Sunday, 25 February 2007

Afternoon out

I just had an afternoon out in Bolton meeting up with some friends for a knit out in the Cafe Nero in Bolton. I am not sure what the passers by think of us all blithely knitting away in the window seats but the assistants don't seem to mind us being in there unless of course they get a rush on!

I am still suffering the after effects of heaving a reluctant dog into the bath yesterday for a shower. My back is protesting vehemently! I didn't realise a) that he was quite that heavy or b) that he would give himself a really good shake half way through the shower resulting in a rather wet me and an even wetter bathroom. Memo for next time - more towels and wear a wet suit?

I came back this afternoon to a very sheepish dog. I haven't quite found out what he has done this time but I am sure it must be something. He gives himself away with the hound dog look. Yesterday when I left him for an hour he had managed to get the cat's dinner from the back of the worktop and eat it, throwing the kitchen mat into the dining room in the process. I think today he was sleeping on my bed whilst I was away ( well I hope that's all he did whilst I was away)

We have just been out on our second walk of the day. met up with this mad woman who was whooping to her dogs all around the park? She had wild staring eyes and was really weird. ( yes - even weirder than me folks) I pretended I was going the other way just to get away from her but when I turned another corner she was coming the other way again!! Hope she wasn't stalking us. Never seen her before. Let's hope I don't see her again!

The photo is just some of the finished projects I have either knitted or crocheted since Christmas. I have given away a pile almost as big. The production line will slow down now as the dog thinks he is a lap dog and I am finding it difficult to knit or crochet with him at the moment, I am hoping he will settle down when he realises he is here for the duration and not demand quite so much attention.

I have just broken up a skirmish between the cat and dog. The cat is 15yrs old, deaf and very skinny and now has to vault up to the work top for his food. I lift him up whenever I can because I feel so sorry for him but I cannot leave his food at floor level anymore as the dog has colitis and if he eats cat food he is liable to get an upset stomach. The cat is used to the dog as they lived together for a few months but he is a bit too old for all this trauma! I have only been an official dog owner since Thursday and already it feels like a life time! I feel like I work at the zoo. When I am not feeding them, walking the dog I am Poo Picker and Cat Litter changer! I think it was easier when I had a small baby!

Friday, 23 February 2007

Dog owner

The knitting and crochet have taken a bit of a back seat for the last couple of days as I have now become the official new mummy ( grannie?) to my son and daughter in law's dog. He is used to coming to me for holidays and so is quite happy at the moment. Quite how he will be when he realises that he is stuck with me I don't know. He has not been deserted by them and I am sure they will visit and take him for walkies often. My son was quite upset at the thought of leaving him with me but it is the best solution. It's not like he is leaving the family or anything,
Now we have 2 new babies in the family the dog was having to play second (or third) fiddle to the little ones and he was demanding a lot more attention than they were able to give him, and therefore being a bit naughty around the house, so at the moment he is better off with me as I am at home all day and able to give him all the attention is craving
I am waiting for major back surgery and some days I find walking very painful and difficult so the dog will either make me as fit as a flea or knackered. The jury is still out on that one! We have just been out for the second walk of the day. I only wish I could walk him as far and as quickly as he would like. We get by with a lot of stick and ball throwing! I almost killed him last night. I gave him one of those dried pigs ear dog treats and it got stuck in his throat. He was at the eye rolling choking stage and I literally had to fish the ear out of his throat. Did he thank me? No - He grabbed the ear back and started chewing it again. Needless to say I will watch him like a hawk if he has any more treats or when he chews his teeth cleaning sticks.
I am finding knitting and crochet a bit difficult unless he dozes off as he thinks anything remotely ball shaped is for him to play with! When I first got my cat he was like that but the novelty wore off after a while so I am hoping it will with the dog.
Luckily the dog and cat are used to each other and apart from an ocassional skirmish the cat haughtily ignores him! The main problem is getting them to eat their own food., they have a passion for each others!

Tuesday, 20 February 2007

Laws of probability

Is it just me or is there a law of probability? Today I was in the house except for about 10 mins when I had to nip to a neighbours. So when did Parcelforce choose to try to deliver my son's parcel? Yes you guessed it - in those missing 10 mins. I am sure there is some evil pixie working some kind of magic over my life making sure that nothing is ever easy! I then had to go to the Post Office and stand (and stand ) in a queue with identification pressed in my hot little hand until the body behind the counter deigned to ring her little bell saying cashier number 2! I am sure if I had stayed in all day they would pick the one minute when I answer a call of nature to ring my doorbell with the parcel anyway. Last time I had a parcel delivery they must have tapped on the brickwork with a wet sponge as I was in ( no noise in the house) and never heard them. I think the pixie just wants me to experience back pain every time I expect a parcel. I have to walk to the local Post Office as there is no-where within 300yds to park anywhere near it anyway. I think the answer is to sit on the stairs with the front door ajar with a flask, a sandwich and a potty at the ready!

I finally finished dog draught excluder number 2 who almost looks like dog number 1 except his face is darker. I photographed him on the top of the pram blanket I made last week so he would appear differently to the first. he will hopefully be adopted into a new home when my son picks him (and the parcel) up after work.

I am in charge of a friend's mobile phone to answer queries about stretch limo hire as he has gone away for 2 weeks. He hadn't left the airport before I got the first call. Is this the start of a new career? Receptionist to a budding business man. Let's hope I don't make any double bookings or make an error otherwise it will be a very short lived career!

I almost bought 2 plums in Marks and Spencer until the till girl said Gosh 70p a plum aren't they expensive! I said yes they are , I don't want them! I know their produce is good but I am on a limited budget and so I just stuck to the Jazz Jazz apples at £2.49 for 4. My treat for the week. Usually it's a bag of budget apples from Tesco but last week they were all bruised and horrible I finished up throwing most of them away so it was not a budget as far as I was concerned. I think I will make an effort to get to the market next week for fish, fruit and veg. Another chance to maim the unwary with my wheelie trolley!

Sunday, 18 February 2007

The joys of a bad back

No crochet today as yet. The sun was shining for once. It doesn't happen that often at this time of the year in rainy Manchester so I decided to venture out into the place that I laughingly call my garden. It wouldn't be so bad if the grass wasn't mostly moss and if next door's holly bush had remained a bush instead of being allowed to revert to nature as is now a massive tree. I have to wage a weekly war on the horrible prickly holly leaves that only blow on my garden and never the neighbours.

I decided to treat myself to a leaf hoover blower thinking it would make the job easier. Big mistake. I am waiting for major back surgery and that thing was not designed for anyone who has even a twinge of backache. I keep thinking of ways to modify it so that I would not have to lean slighty forward supporting the full weight of the contraption whilst it hovers about an inch from the ground. If I stand straight then I can't see the leaves! My back starts to protest like mad from the first minute and by the end of the hoovering session is screaming for the mercy that only a hot bath can give it. If anyone does read my ramblings I would welcome any suggestions. A neck harness like a ploughman's yolk maybe? At least I have the satisfaction of knowing that the noise the hoover makes kept next door from their Sunday afternoon nap! When I asked about maybe chopping the tree down or at least trimming it so I could get a modicum of sunlight on the lawn I was told it was a feature of the garden!

Not a great day all in all. I was awakened at 7am when I put my hand in a wet patch made I presume by the cat who must have had a wee on my bed (with me in it!) I think the poor old soul has finally lost it. He is almost 15yrs old and has thyroid trouble and now maybe kidney troubles as well. I will see what the vet says. Has e lost his marbles or what? I love him to bits having adopted him when his owner, one of my neighbours, moved to a house on a main road and as the cat is deaf as well as old was not going to keep him as there was no garden for him. Like all pet owners I am dreading the day when I have to say enough is enough so hope this morning's mishap was a one off. I can't face washing the duvet every day!

Maybe tonight I will finally get around to my crochet again. Last night I fell asleep watching the tv. Another sign of me getting old! The cat and I are well matched I think. The photo is Ollie having a rest after trying to attack the baubles on the tree at Christmas!

Saturday, 17 February 2007

Trip Out

Today I made a bid for freedom! My niece kindly picked me up and we went shopping for guess what - more yarn! As if I haven't got enough already. I never seem to have the right colour for the project I have in mind. I am making another crochet dog draught excluder and I don't think somehow it would look quite right in either chucky egg yellow or shocking pink mohair. OK for a psychedelic snake maybe? I bought beige, brown and cream. Not very exciting it's true but more realistic as dog colours.

We also went into the fair trading shop and I bought some Himalayan incense sticks handmade in the monasteries in Nepal. The cat isn't happy when I light up the Lavender ones I already have so I doubt he will like these! They had some rather strange handknitted hats and socks in the shop some in rather lurid rainbow colours and hats with different coloured spikes on top rather like a demented chameleon. I don't know whether my small town is ready for me wearing anything like that on my head or manic stripes on my feet. I think I will stick to my red knitted hat! I have just lit an incense stick and fortunately they don't smell like an old monk and the cat hasn't left town yet!

Not much crocheting done today but I have been a bit frantic lately with it so a day off will do me a power of good and rest up my war wound (carpal tunnel operation scar actually) No doubt I will be hooking again later when its tele time.

Friday, 16 February 2007

Pink and white crochet bedcape

This is a rather fuzzy web cam pic of the latest finished project as described in yesterday's blog offering. Once again the pattern is from a very old Patons leaflet 3005 Cover-ups which is probably as old as me ( Well not quite nothing is THAT old!)

My day has so far progressed as boringly as any other Friday. Maybe I should take up sky diving or motor bike racing. Small snags to either of those 2 I can't ride a bike and I can't stand heights ( I am the odd one out in aircrafts as I NEVER want the window seat - gimme the one nearest to the emergency exit please) so maybe it's back to the crochet for another day!

I organised my patterns the other day. OK OK I shuffled them and tidied them up a bit. Some patterns I have had so long that they have almost come back into fashion. Yes I really did crochet (and wear) hot pants and mini dresses but fortunately have NOT got the photos to prove it. I can't imagine what a sight that must have been with the beehive hairdo and the white PVC knee boots. Hey I thought I looked good at the time but obviously no one else did hence my not having any photos!

Today's crochet project is another bedcape in white with pink trim.I will be making them in my sleep soon! Hopefully the ladies who get them for Mother's Day will appreciate my skills with the hook.

I bought a book called "The Happy Hooker" a few weeks ago. Don't get excited guys it's just a guide to crochet but what a great title for grabbing attention! Any ladies - it's a great book but it's got US crochet terms in it so beware. For some reason they call trebles double crochet but then that's the yanks for you - look what they do to our language! The stitch has 3 stages hence the name treble! 2 stages is a double crochet OK !

If anyone is reading this (which I doubt) then have a good day and Happy Hooking!

Thursday, 15 February 2007

Hooked on crochet

First posting on my first blog! Will anyone read the ramblings of a slightly dotty old bid who is hooked on crochet with some knitting chucked in to give the operation site a break. I had an op for carpal tunnel syndrome in Nov brought on I am sure by years of crochet and knitting plus the pc mouse clicking in my job before I joined the realms of the pensioners. Pensioner !! Who me? I must have had my birth certificate switched. I don't feel old enough to be one of those. Does that mean I have to get a wheelie basket and get grumpy? Oh bugger I have one of those and I am grumpy. Yes - it's official I am old !

I now have more time during the day to do my crocheting now I don't have to be a boring old wage slave. My hook has had sparks on it recently as I have been hooking my way through 4 pram blankets, several baby cardigans, 2 mohair shrugs and today I finished off a pink/white bedcape destined no doubt for someone's mother for Mother's Day. Plus I have finished off 2 children's knitted cardigans I found half finished stashed in the loft that I must have started at some time and vaulted into the loft when I was decorating and forgotten about. It's amazing how much flotsam and jetsom is in my loft. Do I really still have a pair of oars from a long since deflated rubber dinghy from a holiday some 30yrs back?

I will attempt to post a couple of photos of finished articles. I am rather proud of my crochet and knitted draught excluders which I made from oddments I had found stashed in the loft. I should say that I am a returnee to crochet and knitting after a break of some 10yrs or so. Hence all the stashed yarn etc. Anyone who likes the dog and snake I am afraid the pattern book is almost as old as I am so I doubt if Patons still have it in print.