Sunday, September 23, 2007

Pressure Makes Perfect

Life needs sorting. Time is running out before I move.
I have been having a quick look through the stash and these balls of yarn seemed to go well together. There's a dark green, a multi-blue/green and a black. So I decided to put them together to make a top. They aren't in the right quantities to make it match back and front but there is plenty overall so I will just keep changing one colour every two pattern depths till I get there.

I have chosen "Ladders of Elegance" from the Knitter's Stash. This is one of my favourite pattern books and I have knitted the "Daisy Shawl" in many yarns and sizes. The top I'm doing is a thick, two strand one. It's a good stash-buster and I'm the sort of person who will happily wear a sleeveless warmer. I like my arms free. I will try to do more of a "boat" neckline though.

Anyway I can boast about my knitting because I have done all the ironing!!!!!!!!!

I had to start because there was no space left to hang the next lot of washing. I did two weeks worth yesterday and then this weeks lot, today.
I also got lots of stuff out of the freezer so that I can get rid of it next week....probably to the Heart Foundation who have a new Furniture and White Goods Store opening soon in Bishop Auckland. Unless anyone wants to come round and fetch it this week from Wolsingham. Please let me know if you are able to collect a freezer from here or from central Darlington. I also need homes for an old dressing table with mirror, small glazed china cabinet,a tea trolley and small stuff. Email me on

I made Plum Butter and Spicey Plum Chutney. It's a while since I made preserves and such...

The plum butter is really tasty but a bit runny and the plum chutney is sweet and hot!. When I went to visit my sister in Bedfordshire, where I got all these plums, I made plum sorbet...a la Jamie Oliver and cordial. I still have a bag of plums left in the freezer so I will have to make myself some cordial if I can find a bottle.

I thought English was English!!! Particularly as I spoke it. The long period of time I have spent in Australia has not affected my accent but it has impacted on the pronunciation of some of the words and common words are so differently used.
Australian = Other
Op-Shop=Charity shop, Thrift shop etc. from....Opportunity Shop
Lollies =Sweeties, Candy
Icy pole= Ice lolly
Chips = Crisps
Hot chips =Chips
Zucchinis = Courgettes
Cordial= squash, fruit drink
and I'm sure there are so many more.
Please let me know how the words we use on our blogs vary from place to place. Unfortunately I can only cope with English. They tried hard at school to give me a "Language Base" but the only thing which I remember is the Latin that I failed.
Pronunciation is going to affect me mostly with food items eg Yoghurt! Ask me when you see me!
Cheers Gillian

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Is There Anyone Out There who likes IRONING

I had a sore throat... always an indicator that I need to be less stressed, so I stayed at home so that I would not spread it around and while I was at home I did the Jigsaw of the map of Engand and Wales. 1250 pieces and still about 50 to go.

This means that I have not done the IRONING

I went out for a ramble this morning. As it stared to rain Sheila mentioned that she had left a load of washing on the line. I offered to come round with my lovely dry basket of ironing, but Sheila just laughed!!!

So I went home and did some painting and ignored the IRONING.

Of course I shall have to do it soon. I have no clothes to wear.
Cheers Gillian

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Well Does Anyone have a Great Middle Name

I think that the MEME doing the rounds at the moment is an absolute stunner! Let's face it, who likes their middle name?

Most of us have a middle name which is not very attractive but is bestowed upon us for family reasons. My middle name is MARGARET. I don't think any young girls are named Margaret these days. I'm named after my mother who is called "Peggy" and has never been called Margaret. An old aunt was called Margaret Rose and many members of the family were called...Meg, Peg and Maggy. But not while I was alive. Margaret is, to me, an old name!!!

So...Here I go with it!

M...Moving Again! Yes I shall be on the move in two weeks time. From the country town of Wolsingham to the city of Darlington.

A...Art Classes are one of the benefits of living in a city centre again. I have always wanted to have a go at painting classes and will be doing so at the Arts Centre in Darlington. I'm no good but I shall do some homework and hope to improve.

R...I love Reading. There is a small and delightful public library across the road here in Wolsingham. I think it must be one of the smallest in the world. It has a bit of everything and I have read all my favourites. I need a new set of shelves to browse. Mind you I will call in to the library, post office and bakery, here in Wolsingham, on my way to the caravan up in Brotherlee.

G...Geography and Geology. My favourite subjects and those which I taught happily for over 30 years. I worked in Africa as a geologist for an exploration company before I started teaching.

A...I adore, second hand and old stuff. "Antiques" are a real hobby. My furniture is second hand and my rooms are full of trash and tat. Nothing really valuable, just possibly worth more than I paid for it

R...Rambling around the Dales and Fells. I belong to a regular Wednesday group and we dont walk far but we enjoy it. There is so much history and geography in this area. After that I go off to Durham to have lunch with Mum.

E...Eating! Which leads me to FOOD. One small problem with the new flat I'm moving into in Darlington is.........There is no larder. There is nowhere to put the food. I am searching the catalogues for cheap, stunning, small larders to slip into the tiny space behind the kitchen door.The winning larder will take up no space, cost no money and house the contents of a medium sized supermarket.

T...THE is the only word to finish this off. THE internet, THE weather, THE best to everyone and of course have a lovely cup of TEA. My favourites at the moment are...Earl Grey with a touch of Vanilla and Green Tea with citrus and lotus flower.

Thanks Sue . It was fun trying to work it all out .
Cheers Gillian

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

All The Fun Of The Fair

This was the view from my bedroom window during the Wolsingham Show. I stayed for the first night, and sure enough, it all got turned off at midnight, but it took another hour or so for all the excited youngsters to decide to leave the area. The rides extend up each of the roads leading out of town as well as filling the Market Place. No complaints, but I'm sure glad I had somewhere else to go for the next three nights.

Saturday was the start of the community section held at Scotch Isle Park a couple of miles east of town. I walked in along the "Weardale Way" along the river bank and it was so lovely. Then I back-tracked through the farm and along the road to the entry.

I arrived at 11am and judging was still continuing in some tents, so I had a general look around. The foot and mouth crisis had ended but not in time to release permission to transport livestock for the show, so there were no sheep, pigs or cattle and therefore, sadly to me, no sheepdog trials. But lots of dogs, horses, chickens, pigeons, rabbits and guinea pigs. There were farmers markets and I had some wonderful ice-cream from "Archer's". Real Jersey cow ice-cream made by them on their farm, in an old fashioned sugar-cone.

I always love the tent with all the produce in it. I couldn't believe the real size of these vegies. The bloke there is pointing to some ONIONS, each one the size of a small soccer ball and each of the leeks would make a vat of soup. The white things in between are the "longest parsnip" category!

There were slim pickings in the Knitting section after being used to the Sheep and Wool show in Bendigo, Australia, but that did not reduce the skill, talent or flair. My photo does not do justice to the excellent needlecraft that was on show. After a visit to a friend on her "Aloe Vera" stall and another wander around and watching a show put on by the local dog agility group, I settled in at a free place on the fence to watch this lot.

These are the ones who do displays at the Edinburgh Tattoo in the small arena. They gave them a bit more space here but for safety's sake, kept us all well back from them. They warmed up with the routine where every bike misses every other bike by about two inches in the middle of the field. Then the Gorilla came on and then the jumping over the cars began.

If you look closely you can see Danny, motorbike-leaping four cars. In this sorry photo he looks as if he is about to land on the second one but believe me, he made it.

After that I walked home along the road, regretting the fact that three buses made it back before me.

Then I went up to the caravan and spent a happy couple of days doing...

Sudokus, crosswords, reading, knitting nancy stuff with some stonewash white cotton (one day to become a braided bath rug), reading (a Hilary Norman), fixing the toilet leak (no success yet), getting my feet warm in the morning (yes! my own knitted socks worked) and watching the RAF fly low on their way to and from Otterburn and lastly, on the way home today....a red kite soaring above the dale. I'm not telling you where.

I might become a twitcher!

Cheers Gillian