Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Another long posting gap - sorry to anyone who has visited me in vain over the past two months.
We had a lovely holiday camping in Shropshire. The original idea was to go to Scotland but we decided to go via Shropshire because it was on the shortlist of places to move to when we leave London. A friend had recommended Bishops Castle, and Foxholes, the campsite we found there was so lovely that we just stayed - for nearly three weeks.
Bishops Castle itself is great too. No yarn shop, though it's got everything else you could wish for including two pubs that brew their own beer. When we move there I thought I might take a stall in the weekly indoor market in the town hall and try selling a bit of yarn - not to make money, just for fun and because I'm sure it's a place with plenty of closet knitters.

We're planning to go next year. Two years ago I gave up my job and we launched a little education magazine. It's done well enough to support us both with a bit of help from TC's teacher's pension, and happily we can do it from anywhere. I'd move straight away, but I don't want to pull the rug from under my daughter Ellen's feet. She's lived in this house all her life, and started university this week, so I want to wait till she's settled there before selling her home here, although she says there are plenty of friends she can stay with in this area, and she's enthusiastic about the idea of a home in the country.

I've been doing quite a bit of knitting, and have also joined Stashalong. I needed to - I've got at least 13 kilos of yarn under my bed and no room for any more.

I've got two good friends, who don't know each other. They both have the same name and have birthdays within a week of each other, and are both currently having trial separations from their husbands so are naturally a bit fragile. Quite strange, uh? Anyway I knitted a pair of socks for one, and a mobius for the other and they were both really pleased.
I'm also crocheting a blanket for Ellen in an effort to get my stash of Latvian dk down. And I'm doing a Fairisle sampler in the form of a tubular scarf.
I finally made it to Colinette while we were in Shropshire, and spotted Wye Sue sitting on the floor surrounded by 4-ply. Sue's was one of the first blogs I visited when I started knitting, and I think it was actually from her that I discovered Colinette, so it was quite an event for me to arrive there and meet her.
I bought some ribbon yarn from the bargain bins, and after a lot of experimenting made a scarf in garter stitch, on 10mm needles. Pretty basic, but I love it. It looks like chain mail and it's got a wonderful drape. I've worn it to a couple of partyish events, and had it much admired. Don't know what I'm going to do with the other 800 grams though!
After Shropshire we spent a couple of days in north Wales with my father and step-mother Jean who is in the Lleyn branch of the spinners and weavers guild. It was lovely to see them, and she'd just finished knitting a gansey for my father. It's always great to see what she's been up to. She's very creative and hardly ever uses patterns, and she also does lace (not knitting - the kind you do with pins) , tapestry, felting as well as spinning and natural dying; I'm in awe of her. She's been very encouraging since I took up knitting as a beginner, age 51, having been completely uninterested in textiles of any kind until then.
I've also just cast on the first of a pair of legwarmers, with some sock wool from the Natural Dye Studio. I work at a desk in front of a very drafty window, and the recent drop in temperature has reminded me of how cold my legs get in the winter.