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Wednesday, 30 April 2014

one month later...

typical for spring are days that are too short to put in everything I'd like to put in! so no blogging.... there's still too much work leftover, when the day is already gone:) of course I still knit/sew/spin etc. but gardening work takes over the regime. the weather dictates inside or outside work and lately we did have quite a few drier spells.
 
last week we had to go to Galway. we went very early and took some time out to walk down to the sea first. another day of lovely sunshine - first we fed some birds (swans and seagulls mainly), then we went down to the water to collect some shells and sea glass:) the header picture goes out towards Galway Bay (famous from several songs:). the rest of the day wasn't quite as idyllic, a lot of running in and out of shops, waiting in lines for the till etc. - walking from one shop to the next is far more tiring to me than walking hours and hours through a forest or on a beach!
 
Galway Bay 
Galway Cathedral
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
yesterday I went on a longer drive with a friend. I was asked to choose a birthday present - a special one (the big Five-O looming:). I decided that I'd like to go to Lough Key Forest Park - quite a drive from here, nearly an hour... not doable without a car and train and bus connections don't seem to exist either. we watched the forecast for a while, but I didn't really fancy going during the last 2 weeks of easter holidays. there's a lot of stuff on offer for kids and when the weather is reasonably good, it can get quite crammed. we were lucky to choose yesterday - today it's been raining on and off! yesterday we drove in brilliant sunshine, warm, but not too hot, not much wind - the perfect day. this park is an old family estate, taken over by Coillte. hard to believe that one family should have owned so much land - it's huge (I think 800 acres or so?), with the lough right beside it and access to boat tours etc. we didn't come for boat tours though, we came for some greenery:) the park is literally covered in wild garlic, and we went and picked some leaves... and enjoyed a walk through the forested area. at this time of the year it's the perfect walk, the trees are not as dense as they are in summer, there is dappled sunlight everywhere, but it's sheltered and "wild" - esp. after the recent storms we had. we enjoyed some coffee and brownies and sat outside, watching the birds all around....
 
 Castle Island in Lough Key Forest Park
the Fairy Bridge
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
I didn't just drive around all month, I did some work as well:) I am still working on the hexagon table cloth - haven't taken any new pix, but my stack of finished flowers is growing, I need about 100 - 120, but I have sewn more than 50 plus some "extra shapes", where flowers overlap. plus some "buds", so I reckon I need another 35- 40 maybe...
the first batch of flowers - picture taken several weeks ago:) I was worried that I might end up with a sore finger, but I only did 4 or 5 a day max., so it wasn't that bad. I bought some of those "patches" you can stick to your finger, but so far I didn't need them. I hate thimbles and try to work without them if I can....
I think this was my "hexie collection box" at its fullest -  most of them already in sixpacks (new meaning to the word?:); on the right are the ones where I only have a few or leftovers from cutting (I got 8 out of a charm 6x6 in, so I always had two spares that I could use for a middle patch).
so far I only washed and ironed the green I need between the flowers. not sure if I really should use the light green (bottom right), because it has red dots... and the more blueish green (larger piece in the middle). but there are plenty of different greens in the charm pack and I also have some greens already in stash. I separated the more khaki green ones, somehow they don't seem to fit the colourful flowers of a flower garden? maybe I should do a desert garden next:)
 
thanks to a friend, who collects FQ's, I had a large choice of colours for the flowers, but I also ordered stuff from "planet-patchwork", a mail order company from Berlin (yes, it's silly, but it's cheaper and faster to order from germany than from the UK; over here there isn't all that much choice in PW mail order companies:( at least I didn't find any online that offered enough choice of what I wanted....)
 
I also nearly finished the beige cardie; I just need to finish both arm shapings and put everything together. and I finally knitted the black and white potholders in double knitting I wanted to send off as a thankyou. I chose the chinese symbol for (good) luck instead of a sanquhar pattern - but didn't have the time to take a pic yet... next in line will be the green monster (a cardie in frog green donegal tweed I promised to knit for my friend) - and hopefully finally the rest of the FIA I started last year (good thing that UFO's don't need feeding and watering:)! unless - I can't help myself and start on one of the purple donegal tweeds that look so tempting every time I pass the cones....
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