Thursday, 20 December 2007

Knitted Noahs Ark

The Crocodile won.
Finally managed to get a bit of info about what on earth has been happening with the competition- apparently next month they will be publishing an article about it (finally!). I'm not holding out much hope for my dragonfly being anything more than a curio but I would like to see what other people made. I did discover who the overall winner was though- if its the crocodile that I have spotted in couple of pictures then its a pretty handsome beast and deserves a rosette. Well, the article comes out in January so not much longer to wait and then I can let you all know the juicy details. Huzzah!

The Christmas Slowdown

It's my last day of work before Christmas today! Yay!! And to make it even better I only have to be in the office until 1pm! Yay!!!
This does mean however that it is highly unlikely that I am going to get a large scale productive groove on the go. I shall have to try and concentrate on sorting out paperwork and tying up the last of this years affairs. For the first time in forever I really looking forward to the new year. It feels like there is a new beginning on the horizon- something fresh and untarnished. Haven't had this feeling for a while now and I hadn't realised how much I missed it. It might have been bought about by all the horrible icy cold weather that we have been having recently. It's almost as though we are having a proper winter after a year of nondescript seasons and months. It's cold outside but the ice is pretty and come spring, and we may actually get a proper spring, the flowers will start poking through and the world will start waking up again. Last year things just seemed to go right on through. Massively confusing for the bumblebees who seem to have been buzzing around non-stop.
But in the meantime I shall just go back into hibernation. I think that this is what has kept me away from writing for the last few days. All I want to do is curl up in a big pile of blankets and cushion and doze the days away. And after 1pm today that is exactly what I intend to do!

Thursday, 13 December 2007

Long distance phone call

Have just heard from my friend in China! She is such a star- it must have been about 1 in the morning when she called which is an amazing amount of effort just so that she can speak to l'il old me. But the best news out of this is that she will be visiting the UK for a few weeks in January so we will be able to catch up properly then and drink loads of tea whilst we do it.
I am always impressed when I hear from people on other continents. I guess its not such a big deal now what with the internet having shrunk the globe for us but even so it still makes my heart flutter that bit more. I mean, the people who are, figuratively speaking, just up the road actually make less effort in some ways, to stay in touch. I think its a complacency thing. Or maybe familiarity? If it's 'easy' to see someone then I guess you just don't think about it as much. You manage to push it from your mind thinking 'I'll do that tomorrow...' but being in a different country highlights the fact that you are apart from people. If you feel a bit more out of place yourself you spend more time thinking about what you had or maybe you just feel times passage that bit more. It is easy to lose yourself in the new things however. I guess it's just a bit different for everyone depending on the sort of personality that you have. Well, being abroad always make me think of friends back home anyway!

Tuesday, 11 December 2007


Finally got the blasted slide show thing to work. Oh-yeah, oh-yeah.
So now you can see several almost identical photos of each of my knitting projects flashing by very very fast. I shall have to try and do something about the speed at which the thing travels but I can't be bothered right now after the fight I had to get it on here in the first place.
So, enjoy. I'm going to keep updating as I go along. I have a bunch of photos that I can't put on yet as they are are pictures of peoples xmas presents and as I've said already I'm keeping them as a surprise for the people involved as they are so wonderful. As soon as it is the 25th however I'm declaring them fair game.

Pipe dreams

Have just been having a big discussion with a friend of mine about travels abroad. It all came about through being offered a place on a trip to China which I would love to go on where it not for the fact that I have no money. As I was stood next to big world map that we have on the wall in our office the conversation then inevitably tumbled into stories and plans for where we have been and where we want to go next. If only I could afford to travel more! If it wasn't for the fact that we have to pay the mortgage every month then we might well be able to go away more but paying for a trip on top of everything else you have to pay for on a monthly basis is just too much. What we need is a big lottery win so that we can just pack up a car and go. We could spend a few months buzzing around Europe and then hop across the Atlantic and go for a buzz around America over a few more months and then on down to South America. We might come back in a few years time to let you all know how it went and share the photographs though of course we would want as many people as possible with us for as much of the journey as we could manage so we would need either an enormous lottery win or for our friends to win on a following week. Then we could all fly south for the winter and hang our hammocks on the porch of a beach house in Australia.

Monday, 10 December 2007

A great weekend

I am happy to report that I am feeling relaxed and sleepy after a wonderful weekend spent celebrating the husbands birthday. We had friends come to stay over and a few others round just for the evening on Saturday and come the next morning we had a recycling bin full of bottles. The only reason I am manging to remain cheerful about it is that I managed to avoid the dreaded hangover! Yay! This was mostly precipitated by our stay over friends having to bust a groove at an early hour. The husband and I made the effort to get up and make bacon and egg sandwiches because we are courteous hosts and it proved to be well worth it as we where both still drunk upon awaking and so had time to fill up on juice, tea, fried food and preemptive paracetamol before we started to feel bad. Awesome. I then got to sit on the sofa for the rest of the day on Sunday, eat chocolate and watch Futurama. This was all most welcome as I have to say, that we where both very deserving candidates for a hangover after having played drinking games the night before and ploughed our way through two bottles of spirits between 8 of us. My major triumph for the night however was not being the first person to bed. Having said this is it is a close run thing as the first ones to leave spent some time riding a lift up and down and up and down and up and down.....
and up and down.....
after leaving us. This fact shall keep me chuckling for a few days as least :)

Friday, 7 December 2007


I have just finished the Wollaston Collection. I rock. To put this into some sort of context (and because its wonderfully geeky) I have produced the following stats:

Within the collection there are 500 seperate genera
The total number of species within these genera is 1799
Each species has an average of 8 specimens (7.81 rounded up)
Which gives an overall total number of specimens of 14034

Each of these specimens has been cleaned, re-pinned if needed, re-staged and had two labels added to it, one of which is specific to the color coding of the specimen. Everything has been databased. All labels where produced by me and have the name of the species, the author, date of publication and reference if it was a species described by Wollaston. It has taken me about 15 months to complete this project.

And now I'm going out for milkshake.

Tuesday, 4 December 2007


Have just had a close look at my keyboard for the first time in forever and, frankly, am just disgusted with how grubby it is. If you pick it up and shake all these bits fall out and the keys have little greasy spots on them from my fingers. Yuk yuk yuk. Am going to have to tackle this tomorrow. Do you think it counts as work if I prise all the buttons off my keyboard and clean them with a toothbrush in the sink? I'm hoping it does. There is an inordinate amount of glitter in there though so it's not all bad. Can spot some miscellaneous fluff, some of those little bits of paper you get out of hole punches, what appears to be some grass seed and the inevitable bit of insect. Had better make sure that I don't take all the keys off at once however otherwise I might not get them back in the right order. Hmmm, which gives me a great idea for a April fools day prank though I'm not sure how quickly most people would pick up on it if you swapped the keys around. Most people touch type nowadays don't they? Well, guess there's only way to find out isn't there? ;)

Monday, 3 December 2007

Am feeling very smug

Have come up with a brilliant xmas present. I managed to work out the final part of my plan that I have been pondering all weekend and have now cracked it. Unfortunately I have to remain secretive until the recipient has received said present as I really don't want to spoil the surprise. Which makes for quite a boring entry in my blog really so have a weasel to make up for it.
I would also suggest that you check out the link below. This had the picture that I really wanted to use because it is soooooo cute but the buggers have copyright on it. Probably for good reason I guess!
and then look for the weasels (2nd row, 2 in)

Fenway's not all there- but he's okay

I am pleased to say that the vet gave Fenway the all clear at the weekend. He is now officially a nutless cat. Poor dear. He was getting a bit inappropriately bitey with his sister though and there is only so much incestuous dry humping that can be allowed before drastic measures need to be taken. So we took him to the vets just over a week ago to see whether he was big enough to have the operation (both in general body weight and nut size) and unluckily for him the vet said yes. So we dropped him off two days later and that was the end of Fenways' little furry balls. I've been keeping close eye on him over the last week to make sure that nothing was going green and runny, or that he was having any horrid side effects from the anesthetic but he has been perfectly fine and was back to his usual self within minutes. The biting has thankfully stopped but his appetite has increased. We've been warned to be careful about his diet now as its very easy for neutered cats to start piling on the pounds and as much as I love a fat cat it is cruel to let them turn into furry footballs with stabilisers at each corner. Funny, but cruel.
Hoshi will be making her way to the vets in a couple of months. We've decided to let her get a bit bigger as the surgery for a female cat is a bit more invasive and takes longer. Plus we'd like to time it with a holiday so that one of us can sit with her at home for a day or two to make sure Fenway doesn't jump on her head too much. Hopefully by then they will have grown enough that we'll be able to let them out a bit more, although given their performance this weekend I'm not sure that the husband will ever be letting them out again!
They had wanted to go out and play in the garden all weekend but it was raining most of the time so we kept them in. By sunday afternoon their pitiful mews had broken me however and I let them out. They were soon hunting through the grass and climbing the fence posts. Of course they were a bit soggy when they came in so we shut them in the kitchen to dry off whilst we watched a movie. About half way through we got distracted and the husband headed into the kitchen for some tea. He was not amused. There was a little trail of paw prints across all the surfaces in the kitchen from one end to the other. They'd been back and forth across the table about 20 times and one of them had had a fight with the front of the freezer. The floor does not bear mentioning.

My lazy weekend

Ah, hmm, had meant to be a good girl this weekend and get lots of things done on the computer. Of course, I completely failed to do this as the last thing I want to do at the weekend is stare at a computer screen. What I would rather do is knit and stare at a TV screen.
Hmm, strange. Hadn't really thought of it that way. Anyways, I did get 75% of another xmas present finished off and do all my on-line xmas shopping. I also stroked the kittens lots and lots and lots so that their fur is all shiny and sleek. What I didn't do was fill in the important paperwork that I need for work or sort any of our banking stuff out, or even file anything away. I ate bacon sandwiches instead and watched the Tenacious D movie (utterly cool). Sometimes hiding away in the house is just the perfect thing for a weekend.