Hello friends! It’s been a busy week with the house, and finalising a lot of details but still not all done yet! There’s been nothing of interest to report this week apart from a couple of Zoom meetings. There was my usual catch up with my crafting girlfriends on Tuesday night and then, last night, I attended a surprise birthday “Webcake” for my friend Marie who was celebrating a special birthday. You can see some of the faces in the picture below – Marie was very surprised and touched. In a normal time, I know Marie would have had a celebration with all the people who attended the Webcake. I’m sure we’ll get close to back to normal at some point but I’m not expecting that too soon. The weather has turned cold but the birds are still visiting – I only managed to catch this one parrot getting into the last of the flowers. And my little friend Kermit came back to the letterbox for a short visit.
I haven’t had as many opportunities to get out onto the beaches this week due to house visits and then the weather turned quite nasty. There was a lot of rain and wind. Today is very windy but at least the sun is out amongst the storm clouds. I think we’re expecting a lot more rain tonight/tomorrow.
Corona Cooking: It seems I’ve certainly found my cooking mojo again! Last week I showed the pizza dough that was rising – once that was done I portioned it into quarters. The dough sat in these containers in the fridge for a couple of days as per the long fermentation recipe. I made three of them and I think I may have added a bit too much topping but they were very nice. The fourth pizza is on the menu for lunch today as well as some focaccia, which is ready for the oven. I had some very ripe bananas and yoghurt that was almost out of date so I did a search on Taste and found this really nice banana cake. One of these is still in the freezer. Robert has been fishing a bit and has been lucky with snapper. You can see the one we had last night which I cooked whole in my quick Thai green curry. Last but not least, I whipped up a quick pineapple upside-down cake yesterday when my MIL came for lunch. Now I can’t remember which recipe I used which is unfortunate as it was a great recipe.
House Update: We finalised the kitchen, vanity and laundry details this week, with last-minute changes, appliances and accessories. This week’s achievements in the house include the stairs being installed and the wet areas getting sealed. The stairs are out of spotted gum and look great, considering they were mostly covered up and not yet varnished. We probably won’t be able to walk on them for a bit after they are varnished. I wait excitedly for each visit to see what has been done since the last!
New Cast-on: On Sunday, I was inspired by my leftover pile to jump in and cast on the Le Pouf cardigan. This is a free pattern by Beata Jezek of Hedgehog Fibres and had been on my mind for several months. I had intended to use 3 good skeins of fingering weight and over-dye a couple of others until I realised that I had more than enough leftovers for a fade, as you can see below. The original line up (on the deck railing) changed a bit to what is in the tray below. I removed some brownish ones and replaced with grey, speckled and pink. The first photo there is more indicative of the colouring. You can also see my Lunae shawl which I was using as a blanket. I have just about finished the body – yep, this was all I could focus on this week. Try as I might, I couldn’t get the right colours with the photo of the cardigan body, as they are quite darker than what is shown here. I’ll have to take more photos without all the outside light. This was so very potato-chippy as I kept wanting to get to the next fade and then the next, and so on. It wasn’t a portable project after I split for the sleeves as I had to weigh the yarn as I went in order to have enough for the sleeves. It is suggested that 50% will work with the sleeves so I knitted with my scales next to me. The tray photo shows what is left for the sleeves. This project is worked with two strands of fingering which are swapped out one at a time for the marle. I almost finished the body last night while we watched both Men in Black 2 and then 3. It was quite late then and I need to try it on to make the decision.
I did get to knit some more on my Koivua sweater as this project is portable and I did spend some time in the car. The colourwork has been very enjoyable and I only have 10 more colourwork rows and a handful of rows of the main colour left on the yoke before I divide for the sleeves. I’ll be able to finish this section of colourwork with the red yarn and I’ll start the next lot with the orange yarn. I may have more than enough to finish with the orange but I’d like to introduce the caramel as well. Looking at the picture of the sweater and the charts, I think that will work.
There has been only a little progress on my Habitation throw. It came along for the drives as well as I like to share the love on my projects. It’s also a very mindless knit so I can be good company while knitting on it. So far, with this magic knot ball, I’m up to the third of twelve minis which were leftovers of an advent that I dyed up in 2018.
Earlier this week I finished the first bobbin of my Ashford fibre and yesterday I finished the second. The colour is very much like the balcony railing paint which I’ve always thought of as grey; the yarn is just a little bluer. I’ll be doing a traditional 2 ply on this one, probably tomorrow, and then I’ll be able to chain ply the third and final bobbin of my Ixchel fibre.
I didn’t do a lot of sewing this week but I did manage to get the facing and sides sewn up on my sheath dress yesterday. I tried it on this morning and it does fit, though I’m thinking it may need a little shaping. I’ll try it on again and make the adjustments necessary so that I can finish off the facings, seams and hem. It will need to come up a good few inches but I’ll need to be careful with that so that I don’t lose the effect of the kick pleat on the back.
This little dolly now has her very first dress. She hasn’t been quilted yet because I need to sort out her shoes which I think I’ll do as black soft velcro. I think that will be a good idea because it means she’ll be able to have different shoes. I bought some leather patch pieces and I intend to make some boots for her. I have so many ideas for clothes and shoes! Now that the first outfit is done, I have a template to work with – shorts, t-shirt, jumper, party dress, swimmers, pyjamas, slippers, party shoes. The list goes on! I need to finish off her shoes so that I can quilt it and I’ve yet to work out how I’m going to do that. I think it will have to be the old-fashioned way of taping to the floor. Lucky it’s only small as that is a killer on the knees. I don’t have any large tables here that I can clip to and I don’t have my clips either, but I do have masking tape.
Berrima Patchwork has been advertising lots of fabrics on Facebook lately and I just couldn’t resist this beautiful woodland one. In real life, it is a little more vibrant than you can see here and will make a gorgeous little girl dress (or two). It could even be nice as baby boy pants, I think. I’d like to find a good pattern for that so I’ll have a look around.
I’ve been enjoying my latest novel – A Court of Thorns and Roses, though it’s a little more of a romantic novel than I expected. My favourite genre is crime/thriller and I’m pleased that there’s a bit of the thriller in this. I finished watching the second season of After Life that I had downloaded and was left wanting more episodes. It’s a bit risque, absolutely hilarious and very sad, all rolled together. I’m also watching the remaining episodes of Outlander but doing that slowly as it takes nearly 1GB of data to watch each of these Foxtel episodes. I have to be mindful of how much I use – until we move into the house and get back onto wifi!
It’s been a bit stressful this past week with the house build and I’m hoping that it will ease a bit now that the majority of decisions have been made. I hope to get the rest of the decisions out of the way as soon as I can but carpet and lighting are tricky. What I’m really looking forward to is that I get to mind Evie again this week. We’re a little further away than we were last time I minded Evie so it will require an overnight visit. I will also be able to help with the packing as they are moving to a new house the week after.
So that’s my week in a nutshell. I hope you are keeping safe and well and, until next week, I hope you have lots of opportunities for your creative pleasures!