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Name: knitabulous
Location: Mt Keira, New South Wales, Australia

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Ringsurf
Knitting Alone
Knitspot Morning Glory Wrap Frost Flowers and Leaves Pomatomus Socks One Day
Sarcelle A different Phildar swing jacket - No 23A Donyale Socks

Does Chocolate make you sick?

30 Sep 2007

I invite you to read the whole story here.


I guess my initial reaction was to say that if you're naiive enough to post pictures of your children on the internet then you shouldn't be suprised that these images might be stolen or misused. It might come as a shock to the Christian homeschooling SAHM who knits or other Normal People who Blog - but the internet is full of kiddy porn and fetishists.

Then on the other hand, passive pc shit like that doesn't do a thing to help the situation. And it doesn't make it any less wrong either.

Anyway, this post is just about me promoting a cause I think is worthwhile, even though I know it's only a drop in the ocean.

I must admit I find the idea of copying someone's knitting or creative images outrageous but thought this crusade was a bit cliche. Luckily I'm self-aware enough to question myself and realise that this reaction was completely FITH.

Are we ever satisfied?

28 Sep 2007



I don't usually disclose every purchase I make, yarnwise or otherwise - but when a stash enhancement of such magnitude into your possession, I thought it rude not to share. (From left: jaggerspun wool laceweight in lava, jaggerspun zephyr in fuschia, jaggerspun wool fingering in hollyberry, columbine and wisteria. Lounging in front are three skeins of cashmere. It's not all mine, although I wish it were.)


What else? I've been dyeing yarn up in rhubarb and custard colours and knitting a morning glory wrap with it. I really wish I'd made it a bit wider, as I wanted it to be as substantial as the pattern suggests. However, the weight is just around fingering, not DK, so it came out a bit on the narrow side. Are we ever satisfied?

Take a look at the eats roots shoots and leaves progress - much resemblance to a bowl of two minute noodles. Getting a few rounds done a night - am in the second of seven twelve round repeats where each repeat is 136 stitches longer than the previous, this isn't going to be finished in a hurry by any means.

And last but not least, we bought a new sofa. It's so squishy and soft and smells like leather. Love it.



Of course now I need a new coffee table. Once again, are we ever satisfied?

And it isn't even my dog

26 Sep 2007


About and hour after I took this photo my mum and I held her head and sobbed while the vet injected her and put her to sleep. Then we brought her home in a bag to be buried in the garden.

Goodbye Roxie - a visit to mum and dad's won't be the same again for any of us.

God only knows what I'm going to tell the kids when they find out.

Not a good day.

Pass it on ..

23 Sep 2007

Now there's a thought -

BLOGGING WITHOUT OBLIGATION



WHY?

* Because sometimes less is more.

* Because they are probably not going to inscribe your stat, link and comment numbers on your tombstone.

(I picked the two most salient points from the well-written list and stole them. Go and read the post.)

Oops

22 Sep 2007

You Are 50% Evil

You are evil, but you haven't yet mastered the dark side.
Fear not though - you are on your way to world domination.
How Evil Are You?


Of course the questionnaire didn't say that doing these things for the blog is mindless and a cop out.

I've been knitting - so be patient.

Looking after yourself

17 Sep 2007



Thursday I spent the day with Donna and Lara at twinkies house. Thanks for the pikelets DAVID! It was a wonderful day, even if I had to break 140km/h on the way home to get to the kids in time.

Friday dawned bright and crisp (I'll assume this, as I wasn't awake to see it) - I spent the morning with my beautiful niece.

As I got ready to drive to Sydney I had a mild panic attack - OMG what will Lara think of me if she sees me in the same outfit two days in a row? (OK the game's up you guys - I'm not Australia's Paris Hilton). While I was getting dressed I had another mild panic attack (surely I'm not really this FAT??!!) but every fat woman knows you can hide fat behind too much makeup and tacky gel nails. And knitting needles for that matter - but that's another story.

After managing to get myself out of the house and into the car, the journey north to the big smoke was very pleasant indeed. The tank was full, there was cash in the wallet, the spring sun was in full force, the stereo was turned up and I sang at the top of my voice the whole way. It was one of those drives where the red lights stayed green and the weather was so beautiful - I had a fleeting fantasty of just keeping on going and not looking back...


I met Nicky Epstein at Tapestry Craft, and a lovely group of Sydney knitters - many of whom I have tracked down and otherwise met on ravelry. There were two older guild members in the crowd who were so incredibly rude to Nicky - I was mortified embarrassed - but she handled it with great finesse. I bet it's an international phenomenon - the rude and selfish old knitting 'expert'.

I came away with a signed copy of her new felting book and a greater appreciation of her as both a designer and a person - she has a wonderful engaging personality and a very sharp wit - a pleasure to listen to.

I drove straight back to my sister's new house where she was unpacking and helped her unpack boxes till about 10:30pm. Then I went home and had a few wines with the husband. I had only eaten once all day.

The next day I was struck with a modern day irony of life. I had fed my body on Friday the following: Caffeine (in two forms), Asian takeaway including white rice, sugar, four cigarettes (sshh - nobobdy saw me), one champagne and almost a bottle of white wine.

My hair on the other hand had enjoyed: strengthening amino-acid proteins designed to protect it, green tea antioxidants, moisturising agents including marshmallow root extracts, silk proteins, SPF15 and silicone glossing agents.

I guess that's called looking after yourself?

Mass Hysteria

14 Sep 2007

I've been joining things!

I joined this, to get me out of the safety of knitting lace over and over.




And this.



(A risk, since the MS3 went from such a promising start to such a grotesque ending - should have been called quasimodo's dream or even the ugly duckling rather than swan lake)


And this. Which ended up probably not being my sort of group.


I'd like to join this, but I'd be merely a spectator. I've been enjoying discovering the lovely lace patterns of Herbert Niebling - especially the HYRNA whatsername. It's incredible how, because of him, old copies of Burda have been going on ebay for around a hundred USD. I like this group, although it's unlikely that I'll ever be lucky enough to see one of his patterns in the flesh. That is, unless they re-print them. Which they're trying to make happen here.

In addition to joining things, I've been buying things.

I bought the Morning Glory Wrap pattern.

And the new sweaterbabe pattern for a cable and lace kimono (like I'll ever knit that!)

I also made the grave mistake of clicking a link I found on the new autumn knitty (best one for a while I think) - and I found this.

Don't look at the price. But a lace club, like the Rocking Socks Club - I just don't think I can resist!

I really must update those sidebars soon.

Perfection - a flawed opinion

12 Sep 2007

I read an article recently about society's obsession with perfection, and how bad/stupid/pointless/impossible it is. The article (which was a bit of a beat up) went on to say that we're obsessed with perfect houses, so much so we don't let our kids have toys in their rooms for fear it will upset the decor. We are such perfectionists about our appearance we have to eliminate all flaws by any means. If our jobs aren't perfect we stress out and feel inadequate. If it isn't perfect we either throw it out (including relationships) or buy a better one. If our kids don't make the bed right we re-do it.

I guess the article may have been directed at a very small demographic, because I have to say I only know one perfectionist - and she doesn't knit. And she's an heiress.

Then I read on a blog somewhere (can't remember who but it was an American woman with a few kids and a rural property who knits - gee that could be any one of hundreds!) and she was saying that she feels sorry for all those young bloggers out there blogging about the struggle to find perfection in craft, in parenting, in their homes and relationships, effectively trying to style their entire lives as though they were a magazine spread. She said she still likes to pop in and see what they're up to but since her life has changed since having her children she finds them more and more irrelevent - and to her, pointless.

Anyhow it got me thinking about the motivation of the writers of the two above pieces and a couple of bits and pieces and I have say that I tend to disagree with both of them. Whilst it may be true that 'a spotless home is the sign of a boring woman' (common office poster) in some cases, it might also be true that 'behind every dirty home is a lazy sloth who doesn't care about cleanliness', in some cases. I personally like the idea of people striving for something, it's not up to me to judge whether it's worthwhile or not. Higher education, ecologically conscious living, good interior design, great clothes, whatever - ambition and hard work aren't dirty words. Even to the children. In the sage words of that kid on the Incredibles - if we give everybody superpowers and everyone is super then none of us will be.

I knitted a piece of lace while I ruminated about such matters of great import. It is the long-yearned for Frost Flowers and Leaves from A Gathering of Lace (hereafter to be known as Eats Roots Shoots and leaves) - I want to enter this in the Royal Easter Show next year. As I rounded the laps I found myself fudging it a little to get the stitches right. After a few of these I decided I had fudged too many times and that I would not be submitting it as an entry. It wasn't perfect. I really didn't want to frog it as I was almost done with a full repeat of the first frost flower.

So, I pressed on. And blocked what must now be considered the massive swatch. And, as you can see, even though I thought I was wrong yesterday I must have been mistaken.




So I went out and bought a cushion in a nice colour and stitched it on the front. I'm going to the evil craft chain tomorrow to get some iron on stuff and a nice grosgrain or velvet ribbon to trim the edges. I'm hoping it can be the beginning of a lace swatch collection of cushions piled up on my bed.

I will also say that will be the LAST time I block lace without blocking wires. I only now have to decide where to get them from.



On other matters of perfection and the struggle to achieve it:

Storm got his first haircut. So did I for that matter, but mine is far from perfect.



He really is the cutest dog.

SYDNEY KNITTERS: I am going to see Nicky Epstein at Tapestry Craft at 3:30pm on Friday. Anybody else going?

All veges, all the time

10 Sep 2007

I'm trying on a new attitude - adopted somewhat from that tool Jamie Oliver - with his filthy little stubby fingers and stupid lisp.

This spring and summer, we're going to try not to consider our vegetables to be the accompaniment - the meal being the meat or the starch. We're going to consider the vegetable to be the meal, occasionally eschewing the starch and the meat altogether.


Whilst adopting this, I've noticed something about the kids eating behaviour that suprises me, but I love love love. It appears that my kids like their veges! They might be so-so at school, ignore every thing I say, treat the house like a tip and me like a garbage bin, but they love their veges!

I have succeeded as a mother. My work is done.

Now I shall retire to the couch with my knitting.

I've been scouring the foodblogs and recipe sites for vegetable dishes that I plonk on the table and say - 'that's it'. They always say 'where's the rest of the dinner?' and sometimes there is more, but I've been really focussing on the beauty of the vegetable.

Here's two favourites so far - good enough for dinner on their own.

MARTHA STEWART (not actually Martha Stewart)

Zucchini and Almonds - trust me, it's beautiful. I have no mandolin (attention family - birthday present hint alert!) I use real butter, heated up to nut brown, I pan fry the almonds and take them out, put the zuke in, and stir fry a few minutes, toss the almonds back on and squeeze lemon juice. Beautiful.


VERSUS


MARGE SIMPSON
From some redneck recipe site where everything calls for a package of this, a can of that. There's a recipe for guacamole that proudly boasts - no taco seasoning required - I wouldn't put taco seasoning in guacamole in a fit. Anyhow, the whole cauliflower is a bit excessive for my family of four, so I did half. I also kind of improvised on the avocado mix a little - adding cheese. It was really really good - good enough for dinner on it's own.

AMY WINEHOUSE - TO KNOW HIM IS TO LOVE HIM

9 Sep 2007

She's so good, I just don't care about the drugs and the booze.

I love her. She's a modern day Janis Joplin.

I'm changing the day

8 Sep 2007

SAD SONG SATURDAY

Mysogyny. A recent post prompted me to think about this issue and it's relationship with popular music.

It's a nasty little issue, and I'm often shocked at just how widespread it is. For example, I was in target yesterday and there was a whole rack of t-shirts with a picture of a man crawling on his hands and knees, holding a credit card up to a woman. The caption said 'international symbol of marriage'. It's meant as a joke, but it isn't really that funny is it? Do all of us wives feel comfortable knowing that this tshirt is what men really think of us?

And pop songs, well there's the obvious 'smack my bitch up' by the prodigy - which may or may not have been about violence (possibly it was just about drugs) but let's face it, the provocative title's implications weren't lost on the group.

And I'm not going to go into rappers. Plenty of gangsta rappers hate women. Hardcore rap is hardcore for a reason, reasons which this white middle class educated Australian woman has no authority on whatsoever. Or rnb - all of which seems to turn women into objects (even loved objects) with the sole purpose of being attractive to men.

The ones I find most disturbing are the really popular ones - the ones that sound like sugar but really are full of acid. The ones where the mysogyny is shrouded in tones that sound like gratitude or even admiration but scratch the surface and they're full of controlled anger and deep seated mistrust and hatred.

Songs like 'golddigger' don't worry me so much as they're so obvious. Songs like The Police 'Every breath you take' - now that's a worrying song - can you believe people used this as their wedding waltz? It's the furthest song from a love song I can imagine. It's a great song, but it's an ugly one.

There was a band called Weddings, Parties, Anything that had a song in the nineties (eighties?) called 'telephone in her car' - when such a thing was a rarity. It's about a man who clearly used to love this girl, who has grown up and matured and has a successful job and looks different than when she was a girl. The singer, who presumably is still the same layabout loser he was when he was a teen, says 'She's got a telephone in her car, I wouldn't call her for nothing. I got her number from her best friend, but I wouldn't call her for nothing'. It's interesting that he thinks it's okay to hate her because she's outgrown him, she doesn't appear to have done anything else wrong. And the obvious contradiction why he got her number in the first place ....

I think though, the winner this week goes to a song so many people like. This guy is hugely popular, the song was a massive hit. The song is 'So beautiful' by Pete Murray. The particular bit I find disturbing is:

God my fingers burn,
Now when I think of touching your hair
You have changed so much that I don't know,
If I can call you and tell you I care
And I would love to bring you down,
Plant your feet back on the ground

It's kind of threatening, don't you think?

APEC Summit

4 Sep 2007

Unless you've been under a rock in Australia, you'll have noticed the Sydney-centric news coverage of the lockdown on the city for the APEC summit.

It's overwhelming what an enormous impact the 21 visitors will unwittingly be having on the people who live and work in the city. Roads closed, a 3m fence separating them from us, complete closure of the zoo so the spouses can have a look at the new elephants, no access anywhere.

And when George Bush arrives at 9:30 tonight (with a whopping 550 of his own secret service personnel), they say it will be bedlam.

Of course it's been deliberatly organised to cause the greatest disruption possible, and the media have been instructed to make it sounds as bad as they can. This is because the government would like to keep the completeluy free of unauthorised people - but they can't actually come right out and say it like that.

According to news, the Transport Minister puts it like this "The message is very clear - there is nothing to see so please stay away"

That way they can more safely assume that if you're in the area, and you're not a chief or a slave, you're a terrorist or a protester.

So what are they going to talk about at this talkfest? The newspapers say it's all about free trade, oil prices and climate change. A few years ago it was SARS - not that anyone really cared about SARS unless it was going to spread to the western world, which it didn't appear to do. Talking about SARS probably didn't have any effect on the pandemic either, much like talking about climate change won't do much to change climate change.

I myself have a great idea about where they should have held APEC. Woomera is costing us $36m annually, and it's completely empty. Why don't they have the APEC summit out there? Just fly them straight into the paddock next door (it's about 4000 square kilometres, they could just line their jets up like a big parking station).

I can just see the Prime Minister now:

"Yes, Mister Shinzo Abe, this IS Sydney. We're in a drought, don't you know. No, the fishing's not that good at the moment. "

"Yes, President CHEN Shui-bian, there is plenty of room here, it's the perfect spot for immigrants to start their journeys?"

"Yes, Mr Bush, that really is a kangaroo".

They could have a team bonding session where they all learn how to do the Aussie Salute first hand, I'd say there'd be a few flies about out there.

Not to mention the missile test facility - perfect for shooting out any fly-by terrorists. Plus, a place so remote you could guarantee that any passers-by would be bound to be suspicious.

I can see so many advantages - none the least of which if I wanted to go to Tapestry Craft this weekend I could do so without feeling like an escaping convict, consulting three websites and planning a route to avoid any roadblocks or three metre fences.

Time for a Uniform Change

3 Sep 2007



Yes of course it was the Beautiful South song. Whilst it's one of my favourite albums, that song always made me very angry, because it's about a big boobed slut, and her breast size is used as an insult, an accusation, as though she chose them to suit her lifestyle.

The song indicates that big boobs are a sure sign of sluttiness (you'd be amazed how many men actually think this), like you somehow are at fault for having them. But I suppose, it wouldn't be the first mysogynistic pop song out there, would it? (I can feel a sad song Wednesday theme coming on..)

Imagine saying people with big noses eat like pigs - if they didn't they wouldn't have big noses. Or all people with innies are mentally defective. Or people born in Asia can't drive. Or all muslims are terrorists. Imagine that.

The doctor said to me that on day 2 after the operation 'we'll remove the drains and you'll be going home in a crop top'.

A crop top. I haven't been able to find a crop top to fit me my entire life. Imagine me, in a crop top. Anyone got any ideas on where to procure such an article?

In a similar vein, the change in the air, the promise of spring is here. Hasn't it been glorious? The blossoms are so beautiful - in particular the port wine magnolias - I love this time of year.

It feels like only yesterday I switched from my summer uniform of wide legged drawstring cotton pants and ribbed tees to my winter uniform of cargo pants and a hoodie.

It's always pretty hard being not slim and not working in an office every day where a suit is required. If all you do is the school run and the odd coffee date, a uniform is good, a consistent look that says 'I'm quite cool' and not 'I'm a fat disorganised slob'.

A lot of people go for the 3/4 pant. Indeed, though I have been known to wear them, I hate most of the 3/4 pants with a passion. They reeks of suburbia, of mundanity and of mediocrity. I mean, I might not be the yummiest mummy, but that doesn't mean I'm ready to let it all go and just give up. I prefer the capri pant, but a slim leg doesn't look any good with a size 18 bust.

A few years ago the spring uniform for the schoolyard mums round my way was a floral skirt and a little puffed cap sleeved cotton button up shirt with a pair of havians. I was so envious of them, they looked so fresh, so cool, so young and carefree. Since my boobs ruled that little number out, I went for the light cotton/linen drawstring pants and a ribbed tshirt.

Last year it seemed like there were a lot of sacky dresses. For me, a dress than fits my top half just swims on my bottom half, making me look double my actual size. The sacky pinafore didn't go with the E cups, not one bit. Not only that, at five foot not much all dresses pretty much are the wrong length, so I went for the drawstring pants. Again.

So, I'm really really curious to know, after the 17th October, will my choices of summer uniform change? Will I be able to wear what the other mums wear? I may not be slim enough to ever wear a capri pant or a mini dress, but just to be able to think about a crop top (for walking)or a shirt with buttons down the front - I can't comprehend the possibility.

And, if you've endured my self obsessed rant this long, I shall reward you with a picture of the dog. And the offending appendages.

36D so what - is that all that you've got?

2 Sep 2007

Awards given to the first person to tell me where I got the title of this post from.
No googling - I'll be able to tell.

Anyway, you might recall me discussing the state of my breasts on this blog in the past. I have a mass in my right breast, it's not cancer, it's not a cyst, it's just a big lump of breast tissue sitting in the wrong place, giving me an assymetry which is neither attractive nor desirable to anyone.

There are other issues too, but I won't bore you with the details.

Periodically, I fork out a fortune to go and see a surgeon to discuss my options. The last time I went I saw a doctor who said he was going to perform a horrible operation that involved cutting my nipples off and placing them in saline while he removed a lot of tissue and then repositioned them - the prospect wasn't appealing to me at all, not to mention the risk of losing them altogether was too high for me to consider it.

Anyway, last Thursday I went to see another doctor. He was extremely - umm - well he oozed credibility and compassion. He indicated that the previous advice I was given was (he asked the name of the doctor, thought carefully, and said 'that would be quite um, conservative an approach' - you know there's a club and they don't ever criticise one another, like the police).

So I'm going to do it. In October. I've cancelled a girl's weekend in Surfers for our combined 40th birthdays in November for it - and I'm as scared as anything.

So, new boobs for my 40th! What a great present.


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