Oh no! I have run out of wool.

I have been working on completing the Brora Shawl in readiness for the arrival of our new grandchild.  The expected date is 23 November so I was hoping to have it completed before then.

This is how far I have reached.

Shetland shawlI am at round 157 of 197 rounds.  I will need another ball of wool.

I am pleased with how it is turning out despite the issues I had in the first few rounds.  I think it will look lovely once it has been washed and blocked.  You can’t really see the pattern clearly until you do the blocking.

cobweb knitting pattern

I went back online to order another ball of wool from the source where I ordered this lot and the owner is sick and is not fulfilling any orders at present so I have had to source the ball of wool elsewhere.  I went on Ravelry to see if anyone had a spare ball for sale in their stash but it was not to be. I was eventually able to get a ball directly from the original makers, Shetland Woolbrokers. It won’t be the same dyelot but I don’t think it will make much difference.  I will do a post when I get the shawl finished.

The flowers that bloom in the spring tra la!

photo 1(Ignore the random button on the shelf. :-))

I have posted before about how I enjoy flowers from the garden and being able to pick them and bring the sunshine indoors. leucodendron

We have a mainly native plants in our garden but I planted several roses when we moved here as I have always enjoyed roses.

climber

At the moment I am spoilt for choice as we have a wonderful selection in bloom.  These are just a few.

The colours in the garden are constantly changing and the irises are blooming.

Again we have a variety of colours but these are just a couple.

At our previous house we had a really dark iris and I wasn’t sure if we had brought a corm with us but it is here.  Just bloomed today.

IMG_2076It really is dark.

IMG_2074Some other blooms on display.

There are some flowers just about ready to open, the opium poppy being one of them.

IMG_2077

 

Who wouldn’t enjoy the spoils of gardening?  It makes all the weeding worthwhile.

A new taste for me.

loquat treeThis tree is on the back boundary of our neighbour’s property and he no longer lives there.  Our daughter, while she was visiting us last week, noticed a similar tree on the nature strip on our house street and asked what type of tree it was.  I had sussed this out the previous year and found out that it was a loquat tree.  I have never eaten loquats before but our daughter thought it would be worth a try.  She got on to Pinterestloquats pinterest

and found many recipes using loquats and we decided to give loquat crumble a try. The recipe comes from the website The Domestic Front. 

loquat crumble recipe

We forgot to take pictures as we were assembling the crumble until it was ready to go into the oven.

ready for the ovenThe loquats have large seeds and we removed the skins.  You can leave the skin on but we decided not to.

cooked crumble

The cooked crumble was delicious and it is a taste that I really like.  It is difficult to describe but it is sort of like a mix of rhubarb and apple.  There is tartness to it but it was also sweet.  The texture is similar to pear.

good cropAs you can see from the photo there is a good crop so I will be trying out some other loquat recipes.

Loquat dacquiri sounds like a good idea. :-)

Is it Peter Rabbit?

rabbitThis rabbit has taken up residence in our citrus orchard.  It seems to be a domesticated rabbit but we have no idea from where it came.  It doesn’t seem to be frightened of humans and it doesn’t dig holes, unlike the wild rabbits that we have here.

It would appear that someone has lost a pet!

 

 

Butter makes it better.

Those of you who know me well will know of my love of butter.  As I was “shaving off a bit of butter” for my morning toast this morning it brought back memories of my mum and dad.

breakfast butterThere are many reasons for this but the first one is the fact that the butter formed into a curl.  The curl was what triggered the memories.  Mum used to get us to curl the butter when she had visitors coming.   The tool we used was a very basic piece of equipment and I always had great difficulty in getting the butter to make curls to my satisfaction.  Mine never turned out quite like those expert ones in the photo below.

Expert butter curls

David Masters – FlickrCurled Butter

The tool you can buy nowadays looks like this.

modern curling tool

The tool we used wasn’t in a curved shape, it was a flat blade with the serrations on it, the blade being the width of the butter curl.

In my breakfast photo of the butter curl you can see our butter dish.  Our original butter dish was one that I sent away for after watching Peter Russell Clarke on television.  He used to sprout about how butter makes it better and there was a special offer for a cheap butter dish.  It looked just like the one I have now.  The original was broken many years ago. If you have no idea who Peter Russell Clarke is you will need to check out this short video.

The memories of my dad was that he used to rib me about the amount of butter I used.  He would say things like “Are you sure you have enough butter with your bread?”

It’s interesting how an everyday event can trigger so many memories.

I then remembered how we used to be sent for the messages. The grocer was Mr Green (correction – Mr Storer, my sister has a better memory than I do) and he used to parcel up the butter after cutting off the amount we required. We also used to get Lurpak butter, which was Danish, and New Zealand butter. My childhood was spent in Scotland.

(Mr Green was the auctioneer not the grocer!)

Betty Botter

 

Licorice allsorts with a difference

My latest piece of knitting, in between the knitting of the shawl I am making, is this quirky  piece I found in an old craft book I had.

allsortsThe pattern calls for 7mm needles and chunky wool.  No tension given so I assumed that 14 ply would be the type that was used.  I have knitted the orange and black one but it looks to be much smaller that the one illustrated.  Maybe when it is stuffed it will look bigger as the wool will stretch.

I haven’t sewn the pieces together yet but I will post a picture of the finished articles later.  This is the book where I found the pattern.

The great book of handicrafts