WIP Wednesday: The Blankets
Blankets are a bit of a failing for me. My flat is so cold so much of the time that I want to be totally covered in knitwear all of the time, and blankets are just so warm! Plus they look good, they last forever and the ones I pick are usually pretty easy. The only thing is...they're big, they take a lot of knitting and commitment, and while I'm good at the knitting, I such at the stick-to-it-iveness that a blanket requires.

So here's my list of blanket shame.

1. Mitered Square Blanket

Ravelry tells me I started this in October 2007 - a mere three years ago. That's terrible!

I have completed 38 of the 48 required squares. Including the border, that means that I am about 70% of the way through this blanket. If I worked on it exclusively, I could finish it in two weeks easily. I think this is a perfect January project!

2. Moderne Log Cabin Baby Blanket

I started this about this time last year when I needed something simple to work on but didn't feel like knitting a sock.

It's knit with all the 5-ply crepe bibs and bobs I have floating in my stash, and I'd really like to get rid of them. There's a baby which is due in January that would be perfect for this blanket - I think I have found my December knitting.

3. Mystery Blanket: Weaving

I started this blanket on New Years Day with some Bendigo Woollen Mills Rustic 12-ply that my sister gave me for Christmas.

It is already beautiful and soft and squishy - I can't imagine how wonderful it'll be when I finish it. All the big squares have been knitted and about half of the little squares. All I need to do is attach one more square, knit seven of the little ones and do the border and it'll be done. The only thing holding me back from finishing the blanket is that I need space to lay it out which I don't have in my flat. However, Sam is housesitting his parents' place from tomorrow, and they have heaps of space. Hopefully I'll have it finished in the next few weeks.

4. Stashbusting Baby Blanket

This blanket almost crippled me.

I joined all the squares in three days using a crochet hook and was completely unable to use my right hand for about a week. I'm not sure if it was the way I was holding the hook or the amount of hours I crocheted out of the blue, but the effects were crippling. The blanket has therefore been 95% completed for about six weeks - I just can't risk putting myself out of action again. My solution has been channel the tortoise rather than the hare and I have been crocheting 10 and only 10 stitches to the border every day. It may take me the rest of the year to finish it, but it will eventually be done.

I wish I had the skill and the camera to capture how completely gorgeous this blanket is. I don't think I'll be able to give it to a baby to spit up and poop on!

So there's a complete list of my WIPs. Eleven projects in total. That's a lot. A huge lot. My aim (dare I say it out loud?) is to get down to five works in progress by New Years Day. I don't know if I can do it, but I have to do something - 11 things on the go is totally ridiculous! Wish me luck, and I'll update you in two months and four days time with my progress.


Frankensocks continued
Last night when I was grizzling on the couch, tired and cranky, all I could handle was a project that included the knit stitch and the knit stitch only. The only one I could find was my Frankensocks, so I worked on them furiously, hoping to magically transfer my bad mood down the needles and away from me.

This morning when I looked at what I'd done, I was amazed:

The top part of the socks are done with the same yarn, then I started spiralling in different yarns to make it more interesting. The yarns are the same, but because they started at different places in the repeat the resulting look is completely different - one has come out in lots of fake fair isle and the other one has come out in single stripes. Lots of fun! I actually wish I'd been spiralling the whole way, not just the after the first 5cm, but I can't wait to see how the rest of the sock looks. It's looks different and crazy with almost no more effort than a standard pair of socks...my favourite type of pattern!

BLOGTOBERFEST UPDATE: 26 down, 5 to go.

What happens when you drink too much wine.
I think I am going to have to finally admit that Blogtober is too much for me this year. I had one of those weekends where you're on the go from the moment you wake up until you stumble drunkenly into bed 18 hours later, snatching a brief eight hours before embarking on another all-day marathon. I have had So Much Wine that I'm worried that my liver is going to pack up and leave me for someone who drinks only water and herbal tea. I've fallen behind, and I can't see any chance of me catching up since I have another appointment in 25 minutes, a two deadlines on Friday and Monday respectively and a house that's drowning in clutter. Lucy is being cruelly deprived of both attention and affection! (and letting me know all about it)

Hopefully I'll be back tomorrow. There's only six days left...I can do that, right? Right?!?!?!!


It's meme time!
From Cath's blog, it's meme time.

4 things that I always carry:
- something to knit
- something to read
- sunglasses
- lip balm
(I wish I could say that I always carry my wallet and iPhone with me, but I constantly forget them. I'm hopeless!)

4 things that are in my bedroom
- a massive teetering pile of books
- a kitten bed that is much too small for my adult cat, but which she sleeps in every night anyway
- size 12 men's shoes on the floor all the time, no matter how many times I ask them to be put away
- back-up knitting and reading, just in case

4 Things that I would like to do but haven't done yet
- learn French
- get laser hair removal
- see Radiohead live (I've been so close!)
- write a PhD thesis on Cary Grant

4 things that you don't know about me:
- I worry about how smart people think I am. I know it doesn't matter, but I do!
- I sleep with socks on
- I take my shoes off to drive. Okay, for those who know me really well, I take my thongs off to drive...
- I have a cat who likes to sleep on my head

4 things I often wonder
- what happened to the feminist movement?
- what if I'd done a law degree instead of an arts degree?
- how is it fair that Jon Hamm is so damn good looking?
- how does self-saucing pudding work? It's like a dessert miracle.

That's all today, folks.

BLOGTOBERFEST UPDATE: 22 down, 9 to go.

A lovely spring day
Today's weather was so perfect that instead of blogging, I spent as much time as i could outside. More tomorrow, where there are showers forecast that will send me straight back inside!

WIP Wednesday: The Bottom Half
To continue my series of works in progress, I give you all my bottom half WIPs. The photos are taken on the rubble that is my courtyard at the moment. Good times.


These are experimental socks that I am knitting to use up the nublets of sock yarn left over from Sam's socks:

I was originally going to just do stripes, but I thought that looked a bit awkward, so I'm now spiralling the yarn. It looks great! The socks won't match but they will look very funky...eventually. I'll just be adding to these socks every time I finish a pair, so they are a long term project.

Camouflage socks

My basic 72-stitch man sock. Hopefully done in time for Christmas.

I also started Citron (my swatch being, well, the scarf).

This brings my total of WIPs up to seven so far. There's still one more week of WIPs to unveil! I seriously need to start with the finishing and stop with the starting...

BLOGTOBERFEST UPDATE: 20 down, 11 to go

I just logged on only to discover that the entry I wrote yesterday using the LJ app on my iPhone never appeared on the blog! I am seriously annoyed but, at the same time, curious as to where it went...

You'll have to trust me - it was funny, clever and entertaining, and definitely posted yesterday. Last time I blog from my phone again!

Making Lemonade...
Today I had to do something that I really didn't want to do. It was necessary, but I knew I would hate it. And I did (although not as much as I thought I would. I promised myself if I could get through this thing without complaining too much, I would get a present. Well, I did it without complaining at all! (Yay me!)

This is my reward:

It's a sock yarn but with only one ply. I have never seen this before. I am going to swatch for a Citron. This is only swatching, nothing more. I will not be starting a new project today! Now matter how pretty my new yarn is...

BLOGTOBERFEST UPDATE: 18 down, 12 to go.

Ode to my Library
I am sucking at Blogtober this year. I have missed two days! Although again, in the spirit of the law if not the letter of the law I am still posting for those days just...late. Oh well.

Let's see if I can make it up to you with my Ode to the Library.

Why do I love libraries
There are two reasons I love libraries. I love libraries because they are filled with books. I love books! Even beyond any specific book, I love books in general - the smell, the ideas, the thoughts. Books are fantastic and make me happy. The second reason I love libraries is because they let you borrow these fabulous books FOR FREE! Simply by being a citizen of this great country, I can go into libraries and take books out of the building and to my home. Excellent.

Why do I love libraries in Australia
In Australia, when you go into a library, both public and private, and borrow a book, the author gets a small fee to compensate them for the loss of royalties they experience because you have borrowed the book rather than purchased it. This is organised by Copyright Agency Limited, and I think it is brilliant. A pensioner who can't afford to buy name-brand tuna can still borrow a brand-new latest-thing-in-cool title without being out of pocket and the author is paid fairly and justly. Seriously, doesn't this system just rock?

Why do I love my library
My library is part of a chain of four libraries. For the cost of a mere $2, they will reserve books for you. They will transfer books between libraries for free. The space is open and light, with study tables near a window (perfect for study-staring), free wi-fi, computers, a section for children that is separate from the rest of the library thus providing a place for parents and children to share and experience the joy of literature and reading while not inconveniencing any of the other patrons - it's fabulous.

I may have got a bit carried away:

In this pile I have romance, chick-lit, thrillers, a gentle English wartime family drama, some capital-l Literature and three non-fiction out-of-print books allowing me to explore my growing obsession with F Scott Fitzgerald (I want to have children so I can name them after him, his family and his characters. Well, not really, but if anyone else is having children I have a number of names I can passionately recommend...). How awesome is this?

Seriously, libraries are the bomb. Support your local library, people.

BLOGTOBERFEST UPDATE: 17 down, 14 to go.

A Day Trip
It's cold, windy and blustery outside, so I think it's the perfect day to recap a lovely sunny Saturday.

Sam and I hopped in the car and drove to Ngambie, a small town about two hours out of Melbourne.

I love country Victoria - I love seeing the animals and the pastures and all the trees. I love the tiny towns where it seems that most people live closer to a winery than they do a supermarket or a pharmacy.

The reason of the trip was to watch Sam's dad do a tandem jump out of a plane. It was his 60th birthday present from me, Sam and Sam's brother.

See how nonchalant the jumpers look now?

They did not look so relaxed three hours later when they climbed onto this little plane:

Yes, three hours later. You get there at an assigned time, sign up, and then sit there until your number is called. Thank God for knitting - I would have been bored stupid otherwise.

After the jump, we had just enough time to stop in at one winery:

It was really beautiful, and the wine was nice. They had a lot of cellar door-only wines available, which I love, because why go to a winery to taste wines that you can get from the local bottle-o?

The winery was on a huge property that was really gorgeous, and even the drive out was lovely, even though I was sad to be leaving. I can seriously think of nothing nicer than spending a sunny afternoon tasting yummy wine.

It was a lovely day, and I hope to have many more like it over the following summer. Minus that skydiving, though - that stuff is for crazy people!

BLOGTOBERFEST UPDATE: 16 down, 15 to go - officially past the halfway point!


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