31 December 2008

Almost there

Sir Terry Pratchett and Commander Plant ;-)

Sir Terry Pratchett - apart from well deservered it takes getting used to ;-)
Two of my favourite artists!

That's what Yahoo said:

Plant, 60, most famous for fronting rock band Led Zeppelin in the 1970s, becomes a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) under Britain's ancient and complex system of honorary titles.

Plant has forged a successful career since Led Zeppelin's demise in 1980, recently collaborating with singer Alison Krauss on the acclaimed album "Raising Sand."

Pratchett, 60, best known for his satirical "Discworld" fantasy series, becomes a knight, one of the queen's most important honors, and will now be addressed as a "Sir."

"There are times when phrases such as 'totally astonished' just don't do the job," he said in a statement.

"I am of course delighted and honored and needless to say, flabbergasted."

In December 2007 Pratchett announced he had a rare form of early onset Alzheimer's disease, and earlier this year he donated 500,000 pounds ($725,000) to research into the disorder.

30 December 2008

Something old, something not so new...

It's still freezing outside, even during daylight. I love these winters! Unfortunately the decks between the buildings here are as slippery as the proverbial slope, even under normal circumstances. The humidity from the sea leaves a wonderful slick of ice on the wooden planks of the decks...
The grass looks stunning!

Under Ice


Still, we venture out.

Tomorrow it will be for something mundane - broken toilet seat needs replacing. I kid you not, it has taken on a life of its own and some metal pin is broken. No chance to repair it, so replaced it will be. At the same time I will look for nice and small pillows for our bed and a - by preference wooden - storage box to store my inks and other writing devices in. Think ink pots, refills for fountain pens and the likes.

I have finished spinning the ultra pink batts from Feltstudio UK and the beret I made out of it is almost complete.
At the same time I have knit my first ever handspun yarn into a neckwarmer and Ysolda's Urchin - just on 15mm needles for the neckwarmer and 9mm needles for Urchin. It's superdupermega warm and will keep this little mini-mo if mine nice and cozy when standing in the early morning chill on the platform, waiting for my train.
I'm waiting for the buttons to arrive to finish the neckwarmer. Since it's made out of BFL, partly undyed and some other wool in more natural colours I got some real wood buttons - yes, again off Etsy. Either the Loggles or the spalted Oak Wood Buttons, I don't know yet. I'm tending towards the Loggles at the moment.

New spinning fiber is also on the way to me. I find spinning to be therapeutic, even if it's only with a spindle at the moment.

It's funny, ever since I got the mini-mo (best creative un-do since my beloved zig-zag cut back in 2006) I find myself counterbalancing this unusual cut (for a 38 year old in any case) with a certain, unusual oldfashioned way to dress. Think lace, think hats, berets, shawls, scarves... Carefully chosen. Even jeans never looked so good with a nice blouse and scarf to complete it. I'm finding myself looking at knitting patterns I haven't considered so far. Old fashioned, solid, never out of fashion and wonderfully unique. It seems like contradiction, but to me it makes sense. And feels good. I wonder, what my therapist will say when she sees me beginning of January. Well, I feel a lot more alive than I have for most of 2008.

Going out in style

This is a perfect example. A lace hat, crocheted out of Catania Cotton in Creme and long time ago, my Elizabeth Victoria neckpiece, a wonderful coat I got from my Mom (she drowns in it) and the cuff I got from Bonzie. Who sees the "underwear" in winter? Black trousers and a black sweater make up the rest of the outfit. Simple and sophisticated!
And I can tell you one thing: my husband loves it! The last week has been full of compliments :-) Especially yesterday ;-)

Irish Ensemble

Friday I have an appointment to have my eyes checked. I will get a second pair - the frame has to be sent away to get new glasses fitted and I simply cannot exist without my glasses. I always had two pairs, but since getting this frame it's been my sole companion. I've been looking around the optician's store yesterday already and saw only one frame I might consider - think Harry Potter in red. I don't know yet how it looks on my nose, but I will find out. Something tells me I might end up with bi-focals...I have problems focusing clearly especially when looking up from knitting or reading and looking into what I call middle distance (like to see my train approaching the station or the houses across the lawn). Reading or knitting is fine (as far as I can tell), so I wonder what has changed.

And it looks like February will see me here. I haven't been to Zwolle yet, but from what I read it seems to be a rather interesting and lovely place (Woodhenge? A woodhenge was found?). I hope the weather will be fine - but it's two months until then. Rotterdam was so much fun and I would love to get some more fiber and new ideas and chat and have fun with like-minded people.

27 December 2008

Peaceful days, family and knitting

Christmas was nice and quietly spent with family back home.
We arrived noonish on the 24th and my sister and her husband arrived on the 25th.
Our family tradition is warm potatoe salad on the 24th, with a roast and veggies on the 25th. Other than this it's really a family get together, chatting, relaxing and having a good time. Despite other expectations no comments from my parents on the mini-mo, my sister loved it and would like me to grow a tail in the back and maybe a lock at the front. She said she prefers it over "simply short" and that it's "getting better and better". Yay!

In the train, having fun with knitting a scarf:


All of us:


My sweater project on the table grew quite a bit. It's again one of those UFOs, and will become a FO! I'm determined!



While I according to my sister don't need a basic knitting guide she felt (and rightly so) that some basic information always in reach isn't a bad thing. I already fell in love with a pattern I HAVE to try.

Sunset 25.12.


It got significantly colder during the Christmas days and today it's freezing even during daytime. Which causes solid wet dreams with our Frisian citizens.

We are avoiding the shopping frenzy most likely going on today, we have already prepared for a quiet weekend with a veggie soup and rice today and some spinach tomorrow.

Today will be spend with some laundry and cleaning, some knitting, some pattern admiration and lots of coffee.

Talking about pattern admiration:
This is great! A knitted guitar.
I came across this while looking for the stackable cats pattern .

Another find:
This blog, though in Turkish is quite a find, let me tell you that. Some treasures to be found, and lots of inspiration, even if you don't understand the language.

22 December 2008

Pixie goes Punk

Pixie goes Punk and loves it.
Family will probably get one or the other heart attack!

Spontaneous idea while strolling through downtown The Hague. We just came out of the American Book Center and were actually planning to make our way homewards when I discovered a branch of my favourite hair dresser. New place, only in public service for almost three months. And Stephanie, returning the hammer she borrowed from the neighbours invited me in...

Result: obvious.
Obviously very much in love with this punk design. The back is asymmetric, with the mohawk part not straight down, but to the side, ending in a point on the lower left.
Three colours (magenta, blue black and a dark red)- and big big kudos to Stephanie, her idea, design and handiwork!


It's amazing how different I look.

All in all a great day!
Well, apart from the fact that some idiot from the building next door shot fireworks at me, hitting the ground barely two meters from my feet. Who needs sport when you can get your heartbeat up to 200bpm while taking one step? Needless to say - police report filed. I have absolutely no tolerance for this kind of bullshit! Especially not since certain buildings are known for their yearly mayhem. The agent lady I reported this to only got the address and her reply was "Oh, it's the apartment block." Yep, we know where the yearly chaos and destruction originates.

21 December 2008

Pale Moon

There could have been no better day to finish this.
I'm in a finishing mood lately, yesterday I completed a gigantic cropped sweater (picture to follow, I'm not in picture mood today), today Pale Moon has finally been finished. I only had to assemble it and embellish the disc. An hour later and I have a new addition to my wardrobe.

Made out of a small amount of Sassa Lynne's Medium Cotton Thread and a tiny amount of Gedifra Super Gigante.
Hook used: 2.5mm
A hippo's behind button, purchased at ButteredParsnips.etsy.com, a glass bead bought in England and various smaller beads from my treasure have been sewn onto this disc.
New choker ready. Will be worn tomorrow when we venture into town.

The Point of Roughness


13 December 2008

Dear Diary...

...today I have been mooned.
This little and extremely funny incident happened when my husband and I strolled over the Saturday market downtown.
It was the most beautiful weather, ice cold and sunny, so we cuddled up and ventured out and about.

My outfit of today
I have the tendancy to ignore cliche plus size dressing rules and I love to mix and not quite match. Style is personal, oh yes!

Shoes: Doc Martens
Leggings: M&S Rotterdam
Skirt: Miss Etam - totally last season, remixed
Purple Shirt: Miss Etam
Stretchy Crossover Cardigan: Miss Etam - totally last season
Scarf: Noro Sock Yarn, made by me
Scottie Spoon Pendant: yipestoo.etsy.com

When we passed a booth I heard "Happy new hair" from behind me and turned round to face the gentleman (well, slightly questionable). We got into a little friendly discussion about unique people and somehow the lady of the next booth in line got involved. I had already turned around to commence my strolling when a bit of commotion broke out. I turned around again, looked at my husband and asked:"What happened?"
"Well, he mooned you?"
"Mooned me?" I started laughing.
The gentleman, not needing any further encouragement, said "wanna see it again?", turned around and mooned me again. This time for me to see. I laughed even harder, but we refused his kind offer to show us the other side as well. Though on second thoughts, with the cold nothing would have been visible anyway. I laughed for a little while longer.
Things like this don't shock me. Ask the guy in Central Park New York, who jumped out of the bushes next to me, opened up is trenchcoat to reveal his birthday suit, white socks and black shoes. I spontaneously burst into really loud laughter and I think this was not the effect he had hoped for. I'm sorry, but it was so cliche...

The market downtown is an eccentric mix of everything. Fresh fruits and vegetables, fish, cheese, spices, new mobile phone stuff, socks and underwear, bedding, bikes and accessoires, esoterics...you name it, it's probably there. Antiques and would be antiques.

Childhood memories - for both my husband and me.
Blaak Market find

I'd love to have this sewing cabinet.
And a lot of more stuff I saw...a dressoir for example...
A girl can always dream.

We got an old book about Dwarfs, some bread and mandarines. At the outer ends of the market the kilo was 1.50 Euro, in the middle 0.095cents to 1 Euro per kilo.

We had great fun! Around 2pm we made our way back to the Metro Station to get into the shopping district. Dear husband, who is slightly the little frost bite, needed some warm attire for the office, to wear over his shirts. We were successful and I have to say - very handsome, that guy. Too bad I'm already married ;-)

A rather late lunch was had at our favourite hole in the wall - best Saoto soup in the world!

The sun was already setting when we went back home. The wind got really chilly and I started to get tired.

We stopped for a cappuchino in the mall across the street from us - we wanted a little pick-me-up.
Happy Husband!

Wouter gave me his cap for some protection and wore his hood (he had his favourite red hoodie on). We left the mall, crossed the street and were home!
Greeted by slightly hungry cats, who are now happy and fed and cuddled up somewhere.
I have a hot cup of 15 minutes Peppermint&Liquorice tea right next to me and type this entry.

I still need to show you my memory wall, but that's for a new post. This one long enough already.

06 December 2008

The world needs more glitter!

One thing I actually like about this whole Christmas commerce is the selection of make up! I braved the Dutch last minute shopping crowd yesterday (HORROR) and went out to get some picture frames. While at the store I also found some great metallic eyeshadow and eyeliner in the most vibrant turquoise! Think Ziggy Stardust Life on Mars.
Add some glitter hairspray (barely visible in picture) and glitter lipgloss over lipliner and ready we are!
This is the time of year where I get my glitter make up for next year! Call me crazy, but I love my glitter! And I'm not afraid to wear it.


And yes, there is even glitter on my sweater. One of the reasons I got it ;-)

I'm not per se a glitter rock kind of girl, though I do appreciate an old Bowie or T. Rex. I'm more a prog-rock, heavy metal, folk music sort of flapper-hippie, but I do get my inspirations from everywhere.
Ziggy Stardust is legendary and I wish I could have seen one of the concerts.
I also wish I could have seen the old Led Zeppelin playing live. Same for The Doors and Janis Joplin.
I love some newer artists as well - Tori Amos is one of my inspirations and so is Amanda Palmer. Thanks to Bonzie I discovered Imogen Heap, which led to Unwoman. Emilie Autumn is quite nice as well.
Linkin Park covers my wilder darker side nicely. I like the raw emotions Chester portraits.
Metallica is great for falling asleep (I kid thee not), Depeche Mode and the old Marillion keep me company on the dance floor. Throw in some good old folk - Oysterband, Valravn, Shooglenifty and you have a very happy little pixie.
Just with lots of glitter.

When I was a teenager I didn't have an idol sort of thing. That would have been in the Eighties and posters of Tom Cruise (blech) in Top Gun and the likes adorned my classmates bedroom walls. I had posters of star constellations and some drawings on mine. I didn't day dream of popstars or actors. My taste in music was different from the beginning - well, I started with Abba (still like them) and Chris de Burgh (I still like the old stuff) and from then on it got stranger by the year. Suzanne Vega and Latin Quarter, a now defunct and rather political band came up next. Depeche Mode and Eurythmics were the other half of me. Pretty quick I discovered rock (Deep Purple) and my favourite hangout became the best disco in the world - The Getaway! Yes, I was 15 when I first went there, together with my older, but very responsible friends. My parents knew and approved - I made sure they knew my friends and all of them were good ones. Always making sure I got home okay, looking after me...and it never was a bother, to none of us.
Anyway, the first song I ever danced to in a disco was Perfect Stranger - and then there was no stopping me. The Getaway was basically an old barn turned club, in the middle of absolutely nowhere. Three houses and plenty of trees, that's what the whole place consisted of. It doesn't exist anymore, but it set the tone of what kind of atmosphere I prefer for a dancing night out. Later Haus Spilles became my favourite, with music provided by Jethro Tull (Locomotive Breath), Rolling Stones, Doors, Janis and later a more grungy and metallic sound.

Led Zeppelin came in 1988. Best I gained and kept from a relationship.
Tori Amos also came in 1988. I never knew her songs would get so important to me. I sometimes call her my Faerie Godmother. She wrote the lyrics to the stuff that happened to me.

Progrock was always in there, but when discovering Queensryche it got stronger with me. Pink Floyd was listened to daily, though not volunteraly! Thanks Richard ;-) My old and best boss to date liked them and played them all day long - the same CD. Can drive you slightly insane.
The Dutch have a great progrock scene and with that Epica, After Forever and the creations of Arjen Lucassen were discovered.

The latest discovery was actually what I call dark cabaret - Amanda Palmer, Vermillion Lies, Emilie Autumn, Unwoman. A more electronic sound with great appeal to me. I'm still discovering.

But deep down inside me I am and always will be a glittery rock child. Sometimes with flowers, sometimes with leather and lace. Always with glitter. And something knitted. Never without.

And I seriously need to get my roots done! This mess called hair is growing like the proverbial weed! One of the pitfalls when having short hair: after two and a half to three weeks one looks like an exploded pillow! Bad bed hair! Berets and hats to the rescue. Though that usually asks for comments from friendly people around me. And I admit - it gets a bit warm sometimes. Especially when inside.

Creativity is ongoing in this household. I picked up a long neglected piece of left overs knitted into a freeform sweater.
Shaby's scarf is almost finished.
Wouter has a new hat. Marcus, my brother in law will also get one in red and black as per request.
I got myself some novelty yarn (Katia Can Can, talk about glitter again) for some lovely neckwear in jeans blue and burgundy. Two pieces, not one ;-)
I'm waiting for my new wooden drop spindle to start spinning this:


For all you knitters out there - and all you folks with a sense of sarcastic humour:

04 December 2008

Dead and alive electronics and wet cotton

I spent a couple of days with my family...
My Dad was released from hospital last Saturday, he is now the more or less proud owner of a brand new ICD. His diet has to change and he should stop smoking. But honestly - how big are the chances that someone smoking for about 50 years will stop? As much as I would love to see all my family members stopping (I am the only non-smoker) I simply know that this is not going to happen.
What exactly causes the heart problem ten days ago is still a riddle to all involved.
I hope the ICD doesn't have to do its job for a long time and that my parents will continue to make changes and improvements in their lives.

While I was gone no progress was made on Bubble Hue (I crocheted a hat for the husband while gone and worked on my merino tunic instead), so I finished it yesterday!
Wore it out today - not a good idea! Simply because it was snowing and raining and we all know how heavy cotton gets when it's getting wet. Bubble Hue is now drying and so is my coat ;-)

It's extremely difficult to capture the true colours of this multi dimensional life form :-)

And yes, I'm wearing a necklace in my hair. Why not?
While getting dressed I played with several necklaces and put one on my head, more to "store" it for a moment rather than anything else. It was a different one, shorter than this little beauty, but sparked the idea.
The length is perfect and I have matching earrings!
I like the idea and will dive into it in the next couple of days. Now I know the lenght and can start playing. Perfect for Christmas parties and likely to spark lots of comments. It seems that us short haired pixies are not allowed to play with accessoires, that's only for the long haired beauties! Ha! Nothing like this! Humbug! It's only a limitation in the mind of such nay-sayers. Why should I limit myself to glitterspray and hairgels to style my short tresses!
And personally I'm used to stupid comments regarding my looks, so it's water and the back of a duck.

During my absense a lot of Etsy mail arrived! This calls for a groupshot - once my camera decides if it wants to work or not. It somewhat gave up its electronic ghost after the shots today and might have gone to the place of all dead electronics :-(

It's cold and snowy and windy...tea time, I think!

26 November 2008

BBEST, episode 2

My Dad's surgery is scheduled for tomorrow, he will actually get an ICD, a defibrillator. Pace makers are to make your heart beat faster, defibrillators can do that and can also get the heart back to beating slower or in rhythm again.
He was moved to a different room and was sitting in a chair, watching TV. He is already making jokes and complained that they took his glasses when they went in with a heart catheter. He wanted to see more :-)

But now: surprise number two arrived today and was dutifully delivered by a loving husband (because the mailman was even later than I was today!):

This envelope doesn't give away anything, does it?

It revealed a lovely card, which will actually be framed as well ;-)

This ACEO - my first one ever! - is stunning!
Before I opened my mail I had been chatting to my Mom about an old photobook we hope to receive. It once belonged to her grandfather, so my great grandfather. Opa Becker died when my Mom was 14, I never met him, but feel a close connection to him. I think we would have enjoyed each other's company.
So imagine my delight when I saw this beautiful old picture! It will receive a place at my "sentimental wall" (I have to take a picture of it at some point), it's rather interesting.

Instead of tea or coffee a glass of Belgium beer was had :-)


BBEST, episode 1

Not all was bleak yesterday! Well, the news that my Dad is doing fine considering the circumstances and while serious, it's currently not life threatening was good news already.

And then my first BBEST surprise arrived!

The envelop has arrived and opened!

An envelop inside the envelop!

Thank you, Judy!!!!

And of course, my ever nosy little cat Silly (name as well as character) had to inspect everything on HIS table.

You have no idea how soft this is!

And already in use today - off to the dentist. All teeth well, next full moon can come ;-)

Thank you very much, Judy! How did you know that my wintercoat is actually blue and temperatures are rather chilly lately?

Instead of tea - coffee with a dash of caramel chocolate powder was had for the party!

My Dad

Because I'm a daughter, too!
On Monday evening my Mom and sister informed me that my Dad has been admitted to ICU earlier that evening with serious heart problems. HE called the ambulance after feeling pressure on his chest and a tingling in his left arm. He also had breathing problems.
The medical team wasn't able to stabilize him completely, had to defibrilate him at least once to get his heart back into rhythm.
He was stable and conscious when my Mom left the hospital and remaind that way during the night.
Further examinations revealed two almost blocked coronary arteries (Atherosclerosis) with likely the first signs of an unstable angina pectoris.
He had no further irregularities since Monday, but will receive a pace maker as precaution.

He has high bloodpressure for years, and while this is not necessarily a contributing factor to the atherosclerosis his chain smoking is. There will be a lot of changes in my parent's life from now on.

I haven't slept much and I will be off to see my family. My Mom is understandably very upset and it would be too much if we all would be staying with her at the same time. My sister and her husband are with her until tomorrow, we will come on Friday.

And now I have seriously had it with 2008...

23 November 2008

Elves and knitting

Today we opened the curtains to this:

Which promptly made me indulge in coffee with a dash of cocoa powder, candles on the windowsill and cranberry oil in my little aroma lamp.

It didn't quite stop:

What it doesn't show you is the windspeed (force 7). I can hear it howling even now. We usually don't do snow here, we do rain.
A couple of brave souls have been trying to build snowmen, but the snow is too wet and it's too windy.

I continued my latest knitting project, a length-wise scarf (bad idea when 4mm needles and size 4 perle cotton are involved) inspired by not only the gorgeous colours dyed by Sassa Lynne, but also by listening to an audiobook version of Neil Gaiman's InterWorld.
Meet Bubble Hue. A MDLF. And most likely a she.

I have another hank of her viscose/cotton ribbon yarn and after watching Lord of the Rings two nights ago have set my mind on designing my own LOTR scarf. More precisely: an Amon Hen scarf. It is a key scene, both sad and very important. A wonderful place, both ancient and disturbing.
A not too wide scarf, cables and lace involved, possibly some beads.

Also inspired by the movie (and I can watch it time and time again, I still discover something new, still get inspired and still want to go on a holiday to Lothlorien and Gondor's White City) and a post on Ravelry I researched what my name in Sindarin or Quenya would be:

IRL my name is the Low German and Swedish form of Christina/Kristina - meaning Follower of Christ.
Christ (origin Greek) itself is a title more than a name, meaning Anointed One. Rub it in ;-)
Thus in Quenya my name could be translated into Laivine as translation for anointed one (or Elpinoine, but that would be the 1:1 translation again). Seems to closest match so far.

The Council of Elrond suggests “Follower of God”:
Sindarin: Echileru - fem. Echilerueth, Echileruwen, Echileruien, Echileruiel
Sindarin: Aphadoneru - fem. Aphadonerueth, Aphadoneruwen, Aphadoneruien, Aphadoneruiel
which is only half true if you look for the meaning of and not just the translation of the name Kerstin.

I haven’t been able to find the Sindarin equivalent to “anointed” yet, and would then be adding a feminine ending, like -wen, or -hiril, or -iel.

My last name is equally fun and already interesting in itself - the Low German word for acorn, so “fruit, berry”.
So in Sindarin (not having found the direct translation) one could use doron (oak) and eridh (seed), so Doroneridh.

Fixed a lovely meal out of kohlrabi and mashed potatoes.
Had lots of coffee.
And my usual headache. I should go and have my eyes checked.

22 November 2008

A light from the shadows shall spring

Weather: see yesterday. Or look outside the window.

Just somewhat colder than yesterday, so warm measures had to be taken when we left to celebrate our friend Miranda's birthday.

I managed two hours of chatter and general party noise before caving in. Now the headache is almost gone again and I'm just tired.
But I wanted to be there and I was, this is what counts.

Before the internet decided to go for a walk I had promised a picture of my most recent WIP yesterday:

Taken with only my desk lamp on. Awful light. Wonderful yarn!

The name - Bubble Hue - is based on the audiobook I was listening to while winding the yarn. The project has grown somewhat in the meantime, I was able to do some more knitting while watching part one of Lord of the Rings on TV last night.
Sigh...I don't know how many times I've seen it, but I still can't get enough. I still discover new things, it still impresses me and I still love Legolas. Yep, the elf. I adore Gimli's braided beard. I laugh about Samwise's wisdom.

Still, knitting a scarf length-wise in size 4mm needles is NOT a good idea. What on earth have I been drinking when I made that decision? Oh, coffee...yes. Plain coffee. That's probably the reason. Coffee. Plain. I try Irish Cream with coffee next time. Might have less stupid ideas. Who knows.
But it's worth it. The yarns,(Sassa Lynne's wonderfully handdyed knitting yarn and at least two of her Medium Cotton Thread creations make a wonderful combination - and they fit my mental image of Hue. And since most people haven't either read or listened to Interworld by Neil Gaimen - Hue is a MDLF, a muddluff - a multi dimensional life form. It appears in the form of a bubble and communicates in colour. And it's most likely a she :-)

I also acquired another Sassa Lynne creation and after watching LOTR last night it will be a foresty scarf, embellished, with lace and cables. An autumn forest, Amon Hen like.

I just wish I could go and take a vacation in Lothlorien. I'm not a Rivendell sort of girl. And no, I don't want to go to New Zealand, thankyouverymuch! Middle Earth will do just fine.

Hmmmm...and I've just been fed an Oreo...

21 November 2008


Had a wonderful day today!
Outside, it's rain, storm and hail, interrupted by occasional sunshine. Winds went up to windforce 9 late morning, but died down somewhat.
Germany was hit pretty bad as well, I keep on following the news, hoping that my brother in law and my little sister make it home alright in these conditions.

My tummy is full of Dim Sums. I had some cassave, too.

The skinny scarf is finished and two hanks of wonderfully dyed yarn have been wound into balls, all while listening to my new favourite audiobook.

Project has been cast on on 10mm needles and is currently continued on 4mm needles, soon to be upgraded to 10mm again.

Behind me, I hear the sound of Daleks and my beloved 10th Doctor Who. In a couple of minutes I will cuddle up and watch (again) Lord of the Rings.

I fell in love today. With Hue. A MDLF. She has been the inspiration for my current knitting. And I doubt that most of you know what I am talking about. I love me some Hue!

My internet connection is giving out, so the picture I wanted to include will be uploaded tomorrow. Now it's time for some great costumes and one of my favourite movies.

20 November 2008

There are stars in the sky!

Do I have news for you...
The somewhat secret date was a job interview. I didn't get the job, for one of the most interesting reasons I ever heard: knowledgewise I could have started immediately, but I'm too similar to the people already working there, the manager is afraid that this will cause tension.
My personal opinion goes into a different direction: the manager is only six or seven months with the company, his senior employee 10 years. I already had a weird feeling and an alarm bell during the interview - that person seems to live for the job and would have gotten an equal - new, but with same knowledge level, therefore threatening her position as leader.
Their loss.

Still a lot of anxiety, I'm more calm, but anything out of the ordinary throws me off my feet. Sleep is getting better, but still not uninterrupted. But at least I fall asleep again without rotating for hours. Dreams are of the interesting kind - not nightmares, more absolutely abstract. Stairs have always been one of the main features, and I even meet people in my dreams I know in real life. That doesn't happen very often. I also managed to wake myself up laughing - that was a first. Still very easily reduced to tears. But the rebound is getting easier, shorter. Music helps a lot - Oysterband, Suzanne Vega, Tori Amos, Ayreon (prog rock of the Dutch kind).
Getting better, very slowly, but surely.

Have just finished my latest project - hot off the hook:

A neckwarmer matching my new dress. Also a first - I usually don't make things to match or compliment one specific item in my wardrobe, but this metallic cotton thread almost matches the magenta in the dress and I have some gray sock yarn and beads... Took me a couple of days only, and I like it a lot.

Also on the needle is an almost finished skinny feather and fan scarf out of Noro Kureyon Sock yarn and a scarf for my friend in Canada. The skinny scarf will be finished tomorrow, the Canada scarf in a couple of days. It's my bedside project, for the times I do watch TV (which isn't often).
Two hanks are waiting to be wound into balls and I need to hunt for the matching needles. A 4mm and a 7mm, I reckon. The colours are gorgeous, cold turquoise and magenta, yellow...a wonderful contrast to my usual wardrobe!

But the best thing that happened to me this week is this:

Tada - Winners

I'm still speechless and quite flabbergasted. Somebody is looking out for me! It's amazing, how much little glow worms nature provides in the dark, or how many stars there are, shining brightly and lightening up my sky! The BBEST team cannot imagine how I feel. I'm planning to have my own little party for every surprise that reaches me, I'm amazed by the love and creativity of the world around me. There is a huge thank you in my heart for all of them!

I'm going to crawl under the covers in a moment. The husband and the fluffy critters are all asleep and I'm going to join them.

16 November 2008

Can you?

Can you tell what I was doing?
How I was feeling?
Who my inspirations were?

Sunday at my place by Pixie Redhead

13 November 2008

Creative with Polyvore

Sometimes I like to waste time on Polyvore and after months of no inspiration the muse has kissed me...about time ;-)

If I could pull off red this would be a favourite for winter - it should even look good in plus size:

London Calling by Pixie Redhead

And that could be me on any given day. I own or use a couple of the chosen items, some not in the colour and all bought locally or like my leather handbag from the artist who made it (on a great market in Greenwich Village, London. Great place to be!).

Any given day by Pixie Redhead

12 November 2008

And even more good news

I got contacted by an online Guide website, wanting to the approval to publish one of my photos of the Royal Botanic Garden in Edinburgh in their city guide.
No profit involved (and I'm not after profit), I gave the approval to use a small version of a picture in their Edinburgh Map.
The guide is not published yet, but will be eventually here

I'm double flattered - my favourite city and I made a picture worthy enough to be included!

Down memory lane

We don't have a movie tradition, but on Christmas Eve on those years my father couldn't be with us (he was working half a world away and not always would it work out for him to be home for Christmas) we would gather around the radio (yes, oldfashioned), his a small world radio, we at home in the living room and listen to the same program. A program where families would greet their family member sailors, or sailors greeting their family. It was always something like "Mom Miller and the kids would like to greet Dad Miller, mate on vessel , currently in the Pacific Ocean . There were little songs played - and you could just imagine the sailors being crammed around the board radio. I once dated a marine and I know how much these things are appreciated.
And even while my Dad wasn't on a boat, he was far away, and knowing we would do something in common made us feel closer to each other.

Anyway, that was our Christmas tradition for many years. I don't think that it still exists - mobile phones etc. have made it void. And I think it's a shame.

11 November 2008

More breaking news

This time of the positive kind:
- I changed my banner! Why knit wonderful scarves when one can't use part of a picture for the blog? I like it a lot better!

- Keep you fingers crossed for me on Thursday. I won't say anything here until I know for sure if or if not this thing works out, but it should be a thing to help me out of the situation I'm in. But even if it doesn't work out, it's a good experience.

- I won! I'm not a winner sort of type, but this time I won. I don't know what yet, apart from books and treats, but The Witchy Chicks had a contest in October and I won. It couldn't have come at a better moment. Especially since my psychologist recommended reading, audiobooks and long walks. Long walks are more like a long swim in cold water - it's been rather stormy here and will remain like this until Thursday from the looks of it. So knitting, reading and audiobooks it is.

- I'm seriously considering growing my hair out. I'm currently not the tough and strong girl my short hair makes people think and I'm feeling soft and vulnerable. My outside doesn't reflect my inside anymore.

- I bought some dresses(!) yesterday! I currently have one, plus a couple of skirts, but have considered dresses for a while now. So my husband accompanied me and we got a dress, a nice tunic and a knitted dress/tunic! Plus leggings!
I'm not going to hotlink the pictures, they are copyrighted, so if you want to see what I got:

Flower Dress

Long Shirt, great with skinny jeans

I couldn't find the knitted ajour tunic - my big knitting project is a knitted dress and this little black tunic looks great! If my project, which I want to have finished for Christmas, turns out half as good looking I'm more than happy.

I need to get some boots now, too.

08 November 2008

Breaking news

From the looks of it I'm now completely out from work, for at least the next six weeks.
I have an appointment with the company doctor on Monday, but after my talk with my therapist on Thurday I cannot hold up this pretense anymore. I'm getting worse instead of better and I'm constantly in tears. My concentration is down the drain, for a woman who could multitask with the best of them and now can't even finish one item at a time this is the most shocking realization.

I had to agree with my therapist and making that decision was one of the hardest - giving in, admitting weakness.
But it was and is the best decision. I need to get back upon my feet and have to take care of me first.

There is a certain relief that quickly overcame the guilt.

06 November 2008


First worknews:
down to three days work, two days off for at least the month of November.
Not exactly what my manager had hoped for, but it might get worse for him.
Had some not so nice conversations with him, accusing him on drive by management. Instead of asking why I think this he went into defense right away, and I would be the only one saying that. That tells me enough, thank you very much. I rest my case...for the moment.

Relaxing isn't easy for me, though I try and follow all advises from my therapist. Talking walks, disconnecting all phones (which limits me, but keeps me save at the same time), listening to audiobooks and sleeping. It takes me 1.5 days out of the two I'm off to get to a calm state of mind - which then gets destroyed as soon as I go into work. Therefore considering to stop completely, before this burn out turns into burn out with depression.

I find peace in knitting, though not big projects. I need instant gratification, sort of.

Pudorose neckwarmer and a crocheted headband, both out of Noro Kureyon Sock yarn.
I still have plenty left, so I've started a skinny feather-and-fan scarf. I wonder if Noro has some more antique colours, creamy, gray, dusty... Or any other sock yarn, they mostly come in rather bold colours or are self-pattering.

I re-coloured my hair in the meantime. As in: two hours ago. The roots of all evil, goodness gracious!

I'm an avid reader of the Designers Block and one posting caught my crafty eye:
Strumpet and Pink take unmentionables to a completely new level. I'm especially in love with these two, practical or not:

My inner Scot is particularly happy to have stumbled across this designer called Anta
I'm especially smitten by the fashion, oh, and that throw Cairngorm - just my colours...
Next time I'm in Edinburgh I will go and spend some money there.

Talking about reading, my dear husband brought me The Graveyard Book by my favourite author (one of them at least) Neil Gaiman and I'm going to start it soon. It's a children's book, but if you are familiar with Mr Gaiman you know that you can enjoy his works, regardless of age. I understand that Coraline is being made into an animated movie and I hope it's going to be shown here.

And I have to get this pattern: Spindrift Capelet

Now I will return to my skinny scarf, some Loreena McKennitt and a mug of herbal tea. It's a surprise tea - I bought it on a medieaval fair and have forgotten about it. So I have no clue what I'm drinking, but it's nice and soothing.