>Grumpy McGrumperson

>Sorry about the unintentional blogging hiatus. Didn’t mean to worry anyone.

Basically I’ve been feeling blecch from the infection, taking penicillin because I react to sulphinamides and some of the related ones as well BUT Cephalexin gives me a nasty stomach ache so still not great. Then of course there was the four+ hours spent Clogging [appalachian tap ] on Sunday at Daylesford . Illadvised when one is not at peak fitness, but I’d made the committment to be there and no way I was going to miss it. Plus I had a great time – no camera though so you miss out on the sight of a middle-aged Catsmum tapping her feet into blisters. Got to cue for the first time in ages and proved I haven’t lost that particular skill. David spent the time alternatively watching the dancing and DVDs and eating enough junk food to last a month so a good day in his book I think :] I pretty much fell in a heap yesterday – then turned around, blisters and all, and drove back last night for the usual monday night class – got told I can cue as much as I like in future :] – and today I have David home with a cold which he seems to have shared with me, so I’m taking full advantage and staying in the jammies in front of the teev and the fire with only occasional forays to feed said fire or the livestock.

and speaking of livestock as I believe we just were:

Ms Caramel is still living in the linenpress most of the time, still not happy, and I have to say she would have to be the single most unlikeable cat I have ever met in my life. Oakley and Sophie share that view. Every overture is still being met with claws and/or teeth. She is a nasty, vicious little piece of work and she’d better settle down soon while I still have a few shreds of skin left unscarred.

the rest of my life in bulletpoint:

  • [Re]reading HP and the Order of the Phoenix, to be followed by Half Blood Prince before Nadie brings up Deathly Hallows next week. Also reading Norah Gaughan’s Knitting Nature.
  • Knitting – well nothing really because the wrist was still sore but I’ll get back to the current baby cardi that I haven’t posted about in the next day or so –
  • crocheting STILL on the ripple baby blanket for friend Robyn to give some friend of hers I’ve never met. She thinks that she’s doing me a favour by giving me something to ‘keep me busy’. LOL Little does she know!!
  • quilting? Well I’ll probably get back to finishing the binding/hanging on the current rock thingy and I’ve decided to hang it sideways after all and bugger the text. Upside down just looks flat out wrong but sideways not so much. I did even consider chopping it into three or four ‘fragments’ but decided against it.
  • I’ve finalised the design for the quilt that I have to do within the next month or so for the Johnstone collection and I’ll fill you in on that next time. Not something I’m doing willingly but one makes a committment – or rather gets nagged into one – so I’ll do it. Can you tell me why do it is that people think I have nothing to do in my life except their own particular pet little project? Yeah, yeah, I’ve already heard the one about how I should take it as a compliment. Today I’m not buying it… and for some reason I feel like I have to apologise because I’m having a negative day. What is this major flaw in my character that I can’t admit to being bummed when I’m not well?

I’ll leave you with these: an oilslick on the wet road in town yesterday morning – who WAS that mad woman crouching in the middle of the road with a camera? – and my quilt Oilslick [ made in 1995 but some of you won’t have seen it ] I’m giving you two photos because neither of them is really true for colour.


>With apologies to Robbie Burns

>Yes, the best laid plans of the Catsmum went badly awry
This should have been a post about the trip down to Melbourne on the train, for the Vic Quilters’ Quilt Show [ State level big one for those OS ] and the associated mega craft expo thingy. There would have been tales of joyous reunion with my BFF Beryl over from Tassie for just the one day before flying out to England tomorrow.
There would have been glorious photos and sparkling text.
There would no doubt have been purchases…
and stunning quilts…
You would have been rivetted.
Instead I’m sitting here full of antibiotics and tetanus shot.
Last night, Ms Caramel decided that I was personally responsible for all that is ill in her world at the moment and fastened herself onto my wrist.
There was the full length of her not inconsiderable incisors buried into my soft and squishy bits.
There was blood.
There was pain.
There was not nice language.
There was a very uncomfortable, largely sleepless night and an early morning call to the Dr.
I am now home with extra puncture mark and pills.
and you want to know the worst thing?
the absolute worst thing?

It hurts too bloody much to knit or hand sew.

ETA Okay I’m doubly pissed off now about not going to Jeff’s Shed. Just had a call from BFF Beryl to say that she won the awards for Best Amateur Small Quilt and also Best machine quilting on a domestic machine [ amateur ] and I WASN’T THERE TO SEE HER GET HER AWARD AND TO CHEER HYSTERICALLY.

>happy squishy mail , a contest and a new cat


This arvo, I visited the lovely handmaidens of happy squishiness at the Post Office and was rewarded for my devotions before the high altar of postality with this:
lovely, lovely Koigu KPPM … and not one hank but two :]

So I can die happy now.
No, I don’t know what I’m going to make with it. For now it’s probably enough that I’m going to pet it and surround it with luuuurve.
Big big thankyou to the lovely Rose Red
In other news Chez Catsmum, Chris and I spent Saturday rearranging the rumpus room. He has been talking about moving the teev outlet for the last several visits so this weekend it happened, entirely unaided by either Maz or my own sweet self, followed by general moving of furniture and books, during which my participation was mandatory. There was also the ritual hunting down of killer dust bunnies roughly the size of small sheep.

If this wasn’t enough excitement for one weekend [ oh yes, it’s a giddy old life I lead up here ] Sunday morning saw us all getting up at a highly uncivilised hour and making sure that the breakfast detritus was cleaned away before the parents of Nadie’s friend Fee – being people I’d never met and therefore necessitating a clean kitchen bench – arrived on the doorstep with:
drum roll please
Ms Caramel Cat. Refugee from Melbourne and newest member of the menagerie.
Current abode:
the Linen Press, on top of the christmas linens
Current mood:
Not happy Jan!
Oakley and Sophie?
keeping right out of her way
Current state of the Catsmum:
scratched and punctured, quite possibly in the bad books with the other two, and trying to remember when she last had a tetanus shot.
Now don’t forget that you have until midnight AEST on
August 4th to leave me a comment here detailing your current obsessions [ knitting, quilting, Blogging, whatever ] for a chance to win something ‘noice’ in my Blogiversary contest. Whether it is a quilty something or a woolly something or something completely different, will largely depend on who wins and what I can glean from your answers.

>Sheepies at Bendy

>You would’ve been proud of me. My maiden voyage to an Australian Sheep and Wool Show and I managed to keep entirely Knit From your Stash 07 legal. Yes, you did read that correctly. I did not buy so much as a skerrick of wool [ what’s a skerrick anyway?]… and it was EVERYWHERE I tells ya.

There was wool, wool and more wool – glorious colours, heady scents, irresistible textures but I resisted. I am strong. I am invincible. I am … oh sorry…channelling Helen Reddy there.

There was felt in all forms and permutations. There were the knitting competition entries – which I totally forgot to photograph -almost no baby knitting surprisingly but huge numbers of intricate lace shawls…
and then there were the sheepies. [ also alpacas and goats but they were on the far side and our feet wore out and time ran out before we reached them ] We also skipped the fashion parade for the same reason.

This is Baaaala [ I think they actually said it’s spelled Barla which is supposed to be Hindi for girl, but I like my way better ]
At this point we’d been there about an hour and a half and had managed to move about a hundred metres from the entrance.

Then I ducked into the coloured sheep tent and saw what I am convinced is the world’s fattest Border Leicester Ram

and I have no idea what this girly is but I loved her sweet face.

One thing that was really noticable was the sea of grey and white heads at all of the various Guild Exhibits : the Spinners and Weavers, the Handknitters, the CWA ladies – no wonder that stereotype still lingers. Where were all the funky young knitters and spinners and so forth that I know are out there? Well most of them were manning [ womaning? ] the stalls in the commercial area.

Speaking of which Jeanette and Maz decided that I didn’t have enough sheep so they bought me two [toy] rams!! That would be them with the horns in the middle of this mug shot of most of the flock.The smaller one makes the most incredibly shrill baaaaing sound if you so much as look at it. I suspect that his batteries won’t be replaced too often.

What else? Well, we met up with the lovely Barbara from Yarn Magazine, Maz had a great time talking vintage knitting gauges with The Button Lady and scored a limited edition carved bone one from Nepal, I had a long and involved pow-wow with the rep for Oertoel Electric wheels. All good stuff in fact but sadly undocumented with photos.

The only fly in the ointment was a lady from the Spinners and Weavers Guild stall who overcharged Maz and I $5 for the same magazine. We both bought that copy of Spin Off that has the Estonian lamb puppet on the cover and only realised once we got home that she’d charged us the original price of $15, not the $10 it was marked at :[
Maybe I should make sure I get my money’s worth and knit a southern cousin for Ms Lulu.

Also on my wish list were a niddy noddy [ and she scores ]

hand carders [ scores again ]

and this knitted and felted sheep pattern that I didn’t know was on the wish list until I saw it.

There were a ‘few’ other ‘small’ purchases but this post is picture heavy enough for one day so that’s your lot.

>It has to be gremlins


Well, after perusing all of the comments and much cogitation I decided to go with the original quilting plan [ for this one anyway ] and use the text horizontally. Apart from anything else it really does fit better that way.
So on Wednesday I hauled my gear over to the Maryborough Gallery and proceeded to baste, mark and quilt the piece. I even remembered to take my glasses this time. It is amazing how much difference it makes when one can actually SEE.
All according to plan, although it probably didn’t do a lot for my powers of concentration that several people felt that they needed to watch closely and ask constant questions …still it was duly done, packed up and carried off home in triumph, stopping only to admire the lambs by the roadside. [ yes Caity, I know, SHEEPIES ]
Fast forward a few hours and all I can think is that there must have been evil forces at work in my sewing room. The Anti-elves MUST have decided to ‘help’.
How else do you explain the fact that when I went to bind it yesterday I discovered that the text was on UPSIDE DOWN.
Do you think anyone will notice if I go ahead and hang it the way I was planning to?
Maybe I can make up some artspeak mumbo jumbo to justify the upsidedown quote.

Okay I’m taking myself off to the Bendigo Wool and Sheep Show for the day with Maz and Jeanette to recover and indulge in things of a wooly persuasion.

>I need your help


Usually when I say ” I need help” I’m being facetious about my ability to limit the size of the stash or one of the ever-burgeoning collections, but this time I would really like your design input. [ and no, not just the quilters ]
I stayed up till about 2 am last night working on another ‘rock’ piece based very, very loosely on the fractures in the exposed rock face out the back. When you’re on a roll, y’know?
Back at it again today instead of doing the weekend housework [ what?? this SUPRISES you in some way? ] and I particularly like how the tiny strip pieced areas mimic the quartz / leader crystal seams.
No quandary so far.

I made the sections a bit over-long so that I could take umpteen photos with the various bits moved by a poopteenth of an inch to see what lined up [ or didn’t ] with what, but I’m not going to inflict them all on you because on a screen this size I doubt that you would see much difference. It’s enough that I do.
Yes I DO know that I’m more than a bit OCD when it comes to my quilts. Why do you ask? :]
Moving right along…
I’ve reached the stage where I can’t see the wood for the trees to a certain extent and so I’d like your opinion as to whether this piece should be horizontal [ the way I created it ] or vertical. I’m going to use text from ‘My Country’ for the quilting again [ scroll down ] so I really need to make up my mind about the orientation.
The piece I showed you earlier in the week will remain in the collection of the Central Goldfields Gallery once the VicHealth project is over, but this one I’m working on now is separate to that.

So … what do you think?



Your Score: The Cougar

Here’s your results! Your spirit animal has a Nobility ranking of 13 out of 18.

Your spirit animal is the cougar. It is a stealthy and deadly protector. With a cougar as a spirit animal, you have nothing to fear in this world. Your life is blessed and you are on the right path. You will still have hard times, but you will pull through them, always stronger for your travails. Congratulations, few are fotunate enough to have such a spirit animal!

***Wondering how this animal was chosen for you? These questions were carefully thought out to see how important you hold certain virtues such as: humanism, self-knowledge, rationalism, the love of freedom and other somewhat Hellenic ideals. Some of the questions were very subtle. Your score was then matched with an animal of corresponding nobility. However, you shouldn’t think this was a right/wrong sort of test, but more of an idealistic values test. It’s ok to not hold these values, you’ll just get an animal spirit of lower stature if you do!***

Link: The What is Your Spirit Animal Test written by FindingEros on OkCupid, home of the The Dating Persona Test