Monday, 26 December 2011

Here it is a little bit of new crochet in a gloriously soft and vibrant hot pink cashmere yarn. Started this new jumper/ cardi on Christmas day and worked a little crochet magic on Boxing day too.
This is the stitch pattern for ''EMMA'' from Sue Whiting's children's clothing book.
Christmas eve started with croissants home- baked at home, Miss Y was quite excited about this and loved the way the special croissant dough package opened up.
Then it was mostly relaxing and decorating as well as 2 church services : 3 pm for the early Christingles and 11 pm for Midnight Mass both at St Mary's , Thame. The Christingle service was chosen because I wanted to watch King's College choir at 17:45 but the service was crowded and full of cute babies and toddlers but also a lot of crying noises and it stayed light throughout- out by 4pm- which didn't seem right with the candles somehow. Midnight Mass was just JJ and me and a rather rude Boris Johnston who just marched in halfway - 11:30- as if he couldn't be bothered to check the time. It was really lovely to see Dee and Libby from Towersey dancing there though.
Then I was cleaning and tidying to make space for the giant turkey from NEWITTS.
Miss E was cooking Christmas dinner with JJ supervising and they were up early to put Audrey in the oven. ( Miss E named her while in the queue at Newitts the Thame butcher)

There she is before all the preparations got underway. I was off the church by 10 with Miss Y ( singing in the choir)- saving a pew for JJ and Miss E who arrived a tad tardy at 11:05.
After church there was crochet and lunch and presents and then JJ and I had a lovely cuddle and nap to sleep off all that food while the girls dominated the living room with toys and tv. Actually we'd been up a lot and been sleeping less than 5 hrs a night so a catch up was in order.
After finishing the available yarn for the white cotton jacket I got started on the pink cashmere samples: Hannah- top- and Emma - lowest above. I have to figure out what went wrong in the arithmetic as I thought I'd ordered enough for the entire jacket in white, and yet after 7/8 of the second front I've run out and there's the sleeves yet to do too.
There was much gentle tv such as the SNOWMAN - such lovely drawings animated and Dr Who and while I enjoyed Downton Abbey - the girls watched strictly come dancing with an open fire and JJ sought some quiet male time in his den with a scifi movie.

The dogs too have enjoyed all the turkey skins and titbits, but very little walking as it's so dark and wet.
Finally late in the evening we had our Christmas pudding:

Almost half gone.....We retired after 1:30 am to sleep once again, sweet slumbers into Boxing Day.

Friday, 23 December 2011

A little Christmas-sy crochet

At last I crocheted a poinsettia - my own pattern- as I have been meaning to do for several years now... But it took so long that there's no time to finish an entire door wreath of these?!
It's floppier than intended also- needs a bit of tweaking?
The mistletoe turned out just fine- thanks to Lesley Stansfield's book.... It works too!
It hangs proudly in the kitchen already.
Very chuffed with these holly leaves and berries I was this morning!
And here's a playful experiment I took to Paris with me: a ball of Tosca Light by Lang and a free pattern for mini mochi by crystal palace yarns... The above was in 4 days and weighs 52 g out of the 100g ball. Used a 4 mm hook and this represents about 200m in length..
I have had such fun! On the train and in restaurants: happily hooking away and these tumbling blocks making a nice texture and lovely diagonal stripes. This was new to me but so easy and I was quite mesmerised by the colour changes and the way it works.
This is the picture of the scarf which inspired me to print the pattern....
It doesn't work in shorter sequence variegated yarns, no! Not at all.
More to come on the PARIS front and more crochet too.... MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Saturday, 3 December 2011

Active weekends and Royal Colleges

OK it starts with the bear who is modelling a new jumper finished yesterday and to be sent to a little girl next week when I have sewn a coordinating skirt....
Viola, own design, own pattern all cotton DK. The bear for whom it was made is as pink as the flower.
I included a hole for the tail of the bear.
This is the new advent calendar we are all enjoying, from the famous artist J Lawson.
It has animated stories and games and for 2nd December it was decorating a tree and this was my effort....
Been all around some of the Royal Coleges in the last few weeks, this was the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists- which is housed in a great building AND in a great location, for once I could simply walk out of Marylebone and walk there! No tube.

It was a wonderful cuppola over the staircase: I think it may inspire some crochet????

And lots of lovely art: photos, paintings ( oils) and sculpture too.
Here's the Royal connection: the lady in pink is the Queen.

A female president in 1938 I think, may have got the date wrong, I was impressed as it was an early date for female medical professionals I thought.
A mother and child portrait- exactly next to our ChiMat table....
The view across to Regent's Park
Historical instruments: gkad that when I did my 10 deliveries I dod not have to use these OR their modern equivalent!
It's a hickelty pickelty post this, I'm afraid, been sooo busy and trying to catch up a little.
Made a new dance dress for Scottish dancing : out of an old tiered cotton voile dirndl skirt and a T-shirt Miss A has discarded from Primark. ( the t-shirt was cropped and boxy but a fabulous blue colour)
I unpicked the skirt which was in horizontal stripes, re- aligned it and sewed many small pleats at the top before sewing it to the t-shirt in high waisted style as it's more flattering to my shape.
I danced in it at the end of Michaelmas Term dance at Oxford University and it was excellent: very comfortable and kept me cool, but nicely swirly on the turns, especially in Petronellas.
These were the new white leather figure-skates we bought for Miss E in the October after our skating in Oxford at Half Term. They did not have them in my size, but I'm hopeful Santa will find me some too?
This was me taking photos at half term , because I was too ill- chesty and full of cold to skate: ooh SUCH a shame!!! And I lost a pair of black leather driving gloves ( for my new black panther convertible )with cream piping and buttons too.
But it was then that I took the details of the skates for Miss E AND the details of OXIST so we agreed we'd come back and try OXIST out. This we did last week: Miss E and I, on Sunday.

Much quieter but all skaters were highly proficient- very inspiring ! Only Miss E was a little put off at first.
There she is loving it in her new skates ( early pressie from Santa)
Waiting for the bus home after a bit of shopping in Oxford too- new jumper for Miss E.

Then this week to the Royal College of Paediatricians and Child Health for an all-day workshop , and I walked from Theobold St down Holborn to Oxford St. Sorry for blurry photo of X-mas lights.
And John Lewis had some lovely in-store decs up too. I went in to buy some lining for dance dresses.
The chocolate advent calendar is hung high in the staircase hallway so Lucy can't get at it but she sits below it and whines....I still have quite some X-mas shopping to do and it's our 11 year anniversary next week. Work's very busy and Miss A has now performed for 4 nights in the joint school play which we attended on Friday and it was very very good. Much higher standard than at primary school.

I tried to provide laughs by including a video clip JJ took of me when we had a fishy pedicure in Wales in July: it's all giggles , do have a look it may make you laugh! It was such fun to do.