Wednesday, September 30, 2015


Alexander came over from the west yesterday to talk to a man who is in charge of a private care provider. We've taken them on for three hours a day. It sounds as if everything has been dealt with except perhaps engaging someone to do the knitting. I don't understand how food is going to work – I can't just hand these people my wallet and send them off to the corner shop.

No doubt it will all (or largely) become clear as we go along. Solvitur ambulando. I will give some thought to food today, looking out soup recipes, planning a menu for the weekend. I've got a brochure somewhere – and it's all right, I know where – from someone who provides boring-sounding hospital-type meals to your door at quite a reasonable price. There's also Cook, who are pretty good. I've cleared space in the freezer.

I told my husband some of this, and he wasn't terribly pleased. He doesn't want his house full of strange people, he said, or indeed any people at all. I'm afraid it's the price to be paid for staying in it ourselves.

I think I heard the radio say that the crunch match between Scotland and South Africa will be played tomorrow. That'll make a fine last-day-of-the-old-life, for Alexander as well as for me.


A bit of a struggle, last night. The crunch point, the pons asinorum, in the Dunfallandy blankie pattern are the rows at half-way where the second horizontal cable is worked. Mercifully, the eight triangles will stop after the first one.

There are infelicities in my knitting at that point in all three squares, and they are worst in the current, third one. I think I just scrape by under the galloping horse rule. The rich, dark colour of the yarn helps. I looked at Dr de Roulet's (the designer's) tutorial last night, a bit belatedly, and I think I may have learned a thing or two which will help with the fourth square.

Last night I suddenly found my stitch count seriously wrong. For the first square, everything went perfectly in that respect. There is a marker at the mid-point which is very useful for providing assurance that everything is all right so far, up to the "sm" (="slip marker"), and a stitch count is provided for every row.

On the second square there were two instances when I had a stitch too many, or perhaps it was one too few. The mistakes were easily fudged.

Last night, I suddenly had three extra stitches on one side. I don't see how this could possibly have happened, but it did. I have, again, fudged them away but I remain puzzled and chagrined. I am now sailing happily forward through the decrease rows towards the end. I hope to finish today, and to cast on the fourth square.

Several Ravellers have grumbled at the absence of a chart. Dr de Roulet has now provided one, pointing out that there is no convention for charting a horizontal cable (a technique which she has unvented). I've printed the chart for myself as a useful overview. I won't try to use it row-by-row.

Non-knit, technical

I've done some iPad research on smart television, as well as on Dunfallandy blankies, and I think I see how to approach our new set. I'll do some experiments today. I must also try to load a picture into Blogger soon, to see if Google Chrome makes any difference. I'll take a picture of the cat for you today, and try to post it tomorrow. She is a great source of comfort and strength.


  1. Your preparations seem to be coming on well which must be very encouraging and reassuring. I'm sure knitting must help. One of my colleagues says she knits a couple of rows each morning and that sets her up for the day.

    I'm impressed with your progress on the blanket! I can barely get to the end of a sock at the moment ;-)

    You will have to wait until Saturday for Scotland vs South Africa. Tomorrow (Thursday) it's the match between Wales and Fiji, which should also be worth watching. The Scotland match is on Saturday afternoon and will be followed by the do-or-die match between England and Australia that evening.

  2. Waitrose deliveries. They saved my life for four years when I was unable to leave the house for food etc. It pays to be quite organised if you can. I hope the carers coming in aren't too great a source of stress for your husband (or for you). I fear that your husband underestimates the assistance that will be needed if he is to be at home. The solution has to be right for both of you doesn't it?

  3. It's encouraging to hear of the private care. Is the three hours the only extra help? Perhaps I am naive but that sounds like an awfully small amount. Is there not public assisted case also available? Or perhaps your husband has recovered so much that there will not need to be that much extra help. I do worry about you having to cope alone

    1. Stupid keyboard on the iPad wouldn't let me position the cursor to finish that para. Blogger really needs to improve there comments section. Ugh.

      Anyway sending heaps of good wishes and energy to you for this next big change.

    2. Care. Not case in the first para. I need more coffee

  4. Your husband must be looking forward to meeting Perdita. Perhaps that will take away a tiny bit of the sting of needing in-home help. Solvitur ambulando - you have used it befor and I think I should make a sign for myself. But Euclidian geometry with my first sip of morning tea has my head spinning!

  5. Isn't that three hours a day the time when you can go out to shop, because your husband is being cared for? My sister's husband is eligible for six hours of care, three days a week. She lives out in the country, and that gives her time to get in to town and do all her errands. There will be adjustments for both of you, but I'm sure you'll do well -- and still have time to knit!

  6. It's good to hear that you have reinforcements in place. Carers are usually trained not to take over anything that the person can manage for themselves. - and there will still be all sorts of helpmeet functions which only you can provide for your husband, while someone else does the heavy lifting. You might need to take a nap while the carer is there, if you have had a broken night. Important to remember that you have also been ill recently.

  7. Like Shandy, I'm thinking about the toll of preparations and the new normal for you. Do be sure to think of yourself and make time to sleep and knit and do at least a little of the things that you love. That will help keep you healthy and sane.

    For some reason I haven't been able to make the comments work for the last couple of days, so let me also say that the wedding video was absolutely lovely. It looked like the wedding was everything you'd want a wedding celebration to be. And thank you SO MUCH for the M1 mnemonic!! It's brilliant!

  8. Good luck. The helper can keep him bathed and toileted. That will be a great help to you physically. Stick to your guns about what you can physically do for him. If you get hurt, he goes back to institutional care. Be careful of your abilities.

  9. The Dunfallandy is beautiful, I bought the pattern and will use your blog as notes. I second many of the words above, especially as I cared for my mum when she was quite incapacitated; care givers are paid a nice sum because they have skills and muscles and stamina and resources. Please take care of yourself - selfishly- so we might keep reading of your perspective on so many things.