>Sometimes it takes me a while

>For some reason this morning, I suddenly made a decision regarding that which is laughingly referred to as my wardrobe. It is in dire and desperate need of another baby-doll style dress: this season’s fashion gift to those of us with almost no boobs and a disproportionately large middle.
So did I head straight for town and the delights of somewhere like Country Tar-jay?
not on your Nellie
not this little black duck
for what my wardrobe required, nay, demanded, was
a crochet dress.
in nice, cool cotton
maybe variegated
Something like the misdyed Bendy 8-ply cotton I used for the Chic Hippie [ or in my case Hippy Chick ] skirt from Candi Jensen’s Hooked On Crochet.
You know.
That one I made last year and never wear because it makes me look like a hippy hippie hippo

For modesty’s sake, perhaps the top section could be solid trebles [double crochet for my US friends] … just like the yoke of the CH skirt

and then some sort of graduated shell pattern … just like the CH skirt

yeah and maybe some little buttons down the front …like … the … ones … on … the …

bloody hell

fast forward through the removal of the drawstring from the waist, and the manipulating of a few metres of cotton thread around a 3.5mm hook to create a couple of shoulder straps
and if you’ll forgive the crappy back-lit photos:

>that was the week that was

>Thursday saw me up bright and early to feed goats and greet the day. Thunderstorms were forecast and the prospect of rain eagerly awaited. So I drove into town and lo! water on the road! Dropped David off at his Day Placement and kept on going to Fryerstown and Lo! more water! Grey clouds looming and a lot of anxious stallholders setting up for the weekend’s antique fair.
You can get in the two days before on an early bird ticket, which is usually perfect for me because I don’t contemplate taking David on the weekend once it’s in full swing – dust, crowds, and dogs = a recipe for a David Major Meltdown.
Anyway I paid the princely sum of $5 and in I went. About half of the stalls were fully set up and one had to keep an eye out for trailers backing up but it was fine for about half an hour and then it started raining. Not ‘the heavens opened’ or anything, but enough to set all the stallholders panicking around with tarpaulins and drop sheets. Still there were finds to be found and bargains to be had.
I acquired another tin trunk for my stash of fire lighting newspaper – $12
some knitting gauges, needle books and a darner
a vintage white-metal victorian shoe pincushion for Maz which I didn’t photograph
and that’s really about it. Apart from a $2 not-at-all-antique blue and white china guinea pig.
… and when I got home? Not one single, solitary drop of rain to be seen.

Friday – I had thoughts of going back to Fryerstown but decided some last minute house tidying was probably necessary. Chris and Maz arrived around 1pm, offloaded and then headed out to Fryerstown sans moi. At about 1.05pm, I opened the kitchen door and a very startled 3′ brown snake beat a hasty retreat through the adjacent shrubbery.
One phone call to PND later, and with a brief pause for the hasty donning of cowboy boots-and-shovel, there we were, conducting a fruitless search for said reptile who hasn’t been sighted since. Chris, Maz and Nadie were all alerted by phone to the need for snake related watchfulness.
Still no rain

Saturday – hot, humid – no rain. This, photographed in all its glory in the morning, was a faded ruin by evening.

Sunday – Nadie arrived around lunchtime and we had a BBQ dinner to belatedly celebrate Chris’ birthday on the 16th. I’m not going to tell you what natal anniversary he was celebrating [ but if you know mine – well he’s 11 months older ]
Didn’t pick up my knitting until about 10 pm.

Monday – Chris and Maz headed back home around lunchtime, Nadie and I pottered – bit of this bit of that – goat and cat bonding featured strongly for her, and tinking a days’ worth of progress on the bamboo cami on my part – and she toddled off back to Melbourne after tea but not before modelling Sweetie Pie… and as I am a Catsmum of considerably more girth than my DD, it was strategically pinned but you get the idea. I plan on wearing it for belly dancing – those sleeves will hide a multitude of sins.

Tuesday – long weekend over and everyone back to business. Last night was our first Clogging class for the year, so Karen and I headed for Bendigo. One stop at Maccas later, we arrived at Maiden Gully well aware that it was totally insane to be tap dancing in a hot stuffy hall in 30+C heat… but we did it anyway. Between a lay off of 6 weeks or so and the heat, Heather wisely settled for a revision night.

…so that was the week that was. Still no rain unless you count yesterday’s total of 4 drops.
Pause for gratuitous cat: Oakley enjoying the catmint out in the Cat Run you may now return to your regularly scheduled program

>Fly By WNBPP* now with photos

>* Wednesday Night Bullet Point Post

So this is what I’m:

  • Knitting – lacy nightie from IK in Cleckheaton Bamboo. Mine will be more cami than nightie.
  • Loving – the bamboo yarn – wonderful drape, lovely sheen, sort of slinky feel. The test will be how it washes up because I could see this being fabulous next to baby skin.
  • Trying – Russian Joins as a way of coping with the slippery yarn and working on circs. So far so good!
  • Quilting – not so much. Was going to do some hand piecing at Goldfield’s Quilters today but when I got there at 9.40 there was no sign of anyone so I went home and reorganised the smallest bedroom instead. I know they all turned up later but just for a moment I was convinced I’d got the week wrong. Oh well – next time.
  • Painting – my bathroom is now green to match the bedroom. Not being one to rush these things, it’s only taken me 11 months to get back to it. I did the cutting -in last February.
  • Reading -just started The Book Thief. Too early to comment yet
  • Watching – Blackpool on DVD [ David Tennant yummo ]
  • Looking forward to – the Australia Day holiday weekend and visits from Chris/Maz and Nadie … also the Fryerstown Antique Fair also this weekend – which is why Chris and Maz are coming up.
  • Feeling sad about – the fact that Heath Ledger’s life has ended so tragically and so early

>my babies are growing up!

>You’ve had the quilting, the knitting and crochet, and I think the snake incident would qualify as “Life in the Bush”

however I’ve been neglecting the domestic livestock updates

I don’t think there’s been a photo of the goaty girls since probably NOVEMBER
So herewith:
today’s photo of my babies who are now 4 months old and very nearly as tall as Robbyn, although a mere fraction of her weight. Rosie still towers over them though, so they’ve still got some growing to do.

btw this is what happens when the laundry door isn’t fully shut

the cats are demanding equal time so there will be a felicentric post tomorrow … oh and we had the first rain for the year on Friday – an inch which was very welcome.

>regarding things of a brown and wriggly nature

>There’s an old, grainy, black and white photo somewhere up in the shed of me with about a metre and a half of diamond backed carpet python wrapped about my shoulders.
It’s a cool photograph even with the 1980 hair.

It was taken at the school I was teaching at, in a controlled environment with a python which was used to being handled as part of a travelling reptile show run by Andrew Wegener who is apparently still doing this stuff
Most of the other staff gave the animals a wide berth but I popped in after class on the first day with #1 son who was about 5 at the time – must’ve been cos he was in preps – and we both got to handle the ‘safe’ snake and a few lizards.
The next day, when the preppies got their turn at Andrew’s talk, he handed the snake to Stephen because he already knew that he’d be okay with it. Normally he wouldn’t have been able to do that of course. So there’s a second photo… somewhere.
Snakes in a controlled environment – interesting.

Fast forward a few years to me living here in the middle of my 10 acres of pretty much virgin bush, and my attitude to brown-and-wriggly is a little different. It’s sort of “Eeeeee [shudder] snake!!”
A country-born-and-bred friend of mine from quilting once famously described my block as being so dry that ” you couldn’t run one snake to an acre” and I sincerely hope that she was correct.
All the snakes I might be likely to run across here would be the nasty variety. Mostly aggressive browns… but I haven’t seen any in the 3 years I’ve been here.
I did see a teeny weeny one of these last summer
BUT apparently PNDs daughter – safely in car – saw one crossing their driveway between my dam and his, last weekend.
a six footer
Well away from my house, and heading further away but too close to both Pete’s house and livestock for comfort… and that was the second one seen coming from the direction of my dam in the last few months.
no trotting up the block to visit Ms Bella, and no rambling around any part of the block where I can’t see bare earth.

>promises promises

>Last year about a gazillion knitters joined Knit From Your Stash 07. Some succeeded, some not so much.
Personally I stuck to the rules almost completely – but – the damn stash still grew … a lot …because The Rules had a little too much leeway in them.
Sock Yarn didn’t count
Dyeing supplies didn’t count [ this one could be used to justify purchase of any amount of white or natural cream wool, cotton or bamboo ]
yarn needed for a specific present that you didn’t already have … did not count
spinning supplies … repeat after me … did not count
gifted yarn did not count

Can you see where I’m heading with this?
Yes. I thought that you might…
and the biggy ? my number one Achille’s heel ? the major flaw in the plan ?

anything on sale in the magic playroom of special discounts at Bendigo Woollen Mills

sad isn’t it?

Of all of the stuff that I knit last year, only the Louisa Harding Kimono Pure Angora for Auntie Fay’s scarf – and okay, yeah, the second one that I made for myself – was non stash, but I pretty much took The Rules and used them to justify some fairly massive spends at Bendy.
So I’ve decided not to set any arbitrary rules for myself but to try and practice ‘mindful’ yarn acquisition.
No promises. No resolutions. We’ll just see how the stash goes… and all bets are off for the Sheep and Wool Show in July.

With that in mind, I’ve joined the ‘Stash Knit Down 2008’ Forum [ fairly self explanatory ] over on Ravelry.
The first challenge was to knit or crochet 1 mile or 1609 metres between January 5 and the 20th of Feb from stashed yarn.
Thanks to having to redo 670 metres of my Sweetie Pie Cami, plus crochet’s propensity for eating up about a third more yarn than the equivalent amount of knitting, plus the fact that I’m a rather umm ‘generous’ size and that I made it longer and added the afterthought sleeves, my finished cami took a whopping 1620 odd metres.
So herewith my first official finished object of ’08Started jan 5
finished today jan 17
one whole mile of thin thread [ BWM 4 ply/ fingering cotton on a 3.5mm hook ]
can I get a w00t ?

oh and this? this is what it looks like when the ball of cotton runs out with about 4″ of thread needed to finish.
Just as well I had more of the yarn but still … damn damn and double damn
and I’ll tell you about the snake tomorrow okay?