Friday 1 December 2023

Meet Mabel

Mabel arrived exactly 8 weeks ago and my house feels like a home again. I met her when I went to visit a cat rescue close to me and once I had spent some time with her, I decided that she was 'the one' and I didn't need to meet any of the other cats. I had gone with a pretty open mind; I was happy to have a bonded pair of cats, a couple of kittens or a youngish adult cat. Colour wasn't important either. When I saw Mabel, she was in the back of a box where she had taken refuge but she allowed me to stroke her and nuzzled her head against my hand. She hadn't been in the cat rescue for very long. Her original owner could no longer keep her so she had gone to live with the owner's daughter. But she didn't get on with the resident cat so was taken to the cat rescue to be rehomed. I brought her home 8 weeks ago and she has settled in incredibly well. She is very sweet and affectionate, but has an independent streak too so she doesn't want to be on my lap 24/7, unlike Flo. She is very playful and has totally bonkers zoomies sessions around the house. She hasn't been outside yet, but is already showing a lot of interest in birds and has hissed through the window at my neighbour's cat! Here are a few photos of Mabel's first few weeks chez josiekitten. xxx

๐ŸพFirst meeting with mum - she seems ok! ๐Ÿพ

๐ŸพDay 1 in my new home ๐Ÿพ

๐Ÿพ I have my own special crocheted blanket ๐Ÿพ

๐Ÿพ I am good at gymnastics!๐Ÿพ

๐Ÿพ I have perfected the art of looking cute! ๐Ÿพ

๐ŸพGet out of my garden! ๐Ÿพ

๐Ÿพ Mum says I have very expressive paws! ๐Ÿพ

๐Ÿพ I am practising being an ornament! ๐Ÿพ

๐Ÿพ I took an interest in knitting and chewed the cable of the needles! ๐Ÿพ

๐Ÿพ I am very good at jumping! ๐Ÿพ

๐Ÿพ How long before this door will be unlocked I wonder? ๐Ÿพ

๐Ÿพ I helped with the dusting! ๐Ÿพ

๐Ÿพ I have beautiful whiskers ๐Ÿพ


Saturday 12 August 2023

A bit of a catch up!

Goodness me! I hadn't realised that it had been quite so long since my last blog post. No real excuses apart from just feeling a bit 'meh' and lacking in enthusiasm. I am really missing Flo's company and it's so easy to get into a slump.

I did do a bit of spinning to join in with the Tour de Fleece. To be truthful, it was more plying than spinning. I spun a couple of bobbins of singles last year and I'm ashamed to say that they sat there untouched for a whole year. I decided to ply them with some fluffy yarn, so used Drops Kid Silk mohair yarn. I have a vague idea of combining various skeins of handspun yarn into a sweater so let's see how far I get with that idea. I also finished spinning some pink fibre but that still needs to be plied so I will save that for another blog post.

I have added a few rows to my Chunky Striations blanket. I'm using various balls of Stylecraft Special Chunky yarn and it is a total explosion of colour! I still have quite a way to go to get it to a decent blanket size and then I need to decide how to finish off the edges. There is a garter stitch border around the edge but I am thinking that an I-cord might be a nice touch too. Watch this space!

I have finished the matching pair of each of my Grannies in a Row socks. They were a lot of fun to knit. There is a KAL running until the end of August if you'd like to join in. Jen, who is EveryThing ShapesUs on Instagram, is the organiser, so check out her Instagram for details. There are prizes to be won (more on that a little later!) It's a perfect pattern for using up scraps of yarn (of which I have many!)

I joined in the Contrast Blast KAL which was run by Stephen West. I used two gorgeous yarns from Beth over at Beehive Yarns and really enjoyed knitting clues 1 and 2. The pattern on the heel flap is fabulous. I haven't got round to knitting the remaining clues yet, but I have at least printed them out! My aim is to finish these before starting any more pairs of socks!

I finished my Hush sweater by Tin Can Knits. The yarn was a birthday present from my knitting pal Snoopydog and is so beautiful. You knit with a strand of fingering and a strand of fluff and it creates a wonderful cosy fabric. The cable pattern around the yoke was fun to knit and I also knitted an I-cord neckline. I'm looking forward to wearing it when the weather is cooler. I did miss my furry photobomber Flo who could be relied upon to climb the tree and feature in a photo or two.

I sewed a project bag as a prize for the Grannies in a Row socks KAL. I thought that the granny square fabric made it the perfect choice! I added in a set of miniskeins and hope that whoever wins it will like it. It's been a long time since I dusted off my sewing machine and I did enjoy making it. 

My darling Flo is back home. I have never had a pet cremated before so I wasn't quite sure what to expect. I chose a wooden photo frame to store her ashes inside (they are in a satin bag in the middle of the frame.) The vet had also taken a paw print and a little vial containing her fur and they were given to me when I collected her ashes from the vet. She really was my best girl and I miss her. xxx

Sunday 2 July 2023

Harbour blanket ta-da!

I have, at long last, finished my Attic24 Harbour blanket. Lucy released the pattern for a crochet-along back in January 2022. The pattern was shared over several weeks, with the aim of completing each week's rows in time for the next block. I got behind and the blanket got consigned to a project bag by the side of the sofa. In no time at all, it became buried under more project bags and I only got round to digging it out again after Flo was put to sleep. The colours in the blanket were inspired by boats and other seafaring bits and pieces and looking at some of my photos of harbours (mostly in Cornwall, a couple in Whitby and one from Greece), Lucy has the colours nailed perfectly.

Although Flo is no longer here to give it her seal of approval, she did give it the paws up early on in its making. I'm glad it's had a squish from Flo ๐Ÿพ๐Ÿพ๐Ÿพ

It's currently on the back of one of the sofas, but I plan to use it out in the garden when the days get a little cooler, so I can be nice and cosy while I'm reading. You can find details of the pattern here on the Attic24 website and yarn packs are available from Woolwarehouse if you don't have a bricks and mortar Stylecraft stockist close by. Have you ever made any of Lucy's blankets? xxx

Saturday 24 June 2023

Grannies-in-a-Row socks

I was lucky enough to be part of the test knitters for a crazy new sock pattern called 'Grannies-in-a-Row' which has been designed by Jen Yard who is Every.thing.Shapes.Us over on Instagram. The design uses both crocheted granny squares and traditional sock knitting to create a really fun sock. The first sock was made using lots of oddments of West Yorkshire Spinners Signature 4ply yarn.

I wanted to knit a pair using self-striping yarn, so I used leftovers from my Advent skein from The Yarn Badger and made the granny squares one solid colour. 

Copyright Jen Yard

Jen is running a KAL over on Instagram which starts today and ends on August 31st, so there's loads of time to join in. The pattern is currently on sale until this coming Monday (June 26th) from Jen's Ravelry store here. I will be joining in and hope to knit a matching sock for each of my test knits as well as another pair or two. There will be prizes too and I am donating something! I really hope you come and join the fun! xxx