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February 2006
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April 2006

Yes Virginia, there is a cold snap in Hell!!!

Yesterday I was so tired I wanted to cry by them time the day was over : and we won’t even talk about the custard powder explosion in my car…….

I went to the Knitting Coven. I had a lovely time, we talked and laughed and shared. I went to town, and then to the Madcages for tea, but I was feeling pale and fragile and slow by them. Last night I could hear my pulse beating in my ears before I fell asleep and I slept till 8-50am, and only woke once to let The Labradors out. I feel the same today and although I had to go out to buy Dog Food, I am resting and knitting : cups of tea with lemon and sugar!!

Www_sock_competition Four of the Knitting Coveners have made socks and here they are before they were parcelled up to be sent. It was like a military operation to fill in all the forms and obey all the rules. We were all stymied by the Categories into which we should enter out socks, and in the end we just guessed!!! See how I have blocked my socks into submission, mine are the dark green ones on the right. I made cardboard sock blockers!!! Can you buy real sock blockers here in Australia???

Sharon had been to the knitting shop (KN&W)and bought some of the new Cleckheaton Country Silk, it is divine and she is making some bags with it..and she had some hats she had knitted.

Sandra D was knitting away furiously with grey yarn ….she is much more dedicated than me, I talk too much!! It was Margaret’s birthday….she is 1.25 scores old and she is onto the foot of her sock!!!!!

Cathy had been knitting away industriously as usual, and  made tiny socks and cardigans and a clever bag that is almost complete. My_new_nameless_so_far_cardigan

Katt has been dyeing wool, and it looks very professional!! It is so lovely and she gave me some as a present!!! You can guess which one it is if I say it is of course green, 2 greens and one of the April Project Spectrum colours!! It is 2 or 3 ply and I will be making something lace!! Thank you so much  Katt!!

Suzi is up to picking up stitches for the gusset of her sock. I think we have all given up on the mini-sockettes from Yarn Magazine #1. The pattern is just boogelly!! It had an error and several ambiguous instructions.

After this I accidentally had to go to KN&W and buy a pattern book and enough of the Country Silk to make this cardigan!! Of course I chose the green colour, and I have changed the pattern slightly. I made a provisional cast on and then knitted the two rows together to make the picot edging, and I am also doing 20 stitches of rib at each side to add a little shaping. It looks boxy in the diagram..and I go, well, in and out in a curvy fashion. I have learned from my Zhivago cardigan that I overestimate my size, so I am New_yarn_magazine_2 making the 12-14. I know, this sounds far too small, but my tension is exactly right and I have measured it on some other tops and it seems OK!!!

See the cover of the lovely Yarn Magazine #2??? Very Eastery!!

Yes, Katie!!

Hell must have frozen over for me to be making things in colours other than green!! I hope I have appeased the Goddess of Green with my new silk wool. Look at Katie's socks - she dyes the wool and then knits it up!! Very fishy!!!

ACMA has raised $120 with the biscuits for the Relay for Life Cancer thing. This is a very good result!!! Here are photos of her lovely choc-chip biscuits, my MnM ones and the recipe, should you choose to make some!!!

Choc-Chip BiscuitsAcmas_chocchip_biscuits

  • 180g butter, softened

  • 220g brown sugar

  • 1 tspn vanilla extract

  • 1 egg Mnm_biscuits_1

  • 300g plain flour

  • 1 tspn baking powder

  • 1 cup choc-chips, or other chocolate lollies

  • 1 cup of nuts if you so choose

Preheat oven to 170*C and grease and line trays.

Cream butter, sugar and vanilla, then add the egg and mix quickly to combine. Fol in the sifted dry ingredients and the chocolate/nuts. If it is sticky, refrigerate for 20 minutes or so.

Roll into balls, about 35-40g each, and flatten. I fitted 8 on a tray, ACMA’s were 50g and she only fitted 6. Bake for 8 minutes, swap trays and swivel them round. Check after 6 minutes., They should be golden brown on the base. You will soon work out if you need to cook them a little longer, or a little less!! Cool on tray for 5 minutes and then on a rack.

Makes 24 medium or 18 large biscuits.

Foxy Kath'n'Kim Knitting!!!

No sooner said than done!! I went to the Black-Spot-of-Doom-Light  shop where they have removed the chair!! I asked they Licorice_allsorts_scarfbring it back and so did the lady next to me with a gammy knee!! I bought yarn for the scarf – Liquorice Allsorts Scarf. I am using the Misty Garden pattern. This is not wool : it is Vixen from Moda-Dea and 100% acrylic, but how could I pass by the perfect colour combination?? It is black, much blacker than the photo shows, and then it has a second strand of gently merged rainbow colours that progress from red, orange etc through to indigo and violet.. This is nubbly and the black fluffy wool is, well, couched over the coloured one. I might add a few brightly coloured chunky beads, or will they just whip you in the face when the wind blows up the Mall in Hobart straight from the Antarctic??? I am making sure I start and end each row with a knit stitch so there is no rolling of the edges.

Last night I knitted a whole ball while I watched The Movie Show, The Einstein Factor and then Poirot. I was a tad disappointed with Poirot as you couldn’t solve the mystery as you didn’t get to see all the facts. I have started the second ball of the Vixen!!!, courtesy of the cool weather. My hands and arms are complaining as the needles are 5mm, albeit casein and forgiving. The Labradors aren't having a walk today, but we will go tomorrow. It is almost time for Elevenses, or in their case breakfast. They are having the end of the risotto and ordinary boiled zucchini. Yum yum!!

The Lovely Sharon has sent me an email of Doctorate of Technology proportions, and so I am going to attempt to add the Project Spectrum button to my sidebar. Thank you Sharon!! I thank you, Harki thanks you and Peri thanks you too!!!!

Project Spectrum

I have joiProj_spec1ned Project Spectrum. It is an ‘a-long’ thing.  Well not strictly, but it is about colours, and I love colours. The colours are the only rules really. Each month you craft something with the colour designated :

March - Red and Pink
- Orange and Yellow
- Green
- Blue
- Violet / Purple 
August - Neutrals / Black & White


Of course, May is the month I will have no problem with : Quelle Surprise!!!!! I am making something red for March : a Christmas embroidery I have made before, but I am easing myself into this challenge. Using colours other than Green is as Space to me : I shall explore strange new worlds; seek out new life and new civilisations;  boldly go where no one has gone before. I will be able to make 5 things for other people as I aReady_setm claiming the Green for myself!!!

Of course, I would have added a button to the sidebar : if only I knew how. I am a Luddite only when it counts. I have added Project Spectrum as a Category since I can't make a button in the sidebar!!!

So I have looked at red Christmas fabric, chosen 6 reds, cut them out, made Go

little plain squares, traced pattern and started stitching. I don’t want to do

this all in one day, so I have put it away now, and I will do some more

tomorrow. I need some thin wool wadding and backing and I already have beads for embellishments.

I am going to have to consider April carefully….. Orange and Yellow……

Eau de Chill

Ahh, the temperature has fallen his morning. When we went to get the paper from the Forbidden Zone, I could actually feel the cold air permeating my lungs and enveloping me in coolness. We are all feeling much happier. It is only 17*C. I made soup this morning : it’s cool and Autumn, and that  screams soup!!!! I made a Red Curry soup, and when I say made, I mean I made up the recipe too!! I like soup, it has lots of vegetables and vitamins and goodness, along with convenience and portability!!

I have thought of another movie that I have to watch till the end : You’ve Got Mail, or as I like to call it “Woodent_it_be_luvverlyYou HAVE Mail” , I sat on the couch this morning and cried my eyes out  while I watched the last hour. I am such a sook!!!

Yesterday ACMA and I went to breakfast and I bought a new top for $5!! Yes, that’s all it cost as I had a voucher for $20 and it was already on sale. It is a pale eau de nil or  muted turquoise colour. I need to make the v-neck lower and shorten the straps of the camisole, but otherwise it is great.  ACMA bought a very snazzy long sleeved New_top_and_peris_head_on_right_1T-shirt top and a smart zip up blouse with shantung-like subtle blue stripes. Then we went to the Black-Spot-of-Doom-Light and she bought beads to make key rings for  Mothers’ and Fathers’ Day at school and I bought green wooden beads to make a bracelet and some earrings. Apparently, if I don’t wash them , they  will be OK!!!

One Hippo sock is complete and now I am about to start the other. I do love these socks, both the pattern and the yarn. It is very weird that I am onto my very last sock : there are no more to be made, I have come to the end of my sock yarn for the time being.  I am thinking of knitting a scarf for someone. I have a short time. I need a quick pattern on medium sized needles, oh and some wool too!!! I might go to the aforementioned shop later on and buy some and make a start.One_hippo_sock I think I will make Misty Garden from ScarfStyle. It is knitted on giant 5mm needles!!!

If you were born after 1945 , you can see the song and album that were #1 on the day you were born. I have ‘I Remember You” by Frank Ifield. Sad to say, of course, I really like this yodel-embellished song, and he’s Australian too!! My album is ‘Pot Luck” by Elvis. I don’t know what is on this album, but I am a bit of an Elvis fan, especially young film Elvis!!!

The Premier is being interviewed on The National Interest on RN today. My word, he doesn’t come across well. He seems curmudgeonly and evasive and appears to be making very inappropriate comments about the candidates from other parties.  His PR skills are not his best attribute. You’ll be able to listen there I think. In the interest of fairness, you can also hear the opposition leaders, Peg Putt from The Greens( whose voice is not the most mellifluous but the content was OK) and Rene Hiding from the Liberals (tends to ramble and if he says ‘for all Tasmanians’ again I will scream!!))

Red Curry Soup


2 tbspn olive oil


3 or 4 tbspn red curry paste – or to taste


400g lean mince


2 litres chicken, beef or vegetable stock


500g bag of fresh stir fry vegetables from the supermarket

Add the oil to a hot heavy based large pan or pot and fry off the paste till fragrant. Add the mince and stir as it browns, so it is well broken up. Microwave the vegetables for 4 minutes and then add with the stock to the pan. Bring to the boil and then simmer for 20 minutes.  It makes 6 to 8 servings. You can add a dash of coconut milk and salt and pepper to taste.

Galileo, Galileo, Galileo, Figaro!!!

Swimming_harki_stalking_her_ball Yes, we are having a heat wave, a tropical heatwave…We are melting…….Hobart had a maximum of 34*C, 14* above average,  but it is only 22 today. We had 29 yesterday and it is 29  again today, and possibly tomorrow. Where is Autumn???

This morning I finally remembered to take the camera with me and so I have pictures of The Labradors swimming.  They had a very big Swimming_peri_and_her_wakeswim: Peri swam after her stick, Harki after her ball. Then there followed splashy frolicking. Harki was unnerved by a solitary floating thong (the footwear kind) and she stalked it as it floated to the left of her tennis ball.

In spite of the heat I managed to complete the Jaywalker socks this morning. They match, right down to the toe. I am so happy. It takes so little to make me happyJaywalker_socks!! Now I only have the Hippo socks to finish. I wore the Spaniel Socks this morning when I walked The Labradors. What lovely socks to wear they are. Very comfortable indeed.

ACMA has prompted me to add a proviso to my Commonwealth Games Knitting : if it is too hot I am not knitting. That’s it really. I can’t do the simplest things, let alone knit!!! And picture knitting at that too, something I have never done before!!

Knitabulous is having a trying start to the school year, so of course, I felt compelled to give her my opinion!!!!!  Two teachers at a school here were assaulted in the playground by a former pupil and friends at lunch time. I know I have had a chair, a tub of books and a variety of other things thrown at me, and been kicked, vomited on, sworn at etc in my time. Why do I still miss teaching??? I must be mad!!! Aunty Captain Mrs Archer bought a new Galileo Thermometer for her classroom, and it was 38*C in the room yesterday. Hers has more floaty Swimming_look_at_us coloured glass indicators. I have one too. They are very cool!!!

All The President's Men and Women....

Only one episode of TWW last night, so I was forced to do calculations. If each of series 4,5,6,7 and 8 have 22 episodes and they show the season openers as a double, that is 105 episodes. Let’s say they do show it every Thursday, then that’s over 2 years’ worth of The West Wing. I am very happy.

This morning we arose at The Regency House hour of 10-30am. It is hot already. It was hot already at 5-30am when I woke up too hot to sleep and had to start the cooler!! The Labradors immediately commandeered all the air space between me and it!!! Thank you to everyone wishing me well!! I am hoping those red blood cells might be popping out of my bones in droves as I type. If only there was a magic tablet…but there’s not!! So I will rest and recuperate and be positive!!!

Turning_the_heel I am almost up to the foot proper of the second Jaywalker. There are only 40 rows to go to the toe then. Cleckheaton has a new yarn, wool and silk, and a new pattern book. I shall be buying this and putting some of the green wool away ASAP. There are 3 or 4 patterns that I love!!!!!

There is nothing else exciting happening, which is good!!! I am making red salmon cakes for me – finally!!! I cooked the potatoes in chicken stock and when they are cool I will mix in the salmon, an egg and some red onion. The Labradors can have the skin and bones!!!

I have finished A Breath of Snow and Ashes, all 1000 pages , and now I am finishing Drowned Wednesday in preparation for Sir Thursday.

The Labor and Liberal parties have refused to take part in a leaders’ debate if The Greens are involved. Thanks to the ABC and their innate fairness, the debate will now not take place. “With me, it’s all or nothin’”….Oklahoma!!!

Wan Day at a Time

Well, I am still feeling tired, despite having just slept from 11am till 3pm!!! I slept all night till 8-11am and now another 4 hours. Rip van Winkle has nothing on me!!!  And I’m not in the least concerned I will lie awake tonight unable to sleep : it’s just not going to happen!!! I hope this pale and tired stage will pass by next Tuesday as I want to be alert and awake for the Knitting Coven.

Jaywalking_marathon_of_delight I have knitted more of the second Jaywalker sock. It has a very soothing pattern, there are no stitches to count or rows to count, it’s just a steady 2  row pattern and one of them is just all plain knitting!!!

In other knitting news, the March Magknits is up. I  think that designing socks is not a hard thing to do. It is like ‘designing’ a scarf. Once you have a basic pattern that fits you, you can adapt most stitch patterns or combinations to make them uniquely yours.

It is almost time for the new Yarn Magazine to appear and I have still not done any dyeing with jelly. I have found a site with a good self-striping tutorial Teddy_1here though. She makes it seem quite easy!! I still think this is something I will do this year : make my own sock yarn. I already have the yarn from the Bendigo Woollen Mill. 200g is enough to make almost 3 pairs of socks for me!!!

The Labradors had a wonderful walk today. It was all ears flopping and tails wagging, and Peri came when I called her even when there was the best smell of something ….dead ( I think)… and was most obedient. I think she is working her way up to a ‘naughty’ episode soon. Harki didn’t see any kangaroos ( wallabies)  and hopped into the creek hopefully, but it is still dry.

Today I have a photo of Teddy. Teddy lives with Mary and is, if you can believe it, more spoiled than The Labradors!! He is the cutest and the cuddliest little puppy!!!

I am drinking Russian Caravan Tea : weak with sugar, and eating homemade soup, even though it is 26*C.

Pale face and red skin both turn chicken*

Jaywalker_2_started I came over all pale and head-achy yesterday afternoon, so I went to bed and I slept, on and off, till 9 this morning. I still feel slightly muzzy. Is that a word?? The Labradors wanted me to get up and used their entire repertoire of getting up tactics : sitting on me, lying next to me, hitting me with their paws, bopping me with their noses, whining, staring pathetically…..all to no avail!!!

All I have done today is cast on for my Jaywalker and do the ribbing. Not much at all – Oh and I have read half of my 1000 page Diana Gabaldon book. I read fast. I read very fast!!!

I have the new Winter Vogue and I am too pathetic ( my word de jour apparently) to make a clicky link and I plan to pick up the new UK Simply Knitting tomorrow too.

I loved F Troop: 'Oh Wilton"......