The Knitting Sailor


Woolfest 2013
July 18, 2013, 8:17 am
Filed under: the Captains Cabin | Tags: , , , , ,

It was totally epic!  This year I took my mum who hadn’t been before and it was even busier than last year.  Stuff that was exciting this year -

  • Rare breeds show – this actually seemed to be ‘breeds that you may know and love in the British Isles’.  They all still really looked like sheep to me.  Apart from the Alpacas.  Obviously.
He struggled with the goat.  He'd lost his notes about that one.

He struggled with the goat. He’d lost his notes about that one.

  • Re-visiting the scene of the crime.  That’s right – this is where it all started last year, and I was determined that Kate got my mum hooked this year.  Think she succeeded….
I got a hug when I told her I now had my own wheel and everything....

I got a hug when I told her I now had my own wheel and everything….

  • Look - its like real wool - and she's only been doing it for three seconds!!

    Look – its like real wool – and she’s only been doing it for three seconds!!

  • Going to the fleece sale (I was SOOOO good – I didn’t buy anything (From the fleece sale.  OBVIOUSLY I bought stuff from Woolfest…)
All of the fleeces had names and sometimes photos of the sheep on them - they were gorgeous and I was very restrained not to add to my herd....

All of the fleeces had names and sometimes photos of the sheep on them – they were gorgeous and I was very restrained not to add to my herd….

  • Admired the wool-art.  This was actually made really close to where I live by a group at the Linskill Centre – it’s always the way that you travel to see something that’s local to you…
Millions of hours of work!

Millions of hours of work!

They're not real

They’re not real

  • Found this amazing display and blog – Land Keepers - please go and have a look – the photos of the farmers on their land and the beauty of the Lake District in rain, snow and hail are all there.  I’m not showing you a photo to build the suspense.
  • Took an excessive number of photos of sheep.  You will be thrilled I am going to share with you.
We're all sheep

Grumpy looking sheep

DSCF2355

Curly looking sheep

DSCF2330

Giant fringe sheep

  • Took the bag of goodies I bought and hid it.  I have a baby blanket to knit.


Now we are One

It turns out that it was a year ago today I posted my first entry on this site.  It was a bit random and primarily in response to ‘I couldn’t do that – could I?’.  Well so far it’s been a lot of fun – I think!  And looking back over the year, it turns out there are lots of things that I couldn’t have imagined at the beginning of this!

Things I have learnt from this year

  • Everyone hates running (apart from Tillerman – but I don’t actually believe him)
  • That the inventor of the Crow’s Nest was born in Whitby
  • That I DON’T NEED TO KNIT CARDIGANS
  • Spinning is really hard
  • How to taste wine (sort of – it all still tastes like wine really though)
  • Trying to teach kids anything without the benefit of chocolate is basically a waste of time
  • You actually can buy ANYTHING on E-Bay
  • How to be a better OOD!
  • We all like Dinosaurs (maybe I imagined this?)
  • Woolfest is awesome
  • Not every 50p is worth 50p
  • The Internet definitely thinks I should get a sheep

Amazing things that happened this year

  • I ran the Great North Run– who knew?!?
  • I came third in an actual proper sailing race – and got a prize to prove it
  • It was the Mr’s last year as Commodore
  • I learnt to spin
  • The dog qualified to drive a powerboat
  • We didn’t move to the country
  • I met a real life alpaca and fed it a carrot
  • I got a spinning wheel AND a knitting machine called Jeremy
  • The Olympics and the Jubilee!  Go Britain!
  • I qualified as a Dinghy Instructor
  • The Solstice at Stonehenge – kind of amazing
  • I learnt how to felt… OK it was by mistake – but let’s take it as a positive!
  • I wasn’t last at an open event

I also found some amazing people and blogs out there in the ether of the Internet – I have added a new page so if you would like to go and visit some of them then check this out.  Be warned – some of these people actually know what they are talking about!

But most of all it’s been fun to chat with you all – so thanks for dropping by…. it’s appreciated!

So what about this year?

Well I have a plan.  I need to get better at sailing and knitting.  I also need to delete the email suggesting that I take part in the Sunderland Half Marathon in April.  This is a foolish idea and no amount of looking at the email is going to get rid of the cake and beer induced wobble prior to April.

So I am going to be doing 3LT – this is the name for my new recipe for success.  Every idea needs a good marketing slogan.  And maybe a logo.

Look, Learn, Listen; Turn up, Take part and TRAVEL!

That sounds really exciting doesn’t it?



Just like buses
December 4, 2012, 8:14 am
Filed under: the Captains Cabin | Tags: , , ,

So you pine all year, and then two come along at once!

Please ignore the background - we're decorating and its a mess

Nearly looks like a bike when you see them like that

That’s right, I am now the proud owner of not one but two spinning wheels!

They are both Ashfords, both about the same age and both sitting in my house.  I could barely contain my excitement.  Not least as collecting them had involved road trips to Scarborough and York.

Beautiful in the winter sunshine

Beautiful in the winter sunshine

One was from E-Bay, one was from a friend of the Mr’s who had heard I was looking for one – and before I knew it we were committed to both.  But with a brill deal on both I am reasoning that I can always sell the one I don’t like as much.  this was until my Mum started eying them and saying that actually it looked like more fun than she had expected.  and before I started to think that obviously it would be good to have two wheels – you know, one for home, one for the sailing club…

They have obviously been well loved – and Mavis even showed us some of the things that she had made with hers – including a cardigan with beautiful colours in it – all dyed from plants.  I think I am some way off that for the moment!

The second wheel was a real surprise – it came with some extras – a Carding Drum which lets you comb out fleece ready for spinning, but that actually looks like a Spanish inquisition type torture device and a couple of extra boxes.  When I was introduced to this box I was told there was some fleece in there.  When we went to collect, a couple of boxes had turned into 5.  And when I got home and looked inside the first box…. There were two actual sheep fleeces in it.  Complete with straw and sheepy smell.  I don’t know that I have ever been more stunned.   I just looked at them.

Trust me - they look bigger in real life

Trust me – they look bigger in real life

So on rough calculations I have around ten fleeces from ten actual sheep.  It’s a flock of my very own.  I have absolutely no idea what to do about this, so at the moment they are sitting in the spare room being interestingly sniffed by the dog who has finally found a sheep she can get up close and personal with.  I’m just hoping the sheep don’t want them back.

And I have one of them working.  Kind Of.  What I’ve got from my attempts over a few hours is this – it’s lumpy and bumpy and looks like this -

Lumpy, but really fast

Lumpy, but really fast

So I am super loving it.  But I need to put them away as we are in the middle of a decorating nightmare – so over Christmas I am going to have lots to play with once we are finished.

I love Christmas.  I’m going to decorate the pasting table.



Is a sheep a hasty choice?
November 15, 2012, 7:10 am
Filed under: the Captains Cabin | Tags: , , , ,

To take true consideration if all of the options here is my list about why it would be great to have an alpaca / lama in the garden.  This is to endure the full facts are explored before I bring an animal into my suburban back garden.

I say alpaca / lama as I have never really understood the difference between them. I think lamas are taller. I’m sure someone clever would be able to tell me.

  • If I had an alpaca in my back garden then I could make heaps of money by selling the fleece as its really expensive fibre
  • I could hire it out in the winter to star in nativity productions
  • It would be able to peer over the fence and entertain the neighbours grandchildren (if it was a tall one which makes it a lama)
  • I could run visits for knitters and sell them alpaca / lama related items – e.g. a book in the shape of an alpaca / lama, alpaca / lama flavoured wine etc.
  • In the summer I could take it to the beach to take the kiddies for a ride
  • I could make my own cheese (or is that goats?)
  • My lawn would still be beautifully manicured – but so would my bushes due said animals increased height

Concern may be that they spit and don’t get on with the sheep, and as they are part of the camel family they might find the North East a little chilly….  Also, the last time I met a camel I had to buy a rug.

It’s a real camel. Or dromedary. Or something.

Don’t ask.

 



New Plan
November 14, 2012, 7:04 am
Filed under: the Captains Cabin | Tags: , , ,

Get a sheep to live in the back garden.  Reasons why having a sheep in my back garden would be a good idea -

  • It would save me lots of money on wool
  • It would be locally produced, organic wool and of the finest quality
  • I would not have to mow the lawn again
  • The sheep would be a friend to the little dog and the fishes in the pond
  • It could be a business investment as I could spin the wool and then sell it for lots of money to pay for the sheep’s upkeep
  • I could knit it a scarf and then sell photos of it wearing the scarf for Christmas cards
  • It would feed itself on grass so would be very cheap
  • In the winter it could live in the Mr’s shed – so it would have the added benefit of getting the shed cleared out
  • It would mean I could find out what sheep nuts actually are
  • We could take the sheep for days out to Kielder and it could play with lots of other sheep
  • People would visit and make a fuss of the sheep so it would become a talking point

Thinking about it, maybe I need two?

 



How to win friends and influence people…
October 25, 2012, 9:39 pm
Filed under: the Captains Cabin | Tags: , , , ,

… at a wedding.

  • Tell everyone who comments on your feather fascinator your technique for getting a bird of the right colour to fly into your hair specially.  Feel guilty when someone actually believes you, but not enough to tell them you were making it up.

 

  • Comment on how great it is they have colour co-ordinated the bridesmaids to the wallpaper.

 

  • Spend more time photographing the sheep in a neighbouring field than the bride and groom.

What no wedding finery?

 

  • Turn up with hand knit baby socks to accompany the wedding gift…. Only to start to worry if they are inappropriate half way through the service – and AFTER having given them to the best man to add to the present pile.

 

  • Tell all of your husband’s work colleagues that you really want an Angora rabbit or an Alpaca to keep in your back garden and that you don’t understand why he won’t let you have one.  Discuss house rabbits at length.

 

  • Steal all of the best sweets out of the favours on the table before anyone notices – only realising later you might have got away with it if it wasn’t for the chocolate smeared down one side of your mouth.

 

  • Mention that you are going to have fondue night on Saturday despite the fact you don’t own a fondue set… only to adopt one from another guest that has one in the boot of their car for no discernible reason.

 

  • Talk to a volunteer special policewoman, only to feel inexplicably guilty about the afore mentioned stolen sweets.

 

  • Kiss the groom who you don’t know that well on the way out then panic it was inappropriate.

 

  • Leave early to drive to Bristol for a stupid early appointment – plenty of time to contemplate how you managed all of the above without even having a drink.

 




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