Well its been eight and a bit months since I wrote here. Thats not to say I haven't been thinking about it or doing any work, but being pregnant and having to push on the house so its finished for when the baby arrives has just taken up a lot of my time. Thats fine though. We've really enjoyed planning and decorating the house and I'm so pleased with how it looks now. Its so different from when we moved in. We thought it was so lovely, even though it was all magnolia, but now we look back and can't believe we thought it was so great - its a million times better now!!! No but seriously, I don't believe you can bring out the character of a period house with magnolia paint, apart from the fact that magnolia isn't even a colour (sorry if you happen to love it). The house is really cosy now and the only room left to decorate is the baby's room, which obviously will not be pink or blue, but will be a lovely warm, earthy red. Perfect for a baby who's used to being in a little, enclosed space, though it won't be going in its own room for a few months but will sleep in the Moses basket in our room to start with. I'll put up some photos of the house in another post.
We found out I was pregnant when we were in South Africa in December and January; we were staying on Marno's grandad's farm at the time, and waited until we got there to do the test as it was such a special place for him with so many memories. Well we certainly created a new memory! Finding out you are pregnant is pretty scary, even if its been planned and you pretty much know you are anyway.View over the farm from the mountain.
View of the mountain from the farm.
So the project I took to SA was the Swallowtail Lace Shawl. I so enjoyed knitting the lace cardigan that wanted to knit some more lace so I had a browse through Ravelry and chose the Swallowtail. It seems like so long ago I knitted it that its odd writing about it now. Never mind. It was a great project for the plane and airport as it was small and I used wooden DPNs so it wasn't detected, though I did ask if I could take it on the plane on the first flight. It took about a month to complete and I ended up wearing it all last winter as we had such awfully cold weather for so long.
This shawl was so enjoyable to knit and the pattern was so clever and simple but really taught me a lot while I was knitting it; about increases and decreases and how they work in making patterns. I also enlarged the shawl as I usually wear shawls rather than scarves and my current one is pretty big. Because I knit quite tightly but wanted to use my wooden DPNs and also my Bigwigs Angora, which I bought at Wonderwool in 2009, I thought it would end up being very tiny and probably unusable, so I managed to find a Ravelry link to Mintyfresh's blog where she explains how she enlarged the shawl, as you can't just add as many rows as you like because the pattern calls for an exact number. I have to say, the number of rows I worked out to add was correct, before I found the blog, but she really helped for the last few rows where you can't get the number of stitches totally correct and have to K2tog (I think, it was a while ago...) a couple of times to get the correct number of stitches. It worked out perfectly anyway, so I'm happy, and looking forward to wearing it again this year, though I don't fancy getting baby puke all over it!
I also finished the Robin hat I was knitting from Kim Hargreaves Thrown Together book. Unfortunately this is the only half decent photo I have of it...
...modelled with the Swallowtail shawl! I decided not to attach the bobble, though I did make one, but I thought it looked a bit stupid. Thats probably because it turned out to be massive and I got little bits of red wool everywhere from trying to sculpt it into a more acceptable size. I'm happy with it as it is though. I also have to say that I'm looking forward to wearing that jumper in the photo again, and having a slimmer face. I hope its true that breastfeeding uses upwards of 500 calories a day!