Sunday, July 30, 2006

Let them eat cake....

or want to buy lots tomorrow in Ross.

I was asked to make some cakes for a coffee morning for Air Ambulance, so this is what I made...

Working on the principle if you haven't got it you cant sell it....

And the recipe for most of the cakes makes 4 per bowl and my oven can cook 8 at once...

I got it a bit wrong with the ginger bread, I doubled the recipe twice, which made 10 cakes.

Basic cake recipe:
275g sugar
350g marg
5 eggs
450g flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
tip of liquid

flavours :
lemon drizzle, orange drizzle - zest added to cake mixture, juice and sugar mix poured over hot cakes.

banana - 4 mashed added to mixture
double chocolate - cocoa & chocolate chips
and a new favourite coffee & walnut : very strong coffee (think it was 6 teaspoons of coffee solution) and a packed of walnut pieces.

Makes 4 1lb loaves, cook at 180C, for 35 minutes

And these are the second batch of coffee & walnut cooling down ready to be bagged.
In front are loaf inserts and the foil trays that I use for cake tins. Both from Lakeland.

Total cake count for the day:
10 Gingerbread
8 Lemon Drizzle
8 Coffee And Walnut
4 Orange Drizzle
4 Double Chocolate
4 Banana

Lets hope the sun shines and the good people of Ross want to fill their freezers with cake ;-)

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Saturday Sky

This was the view out of the bathroom window about an hour ago.
A small bit of blue sky and some blackish clouds....

And now this is a similar view.....

It's raining :-)))

Not sure how long it will last for but the veg will like it, and it's gone cooler.
The weather man has just said it should be 'normal' temperatures next week, then I think it might get hot again.... better knit quickly ...


It's smaller than it should be, but that's fine by me. 30inches from top to bottom of the point if it was the 40 inches it would drown me...

It was on the needles for a long time, think it was cast on at the begining of the year - I know it went to Skipnorth with me....

In the end I enjoyed finishing it (even in the heat) The i-cord edging was not as bad as I thought it was going to be, picked up all the stitches on a circular rather than 10 - 20 at a time as the pattern said..

And I've signed up for Lace swap.

Now do I try and finish some more wips or do I just have to cast on another shawl....

Friday, July 28, 2006

Let the blocking begin...

I've just finished knitting the Northwest shawl :-)
Now I've 'just' got to wash and block it. That will be a job for tomorrow when there should be pictures, at the moment it's sitting next to me in a pile. It took three balls 15g of hand dyed cobweb from Jamieson & Smith that I got at Harrogate last year.
Question is what do I make with the other three balls ? Northwest said it needed 1100 yards but I used 3.50mm instead of the 4mm in the pattern.

And something that amused me.
There is a 'Promises Auction' this weekend in the village. One of the lots is:
'Night in the lambing shed with Mr Farmer'...
It doesn't say what he will be doing in the shed, and after helping lambing last year it's a messy thing, happens when it's cold, and very new born lambs are not that pretty - give them a week and then they are cute....

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Extra SP questions

I'm a bit confused (nothing new there!) I've seen two set of these questions so I've added them together and here they are....

1) What is your favorite season of the year?
Autumn, temperatures cooler, colours inspiring, and can wear woollys

2) Where is your favorite vacation spot?
North West Highlands, Scotland. A favourite place of my Grandfather's

3) If you could visit any place in the world, where would it be?
Cuba, my Grandmother lived there for several years in the 1920's.

4) If you could pick any job, and be paid well, what would it be?
Something helping others, and making them find their creative side.

5) If you were going on vacation for 1 week, and had to take ONLY one project with you, what would it be?
Something lacey to last and that would travel easily.

6) If you won a shopping spree to your favorite Yarn shop, what would you get??
Posh wooden needles, straights and circulars and some yarn to try them out on ;-)

7). Summer is hot. What do you knit in the summer?
Anything that does not squeak (hence no moles !!)

8) What are some activities that have become family traditions for your family?
Hard one - aunt has eggs & chips and champagne on New Year's Eve. Cant think of anything else....

9). What is the weather right now? Muggy, hot...

Monday, July 24, 2006

Can you see my Melons?

This is the first year I've managed to get fruit.

There are three fairly small melons on the plants, will have to wait a few months to taste them...

This is the mystery yellow courgette that planted itself by the pond.

Can you see the problem I'm going to have soon...

How do I pick them without falling in the water...

And this is one of the reasons the mole pattern hasn't been finished...
This is the start of the Basalt top from Knitting Nature. The whole hexagon is the front and the other is the underarm - side. I'm going to do it differently from the pattern, going to put half hexagon at the side instead of the whole ones.

And this is the other reason moley will have to wait..
There is a man in Yorkshire stuck in a cellar. He is also knitting this. I found it yesterday and thought I'd do a few rows... I was upto row 126 when I found it now it is upto row 154.. dont know what happened to yesterday.... or this morning....
But I do know what is going to happen tonight....

And today's post was brought to you by the colour GREEN....

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Saturday Sky

Not an ideal day for taking photos of views.
Still very hot,and no rain :-(
A hazy sky from the bathroom window.
I was hoping that the sky would be a bit more interesting as the day progressed but its not changed since first thing ....

Now a choice....Camiknickers for the teenage girl...

It was worth getting this book for the descriptions alone !
' The ideal underwear for the youthful, cleverly combining the warmth of wool, the daintiness of a lacy stitch, and the comfort of a one-piece garment. The ribbed waistband ensures a perfect fit'

Firstly she doesn't look that youthful to me.
Comfort of a one piece garment - obviously never goes to the loo....
Perfect fit -length from neck edge at centre front to crutch 24in.
No other measurements given....

Or, Warm panties and vest for a slim silhouette....

"the problem of cumbersome underwear is solved by a short hip-length vest which does not spoil the line of the slim-fitting panties. Other good features of the vest are a brassiere-top and low back. "

This is made in 5oz of 2 ply.
It does have more measurements - vest fits a 32 - 34in bust and is 18.5 inches long.
Panties back length to top of leg 15 inches.
front leg to top of leg 13.5 inches.
Width round widest part 38 inches.

If I was to make and wear these I would have to continue with my diet and loose at least another stone and not just the half stone. And if I lost that much I would look ill, so would probably need to have some warm undies.... Think I've either just talked myself into making them or staying the same weight, cant work it out !

I would also like to say that I have quite a lot of old patterns and if push comes to shove I can (and will) make similar and send them out to new homes. And dont worry about the sizes I can use thicker yarn bigger needles as required, or thinner got some silk that was going to be a WRS before the bag of doings hid in the box of wip's and soon starts... Now who would like a set???

Friday, July 21, 2006

The Sues do coffee....

... and lunch....and talk about all sorts of things...look at books... compare spun stuff.... and then shop....

Sorry no photos today but I managed to get 17 old buttons for 17p, and book of 'charted Peasant Designs from Saxon Transylvania' and the best find for £1.50 Practical Home Knitting from 1949. Somehow I think I was challenged to make the'warm panties and vest' and I think wear it in the shop....And I quote :

"the problem of cumbersome underwear is solved by a short hip-length vest which does not spoil the line of the slim-fitting panties. Other good features of the vest are a brassiere-top and low back. "

I will post a photo of it soon...

We did have a meaningful discussion about Mr Mole wool that we found with lots of other balls for 99p. I was nearly tempted to buy some in different colours but common sense prevailed !

About some stuff (definetly wasn't wool) to make a scarf...
But the yardage is only 40m, says me Sue.
Yes but it's only 99p says her Sue.
Good point, says me Sue.

And we were good and left it in the shop ;-)

And when someone next asks how I learnt to spin I should just send them here.

Thanks for a good day, we must do it again, I will do some spinning tomorrow, just about to cast a certain top ....

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Too hot for moles...

I've been trying to work out the pattern for the mole and his hill.
There are a few things I have realised :

a) I should have paid attention when I created the first mole.

b) Evil plume-like 'yarn' doesn't like me, and the feeling is mutual.

c) If you are stupid enough to drop a stitch forget it, it's easier to undo and start again !

d) Moles come in various sizes and I've nearly got it (I think)

e) There are five moles in one ball of the evil stuff....

f) I have a chair covered in partly made moles.

g) No mole would be able to burrow in this heat, so they are going back underground until it gets cooler.

I'm of on an adventure tomorrow, talking spinning & knitting ... guess who I'm going to meet ?

Sunday, July 16, 2006

I think

...I've nearly got it... after my lesson at Colinette yesterday when a lady (whose name I've totally forgotten) pretended to be a spinning wheel.

These are my first showable results - the brown came first and then the blue/green/white mixture and then the white. All were from Winghams the coloured ones are merino and the 'white' swafdale. I was going to use them for felting, and probably will - as the 'balls' are not much use for anything else ;-)

Think I need to work at it, results are either over spun or not spun enough. But I know how to join after having a lot of practice !

I've been invited to go to WSD Guild meeting in August, problem is Diane, has asked if I want to stay at her's and that means meeting her at work and she works here

Message for M - cheek has been known to get some 4 ply but not silk ;-) But thanks for the suggestions - think it will end up as something lacey and shawl like, but not for a while... Knitting nature is next on my list...

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Saturday Sky

Guess where I've been today.....

For their first ever Saturday opening.
And it when well, hello to everyone I met, Cherry who might be posting a very strange picture of me being taught how to spin with someone pretending to be a wheel.. Sorry my brain forgot other details...

This is some of the rehomed yarn - a cone of silk, dont know what it will be but as they pointed out to me it will dye well!
So suggestions of what I can do with 1kg of 4ply silk, please...

And some hanks of Tagliatelli to match some I found yesterday (should do clearing up more often !!)

And I just had to get some 4ply - this time 1kg of interesting blue/green/grey mix.

Some of the new kid mohair in Velvet Leaf that will be something lacey.

Some Lantern Moon needles, just because...

I did also get some of the kid mohair for my nextdoor neighbour, and some giotto but that is going on a journey..

I'm off now to pay with my new needles.

And for those who enjoyed today and want to do it again sometime, Colinette was very pleased with how the day went and I think will be doing it again sometime ;-)

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Knitting and Crochet Guild AGM

At last my head might be working ;-)

Last weekend I went to Chester for the AGM of the Knitting and Crochet Guild. I thought I would probably be one of the youngest there and I was not wrong ! When I arrived I met a sickly Yvonne knitting on a bench in the sun. The other members of the guild were around and I wondered what I had let myself in for… But I should not have been worried, even though most of the other members were of a certain age they were all very friendly and knowledgeable and made me very welcome.

After dinner on the Friday night, Liz showed us items from the guild collection that is housed in Yorkshire (Yvonne managed to take some photos before her cold took hold) I had seen some of the items when we visited the collection during Skipnorth.

I’d forgotten the state of university beds, creaking was an understatement ! So on Saturday morning I took myself off for a walk to the city. Not much was open at 7.30am but I got to look through Stash window and a wander round the closed shops. I got back before breakfast and after a battle for some toast the shopping began ;-)

Also in the morning was a ‘show and tell’ the most amazing items were passed round, knitting, crochet, possum wool, moles (pattern is under construction). A lot of the items were designed by the members and guess who didn’t get round to taking any photos ;-)

The main event of the morning was the AGM. Cant really remember what was said but a lot of it was how to appeal to new members, and why the guild has the reputation of being older ‘stuck in the mud’ members - I can tell you they are not , ok there were more older members at the weekend, but they are very friendly and willing to listen to me witter on…

There was more food and then Ruth Lee. The most wonderful knitted creations.

Here Ruth is showing her design book.

And with a lace arm warmer ( I managed to get the Knitting magazine it was featured in at Brimstage, and it was going cheap !!!)

Many thanks to her for donating a scarf/boa to the raffle and for drawing my ticket out, I’m a very happy girl !!

I then escaped to the city with Yvonne and we visited Stash and an internet café …..
Unfortunately (or not) we missed the string quartet, but did meet for drinks and more food.

Evening entertainment was from Janet Bradshaw, all we were told was that it was ’nice’. Mrs Bradshaw works at Tatton Park and dresses up for school visits. For the whole time she entertained us she did not appear to stop to draw breath, and her ’Nine Lives’ were her different costumes through the ages. She was very amusing with stories of quotes children say….

Some of us then retired to a sitting room with a bottle or two for further chatting ….

On the Sunday morning, breakfast, handing in of room keys and then more shopping (I really need to go and get some more bookcases next week….)

There were then workshops run by members, cant remember which ones I was meant to be in but I ended up in Denise Musk’s decorated bags - now with all the knitting I’ve done recently she has inspired me to get out my sewing machine and play …
Then Sue Hobson explained what was involved in The Knitting Guild Association Certificate, lots of swatches and interesting bits…

Surprisingly there was lunch (I’ve not eaten so much over a weekend for a long time !!) and final goodbyes and lifts to the station…

Overall the weekend was much better than I ever imagined. The people were very interesting and friendly and I would recommend it to everyone. It was a very filled weekend, but there were chances to opt out and take things easy if you wanted to. Next year there is a one day AGM (and it’s at Cheltenham, which is only an hour from where I live !!).

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Secret Pal

When I came back on Sunday night there was a parcel waiting for me. And because I was feeling yukky I opened it and all it's nicely wrapped presents without taking any photos...

Here is a handmade card, some handspun from Skye (wonderful colour !!)
Some soap also from Syke.
A pincushion that is too good to use.
And a book of photos by Colin Baxter, open at one of my favourite beaches - Oldshoremore.

Thank you secret pal, they are lovely.
I've been sitting looking at the Highland pictures and dreaming of being up north again ;-)

And this is one of my Brother's cats.
This one liked trying to eat my knitting needles last time I was staying, this time she was in an unsocialable mood !

I'm feeling nearly normal today, finished knitting a Colinette jumper last night so get ready for some knitting photos ;-)

Tuesday, July 11, 2006


Thanks for all the get well messages, I'm feeling a lot better today, still hotter than I should be, but I managed so knitting this morning which is a sign I'm getting better ;-)

When I said I didn't buy any wool from Stash I forgot to say that I stopped at Colinette on the way north....

Here is some more 4 ply...
I know I've got more than I need but....
And I'm not going to say how much this lot was but I got a *very* good deal ;-)

I also got 10 balls of British Breeds Natural Aran.
Inky-dinky Spider Stole by Fiddlesticks.
The Rowan mag is the one from Stash which has River in it...
Knitting Nature by Norah Gaughan,
One Skein, Stahman's Shawls and Scarves,
Folk Knitting in Estonia by Nancy Bush.
And I managed to find Traditional Scandinavian Knitting by Sheila McGregor reduced at Brimstage.
For those that have not seen Knitting Nature, you need to go and get it, different wearable patterns (somehow I managed to order some yarn for the Basalt Tank today..)

They had a scarecrow competition at Brimstage and look which one won - the one doing knitting !!!
I called in at Brimstage after KCG finished in Chester, then went to friends for tea before driving home.

I will post about the weekend tomorrow when I should be able to make more sense...
Some will be pleased to know that I have to work out Mr Mole's pattern as he made lots of new friends over the weekend. So will post when I've played, think of me with a set of dpn's, pen & paper - what are the odds of me trying to knit with the pen and write with needles ?

Monday, July 10, 2006

Saturday Sky

Here is my Saturday Sky picture.

And yes it was 7.30am !!
I was staying in Chester for KCG AGM.
I took myself off for an early morning walk to find the shop below...

Stash is a small shop but has lots of woolly choices but I had to wait until the afternoon to go back when it was open. But I was good and only bought a pattern book.

And thanks to someone else who was also at the AGM I'm going back to bed to try and get rid of a cold before it takes hold... will post full details of the weekend soon, including the Ruth Lee scarf I won in the raffle :-)

Wednesday, July 05, 2006


I'm off on a yarny weekend.
Visiting Colinette tomorrow, picking up a Point 5 jumper to knit for their stand at Ally Pally, and somehow I've been challenged to finish it over the weekend.... knitted on 12mm needles so might be able to, but it does depend on how much chatting I do ;-)
And the main reason for traveling North, knitting and Crochet Guild AGM, held in Chester. I've never been to one of these before so should be interesting to see what happens....
I'm also managing to visit my brother (buying diner for us before I go to stay, coz he never seems to have edible food in the house!) and also popping in on my cousin - so that's most of my family visited in one go.
And then after the AGM finishes on Sunday I'm going to see then senders of the postcard (from a few posts ago) and find out where she got it from and if they had a good holiday.
Also planning to go to Ikea tomorrow for bookcases....

Better go and pack, got the essentials ready - knitting, old patterns and older lace, just need to find some clothes....

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Whilst I was sleeping....

My garden was invaded .....

I noticed this on the grass - Mr Mole had just popped up to tell me to mow the grass !!

Then in the hazel bush....

Mr Squirrel said he didn't like it sat on the top like a fairy, so decided to fall to the ground... (sorry I missed the action shots!)

But I was left a bag - Unbiased from Knitty. I think it needs lining, but it has been sitting around for ages waiting for it's handles...

The animals are for the knitted garden My plan is to be a knitted garden groupie and follow it round several of the shows, Exeter, Birmingham and maybe Cardiff.

I got my tickets for Ally Pally learning curve - booked four for the Saturday, and I'm going to be with Ruth for two of them :-) I also get to see Ruth Lee next weekend at KCG AGM... If I wasn't so hot I'd be getting excited.. And now I must try and do some ironing before it takes over and the temperature gets any hotter ;-)

Saturday, July 01, 2006

Saturday Sky

Being a follower of Sue here are some pictures of my Saturday Sky.

This was this morning in the back garden.

My first Sweet Pea flower :-)
I did try and take one of the paraglider thing that was flying over head but he was too quick for me !!

Note runner bean flowers...

And this was this afternoon at the front.

The school had their fete and advertised an Army helicopter landing on site.
I was listening out but missed the landing, but I did get the taking off !!

Will see if the hot air balloons come over later....

And as I'm in a finishing things mood, better get back to the knitting.
And there *will* be pictures of knitting tomorrow.....