So it’s back to work with a bump this week. Those who read my previous post will know that I’ve just had 4 days off to do nothing but craft. 4 lovely days with nothing else on the books. No chores, no work and all on my lonesome so no one else to pick up after! Just the kittens and me. Obviously with me home they demanded lots of cuddles and got into mischief. The little one must have been cold, he decided to get completely tangles in my big cardigan. Fool. I wonder whether they make more mischief just because I’m home, or I’m just there to see their usual tendencies.
Of course I had to do some chores, I didn’t manage to get off that easily, but it felt like I was clearing some of the backlog with no extra time spent. I’m all for greater efficiency.
So, how did it go I hear you ask? Actually pretty good! As always I over plan so I never get everything I want done. I must think that because its time off, the fairies will come and help me and I’ll blink and wake up to lots of lovely presents all finished and perfect. They’ll have done the wrapping too. Lovely thought, but unlikely.
So last time I was telling you about my frustration with C1 and the need to get it finished that night or else! Did I get it finished? No. Of course not. There was much grumbling. But it was obviously the first thing I did on Tuesday morning. I thankfully got it finished by lunch time. I do have a tendency to forget to eat when I’m in the house by myself, so this prompted me to go put something in the oven.
But I came back feeling disheartened. I just felt there was too much to do. Everything was a chore, work rather than fun crafting. Usually I tend to prioritise and look at deadlines, but I just couldn’t face it. I decided I should start with doing the things I want to do. Luckily I had an urge. And that urge was to knit. And I had just the project up my sleeve for such an occasion! I started on C7. Thank goodness for C7. It was the kick I needed to get back in gear. It’s been a while since I’ve had a proper knitting session. After my submersion into crochet 11 short months ago (has it only been that long?!?), I haven’t even looked at a set of needles. Like I said I really don’t know where this urge came from. Mostly from the pattern I think. This is one of my favourite patterns of all time. This is my fourth creation from it I think and I love it more every time I do it. It created such a lovely finished product, the pattern is so simple, but so effective. And I get to use my lovely Knit Pro Symfonie wood size 10s. So so expensive, but they’re just a dream to work with. They just glide through your hands and the wool slides off so beautifully with them. Plus I’ve used them a lot so well worth the extra money. Highly recommended.
The other factor was the wool delivery. That perked me up I can tell you.
After opening and squidging this parcel of course I wanted to throw off my old boring projects and play with it. New toy syndrome. I was using the Stylecraft Special XL (fourth from bottom left) in Graphite. I’ve since decided I want some for myself as it’s just beautiful. So soft with the colours so deep. No wonder I wanted to play with it. It comes in 200g balls so plenty left over. It just works up so quickly. Within an hour I’d done most of it. I panicked. It was going too fast! I wanted more time with it. I had to mentally shake myself and remind myself that I had other things to do, and once they were done, I could go back to it.
This really set the formula for the whole week. I’d decided on Buffy as my box set of choice. Reason 1, the episodes are 45 mins instead of an hour, meaning a quicker change of project. I’d decided to test the one project per episode philosophy to keep my brain a bit more active. Reason 2, I don’t actually need to watch it. I’ve seen it so many times, I know most of the words, its there for entertainment, but I wasn’t so engrossed in it that I was focussing on that and not what I was doing. This was very important. This week was for crafting, not for telly. Must be strict with self.
Anyway, on to the boring stuff. I shouldn’t call it boring really. It’s certainly become a lot less boring since I figured out what I was doing. But it is less fun than playing with those lovely needles. I know all these posts sound very cryptic and I do apologise, but you’ll just have to bear with me.
In learning my new skill for D4, I obviously need to practice unaided. However this can lead to bad habits, mostly making my stitches too small. I did the same thing with crochet. History repeating. I was ready to throw the whole project out and start again. Luckily The Master consoled me that it might just need unpicking. You can tell I was in a foul mood because this happened..
Once you know what it is, you’ll understand that this was by far the most sensible thing for me to do. But it does feel petty and childish. Like I should know better. It was so frustrating having to go backwards. Never mind. It saved me half an hour so alls well. The project is now back on track, the right size and more importantly not cutting off any circulation.
Get ready for some more good news.. B2 is finished! For my next time slot I managed to quickly finished it with help from the delivery. So quickly in fact that I made a start on C5. Its now my train project along with D4. Again this is enjoyable. Nice and simple. I don’t have to count, or check a pattern. Can just get lost in the hooking. More of that please.
On to D1. And yes I’ve been putting it off for a while. So much fiddly counting, I never feel like I’ve got the energy for it. But I ploughed on and actually got some sections completed. It’s nice to see it actually take shape. Also after a disastrous trip to B&Q I managed to find the extra supplies I needed for it in Hobby Craft. May still have to get Himself to cut it for me though. Along with power tools I’m not really supposed to use sharp knives. It only ends in an accident.
It was Thursday I think, when I looked up and realised that I was completely surrounded by yarn. I’d unknowingly made a yarn nest for myself with all my projects and all my stash around me. It was probably time to have a sort out. I had another hoard of unstarted projects in the corner too. Not just any corner. The Christmas tree corner. What a perfect excuse to organise!
I started by just putting it in as I found it just to get it out of the way. But that wouldn’t do. Not when I could organise it into lovely colours. I always like to take a picture of the bottom of the box too, just to show the squishedness.
I also realised that during my blanket buying escapades, I’d bought far too much cream and stone. So much so that they had to have separate boxes. Its not a bad thing obviously. I’ll always need these colours for something down the line. But wow, I should have been more organised when buying!
I seem incapable of taking a decent picture without a kitten getting in the way. Troublemakers..
A1 – Complete!
A2 – Complete!
B1 – Complete!
B2 – Complete and waiting to be gifted.
C1 – Complete! Waiting for a suitable frame and travel time. This one is flying a long way away.
C2 – Started, but slow progress
C3 – No progress
C4 – Lets not talk about these..
C5 – Started! Maybe 50% through.
C6 – No progress
C7 – Complete and waiting to be gifted.
D1 – More fiddly bits completed and extra arts supplies purchased.
D2 – No progress – May keep for another time.
D3 – Started! Again about 50% done.
D4 – 2 more rows and then I can decrease!
D5 – No progress – May keep for another time.
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, I love getting this on paper. Metaphorical paper anyway. It’s nice to see lots of progress, even though it never feels like much has been made.
We may have an issue though…
This happened today. I’ve put a bandage on it but it seems to be getting worse. Which is a worry. I’ll have to see how it goes. Hopefully I’ll still be able to craft, or I’ll have to get Himself on the hooks sharpish!
Progress was cut short at the end of the week however. I returned to my old stomping ground over the weekend to help with Santas Grotto. I am obviously biased, but Cardiff Castle does the best grotto in the area. How they manage to decorate it so beautifully I’ll never know. I’ll try and sneak up and get a picture next time I’m there. I was helping the kids with the arts and crafts after they’d been to see the big man. Right up my street really. It involved lots of praise giving, a smattering of musical chairs to fit everyone in, but mostly putting lids back on pens and glue sticks. Not a bad way to earn some money. Plus it meant that I got to see lots of old friends which was wonderful.
It also propelled me further into the Christmas spirit. I’m so early this year. Usually I’m not feeling festive until I embark on my annual reading of the Christmas Carol, but this year I’m weeks and weeks ahead. I’m really enjoying it. It does mean that I’ve been taking lots of pictures of Christmas lights everywhere I go. Makes a change from autumnal trees I guess! It’s so lovely to be able to walk down the high street and look up at the shiny lights. Even the huge carousel that gets in my way every morning looked festively lit in the dark. It always takes me back to my childhood and going late night shopping with my parents. And that’s the best bit about Christmas for me, feeling like I’m a kid again. It’s been harder and harder to feel like that the past couple of years. So I’m so happy that I’m full of Christmas cheer so early.
I’ll leave you with more pictures of the kittens getting in the way and generally being posers.
Much love xxx