Thursday, February 28, 2008

I ran out of cupcake cases while baking this evening

So now do you think I can justify buying a packet of thesewhich I've been lusting after ever since Wheel & Barrow opened in Canberra?

And do you think, if I do go in to buy them, I'll manage to escape without buying these as well?

If only I could be in two places at one time

The universe is taunting me.

It was bad enough that I discovered, after booking my tickets to New Zealand, that the
Lifeline Bookfair is next weekend (I think I should copy the dates through to 2011 into my diary very soon so this won't happen again)

Today I spotted a flyer advertising the Vinnies Belconnen craft sale and got all excited until I saw the dates: Thursday 13th - Sunday 15th March from 9am. Rats!

Then, just to rub salt into the wound, there was a sign on the counter at Y's Buys advertising the next garage sale: Sunday March 15th. (Since when have the
YMCA Garage Sales been bi-monthly?!)

And just because a frugalling post looks kinda naked without a picture here's the placemat I picked up for a whopping 30 cents from Y's Buys:
I also got a Whitlams CD for $4 and pair of cream knitting needles for $1.50. Plus something for my Dad for Christmas (she says sounding all mysterious)

Actually - that reminds me. I have photos of what's new in the land of op shopping in Canberra that I haven't shared yet. I might get time to post them later this evening but first I have to attend to the little matter of a gluten free cake (or two) I promised to bake for morning tea tomorrow at my new job. New girl-itis? You betya!

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

A bit of a heel...

I'm still not quite sure why I'm knitting socks (apart from the fact the wool was a gift and I did say I wanted to master DPNs this year...). In fact I have a sneaking suspicion that the second sock may never happen as I know I'm prone to the "Learnt that now!" chuck it in the corner and move on syndrome when it comes to new techniques.

Maybe I could decide it's a Christmas stocking I created very early in a burst of super-organisation. Oh. Except I don't do Christmas, do I?

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

I'm rich I tell you. RICH!!!

I got paid today. For my (new) second job. And I'm feeling a bit like this:Although I might complain (jokingly) about having to drive across town twice a week, sit in an airconditioned office with other (very nice I might add) people and (this is the hardest) think about what I'm having for lunch before I eat breakfast, all that kind of disappeared as I gazed into my bank account this afternoon and saw a chunk of money there. Which will be there again in 2 weeks' time.

I think I'll celebrate by buying all those groceries that have mysteriously turned into weekends away, knitting needles, frugalling trips and other things not in my budget over the past 9 months. Put $60 aside for a year's membership to The ANU Film Group (200 films for $60 - that's 30 cents per film. Not that I'll be seeing them all but it's still damned cheap entertainment). And I'll throw the rest onto my Visa card (which is my debt with the highest interest rate).

It's a bummer being all grown up and sensible...

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Seven Things Spring/ Summer Week 25

In:

* 2 scarves worth of Hokitika yarn, 1 small -person sleeveless vest worth of Totem wool, 1 wooden double file tray, 1 book, 1 CD on Tuesday.
* 1 magazine
* 1 Grafton Primary CD

Total In this week: 8

Out:

* 12 balls of knitting cotton donated to a colleague at work for washcloth crocheting.
* 4 non-black-and-white magnets: donated to a friendly blog-reader with a much more colourful life than I have...
* 1 doggy picture frame which I'd planned paint black but know I never will, 1 Brambita biscuit tin which always makes my biscuits soft and floppy. Which is not really good in a biscuit... (op shop)

Total Out this week: 18

Shake-it-all-about:

* 2nd Koolhaas Hat finished.
* 1st Koolhaas wristwarmer started.
* 1st sock started.
* Hokitika scarf started - and then it turned into a bag!

Net items out so far during Seven Things Spring/ Summer: 341.5

Hit me with your best shot(s)

I had a great weekend camping down the coast with S, J & M. There was lashings of (alcoholic) ginger beer (alas Blue Tongue, not Stones).

We swam. We ate and drank. We talked to the local kangaroos and kookaburras. We ate some more. We tried to remember campfire songs (and failed miserably). We completely forgot to tell ghost stories around the fire with a torch under our chin to make us look super-spooky. We walked.

It was brilliant. I took 181 photos. Not counting the sock pics, which you've already seen, I'm left with about 141 workable ones. And I'm sure you don't have the bandwidth to wade through that.

So I set myself the challenge to whittle it down to my 10 best/ favourite shots. And after half an hour of angst I changed it to the top dozen (in chronological order).

First up we have the I was busting for the loo Saturday morning until I opened the tent flap then I was reaching for my camera and wandering up and down the beach at 6:30am in my PJs set:
My Lucky Miles shot: The beach:And my Max Dupain homage:Night falls (with Kookaburras):And, finally, bushwalking:

Let's talk about socks, baby...

I had a bit of a one-track mind this weekend.

There was socks on the beach:Some pretty in tents socks:Socks on the back seat:And just plain hot socks:

Friday, February 22, 2008

Belated pictures from November

I'm not sure if I mentioned last year that some of my cupcake knitting was going to be exhibited in Sydney while I was overseas in November?

Marrickville Council’s bi-annual Arts Night was held at Petersham Town Hall on Thursday 29 November 2007. The event was named Map 255: Marrickville (directions in arts and culture) in reference to the cultural mapping that was carried out during the year as part of the Cultural Planning Research Project.

The Project plotted local artists, events, resources, creative industries, and cultural activists on the Marrickville map.

I received photos of the event this week, including this shrine to The Shopping Sherpa:(Tea cosy, cupcakes, vintage bed tray and magnolia teaset all provided by moi via Princess B)(Photographs courtesy of Simon Rowell, Marrickville Council)

Thursday, February 21, 2008

What's the cost of one week's entertainment?

One dollar.

For that pricely sum I saw Enchanted at the ANU Film Group on Monday (for free) and tonight I finally saw Mad Hot Ballroom at NLA (gold coin donation).

Oh - I also watched a Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers video last night from my stockpile. Seems this week's theme is dancing. Or New York. Or dancing in New York...

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

I have a new musical obsession...

Grafton Primary's Relativity. Fab song. Heard it on Triple J this morning and have had it going through my head ever since.

If you loved 80s synthpop you need to pop over to their Myspace page and have a listen. Of course, it's just my luck they're playing Canberra the night I arrive in Wellington (NZ, not NSW)

Tuesday twelve

Twelve o'clock lunch.

Twelve dollars.

Twelve items from the op shop(s):* 1 double wooden filing tray: $2.

* 5 balls Sean Sheep Hokitika: $1 (well they had to sell it to me for that as it was clearly marked with Big W stickers at 20 cents a ball. I know I'm suposedly anti Muppet-spew yarn but the green and blue combination of this reminded me of paua shells so I couldn't leave it there...)
* 4 balls Patons Totem 8 ply: $3 (Hurrah - there's at least one op shop in town with sensible wool prices!)
* Crappy lightweight candyfloss-for-the-brain plane read and toss book: $2.
* Regina Spektor double CD: $4. (I was particularly happy to snaffle this.)

Monday, February 18, 2008

Waahey!

I popped online check a couple of things before I went to bed and what do I discover?

Loobylu's back!

It was a poignant discovery as she was the whole reason I started blogging way back in February 2006.. Seeing her post made me feel like a wee Primer who always looked up to one of the "big girls" at school and then meets then years later and realises they're not that much older or bigger than me at all.

(Do you think this means there's a chance Little Birds might start blogging again too?)

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Seven Things Spring/ Summer Week 24

A week where I'm so busy having people over to dinner, going to S'n'B, going out to dinner (and a job interview!), seeing a movie and driving round the countryside that I don't deal with what came in (sadly something given to me Monday night is sitting on the dining table just where I put it that night), let alone find some stuff to get rid of. Actually, that's not quite right. I found a couple of things to get rid of but they never made it across to the bin.

Oh well, I console myself with the thought that I've managed to get rid of over 1,000 things this challenge and that tomorrow is another week...

In:

* 2 magazines
* 6 sets of bamboo double point needles and 11 sets of bamboo circulars
* 1 sheet set, 1 Footrot Flats the Musical programme (courtesy of Taph who thought it might go with the Dog's Tale video I was gifted last week), 1 cable needle.
* 1 black and white stripy T shirt ($5, Salvos) and 3 CDs ($3 each, also Salvos)
* 1 skein Humbug yarn from Happy Spider, 2 dolls house dolls, 1 clear plastic chocolate box from Taph.
* 1 small black teapot ($1.50 from Salvos) and 1 pair cream and black knitting needles (which I don't need) $1 from Vinnies.
* Parkes Dish stitch marker

Total In this week: 33

Out:

* My old white 2 person teapot and last month's AU marie claire: donated to Happy Spider via Taph.
* My old copy of Alison Holst's Meals without Meat: given to Taph who mentioned she'd like a copy so she can cook for all the vegetarians she seems to now know.
* 1 book: donated to friend K.
* 1 books, 1 map: donated to J & M.
* 4 washcloths: gift.

Total Out this week: Not enough. Oh sorry, I mean 10.

Shake-it-all-about:

* Koolhaas Hat(s)
* 5 washcloths

Net items out so far during Seven Things Spring/ Summer: 331.5

Three do a Thousand Part Six: Home again home again, jiggedy jig

And that's really the end of it. One of the problems with travelling for mileage is the lack of time to stop too often and for too long.

We did quite well but it was disappointing to drive through Dubbo as fast as we could (we at least saw the sign for the zoo), only stop in Orange for petrol (seems like a very nice place) and blat through the outskirts of Bathurst as the sun started setting.

Because of the road situation through the middle we ended up heading back to Cowra and retracing our morning route (without the detour for the dam) back home. We lost the light just after Cowra so that's when I stopped knitting and we made it back to my driveway at 10:05pm, almost exactly 14 hours after we left but with an extra 1,000 km on the clock.

I'm not even going to mention the amount of op shops we passed along the way. It was harder for me in the morning when they were open but became almost a joke by the afternoon ("Oh! Look! Op shop/ market/ garage sale/ antique shop!") And I worked out a system where if I felt one approaching I'd just stare down at my knitting til it passed.

I still find it very perplexing that the Australian Fringe Benefits Tax system has people randomly driving round in order to not have to pay excess tax. M isn't the first person I've known who's feverishly driven every weekend to "prove to the Tax Office that they're using their car for work" and so not having to pay thousands extra in tax. I don't understand it but I'm happy to tag along and see more of the country. And I tell myself I'm making the trip more green - 1,000 km divided by 2 is 500 km each. With me in the back that's "only" 333 km each.

Next weekend we plan to go camping down the coast. I'm going to suggest we should drive up to Nowra as it rhymes so nicely with Cowra. And Jervis Bay is just down the road from there. It's part of the ACT. I've never been there before...

Three do a Thousand Part Five: The wrong Wellington

Though they may share a name
They're just not the same... (This last one cracks me up: "OK Kids, play nice or I'll get the ammunition out...")

Three do a Thousand Part Four: Purchased at Parkes

Just outside of Parkes we came across a nice little cafe that was selling jams and things. And you know how I am when it comes to jams and things packaged in my colours of choice. So I just had to buy some:They also had a little gift shop where I found this very cute stitch marker:I guess they used have pretty awful TV reception as out the back they have the biggest Sky dish that I've ever seen...It seemed to be a pretty good place to stay for a while. Pity we didn't have time.

(OK, just kidding. I know it's the Parkes CSIRO radio telescope as made famous by the movie The Dish. So visiting here nicely continued our tradition of visiting places on our travels that we've seen in movies)

Three do a Thousand Part Three: Finished at Forbes!

Finally, after the answer on how one Ssks, and teaching myself to knit on DPNs while seated in the back seat of a car travelling at 114 kph, the Koolhaas hat was complete.

J modelled it before I sewed the two ends in:and seconds later I tried it on after finishing it completely (I forgot that knitting in the round means no sewing up required!)

So what did I do to celebrate this amazing feat of knitting and learning? Cast on another Koolhaas Hat for J of course, since the first one looked so good on her (apart from being to long, but that's why I'm knitting her the shorter girl-person version)

Three do a Thousand Part Two: Turning Japanese

I was pretty excited to finally make it to Cowra as it's been on my list of interesting sounding places to visit for ages. We visited the beautiful Japanese Garden: then headed further up the hill to the site of the Cowra P.O.W. Camp for a quick visit.Unfortunately time constraints meant we didn't have time to walk around the camp area visit many other sites in town where we could have learnt more about the August 1944 Cowra Breakout. I definitelty need to return to Cowra for a longer visit soon. I'm also thinking I should try and make it over the hill to Featherston while I'm in New Zealand next month and learn more about a similar event which happened there in 1943.

After a quick call to the Knitting Emergency Helpline to find out what an Ssk was, we were on the road again.

Three do a Thousand Part One: Canberra to Cowra

Remember about a month ago I went on a drive to Thredbo with J&M in a quest to get their mileage up?

Well the quest is far from over so yesterday I joined them again for a mad adventure to explore Central New South Wales. I knew it was going to be a long day so packed some knitting to do on the way...

We left Canberra at just after 8am with me madly knitting Dad's Koolhaas Hat in the back seat, headed out towards
Yass then up towards Cowra.

First stop was Lake Wyangala to continue our tradition of visiting almost empty dams. It used to look like this:and now it looks like this:
And here's a Koolhaas closeup in Cowra (try saying that three times fast!):