On the way we all stopped at Moeraki for a walk along the beach and this place feels right to me. ( These photos are not very clear because they are photos of photos.) [caption id="attachment_901" align="alignnone" width="225"] Sammy[/caption] [caption id="attachment_902" align="alignnone" width="225"] Brett, his parents, Sammy and me on the Moeraki beach[/caption] [caption id="attachment_900" align="alignnone" width="300"] The weather was one of those perfect, big sky central Otago autumnal days.[/caption] So next week I am going for a quiet stroll with Bev along the beach and to scatter the ashes there. I will be away for 8 days and have decided not to take my computer so will take lots of photos and post when I return home. I am however, taking my knitting! I am making a fancy beret from the alpaca wool for my friend Bev, who is a hat wearer from Dunedin, as it can get pretty cold down there. Below is the pattern from a blog site called Knitting Galore by dianne-jones.blogspot.co.nz. She is obviously really clever and her pattern is free. It is also on two needles as I am not keen on circular ones. I have no idea how to “wet block” the finished article but no doubt there will be a video about it somewhere. Fingers crossed I can do it. Isn’t the koru such a lovely symbol of growth? This is the fern that grows at our back door right beside the washing line. I guess they will have unfurled by the time i return home. Have a wonderful week wherever you are. FG ]]>
http://www.nevaleaalpacas.co.nz/ I couldn’t help myself and bought a whole packet of wool at $9.50 per skein. Nev, above, told me alpaca is 30% warmer than wool, it is a delight to knit and by the end of the afternoon I had the softest, loveliest little hat all knitted up. Alpaca hat and wool [caption id="attachment_895" align="alignnone" width="225"] Wool, it is actually 95% alpaca and 5% merino. Nev told me the 8 ply would be too hot but I bought it anyway. He has obviously never been to Dunedin![/caption] As an update for meeting my friend for whom I was bridesmaid many moons ago, we had two great catch ups and neither of us has changed a bit… who cares, aging is wonderful and those Knickerbocker glories were fab. [caption id="attachment_880" align="alignnone" width="300"] The olden days[/caption] [caption id="attachment_894" align="alignnone" width="300"] We have much better colouring![/caption] Definitely worth a visit to St Heliers Cafe and Bistro. I believe they also own Rosies, Takapuna Beach Cafe and Cafe on Kohi. They really know their stuff, have a great range of unusual and healthy food and the staff are always mature and lovely. http://stheliersbaycafe.co.nz/ On Thursday I am off to Christchurch, a town where I spent a good 30 years of my life and to Dunedin, the place where I was born, so will keep you updated with my whereabouts. Have a good week. FG ]]>
It is a lovely easy walk on mostly flat paths and is really lovely. The birds are amazing and I saw my first North Island robin. I highly recommend it. The reason I had the opportunity to see so many birds was this little app I have on my phone called What Bird? NZ. We had a lot of fun using the audio and the birds really responded to it, quizzically looking at us trying to work out why we weren’t very bird like. The app is completely free and if you are a novice like me it was really handy. ]]>
In between times I continue with tiling and knitting. I am back to making a few dish cloths to give away to visitors as well as the odd woolly hat. I also went to the $6 session of Hip Op-eration, a local film about a group from Waiheke Island forming a hip hop group. They age between 67 and 94. I thought it might be too similar to Young at Heart which I loved but I thoroughly enjoyed it and recommend it. Quite moving and the best part for me was the back stories of the women they focused on.
There is an amazing young woman who has set up her own business called The Sweet Eatery and her confections are out of this world. She sells at markets around Auckland including the Saturday Mairangi Bay market. http://mairangibayvillage.co.nz/community/farmers-market/ and incidentally this market has the best greens in the world. So cheap and so fresh. Anyway, back to the tiles. I am hoping The Sweet Eatery might be interested in putting a delicious Christmas confection on top of a tile as a gift. I thought it would be ideal for a teacher, an elderly person, a friend as they get to eat something delicious and then keep the pretty tile for the Christmas table. Who knows she might be keen. Thoughts anyone?? Below are just a few of her concoctions, yummmmmm. She also does good gluten free. Bet these have really helped that late afternoon sugar craving. Stuff Dr Libby’s chocolate recipes made with beetroot and avocado right now. Have a good week, FG]]>
Wellington a beautiful is gorgeous and the sea and surrounds were stunning. It has been my best holiday there yet. [caption id="attachment_847" align="alignnone" width="225"] This is a small piece of a Katherine Mansfield sculpture in the city centre. It was interesting picking out the familiar stories.[/caption] [caption id="attachment_848" align="alignnone" width="224"] The cafes were quirky and more interesting than Auckland I thought. I feel able to comment as I went to quite a few….[/caption] [caption id="attachment_849" align="alignnone" width="300"] Beautiful Floriditas. Tried to go to the new sister cafe called Loretta’s on Monday but sadly it was shut. I was totally psyched up for the rice pudding.[/caption] http://www.floriditas.co.nz/ [caption id="attachment_850" align="alignnone" width="225"] Trelise Cooper’s shop was quietly classy too.[/caption] there were interesting images all over the place. [caption id="attachment_854" align="alignnone" width="300"] This is the chocolate shop. I brought Bruce some craft beer chocolate home.[/caption] [caption id="attachment_855" align="alignnone" width="300"] I was simply watching I suppose but loved the weekend.[/caption] I arrived home “tired but happy” last night. It was so lovely to have a little adventure but to also come home to my partner, to our warm and sunny home and note all the little changes in the garden. It was good to sit down to dinner with fresh vegetables from the garden. The grape vine has gone berserk in the last few days. It was good to go back to routine today and do some yoga. It’s amazing how creaky you get after just a few days. Friends are checking in and booking in for Christmas and the temperatures are on the rise so Christmas is creeping up very quickly. I am so grateful to be able to be at home. Have a good week, FG ]]>
My latest NZ wool baby hats.[/caption]
The wool is Peruvian silk-brushed alpaca and it is like knitting a cobweb. You just do garter stitch on a fat needle 10mm. It is quite slippery though. Another advantage of this light warm wool is that it is anti-allergy as well.
Once again bought from Devonport’s Wild and Woolly Yarns
Wild & Woolly Yarns, The old post office, 10 Victoria Road, Devonport 09 445 3255
I am also continuing the MOOC, The Science of Happiness which I am finding extremely interesting. Once again it is free and available to anyone who registers. I recommend it if you are interested as it is always possible to go back and catch up if you have the time.
This is the course outline but don’t panic you don’t have to do the exam!
A lot of the lecturers are involved in the
and there are lots of essay and articles there.
I am also supposed to be doing the Writing Fiction one but find I don’t have a novel in me after all…. I will get back to it after the weekend though.
I have discovered the record sized snail so far caught in my traps. It looks more like a whale than a snail. I know it’s gross but it is kind of satisfying to know I won’t be sharing my lettuces with that fatty!
I’m off to Wellington for a long weekend so will report in after that. No earthquakes I hope.
I’m not nervous…
Have a happy weekend everyone, FG
I spent this afternoon with my dear friend Deb and we stuck and pasted to our hearts’ content. I had never liked our cheap coffee table anyway.. It is a lot of fun pottering with a friend and chatting and sticking and deciding where to put things. It is very reminiscent of my childhood, with scraps and card making etc. I think that in”the olden” days, women spent a lot of time in this companionable way, perhaps knitting or sewing or cooking together and it has been lost in the rush of today’s way of living. Books have even been written about the crazy way women manage children, full time work and all that that involves. Been there, done that. Libby Weaver’s book”Rushing Women Syndrome” has become a huge best seller( including my contribution to it) and was yet another reason I chose to slow down and try to live more simply.
Rushing Woman’s Syndrome (E-Book)
$ 19.95 NZD