Friday, March 07, 2008

This has been a busy week but most of it has been online or on the phone. I haven't mentioned that I intend on taking a two month trip to the states in October-November. I am trying to pace myself, there will be no Civil War battlefields, I am having stops at each end before flying home because I remember how much pain I was in waiting for the last flight to Canberra in the Qantas club lounge in Sydney. So I have been busy booking flights, hotels, cars etc. Why now? Because the Aussie dollar is at record highs against the US dollar. It's always a guessing game on whether it will get better or worse, but I don't remember having this favourable an exchange rate ever, but I only knew it every day since I've lived here, because the nightly news always includes the exchange rate. It effects imports, exports, and all our dealings overseas and Australia lives on foreign trade. We don't manufacture a lot but export vast amounts of minerals and food, so the exchange rate is of interest to any business who has off-shore interests. So I was busy taking advantage of the exchange rate by paying for things now.

I'm starting with a course at The Weavers School in Washington State, then visit various friends and family in the east, and end with a cruise with my mother-in-law for seven days through Hawaii. I've always wanted to see Hawaii, and especially the volcanoes on the Big Island. If my optometrist can fit me with goggles, I want to snorkel as well, because I adore snorkeling and badly sunburned the backs of my legs floating above the Great Barrier Reef years ago. There were a few slip ups in booking the trip planning, in not finding a flight to get me from point A to Point B in time to make a connection. However, that is all good for my legs to be forced to rest.

I have successfully navigated a year of living from my stash (except sock yarn), and I suppose technically that's still true. However, yesterday a friend came to me at work offering me two large shopping bags of yarn. "No! Take it away!" I cried. Then I saw one was full of mohair. So I looked at that bag and there are several 100gm balls of Patons Luxury Mohair in white and dark blue, and some dark blue Miraggio at the bottom. I knit a jumper out of it for one of the children in England a few years ago and really liked it--it's soft and a combination of chenille and boucle. So I reluctantly took it. I had just pulled out of the stash the making for 2 winter projects: Philosopher's Wool to try my first real fair isle and I intend to steek an make a cardigan, and some very neutral grey wool that's relatively light compared to what I've been knitting. I also want an all purpose neutrally coloured cardigan I could wear to work or out and about in general and I have a pattern for one with simple cables, and pockets (very important). I also pulled out a few single special skeins for a few hats and/or scarves. I am on the home stretch on the Regia wool/cotton socks. I am brokenhearted that my toe went through the end of my new Panda Cotton socks. No doubt because I was in a hurry and jammed my feet into my shoes. I hate fixing sock toes, which I used to do regularly for the Bear.

I am listening to a podcast about the possums in New Zealand which was introduced in 1837 as a fur industry source. It has now devastated the ecology to the islands and is therefore the reason being harvested (yes, I mean killing) and why you can buy possum blend yarn. It is very warm and very soft. I have stopped feeding possums because I began to find it a chore rather than an amusement. I know I can always get them back by supplying them with bananas.


kris said...

A whole year living off your stash? I couldn't. I couldn't do it! I must purchase beautiful fabric whenever and where I find it! I respect your restraint! WOW!

Susan and SmokeyBlue said...

I have been searching and searching for just the right cardi pattern with simple cables and am about ready to design my own out of frustration. Most of what I am finding is short, tight or if an OK shape then full of too much cable fussiness for me. Which one are you going to do?

Also I am very glad to hear you are making your travel plans so I can really count on seeing you in the fall.
Namaste, from still winter.