Sunday, 27 October 2013

Phew! I'm ready for a break!

Week in review -

As this week's title suggests, I'm fit to drop. Those of you with kids in the UK will know its half term around these parts. My son is on half term this week coming, but my second pharmacist's children were off this week. In my infinite wisdom I decided not to employ a locum to cover her hours. I thought it'd be fine. Don't get me wrong it was fine, even with the fact I had a fulltime technician off too. But dear me it was hard work. If I wasn't ready for a week off before, I am now! I'm pooped!!

At knit night this week I picked up a couple of mugs. The woman who hosts us has a gallery. Her husband is the most amazing potter. His work is stunning. Now I have a couple of his mugs I covet his teapots.  You can find his work Here. Please leave some things for me to buy next week!

Next week promises to be busy too! I've got things to do every day. But it'll be good to be busy with home things rather than work things.

Feeling the love this week -

I finally finished the Dragonfly fibre. I got about 900 yards of 2 ply. It's a heavy laceweight to a very light fingering. I'm really happy with it.

I've washed and thwacked it and once it's dry I'll pack it up and send it on it's way. I've also started to spin on my Turkish spindle again. I'm spinning some Nunoco fibre. It's a mini batt from my smorgasbord box. It's called autumn sky and it's a  gorgeous blend of merino, tussah silk, corn fibre and soya. I thought I'd leave it as a single and full it slightly, but I'm not sure how it will felt with all of the other ingredients. I don't want to ply it because I want to preserve the colour gradient. The only way of plying and doing that is to Navaho ply it and I'll lose lots of yardage. We'll see

On the knitting front I've been exclusively knitting on the Hitchhiker. I've now exceeded the 42 points, I'm now intrigued to see how many I finish up with.

It dawned on me this week that it's about 2 months until Christmas. I really need to get a wiggle on with the gift knitting.  I need to focus and get the job done!

On the horizon -

I don't think I'll get much spinning done, but I really need to work on those gifts   My goal next week is to make significant progress on the gift knitting.

I'm taking Ben to Beamish next week. It's a huge museum in the North East. I'll report back, I'm looking forward to seeing the Victorian pharmacy they have. Maybe I'll find a spinning wheel to play with there!

Have a great week guys.


Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Poorly Sick Pig :-(

Hey there guys! Huge apologies for the lateness of this post. This weekend I've mostly been poorly. I've got a throat infection I think, and I feel awful.
I'm still at work though (such a trooper! I know!) so by the end of the day I'm completely done in.

This post will be brief, I'm sorry.

Week in Review:
There's not a lot to say about this past week, I've worked and I've spun and that's pretty much it. We have new additions to the family! We have 2 pet rats called Ringo and Rusty. I'll post photos as soon as they've settled in enough. Trying to convince Ben to take baby steps with them is proving difficult. He's been desperate to have a small furry pet for years, and now they're here he wants to play with them all of the time!

Feeling the love:
I've worked mostly on getting the second single of the dragonfly fibre done. I'm really pleased with it. I've started to ply now and it's coming out nicely. I'm a bit concerned about my bobbins though. I weighed the fibre when I split it, so I know that I had 50g in each half, but as I'm plying it's becoming really obvious that I'm going to have a lot left on my second bobbin. I'll try to take it off and make a centre-pull ball to tag it onto the yarn I'm plying. This has never gone well for me, so I can only hope for the best!

I have knitted too, I'm still working on my Hitchhiker. There's not a lot to see right now as it's started to grow more slowly.

On the horizon:
I'll have the dragonfly finished this week I'm sure
I'm hoping to have the Hitchhiker finished (HA!)
I'm hoping that my throat will be less septic!!

Sorry for the lack of photo's this week,
And the lack of content!
Hoping for a good week and I'm looking forward to being off work next week!

Have a good one

Ellen x

Sunday, 13 October 2013

The third time IS a charm

Don't panic good readers, I'm still here! It seems though, my weekends escape me more often than not!

Week in review -
This week has been tricky. Work has been interesting; I've had numerous queries and it's been great. I loathe weeks when all I get to do is dispense. This week I've had loads of clinical and pharmacological questions to answer and it's made for great challenges.

I've also had new challenges on the coaching front. Normally I coach older children to swim at  swimming club. This week, however, I've been teaching the youngest children. They're 4 and 5 years old, and with the best will in the world, I find them tricky. Their short attention spans mean I have had to change my teaching style to keep them on my side. It's difficult, but I've enjoyed it.

Feeling the love -
I know I had all these good intentions last week, but they all went to the wall!
I DID get to knit night and had a great time. I met 4 new women and loved the 2 hours we had to knit, crochet and spin together. I'll be back with bells on next week! I had intended to cast on either socks or Viajante but managed to cast on neither! What I did do though, was to cast on  hitchhiker. I'm using some of the first handspun I'd ever made. I love knitting with handspun. Even such an early attempt as this. There are places where my plying is woeful but as I'm knitting, I love watching the colours knit up and I love seeing how my plying is improving as I work my way through the skein.

I've also been deep stash diving. A long time ago I decided to make garter stitch scarves using super bulky yarn. I found a few of the scarves that I hadn't sold or given away and unravelled them. So far I've made one cowl. I think I have enough yarn to make 2 more. I'm not going to write up the pattern and publish it because I've no idea what the yarn is. But I have put all the I instructions  I used to make it on the project page. If you fancy making something similar, feel free to use these directions 'till your heart's content.

I have spun too. I've made a little progress on dragonfly, but it's slow going. Such is spinning thin!

On the horizon -

Will I get Hitchhiker finished?
Will I get cowl numbers 2 and 3 finished?
What about Annie?
What about those ballet wraps!?

Wish me luck! I'm going in!!!

Up until Next time, have a good one

Ellen. X

Sunday, 6 October 2013

Third time's a charm

Week in review - 

It's been a week. I've not had a lot of fun, but thankfully I've had my knitting to keep me sane. I'm forever grateful for the knitting community. You guys cheer me up. When I'm feeling that  I want the world to stop so I can get off, a visit to Ravelry to look at the boards raises my spirits. 

The week hasn't been all doom and gloom though. My son was on the television this week! Our village is one of the first rural communities to get fibre optic broadband and his school has been hooked up. Regional television came to record the moment, and Ben was interviewed. So, at the tender age of 10 he's had his 15 seconds of fame. 

On the work front it's been an interesting week. My love as a pharmacist is clinical pharmacy. There isn't a day that goes by that I regret moving out of hospital pharmacy and into community pharmacy. I miss the juicy clinical challenges. In community pharmacy these challenges are few and far between. I'm lucky, in that I work in a building with 2 large GP practices, so clinical queries happen more often. This week I've had the opportunity to get my teeth sunk into some good problems that have lead to me learning new things. Happy days. 

The title of this week's blog comes from the fact that, once again, I didn't get to knit night this week! This time it was cancelled. Gutted. But you never know, if the planets align I might just get there next time! Keep everything crossed for me guys! 

Feeling the Love - 

This week I've found myselft working on Annie surprisingly enough. I think the stresses of the week have only allowed me to mindlessly knit while I've chewed over what's been going on. This means I've made some good progress. I've nearly finished the second skein and it's clear to me now that I'll have to use all 4 skeins. The yardage on these skeins is quite short. It's knitting into a gorgeous fabric. The drape is great and I think it will be a beautifully warm scarf. The hand dyed colours are finally working with the pattern. 

I also heard back from the girls' mum who gave me their up to date chest measurements. They've grown! How rude!? So Sophie's pink wrap has been ripped out and I'm nearly back to where I'd originally got up to.  I'm enjoying the knit so far, I've got a little way to go on the raglan shaping, then we'll see where I go next. 

Don't keel over guys, but I've finally got a decent amount of spinning done too. I've finished the first single of the dragonfly top. I've pre-drafted the second half in an attempt to get some nice barber poling going on. 

It's a lovely spin, but I can't wait to move onto something else. I can feel a batt coming on. But having said that, Ben is spinning some clown barf top I bought for him at Woolfest this year. He decided he wanted me to split up the colours. He's going to spin one after the other and then I'm going to Navaho ply them for him. 

I originally bought 2 braids of barf! One was a bright rainbow, and the one he's spinning. I offered him one, but he wanted half of each. So now I'm thinking that with my half of each skein, I could have a go at making a 5-ply yarn. I have no idea how I would ply 5 singles together. Some research will have to happen I think. Maybe I could make a 2-ply and a 3-ply. Can you imagine the results? Mmm. Maybe the batt will have to wait for next time. 

On the horizon - 

I'd love to make some good progress on my second dragonfly single. I really want to get it winging it's way to the recipient. 

I think I'll get the third skein of yarn started on Annie's, and Sophie's wrap needs to see some serious action. 

And then there's knit night. Well. If it comes off, I'd like to either start a pair of socks, or I'm thinking that Viajante by Martina Behm is calling me. 

Have a great week. 
Keep smiling

Ellen x