Sunday, October 25, 2015

This day is called the feast of Crispian.

Both my husband and the cat failed to re-set their watches, so my hopes of an extra hour's doze this morning were frustrated.

A knitting set-back yesterday. I am knitting both sides simultaneously of the front of the v-neck vest. That means that in every row there is a precarious moment when I have finished one side and not yet started the other. Last night I discovered that one side had one more stitch than the other. That's easily fudged, but I counted and found that the corollary was also true – one side had more rows.

I think, given a calm half hour, I could rip back to a point where both sides were at the same point of development. But interruptions are constant here and I may not achieve it. Going back to the point of the “v” wouldn't be an absolute disaster. Can I think of a system for bridging that mid-row gap more securely?

I have thot of an idea: to take my knitting around the corner to the local LYS, Kathy's Knits, during part of the mid-day time when our private carer is here. The problem might be that I'd be taking up space (she offers a sofa) and not buying much, day after day. Her stock is first rate, so buying would be a temptation, but I could deal with that. Partly by buying.

I think she's closed on Mondays, so I've got two days to think about this.

Someone has left a comment on an old post – that usually means junk, but not this time. The subject under consideration was provisional casting-on, and she asked what we meant by the “eensy-weensy spider” cast on. The answer would be just to Google “provisional cast on”. I suppose I should think of a more adequate answer and go put it with the question.

I read a bit of the relevant blog. It was three years ago, I think, when our dining room was being re-constituted after the flood. I was surprised at how peppy both I and my husband seemed, me fretting about getting the tatties in (=planting potatoes in my vegetable garden in Strathardle). Decline has been swift.

Non-knit


If we all hate Christmas so, why do we put up with it? Partly, in the northern hemisphere, I feel it's the price we have to pay to get out light back. What happens in the antipodes? Cat?

23 comments:

  1. Hi Jean,
    What a great idea to nip round to Cathy's Knits! Just a shame that we don't live around the corner so that one of us could join you each day.
    I wonder if you have come across the Danish knitting show called "The Great Knit-Off"? There are a couple of episodes with English subtitles on You Tube. Very rewarding, if you get a chance to watch even a short section of it - but the time limits!! Worse than in "The Sewing Bee".

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  2. Christmas? It is the time of the year people who can hibernate from the heat do so. We lose an hour to begin with of course and it means that the children get out of school in the hottest part of the day. Not my favourite time of the year. My father (slightly older than your husband) paces the house in frustration at not being able to get out into the garden and the shed. I am always glad when Christmas is over but we still have to endure the heat of January and February. I prefer autumn and spring - or even, dare I say it, winter. (Winter is the equivalent of a good Scottish summer of course.)

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  3. I'll have to watch the Great Knit Off...recommended to watch on your new Smart TV! I kept on being reminded of Drummond Place yesterday evening while watching a performance of The Winter's Tale which included, of course, Princess Perdita.

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  4. Have you been watching 'The Story of Scottish Art', Wednesdays 9pm BBC 2 or Simon Schama's 'The Face of Britain', another brilliant art show? Both available on I-player and a little distraction from the everyday labours.

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  5. A regular visit to Cathy's knits sounds like a wonderful idea. By way of further distraction, the class list for the Edinburgh Yarn Festival next March has just been announced.

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  6. And PS, re the vest - rather than ripping back, could it be fixed by just adding the extra rows, and additional decrease, to the shorter side? Or is there more complex shaping going on?

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    1. LizM has described mythoughts exactly. Good luck!

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  7. wednesday12:32 PM

    My family quit Christmas years ago. The first couple of years it felt like we were playing hooky from school, and might be caught any moment and marched back into the celebration. Now the reaction I get from most people is that we are so lucky, and they wish they could skip it too. Every December it feels like we are on a secret vacation that no one else gets (except the other non-celebrants).

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  8. Anonymous12:47 PM

    Perhaps you have "bought" several hours on Kathy's sofa just be mentioning it on your blog, Jean. I wonder if she will notice an increased trickle of tourists in the next few months. I am also avidly awaiting solutions to your vest setback. V-neck construction is my next personal knitting challenge. Chloe

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  9. I don't work both fronts simultaneously for that reason. I start knitting on auto pilot and get off track. I find it simpler to check the second front against the first as I go. That type of provisional cast-on is in EZ and Barbara Walker Top Down, I'm sure.

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  10. Anonymous1:17 PM

    Jean, it would be superfantastic if you could come to Rhinebeck! It is officially about a 2-hour drive, but there is always a lot of traffic. I usually go up for just the day. I will write more in an email from my computer.

    Beverly in NJ

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  11. My husband and I gave up Christmas several years ago too. His parents had this idea: give to charity only. No presents for anyone in the family, only gifts to charity. For the past few years we have been adopting an Angel from the Salvation Army tree (they put paper Angels on the tree with names, sizes, and a wish list for children in needy families). We have so much fun shopping for those kids. One year our Angel was a baby and we had a ball at the Kids R Us store picking out a stroller and getting advice from all the other shoppers. As we are in our 60s they all assumed we were grandparents I guess. Great fun. I highly recommend this way of celebrating Christmas.

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  12. As I got the story from an Australian friend, they sing the same songs and decorate with fake snow in the window corners, but Christmas dinner is a picnic on the beach. Sounds way more relaxed.

    I had been hoping to find new-to-me Christmas carols, suited to the hemisphere.

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  13. Patience3:31 PM

    When I knit two sides at the same time, I use locking stitch markers in the middle to link the two edges and not turn back too easily. http://www.clover-usa.com/en/best-sellers/140-locking-stitch-marker.html

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    1. I do the same thing with safety pins. Reminds me I'm not at the end of the row quite yet.

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  14. I guess I am the lone person who loves Christmas. :)

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    1. Anonymous1:53 PM

      You are not alone. I enjoy every part of it.
      Pat

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  16. Last year around this time we were in Scotland. I remember being surprised at the Christmas decorations up in Glasgow (where it was sunny and we were turning in early because of jetlag) but really loving the one's in Edinburgh (on Prince's Street maybe?) By the time we had toured around to Edinburgh it was dark early and rainy and all the lights were wonderfully cheering. But I think a lot of that is tourist eye!

    Here our local stores are putting up all the Christmas stuff and it's a bit much. While I may be good about refusing to buy anything until December, I know my mother and aunt love it and are already out completing all their Christmas decoration shopping now (that they didn't purchase already in the post-Christmas sales last year!). I then miss out completely when I go to get something I'd been seeing since Halloween, but put off until December when it is all gone. So be it.

    The other phenomenon I've noticed here in the States is the spreading out of traditions into all holidays. I just had to explain to my daughter why I refused to buy a gingerbread haunted house kit.

    I always thought that part of the joy in the holidays was the periodicity of them...a yearly tradition, not an everyday thing.

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  17. It is odd to be singing about the snow and midwinter, when it's 35C+ outside!

    There are one or two antipodean hymns, let me rummage around for them...

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  18. Here's one and the lyrics are included:

    http://youtu.be/Rlkflpc3vUc

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  19. This is a more secular one:

    http://youtu.be/D1PuZk6VBr4

    Orana is an Aboriginal word meaning welcome.

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    1. These songs were really fun - thanks for sharing!

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