Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Um, what's gone wrong?

For some unknown reason my computer isn't letting me download pictures from my camera.

So I can't show you my windowsill full of little hats. Neither can I show you the sock that I just finished last night. Or the yarn wound into a pretty ball ready to start another sock.

And I certainly can't show you the pudding that we had for tea last night (it was like apples covered in lemon curd poured into a pastry case and baked until golden). And that has nothing to do with the camera, no, we were pigs and ate it up before I remembered to take a picture!

Oh, anyone know the whereabouts of the St Dunstan's blanket? Who's got it now?

Ooh look everybody, it worked! I'm obviously not so rubbish as I thought!!! A few bad words and a hearty kick did the job! (20 hats Warren - hope you're saving up!)

Monday, September 29, 2008

Flower Pot

Well if you use your imagination it looks a bit like a flower pot doesn't it?

So pleased that you all liked the Stash Basket hat, but don't squabble over it ladies please! I'm tempted to make a big one for me so that I can stay warm in the winter. It wouldn't look too silly would it? People round here are quite used to seeing me wearing strange knitted things, I'm sure a woolly basket hat complete with mini balls of wool would only confirm their suspicions of me!

As to a pattern? Oh please! I made it up as I went along. I think it was something like this though:-

Cast on 28
Moss stitch for 12 rows
Purl 1 row
Stocking Stitch 6 rows
Knit 2 tog to end
Purl 2 tog to end
Gather centre sts, sew up seam.
Fold over lip and sew down to make the top of the basket.

For the balls of wool, use tiny needles (I used 2mm) and cast on 6 sts. Stocking stitch 12 rows, cast off, roll up and sew down ends. Wrap piece of white yarn round middle to look like a ball band. Make 5 balls and sew in place.

OK? Let me know if you make one, I'd love to be a real proper designer. Perhaps I could make a book for Innocent on tiny woolly hats. Mini woolly hats take over the world....

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Saturday pudding and a few hats

Thank you all so much for your sympathy with my very bad lunch time on Thursday. I am so glad I provided you with much hilarity. Yes it was unkind to laugh. I suffered a huge loss of blood (half a teaspoon) and poor son had to cope with dried bread for tea. At least I know who my friends are now!!!

Anyway, today being Saturday, it's pudding time. Chocolate and raspberry trifle. It was a case of open the fridge, what have I got and bung it all together. Well it looks OK, but the proof of the pudding is, as they say, in the eating, so we shall just have to wait and see!

Presenting the Stash Basket hat complete with little balls of Posh Yarn (cashmere no less!) and a mad penguin button one.

And 2 quite plain and simple ones finished whilst on the bus this morning. Why was I on the bus? Find out another day if you're interested (it's not terribly exciting so I might even forget to tell you).

What's everyone having for tea today? I can't decide what to have. But at least we've got pudding so the important things are sorted!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

More Haste...

... less speed, so my mum used to say. Why didn't I take any notice of her?

Yesterday I had half an hour for lunch so ran home from work (only 6 doors away, so don't be too impressed that I can run miles!) to grab something to eat, make tea, hang washing out, bring washing in and generally charge round like an idiot!

Eldest son was going football training so had requested a light tea of soup and crusty bread. First make soup. Grab pan, pour in a little oil, heat gently and chop some veg to go in. Arghhh! Chopped thumb by mistake. Lots of blood (fortunately not on veg). Grab plaster. As tried to grab plaster, blood dripping onto floor. Grab kitchen roll, hold tightly over cut, wipe blood from floor. Put plaster on, then another and finally a third as blood still coming through.

Back to soup. Oil is now very hot and beginning to smoke. House stinks of burning oil. Lower heat, put in chopped onions, carrots, celery and tomatoes. Make lunch (toast, all I can find with time running out).

Ooh, Postie calls with a parcel. Beautifully wrapped parcel containing all sorts of goodness from Monkee Maker. Lovely bag and pincushion and oh heck, what's that smell?

Forgot to turn heat down. Veg is now burnt black and stuck to bottom of pan. House smells really bad now. Quick, change pans, rescuing what little veg remains. Turn round quickly, pan handle disappears up sleeve, grab pan, burn fingers.

Toast burnt. Phone rings. Call centre from somewhere abroad ('please go away I'm having a very bad nervous breakdown').

Decide to give up with soup. Decide instead son can have dried bread and cheese for his light tea. Washing can remain out (it later rained).

So instead I just went for the easy option. Go back to school, look after 29 loud 4 year olds instead and worry about tea and washing later.

Monkee Maker, I love my new bag, I love my new pincushion and I love my new little zippy bag. The chocolates were the only nice thing I managed to eat at lunch time. Thank-you very much.

So please excuse the lack of little hats today - the knitting needle keeps sticking to the plasters.

And just to show you that all is well really, here's a little Family Portrait.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

How many are we up to now?

OK, OK Wonderwoman, will this do? I got a bit stuck with the dreads, but this was the quickest way I could manage them - more like loopy bits than dreads really, but you get the general idea yes? (They're much longer at the back)
Then here's my take on a Dalek. What do you think? I was right, it did take hours to do and was made up as I went along, so is totally a one-off!

Then youngest son was playing and he came up with a Rasta Dalek which made me laugh so much I couldn't resist showing you all!

And now I must clear off back to work. Chicken pox is doing the rounds at school; one lucky class only has 13 children in. We, on the other hand, have a full compliment of 30 healthy 4 year olds.

Paracetamol anyone?

Monday, September 22, 2008

Numbers 5 to 11.

Thanks so much for the many and varied ideas for hats. Our first model of the day is wearing a little cowboy number (which looks far better off than on!) Thanks Mary Deb for the suggestion.
Next we have a rose as suggested by Giulietta.

And finally Monkee Maker's Cake and lots of little stripey ones.

I also wish to amend my earlier post. The plain hats only 20 mins to make. Honestly. However, the fancy ones can take blinking ages. This is a great way to use up all those scraps of yarn that I have been hording for years - I refuse to throw away anything longer than 12". Is it any wonder I drive my husband nuts?!

I will still peruse the list and see what else I can come up with. Dalek? Oh yes Warren, I think so! (All those fiddly bits - this one could take all evening!)

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Saturday pudding

Two puddings for the price of one today. Firstly we have apple and blackberry almond cake (that was pudding at dinner time).

And the second one is Apple Syrup Upside Down Pie courtesy of Nigella. Now I know it may not look much, but it was very delicious. Even the boys (fussiest beings on planet Earth) liked this.

And now I must away to knit some little hats. That's going to teach me isn't it, fancy asking you for some ideas. Like I said, I'll try my best. Oh and WMK? I thought you were my friend!!!!! That list is very long and nigh on impossible!

3 and 4

OK, OK stop nagging will you. I'll give you photos of silly hats every day for a month if that's what you want. The pink and blue frilly one took 25 mins and the clown took blinking ages (all that hair to knot on and I couldn't be bothered to find a small crochet hook so used this hulking great big thing).

I have set my children the task of coming up with ideas and I will try and incorporate them into wooly hats. This is not easy, they are becoming more outlandish by the day!

Come on then, bring it on Blogging World. See if you can challenge me to put one of your ideas into knit. I don't promise anything, but will have a go...

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Number 2

Now I'm not going to bore you every day for the next month with pictures of little hats (well, maybe I shall) But I just wanted to let you see number 2. Desert Island Hat.

The house is in a mess. Haven't yet decided what to make for tea. There's knitting all over the place, and OMG, Mr stressy is due home any minute.

Perhaps I've got time to just make another little hat? (And yes Monkee Maker, it really does only take about 20 mins to make one. Give it a go and you'll see!)

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Number 1

I went to Sainsbury's today and bought myself a little bottle of Innocent Smoothie (they also sell 'thickies' which made me laugh out loud) just so that I could see if I was knitting the right size hat. This is my first attempt - a cashmere Christmas Pudding. And it is now official. I am hooked on knitting teeny weeny hats. 20 mins from start to finish. I think I can spare that much time on a daily basis, so expect to see a new hat every day until dead line day.

Did I really say that? So as well as the St Dunstan's knitting, the Christmas knitting and the bag knitting, I'm also doing teeny hat knitting.

The cashier in Sainsbury's had obviously never heard of the hat project. The conversation went along the lines of:-

Me - (to myself) - Hmm, I wonder if it will fit (holding up bottle)
Her - I'm sorry?
Me - I'm buying one of these so I can try a hat on it.
Her - Pardon?
Me - I've knitted a hat to go on top of this bottle.
Her - Oh. Why?
Me - Because Innocent will give 50p to Age Concern if I do.
Her - Ohhhh, I seeeee. You knit hats for little bottles.
Me - Yes. My first is in the shape of a Christmas Pudding.
Her - Right. (Obviously wondering where on earth Security was when you needed them)
Me - You sell them near Christmas, you must have seen them.
Her - Um no, can't say I have. (Sarah, ring the bell for me)
Me - Oh yes, you sold them last year, they are hoping to have half a million hats knitted for them this year.
Her - OK, I can see my supervisor calling me, I must go now, good bye.

Sane, normal, it's everyone else who's odd, not me.

Thanks for all the help about the bag. My Fairy Godmother has come to my aid and has let me swap some of her mini skeins so hopefully I can finish the bag in time for Ally Pally and stuff it with yarn!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Casting on - again

You know how when you see a pattern and it just shouts your name? Like Tipsy did to me all those months ago? Well I saw this on Ravelry and just knew I had to make one. But not for me the elegant subtle colours that I could have got from Noro, I decided to go for something far more 'in your face'. So raiding the stash basket (which is getting perilously low in stash) I came across all the little Wollmeise skeins that Kerrie bought me. Perfect! Pattern bought, all cast on and I am so loving this pattern! I adore clever knitting and this is cleverness itself. (It's a 'stained glass window' bag for those of you not with a ravelry name)

Not for me the geekiness of hadron whatsit doo daas, give me a cleverly written pattern, some gorgeous yarn and believe me, my inner Geek outshines all of yours! (Incidentally, if the black hole materialises before I have finished this, I am going to be seriously annoyed!)

However, I have come across one major problem. I do not have enough yarn.

Now I would buy more, but am not allowed to do so before Ally Pally and I really wanted this finished before the event so I could skip happily amongst the yarn with a pretty (garish) bag.

So what do I do? Take a Sainsbury's bag instead? Those big ones are very big and I can fit lots of yarn in there. Or buy more yarn and announce to Warren that all bets are off and I've failed at the last hurdle?

Have also realised that I need to get a move on with finishing the UFO's - Warren has pledged hard cash for all projects completed by the date I go crazy and spend, spend, spend. (Came up with a cunning plan though, looking here I see these don't take long to knit so theoretically I could knit loads by my dead line and help others in turn).

Advice please.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Not long now...

So we're now down to less than a month to go until I buy yarn. I have lasted since February. Although I must be honest, whilst I haven't actually bought yarn, I have had plenty given to me. Oh such kind people out there feeling sorry for me!

Alexandra Palace is my spiritual home I'm sure! Especially during the few days the Knitting and Stitching show is on. Are you going? Any of you going on Saturday? I need to meet some Bloggers. I need to know if you are as insane in real life as you sound on your blogs.

I am very normal and sensible. I was the one carrying a monkee made of knit last year taking its photo at every available opportunity. I was the one skipping from stall to stall greeting the skeins of yarn like long lost friends. I was the one fondling the yarn, caressing it, stroking it. I was the normal one amongst all the nutters there.

And no doubt I will be again.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Saturday Pudding.

Unsure as to what to do for pudding today, I asked eldest son. He requested jelly. I refused saying that my friends in Bloggy Land would not appreciate that. So he changed his mind and went for chocolate eclairs instead. My twist on them was to fill them with a mascarpone and chocolate cream.

Oh and I took the photo outside as it has been sunny this afternoon (spot the shadow?). Thick fog this morning, but sunny this afternoon. More of the same tomorrow apparently and then we're back to normal weather-wise. Rain.

Thursday, September 11, 2008


I can hardly believe it was 7 years ago that I was waiting to collect youngest son from school when I heard Steve Wright on the radio saying that a plane had flown into a large building in New York.

Along with many others I thought he meant a small, light aircraft.

And along with many others I sat horrified at the pictures beamed live to our homes, tears streaming down my face.

My thoughts are with everyone affected by this dreadful event. No doubt I will still be sitting crying as I watch the memorial programmes taking place this evening.

I am a peaceful being. Why can't we just all get on? I'm obviously very naive too.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Excitement at the Stashbasket

Remember I told you that Mr Stressy husband had won a competition? 36 bottles of wine from New Zealand and a fridge freezer? The wine has been going down a treat but we hadn't heard a thing about the fridge. Well look what turned up on our drive yesterday...

I can't begin to tell you how excited we are by this. We are normal people (slightly crazy, but normal all the same). We don't win prizes. We don't win anything. Until now.

Here it is being unloaded - the delivery man had just come inside to check if it would fit through the door. It wouldn't. We had to take the door off!!!!! (Mr Stressy didn't grumble too much as it was his prize in the first place.)

So here is our lovely new fridge freezer. It is fantastic, I love it, I want it, but I can't have it. We have no room to put this anywhere - it looks somewhat strange in our dining room and having had a super-duper new kitchen installed less than a year ago, I don't feel like ripping it all out to accommodate a new appliance. So it's up for sale if you're interested!

I made this necklace last night from a kit in The Box. It was a bit fiddly, but great fun to do. It's so pretty, but I doubt I'll ever wear it. So anybody have any ideas? At the moment I can't help thinking it will look good on the Christmas Tree.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Trashy's box

The Box has arrived at the Stashbasket. How exciting was it to open - like Christmas and birthdays all rolled into one! I've chosen my things (although the thing I really wanted was not for keeping - you'll know what I mean when it gets to you) and just need to replace them. I've picked some blank cards with teeny skeins of raffia, a bag pattern (that looks great for transporting half-finished socks to football matches) and a very mad and crazy necklace kit which I intend starting in the next few minutes! This is a great swap - count me in next time too Trashy!

I said I'd show you the cake I've been doing this weekend. It's for a firm I used to work for in London, a client of theirs is retiring and they wanted something to do with a whippet and a man in a flat-cap. I've piped the words to some of Ilkley Moor Bar Tat round the sides (have you ever read the words to that song? It's not the nice little Yorkshire ditty I thought it was!)

Oh and bad news. Startitis has returned. Ravelry is not a good place to browse...

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Saturday Pudding.

OK, I forgot yesterday and so this is all that's left! It was youngest son's party, so pudding was birthday cake. It's quite nice really, if you like chocolate - certainly had no complaints from the 10 nine year old boys! (They weren't half noisy though!)

Must go and get on with decorating a cake now - I'm liking this one, details tomorrow.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

50 Buttons

I forget whose blog I saw this idea on, but I loved the thought of it and wanted to have a go. My friend's 50th birthday provided the perfect opportunity. I'm really pleased with the way this has worked out. Rubbish framing, but it was only £1.89 (so much better than our local framers who would no doubt have charged over £50 for a similar effect).

Then faced with the problem of my neighbour's golden wedding, I had another go, and I like that too. Oh yes, and here's their cake

This cake was ordered by Doreen's mum - a 96 year old lady still living on her own. I spoke to her last week. She was a bit tired - she had just driven the car into the garage and scratched it on a tree at the side. This tree had long since annoyed her so she decided to saw it down. It took her 2 trips to the dump to get rid of it all.

I'm not sure which made me smile most, the fact that's 96 and still driving, or that she's 96 and sawed a tree down, or that she's 96 and had to make 2 trips to the dump on her own. I have many visions of her struggling with trying to see over the steering wheel whilst being hindered with twigs and leaves! She's only little, but blimey, I hope I'm going as well as that at her age!!!

Update - I got it wrong, Doreen's mum is 98!!!!