the mad preserver strikes again!

Well, I couldn’t help myself. You see, I had to go to the local farmers’ market on Saturday to replenish our stocks of produce and fruit.

(And, of course, a wee treat for JJ: apricot loaf!

Looks decent, eh? It’s all gone now!!)

Then I got home and realised that I’ve been bringing in produce etc at a rate that JJ we just can’t seem to come up with.

What to do with all of the leftover stuff? Why, get my cauldron going, of course!

And find my special preserving outfit to go with the cauldron…

And… voila!!!

This one is blueberry and apricot jam with lemon zest and lime juice.  It’s my first effort in making jam without pectin, which just means that you have to boil the fruit mixture a lot longer.  There is also a little extra ingredient in there… cherry tomatoes (I didn’t have enough of the blueberries and apricots, so had to improvise.  Not telling my chief taster, JJ, about the tomatoes though!!!)

And here’s another experiment:

This one is mixed bell pepper jelly with rice vinegar and rosemary.  The experimental component: midway through I realised I didn’t have enough sugar.  So, I’m not sure it will set.  But what the hey…

I also had a heap of fresh herbs, so decided to make some Sassy Scarborough Fair oil.

Parsley, garlic, rosemary and thyme… with some lemon zest added.  The garlic and the lemon are the “sassy” components.  I don’t like sage.

So, please do wish me luck – and don’t tell JJ about the tomatoes, eh?

Happy Monday!  Today is a holiday for us up here – yippee, yahoo, etc!!!  No big plans although there will surely be some patio or other calling our names out later this afternoon.


Knitting – it’s radical, man.

OYes, yes, I know – my lingo is slightly behind the times. What exactly did you expect from someone who prefers musical selections from old dead British crooners a la Rat Pack?

However, I’m prepared to be wowed by new concepts, particularly when I’m in a bit of a knitting funk. So, I was very glad to come across some web pages yesterday with some fresh knitting ideas.

First, how about some radical lace?

This is a photo taken at an art show in New York back in early 2007 – the work is by Cal Lane. I wish I’d thought of that, frankly.

It reminds me of some of the art knitting in this book that I had bought some time back:

And no, they don’t mean this kind of New Wave:

Tainted looooove… doo doo… tainted loooove…


But I digress…(and hey, at least it’s not the Rat Pack!)

It all seems a bit closer to this, actually:

And, after all, what’s a little madness between friends?

Now I want to start working on some fancy lace creations, such as this one by Anne Wilson…

In my virtual travels, I also came across some funky knit “graffiti” type stuff by a group called Knitted Landscape. How about a tulip in the snow, for example?

Or, perhaps you prefer the idea of a day on the beach?

Now I’m full of ideas all of a sudden. So many, that I’m not quite sure what to do.

Ah – eureka! Given some of my obsessions, it should have been quite obvious, no?

A knitted rubber duckie! Although, is it truly a “rubber duckie” if it’s knitted??? Hmm….

Well, why not? I just found a website called Unifly Rubber Yarn Products!!!

I guess it’s official… the possibilities are, in fact, endless.


So, if you could knit any object you wanted, what would it be? Tell me… come on… don’t be shy!

Happy Friday!

pride goeth before some serious ripping

Well, it’s official.  I’m not actually a genius.

(I know it has taken in until quite late in the day today to make this admission.  But it was really, really hard to come to terms with ).

You see, I always wanted to be a designer when I grew up.  And, silly me, I thought this meant that I could just sit down one day and whip up a lovely designer item right off the needles!

Yes, yes, I know that all the other designers actually sit down with graph paper, pen and pencil, maybe even a sketchbook.  But I have another dire confession to make… I can’t draw.  And … graph paper?  Man, I didn’t skip maths class for nothing all those years!  Why would I, Genius of all Geniuses, need to use graph paper?!)

Well, colour me dorky.

I spent much of yesterday coming up with the ideal, most brilliant lace design of all.  But – it doesn’t work… because I don’t have graph paper.

(At least, that’s what I’m telling myself!)

And, my brain is just not big enough to fit all those little diagrams.

Man o man, do I ever feel humble now.  Icarus (the real almost-god one, not this one:

has nothing on me.)

To top it off, they didn’t bother to tell us that they’d be testing the fire alarm system at the office for half the day today… intermittently!



So, I’m off to hunt down some safety pins to make this Safety Pin Jacket:

And then I’m off to Currys to buy some… you guessed it!… graph paper.

I figure that I might as well do something productive!  Hard to accomplish, when one’s brain looks something like this:

Happy Monday (um, er, I guess).  Hope you’re having a fun one, at any rate!