Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Day Four of Games Week

And today we go back to Strathardle -- so no more blog until sometime next week. By which time the countdown to my 2nd cataract operation, on September 3, will be well under way.

More was achieved yesterday than one would have thought possible. Nearly a whole repeat of the Princess Shawl edging -- I'm half-way through #64. Next week should, at the least, see me through #66 -- and at that point, the number remaining to be done will be numbered only in the 'teens.

And I finished the Wallaby pouch and resumed knitting the body. I haven't started scrabbling around yet, however, to work out exactly how many rows there are in the pouch and then to start counting body rows.

I got a surprising bit of income tax done yesterday, too (due end September), which should help a bit on the anxiety front.



Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Me and Jamie Posted by Picasa

Day Three of Games Week

No new picture, and not much knitting yesterday. A few more rows of Princess edging, but I'm still not finished with repeat #63. A few more rows of Wallaby pouch. So today's illustration is an old one, taken on Games Day last year, with me in my Kerry tee-shirt and grandson James wearing his striped Koigu, in the dining room at Burnside.

I think the thing to do today is to make LISTS of things to do.

My sister and brother-in-law are safely here. I didn't even get any sock-knitting done at the airport. The plane was absolutely on time, and the anxiety about whether I was waiting for them in the right place, too acute. One of the little-mentioned rewards of old age is not having to go anywhere and so not having to spend much time in airports. It was good to be reminded of how horrible they are.

Alexander is not happy with the current plan for accomodating him and his family over the weekend. My own plan for them has been overridden, and he rang up yesterday to complain. One of the first things to do today, therefore, is to see if I can improve that situation. Alexander's reaction to unsuitable plans will be quiet withdrawal from the scene.

Monday, August 22, 2005

The Wallaby, with the first few inches of its pouch Posted by Picasa

Day Two of This Week, and the beautiful weather is deteriorating fast. The forecast is bad, but there's still time for recovery before the weekend. We've had rain on Games Day often enough in the past, but never, that I can remember, an actual storm.

While David was loading the car yesterday morning, a literary Walking Tour was standing in front of our house hearing a lecture about Whiskey Galore (a.k.a. Tight Little Island), as its author, and the author of much else, Compton Mackenzie, used to live here. It made him -- David -- feel rather important.

Later Helen drove him to the airport for the plane to Thessaloniki via Prague, while we took the three little boys to Mass. They have gone back to Kirkmichael now. We will join them on Wednesday. I told her as she was leaving that we may be as many as ten at supper on Wednesday evening, but she was adamant that I needn't do or bring anything. A pretty ordinary refrigerator fills up fast when everybody is shopping for twelve and stuffing things in, so the idea is to demarcate responsibilities, as mentioned yesterday. I am accumulating recipes and ideas, but not food, for Saturday's Games Day picnic.

And today I will drive out to the airport with my One Bright Eye, to meet my sister and her husband, arriving from CT via, I think, London.  


I think perhaps my left foot is getting better of its own accord. It was x-rayed last Thursday, and our GP should have the results soon.


It's time we got back to the point. Above is a picture of the present state of the Wallaby. It looks rather small, but gauge calculations suggest otherwise. I think it is just being bunched in by a smallish circular needle. And I'm well into repeat no #63 of the Princess Shawl Edging. I would like to look out some yarn and a small circular needle and knit a couple of inches of K2P2 rib, so that I could hand it over to Granddaughter Rachel when we get back to Kirkmichael, to make a hat. I think she said her Chinese ayi had got her on to circular knitting -- she could certainly help finish. I may not, however, get that done.



Sunday, August 21, 2005

Breakfast Posted by Picasa
The Gamers Posted by Picasa

The week has begun.

Helen and her family are here, David on his way to Thessaloniki and the rest of them to the Chinese State Circus this afternoon and then back to Kirkmichael. In fact, they swapped a boy with James's family. What you see above is Alistair Miles of Beijing having breakfast just now with his cousins Fergus and Archie Drake of Thessaloniki. The other picture is of Alistair, left, and Archie, playing dice last night.

Helen says that chores have been allotted for the rest of the week. My job is the picnic lunch to be eaten out of the backs of cars on Games Day. One has to get to the field very early to get a place for one's car by the ring. With all those people, we'll need two cars. Ample quantities of drink are of course essential.


The pouch is attached to Fergus' Wallaby, and looks good. A row of purl bumps really helps. I measured the boy himself carefully last night. I did a course with Kristin Nicholas at Stitches East once, on designing for children, and remember her saying that they do not, on the whole, expand much as they grow, they just get longer.

And I'm more than halfway through Repeat No #62 on the Princess Shawl edging. One can think of them as years in a long life, if one likes (there being 85 in all). I'll soon reach my own age. There's an irritating mistake in #61 -- not worth doubling back for, but I could easily have avoided it.

A neighbour is expecting a baby with a bad cleft palate, revealed on a scan. The Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh suggested an abortion, but the family rejected that option and now the doctors are saying "It's nothing we can't deal with" and everyone is much happier. I feel a Baby Surprise coming on. Koigu is terrific for that, as for so much else. Thank you for your comment, MP!

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Breakfast Posted by Picasa


That's a breakfast table scene from Burnside earlier this week, with James. The two families of children meshed beautifully. I don't remember what everyone is looking at.

I forgot the big news yesterday: Granddaughter Helen Ogden got the A-Level grades she needed to go to Newcastle University. There was a cartoon in the New Yorker recently, college advisor and high-school student, the latter saying, "What college has the most closet space?" Hellie chose Newcastle for the club scene, which I gather is strong there. It's also a good university and a good city and everybody's very happy.


Haliban: it's worth following the link in Helen's comment to my post for Thursday. I had seen the story in the Scotsman earlier in the week. Unbelievable, unless you are unfortunate enough to bank with these idiots.

Thank you for the children's knitting book suggestions yesterday. I know of Melanie Falick's book. "Klutz" is news to me, but hey! we've got Google. I will explore both avenues. There was a review of something new in one of the magazines recently, the conclusion being, I think, that the new book isn't as good as Falick.


I finished repeat #60 of the Princess Shawl edging yesterday, and am indeed half-way through #61. It's much easier now; I can even do it through the early evening news. The Wallaby is correspondingly neglected. However, today the intended recipient will turn up here, with his brothers and his parents. His father, alas, must fly back to Thessaloniki tomorrow. I think he will be the only family member missing at the Games a week today. Counting from my husband down to Thomas-the-Younger, we will be a party of 27. That includes some girlfriends who are not (yet) formally attached. 

So I will try at least to finish attaching the pouch, so as to have something to shew Fergus.


Friday, August 19, 2005

The adult striped Koigu Posted by Picasa

I'm half-way through repeat #59, Princess Shawl-wise. Some dropped-stitch trouble last night, due to misplaced self-confidence leading to momentary inattention. I think the repair will stand the galloping horse test, but this evening I'll switch to the Wallaby earlier, before tiredness and cider kick in. I'm half-way across the row, attaching the Wallaby pouch. Picture soon.

Today's picture is the progress report on the country striped Koigu. I did a bit, over last weekend, but not much.

I was very pleased, in the country, about granddaughter Rachel's interest in knitting. She's working away on the French knitting spool I gave her recently, and showed me some garter stitch squares she had knit in Beijing. Her parents, neither of whom knit, think her ayi did most of the work. Never mind: Rachel is interested and, much more exciting, is discussing knitting with her ayi in Chinese. I mean to make up a package from stash of yarn for both of them, and to ask the ayi -- I'll get her name properly written down when I see them next week -- to look for some more of the wonderful merino lace-weight I bought when I was there two years ago. I think I still have a ball band.

I've been thinking about Sharon Miller's Lavender Garden shawl for Ketki (the daughter-in-law who lives in Lavender Gardens). I'd like to do it in black, but Rowan Kidsilk Haze, for which it was written, doesn't come in black. I could use Sharon's lace-weight merino, which does: that's the stuff I started the Princess Shawl with, and liked, before Sharon herself intervened and put me on the right track. But the Chinese yarn would be perfect, and I love it in my hands.

And I want to give Rachel a book with children's projects -- does anybody have any ideas? I'd give a beginning adult knitter "The Knit Stitch" and "The Purl Stitch" by Sally Melville, and EZ's Knitting Workshop, but Rachel is too young for those.

Non-Knit: the Haliban Again

When I logged on to my bank account yesterday, I saw that the sum I made over to James and Cathy on Tuesday (see yesterday's Blog) had indeed been paid, and that an identical sum had been paid into my account on the same day. My first thought was, Bank Error in Your Favour Collect £200. My second thought, ten minutes later, was that nothing had been paid into James' and Cathy's account at all: it had been a completely circular transaction. (My own home accounts program, Quicken, won't let me do that, but the Halifax Building Society knows better.) The latter assumption proved to be the case. I hope yesterday's phone call, which was at least fairly brief and pleasant, has straightened things out. James is so important and has made himself so objectionable that they have given him a phone number which connects directly with somewhere in Scotland (judging from accents) which is easier, in a crisis, than dealing with Mumbai. Although, even so, not terribly easy, as this week's events prove.

The case of the innocent Brazilian shot dead in Stockwell tube station is becoming an international incident, as well it might. The behaviour of the police exceeds by far what we hear of New York, and the initial account which the police put about -- that he was wearing a padded jacket, failed to stop when hailed, vaulted the toll machines, etc. -- turns out to be lies from beginning to end.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

The vegetable garden Posted by Picasa
The broad beans (and some grass) Posted by Picasa

Where to start? With the vegetables, I guess.

We're back from a very happy four days in Strathardle -- driving was positively pleasant, with my new eagle eye. We were six adults and six children in a little house, and all went well. I didn't contribute much except to cook the evening meal, and that worked. Recipes turned out as they were meant to. Quantities were about right. And there is little more wonderful than setting a bowl of plain boiled potatoes on a table in front of hungry people, and having it be a dish fit for gods (because the potatoes had been dug in the previous hour).

There are yesterday's pictures. A vegetable garden can't really put up with the amount of neglect which has been enforced this summer, and rain has been sadly lacking too. But I'm glad, in the event, that I kept on recklessly driving with my sightless eyes long enough to get it planted. At least I'll be in position for next year. The potatoes are wonderful, and so are the broad beans, and there are small crops from some of the other stuff.


Foot still sore. I will get it x-rayed today.


Not much progress in the country. Here, Sharon's Wedding Ring Shawl pattern was waiting when we got back, and it's terrific. Maybe I'll knit it when I've polished off the Princess. Ha! On that, I'm four rows short (out of 20) of finishing repeat #57. And I think it's time to attach the Wallaby pouch this evening.

The Haliban

James and Cathy, out of fecklessness rather than insolvency, had let their current account get into such a state that it had been blocked, with a Visa account unpaid. They were afraid of running out of cash before their return to China next week, and we had plenty of money in an account in the same branch (of the so-called Bank of Scotland) to bail them out. It took more than an hour, of choosing from menus and listening to music and being put on hold, with James and I alternately shouting down the telephone when we were connected to a human being. The difficulty was that the account was blocked, so I couldn't pay money into it. He finally got put through to someone senior enough to unblock it. Poof.

I had a birthday recently. I discovered that Madhur Jaffrey and I share that birthday -- not just that she was born on the same day, but also in the same year. There's a factoid for you. I feel younger already.

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Grapefruit juice Posted by Picasa

Much-needed rain is forecast for today. Helen says it is so dry in Kirkmichael that the potatoes can be lifted without spade or fork. Today I should be reunited with my dear vegetables, and see for myself.


My husband has half a grapefruit for breakfast. When our children were young he would sit the toddler-aged one on his lap and feed it spoonfuls of juice. The picture shows him making the same offering to our grandson James in London last week.


The dr thinks I have arthritis in my left foot, which coincides with my sister's email diagnosis. I suppose that means the pain/discomfort will never go away. I am to have an x-ray when we get back from Kirkmichael next week. Yesterday afternoon I DROVE to Sainsbury's and stocked up on cider, while my husband went and got me some insoles (in-heels, really) as the dr had recommended. There is no doubt that driving is more fun when you can see where you're going.


Janis, I can't find an "email me" button on your website (any more than there is one on mine: is the answer). Sharon specified 13 20gr balls of DMC crochet cotton for the Princess Shawl. Each ball is 330 metres, she says, so that's 4290 metres in all. Her own Gossamer Merino, which I am using, is 480 metres to 20 grams, so I ordered ten balls of that, 4800 metres, which I thought ought to be plenty.

It came yesterday, although alas the Wedding Ring pattern did not. Maybe today, although there won't be time to contemplate it as we scramble around getting ready to leave.

I notice that Sharon has a shawl pattern called "Lavender Garden" on the Heirloom Knitting website. Would Ketki wear such a shawl? I'm dubious. But she and Alexander live on a street called Lavender Gardens in London, so I'm also tempted.


There is a most interesting anonymous comment to my post for Thursday (I think) saying that the Knitlist is now heavily moderated, and that's why the number of messages dropped so dramatically in July. This was essentially the issue on which the Knitlist and I parted company. With the membership growing and growing, I thought moderation was the only way to make the job do-able for the Listmoms -- either that or just let-'er-rip. The others, and especially the head Listmom, were dead against it. So what I wonder now is, did they have a Road-to-Damascus, Jean-Was-Right-All-Along moment? Or has the cast changed? I am making enquiries, so far without success.

I had expected to linger on as an honorary Listmom, giving sage advice from time to time and helping in emergencies, but they threw me out.


We are going to Kirkmichael today, and should be back on Wednesday, insh'Allah. So no blog for a bit.

Friday, August 12, 2005

Our car, with weeds Posted by Picasa


The world is now visible with startling clarity. It is all a bit disconcerting.

We have decided to stay here today -- I will see the dr this morning about my lameness, which is if anything worse, and hit Sainsbury's this afternoon. Tomorrow we'll go to Kirkmichael IN THE CAR. It has not been driven since late June. The picture above, I hope -- I haven't taken it yet -- shows the grass growing under its feet, as it stands on the cobbles outside our front door.

The other big news is an email from Heirloom Knitting to say that my order has been dispatched (the Wedding Ring pattern, and the yarn for the Princess Shawl). So maybe TODAY! When I didn't hear from them for two days after placing the order, I had begun to think that even Sharon and Mike allowed themselves a few days off in August, but no. I think we are very fortunate that Sharon's great talents are being marketed like this. It would have been impossible without the Internet.

So yesterday I did more Wallaby than usual -- now that I can actually SEE the television set, it is interesting to be in a position to look up at it from time to time -- and correspondingly less shawl edging. Even so, I'm halfway through repeat #55. The next one will be another of my little landmarks -- perhaps I will press to finish it today. When I've done 56, the repeats remaining will be numbered only in the 20's.


James phoned from Kirkmichael yesterday, where they seem to be getting on fine without us. He and Alistair were planning to camp at the bothy last night. It set me reflecting on how everybody who lives in the country must build up a set of family vocabulary for places -- in our case, "the bothy", as just mentioned; "the nettle way", "the stubble field", "the commonty", "Sim's pool", "the bumpy road", and so forth, all pretty unintelligible even to neighbours. The commonty isn't common any more, the stubble field has carried no crop except sheep for decades, and the bumpy road is now tarmac'd and as smooth as a motorway. And some such words become common among neighbours, and make it to the map. One passes signposts to places named Wolfhill and Gallowhill and, in Kirkmichael, we have the Bannerfield. I think the standard was raised there once for some rebellion or other. We hold the Games there now.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Travel socks Posted by Picasa

Those are the socks I was working on in London. I'm pleased. It's a Regia yarn. Destined for Rachel, who seems to be getting everything these days.

The very sharp-eyed will remember that these are not the travel socks I last displayed. That is because one day when we were going somewhere -- to Pitlochry by train, I think it was -- I could find the newly-started sock all right, just where it should be, but couldn't find the second ball of yarn which would eventually be needed. I know myself and my many faults well enough to know that that's not one of them -- I wouldn't have cast on that sock if I didn't have two balls in front of me.

But I took something different (which you see above) for the train, just in case, and when we got back, tore the cupboard apart to find the missing ball. The Stash Store looks pretty chaotic, but I fact I know it well and usually have little difficulty finding a specific yarn. This time, I had actually given up and was starting to pile everything back in, when I found what I was looking for.

So eventually I'll knit those socks too.

All well else. Repeat #54 of the Princess Shawl edging is half-done. I'm having trouble with the ball of yarn, which has sort of imploded. This is probably because, when it arrived, I was in such a hurry to start that I didn't take long enough to find an end. I'm pulling from the centre. That  worked fine for a while but has ended up by eviscerating the ball. Maybe my Heirloom Knitting order will arrive today and I can start afresh.

The first episode of the American TV drama "Lost" was shewn here last night. Great Wallaby-knitting stuff it was, too.

I go on thinking about big cardigans. I like the "Bressay" in Jamieson 3, but the yarn is too heavy for my taste (and for comfort worn indoors). Perhaps I will look around for a nice DK or even 4-ply merino -- do Jaeger do one? -- and re-write the pattern.

Queer Joe is on holiday and has brought someone in to guest-Blog for him. There's glory for you.


I had a nice comment from Heidi yesterday, about my question about the Knitlist. She's right, of course, that the big lists are simply too big these days, and such pleasure as is still to be derived from list membership comes from the smaller, speciality ones. But why the sudden, big drop in Knitlist mail for July? It's early yet to say how August is shaping.


My foot still hurts. Ibuprofen helps a bit, but the loafers made no difference and have been discarded. Sainsbury's has discontinued deliveries in our part of town due to the bloody Festival. I have to do a lot of walking to get supplies, if I want to go on drinking cider. No news on the glasses, so the question of how and when we go to Strathardle to join James and his family (and my vegetables) remains unresolved.



Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Alexander and James Posted by Picasa


I saw my oculist yesterday. He seemed as pleased as I am with my new eye -- and what a joy it was to be able to read right down to the bottom of the chart. New glasses will be ready in a day or two (I had thought it would take more than a week), and I should be able to go right on driving after the second operation, on September 3. So that's good.

But I spent all of yesterday, at least all the hours of it in which I was standing up, in some considerable discomfort on account of my left foot. Worse than it had been in London. My doctor sister, who is also my most faithful reader, suggested ibrupofen. I started taking that yesterday evening, and also discarded my shoes in favour of an old pair of Timberland loafers -- too good to wear, and so not worn out. Things seem much better this morning. I have an appointment to see a doctor on Friday but may not need it.

I suppose it is inevitable that one spends one's eighth decade patching up one bit of oneself after another. One should be glad to have an eighth decade.


 is full of policemen. Where did they get them all from? We saw some on Whitehall carrying those sinister little machine guns. There were constant warnings in the stations to keep your luggage with you at all times. As if a suicide bomber would do anything else.

We saw no yarn, but lots of art. "Colour After Klein" at the Barbican was probably the best, but Joshua Reynolds at the Tate was pretty good too. The Royal Academy summer show was a bit of a bore.

Our son Alexander is a brilliant cook. Above, he is preparing Thomas-the-Younger's Christening lunch, with help from his son James.


I have taken up the Princess shawl where I left off, with very little loss in my memory of the pattern. Nearly finished with repeat no #52.

The Wallaby is at a pleasant no-brain round-and-round point, and that progresses too.

I've got the Bavarian Travelling Stitch books, and feel a bit daunted. Do I really want to embark on something so ambitious? Perhaps better to attempt travelling stitch on something smaller first, a child's vest, maybe. I got out a Jamieson book and began thumbing it for simpler possibilities for my long cardigan with pockets. I am always surprised when I hear of someone who has finished a project and doesn't know what to do next. For me, a serious part of the pleasure of knitting one thing at a time is thinking, like this, of what comes next, refining ideas, choosing yarn, so that the instant the last end is woven in or button sewed on, the next thing is ready to go.


I don't get emails from them any more, but I'm still a member and occasionally have a look when I'm at Yahoo anyway. The numbers continue their inexorable rise, the messages seem as dull as ever. (Things are much more interesting here now that I do all the talking.) But I was struck by the fact that there were nearly 700 fewer messages last month than in July '04. That's odd. Why did it happen?


Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Thomas-the-Younger, newly baptised Posted by Picasa

Here we are, although not for long. James and his family -- the Beijing Mileses -- drove to Strathardle from London yesterday. We hope to join them as soon as we've caught up with mail and sleep.

We had a successful week, although painful on my part, heel-wise. I think my next move is to buy a new pair of shoes, the current ones being slightly elderly, just in case that's where the trouble lies, and then go see a doctor. But I covered the necessary ground, and there was a lot of it.

Above is the ever-cheerful Thomas-the-Younger at the photo-call after his baptism last Sunday. He is wrapped in the Calcutta Cup shawl ( as his "white garment". It smells slightly musty, and my husband says I must wash it before putting it away. Will I? This is almost certainly its last outing in this generation, so it'll probably have to be washed before its next use anyway.

There is much to report, but I'll stick to knitting news for the moment. I just ordered the Wedding Ring Shawl. A kindly comment-er pointed out that this limited edition, although larger than the Princess Shawl one, is likely to sell out fast. I was relieved to find it still on the website this morning. I also ordered the Gossamer Merino I need for the rest of the Princess Shawl. I was pleased to see that the discrepancy in the yardage between the yarn on the website and the sample ball Sharon had sent me, had disappeared during our week in London.

One day last week we went to the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich with James and his children, because my husband for some reason wanted to see the Nelson exhibition. (This year is a significant anniversary of the Battle of Trafalgar.) He went round it with James's son Alistair, and I think they both enjoyed themselves, while James and I and the little girls cruised the rest of the museum.

In the Gift Shop -- a crucial port-of-call at any museum -- I bought for an absurd price a French Knitting kit, an updated version of those nails the aged among us used to hit into empty cotton reels back when cotton reels were made of wood, and then use the resulting implement to knit i-cord. The price was absurd, but the actual object -- a stout twig, hollowed out -- and the accompanying leaflet were rather good. Yarn was included, and I started Alistair and his sister Rachel off in the car on the way home.

At the baptism three days later, I asked how the knitting was going. To my delight, they produced a completed cord, using all the yarn which had been provided with the kit. I had, meanwhile, accelerated the knitting of my current travel socks so as to finish the first one and give them the rest of that ball of yarn. I hope to see great things when we meet in Strathardle soon. 

I told Rachel and her sister Kirsty that I expected them to write a book about Chinese knitting when they grew up. James said, interestingly, that now that his attention has been drawn to the subject by my visit two years ago, he sees knitting everywhere in China.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Off to London

No, Algipan doesn't have any effect. I shall have to walk around London in (and through) considerable discomfort.

On the other hand, the kitchen ceiling isn't dripping this morning (yet). We heard a plumber crashing around up there yesterday, but no one spoke to us. I think on reflection I had heard the same drip at the same time on Sunday morning, and perhaps before that. It doesn't happen through the day, when I spend a good deal of time in the kitchen. Perhaps connected with the timed starting-up of a boiler? Helen and her family -- currently in Strathardle -- will be here tonight, in our absence, and are fully au courant with events.

The Beijing Mileses should be in London when we get there -- James and Cathy and their three children. They will be staying at Rachel's house, Rachel herself and her family being in Ravello or some such place. We will be staying with the Lavender Hill Mileses -- Alexander and Ketki and their two sons -- but these venues aren't all that far apart, as London distances go.

I will log-on for an unillustrated Blog entry from London if I can; otherwise silence until Tuesday the 9th.


Sharon Miller has a new wedding-ring shawl on her website. I must have the pattern. She also now now lists a Gossamer Merino, but she says it is 400 metres in 20 grams. The sample she sent me, with which 50 1/2 repeats of the Princess Shawl edging have now been knit, claims 480 metres for 20 grams. I must get that straightened out. Even if it isn't quite the same, it may do. I think the ball I have will probably finish the edging.

The skeins of Meg's fancy yarns are too big to order broadside for swatching, as I suggested to myself yesterday. I've picked out a nice rich dark green from the Finnish yarn. I'll wait until the Bavarian Travelling Stitch books come, and maybe tentatively design a sweater, and then decide whether to take the plunge.

Monday, August 01, 2005

Kitchen ceiling -- I think I can see something sinister there, on the upper moulding. The choice of decor is not ours, but equally, we haven't done anything about it.  Posted by Picasa

Mrs Carson, Again

Water is dripping down through our kitchen ceiling this morning, from Mrs Carson's flat above, presumably. I could wish for better eyes, just for a moment, to see exactly what is happening above. Ceilings here are very high. I hesitated at first to phone anyone so early, then thought, bugger this, and did. She's home, thank goodness -- this is a time of year when lots of people aren't. She'll get a plumber. She had thought her new tenants weren't there yet.

Princess Shawl

I finished repeat # 50! There was some confusion on the count yesterday, because I had inadvertantly -- and it's the second time this has happened -- removed the peg on the Peg-It board which was there to count the units of the repeats (so that I knew I was somewhere in the 40's, from the position of one peg, but not where, because the other one was gone). There are no children in the house; it must be my fault -- or a poltergeist. I spread it all out and counted -- not entirely easy, but after several attempts I was satisfied with the result. I have put in a life-line, not for clutching, this time, but to assist with future counts.


The Wallaby continues well; lovely yarn (Rowan 4-ply soft). I am contemplating ordering from Meg one ball of a couple of the yarns she recommends for Barvarian Twisted Stitch, to force myself to try swatching. Depends how big the individual balls or skeins are, and how much time I have today amidst the inevitable tension of getting ready to go to London tomorrow. I have been having trouble with my left heel -- not a blister or a too-tight shoe, nothing to see or feel by prodding, just discomfort on walking. On the theory that it might be muscular, I have started smearing it with some "Algipan", left over in our medicine cupboard, I suspect, since Alexander's rugby-playing days. I'm not sure it's not helping. London involves a lot of walking, if one doesn't get blown up. And I suspect one won't be.