Saturday, November 28, 2009

It's easy being green

With literally a teaspoon full of yarn to spare...

I finished the Fairy Godfather Shawl!

The sheen of the silk in the blend is impossible to describe in happy enough terms, so very pleased with the latest Damson. So much so that I took advantage of Knit It Up's Black Friday sale to purchase a little more Silky, this time in bright shades of blue. I also had that voucher from a few months ago burning a hole in my pocket!

Which means I should probably likewise confess to a yarn purchase at Enchanted Knoll Farm. The colours are deep and earthy, which is unusual for me (you might have noticed the parade of unabashed brightness), but a yarn called 'Wood Elves'? Seriously, how could I resist? And 'Fiesta', with its golden and plum highlights... lovely. It's a lace weight, so will have to give serious consideration to use.

I just have to decide upon an appropriate project to take to work on Monday... there's a long planning meeting for most of the day and the only way I think I'll retain a shred of sanity is to have my needles with me and a pretty yarn.

Okay, off to write about pumpkins!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

That last little bit of yarn...

I'm at that moment on the Fairy Godfather shawl. Will I have enough yarn for the last five rows?

I've been knitting away at it for the last couple of hours, a book propped on my knees. It is work. I'm reviewing the book. But I seem to lack the capacity now to do one thing at a time. I've found myself enjoying and absorbing the book much more while knitting. And I don't think I'm kidding myself. I've written far more notes since I picked up the needles... well... I haven't been writing notes and knitting at the same time, because I would need more hands for that, but I have been happily dropping the knitting (carefully, but on a circular, not so dangerous) to scribble a few words on a regular basis.

And tonight I'm cooking venison! I've had venison in Oxford and in a little town in Quebec, but never here at home... slightly nervous about it. I'm eating it with tasty baked organic potato and broad beans and peas from the garden.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

What's red and green?

Late today, I noticed a theme. I'm working on my Fairy Godfather Shawl (another Damson in Knit It Up's Mermaid silk/merino blend - there's a little streak of turquoise that glistens when it hits the light) and Bigby...

And then I went out to pick some broad beans to have with my dinner and it hit me.

Green and red! Thankfully I am getting a chance to enjoy some of the broad beans. A fortnight ago, the vegetable patch was looking so sumptuous, I had visions of a fantastic harvest. Then we had three very hot days and everything has drooped and browned. It's sort of disheartening.

It couldn't be helped

The moment I saw Ysolda's Peak Island Hood, I knew I'd found my reason to order Needle Food's Cranberry Worsted. Just look at that saturated colour!!

Yes, I know red for a hood is a little corny, but I don't care. It's going to be glorious. I adore the yarn, I love the project, and I have dubbed it Bigby, after my favourite character from Bill Willingham's Fables. He is the Big Bad Wolf, you know.

You can see my little wolf pendant there too... I bought that in Quebec. For some reason, it never gets old that when people admire it and ask where I got it, I get to say 'Quebec'. Incidentally, I had one of my all-time favourite holidays in Quebec. The food is utterly amazing - better than in France! - the people are the friendliest I've ever encountered in my travels, even when I was totally baffled by the dialect, and Quebec city is unlike any place I've ever been before. Most cities now tend to morph a bit into each other. Not Quebec. The river was frozen over!!! There were mad Canadians skating around ramps in the city. They were building an ice castle in the streets. My jeans froze one evening while I was wearing them. Okay, I love extreme cold, but seriously, a gorgeous city that is an odd mix of the best of Europe and the New World, so to speak.

Oh, and the breakfasts I ate... I was so stuffed! The B&B was being taken care of by some friends of the owner and they were having the time of their lives experimenting with recipes. I've never eaten that well... although, The Bear Inn in Hay-on-Wye comes the closest.

Speaking of food, the other night, with all the heat and the fact I had some avocados lying about not knowing what to do with themselves, I looked up some pasta recipes and cobbled together my own version. Ta da.

Admittedly, it looks a bit washed out in the photo, but it was delicious. If you need to be gluten free, Spiral Foods Fettuccine is glorious. You just cook up the pasta while you mix together avocado, a little lemon, balsamic vinegar, garlic, chopped cherry tomatoes and red onion (next time I'm going for spring onion, but I didn't have any then), salt and pepper. Yum.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Last night, I watched The Day After Tomorrow (the remote control was too far away, I was tired, and, besides, once I used the film in a lecture about first world/third world divisions, so I did get some intellectual currency from it). Is it bad that in my head, I was considering where I'd hibernate during a freezing storm and I figured the dining room with the fireplace was the obvious place, plus, there was the added bonus that that's where my stash is kept, so, of course, I'd never be frozen... I could knit mittens?

Speaking of stashes, the other week when our knitting group met up, we all brought along our Needle Food projects. Hopefully the rest of the group won't mind my sharing this shot, but it's so pretty!

That's my Lollipop in the foreground there (plus my sample from the Ewe Beaut Sampler, which I bought along for show and tell). It has since turned into... ta da...

The Perky Goth Shawl! It kept making me think of Abby from NCIS for some reason. I cast off a little tight again (I was fearful over what would happen to the little dog in The Day After Tomorrow - there's always a little dog in peril and I know the dog always survives... of course, it did also start me wondering if I'd be able to get my chickens inside in such a storm and whether they would stay in a box... probably not...). Nonetheless, it's another cute little addition to the cocktail lounge... and yes, it's another Traveling Woman. But small this time, so not identical to The Pretty Boy Shawl.

I also received my Knit It Up! Coraline cinema sock club package and it's glorious! The yarn is saturated colour and the extras are perfect, including the little key charm for a stitch marker. And there may just be enough for another Damson, because, can you have enough Damson shawls? Says the person who has just cast on another one...

I have a problem.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Nearly dinner time

I just picked some artichokes for dinner... now I just have to decide how to cook and eat them... I'm tempted to go quite plain. Maybe with a poached egg and toast?

My purple peas are on the vines too, now. I get a childish delight out of the purple pods! The peas inside will still be green, but the dark pods are glorious.

I'm reading a book on children's literature for review and still wading through the final papers that require grading, but there is some knitting that is oh so close to being finished...

No, not the orange juice Coraline. Although, that is proving to be excellent telephone knitting and is growing ever so slowly. I still love the colour.

But we'll see... I'm aiming to spend tonight coach potato'ing with Stargate Atlantis and the nearly finished WIP.