March 29, 2009

A coulourful day;)

I thought you may like a little colour today but a warning that there are colourful ladies under garments further down this post.
Let us begin with the fabulous tulips I purchased the other day in Lidl, British tulips I am pleased to say.
The colours were so intense I thought you would appreciate them
I love tulips when they open up, their colour seems to change, it is almost as though they are cautious and only show their full beauty once they know where they are.
In the home of a true admirer perhaps? One who appreciates the show.
I'm awaiting the other ones opening maybe tomorrow, they are a solid purple at the moment but who knows when they unfurl their petals?
While walking in the park I saw this and had to have a picture. Can you see the eye and the hump? Reminds me of a rhino a little.
This beauty lights up a dark corner of the park, I love the paper bark on it don't you?
And a close up, just because.
As you know I adore colour and I adore dyeing. A little known fact is that Mr Mog and I do not wear bland under garments. I always tweak the colour a little:) My under things were getting a little worse for wear so I purchased 2 packs of new ones at M&S. Here you see the results. Enough to keep me clothed for a while I think?I've put another picture of tulips in between to protect the easily shocked:)

Those purple flowers will be open tomorrow if this sun keeps up.
And here you go, under whatsits in the sunshine. Avoiding the dreaded kn****r word don't want unwanted visitors.
As you can see the sun is shining and it is a gorgeous day here. We are going to look after our grandsons for lunch time as my DD is going to a 90th birthday party. I'm hoping the fresh air helps me breathe, the chest infection is still pretty dire:(

March 27, 2009

Spring and I are quietly getting on with stuff

Spring rushes onwards and the flowers grow ever brighter in the park. A few days ago we had a little meander around the flower beds and it was indeed splendid. I won't upload hundreds of pictures but the following should give you a taste of what is happening out there.

Don't they brighten up the day?
Just look at the golden glow from this forsythia bush.
These could almost be summer flowers.
Then there has been knitting. Not a lot because the dreaded viral thingy has now sat upon my chest and refuses to depart. Indeed I had to go the visit the doctor this morning for aid in removing said virus as I am wheezing like a good un. One would think that I'd had my share of stuff lately but apparently not enough yet.
As such I'm now on level 2 antibiotics. Not level one because of course silly me had completely forgotten that I'd had my share of level 1 antibiotics a month ago for the rash. How could I have forgotten that pleasure? According to the medical expert the government have new guidelines in place for the use of antibiotics. Isn't that thoughtful of them? So said medical expert has to follow their rulings and not any expertise they have.
Enough of that, I am hoping that they will work miracles for me, pleurisy is a nasty thing and I'm not wanting that again. I'm drinking lots of liquids and hoping for an early recovery.
So back to the knitting after that slight diversion.
This mohair is a luscious green and excellent to work with. But I couldn't just work on one item, after all don't want to be bored do we?
This is the mohair that was dyed in Wales last week, very soft and luscious to knit. The colour is actually darker than shown but who cares:) Mohair is hard to photograph even when it is Mr Mog doing the photography and not me.
So my dears I'll be off to rest and await miracles.
Talk soon

March 21, 2009

Midnight's moonlight shawl - finished:)

Title says it all really, I have finished Midnight's moonlight. This shawl is massive. Measures approx 7ft6inches by 2ft.10inches

What do you think?

Do you like the beads?
I've decided I will sell this one. After all there is always the next shawl I can keep:)

Speaking of which the fire shawl is awaiting blocking. Pictures hopefully tomorrow.

March 20, 2009

Happy Ostara or Spring Equinox

Happy Ostara or Spring Equinox. At this time of equal day and night everything seems to be hushed and in the balance, waiting.
What for? Who knows but it is a waiting time I always feel.
Still feeling rotten and my throat is really burning up and it is hard to swallow. It isn't just the mohair, I think my eldest grandson has passed a little something to me:( Bad night last night despite drinking gallons of water each time I woke. Mr Mog also had a dreadful night, he was sore and shivery all night. But we woke up this morning determined not to let it spoil our day. We went up to Cumbria to meet up with Cae at the Wool Clip. Pictures will follow tomorrow when I upload them. The weather was gorgeous albeit a little misty. A no coat day:) It was wonderful to meet up with Cae again and to see the new Wool Clip shop. Twice as big as the old one and lots of inspiring goodies. I was very good though and didn't spend, have to save the pennies for Wonderwool. We then had lunch in the tearooms above the Wool Clip, oh and visited the jewellers there. Mr Mog is now the proud owner of a haematite and rose quartz necklace. A present for our anniversary which is fast approaching.

Spring always seems that much nearer at Ostara and of course the clocks spring forward next weekend. This weekend we are out to lunch on Sunday to celebrate youngest grandson's 11th birthday. It is a tradition and one we all love.
These garden pictures are from our old house, sadly missed:(
This is the grove at the bottom of the garden.
As you can see a very private place for relaxation and meditation.
Right as I'm now coughing and spluttering once more I will bid you farewell and hope your celebrations bring you much joy.

March 19, 2009

A cautionary tale on the winding of mohair

What to do and what not to do when one is winding a hank of mohair.

DON'T wind yarn inside if you can avoid doing so.
DO wind outside if at all possible.
DON'T get your partner to hold the yarn while you wind.
DO use a swift,preferably one you can clamp or an upright swift.
DON'T wind the yarn fast, I know it is a temptation and I know you want to do so but DON'T.
And yes I know it helps to unwind the matted fibres but DON'T. It gets in your throat, up your nose and covers you in fibre.
In fact even using a floor standing swift can provide hazards for one's partner, who is standing on the base of said swift to keep it stable due to the speed one is winding at.
He also gets covered in mohair.
DO wind slowly and carefully using either a wool winder clamped to bench or a nostepinne.
That way you don't disturb the sleeping fibres and allow them to make a break for freedom.
See above it gets in nasal passages, throat and on one's person.
DON'T wind away merrily with utter disregard for one's well being. It is very unsafe and unhealthy.
DO wear a mask. It keeps you safe and you don't wake up with a dreadful sore throat that then entails one losing one's voice and feeling generally yuck.
You saw the fluff in yesterday's post. Imagine how much was unseen.
Joking apart be careful

March 18, 2009

It is always wisest to wind mohair outside;)

The above post title is because of this;-
There was much more fluff but as it floated around the garden I suspect the birds will use it for their nest building. This mohair was very fluffy and I didn't want to get fibres around the house or indeed to breathe them in. It was a beautiful day today and very sunny so the garden seemed a good idea. Mr Mog kindly helped to move the yarn on the swift as I wound the wool winder. The yarns tuck together well so it wasn't an easy task.

As you can see though we made it:) This is the yarn from yesterday's blog post and it is all ready to start a shawl with.
I do have to bead this one first.
Now finished with a fancy border and awaiting beads then blocking.

Here you can see the 2 beads I'm going to use, colour doesn't show properly as they are in bags but watch this space:)

March 17, 2009

Wild colours in Wales

We have been on a visit to friends in wildest Wales.
Here you can see the sign that gives a hint to where we are heading
I love going to visit Anne and Tony, the only drawback is that the time goes much too fast. One of the reasons for going this time was to visit this place.

Do you know where it is?

Does this help?
Yes we went to Portmeirion.
What a fabulous day we had. The sun was shining and it was warm enough to sit outside to eat. What more could you ask at this time of the year? Mr Mog had never visited the village before. I haven't been in over 18 years. Last time was when I had money (VBG) and actually stayed there twice. Once in the hotel and once in one of the village apartments. At that time the site was full of Prisoner references. It isn't now. I loved the place then but now it is even better if that is possible. Thanks are due to Anne and Tony for taking us there. More information on the place can be obtained by following my links. It is well worth it:)
The gorse smelled strongly of coconut.

There were many strange shaped trees to be found. I haven't put too many pictures of the actual buildings because you can see them online.

The bay was so green and the tide was in when we arrived.

So many different scenes to try and catch.
The daffodils were in full flower, helped no doubt by the sunshine.
I took some mohair with me and Anne kindly dyed it. It came out exactly as I wanted so I present to you Violetta:)

Isn't it gorgeous? This will be yet another shawl.
I took knitting with me and I am almost finished my midnight's moonlight shawl. I'm 3/4 through the border so pictures hopefully soon. I need to search my bead boxes for some gemstone chips to edge it.
We came home from Wales to one night at home then off to my DD to babysit overnight.
Latest news on MIL is that she is being sent home Monday with a care package. However we are not expecting her to be at home long, she is frail and very confused. I don't think she is going to cope.

March 12, 2009

midnight and fire

A beautiful day today but cool. Brilliant blue skies and when the wind drops you can feel the merest hint of warmth in the sun.
A full week we have had what with the Cumbria trip to a case conference on mum and before that a day visiting birthday folks:)

Tomorrow we are heading towards Wales to see good friends. I've packed the knitting and the gifts and later will pack the clothes we need. After all the knitting is the most important item.

Before packing up the knitting I thought you would like to see the current state of play.
The green socks are hanging about to be completed. I haven't knit on the for a week as I was giving my hands a rest from the Knitpicks harmony needles. I am more than ever convinced that the nickel join is irritating the rash. I will hopefully finish the second sock this weekend with the help of cotton gloves. Not sure if you can see but the oak leaf is starting to bud.
Then the midnight's moonlight shawl has grown, a lot.

Picture doesn't really show but I am up to 220 stitches now. I'm planning on edging this with beads.
Following on we have the Beltaine fire shawl.

This suffered a slight hiccup as I don't have enough of the first yarn. I did find some on rav and the very kind raveller agreed to sell it to me. It is on its way as we speak. I have joined in the second colour I showed earlier and it is looking good. My plan is to use some of the second colour but still with the orange twisted sister. Once the new yarn arrives I'll continue alternating. This too will (hopefully) have a beaded edge.
You will notice the needles on this aren't the harmonies. Cae offered me the use of her Denise needles to see if they helped. They only have plastic joins so no irritation. I am able to use these with no gloves. Much better.
The rash is almost gone on my body but still present and a little sore on my feet and hands. I've come to the conclusion that the 2 rashes were different. The body one I think was a virus, the hands/feet not. I am of the opinion that some dye from a yarn has irritated me. A purchased one I'm guessing as all my friends rinse well as do I.

March 08, 2009

Beltaine fire shawl, PS North,don't be rash

The lovely Cae has offered me some Denise needles to try. They don't have the nickel joiners so I'm hoping that they won't upset my hands. As I didn't really want to move my shawl onto new needles I really didn't have any other option but to cast something new on to the Denises;)

Beltaine is approaching soon so it seemed appropriate to start another fire shawl. I didn't have too much mohair in fire colours and really didn't want to get into dyeing today so I went stash diving. Here is what I've come up with.

This will be the top part of the shawl, some unknown mohair mixed with twisted sisters mohair.
When this runs out I'll continue with this

Artful yarns portrait plus twisted sisters mohair in a more fiery colour.
What do you think?
For project spectrum north I rather liked this picture Mr Mog took of the willow in the park while we were in there today.
She is just starting to come into leaf and I love the golden yellows swaying in the breeze:)

My rash is back:( Some more spots have appeared and my hands are worse. More blisters have appeared some getting quite nasty looking. I've continued with the fresh aloe juice added to the lavender oil and aqueous cream. I've even used fresh aloe alone. I'm wearing cotton gloves to knit.
I agree with several suggestions that it would appear to be something in the yarn, possibly the dye or the way the dyes have been used. Possibly not rinsed correctly. It may have been one of the ones I've purchased, I am fanatical about rinsing correctly and also about the application. I always use gloves and never touch the yarn with bare hands until it is dry.
The steroids beckon in vain still but it is a struggle.

March 05, 2009

Midnight's moonlight shawl

There has been knitting and it isn't socks and it isn't hats.
May I present to you the beginning of Midnight's moonlight shawl.
Yarn is a mix of fleece artist mo and an unnamed glittery cone I've got. Don't they look gorgeous together? This shawl is going to be (hopefully) very long and very wide. The kind you wrap round yourself on moonlit nights.

I love how it is knitting up together.
just a hint of glitter when it moves, just like moonlight glistening through the trees.
mohair never photographs easily and the glitter doesn't show in the other ball, but still a great pairing.
2 views of it on the swift
More later.

March 02, 2009

My new boots:)

Do you like my new boots?
I asked Tracey for a matching design in night and day but I wanted random boots that didn't match apart from that. I left colour choices up to her and I think she succeeded don't you?
The daytime is especially my colour scheme but there again the night sky is also:)
Boots from the Picture boot company in Glastonbury.
I've been buying boots from them for many a year now and have never been disappointed:)

Poetry for Brigid Imbolc

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