Monday, October 25, 2010

Strictly Crochet

My cyber-friend Pat from Tasmania (and Australiacrochet group) read about the mini stocking challenge I was involved with on Knit4Charities and wanted to help. Well, today the postie delivered these gorgeous little stockings ..

Thank you so much for your help Pat. I will add the few I have made and send them off to the K4C collector who will be putting a few little sweets and a candy cane in each one and at Christmas they will be distributed to needy children in Queensland. Knit4Charities aim to provide 5,000 of these little stockings and are well on the way to achieving this goal, thanks to the help by members of the group and wonderful friends like Pat.

Like most other crocheters I know, when working on a big project you need a little something 'on the side' so you don't get bored. I've been working on my wool-eater blanket today but right now, I must confess, I'm getting my little bit on the side. This lovely Queen Anne's Lace scarf pattern is very addictive, quick to grow so is almost instant gratification. I'm using cream acrylic (Bounty 8ply with a 4.5mm hook) for this one but might be tempted to get some Noro Taiyo some time in the future for another scarf. There are some lovely pictures of this project on Ravelry.

Ah now, decisions decisions ..... do more of the blanket or more of the scarf ! What do you think ?

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Beautiful Sunday

Lovely flowers growing on my front courtyard wall .. my gorgeous grandson .. and yummy triple choc muffins which he helped aunty to bake. What more could you want ?

I thought I'd show you a few of my 'special' crochet hooks. This first one is an Addi -I was led to believe they were the Rolls Royce of crochet hooks but I can tell you they're not a patch on the Etimo hooks. The handle is hard plastic so not very comfortable to use.

In the next group, the top left pic shows the beautiful hand crafted Swan Sterling Silver hooks which are lovely to use as far as how they slide so easily through your work but now I have become used to a soft-handled hook, these ones don't get much use. The pic top right was a sheer indulgence that I just had to have! Of course its a Graydog which I've had for maybe 8 years or so. Way back then it cost me $75 so goodness knows what they go for these days. The bottom two pics are novelty type hooks - the little keyring on the left is cute and the hook at bottom right is one of those light-up hooks which I received as a gift from a US friend. I don't think they took off as much as was predicted but ok if you want to work in the dark.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

A must read

Every now and then a book comes along that you just simply cannot put down. This is one of them ! If you like a good psychological thriller, I recommend this debut book from Chevy Stevens.

On the day she was abducted, Annie O'Sullivan, a 32 year old realtor, had three goals - sell a house, forget about a recent argument with her mother, and be on time for dinner with her ever-patient boyfriend. The open house is slow, but when her last visitor pulls up in a van as she's about to leave, Annie thinks it just might be her lucky day after all.

Interwoven with the story of the year Annie spent as the captive of a psychopath in a remote mountain cabin, which unfolds through sessions with her psychiatrist, is a second narrative recounting events following her escape - her struggle to piece her shattered life back together and the ongoing police investigation into the identity of her captor.

Bestselling author Lisa Gardner said of this book "A heart-pounding debut. Stevens pulls out all the stops in this cat-and-mouse battle between a brilliant psychopath and his tenacious victim. By equal turns clever and compelling, Still Missing is the not-to-be missed thriller of the year."

I started reading this book in bed on Sunday night and finished it just before 4am this morning. Of course in between reading sessions, I managed to get started on my Reversible Hungarian Rug ..

The Bendigo wool is beautiful to work with but I did have to frog about 4 rounds at the beginning as it seemed to be puckering. Went up to a 5.00mm hook which sounds big for 8ply but I think with it being such a dense pattern and also wool rather than acrylic, the 5.00mm is giving a better result.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Just a quickie

Look ...

Gotta go now .... may come back later :)

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Bring on Santa Claus

I'm like a kid waiting for Christmas !!!! I hope my order from BWM arrives tomorrow so I can start playing with that beautiful wool. Have been sort of 'lost' all weekend not knowing what to do with myself so I ended up playing with my hooks and yarn (of course) and made a few octagons which frustrated me as the pattern was written rather strangely, however I did end up finding a website with more precise instructions. Then I went to Ravelry and ended up joining a granny square group ...

... more in my comfort zone than that octagon. Can you see that little blue tail peeking through ? Must confess I haven't sewn in any of the tails and there are a zillion of them to keep me busy tomorrow while waiting for the parcel delivery man.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Butterfly square

I think I now have a new favourite square. This one was designed by Jane Griffiths, a member of Knit4Charities and she has donated the pattern to the group.

Donated squares are being sent to another member, Kerry, who is going to join them together to make a blanket (or three) to be donated to one of the charities we support.

What a happy chappy

I just have to share this video with you.

Another video of this talented canine (Jessie) is on Scotty's Place which you can find in my blog list, and I want to thank Pammy for introducing me to Jessie. A bit of background ..... Jessie, a Jack Russell terrier is just 3 years old and is trained by 19 year old Heather. The pair obviously have an exceptional relationship and Jessie seems to love what he's doing. I think if dogs could smile, Jessie would have a huge grin on his little face. Hope you enjoy this as much as I did.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Just another manic (umm) Tuesday

Wonderful news from my friend yesterday – she found some Magnum 8ply in a local yarn store not far from where I live so I just had to go there today to buy some to make a wool-eater blanket. The colour range was fairly good but I still had trouble selecting, and ended up getting soft green, dark green and cream. Unfortunately the Magnum didn’t come in cream so I got another brand which ended up being more like 5 ply when worked up and looked terrible. Long story short ...... the balance of today’s shopping spree will be going back tomorrow and I will be anxiously awaiting arrival of the order I’ve just placed with Bendigo Woolen Mills. OK, so it did end up costing me an arm and a leg but I love working with wool and am happy with the colours I’ve ordered – celery, maize and pumpkin. The cost factor should be enough motivation to get this project finished.

Can’t have a post without a pic so here are two nice squares I got from my partner in the October round of Australiacrochet’s 7” square exchange. (Thanks Tina)

I’ve often looked at the “maze” kind of pattern in my book and really must give it a go myself one day.

Talking of October, here's a bit of trivia for you. Did you know that October 2010 has 5 Fridays, 5 Saturdays and 5 Sundays all in the one month? This apparently only occurs once in 823 years.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Old photographs, memories and mini stockings

While sorting through my USB drives this afternoon I came across a whole lot of photographs I haven't seen for ages so I thought I might share a few of my favourites with you. I just hope my daughters don't read this or they'll kill me for these first two pictures ...

I love this one of my girls which was taken around 1978 when my eldest was just over 2 years old and my baby was 1. This has been scanned from an old slide so the quality may not be fantastic.

And a few years later, here's my baby ! I was there to see her land and I can tell you my heart was in my mouth till her feet were well and truly on the ground. That's Parliament House you can see way down there on the ground.

As you know, we are very fond of our furbabies and used to show and breed our little Japanese Chins. Here's a pic of our beautiful Wendell (Aust.Grand Champion Siatori Charlies Magic) taken just after he won one of his Best in Show awards. He was a magnificent representative of his breed and we were very proud of him. Sadly he is now in puppy dog heaven.

This next one is of Wendell when he was just 12 weeks old. It was taken in Melbourne where he had won Best Baby Puppy in Show at the Japanese Chin Club of Victoria championship show.

Cute eh ? And so you know what they look like at birth ...

That's not Wendell but its one of his grandsons.

Finally on the furkid front, my favourite picture of 6 week old baby Madison who is now about 20 times as big as this but still as gorgeous.

Enough reminiscing for now. I spent yesterday afternoon with my grandson at Lollipops which is one of those kids play places where they have huge slides, jumping castles etc. While he played I worked on more mini stockings, only to find out last night that the ones I'm making are just a bit big.

The smaller one in this pic is more the size required and even though there's no sewing up on it, I still prefer the look of the bigger ones I've been doing. Think I might have to play around with the pattern and see if I can work something out.