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Friday, January 21, 2011

Troll Days

We had one of these yesterday.   Both boys misbehaving; it started with Ian's usual slow getting dressed, followed by me having to take them home halfway through the meat shopping.   I still have to get 5 more meats for the rest of the fortnight, but there was no way I was staying any longer with how they were behaving; I think the butchers were quite glad they were leaving too.
On the way home we needed milk and Ian wanted jellybeans.  I said no as he'd not been good enough and he screamed.   I pulled the car over, turned the engine off and the keys and I went and sat on the bonnet of the car for 5 minutes while we all calmed down.   We then went and got the milk, and only the milk before going home.
Behaviour did not improve throughout the day so the only privilege not removed was movies; and that was more for my sanity, and so I could get some work done.
The one good thing is that Thomas got to appreciate what I'd been going through when he got home as they didn't improve.
The did go to sleep fairly quickly though which was good as I needed to keep working to get all my work finished.
It was a pretty busy day for aftershocks yesterday though, so maybe that contributed.

Today seems to be better so I've treated with KFC for lunch and a juice box for each of the boys.  The weather here is pretty bad so just staying home this afternoon.  We had a visitor this morning to assess George for some carer support time, she  reckons we'll get some as well as a Kiwiable card for him which will give cheaper entry fees for some activities.  She reckons we should also make an appointment at the doctors to apply for Child Disability Allowance; not sure if she's right on that one, but I guess we may as well try; it would cover his fish oil tablets which I'm hoping will help with his concentration issues.

Right atm though, I'm doing a little knitting on my Whisper Cardigan, 3" of ribbing in laceweight takes a very long time.  

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Let's go to Ferrymead!

Yesterday was a nice day, not too warm, not too cold and with no appointments so I suggested to the family that we go to Ferrymead.  The boys weren't keen, Thomas wanted to go to the beach, but as it wasn't really warm enough for that he agreed to go to Ferrymead instead.  For those of you not from Christchurch, Ferrymead is a historic township where you get to see what life was like back in Edwardian times, and a little later.
$36 got the four of us in and the first thing we saw was a water pump that the boys had to try
Unfortunately the seals on this one had gone and it no longer worked, but there was one in the main street that still worked well with an application of several pumps.  We went to see the town church, a cob cottage with dirt floor, a couple of normal houses with teeny beds.  Loved the oven, an old wall oven, not electric though!
There were lots of other places we saw too like the fire-department history, communication history etc.

We got to ride on a tram and see an old tram being done up; that was amazing.  We saw photo's of what it was like when rescued; much of the bottom had rusted away, it was a dingy white colour and looked like a dead duck.  This is what it looks like now
and the tram we were on

The bakery oven; which is being repaired atm after the earthquake.  They lost quite a few chimneys from that little incident.
 We saw a huge butter churn!
The local millinery, I think headwear styles have changed a little since then
 and a relatively flattering photo of us; we're not really that tall and slim unfortunately, but that would be a marvelous mirror to keep at home.
After the boys saying they wouldn't like it, both really enjoyed themselves and wanted to know when they could go back, lol.

After we got back I finished my latest spinning:
This is 100g of 335m of Merino/Silk 2ply yarn.  I have yet to check its weight, but I think it's somewhere between fingering and sport weight and it will be socks.  I'm testing how well silk goes in socks.   Love the colour, it's not as soft as normal, but that's because I overspun and overplied for strength.  I had bought this especially to see how silk/merino blend works for socks, unfortunately I completely forgot to take a photo of the actual fibre before spinning.  Next month will be some fibre from Morag (Vintage Purls).

Today I finished my socks; the pattern is Spiral Bound by Morag MacKenzie (Vintage Purls), the yarn is Handmaiden Casbah Sock in the Hummingbird colourway.  I think it's beautiful
This just leaves me with 3 items on the needles.  My Whisper Cardigan which is what I'm working on atm, my One Sided vest which will be next and my Central Park Hoodie.   I also have a cardigan that Mum did most of, I just have to do the button band and sew it up and that's finished.  I'll do that somewhere in there, it's a mohair cardigan so for winter.
My next cast ons will be Open Windows socks in the above Merino, I've knitted these before, but at the wrong gauge, looking forward to a wearable pair; then the Bug Off mittens that will be based on Morag's Bug Off socks pattern, and a Citron scarf in some my handspun.

Thursday, January 06, 2011

What's coming up

There will of course be more family stuff on the blog in the coming year.   Ian's starting in room 6 which is Year 2 this year.   He will still have the same main Teacher Aides (Wendy and Michelle), but is going to be full time after about 3 weeks.  Wendy will not always be available as she's starting to do teacher training; a full year with Ian didn't put her off and she still thinks he's lovely (he is, just a little challenging at times).

Sewing:    I'm going to be doing more of this in the coming year.   I've got one more skirt to make and I need some bike shorts as well.   Thomas needs more trousers and I think the boys could do with a couple of pairs of shorts too.   I'd also like to work on a costume piece at some point as well, maybe even something practical like a long skirt with bloomers underneath that I can still actually wear.   I think the Elizabethan costume might have to wait a while.

Knitting:  I've got 4 projects on the needles at the moment which need to be finished.   Whisper Cardigan, Central Park Hoodie, Spiral socks and One Side vest.   I'm going to finish Whisper first as I need that right now, then the socks.   At that point I will finish a cardigan not on the list that Mum did most of, but doesn't suit her; only got the button band to do.  Then One Sided will be finished and I can cast on something new.   I'll be casting on my Bug Out mittens, and a shawl, probably the Evenstar or Citron.  Maybe both.  I want to get at least 3 more pairs of socks finished this year and am aiming for 12 cardigans/vests/jerseys including some colourwork.

Spending:  I've got to pay back for my new bag and pay for the old one to be fixed, then I'll be saving for a bike rack that can fit all 4 family bikes on it.  That way we'll be able to go places as a family and bike around. Should be great fun!

Ok, that's all for the moment.  Wish me luck!

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Sewing days

We've been pretty busy here, despite the heat (32 degrees on Tuesday) we've managed to clear out the section a lot and Thomas has been busy in the garage and lean-to as well.  Red bin was full to the brim and so was the green.  They've been emptied now, but the yellow is still full and that doesn't get emptied till Tuesday next week.
Been getting more exercise as a result and on Tuesday I went out for a decent bike ride.   On Monday the kittens got to go outside for the first time, they went absolutely nuts!   My flax plants are now flattened; if you watch this you can see why!

We've had to rescue Ray from up on the conservatory roof too, she's the adventurous one; though right atm both of them are curled up on the beanbag, fast asleep.

Yesterday we went to Willowbank with the boys and had a superfast tour by Ian, he lead, we ran along behind.   Some photo's to show what we saw when he paused.   It was a good day for it, not too hot.
 The voracious eels
 The beautiful peacock
 The only deer that was interested in us, the rest were hiding
 The very bored looking gibbon
 Our favourite Clydesdale horse
 A juvenile pukeko, his red colouring will come in later
 Our boys on the donkeys which they both enjoyed
 A lamb in the Arapawa/Karakul sheep enclosure; he's got a fat tail, so I suspect he's Karakul
 The sulphur crested cockatoo who was refusing to talk
 A tortoise, this is the first time we've seen tortoises here
A wallaby, we also saw one with a joey in her pouch.
The boys really enjoyed themselves and afterwards we bought lunch at Bakers Delight and an iceblock each from the dairy.  All in all a very good day.

That afternoon I got more sewing done.  I finished this skirt a couple of days ago

This is a New Look pattern that I've changed quite a bit; shortened and removed the waistband so I could use a facing instead.  The fabric is a stretch cotton sateen from Fabric Vision
My second skirt is the same pattern, but the fabric is a quilting cotton from Stitch and I've used a velvet ribbon trim
I really like the way this pattern works out after the adjustments and a size reconciliation (according to the back I should be a size 20, however size 16 fits perfectly).  I've been wearing this skirt all day and I'm in love!  I bought another 1.4m of another quilting cotton to make one more, then I'm right for summer skirts; that's a blue with spots on it and I might embellish one or three of the spots when it's done.   I've got to prewash the fabric though, and I need some bike shorts first.
Got the pattern for them today as well as a new trouser pattern for Thomas as the one I've been using is feeling rather sad, that and if he can't shift some weight then I'll need a larger one anyway.   I also got some more invisible zips, love those things when I install them correctly.
The last thing I got was a new shoulder bag, my current one is over 15 years old and starting to fall to pieces. I've dropped it in for repair, but I found one in the same range for $155 which I bought in the meantime.  I think this will get used lots too.

Right, back to knitting while I"m waiting for the weather to improve for my prewashing.   See you later and wishing you a happy crafty new year.

Saturday, January 01, 2011

Happy New Year!

1st day of 2011 already!   We've been busy here, but first I want to show you my last project that I finished on New Years Eve.

My husband's business trousers.  Made from a Burda pattern that apparently fits well, or at least the old pair in it do, the new pair are a little tight.   He has 3 weeks to lose some weight or for these trousers to stretch to fit as apparently the old ones have.
Aside from the fact that he's expanded they're a really nice trouser, I could possibly add a little extra room in the seat, but to add any into the waistband means I have to undo a lot of topstitching first.  We're hoping he'll lose the weight; it'd be a lot easier for me.  

I also got the heel turn done on his last sock in the pair, so just 62 rounds to go and that'll be finished too.

My birthday the day before didn't go so well due in the main to a nasty cold which gave me a headache and a middle ache from all the coughing; feeling a bit better now, but it means that I didn't get the sewing, spinning and knitting done that I'd planned as I wasn't feeling up to it.   On the plus side, Thomas took the boys out for an hour or so for a walk so I could play Fallout 3 on the Xbox, that was nice.   He gave me a skein of Dream in Color Smooshy in blue.   Liz (MIL) gave me some hankies, some biscuits in a very nice tin and some Belgian chocolates which are not opened yet as I want to be able to appreciate them.

Today we got to clearing out the lean-to next to the garage so we can store the bikes in there and so I can get to the freezer.  It's looking a lot better, but our rubbish bin is now full.   I also cut out two skirts which I'm hoping I'll get some sewing done on them tomorrow; no time tonight as we're playing Talisman.  I'll post photo's once they're done.

New Years Resolutions:

More sewing and knitting of course including more socks and jerseys; also much more sewing to get the mojo back up and running.   I need more workout gear too.
Less eating of sugar and junk
More exercise; this will be easier now my bike is fixed.
Less tv/xbox etc again too.

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