Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Have Yourself a Mini Mitten Christmas

Whiskers on kittens and... mini festive mittens, yes there's just something about them, isn't there?

Mini mittens (3)

So teensy! So cute!

Mini mittens

I only knit the one item for Christmas gifting this year; this wee pair of mittens.
They are so adorable though, I may have to knit an entire battalion of them for next festive season. Battalion? Flock? Drift? What would be the collective noun for mittens I wonder..?

Mini mittens (2)

Hoping you all enjoyed a hearty, healthy, happy and contented festive time with your loved ones.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Too Funny, Too Forgetful!

Oh dear...

After my last post I went to Ravely to add the rainbow yarn to my 'stash' page - and what should I find...?

Fine with Rainbows

Yes, there it is! I had already entered it in to Ravely and named it something entirely different! Hahaha! Just shows what this industry has done to my brain - I'm so scatter brained nowadays!

Frictal Fractal

I discovered I had a wee amount of rainbow wool on an abandoned bobbin from literally years ago. This is the same rainbow tops from which I spun the white rainbow and the intense rainbow, but eons before spinning those two I had begun spinning a singles yarn changing colours through the rainbow.


It is only a weeny wee skein, made by navajo-ing the very thin singles.


For some reason it makes me think of fractals. It makes me think of refraction of light through one of those pyramid shaped prisms.

Set 2
Goodness knows what I will do with it as it is only 30m of fingering weight (light fingering at that!) but I'm sure I will find something :)

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Festive knits

I am only knitting one Christmas gift this year - contrary to my original plans. A few weeks ago I placed an order for some yarn, planning a knit for EVERYONE! But then realised that therein lie beasties and monsters of stressed anxious times and unfinished gifts, being that it is already part way through December!

So instead I am leaving the yarn for next year's gifts, which of course I wil commence knitting EARLY in 2011, or even straight after Chrissie!

But I might still knit a few little Christmas goodies... just a few... and very little...

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Peaceful Happy Tasmanian Fibre

To appease myself after returning to the Pilbara from our glorious time away in Tasmania I decided a little parcel of Tassie fluff might be just the ticket. I wanted Tasmanian fluff not just fluff sent from a store in Tasmania and I found Tasmanian House of Fibre to have all sorts of goodies!

It was so lovely to come home from work one day with a squooshy parcel waiting for me!
FIbre Fest
(apologies for blue-rinse photo effect!)

I purchased some undyed fibre to dye up myself here, but time has not been as free and easy as I always optimistically think it will be so I haven't played with that yet. The Mount Roland dyed fibre is absolutely luscious - I would say the softest most delicious fibre I've played with yet!

I wanted a stress-free spin with the Mount Roland as life has been very full on lately. But I just couldn't spin so I was happy with it. Too thick, too uneven, little coils and I couldn't decided what personality the yarn had.
Last night I decided on a nice thin yarn that I will navajo in to around a fingering weight. It must have been the right choice because it is going marvellously :)

Unfortunately my lovely shweetie has to head back south and have some time off work for a while and, as he'll be taking the car, Arthur (my spinning wheel) must go with him as he is too cumbersome and fragile for the plane - WOE! I must enjoy the spinning while I can!

p.s I'm sure I took a photo of my single spun Mount Roland on the bobbin but now I can't find it! So you will have to stay tuned for that shot et to come!

Saturday, December 04, 2010

Tree Nut

I have always been a tree nut; a tree climbing, tree hugging tree nut!

Although a lot of our block is tea tree bush and other woodsy wilderness there are still some corkers amongst our acres - big delicious river red gums, amazing gnarled banksias and some of the most amazing formations I have ever seen.

101113 - Wilderness walk (10)

101113 - Wilderness walk (22)
Two views of the same incredible tree mass by a hook in the river. You can see some of the flotsam in the branches from very high waters.
101113 - Wilderness walk (23)
Are they worshipping the tree in the centre? Is it nature's jungle-gym?

Wednesday, December 01, 2010


This made great big fat tears roll down my cheeks - it is absolutely beautiful.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Glorious Goomp!

We took a fantastic walk along our river, following it right on the very edge. It was GLORIOUS!
The only down fall (haha literally) was when I leeeeaaaned out to remove a branch for photographic purposes and GOOOMP - The bank collapsed and I fell into the river!!
101113 - Wilderness walk (24)
It was alarmingly deep actually.. as you can sort of see in the photo above the water almost reached my belt! Luckily my camera was safe and my shweetie was able to yoik me back up to the bank! My gumboots were full all the way to the top and were very squelchy for the walk back!

Friday, November 19, 2010

A lesson learnt in Tassie!

This picture illustrates why it is NOT a very excellent idea to knit on a lovely mossy ancient log out amongst the gently swirling waters of our river...

101111 - Wet Pattern

Luckily I noticed before the pattern (which had been innocently tucked under my armpit) was swept off and all my notes with it. However it was rather soggy for the rest of the day and evening, and is quite artistically covered in running ink!

I knit on the plan back over to the West, but knitting has since halted for the moment as I need to change needle size and can't find where I've put my other needles! I know I unpacked them somewhere...

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Snap Snippets

A few images captured of our block;

Mushrooms on the Track
Weeny weeny wee red mushrooms on one of our tracks - so small I had to grovel around in the dirt and wet moss to take the shot. Just one of the myriad of magical elements; I'm sure we share the land with the wee folk.

Boulders on Wombat Hill - In some places it looks like a paint tin explosion; lichen and moss in such a variety of colours, white, vibrant orange, grey, green and so on.

A beautful spot - it feels very special, sacred, almost as if one should talk in whispers out of respect for the age old banksias and history of the land embedded in the rocks.


We have now returned from our luscious two weeks off, and we are thinking. We are feeling and thinking - and trying to strike the balance between the two. Looking back through old photos on various hard drives I commented a number of times on how different we looked - all spritely and perky and YOUNG. I don't know quite what it has been up here, probably a combination of many factors, mainly the stress, sun and extreme heat - comparing us from those time-gone-by snap shots we appear much more greatly aged than the time that has actually passed.

I've developed an injury/discomfort that is worsened by the heat (requiring vascular surgery). This all sounds extreme, but I don't mean for it to be dramatic - it's just another of the considerations of this lifestyle.

We are feeling so stressed and pressured already after not even having returned to work for a week. No time to get the things done we need to do, and then no time to relax and unwind either - so it winds up and up until we snap at each other and become very out of character.

So.. we are considering our options. We have an opportunity in this industry to pay off our mortgage and live debt free in a remarkable length of time - what a life of bilss and freedom that would be without debt hanging over us! But I am now starting to weigh the cost and value of these things. How much is that future freedom worth? What type and size of sacrifice are we willing to make at the moment, after 3+ years like this? Although the sacrifice feels like it is only for the times we are AT work, I am realising now that the impact is much longer lasting- health wise, regarding family and connections, and also in terms of how our characters and personalities are being shaped.

No drastic moves yet, but something definitely needs to be worked out.

101104 - Night Fire
A small bonfire we had going - the sparks and embers flew in the hot updraft like frisky fire sprites, it was enchanting and mesmerizing to watch

Friday, November 12, 2010


I met a wee platypus!!

(I am more excited and thrilled than I can say - they are a truly enchanting creature)

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

That Sinking Feeling

Last night while relaxing by the wood drum fire at our neighbour's place I was happily knitting away on the button bands of the P in T cardi. I found it perplexing that the Left Front button band had 108 stitches but the Right Front button band I had just picked up stitches for had substantially more - why could that be?

I counted and re-counted, then I laid the cardigan out and looked over it.

Ah. That's why.

P in T Oh No

I missed several rows of the Left Front - GAH!!

What makes the situation worse is that after the lace section ( I think I missed a "Repeat rows 14 - 17" type instruction) the shoulder continues and then is bound off with the back shoulder - so I will have to UNDO my kitchener stitch and rip back to the lace section.

Another worsening of the sinking feeling - the button band, all finished and pretty, is made by picking up stitches on the completed front, so I will have to undo that also as it will need to be longer! I toyed with the idea of just adding a small section of button band at the top there and trying to attach it seamlessly rather than undoing and redoing the whole lot, but it will be front and centre there at the neckline and I don't want it to look peculiar...

I tried to ignore it last night and finished the non-gaffed Right Front buttonband - but this morning there is nothing for it but to take a deep breath and rippit!

Ditch Witch - Original Style

We had a very energetic day yesterday!

A visit from the previous owners so we took a long walk all through the block along the river picking up local knowledge and asking questions. In the afternoon we literally bush bashed our way through from one track to another, sourcing a potential link up route (ouch! Spiky tea tree!).

In the middle of the day we decided we ought to provide some drainage for the wet and soggy sections of our tracks, and when the shovel proved insufficient we called in the Proper Equipment from our neighbour - the Pelican Pick. We had one each and went absolutely beserk digging out trenches to provide a run off spot for water collecting in pockets - back down to the river it went!

(Ditch Witch - Like a dirt chainsaw!)

The old Pelican Pick is somewhat different to the modern method of trenching - the Ditch Witch - but it worked fine for us, if a little muddy...

Ditch Witch?
(Track before pelican picking)

What a satisfying accomplishment and great exercise!

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Torso in Tassie

On Sunday I completed the torso section of my Audrey in Unst (or 'Permaculture in Tassie' as I call it).

P in T Cardigan

Since I'm knitting with three balls of Dream in Colour Smooshy (delicious!!) I am alternating row by row so the colours are kept even.

I'm not sure exactly how far three skeins will get me, so rather than knitting the sleeves at this point, I will knit the button band first, the neck band and then progress to the sleeves. My plan is such that all the remaining yarn at that point can be used in the sleeves, enabling me to ration the yarn evenly between the two sleeves and knit knit knit until I run out of yarn. Whatever length of sleeves I can eke out will be just right!

P in T Torso Collage

For now I am very happy with how the cardi is coming along, and trying it on at this stage makes me feel I should knit some VESTS! A very handy little piece of warm knitwear, and if I were knitting a vest I would be done by now - what a quick knit vests must be!

Sunday, November 07, 2010

dread maintenance

My dreads are going famously, but I have really been quite neglectful of them - there hasn't been nearly enough of this action:
100719 Dreads (1)
That is, dreading new sprouts of hair, or escaped flyaways back in to the dreadleys.
100719 Dreads (3)

Here they are in the wilds of our Tassie block - dreads are THE perfect thing for our lives in Tassie - no mess, no fuss, low maintenance, easy care.
101103 - Would We Build Here Dreads (1)
Sometimes I get snagged on spikey plants as I walk past resulting in a bit of natural velcro! Love that they are easy to put up, love that they are easy to wear down and don't tickly me nose of fly into my face when they're out!

In short, Love love love - and they will only continue to get better, more established and dreadlier!

Friday, November 05, 2010

12 Buttons!

I have buttons - Hurrah!
Wooden Buttons
We popped in to town for some bits and pieces and I was able to pick up 12 dear little wooden buttons for my cardi - Shaping the neckline now, I'm getting closer and closer to a finished object....

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Two Weeks

My goodness - after all the counting down and anticipation we are here again on our magnificent block!

Some things are quite changed, but for the most part we are noticing how familiar things are becoming.
Fairy Glen
We have a glorious two weeks to spend exploring our block and making important design decisions. It's this period that is so vital - where will the house site be? Where will we build the shed in relation to that (since the shed will go up first)? What will we do with roads, probably make new ones, so where will they go? And so on.
View 1
It is so important that we get to know our land thoroughly - so we are exploring the hills and dales and enjoying it immensely!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Knitting for Tassie

On our last trip to Tassie I knit the very first stitches of my current project - Audrey in Unst.

The project had to languish a little while while I gift-crafted and was otherwise engaged, but the last little while I have been back on track and making some good progress.

Driving and Knitting

This cardi feels like all things Tassie to me - the lush wonderful green hues of the Dream in Colour Smooshy (Happy Forest) are all the amazing variety of greens on our block - the tree ferns, the eucalypts, the moss and all the myriad of other greenery and life.

Permaculture in Tassie

The pattern itself speaks to me of our block in Tasmania - the twisted stitch rib like tall strong lithe stems, the stockinette is the smooth moss on the clearing and the unst lace makes me think of little poke holes to plant seeds in to, the cultivation and planting.

Permaculture in Tassie (1)

It's down to a few sleeps until we are up up and away - and I am still knitting away, hoping to be able to wear my cardigan while we are there. The cardigan is knit bottom up, and at this stage I am finished to the underarms, completed the right front and now on to the left front. Knitting of the sleeves, back and left front remains, and also the button band. Here we gooooo!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Wildflower Winkie

One of my Grandmothers recently celebrated her birthday, and since she was the first lady to introduce me (many many moons ago!) to knitting I knew she would appreciate a hand made gift.

I've been working on my crochet skills a little and felt confident in making a gift-worthy item - albeit a simple one!

Wildflowers Winkie

My Gran cooks wonderful delicious things, particularly baked goods, so a large Winkie Square Pot Holder would be just the ticket for her dining table! The colours of this yarn, fabulous koigu KPPPM, are just the wildflower hues that my Gran loves - it was the perfect match!

Wildflowers Winkie (2)

The shot above gives a size comparison with the fork. Basically I started in the centre crocheting a standard Granny Square pattern and just kept going and going and going until I felt it was a suitable size!

Monday, October 25, 2010


One of the lovely things about living in a camp is coming back after work to find everything all nicely made :)


(plus we are absolutely spoilt at this site - a couple's room!)

Monday, October 18, 2010

Our Gate

I love our gate - seeing it fills me with all the glorious dreamy feelings and inspirational sparks for our future.

Our Gate

I think it symbolises our land to me in some way. When we're ON our land, through the gate and walking in the wilderness with no visible fence or infrastructure at all, it's more like we're with the land and part of it - but the gate reminds me that I'm not just wandering through an amazing part of nature and will wander back to the car and drive away - but that this little possie is where we will be building our future, our family and our lives together.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Mum's Mr purplejeans

My wonderful Mama is knitting away on a lovely cardigan at the moment. It is her first knitted cardigan or significant article of clothing after a long hiatus as she has only recently re-taken up knitting. After knitting a pair of Ysolda's garter stitch mitts to refamiliarise with knitting it was on to a bigger project, and Mum, you are going FABULOUSLY!!

It is indescribably fantastic spending time with Mum knitting together, and sharing this craft - talks of yarn, projects, what-should-I-do-here, colours and all the other things we knitters discuss. What an extra added gem to my incredible treasure-chest relationship with my lovely Mum to now share knitting too!!


Mum is knitting up a Mr Greenjeans, but we call it Mr Purplejeans as Mum is knitting with Jo Sharp Silkroad Aran Tweed in this fabulous rustic purple tweed (the photos do not do the purple tones any justice!)

Mums Fabulousness!

It has been such a ball already on the cardigan adventure together. Selecting a pattern, working through the pattern (see wee schematic above) and then the yarn shop crawl! Finding the right yarn is of course vital to a delicious knitted item ;D Mum and I left the store with this wonderful booty bag of purple tweedy balls for Mum's cardigan adventure!

Mums Fabulousness! (1)

Sending so many knitterly wishes and warm fuzzies for smooth, relaxing, interesting and educational knitting, Mum - I adore sharing this extra crafty delight together :)

Monday, October 04, 2010

New Favourite Beveridge

Tasty Bevvie

Gin & Tonic - with lemon and frozen rasberries.


Friday, October 01, 2010

Cooking Frenzy!

I had a training day at work last week which gave me an early knock off - what did I do with that extra time?


It wasn't a planned frenzy - I simply used all of the tasty things I had in the fridge and pantry...
Fetta cheese, pumpkin seeds and pine nuts (sauteed in butter and vegie stock), potato, sweet potatoe, vegie sausage, ricotta cheese, caramalised onion, white cream sauce...

Cooking frenzy

Which became a delicious pastry-less quiche!


I dutifully cut it into portions and froze them for yummy lunches once we return up north!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

R&R - Day 1

It has been a glorious day...

R&R Day 1

Sitting out the back over looking the garden ... Three or four different bird species simultaneously fossicking about, chortling and chattering ... Spinning luscious fibre ... My shweetie measuring, oiling, crafting away at his reloading press ... Knitting podcasts ... Tasty snacks ... Movies to watch tonight ...

Australie Singles (2)

It has been such a balm to have an entire day of relaxation - no appointments, errands or 'should's.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Touching Base

It is so awesome busting in through the door, finally home on R&R, dropping the bags and ferreting delightedly through the mail...

R&R Bounty!

We realised on the taxi ride from the airport that this time around we have been away for THREE. MONTHS. A long time to go without seeing family, close friends and fuzzy wuzzy doggalogs.

Sunday, September 26, 2010


Our lovely block of land is near beautifully running water - so in this waterlogged time of year the low paddocks tend to get a little soggy - which we discovered while driving across one!

100826 - TAS (152)

As you can see - we got out in the end!
We had driven across this same paddock several times already, and since the ground was so soft we decided to take a slightly different angle so as not to etch an ugly track in the one place we had been driving.

Bad move!
That innocent looking grassy patch for a sneaky veneer over incredibley soft, dark, rich and SLIPPERY mud!

Bogged this deep!!

Here I show how deep the ruts were that we became stuck in - right up to the axel almost!
Also - as you can see, neither of us were wearing our gumboots since we were just popping out to town, and had no expectation of becoming shin deep in mud!

Bogged in the paddock

The textures were so delicious - the mud was like melted rich dark chocolate and contrasted so beautifully against the textured grass.

Thank goodness for the shovel, our healthy strong bodies and my shweetie excellent skills!
Very unconventionally - we put the car in to reverse (it was already in low range) and both ran to the front to push. Since it's a diesel car it didn't stall with no one in the seat to feather the clutch and with MONSTER effort (we both had headaches afterwards from the strain) we pushed the mongrel out!

The problem had been that the mud was SO bloody slippery that even with no obstacles behind the wheels, we had dug out the mud to a nice smooth surface for the tyres to turn on, the wheels would simply spin on the spot as the tyers couldn't get any purchase!

100826 - TAS (147)

We met another friend from all of this however, a GIANT earthworm must have been disturbed by all our efforts in the soil and was inching his way across the grass looking for a way back down. We helped him back to an earthy opening he could push in to, lest he be gobbled up by a bird.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

D90 excitement!

( Isn't it odd - I apologised for the absence and then disappeared again - then it felt awkward to jump back in again so I procrastinated until I finally realised how absurd that was and here we are..!! )

While away on our last R&R - our trip back to our MAGNIFICENT block in Tassie - I picked up a liddle somethin'-somethin' that I am exceedingly excited about...

100825 - TASSIE (30)

.. my very own fancy pants Digital SLR camera!! Wooooot! :D

I am miles away from knowing what on earth I'm doing with it - so thank goodness for 'auto', hey? I bought a kit lens with the D90, it's the 18mm - 105mm and I'm finding it very nice indeed. I love the idea of a very super ridiculously long lens for wildlife shooting (that way I can go "hunting" wildlife on our block too, but a different type of shooting than Sir Shweetie!) and I am desperate to get a delicious macro lens. But the reality is that the DSLR world is a fancy pants from france world with expensive accessories!

For now I'm thrilled to bits with the D90 (yet to be officially named) and I'm sure it will keep me very busy learning how all the bells and whistles work!

p.s. those woolly looking sleeves in the photo are my malabrigo Toasts! Absolutely perfect for the cool Tassie climes :)