Saturday, 12 January 2013

Some good news

We got some very good news yesterday:  DS has received an offer to study at Oxford University!  We are very proud of him, so now all's he has to do is produce the goods on his end-year exams.  As the alternative was Durham, which would have been a six-hour drive away, Oxford at 1.5 hours seems a much better bet as well as being so prestigious.  I look forward to many visits there over the next four years, it is such a lovely historic city.

This was my first full week back at work, and it really dragged.  I've got a bit of a cold which didn't help. My manager has apparently taken a new year's resolution to be very proactive both in tackling new things (many of which I don't think are actually adding any value) and in managing my time (which is kind of annoying).  Six more weeks plus two weeks holiday and my contract will be finished.

But one good thing about the job is that I can sit indoors downstairs and knit during my lunchtimes.  I am halfway through the Pretty Thing cowl in Adriafil Carezza angora and it's looking pretty good. I've also almost finished the third chart repeat of the second Featherduster shawl that I am knitting for myself after giving the first one away.

One of the things on my Christmas to-do list was to block my hibernating Haapsalu Shawl and decide whether I was going to keep going or not.  I had lost the will to live with it because I realised that the mohair lace yarn isn't really the right yarn for it and I wasn't even sure if it would block flat, was concerned about how ragged my nupps looked, and the pattern wasn't looking very good, plus it is HUGE. I'm only knitting the centre at the moment, then there is a knitted border to add.  This is the traditional Lily of the Valley pattern.

But I was pleasantly surprised.  It blocked flat fine, and when I took it off the wires it was so soft and ethereal.  Most of the nupps flattened out in blocking, and my always erratic tension doesn't glare as much as I feared.  I measured and it's coming out a little on the wide side, and the length so far is about 1/3.  I've done three chart repeats, and I calculate I need to do eleven chart repeats.  So I felt heartened about the project, put it back on the needles and knit a few rows during TV knitting.  I'm more experienced at lace now as well, than when I started the project a few years ago, so it is easier now.

I'm almost finished Day 20 of the Advent Calendar Scarf 2010 (having skipped Day 18).  Day 20 didn't start out well, I had to frog twice and was starting to feel really inept until it occurred to me to check the errata.  There I discovered that the starting stitch count was wrong, which resolved the issue.

I'm halfway up the straight part of the armhole of the Alice Starmore Marina pullover  on machine.  It's long enough now that I can admire the right side of it, although the colours have come out a bit more 'southwestern' than I was expecting.  I think when I saw a slide of it at Alice's lecture at the i-Knit Weekender a few years ago, it may have been recoloured to more blues and pinks which I like better. This is still nice though, with such gorgeous shading.  But still not convinced by the number of colours specified, some of them are only used for one or two rows once in the 68 row chart.

I've been doing some more packing in the attic, and have boxed up eight boxes so far of my dollshouse stash.  It's taking ages and isn't fun because it is freezing up there and dusty, also it  depresses me that I have so much good stuff and it's been hidden up in the attic for nine years out of sight and mind.  I really hope in the next house I have a proper workshop.  We just picked up a load of boxes from Freecycle today so will start boxing up some of the books tomorrow. I also brought down my entire collection of magazines covering a variety of hobbies, dating back to when I used to keep all my magazines instead of ripping things out.  So I am having an enjoyable but dusty time going through 30-40 magazines most evenings and ripping out what I want to keep.

The Red and White Stars quilt is off the frame now, although it still needs some manual quilting before it wil be done.  I need to do some maintenance on the frame, the takeup roller is freewheeling now and I need to reglue the end caps.  Then I will load up the next quilt which I think is the Kaffe Fassett Lone Star top.

1 comment:

Sandra said...

Congratulations! You must be extremely proud of your son. Hugs, Sandie

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