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Tuesday
May302006

Lots of nothing

I'm not quite sure where to start... There's been nothing particularly big going on, d'you see? Just lots of little things that I might quite like to chat about, but which noone would notice if I didn't mention.

It's nearly June, and the weather is still awful. We managed to get an entire game of cricket in on Sunday, so that was a bit of a surprise. I went in at number 2, somewhat to my surprise, and got a duck. Which honestly didn't surprise me much at all. Then Monday (it being a bank holiday), we tried for another game. I went in at number 2 again, and got another duck. Not a great weekend, for me, cricket-wise. I could really do with getting some practice in, but I can't get to Croydon and back on a Thursday night particularly easily. Or be in a fit state when I get there to actually practice. Never mind, there's always next weekend.

As it happened, the heavens opened after we had finished batting, and the game was called off halfway through. So that's three league matches that Redoubtables 1s have had rained off. That's pretty unusual. This May has been dreadful.

Got home around 9.00 last night, and I can proudly say I now have some baby tarragon plants. They've been coming up for a while, but I didn't want them to decide to die so I've been ignoring them. I think a couple of them are now past the worst danger stage, so that's good. I could end up with quite a lot though, and I'm not quite sure what to do with the others! Mum doesn't like tarragon apparently... I also have some alpine strawberries coming up. I seeded them in a home-made propagator, made out of a largish plastic squash bottle cut in half lengthwise, and there are quite a few just poking their leaves through the soil now. So that'll be good! Hopefully they will be large enough to survive moving (whenever that happens) easily...

I like watching things grow from seed. It's really cool the way you put these tiny little seeds in soil, and the next thing you know small plants are unfurling themselves! The only problem is that I tend to end up with more plants than I need. I haven't quite got to grips with thinning them out yet. It always seems a bit mean. They've tried so hard to get going, and then I come along and kill them, just because I've grown too many! So, if anyone wants some tarragon or strawberries, let me know...

Tuesday
May232006

Excitement!

Once upon a time there was a large amount of Debbie Bliss Maya, in a glorious rich red colour, sitting in my stash. Then, sometime later, I decided I needed to make it into a nice, v-neck jumper. So I started. It developed a nice 4 strand cable up the front, and proceeded quite quickly for a time. Then life got in the way for a while. Did the v-neck. Didn't like it, so frogged it and redid. Eventually I finished it, and tried it on! Didn't like the collar. Un-finished it. More life got in the way. Got around to redoing the collar. And finally...

I finished it properly! Woohoo!

Unfortunately, it was stubbonly refusing to be photographed last night. The flash was making the colour look awful, and the detail of the cable wasn't showing up at all. I'll try again later.

The other exciting thing that happened last night was that the person buying my house came round again to measure some stuff. And she wants to move on June 9th! That's only 2.5 weeks! I mean, I said great, but that's a lot to sort in just 2.5 weeks. I don't think the solicitors will go for it, personally. I just don't think that the onward chain will work, and it'll be quite a lot of faff to move out without having anywhere to move into! But I guess we can aim for it, and see how close we can get.

Today, the car is back in the garage. Waaaay back in January they pointed out it needed something doing to its brakes, so I've finally got around to doing it. Let's hope that's it on the car front for a while!

Sunday
May212006

GGs fleece-lined birthday jumper

Although I didn't manage to persuade her to pose for a photo, and now she's gone home, merrily wearing it. At least it's appreciated! I'll have to repost this picture instead:

GG Lined

This was a pretty basic modified drop sleeve jumper, with a zip neck. Knitted in Knitpicks' Wool of the Andes in Winter Night, Hyacinth and Cloud. It was knit at 5 stitches per inch, and to about 40 inch around the chest. Depth to armpit was about 14.5 inches I think, and about 10, 11 inches from armpit to shoulder. Sleeves were about 18.5 inches long.

The fleece liner was a stretchy fleece offcut I found in a shop in the Laines in Brighton, just after my job interview. A lucky find, and there seems to be enough left for mine too! Woohoo! It was cut to shape from the blocked pieces, which are shown pinned out on it above. Fleece doesn't seem to fray particularly, so it was stitched to size, then the hems cut right down. I may live to regret that, I'll wait and see. Then the liner was sewn to the wool jumper at the shoulders, around the collar, down the zip (using zigzag stitch), and around the ribbing at the base and the cuffs. We'll see how well that stands up to being worn.

At 5'1", GG is not tall. She wanted to buy a £50 man's jumper, so you can imagine what that would have looked like! This fits her for length, and is a comfortable width on her, even with the liner. It should be a lovely warm top, and I'm wishing I had one too! Fortunately I have the wool... But I need the time... Oh, and to finish a couple of other things that are sooooo close...

Thursday
May182006

Excuse the delay

I now have the photos that last night's post needed! Hooray!

First up, the key in the ice...

Key on ice

Sorry it's large. I got all artistic or something. This was an attempt to not use my car this week. It failed today, when threatened with gale force winds. I feel like such a wimp...

Now the boots, I think.

wet boots

This was taken this morning, remember, so these had 13 hours of drying out... I got rained on. Those are spd compatible boots, usually used in winter. Nicely waterproof, but water tends to soak in via my socks if I don't take precautions. I hadn't taken precautions...

And finally, the sewing machine.

JonesSewing

I think that's pretty cool and retro. My mum got it as a present for passing her O-Levels. Which dates it to the mid 60s I think. Like I said, it didn't work brilliantly, but I believe that was me not getting the right needle for the job rather than the machine...

I have finished that jumper now. More or less. Hooray! GG's birthday present, only, ummm, 1.75 months late! Pictures and full spec (such as it is) when I can persuade GG to model it...

Wednesday
May172006

Oh...

I had a request to blog from my Gorgeous Girlfriend, who's had a really crap day. Apparently she reads this to find out what I'm thinking about, and to have a bit of a giggle.

I still think she could just ask me!

Anyway, so I had all sorts of photos to take. One of my car key, frozen in a large lump of ice, to show that yes, I am strange enough to do that. Of course, the really silly thing is that the spare key is lying unfrozen in the bowl full of keys, but that's not the point. Tomorrow is going to be a big test of the frozen key thing I think. The weather forecast is Not Good.

And I was going to take a picture of my Mum's rather old Jones sewing machine that I've borrowed to join the fleece lining to GG's Wool of the Andes jumper. It's so close to being finished now. I've fitted the zip, all I need to do is run som stitching around the bottom and the sleeves. Unfortunately, the sewing machine isn't actually speeding me up. I think I'm using the wrong type of needle for stretchy fleece, and it keeps not piercing and missing a stitch. So I'm cranking the thing by hand, so I can make sure of every stitch. I really should just go back to the shop and ask them again, probably with a sample of the fleece this time, but I'm too stubborn. I'm hoping she'll wear it to pieces, so I can try again in a few years time.

And then there was the picture of my cycling boots. All damp from the trip home earlier. I knew I should have put my mudguards back on the Trek this morning. Ho hum! I've cycled for 8 consecutive work days now, saving something like £24, which pays for the new cricket shirt I've just bought. Woohoo!

But my batteries died. And I haven't got any spare at the moment, and by the time they've finished charging I plan to be asleep. So there are no photos... But hopefully it's the thoughts that count!