Wednesday 27 January 2010

Marble for Malawi

Time to start another wee charity project after bringing home some more James Brett Marble DK from my Knit Club meeting. We are at the moment busy knitting items once again for needy children in Malawi.

I'm attempting the pattern above from Let's Knit magazine. It's called 'Tia' and is by designer Zoe Halstead. It's seems a very straightforward childs short-sleeved cardigan in stocking stitch and garter stitch.

I've got another few knitting projects queued up to get my stash down to a manageable level. Sadly that means I must promise myself no more yarn for now..but do knitters ever really stick to that vow?

Tuesday 26 January 2010

Bella vs.Beast

Now the worst of the winter weather is behind us (hopefully..have I just jinxed it?) our new car Bella well and truly needed a wash.

Here is the Mister hard at it. I was still indoors in my pj's with a lovely hot cup of tea..oops!

The photo was taken through the window..hence the glare.

Also indoors was pampered pooch, Patch. He was a little bit put out that his papa was giving more attention to that of the four wheeled variety instead of the four pawed.
You can't quite catch the contemptuous look he is giving Bella as he perches on the (badly scratched!) windowsill staring out.
Patch doesn't have much love for our new motor yet. He gets a bit anxious travelling. We are hoping to get him car trained quite soon so we can all look forward to trips to the seashore this summer.

Monday 25 January 2010

Twee Tea?

My latest knitting FO is the Strawberry Teacosy. The pattern is by Katya Frankel and is available on Ravelry as a free download. It was far easier than I expected and only really took a couple of nights knitting time. I just used some arcylic from my stash as its more for decorative purposes than perhaps actually keeping the tea warm.

I just wanted to knit something pretty for my friend F as she hasn't had the best start to 2010. Her step dad died suddenly on Christmas morning and she had to fly back from her festive break overseas. For the past month she has been a big support to her mum.

Flatmates in Edinburgh back in the day, F is now based in the South of England and I don't see her as much as I'd like. In happier circumstances she is a big fan of tea parties and so a colourful cosy seemed the perfect cheery gift. I also knitted a couple of matching egg cosies just for that extra twee factor. I don't think she reads this blog so the surprise shouldn't be spoilt.

Thursday 14 January 2010 2 & 3

The snow has thawed now and there are only small traces left..but it's still cold so I will continue with my theme...


2. Online Shopping

Warning, this can be a dangerously addictive pastime but, if like me you love to find a good bargain...very fruitful.

My best buy in the January sales was this pair of real leather boots from French Connection.
I'd seen them before Christmas and had considered buying them then but I just couldn't justify the £140 price tag at the time.

So, imagine my delight when I managed to pick up a pair on Amazon at just £42!!! (big smile!!). They still have the pre-sale price on the box...I saved £98. That I like.

I didn't plan on taking the photo of a boot/dog combo. I think Patch was desperately vying for my attention. He is giving his pathetic face...don't let it fool ya.

3. Knitting..of course.

Sometimes you just long for a cold wet day to give you the perfect excuse to curl up with a hot cuppa and indulge in some quaility knitting time.

I have completed my first knitting project of 2010 (FO in 'knit-speak' in 'Finished Object').

I'm pleased to report I have knitted my first shawl..albeit a small and simple one. The pattern is 'SIMPLE THINGS SHAWLETTE' by Ravelry's own Mary-Heather Cogar. It took just over 50g of 4ply sock wool.

The hardest part was blocking it..I've never blocked anything before but I'm really pleased with the result.

Nice scarf..shame about the face (too much Rocky Road

Sunday 10 January 2010

Rocky Road

1. Make Rocky Road

My sister in law is always making Rocky Road and I have become addicted to it so much that I can no longer bear to wait for her next offering of chocolatey goodness. I decided to take the matter in hand and make my own...and as it involves no cooking as such knew it couldn't go far wrong!
Step 1: Getting the ingredients together.
Digestive biscuits
400g of milk chocolate
100g of butter
Tin of condensed milk

Melt the chocolate and butter together in a 'bain marie' type stylee before adding in the condensed milk and giving it a good old mix.

Crush the biscuits roughly and add them , the marshmallows and sultanas to the chocolatey mixture. I also threw in some Malteasers as an added bonus.
Spread the thick gloopy mixture onto a lined baking tray and put in the fridge for as long as you can wait.

The three hours I managed felt like 3 years...I was practically salivating at the fridge door (how very hygenic, huh?)


Saturday 9 January 2010

Souper Day Out

As you have probably summised (wherever you are in the world)..we are still getting snow here in the UK. Fife is not the coldest part of Scotland luckily..but it's still pretty darn cold being below freezing most days and rumoured (I don't know for sure) to be as low as -12C at night. There is a small densly in habited part of the Highlands, a place called Altnaharra that was cold as the South Pole...brrrrrrrr!

My new camera has not seen much outdoor it's just too cold for me to stay outside long enough to compose a decent photo. The strange picture above (I like to call it 'arty' was taken from a moving car.

We took a country drive the other day whilst the roads were clear. The intention was to visit knitwear designer Di Gilpin's new bothy studio at her home in Largoward but when we eventually found it there was no-one around. Ah well, her loss..I had money for yarn!

On the way home we stopped off at Blacketyside Farm Shop near Leven. Having passed it previously on the bus it was really nice just to have the option to stop and nose around.

As it was lunchtime we headed for the cafe and had a great bowl of homemade soup.

I had the chunky vegetable option which was delicious and the Mister plumped for the tomato which he rated a 9/10! High praise indeed.
The wholemeal soda bread that accompanied the soup was also extremely tasty.

He was too embarassed to be seen taking my photo in the cafe.(spoilsport)..maybe just as well!

Sunday 3 January 2010



I realise I'm not very quick off the mark, what with it being the 3rd of January already but 'hey'!

No, before you ask I have not spent the last few day recovering from a drunken stupor because against all Scottish sterotyping this little lady is teatotal (well..almost!). The Mister in I did not venture out but instead it was pj's and pizza then bed by 12.15am. Very sensible I think you will agree, considering it was around -5C outside!

We have been out for a few drives in 'Bella' as most of the roads around here have thankfully been clear. It's great being 'on the road' and the comfort of the car sure beats the old ramshackle buses. No more whiplash going over speed bumps...hooray!

For such drives and days out I decided to upgrade my digital camera. It must be said I am not very tech savvy so as long as I can point and shoot I'm fine. I found a very nice model with a neat little discount so I'm pretty chuffed.
My new camera is a Sony Cybershot DSC-W215 and is a definate improvement on my ickle Fuji 6mp camera I bought a few years back. Now I just have to figure out how it all works.
See somewhat reluctant model at the top of this post.

Not been knitting yet this year..must get back to it. I have my first shawl on the needles that I will show you later.
Bye for now and may 2010 be good to you or as they say in Scotland
'Lang May Yer Lum Reek' (who said it I dunno...not me!)