Friday, January 29, 2021


I love this time of year, with the light beginning to creep back around the edges of the day.


2293 steps so far today. I’ll walk around the house a bit if I have to, to reach 2500 by bedtime.


And 5 ½ scallops done, of the edging on the third side of Gudrun’s hap. I was briefly fired with hope today, when I discovered a set of interlocking blocking pads at Amazon and I thot I could lock them together and block on the dining room table. But elementary arithmetic proved me wrong. The blocking pads are each a foot square, nine in the set. Or you can get three more, in an extension set. But the shawl, it says, will be 46” square. Last time it was markedly smaller, but (a) this time I inadvertently left out an important decrease round; and (b) even if smaller, it will probably be more than 36” per side.


I watched the Cocoknits episode of Fruity Knitting – I had seen it before. I found that copies of the book are available on Abebooks, so I ordered one from there. Blackwell’s has it, but in German. Andrea asked in the sound-interview I mentioned yesterday, how the Cocoknits system compared with Asa Tricosa’s “Ziggurats”?  (I’m not going to check the spelling of any of those words.) But she drew a blank – Julie hadn’t heard of it. I’ve got that book, and it will be interesting to compare.




I’ve finished a fairly hasty run-through of “Spoon-Fed”. It’s enough to put you off food altogether.


And have returned to Jane Austen. What a fascinating story. I’m reading about the years after she wrote (but hasn’t, so far, published) the first three books: Northanger Abbey, P&P, and Sense and Sensibility. The family has left the pleasant vicarage where they grew up and are wandering about the south coast, Jane presumably carrying the three manuscripts with her.


Tamar and Shandy, it would have been absolutely fascinating to see the cast of a dramatized Mansfield Park, acting “Lovers’ Vows”. I’ve got a copy, but have never got beyond the first few pages. It’s not short, and it’s pretty boring.


Friday night has come round again, and I must read some Pirandello.


  1. Marilyn Nance6:31 PM

    Maybe buy two sets??

  2. Anonymous7:02 PM

    You are right Jean, it's lovely to have the light back. One of the joys of this time of year is taking the dog for his evening walk and hearing the birds singing in the hedgerows.

    There are already several versions of Bernie mittens on pinterest, do you think he ever imagined the stir he would cause?

    Sarah in Somerset.

  3. I bought two sets of the interlocking blocking mats many years ago and I love them! They are well worth the cost and storage space. I pin out the garment or blanket on the blocks and aim a fan at it on low. Usually the piece is dry in a few hours.
    We discovered the utility of using a simple fan when we lived in Korea. Clothes dryers were seldom in apartments. We got a clothes rack, hung out the clothes, aimed the fan at them and soon they were dry.
    I also use a fan to defrost meat or chicken. It works like a charm.
    Looking forward to seeing the completed hap!

  4. Early Learning Centre still do the precise item that I bought many years ago - alphabet interlocking mats - 30 of them each 29cm square.

    They have been quite big enough for pretty much all I have needed, and have the advantage that I can write ruderies, which is a test, since there is only one of each letter.

  5. =Tamar11:56 PM

    It was a 2012 production of a minimalist adaptation, at the Theatre Royal at Bury St. Edmunds. There were only eight actors. There are a few trailers from it (used to promote the 2013 run, I believe) on Youtube.

  6. Pirandello in Italian!? I can barely comprehend him in English. You are impressive, Jean. Is your table large enough to block a 46” square even with the pads?Mine is not, I just went and measured to satisfy my curiousity

  7. I have two sets of blocking pads. I have a huge kitchen island (I know how lucky I am) so I can block large things. If it's a bit too large for the island I just block what I can and then scoot the thing off the edge and prop it on two chairs (luckily the kitchen chair backs are exactly the right height). Makes navigating the kitchen a bit of a challenge but it works and I don't have to get down on the floor. The pads hold together remarkably well so they can be moved around that way. I've been using them for over 10 years so they are a very good, durable investment. I also would vote for getting the plain grey pads; the colored ones mess with your picture-taking!

  8. What I found amazing was that JA was able to stop writing for so many years and then start again. One wonders whether there were, in fact, pieces from that time which are yet to be discovered.