Sunday, 29 December 2013

Getting back to normal

Today for the first time in a long time we felt like we were on holiday.  We had nowhere we had to go, nothing we had to do, no-one we had to oblige - it felt wonderful.  The two weeks after moving were all about sorting the house out and getting ready for Christmas, then we had a house guest for four days, then yesterday we had to drive down to the old neighbourhood to visit an elderly friend.

Today I slept in until almost 10am and after breakfast we took our previously-purchased Heritage Trail leaflet out into the sunshine for a stroll around some of the historic sights in our new town.  So cool to be living somewhere that has historic sights - our previous London fringe suburb had very few of those. We finished up with a leisurely hot drink and two mince pies at Costa Coffee, did a bit of shopping and came home for lunch.

After lunch I investigated one of my Christmas pressies which was the December issue of 'Let's Knit'.  It included an 'Essential Winter Knits' leaflet which for once has several things I wouldn't mind knitting - I find 90% of the time the patterns in these 'free' leaflets do not appeal but there are some cute things in this one.  The mag also came with three 'free' balls of yarn and two baby patterns to make.  I cast on immediately for the baby booties (although from the size they are coming out, I think they are toddler booties).  I've modded the pattern to knit straight down from the fair isle cuff instead of sewing it on afterwards as specified by the designer.

While the guest was here I started and finished another square for my GAAA afghan.  This is the Ginger Smith square, and it had an intriguing construction.  Instead of knitting four charts across each row, after knitting the border you then knit the first chart to the full height of the square, slipping the first stitch on each WS row.  Then you pick up stitches  down the side of the column (through the slipped stitches), move the next set of held stitches from the border into work, and knit up the next chart to full height - you join the second column to the first by P2tog on each WS row to join to one of the picked up stitches.  It made it really easy to whip off this square quite quickly as you are only working on one chart at a time.  I think I could use that construction method on some of the other similarly designed GAAA squares.

The day before the guest arrived, I worked on my Harvest Moon cardigan some more.  I steamed the edges and other troubled areas which made it look a lot better, then I unpicked the sleeves and pulled them back by about 2.5 inches, then re-knit the i-cord edging.  It looks pretty good now, I will have to get a piccie taken when I wear it although I am worried it will be too warm to wear to my generally-too-warm office.  I also stitched on my Hawaiian applique quilt one night, it's still a long way from being finished though.

We had a good Christmas even though everything felt a bit weird and different compared to how we would normally do things.  I received several craft mags as treats (Cross Stitcher, Let's Knit, Knit Today, Fabrications Quilting For You, Patchwork and Quilting), far too much candy and chocolate, and several other nice but non-craft-related items.  I also treated myself to a couple of knitted toy pattern collections - I fancy buying some cheap DK yarn locally and making something small and cute.

Much as I am enjoying DS's company while he is home from uni, it suddenly occurred to me that once he goes back, I can take his room over as a sewing room!  I feel quite excited - I haven't been able to have my sewing equipment out and ready to use since we put the house on the market in June.  I haven't told him because I don't want him to feel unwanted, but it will be great to put my little Featherweight up and spread out a few quilting projects on his bed.  I will need to buy a sturdy table though to put the machine on - we don't have anything suitable as my normal sewing table is in storage. I'm sure we can find something cheap secondhand.  DH is doing his modelmaking on a secondhand computer desk we bought from a charity shop.

With best wishes for a happy new year.


swooze said...

I'm glad things are settling down for you. Keep us posted on the house hunt please. I'm curious what items you stored and wish you hadn't.

Daisy said...

Happy New Year (almost!). Awaiting pictures of your sewing room once he goes back to university. Hope he doesn't intend to come home mid-term (which I used to do at least once a term!).

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