Hello friends! Welcome from Fisherman’s Paradise on the south coast of New South Wales. We’re in the middle of our stay here, moving out next weekend to our long term accommodation while the house is being built. It has been a relaxing week as there is not a lot to do around here but enjoy the peace and quiet. And the boat ramp. We are on a creek that flows into Lake Conjola. The first part of the week was very wet, and the boat ramp was underwater with only the floating jetty visible but with no access. You can see in the photos the difference when the water receded.
This area was in the thick of the fires a few weeks ago and has now been submerged in the floods that happened in the last couple of weeks. You can see the burnt bush in the photos but it’s so heartening to see all the fresh green coming from the black trees that seemed to be just burnt sticks. The first photo shows the view from our back deck with the water flooded into the area between the creek and this row of houses. The second last photo shows the same view with the water receded.
The rains caused a flood at Lake Conjola where many houses that had been through the bushfires now had water through them. To fix this problem, the local council organised to have the lake opened up to the ocean though it was so full it probably would have happened anyway within the next 24 hours. We were lucky to witness this when we did a little scout around the area. As usual, the south coast has some wonderful coastal views. The rain has seen a host of mushrooms popping up around the area but also lots of mosquitos which love me. That has not been as welcome!
As I mentioned, it’s been a relaxing week. You can see my favourite position, usually with knitting but also with some stitching. I went to Wollongong for a day with my beautiful granddaughter and we went for a play at the Discovery Space because the weather dictated indoor activity. You can see her here, off to save the world! My friend Mary and I were able to catch up briefly on Thursday but she came for a visit on Friday and we had a lovely afternoon chatting with our knitting.
And finally, Project New House is continuing nicely, despite the heavy rain we’ve had. You can see here the initial picture, progress with the demolition and, finally, the cleared block. There is only one retaining wall remaining and that is on purpose. The pipes on there will be removed.
This week has been big on finishing. I have essentially finished my Lunae shawl but won’t claim it just yet as I need to add tassels. I think there are 41 tassels to add so they will take a little while! It will be a good opportunity to use all the different colours that are in this project. I worked out early in the piece that I wouldn’t have enough yarn to do the contrasts on the large border so I got a couple of more balls of yarn. Different colours as I wasn’t able to find the same ones. They are all Drover and Classer yarns except for the white which is some off-the-shelf yarn from Lincraft that I had in my stash. I didn’t realise, in the change of colours, that I had actually gone from warm colours to cool colours but I don’t think it has ruined the project. There were lots of ends to sew in and, contrary to my usual practice, I actually sewed them in immediately. Well, it actually took a couple of days but I didn’t leave the shawl languishing for weeks before doing it. And I even blocked it! I’ve often been asked what the benefits of blocking are and this project is a great example. Top pic is unblocked, bottom pic is blocked. The ends may have been straighter if I’d blocked them out beyond the ends of the blocking mats that I used.
Last week I finished the Songbird shawl and I have remembered that it needs tassels. I have blocked it and this is another example of the benefits of blocking. I posted the top left pic last week and you can see how nice and flat it is sitting now. Seems like today may be a tassel making day! At least this one only has 3.
Another finishing episode with my Olilia shawl. It had been waiting for me to sew in the ends which I did finally get done. Another blocked project and it’s looking great. This one doesn’t need tassels so is finished-finished but I claimed it as finished last month. It was quite difficult to take the final photo as I really had to get up high over it for it to fit in the screen. The picot border is still a bit curly as I didn’t have my individual blocking pins to use. I hindsight, I probably could have used normal pins. I have one more project to sew ends in and block (my Outline advent shawl) and will hopefully get that done this week to clear all the backlog of finishing.
Finished Object: My Mina’s Vanilla socks using my Inversibles yarn from Fibernymph Dyeworks are now finished! I’m glad to have these done but won’t be wearing them for a while. With these, I did a German short row heel and I’m not sold on that type of heel. You can see from the photo that the short row section is a bit loose even though I tried to keep the stitches tight while knitting. I think I’ll stick with a heel and gusset in future, though I’ll need to work out which one. I have some leftover yarn so I may be able to get a pair of little ones out of it. I was sitting on the jetty knitting these the other day when the sun came out.
I finally got back to my Tuileries sweater and I’m loving it all over again. This one was put aside mainly because of advent knitting and also because I was figuring out how the yarn blend was going to go. I wanted to start on the sleeves with the yarn I’d used for the yoke. I only have four balls of this MadTosh Merino Light one of a kind and they all have a little different colouring. I’ve been using the helical method to resolve the colour differences and continued this with the sleeves. I did about 6 inches on one sleeve and have now moved that yarn over to the other sleeve and will do the same amount on the other sleeve. I intend to use all four balls but need to ensure I have enough length on the sleeves before finishing the body. The helical knitting means I now have 4 balls attached to the project. I also don’t want to cut the body yarn to do the sleeves so I may just add that yarn from the centre of the balls when I get this sleeve to the same point as the other one. I’m technically on sleeve island and doing a twisted rib so it seems to be going very slowly. Having said that, it’s all I want to knit on at the moment!
The last project I worked on this week is my Garland sweater. I took this and the socks to Wollongong for babysitting. I wanted some easy knitting, and I never only take one project. Just in case something stops me from progressing on one of them, I would have another to work on. I’m still on mindless body stockinette but I’ll have to check how much further I need to do before separating for the sleeves. I don’t think it will be too much longer. It’s looking very crushed as that’s how it is in the plastic bag that’s it’s been stored in. I think it can now progress to a proper project bag.
It’s taken all week but I finally finished putting the rows together on this little minkey quilt. I seemed to get interrupted each time I sat to do this one. It wasn’t too bad putting the rows together but still had to use lots of pins. I’m glad I’ve cleared this off my sewing machine so now I can move onto another project. This will now need to be backed and I think I’ll use some pretty flannelette that I have. It’s in storage so it won’t happen just yet. I don’t have any other minkey fabric and I’d rather not use that as backing anyway because I think it needs something that has some structure, without any stretch.
My Round the Garden quilt came out to play this week. I worked on several more flowers for the inner border. I’m going to need to cut a lot more circles to get this done! This is the sum total of the large circles I had left. This afternoon may be a good time to put these onto the quilt.
Last week I’d started a new book but have put that one aside now for a book that I’ve nominated for our Book Club. The book I chose was The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides. This book won the Goodreads Choice award for 2019 and was reviewed highly by Leigh Sales and Annabel Crabb on their Chat 10 Looks 3 podcast. I hope it’s as good as they say because I really should have read it before nominating it. I didn’t have that much time the last couple of months. I have finished the latest episodes of When Calls the Heart as I had downloaded them from Netflix but I’ve been watching Married at First Sight when it’s shown on Sundays through to Wednesdays. It’s one of those shows that gets you in but wouldn’t be missed if you never watch it. I’ll be so glad when I get back onto wifi next week!
This week will be another relaxing one; even more relaxing as I don’t need to go to Wollongong. I’ll have plenty of time for crafting but I’ll also have some socialising time with breakfast tomorrow morning and a sewing day on Wednesday. I’m also looking forward to a massage and facial tomorrow that I was gifted for my birthday.
Time to get on with the day now so I’ll sign off here. Until next week, I hope you have lots of opportunities for your creative pleasures!