Monday, June 29, 2009

Race for Life 2009

So proud of my big girl, who is my 'kleine meisje' at the same time.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Running surprises

I'm still running three times a week and still see a gradual improvement. From learning to run 20 minutes continuously, without having a walking break, I have been trying to increase the length of time I'm running for. At the beginning of the week, I was managing 26 minutes, and I was just thinking that maybe for the next session I'd try 28 minutes. But the run was going very well and I thought 'it's only 4 minutes more to do 30 minutes', which is what I'd aimed for all this time. I thought I'd give it a try and to my utter surprise I managed it! Half an hour of continuous running, no stopping - if you'd told me a year ago I'd be able to do this, I'd have rolled over the floor with laughter.
I'm all the more surprised because I am the least sporty person I know. I used to be the one who got chosen last at school for teams in PE. I would be the one dropping the ball which everybody else would catch. I would be the last one coming in if we had to run around the track. I would dread the days on which we had PE.
And then, a few years ago, I felt I had to do something about my fitness. I was a bit overweight and my job is very sedentary, and I knew it wasn't healthy. So I started swimming - the only sport which I enjoyed. I found I got better and better at it and discovered it is true what they say about sport: it makes you feel better, endorphins do exist, you do get more energy. Then when I met B., I started cycling near where he lives - miles of country lanes to explore. I love going out on my bike on my own and enjoy the surroundings, the changing seasons, the wildlife you spot.
As I posted here before, after mum became ill and then recovered, I wanted to do something positive. Running would be a real challenge - something I couldn't ever imagine being able to do. But although it has taken me much longer than I expected, my perseverance has paid off and now I can run 30 minutes and I actually enjoy it. Someone asked me the other day if I was going to stop running after Race for Life (this Sunday) and I said no, definitely not - I can't imagine anymore that I'd not do any form of exercise. And running is definitely going to be a big part of that exercise regime. I think I have mum to thank for that - so thanks mum!

On another note, isn't this gorgeous?

Organic merino in colourway Grey skies (although to me it looks just like the sea at Lyme Regis on a sunny day) from the YarnAddict, destined to become an Ishbel. I can't wait to cast on.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Presents (presenting several FO's)

Four weeks ago friends of mine had baby twins, a boy and a girl. They didn't know the sex before the babies were born, but I knew I wanted to make something for them. I deliberated for ages between knitting and sewing, and ended up doing both once I could choose colours safely (I find choosing unisex colours quite hard, apart from white or cream, and I didn't want to make two identical outfits).

For starters I knitted these hats. In fact, I knitted these hats three times, two lilac ones and one brown one (more info on Ravelry). The first lilac one went to a friend in Holland who gave birth a few weeks early just before we were last over in Holland. I did the finishing off on the overnight ferry! The pattern is a freebie from Woolly Wormhead, whose hats I love. I've also discovered I really enjoy knitting hats, they go fast, they don't have many sizing issues, they're useful. A Woolly Wormhead beret (Meret) is on the to do list next.

I. kept asking for some fabric with monkeys on from the colormeflannel coop in the US, and I chose the wrong one. So that got made into this nightie

and with some other flannel which N. has really outgrown, I made these pjs:

There was supposed to be a flannel top with it, but that turned into such a disaster that it ended up in the bin. I bought the little red tshirt and cut a square from the fabric and zigzagged around the edges.

The patterns were from a Dutch sewing magazine (Knippie) from several years ago, I'd made them both before for a Secret Santa swap.

A couple of photos of all the presents, which are all handmade, albeit not all by me.

Mum knitted the little bootees (in fact, she made 4 pairs, as two colleagues from work are expecting babies too), and the sleepyhead dolls come from Liz, a sewing/knitting friend.

We're going to meet the twins tomorrow and I'm looking forward to gifting these!


I am in the Universe
In the Milky Way
In the Solar System
On one of the planets
On Earth
In Europe
In England
In Suffolk
In Bury St. Edmunds
In B.C.
In my bed room
And there's ME!!!

By N. aged 7

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Rainy Sunday afternoon

In the summer, I would love to take our VW camper out every weekend if I had my way. Life gets in the way most weekends though - B. works on the house most of the time, I often have to work myself. This weekend it would have been far too wet to take the camper out. So the next best thing? Install ourselves in the camper in the barn for a few hours, drawing, reading, knitting, drinking coffee and eating snacks...