Sunday, September 30, 2012

Sanity in small pockets

Sometimes we have to seek sanity in small things.  Life has been throwing curve balls at me for a little while.  Life has been unsettled for a while now and hinged around a potential international move which would have been very welcome.  It's not to be at this point.  I am very sad.  I even went to see schools and houses and fell in love with seasons and fresh air again.

It's hard to accept I have to stay here another two years. It's an ok place with lots going for it - but it felt like time to go.  It still feels like time to go but I have to stay.  I feel bereaved that my plans and hopes have not come to fruition this time. Sad, so sad.

So I have to pick myself and get on with it.  There are exams in two weeks which I am NOT prepared for.  The endless round of school stuff and the same ho sweaty weather everyday.

My sanity in the last 3 days has only existed in the small world of knitting, making a sweet cardigan (mignon from Loop knitting)

and a little hat to go with it, that I haven't taken a picture of yet.  All this in 3 days.  It's Christmas knitting if I can wait that long to send it.
Now, off to make a list of what I can get out of this next two years to make it a positive experience.  What have you put on your list for the next two years?

Thursday, August 23, 2012


There are days when nothing seems to go right or you wonder what you have been doing all day.  I used to have those a lot.  Particularly when the kids were little and days were pretty unpredictable.  This is when knitting soothes and gives a sense of accomplishment.

I LOVE my knitting.  I love the creativity of choosing the project, just the right yarn, the perfect colour and the matching beads if required.  I often tweak patterns these days and they feel more like mine if you know what I mean.  I've been working on a soothing, repetitive project recently, the lovely Swoon from Juju's Loops.  I've made it once already, exactly like the pattern but this time I've made it my own.  Instead of wrap stitches I placed tiny beads and for the endings and lace I used feather and fan.  I started it on the plane on the way to Paris, whilst I was there and also in Barcelona and on the flight on the way back.  It's almost finished, only 1 small piece of lace for one of the sleeves to do.  What do you think?

Things are tough at the moment and I need something at the extremely simple, no thinking end of the knitting spectrum so I have cast on this , Boxy by Joji Locatelli in Lavanda, Malabrigo Finito.  Shhhhhh, I should have knit that small piece of lace first.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Juggling without balls

This week I have been practicing my juggling skills. This is what I have managed this week so far:

Taxi driver
Chaperone to 11 year old sweethearts
Car maintenance engineer ( had a blown tyre)
Communication skills expert (for my job but also dealing with kids)
Patient (mouth still hurts - seeing surgeon again tomorrow)
Super duper back to school planner (wish they had more time off.  Can't believe I just said that)
Food shopper
Dutiful daughter
Concert goer (the Beach Boys)

And other stuff I can't even remember.  People, it is only Wednesday . What are you juggling this week?

Friday, August 17, 2012

Incompetent parenting - that would be me.

I am not being a good parent today. I had surgery on my mouth yesterday but decided that I would still take the kids out to the museum today. We saw a beautiful wedding dress exhibition which is visiting from the V&A. They were NOT engaged and I got ratty that I had made the effort and they didn't seem interested.

I am grumpy and so definitely not a yummy lovely mummy today.


Friday, August 10, 2012

Diamonds, SIM cards and spectacle cable needles

I had a creative solution win today.

DH needed a new SIM card and then decided to put it into the phoe whilst we were still in the shopping center.  His phone has one of those ports where you have to use a paper clip or something like it to open the thing.  Unusually (!) we didn't have one on us.  Quick as a flash I took out my diamond earring and used the post.  Ingenious, at least I thought so.

It reminded me of the time I got stuck without a cable needle on the plane.  I used the arm of my spectacles.  It wasn't perfect but it worked and meant I could continue to knit.. Win!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Conscious competence?

Have you heard of the four levels of competence when learning a new skill? It goes something like this:

1. Unconscious incompetence - you don't know how bad you are,
2. Conscious incompetence - you realize how bad you are,
3. Conscious competence - you can do it if you really think about it and talk yourself through it,
4. Unconscious competence - you can do it without even thinking about it.

Much of my life I worry that I hover at conscious incompetence but I've realized  that actually i know lots of stuff and the stuff I don't know i work at.  I need to lighten up.  Today I discovered I am well regarded at work and after a career break of 11 years (I've been back 3 months) this was a good moment and unexpected. Hell, I didn't have anything to wear or even know what to wear when I first went back. Suits are too formal these days and where I work does not have the smart casual rules of my last job. I spent ages looking at people going to work trying to work out the new rules for work clothes. Guys,  there is an opportunity out there for helping women returners get their work clothes mojo back.  Even blow drying my hair before leaving the house and doing my make-up was challenging when you're trying to get out of the house early.  But I've done it.  Me. I've done it.  And the kids look at me differently and so does the DH.

Sense of competence on the increase. Just.