I was literally going round and round in circles this weekend. Or trying to.
It was a weekend of emotions ranging from excitement at starting a new project to frustration, anger and finally contentment. The things I do just to join in with Sian's rather brilliant idea to see if we can all learn something new at the weekend. Having been moderately successful with my first effort at sock making (positive side - I ended up with a wearable pair of socks, negative side - stitch tension was variable to say the least) I was eager to get going on a second pair. Sian makes amazing footwear using a circular needle and it seemed to me that if I too had a circular needle, all my tension issues would be resolved. New wool and a circular needle arrived in the post on Friday and at the beginning of Saturday afternoon I couldn't have been more wrong. Never mind the tension on the needles, the tension inside of me was at breaking point! It looks relatively straightforward on a YouTube video; cast on here, slip stitches there, start knitting. But there was something I was missing. Some vital clue on why I could not see how on earth 64 stitches in a straight line were going to end up in a tubular shape. I watched clip after clip of various video lessons until I realised that the clips I saw went from
- Cast on stitches - to -
- Knit in the round
No one mentioned the fact that there was a '1 ½' stage where you slid the stitches down onto the flexible bit and pulled the loop through so you could then divide the stitches onto both needle ends. Once that penny had dropped I sank back in my chair with relief and got to grips with it. But, just be aware of what a lucky escape you had Sian, I was definitely thinking that the only way to sort it out would be to get on a Ryanair plane and head off to the Emerald Isle to sit round your table and have a cup of coffee and some one to one tuition. I would even have picked up one of those airport sized giant toblerones at Stansted to bring as a thank you. Hey, actually that doesn't sound such a bad idea!
Practice makes perfect
It's mid way through the Easter Holidays for me, and I've spent a lot of time in the kitchen experimenting with new recipes. We have friends coming over for dinner in a couple of weeks time and I wanted to try something new for dessert. My mum used to make the most amazing meringues, and although I've got her old recipe, mine never taste the same as hers did. Looking through my new cookery book I came across these little beauties. Tiny meringues sandwiched together with crème fraiche, lemon curd and crushed raspberries. So having learnt my lesson on Saturday about concentrating properly, and looking at instructions from start to finish rather than skim reading over the bits I think I know, I decided to give them a whirl. This was so much easier than starting a new sock - I think I've found a new favourite dessert!
Quick off the mark
The weather was so glorious on Saturday that we decided the time had come to uncover the summer patio furniture which had been carefully packed away at the end of last year. We wiped it down, brought out the cushions, put a throw over the seats, went indoors to make a coffee to bring out and enjoy it sitting in the garden, (another first for this year) however, look who got there first ...