Friday, 25 April 2014

Super Summer - Take Two

Remember that time I did a Super Summer Plan? Then basically everything that could go wrong for me went wrong?  In one month?  Well I've decided to give it another go and just cross my fingers that I'm not a jinx for summer.  Tam and I each made a fun list of things to do this year instead of making resolutions, but the slight flaw in our plan (ok, my plan - there's no doubting that he's smarter than me and thought through his list a bit better...) is that most of the things I picked to do are just more feasible in summer.  Check out what I had in mind...

  • Swim in the sea/go cliff diving
  • Go camping
  • Sleep in a camper van
  • Drink cocktails
  • Have a beach BBQ
  • Watch the sunset
  • Go to a water park
  • Sit in a deck chair
  • Lie in a hammock
  • Visit a Scottish island
  • Go to a ceilidh/barn dance
  • Go to Blackpool
  • Win more minions
  • Make more videos
  • Visit a distillery
  • Try surfing 
  • Visit Yorkshire again before my best friend leaves
  • Go on a group holiday
  • Visit a lighthouse
  • Walk across the Forth Road Bridge
  • Knit wee hats for the Innocent Big Knit
  • Do the Great Scottish Run (10K or half?)

I think that's a pretty good list to be getting on with!  You may have seen a theme developing, no?  Obviously my brain needs to catch up with the great Scottish weather but I'm hoping at least some of these will be do-able...


Wednesday, 23 April 2014

A trip to Aberfeldy

At the beginning of March I had a mini holiday in Aberfeldy with Tam and his family.  It was nice to get away for a few days of walking and exploring somewhere new, despite the freezing weather (I ran down a hill in heavy sleet, it was oddly fun).  We found what is said to be Europe's oldest tree which was...not unlike a lot of other trees from where I was standing...but the church yard was very pretty ;)  There was also a fab old cinema where Tam's brother and I saw The Lego Movie and did a lot of singing afterwards...
We also realised we were near a place called Dull, which was very exciting and turned us into embarrassing tourists.  (Remember Wetwang?)
Parsnip obviously had a blast with all the walking involved...
We stayed in a gorgeous cottage a mile or so outside Aberfeldy (here, if anyone's interested).  I'd definitely like another trip up there soon, we have so much of Scotland left to explore!


Monday, 21 April 2014

Finished Knitting - chevrons, stripes and pompoms

I recently got back in touch with an old school friend and it turns out she's just had a baby girl.  Obviously, my mind jumped straight to 'Ooh what can I knit her?!'  First I raked through my stash and came up with some fun wool, then I turned to the pattern hunting.  It took me ages to find a pattern for booties that I liked - they were either all too fussy or too plain.  Admittedly the one I used is pretty plain, but I knew I wouldn't be able to resist adding some pompoms to the toes so it worked out ok.  The booties pattern is from a free booklet I found here and is knitted flat then sewn up along the back and sole.
Ah, the chevron blanket.  Some folks may remember my last attempt at this...  I used a slightly different pattern from Purl Bee this time and it seemed to work out better.  I love how easily and quickly this pattern knits up, I'll definitely be using it again.  The only thing annoying me a bit about the finished blanket is that I had to use grey instead of white (I didn't have enough left in the stash) which makes it a bit darker than I'd like it to be.
I just love the colours in this blanket!  I raided Mother's stash for the supplies (she was not overly impressed with my thievery) and found a very easy pattern to go with it.  Can you sense a theme here?  My brain is not in the mood for anything complicated at the mo!  Tam and I went to Aberfeldy with his family just before I started the new job and I got a good chunk of knitting done there.  The pattern is a super simple K1, P1 row then five rows of stocking stitch - the only change I made was using eight colours instead of eleven.  I ran out of time to try and block it but being a blanket I don't suppose it matters too much.
I got an email from my friend when she received the parcel on Saturday morning and she was super excited about the goodies (my mum made a couple of wee cardigans to put in too but I didn't get a chance to photograph them) so it was worth the effort!

All the wool I used is just basic, washable DK yarn, and the pompoms were made with the help of the smallest sized Clover pompom maker.

My next project is a scarf I started before the baby stuff, which will likely be finished mid summer at the most inconvenient time for wearing it, and a bunch of tiny amigurumi stuff for work.  (Some of the offices have windows facing the hall and various staff members have decorated theirs with Lego, novelty rings off cakes and - in the case of our window - tiny Easter chicks.  Of course, as soon as I let it be known I could knit, I started getting requests for various bits and pieces.  I'm keeping a record of the rivalry on Twitter for anyone interested in our rather unique approach to de-stressing.)


Saturday, 19 April 2014

My crazy life...

photo from Sarah
Hi.  It's been a while.  Life got a bit crazy around here in the last two months or so, and I feel like I'm just getting a bit of time now to indulge myself in all things internet related.  Catching up with blogs has been the first thing of course, closely followed by actually updating my own blog.  Woohoo!

The biggest change happened on the last day of January when I was offered my dream job, which kick started change in the rest of my life.  I'm now a Film Preservation Technician in Glasgow and I still can't quite believe it.  (Basically this involves lots of winding old film and turning videos into computer files - I've seen a lot of wonderful movie making and a lot of...not so wondeful movie making...)  I started at the beginning of March and have hardly had a free moment since - going from working sixteen hours a week to around forty has been a bit of transition for sure, although definitely in a good way.  I just need to get better at time management to fit everything in!

photo from Sarah
Being closer to Glasgow has had its plus points though - this week Janet was up visiting and Sarah decided to come down for a whole two hours (!) to have dinner with us.  We had a great time eating cheap food and chatting non stop, and even excitedly planned our next meet up on Twitter on the way home (nothing to do with the alcohol we'd just consumed of course...)

photo from Franca
I almost forgot about the other meet up I went to in February!  Kerry had suggested going fabric shopping way before Christmas, which later turned into a sewing bloggers meet in Glasgow.  Now I realise I'd have to have a big turnaround to call myself a sewing blogger (my last project was last summer!) but I fancied meeting some new people and going to a nice tea room anyway :)  I'd only read Kerry and Debi of My Happy Sewing Place's blog before attending so it was fun getting to know everyone else (Alison of Heavenly Handmades, Deborah of Dfabrication, Elaine of What Diana Did Next, Franca of Oranges & Apples, Helen of Grosgrain Green, Katy of I, of the needle, Katy of The Littlest Thistle and Nessa of Nessa's Place)

I'm now hanging out with Mother over Easter (I get a bank holiday off!  What is this amazing madness?!) which I've been very excited about - so far I've just been glued to the internet but I'm determined to go out a run and enjoy some nice weather this afternoon.  I'm sure I'll have lots more adventures to blog about soon too - Tam and I have been out and about a bit lately and I just got us a Historic Scotland membership so there's be plenty of photos waiting to be taken!

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