Monday, January 25, 2010

Upward dog, inhale

Sorry about the pause! I have had a rather busy and exhausting couple of weeks, but am now recovering.

I have been so exhausted that... shock horror... I have done hardly any knitting. I finished off these socks on Boxing Day, but the ones in the previous post are still languishing. I messed up one of the heels, didn't notice until the sock was nearly done, and am still psyching myself up to rip it back.

Still, you don't care about my socks. You want to know how the yoga is going.

My sister and I have now had four classes and are enjoying it. We are doing Ashtanga yoga, which is fairly energetic, although not so energetic that you seriously break a sweat. Our teacher is very nice; she's Spanish, and as a consequence we are probably learning all the words for the different positions with a Spanish accent.

To begin with, we both found it quite tough going: after the first class, I couldn't raise my arms for a few days, while S had a sore, um, gluteus. We seem to be adapting, though I wouldn't say I'm precisely graceful yet. Most of the others in the class are students, although one girl has started bringing her mum, so I'm no longer the oldest in the class. Probably still the chunkiest. But I'm managing OK.

On Monday evening I tried something new: I made a sock monkey.

Sock monkey

Sock monkeys have a whole history in the US, but they're practically unknown over here. I think they're cute, though. And surprisingly easy and quick to make. I also like the fact that you do almost all the sewing before you have to cut into the socks, and that one monkey uses up one pair of socks, with hardly any wastage. (These were cheapo knee socks, cost £1.49).

The instructions I used are here.

Sock monkeys are very good at yoga.

Lotus position

I don't know if anyone noticed (other than Mum), but the comments on my last post contain one from J! A rather scathing one, frankly, but still. He excuses himself by saying that he's never commented on a blog before and doesn't know the etiquette. (Honestly. You'd think it was 2003.)

Saturday, January 09, 2010


Despite the fact that I was quite happy saying "nineteen-whatever" for the first twenty years of my existence, I am having trouble thinking that this year is "twenty-ten". I'm sticking with "two thousand'n ten" for now, although I hear that most people seem to be quite happy saying "the twenty-twelve Olympics".

I'm hoping that this decade will have a good last year. I will finish my thesis. Maybe we will move house (though I'm sticking with "maybe").

Just now, our own house seems quite big and commodious since the Christmas tree went back in the loft. We have to move the sofa to accommodate it, so we lose a bit of floor in the living room; strange how much difference it makes.

During December, the guinea pigs' living space underwent some renovations:

The run gets a makeover

They're now on a fleece blanket (over newspaper) instead of wood shavings. The wood shavings get kicked on to the carpet, and they also create huge amounts of dust, which was annoying for us and possibly not that healthy for the piggies. The room's been much less dusty since we swapped, and the pigs seem to like the fleece.

They also now have a play-pen in the spare room (which folds away when we need the room), which is what we were making in my last post. I tried to get some pictures and video of them trotting about in it, without much success yet - it's been too dark.

O Christmas tree

We have not been as badly affected by the snow as... well, as most people we know. Our street is very snowy, but it's not on a slope and we don't have a car, so it could be worse. The main roads are clear, the buses haven't stopped running and the supermarket is within walking distance. It could be a lot worse.

The beasties, of course, are not hugely disadvantaged by the snow (though it would come over their ears if they went out in it). They do seem to think it's hibernation season, though:


It seems like the weather for knitting.

Pigs in ska hats

No, I haven't gone completely nuts - these are the toes of socks which I'm making for a "travelling knitalong" (the sock gets passed around a group of five people, each of whom knit a section and finally get their original socks back again). Should be fun. They make good guinea pig hats, don't they?

I cast on a non-travelling sock on the bus when I went to meet up with Loth and Mum on Monday. Mum said she was disappointed by my lack of progress a couple of hours later. I dunno - I don't knit particularly fast, and I thought this was quite good for one day's knitting...

Sock toe

This was rather a rambly post, wasn't it?

In other news, my sister and I are signing up to do a yoga class this year, so as to be calm and serene. "And to have thighs the size of pencils" - sister. Wish us luck with that one.