And relax…..

When we arrived at work this morning, pao bumped slightly into the kerb when reversing into a parking space which set me off feeling extremely light-headed, unable to breath for a second which in turn set off something that was just like a panic attack. I was pretty wired – I had a big load of working for an important departmental thing to do today before I could go today and I still had quite a bit to do so I was ready to get going. The breathless and racing heart knocked me out somewhat but I was able to plough through and get as much as I could until the external database crashed this afternoon. I’ve just got some small things to do then it’s done for the moment until some twit decides they want to change something else or we get more staff. So when it got to 4.45 and I was just finishing up, my colleague showing up and wanting to know if I could update some web stuff before I went wasn’t all that welcome. I didn’t mind doing it but I was just utterly exhausted! Thankfully, he took the hint that making me a cup of tea would help matters immensely 😉 This was especially welcome since the webserver seemed to be in a strange state and wasn’t letting me upload the files in the normal way. Luckily, I quickly figured out another solution and got to leave almost an hour later than I’d intended but I know that it is all over and I’m on HOLIDAY!!!!

We headed straight into town after work and I got myself some new pairs of black trousers – I wear black trousers ever such a lot…. Actually make that I wear black such a lot as I am looking down at the black top I’m wearing right now.

I still feel shattered – got lots to do before bed. The taxi is picking us up at quite a civilised hour so if I go to bed a little late that’s still ok. It’s just last minute packing and getting camera etc

Whilst I am waiting for my files to copy across, here are some random shots I took this month. We are having unseasonably warm weather over here.

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I just love the contrast of the pink flowers against that very clear blue sky. I was sitting outside in the quad one lunch time just taking pictures and drinking Cherry Coke (a very rare treat as I know how much sugar there is in one of those bottles).

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An iris which sadly lasted only a couple of days. Irises are probably my favourite flower followed closely by peonies. Purple irises are the best colour but white ones are lovely, too..

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The unseasonably warm weather has had surprise consequences for my tomato plants. They are already flowering but I suspect that it is because they are inside the house and being moved round to keep them happy.

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Cats love boxes. You can spend £20-30 on fancy cat beds but they’d rather have a cardboard box instead. Thankfully, I didn’t buy them a cat bed as they quite liked the one I’d made them out of old pillows and some scrap material that was going cheap at the fabric shop. I am now the proud owner of three sewing machines but I have no idea if any of those work but I’d like to learn how to sew as my mum was always sewing stuff when I was a kid.

Enough with the weary ramblings for tonight, I think 🙂 See you all in just over a week!!!

(ooops, I forgot to move items over – daft me)

Trip-tastic!

pao is much better now and is back at work – thank you so much for your supportiveness and kind wishes – he really appreciates them. Whilst pao was off sick, I tried to distract him from the nasty sickiness by booking our trip to the US and we now have dates 🙂

We’re leaving the UK on Friday 24th August and flying to New York for 6 days with a day trip to Niagara Falls on 28th August. We leave New York on 30th August for Minneapolis and will be staying there for three days until 2nd September when we will be flying to Boston until Saturday 8th September. We’ve booked another day trip on 3rd September to visit Maine – specifically the coastal area as that is somewhere we said we’d love to go when we were in the US last time. So we’re open to recommendations of places to visit and eat etc because we are the atypical tourists 🙂

Can you tell that we haven’t been anywhere out of the UK in the last 5 years since we went to the US last time? Only two days at work and we’re off to Montenegro!

I’m really looking forward to reading about Peevish‘s adventures in the US – the Guggenheim is definitely somewhere we’re going to visit. Also, I wanted to say a big thank you to her because she sent some fantastic Cat Garden seeds last year – thank you Peevish!! 🙂 I noticed that Perdita was taking quite an interest nibbling some tulips which are supposed to be poisonous to cats so thought I ought to grow them some greenery.

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Ariel is certainly enjoying it 🙂 I’ve also sowed some cat nip and cat mint which were also in the packet to grow in the garden and give out in rations!

The Blip

pao had a bit of an eye scare on Friday so he rang the consultant’s secretary and went right down there on his own. He wouldn’t let me come with him even though I wanted to go but it wasn’t so bad because experience has taught me that he would probably be alright. It is scary to think about the possibility of the cornea being rejected so going on holiday to Montenegro on Friday is an interesting prospect but I’m actually ok with it. Every day over the year and a bit that pao has had George, I’ve thanked God that George is safe and happy and pao is ok. So Friday was a blip.

In a way, it was probably better that pao didn’t get me out of work to go with him but it was pretty hard to concentrate wondering if he was ok and where exactly he was as the eye consultant works at a few different hospitals and pao was a bit vague as he was leaving. Thankfully, he had some inflammation and the consultant was able to pull some stitches and give him some eye drops o sort him out.

pao isn’t well at the moment and when he started throwing up yesterday, I knew he was poorly. I think he might have what I had last week as he’s so weak and tired but at least he’s keeping his food down and he even cooked lunch so I could go to the village church. He even fixed up my new desk for me (well, it is new to me – we were given some fantastic second-hand furniture and a third sewing machine – I’ll take some photos once I’ve cleared up all the paperwork I’ve spread over it) and it is brilliant!

I count myself as very lucky and fingers crossed that he recovers quickly.

I started the Birch shawl in a Rowan leaflet and I’m about 18 rows in which is quite a lot of knitting but I realised that I’ve not been careful enough to count properly and it has all gone a bit awry. I’ve now seen this shawl on quite a few blogs and I know that I could bodge it but it would completely spoil the beauty of the project so I’m ripping it out and starting again. ( I see this was a just a practice run for the real thing.) It is such a lovely project and my first major foray into lace – I previously flirted with a lace a little so I’m now going for it (must remember to put in some lifelines!!) I was quite intrigued by the lace wires that she was using so I’m going to have to investigate finding some of those.

Belated Easter Redux

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Good Friday: primrosing in Willow Woods.

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Saturday: Discovering The List and those contentious cockerels. In case you are wondering what The List is, it doesn’t appear on any maps but villagers kept mentioning it during the village meeting. Ivan from Australia – hi Ivan! told me where it was located. Nothing beats a bit of local knowledge.

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Easter Sunday: Going to the service at the village church and wondering if the lamb will burn. Eating Easter cake and biting head off bunny biscuits made by local ladies (evidence of these are on pao’s camera…)

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Easter Monday: Strolling by the Nailbourne. Watching the new neighbours move their furniture in (do click on photos for larger images – excuse window – this was pre-Windolene)

Pretty in Pink and some FOs

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Please, mrspao, knit me another leg

At last something Project Spectrumesque. Only a very brief post today as I’m still feeling a bit grotty.

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Here are some pink roses which have been on my windowsill whilst I was off sick.

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I was rifling through my computer and came across a photo of this pink flower. Don’t ask me what sort of flower it is, it is very pretty.

How about some FOs?

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24 sweater. I love this, it is cozy and warm and nice to wear (luckily, I’m the kind of person who gets cold easily). I’ve worn it out a couple of times now and have had a few compliments – I must be getting better at this knitting business. 🙂

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Pink teddy. (I couldn’t really ignore his pleas for another leg, could I?)

I finished knitting the purple Casablanca sweater last night. It was quite scary as I was rapidly running out of yarn and it was touch and go as to whether I’d need to source another ball of yarn. Luckily, I will have just enough to sew it up. Phew! It is blocking away as I write so will sew it up soon.

I’ve started on a pink triangular lace shawl which should keep me occupied for my holiday in Montenegro. It’s only just over a week til I finish work now 🙂 I wanted something lightweight to pack and that Kidsilk Haze is very light. I’ll probably take some socks too.

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I thought you might like to see that other lesser spotted creature, Monkeh-Pao! 🙂 This was taken just before I got hit by the nasty virus.

Coming back from the black hole

No, not missing, just ill 🙁

I’ve not been at work this week because I’ve been knocked out by a horrible virus. I’m still feeling a bit grotty and felt much worse yesterday than I did when it started on Monday night. I’m not one for taking paracetamols much but I took three lots yesterday and they didn’t seem to get rid of the pain. I think it might be leftovers from my ear infection a few weeks ago as that doesn’t seem to be any better. Even my teeth hurt still from the dental work – aaah – my jaw still hurts when I open my mouth 🙁

But there has been knitting. Lots of knitting. I finished my 24 cardigan (yes, we did watch the whole of series 2 over the Easter break) and a teddy gift for pao’s goddaughter. No photos just yet as I’m going to back to bed in a moment. Now I’m working on the purple Casablanca sweater I started some time ago. After knitting with pure muppet (Patons Whisper in very light pink) on and off (quite a lot off actually since I lost the errata slip and only found it again this week) to make the teddy, it was lovely feeling the slide of the silk mix on the needles.

We also had a great Easter. Between episodes of 24: friends and family members came for several meals, we found The List (thanks, Ivan), baked a cake, went for a Good Friday walk in Willow Woods looking at the beautiful wild primroses, and spent lots of time watching the new neighbours moving in . I can’t believe how quickly they found our little bird house. The food is going down very quickly and they are driving Ariel mad!

Back soon with photos x

Happy Easter!

Wishing you joy, love and lots of yarn or chocolate!

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Me? I got a gift of Noro yarn which I am already knitting up into the cardigan with two left fronts!

Between visitors this weekend, we’re going to try and watch series 2 of 24 🙂 So maybe I’ll manage to finish it before series 3?

Btw, 24 was our Plan B. Our order for Firefly and Serenity hasn’t arrived yet. It does look good so we’re looking forward to those arriving!

I must be feeling unwell, I didn’t knit any socks last month apart from finishing off those Apple Laine ones. I better have a hunt through the stash for something pink, yellow or green so I can participate in Project Spectrum!

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This is the lovely Wensleydale I ordered with my Christmas money from Grandma 🙂 It is lovely and very cuddly! As it is Easter, I’m going to confess that I feel off the Stashalong wagon and bought some Noro when I was ordering some as a gift. So I’m playing my “Get Out of Jail Free” card. Unfortunately (or fortunately), I may well have to end my commitment a little early as we’re probably going to visit the USA at the end of August/early September instead and it would be sheer torture not to go near a yarn shop, hmm?

Wild Wood

We had a great time at Wildwood on Saturday.

Lots of the animals were very sleepy:

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This vixen looked so cat-like in her sleep.

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I think we’ll have to go back when they are awake 🙂 They are so pretty.

But some were awake…

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I’d be a bit terrified if this cat jumped on my lap.

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I thought of Mama Tulip when I saw the deer.

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And of Chris when I saw these little egrets.

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It isn’t often you get to see badger’s up close. You could go underground into their sett and see them doing what badgers do – namely, scratching themselves and rolling around in the dirt.

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Two Left Bodies

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I started the right hand side of the of my Noro cardigan on Friday night as we were returning home from Bluewater in the car and knit away quite merrily through Saturday and Sunday between trips out and gardening. It was only when I was distracted slightly during Dr Who that I realised that I had knit two left sides! So I unpicked the whole of the “right-hand side” to only realise I only ought to have unpicked as far as the ribbing – doh! At that point, I gave up on knitting because I was just too tired to concentrate properly. Before you ask, it is meant to be assymetrical as I have been told so many times that horizontal stripes make you look fatter so I figured if I broke them up it would work better.

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Nevertheless, I love the Kochoran. It is quick to knit with so I’ll hopefully make up for my daft faux pas quickly.

Well, it has been a bumper weekend. Saturday morning saw us up with the blackbirds and off to the garden centre with Grandma, then a spring fair to hunt for books, Wildwood (more on that soon), then to see our friend David in an excellent production of Kiss Me, Kate. Yesterday, pao had a horrible tummy ache when he woke up so we skipped church until that passed but then went on a bumper shopping trip for lots of garden things – we bought masses of plants and some bird feeders then spent quite a bit of time planting and afixing in the afternoon.

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It will be interesting to see what happens to these sweetpeas – I need to affix some netting to the wall for them to scramble up – I don’t know what colour they will be yet. Sweetpeas remind my of my mother-in-law because she brought me my first ever bunch when she came to see us the first time.

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We now have a few hanging baskets and a bird box by the garage so it doesn’t look so bare out there any more. I had lots of plants so I cobbled together an old wire frame and some liner to make an extra one. I don’t think it looks too bad. The ground isn’t particularly good but I’ve dug in some multipurpose compost where I planted new stuff so that should give it a bit of a boost – there were some worms in the bits I turned over so it couldn’t be too bad a spot.

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I thought some spring pots would brighten up our front door area.

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Ariel says she would have helped but she is busy sunbathing.