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May. 15th, 2012

tor

Knitting in the box / Banging my head against woolly walls

I have been knitting for nigh on 40 years - yes I am old. Since I had to go to school on a Saturday morning to knit squares for starving babies in Africa - no I don`t know how knitted squares filled their bellies and yes, it was a Catholic school. I was never taught I just watched other people and tried to figure out what they were up to. The end product resembled a garter stich square exactly but the method differed, I would knit from right to left and back again and the result seemed just fine.
Until a decade or so later when the need to make small woolly things for my babies arose. My method didn`t work with the patterns which came free in Woolworths. A trip or two the the library and enlightenment - there are basically two different stitches and one is meant to turn the work around after each row.
Now a quarter of a century later and a quarter of a century restricting myself to plain, colourwork and cables (well I`m not very good at this) and I decide it is time to tackle the ultimate - lace. I dream of webs of delicate patterns, shimmering fae shawls and pretty edges from the long and distant past. Most of what I have produced is serviceable and chunky, not without its own charm but could never be considered artistic except in its most rustic sense of the word.
Four failed projects later I have discovered why thanks to youtube (of all things) I have been doing it WRONG ! for a K I have been TBLing, I have been Ping clockwise instead of anti. Although this wasn`t noticeable before if I want to create anything with lacy refinement I`m going to have to start all over again. Here`s looking forward to knitting inside the box !

May. 13th, 2012

tor

Rusty skills , curling paper

So I have returned, 'a twitch upon the thread' to quote one of my favourite authors. It takes an amount of self indulgence to lock oneself away when there are constant chores to be done and in a household of a constant 6 kids there are chores aplenty.
Perhaps its a time of life; I am more than half way through mine and I find I am returning to things that inspired me long ago. I am drawing again. I am enjoying it, my lack of skill is frustrating but it is very satisfying to see it return little by little and I have produced some pieces I am not ashamed of showing. I am seeing the world in colours, shapes and shades long forgotten and it pleases me.
I have revisited my 'coming of age' companion Tolkien. Tolkien was with me from when I was 10 years old until I was in my early 20s. I must have been Geek child incarnate (although back then the term wasn't honed) I reread my copy of LOTR until it fell apart and lost count at rereading number 44. I tried to teach my self to write in Dwarvish runes, imagined how Quenya might have sounded and sought out long flowing middle earth type gowns - not hard in the early `70s. Now I find I am not alone and need to bow to the great worldwidewonderweb yet again. Although the ability to dress up as an elf has long passed the archetype of theme and the magic are still there.

Aug. 8th, 2011

tor

I pads

Shiny and new !
It needs a Tardis cover and suggestions for interesting things to fill it with.
Anyone have a "Most loved" app ?

Aug. 7th, 2011

tor

Summer ?

Where did you go ?
The pool is finally clear and inviting but we have wind and rain enough to float an Ark upon.

Aug. 5th, 2011

tor

screwed up brains

I would never have thought fostering would be so hard. It is bloody hard work, physically, mentally, financially and emotionally.

I don`t get it; people who know they have been screwed up then choose to screw up their own kids? When did that parental impulse of "doing better" "providing what I never had" or just simply "protecting from pain" get blown out?

I understand the theory of people who are having a hard time/ cant cope / dont have the life skills to cope.

But

You have to work pretty dam hard to screw up a kid in five short years ........

Feb. 4th, 2011

tor

Rant

If I have to explain to one more "professional" about the ADHD - ADD - Aspie spectrum disorder I swear I will print a list in three different languages with hints and tips of how to make life easier, but I cant help you find the willingness to implement them.

-Strong warning as to why it is a really bad idea to punish a child for not behaving in the *box* when they are obviously not being naughty or disruptive.

-Stronger warnings about overwhelming a child with long long lists of tasks.

- Life time guilt about making a child believe he /she is obstructive, lazy and stupid because that feeling stays with a child for all of their life.

and if I hear the words " I know he/she has the intelligence and knows the answers because we had a really good discussion about it BUT I don't understand why he/she refuses to put it all down on paper, written neatly in fountain pen with underlining and punctuation" again my head will implode.

Not dissing education or discipline here just wishing being a little bit different was OK.

Feb. 1st, 2011

tor

The Bad Shepherds

The Bad Shepherds are a band I have an inordinate fondness for, they play 70s punk songs on folk instruments and it works, well most of the time.

The songs were the background of my teenage years, not that I embraced them. Younger me held on tightly to her ideals, gypsy skirts and love beads, rejecting punk in the way punk rejected mostly everything else but the music was there, the vibe of change unavoidable and there were some pretty good bands and songs in the mixture. Come the early 80s there is an incriminating photo of young me clad in nowt but a bin bag, black lipstick and docs off to see The Clash. But it was a one off.

As I approach half a century on planet Earth I notice gusts of acceptance blowing in on the north wind. They whisper "One does not have to like it but that`s the way things are" Outrages of all kinds fall under this simple phrase; all the outrage and injustice of the human condition both personal and global. Mostly the breeze is gentle, regretful but peaceful in its acceptance. Occasionally the wind is so cold it brings tears, despair and sometimes it howls. Howls loud, long headache making howls.

The howls and outrage of Punk are long gone, Johnny Rotten now sells butter dressed in tweed. Punk is played on folk instruments with a Celtic twist by a man better known for his comedy portrayal of a punk rocker.

Funny how it all turned out.

Jan. 31st, 2011

tor

cobwebs

Feels better, dispite my inability to gather the will to activly participate in LJ or keep my journal I have at least brushed away some cobwebs. Let go of many obselete and fannish communities preferring to keep real people and groups I actually read when I do drop in. So far so good.

Jun. 13th, 2010

tor

Jerri LaPoint President, Professor and Lady Who Cleans Trays in the Cafeteria at Highlander Universi

Jerri L. LaPoint, 55, of Kansas City, passed away on June 9, 2010 due to complications from Diabetes. She is survived by seven siblings. At her request, she has been cremated. She will be buried in the family plot in Ottumwa, Iowa, at a later date. (Arr. Heartland Cremation, 816-313-1677)

I have never met this lady, but from my first forays with the internet into usenet and fandom she was there with her sharp wit, concise insight, critique, intellect and above all humour.
I know she had a "humongous" family but lived alone with her dogs, she adored her dogs, crockpot chicken and noodles and cheesy cheetos. She knew how to solve computer problems, how to deal with trolls and she loved the sunshine.
Although once daily, my contact with her had become increasingly sporadic. She died far too young.

She was the heart of Alt.tv.Highlander, kept the lights on as people drifted in and out.
Rest peacefully my friend.

Check out her writing especially Highlander University.
http://jerlapoint.com/

Mar. 31st, 2010

tor

Zen and the art of Knitting

Knitting seems to be a metaphor for life at the moment and I`m knitting like crazy.
Five projects on the needles, ripped all of them off. Tension isn`t correct, yarn is the wrong ply/colour, bored of this pattern - or is it too many patterns and too little time. Striving for the perfect thing to finish and finish none. Too many kids and Grandkids to knit for, toys clothes, tea cosies and mittens. Don`t get me started on socks.
Searching for Nirvana in the depths of hand dyed yarn and wooden needles.
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