Sunday, January 30, 2011

Zucchini and a rainbow

What happens when you plant zucchinis in your vege patch and then go away for a few days?

They're just slightly enormous.

I've discovered that cutting them into rounds, removing the seeds and stuffing the cavity works rather nicely for oh-my-goodness-it's-a-monster-zucchini. We've also been eating a lot of vaguely normal sized zucchini at the moment: zucchini and feta frittata, zucchini parmagiana, zucchini in stir fry, zucchini on the side... If you have any yummy zucchini recipes that you'd like to share, please let me know! And we only planted 2 seeds!?!

On another note, I've signed up to make granny squares for Sarah London's Crochet a Rainbow project which will result in a whole lot of granny blankets being given to people who lost most (if not all) of their things in the still-happening Australian floods. Sarah is collecting granny squares from volunteers all over the world and stitching them together into blankets. For me this is great - I get to feel vaguely useful, get to make granny squares and don't have to sew them together (which I find rather tedious). I'm pleased to be able to contribute something other than just money - money is very necessary (obviously), but it feels quite impersonal, and it's good to be able to DO something.*

If you would like to crochet some granny squares too, go and check out all the details by clicking on the button below, or in the sidebar.

*I know that this is all about MY response from afar, but I think action is better than simply moving on and forgetting.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

my creative space...

Green, green, green, YELLOW!!
Green, YELLOW!!
Green, YELLOW!!
Green, green, green, YELLOW!!

Over the last couple of weeks, including some time away, a pair of socks have been taking shape. While the knitting can have it's rather surprising moments (the appearance of YELLOW(!!) in between those lovely greens can be a tad frightening at times), I think the finished result is quite pleasing.* Fortunately!

I've just started sock number 2, which I think I'd like to get finished by the end of February. That should give me enough space to work on other projects, too...

I'm hoping to have a satisfying and productive creative space this year, with a focus on the process rather than the outcome, though it will be nice to finish a few things, too! Of course, I have a long list of things I'd like to make, so it will be interesting to see how long it takes to get overwhelmed by outcomes and the process gets relegated to a requirement rather than a pleasure...

To visit the creative spaces of other more or less idealistic and optimistic crafters, many of whom will actually succeed in making what they say they want to (how novel!), go here.

*Except for the unfortunate 'Aussie, Aussie, Aussie! Oi, Oi, Oi!' parochial factor, but we can look past that for now...

Thursday, January 20, 2011


Could 2011 be the year of knitting?
Many of the things on my To Make list so far are knitted things. My first finished project for the year is a knitted thing. Or things: my Through The Loops Mystery sockalong socks are complete!
As these are my first handmade socks, I'm yet to work out how to get a decent photo of my own feet, but these socks are rather nice. I'm looking forward to the cooler weather rolling around so I can actually wear them!

It seems the sock bug has properly bitten - I've cast on a pair of Monkey Socks in a rather frighteningly bright colourway, but I think (I hope) it works when the pattern is stretched as it will be when it's worn. Since taking this picture about a week ago, I'm now about half way through the foot of the first sock, so I'm making some serious progress!
To provide a bit of variety, I've also started a shawl, which I'm crocheting out of an enormous cone of laceweight yarn that I ordered from WEBS along with at least three other shawls worth of laceweight yarn. I clearly had a one track mind when placing that order! I'd better include at least a couple of shawls on my To Make list this year...

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Well, hello there...?

It's been a while!
For me, 2010 finished a bit like a balloon with a slow leak, resulting in a slightly flabby crumpled heap effect by the end of it. Fortunately, things are starting to get back on track a little with an emerging enthusiasm for the slow things of summer, including the beach, the pool, berries, and more time in the backyard with the girls.

Somehow, in the insanity that was December (including a husband away for a week and a half, a two-year old birthday party the day after he got back, general pre-Christmas craziness as well as hosting Christmas lunch), I did manage to make a few (rather unspectacular) gifts:
A Silvan Star washcloth for Jodie's Christmas Washcloth Swap;

A Grit Stitch washcloth for a friend who had said she'd like one (Sucker? Hopefully she wasn't just being polite!); and
two Bump Stitch washcloths (Ravelry link) for another friend, who I KNOW appreciates handmade. Do you think I have a washcloth problem?

While my handmaking of gifts was rather minimal this year, I knew I'd be busy so didn't set my goals too high. It would still be nice to make a few more things next Christmas, though.

I'm hoping to make an appearance here a few times over the next couple of weeks, but it is summertime so it's likely to be slightly erratic! I'm hoping to get back into an achievable and consistent blogging routine by February.

I also have an embarrassingly long backlog in my reader because I haven't been visiting much lately. Sanity has required that any available brain output capacity was used up knitting sock* (even if it was only two rows in a day), which meant there has rarely been any left for other things. Hopefully I'll start to get back on top of blogland soon!

I'm also hoping to be able to start thinking about the year ahead this week, which means thinking about goals for making and learning. projects!

*I think I might finish sock 2 today, so there's been some progress on that front, at least!