Sunday, 22 December 2013

End of Year review 2013

Well it is that time of year again.  I have given up on making anything else before the Christmas Deadline.  If I attempted to squeeze another project in I am pretty sure I would end up dead.  Either due to winding up my spouse, kids or blowing my own top in frustration.  So I got off the crazy bus and now I am so mellowed out it is questionable if I could breath in a lung machine. At least this year I was not so crazy to have a huge list of items or to attempt to knit a jumper in a short period of time.

As I have been slowly recuperating from yet another dose of flu whatever lergy that someone had to share with me given the depressed immune system thanks to the chronic illness status.

This year has been on the whole micro micro minute baby steps to get back into the swing of things.

Apparently there are three shopping days until Christmas and I can honesty say that I haven't done any shopping at all. Ah the bliss of not being abut to go shopping or brave the crowded streets due to my poor mobility. There is a  plus side to being a spoon.  

So  I finally picked up the needles again during the summer and some projects that hadn't been finished have been finished.  The plan was if I could concentrate long enough.  After falling even further down the sink hole of depression with my forced medical retirement last year I ended up needing a stronger dose of meds that resulted in a period dribbling in the corner.    

Spring helped along with a personal decisional decision to cut the meds back.  Quacks didn't quite agree but I did it anyway and was going ok until September.  Minor setback but didn't end up down the drain I just had to work a little harder to stop myself nose diving.

Ry comes home from University tomorrow so we will have a full house again.  It will get noisy again.  You wouldn't think that one child not being here would make so much difference. Not that either would agree with the noise comment or the label of child.  I now have young adults.  All my kids are no longer in school by gads I feel like a fogie now. 

Wishing you all the Seasons greetings to you and yours.  Hope you have lovely break with your family and friends keeping safe and well.

Monday, 28 October 2013

Hurricane St Jude

It is a wet and windy day here in the UK and I am glad I am not out and about.  We currently have wind warnings for gales force winds of 80 miles per hour plus. So I am quite glad to be knitting away here on another pair of gauntlets.  I made a pair earlier in the month for the daughter just before she returned to Uni for this academic year.

The rest of the family then put their own request for their own pair.  So I have been knitting a manly pattern for the son and the father cause they didn't want lace like the girls.  So we seem to be a mix and match family for accessories this winter.

Given how quickly the bad weather has settled in and looking at the weather map pictures on the BBC I am saying that it is not Autumn but rather winter.  I don't think we will get much in the way of white stuff this year but I think we are going to get lashings of rain.  

It may be Guy Fawkes next week along with Rh's birthday but I don't believe we are having autumnal weather any more.  So keep your heads down and don't get blown away in the wind gusts.

Monday, 30 September 2013

Revisiting Hiya Hiya sock circular needles

Back in 2010 I brought a couple of different sized Hiya Hiya needles.These needles are well made and I thought I would trial the use of the 9 inch sock circulars to see if the travelling sock knitting was made any easier.

I cast on and it was over six months later in May 2011 before I finished the second sock.  I ended up struggling again to complete the toe of the second sock.

For some strange reason I cast on another pair of socks using the circular needle again just to make sure that it wasn't for me sometime in late November 2011.  I really wasn't for me.  I have rheumatic problems and during the colder months I found that I was dropping more stitches than I was knitting.  I ended up with a project bag with one sock finished in a pair and the other sock just barely cast on the needles.  One sock hiatus had struck as the project had developed second sock syndrome.  It was a top down sock and the ribbing had been completed moving into the pattern on the second sock before the motivation to continue walked off the shop floor.

Come 2013 after my great hiatus in knitting I was sorting round the various project bags that I had in my lounge room work basket only to find the one sock hiatus project bag.  I was rooting round for something that I could just knit while on the go.  I needed a project for Yarndale in Skipton the outing was my belated birthday present from the family.  It would be the first time I have been out of the house in nine months for a non medical trip and I was going to be in the car for more than thirty minutes so something for the drive there and back was most certainly needed to help distract self from back pain.

Knowing me and long drives I need something to keep the hands occupied but simple enough to enable me to gawk out the window at the countryside.  It was a lovely dry crisp Autumnal day.  Everyone seemed to be out and about especially the Vespa club who seemed to have a run to Skipton on as well.  I saw lots of lovely bikes and even a couple of side cars attached to Vespas. There were some lovely paint jobs on some of the vintage models.

With a little jiggery pokery I managed to deconstruct the pattern instructions from the completed sock as the original pattern had been long lost thanks to either the dog or the cat.  I did a lot of knitting and then some tinkling on the second sock.  Given how much worse my rheumatic issues have become over the last couple of years I would love another one or two inches on the cable.  It is just that little bit two short for my required knitting action.  The tight action makes it painful to knit and I can see why I didn't finish this sock that quickly.  

If you don't have fat fingers and can cope with a tight knitting action I think the needles are well made.  There is no catching on the needle to cable join area.  They seemed to wear well with no sign of any metal degradation after almost two years rolled up in a project.  I just could do with an inch if not two to have enough give for my preferred knitting action.  As an idea I think a short pair of sock circular needles are still a very good idea for the commuting sock knitter.  But for me I need about 11 inches so I don't drop stitches and to relieve the tension in my hands.