The weather has been [finally ] warming up and so, inevitably, we have come to Bear’s least favourite day of the year.The Annual Shearing of His Hairy Beariness.
It’s not just a heat thing – although that is one major consideration -but out here, the grass seeds are a real problem. Nasty wiry little beggars that cling onto anything and given half a chance will burrow into places one doesn’t really want grass seeds. So given the magnificent lushness of the pelt on The Bear, a trip to the hairdresser was in order.
Cue the shaking and shivering on the back seat of the car
which lasted precisely as long as it took to drive around the corner to Bear’s ‘stylist’ Ms Leanne
What he doesn’t love is
a] that he gets sent home sporting a bow on his collar [ although at least this time he got a blue one ] and smelling like a Francophilic female of negotiable virtue.
b] he gets teased by the duck
The really weird thing though is that I almost expect him to behave differently once I get him home. I feel like I’ve got a different dog, so how can he possibly behave like MY Bear ?
Back at the start of July, I mentioned what a frantic month it was shaping up to be [ and yes it was, as you possibly guessed from the relative paucity of posts ] and showed you a pic of the cardi that I had just cast on for the Tour De France KAL [ knitalong ]
The stated aim was to have the cardi/jacket finished in time to wear it to the Wool and Sheep Show in Spendigo two days before the finish of Le Tour.
This did not happen.
I started off Le Tour well enough, managing to get in a little spinning alongside working on the jacket. I was averaging about a ball a day and the jacket was going to remove 16 balls from my stash.
A couple of days in, I had a major equipment failure when the little metal jigger parted company with the cord on my favourite and hitherto impeccably behaved KP circs.
Picture me sitting there with about 200 stitches of impossible-to-see dark purple alpaca/merino boucle unravelling in my lap. Several unladylike thoughts, a lot of frogging and reknitting, and an application of superglue to the offending circs, and I was back on track …
and then it happened again … to the other end
Clearly my beloved KPs didn’t care for the greater-than-normal weight that I was asking them to carry.
Still, if those TDF boys could get back on their bikes after an equipment malfunction, so could I.
and so I
cycled knitted on
next was the week of the truly revolting code id da doze which morphed into da code id da jest ad den da code id da froat
… still I cycled slowly on … cough … hack … splutter
and then the KP cord that I had changed to, while working on the back, did exactly the same thing that the other one had.
mutter … mutter … superglue … mutter
this cardi was clearly cursed.
Then I fell off the metaphorical bike completely when I … well … ahh … fell. Heavily. Backwards. Jiggered back. Unhappy hip and extremely stiff, sore and unhappy wrists which had to bear the brunt of my not inconsiderable catsmumish bulk.
At this point one of the girls on ravelry stated that I was ‘having a worse Tour than Rabobank’
still … slowly, and with wrist brace and heat pack, on I pedalled.
The knitting was finished the day before Nadie and I were going to Bendi, but a bunch of knitted pieces is not a cardi, and clearly I wasn’t going to be wearing it to the Wool & Sheep Show
To tell you the truth, at that point, it very nearly went into hibernation in the basket under the coffee table [ from which it might never have emerged ]
and then someone [ on Rav again ] quoted the rabobank comment, but added that I was on track to have a finished garment for the ride down the Champs Elysee on the Sunday. Buggerit.
So through gritted teeth, and with further uncharitable and unladylike thoughts, I sewed the beggar together, gave it a bath, and posted a photo [ damp, laid flat on a towel but definitely finished ] just in time for the finish of Le Tour.
I’ve worn it a few times in the last couple of weeks and while it may not be the most flattering cardi on the face of the earth [ or possibly that’s down to the middle-aged Catsmum inside the cardi ] it is certainly warm and toasty and fit for the worst a central Vic winter can produce.
and why am I catching you up on the cardi now, two weeks after the fact?
Well, mainly because today was our monthly SnB/ GTG/ Wip day / UFO day / whatever the heck you want to call it, and so I had a willing photographer in the person of my friend Toni
So herewith: from pile of yarn to finished jacket in just under three weeks
and fairly gratuitous pooch
AFTERWORD: all KPs have now been thoroughly tested and superglued where necessary, and given that I am never likely to knit anything that heavy ever again, the relationship with my KPs appears to have survived.
It was such a beautiful crisp Autumn morning
After the obligatory morning bark-at-the-annoying-little-mop-down-the-road, I decided to accompany my human into town. I don’t really enjoy sitting in that noisy thing she calls ‘car’ but it’s the only way that I can get to several interesting places.
Some days we use it to visit my family on Nannie and Poppie’s farm [ Mum refers to them as Pete-and-Brenda ]
and sometimes we go and hang out in the back garden at The Dove where they make wonderful things that include BACON and call me “Good Dog”
but today I thought that my human needed a bit of exercise so we went to walk the circuit at the Castlemaine Botanical Gardens.
We saw Mum’s friend J9
and I have to leave you there. There’s some magpies that need a good being barked at.
I could have told you about the stitching, quilting, knitting and spinning sorority that invaded my house on Saturday.
Or the many and varied projects that Nadie and I have managed to finish in the last week or so.
Or the total chaos that has been my house for the last three days as we began the Great Post-Christmas Takedown of 2012.
Instead I’m going to tell you that a certain canine should be thanking his lucky stars that he is not currently a dog-skin cap
is what was formerly a rather vital part of Nadie’s 18 month-old Husquvarna sewing machine
currently reduced to just so much useless plastic.
It is true that I have been – just once or twice mind you – in the past, informed that I am
just a wee bit totally obsessive when it comes to things of a fibre or textile nature.
Whereas, I have always strenuously denied that this was the case,today I am prepared to concede that there might be a hint … the merest whiff … of truth to those allegations.
Exhibit A – Big box o’ dog fluff [ from this guy ]
Exhibit B – the yarn spun from the box o’ fluff
[ augmented by alpaca and a bit of baaaaa ]
Exhibit C – would be the shawl the I started knitting from my Hair Of The Dog yarn – with a drip in my hand – post surgery. Perfectly normal behaviour in my view. Not the least bit
mad weird insane OCD odd.
Said shawl has been on hiatus since I ran out of yarn in hospital, until this week, when I got back to spinning, the result of which was duly skeined, soaked, whacked into submission, dried, wound into a ball
and finally added onto what had been done earlier
This is a rustic looking yarn with flecks and nupps of brown polwarth, blue grey alpaca and white Samoyed… not something suited to fine lace. The shawl that has evolved [ pattern? what pattern ? ] has alternating bands of garter and stocking stitch, garter borders and rows of eyelets whenever I jolly well feel like it.
So that’s what I’ve been doing the last few days when not engaged in weeding, goat wrangling and the knitting of a ‘something that was not a shawl and which I will tell you about later’
Brain mostly in neutral, which accounts for the inevitable ” Damnation. I forgot to put in the yarn overs on that last row buggerit”
Still, all going well until I got to the cast-off [ bind off for my trans-pacific friends ] and realised that I wasn’t going to make it.
Maybe if I knit faster, it’ll go further …
**mutter mutter mutter whinge whine twenty bloody stitches grizzle **
but did I throw it in the corner to rot ? [ as may have been my first inclination ]
I did not
Did I haul out Ms Charlotte Sheridan and press her into service ?
Well, actually, no
I did not:
Nadie is not the only woman in this house who owns a drop spindle or three [ mind you I did only make a metre or so of yarn ]
and now all I have to do is find the right sewing needle, darn in the ends, give it a warm bath and a good blocking [ a bit like being stretched on the rack would be if it was with woolly items instead of medieval victims of torture ]