Monday, 31 August 2009

Weekend away

The photos today are of a baby blanket/small shawl that I have made for my niece's best friend Louise whose baby is expected around Sept 12th. I have kept to cream as we do not know the sex of the baby until it arrives. I love surprises. It always spoils it for me when people know the sex of the baby prior to it's birth. Now I have the excitement of making girl or boy clothes when it makes it's appearance.

I have been away for a mini break with my neighbour Julie for her 40th birthday. We went on one of those mystery tours with some of her work colleagues, her sister and another neighbour. The coach driver kept us guessing as to where our destination would be. We arrived first at Beverley a small and very picturesque village. As it was market day we had a few hours browsing around the stalls. I resisted all temptation and walked past the wool stalls!

We then set off for our hotel for the night. The scenery gradually got worse and worse and we passed many boarded up houses and shops. We arrived at the Royal Hotel in Hull. The hotel itself wasn't that bad although quite shabby in parts you could see that it had once been a really nice hotel. It faced onto the war memorial and the newish shopping arcades.

I was given the key card to my room and after unpacking I decided to have a quick shower before dinner. The shower was scalding hot and the cold tap came off in my hands and so just as I managed to get the temperature of the water a bit less scalding by twiddling the tap spindle and had got in the shower when the smoke alarm in my room started to shriek. I thought that the steam from the shower had set it off as I hadn't closed the bathroom door. I got out of the shower and called down to reception to tell them only to be told sorry but the hotel is being evacuated - what you can hear is the fire alarm!

I hurriedly put some clothes on but didn't bother with underwear and set off down stairs. Within minutes 5 or 6 fire engines complete with burly crews arrived to enter the hotel. It turned out that someone had left an iron on in one of the ironing rooms and that had set off the alarm. After a 10 or 15 minute wait we were all allowed back in the hotel and I went back to resume my shower. Thank goodness I hadn't put shampoo on my head when the alarm started! There was one guy outside dressed in a towel but I did risk staying a minute longer to put clothes on.

It turned out later that several people thought it was them who had set off the alarm as the first thing they had done was either start to have a shower, as I had, or put the kettle on.

I thought dinner was fine although some guests didn't like it. I had roast beef, Yorkshire pudding with roast potatoes and vegetables. There was a glittering array of sweets but I was too full so passed on those. The younger ones of the party wanted to go out and find some pubs in Hull but I was content to stay and chat to other members of the coach party. Whilst we were in the hotel all we saw through the hotel doorway was riot vans, dog vans. police and ambulances screaming up and down outside the hotel. This went on all evening and when I went to bed it was like trying to sleep in war torn Beirut. The noise of sirens, shouting and screaming carried on well into the wee small hours.

We had to set off again in the morning at 9am. The younger ones said that Hull was a seething mass of fights and people being sick everywhere. They saw people getting hauled off in police vans and lots of arguments and screaming and shouting. I think I will give Hull a miss in the future. Some on the coach were saying that it has the highest level of crime which after Saturday night's antics I am not surprised at. I had seen something similar on the TV recently but I found it to be quite scary in Hull and I stayed in the hotel.Not a place to go sightseeing in.

On the Sunday we went to York. Had a guided coach trip around York and heard a bit of the history and went to see the Rowntree village. This village was built by the Quaker owners of Rowntrees and is a complete village with retirement bungalows and old folks home all provided by Rowntrees. The only thing missing is there is not a pub in the village as the Quakers do not believe in drink. You do not have to be a Quaker to live in the village but you have to abide by Quaker rules. They have the only off licence in York which does not sell alcohol!

York was beautiful and I would have quite happily have stayed there for the weekend. I love the ancient history of the place and wished I had the time to visit the Minster. I have mentally put York on my list of places that I would like the spend a few days in. I would have felt safe walking the streets of York and would have preferred to have stayed overnight there but I suppose for the money that we paid for the tour that would have been out of the question. I had a walk down the Shambles and bought some home made toffee and a lovely freshly made pasty for my dinner on Sunday evening. There was a couple of wool shops that looked very nice. One had Rowan garments made up in the window display but unfortunately both of them were closed. The market wool stall did not tempt me in the slightest.

I had a very enjoyable weekend and the weather was beautiful all time we were on the other side of the Pennines and yet the minute we reached them on the way home down came the rain.

We hadn't quite finished with out excitement as when the coach dropped us off in Oldham there were some youths in the bus station abusing and spitting and kicking out at a disabled couple. One of the ladies in our party shot off the coach and started yelling at them to stop and phoned the police. There was a taxi rank full of male drivers and not one lifted a finger to help this couple. The abusers were skinheads of no more than about 14 or 15. What is this world coming to. The bus station had CCTV cameras but the police rang back and said they could not find them!

I was so tired when I got home and my poor little knee was staging a protest at all the walking that I had done over the weekend. Very enjoyable. I would go again on one of these mystery tours but NOT if it was going to Hull. Sorry if anyone lives in Hull but it was rather dreadful.

Oh by the way if you do visit York don't bother with the Haunted House tour. Scary it was not. The rooms were dark and musty but the moving floor was obviously a trick of some kind. It didn't scare me, all it did was set off my vertigo and make me feel sick. How that house passed the health and safety regulations I will never know as they had us climbing up and down steep steps in the dark with low doorways and sloping floors. Apparently Most Haunted filmed there and they hold seances up in the room with the large circular table. I felt no spirit presence there at all. I had more of those feeling when I lived in a very old house with my parents as a teenager. Now that house did have an spooky atmosphere and some unexplained things going on.

Back home to rain and a pile of washing to do. Guess it's a tumble dryer weekend. I have started another blanket for Louise's new baby again in cream. It is a big granny square all in one colour. I will stop when it is big enough or when the wool runs out whichever is the soonest.

Thursday, 27 August 2009

Catch Up Time

Catch up time. Where shall I start? I just haven't been in the mood for blogging for various reasons so took a break for a few days.

I will work backwards starting with today.

Today my friend and neighbour Julie is featured in the Sun newspaper being interviewed about her mis diagnosis of her ovarian cancer which almost cost her life.The doctors kept dismissing her symptoms as putting on weight even though her stomach swelled up so much she looked 9 months pregnant. This is one of the symptoms apparently but her doctors kept missing it. They kept telling her over the many times she visited them to diet and go jogging! By the time she got to Christies she had 5 large tumors on her ovaries and others on her pancreas, liver, womb and kidneys. Scary isn't it?

I am chatting online at the moment with an Athen's wool shop owner and trying to convince him to take some copies of the calendar when it is printed but he seems more interested in me than buying a calendar. Ah well at least I tried.

I need to go into the garden and take down one of the plastic greenhouses that is tilted over at a dangerous angle after the torrential rain and wind yesterday.

Yesterday I met up with Sylvia in Bolton to swop parcels. She had a parcel of wool for me to crochet some baby items with and I had a parcel of baby cardigans for her foster baby plus the surprise shawl that I had made for her. I had made it earlier but could not post photos of it on my blog as it was a surprise. It is, of course, the Blue Curacao shawl by Doris Chan from the Amazing Crochet Lace Book.

Sylvia and I met up with Deb and her daughter who were on a school bag and pencil shopping expedition and we all had a coffee and bun in the Costa. I made the mistake of wearing a pair of boots with a small heel and so my knee was very painful by the time I got back home again and I paid the price for trying to look a bit more elegant than my usual flat shoes. Vanity thy name is woman! My knee is still sore I just hope that It clears up before the weekend.

I had a compliment yesterday when a guy who lives in the Isle of Man contacted me on Yahoo and said "Is this you?" He had the link to the web cam photo that I took of myself knitting naked that he found on the Naked Knitting web site. I said yes it is and he said I was bloody gorgeous! Wow what a good way to start the day eh? I told him to buy a calendar so he could have me on his wall and he said I would rather have you!

Tuesday I looked after my next door neighbour's dogs,after my osteo appointment, as Sky News was coming to film and interview Julie about her ovarian cancer and her misdiagnosis. I didn't see it on Sky News as it was broadcast at 6am long before I was up out of bed but it can still be seen online if you go into Sky News and type in Ovarian cancer. It is under the heading of 80%.

On Tuesday I also got delivery of my new baby patterns. They came from a lady called Kay and she gave very prompt delivery as I only ordered them late on Sunday evening. As you can't actually see any of the baby cardigans in my photo I will put the link to her web site in my blog title. At £2 a pattern I think they are well worth the money. She also does online PDF's to save on the postage but I do like a proper pattern to work from.

On Monday the Bolton Knitting Noras were featured in the Manchester Evening News. I can't post a link to that as the paper didn't put us on their online web pages.

I went to the Kings Arms Knit Club on Monday night and had a good evening. I got chatting to a guy at the bar who turned out to be a reporter for the M.E.N. You never know who you are chatting to in a pub do you? I told him I had been mentioned in the article and he said he would look it up when he got hack in work on Tuesday. I said look for the bit about being the oldest model and he laughed and said but did it say a glamorous older model? Perhaps I should have removed his beer goggles.

Knit wise I am still ploughing on with my 4ply baby cardigans.Very slowly so I have started a cream baby blanket in crochet as this knitting malarky is driving me mad. I am so looking forward to starting the new baby crochet patterns but I must make myself finish this knitting first.

Hopefully I will be back to blogging as normal although I really do feel under the weather. Yesterday every bone in my body ached. I don't have any flu symptoms so it's not swine flu. I think it's just my arthritis reaction to all this wet weather.

Sunday, 23 August 2009

The Letter Y

Thanks everyone for your words of support. They do help a lot.

I am feeling a lot better today. I think the last few days were a combination of a flare up of my arthritis and a bit of the blues about what has happened in my life recently. The flare up was partially my fault as I don't always take my medications at the right time and sometimes miss doses altogether. I suppose deep down I rebel against having osteo arthritis and I hate taking so many pills. I don't know whether I think it will all go away if I forget it or what. Stupid I know. I think I am a rebel against my advancing years. Maybe I should just go off and live in a warmer climate where my bones won't ache so much. If we had a good summer then at least I would have had a few good months but summer has been so depressing this year. Too much rain and dampness.

As to my personal life I shall just have to think that I am a far nicer person than they are and refuse to drop down to their level.

I managed to rally myself with a bit of knitting last night. One of my Knit Clubs The Kings Arms in Salford is taking part in knitting letters for the Poetry Society for their Knit A Poem project. My letter was the letter Y. I have been waiting for some wool as they insisted that the square was made in wool or mostly wool. Most of you know that I am allergic to wool, except for on my feet,so I didn't have any wool oddments. Rachael kindly ordered some wool for me when she was ordering hers and as I know that from this coming Monday the lifts that my niece has been giving me to the Knit Club will stop as she goes back to work so I wanted to make sure that they got my letter in time.If you want to know more about this then click on my blog title and it will take you to the Knit a Poem site. I think that you want to then you will still have time to take part if you hurry.

I went up to the Farmers Market today and bought some lamb and bread. I bumped into a few old friends and had a chat so that was a nice change for me. One was a friend who used to live across from me when my son and her kids were small. She has promised to drop in for a coffee sometime so that will be nice to catch up about old times.

I think the baby knitting is stopping my mojo. I chose to do it in 4ply but to be honest I am finding it so boring that it is putting me right off. I will continue with it bit by bit but I must start some crochet before I go mad.

Friday, 21 August 2009

Normal Service will Be Resumed As Soon As Possible

I have not had much inclination to blog over the last few days. I am not in the mood. I feel like I have nothing that I want to share just now. As my Dad would say If in doubt say nowt.

My bones ache.I am not sleeping and my mind is churning. There are a lot of things that I really want to say but now is not the time.

I am not knitting so no photos to show. Not even fringed the shawl.Maybe after the weekend this mood will pass.

Tuesday, 18 August 2009

Sweet Pea just Needs to be Fringed

The Sweet Pea Shawl is finished and just needs fringing. I have made this pattern so many times in the past and still love it. I have no doubt that I will make it many more times in the future as I have never actually made one for myself.

The 4 ply baby knitting is carrying on slowly and I have now finished the back of the white cardigan. After some discussion with my niece we both decided that we like the wrong nubbly side (last photo) better than we like the ribbed right side so I think this cardigan will be made up inside out. Not the first time that I have done that with a pattern I might add.

Yesterday I received a lovely present of some very old baby crochet patterns. I won't say who from as although the patterns are so old that they have long ago gone out of copyright there will always be someone who will jump on the case saying photocopying is banned etc. I do object to being asked on Ravelry for free copies of my patterns that are still available for sale. I simply point out to them where I bought the book from and leave it at that. We all have in our possessions treasured patterns that could have been our mothers or grandmothers and I see no harm in photocopying those. I will no doubt get shot down in flames for even suggesting such a thing but how else are people supposed to get copies? I know that very occasionally there are some in charity shops and on E Bay but that chances of picking up a popular old pattern are virtually zero. Anyway thanks a million to my friend for the patterns. I really appreciate them as the oldies are the goodies (and I am not describing either of us with that remark :) ) There is something about the vintage crochet baby patterns that doesn't exist in the modern day ones.

Last night I had a great night out at the Kings Arms Knit Club in Salford. My niece has been giving me a lift but next week will be the last time that I can get a lift. Ah well I can only hope that someone else is passing my way in the future as I really do not like waiting for a bus outside Salford Station alone in the dark on my way home. It is such a shame that one can't feel safe in ones own city after dark. I will have to concentrate on winning the lottery so I can afford to get another car. Is it too late to learn to ride a motorbike? I could maybe afford the insurance and road tax on one of those. I think I will be more of a fat lady with a sidecar, or Wallace and Gromit than a leather clad Honor Blackman or Joanna Lumley as in the Avengers. The Kings Arms is not only the host to our Knit Club but also holds drama events upstairs in it's function room. I have been told that their plays are very good. They also sell m any varieties of real ale and obscure beers for the connoisseur.

I am off to another osteo session today. My knee seems to have reached a level now and I don't think there will be much more improvement except to use it more and strengthen the muscles. The family have said I should seriously consider having the new knee and should concentrate on getting my weight down again so that they will operate as the success rate improves greatly the less strain (weight) that is put on it after the operation.

Sunday, 16 August 2009

Another Sweet Pea Shawl

When I need a shawl for a present in a hurry I always turn to the Sweet Pea Shawl from Stitch n Bitch The Happy Hooker book. It starts at it's largest width and then decreases with every row. It is a fairly easy pattern to follow despite the repetitive wrist aching triple trebles. I am using some Woolcraft DK.

The flowers are from a plant that The Knitting Noras bought for me last year after my spinal operation. When it died I put it outside in it's pot as it appeared beyond revival. Imagine my surprise this year when I realised that not only was it growing leaves again but also it was flowering once again.

I was going to try to mow the law today but although it hasn't rained it was so dull and miserable that I just didn't feel like it so I stayed indoors and started the shawl instead.

Saturday, 15 August 2009

Last of Veronica's baby Jackets

Today is what you might call a blustery day. I finished off the last of the matinee coats for baby Veronica and battled my way through wind and thrashing rain to the Post Office. I was almost a shop lifter in there. I picked out the right size Post Office box and then packed everything inside it, sealed it and wrote the address on. I went to the counter to get it weighed and to pay for the postage. I was walking away from the counter when I remembered that I hadn't paid for the box. Oops. Luckily I remembered in time. Whew.

I have looked at the photo of the lilac matinee and realised that I have buttoned it up wrong and the sides don't match. As it is on it's way to Liverpool I can't take another photo so you will just have to imagine that everything is OK. I made the little beanie hat with the rest of the pink lustre wool that I had used for her cluster stitch matinee coat and other hat. I crocheted a flower and added a ready made ribbon rosette with small beads in the centre.

The dark green flowered cardigan is one that I started a very long time ago and when I found the WIP the pattern was missing. It was in a book of Sirdar children's garments but it has gone stray. I have compromised my making plain sleeves. I remembered that the pattern also had flowers on the sleeves but I wasn't in the mood for trying to make new charts for flowers to finish it off. I just hope that it fits Veronica's big sister. If it doesn't then they will have to save it until the baby grows into it.

The rain has stopped but it is still blowing up a storm here. I was going to mow the lawn but I will wait until the grass dries out a bit - maybe tomorrow.

Friday, 14 August 2009

Things That I Found in my Loft Today

You might wonder why I am showing you my lines of washing today. They are a whole wardrobe full of clothes that I found packed away in my loft.

Before I retired from work my son and daughter in law had a delay between selling one house and moving into another and rather than rent somewhere for an indeterminable length of time they camped at my house. I had to make space for them in a hurry and so put away all of the clothes that I didn't desperately need for work to make wardrobe space for them and my step grand daughter. This bag must have been left still stored away when I got back to normal when they moved back out again. My ex husband would say that it proves that I have far too many clothes if I hadn't missed this bag. I opened it all up and of course it was like treasure trove to me as I haven't seen this stuff for years. I have a new wardrobe in my eyes as fashion has passsed me by these days.

I haven't, of course, tried any of them on as they all smelt a bit musty but as they came from an era when I was at my heaviest they should fit me easily with my extra weight gain. I have counted 9 pairs of trousers, 7 Blouses, 3 Skirts and 4 skirt and blouse sets (Hyacinth Bucket style!) A lot of these clothes were bought from Evans and Ann Harvey and there is even a Oui Set outfit in there. Much better quality than I buy these days so I am really pleased. I found all of these when I went in search of a pair of decent black pants that I knew I still had but could not find anywhere.

I wanted another pair of decent black trousers to wear for my weekend away and didn't feel like spending any more money as I have loads of trousers but most of them are a wee bit tight. I wanted to be comfortable with having two days of travelling on a coach and not squashed into trousers with a too tight waistband.

I am not looking forward to a mammoth ironing session but will enjoy my little fashion parade later.

I have almost finished off the lilac matinee coat and have also found a couple of cardigans in my stash of already knitted things. the knitted cardigan will fit the 5 yrs old and the crochet cardigan will fit the baby in a few months. I need to get them all parcelled up and taken to the post office once I finish the coat and the matching bonnet. I will post photos of these tomorrow.

It looks rather like rain so I hope that I manage to get my washing dried before the heavens open.

Thursday, 13 August 2009

Thanks Everyone

Thanks to everyone who has sent me such lovely comments via e mails, Ravelry and phone calls about my amateur impromptu photo session with a web cam. I am glad that you all think as I do that brighter colours suit me. Today's photo is courtesy of Cat, a lovely Ravelry lady (Byhook) from Idaho, who read my blog and took away the ugly background of my photo and changed it and gave it quite a Gone With The Wind look. I felt quite a Southern Belle and all that was missing was my crinoline. All I need now is a modern day Rhett Butler. I am looking forward to wearing the shawl when I go on Julie's 40th birthday weekend.

I have been having a lot of down days lately for one reason or another and so I feel quite uplifted with everyones kindness. Much appreciated folks.I had a message on Ravelry from a lady that I had not previously spoken to and she said I had a smile that lit up a room and she would love to sit and chat to me as I was so full of life. I was so touched when I read that, it really made my day. Thanks Maureen. I would love to sit and chat to you one day also. You also sound like my kind of people.

I found out later that Granada TV came to interview the rest of the Calendar Girls at the photo shoot but as Deb and I were the first to get photographed we had been flashed and dispatched before the camera crew crew arrived. I knew nothing of their impending arrival but C'est La Vie I suppose. I hope that the other Calendar ladies enjoyed being interviewed. I know that I would have. It's not often that I get some excitement in my life.

One of my friends from the King Arms Knitters is starting photography courses so maybe I should join and be able to take better photos. If you are on Facebook she is Louise Bolla on there.This is the message that I got from her today

Basic Info
Type: Common Interest - Activities
Description: My name is Louise and I'm an experienced photography tutor.

I teach photographic skills 1-2-1 so you can get the most out of your camera and take great photos, you choose the time and the place.

As well as being a skilled photographer, I have an art background so can give you creative projects if you want to broaden your interest in photography.

I tailor the tuition to your individual needs and wants so you get the most out of your sessions.

I am also willing to take groups for a discounted rate; whatever works best for you.

Please contact me on: 07958 050 730
or email:

I also work as a photographer specialising in taking photos of artists work. This is the group:

Contact Details
Office: 07958 050 730
Location: Manchester, United Kingdom

Recent newsI have special offers at the moment:

£15 for the first session you book with me (usually £25 for an individual session).


£80 for a 4 hour (4 week) course (usually £100).

It all sounds very tempting Louise I shall have to dig in my coffers and count up the pennies.

I haven't done much knit or crochet this week as you can see. I have barely started the 4ply white knitted baby cardigan and have started a lilac crocheted baby matinee for baby Veronica in a larger size as the ones that I have made for her so far will not fit her for long. I hope to get a move on tonight as I would really like to post my parcel off to them by Saturday.

I had this message from my nephew in law asking me if I had anything to do with this knitted graffiti
I said no but maybe it was the work of other knit club members. Now let me think did any member go to Sydney on holiday this year?

Time for some dinner then I think it will be nose to the hook tonight. I just hope that I don't fall asleep as I did last night. One minute I was enjoying CSI and the next minute it was 1.30am and I was asleep with hook in hand. Sign of an old dodderer or what?

Wednesday, 12 August 2009

Photo shoot

The day of the photo shoot for the calendar arrived at long last. My niece gave me a lift down to the studio otherwise I would have been travelling by public transport without underwear (strap marks).Not a thing I would have relished. Plus with the trams not going across the city centre anything the other side of town to me is a bit of a ball ache.

The studio was light and bright but I was slightly disappointed in that I wanted to wear this shawl but it wasn't suitable for the shots so I wore a pale lilac shawl which although beautiful (I made it!) is a bit pale for my colouring. Anyway the photo is going to be in black and white so I don't suppose that matters anyway. I have seen photo shoots on TV and they take dozens of photos saying turn your face this way and head this way so I felt like I was just getting started and into the swing of things when the photographer said "That's it" after just 3 shots. I just hope that one of them turns out OK. Normally when I have my photo taken, out of a dozen photos I only get one that is half way decent. I just hope that I am smiling and haven't got all of my chins showing in the photo!

When I came home I decided to make my own calendar girl photos wearing my shawl which is bright, bold and brash - Add in blonde and hey I just described me! I made a flower closure for the shawl and another one for my hair. Olay! Sorry they are not studio quality but one does the best one can with a web cam. My ex husband called around this afternoon so I suppose I could have asked him to take the photos with my normal camera but I doubt if his new wife would have approved but at least I would have had a better background. Since I changed to Windows Vista the photo edit is rubbish and I can't change the background as I could when I had the Windows XP. Another reason I don't like Vista. So many things are missing from Vista that were standard on XP.

The shawl is All Shawl by Doris Chan but with a variation copied from dkmoyer from Ravelry. I made the shawl as the pattern and made the bottom flounce in red. Counted 4 rows up and made another flounce (less pattern repeats of course) in burnt orange. Counted a further 4 rows up from the orange flounce and worked a gold flounce. I can't tell you how many pattern repeats I did for the other two flounces I just gauged it as I went along.

Knitting and crochet has been at a dead stop this week so I must get the whip out and tell myself Mush Mush tonight. Or maybe I will just wear my shawl and dance - Olay!

Tuesday, 11 August 2009

Flamenco Shawl

I am making an All Shawl by Doris Chan but as I saw from a fellow Ravelry lady it can be made flamenco style by adding more ruffles. Since these photos were taken I have added a third ruffle. The colours are not as bright as they appear on the photos. The bright Orange is more of a burnt orange.

I have finished most of the shawl and until 5 minutes ago it was happily blocking outside in the sunshine as it has been quite a lovely day today. Then it suddenly went very dark and down came the rain and I had to rush to rescue the shawl and my washing from the downpour. Hopefully I can take more photos of the shawl tomorrow when it is completed. It has gone too dark now and so the colours will appear even brighter with the flash.

Last night I started another baby matinee coat in Lilac for new baby Veronica when I was at the Knit Club in the Kings Arms Salford but it is so dark in there that I am seriously considering ordering one of those lights on a headband from Tesco that are meant for handymen and wearing it whilst I crochet in the snug. Someone worked out for me that 4.41kg was around 9lbs 11 ozs so she is quite a hefty young lady so I am making this matinee coat a larger size.

I have decided that I am not a girly girl. I just cannot master the art of painting finger and toe nails. I am OK with painting a skirting board or a door but fiddling about with midget brushes is not my thing. I am too impatient anyway and ages after I think everything is dry I still manage to ruffle up the varnish. Sigh. Perhaps I was never meant to be ladylike.

I have just come back from my 4th visit to the osteopath. My knee is still sore but it is slowly getting a bit better but as my niece pointed out yesterday with all the degradation of my knee I am only postponing the inevitable by waiting 6 more months to decide whether to have a new knee. I discussed it with my osteopath and he said that I do need to be slimmer than I am at the moment to make the operation a success so I think I should concentrate on improving my walking and than maybe going back to water aerobics when I can walk from the station to the Leisure Centre. Improving my overall fitness will help to shed some pounds. I am not eating any more than I used to I have gained weight purely by being so inactive over the last 12 months since my spinal operation. When I wasn't walking about then I know that I should have been eating less but that is OK in theory but not in practise. I still felt as hungry as I used to and found it next to impossible to cut down. Plus I think that the more often I was in the house the more I looked for something to eat. When I was out and about or doing the garden food went to the back of my mind but when I am watching TV and crocheting then food comes to the front of my mind. The TV adverts don't exactly help. There is a food advert every commercial break so it enters my subconscious mind that I need food when I don't.

Monday, 10 August 2009

Back to Rain Again

I am so glad that I chose to spend as much time as I could outside yesterday as I woke up to rain again this morning. I was toying with the idea of giving the grass another mow and trimming the hedge today if it had stayed fine but the rain came. What a shame I can't do it and now I will just have to do some housework instead. No - wait a minute I will have to knit or crochet instead. I did the housework last week I don't want to get too houseproud do I? I will just settle for a quick runaround with the hoover instead.

I have made another Baby It's Cold Outside. I am working my way through my oddments slowly but surely. This jacket may be a bit small for it's intended little person but as Sylvia fosters I am sure it will come in handy for her next little foster person.Sylvia, I will cure you of your stripe hatred one day. Sorry but I had to stripe it as I was running out of wool. I only had 100 grams of Patons Diana and the jacket needs about 150 grams.

The 4ply baby knitting hit a stop. I found that I was not enjoying the pattern stitch. It was one of those patterns where I felt I was making a lot of effort for something that just didn't show. I knew that it would be destined for the never to be finished WIP basket so I unpicked it and started it in a different easier to remember stitch. The baby's mum doesn't knit and hasn't seen the pattern so she will be none the wiser. I decided long ago only to knit and crochet things that gave me pleasure. If a pattern starts to really annoy me and I know I won't finish it then back it comes and I use the yarn for something else. Life is too short to make things I don't enjoy.

My friend's baby girl still hasn't put in an appearance. Her Daddy texted me and said they had a check up on Friday and she is showing no signs of being ready to be born, despite being overdue, and is fine and healthy. I think the hospital are going to revue the situation today as she is now about 12 days overdue. I won't get too see her for a while as they live in Liverpool now.

I am hopefully going to the Kings Arms Knit Club tonight and must take my needles with me as I have to knit the letter Y for a knitted poem. I got the pattern last week but as my stash didn't have any 100% wool DK in two colours I have not been able to start my letter. Rachael has got some wool for me so I can start tonight. I can't wear wool(except on my feet) so my stash only contains oddments of pure wool in sock thickness.

ETA - I have just had a text from Daddy - Veronica has made her appearance very late last night weighing in at 4.41KG so it's a good job that none of my cardigans are small! Mum, Dad, Baby and Big Sister are all doing well.

Wanders away to covert 4.41KG into pounds!

Saturday, 8 August 2009

Baby It's Cold Outside

Don't worry - the weather has not suddenly turned Arctic in Manchester. The blog title is the name of these two baby jackets. Baby It's Cold Outside is a free download by Julie Holetz available through Crochet Me and you can find it by clicking on my blog title or through Ravelry.

The blue jacket was made from a part ball of James C Bretts Marble Chunky and the pink one from some wool that Sylvia gave to me for the crochet bed cape I made from the Naked Calendar fund raffle. I think it is either a very thick double knit or a fine aran. The jackets are made all in one piece as you can see from the bottom photo so there is little stitching up (just the way I like it!)

I went to the hospital yesterday and I made the pink jacket in the waiting room whilst I waited. First they altered the waiting time to 1hr then 1 hr 10 followed by 1hr 30 and finally 2 hrs. I actually waited 2hrs 40 mins in the waiting room and a further 10 mins in the cubicle. There was no water fountain or any newspapers so I felt like the entertainment there as I knew a lot of people were watching me. One old lady said you will have that finished before you get to see the specialist. I said "Have it finished, I should have brought another ball"

When I finally saw the specialist I didn't say at first that I had been seeing the osteopath I thought I would let him have his say first. It was a different guy again (I never see the same person twice) and he looked at my knee scan results and said there is nothing more that we can do for the knee as it is now. It is so badly degraded with arthritis that the only option is a new knee. Well considering what I have been through since March I am not in a rush to do anything hasty. I then told him that I was seeing an osteopath who was working wonders and told him exactly what I thought of the hospital physio dept. He has given me an appointment for 6 months so that I can make up my mind what I want to happen next. I have always thought of a new knee as the last resort and if I can manage a while longer without having the operation then I will. I am very hopeful that with a few more osteopath sessions my knee will be much better. He has got me walking (albeit still in some pain) and the knee feels better with each day that passes.

I have not made any progress on the 4ply baby cardigan and I don't take knitting to the waiting rooms as they are always crowded and I need more elbow space to knit than I do to crochet.

I am off to do some food shopping now and for once I am not dreading the walk to Tesco. I still have to take my 4 wheeler trolley, of course, as my back will never be up to carrying a week's shopping.

Thursday, 6 August 2009

A Little Sun Today

I sat out in the garden for a little while today as Shhhh we had a bit of sunshine. Unfortunately it didn't last long but at least it didn't rain. it is probably saving the rain for tomorrow when I am going to the hospital. I have a check up for my knee with my specialist. I will be bending his ear over the uselessness of the physio department they have there. They wouldn't last two minutes if they had to earn their own living in the private sector. No-one would pay for the kind of treatment and diagnosis that they hand out there. I can't imagine anyone would pay for treatment and be happy with a ten minute question and answer session and then being given a piece of paper with exercises on (with some crossed out as they don't apply to a knee injury)

I started the 4ply baby cardigan but as the sun was shining my needles soon became sticky and squeaky so I had to give up after 8 rows. I like knitting with finer wool when it is something small but I will have to knit it in and between my crochet as my arthritic wrists really don't like the knitting action these days. They get very sore after a few rows. This baby isn't due for another 6 weeks so I have plenty of time.

I managed to do some crochet as my hands don't get sticky when I use a hook. I am still working on an All Shawl in black which will have a coloured edging. I may have more to show tomorrow.

I just hope that I don't have a two and a half hour wait to see the specialist like I did last time. I must remember to take some knit or crochet with me just in case.