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Doctor Mambo

3 Feb

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This little heartbreaker arrived on Saturday. He is a 4 month old Cavoodle (cavalier spaniel x poodle). His name is a compromise – Boyo wanted to call him Mambo, and Sasquatch wanted Doctor – which is already being shortened to Doc. He is amazingly friendly and well-behaved, and has adopted us all without any dramas. The boys think he’s fantastic, but don’t quite know how to handle him yet. This morning he goes in for his final round of shots, after which he can go to the park, and to puppy school and the boys can show him off to all their friends.

Catching up.

2 Aug

While I’ve been spending a fair bit of quality time with my new stove, there have been other things going on around here as well.

My in-laws came to visit, bringing with them a couple of dwarf fruit trees (peach and nectarine), to get our garden started. Before I could put them in, I had to dig out the somewhat overgrown garden bed and mix a bunch of compost into the heavy, clay soil, which, as Dr Bones pointed out, constitutes a fairly comprehensive workout.

fruit trees

My crack team of personal shoppers (AKA Dr Bones, Knightly Knitter, Tinkingbell and Zephyrama) came through big time, sending me everything on my Bendi shopping list:

ALL THE FLUFFY THINGS!!!

I’ve also been knitting, getting halfway through a pair of Nutkin socks,

CocoNutkinsas well as casting on a Vertex cardigan in the 4ply Cormo wool bought at Bendi 2012:

Wordpress really wants this pic upside down. I even tried turning it upside down in my folder, but it liked it that way.

WordPress really wants this pic upside down. I even tried turning it upside down in my folder, but it liked it that way.

And there’s been this, which is making me ridiculously happy:

happyThe house is also taking shape; next week we have an electrician coming to replace the stupid, expensive-to-run so-called “low voltage” downlights with more efficient compact fluorescent units, and put in some extra power points. Because we can do that sort of thing now.

What we’ve been doing.

7 Jun

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We bought a house.

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Four bedrooms on a 1/4 acre, with a humongous shed, room for dogs and chooks and a veggie garden.
We’re currently buried under a mountain of boxes, but as we sort things out I’ll share more pics.

Simple pleasures.

21 Feb

The other day, I broke out a new toothbrush. And I’m standing there, brushing my teeth and thinking, “This is ridiculous, something as small as a new toothbrush should not be making me this happy!”. And that got me thinking – why not? Why should I only look for joy in the big stuff? So today I give you a (by no means exhaustive) list of things that make me happy out of all proportion to their size or importance:

  1. A new toothbrush.
  2. Freshly painted toenails
  3. Crisp white cotton sheets
  4. Newly sharpened pencils
  5. Thick fluffy towels
  6. Bread, fresh from the oven
  7. The first sip of coffee in the morning
  8. The smell of rain on a hot day
  9. Cherry tomatoes

So, what have you got to add to this list?

Undercurrent, et al.

5 Jul

Again, I’ve been having difficulties getting to the blogging. Had another exam on the 29th, for which I over-prepared (I can be a little obsessive – Boyo had to get it somewhere), so I’m feeling fairly confident about it. There’s a 4-5 week marking turnaround, so I’ve only just got the last results back – 86% on the exam, 92% on the assessment project, and an overall high distinction for the unit.

Anyway, on to the knitting: first up, Undercurrent (as usual, all links are Ravelry-links).

With an almost unanimous vote of “bigger is better”, I have sewn on the buttons. Part of the reason for my lengthy blogging silence is that every weekend, when I’ve had access to both daylight and a husband to wield the camera, it has rained. In fact, last weekend we had snow. So even though I’ve been wearing it all the time, there’s still no modelled pics. Finally, this morning I decided to just spread it out on the floor and take pics that way, so I can post this and move on. Hopefully, I’ll manage to get some pics of me in it at Bendi.

Anyhoo, here ’tis, my beautiful Undercurrent cardigan, overflowing with stripey Noro goodness. It’s so soft! And warm! And every other good thing! I will most definitely be knitting with Silk Garden again.

The Vital Statistics

Cast On: 22 July 2011
Cast off: 19th January 2012
Finished: 10th June 2012
Pattern: Undercurrent, by Lisa Kay for Knitty, First Fall 2011
Yarn: Noro Silk Garden, colourways 8 (blue-green-purple) & 84 (red-orange-pink), bought at Bendigo S&W 2011
Needles: 5mm Knitpicks Options, nickel-plated interchangeable circular
Modifications: None
Notions: 8 x 23mm natural shell buttons

Moving right along, I have also (finally!) put the finishing touches on my Cloud Chaser cardi/vest/thingy. The delay on this was three-fold: a) I ran out of yarn, so had to modify the armhole treatment (pattern called for 10 rows of k1 p1 rib, I ended up going with 2 rows purl), which first required b) a lengthy sulking/thinking process and c) I got distracted by other knitting. However, yesterday while sitting by the phone/computer waiting for contacts from auto-wreckers who were hopefully trying to find me a car part (more on that later), I picked up and worked the armholes, and here it is, blocking its little heart out in front of the heater (I’ve woven in those ends since taking this pic):

The Vital Statistics:
Cast On: February 24, 2012
Cast off: July 4th, 2012
Pattern: Cloud Chaser by Amy Singer/Indiknits.
Yarn: Cleckheaton Natural Cotton 8 ply, colour #004 (a very soft green); 10 x 50g balls
Needles: 4.5 mm Knitpicks Options interchangeable circular
Modifications: Added some length in the body, worked some of the edging in garter stitch rather than rib, 2-row purl armhole edging.

And of course, with all the finishing, there’s new projects on the needles:

Foxhollow, cast on June 11th (the day after I finished Undercurrent), is already waist-length, with sleeves. Now I basically just keep knitting ’til I run out of yarn. And there’s still plenty of that laying about – this yarn is the Neverending Packet of TimTams.

Finally, while stuck in Orange with the boys the other day, waiting for the auto-electrician to pronounce on my car, I cast on for a Calorimetry. I made one of these little lovelies several years ago, out of some beautiful lavender handspun that the most excellent Knitasha gave me for Christmas in 2007, but it never really worked for me – my hair was a cantankerous beastie when it was long, and the dreamy softness of Becky’s handspun didn’t really stand a chance. But I’ve been wearing it a lot since I cut my hair – it keeps my head warm, my hair out of my face while I’m studying, and I think it looks pretty cute, too. So I’ve decided to make a couple more out of the leftover Noro from my cardi. This is how much I got done during a leisurely morning tea and an hour at the library.

Finally, we got the call to tell me that my vehicle speed sensor needs replacing (click for an explanation of what it is and what it does, if you’re interested – I wasn’t until quite recently), and that because my car is a Proton, a new part is going to be hard to find and expensive (never again will I choose a car based primarily on cuteness!). So I spent all day yesterday emailng and calling various wreckers, in hopes that somebody would have one. Finally at almost 5pm, I found a guy in Sydney who had one, and it’s on its way here. All things being equal, I will be ready to roll in plenty of time for Bendi (knock wood, light a candle, wave a circle round it thrice).

The Problem With Cathedrals…

27 Mar

…is that there’s too damn many of them! This morning, I was part of the school choir’s ferry service down to Bathurst for a combined schools musical workshop at All Saints Cathedral. Anyone who knows me even a little bit knows what happened next.
I got lost.
I thought I knew where I was going. But I went to the Catholic cathedral instead of the Anglican.
I tried using Google maps on my phone, but it tried to send me over to Kelso.
I even asked for directions at the Tourist Information Service (’cause I have the chromosome that lets me do that, you know), but the woman there sent me right at the lights when I should have gone left (and I double checked with her. She definitely said right).
Finally, the school called me and gave me directions that worked, and I got my three charges to the right place, only 40 minutes late. And now I sit here in my favourite cafe, drinking the Coffee of Shame, eating the Muffin of Embarrassment.

Business as usual.

8 Feb
  • Sasquatch went back to school this morning. He still has a bit of a cough (which can turn into a full on hack-’til-you-gag extravaganza if he overdoes it), but the doctor assures me that this is normal, and the ‘post-Whooping Cough cough’ can go on for a couple of months after the infection is cleared up (oh, joy).
  • You have never seen a kid so eager to go to school. He was completely ready, backpack on, standing by the door by 8.30am. Then he had to wait (more or less patiently) while Boyo dragged his feet and generally wasted time until 8.55, when I lost my cool and started shouting.
  • After that, I had a nice quiet day, pottering about the house, and the TV did not go on at all.
  • I even got to use the new iPod dock I got for Christmas, which has barely seen any use because school holidays + rain + boys = what’s the point in even trying to listen to music?
  • The Hop, Skyp socks are up to the heel flap. I do love knitting with the STR yarn – it’s just so sproingy and round. It makes my fingers happy.
  • The Crazy Zauberball socks will have to be ripped back, because the all-over cable pattern has no elasticity at all, and they won’t go over my heel. I even gave them a good hard blocking to see if that would loosen things up. It did, but not enough.
  • Tech Support got home from his business trip just in time to go and pick the boys up from school, so this evening everybody is back where they belong.
  • Sasquatch has announced that he wants to be in the school band. He wants to play the saxophone. He promises to practice every day.
  • This weekend I will be buying noise-cancelling headphones.