Why didn’t anybody tell me about this?



Using Alpaca – “Fibre of the Gods”. 1st & 2nd September
Tutor: Jenny Hopper
A 2 day workshop concentrating on exploring the advantages and particular qualities of alpaca fibres so that spinners, felters, weavers, knitters and other users of alpaca can create yarns, fabrics and garments/articles which use the best of alpaca’s features to greatest advantage.
Detailed facts of alpaca fibre varieties, structure, characteristics, qualities and handling will be covered in depth. Comparisons will be made with other fibres, also blends of other fibres together with alpaca and the resultant advantages or disadvantages. Cost $70 per day. ($140) which includes morning tea and lunch.

Fully booked. Damn.

This Sunday

This Sunday is Innominata Concert Day. This concert is “Brilliant Baroque“, and is quite likely to be Mark’s last concert for 2007, since the next concert will be two weeks after Ampersand is due to join us, and it may be a little tricky to get to rehearsals.

I had a sneak preview of the concert on Tuesday night, as I had to bring supper for the rehearsal. For this concert, Innominata are joined by an orchestra, and the music will be quite special. Tickets are about $30, 3pm, Sunday 19 August 2007 Saint Scholastica’s Chapel, Glebe.

Do come – and if you do, come early. I expect this concert will be a sell out.

PS. I knit during the concerts. I know of other knitters who attend, but don’t knit. Feel free to come “out”.

Environmental Concerns

Lots of people have asked whether I am going to use cloth or disposable nappies for Ampersand, and the answer (so far) is that we’re going to try cloth – with a nappy service.

Largely based on a assessment by Choice Magazine, that using a nappy service with cloth nappies is the best environmental choice, due to the economies of scale in laundering the nappies commercially. Apparently, according to this article, you can also get a slight edge over disposables if you wash at home using cooler temperatures and larger loads.

So I’m still thinking cloth nappies (babies in cloth are apparently easier to toilet train), but we will probably seek out 100% biodegradable nappies for outings.

PS. This happened in Granville this morning – actually South Granville, miles away (well, further than I would like to walk anyway) from us. We did look at a few places in South Granville, but then the Merrylands house came up, and we’re thrilled to be here. And not at all threatened by one shooting – especially not after a cabbie was murdered in Epping a few months ago, and just last week a priest was attacked in Marsfield! Granville looks much safer in comparison.


My three day experiment going drug free is a failure.  I was ok for two days, but this morning it came back to bite me in the arse.  I woke early, before Mark’s alarm, and by the time he was ready to leave for work, I was ready to drive him to the station.  All good, until I got home, and barely made it to the bathroom to lose my morning coffee.

I couldn’t keep anything down till about 11am when, still queasy, I ate some salted pretzels (food I thought I was well and truly over – thank goodness I still had some in the house!).  The rest of the day has been spent limping about feeling sorry for myself, and guilty for not getting more done.

I did finally block my major project for the last few months.  If your name is Christine, stop reading now, and please don’t look past the first two pictures.

Imgp0615 2

Here is Custard, having a nap.  He is not dead, honest.  There is something about loppy eared bunnies, when fully relaxed, they tend to look like roadkill.  Extremely cute, but slightly disturbing nonetheless.


Here is the gorgeous cockatoo.  Sometimes known as “Cockalicious”, which if it weren’t so pornographic sounding, might be her permanent moniker.

She has decided that Mark is her “Special Friend”, and was following him around the house on the weekend, rubbing her head against his calves in a rather too affectionate manner.  The bird whisperer has decreed that I should henceforth be the bearer of treats (instead of Mark all the time), so that she shares her affections.  Here she is with her afternoon corn cob.  Just prior to this shot she was holding it in one foot and going nuts, but she is a little camera shy, and dropped the treat.


And here is the big project (iPod included for scale).  It is the first two charts of the Swallowtail Shawl (that has become a bit of a favourite with me), doubled, with a wide moss stitch border.  I did a provisional cast on in the round, and used two “centre” stitches instead of one so that I could knit it on two circs.

The yarn is Patons Jet, a bulky wool/alpaca mix, in a mixture of reds, purples, and a little but of a rusty colour. Pattern modifications are my own, and yes, I do feel a bit clever.

This is to be a blankie for my new neicephew, who is due on the 13th of December, to Mark’s sister Christine, and her husband Matt.  I hope they like it, it was made with much love, and great hopes for a very wanted child.