Wednesday, August 31, 2011


Wee Davie is currently running around the room with a rattling ball. He is having the time of his life chasing it, batting it, carrying it. He's playing. Playing is great.

Why do we so often give up play as adults? We all know how important playing is.

These last couple of days, I've been playing.

I've been playing dress-up 1920s style with my new hat, knitted by my friend S (seriously, how adorable is this hat? I feel like I'm in an F. Scott Fitzgerald novel when I put it on!).

I've been putting on my bright blue shoes and striding about, clippity clop.

And I've gone to my first hoop dance class. It takes place in a dance studio and those mirrors are terrifying! But can I confess I was always a little envious of the girls doing rhythmic gymnastics? I couldn't do gymnastics. Tuck and roll? Impossible. Cartwheels? Not likely. But hooping doesn't necessarily involve all those gymnastics, just the cool stuff that I really wanted to do, like twirling hoops and skipping through them. I kind of stunk at my first class, but that's okay. It was the first class and at least I got the hoop moving. And I bought a sparkly green hoop to make myself look good while I stink at hooping! It was kind of fun carrying it home on the train. You do get the funniest looks.

I was just trying to convince Wee Davie to jump through the hoop, but he's not convinced. He's more a ball guy.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

And then there were two!

My Bingley is now ready to visit Pemberley! These are my favourite socks ever to knit. I adore them. It's been a wrench finishing them off. I may now have to frame them.

Just a quick reminder, they're knitted in Knit It Up Vivacious in the "Bingley" colourway to Kristi Schueler's Netherfield pattern. The yarn is super smooshy and a gorgeous golden shade. The pattern is filled with cute little details that can be a bit fiddly, but are definitely worth the effort. The match of names was serendipity.

Yesterday, I'd just started on the final leg and was frowning a bit at the yarn remaining. It looked like it'd be touch and go. After some nice, healthy tacos for dinner, I sat down to watch one of my favourite films, Hatari!, and then, as the ball of yarn steadily dwindled, I just kept on knitting, convinced that if I stopped, I would run out of yarn.

Just after midnight, an old Bing Crosby and Bob Hope film on the television, I was done.

And I had this left over:

Yep, don't know what I was worried about!

Thursday, August 25, 2011


Look, S! I did it! I did the second heel of my Netherfield sock all by myself! For those who didn't know, I made an awful mess of the first heel some time ago and S kindly fixed it all and knitted through the heel so I'd actually finish the first sock. Okay, that was... ah... years ago. I've learned a lot since then. So last night, in a spurt of determination...

A finished heel!

Now all I have to do is keep the sock away from the monster under my desk, who is known to do this to the socks I'm wearing:

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Watch out for the Vashta Nerada!

It's all done! Dubbed 'Spoilers!' this is my scarf version of the 'Tilting Tardis Cowl' by Marilyn Phillippi. It's knitted up in Needle Food's 'Dining In Denim.' Oh, how I miss Needle Food! Well, maybe my bank account doesn't...

In fact, I started this off when Shelley and I first traveled about New Zealand, by bus and horse, and visited Needle Food herself. It was a wee few rows of TARDISes at that point.

It grew extremely slowly. But recently, I had a few long flights...

And it grew! It grew across two hemispheres, in fact! And now it's finished and I'm feeling very, very satisfied with it. It's frankly gorgeous.

I'm making a conscious attempt now to get the WIPs whipped into order. In part, this is an effort to counter impulses for yarn margaritas. Remember those stressful days when I'd reach for a yarn margarita? Well, I'm putting aside for something special now, so I have to restrain those impulses. Plus, it feels rather good finishing off projects. Right?

Friday, August 19, 2011

Do You Think I Missed Someone?

Yes, some days, I just walked around Italian cities taking pictures of dogs.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

These Are A Few Of My Favourite Things

I think this little photo essay says it all. I was in Italy. I was working. There may have been chocolate gelato smudges on graded essays.

Best ever tip? Look at the pistachio. If it's bright green, forget it. If it's got a brownish hue... that is the right stuff! Trust me. I speak from experience.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

While I was in London...

I love London. I'd actually forgotten how much I love London. I'm not particularly fond these days of Charing Cross Road and the craziness of Piccadilly Circus, but I still love walking along the river at night.

My trip to London coincided, oddly enough, with Knit Nation. Yes, I got to go to Knit Nation! I didn't have a lot of time up my sleeve, but I had a blast. I hit the market on the preview night - you should have seen the line to get in! It snaked away as far as the eye could see... literally.

But I was running into a major problem. I had to get from the marketplace back into the West End to see a certain play. So...

I ninja'd the Knit Nation marketplace!

I headed straight in, knowing what I wanted. I was the first person to buy yarn at the Socktopus stand, because I had already decided upon a skein of Fontainebleau. And since Ysolda was there... how could I not pick up a copy of Little Red in the City and have it signed? Happily, I got to her table before everyone else had crowded in (they were distracted by the Wollmeise... seriously, it was scary in that corner of the market!) and she was really lovely.

You can spot the polka dot shoes from
Irregular Choice - they were on sale, so they don't count, right?

I also picked up the greatest sock pattern in time and space and on impulse, a project bag made out of Doctor Who fabric, before dashing out, making the woman on the door laugh that I was heading in the wrong direction.

Well, you know, I was seeing the Doctor and Donna in Much Ado that night! I gave a little teaser last time, but seriously, it was amazing. Catherine Tate is a fantastic Beatrice. She speaks Shakespeare's lines so as to make them sound completely contemporary and there is great humour and pathos in her Beatrice. You want Beatrice as a friend. And David Tennant and physical comedy! Brilliant! He looked like he was having the time of his life and when Benedick is told that Beatrice regards him as a fool... for the first time, I really thought, 'you know, there really is something to that barb...' I won't even mention the Madonna thing.

There are some things that just can't be put in writing.


The next day I went to Cookie A's 'Oddball Stitches' class which was terrific, although I ran completely late, couldn't find my way into the building, and then ended up with cold porridge from PrĂȘt. Hmmmm...

But I did enjoy making all sorts of bobbles! I love bobbles.

Later I met my friends and I hit the Doctor Who Experience, which is very kitschy and extremely fun. We got to travel in the TARDIS! And gaze in awe at the 10th Doctor's suit and coat. And I picked up a mug that you might spot later in this post.

After that, we ran into the West End again to see Priscilla. Front row! Back in the Palace! I was a complete musical theatre geek when I lived in the UK and on weekends, I'd be in the theatres. Very often, it would be the Palace, because I was especially a Les Mis geek and we knew where the cheap tickets were, so this was a 'slightly' different experience to those nights and matinees of watching urchins and doomed revolutionaries. In fact, I did joke that I'd seen a lot of men in tights over those couple of days! (Hint about the Madonna thing, there.)

It was a whirlwind, but wow, what a time!

It's been a whirlwind since, but I have been sneaking in the odd cup of tea and knitting a row or two of TARDISes...

I think I'll be finished very soon.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

A Great Day in London

I recently had an absolutely brilliant day in London.

It was sunny!

I went to Little Venice, my favourite place in London.

I had breakfast there at Raoul's Cafe, my favourite cafe in London.

I stopped to say hello to a squirrel in Hyde Park.

And after a little window shopping on Regent Street and a little actual shopping in Carnaby Street, I went to the theatre with some friends.

If only you could see my big grin right now!

And then I went back to the pub where I was staying and flopped on the bed in exhaustion!

(Note: At the moment, it's really busy, so I can't write much, but I couldn't resist some teasers!)