29 September 2011

Melbourne Weather

I actually really love Melbourne.

Whenever I go to a city without trams, I get really angry.  How's a person supposed to get around?  Seriously!

I don't mind that we can have four seasons in one day.  A recent representation of Melbourne included the description:  jacket on, jacket off, jacket on.  Perfect.

How crazy were last night's storms?  I could see lightning from my office window at about 4 pm, it was spectacular. 



28 September 2011

WIP! Holey moley, I'm a knitter...

...well, maybe just for a little while.  To be honest, I'm not really enjoying it.

I am making a Gauzy Gathers Scarf with yarn I won in a blog giveaway by the designer, Jorth!

It's insanely fiddly.  I have to worry about 42 loops!!!  With crochet there is only one loop to worry about.  So the margin for error is insane.  I'm having problems with tension, the scarf spins around the needle like I don't know what. 

I made one mistake so far.  I had 43 loops at one stage.  I knit that sucker together with another stitch.  I haven't dropeed any stitches yet.  touch wood.  I'm pretty sure my problems do not stem from my choice of pattern, I think it's a fairly basic combination of stitches.  Perhaps this yarn is difficulat to work with?  I like the fuzziness of it.  And my scarf is only going to weigh 25g!  That's pretty spiff.

I have no idea how anyone can find knitting easy, speedy, or enjoyable.  I've attempted knitting before, but I never got past garter stitch.  However, I thought now I am much older and wiser, and have become much more knowledgeable in the ways of yarn, surely there is a knitter inside me.  I am beginning to question that assumption.  Plus I really want to make a Doctor Who scarf

It wasn't like this with the hook.  Within a couple of days of picking up the hook I was whipping up grannies quick as a flash.  I never felt this anxiety or annoyance or frustration when learning to crochet.  This is a hard slog and if I don't feel better by the end of the scarf, the needles can get bent.  Literally.  I will bend them.

Me and kntting, we just dont gel.

Anyways, I finally finished the third installment of A Song of Ice and Fire during the week, so now I am treating myself by re-reading the first installment of Skulduggery Pleasant.
Random internet picture for your enjoyment.  A Storm of Swords!  (via)
I just can't help myself.  I finished the 6th book a couple of weeks ago, and I've been irked because my memory is terrible and I don't remember the events leading up to Death Bringer.
I just like skeletons, OK?
BUT there is a new twist!  As some of you may already know, I currently have a penchant for audio books, so I am listening to Skulduggery Pleasant.  It is so far a wonderful experience!  It is read by Rupert Degas (who looks annoyingly familiar but I can't place him) who does all the lovely Irish accents, so it just brings the book to life!  Not that I don't do a fine job with my own imagination thankyouverymuch, but listening to someone else's interpretation of Skulduggery's voice is a treat!  (It's pretty deep in case you were wondering).  I think some of my fave parts of the entire series is the dialogue between Stephanie and Skulduggery in book 1:

Stephanie Edgley: Mr Pleasant, you're a skeleton.
Skulduggery Pleasant: Ah, yes, back to the crux of the matter. Yes. I am, as you say, a skeleton. I have been one for a few years now.
Stephanie Edgley: Am I going mad?
Skulduggery Pleasant: I hope not.
Stephanie Edgley: So you're real? You actually exist?
Skulduggery Pleasant:: Presumably.
Stephanie Edgley: You mean you're not sure if you exist or not?
Skulduggery Pleasant: I'm fairly certain. I mean, I could be wrong, I could be some ghastly hllucination, a figment of my imagination.
Stephanie Edgley: You might be a figment of your own imagination?
Skulduggery Pleasant:: Stranger things have happened. And do, with alarming regularity.

As per usual, more WIPs at Tami's Amis, and yarn along at Small Things.


21 September 2011

WIP - wowza!


Current bead count:  546

Woooowwwww..  I've only added 2 inches to the size of my dahlia, but have almost doubled the amount of beads I'd added since last time.  It's slow going, but I actually find it quite therapeutic.  It's also portable, so that means this project continues to be public transport friendly.  It still looks the same as last time, so I've gone for a more arty shot.
ooo la la

I'm technically listening to this... love audio books, I hate sacrificing my precious crochet time during my morning commute, so having some old guy read to me has been very useful.  It does get a bit, shall we say awkward when it gets a bit... sexy.  Listening to some elderly gentlemen describe these scenes... It's a bit creepy.  
Overshadowed by the awesomeness of audiobooks is the fact that these books... man, they are a marathon.  A good friend of mine aptly described the reading experience as needing to take a xanex every time you picked it up.  *Spoilers so look away if you don't want to know* Can any more bad shit happen?  Seriously, Rob and Catlyn?  *sob* Dany banishing Mormont?  booo!  Tyrion about to get his head chopped off?  Aye carumba!  And it just goes on and on and on and on... and it moves so slowly.  

However, once I start something I stick with it, so I'll keep going.  But after this installment I am going to treat myself with something much more fun!  Any suggestions?

Also, just because I wanted to show of, and it IS a book after all.... LOOK WHAT I MANAGED TO PICK UP!  Soo exciting!  Me and my sisters would just spend hours looking at this and trying to decide what cake to ask mum for on our birthday.   Between the three of us girls, my made us the bunny, minnie and mickey mouse, the pig... I'm sure there were others!  It would be lovely to hear about your memories relating to this book.

Women's weekly have omitted 4 of the cakes though, which include mickey and minnie, for copyright purposes... for the life of me I can't work out which were the other two.  I think my mum's original version of this has long since disintegrated!

Check out Tami's Amis for more WIPs and Small Things for this week's yarn along. 

20 September 2011

Things? Hello! What kind of things? Interesting things? I love things. Ask anyone.

As per usual, I've seen some awesome things around the internet, and wanted to share.

Granny square biker jacket spotted by Crochet Concupiscence

Epic mosaic garden shed of epicness.

Doctor Who fabric!
I really want to try my hand at sewing again and make a cute skirt
de fil en aiguille (which means one thing leading to another) spotted these gorgeous crochet wire creations:
Purple flower earrings by Yoola
I've just learned the name Patricia Kristoffersen.  She has designed lovely doilies! (This blog is called my grandmotherly ways.... remember?) I haven't made a doily yet but I might just have to try one of these!
Hooked on Hobbies is making this far out doily

What a pretty blanket!

Sugar Skull embroidery pattern from Polka and Bloom

Jane and Michael from A Stash Addicts Ramblings are amazingly crafty!  They also have an etsy shop!
Pin cushion teacups!
Decoupaged table legs using fabric!
Tutorial for an epic patchwork crochet quilt from The Adventures of the Gingerbread Lady.  I'd love to make one.. and in small steps it might be achievable... big projects do scare me though!  I have a granny square afghan in hibernation which is making me sooo guilty.......
[The title of my post, btw, is The Doctor, Season 6, episode 11 - 'The God Complex".  I can't believe there are only two episodes this season to go!]

16 September 2011

FO! Rainbow Mandala

As foreshadowed, I made a rainbow mandala to match my tea cozy.  It's so super happy!

5 points if you can tell what's on that towel...
My new mandala lives in my office with my teapot.  It's made such a differenct to the vibe of the place!

I think I need to re-do the teapot cozy now because I didn't use all the colours.  It needs to match!!

It is another Alice Best pattern, Ravelled here

More FOs at Tami's Amis!

14 September 2011

WIP and teenage fiction.


My aran toggle wrap is doing quite nicely, even if slowly.  Sorry, it's not very interesting to look at, it's not very interesting to work on either, hence the dawdling.
I've done the shaping around the neck, and now I'm just repeating the whole thing, but in reverse.  ho hum.

The pattern is not very logical.  With the right side shaping you work directly onto the work, but the left side you are supposed to make separate and stitch on.  I just worked it straight onto the work, so it's seamless.  Once I've completed this monster I'll do a proper summary of all my mods.

Yarn Along

So technically I am not currently reading this, but it was so awesome I wanted to share anyway.  Also, the book actually mentions crocheting, the context of which I found hilarious:
Apparently serial-killing is a feasible alternative to crocheting!
Anyway... I just finished the latest Skullduggery Pleasant book.

Before you dismiss it as a children's book, I will tell you some of the reasons why I like it.

Reason No 1.  The author is awesome.

Last year, I went to an author book signing for the Dark Days tour. It was an odd experience. You had to register your attendance.  The lady on the phone said to me that the event was targeted towards 7-12 year olds.  I was 26 at the time.  'Can I still come please?'.  Getting to the event, we all got a little goodie bag.  The best item in it was a Dark Days t-shirt.  It was literally a size 4.  For a child *sigh*

The event totally was for children, there were a bunch of games, but when  Derek Landy came out to do his author spiel and answered questions, I was super impressed by how articulate and engaging he was.  Ok, I probably shouldnt have been surprised, words are his trade after all, but he was so interesting even though he writes supposed children's books.

At the time, there were talks about the series being made into a movie.  This has since fallen through.  Some of the kids asked questions about it.  In response, Landy compared getting a movie made with the film Battle RoyaleBattle Royale is a nutso movie about children forced to kill each other and is certainly not suitable for young audiences.   Yet Landy, conversationally, spoke about the cut-throat world of hollywood with reference to Battle Royale.

One point for Landy.

Then, there was the acutal book signing.  When it was my turn, Landy signed his name and drew a little skull.

'And this is Skullduggery' he said. 

I replied, 'Is that how he will look in the movie?'

[Landy chuckles] 'If we can get the special effects right!'  (OMG I made Derek Landy laugh.  One point for me also.)

Another point for Landy. 

On his blog, Landy calls himself 'the golden god', and his fans his 'Minions'.

Another point for Landy.

Reason No 2 - Skullduggery Pleasant

The title character is a skeleton detective sorcerer with impeccable dress sense who drives a Bentley.  He's also sarcastic, a total smart ass, and extremely narcissistic in a totally loveable way.  I will illustrate with one of my favourite quotes from the new book:

Skullduggery:  That would have been my first clue.
Reason No 3 - it is better than HP

I am going to lose some friends here.... the HP fandom is enormous.  People get pretty obsessed about it.  I personally lost interest in HP after the fourth book.  I found JK's stories to be stagnant and gratuitous.  The title character himself is annoyingSO whiney.  'Boo hoo poor me my parents died'.  Uggh!  Get over it!  I also found the books unoriginal and derivative.  (Go and read some Terry Pratchett and then come and talk to me about a good story).

In many ways, SP is very similar to HP.  Young protagonist drawn into a secret magical world the mortals (aka muggles) don't know about.  But the characters are so much more bad ass.  And clever.  And funny.  And memorable. And the bad stuff that happens is actually terrible bad stuff and you can understand why the characters are motivated to do what they're doing.  The stories move along at a cracking pace, and I always stay up far too late to get through that extra chapter...

I personally have a bit of a penchant for teenage fiction, so I found the SP world totally engaging.  Adult books can be soo boring and serious.

Today I'm linking my post to Yarn along and Tami's Amis.  Check 'em out for more yarn and literary delights!

09 September 2011

FO! I'm a little teapot [cozy].

Well, not really.  I do not consider myself short, but am possibly a bit stout.

Teapot cozies!  So deliciously grandmotherly.  I think mine is swish-o!  I made it to spruce up the office a bit.

When I was feeling down one day, I googled 'how can I be happy' (seriously, I'm not joking).  I read something that said surround yourself with bright colours!  Even though I'm feeling much better generally, I don't think it could hurt to have a bit more colour around :)
'scuse my enormous pile of junk in the background.
Doesn't it just make you want to drink copious amounts of rainbow tea?

Ravelled here.

I think I could have made it a bit longer, my teapot's bum is showing.  Oh well, you shouldn't be looking at its bum in the first place. 

The pattern is by Alice from Crochet with Raymond.  She makes such lovely things.  I have already made one of her granny cowls, and I am nearly finished a  mandala to match my happy teapot.

Check out some more FOs at Tami's Amis.
click me

07 September 2011

WIP: beady beads

Current Bead Count:  266

Very slow progress with my dahlia.  Although looking at the bead count, whoa!  Better than I thought, but so so much to go!

I am going to try to do a bit of a pattern with the beads, so I started with adding them to all 5 trebles of the shell, the next row I've added them to the 1st, 3rd and 5th trebles of the shell, and the next row I will add them to the 3rd treble only.  Then I will reverse the process, increasing the amount of beads per row.  They are so tiny, barely noticeable.  Thank goodness for close up photography!

Last week, Calophi asked when I am putting the beads on the stitches.  I slip the bead onto the stitch when I have 3 loops on the hook (so after yo, draw a loop through), then I complete the treble as per usual.  So the beads are at the bottom of the stitch.  I hope they stay where they're told! 

The 'body' of the shawl currently measures 12".  It needs to be 21" before I start the edging, and the rows are only going to get longer....

oooOOoooo so artistic! LOL
Check out more WIPs at Tami's Amis!

06 September 2011


As if I didn't already love NPH enough, he's gone and done this:
Your fist has touched my heart.

I knew about this episode for so so long, and it did not disappoint!  The perfect amount of cuteness and silliness.  LOL @ Ice King!  (How awesome is Adventure Time btw?  I just love it.  It's my current fave cartoon.  How awesome are cartoons btw....?)

I love that whatever NPH is in these days, he sings!  Even in HIMYM (which I am pretty addicted to... I must say)! (He is also a magician, which is doubly awesome)

I'm very sad that Doogie Howser is not available on DVD.  *shakes fist at DVD gods for not providing me with additional NPH goodies to watch*

Cute lil baby NPH anyone?
And of course, there's Dr Horrible.  I. Love. Dr. Horrible.  I've seen it more times than I probably should admit.  There are too many reasons why Dr Horrible is awesome.  The music, Nathan Fillion, Joss Whedon, Bad Horse.... it goes on.  Check it out if you haven't already.
via (this picture is not representative of Dr Horrible, but NPH is so totally cute here)
And, I found out recently, that he was in RENT.  My absolute all time favorite musical.  I've listened to the soundtrack so many times, it's just lovely music.

So anyways... NPH is awesome. 

Generally, I'm pretty addicted to TV and movies.  I like awesome things that aren't too serious, take the piss out of itself/themself or their genre, and is just fun.  When it comes to my entertainment, I really don't like to think too much.

Any suggestions for me?

03 September 2011

New Growth

How cool is it to watch things grow that you have planted??

Sweet Peas

[Blurry] Basil
And some of my other lovelies...
My cyclamen that refuses to die.
Lovely lavender.