Tuesday, June 30, 2009

More 5pm

I've been taking pictures....pictures at 5pm! For a week I got the camera out every day at the same time to have a bit of a play around with light and shapes. A couple of days were out in the back yard and there were a few shots that are fairly good, but as you can see here it was the trips to the beach that yielded the best pictures.

There are just so many things to choose from when you're at the beach that I've managed to get quite a few shots that I'm really quite proud of. The weather, the light, the sea, people, creatures, clouds...the list goes on. Although there are all those variables, it seems that the choice of 5pm is a little limiting at this time of year, well it is for my imagination and creativity so far any way. I've been going at it with no real plan other than to try and get good photos and I'm starting to think that it needs to be fleshed out with a little more structure.

I still think I'll give it a bit more of a chance and will try to vary the locations and subject matter a little more just to see where that will lead me. It can't be too regimented otherwise I think it will start to show and I won't be getting anything worth keeping (or showing off!!). It's funny how quickly my perception of things has changed. I'm starting to look at everything in a new way, opening my eyes again to the things around me, which just goes to show that I've managed to cement myself into a bit of a niche, staying at home with a toddler, cooking dinner, so on and so on.

So there you have it, it's been good to get out and have that little time to myself doing something out of the ordinary. Funny how all it takes is a few minutes and some thought!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

First Knittaversary!!

On this day, one year ago, I finished my first knitted object. It was a stripy scarf from a Patons Learning to Knit book and I was quite pleased with myself when it was finished. The Handsome Husband, otherwise known as Rob, liked it and he's been using it quite a bit since for his commute to work on the train. Since that day, my knitting (or should I say my new obsession) has come along in leaps and bounds. I'm still climbing the learning curve though, and am enjoying every minute of it. Who would have thought I would immerse myself in something so thoroughly that within a year, if I don't do at least a tiny bit of knitting every day, I don't feel right!!! I never thought I would that's for sure.

I've been trying lots of different things, as we all know that scarves can get a little boring. I do like to make them though and there has been more than six completed in the last twelve months. Of course there has also been some bandwagon knitting attempted, the first being the infamous Clapotis which I tried in Noro Silk Garden. It's a nice big woolly thing (that I for some reason made over the summer) which has come in quite handy as a bit of a lap blanket on chilly evenings sitting on the couch.

Gift knitting has become huge with me as well, most people have been taking it well, so I think my gifts have been appreciated. No one has told me other wise yet, so they'll keep getting hand made items from me for awhile yet I think.

Sometimes though, my gift knitting gets a little behind, like the cute little baby cardigan pictured here. I started making this for a friend's baby that was born last September, I just finished it this month! Mainly because of my fear of seaming and finishing off items but I'm starting to overcome that. I'm learning that without giving it a try it's never going to get done, and if it's no good, it can always be done again!

For my second year as a knitter, I'm hoping to keep adding to my skills, to try and finish more objects (without them having to sit in a bag for four months waiting to be sewn together) and to build on the wonderful friendships I've been making. I really didn't expect, when I started out last year, that I would meet such a kind and generous group of people. Through taking a class, reading people's blogs and Ravelry, I'm finding like minded people that are inspiring me to find something fulfilling in myself........you can't get much better than that from a hobby/obsession now can you??

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Actual knitting content

Even though I've been having a lot of fun playing with the camera this past week, there has also been some knitting taking place. Of course I think there would have to be something seriously wrong with me if there was no knitting happening these days! As usual there are quite a few things in progress, two of which you can see here.

The red and black above is a scarf promised to my six year old god daughter in her "favourite colours". I'm just making it up as I go along, working alternating stripes in various sizes. It's almost finished thankfully as I'm not really enjoying the yarn I've chosen, yes I have become a total yarn snob in the past year!

The second picture shows some lovely Jo Sharp Silkroad Aran Tweed in Licorice. I've decided to make the Garter Stitch Jacket from Jo Sharp's Knit Issue 6. I was warned before hand that it knits up rather large, but I've gone ahead and started it in the second size up anyway. I'm starting to wonder if that was a wise choice. The back and left front seem ok, but I've started a sleeve and it's looking like it might end up very loose. I'll keep going with it for awhile and see how it looks, I really hate the idea of frogging something and starting again, as I just know that I'll end up leaving it and I don't want to do that.

Finally, I have something blocking that is, for me, very exciting. I hopped on the Ishbel bandwagon and knit this thing up in about a week. It's taken me over a week to get it blocked, but it's drying as I write. I could go on about this one here, but I'm planning on giving it a post all of it's own as I had such a good time with it, and the yarn.......more later, I promise!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Playing at being creative!

Last week I was sitting here at my computer looking through some photos when I thought I might have a little play around. The picture you see here is the result of mucking around with various effects. I did so many things to it I can't even remember what they are, but I kind of like the result. What do you think?? The original is below for comparison.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Food, yummy food!

Today the Lukester and I had a play date. We haven't had one in such a long time that I thought I'd mark the occasion with some yummy baking. I even tried a new recipe, something decadent, something by Nigella Lawson! The Chocolate Mint Cookies from her Nigella Express book worked a treat. They are so yummy I will definitely be making these again! They were also very well appreciated by the Lukester's friends Mum and Dad, always a good sign.

While I was in a good cooking mood I also thought I'd try something new for dinner. A nice, winter warming Tomato and Roast Capsicum soup, and yay, another success. Mr two and a half even liked it - bonus points to me!! I'm a happy Mum today.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009


Today I decided to start my own little photographic project to try and kick start things a little. I haven't worked out all of the details yet, but as you can see, it involves 5pm.

At this time of the year it's close to sunset and we get beautiful colours in the sky over the lake and the mountains in the distance. I thought that with the big changes in weather we are having at the moment too it might be a good idea to try and capture some of the different moods of the sky. This past week alone, we have had warm days and cold nights, cloudy but very windy days and just plain old grey winter days!

I know it's not highly original to try and capture a similar subject at the same time every day or week, but hey, I've got to start somewhere.

Monday, June 8, 2009

A wish I have.

Last night I was sitting at my computer having my usual look around and yet again discovered more blogs with some fantastic photography. It's got me all inspired to try and get going with our camera. It's a pretty good one, the Handsome Husband is so in love with it he calls it his "mistress"!!! The only thing is, I don't know how to use all of the different functions on it. I tried playing around with it last week and couldn't get anything exciting but I'm determined to keep trying, with new ideas popping into my head all the time. This is good, I'm enjoying getting the creative juices flowing, it's good for the soul!

The two pictures I've included here on this post were taken at Christmas time when we were visiting my parents. They live in a beautiful little seaside town in South Australia and we were down at the beach one day when I decided to have a little play with the camera. I managed to get a few shots I am happy with and these were two of them. Hopefully I'll be able to expand on these and get a lot more that I am totally in love with.

Wish me luck!

Friday, June 5, 2009

New York, New York

I long to return to New York. For as long as I can remember it has been my dream place, the place I want to go to live, to change my life. I think about it often, visit blogs dedicated to it, and frequently take a peek via the Times Square web camera.

I was fortunate enough to be able to go there with my Handsome Husband for the first leg of our honeymoon. Seven or eight days jam packed with visiting galleries, museums, major tourist spots and quite a few afternoon naps on the most comfortable bed I've ever slept on due to jet lag. We tried to cram so much in that it was almost overwhelming.

Next time I go (notice I say next time and not "IF"!!!!!) I will try to take it a bit easier, soak in the atmosphere a bit more, take things more as they come, and of course visit some yarn shops (he he). That's not to say we were completely touristy, we did hang out at a few good bookstores, cafes and resturants and by the end of the week we knew our way around the subway, almost like locals. But, I need more!

Quite often I get such a strong yearning that it's more of a consuming thought in my life, I watch more tv shows and movies and read more books that are set in New York, I look at the blogs a little more longingly, and wonder, how long it will be before I can get back there. Then I get sad...How LONG will it be before I can get back there?????? I'd better start buying those lottery tickets, that's how long.

Monday, June 1, 2009

More finished knits.

Well, another month has passed and I've managed to do a fair amount of knitting. When I sat down today though to make the list to see what I've done I discovered that out of the five things finished only one of them was for me, and that's something that I'm not very satisfied with, but I'll get onto that later. First the details;

Number one is the Alhambra scarf (Ravelry link) by Anne Hanson. Quite a few of these have been made by people on Ravelry and there were a couple in particular that really caught my eye, and as luck would have it I had some of the very same yarn in my stash. Jo Sharp's Alpaca Silk Georgette was the choice in a shade of green called Sprig which is a bit out of the ordinary for me and as soon as I started knitting with it I decided I probably wouldn't make much use of it so a gift it has become for my Mum.

The second item was slated to be Mum's mother's day present from the beginning. It was finished a little late and although it was finished on 17 May I've only just managed to get it ready to be put in the post tomorrow. Luckily I have a very patient and understanding Mum! The Stolen Moments Wrap is a fairly simple pattern, very easy to memorise, and yet still possible to make mistakes, many of which I am afraid to say I have made and left in the finished piece. I got lazy and didn't try and fix what I think are plainly visible but I think that to anyone who looks at it in passing, they're not going to notice anything (at least I hope not). I've given Mum instructions to return it to me if she thinks that the mistakes are noticable and I'll frog it and start again. I used Rowan Cocoon, which is a very nice lush yarn I'm looking forward to using again in the near future.

Number three and four projects were much more successful. The Blackberry Cowl is a cute pattern, very quick to complete, and Kim Hargreave's Robin hat is also very cute. I talked about them in my previous post so I won't say any more about them here.

Finally, the other project I finished in May was Ysolda Teague's Grown-up booties (Ravelry link again). Again, these were very quick and easy to make but I'm not all that satisfied with the outcome. Due to my lack of experience in seaming (I'm still a fairly new knitter I have to keep reminding myself) I couldn't get the nice rounded look to the toes like Ysolda does, hence a very boxy, square looking pair of slippers. On top of that the light grey colour ended up being a bit boring so I headed off to the shops to try and find some interesting buttons (no easy task let me tell you!). I managed to find something big and chunky to fit the bill and so I have myself some cosy slippers.

So there it is, five more finished pieces for the year. Needless to say there has been other knitting in the works during May and hopefully they will feature in the June round up, with much happier and satisfying outcomes!! Until then, happy knitting to all!!