Saturday, November 23, 2013

A pillow in the sun

Recently, a friend of my moved to Berlin. As I have made clear in the past, I have a deep and abiding love for all German sock wool and so my friend brought me a lovely present with him when returned home for a brief holiday.


"Here," he said, "I brought you some wool from a wool shop in Berlin. Did you know there are whole shops that sell nothing but wool?" Yes, friend, I actually did! 

The wool is gorgeous and soft but I know nothing more about it than that. When I asked what type of wool it was, my friend looked at me like I was a few cards short of a full deck and said very slowly, "Wool wool. You know, from sheep? That wool." So I don't know if the wool is superwash or hand wash only, or even what its actually thickness is. It's very soft, though, so I think it would be a perfect scarf or cowl - maybe a two-colour brioche stitch? 

While I was outside, reading my new book (Save with Jamie, review coming soon) and taking photos of the-type-of-wool-that-comes-from-sheep, my cat was making herself comfortable on the warm bricks. 

But she soon decided that the bricks weren't quite enough warm enough and shifted to a better place that was both in the sunshine and had a nice warm pillow...

..on my foot! She is just too cute for words. Adorable!

Monday, November 18, 2013

When bathed in sunshine, life itself is sunny.

Happy Monday! I know that Monday is supposed to be all bleurgh blah blah icky bleurgh but I had an excellent nine hours sleep last night and I feel fabulous so I just can't buy into it today. Plus, I had a very productive weekend and am feeling very smug and pleased with myself right now. I think I must be unbearable to spend time with at the moment, but I'm sure I'll be back to my cranky self tomorrow and growling about silly things again the way I should be behaving.

Firstly, I got a decent start on my Christmas gift socks. This pattern is lovely to knit and the yarn is a delight to knit with, so that was all fun.

Secondly, I finally started the border for my Serenity-ish blanket. It's going to be a long, slow process knitting those seven stitches back and forth but the finishing line is in sight. At last!

I think the bee stitch was a good choice…I guess there's not much I can do about it now. 

And finally, two weeks after I should have (it's been too cold to garden!) I got around to potting my zucchini seedlings. I did a bit of internet research on the best way to transplant zucchinis and it turns out that researching gardening on the internet when you don't know anything about gardening is a completely useless way to learn anything about gardening. There's so much contradictory information out there that I was more confused *after* reading about it than I was before. 

One website said to plant the seedlings together in a hill but, since I have no idea what a "hill" is in the context of gardening as opposed to wide open vistas and landscapes, I smooshed three plants together in the same hole.

Another website said that vine zucchinis should be planted where they can grow on a trellis. I have no idea if I have vine zucchinis and the seed packet provided me with no insight, so I planted another four seedlings against a trellis (and next to a solar light, because, well, I like solar lights. Is there anyone who doesn't like solar lights? They are awesome! All they need is sun and they make my courtyard look amazing. Effect with no effort is my kind of lighting).

In my uneducated view the trellis ones look the happiest so far. I'm not sure if happiness is an appropriate measure for plants but it's been 24 hours and nothing's died yet so I'm going to count this as a win. If everything goes well in 4-6 weeks I'll been able to eat food that I've actually grown myself in my garden like some sort of pioneer or settler. Fingers crossed!

PS: I saw this bag on a Christmas gift guide and I want want want. Christmas is about buying for other people not yourself, though, right? Those Louisa May Alcott and Jane Austen quote pieces of jewellery - gorgeous. 

Thursday, November 7, 2013

A bit of good, a bit of bad

I have some good news and some bad news. The good news is that 10 days after planting them, my zucchini seeds look like this:

I have never had this much success with seeds before! This weekend I'm going to buy some more dirt and put some of them in some bigger pots and some of them in the garden. Soon (fingers crossed) there should be zucchinis for everyone! I even made zucchini fritters for lunch to celebrate, I was that excited. (yes, I recognise that is ridiculous. But still! Zucchinis!)

The other good news is that I finally picked a border for my Serenity blanket. I'm using Bee Stitch because I thought it looked very pretty on the Yarn Harlot's blanket.

The bad news is bad news for the blanket, though. I'm not sure if it's because of the cotton or the cabling or the weight of the blanket on my needles but I can't knit for more than a few minutes before my right hand starts seizing up. I don't want to cause any permanent damage so I keep stopping and resting and icing and it is taking forever to get any progress on this blanket done.

I've got four weeks till the baby is due and I am probably 65% of the way through. Unless this hand thing magically goes away, I think this is going to be a very close call!