Thursday, 27 May 2010

I have

an interview tomorrow morning, please wish me well.
it's also my birthday, but that's not as important.

I am in a rather tatty hotel by the sea, with very creaky floorboards everywhere and suspect sleep might not come easily tonight for a few reasons.

But I would grasp the job if offered it, so please - cross your eyes, fingers and various appendages!

Friday, 21 May 2010


it's been a tough few weeks. I have been ill today and yesterday, had lots of tests at the dr (arranged last week, so the timing was good), pretty grotty. Not stress (I think) but not nice.

Once again the week has just vanished, too tired and fed up when I get home to do much in the way of crafty goodness, and as I have a craft fair next weekend that's a bit of a bugger, am going to have to sew for England over the weekend to make sure I have plenty of stock.

Absolutely GORGEOUS weather, sunny, downright warm this afternoon, and warmer still forecast for the weekend, bliss. I had a pootle about in my teenytiny garden, and am counting it all as part of my Craft a Day for the Month of May:

Bits of all sorts - sugarsnap peas, runner beans, radish, lettuce, spring onions (or opinions as I originally typed), chard, spinach, beetroot. Several of the larger plants will need transplanting when they really start growing (with a bit of luck) but for now they seem perfectly happy. Considering it's a seriously tiny garden with no soil I think it's doing really well.
I also have one of those inceywincey wannabe greenhouses (with plastic covers that rip every time you unzip the front) and it's great! Spring onions, chard, lettuce, beans - all sorts, and plenty more in pots that haven't peeped through yet. I love the smell of it and the humidity when I open it - one day I will have a decent sized garden, and ideally a 'real' grown up greenhouse. And a shed! And a lawn, I really really miss a lawn.

Not the greatest photo in the world - Rowan Cotton Tape, one of the wondrous Kemps bargains, I have had this sitting upstairs for ages (pre Christmas I think), and needed something that would grow quickly - I want a long loose throw-it-on type of cardi, so hopefully this will work ok. It's a new pattern on Ravelry, will add a link tomorrow. It's also a nice break from another cardi I cast on for the other night (I was in serious need of something to calm my tattered nerves after another violent day at work and my laptop wouldn't connect. After a few minutes tutting to myself I used it as an opportunity to actually knit something from a book or magazines instead of downloading yet another patern, and ended up with one I plan on adapting from a Rowan mag - will link this one too.

 It's in a very spiderycobwebby sort of wool - a merino / silk 4ply, and I suspect it's going to take until next summer to finish it.

I also love this cardi - no idea where I saw the link.

I would have to make the cables mirror each other though, but I like it and love the bubblegum pink.

That's it for now - sewing, knitting, sleeping, that's tomorrow's plan. And being very careful about what I eat - dr's advice at the moment is no gluten at all, and ideally no dairy. Poor tum.

Friday, 14 May 2010


a post. Work, needless to say, simply got in the way.

I started teaching again on Monday, with the most explosively violent couple of days I have ever known, and I have been teaching PRU kids for quite a while now. The worst day by far - ever in my career - was Wednesday, utterly shocking and upsetting violence on a scale that left quite a few of us shaken. I left the staff meeting early to have a good cry in private, and had a hell of a struggle to get in the next day. But I di, so that's the first week done.

And there is some good quality work in their new books, as a teacher I needed to remind myself of that so spent a long time marking every book and making sure they were all up to date.

But enough of my shitty working life.

Knitting - very very little done this last week, but the second sleeve is almost done, and then it's seaming time tomorrow. I also want to make some pockets to sew on, a jacket - cum - cardi is no good without pockets in my opinion.
Still loving the pattern and the wool.

Not sure what I have lined up next, I might have a change of scene and use some of the Rowan Lenpur Linen I have, or the large amount of bamboo thats lurking upstairs. In black, of course . .. although I also have a cardi's worth of Rowan Cotton Tape, and was eyeing up a young woman's long loose cardi on the bus yesterday, I really liked it.

Sewing has also come to a grinding halt since the weekend - so much for A Craft a Day for the Month of May!

I did manage to get the front of my quilt all joined, so plan on sandwiching the whole thing together tomorrow, ready for the fun bit. I LOVE the colours in this, they make me happy.
I love this quilt: and the sewing shop in town has most of the grey fabric in stock - I am planning on making myself a summer skirt from the grey roses print, not cheap but very striking.

I love this photo.
As probably most of the world knows, our election became increasingly bizarre, and now we have a coalition government with a smarmy smug elitist prat and a self contradicting twit in charge of the country. As Gorgon le Brown has now gone (and his goodbye speeches had to be the most honest, light hearted ones he has ever delivered - and he looked like a man who had just shed 10 years with relief - hopefully Labour will now elect someone with a bit more people-power. It's pretty likely there will be another election in the next year or so, so it will be all change again.
Hey ho.

Much more to come, hopefully tomorrow - I plan on a day at home, sleeping, knitting, sewing, tidying up (a few weeks back at work and my house looks like the IRA have been in. Twice.), and more sleeping.

Happy weekend!

Wednesday, 5 May 2010


not to be totally overwhelmed with work, and work worries.

That's all.

Monday, 3 May 2010

It's a shame

how quickly work once again takes over. My weekend plus the Bank Holiday has almost gone, with very little to show for it. I have, however, just applied for one of several jobs I have earmarked, as I seriously think work will finish me off (either mentally, physically or both) if I don't get out very soon.
Let's just say that 'supported return' isn't quite what I expected it would be (and believe me I had no delusions of it being joyous) - increased workload, however, wasn't quite what I had expected! Maybe I was just naive, I don't know.


A Craft a Day for the Month of May
That was my (maybe foolish?) intention. But as always time tends to run away, especially when you plan on doing some carefree craftiness! But I grabbed a few minutes to take some piccies, and I have managed to do more than I had thought. Seeing it as photos is good, it reassures me that at least some of my time each day has been spent on the things that bring me great pleasure.

May 1st

Two bags, fronts and bagsm, ready to line, interface, straps and fastenings and pockets, hopefully finished in time for the next craft fair - I especially like the purple and green one.

May 2nd

I am really pleased with these - these are the first two strips for my quiltalong with jelly rolls / charm packs over on Ravelry. I have talked about quilting, have many (expensive) books, and mountains of material, but have never got any further than making bags. But now I have not one but TWO on the go, and this one is lovely - the colours are fab! I would never ever have picked mint green with a vibrant lime, but because the pinks are the same throughout it works. Those Moda folk know their stuff.
and late last night, with Dog Soldiers in the background I cut out a summer skirt for me:

but I need some black interfacing.

May 3rd (ie today)
Very little - I potted up some plants this morning before it decided to hoy it down, and not much else, my day has gone on work stuff, and trying to get a new job stuff.
But I have squeeeezed in a bit more knitting on the lovely jacket / cardi / hoody -
I love this, it's good soothing knitting, and is growing quickly. I am aiming to finish the left front tonight, and the right front tomorrow night. With a bit of luck and a strong wind behind me I should get at least one sleeve done by the weekend, so should have the whole thing finished by the end of next weekend.
I don't usually do much colour, but I think this should look good with all black.

I still love the wool, sod's law that it's discontinued.
I hope you have had a pleasant bank holiday and didn't get drenched!

Saturday, 1 May 2010


and showers, of course, it being a bank holiday weekend. 'Tis pretty much compulsory for rain on a holiday.

I didn't manage to keep up with the knitting bloggy a day thing, as I expected work pretty much took over and my evenings became 'come home, ring mum, have a bit of a cry about how utterly dire my job is, have a glass of wine, potter about and have a long hot bath'. And I don't usually drink at all during the week, and rarely at weekends, so that sums up how rubbish things are. Hey ho.

But let's move on to lighter and brighter things.
Such as the aforementioned sunshine! I am British therefore an eccentric obsession with the weather is natural - so far this morning we have sunshine, after a crappy rainy grey day yesterday. I open my bedroom curtains and see this:
it reaches above my house, and because my garden is so teenytiny is pretty much fills it! The smell is incredible, very sweet - I love this tree.
No idea what sort of tree it is, and every year I resolve to find out and then promptly forget. It's a tree. And it blossoms.

All manner of wondrous things are going on in my little garden. The flimsy excuse for a greenhouse that I love is doing really well. This is lettuce and either peas or beans, I can't be bothered to nip out and check the label. Strange bedfellows in terms of size, but they both seem happy enough so far. The lettuce can be transplanted in a few days, and live next to my radishes in this wondrous thing:

How much do I love this, despite its flimsiness? A portable raised bed! I have carrots, spring onions, lettuce and radish to go in here, with some herbs and marigolds to keep the bugs away. I have another one but ran out of compost (will nip to good old Wilko tomorrow after the gym and get a couple of sacks home in a taxi), the second one is going to be for chard, beetroot, possibly some of my peas and whatever else I plant. The peas and beans have deep bag planters, and I have some new potatoes already planted in their patio bags, Not that I have a patio you understand.
I love my garden.

Incredibly some knitting is being done too! It's far too long since I picked up my needles. I have had a hell of a job getting hold of enough Rowan Silk aran in this shade of pink, to be able to make Old Mill Hoodie, which I have had queued since it came out on Ravelry. Thankfully I managed to get 7 more balls on ebay, and wonder of wonders they are the same dye lot. I suspect I might end up having to buy a couple of balls as there isn't much metrage to it. It is a delight to use, utterly gorgeous and I love the colour. And the jacket (which I am hoping will make a nice spring chuck it on kind of jacket) is ridiculously easy so far.

Soothing knitting, can't beat it.

Over on Ravelry I ran a 'Craft a Day for the Month of May' swap, and was totally posilt by my lovely friend Martha. This huge bundle of fantastic crafty goodness arrived on Wednesday, and I am thrilled with all of it - I would never have poicked up the hemp book, yet the jewellery designs are gorgeous and I can't wait to have a play. And I have not used (or seen) water soluble oil pastels before either, so that's going to be today's mission. I also received a very generous package from my friend Darlene, which included some precut watercolour paper artists trading card blanks - so Craft a Day in May is sorted for day one!

And I will leave you with this. I love the pound shops - 90% junk, 10% treasure / bargains. I usually stock up on Nicky Clarke hair products (so do the girls who work there! I get my hair cut there and their products are excellent but pricy, so I bought 3 or 4 of everything when the pound shop had it in).
But sometimes (usually) there is that rogue item that falls into your basket, that thing that you couldn't resist because it was 'only a pound' (the IKEA effect) but quite simply has absolutely no use whatsoever.

So here it is.
The Pointless Poundshop Purchase of the Week, a regular feature.

Yes, a camper van candle. What can I say - it's pink and it's pretty!