2015 – a new musical adventure

I know that you’re all eagerly waiting to know what I voted for in triple J’s hottest 100 (baited breath right!)

Well without any further ado – here are my top 10 songs from last year. And it was really REALLY tough to narrow down. I think I had a 30 song shortlist that eventually culled into 10 songs.

Wolf Alice – Moaning Lisa Smile

Thelma Plum – How Much Does Your Love Cost?

Spoon – Do You

Silversun Pickups – Cannibal

The Decemberists – Make You Better

Cold War Kids – Drive Desperate

Cold War Kids – All This Could Be Yours

Clap Your Hands Say Yeah – Coming Down {Ft. Matt Berninger}

Blood Red Shoes – An Animal

Blood Red Shoes – The Perfect Mess

As always I’ve restricted my voting to the options that triple J give me, which explains the lack of Editors in this list.
Even though I loved the latest Editors album, it wasn’t all that well received.

To see all my highlights from last year my 2014 playlist can be found here.

And there is a 2015 one on the way!

Stay tuned.
(ha – I’m so punny)

sig

15 in 2015

This has become a bit of a tradition now. I did 14 in 2014 and 13 in 2013

Something a bit like resolutions but I prefer to call them goals.

Last year got a bit waylaid with the whole ‘spinal nerve damage’ thing, so I’ve made this year a little bit more achievable.

2015

knit 15 finished items
read 15 books I already own & 15 books that are new
dye 15 skeins of yarn
stamp 15 new cuffs
send 15 postcards/unexpected snail mail for unsuspecting friends**

I think this should be simple and achieveable.

What are your plans for 2015???

sig
**If you would like to be an unsuspecting friend send me an email bekswhoknits [at] gmail [dot] com

Now where did I leave off?

I’ve been on holidays for a bit. Both from this blog’o’mine and in real life.

We rang in the new year in Melbourne making new friends, and celebrating after our first live Boxing Day test (which was a draw – boo – but still a pretty awesome experience).

Overall the trip was a bit of a mixed bag.
On the way over I read Amy Poehler’s book ‘Yes Please!’ which I thoroughly enjoyed, but the oxygen tank needed to be called for the nervous flyer who looked like he was going to faint.
His new phone took brilliant photos of us and the view of the MCG from our hotel room, but only survived 5 days into the trip before the screen cracked and it became unusable.
The cricket was awesome, but there was a rain delay and it ended up in a draw (and Shaun Marsh dramatically run out on 99! We’re big Marsh supporters and want both the second-cousins to do well).
There was also a Max Walker sighting (the Max after which our Marron-Max was named) which excited the boyfriend no end!!!

The yarn store I had planned to visit was closed for the new years break.
BUT I stumbled on another one! which was was above one of the biggest book stores I’ve seen! Unfortunately we didn’t have time for me to explore both :(
So I’m now a

So there was yarn, fireworks, cricket, cider, new friends, trams, shopping, and generally good times.

But it’s now back to work and ‘real life’.

Now bear with me while I bombard you with pictures of the wonderful time we had!!!!

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/334/16837171/files/2015/01/img_2149.jpg

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/334/16837171/files/2015/01/img_2146.jpg

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/334/16837171/files/2015/01/img_2142.jpg

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/334/16837171/files/2015/01/img_2145.jpg

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/334/16837171/files/2015/01/img_2126.jpg

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/334/16837171/files/2015/01/img_2121.jpg

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/334/16837171/files/2015/01/img_2120.jpg

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/334/16837171/files/2015/01/img_2108.jpg

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/334/16837171/files/2015/01/img_2105.jpg

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/334/16837171/files/2015/01/img_2144.jpg

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/334/16837171/files/2015/01/img_2094.jpg

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/334/16837171/files/2015/01/img_2093.jpg

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/334/16837171/files/2015/01/img_2127.jpg

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/334/16837171/files/2015/01/img_2038.jpg

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/334/16837171/files/2015/01/img_2075.jpg

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/334/16837171/files/2015/01/img_2072.jpg

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/334/16837171/files/2015/01/img_2035.jpg

sig

Everything and nothing

I feel like I’ve done everything but still done nothing in the last month or so.

I don’t think I’ve finished anything yarn related. My spinning wheel still isn’t set up although I have bought fibre for it.
I am working on my own hat pattern though. I’ve frogged it twice but it’s starting to look pretty good.

I bought some new glasses from firmoo.com. I have worn glasses since I was 8 and only now have I discovered the wonders of buying glasses online.
My last pair of glasses cost me $375 in out of pocket expenses.
I got three pairs for $130 from firmoo! I now have a pair of prescription polarised sunglasses. I’m not sure I’ve ever had a pair of prescription sunglasses before. It was also too expensive. So I’m pretty psyched that I now have 4 pairs of glasses with the same prescription. I’ve had just one pair of glasses for 3 years which I’ve been terrified of breaking or losing, so this is a really cool feeling.
Plus they’re really stylish and cool.

We have booked flights, accomodation and tickets for the Boxing Day Test Match!!! Our credit card is slightly maxxed but its worth it. I feel it’s been ages since we went away more than 3 hours from the city.

I’ve sent some things out in the post and got some things back in the post. Including a super awesome postcard from twitter lovely Megan and a swap package full of lovely goodies as part of the selfish knitters winter wonderland swap. I quite like putting something in the post and knowing that it’s probably going to brighten someone’s day.

I’ve been reading plenty. I actually paid money for the digital copy of Dragonfly in Amber because I finished Cross Stitch and was still awake so clearly I needed to read the second one immediately.
This is also the difficulty with December. I’m not sure where it all started, but Christmas Lists have always been a ‘thang’ in my family.
Mostly mine consisted of books. But it always meant that if I put something on my Christmas List then I couldn’t buy it until after Christmas.

Well that’s what’s happened again. I have a Christmas list which has this book on it, so I don’t want to order it, but I need to read it straight away. Yes I know – first world problems.

I’ve also had another needle in my neck. Yay! But I am feeling the best I have in a while. My twitter nagger Raves has been keeping me on track and making sure I go to the pool. I wasn’t a happy panda when I went on Saturday. All these people were there and the walking lanes were full. At least after work is mostly small children yelling. I think I put up with small children yelling, more than other people in MY lane. But I’ve felt better for going.

Oh well. Here are some photos from the last month or so.

Later taters.

IMG_1981.JPG

IMG_1997.JPG

IMG_2003.JPG

IMG_1994.JPG

IMG_1995.JPG

IMG_1934.JPG

IMG_1924.JPG

IMG_1923.JPG

IMG_2004.JPG

IMG_1983.JPG

20140106-120040.jpg

So many capital letters!!! ALL THE THINGS!!!

I honestly don’t know what I’m more excited about**

That my shawl is finished, blocked, and looks more amazing than I thought it would.

IMG_1904.JPGTIMG_1883.JPGIMG_1881.JPG

That my tenth doctor yarn arrived on Friday!

IMG_1887.JPGIMG_1888.JPG

AND I’m now the proud owner of a hand crafted spinning wheel!!!!

IMG_1893.JPG

IMG_1905.JPG

Oh and I made a tea cozy.

IMG_1894.JPG

**Pretty sure it’s the spinning wheel. It’s going to take all and I mean ALL of my energy to not look at ALL THE SPINNING FIBRE while I’m at work!!!!
And all the spinning tutorials.
Seriously when my Grandma (in-law) casually suggested that she had a spinning wheel and would I like to use it as it was currently in storage as a decoration I don’t think she expected the excited shriek that followed. The tea cozy was made for her on Saturday in gratitude.

sig

I have too many nail polishes that I don’t actually like on my nails.

I cannot apply black nail polish to my nails. It just doesn’t work.
Most of it ends up on my cuticles and it never looks neat enough.

Same with the banana yellow colour I have. You need 15 hundred coats to make it look any good and I just don’t have the patience to keep my hands still for that long.

Somehow these unusable colours keep finding themselves into my nail polish collection. I blame the $2 price tag and the 3 for $5 sales that all my local chemists seem to have. (I go to the chemist a lot at the moment.) A gal only has so much will power.

So inspired by my polka dot jars, which I’ve just found out I never actually blogged about.
So quick tutorial – I used nail polish and hole punch protectors and you combine the two to create polka dots on jars.
20140214-080157.jpg

We have a rather large collection of empty jars. They’re just so practical! I use them for my dyeing but also for storing things on my desk, but they have to be pretty.

I didn’t have a plan, I just turned the jars over and poured nail polish over them. Very simple but effective with the right combination. Really how can you go wrong with black and pink.

IMG_1813.JPG

IMG_1810.JPG

IMG_1871.JPG

My desk is messier than usual because I’ve been busy. As the Pogona needed 20 stitch markers I thought I’d better make some more. And of course some earrings had to be made as well.
IMG_1874.JPG

IMG_1862.JPG

IMG_1870.JPG

sig

For when you need food but also need to not leave the couch (A Menulog How To Guide)

You know those Saturday nights when you’re watching 30 Rock, watching Tina Fey eating constantly so you get hungry and there’s nothing in the fridge, and leaving the couch is really way too much effort. That’s when you get to order food without talking to anyone. Ahhh definitely bliss.

I’m already pretty sure I’m addicted to my phone. I do everything on it, from keeping track of whether I’ve taken medications , to paying bills, keeping up with my song a week challenge, managing my etsy store, plus I just downloaded Stash2Go that I’m still figuring out, but will probably rave about in a couple of weeks.

Well another app which I’m finding has changed my life is the menulog app. Say goodbye to trying and struggling to pronounce chinese food on the phone, and having to talk to anyone to get food delivered to your door – there’s now a free app to do all of this for you.
I used to have this ‘thing’ about talking to strangers on the phone, being a receptionist for a year cured that to a certain extent. I still prefer to not talk to people if I can help it.

It’s dead easy to get food delivered and only leave your couch once.
I already had the menulog app on my phone so I put in my post code and then made the difficult decision about what type of food.

IMG_1857.PNG

IMG_1853.PNG

I had a hankering for Chinese food so I found the Panda House. I surfed through the menu and tapped on what I wanted (predictably the order included some lemon chicken).
When I had enough food in my cart to feed a small army or one hungry Bek I checked out.
And because they have PayPal I still didn’t have to leave the couch to get my credit card from my wallet. I’ve deliberately not memorised my new card. It’s safer for my bank balance that way.

IMG_1854.PNG

I then got an sms saying they had my order, and then 45 minutes later I had Chinese food in my belly. Well after I hobbled to the front door – that’s the leaving the couch part. But once I was safe and sound and back on the couch it was the perfect Saturday night. 30 Rock, Chinese food, knitting, couch, and cider.
IMG_1858
This photo is why my food posts are few and far between these days.

*Full disclaimer – Menulog gave me food to write this post. Well they gave me credit to buy food. Same difference. But rest assured lovely readers even if the food wasn’t free I would still recommend this app and endorse it as an easy and delicious experience. You’d have to be a stronger lady than I am to pass up free food.

sig

Getting tweedy with it

I finished two shawls on the weekend in between writhing on the couch in pain watching gilmore girls, WA winning the Domestic One Day Final(!!!!), and having a very adult-y dinner party with some good friends, good lamber, and Emu Export.

The first one is a Ffrench pattern – Seven and Zero.
I swoon over all of her patterns. I just do.

This one was started so long ago I don’t know exactly when. I’m not exactly sure why considering it’s a pretty easy knit, excluding the counting part. If you look closely there’s a few times where the yarn over rows are a bit closer than the rest. It’s not a mistake it’s a design feature.

But it’s finally off the needles and blocking as we speak.
I literally used every single scrap of the Yarn Vs Zombies Tweed as I ran out while casting off.
So I wove in the ends I had and then used those scraps to finish the cast off. I was stressing for a while but I had just enough. I blocked it with points instead of straight. Just because I could.
Check my instagram for shawl selfies as soon as it’s finished. I can almost guarantee I won’t be able to resist.

IMG_1822.JPG

IMG_1821.JPG

IMG_1824.JPG

IMG_1823.JPG

This second shawl is a Stephen West pattern – Pogona.
I’m pretty sure Keri raved about Stephen West patterns all the time. So when I was trying to find something for Yarn vs Zombies Tweed dyed in 11th Doctor colourway this really spoke to me.

This literally flew off the needles. I was blind to all of my other projects. I had to finish this before I finished Seven & Zero or blocked the Spiral Blanket of Awesome which was also recently finished.
I probably had enough yarn left for another few repeats but I wanted to play it safe.

But I think that the universe was secretly telling me that I needed to have enough left so I can make a bow tie out of the rest. Because bow ties are cool.

IMG_1809.JPG

IMG_1795.JPG

IMG_1805.JPG

IMG_1800.JPG

sig

Stained glass – more adventures in dyeing

I can’t actually believe that I made this.

This is a mystery skein from the lovely and fabulous MsGusset (who quite rightly is a finalist in the Australian Etsy Design Awards – go vote for her here)

It’s dyed using food colouring and set with vinegar and heat still using the same technique as my first attempts at dyeing. I got a little bit experimental with a coat hanger to dye different parts different colours, particularly as black is a bit tricky to work with.

The ‘What a kool way to dye’ group on ravelry’s October Dye-along challenge was stained glass.
I think my submission meets that criteria. But I’ll let pictures do the talking.

IMG_1721.JPG

IMG_1722.JPG

IMG_1723.JPG

IMG_1724.JPG

IMG_1733.JPG

IMG_1751.JPG

IMG_1729.JPG

IMG_1757.JPG

Also I made a video thing where I also gush about MsGusset and YarnvsZombies and The Golden Skein

sig

Imagine the stash you could keep in a TARDIS

I had so many Doctor Who and yarny related goodies in the mailbox recently I don’t know where to start.

Ok there was two. But they were both awesome that it seems like more.

First up, I managed to nab a Tangerine 8 project bag! I have been trying to get one of these for ages, but they sell out almost immediately.
One night I was lieing awake at 2am, surfing Twitter and saw a shop update. I set my alarm and then later that morning scored myself the project bag of my dreams. How could I possible not have longed for a knitting bag with yarn rolling out of the Tardis. *swoon*

IMG_1632.JPG

IMG_1647.JPG

I’ve now located all of my Midnight Scribbles Doctor Who stitch markers and this did seem like the perfect place for them.

IMG_1625.JPG

I now have 6 of these stitch markers, one for each month of the Doctor Yarn Club by Yarn vs Zombies.
Another 2 yarns arrived in the post this week!
Australia Post hasn’t been kind to Kiki and there have been missing packages all over the place so I got two at once which was a very nice surprise.

So in the mail arrived the 12th Doctor and the 2nd Doctor. IMG_163912th Doctor Yarn2nd Doctor

Which was good timing because I just last night finished off the 9th Doctor (plus nanogenes) which I made into 22 Little Clouds.
IMG_1627
IMG_1640

And have started knitting the Of The Moon using the 3rd Doctor.
IMG_1631IMG_1630

I cannot wait to see how this one turns out. I love all of Caitlin Ffrench’s patterns. (Who by the way has just released her first book! Which you can buy in PDF onlyor in hard copy book format. It also includes natural dye recipes to recreate the yarns perfectly.)

sig

*disclaimer- as much as I gush about these products, they were paid for with my own hard earned dollars. Although if anyone ever wants to send me free yarn please feel free, but my honest opinion can not be bought!

Previous Older Entries Next Newer Entries

Follow polka-dots & sparkles on WordPress.com
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 581 other followers

%d bloggers like this: