Byron Bay Markets/Presents for the new baby

Byron markets were on the morning of the wedding, so I got up early and went to check them out. Mostly I bought baby stuff, and a card (for the happy couple) by a local photographer.

These singlets are the ultimate baby souvenir from Byron, so of course I had to get a couple (the kid may turn into a hippy even if we shelter him/her from the evil influence of tie-die)…


And the socks….. $5 a pair. Pretty reasonable until you consider that EVERY DAMN STITCH IS HAND KNIT!!!!!!!!!!!

I bought 4 pairs. Would have bought more but the money ran out, and the bank of Mark wasn’t as impressed as I was.


P.S. Have decided not to feel sorry for myself. It may not work, but it’s the only strategy I have right now.



Just when I thought it was safe to talk to people again, I was loosing sight of my deep despair, and my Dad has to have surgery again. “No problem”, says our plucky heroine, “he’ll be right as rain in no time, and it surely won’t be cancer”. I was given flowers by a lovely man, good Aussie “Premium Non Vintage Cuvée” by a lovely woman. I asked my boss if I could work part time (so far so good), Custard bunny seems to be keeping up his weight (if not actually gaining a whole lot), and life in general doesn’t suck as much as it could. I am even making good progress on another Swallowtail Shawl for someone who could possibly read this blog, so I have to be a little ‘neaky.

And now two more crappy things have happened to my nearest and dearest. My great aunt Patsy (George‘s sister, is dying. And Marguerite, my mother’s sister broke her pelvis in a cycling incident. I told her that knitting is a much less risky sport, but she has this thing about keeping fit.

Mag is in surgery now, and I waiting to hear if she is up for visitors tonight.

P.S. I have pictures of the bears face, but they aren’t pretty. I have sent them to the local koala rescue service, along with details about where I saw him, but his eyes were in a pretty sad state – not for the weak of stomach. I will get around to posting holiday pics very soon, there are some wildlife shots that I can show people who have delicate digestion.

Champagne, and flowers – on the same day!

Today I was given a gorgeous bunch of orange tulips, and a bottle of Jansz champagne, from two different customers. I feel special.

On the down side, Dad has to have surgery again. His allergist referred him to an ear, nose and throat specialist, who found a lump. It’s unlikely to be malignant, but it has to come out just in case.

Feeling slightly brighter though – thanks everyone for your kind words.


A Knitting Post!

Check out this excellent short row heel tutorial.

Though I prefer the fit (so far) of top down, proper heel flap socks, I much prefer to knit toe up. Something about the logic of knitting in the same direction the sock goes on the foot, that I can shape as I go, trying it on, and I’ll never run out of yarn at a crucial moment. Unfortunately, I have never had the foggiest idea how to follow the instructions in Wendy’s Generic Toe Up Sock Pattern.

Now I feel confident to start again on my Wildfoote socks with the yarn I got from the excellent Yarns Online.

Furry People

BBC News has published an article that discusses the Question “Are chimps people?”. At Chez Lara and Mark (AKA “Club Denistone”), I’ve been referring to the non-human members of the household as “furry people” for quite some time, and it is natural for me to think of them as differently abled, and differently motivated people. They are definitely part of our little family, their comfort is as important to me as my own – more so, because they rely on me utterly for everything they have. In a way, their reliance on me makes the obligation more important than other concerns, and I try to make sure they have everyhting they need for happy, furry little lives.

But are they PEOPLE? Hmmmm…..

They are individuals. They learn. They communicate. They have emotions. None of this I doubt – but what is it that defines personhood? I think it is a mistake to consider personhood in terms of worth, or value (as in “it’s not worth the money for life saving surgery, it’s only a rabbit”), but this is often thrown at me when strangers find out how much I care for my creatures. I have been told more than once that I am a bad person because I have spent money on vet care instead of … (whatever it is they think is more worthy).

So lacking a concrete definition of what a person is, I am inclined to err on the side of caution, and treat them with respect. Ultimately, I don’t need a definition. Your mileage may vary. 😉

Thanks to Kris for this link. Imitation is sincere flattery;)

An Explanation

I am a vegetarian. I am lactose intolerant, and I don’t really like eggs, but I don’t call myself a vegan. Aiming in that direction, but still a long way from pious self righteousness. But of course that doesn’t stop me from comming across as a sanctimonious prat at times.

If you’ve met me, you know that I can be a wee bit forcefull. I am large and I am bolshi. And I don’t have a lot of filters between what I think, and what comes out of my flapping jaws.

So it’s not great surprise that I offended a dear friend by asking her not to bring meat into my house. More specifically, to eat outside. And two years later, she’s still not talking to me. She hasn’t even told me what she is upset about – I had to find out third hand.

I love her, and her kids to distraction, and I would never knowingly do anything to hurt her. Obviously I did, and I regret that deeply, but I am left with no recourse. She won’t engage with me, so I can’t apologise.

I don’t want meat in my house. The only times I have ever had dead animals in this house is when we have had a creature die suddenly and they have needed refrigeration before being taken to the vet for a necropsy the next day. And once when my very frail grandfather ate his chinese take-away on my couch. I didn’t have the heart to throw him out, but I thought I was close enough to my friend that she would understand.

So now I am the bad guy. I hate it. I like to think of myself as an ethical person, but this is a situation where I have clearly done a mean thing. It’s a mean thing that I feel strongly about – and it’s also a cultural thing. Twenty years ago it was ok to smoke in private homes, even if they were non-smokers, but now we wouldn’t dream of lighting up inside, even if we were invited to.

Apart from the fact that I am uncomfortable with having meat in the house, we share our space with vegetarian creatures – rabbits that freak out at the merest scent of death, and cooked meat really upsets them. I know this because I haven’t always been a vegetarian, and when I moved to this house I had been veggo for a year or so – and I wanted this house to be a comfortable place for them as well as Mark and I.

So here I am, stuck in the middle of a big grey area, with no horizon in sight. And I’m miserable.

Here is a picture of a duck

Mark and I heard a series of Mash ups on Triple J, and went looking for where we could purchase the music. We found him at Home for the Def. Mark enclosed what he hoped was enough postage, but apparently we sent too much. The artist sent us an extra CD, and a lovely note. At the end of the note, there was a drawing of a Duck.

That’s excellent service. 😉

If you’d like to hear Eminem mixed with Benny Hill, want to support local artists, and like ducks, send him money.

If not, please enjoy this picture of a duck. He lives with my friends J’aimee and Ossie, and their three adorable children.


More holiday pictures later.