Monday, 24 August 2015

Roadtrippin' and small things spotted

Being married to an after-hours endurance athlete, means a lot of road tripping to nice places, of which my South Africa has no shortage.  So this weekend we went off galavanting to the Trans-Baviaans 24hr Mountain Bike Marathon where  our team of four rode into the mountains, following dirt roads, single tracks, orienteering through the kloofs and slipping down snot-like mud downhill towards thick gravel and potholes.  They started at 10h00 in the Karoo town of Willowmore and had 24 hrs to make to to Jeffreys Bay.  They're allowed only a 1-person logistical support and the checkpoints, and none on the road.   Our novices did quite well, considering one broke his chain in three places, and another had to be medevacked (but is now fine), and they're happy with their finish time of 14:40.

That was at 00h40 in the morning .
#imstillblearyeyed

We, the Wives of Cyclists,  did what the support team does and that is to take a long, slow drive, and pitstop at nice places along the route :-)

First stop was at The Heath, a favourite for good coffee on the the N2 and a nice spot to find some community project hooky:


Mmm...an idea for that basket or straw bag where the bottom corners are getting a bit...worn?


Pretty clutches


Onwards to Old Nick's Village, where I walked with my hands firmly tucked behind my back at Mungo's and just had time for a quick dash through on or two doors...

...where I spotted the lady at Indalo working on these squares!


By that time our boys' support vehicle reported a pitstop at a local church bazaar (fête) and lo and behold, it was just up the highway and 8 km off behind the mountain, so there we went!

The community of the tiny hamlet of Kareedouw hosts a Fietsfees (Bicycle Festival) during TransBaviaans weekend in the form of a bazaar on the church grounds:


How beautiful are these sandstone churches?


Ja...we had to pose...me lurking in the back with the red scarf.


As church bazaars go, there was some craft to be found, and  spotted this beauty of a baby blanket:


Love the sandstone colours.  I might be right in thinking this was done in Elle Premier Cotton DK, a beautiful mercerised cotton yarn.


And again, beautiful work from a community craft project, and I walked away with new washpeg bag and these potholders for me and my sisi:


Some shwe-shwe brightness for my kitchen, with crochet in Elle Premier Cotton

These hand-embroidered proteas will be making their way to Ireland

A most enjoyable, tiring weekend, with very little of my own hooky being done!
Will catch up, hoping for a quiet morning :-)

Saturday, 15 August 2015

A Tommie Blanket


Our Tommie-cat has died.




Suffice to say that there are currently very hostile feelings between us and that I'm counting the weeks until my kids can again safely ride their bikes in our (usually) very quiet, single-lane street in our (usually) very quiet residential estate.





 Tommie was my (okay, my son's) very first kitten. 
We got her as a rescue from the local SPCA for his 7th birthday after he's been pleading for months.  Although she was his, she was also mine, my constant companion during the mornings at home, following me and calling me if she didn't immediately see me, fighting with my hands when I folded laundry until I had to cage her with the laundry basket, walking round and round the edge of the bath, waiting for me to get out of the water (she fell in twice :-) ).  





She was such a bloody oulike cat.

But.  

The Unveiling of the Tombstone (it's a Thing in South Africa)
We planted a katjiepiering (gardenia) and catnip in the zinc bath.
He wrote a letter that was cellotaped to a stick and planted in there as well. 

So last week terrible Friday I started sorting my Vinnis and other cotton and bamboo yarn stash, putting together colours to use in a month or so when I would start working on summer blankets for the boys.  I decided to make a simple Granny Stripe for the Little One, as he already has a smallish Granny Square blanket.  As it is when sorting yarn and making Big Decisions like this, I thought I'd just start with a row or two, just to get an idea...you know...




And then the Horrible Afternoon happened, and we had a Cat Funeral, and took the boys to the beach to get them away, and I diverted my Little One's attention by telling him about his new blanket that I started that morning, and that he could remember Tommie when he cuddled under it and by the end of the day I was ten rows away and made promises of a crocheted kitty appliquéd on the blanket.  

SO here I am, hooking away on this one, shoving other plans and projects to the side. As usual, there is a Formula to my colour sequencing :-P




Meanwhile, I'll be scouring the universe for crochet kitty patterns to appliqué - feel free to point me in the right direction!

Tearfully, 
Stel