Friday, August 08, 2008

Multiple Choice...

And the big news is?

a) I'm ba-ack....
b) The Ravelympics 2008 has started....
c) There is a new Yarn Pusher on the Block....

Well, duh. What else could the answer be, but c.

So, welcome to Dizzy Blonde Yarns, home to the fantabulous creations of La (you know, La, from the infamous KnottyGirls stable, out of JenLa, by Yer General Troublemakers, but we luvs ya anyway).

I have sampled said yarns, and I will attest to their general swooniness-making abilitites. Good yarn, nice yarn, highly pettable, knittable, wearable yarn. In good and generous quantities, enough to delight the hearts of any yarn lovers.

So, ya know, clicky-clicky:

Oh, yeah, there is some knitting news, but with all the excitement today, I'll save it for later.... 'cos, you know, I have a blog, and really ought to put things on it.....

Saturday, May 03, 2008

aaaaaaargh! (resolved)

Can you see the crisis? Can you see the problem? Can you see the whole earth-shattering, scream loudly, rip it all out issue?

Can you see the idiocy, which is to use yarn that comes all nicely measured, for a specific kit, and take some and play around with it on other things, and then mess a whole wodge of it up, and then use it to play with the cats, and then wonder why you run out of yarn at the end. I should have liable to 'User Error' tattooed on my forehead....

But, the amazing Andie over at Renaissance Dyeing, after getting my slightly hysterical, written at 2am email, ran out to her workshop on a Saturday morning (now there is service for you), ransacked her stores, and found the right yarn, in the right dye-lot, and is sending it to me. (Along with some other things that may have fallen into my shopping basket). And anyone else who needs Copper Beech dye lot no.2 will just have to whistle for it, for I have cornered the world market in this particular yarn. (Open to bribes, of course, of other yarn....)

So, do you think 250m will be enough to finish it?

(Hmmm, wonder if this was what was causing my somewhat self-indulged melt-down recently.)

Thursday, May 01, 2008

not knitting but drowning....

Well, there is some knitting, and exciting things are close to finished (as long as I don't run out of yarn...), and some exciting purchases have come into the house (ask me how to get hold of some Woolmeise!). But I need to vent, so be warned.

But, right now, I am fighting with Insurance companies, and most specifically their very clever new strategy of demanding that all clients must needs become hydrogeologists overnight. For last summer, the area I live in suffered some flooding. Some quite bad flooding. A result of extreme weather, and poor infrastructure maintenance. But my house, luckily, was dry.

But now I have to fill in a form, asking such things as are you within 1/4 mile of any streams, rivers, lakes, reservoirs, water courses or tidal waters? (Well, I reckon most places would be fairly close to at least one of these, oh, and by the way, what precisely do they mean by a water course? Precisely? Because if I get the answers wrong, it could be used to invalidate any insurance claim I make....). and please advise the approximate height of the premises above the normal high water mark of the nearest watercourse? (Do you think the council would lend me their fancy theodolites? The ones that can measure along roads, and around corners, and through buildings, oh, and would a really, really good GPS machine be useful, one which will give me the exact height differences? Because if I get the answers wrong, it could be used to invalidate any insurance claim I make....)

Now, I may have mentioned my problems with forms before (I once managed to tell the DVLA - driving licence people - that I was legally blind, and when they sent me a very nice letter asking if I had made a mistake, I rang them up and argued about it. Because I couldn't possibly have been wrong....). So I am in complete tail-spin melt down.

Not helped by going to events to which one needs to take a smart suit (fine, I'll get the iron out), display boards (well, if you will volunteer to put up a display), drawing pins (for to attach to the display board), computer (for to display something using technology - amazing, though, how people who don't like computers can actively refuse to even acknowledge the presence of one, even if you are playing music very loudly through it). So far, so good and normal. But then add in a couple of laundry racks (which have absolutely nothing to do with my display), and most importantly, a cool box (because there was a transfer of a rather nice piece of meat - apologies if you are veggie - that needed to take place in a car park, which had absolutely nothing to do with displays, events, smart suits, computers, or even laundry racks.) It was remembering the cool box which put me over the edge....

Oh, can anyone explain what a supra-existential crisis is (and why it might be different from just your plain old regular existential crisis)? Or what an ontological insecurity is?

Friday, March 21, 2008

here bloggy, bloggy, bloggy, blog

time for feeding!

So, yes, the blog. Well, since I've been away, there's been a earthquake (dudes, how do you in California survive the we'll shake you like you're a lime green jello?), the roof done got broke, and fixed, the boiler done got broke, and fixed, I've had to chase the wheelie bin, and assorted contents, down the road three times 'cos of the wind, wash one of the cat's heads twice, 'cos she has taken to sticking it a local sewer, and you just can't wait for the grooming to kick in, been labelled the spawn of something found on the bottom of a shoe (don't ask, long story, but it may involve meetings about string, but hey, I won), caused havoc at a local quiz group, and we haven't even had the first round yet, bought five pairs of shoes in five minutes (I'm good at shoes), and then spent 3 hours trying to buy a pair of trousers, all from the same shop (repeat until you remember it, you are not the same size you were 20 years ago), finally made a loaf of bread which isn't paving-slab-like, finally managed to find my ear plugs, so I could go to the movies (I'm delicate like that, I am, you know), told off a PhD student for writing about babies growing in women's abdomens, and taken to buying, and wearing, manga t-shirts, because I'm clearly having some kind of crisis about turning 40 this year.

Oh, and I've done some knitting.

A while ago, La (of JenLa) sent me some sumptuous Dizzy Blonde hand-dyed (check it out on Ravelry. See, told you it was good). Too good to go on the feets, so instead, at last, it became something....

Serpentine Mitts, from MimKnits (funnily enough, a kit for her Lightweight Mountain Peaks Shawl also managed to find its way to the house, from Renaissance Dyeing, purveyors of high quality you should be able to eat it yarn). And a treat they are too. And I've got enough yarn for another pair. La, you are a goddess.

And then, to balance out the good, I've been playing fugly...

Which looks better when you make bigger squares...

And is part of a group project for Project Linus. And somewhat stunning, in a I know it is only March, but dear heavens I need a pair of sunglasses now to save me, but hopefully something that boys will like. If it ever gets sewn up into a comfort blanket.... which it will. Because I have decreed. And because I suckered punch Pampootie into being in charge (which she may deny, but I am stubborn, and I will win).

And now I must flee, and save the sewer-headed cat from barfing on the scary fugly yarn (which, truth be told, is actually rather nice knitted up, being a decent superwash and all, and I would tell you what it is, but the rest of the yarn is shut away in a darkened room, for its own safety, and I can't remember what it is called). (As usual, the good pictures come from Puplet.)

Oh, yes, and the last thing I did of any note? Helped to welcome the well-hatted Aran into the world, by getting drunk on the last of my 28 year old single malt.

Aran, son of WoollyWormhead and Mr Tom, you were worth the sacrifice!

Friday, February 08, 2008

I'm having a Charlie Brown moment...

... in other words: 'Oh, good grief'. So the blog hasn't been fed for a while. Because I've managed to get myself silly busy, what with Ravelry (not that I say much there, either, but so much pretty pretty to look at), and joining Mission: Possible 2008 (the fault of Jen of Jenla and Bavgirl, and by the way is there a prize for the greatest underachiever? Aside from yarn arson?) and work (actual paid work, which can be done in pyjamas, with coffee, in front of the computer. Oh, buggery, in pyjamas, with coffee, in front of the computer. Sorry, did I say I was meant to be working?), and volunteer stuff (I'll have you bow down and worship now, please, because I am now both a President, and a Trustee. Oh, the power.... to go to meetings.... ), and grant applications for volunteer stuff (so, you want me to tell you exactly how long that piece of string is going to be, in advance of getting said piece of string in our hands), and projects for volunteer stuff (how long should a piece of string be, anyway? Should we maybe get a committee together, and have some meetings, to discuss the ideal length of a piece of string? Oh, look, how surprising, everyone thinks it should be a different length.... ). And then the general stuff of living (anyone know where I hid the hoover?)

And there has even been some knitting, but because I have a new camera (Woot!), and a shiny new computer (double Woot!), I haven't managed to co-ordinate the taking of pictures with the uploading and the posting .... but I'll give it a go....

Hot-diggety-dawg, something has worked, so behold Daisy, from Woollywormhead's new book, 'Going Straight',

and Sweet Winkie, from the same.

Folks, I gotta say it, and not because I know and adore Woollywormhead, but this is a fabulous book! Hats in a multitude, all designed to be knitted on straights, with fantastic tutorials on short-rowing, and kitchenering (who knew that not only did garter stitch have a reverse side, but that it had its own rules for kitchenering?). And the hats are just so clever, and fun, and quick.

But now, I must go, for I've just been told that Shrödinger's kitten has got a ball of string to play with, and I've got to measure it.

Friday, January 04, 2008

xmas (not), new year (not), okay winter socks

Finished. Finally. Meant to be an xmas present, but didn't make it. Meant to be finished for the new year, but didn't make it. But hey, they made it in time for winter. And to keep puplet's feet warm, in his brand new wellies.

And I have to say, I am deeply proud of these (even though the pictures aren't great, but you know how finicky and unco-operative models can be....).

And the details, just so I can try and keep track (the whole scraps of paper and backs of envelopes working soooooo well these days.)

Based on Cat Bordhi's Clematis Vine (thought without the clematis, or the vine, I suppose), from her New Pathways for Sock Knitters. And my advice for people working from Cat's book, is to trust in her numbers.

And the tops - well, cobbled together, a filling of a 2x2 corrugated rib, sandwiched between 2 rows of a Kihnu vits braid, from Nancy Bush's 'Folk Knitting in Estonia.

And the cast-off - from Priscilla A Gibson-Roberts 'Ethnic Socks and Stockings', something that she calls the double stitch bind off, which worked wonderfully in the two colours. (Though I went up 2 needle sizes, to a 3.5mm, and it still isn't the most elastic ever, but it isn't circulation cutting, so good.)

And the overall knit? Well, on 3mm needles, I kept going, gradually increasing up the back of the leg, 'til there were 104 stitches around. And I kept going until I was just about out of yarn. 4 balls of Regia Silk 4ply gone from the stash (yippee!).

The verdict? I am all seriously boasty. I think I done good.

Next, on to the Hats. For I have received, and drooled over, WoollyWormhead's glorious new Hat Book. And I strongly urge all and any to get it. For the Hats, they are good.

(Normal incompetent non-fitting knitting will return soon.)

Monday, December 24, 2007

catmas cheer

Remember to put some catnip out for Santa and his reincat, hard at work tonight.

Remember that only good cats get catmas presents, so a last-minute public display of affection for your catmas friends is always a good idea.

And finally, don't forget to get to sleep early the night before catmas - it can be tiring, being full of catmas cheer.

To friends old and new, Happy Holidays!