late night making, sticking, cutting and stitching was involved in said costume makery.

I’ve been feeling a little jaded with my knitting projects this week, possibly due to late night commitments, and have frogged a couple of things. I frogged my 2x2 cotton cardigan as I was totally bored with all the ribbing and couldn’t face knitting the tedium that is 2x2 rib throughout the winter. Then I also cast on, and almost immediately frogged, a cabled hoodie in Sirdar Spree chunky yarn. I love the hoodie pattern, but I wasn’t overly fond of the off-white colour of the yarn I’d chosen to knit it in. I have managed to knit some of Dad’s scarf on the station platform however and cast on the stitches for a Central Park Hoodie - only a year behind everyone else!

Here is the beginnings of the CPH resting upon its own project bag that I made earlier last month. It's a piece of Laura Ashley fabric that I had left over from a project some years back, and all I had to do was stitch the sides and add a drawstring. So much prettier than a tatty plastic carrier bag that I usually haul my projects around in.

Monday, October 01, 2007

100 Posts!

Would you believe that this is my one hundredth posting onto my blog? A cause for celebration maybe.... pop by and leave a comment for me!

Until I realised that this was posting 100, this entry was going to be entitled "Pretty in Pink" as it is 1st October and the start of Breast Cancer Awareness month. I usually buy an item of Tickled Pink clothing to support the Breast Cancer Awareness charity, but as I'm an official member of Wardrobe Refashioning I'm unable to do that this year.

Instead, I will pledge to go through the whole of the month of October wearing at least one item of pink clothing to support Breast Cancer Awareness. This morning I'm wearing a pair of pink stripey socks, a pink hoodie and pink underwear. And here's the proof!

Righty-ho - back to my assignment. I probably won't have time to blog this week as I have several study type things to work on, so I'll catch up with you all next weekend. Have a good week!

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Oh Dear - More Unravellings

Not only is there a pile of garments waiting to be mended in my workroom/craftroom, but Mr Melody and I went through his clothes this morning and put a whole lot of stuff into recycling. White shirts that have been in the wardrobe for months and the collars around the neck have gone yellow, shirts that are past their sell-by-date and a pair of his pure wool work trousers that I noticed had a tear in the pocket fabric that wasn't mendable. I've popped a lot of the boys' socks into recycling too as Dan's feet have grown so much in the past few months he's outgrown them!

My invite to join Wardrobe Refashioning arrived this morning - trust me to find the People Tree website just a few hours before it arrived. Sheesh *rolls eyes* There's some fabulous stuff there....

My refashioning tasks this week will be to mend the trousers in my craft room and to mend my combats where the pocket ripped and the button came off.

On the knitting front - I frogged my 2x2 cotton cardigan last night; I decided that I could free up the needles and concentrate on a chunky cardigan for the cooler months ahead.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Falling Apart

It's one thing to buy cheap and cheerful clothes from the supermarket and to think that we've bagged ourselves a bargain, but it's quite another thing to find that these items of clothing start to fall apart after being worn for only a short period of time. This week has seen it's fair share of clothing falling apart in the Melody household: I have already mentioned that two pairs of Matthew's school trousers have been put into repair (my crafting/work room!) which joined a pair of Mr Melody's trousers that need the leg seam repairing. But I've found to my dismay this week that a pair baby cord combats that I love have lost the cordy bit on the inside of the legs due to friction :? and the fabric has become thin as a result, and the hood of a cashmere hoodie (again bought from a supermarket chain and not handknitted) is parting company with the neckline and I've spotted a dropped stitch.

We all went to a sports store yesterday evening to buy Matt a footie top as he plays football a lot now and needs this type of sports clothing, and I was taken aback to see the amount of non-sports clothes on sale at the sportswear store. All cheap and all cheerful. No, I didn't buy any non-sports stuff as I'm currently trying hard NOT to buy clothes just for the sake of it, but I wonder how long it would take before they start to fall apart too?

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Very Little Progress :(

I have a bit of progress to report on my Las Vegas socks - I'm up to the gusset pick-up on the second sock. Although I can report that my first assignment is in first draft phase at the moment, awaiting quotes and references where appropriate.

I managed a few more rows on the Alva cardigan and Paris jacket but that's about it this week.

Matthew has somehow managed to rip the side seam of his school trousers and the hem of another pair has come adrift, so there's mending to be done this weekend. The trousers are in good condition and there's no way I'm throwing them out just yet.

Strangely, I 've just removed a comma splice from one of my sentences when last week I didn't even know the term existed....

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Las Vegas Socks for September Maybe?

I've just sat and typed out my post for today and the whole lot disappeared into the ether - sheesh!
For some reason Blogger appears to be a pain in the rear this afternoon as my delete key wouldn't work a few minutes ago.

Anywhoodle, here are my Las Vegas socks which will possibly be finished in time to enter into the September Sockamonth challenge on the Crafty Threads 'n' Yarns forum:

I managed to miss the train by about five minutes a couple of times this week, so I took the opportunity to grab a polystyrene cup of train station tea, whip out my sock yarn, DPNs and sock bag and knit. Sheer Bliss.

I might have to miss the train a couple more times to get these socks finished by the end of September, and as these are my third pair, I might be in the running for a bronze award.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Student Life

Uni life has already started and we have assignments to write and plans to set out. I'm tired, I haven't had dinner yet, but I'm happy :) I've discovered that wearing my contact lenses all day in hot and dry environments doesn't result in particularly comfortable eyes :?

I also found this week that socks are very useful to knit on station platforms whilst waiting for trains. I promise I'll take piccies of my Las Vegas socks to show you at the weekend. Denver Jon would be proud as he sent me the yarn last year all the way from Colorado just up the road from Las Vegas.

On to Refashioning News - I have done a little refashioning since taking my pledge - I shortened a pair of navy chinos for Mr Melody and he's already worn them several times to play golf in. He's been to the office in them once as well, as he now informs me that chinos are perfectly acceptable in his office environment.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Preliminary Placement

Phew! Busy.

I spent Monday to Friday this week as a Student Teacher in my preliminary placement at a local primary school.... I had a fabulous but busy time working with Key Stage 1 children and have enjoyed it immensely. I have loads of notes to type up.

Lectures start on Tuesday morning at 9.15am sharp.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Ooh! Ooh!

I forgot to tell you that Jacquie awarded me the Rocking Girl Blogger award last week..... how could I forget!!! I've been coveting that award for ages, and when I finally get one, I forget to tell you all *rolls eyes*

Thank you Jacquie! Now all I have to do is figure out how to add the button to my sidebar....

And now I have to award the button to five other bloggers, but I fear that they have all been nominated previously :( Here goes nowt:

1 My darlingest, best cyberbuddy Denver Jon of Colorado Knits who has a blog no more. Jon was the one whose blog I read every day and who got me into blogging in the first place. So thanks matey!

2 Jo from I'd Rather be Knitting - she knits some fabulous stuff and we seem to have the same patterns on our 'to-knit' lists. But she finishes lots more than I do!

3 The blogger who showed me Wardrobe Refashioning - Joanne from Don't Talk Just Knit - you gotta love a girl who refashions

4 Murdo and the Pirate Purls cos I love the nutty, orange, lab-coated muppet to bits, and I love her Perfect Paparazzi Pirate Purling girls too (and happy bithday for yesterday to the eldest Pirate)

5 Fegrig - not a Rockin' Girl Blogger as such (then neither is Denver Jon of 1 above, but we gotta have equal opportunities here guys) as he made me laugh so much with his dog-walking antics today. I hereby award both Fegrig and DJ a *cough* Rocking Boy Blogger button each. Bring it on boys....

Saturday, September 08, 2007

It's Refashioning, Jim. But Not As We Know It.

Not refashioning in the true sense of the word admittedly, but our cream leather sofas and chair were getting a bit grubby and looked bleugh, so last Monday I cleaned the leather with hot water and washing up liquid and made some more cushions from fabric that I already had in stash. I made one cushion cover from pale cream cotton with a smidge of lycra in it; it's not plain cream, it has white figured flowers all over it but the pattern is difficult to determine with the camera. I had intended to make flowery cushion covers for the sofa this week as well and got as far as getting the fabric out, but fate intervened once more and I found myself in class 1 for four days solid and helping out by being nursery nurse cover for the week.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Birthday Booty

I was finally allowed to opened my pressie from my wonderful friends Murdo and the Pirate Purls and this is what I found inside:

Wonderful knitting luxuries from Knitpicks, Boyes and the Yarn Yard, and some other little luxuries for me. Thank you so much Murdo and Pirates!!

I had such a bad headache on my birthday that as soon as I'd taken the boys to school and I'd had some breakfast, I went back to bed to try to sleep it off - so many apologies to the wonderful Murdo and the two Pirates for seemingly blogging late about my wonderful birthday gifts - they really are appreciated.

On birthday afternoon I logged in to see if I could pay my student tuition fees online again - this time it worked!! It's stressful having to shell out £1,535 to pay for the first half of my tuition fees - my next installment for the other half is due in January 2008. Thankfully my parents had given me money for my birthday and Mr Melody always gives me a sum in the bank to spend on what I want for me, but I can see that it will be no yarn purchases for me for a while nevertheless :( as I spent my birthday cash on the books and yarn in Wales this year (see previous posts!!)

Birthday and resolutions.

As it is 2nd September today I'm took the pledge yesterday to join Wardrobe Refashioning as from now, although officially I won't be able to join until 1st October. I just cannot afford to buy any new clothes anymore for myself unless I absolutely need them; the boys of the family are excluded from this of course as they will need new items for school uniform and work I should think.

I really need to sort out the old clothes that won't fit or I won't be wearing anymore and either get rid of them or pack them away somewhere. Having worked in an environment with small children and paint and glue for three years, I'm used to wearing casual stuff for work and clothes that could be mullered and I wouldn't be bothered about it. I can still wear jeans and combats for Uni of course, but I'm assuming not for Teaching Practice in schools. Besides, I want to look half reasonable for school and jeans just don't cut the mustard do they?

And I really have to lose some extra poundage. Sitting around on my fat ar*e all summer and not doing any exercise, plus all the goodies I've been eating, has added inches to my thighs, hips and waist. I'm positive that when I start walking from home to the train station and then from the train station to Uni each day the extra weight will start to drop off, but I can't wait that long. I walked to pick the lads up from school on Friday, and then round to my friend's house later in the evening and all told walked about 2.5 miles. Not bad for a start anyway.

I sat in bed for a wonderful hour yesterday morning, in a quiet house whilst the boys were at football practice, and read about a quarter of Jacqueline Wilson's ‘The Illustrated Mum' as part of my summer reading list. I'm about a third of the way through already and sat this morning with a box of tissues by my side, tears rolling down my cheeks. It's an excellent and thought provoking book; I'd highly recommend it.

Monday, August 27, 2007

A Bank Holiday Full of Challenges

I set a Bank Holiday Challenge for everyone on the Crafty Theads ‘n’ Yarns forum - to cast on a project on Friday afternoon/evening, and to have it completed by midnight on Bank Holiday Monday.
I was hopeless as usual, as despite actually setting the challenge, didn’t know what to knit or sew to compete *rolls eyes*

I decided to knit a dolly clothes set for a little friend of Danny’s who is five this week, rather than spend money buying a pressie. I knitted a size 12" chest preemie size cardigan in Brett’s Shimmer 4 ply (as I have a small mountain of it left over from my now-closed eBay shop), and the little hat to go with it. I’m still knitting it, so you’ll have to wait to see the finished dolly set.

I also set myself a non-crafting challenge to actually go out to the local town to find some long, knee-high boots for this winter as I’ve spent the last one or two years trying to find boots that will actually zip-up over my calves. I’ve got small feet, and muscular calves as a result of too much dog-walking and running, and boot manufacturers don’t cater for my shape of leg or smallness of foot generally. I can’t find boots that come up to my knee and actually fit over the bulgey bit of my calf muscle.

I tried all the usual suspects, but found either no boots at all or none that would fit :( So we went out on Bank Holiday Sunday to Marks and Spencer at Fosse Park to check out the boot section.

And lo and behold! Boots that fit!! I had to go up a foot size, but heck, they're fabulous boots!! The cowboy boots wouldn't usually be my first choice of style admittedly, but they look fabulous with a shortie denim skirt. And the high heeled suede boots are to die for and exactly what I wanted

Mr Melody was so fed up with traipsing round shoe departments and shoe shops that when I found two pairs that fitted, he insisted that I bought both pairs. I knew there was a reason for dragging him with me.....

Friday, August 24, 2007

Holiday Stashing - Part Deux

This is the final instalment of my Holiday Stashing piccies, taken before I stashed all the yarn and books away in their respective places.

Books, books and more books from Stash in Chester. Oh and 8 balls of Noro's Cash Iroha in a gorgeous mulberry colour to knit Agnes from Noro Knits, two pairs of Brittany Birch needles and two balls of Regia sock yarn:

And four more Colinette books and some cotton DK for dish/facecloths at bargainous 50p a ball from Ar-Y-Gweill in Llanrwst. (Notice that I managed to pick up the discontinued Portmanteau book from here? Yippee!):

I bought so many books on holiday that I had to tidy up my shelves in my crafting room today to make room for them all on the bookshelf *chuckles*
On a positive note though, I now have more free shelf space to store the yarns-that-I-want-to-knit-next rather than sticking them out of view in the guest wardrobe :)

This weekend is Bank Holiday weekend, so I'm planning to get some crafting stuff done - there are so many things I want to do, so hopefully a few will be achieved. I've set myself another Bank Holiday challenge to either knit Eve from Femme Fatale using the new Giotto yarn that I won on eBay last week, or make a start on a fusion-knit. Or sew myself a new top Or maybe make some new cushion covers for the cushions our sofa - I have the fabric and I have the cushion innards, so I really should put the two together :? There are so many crafting projects going round in my mind, but at least the crafting mojo is back :)

Sunday, August 19, 2007

My Wardrobe is Out of Control!!

My wardrobe is full to bursting with clothes. I have lots of pairs of shoes, boots and sandals. I also have a large yarn stash and a fairly large fabric stash.

At one time, before I had children, and I went to work in an office for a living, I sewed all my own clothes, even my suits. Just before I found I was having my eldest son, I attended an evening City and Guilds Tailoring course but only went for a term and a half as I quickly realised that I wouldn’t be able to tailor stuff to fit my ever-expanding tummy! My mum was an excellent seamstress in her day, and still prefers to tailor her own clothes as she is able to attain a custom fit.

So I am able to knit and sew my own stuff without resorting to shop-bought clothes.

I saw an interesting entry on someone’s blog over the weekend - Don't Talk, Just Knit - about the Wardrobe Refashioning blog that aims to refashion clothes to reduce the amount of money spent on new clothing and textiles, which suits my reducing, reusing and recycling ideal very nicely.

Just one last visit to M&S and I’ll join up, I promise....

Friday, August 17, 2007

A Week of Unexpected Parcels

You expected Part Deux didn’t you? LOL! Well I’ll do part deux next I promise!

Our postie regularly delivers packages to our house (no surprise there then), but this week I’ve had one or two surprise packages arriving at Chez Melody, and I have to tell you about them cos they are so scrummy. Three surprise packages turned up in all, in amongst the ones I knew were being delivered, so I’ve had a busy week answering the door to Mr Postie.

My first package arrived on Monday morning - my one skein swap parcel from my swap partner on the Crafty Threads ‘n’ Yarns forum. Just look what Granny Smith sent to me:

A ball of Opal sock yarn in lilac Magic, and a skein of undyed sock yarn with a set of Kool-Aid dyes. And an Apple room freshener as her clue! Perfect in every way! Thank you Granny Smith!
Then two surprise packages arrived on Wednesday, a squishy one and a heavy one, and just look what was inside!

I am knocked out by the utterly superb Tess Dawson yarns , and I've been stroking them ever since..... the Baby alpaca yarn is to die for it's so soft, and the colours are stunning! I want to knit the Boutique cardigan from one of the Jaeger books, JB30 - the cardigan that has all the buttons sewn over it, I'll find a piccie if I can - and now that Jaeger have finally closed their doors on their yarn spinning operation, the Tess Dawson Merino 4ply is a perfect substitute. A Very Generous Yarn Fairy sent these yarns to me, as she knew that I'd been drooling over them - a huge thank you to you, you know who you are *wink*; you know that I'll have so much fun testing them out.... I have plans for the Alpaca DK already!

In the heavy package there was this mysterious parcel wrapped in pink birthday paper, but I was warned not to open it until my birthday at the end of the month. I do so hate waiting to open presents, and patience isn't my strongest virtue where brightly wrapped gifts are concerned.... *sigh*

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Holiday Stashing - Part Un

I was a very good Melody on our holiday to North Wales and was very restrained where yarn shopping was concerned - honest!

On our way up to Llanberis we stopped at Abakhan Fabrics for a picnic lunch. The boys were able to stretch their legs on the adventure playground and swings with Mr Melody, while I dodged into the yarn shop for a quick reccie. I came out without buying any yarn, but did buy an open-ended zip! That's totally unlike me.

On our first proper day in Wales we popped into Craig-Y-Don to do food shopping; boring, I know, but someone's gotta do it. I went looking for the Wool Post as last year the shop had moved to smaller premises on the opposite side of the road to where it had been previously. But this year? It had disappeared completely I’m afraid :(

Probably the best yarn-shop-stop this holiday was the day trip to Colinette to visit a few of my forum friends who were attending a workshop there, and to actually visit the Colinette shop in person. I had a list of the yarns I wanted to buy in my head, and had taken the only two Colinette books I possessed with me, you know, to consult in case I forgot what I wanted and how many skeins I needed.

However, fairly soon after arriving my list went out of my head completely, and so I set about chatting to Jackie, Joy, Christina, Linda, Carola, Diane at Colinette, and the ‘Pirate Purls, Knitting Girls’ (who were the Colinette Paparazzi for the day), whilst idly fondling yarns and oohhhing and aaaahing at the colours.

I bought a stack of pattern booklets from the Colinette shop, three skeins of Parisienne from the millshop itself and ordered seven skeins of Zanziba to be dyed in the raspberry colourway to knit Rachael from the Portmanteau booklet. The book is now unfortunately discontinued, so Diane kindly gave me a copy of the pattern with my yarn. I also bought skeins of the new Iona aran weight yarn in a lovely denimy blue colourway called Slate, to knit something from the new Iona book, which will probably be the Ula sweater or cardigan.

The books:

I also bought a couple of pairs of Brittany Birch straights - which have recently become my straight needles of choice - and a set of five Prym bamboo sock DPNs which are probably the slinkiest and smoothest bamboo DPNs I’ve knitted with. THe DPNs are not in this piccie though cos they're in a sock!

My haul from Colinette:

The Melody Family had to run like the wind to catch the 1pm train to Welshpool on the Llanfair Caereinion Steam Railway I can tell you!

More stashing exploits later.....

Thursday, July 26, 2007

In which Melody Finishes More Items and Casts on Two New Projects

A few more finished items to show you.... first, Tide:

Knitted in Patons 100% cotton DK with Brittany Birch needles, using Louisa Harding's ‘Tide' cardigan pattern. I fudged the sizing on this as I used a different dk yarn with a different stitch tension. This fits so well and was interesting to knit, and I have the yarn out of stash already to knit another! Again in Cotton DK but a lovely mid-lilac shade this time

Next up, Vanessa:

Knitted in Sirdar Denim Tweed DK yarn with Pony Pearl needles and using RYC's Vanessa pattern from RYC Art. I knitted the size 36 size, without fudging anything except maybe the row tension which I knitted as is. I absoutely adore this! I also have yarn for this out of stash and want to knit another one, or maybe two, three, four.... LOL! I have taken some Patons Coral DK in the Vanilla shade out of stash holding, which is a cotton mix yarn, and will look fab knitted up as Vanessa I think. I thought about knitting another Vanessa in Brett's Kool Kotton, but wanted another sweater with that summer melange kinda look.

For my next trick - I cast on for the Drops short sleeved jacket using Garnstudio Paris cotton aran in a gorgeous colour called Heather, and also cast on stitches for one of the cardigans Alva, in the Colinette Banyan booklet:

The Paris yarn is a superb dark cerise-pinky-purple in real life, and it's easy to knit in one piece on Addt turbo circular needles, much to my amazement as I don't like circulars or metal needles generally. The stitches are nice and even, and there's none of that nasty rowing out business that happens when I use bamboo needles as it did with the Grace jacket I finished earlier this year. Which just so happens to be next on the list to sew up!

I'm also knitting Alva in James Brett pure merino dk, and it's an absolute joy to knit with. I chose the merino because I don't possess any Colinette AT ALL! Hopefully that will be rectified on holiday when I have promised myself a day off from Knitting from Stash to visit the Colinette millshop in person. I quite fancy some Cadenza but which shade? Who knows!

Friday, July 20, 2007

A Good Day's Work

It's been raining pretty much all week except for a few good sunny days, and I've been able to get the laundry down in the laundry basket to an acceptable level again. All this rainy wet weather means drying the washing inside though except when it's been sunny! I still have TONS of ironing to get through though, but I've been able to do almost three hours' worth of ironing in the past two days amongst everything else, so thank goodness for days off work!

The boys have been doing some cookery this week - they made twelve cupcakes before lunch today. They are both really quite good little cooks, and made excellent cakes! They love messing about in the kitchen, which as a mother of two boys I'm really pleased about and give them every encouragement. Hopefully they will be able to cook themselves a healthy meal and not have to rely on takeaway junk food when they finally leave home in years to come!

Just to tempt you, here are a few cakes that the boys decorated....

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Totally Finished Objects!

Yay! As promised, a couple of totally finished objects. I've obviously had the sew-up bug this week as I've finished sewing up three knitteds. The third - Louisa Harding's 'Tide' cardigan - still needs a button and button loop, so until it has that it won't appear on the blog as a TFO.

Here are the two totally finished items:

A wrap cardigan in peacock Sirdar Country Style double knitting yarn that I fusion knitted on the knitting machine and by hand, and the Valentine sweater in Red Sirdar Denim Chunky that I knitted in February this year. The sweater has turned out really well, and I'm glad that I didn't throw it into the textile recycling bin as I had threatened! The wrap cardigan is okay and I will wear it, but I'm not sure that I'll ever knit another :? However, I'm already planning Valentine sweater number two in vintage, black, chunky yarn ;)

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Officially Unemployed

It was officially my last day at preschool yesterday - so I have officially joined the ranks of the unemployed of Great Britain until I become a student again in September.

I had an amazing amount of leaving gifts from parents, children and other staff and teachers, and I'm still overwhelmed by their generosity. I had a few pieces of beautiful jewellery, a great Scholastic Circle Time book and a children's music and rythmn book for my teaching practice, chocolates by the boxes, plants, flowers, a stunning gemstone keyring to promote success (which knocked me for six it is so beautiful), a lovely mug and bowl set to warm my teaching practice food and drink in, pampering gifts such as bath bombs and lavender salts, pens, and loads of cards and warm wishes for my future.

I am, indeed, officially unemployed.

I've been asked to cover at preschool for a day in September though, before my preliminary teaching week starts - so I shall be revisiting quicker than I'd anticipated!

Knitting stuff - I've been sewing stuff up madly this week, probably due to the lack of enthusiasm for knitting and my general feeling of unsettled-iness. I have managed to sew up two garments, and they look fab! Even the rubbishy Valentine sweater that nearly went into the textile recycling bin doesn't look all that crappy after sewing it up! Piccies 2moz I promise....

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Last Day at Work

It's my last day at work tomorrow :( and I'm feeling very sad at the prospect of not going back to preschool in September.

We had our summer party this morning for all the children, and it seemed so surreal, the fact that I wasn't going back next term.

I'm feeling very unsettled at the moment.....

Friday, July 06, 2007

Closing the Shop

I have made a decision about the eBay shop that I've been running for a number of years and have regretfully come to the decision to close the shop at the end of July. With all the new things that are happening in September, I just won't have the time to wrap and post parcels like I do at the moment, and the doors of Melody Yarns will close permanently on 27th July.

I will still be stash busting and listing yarns in auction listings though, so don't forget to pop by and see me, will you?

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Alexandra Palace

I have made a decision not to buy any more yarns until I go to the Alexandra Palace knitting show in October this year. If I keep buying yarn at this alarming rate, I won't be able to buy anything while I'm there cos I just won't have the dosh!

I shall save my weekly yarn allowance, and sell my destashing items on eBay to hopefully raise some more cash, and we shall see how much I can raise to spend there.

In the meantime I will make a wishlist for Ally Pally and any yarns that I want, need or just plain fall in love with, shall go onto the list. And then I'm going to buy the lot at Ally Pally :))

The only exception I will make is new books in August (I can't live without inspiration!) and any new needles that I need to start or complete projects.

I already have a wishlist that I keep on an Excel file on the computer. It's not that long that I need an Excel file you understand, but it makes me happy knowing that it's there *wink*

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Check THIS Out!

I hadn't realised that my blog is now one year old - Happy Birthday Melody's Blog!

Time to confess my yarn splurge I think:

Rowan Cotton 4 ply in a beautiful shade called Aegean to knit Kitty from Rowan magazine 27 and a couple of balls of bamboo sock yarn from Hartmuth Wools in Germany. I also bought five balls of Sirdar Pure Cotton 4 ply in navy, cream and sand from the clearance sale at Kemps, and I won a pack of Rowan Cotton 4 ply in a bright and perky shade of Cheeky from eBay. Plus I won some Sirdar Luxury cotton 4 ply in raspberry to knit a cotton cardigan with 3/4 sleeves.

Garnstudio 'Paris' pure cotton in a scrummy raspberry colour, two shades of beautifully soft Fabel sock yarn, and the most delicious Alpaca you've ever squidged or sniffed in your entire life. All this little lot from Scandinavian Knitting Design :)

I forgot to mention that Danny's socks are now complete and on his little feet:

How could you not adore those titchy feet and squidgy knees?

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Holiday Knitting

It's the time of the year when I start to think about which projects I'd like to take on holiday with me so that I can spend two entire and glorious weeks knitting to my heart's content. Not that it ever happens of course.

I've already started to think about which projects will be packed and taken to North Wales to keep my fingers busy. Maybe I'll start on a Central Park Hoodie? Maybe I'll take the yarn to knit
'Violette' from Louisa Harding's 'Gathering Roses' (shown in the picture, right) collection? Maybe I'll take some yarn for socks? Well yes, socks definitely then.....

Last year I gathered up all my current WIPs and all my yarns, needles and patterns for projects in waiting that I just *might* knit on holiday and ended up taking a fair few of them with me as I couldn't decide which ones to take; I spent some time shoving them into any available space in the Landie. It was only when we got to our destination and unpacked our clothes that I put all my WIPs and knitting supplies into our empty suitcases for storage purposes, only to find that I could fill two suitcases

The words 'over' and 'optimistic' spring to mind....

Sunday, June 17, 2007


I opened my eBay account in October 2004 with the intention of trying to destash some of my yarns to good homes and hopefully recoup some of the money spent on the yarns in the first place.

Almost three years later I think I can claim that I have rehomed a huge amount of yarn in that I have probably destashed half of what I originally had, although I've probably managed to spend most of the proceeds on more yarn :)

I have four large cardboard boxes and around four large sacks of yarn to rehome, and then that's it - all gone.

I might have to rummage through my stash to find more yarn to rehome when this last lot has gone though *wink*

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Hello Sunshine :(

I was supervising the games stall at the school summer fete on Saturday and really enjoyed myself - so much so that I didn't notice how strong the sun actually was and have ended up with searing sunburn on my arms, shoulders and the back of my neck. Ouch! I lay on the sofa on Saturday night with two paracetomol and a cold drink :( I felt fairly sick yesterday, but I shouldn't complain as it's totally self-inflicted! The boys had suncream applied liberally to their ams, legs, faces and any part of them that was exposed. But in my hurry to get out of the house and down to school, I ....errr....... forgot the sunblock for myself *rolls eyes* Silly Melody.

Anyway - knitterly stuff! After my bout of frogging I decided that I had just enough space in the cupboard for another WIP and so I cast on for this ribbed chunky cardigan in Sirdar Denim Tweed Chunky that I just happened upon in my stash last weekend. I probably won't be wearing the hat with the jacket though..... not my style!

A quick, clockwise round-up of current WIPs reveals a 2x2 ribbed cardigan in black, scrummily soft James Brett merino DK, Danny's socks in 4x2 rib, the start of the second sleeve of Vanessa from the RYC book Classic Art which has a deep 2x2 rib on the body, a 2x2 ribbed cardigan for the warmer months in an gorgeously soft, bright turquoise Sirdar pure cotton wot I fished from stash, and at the top of the piccie pink Kim socks with a lacey pattern up the sides. And of course the new 2x2 ribbed chunky jacket in the previous piccie.

Spot the common denominator anyone?

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Another Bout of Frogging

When you start to frog it just goes on doesn’t it? I frogged the red mohair lacey thing yesterday and boy did it feel good. Hmmm, what to frog next?

Oh yeah, I was on hand yesterday to help out with First Aid on a baby who needed emergency medical aid in Asda. He went blue and couldn’t breathe. I didn’t do much to be honest, a midwife had got there seconds before me and had the situation under control, but she looked relieved when I said I’d hang on for the ambulance in case the babe needed CPR. He didn’t, thank goodness, and was whisked away in the ambulance as I trotted round the supermarket with my trolley. It’s a skill I don’t have to use it very often, but being a Paediatric First Aider does have its uses occasionally.

3rd of June already. Where does the time fly to? I’ll be thinking about knitting winter sweaters soon.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

More Members of the Melody Household

In addition to Mr Melody and myself, and the two Melody children , we also have a doggie named Max. Or Max the Dog as the small Melodies call him. He's an old doggie, he's twelve and a half and quite doddery on his legs, and he's recently had an ulcer on his eye had his third veterinary appointment this afternoon to check on its progress. We saw a different vet than usual this afternoon, who also took a look at his back legs.

All is going well with the eye, so far so good. Max the Dog has had dodgy legs on all four corners since he was a young puppy and had osteochondrosis in both his elbows at eight months of age for which he had two big operations and months and months of physiotherapy; he also has hip dysplasia in both hips and has medication for arthritis in his hips. I said he was doddery didn't I? Today, the 'different' vet recommended glucosamine for his dicey legs.

"It only costs as much as the Metacam. It will make a vast improvement to his mobility" said the vet, so we agreed to take it to try. Bear in mind that Max the Dog will be taking glucosamine for the rest of his life.

John and the boys took Max back to the car while I went to reception to pay the vet bill for the ten minutes we were in the surgery - £78 odd... gulp!! I questioned the total, and was told the glucosamine tablets were almost £60 for just over a month's supply.

Did I take them? No. Sorry. Our dog has been doddery for several years now and no-one has ever suggested them before. To pay out £60 per month for tablets in addition to the medication he's already taking (At £30 a month) is ridiculous. The same vet also recommended that we take Max swimming in a doggy swimming pool to improve his legs and told us that there was a specialised doggy swimming pool in the next village. Errr - no, I don't think so either thank you.

I think next time we'll make an appointment to see the vet who has her feet firmly on the ground :?

And finally - the newest addition to the Melody Household - Matthew's plant that he has grown from seed at school during the science project this term. Matt has named his plant 'Speedy McJunior'. I know what this plant is, but do you??

Monday, May 28, 2007

Knitting from Stash

Anyone who knows me well will already know that I have far, far to much yarn to ever knit in a lifetime and recently a few of my friends on the Crafty Threads 'n' Yarns forum have decided to knit from their stashes for a while. I decided that I'd like to try to achieve the same thing, and so far have managed to resist buying yarn for three weeks. It is necessary though, as after the end of the last Stashalong, that lasted for four months, I went a bit bonkers and bought lots of yarn!

I've made my list of garments I want to knit over the next twelve months, and taken yarns out of my stash and stored them in the guest room wardrobe; I have already cleared the extra yarns from said wardrobe and it needs to be catalogued and stored this morning so I can do the ironing!!

One of my planned garments is the Central Park Hoodie that was popular with knitters last winter. I have the magazine and thought that I could knit the CPH from some Charisma Supreme Heather Aran from stash which I purchased from the Yorkshire Mohair Mill some *ahem* several years ago. It's a lovely cream pure wool yarn with little brown bits in it - perfect for a CPH hoodie I thought.

I dug the yarn out of stash yesterday to and it is a CPH failure already. I knitted a tension swatch and hand washed it as it is pure wool. On 5mm needles the tension is 15sts x 20 rows which is chunky if you ask me :evil: So I have to find a chunky pattern that I'll want to knit this yarn up into - not a problem in itself but in my mind it was destined to become a CPH. So now I have to find a substitute yarn.

I do have three 400g balls of Sirdar's long discontinued Highland Aran in a gorgeous Autumn Berry colour that was ordered specially to knit some garment or other - again more than several years ago, before Matthew was born - and it will make a superb CPH. It won't have those super little flecky bits that the Debbie Bliss Aran Tweed would have, but I'm knitting from stash. Right?

Sunday, May 13, 2007


What a poor old lonely blog this is turning out to be - I neglect it so badly don't I? Probably due to the fact that I don't have much free time to knit, never mind blog!

The 'Tide' cardigan is now finished, but needs sewing up :? so it's residing in the 'needs sewing up' cupboard at the moment along with all the current WIPs, one of which is a fusion knit wrap cardigan that I started last Bank Holiday weekend and is now nearly finished. The plan was to start and finish over the three day break, but as usual, family life and blocked sewer drains got in the way and I only have a titchy bit to complete.

It's 11.25pm, I've just finished my weekly plans for preschool and it's time for a few rows on the wrap cardi ties before bedtime.

Night, night xx!

Saturday, April 28, 2007

This year I made a knitting New Year resolution to knit at least one large item and one small item per calendar month. This month, I may just finish my Louisa Harding ‘Tide' cardigan that I started last summer but then couldn't finish before the cooler weather in the Autumn. The smaller project that I aim to finish this month should be Danny's socks, but I think realistically that they could be finished sometime in May. I'm also past the armhole shaping on the back of RYC's ‘Vanessa' but considering that I spend most of my free afternoons in Class 1 at the moment, and my mornings working at preschool, I don't often have time to sit and knit! Anyway, here's the progress on ‘Tide' :

I did place an order for my celebratory yarn purchase however, which arrived today from Get Knitted, my online yarn store of preference. In addition to my two sets of Brittany Birch short 4mm needles which I want to use to knit sleeves and fronts of cardigans, I received 12 balls of Diploma Gold DK in Berry which is a gorgeous shade of deep reddy claret, 12 balls of Diploma Gold DK in plain ordinary black, and 12 balls of the same in Natural. I do have plans for this yarn, but it really is boring and you probably wouldn't be interested. Suffice it to say that I need sweaters and cardigans for teaching practice (hee hee!). I was unsure whether to choose Berry or Plum, but I think I made the right decision after all as it is a GORGEOUS colour. Diploma is a lovely soft yarn to knit with and is easily washable and I would say mid priced; after spending this week seemingly covered in orange, brown and green paint and mixing up several bowls of Plaster of Paris in Class 1 yesterday, this is the exact specification of the yarn I need for the classroom!!

I also ordered 9 balls of Sirdar Luxury Cotton DK in Venetian blue for Matthew which you can see in the picture above, as he wants a knitted something in cotton. It's a very pale denim blue, so not something that I would have chosen myself, but as Matt chose it he must like it! I've already done the ‘rub test' on the back of his neck and it was awarded the thumbs up Matthew seal of approval! Get Knitted also sent me a packet of Love Hearts (bless ‘em!) A Get Knitted pen, and Get Knitted notepad and a small bar of lovely smelling soap.

Now that's Fantastic Customer Service indeed! Thank you, Get Knitted.

I have been a bit naughty though, and despite publicly announcing a yarn lockdown on the Crafty Threads forum have succumbed and bought a few balls of Sirdar Spree chunky on special offer at Ekemps Woolshop. And a few balls of Sirdar Breeze DK. Well they were only 69p per ball and at least 60% cotton. Bargain! All for teaching practice sweaters of course, so Natalie-Who-Knows-These-Things says it's not officially stash in the true sense of the word, and I'm not one to disbelieve her ;-)

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

I'm Better!!
The ten days' worth of penicillin worked and I'm back to my old self again , and many thanks to everyone who wished me a speedy recovery, I'm sure that it helped the getting better process

Here's a few things I've been up to in the past week:

Galaxy Truffle - A rich chocolaty merino 4 ply cardigan that I finished and sewed up at silly o’clock on Saturday night so that I could hand it to my mum on Sunday morning when we went to visit my parents.

Mum has tried it on and proclaims that it’s ideal in length, sleeve length, neck depth, yarn weight, ..... in fact EVERYTHING!! So much so that she wants several more cardigans and several sweaters worked to the same block. A true indicator that something is appreciated and well liked I think.

I went to a crochet course at Wool in Stockport on Sunday and met several ladies there who I’ve chatted to online for ages but never met! I thoroughly enjoyed the day and came home with this goody bag from the workshop complete with five balls of Debbie Bliss Angora cotton yarn and a hook in a yummy pink bag, amongst other things *wink*

I have been so enthused by the workshop that I've been able to start, and finish, two granny squares in James Brett Supersoft aran baby yarn for a baby crib blanket that I shall call Stockport as a tribute to the workshop. I want to add a few more colours to the blankie, and think I'll do this by making some two colour squares to intersperse between the white ones: