Wednesday, October 11, 2006


Yes, my second knitting project is complete!

I'm so happy with the progress of my knitting skills. This pattern for Summer Yellow Eyelet patternwas a challenge. I undid first 4 rows most likely at least 10 times. But, then I just got it. It also helped to have it with me on my visit to SnB in Tilburg two weeks ago. The advices I got from Jose helped me in figuring out what is the idea.

I don't have Barbie so couldn't take fitted picture. I did measure my dress and, according to the measurements I have, it should fit easily. Once I give it away will find out for sure.

Now I know hot to cast-off for arm holes and wrestle psso. The second is still causing me to move together with needles, sweat, good I can not see my facial expressions while completing this step.

I couldn't join my SnB girls last night. I've decided to finally empty those last few boxes with stuff from USA. There was not much important in them, but I did finally locate the missing Sequence game. This project is happening only now that we have finally received living room furniture and now all the things we have can find their appropriate place. My husband did mention how one of the appropriate places might be our garbage bin as well, but luckily for him, he didn't try to hard to convince me that is indeed so.

So, house is still a mess while all the odd bits and pieces are expecting to find their spot, but it is such a relief to see all the space freed up from that stack of boxes. Off I go to clean some dust now!

Sunday, October 01, 2006


Yesterday was still nice weather, considering the time of the year. Clouds decided to let the sun shine through for most of the time and we jumped on the opportunity.

My husband found recently info about possibility of kayaking on our local river, Dommel. So, he checked the weather forecast, called and made reservation. We decided to try the shorter trip of 2 hours ending in Valkenswaard (which was actually the starting point for us since the river flows from Borkel en Schaft towards Valkenswaard). It turned to be good decision, especially considering a 4,5 year old son of ours.

We had fun and it was also boring. Boring when for long stretches we kept seeing just relatively high banks of nettles, reeds, grass and some other plants. Some of those I thought I've seen growing in my garden as weeds! Fun when we had to row hard to avoid hitting the banks (and did we hit them a few times!), when our son decided to help, when we almost missed the ducks (the plumage is indeed suited to the environment), when we scared two pheasants, when we saw glistening of a bird I thought must be kingfisher...

The last stretch was really nice, it was a nice long stretch overshadowed by tall trees. And the sun decided it is perfect time to show up. I was scared a bit we will swim at the point of leaving the kayak, but it all ended well. Just a beautiful day in the nature.

And it is raining now, guess the fall has indeed arrived. And my garden could do with some water, I was already watering a few newly planted roses and bushes by hand. Just perfect timing.

Saturday, September 30, 2006

Lichtjesroute and two completed projects

Thursday night we followed for the first time Lichtjesroute. My husband was telling me it might not be so interesting but in the end we both liked it. And even our son, I thought he will be asleep within the first half hour, but no, he made it to the end. And without any tantrums.He asked only once when are we going home, 5 min before we were done! Yes, the whole spectrum of displays is very much geared towards children (lots of animals and the Smurfs land on the lake!) but the difficulty of some of them makes even adults to stop for a bit.

And I'm glad my husband drove. I'm sure I would have ended in a traffic accident. I still have trouble with the rule of the car coming from the right having the right-of-way. And there was no way last night to avoid all those small streets. That is one part of "inburgering" that is just killing me!

I'm finally finishing some projects. So many WIPs, WIMs, have to get a grip on myself. I guess it is a loosing battle.

But, I am happy about this crochet project. It is called Floral Filet, originally published in "Tabletop Elegance" by Annie's Attick. I got it when it was republished as Free-Pattern-A-Day. As soon as my mother spotted it she said she wants it. Being my mother, she immediately corrected herself and retracted. But admitted she really likes the pattern, it is only just to short for her coffee table. Indeed, not that it is finished I agree with her. It turned out to be only 46cm (18") long. Well, I measured her coffee table (without her knowledge) and now it is a.... WIM!

And my first knitting project is also complete. . It can be seen in this photo as well, it took me a bit until my tension settled. But, my worst fear of not being able to knit has now disapeared. The patterns was easy enought for me to follow, real beginners project. It was published in the series "The Weekend Crafter" - "Knitting" by Catherine Ham. I have also Crochet Weekend Crafter and now can recommend both. I was never good at starting a new craft making meaningless gage swatches. I rather have scarf, even of uneven width. Can always give it to my father, I guess, since my husband refused and didn't offer it yet my BIL's. So, final destination is at the moment unknown.

And I jumped into a new knitting project, dress for a Barbie. It is small, am using 3mm needles, made only 4 rows so far, but am having fun.

Friday, September 29, 2006

Busy, busy

No, it is not work aka paying job that got me busy. No, just I'm reaching out and trying to get out and about.

On Tuesday I managed to get to my first meeting of Stitch 'n Bitch. They are getting popular in Netherlands as well. I was member of the Breda branch for a while, but never attended any of their meetings. It is just too far, would probably take me better part of the afternoon and night to travel back and forth.

But three months ago chapter is Tilburg was started. I joined immediatelly and decided to pay a visit to this weeks gathering. It was really fun. Got to meet four fellow knitters (some of them also crochet) and just had loads of fun. And I immediately got advice on the current knitting project, Barbie dress.

It was nice to get info on a local yarn company, Lammy Yarns in Hilvarenbeek, where I can actually once a month buy yarn. Will probably not pay them a visit in October since I'm planning to attend Handwerkbeurs in Den Bosch in two weeks. But will most likely attend next SnB meeting in less than two weeks.

My son did resist this adventure of mine. According to him I'm supposed to stay at home all of the time and only his father is supposed to go to work. My dear 4,5 year old:-)

Sunday, September 17, 2006


On Monday we finally received our living room book case/cabinet and dining room table, chairs and dressoir.
It was hectic, assembly crew just coudln't get it right (maybe because one of the two guys that showed up was capable of only opening boxes without inflicting any damage!?). So, they did stick around from 14:30 till 19:30 at which point we literally pushed them out the door.
The next day, another crew showed up and managed to fix the mistakes of their predecessors and completed the task in 3 hours.
Boy, was I happy. The living room finally looks like some decent folks live here, finally over with the camping (we had folding chair as the best of our dining set).
And now, the reality is setting in, I have to unpack the final boxes and arrange things! It is not easy, but I'm sure I'll get there.
That is unfortunately confliciting with my free time (there is significantly less of it, surprise!) but my scarf is almost done. Knitted! Just have to finish three more yarn ends... One of them is on the CO end which I'm not very proud with. I started very loose in fear of it being too tight and now have a very wavy edge. Keep on thinking I can still do something about it, will have to spend some quality time with it tomorrow.
Last week I was sick. Wish I knew what it was, now I'm a bit uneasy thinking of the simptoms and the lack there-of. For two days I had slight fever (max was 38.4C), but had persistent headache for 4 days. Now, I never have headaches unless I suffer from the lack of sleep. That was not the case last week, so now I'm a bit worried. Will definitely go to the doctor next time this happens again. Glad my son is old enough to go on his own to the two neighbourhood boys to play.

My first yarn splurge (Aug 17, 2006)

Decided I can not wait any longer and have to start knitting. Immediately. So I biked to the marked in the neighbouring village with decision to give the yarn stand a try. It turned out all the yarn was light and nothing in the weight I needed for the men's scarf (for size 8mm needles). The seller mentioned how his yarn is appropriate for the season. I know his answer was honest but from a sales point of view didn't make to much sense.

Not only is August turning to be the wetest for as long as it has been recorded (and among the coldest) but the summer is slowly drifting away. Does he believe winter sweaters will be made only in winter and not a season before?

Anyway, couldn't contain myself so I sat in the car later in the day and drove to a store in another village. They had stock clearance so not only did I buy the scarf yarn but also very nice yarn for what I envision as nice summer tops. I just succumbed just like all my fellow crocheters in the groups I belong. At least I know it is "normal" to have this type of an urge.

And, I just realized, I have found my favorite LYS in Netherlands.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Life is back to a routine. I managed to do my regular biking route of shopping to the neighbouring village. Bigger than mine, so a lot more interesting things to spend my husbands hard earned money on.

I look at it from a different standpoint. This way I get to move out and about which I wouldn't normally do. Am at the moment glued to the computer quite a lot. Trying to catch with the posts of the CAL-yahoo group I belong to. Or sitting on the couch watching all the crime soaps and cooking shows (Tim Maelzer and "The Perfect Dinner"). Hard disk on our satellite receiver is almost full, goed I have so many crochet projects lined up, it's a good combo.

Past weekend was in a sign of USA. First had to take my son to the American Consulate in Amsterdam. If I got to use the public transportation from our village it would take me min 3,5 hours to get there. Knowing they are open only mornings till 11:30 resulted in realization of having to start that day quite early. Now, waking up a 4,5 yo at 6 in the morning would have proven quite a challenge. My husband had a better solution. We slept the night before at my in-laws, in Utrecht, and it was just a measly hour that took us to get to the consulate.

And boy, it is nice to be on your own soil for a bit again. The treatment was great, got to use separate booth set up just for US citizens. Glad I was able to skip that crowded waiting room of the Dutch nationals.

But, there is a but to this day. It was raining so hard, didn't have the heart to drag my son into sightseeing of this beatiful city. I made a mental note of coming soon again. Alone or with a friend but as soon as the weather allows it.

Next day we managed to walk through center of Utrecht. Now, I don't know the countless number of times we did that, but this time I noticed a store with Cheerios in the store front. Had to get closer and realized the store is choke full with american products. Even though I couldn't locate any prices I couldn't resist and buy myself Oreo cookies. Don't think I'll do that soon again it ended up being 8 euros. And it is just a normal size package 1lb1oz (482g). So at the moment I'm wondering which measuring system was used as reference since neithe of these is a round number.

And to top that day, in the local establishment of the national chain of the 2nd hand bookstores I found "The Weekend Crafter - Knitting" (unused) by Catherine Ham for 6eu and "All Stitched Up" by Jane Crowfoot for 5eu. I'm sure the 2nd one will be useful for both knitting and crochet. And the first one I bought since I'm planning to learn how to knit. Best recommendation was the fact that I already own the same in the crochet version.

I'm at the moment looking for yarn for a men's shawl from the Weekend Crafter. Seems like a nice and easy pattern to learn a new craft. Am a bit nervous about this decision. My aunt tried to teach me how to kint when I was a teenager. It was a complete disaster, it was so tight that I couldn't get a needle through the project any more. But I'm consoling myself if I could master crochet (which sometimes gets to be a bit tight as well) I should be able to control myself with needles as well.

The school has started on Monday, so it is back to the old routine. I should be able to catch up with my e-mails (I hope) by the end of next week, and then the projects should be just flying of my hooks and needels!

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Entry for August 10, 2006

Managed to work on Gerbera Doily last night. That was a relief, finally back in the grove. I'am not allowing myself to start on any new project until I finish at least this doily and the Floral Filet. On the second I just have to weave in a few more ends and wash and form. Maybe I could then also finish the giraffe which I started before departure for vacation...
And I took care of my house plants today. They have been neglected these two months while I was gone. None of them perished, my husband followed my (simple!) instructions of watering plan those few days he was around and the results are obvious. Should I crochet something for him even though it has been forbidden?!

Entry for August 9, 2006

Not yet a week since my son and myself returned from our holiday to my home-country, Hrvatska (Croatia). We are still very tanned which is starting to look rediculous as the clouds are threatening to stay around for quite a few more days.
Garden was terrible, have weeded a lot in the last few days, but had to stop once I filled our green waste bin. Ridicoulos system in our village, it gets picked up every two weeks, alternating with regular wast pick-up.
Still haven't done any crocheting. Was not able to do much in Hrvatska either. Beginning of June was still cold and rainy but since I spent it in my home city, it was fine. As it turned better we moved to our vacation house on Adriatic and stayed there till the end of July. The only drawback of nice weather was the fact that my crochet time was reduced to nil. But, what a nice vacation it was. Even my husband enjoyed it and managed to keep his hair dry for three weeks. Real dutch men don't get their hair wet in salty water, says he. I'm working on my son to dispute this fact.
Oh, yes, I also managed to buy some fabulous yarn in Hrvatska. There is a local factory, Unitas and of course I got supplies for the next few months. Got wonderful yarn for Garn Studio Drop Design 60-14 and tablecloth named Salt air by DMC. Pattern for the free project is free to be downloaded, for the second I have purchased a flyer in one small YS in Belgium, just over the border. That was a nice excursion.