Showing posts with label spring. Show all posts
Showing posts with label spring. Show all posts

Saturday, 12 November 2016

Rules for Kids: let Mum pee alone. K, thx.

This image may or may not represent some of what this weeks blog post is about.
Image source unknown, but not mine. K, thx


As a human being and a mother, I don't have many strict rules for my kids.


There's the usual like:

  1. Don't make people dead or hurt.  
  2. Don't lie to Mum.  
  3. Don't do drugs until you're old enough to not be living with Mum and not the really, really bad ones. Which is most of them. And after that don't tell Mum. And do all that while obeying Rule No.2.
  4. Don't be mean to other people or animals. 
  5. Treat everyone with respect. Unless they are being an asshole to you. Then take the high road and find clever ways to get back at them without being an overt asshole (eg don't be racist, sexist, xenophobic, homophobic, etc etc), so they don't realize you've made them look stupid until you're far enough away that they can't hit you. 
  6. Don't disrespect Mums music. Holy Janice Joplin you'll be in trouble if you speak against the mighty Foo Fighters or any band Mum has a tshirt for.
There are a few others which generally confirm to societal norms, or I make up on the spot, but one of the more important ones is:
  1. Unless the kitchen has exploded, ninjas are busting through the front door or you really need to use it yourself, Don't bug Mum while she is on the toilet.

Now I don't know about you but there are certain places where you should just be left in peace. The toilet is No.1 on my list.

In your household, how many times do little people come banging down the door, yelling random things at you through the door, or even try and come in to tell you something while you're in there?

As parents and as human beings aren't we all entitled to a little peace and privacy while we take care of our least attractive bodily functions? We don't have to share EVERYTHING with our families. Sure we should do everything we can for our babies but we don't have to sacrifice ALL OF THE THINGS for our kids. Like time alone on the loo. Who wants to have pairs of little eyes watching you wipe your bum? Seriously Ladies!

Some people are totally ok with leaving the door open and having conversations with any passersby while having a pee. Some couples view this as a sharing part of their relationship.

Not this Amazona.

From a young age, when little people come yelling down the corridor, "MUUUUUUMMMM!!! THE TV ISNT ON/ I WANNA BISCUIT/ CAN MY MATE BRUCE COME OVER? MUMMMM THE CROC ATE MY HOMEWORK!!!!"  while I'm ensconced in the old water closet, I first ask:

"Do you need to go to the toilet?"
"No"
"Is the kitchen on fire?"
"No"
"Are there ninjas busting down the front door?"
"No"
"Are you dying?"
"No"
"Then it can wait till I get out!"

In the Bears previous relationship, he was used to being walked in on while on the throne by all members of the family for any reason at all. And he'd sit there, sigh and answer their questions.

After we started dating, he relayed this information to me.

I looked deep into his lovely green eyes and said, "Babes. I love you and I promise I never, ever, EVER want to walk in while you're on the loo and talk to you about ANYTHING! Your peace in the throne room is guaranteed."

I think that's when he fell in love with me.

So it was startling when the other evening I happened to be in there (let's not go into details Ladies), and Sonofagun No.2 comes thundering down the hallway. For an 7 year old he does an awfully good impression of a herd of elephants.

SOG2: "MUUUUUUMMMMM MUUUUUUUMMMM!!!!!!!"

Amazona says through the toilet door: "What? Is every thing ok? Do you need to wee?"

SOG2:  "No."

Amazona: "Is the kitchen on fire?"

SOG2: "No"

Amazona: "Are there ninjas busting down the front door?"

SOG2: "No"

Amazona: "Are you dying?"

SOG2: "No"

Amazona: "Then it can wait!"

SOG2: "But it's important!!"

Amazona: "What is it?"

SOG2: "I have to tell you there's something bigger than the Milky Way. It's the Universe. And in the Universe is like, stars and other planets, and like they're bigger than Earth. And like, there's kabillions of other Milky Ways and other universes in this bigger thing called the Multiverse. And yeah... Can I have ice cream?" Yep. Hello parenting.

It's so been so wonderful having a growing teenaged Sonofagun No.1. Now he can reach the top cupboard for mummys wine glasses when she needs a Medicinal Moscato.
 
In other news, apparently it's Spring.

But down here in Melbourne, long sunny Spring days have been few and far between #crazymelbourneweatherisgivinglocalsthes**ts


On the occasional sunny day, I've been enjoying the beautiful scent of jasmine, sweet peas and crab apple blossom. I love those scents!

One of my potted roses is also blooming. I seem to have lost the label but I think this is one of the David Austin roses.


I haven't really done anything in the garden this year. It is a bit of a mess. But the regulars keep coming back each year...




This morning the weather was really windy, with clouds threatening rain, and some sun. I decided to take a long walk along the local beach. Despite the wind, it felt good to stretch my legs after a yummy big breakfast of bacon & eggs.

The rain stayed away from our part of the city, while a storm whips up in the middle of Port Phillip Bay (on the right of the photo)




Some beautiful roses from someone's front yard.

I have been steadily working on a project with my Best Bloggy Buddy Vicki from Off the Hook. It definitely has been a challenge to create something with a 100gm skein of variegated yarn, that's for sure! Stay tuned for that one!


Whenever I need to take a break from focussing on one project, I go to my messy tray of bright cottons and whip up a mandoily (mandala/ doily).






I love experimenting with the colour combinations. I am not exactly a colour expert. I don't find it easy to choose palettes (that's why I have a whole Pinterest board devoted to colour combos!)

The challenge with going round and round using different stitches is keeping it even so the circle doesn't get too tight from too few increases, or start to buckle from too many increases.  Alot of frogging happens!

xox
Louise
The Red Haired Amazona

Wednesday, 19 October 2016

Kamila Cardigan- The Stripey Version. A finished project (Designer Ling Ryan)

 
 

I have had a busy few months.

I've had my head down working like a crazy woman on project after project. I haven't really devoted much time to designing new patterns even though I often write ideas down in my pretty notebooks.

Let's just say I've been selfishly crocheting for the sake of crocheting without creating anything new.

This is totally fine and I've had a lot of fun doing it.  I finished my Yarn Bombed Stag, the Bear Cubs Lean Mean Green Blanket, my Icicle Scarf, and now at last my Candy Striped Kamila Cardigan.

This is my 3rd attempt at crocheting a cardigan in the past 12 months. 

The first was a Tunisian crochet cardigan I found in a magazine last winter.  I restarted it so many times, found numerous errors in the pattern which resulted in a couple of emails to the magazine who then published errata that I gave up.

I then tried another pattern I found on Ravelry but was not happy with the way it was shaping up. No errors this time, I just realized it wasn't very flattering for me.

Then I found a new pattern published by a crochet designer called Ling Ryan called the Kamila Cardigan.

The pattern shows a lovely soft grey cotton piece.  I decided to purchase the pattern and give it a go.

This pattern was really easy to follow as Ling includes lots of photos and extra 'explainy' bits.

I have always envied those bright stripey little girls cardigans and jumpers that you often see in the shops, and decided to try making mine like that. 

As I also started it just before the beginning of Spring, I think the cardigans colour choices were a direct result of my environment....

I received these flowers from Bear one day....


I began crocheting in THIS place, under THAT blanket.  Please ignore my manky couch with the extra dodgy padding under the seat cushion. I'm putting off getting new couches until Sonofagun No.2 has grown out of the phase where he smears all of the grossest things on my couch arms.


I was also wearing these socks.


And this was happening in my garden...


So as you can see, I was surrounded by bright, vivid Spring colours everywhere!

And so I began...

I used a selection of Patons 8 ply Cottons and some beautiful Cascade Ultra Pima Cottons which I purchased from the Little Woolie stall at the Australian Sheep & Yarn show.







And at last I finished!
What do you think?


The pattern calls for a row of buttons down the front, but I decided to use a hair pin to fasten the cardigan in the middle. 


Although the bright Hair Pin (bought for me by The Blonde Bombshell in Hong Kong) is lovely, I am concerned it may stretch the fabric, so I am going to look out for the perfect button to put here instead.

I also decided to make my sleeves slightly bell shaped.  Not because I think the pattern should do that but because I like bell sleeves.

I know stripes shouldn't be worn on anyone over a size 10 but haters gonna hate!

The big question is: Have I worn it in PUBLIC????

By Jingo I have!

This photo was taken the very second after I finished sewing the last threads in, before I gave it a light blocking.

I first wore it with jeans to Sonofagun No.2s school concert, and then yesterday it was a slightly chilly day so I wore it to work!

Yes. I wore a bright, candy- striped cotton crochet cardigan into corporate work land. Because that's how I roll people!

If you'd like to have a look at Lings pattern or even purchase it yourself to make one (perhaps in one colour or candy striped!) you can visit her Ravelry page here. 

By the way this isn't a paid endorsement. I don't do those. I just really liked it and bought it and made it and am now sharing with you lovely people!

In other crochety news, my Best Bloggy Buddy in Jolly Ole England, Vicki from Off The Hook sent me a surprise package for my birthday last week.  I don't know if it actually was for my birthday or out of the goodness of her heart because she has a wonderful habit of sending me random pressies.


So the package?  2 balls of Stylecraft 'Merry Go Round' acrylics, a crochet hook with a lovely polymer clay handle which she made herself, and a skein of delicious wool which she also hand dyed!

The hand dyed wool came with a challenge.


Vicki has a very very similar, almost identical skein as well. And she challenged both of us to each create something with our skeins.

1 week to make 1 thing with 1 skein.


1 week! Ye Goddess I panicked! And delved into the Pinterest, and wracked my brain and tried a few things and then after 3 or 4 days wrote to Vicki and said, "Can we pretty please maybe make it a month? Because I'm not so awesome I can pull a new thing outta my brain in a week!" And she agreed and said she also needed a month. Because we are good but we are not THAT good. I mean that would take super human powers of ignoring everything else in life for a whole week. Which as Mothers and Livers of Real Life and Workers in 'Real-Life non-Crochet Boring Jobs' is not humanly possible.


So stay tuned. Have you ever dyed your own yarn?

Check out Vickis blog post and see how she did it!

 xox
Louise
The Red Haired Amazona












T

Friday, 30 September 2016

A Day at the Royal Melbourne Show

We are reaching the end of a nice little 2 week break for the Spring School Holidays.

Normally during school holidays we don't do a lot. No, we do ALOT of nothing but vegging out watching movies and saying we're going to do stuff, then actually doing nothing.

These holidays we actually did some stuff. And I've enjoyed every day I spent with my crazy boys.
In the first week I took a deep breath, dipped deep into my meager savings and took the boys to the Royal Melbourne Show.

When we lived in Canberra, I never got around to taking Sonofagun No.1 to the Canberra Show, and now No.2 is old enough I thought it would be fun to check one out.

Now you know how a day out at these things go... It's long, crowded, shit weather, and you spend all of the dollars on crap while the kids whinge and you wish you never even bothered to battle crowds, fairy floss, outrageously priced rides and showbags.

I decided that was not going to happen.
I went a little crazy and made the choice to go on a week day when light rain was forecast. Crazy right? Not so crazy! 

I figured the crowds may be less. I also set a budget limit, pre-purchased our entry and ride passes online for the better discounts, and told the boys we would pace ourselves and enjoy the day.

The threat of rain and being a weekday meant the crowds were minimal. The best part was that it didn't rain all day! It was even a little sunny!

Here's the thing about Ferris Wheels. They look pretty and the idea of them is fun and romantic...
...but when you're stuck up inside one as it goes higher and higher, all I can think is, "I am in a nasty cage of death which is going to dislodge and I will fall in this death cage with my beloved children where we will all die a painful, horrific death all twisted and mangled in the metal. The kids thought it was 'fun'. Sickos.
 
We met some gorgeous pooches in the Dog Show area. Meet Penny the Boston Terrier!


I was a teensy bit star-struck as I found the Masterchef Building within the showgrounds which is used in the TV show Masterchef Australia which Sonofagun No.2 and I love watching every year.  There were lots of delicious foods in here...
 

How awesome to see the clock which the cameras focus on when judge Matt Preston counts down from and to the left, the gantry that some of the contestants watch the cooking competitions from.


After a day of Ferris Wheels, Showbags and ALL OF THE JUNK FOOD, the boys let me wander around the Art, Craft & Cookery Pavillion. So many wonderful entries! I took a stack of photos, more because I was cruising through at a quick pace and wanted to look at them again later. Would you like to see some?

There were lots of yarn bombed farm animals....

yarnbombing
 
yarnbombing

yarnbombing
 
yarnbombing
 
yarnbombing
 
I loved looking at the entries in the different Crochet Competition Divisions...

 
Crochet sculpture
I loved this entry of little pottery type crocheted vases.

crochet blankets sophies choice
There were quite a few entries of sampler blankets and even two Sophies Choice blankets. Here's one on the left which won 2nd place.


Crochet competition
This beautiful Crocheted Parasol was the 1st Prize Winning entry in the Open section. It was created and designed by Josephine Sciaccitano. Beautiful!
Crochet Sampler Blanket
This was one of my favourites! A sampler blanket which won Best in Show in the Junior section. The young girl named it 'Homework Procrastination'. Darling, as you grow and crochet, you'll realize that there is nothing more enjoyable than crocheting instead of most other things!!!
More from the Junior Section... Aren't the kids who crocheted these entries super clever???
Yarnbombing

You know I love goats. I used to live on a farm with goats. But their eyes look so bloody evil. Goats are cute. Goats eyes make them look like devil spawn. It's one of those confusing crazy Mother Nature things....
No one thought I was strange for posing with a Granny Square covered cow. No one at all.

This big, beautiful amigurumi Hippo won 1st prize in the State Award.


 And just in case you were wondering, yes I did check out non- crochet stuff! Would you like to see some?

These were some of the entries in the Junior Ceramics. I absolutely adored all of these!
It's so hard to photograph through glass. ALL THE DELICIOUSNESS! Preserves. Yummmy!
 Alright people. Prepare yourselves.... Check out the CAKES!!!!


This magnificient cake won 1st prize.


Decorated Alice Cake
There is so much detail, it's like porcelain!

I couldn't see the sign for this gorgeous cake but it seemed to celebrate Totoro and Studio Gibli movies. If you haven't seen it, I thoroughly recommend My Neighbour Totoro.

Not a cake, back to the yarnbombed animals: A Felted Pig! (Sounds like the name of a hipster bar in Brunswick...)




So I spent waaaaay too much money and we ate lots of food that was probably not very good for us, but despite braving the cage of death, it was a fun day!

After seeing all the wonderful entries in the Crochet competition, I'm thinking of entering something in next year. Have you ever entered anything in a show? I'd love to hear your experiences or tips!

 xox
Louise
The Red Haired Amazona