Thursday, June 28, 2007

I want ....

.... to thank our dearly beloved Yorkshire Water, for having the prescience in signing me up to a free, three-month sewer and drain damage insurance policy. Amazing, that the letter was sent out on Thursday 21st June, and the great deluge hit us on Sunday/Monday 24th/25th June. (Where I live was hit quite badly this week, fortunately our house was, just, safe, just a minor roof leak, and a little bit of toilet backing up downstairs, but enough are still under water. Blueadt, who has a swanky new mobile phone, took many, many pictures.) Just who are their weather forecasters? They should get a pay rise. Ah, but the best thing about this free, try-it-and-see insurance policy. You can't make any claims for anything that happened before 5th July.

.... to have a wedding. With ceremonial swords. Because for the really very reasonable sum of £39 extra, you can get up to £20,000 of cover for ceremonial swords. Just what do they anticipate happening with the ceremonial swords? Do you get someone in from the Confrérie du Sabre d'Or, who attacks the toasting champagne, sending the cork flying off, to great applause, but it lands on top of the wedding cake, which topples, tipping the flower-ringed candle over, which sets fire to the crepe swags, which in turn ignites the immense amount of hair-spray vapour in the marquee, and as the fire brigade arrive, to drench all the guests in water, they run over the castle owner's prize Chinese Crested Dog (nothing fatal - just put him off his stride a little) which was on its way to a highly lucrative stud assignation. And all this from having a ceremonial sword or two at the wedding. (Oh, and not to mention that in the whole basic wedding insurance package, they'll even pay for your counselling, but only if the wedding doesn't take place. But if you are getting married soon - Good Luck!)

.... to stay dry this weekend. Even though the Met Office is predicting more heavy, heavy rain. Because someone has decided that I must go camping, in order to attend Woolfest. (The one and only time I have ever camped was in a friend's backgarden at the age of 8. Memorable because they had broad bean plants in their garden. And we had just 'studied' broad bean anatomy and reproduction at school. So we spent the whole evening, in a state of high giggles, just this side of mass hysteria, comparing the anatomy of a broad bean, and its reproductive cycle, to that of humans. Urgh, men, urgh, gross, giggle, giggle, giggle. Parents screaming to get us to shut up. I wonder why I never went camping again.) So hopefully I won't be washed down a mountain, with a precious skein of hand-dyed lace-weight clutched in my teeth, as the hills resound with the sounds of knitters all crying 'Save the Wool! Save the Wool!'.

.... my new, just finished Yoda coat (though it will probably be more Kenny from South Park coat - the hood looks worrying) to dry in time for said camping. Because I need something to wrap up in to keep warm. Because I've been told that campsites don't tend to have central heating.

.... finally, for my house to stay dry this weekend too, though as I am leaving Hiding Pup in charge, I have every confidence that it will be. But I might just move some things (the stash) upstairs, just to be extra safe. And it would be no great loss to humankind if the living room carpet had to be replaced.

Friday, June 22, 2007

this is not....

... a cow. Even though she eats a cow's worth of grass, and other assorted vegetables (I'm currently trying to wean her off raw potato peelings onto carrot peelings, but somehow the orange doesn't appeal.)

... a sign of affection. Though I suppose, grudgingly, they are quite fond of each other. (Mainly because the not a cow has a habit of not finishing her cat food, giving the not affectionate one ample opportunities to grab some sneaky extra helpings.)

... asleep. This is 'being' asleep, with the paw over the nose actively keeping those eyes shut, because it is daylight outside, and one wouldn't want to be awake in the daytime, because that would interfere too much with dawn and dusk hunting activities. (Though she has a spangly new collar, with a bell on it, which has dramatically reduced the number of huntees.)

This, you may have noticed, is not a post about knitting. This is because no photographs of knitting have been taken recently. Because I cannot quite face all 48 knitted and decorated butterflies just at the moment, and because I had yarn quantity issues with the Cosmos Jacket.

Many thanks for all your generous comments about the Cora Shawl - she shall have an outing soon.

Monday, June 11, 2007

cora filed

Finally, at last, the Cora/Neapolitan Ice Cream Shawl is done. Not just done with the knitting, but done with the washing, the blocking, even done with the photo-ing. Done, done, and ready to be done with as I please, and if that means wadding it up into a ball, dumping it on top of the filing cabinet, and forgetting about it for months, it is done to be done with. (The fact that I might just be waiting for an invite to an 'event' - and I'm really not fussy here, any kind of 'event', which involves hanging around until the summer evenings turn cool, and something simple must needs be draped to keep me warm, and I can pretend that I am elegant, really, really shouldn't have anything to do with whether I wear Cora or not, but hey, I'm only human, and I want to show it off at somewhere a little bit nicer than the local pub.)

The facts:

Can't remember when I started Cora, but it was sometime this year, and, even more amazingly, she has only been hanging around since I bought her at the Harrogate Knitting and Stitching show last November. (The shawl pin, shown below, also came from the same show, but you think I can remember from whom?)

It is, but of course, a Sharon Miller design (though not her colours, which were just a little too pink), goddess of all things lacy.

A remarkably trouble free knit - which is down to two reasons. Shetland wool, baby (Jamieson's Ultra, this time) - my choice of desert island yarn, no matter the weight, because it just grabs me, baby. And the good luck knitting markers from Mary-Lou, which have stuck with this project from the very start (scroll down to seem them in action). Not that I believe in luck, but the lack of dropped stitches, come blocking time, has got to be down to something....

A couple of other thoughts. First, may I never see feather and fan again, or at least for a long, long time. Yes, pretty, yes, effective, yes, simple to learn. But on a round of close to 1,000 stitches, and may the knitting saints forgive me, but more boring that purling close to 1,000 stitches. And second, the shawl is large (just over 5 foot square, and it could have gone further), I am short (just, just over 5 foot, and some people still owe me an eating of their hat, because I broke the 60 inches), so in the triangular shot, the dreaded pointing finger of look, look, large ass(crack) here is avoided. Yippee.

So I leave you with some photos, the obligatory cat claiming ownership;

the laundry line shot;
the close up, with adornment;
and the imagine a person inside the elegant drape shot;

And I think, in honour of the luck that Mary-Lou's stitch markers brought, I shall rename her 'The Wimseycal Shawl'.