Thursday, 11 December 2008

Dear Santa,

Dear Santa,

I am pretty sure I have been a good girl this year, although I caused several death in the bug kingdom (carpet beetles and moths). So if it is not too much trouble I would really appreciate a new job for Christmas. Any little job will do as long as I can pay my half of the rent and the food and the bills.

I want that more than a working spinning wheel (and that's quite something).

Many thanks, and Merry Christmas,

A. xx

Monday, 10 November 2008

Next step...World domination!

Not one but 2 of my designs on this year's banner...I shall go back to basking in my own little smug-ness!

In case you are wondering that would be the Tropical island and the viking hat... Now what to make next year...???

Tuesday, 4 November 2008

He took an axe to it then the crowd started to fight over its insides

It all happened on Sunday. In a snowy village where the fog could not quite clear the time for the massacre was coming closer. Tens had gathered to watch, children were eagerly waiting for the large beasts to be slayed.

The man started with a knife, but it quickly appeared that was no match for the thick skin of even the smallest one. Almost 700 lbs , and the largest over 1200!

Finally he pierced the skin and flesh to reveal the insides, and the crowd rushed, scooping flesh and juice with their bare hands, children begging for spares.

Not quite the gore Halloween story you may be picturing by now, but the final day of the Pumpkin fayre.

We ate pumpkin bratwurst washed down with gluehwein and apple punch, we admired the pumpkin and squash sculptures and the very many varieties. We even managed to score some seeds so that we too can grow enormous vegetables next year.

It was cold, but it was fun. Can't wait for next year!

Tuesday, 7 October 2008

101 for Innocent 2008

The big knit is back and this year I aimed for 100 all by myself. It was fun, and I got to allow my creative juices to flow.
However I can not count, and it is not at 100 that I stopped, but 101!
Wonder what the looks like?

Well here goes...

Friday, 26 September 2008

Pretty in teal..

Finally something worth blogging about : I won!
Not the Nobel Peace Prize, not the X-Factor, but a photo contest. The cynic in me believes I won by default, by being the only entry...but hey, who cares... by sending this photo of my interpretation of her sock design to Dogknitty Designs, I bagged myself not one but 2 skeins of teal coloured sock yarn handpainted by Claudia...Heaven!

Photo of the yarny goodness.

There was also a lovely trip to the Lang factory, and i accidentally took up spinning...who knew you could get high on merino and silk fumes...

Tuesday, 3 June 2008

Dear Britain, it has been fun...

But I have to leave you....

13 and a half years is plenty long enough, and frankly I don't think I can put up with yet another season of Big Brother, or with the statistics about underage drinking (25% of 11-16 y-o) and daily dose of teenage stabbings.

I know I will be abandoning many a friendly knitter, but I am sure the Swiss yarn obsessed will have me...eventually!

Having finally let go of the 'I do not have a driving licence' excuse as of last week, I was happily pottering about with yarn and colours when DBF dropped the news: "Can we move before the 14th?" he said...Hem...but...ahem...heu...the KIP day...and the packing....ARRRRGGGHHH panic!

But thanks with regards to the driving go to Gail and DBF for sitting in the car, and to my instructor Adam for not giving up on me...I probably would have!

So here I am, sitting on the sofa looking dreamingly at my home-dyed sock and lace yarn, have to master a way to pack EV-ERY-THING within just over a week and a half.

But hey it will be worth it. This is the view I will be enjoying from the end of next week:

There also another reason I want to go breath the fresh mountain air...the amount of pollution that clings to everything (including my lungs I suspect) as evidenced by the colour of the water when washing clothes... I have a photo. but I don't want to gross the world out!

Tuesday, 13 May 2008

Return of the sporadic blogger

So I am back!

It 's been a while, and surprisingly not a lot has changed... I am still here, STILL waiting to take my driving test and Zurich is still the final destination.

BUT I have kept busy.

I have been knitting, and crocheting, and meeting new future friends, and crafting some more.

Wanna see?

First, the tooth. It's a present for my dentist who spent around 15 hours sorting out my abscess and then root canal...all free of charge as I was his case patient for his post-grad dissertation! Made of wool and acrylic felt and hand stitched/embroidered. It is stuffed with polyfil. Pattern from the book "Softies".

Then a plethora of presies for a little baby girl who is almost a month old. The tree is as for the tooth and I included a rattle ( a kinder egg container with small beads sealed and nested in the stuffing) which I secured by stitching the top of the tree and the trunk all the way through the stuffing.

Then a small but perfeclty formed cardigan. Wendy merino wool on 4mm to knit the larger version of the Baby Sachiko kimono sweater, by Erika Flory (Free in the Winter 2007 issue of "for the love of yarn":
The embroidery at back is from Kyuuto Wool Embroidery and all done in tapestry wool.
So simple, yet so effective!

The front was all me !

I also discovered how big 9 inches really is when asked to knit some squares for Oxfam...I really did think it looked mu ch smaller than that ;-)

And as summer approaches...Monkey needs new clothes!

Tuesday, 11 March 2008

It's all going red and chocolatey...

Ok, so I have been a bad blogger and not posted for...monthS...

Well, I have no excuse, other than I am desperately trying to get all the stuff sorted because I am all by myself at the moment.

No no, fear not , nothing bad has happened to the BF, unless you count having been abducted by small purple cows and having to travel on trains that are ALWAYS on time.

Yes, it finally happened, BF has moved to the Swiss country and I now get Skype updates of -15C weather and snow-boarding forecast.

Strangely enough it has gone all Swiss here to, as the latest knitted addition to the house menagerie gears up for the move...

And the local shops have decided to provide me without interesting tastes all courtesy of Frey, the big chocolate company and my local home-bargains (how could I resist Swiss chocolate at 29p per 100g ??)

Interesting flavours currently residing in my cupboard ?
White chocolate and blueberry
White chocolate and rhubarb
Milk chocolate with carrot pieces
Dark chocolat with lemon and pepper
Milk chocolate with cinnamon and coriander (absolutely divine)

The other find of the week was next door...TJHughes had a big Pout display (RIP) with prices that did not exceed £5!! And we are talking Benefit prices normally!!


So my lips will be plumped for £3 and taste of cinnamon and mint...

Even sent one to my Mum...along with some coriander chocolate...

The monkey is monkee-maker's modification of the PG-tips monkey...and there's a new purple one taking shape on the sofa... more pictures soon!

Thursday, 17 January 2008

It is my last day at work !

And somehow I feel like this:

Please visit for much more cartooney wisdom!

Tuesday, 15 January 2008

Frightening friends

Or how Utopia can be a very scary thing...

Picture it: it is Monday lunchtime, and the knitters have gathered with some lunch and projects around a small table. The Utopia hat is such a logical make, the stitches seem to have taken a life of their own in my fingers as I chat away about Christmas and holidays and vacations...
"Why aren't you using a cable needle?" K's voice resonnates in my ear.

Looking up I see the horrified look starring at my 6-st cables that alternate right and left, as my fingers still pinch 3 stitches in mid air.

"Did I scare you" I ask her? She nods. I laugh. "It's really less faff than a cable needle" I add.

Later that day I send her the link for Grumperina's tutorial on cabling without needles.

And later this week there will be a picture of Utopia finished...but not now, because the light is bad and casting icky shadows...

Friday, 11 January 2008

Free range is fairer!

Apologies to the vegetarians (yes, you can look away now) as I step onto my little wooden box to call to the masses...

No it has nothing to with knitting, but yes, I believe you should keep reading.

If you live in the UK and have been watching TV recently you should aready be aware of the Chicken Out campaign to get better lives for chickens that will eventually end up on our plates.

BF and myself switched to free-range after watching The River Cottage Treatment last year, and as I felt guilty tucking into a Nando's bird of non-descript origin last weekend I knew there was no going back. Added to that the 3-part program of this week (Hugh's Chicken Run still available to watch on 4OD and probably through really finished opening my eyes.

Free range chickens take almost twice as long to get to retail weight, and they get a good night sleep...not 30 minutes of shut eye like their intensively-farmed equivalent.

The main issue people have with free range is the cost, and I confess I have gasped at the £17.99/kg price tag on organic free-range fillets BUT in fact the cost of a WHOLE free range chicken is only about £5.00.

Compared to the cheaper option (£3.50 on average) it is only the equivalent of 1 half pint of beer or about 5 cigarettes...not much of a sacrifice to eat a much tastier bird that had a much more 'normal' life.

So anyway as the celeb chefs take it in turn to draw the public's attention to the issue I thought I would follow in Roman Sock's footsteps and, having just signed up to the chickenout campaign, that I would encourage anybody who comes across this blog to do the same. Link in the side bar...

Thanks for reading.

And now to find a knitting way to help the campaign... knitted chicks anyone?

Wednesday, 2 January 2008

Many happy returns!

First of all, to wish my friends and fellow knitters all the best for 2008. Whatever 2007 was like for you, I wish you a happy and positive new year!

Christmas is over, finally, and as the sales signs multiply in the shop windows I can breath a sign of relief. Well, almost, since I have yet to do most of my Christmas shopping... That's the thing with knowing you will not see your family over the holiday: you can postpone the shopping. (or possibly recycle some presents I received...mmh, now here's a thought)

It does not however make it any easier or even that much cheaper as, lost in the post-holiday calm you only want to forget about the past few weeks and focus on the coming year.

And in my case it is a somewhat scary prospect, as I face the new year without a job and not enough savings to make me comfortable about the whole thing. Somehow spending on presents becomes a frivolous activity, and CV writing fills me with tears.

Time for some stash busting I think... to the montego bay scarf and to the foliage hat still to be photographed, I will add a melon-seed scarf for my gran in a lovely dark grey mohair (fingers crossed I have enough yarn for the intended border!) and have to think of further presents to handmade from existing yarn... finally a god use for my craft!

As I finish this post I glance with a smile at the hat-o-meter on the right: we made it! over 400 000 hats to adorn the tops of bottles. I wonder what the target will be for next year...500000?