Archive for the ‘Nothing Like a Cuppa’ Category

Lazy Shabbat

November 2, 2013

It has been a lazy kind of day.  A much needed rest.   I actually slept in – rare – and then spent much of the day relaxing with knitting in my hands, a cup of tea by my side, and the catbeast purring on my stomach.

I sipped a variety of teas, with a special treat of chai latte sent to me by Anissa in Germany in a package swap.  The chai – by Krüger – is apparently available in most supermarkets in Germany, but isn’t sold commercially here.  Although several cafés sell it.  Anissa sent two different varieties, and I’m trying to savour them slowly.   And keep them from kidlet…athough she was much happier grabbing the Kinder egg from the package.  Anissa told me she had to share the vanilla halvah I sent her – her husband’s eyes popped out when he saw it.

The tea mug – a much treasured Unique Sheep mug.  When I was in the Unique Sheep “Sip-n-Stitch” Yarn and Tea club a few years ago, one of the club packages included – logically enough – a wonderful mug.  Along with yarn, tea, and a couple of honey sticks (all three of them yummy).

sip n stitch 2


The mug was a prized possession, and used often… Until a couple of months ago, when it accidentally  got knocked from the table and smashed into smithereens.  I may have startled the neighbours with my wail.

So after searching the Unique Sheep website and finding zero mugs, I wrote to Laura and asked if there were any more to be purchased.  She wrote back right away, saying there were usually a few left over from the clubs, and asked me which design.  I sent her a picture, and waited.  A day later she wrote back to say she had found one remaining mug at the very back of the closet!  Not with black trim, though, but in green.  I told her green would be just fine, and asked the price.  She said she would be happy to replace the mug at no cost.  We finally agreed that I would pay for shipping.  And it arrived soon after.   (Indie business service just can’t be surpassed.)

unique sheep 2

So that was my mug of choice for my lazy day today.

And the knitting?  I finished two chart repeats of the Giraffe and have begun the third.

Giraffe 2nd repeat

Batteries recharged, and it’s time for a new week!!

Tea Time – Morning, Afternoon, Evening

August 5, 2012

The European Traveling Tea Box has once again landed in Haifa.  And such a treat it is indeed!

Arriving this time from Nadine in Germany, this:

opened to display this treasure pile:

I began to sample almost immediately.  The first thing I grabbed was a chai latte stick.

Oh my stars and whiskers, that is delicious stuff!  With many apologies to those folks after me on the ETTB list, all of these are staying with me.  And may well be gone very rapidly.  Now to figure out how to get my hands on more…  Seriously.

In the end, I took out a nice selection of yarn and tea and notions.

There’s a lovely purple button there, and some Regia sock yarn:

And some mystery yarn someone found at a flea market – lovely colour, very soft, and there’s definitely some mohair in the mix:

I added a bunch of stuff to fill the box back up:

Packed in as much vanilla halvah – always a favourite – as I  could until the scales read 2 kilos.  The box will soon be on its way again to Jackie in Denmark.

Now to make some lovely tea while I knit away at the Ravellenic projects.  On the Out of my Ravellenic Head I  finished the body of the shawlette, bunged in a lifeline and I’m into the lace border.  Not too complicated, but I do have to count very carefully.  On the Ravellenic Wings, I’ve started the fifth triangle and I’m still on the first colour pattern.  The pattern calls for eight triangles in all, but many people who have knitted this have made more.  I will knit until yarn and/or time runs out.  We’ll see how many that will be!

Putting the kettle on again.  Join me for a cuppa?

Rainbows, WIPs, chai and a cervix

March 21, 2012

Back at the job, and crazy busy after all the days I missed.  Boss has requested I work overtime – finally making up all the lost work.   Last night I got home from work and headed right for bed.  I was asleep before 8pm, and slept through to the morning.  Sheesh.

Finished the rioting rainbows!

Wove in the ends on the way to work, and wore the mitts while it was still kinda cold this morning before the heating kicked in.

I  can’t decide whether to now

  1. Cast on for another pair for kidlet  (Do I want to work with splitty yarn again right away??  OTOH, it’s fresh in my mind, and she really loves them.)
  2. Work on the WIP pile  (Of course this is what I should do…there are quite a few that are close to being finished.)
  3. Cast on for a new project since I finished one  (Way too many queue items are calling me…and *ahem* there is some chatter in the Yarn & Falafel group about starting a new KAL.)
  4. Knit and felt a cervix for women’s collaborative art.  (Check it out!  Now why does this especially appeal to me??)


I need your opinions!

At least we got to spend time with Kidlet on Saturday.  Picked her and a friend up at the kibbutz, and they begged for a trip to the mall.  Shops were still closed but the cafés were not, so we had a treat while waiting for the shops to open up. Then the girls got a phone call that several old friends had come to the kibbutz to visit, so they decided not to wait and wanted to return early.  (Methinks my wallet is grateful…)

Kidlet did manage to snap a picture of me with some of my favourite things, all in one:

There’s me with my tea (a wonderful chai latte), lace knitting and the iphone.  Never mind about raindrops on roses,  just colour me happy!  (Pull the kindle out of my bag and onto the table, and the happy upgrades to ecstatic… but let’s not get carried away.)

Now I’ve got Julie Andrews singing in my head…

December…Holidays…Uh oh

December 3, 2011

December is here, and the race to finish (OK, in most cases start) knitting holiday gifts has begun.

Kidlet picked out a hat pattern and yarn ages ago, so that’s one Chanuka project on the needles already. It’s the Sixty Cables slouchy hat by Gabriella Krisztián…and it wasn’t until I went to cast on that I actually paid attention to the name of the pattern.  Yes, it does indeed have 60 cables every 4th round…but luckily, done without a cable needle.  (Otherwise I would now be shrieking that I don’t care what she chose, she’s darn well going to get something else…)  Working on it has been a challenge while she’s home this weekend, although there was a nice space of time before she woke up.  When she was up and around I worked on grand nephew’s scarf.  And then again time when I dropped her off to see a friend and son and grandbaby –  it was generally decided that since I have a cold I shouldn’t be cuddling infants.

So I headed over to a local café for a chai latte until it was time to pick up kidlet and drop her off at another friend’s for a bit.  Great, more time for knitting.  Still working on the hat brim.  The chai was lovely, and very good for my cough…

For those who haven’t yet seen it, all this month the Yarn Harlot is blogging ideas and advice for non-knitters who love knitters.  With lots of gift recommendations to make knitters happy.  The first installment is here, and I love the stuff in the second installment even better!  Very much worth checking out – non-knitters, get some great ideas, and knitters, something to send to all your significant non-knitting others.

Besides the wonderful knitterly gifts recommended, I found something else that is definitely on my holiday wish list.   The Warner Brothers official shop has this lovely mug

And when you fill it with hot liquid it transforms to this

(The shop also has more mugs, shirts, wands, a time turner, etc…but I really love this mug the most.)

Other gifts are also in the cards, but I shan’t mention them yet.  Some things should be a surprise.

Now back to the needles.  After I make myself another cuppa.

Tea Is Roaming Again

November 4, 2011

The Ravelry ETTB (European Traveling Tea Box) has again arrived on my doorstep!  Well, it arrived at the post office, but never mind, I’m not bothering with insignificant details….  It only took a week to arrive from Wales, which is much better than average.

(privacy teacups added, of course...)

I happily tore into the wrapping – good grief, Sara, you really wrapped it thoroughly, it took a lot of swearing um, tearing – and was immediately hit by tantalising smells (tea) and sights (yarn)!

I dug right in and discovered…

Lots of yummy teas

and goodies

and yarn.

I’ve just finished trying a cup of  “teapigs” rooibos crème caramel, and the rest of that will be staying with me, thank you very much.  Also grabbed some of the Milford fruit teas, like the pear/pomegranate and the cherry/banana.  (Thank you, google translate)  Took a few samples of the loose teas.  And that was it for the tea stash.  Kidlet swiped some of the candy as well.

The yarn stash grew with the King Cole Riot, I couldn’t resist the colours.  (The colourway is called “cool”.)    I’m thinking….rainbow mitts?

And the wonderful little teapot-covered notions/small project bag has also found a home.  Even the material in the lining has teacups!

Now I have the weekend to decide what to add to the box before sending it back on its way, to Norway this time.  (Heads up, Ranveig!)   Fun to choose what tea/yarn/goodies to add.  I do believe there are a couple of stroopwaffels in the cupboard.  Now what else…?

I need another cuppa tea to help me think.  (~_^)

In-house yarn bombing

May 6, 2011

I’ve received a wonderful swap package from Linda in New Hampshire!

Some merino superwash in a beautiful blue, Patricia Cornwell’s Port Mortuary, one of the few books of hers that I didn’t have, a great notebook, a bunch of stickers, some yummy teas and this gorgeous tea mug

perfect for loose teas.  All the pieces arrived intact!

Can’t wait to use it.

Also in the package were two discs of music.  One – “Music to Read By” – is solo piano, very soothing,  great not only for reading or knitting but also for  driving, especially in awful traffic.  I can attest to the fact that it kept my blood pressure down!

I’ve finished the first Minion Tiara sock, and immediately cast on for the second.

I was slightly less inspired for the second, since I had no royal wedding to watch while knitting.   But still, it seems that so far I’m avoiding Second Sock Syndrome.

I may take a slight  break from socks, since I have a very strong urge to do some in-house yarn bombing and knit covers for the crutches.  They just look so naked!  I dug through my ancient acrylic stash and found some colourful bulky yarn.

I’ll do some kind of a rib so it will hold the crutch well.  I tried several swatches, knitting in the round to make a tube, but if it can fit over the wide bottom of the crutch then it’s way too loose and floppy on the crutch, even with the rib.  So it looks like I’ll be knitting it flat and seaming it right onto the crutch.  Which was what I was going to do for the upper section anyway.  I want to get this done fast, since I have a wedding to attend in a week and I want pretty crutches.   No, I’m not really crazy, honest.

Still undergoing lots of tests, most of them including blood work.  Within a week and a half, the vampire nurses have drawn a whole lotta blood three separate times, and all from the same place!  Seems the veins on the other arm aren’t as prominent.  But ow, geez.  (Actually, the nurses have been fantastic so far.)

Can’t wait for Independence Day this coming week, we’re going to a picnic at kidlet’s boarding school.  We’ll carry a folding chair for me.  Probably won’t finish the yarn bombing by then, though…  Pity.

Tea Snob Heaven

April 17, 2011

Oof!  I’ve been busy with preparations for Pesach…well, at least I’ve been trying to get the flat in order.  Between that and work, and running after kidlet on vacation, there hasn’t been much time to blog.    (I’m not really running after kidlet physically, just emotionally … like sitting up all night when she goes to an all-night party/dance/club.  Still takes a toll…  And I’m very glad that I’m not 16 any more.)  Still have last minute shopping to do, too.

Sent out one swap package, and just about ready to send out another.  And waiting very impatiently for the Smart Ass Knitters April package.

What has arrived is the Traveling Tea Box from Steepster!    It began its multi-continent journey  in January 2010, and after several snags along the way has finally arrived on my doorstep from the US, and will then continue to the original starting point in Europe.

Oh, my.  As opposed to the Ravelry TTB, which is tea and yarn, this box is purely tea-related.  Very few accessories, just amazing teas.   I honestly don’t know where to start.  And how much I can take out without emptying the box completely!  I am not nearly as much of a tea snob as I am a yarn snob ( 😀 ), but this is just astounding.

First, some of the scented teas:

Also some pure-leaf (no scents):

Various and sundry other teas:

A few tins as well:

Some tea bags and storage, and a disc of music that I plan to listen to as I sip

If I have time, I’ll sort out what I’m keeping before tomorrow, but it’s doubtful.  I will be putting the box away for Pesach  (rotten timing!), but I foresee an orgy of tea tastings immediately following the holiday!  And probably more than one tea party.

Mm.  Glorious.

Little gifts and big wails

February 8, 2011

Kidlet has just finished a unit at school on working with leather.  We went out to her school to visit yesterday and she surprised me with a gift – this purse she made.

She continues to excel at all kinds of crafts…but still doesn’t knit, although she knows how.  I suppose that’s understandable.  She wants to shine in her own way.  And she does.

(Check out the paw prints on the back of the purse…love it.)

A friend at work gave me a new mug – she doesn’t drink that much tea and she thought I would like this.

Complete with a little slot to hold the tea bag string.  When I use tea bags.

Little gifts, for no special reason.  🙂

Saturday news brought a wail of “Noooooooooo!”  from me.  Not long ago…last month, in fact…I mentioned how much I love IKEA.  Well, I bought all my new yarn storage boxes just in time…our IKEA store  has burned to the ground.  Saturday morning, a fire started on the roof of the building, and destroyed the entire place.  Nothing left.  The damage is estimated at over 100 million dollars.

Luckily, it happened on Shabbat, which meant that there were no people working or shopping there, and therefore no one was injured.  The government has established a committee to determine how to support the 400-or-so employees until the company rebuilds – they say within a year.

At least there’s another branch in the country – farther away, but available.  I have a feeling that their business is going to skyrocket.    (I wonder why the IKEA in Israel doesn’t take online orders – I understand they do in other countries.  That would make life easier.  And the bank account emptier.  Hm.  Just as well.)

What do you like better – shopping online, in the  comfort of your home, no crowds or lines, or wandering around a store, using all your senses, not just sight, to inspect the goods, compare them, make your decisions?  When do you do more impulse buying (if you do…like me)?

To find the best deals, I usually shop online. You can find great bargains online that you wouldn’t find in stores.  But when I need something quick, I run to the stores. I also window shop a lot, and when I find something that I really like I usually go online to see if I can find a better deal.

Unless it’s something I can’t get here.  Then online shopping is a blessing.

Which do you prefer?

Sipping and Stitching, Stitching and Sipping

February 5, 2011

Kidlet received her stocking cap for her birthday and was properly excited.  She did feel that the pompom was too big, so I gave it a haircut…

I think it still needs a bit more of a trim, she was rushing me so she could wear it out.    Later.

The Wedge scarf was dubbed “The Wedgie” by my Stitch-n-Bitch group.  As I finished the first ball of yarn, I realised that the scarf was going to be incredibly long.  So before I started on the second ball of yarn I used some of it to whip up some matching fingerless mitts just in time to keep my hands warm as a cold spell hit. 

I suppose I could have figured out some way to use the Wedge pattern for the mitts, but I went with simplicity, a spiral rib pattern from Canadian Living magazine.  I’m now back to the scarf with the rest of the yarn.

I could not resist the BMFA Marine Silk any longer, and cast on for the Criss Cross scarf.  Oh me, oh my, what wonderful yarn to work with!!  Soooo soft, the silk just glides through my fingers.  It’s also fun that I am using straight needles, I have been using circulars for so long, I don’t think I’ve used straights in years.  But…I received these Addi bamboos in a swap, and they’re short as well, so I chose them for this project.  So light.  I still have to remember not to drop the second needle when I finish a row, I forget that it’s not connected, and I’m getting a little tired of chasing the needle around the floor when I do it. 

The European Travelling Tea Box has arrived, filled to the brim with goodies, as usual.  These are all the non-tea treats:

Tea accessories, chocolates, note paper, pins, and more…and of course, yarn.  That red Fleece Artist Merino 2/6 most undoubtedly has my name on it, it will be welcomed joyfully into my stash.   Some of the Kool Aid will stay with me as well. 

Then the teas!

I will have to take more time to go through them and choose what I want to sample.  I do have my eye on some of the flowering teas, and certainly the Teavana Rooibos Blueberry Bliss.  There are some I’ve never heard of as well.  The S&B group has threatened me with bodily harm if I don’t share this time, so it looks like a tea party is in the cards, and we’ll all fill the box back up together. 

Have a nice cuppa while you knit, and Shabbat Shalom!

In which I continue to tink Persephone…

January 11, 2011

It’s 11.1.11 !!    Or if you’re in the States, it’s 1.11.11 !

No idea if there’s any significance to that, but never mind.  It’s just a whole lotta ones.

Had fun last night at SnB.  We filled up two tables.  Our youngest member was interested mainly in gnawing things with her incoming teeth, luckily she found something other than yarn or needles…

I was mainly still tinking Persephone.  (Now there’s a sentence I never would have thought I’d use…)  In the end I re-did the chart farther back than I planned to before, so she’s still being tinked….

On the other hand, the stocking cap is sailing along…it needs to be ready for kidlet’s birthday in a few weeks, so no worries.  (Let’s hope those are not famous last words…)

Tillybuddy’s special cast on looks great, and the cast on is just as stretchy as the rest of the ribbing.

I’m still waiting for my chocolate swap package, but Jennie in New Zealand has received hers from me!  She loves all the chocolate goodies I sent, and for a hoot I knitted up a personal chocolate bar just for her!

The pattern is the Chocolate Bar and Wrapper from Craftbits.  I changed the pattern from knitting flat to knitting in the round to avoid seams, using a toe-up sock cast on for both the chocolate and the wrapper.   I also stuffed it lightly, to give it some firmness.  One of my more whimsical knits.  🙂

And I’m next on the list for two Traveling Tea Boxes, one coming from the UK and one from the US.  So there should be yummy hot things to drink very soon in the (finally!!!) cold weather.  Well, as soon as the post office can handle, I guess.

There’s a new page on the blog, I’ve taken a reading challenge for 2011 – 52 books.  I think between knitting projects I can handle at least a book a week.  Check out my progress on the page, can you match me?  Or beat me?  What are you reading?

Meanwhile we enjoy very dramatic skies.

I love clouds.  (Do you search for cloud pictures like I do?  What do you see?)