Monday, June 30, 2008

Dream cardi complete!

Project Specs

Pattern: Dream Cardi from And So To Bed by Lucinda Guy
Wool: The pattern specified 9 balls of Rowan RYC, but I went for a more budget knit and used Bendigo Woollen Mill's Classic 8 ply in Musk (1 1/2 balls)
Size: 3 - 4 years
Notions: Three vintage shank buttons from my stash (thank goodness for yard sales!), 1 metre spotted pink ribbon.

I love this cardi, as does Grumbles judging by the number of times it's been worn since I finished it two weeks ago! I'm rather glad that my camera didn't pick up the spaghetti sauce stains on the sleeve *ahem*.

Despite adoring the cardigan, I did take a few liberties with the pattern. It originally called for the lower bodice to be knit separately using double yarn, but I felt it made the pattern (which was knit all in one) unnecessarily complicated, without any major visual payoff, so I rewrote the pattern to suit me, and worked it using only a single strand of yarn.

I also ignored the instruction for croched button loops, and instead made my own using this method from the lovely Anna, which I felt would be far more sturdy for the age group specified.

But other than those minor quibbles it's a great cardi, with a lovely stitch pattern, and I can tell it's going to be worn and worn and worn!

In fact, I rather fancy making one for myself! [Said whilst hunting around for a calculator and some note paper]

Wednesday, June 25, 2008


Dearest, darlingest Grumbles,

Today, four years ago, you were born. Four years! Where on heck has the time gone? I suppose it has followed that golden rule: Time flies when you're having fun, and since you have brought nothing but joy and and happiness and laughter into my life, then it's no surprise that time has zoomed by at an expotential rate.

You and Daddy and I have sure done a lot in those four years. You've gone from a chubby bundle who could projectile vomit 6 feet across a room without batting an eyelid to a hilarious girl with an infectious laugh who can hold her own on the dance floor with the best of them. We've done bike holidays together, and music classes, and gymnastics, and kindergarten, and so many other wonderful activities, with you growing taller and more confident with each one, and me standing quietly by your side, collecting each memory and holding it in a special place in my heart.

Fantastic as all those things have been, it's the quiet, unexpected moments that I treasure the most. Like yesterday, for instance, when you instructed that I draw on a large piece of paper a mummy crocodile, a daddy crocodile and a baby Grumbles crocodile, and then you painted them in blue and yellow and brown, making them talk in funny voices like I do when I read books to you. And I watched, feeling so stupid with pride over you. Or each night, after we've sung "Moon, moon", and I'm turning off the light, and I say "I love you, Pumpkin-head!", and I hear you say through the darkness in a deep, growly voice, "I love you, crazy Mummy Pumpkin-head!"

I also like it when we walk down the street, and you say hello to somebody, and then before they have even finished passing you tell me in an extra-loud voice that "I have very good manners, don't I, Mum!" That one never fails to elicit a slightly embarassed guffaw from me.

Or when you insist that I play the Amelie soundtrack, and we dance and dance and dance around the loungeroom until I'm too out of breath to hold you up anymore, so then you lie down so I can play the 'piano' on your back, and we both lie there, giggling like crazy.

And the way that you are really, really crap at bargaining. I'll say "Ok, tiger, time to pack up, dinner's ready! Pop your colouring away please."
"How about five more minutes?"
"How about two more minutes?"
"How about next week?"

Like I said, it's the quiet, unexpected moments that I love the most. They're like a shiny, beautiful gift, comfirming to me how brilliant and wonderful you are, and how I must be the luckiest thing ever to share these days with you.

I love you, Pumpkin-head!

xo Mum

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Never smile at a crocodile...

...especially one as badly drawn as that! I mean, c'mon - when was the last time you saw a square mouthed croc? Talk about crikey! Lauren Child, you have nothing to worry about.

Even Grumbles has turned from it in digust and shame. And this is after she tried to cover the horror of it with paint. Don't blame the kid, really.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

MixTape goodness

As I may have mentioned before, I write a regular column for MixTape magazine. So if you've ever wondered what's in the mag, then go take a sneak peek. Go on, you know you want to... it's full of crafty goodness, including my oh so fabulous 'Green' column, and proudly produced in Melbourne.

Take a look, take a look! You won't regret it!

Thursday, June 05, 2008

A bear, a bike and a basket

(and some washing on the line in the background, but I didn't really think that fact worthy of a post title mention)

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Dropping a massive hint

Urgh. I'm still residing in the Valley of Snotty Nose, but am keeping myself cheerful by gazing at these gorgeous works of art by the supremely talented Louise of Art & Ghosts.

I mean, seriously, what's not to love about red stockings? And rabbity hats! And soulful eyes? I think I'm in love.

Oh, Galumph? She has an Etsy shop. And my birthday is soon... I'm not saying, I'm just saying, you know?


Monday, June 02, 2008

Small but productive (and I'm not talking about Grumbles!)

I had a list as long as my arm, detailing things I wished to accomplish this weekend. Instead I was struck down with a sore throaty, feeble cough lurgy, so my accomplishments amount to snapping a few pics and doing lots of moaning about how sick I felt.
However, the Galumph was on a roll, and under the watchful of eye of his temporarily invalided wife he cleared out our front garden, and planted out our brand new vegie patch. Previously the front garden was a wonderland of odd weeds, with a few tomato plants in summer time if we were organised enough, but with food prices going through the rooft, plus lots of thinking about the negative impact of excessive food miles, I decided it was time we dug for victory and did our bit. And by gosh if I was going to do it at all, I was going to do it properly. I wanted decent beds, with paving to help control weeds and darn it, I wanted it to look pretty!
We have spent the last few weeks keeping a weather eye out for stray bricks, and on Saturday hit brick gold when we discovered a family down our street doing some renovations. We asked very nicely and they gave up all their crappy bricks ("Trust me honey, you're doing us a favour by carting them away!" I was told in a big booming Italian baritone), which we promptly laid down in the garden, forming four mini beds.
The front two have been planted with silverbeet and beetroot, and the back beds have broad beans and snow peas. Keeping these company are a couple of pots containg rocket, Freckles Brunte lettuce and Mesclun lettuce mix. All seeds are heritage ones from Diggers - not only do they ensure that genetic variation isn't lost, but they also perform like crazy!

Not bad for a wee space measuring 2 x 1.5 metres!