Well Hello

It’s been a while. Again.

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My two favourite people.

My wonderful daughter is now coming up to 8 months, she’s fun and has a brilliant little personality developing. She also is starting to look more like her Dad which is interesting. Until the past week I’ve barely had time to knit or crochet (she’s a clingy one). We’re 6 weeks into weaning Artemis, who seems to have a reaction to milk products, which along with my gluten intolerance has made things difficult, but we’re slowly working it out.

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We moved into our first house at the end of May (It’s stunning, absolutely wonderful!). My paid maternity leave ended and for the first time in a very long time I am officially unemployed. I am starting to study for four A Levels whilst still learning Spanish. I am preparing my house to become a childminder setting, slightly scary!

We’re now down to 5 rats, Ben was put to sleep in early March, and we had Zhaan put to sleep yesterday, both were well over three and had great lives so we were happy to have had the pleasure of caring for them even though it was so brief in the grand scheme of things.

I still have masses of Debbie Bliss and Stylecraft Special, the only yarn I’ve bought in the past 18 months has been stuff with my birthday or Christmas money and a couple of balls to do the Carousel CAL (which is still getting there).

And apart from all of that, life is muddling on.

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A generic update – Happy New Year!

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Our little family on Christmas morning.

I’ve been pretty busy recently, what with the baby, so I’m not being too hard on myself for not posting! 😉 The baby is doing well, she’s 8 weeks today and is cruising smack bang between the 91st and 95th percentiles, so she’s a big girl. She’s outgrown most of her 0-3mo clothes already! She’s smiling, cooing, playing with us and generally is ensuring that she has us wrapped around her little finger!

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Out in the pram with her Sherbet Rainbow Blanket.

So, a generic update. I finished the sage green cabled cardigan which was posted about in this post, which I’ll post about when I’ve blocked it and got photos. I started working on the Carousel CAL by Stylecraft, using SSDK rather than Batik as it’s the SSDK I have in bulk and am trying to get rid of! I am also working on a dress for Artemis, which was supposed to be a Christmas dress but I never finished it in time. I’m almost done now!

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Before the year was out we had to say goodbye to our beautiful Oreo, she had numerous tumours which got so large that they were negatively affecting her quality of life, and so we made the decision to have her put to sleep on Thursday the 29th of December. Kozu has been acting weirdly for a couple of months now so we think that she may have something wrong with her, she certainly isn’t her usual self. The rest of the rats are all fine though, we’ve not introduced the two groups yet but we’re hoping too soon.

The baby is stirring so that is probably my cue, not that I can think of anything else to update with right now anyway! Happy New Year!

Long time no see!

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It’s been three months since I last posted, to the day. I have been pretty busy in that time and, to be honest, I’ve been working on the same project that entire time, so I just haven’t bothered updating as it was moving so slowly due to a mix of procrastination and genuinely being bloody busy.

News and updates I suppose. I’ve started maternity leave officially. It’s going to be a bloody long one as baby isn’t due until early November! However we have had to relocate for Nick’s work, so we moved back to Essex on the 1st of September and my last working day was the 31st of August. Nick has to head up to Coventry for his training tomorrow, so I’m being abandoned for two weeks whilst that occurs, which suits me as I have a lot to be getting on with!

I completed all three blankets with two evenings to spare. I’m really chuffed with them. All three are rainbow themed, GC (the eldest) has a standard bright rainbow, SC (the youngest) has what I’m calling a Sherbet Rainbow, which was more pastel colours, whilst CC (the middle) has a dark rainbow theme. They seemed to like them thankfully and I’m hoping that they will continue to do so! That’s 3/28 projects complete before I’m 28!

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For an idea of the size of these blankets, this was SC’s one on our double bed. This was over 150cm wide (whereas CC’s was 160cm+ and GC’s was just over 140cm IIRC). Unfortunately, I don’t have any wonderful photos of the blankets as the weather turned after I finished them on the Monday evening, I asked Nick to take them outside for me whilst I was at work on Tuesday whilst the sun was shining gloriously all day. He didn’t, so this is the best I have and the colours don’t show up at all, which is disappointing.

All three blankets were completed in Stylecraft Special DK and I used the Ripple Blanket tutorials over at Attic24 (Ripple Blanket Know-How and Neat Ripple Pattern).  Each blanket started with a 213 chain as recommended (though I got drastically different sizes!) and I only repeated each set of seven colours 6 times, I think that they ended up being about 120cm to 140cm high. They needed only just over one ball of each colour.

(Links to my Ravelry Project Pages for each blanket below)
The Standard Rainbow was made using: Matador; Spice; Sunshine; Kelly Green; Aster; Violet; and Plum.
The Sherbet Rainbow was made using: Pomegranate; Spice; Citron; Spring Green; Cloud Blue; Lavender; and Grape.
The Dark Rainbow was made using: Lipstick; Tomato; Mustard; Kelly Green; Petrol; Lobelia; and Emperor.

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In other news: in July we had two new little ratties join our mischief (which now makes 9!), two boys who we have called Rygel and D’Argo, the last of our Farscape themed names! D’Argo is the mismarked hooded black and Rygel is the tiny Himi/Siamese. Rygel is a runt but he hasn’t got the special needs that Ashi did and is fine with other rats thankfully, though he has seizured so we’re keeping our fingers crossed that it was the ridiculous heat and not epilepsy, which is something that Ashi had. They were neutered on Tuesday so that they can eventually join the girls with Ben (who was neutered before we got him) once Howl passes away.

Howl seems to be going strong though! His tumour has stagnated in growth, his respi issues aren’t bothering him too much and despite the beginnings of Hind Leg Degeneration (common in old rats) he is still able to make his way around comfortably and happily. Ben is starting to show his age as well now and can’t seem to shake a nasty respiratory infection that keeps reoccurring, but given that he was over two when we got him that’s not surprising! One of our girls has a tumour as well which is growing steadily, it’s not at removal point yet but as she is now just two we’re currently undecided on how to proceed with that one, we’ll have to see how it grows and how she is, she’s very happy at the moment though! It’s making us rethink whether we’ll get girls spayed in future though, two of the three female rescues we’ve had have developed tumours, our younger two breeder girls (who weren’t spayed, unlike our older two breeder girls) haven’t shown any signs of them yet but they are both under a year so we’ll have to wait and see for them.

For those in the rodent world, we also bought a second hand Savic Royal Suite, which ended up being too badly corroded to save (to my husband’s dismay, he’s seriously upset about it!), so we’ve succumbed and bought an SRS brand new earlier today as our girls cage is currently being held together by fabric yarn O_O

I have also bought all of the yarn I am allowed to buy and am on stashbusting mode. Later this week I will be going through what I think is my entire stash (I think some is missing between moves but we’re not sure! I swear I had more chunky somewhere though!) so I’ll keep a running tally on here of what I have! It will help me with the 28 by 28 challenge anyway…

WIP Wednesday

I have two yarny projects on the go this week. One knit and one crochet! They are also the first two projects that will count towards my “28 by the time I’m 28” challenge 🙂

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The knit one is another baby cardigan, blue again (though a different shade! Husbands choice this time!). I should finish it soon as I’m on the last chunk now, it’s my “We’re watching Hustle and I want to keep my hands busy.” project. With two baby cardigans on the go you may have guessed that I am expecting a baby! I’m due in early November and I’m trying to make as much as I can before it arrives!

My crochet project is a long running one. I have decided to make blankets for each of my three charges before I leave in September. Ideally they’ll be single bed sized but for now I’ll make each one 120cm x 120cm ish and if I finish all three in good time I’ll add the extra 60cm onto each at that point! Just to make sure that they are done!

So the one I am working on first is GC’s, it’s in rainbow colours as she’s also the owner of the Rainbow Stegosaurus and the Unicorn, so we’re following a theme.

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My project for the next year

I really wanted to do a craft project of some sort, so I decided that I would do something to coincide with my birthday. I really wasn’t sure what to do, I did briefly consider doing 27 different types of crafting, which would be awesome, but with limited space already which will be further limited come September when we relocate I didn’t want to worry about where to put everything, so that’s on the back burner until we buy a place of our own!

So I’ve just decided to start and finish 28 projects between my birthday this year (which was a few days ago) until my 28th birthday next year (on the 20th of May). They can be big/small/tiny/etc, but they just need to be done by that point.  I’m going to try doing a good variety of techniques and things too of course, but I just need a nudge to get back into crafting!

I’m actually still finishing up a couple of projects that needed finishing, though I have one little project on the needles that is a new project 🙂

Another update as I’ve not been good at this recently.

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We’ve had a weird month so far. It was mine and Nick’s first anniversary on the 8th, so we went back to the lovely Indian restaurant where we had our wedding meal (Chaula’s in Brighton, if you ever visit locally, it’s wonderful!) and we also visited Wakehurst Place, which has a link the Kew Gardens and the gardens are beautiful, really really lovely. I will warn you, they seem to have something against National Trust members as we’ve been three times now and each time we’ve had a staff member make a sarcy comment when we’ve asked something relating to the NT (and on our first visit, just mentioned the NT in front of the kitchen staff!), which is a tad ridiculous! But I digress, it is a very pretty place and I think in future I may ask about NT just to wind them up a bit.

I wasn’t very well last week, ended up having a day off of work which I don’t usually do, but needs must. I was okay again by Friday thankfully. On Tuesday we had to make a trip to the vets to have Ashi put to sleep. I’ll have to write a separate post about that really.

On Saturday I had lunch and dinner out which was great fun, I visited Wahaca for the first time and the food was brilliant, I’ll be going back tomorrow in fact! Lots of gluten-free fair! On Sunday my parents popped down to visit and take home a load of stuff for us in preparation for our move. We’re moving in with friends for a couple of months before we move back to Essex so they took home things that we wouldn’t need until we’re back. We also revisited Wakehurst as they’ve not been before and are proud new National Trust members.

This week has been normal. Tomorrow is my birthday and so we’re having lunch out 🙂

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I have been stashing everything on Ravelry in preparation for the next move so that I know what I have. I’ve been clearing out a lot of stuff too. So it’s all fun and games! Just trying to get organised and sort out everything. and I’ve been crocheting. A lot. But nothing is finished yet typically so I thought I’d share a picture of two of my girls enjoying the cocoon I made a few weeks back.

Life goes on!

Everything has been quite busy recently, as is always the way!

We have yet another new rat, though this one has been loaned to us to keep our old boy company until he dies, we’re glad that we did go down this route as he is much much happier now, and the boy we’ve borrowed is lovely. His name is Ben, he’s a little younger than Howl and is extremely friendly and sweet.

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Unfortunately, we discovered that Howl has a tumour on his manly parts a couple of weeks ago. Given his age and his constant respiratory problems it’s not something we will be having removed as if the operation doesn’t kill him it’ll cause him an unnecessary amount of stress for something that likely won’t prolong his life by much. At the moment it’s not bothering him what-so-ever and it’s stopped growing for now, so we’ll just keep monitoring and see how it goes. Right now he’s very chuffed to have a new friend and the only thing slowing him down is old age (and even that isn’t stopping him, it’s just making him a bit more clumsy!) But that’s the way it is with rats, tumours are a very common problem and deciding whether or not to have them removed is something you have to consider for each situation.

 

I’ve been crocheting quite a bit. I made a small collection of hats and squares for Woolly Hugs, I’d show you pictures but apparently my husband decided to delete them all as they were ‘really blurry’ -_- I do have one that I took on my phone though! A nice khaki hat!

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This has also been made recently…

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It’s actually a cocoon style hammock for my female rats, but the buttons, sock and Ashi’s mane got added because why not?!

I’ve been working on various other things, nothing big but all needing to be finished! I’ve also ordered the yarn I need to make a single bed sized blanket for one of my charges. I’m leaving my job in September, so I’m going to attempt to make each of my three charges a ripple blanket. I seem to have a rainbow themed going on with my previous gifts for GC (See the stegosaurus and unicorn) and she’s asked me for a rainbow blanket in the past, which made her easy. CC is quite chilled and has a pretty cool bedspread which has coloured camper vans so his blanket will match that but I have no clue what colours to use for SC. SC is 3, her favourite colours change every week and her bedroom is a very nice but quite muted coloured nursery still which will likely change in the next few years so I can’t tailor it to that. So I’m at a loss. I’ll work out what to do with her blanket later on!

I may have mentioned the two bags of Bonus DK before, basically a lot of acrylic yarn that I bought for toys a long time ago, before I discovered the wonder that is Stylecraft Special DK. I have been trying to get rid of this without much success, so I’ve given myself until the end of June to get rid of as much as possible and then it’s going to be donated, because I’m bored of it taking up space now! So any yarn-hungry projects you can think of, please spam me them!

So why have I given myself until the end of June? Well, because we’re slowly packing everything we want to take with us away. We are moving back to Essex in September as Nick has a job with Network Rail and will be based in London. We are hoping to stay with friends in July/August, so most of what we own will be slowly making it’s way to a charity shop, or to Essex, and we want to take as little as possible with us to our friend’s house.

And that’s pretty much caught you up on everything 🙂