Tuesday, March 31, 2009


The things one has in one's hot little mitts when one doesn't have a spindle handy! And I love the possum/merino blend yarn.

Thank you all for your condolences on Nanna's passing. The funeral in Wagga was small without fuss - she would have approved. I'm very glad I won't have to delivery any more eulogies for grandparents.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Knit on, Nan

My Nanna, that yarn stealing 90 year old, left us today at 5pm.

We were prepared for her going, although we didn't know when.

My mother, her youngest daughter, got to see her and spend time with her just a couple of weeks ago and was content. My brother saw her only yesterday. He is probably the most surprised of all of us.

I was close to Nanna for a very long time.

When Dad was sent to Vietnam, Mum and I lived with them on the farm at Jerilderie. A few years later they sold the farm and came to live in Canberra to be near us and I saw her most weeks after that.

She helped teach me to knit and to do fancy work (embroidery) and for a few years, there, I was her yarn supplier for blanket squares which I sewed together for the Red Cross - she really hated sewing up.

We made dolls' clothes together, first for my dolls and then for hers. When Mum and Dad started going away for the winter, I'd come down from Sydney every couple of weeks to see she was alright.

She was a hard woman and a generous one. Once her mind was fixed on something there was nothing you could do to change it.
She made the best boiled fruit cakes and Christmas puddings and the worst savoury mince.

Her life was a hard one but mine is the richer for having her as a grandmother.

Knit on, Dot.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

What he said.

And he did a photo shoot on his desk at work and brought it all home on the bus.

And I'm pretty sure it's not stash if I don't buy it myself.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Wow, what a great list compiled by a slew of women with great taste. I'm checking out the library's DVD holdings, because a swing through a couple of DVD shops last night failed to find a few of those titles and the prices on some of the others were heart-stopping.

I'm feeling much better than I was, thank you - back at work this week and largely functional.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Chicken Soup for the Eyes

That allergic thing really sucked.

What sucked the most was the inability to do anything for days but sit on the couch and stare into space or sleep. I was too ill to knit much (what, lift my arms?), couldn't wear my glasses so reading was out, daytime TV is nothing to stay home for and I had no talking books at my disposal.

What I need is an emergency sick day pack of DVDs, tissues and teabags. But what DVDs? I used to have a video tape of the Laurence Olivier in Pride and Prejudice for such occasions, but it's long dead or lost. What's your DVD version of chicken soup?

Friday, March 13, 2009

On a roll - a Summer Roll

The Old Flame's parents' good china is a discontinued pattern by Johnson Bros. called Summer Chintz. They like to get extra pieces when they can.

The Old Flame purchased four cups and saucers at Vinnies recently. I was dead chuffed to get a dinner setting for four (less 2 cups and 2 soup bowls) plus a rectangular sandwich plate and milk jug at Salvos Phillip this afternoon.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Take the last train to Snotsville

It's official, I'm allergic to the Riverina and have returned with a raging case of allergic rhinitis. You don't need all the details but my nose is so swollen and sore I can't wear my glasses. Computer time is limited to how long I can squint at the screen; which is not all that long.

Nanna's happy and wonderfully cared for in the Narrandera Nursing Home. Thank you all for your good wishes.
When we got there Saturday she and my aunt were sitting in the courtyard knitting. We sat for a while, three generations of us, knitting.

Nan is not asleep. She is working out how to steal my yarn. The geranium coloured yarn in front of her was, momentarily, my aunt's but Nan decided she like it better than the pale blue and that the pattern was boring anyway. She really liked the Naturally Aspire I was knitting into brioche stitch scarf. I had to move it from her reach.

(details on Ravelry)

There were sheep on the road - been a while since I've seen that.

Somewhere on the "short cut" between Leeton and Ardlethan that added an hour to the journey home.

There was op-shopping in Temora, Young and Yass. Total haul 2 pieces Tupperware ($1.50), 2 pairs new swimmers ($4), 3 blouses ($8), and 2 balls old Patonyle ($2).

Salvos shop in Young

And there was more dealing with Nanna's stuff. Several more cartons of dolls have now found appreciative homes, books have been delivered to Lifeline and clothes to various op-shops and the Old Flame scored a pressure cooker for his putative still.

Friday, March 06, 2009


Or actually, sometime next week.

Mum and I are off to the Riverina for the weekend to visit Nanna. She had a heart attack on Christmas Eve which made her fall and break her hip. She's pulled through it all and we're seeing her in her new home in Narrandera for the first time.

Oh, and there may be a little light op-shopping on the way home. Monday is a public holiday in the ACT but not in encircling NSW.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

We're not all hooligans

I was knitting at the bus interchange this evening. Knitting and waiting for the free bus to the stadium to watch the Socceroos lose in a lacklustre fashion to Kuwait.

The woman on the bench next to me asked what I was knitting, fondled the spare balls of Jet and marvelled over stitchmarker bling and told me about how her late mother was a knitter and how nice it was to see someone younger (than her late mother) knitting.

The bus for the stadium came. My neighbour let out a huge sigh and said "Thank heaven the stadium bus is here, now all these hooligans will leave!"

I smiled and said, gently, that I was leaving on that bus too. She blushed and replied "You? But I thought with the knitting and everything...."

"We're not all hooligans", I assured her.

Mind you, I think I like the sound of hooligan knitters.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Footy Knits

The Brumbies lost very badly indeed to the Western Force on Saturday night. The scoreline should have been worse, but Matt Giteau didn't kick very well for the Force. Doesn't bode well for next year when he comes back to Canberra.

There was knitting, naturally. Finished the TTWC that TSS and I started at Twilight the other night and started another Inca beret from scraps. This photo was taken seconds before I realised why it didn't feel quite right - I'd forgotten to change needle size for the body of the beret. Bugger. It's in the frog pond now.

I also spotted this rather nice jumper causally slung around the shoulders of a bloke a few rows in front of us. Interesting columns effect pattern with a garter stitch shawl collar.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Knit Flicks

I thought we'd get a knit free experience on Friday night with a double bill of Body of Lies and
Towelhead but this was not so.

Body of Lies was completely knit free. It was also very violent, with quite explicit images of torture, but it wasn't gratuitously so. Tightly scripted, it was a very good film, despite the lack of knitting content.

Towelhead was more disturbing because the abuse was more personal and more within my imagination. The Old Flame and I agreed that a read of the book the film was based on would be a worthwhile excercise. Uncomfortable viewing. There is one scene in which a minor character is observed knitting.

Monday, March 02, 2009

Flick Knits - Twilight

Oh Lord, where to start? The film is mostly laughable - an entire theatre can't be wrong. There were a couple of tense, engrossing bits, but largely it was laughable ... and long.

The Old Flame found the clause in the ANU Film Group membership rules that allows members to take up to two under 16 guests for nothing to any film, even those marked "No Guests". E, my just-turned-14 niece, is a twerd (Twilight nerd, how could you not know that!?) so was beyond excited to attend with us. OK, there was squealing involved and it wasn't only her father pleased to have someone else listen to endless chatter about Twilight - she's been banned from speaking of it at home.

This was her third showing of the film, although, she assures me, the book is much, much better. And that's exactly why I took her - she's finally reading. Her whole life I've been trying to get her to read. Her twin sister is never without a book, but E has resisted despite all the gifts of books to tempt her. She valued the book as an object but just wasn't all that interested in what lay between the covers. Now she's reading with appetite and we are all overjoyed.

TSS contributed to our first TTWC of the year but that wasn't the only knitting that night. The knit count in the film was pretty high - between 8 and 12 different items, including some lovely cabled mittens worn by Bella (our heroine) and a sweet lacy scarf worn by Rosalie (picks on TSS's blog). No-one was actually caught in the act of knitting and there were no knitting references. Crochet also featured a couple of times.

A quick Rav search showed several copycat patterns and lots and lots of tribute ones (there's even a Twilight sock club).

Here's some of the copycat patterns for you - I've provided non-Ravely links where I can. The prices are US dollars.

Bella's Mittens
Snoweviolet has created a pattern for these (Rav link) $5; as has Beth Galantino (Rav link) $6. Both must be purchased.

Rosalie's Scarf
Shigella has created a pattern for this and there's a crochet version, too. Although, I admit, I had a different idea of the scarf myself. Free.

And one by Beth Galantino (Rav link). $4.

Alice's Scarf
A fine version with free pattern by Craft with Kater Tater.