Five French Hens

At Christmastime I love all my presents, but there are always a few that make me have elbows and go 'Eeeeeeeee!!. This year MrsDrWho gave me a fabulous book: The Knitted Farmyard, and when I opened to the first page, there were five little chickens,(or four and a rooster. I'm not too bothered) We both had tiny paroxysms of delight!! It is is very cute and you can knit a whole farmyard with farmers, pigs and sheep and cows with udders and cabbages and a dog and a cat. And a pond. MrsDrWho was especially entranced by the pond!! We always label our gifts to each other with cryptic clues, so you have to try and guess what's inside. This book was labelled as a Potential OPAM  (One Project a Month) and I reckon if I knitted some each month I would have a lovely big farm at the end of the year.

Five french hens
I had a lovely time at MrsDrWho's mum and dad's on Christmas Day. Lots of delicious food and drink and pudding. I came home with a plum pudding in a cloth of my very own, a special small one. It just needs boiling up for half an hour. Peri and Gilly were so lucky, MrsDrWho found some kangaroo bones for them, as Peri is on her special diet. I cracked  with my hammer and they had half each. It is obviously pretty delicious!!!

Peri and her kangaroo bone
Gilly and her kangaroo bone
I have been feeling slightly better, though I have done very little. I have been resting and doing some sewing over the last week or so. I made MrsDrWho's WeeNephew a circular playmat/sack for all his Thomas the Tank Engine things. It has five or six kinds of Thomas fabric on the inside, and then his favourite colour purple on the outside. It has a drawstring and when pulled up, it holds quite a lot of trains. I made him a purple backpack too.

Thomas playmat sack
Thomas backpack
Backpack 2

My next door neighbour's name starts with an E so I made her an apron in the style of Masterchef, her favourite TV programme.

Mastercheffy apron

And today I sewed a little quilt for my aunt. My mum and my aunt are coming to visit for the day tomorrow, so I have been making coconut ice and shortbread as well as Bishop's cake!! I used some Saffron Craig fabrics, an assorted pack of five from Esme's, and just tie quilted at each corner of the centre patchwork. I put the other green tree fabric on the back, so it wouldn't go to waste.The Thomas play mat and this quilt are two thirds of my OPAM Goal, and so I just have The Very Hungry Caterpillar quilt left to sew.

Aunt's Quilt
This is always a very weird time of the year, I never know what day it is or what the proper date is either. It's a kind of yearly limbo and I'm looking forward to the New Year. I think I will write my Christmas Cards on Thursday, you never know. If the weather stays so nice and cool, I may even do some other jobs!! I am so happy it is cool, well, late teens, early twenties and sunny. Perfect Summer weather for us. People who would like it to be hotter should fly North to the mainland. Where it is either raining and there are floods or it is 40*C. There is an awful lot of weather about.

Chestnuts Roasting On An OPAM Fire

I didn't write anything for November's One Project A Month Goal because it was a secret, but I managed to complete it on time and I gave it to MrsDrWho last night. I made an Advent calendar Quilt for her, complete with treats!! Hurray. This month is the last month of the OPAM.

Advent opam
I haven't been doing very much else, it has been warmish, and I have had social outings. I did have my hair cut and for the very first time, I had my eyebrows waxed. MrsDrWho says this is a good thing as before I had slightly demonic arches. Here are some not very good before and after photos:

Before After
There, I look like a demented serial killer. It's hard taking a photo of one's eyebrows.  Be afraid, be very afraid. I can see my green TARDIS in one photo!!! Yes, pretty much demonic and my eyes are quite pointy. However, fat fills out your wrinkles: a beauty routine to which I subscribe in a big way.

Peri and Gilly had a swim yesterday. Peri loves to swim, she swims to Olympic standards, she swims and looks to the shore and smiles so happily. Gilly has never been swimming. She swims like Harki: once she realised that she couldn't touch the bottom, she panicked and came straight back in!!! I love how happy Peri is and how interested Gilly is, until she goes in!! Peri is a long way out, if I was my dad I would be calling her in: up to the ankles is far enough I remember. I have another video of Peri fetching sticks. I am a rubbish thrower but she is a fabulous Retriever. I'll save that for later on.


Peri and Gilly look so slim when they are wet.

Slim swimmers
When she has finished her swim, Peri likes to play with the last stick. It is the only time she every really plays enthusiastically, and for a long time, with a toy. She thinks it is the best game ever!! Gilly is once again amazed at all the Swimming Traditions Peri has.

Peri's swimming stick
Last night was the final Trivia and MrsValley's team, with her husband, sons and their partners won!! Our team was very happy to see them win. Congratulations!!!

Today I am having a rest, I am crocheting some gold stars and making  pincushion slash decorations. We'll see how that works for me!!!

The OPAM Busters

I met my Goal for OPAM this month. I almost met and exceeded it, hindered only by the loss of a lone Tennis sock. If I could have found it I would have knitted up the other sock, after all I found the wool but I have no idea where I wrote the pattern.

In October I completed the Mint Slice Socks:

Mint Slice

The Croc Socks:

Croc Socks

And last but not least, The Witchery ahh Socks. These are the Through The Loops' Mystery KAL. Thanks to DrBones' Leonie for mentioning them on her blog!! The Mystery name made me think of the Witchery song by The Little River Band. Which you can hear, here. There used to be a clothes shop called Witchery and I think the ad was written for them first and then lengthened into a song. I kept singing "Mystery aah, aah, aah".

The Witchery aah Socks are knitted on 2.5mm needles using the lovely Elizabeth from Wired for Fibre. There was a clue every Friday and I managed to finish these on the last Day of October. They are being modelled on my sock blockers which I cut from my sewing machine box.

Witchery aah
I haven't set my goal for November yet, I shall have to think of what I want to do. I know people everywhere are waiting with bated breath to read what I am making!!!

Spring is here: windy and humid weather, then rain, then sun and now snow is forecast again. One day we go to the dam and there are no puddles, the next day it's puddly and one further day along and the puddles have disappeared. Lorelai Gilmore is skimming the best water from the top of the puddle. Peri's not so interested in the water, I reckon she was off somewhere rolling in something smelly because Gilly stops and looks over to where we had been.


When we stop at the shop on the way home from our walk, I can see The Labradors sitting in the back. There is some jockeying for position, I believe they both want to be in the middle to see what is happening ahead. I think Gilly is winning, but Peri looks happy. She's just a happy girl. I am giving her extra pats at the moment. Just because.

Mirror, mirror in the car Who are the cutest puppies by far

This afternoon I am going to do some sewing, I am making a Dalek Bag. I have a picture of a Dalek, so it's going very well so far. MrsDrWho has lent me two seasons of Psych so I may watch some of that while I sew.

Who's Minding The Mint Slices?

Another pair of socks for the OPAM completed and jolly nice they are too.

These are The Mint Slice socks, using the Old Knittery Cashmere Merino in my custom dyed Mint Slice colour. Using my usual personal sock pattern with 64 stitches and 2.5mm needles. I did 26 stitches of 2x2 ribbing on the back of the leg just because I wanted to. I love them: they are deliciously yummy and the closest thing to chocolate I am likely to have near me without feeling poorly.

Mint Slice Socks
Peri has been taking advantage of the warm sunshine in between the rain. I think she is still basking in the glory of her visit to the Vet and ensuing rump steak!!!

Peri in the sunshine
Gilly has been investigating the empty dog food bag. Notice how Peri doesn't really care that her sister is trapped in the bag. Also notice how after I 'saved' her from the bag, all Gilly was really interested in was getting back in the bag.

Gilly and the bag

Mrs Mauritius went on a holiday, if I could find the pertinent postcard I would put a picture here, and she went to the Hundertwasser Museum. She was amazed when I told her that Opal had manufactured sock wool in colours inspired by his art. I am knitting her a scarf in the lovely 5 or 6 ply Silver Spiral colour. I'm just doing a 1x1 rib with an even number of stitches and slipping the first stitch of every row. It's looking good so far.

100 waters scarf start
When the dollar was good I ordered some material from the Fat Quarter Shop. A Pure Charm pack to make a little quilt for my Aunt for Christmas,

Pure charm

and a Very Hungry Caterpillar panel and some material and flannel spots for Baby Electric.

Panel Spot flannel and fabric

MrsDrWho is so tired after a week of Learn to Swim that she has been laughing, a little maniacally I am afraid, at the latest Top 50 Jokes. She's also having trouble dressing herself. I would have though she would have had lots of training at LTS.

I still have my cold, but this morning when I woke up I could breathe, occasionally, through my nose. Big nasal breakthrough!!

Bloggy Book Club. The book I was most likely reading early this month was Don't Judge A Girl By Her Cover, Book 3 in the Gallagher Girls series. Unfortunately, I thought I had placed a old on #2, but Library Hold Placers can't be choosers and so I just read it. Yes, it's a YA book, a very YA book but I like it. It is amusing and witty and has twists and turns and a little bit of hard reality. The characters are a somewhat formulaic, but not too much and on the whole I am willing to overlook this for the amount of amusement I gained from the read. I have been reading quite a lot of YA lately: Todd McCaffrey, Terry Pratchett, Eoin Colfer, John Flanagan and Zizou Corder. I'm looking forward to the arrival of Book 2.

Now I am poaching some free range chicken breasts in lovely stock with garlic, chilli, onion, ginger, carrot, red onion and bok choy. Then I'll add the bok choy leaves and some rice vermicelli and chick peas for a restorative soup for tea. Tastes good, and is good for me!!

And Desi Harness in 'I Love Lucy'!!

The Labradors have their harnesses for riding in the car. They have been wearing them for a little while today. Peri is a star, she wears hers with great aplomb and style.

Peri's harness
Lorelai Gilmore tried to eat hers.

Gilly's harness
I have had a cold, a head cold, and it has been all Jane Bennett at Netherfield with only panadol to make me feel better. I spent most of the week in bed, sleeping, and The Labradors were OK for the first few days but then they really needed to go for a walk. We went for the kind of walk where one sits at a picnic table and one's Labrador companions run about happily.

Off we go

Yesterday Peri went to the Vet and donated blood for a sick dog.

Peri is so brave

Three, yes three, separate medical people came out to tell me how very good she was and how pleased they were with her. What a brave and good girl she is. Dr Jessica said that Peri should have rump steak to help her replenish her strength. So she did. I am so proud of her, she has become such a sensible girl!!!

Peri's rump steak treat
Gilly's new favourite thing to do is to lie down in the creek or the paddle pool, to get the benefit from the cool water.

Gilly's watery dip

Peri looks so happy in the pool and wearing her harness. They are going to wear them for a few minutes each day, it's only eight minutes in the car to the dam, and then they will try sitting in the back seat of the old car. We'll see how it goes.

Happy Peri and Gilly

There has been little knitting, I am up to the foot part of the second Mint Slice sock. Earlier this month I had in my hand my Tennis sock but not the rest of the ball of wool, then I moved things about TV/DVR wise and now I have the rest of the ball of wool, and no Tennis sock. Still, for OPAM I will have finished three pairs of lsocks, and that's not bad. If I could just find that sock......

Mint slice 2
The Typepad People have still not fixed the spell check and it is still difficult for some people to leave a comment. My help ticket says they are working on it. This does not augur well, as the last time they tagged a ticket this way, was 13 months ago and there has not been a resolution  as yet. I don't know why they have to upgrade something that was working perfectly well.

Now, I am off to bed for a nap, it's been a sunny warm day and I have stayed awake thus far. It's probable twelve to seven that Peri and Gilly could force themselves to have a nap too.

Oh I haven't talked about the book I was reading at the start of the month. I will catch that up next time.

I Could Not Wait To Be Tired Not Sound

You know it is time to get your act together when friends start emailing to ask if you are OK. I am OK, just tired: tired out from the regime of SSS daily posting, Daylight Saving and the juggling of drugs by my specialist.

Self Stitched September was great, but thinking about what to wear and then photographing it every day was a mammoth task. I am the person who can wear the same thing (washed) every day for a week if I am in the mood. As I am wearing the same thing this afternoon as I wore yesterday!!

Daylight Saving seemed fine at first, but then the weird time delay kicked in and I would lie there unable to sleep, wake late and not be home from walking The Labradors until lunch time.The repeat ad infinitum.

We are trying to decrease the amount of one of the drugs I take to keep me well. It has lots of horrid side effects and because my numbers are reasonable, it's the perfect time to try.  Of course fewer tablets means it is less efficacious. And I think I have had a dizzy woozy thing as well. Who knows??

So basically I have been meaning to post but it has seems such a gargantuan task that I have put it off, and had a nap!! Also, Typepad has been Upgraded and of course now things on their Compose page have stopped working. As is their wont, they always say the issue is at my end, but I am wise to their tactics and I know it is not. I am trying to keep up my Please Fix Things Campaign, and now their Engineers are Looking Into Things. The Firefox Spell Check won't work, and the Typepad checker is slow and not Australian, so please excuse any errors. I can spell, but I can't type.

There has been knitting:

Mint slice one One Mint Slice sock using the lovely Knittery cashmere sock wool, the nice thick one that Daphne specially dyed for me. Just a k2,P2 rib cuff, then I continued the rib for part of the back and part of the heel. I love the colours and the way they play.

These are The Through The Loops 2010 Mystery Socks, knitted with Elizabeth from the lovely Katie's Wired for Fibre.  Believe me, they are much greener than they look. There's aclue every week. I would have knitted the other heelflap and turn by now but I have broken almost two paxckets of the wooden 2.5mm needles. I need to buy some metal ones, but there are none to be had here. I wonder where the best place to buy them is??

Croc Socks

Finally MrsDrWho has her Croc Socks. I knitted myself a pair in plain green with the same pattern, meant to look like crocodile skin. It narrows to a point on the foot. Love the rainbow wool, clown vomit MrsDrWho calls it, dyed by Katt years ago. It is nice squooshy wool, and I love the pooling, different on each sock.

Baby irish's cardi
The Keating Cardigan for Baby Irish just needs to be washed and buttoned up, and it will be ready to go.

New shoes
New $20 shoes with four different greens!!!!


New to me TV from MrsDrWho's mum and a new HD DVR with twin tuners. It took me a day to move the old TV, SD DVR and VCR two metres to the left and then bring the TV from the dining room to the lounge room and set it up. I had a tiny failure to make my new DVR and TV communicate by MrsDrWho talked me through it. I can record two channels at once and watch another station too.  In our house we can now record five things simultaneously, at varying degrees of definition. I know, I have no life, but if there is ever anything good on TV it is all on at once.


MrsDrWho invited lots of people for Kebabs, she made a bazillion. In the same way, I have been whipping up a sponge every few days, and filling it will raspberries and cream, or here I brushed on some home made lemon syrup, lemon curd and the cream and a dusting of icing sugar on top. My new oven makes fabulous sponges.

Rainy Day Dogs
Peri has the perfect imprint of the exhaust on her front. Every time I try to wash it off she runs away. I think she thinks she has a cool tattoo. In typical Spring fashion we had a few days of torrential rain, snow down to 300m and a very cold change. Peri and Gilly loved the big puddles that appeared overnight. It was raining so hard the rain drops managed to get on the camera lens. Or maybe Lorelai Gilmore has a halo?? You can see the rain in the puddle. They were Very Wet Dogs and I was wringing wet too.

There, I think I have somewhat caught up now. I just made some individual sticky date puddings to take to MrsDrWho's. We are going to watch the third episode of a Farscape three-parter and Star Gate Universe. A happy afternoon. I will try to be back sooner, rather than later!!

Peter OPAM

When I was small, I had some Disney books which came with a little 45. You put the record onto the record-player and then when Tinkerbell spoke, you read along with the book. I had quite a lot. I loved them.

You will know it's time to turn the page when Tinkerbell rings her little bell like this, (ring)!!

Let's being now with September's OPAM.

I met my goal this month and it was to make a case for my new camera.

I followed this tutorial and used some lovely Kaffe Fasset material, two layers of cotton quilt batting and some of my Crazy Lime Skirt fabric for a lining. I quilted lengthways with green Perle thread and then around various circles as well.

I accidentally matched the pattern. I sewed a kind of bound button hole for the camera strap.

A case in point

I have named this The Tony Camera Case after Tony Curtis. Vale Tony, you handsome devil you!!! (google image)


Tony Camera Case
Peri Naughty and Lorelai Gilmore have been making the most of the newly exposed dirt in the garden. It soaks up all the heat from the Sun, so it is great to lie on. As usual, they got so hot they had to come inside.

Sunny Days

SSS Day 29

This is what I wore today. At 7-45am when I went to the supermarket, and for Morning Tea. Then I changed into my pottering around the house clothes.

Peri has been all put out because I was putting wool into zip-lock bags and it ruined her whole afternoon. She could sleep in her chair but she wanted me to stop moving about and putting things in different places. Peri digs holes.

Peri digs holes too
Lorelai Gilmore digs holes too but she doesn't look so guilty. She looks breezily carefree. Gilly isn't daunted by things being moved about either. Ah, the adaptability of the very young.

Gilly is always good
If I was sending Spam emails to someone, I would not use said person's email address. Come on, I would not be sending myself emails about, well, the things you are sending me. In my name. For heaven's sake, smarten up you Spammers. No, actually don't. I like it that you are not very bright.

In the Great Wool Zip-Locking I found three not quite pairs of socks. Happily, this can be my OPAM for October. One pair for MrsDrWho- Rainbow socks- and two for me- Tennis socks and an unnamed one..

Only one more day of Self Stitched September to go. I am hoping to finish my toile and wear it. I would feel happy with that. That's my small goal for tomorrow.

SSS Day 25

The day after you fall over is definitely more painful that the day you do. Still, I am feeling OK. It was a bit of a hindrance when I was trying to do up shoes, but MrsDrWho and the saleslady helped, and I acquired these:

Aqua shoes Pale green shoes

Two new pairs of shoes. The aqua ones matched what I was wearing today for Self Stitched September, so I bought them and wore them out the shop. The pale green ones are very cute and I think my Swirl socks will match them perfectly. I think I could even get away with the aqua ones in Winter on a cold but dry day. I will need a matching pair of socks for them too. Where are the green Summer sandals though?

Today we had an intruder in the garden. The Labradors were beside themselves. Peri had her hackles up and she was not happy.

Intruder Labrador
Peri hackles

In the end, Peri and Gilly's combined crossness saw the other Labrador off. My word, I have never heard so much cross barking!! You can just see the Intruder trotting off down the hill.

Intruder gone away
I bought Gilly a new toy. She is always very suspicious: it this a toy or a trick?? Once she has confirmed its toyedness she leaps about all over the house, squeaking the toy endlessly.

Gilly toy or trick
I finished my OPAM camera case so I 'wore' that as well. The camera is not inside because I needed it to take a photo. It's a button to be going on with though MrsDrWho predicts that once it's sewn on, it is The Button whether I like it or not!! More details on the case on the last day of the month.

KF Camera Case

SSS Day 24

I almost forgot to post today. Nothing new clothes-wise to see here though. I wore my cardigan today for Self Stitched September.

This morning when I was walking The Labradors I wasn't looking where I was going, I was looking ahead. They were on their leads because we were nearing the road. It's an internal park road but I still make them come and have their leads on. We walk the last ten metres and then they sit and wait to check for cars. Peri and Gilly weren't pulling and when I fell almost flat on my face, they didn't pull then either. They milled about waiting to see what I would do next. I felt OK then but it didn't take long until I began to feel all kinds of aches and pains!! I skinned my elbow through my polar fleece jacket too. Ouch!!

Elbow ouch

I must have imbued The Labradors with a zest for synchronisation. They are very good at it.

Sitting and looking
I have made a late start on my OPAM project for this month: a case for my camera. I bought a fat quarter of some green Kaffe Fasset fabric and I am using this tutorial as my inspiration. I interfaced and then added wadding. I hand quilted along straight lines and then I stitched around various circles along the centre. I am going to interface and quilt the lining before I do any sewing together.

Quilting the camera case
The Keating Cardi just needs to be seamed and washed. I finished all the knitting while I sat under my quilt on the couch this afternoon and watched the last two episodes of CSI. They have been sitting there waiting to be watched for weeks.

And now we are off to bed. When you are a a grown up and you fall over it is much farther to fall than when you are a child. I shall be carefully watching where I walk tomorrow.