>Awooga! Awooga! This is not a drill !

>Some of you are familiar with my friend Sheepish Annie and her occasional co-bloggers Rational Mind and Hysterical Mind, or RM and HM as we Sheepie cognoscenti prefer to call ’em.
I have never claimed to have either a RM or HM
what I do have
normally
are my own teeny tiny ‘inner voices’

Ms Restraint and Ms Goodtaste
whom I keep tied up in the attic

but tomorrow is December 1st and so Ms Restraint is off her leash and about to depart on her annual vacances.

tomorrow we move into full-on Catsmum Christmas mode [ if you weren’t around last year you may want to check the December ’07 archives ]

Restraint has left the building
I think she’s left the state
She’s probably halfway to Maine as we speak

I’ve still got Ms Goodtaste hogtied, blindfolded and stuffed in a suitcase so that she can’t similarly flee the scene, but there are no guarantees.

you have been warned

>Only in Castlemaine

>So there I was, innocently wandering through town yesterday afternoon, minding my own beeswax and intent on nothing much more than perusing available Christmas decorations [ because it’s not as though I could probably decorate a small country – say Monaco or Lichtenstein – just with what I have here, for goodness sake ] in the scant 10 minutes afforded me until I had to collect David
and then I got totally, completely, and uncomplainingly, sidetracked.

In your average suburban environment, frantic beckoning from the owner of the local yarn shop might be taken to indicate the presence of some luscious new goodies with which she was hoping to extort even more of the dwindling bank balance

but no

this is Castlemaine after all …
The Bush

Here is sidetracker #1: Brenda, local yarn shop owner par excellence and someone who is quite capable of side tracking me on a perfectly ordinary day as it is … [wo]manfully multitasking as she measures and cuts ribbon while simultaneously cradling sidertracker #2
… oooh yes… Brenda is another goat-mummy. Meggsy is a week old Boer who had a rather rocky start in life and so she’s coming to work with her surrogate Nanny until she’s a little sturdier.

and I don’t suppose it will surprise anyone that I was a couple of minutes late picking David up

okay, so I lied
it was 8 minutes

>The “Happy News” that I alluded to yesterday can now be shared

drum roll please Maestro

ta da da dahh [ okay so that’s more like a trumpet fanfare… sue me ]

As of last Saturday evening Nadie and The Boy are now engaged.

I have no idea whether he went down on the traditional bended knee – it was twilight on a wet and windy beach, so perhaps not, but in any case, as both sets of parents have now been informed, as well as one hysterically happy Italian Grandmother, ‘t’is official.
We WERE all going to be told in person at Christmas but a certain Boy leaked the news to his mother yesterday and so I was promptly thereafter told over the phone
Harumph
she was up here Monday and didn’t tell me !!!! Little Beggar ! I needed to hug someone and there was no one here except David, who really had no idea why I was happy but let me hug him anyway.

Anyway, the wedding will be in about two years, once The Boy has finished University

>Can I have some whine with that ??

>Marcie pointed out today at Quilting that I’ve been a bit quiet this week. No dramas per se but it’s been a busy week – the good, the bad, and the indifferent

The good:
– getting together with my friend Lorraine for some Saint Nick construction [ and she’s coming over again tomorrow after which I’ll resume the Christmas blogging ]
Tara came over with Sorcha and brought Ms Rose [ the wheel ] along as well – we had a fabulous time … except that I forgot to feed Sorcha … BAD Catsmum … BAD!!! However Sorcha forgives me because I let her play with my vintage pram and the dolliesfor anyone who doesn’t remember, Tara was the winner of my last blogiversary contest
– My lovely friend Val also popped in on a flying visit to Bendigo .
I probably looked a bit stunned when she arrived – because I’d actually thought that she was coming the week before .
It’s that whole ‘this Friday’ /’next Friday’ thing. She asked what was I doing next Friday and meant the Friday of next week … as you would … for some reason my addled brain translated it into Friday of this week … and promptly put Tara and Sorcha off for a week which meant that they all fetched up at mine together LOL
– Nadie came up on a flying visit on Monday afternoon to reclaim Suki and Sumi who were model houseguests but the remaining feline/canine population Chez Catsmum were more than happy to see their tails disappearing in the distance
For posterity – and those who wouldn’t believe it without proof – here are MissC and Sumi actually on the same bed.
Relaxed on the same bed in actual fact.

the bad:
– the funeral for my dear little Japanese friend Mineko Wright [ Minnie ], who passed away from cancer last week. Nuff said, I think.

the indifferent:
– having an electrician in to do a few smallish jobs that had piled up. Quote: $200 – $300 … yup, can manage that. Invoice which arrived in the mail today: $740.
If anyone wants to know a really, really good electrician in Bendigo who charges like a wounded bull but turns up when he says he will , just let me know, okay !

In between all of this there has been much lugging of Chrissy boxes down from, and back up to, the shed, a routine Doctor visit, [ the BP is still up ] … potentially disturbing
health news from a dear friend today [ fingers crossed for good news Friday, sweetness ]

and no bloody dance classes until after I see the orthopedic surgeon next week [ grumble grumble whine ]

edited to add – did get one lot of very happy news at 9pm but it deserves its own post tomorrow – and no … before you ask … no one is pregnant !!

>Oh noes !!

>Sophie here , cowering behind Saint Nick

The Christmas phobic amongst you may want to avert your eyes from the counter over there in the side bar. In fact, you may just want to give Susan In Stitches a miss till the second week of January…

It’s THAT time of year and she’s at it again


So, do you think that Oakley, MissC and I should warn Bear about the horrors to come ?
I mean … this is the woman who puts xmas garlands on goats for goodness sake !!
and now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go find a better hiding place before she finds her stash of Christmas ribbon

>Free pattern : Nadie – crochet headband / hair wrap

>Sheepie suggested that this be named for my daughter as she wears it so well. Who am I to argue with SA ?
So here is the pattern for Nadie, a simple crochet headband of the wider hair-wrap type … particularly fabulous on anyone with long curls or dreads.
It is fastened with a button but you could easily adapt it for ties if you prefer.

This pattern is written in British/Australian terminology [ for US version scroll down to the bottom ]

Yarn: 1x 50 gram ball of Lana Gatto Jaipur 100% egyptian cotton
Hook: 3.5mm
Tension: 18 st and 10 rows = 4″ / 10 cm
Size: average adult

english/aussie abbreviations:
ch – chain
dc – double crochet
htr – half treble
tr – treble

foundation row: chain 78

Row 1: dc in 2nd ch from hook, 9 dc [10 dc in total] 5 htr, 47 tr, 5 htr, 10 dc, ch 1, turn
Row 2: 10 dc, 5 htr, 2 tr,* ch1, miss 1 tr, 2 tr* repeat from * to * a further 14 times [ you should have 15 spaces ] 5 htr, 10 dc, ch 1, turn
Row 3:10 dc, 5 htr, 47 tr, 5htr, 10 dc, ch 1 turn

repeat rows 2 & 3 a further 6 times, ending with row 3 [ you should have 7 rows of chain spaces ]. Do not end off.

With right side still facing you, work2 dc in the corner and a dc in each of the 7 holes created by the rows of dc, ch 1 , turn
next row:* 7 dc, ch 1 turn *, repeat this row once more omitting the ch at the end and fasten off

Work button hole:
With right side facing, rejoin yarn to the right corner and work 7 dc across to correspond with the end section just completed
next row: ch 1, 2 dc, ch 4, skip next 4 dc, 2dc, ch 1 turn
next row: 2 dc, 4 dc into the chain space, 2 dc and fasten off.

Sew a suitable button onto the end opposite to the buttonhole

enjoy!

and now the American version:

Yarn: 1x 50 gram ball of Lana Gatto Jaipur 100% egyptian cotton
Hook: E [ 3.5mm ]
Gauge: 18 st and 10 rows = 4″ / 10 cm
Size: average adult

american abbreviations:
ch – chain
sc – single crochet
hdc – half double crochet
dc – double crochet

foundation row: chain 78

Row 1: sc in 2nd ch from hook, 9 sc [ 10 sc in total] 5 hdc, 47 dc, 5 hdc, 10 sc, ch 1, turn
Row 2: 10 sc, 5 hdc, 2 dc,* ch1, miss 1 dc, 2 dc* repeat from * to * a further 14 times [ you should have 15 spaces ] 5 hdc, 10 sc, ch 1, turn
Row 3: 10 sc, 5 hdc, 47 dc, 5 hdc, 10 sc, ch 1, turn

repeat rows 2 & 3 a further 6 times [ so you have 7 rows with chain spaces ] Do not end off.

With right side still facing you, work2 sc in the corner and a sc in each of the 7 holes created by the rows of sc, ch 1 , turn
next row:* 7 sc, ch 1 turn *, repeat this row once more omitting the ch at the end and fasten off

Work button hole:
With right side facing, rejoin yarn to the right corner and work 7 sc across to correspond with the end section just completed
next row: ch 1, 2 sc, ch 4, skip next 4 sc, 2sc, ch 1 turn
next row: 2 sc, 4 sc into the chain space, 2 sc and fasten off.

Sew a suitable button onto the end opposite to the buttonhole

enjoy!

copyright 2008 Susan Iacuone for personal and charity use. You may make limited quantities for sale but please don’t try to pass this pattern off as your own. It isn’t cool and the karma fairy will kick your backside!

>Belated weekend catch up

>Nadie came up this last weekend with a dual mission.

First and foremost was to take care of David for a few hours while I taught a ‘fabric origami’ class over at Daylesford.

Second was the temporary rehousing of Suki and Sumi for a week or so, while Nadie and The Boy have a short break at Lakes Entrance with some friends.
This brings the cat complement Chez Catsmum to five.

As per usual
MissC isn’t particularly impressed
Sophie spent the first two days under my bed
I’ve hardly seen Oakley except at mealtimes
and
poor Bear is being hissed at every way he turns
He’s spending a lot of time next door with his family and out of the reach of anything vaguely feline.
Nadie and Chris went homewards on Monday night but before that there was time for a little goat wrangling [ and even wrangling of a little goat ]

I took advantage of Nadie’s presence to snap this pic of a crochet headband* ** that I made to try out the Lana Gatto Jaipur cotton [yummm] for Zoe over at Purl’s Palace
Of course, that meant that I had to make another one for Nadie herself – in unidentified denim-y blue cotton from the stash: and I’m currently doing another one for her in the Lana Gatto in a glorious deep red. What can I say? … this is a girl who loves her headbands.
She also happily took possession of the hand dyed pair of Bripples that I made for her … even if it IS almost the start of Summer and they probably won’t get worn again for 6 months.

* anyone got a catchy naming suggestion for the headband ???

** pattern, anyone ??