Knitting around the world

Sunday, 26 June 2011

Week of Medical Mayhem

How time flies when you are having fun. This past week has been just like that. A full four out of five days were taken up with various medical appointments for DH and myself.

Mon - a trip to the Phlebotomist for myself for blood tests required by the hospital.

Tue - DH and I to see the doctor for routine appointments.

Wed - Off to the RIE with DH to finally see an orthopedic specalist. Mind you not much joy there, she says nothing can be done for him, but is referring him for de-sensitizing treatment by physiotherapy.

Thur - Free day Yay!!!!!!

Fri - Myself to RIE for 7.30am for a day surgery operation, which has gone well, if left me a bit sore and the after meds are making me sleepy. A small bonus was that when I arrived at home a loud noise made me look up and right over my head flew a Lancaster bomber and a Spitfire. It felt as if I could reach out and touch them.

Sat - a well deserved rest for the household, you would have thought, but no!! At 9am we were having a cup of tea in the livingroom when we heard the sound of drums. A quzzical look passed between us, were we hearing things? The telly wasn't on what was that noise?
A trip through to the bedroom and a squint up the street resulted in the answer. It was a flute band. So were they meeting there to go on somewhere else? No way, a quick look at the internet and we discovered that our wee flat was right on the route of one of the biggest Orange Order walks of the year. There would be an estimated 6000 marchers and 42 flute bands going right past all our windows and taking approximately 1hr to pass. My heart sank, all I wanted to do was sleep. It was less than 24 hours since my surgery!!
I managed to nap until 12.30pm when down the street they came. Yes it was colourful, sometimes so bright it hurt the eyes, but oh boy was it noisy. Our two poor cats were terrified, there was nowhere for them to hide from the beating drums. We were so glad when it was over and peace was restored.
Birthday yarn from America with free gift.

My knitting this week has been intermittent to say the least. I have been mostly concentrating on the baby shawl and only have a final 3 rows of chart G to finish then on to the edging which also includes the cast off.
The only other knittting related story I have this week is purchase related. Some knitting friends in the USA have been telling me about an online retailer who's customer service is out of this world. Well being the nosy sort I just had to find out for myself. My MIL gave me some money for my birthday, so online I went to well the choice is amazing, I was astounded. I ordered 4 skeins of their own brand yarn, and then thought I would have a long wait as it was coming over the Atlantic. I was very pleasantly surprised when in less than a week the postman knocked on the door and there was my package. The yarn is gorgeous, but it was the little gift and handwritten note from the owner that made all the difference. Yes I will shop there again and I will also recommend you hit the link on the right side of this page and see for yourselves what is on offer.

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

44 Not Out!!

Oh heck, I'm now the grand old age of 44! Now that will mean nothing to most people, it is afterall just a number and I really do think that no matter what age you are, it is how you live that keeps you young. So why is 44 important to me? Well I have done quite a bit of research into my maternal grandmother's family tree and not 44 but 88 is the overwhelming age of mortality for the female side. Should that come true for me, that would mean that here I am at the halfway stage in my life. So are my best years past? Is it all downhill now? Not one bit!! I may have been having my ups & downs lately, but I am a fighter and I will be back and stronger. If this is my second half then world watch out here I come!!!

On the needles right now I have a few projects, a jumper for DH, a secret project for a swapee, (my first swap and I am so excited), a Clapotis scarf for myself and the wonderful Girasole shawl. I have made great progress with this charted project and am now up to chart E. There are 640 stitches on the needle and each row takes over 30mins. But boy is it fun to see the patterns emerge. I am a fan of stitch markers anyways, but they along with lifelines are fast becoming my new best friends.

Lifelines clearly visible and necessary
When knitting lace never underestimate the use of tools to keep you sane!! I am having such a good time with this project that I must admit the others are taking a bit if a back seat. Oh well their time will come soon. Now move over blog, my knitting is calling.

Thursday, 9 June 2011

Charts Strike Fear

Although I have been able to knit since knee-high to a grasshopper, it has only been in the past 3 or 4 years that it has become a serious hobby for me. I joined a few years ago and gained access to thousands of patterns, both free and charged for. I have knit a few of these, but have always steered well clear of any pattern that mentioned charts. Whether it be for cable or lace the word chart struck fear into my heart. Reading a pattern in words was the natural way for me to go. Words I can cope with, symbols well its like a foreign language. All Greek or Geek to me! So how comes it that I have had a breakthrough? Well in one of the groups I am in a member decided to try her first lace project and discovered it was charted. She made a lovely job of the finished item and I, having knit lace before from a written pattern, decided I had nothing to lose.
So did I choose something simple? Did I heck!! I love circular knitting and plunged straight into a huge circular shawl. All charted from chart A to chart H. The shawl climbs form 10 stitches in the centre out to 640 stitches. Oh boy!!
Here I am at day 2 I have completed charts A & B and have only 4 rows to complete for chart C. And yes I am enjoying it. I must admit it is a very well written pattern and these charts are easy to follow. I will update my progress soon, but here is a picture of the first two charts completed.
Stitch markers are my new best friend
 On another knitting theme, Sat 11 June is World Wide Knit in Public day. There will be a small gathering of keen knitters & crocheters outside in Woodburn, Dalkeith, Midlothian from 1pm - 3pm. Anyone is welcome to join in, just bring along your knitting etc, a seat & a mug. Also we would really appreciate some love from the sun as it will soon get very crowded in the shop if it rains.

Saturday, 4 June 2011

June!! How did that happen?

I cannot believe we are into June already. The months are just flying by. Mind you May by all accounts other than our wee holiday was a not much month. Illness does that to you, it takes over and rules what you can and cannot do.

One positive thing though is that both DH and myself have at last got hospital appointments for this month. The relief of his date coming through is amazing as he has waited 6 months.

On the knitting front, being at home all day has given me plenty time to crack on. I completed the Harry Potter scarf for my niece and it was well received.

I also began knitting three scarves for colleagues of mine who are taking part in charity walks this month. Two of the girls are doing the Edinburgh Moonwalk so I knitted them an illusion scarf each.

How the scarf looks straight on

Same scarf from an angle.

My third friend is doing the Race for Life in memory of her dear friend who passed recently. For this I did another illusion scarf, but this time a different pattern.

The hearts disappear when looked at straight on.
I had a lot of fun knitting these and learning a new technique. Illusion knitting is really easy once you know what you are doing and I would urge any knitter to give it try at least once.