Frustrating few days

First of all, Happy International Women’s Day!

The Procion dye arrived, and I dyed three tops, and it worked really, really well. No mess, no blotchiness, no dye everywhere. One top has a small hole in it so it’s going to the charity shop. I put another one on today and within five minutes managed to get a black smudge on it, so it’s in the wash. Hey ho.

Had an email from Royal Mail to say a parcel would arrive on Wednesday. No parcel. Still. Went round the very frustrating loop on the internet, clicking on links they’d sent me, and the parcel was clearly at the local office. Even downloaded their stupid app, which wouldn’t let me log in to it, although I could log in with exactly the same details on tinterweb.

Eventually, today, I phoned up. What an absolute nightmare. I spent 25 minutes holding on for a proper, real, live person, who (thank goodness) was really helpful, and explained that there had been a strike at that particular office, but they were all back at work now, and not to worry. The parcel will be officially counted as “missing” next Friday, so then I have to get in touch with the senders, who have to claim, then eventually they refund me. However, this particular parcel is for part of a birthday present, so there is a time constraint for me. I’m just really hoping it arrives, because there’s a whole world of bother otherwise.

Spent yesterday morning comprehensively failing to crochet an Amigurumi toy.  It was too small, too fiddly, the yarn was splitty, and although I can crochet in a basic sort of a way (blankets, granny squares), I’m hopeless at shaping. The stitch count goes to buggery as soon as I’ve finished increasing. Every time. Why? anyhow, have decided that bigger Amigurumi toys work better for me. I’ve done a couple of Olafs, and they’ve been fine. Meanwhile, will stick to the blanket I’m doing, and knitting the top for hubby.

On the upside, two tops from John Lewis arrived. I’d ordered a brown one and a yellow one, in two different sizes. The brown one, surprisingly, doesn’t look very nice at all. I think it’s because it has a round neck, which isn’t a great look at almost 64. The yellow, however, looks great! and it’s a bit of a departure for me colour-wise. Years ago I had a top in a very similar yellow and loved it. Mm. So the size that doesn’t fit, and the two brown ones, are going back. Yeah.

Also, have discovered that I’ve lost some weight. I only got on the scales because my clothes were feeling a bit big. And I’ve lost 10 lbs in the last 3 – 4 months. Now, I have given up biscuits (work of the devil, have to have at least 3 at a time) altogether, stopped eating crap in between meals (not literal crap, obviously, just sweets and chocolate) and reduced my sugar intake by at least two thirds (I was eating way, way more than 30g a day). So it could just be that. The osteopath said I need to mention it to the doctor though, and I am having some bloods done next week for a routine checkup (on the NHS of course). We shall see. I feel ok, if more tired than usual. And today I’m treating myself to a whole ciabatta roll, warm, with cheese and Marmite for lunch.

Watched Leaving Neverland yesterday. Oh. My. Days. Not sure what to say about that. MJ was clearly a very disturbed, lonely individual. With a child’s emotional development (or lack of) inside a man’s body. And how many lives have been wrecked. And how are we supposed to feel about his incredible talent now? he could sing, and dance, and how. But all that surgery. The chemical straightening of the hair. The skin lightening stuff. Mm.

 

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Ups and Downs.

: pulled up loads and loads of “onion weed”. It’s an absolute swine. You get rid of almost all the leaves, which are sort of strap like, and stink of onions, and there’s one or two left. So you dig down as far as you can, and there, hiding, is a whole bunch of tiny little bulbs, just waiting to come up. I started off with a long-handled fork, but had to get down on my hands and knees because the damn things were all muddled up with the hardy geraniums. Then I found a load more all intertwined with the photinia. I had to thread my head in through the branches and just dig with the hand fork. I am keeping my eyes peeled for more of the damn things.

: dropped our lovely red kettle. Only the spout smashed, but still. I’m very clumsy some days. So I phoned hubby, who was at the local Tesco’s, and he bought a new one while he was there. Mmph. It works. It boils water. It’s quite cute. But it’s not red. It’s black.

: whilst crocheting another small blanket (another practice piece), I had been struggling to work out exactly which loops to put the hook through on one of the two pattern rows. I’d done about two thirds of the blanket, and for some reason I decided to tilt the work slightly towards me to see what was what – and bingo! there are the loops I should have been using! so I undid almost the whole thing, and am quite excited, in a nerdy sort of way, to do it again properly. (footnote: the first one has become a “superhero cape” for a certain three year-old, who swishes around in it like a boss).

: went to have a blood test at the local hospital today. It’s a ten minute drive, but there was a very long queue TO GET INTO THE CAR PARK. So I turned around and went to the doctor’s surgery to book the blood test there. No problems with car parking, or car parking fees, and no waiting for an hour and being herded like cattle. And then went home and am drinking tea.

▲: am waiting, agog, for the Procion dye to arrive so that I can dye three white t-shirts cream. It’s a bit of a faff, more faffy than Dylon, but Dylon don’t do the colour I want. It’s quite exciting. I was a bit worried about pre-dye machine washing but remembered I have some “Vanish” in the cupboard which will do very nicely indeed. I’ve also ordered some special dye fixer called soda ash or something. I used to dye old clothes and towels a lot, but last time I used Dylon liquid dye it came up all blotchy, so haven’t done any for years. We shall see.

 

This and that.

Well. The sinus infection has eased somewhat, but not gone away. Face still swollen, still painful but not as bad (well, not all the time anyway). Back to the doctor’s on Monday.

Meanwhile, here is what I’ve been doing craft-wise. The new vest for hubby (grey) which is much easier to knit, and another crochet blanket with more free yarn (pink). I frogged the old vest for hubby back to zero and started again. Needed to do two gauge swatches, and am knitting on size 5mm needles. I’m enjoying knitting it, and the crochet blanket is fun to do as well. Different pattern from the other one. It’s for practice, and I’m feeling better about it each time I start a new thing.

Today is YD’s birthday. 35. I can’t believe it. She wasn’t actually born until 19.10, but still. She’s coming round tomorrow so I’ll do her birthday present then. It’s a secret.

I’m not going to talk about politics, either here, or in the US. It’s a big old mess. An omnishambles, in fact. Too depressing.

 

Thrumming and crochet

Thrummed fingerless mittens for ED, posted today. Crochet blanket in Stylecraft Swirl (Purple Mist) which was free! the edging is in West Yorkshire Spinners Aire Valley DK.

And the last picture is of a pattern I started for hubby. It’s Whelk, by Rowan. I had endless problems trying to make the pattern and the chart readable. This is as far as I got, and I just couldn’t cope with it any more. I even messed up the gauge swatch to start with!

So I have another pattern, imaginatively called Textured V-neck Vest, which is also for worsted yarn. The stitch pattern is similar but looks more my bag. I’m going to do a gauge swatch before I start to make sure I can actually do it.

 

Pain!

I’m told that when you have toothache to leave it a few weeks, because it might settle down.

So I did. Not the best idea.

I have a sinus infection, which is causing some (lots of) pain in my lower jaw. Yep, my lower jaw. Upper jaw as well, just to add to the confusion.

Anyway, the dentist did X-rays on Tuesday which showed nothing amiss.

The doctor, however, put me onto antibiotics. Which they don’t do as a matter of course, these days, so I’m relieved she did.

After two days of same, plus 2 x 30/500 Co-codamol four times a day, the pain has eased fractionally and I am starting to feel less like a limp rag and more like a human being. I can actually drink without a straw (to direct the water away from the pain), but only room temperature drinks. I can eat a little, as long as there’s not too much chewing involved. Like for a baby who’s being weaned. Bananas, soups, soya pretend yoghurts, that sort of stuff. So definitely on the mend.

But blimey O’Reilly.