Trying

Yes, it has been. I had another go at making yogurt, with oat milk (barista style) and it was a total failure. Down the loo it went.

However, I have done some research. Back in the day I used to make yogurt with evaporated milk. So I checked it out and you can still get it, and it’s much easier to use (no boiling required), and so I’m going to have a go. I won’t be able to have any of course because it’s dairy, but hubby will. We shall see.

The knitting and crochet are going ok as long as I don’t beat myself up for doing it slowly and for a short time. I’m pleased with how it looks (no pics because the crochet is for a present).

The garden is looking absolutely lovely. Daffodils have suddenly appeared without my noticing, snowdrops all over the place, and a few crocus too.

My younger daughter is 37 today. She’s going to tell everybody she’s 36! so not quite sure what will happen when she gets to 40 . . Spoke last night via WhatsApp as she lives in New Zealand. Glowing with health and having a lovely time.

To The Wire

Wow but it’s been tense this last week. I live in the UK, but it feels like the whole world has been awaiting the results of the US election.

I am so relieved, just so relieved, that Biden and Kamala won. I’m not sure what’s going to happen next, despite Trump’s blustery tweets (which seem to have gone very, very quiet this weekend).

There is of course a lot to deal with now, including how on earth it was such a close race.

Ho hum. I do have a lot more thoughts on this particular subject, but not sure it’s appropriate to share them right now, as there are a lot of people who will not be at all happy with the election result.

So what’s been going on here? at our house? well, I have a niece who is 40 years old today. Lockdown celebration of course, and her sister collated video messages from family and friends which she’s made into a delightful mixture. It’s just so lovely.

And last Sunday hubby had a birthday, so I made him a chocolate cake. Dairy free of course. It was, even though I say it myself, absolutely delicious. I baked it on the Saturday, but we couldn’t wait until the actual birthday to start on it, so we had some on Saturday . . . . And on Sunday evening, just before national lockdown, we went to Lambs of Sheep Street in Stratford upon Avon, which is a fabulous restaurant we go to regularly. Excellent. Hubby had steak, I had duck. Delicious. Then we went home and ate some more chocolate cake . . .

Then hubby’s very old MiniMac computer started playing up. It had Ubuntu installed on it, because one of the iOS updates broke it. At least Windows will tell you if an update is inappropriate (usually). But even with Ubuntu, it was failing. So now he has a Lenovo with an SSD. Runs like the wind. But it arrived with no DVD drive in it. I am in correspondence with Lenovo (We bought it direct from them) to find out why. I’d like them to send me the drive and I can fit it. I also want to know why the guarantee has only 8 months left on it, as we bought it this week. Hmph.

I’ve been sleeping a lot. I mean A Lot. Yesterday I woke at 2.30 pm, today I got up, had breakfast, and went back to bed again. Woke at 12.30, so I was able to at least shower and dress before hubby’s afternoon ziz.

All the Xmas presents are ready to be wrapped, labelled and parcelled up, but I just don’t have the oomph to actually do it. I’m intending to do it in stages, it’s just too much altogether otherwise. Even so. Maybe tomorrow morning. Our main postal service has started collecting parcels from your house, so that will help a lot.

Finally found some jeans I like. John Lewis. Yeah. The thing is, because they’re brand spanking new, it feels odd to wear them round the house! so I haven’t yet. But I will I’m sure when I’m feeling a bit more Rah! Rah!

Decided I would crochet some face / wash cloths, so am awaiting some lovely variegated yarn (Rainbow Cotton from Hobbii). It’ll make a change from knitting and won’t take long. Am awaiting a grandson’s measurements from his mum before I can continue knitting the jumper I started. Apparently he’s had a growth spurt, and is all arms and legs. Not sure I want to knit something that (a) he may not choose to wear and (b) won’t fit him even if he does adopt it. Hence the crochet project idea.

Almost September

It was just starting to rain today when I took this photo. Every year it cheers me up. A bright yellow flower on a dull grey British day. The garden is lush and green, but the sky is grey and cloudy. It’s just such a jolly colour.

rudbeckia

Then I noticed this.

Yesterday we celebrated Oldest Grandson’s 18th birthday. On a boat trip in Bristol. It was really lovely. A blended, extended, complicated family, with various children and exes. It was excellent. We all like each other and have fun together.

Had a sort out of my knitting. First of all in my head, last night, and then in real life, today. When I’ve finished my current project, which is a Bonbon bunny, I’m going to knit another toy (a gift so no details). Then I’m going to see how I feel. I’ve ordered some Knitpick Comfy Worsted from the States (75% cotton, 25% acrylic, which is impossible to get in the UK – why??) so am quite excited about that. It’s for a shawlette for me. Me! Hooray!

I’ve contacted several teddy bear repairers, but no joy so far. They haven’t all replied, but one said he wouldn’t know where to start (oh great), another one says their books are full until next summer, and the third said it would take many hours, cost a lot of money, and then she’d still be fragile and have lots of scars. She (the teddy bear in question) is currently having a rest in a box. Will see what happens.

The end of the story about my mobile phone: got the Motorola back, fixed, but it wouldn’t recognise the SIM card. I’d kept hold of the SIM card and the micro SD card while they repaired it. Got a new SIM off Virgin, still no joy. Eventually gave in and just bought a new phone. Samsung Galaxy A10, since you ask. It’s fine. But after two weeks it suddenly stopped accessing our wifi network. Sigh. I did lots of googling, as per usual, and eventually what fixed it was fiddling about with the security settings on the router. And now it works.

I can’t believe it’s April already!

Have been meaning to blog for weeks and weeks now. I’m not sure, to be honest, where the time goes. I’m retired! but my diary is fuller now than ever. Note to self: Keep at least two, preferably three, days a week clear.

Had a wonderful birthday a couple of weeks ago. A lovely, relaxed day, dinner with hubby that night, excellent. And last night we went for another meal out as it was our 16th wedding anniversary. We’ve been together for 25 years now, but it took us a while to tie the knot  … … …

ESW is now three months old and an absolute delight. Happy, chuckly, coos and gurgles. There are still some difficult nights but generally I think she’s turned a corner. Mum and Dad are looking less fraught and more relaxed too.

LCS is almost 17 months old, also a joy. Happy, happy little boy. Smiley, cuddly, fun to be around. Love them both so much.

Been knitting and crocheting up a storm. I learned how to do Amigurumi style crochet, and although I need some more practice, it’s going ok really.

Starting a new project tonight – in a beautiful linen yarn – and it’s a shawlette. Love shawlettes. Who knew?

Also went and supported the junior doctors in their strike action a couple of times – first time it was really cold and raining. Second time much more clement weather. Made a two-sided poster, which is fairly sturdy. So I’m quite pleased about that.

 

And what about the Panama papers? about damn time. Very interesting that only three members of the Tory cabinet were clear about their non-use of off-shore tax havens, the others would not reply. Ha.

Need to get in the garden more. I’ve done some spring-cleaning, but now I need to give the lilac bush a jolly good talking-to, in the form of a hard prune, and I also need to get some ericaceous compost, cut the haggard pieris back, and top dress it. Next week hopefully.

59 years old

Today is my birthday. It’s cold, wet, and windy. But it’s March, in the UK, so it would be really. But the daffodils are out, the crocuses are still pretty, and the tulips are trying their best.

And I have had a wonderful day. Lots of chocolate, a pile of new books to read, a new Kindle (old one is dying!), and visits/phone calls from the family. Lovely.

Finished a jacket I have been knitting. It’s a Bergère de France pattern, Veste Courte from magazine 159. It’s knitted in Magic +, which is Aran weight. It took 9 weeks. I had finished the back when I noticed a mistake and had to unravel it as far as the beginning of the  armhole shaping. Also had to redo some of one of the fronts, and redo the shoulder decreases so that the number of stitches was right for the patterning on the collar. So it’s been an adventure, but at no point did I get upset, or tearful about it. Here’s a photo of me wearing it.

Image

My next project is Octopush, which is a set of 8 blocks, made from 2″ cubes of foam, covered with knitting, in a particular configuration. Here‘s a link so that you can see what it’s supposed to do. Scroll down to see an animated gif. I’ve done one cube so far.

I have lots of projects in my head, and lots of yarn in my stash. But not enough projects for all of it . . . . which makes it exciting, because there are unplanned possibilities still to be explored!