general ramblings · knitting · life

Currently on my needles and other stuff

At the end of the year I’ve started working on a new pullover in Drops Alpaca Bouclé bought during the end-of-the-year sale of alpaca-based Drops yarns. This yarn is very unique – the main thread is thin, but because of the loops it requires bigger needles and knits up like worsted weight, therefore it required a special pattern, suitable for a very lightweight (for its thickness) yarn. While browsing through the projects knitted by other users on Ravelry with Alpaca Bouclé, I found Redy Pullover by Ankestrick. I knew instantly that it was a perfect choice; with its relaxed fit and wide collar, and so I decided to knit it right away.

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general ramblings · knitting · life

Hats, plain and simple

I was planning to write a short Christmas post with wishes to all my readers and visitors to the blog, but as the saying goes – if you want to make gods laugh, tell them your plans! That concerns not only this blog, but also all our Christmas plans, including the meals we were going to prepare which I mentioned in my previous post, and some light holiday hiking along the coast. Instead, I spent almost a week mostly in bed or on the coach, because my chronic condition (unclassified IBD, which has been mostly dormant for the last several years and only acts up mildly from time to time) decided to remind me about itself.

Still, even though I didn’t feel like updating the blog, and all of Christmas cooking had to be done by the Boyfriend (he did well and didn’t complain even once!), it wasn’t a bad time at all. My yarn arrived and I had knitted two new hats for the Boyfriend – since he refuses to wear scarfs or gloves, but actually requested new hats himself. I wanted to knit something a little more fancy, with cables or maybe some colourwork pattern, but both these options were rejected instantly. He just wanted plain, “normal” hats, and so I chose the Classic World War 2 Watch Cap and the Boyfriend Beanie, knitted in brown Drops Nepal and gray Drops Lima.

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general ramblings · knitting

Instead of a Jumper (part 2)

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It’s less than a week left until Christmas, and it seems like there’s not enough time for anything, even without any big holiday plans. I’m still enjoying a break from work (starting again in February), but there’s always something going on these days. To make things more interesting, my mobile, vacuum cleaner, and finally the washing machine all decided to stop working around the same time. I also didn’t notice that something went wrong with the laundry and I opened the washing machine when it stopped without checking – which resulted in flooding our kitchen pretty badly. I’m super lucky that it didn’t sink through the floor to the neighbours below! And also that there is a nice launderette nearby, because the washing machine pump needs to be replaced, but since it’s an old model, it won’t be delivered until the beginning of the new year. Fun times!
At least the timing for all of this technological drama was good, right when I got paid for my work in the summer months, so at I was able to replace the old vacuum cleaner. And to my excitement, the store nearby has a Christmas offer for the exact model I found on Amazon, for the same price, but with a free steam mop as a bonus. Now, admittedly I’m a bit of a clean freak so you can imagine that it’s like the best Christmas gift ever! I redeemed the mop voucher online and it should be delivered in about a month (which is way longer than I want to wait, but let’s not look gift horse… etc.) I know, I know… what can I say, cleaning (contrary to cooking) is the one housekeeping task I enjoy 😉

But apart from these little disasters, things are going well. We’re going to have a quiet and nice Christmas, as usually with the combination of Polish and Greek meals (and other regional food when we meet up with our friends). Then, after Christmas, the Boyfriend is going to Greece for some time (while I’ll be here dealing with the pump replacement), and when he comes back, I’m going to Poland in the second half of January. In between our travels we’re going to Belfast for a weekend away, because due to his work we can’t go in December, so I’m already excited and planning what we’re going to see and do there.

I don’t usually make any plans or resolutions for the new year, and don’t really make any summary of the passing year, but I have to say that it was overall a good year for me, and my only 2019 plan is to make it even a better one. And to keep knitting 🙂

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Alright, so let’s talk about knitting. In addition to the socks from my previous post, I used the red yarn from the Jumper That Never Was to knit a set of gloves, shawl and a hat for myself. Initially I chose the Aubergine hat and shawl pattern. Knitting this set was fast, easy and really enjoyable, but I didn’t really like the hat. I mean it was cute but just didn’t feel comfortable on my head. So I kept the shawl, unraveled the hat and made a new one, together with matching fingerless gloves.

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This set is awesome; it’s very warm, comfy, and I love the leafy pattern. It works surprisingly well with the shawl, and I love how it brightens up my gray coat. Just a perfect match all around 🙂

And now I think I’m done with the jumper yarn, and even though I still have almost 3 skeins left, I’m going to put them away for another time.

I mentioned it before on my blog, but I’m not making any knitted or crocheted Christmas gifts this year. I made a few small items, like socks or gloves for my friends, but they weren’t specifically planned for  Christmas – they’re just “because I like you” gifts. I’ve also received some yarn for the Boyfriend’s new hats (one gray, one brown) today, so they should be ready before he goes to Greece. Other than that, my knitting queue is filled with selfish project and I hope to finish at least one sweater before our Belfast getaway. All in all, I’m looking forward to my peaceful and crafty Christmas!

general ramblings · knitting

So it’s winter!

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Last time I posted here, I was surprised that it was already November. Time keeps flying fast and December has started; with its cold, short and rainy (that’s Irish winter: it rains instead of snowing, pretty much like during any other season, but the rain is colder and accompanied by equally cold wind) days, Christmas songs on the radio and me decorating our apartment with Christmas ornaments without any self control.

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I’m really enjoying the cold weather and the darkness, they don’t seem hostile but friendly, and I try to take daily walks even on the worst days. I’m also in holiday mood and surround myself with shiny, red, green and white decorations. Even the lipstick I use these days is more red than usually, because Christmas! All of that is strange because I’m normally not a very sentimental or holiday-loving type of person. Maybe that’s just a sign of getting older?

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crochet · general ramblings · knitting

Is it really November?

The title of my post may sound like I’m a little surprised, and it’s not without a reason. I’ve spent all October at home, with just a few days in the middle of the month when I felt able to go out, and having a whole month just pass me by feels weird. Suddenly the trees are almost leaveless, and the days are visibly shorter. My cats are a little more fluffy with their thicker, winter fur, and much more cuddly as it gets colder.

When I last updated my blog, I was on the mend from pneumonia, and able to go out again. Well, that didn’t last long (not more than a few days): the Boyfriend caught a cold and 2 days later I had a cold too. Just that, while his cold ended after a week, mine turned into another chest infection – and another round of antibiotics and feeling miserable. Maybe it wasn’t even another infection, just the previous one that hadn’t really had a chance to be fully cured.

Anyways, it’s finally  better again, and I took my last antibiotic tablet today. I’m feeling well and even the fatigue is gone. I still need to have some blood work done, to check if all the medications haven’t done any damage to my liver, and because I’m losing my hair in chunks – but I hope it’s only going to get better and better from now on!

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While I’ve been stuck at home all those weeks, I knitted another pair of gloves. I used the same purple yarn as in the stripey jumper, and I’m absolutely proud of them. Even though, when you have a closer look, you can see that I really shouldn’t, because I made a huge mistake in the pattern!

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Bez kategorii · general ramblings · knitting

Colour Therapy

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I’m getting better, but it’s a slow process. I’m not taking antibiotics or steroids (other than my regular inhaler) anymore, and I started taking daily longer walks this week. I’m still quite weak, and still cough a bit. I’m also terribly bored… seriously, I’m a person who loves being on my own and spending time at home, but I also like being outdoors, and being active. 3 weeks of very low activity seem to last forever and I’m already planning some awesome hikes and trips once I feel strong enough.

The weather matches my mood perfectly (although today it’s actually quite nice for a change); it’s windy, rainy, and dark. So in order to defeat bad mood, I took out some Noro Kureyon sock yarn from my stash and decided to knit with it, just because working with all these beautiful colours make me feel a little better. I used it in two of my most recent projects.

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It’s still not blocked so it looks a little rugged

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general ramblings · knitting

Aran knitting

20181013_145544So far, October hasn’t been a very good month for me. Some time at the beginning of the month I started feeling sick with a cold. But as days went by, it hasn’t gotten any better – in fact, I’ve been feeling weaker and more miserable with each passing day. Finally the Boyfriend told me that it’s ridiculous to just expect it to pass on its own, booked me an appointment with my GP (because I still thought it was just a cold), and then I found out I had pneumonia. Luckily, it is mild and only located in one area of my right lung (seriously, it’s a bizarre feeling when I cough and feel exactly where the inflammation is!), so I avoided going to hospital and could be treated at home. It’s been two weeks now, and I’m still taking antibiotics and steroids, but it is much better. I am weak, I cough (but significantly less than before), and Prednisolone makes me feel awful as it usually does, but the pain in my chest is almost gone and I can see some improvement. I even went out for a while yesterday, and while I couldn’t walk much, it felt really nice to breathe in the fresh autumn air. I am going for a review visit tomorrow again and I really hope I will not need another round of medications – or at least that I can stop taking some of them, because my stomach isn’t taking it all very well and my sense of taste is also almost completely gone. Fingers crossed.

So while I’ve been at my worst, I couldn’t really knit, read, or do much of anything. I’ve been mostly sleeping a lot (I actually got some additional meds to help me sleep as Prednisolone kept me awake at night… or day) and just trying to survive till another day when I could hopefully feel better. Only in the last few days have I started knitting again and it was so great to feel the yarn in my hands!

Here is what I made last week:

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Two hats made with another single odd skeins of yarn – they’re going to be given away to a homeless charity, because they are really warm and I think they’re going to be useful at this time of the year. I’m really happy with the Fair Isle one – it’s the first time in months for me to try colour work again and it went so much better than any of my previous attempts! I didn’t really have any problems with controlling the tension this time. It might be a sign to knit a new Fair Isle sweater?

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Bez kategorii · general ramblings · knitting

Mint Tulip Skirt

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Hi my friends, how are you?

I’ve been in such good mood recently, I’m loving these chilly, early fall days and beautiful colours around. And knitting with wool without any discomfort like it happens in summer!

I’m also busy with the video-conferences for work this week, but at least today my projects were only discussed in the morning (next days are going to be much more intense though) so I could still clean up the apartment, do a few loads of laundry, go for a walk, prepare dinner and I’m planning to hit the gym in the evening too. You know, to make up for hours of sitting in front of the PC in the coming days!

One thing regarding video-meetings: cats and internet cameras don’t mix well. Especially if one of your cats tries to eat more than she should (because I wasn’t watching so she could eat both hers and her sister’s breakfast) and then throws up on the floor behind you while you are desperately trying to ignore it, but also remember about it to avoid stepping in that by accident and hoping that none of your colleagues noticed anything.

But let’s focus on pleasant stuff, shall we? May I present you my latest finished knitting project, a new autumn/ winter skirt:

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Of course I made a mistake in the top lace pattern repeat but I’m just quietly hoping that everyone will assume that it should be this way.

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Bez kategorii · crochet · general ramblings · knitting · life

Yarn Bowl and other stuff

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Look at my new crafty purchase! It’s a beautiful yarn bowl from the Flying Tiger. Not something I’ve been planning to buy, even though I’ve thought about it a couple of times because of my cats. They always hunt my yarn so I have to be extra careful not to drop it while knitting (and the ball of yarn tends to jump all over my desk or coach which gives them many opportunities to catch it), and they always shed, even if it’s much less now than in summer. We buy lint rollers in Ikea in crazy amounts and I keep vacuuming all the time, but I can’t eradicate the fur in 100%. And when I drop the ball of yarn to the floor, it inevitably collects some cat hair which end up knitted into my work and I hate it. So yes… that, combined with a good price (6 euro) convinced me to give it a try and buy a yarn bowl.

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A pair of autumn socks in the making

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Bez kategorii · general ramblings · knitting · life

Current WIP and some Irish landscapes

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Some cables, some lace – my new cardigan in the making

Ever since giving up on the idea of knitting something summery, I’ve been working on my new cardigan, Sweet as Honey by Drops Designs. So far, so good! It requires more focus and attention than my most recent, mindless knits, but it’s going well and I’m really enjoying it.

And I thought that it may be a good opportunity to share my yarn winding method with you!

I don’t have a winder and I don’t feel the need to buy one, as I actually enjoy winding yarn on my own – except for lace I guess, but I don’t use it very often so it’s not a big deal. I do it at my work desk, because the arms of my chair are just what I need.

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Yes, that’s how I sit on a chair – my boyfriend always says his legs hurt just from looking at me like that, but I find it comfy!

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