Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Food, glorious food

I've been tagged by the lovely Claudia with the food challenges meme. So, here goes:

1 - Try to eat a more vegetarian diet. We're fairly good here, only eating meat once or twice a week generally, but that can definitely be improved upon. When I read of how much water it takes to produce a kilo of meat (50,000 litres) I shudder. Although the shuddering always miraculously stops when the thought of sausages comes to mind (stupid, isn't it - I rarely eat meat, but when I do I eat the worst possible hodgepodge available).

2 - Reduce the amount of food that I buy that comes with needless packaging. For example, I am now the proud owner of a butter dish with lid, so I can buy butter in a paper wrap, rather than in a plastic container. If I applied that thinking to everything I buy, imagine how much less rubbish I would be creating! (Suggestions more than welcome here!)

3 - Try to eat as much locally produced food as possible. Oranges from California - forgeddaboudit!

4 - Get our vegie patch really going for autumn/winter. We've been merrily consuming tomatoes all summer, now it's time for the rest to go in. This, of course, all relates to point number 3. How many food miles are there in peas straight from the front yard? None - only about 7 food steps. Hooray!

5 - Be as creative yet ecomonical as possible with our evening meals. And try and come up with some really quick and easy fruit-based desserts. And enjoy myself whilst cooking and documenting them (now, that really is a challenge). Oh, and not beat myself up over the photo quality.

Phew - all done. Now it's time for lunch!

Monday, February 27, 2006

And it's gold for Australia!

Sorry, everybody, for dropping off the radar like that, but it's been a crazy, busy, hectic week. And what have I been doing, you may ask? Well, finishing Bobbles for one thing!

I have to say that whilst I am happy with it, I'm not exactly thrilled with it, which is usually how I want to be after putting in all that work. When I finished it yesterday I raced to the bathroom, put in on and immediately thought: Oh my word. I look like I'm auditioning for a spot in some funky mod style video and went nutso with the macrame before hand.

So then I took a deep breath, and went out to the Galumph. His verdict was "Bobbles aren't really my thing, you know?". Gotcha. Neither are they mine, it would appear. And it's completely and utterly my own fault. I should know by now that large yarn knit with large needles doesn't always equal cool fitted little number, no matter how much the over-styled pattern book photo would appear to suggest otherwise. For crying out loud, the Biggy Print disaster of 2002 should have taught me that.

So back to the mirror I went, this time armed with a large pin and determination to make this thing look good (oh, and I applied some fun bright green sparkly eyeshadow. Didn't help the jacket a bit, but made me feel much better. Mmmmm... green sparkles!). And I've succeeded. I've come up with some avant garde styling of my own, and figured out how to drap and pin the jacket so that it doesn't look so... huge and bulky. My new way of wearing even got the Galumph's seal of approval ("That's much better! I like it now!").

Still, I did need a dose of Pride and Prejudice last night to calm the jittery post-Olympic nerves. And I even donned the jacket to wear whilst I swooned over Mr Darcy. I'll say this much for it - it is warm, no matter what it's other faults may be. And goes very well with the eyeshadow.

I'll try and post some pics of me actually wearing it, as soon as I can convince Galumph to take some photos. Till then, comrades.

Friday, February 17, 2006


So, I've decided that the bobbley cardigan just isn't enough of a challenge for me (let's just ignore that fact that I'm terribly bad at reading charts, and was ready to ram my needles though the darn thing during yesterday's chart-bobble-decreasing-raglan sleeve fiasco. Hey - it was all good in the end - you can barely even tell where the stuff ups occured). So now my new additional Olympic challenge is to finish Bobbley and also get Ruski sewn. Now, there is an ulteria motive for this - I want to wear Ruski in time for our musical excursion on Sunday night. We're having dinner outside on some restaurant's balcony afterwards, and I want to be all snug in that Kidsilky Hazey goodness.

So poor Bobbley has been cast aside for now. Since I've only the back left to do, I'm not feeling too bad, plus I needed a break - my wrists were getting a little sore from wielding those tree trunk needles around, and the finishing of Ruski has commenced. The blocking was done this morning (just a light wet tea towel steam block, none of this overnight drying time for this little black duck), and hopefully after dinner tonight I'll get all the ends woven and some sewing commenced. I'm almost feeling like one of those uberathletes who compete in different events.

Pity my photograph isn't of Olympic standard. Ah well, at least it's proof that I do actually block.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Faster, stronger... coughier?

My Olympic campaign has been derailed! Just when I thought I was safe to skate around the rink with needles in hand, the Tonya Harding of the virus world has snuck up behind me and bam! whacked me with a nasty virusey thingy (see! incoherent already!). I'd post a picture of my red raw throat and furry tongue, but I'd hate to scare any small children in the vicinity of the computer. I think even poor Grumbles has come down with it - she's already in slumber land, despite the fact she only just finished breakfast. Talk about a world record!

Yet it will take more than a nasty virus to stop this athlete! I'd halfway through the right front, which I should get finished tonight, coughs and spluttering allowing, then onto the left tomorrow. I'd post a pic, but how many bobbles can one blog support? That's right: Not. That. Many. So, here's a pic instead of a lovely statue in the Treasury Gardens, Melbourne.

He's wondering if he'll get his Olympic challenge finished in time. Har!

Monday, February 13, 2006

Olympic update

As you can see, my Bobbley Cardigan is coming along nicely, and enjoying it's sunbathing session, it would appear. However, whilst both finished sleeves might be relaxing, my needles certainly are not! Normally I do the back of a jumper, then the front, then sleeves, but I wanted to get a handle on the astrakhan stitch pattern before attempting either fronts or back. I'm glad I did - it's really rather quite easy once you get use to wielding the ginormous 12mm sticks - I mean needles.

So, the plan is to get the fronts done this week, leaving the back and blocking/sewing for next week. Sounds easy, right? Well, it would be if my evenings weren't taken up with French lessons, yoga, dinners out and tickets to musicals. Plus, I'm praying that I don't run out of wool, which would be rather like me.

Okey dokey, back to zee needles!

Thursday, February 09, 2006


Finally - all nine are completed! Now I can concentrate on the Knitting Olympics (starts tomorrow!) and the Sew?I Knit! skirt.

Project specs:

Pattern: Own

Fabric: Cotton patchwork fabric

Tuesday, February 07, 2006


I've been tagged by the lovely Chest of Drawers - how exciting! Well, here goes:

What were three things when you were little you wanted to be when you grew up?
A librarian
A scientist
An old-style movie star, like Rosemary Clooney (the last one a result of watching White Christmas too many times)

You can live one day over again from your childhood. What day will it be?
The Christmas day (I think I was seven) that Dad announced, after all other presents had been opened, that the reindeers had left something outside for us. My sister Anya and I trooped outside, desperately looking, but could find nothing but some very long oblong cardboard boxes, which we presumed to be for the farm. After three scout arounds, Dad finally told us that the boxes contained a trampoline! All five of us children waited eagerly for it to be assembled (I think poor Mum was stuck inside making Christmas lunch) and then all of us, sans Mum who took the photos, spend a wonderful time bouncing on it. It's a wonder it didn't break there and then. Ahhh, the memories!

You have two minutes (and a mover with you if you need heavy lifting help!) to grab 5 things from your home before it morphs into a polka dotted hobgblin and hops away. What will you take? (Food/drink/family/friends excluded!)
The bookshelves containing all my treasured books (including the Phildar magazines!)
My antique jewellery
Grumble's favourite toys, because I simply can't bear to part with them
The computer, as it has all our photos on it
My clothes, because a lot are very individual pieces which just couldn't be replaced

You have to paint one quote on your kitchen wall. What's it going to be?
I'd cheat, and paint the entire text of The English Patient, but in tiny writing a la the Glass brothers Buddy and Seymour do in Franny and Zooey.

What is one thing you want to have accomplished by the end of this year?
To get rid of my 'mummy tummy', aka known as the hysterectomy/mummy tummy. Sigh.

You are moving to the moon for one year and can only bring one flower with you. What kind will you bring?
Jasmine, because it would remind me of so many wonderful times spent.

You just received word that aside from one flower, you can also bring five books with you too! Your choices?
The English Patient by Michael Oondatje
The Nancy Mitford Omnibus
A blank notebook, so I can write my own bestseller
A dictionary, so I can fill my bestseller with large, impressive sounding words
Vogue Knitting, so I could spend the year learning all the tricky bits I've never gotten around to yet (fairaisle, anyone?)

I'm filling in my evening knitting time with Ruffles again. Slowly but surely!

Monday, February 06, 2006


I go through stages with my crafts, where I'm full of nothing but sighs and moans, thinking everything's too hard, and there's nothing at all that I want to make. Then a few weeks later I rush off to the other end of the inspiration spectrum, and find myself in a whirl of project planning, with seemingly thousands of things that I want to make. The fact that every morning I sit down to browse the blogs aids this. For example, I'm currently terribly excited by all the amazing work being done out there, particuarly Anna's gorgeous horse, Grumperina's simply fabulous hat, Erica's too-cute-for-words Peanut and Amelia's exquisite Bridie.

Ahh, so many wonderful things, and just not enough time to try and make them all. And now we have this, which I'm sure will get me into even more inspirational trouble! However, a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, and likewise, every project begins with a single stitch (or whatever). As much as I want to rush off and begin a whole swag of new things, I've got babies waiting for me:

The babies in question are the toddler tops I'm making for a nearby shop. Only the arm facings, neck elastic and hems to do. It's been a vertitable production line here at chez Jorth. Onwards and upwards!

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

What a doggone good bag!

Today, for want of any better pictures to post, I present to you my knitting bag!

Excuse the crumy photo - after all that heat, it's now grey and drizzly. Sheesh!

That's right - I actually made a tote bag, and then embroidered a dog (of all things) knitting upon it. And a very cute dog too, if I do say so myself! Now, before you laugh yourself silly over it, I'd just like to say that this bag was made when I was pregnant and at home, bored out of my noggin, waiting for Grumbles to arrive. Actually, it was quite an enjoyable experience - I remember watching Amelie as I did it, and day dreaming, between stitches, of one fine day when I would saunter through Paris, dog knitting bag slung just so over my shoulder, merrily conversing in perfect fluent French to all and sundry who passed by. Then I probably had to get up and go to the toilet for the 14,000th time that day and so ended the day dream!

As for what is currently inside the bag, we have a finished Ruski! Well... when I say finished, I mean I've finished the knitting component. Tonight I'll block, then hopefully all the seaming shall be done by the weekend. Hooray!