Sunday, August 31, 2008

Spring is Sprung!

The grass has rise.....

Wow - Spring is hitting our garden in a big way! Waikato has had a heap of rain in the last month or two, and the vege garden is loving it.

When we moved into this house it had almost nothing planted in the gardens. 1 Lemon tree, a feijoa, a small mandarin tree, a cherry plum tree, and a couple of bitsy things. In fact - it seemed to us that the people who had the house before us hated all things green!

Its immensely satisfying when spring rolls around, and you can take photos like these of things in your yard that are thriving, that weren't there 12months ago - and wouldn't be if you hadn't bought the house.

We have lots more plans, but they are waiting on our boundary fence being corrected.....

I've just sowed 2 egg trays of seeds to be planted in a few weeks, so it will be a matter of clearing some space. And of course we have the seed potatoes there ready to go in, once the garden goes in.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Tough week...

Wow - been a tough week in this house.

Hamish (20mo) got his grommets on MOnday. What a crappy day - man I hate hospitals.

I couldn't go with him when he went under, so that was Shanes job.... I am bad. But I couldn't do the vax either, so I am OK with not having my kids do pain. Gee - I dont do pain!!

I was called through when he woke up, and I praise everything above that I am still feeding. How to shut up a screaming toddler in a recovery ward! Phew.

He seems to be hearing more. You can see him quietly pontificating new noises, like the small plane that went over the house at dinner. I guess he is starting to hear things a little differently? He is talking non stop, and needs some translation, but is starting to get his message across.

I have been knitting. I am nearly finished on Rainy Day Sock, this was my Ravelympics project that got brushed aside, but I will finish them as I think they are pretty cool.
And I made this dishcloth out of some Cara cotton/microfibre I got from Spotlight a couple of years ago. It was meant to be something else, but I have decided to use it in the kitchen, and maybe share the love for cloths for Chrissie. Cool pattern tho - Chinese Waves, and its really easy, and very chunky for the kitchen.

So far its done one machine wash, and lots of scrubbing up, so people with this in your stash - washers might be the goer.

I am on practium at the moment, and its tough going. I am in the hard stuff, starting to teach about 2-3 times a day with all the planning, and of course both science topics I didn't do in my last prac. Electricity and Chemical Reactions. Oh well. The kids are all fantastic, hardly any behaviour stuff, which is awesome. A few smart alecs, but generally a really satisfying experience.

And finally - a note about my new big purchase. I was lucky (unlucky??) enough to get a place in the Wollmeise Sock Club. This was pricey.... It comes from Germany and i is seriously coveted worldwide! There was a lottery - I entered for a lark, and Uh-oh!! Luckily I have managed to find some fellow woolaholics to share the burden of the price tag, and I dont feel anywhere near as guilty anymore. Yes of course - 8 skeins of hand-dyed beautiful sock wool would be awesome, but you know - 4 is just as good.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Yarn Swap - sent and received!

I recently joined in a yarn swap on TNN - the NZ Nappy network for hand dyed wool. There was more than just that criteria though, The swap had to be themed - and had to also include a recipe, a pattern for the wool, a knitting gift and a small gift.

So this is the lovely surprise I received in the mail on Tuesday :) An Apple for the teacher. Isn't that cool??

I'm not sure what I will use the wool for - its great colours, limes, green, pink yellow - all very cool as these are colours I have trouble getting when I dye with the acid dyes I have. It looks like a handspun, or a very loose 5-8ply wool. Loverly ;)

And of course my lovely swapper went above and beyond - there are all sorts of gifts in there. Tea bags, a knitted cloth, a cool bag, some apple cinnamon dessery stuff, a bath bomb, an apple decal - I'm sure I am forgetting something....

Anyway - thanks to my swapper in Ham, which I dont think is where she is from - maybe?? All gratefully received.

I sent this off to someone in Australia - its a fire themed swap since Aussie is so hot ;)

Sock wool, the firestarter sock pattern (love this sock!!!), some KP DPN's, a recipe for an above ground hangi, and a flames dishcloth. I feel a bit ordinary since my swapper put so much into their package, but I know that everything I sent was still OK. And the receiver seems to be happy. I see she has put the pattern in her ravelry queue.....

Love swaps :)

Thursday, August 7, 2008

On a farm visit

I meant to post these shots last month - but I never got around to it!

So when Shane's older daughter visited from Aus last month we decided to do the touristy thing and pop off to the agrodome. This is a kiwi icon tourist spot in Rotorua - all about sheep and farming. Its actually an organic farm as well, so it was lovely to go around.

We started off with the sheep show!

The presenter talks in a very excitable way about the different breeds of sheep, and one by one they bring the well trained beasts in to line up with their sign! Then they get the dogs in, and the dogs show their amazing trainability by jumping over the sheep's backs to get in line with the whistle.

During the show he sheared a sheep, adn then called for people to milk the cow. I did it - and milked my first cow! Very easily I might add - all the breastfeeding over the last 3y might have helped ;)

We got to get up and talk to all the dogs and sheep afterwards - spot which is Jenna, and which is the sheep - hard to tell with those curls...

Then we popped off on the farm tour where we saw the organic kiwifruit and feijoa farm, and sampled some wine and honey. Yum. WE got to stop off along the way and feed the farm animals. Jenna LOVED IT!!!! She got right in amongst the action - must have dished out about 5-8 handfulls of feed, right in the thick of it.

Hamish preferred the stragglers, and was pretty happy to run off after the 1 or 2 sheep that were by themselves.

The farm tour was topped off with expensive shopping and terrible cafe food, but all in all, a great day out for the whole family!

Shane almost never takes good photos of me with the kids - but I have to say I love this one, and I am very happy to have a great shot of me with Hamish :)

Sunday, August 3, 2008

A couple of other hats...

These are some of the other hats I recently knitted.

My hat is the Feather in Her Hat, made with nearly 2 balls of Jet. I love this hat, and I wear it nearly every day at uni. Very warm!!!

(Modelled by Shane....)

I also made Shane a hat - Jacques Cousteau, which is a fun hat doing the rounds on Ravelry. Shane's hat is made with Bendigo Woolen Mills 8 ply rustic.

I made the large size, and did the full length, but it is too long. I think the length would have been fine if I had made the smaller size, but I reckon you would have to have an enormous head to need the full sized, full length hat!

Death by Hat!!

This weekend the Death by Hat comp started through Woolaholics, a knitting community I belong to.
The "targets" were released on Saturday morning, and the pattern released at 2pm NZ time Saturday afternoon.

My target isn't a NZer, so it will take about 5-7 days to get to her in WA, so I thought I had better get cracking! I have no doubts that I will be killed quickly - I expect I will only knit one hat, so here is my finished product. Actually - not quite, its blocking at the moment :)

The pattern is the slouchy copy cat hat, and it was really easy to knit - using about 2 balls of Kureyon, colour 150.

I am sure my victim will be happy to die with this hat ;)

Friday, August 1, 2008

Its been awhile.....again!

Man - uni studies get away from you.

While I have been knitting, and buying wool, I admit that I am almost overdone when it comes to computers. While I love checking my forums (which are woolaholics, TNN, Nappycino and Ravelry) I admit that the last month has been dedicated to Edlinked.....

A particularly depressing site that is all things education, assessment and assignments. I am nearly over essays. In the last 4 months I have gone from overproducing essays to underproducing, which is a big shift for my mind.

Anyway - I am on practicum from next weekend, which means busy times for super-study-mumma.

Regardless of all the uni crap, I have been knitting!!! I have made an awesome hoody for Hamish which I will photograph this weekend. I am very proud of this one ;)
I have also been doing the baby thing - but in the spirit of babydom, we knit and knit for 2 days in our spare time, and in the desperation to provide newborn knits to the babe, we dont take photos...... And I have to say that I was REALLY proud of one of my knits. A gorgeous hat in cotton, that was so choccy-raspberry and delicious, and it takes all of my power to ask the very non-emotional 22 yo father "Does the hat fit!!!!!" I will err on the side of maturity and experience, and leave that one alone. Suffice to say I made an effort, and the reaction in the young chaps face was priceless and will entertain me on long dark nights to follow....

Speaking of which - how about the weather, and what about those all blacks!! Who cares!!! I am personally gutted that the Waikato Magic lost the final of the ANZ netball champ, and I hope they get there next year. After living in Oz for the last 8y, its lovely to feel a sense of pride in a team that I know I belong to.

Enough of the chatter - I'm hardly poignant when you consider the amazing bloggers out there.

Next post will have pix!