This weekend…

Random | Friday October 22 2010 | 7:35 pm | Comments (3) | |

…crochet has a new rival!!!

– v –

How do you take yours?

Tea | Thursday October 21 2010 | 1:09 pm | Comments (2) | Tags: |

 

Did you know there is an International Standard for making tea? 

Now, I know I am fussy about how I take my tea, but I think if I started prescribing it like this Caveman would have a thing or two to say!

The ISO Standard method is:

  • The pot should be white porcelain or glazed earthenware and have a partly serrated edge. It should have a lid that fits loosely inside the pot.
  • If a large pot is used, it should hold a maximum of 310 ml (±8 ml) and must weigh 200 g (±10 g).
  • If a small pot is used, it should hold a maximum of 150 ml (±4 ml) and must weigh 118 g (±10 g).
  • 2 grams of tea (measured to ±2% accuracy) per 100 ml boiling water is placed into the pot.
  • Freshly boiling water is poured into the pot to within 4-6 mm of the brim. Allow 20 seconds for water to cool.
  • The water should be similar to the drinking water where the tea will be consumed
  • Brewing time is six minutes.
  • The brewed tea is then poured into a white porcelain or glazed earthenware bowl.
  • If a large bowl is used, it must have a capacity of 380 ml and weigh 200 g (±20 g)
  • If a small bowl is used, it must have a capacity of 200 ml and weigh 105 g (±20 g)
  • If the test involves milk, then it can be added before or after pouring the infused tea.
  • Milk added after the pouring of tea is best tasted when the liquid is between 65 – 80 °C.
  • 5 ml of milk for the large bowl, or 2.5 ml for the small bowl, is used.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ISO_3103

OK, so this method is for testing and scientific comparison purposes, or to give it it’s proper name ‘Tea – Preparation of liquor for use in sensory tests’, and if you’re making me tea you can be a little less precise, but just a little!

Crochet for Breakfast

Craft | Wednesday October 20 2010 | 8:39 pm | Comments (5) | Tags: , , |

This morning I awoke at an embarrassingly early hour. 5.00am to be precise, and that’s not like me. You see, I’m a real night owl. I believe my natural sleep pattern is from about 2.00am – 10.00am. This does not fit well with a standard 9-5 job, so I do try to be in bed by about midnight, and last night I wasn’t much later than that.

So why was I awake to early today? I have no idea other than the fact that I have a lot going on at the moment and my head is all a-spin with it.

There was however a plus side. I had breakfast at home while watching the news (I love the news by the way – in fact I write this while listening to the Comprehensive spending Review here in the UK on the radio – we will all know our financial fate by the end of this!). After breakfast I still had an hour before I even needed to get ready for work. The best thing to do in that hour was crochet! Well, I couldn’t do anything noisy at 7am and disturb my neighbours, could I?

I had already started the first strip of my circles scarf and I was able to get that finished. Don’t you love the way the colours blend into one another and mix and match along the length of this strip and within each circle. Brilliant and simple.  Each circle doesn’t lie as flat as I would have liked, but I will give it a press and hopefully it will be a bit better.  

The pattern itself is deceptively simple.  Its basically just a shell pattern at intervals along a chain, and then the same on the other side of the chain. 

I have no intention of making early starts a regular thing.  In fact I am hoping it doesn’t become a habit – it’s not one I would like to have.  I am always stunned when people tell me the things they manage to do before coming to work each day – hanging washing out, cleaning the floor, making lunches.  Even more impressive are those who manage to get themselves AND kids out on time.  I can just get myself out.

Ah well, roll on bed time!

Badges and stickers and tea! Oh my!

Random | Tuesday October 19 2010 | 1:02 pm | No Comments | Tags: , |

 

 

Oh my! Oh Comely!  I’ve mentioned my new favourite magazine before and be warned, it’s liable to come up many times in the future too.  Actually I didn’t have an ‘old’ favourite magazine, I’m not a big magazine buyer or reader but this one really taps into the right places in my head.  

Anyway, on their website recently Oh Comely were offering a freebie of some uber-cute (did I really just say uber!) badges by Kayleigh O’Mara in exchange for telling them our favourite cat story. 

They must have liked my story because I received these goodies in the post today.  Here’s my cat story:  

A few years ago I was at my boyfriends Mums house in Edinburgh, which was a tenement flat, on the second floor! The cats came and went of their own accord when people came in and out the front door. However, on one occasion one cat decided to take the short route – right out the second floor window. Boyfriends mum squealed in horror and made for the front door. As she was half way down the stairs in a panic, the cat was sauntering up past her with its nose in the air and a look of ‘what’s all the fuss about.  

That’s why I love cats!’
  

Oh how I love Oh Comely!  I think their stickers show just one of the reasons why…

Tea cups and tea pots!!! 

And can you read the text at the top (sorry couldnt get very clear pics)?

‘Keep your curiosity sacred’ 

Genius!

Happy Stats

Blogging | Monday October 18 2010 | 8:42 pm | No Comments | Tags: |

I’m feeling rather perky today so it is jolly nice to share some happy stats.  Here goes:

Safe rescue of 33 Chilean miners.  Who can fail to be touched by this story.  All arguments about the reasons it happened in the first place and the media circus that ensued aside, its an incredible story.  Caveman said to me ‘This will make a brilliant film’  I actually think that a film of it will not be as remarkable as the reality and all I would want to see in a film would be the actual footage of the families reunited.  My favourite image from the whole thing was the last of the rescuers leave them empty mine and the rescue capsule disappear up through the ceiling.  I’ll never tire of seeing that.

A weekend to myself to just do ‘me’ things as Caveman has been at a film festival all weekened.  I love time with just my own company.

Blogtoberfest… still!  Daily blogging is a lot less challenging than I’d thought, but I don’t know that I can maintain it long term.  I’m sure I’ll see the month out though!

Our holiday getting very close!  Oh, I can ALMOST touch it!

My first purchases from my new LYS!

 

Circling

Craft | Sunday October 17 2010 | 6:17 pm | Comments (6) | Tags: , , |

The current issue of Inside Crochet magazine has a scarf pattern that I really like the look of.  They call it the ‘Circles Scarf’ and it looks like its made up of lots and lots of individual circles joined together.  In fact its made in strips along the length that are joined in whole rows as you go along, not one by one, thankfully!

The recommended yarn is Noro Silk Garden sock yarn but I think it’s not ideal as it’s not cheap (unless making a really luxury gift or treat) and its also quite scratchy, as the pattern acknowledges.

On my first visit to Purl City Yarns this week I saw King Cole Riot for the first time which I really liked the look of.  It’s great value (at £3.95 a ball) compared to the Noro  and has a similar look but much softer.  It wasn’t available in quite the same shades, but the one I chose will suit this project quite well as it has many shades throughout it, dusky versions of primary colours.

The Riot is a double knit yarn, so I am using a 3.5mm crochet hook, just to make it a little more delicate than the 4.00mm would.

I am very naughty and never make tension squares!  I know many of you will be rolling your eyes now!  I have a very even and standard tension and rarely have a problem with tension.  Also I don’t always make things where the tension is critical.  I can normally read pattern and get an idea of what is involved and how to approach it in my head.  However, the start of this pattern just did not register with me – I could not make any sense of it so all I could do was start the tension square instructions and follow each step quite literally to see it it became clearer!  Thankfully it did!!

 

It was actually really straightforward, once I got going.  I did mess up the middle of one of the circles (look at center of one closest to hook in first picture above) but it will be fine when I do it for real.

I think this will be an easy pattern to follow now and I’m looking forward to churning out rows and rows of those circles in the days ahead!

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