Sunday, 31 August 2008

Almost September?

Its back to school tomorrow & for the first time since forever (well 1994) its just Mr J & me to go back to school as son & heir is established in his gap year job. Tomorrow will no doubt be a mixture of 'well done' ,as our GCSE results were 6% better than the previous best & 1% above target, and 'do better' 'cos.............. that's the way education is in England & Wales at the moment. It will be a busy term, even if the men from the ministry don't come to call (we do expect Ofsted at sometime this year!). My job as been 're-defined' ... read made bigger/same pay, but at least it is a permanent post again after the uncertainty of the last two years following re-organisation.

Enough of that. It really feels like the beginning of Autumn with a heavy mist this morning & real changes in some of the trees as Moss & I enjoyed a walk around Swinsty Reservoir yesterday morning. Mr J & S&H ran 9 & some miles around two reservoirs plus some more. But they are in training for the 'Great North Run' in October!

So with a look forward to September on the knitting front, the Ravelry Sock Knitters Anonymous starts again with a challenge that is Orange socks or Cookie A design or a Mystery sock. I will knit a mystery sock but September will be a time for soothing knitting not challenging projects with tighter timelines. I think I will go for another pair of no-purl Monkeys in Orange! Two out of three aint bad? The yarn is very orange! The 'rule' is 75% orange & either of these little citrus delights from Knitting Goddess easily meet this! Not sure which one I will use though. Whadythink?

Currently on the hot needles is this little cardi (not so little, but she will grow into it!) for Nellie. The pattern is Tater's Cotton cardi. Its not knitted in cotton, but wool, Patons Fairytale colour 4 Me DK to be exact & its lovely yarn. I am planning some adaptions to the pattern, maybe to the edging & I don't think it will have ties but a popper & a crochet flower fastening. There should be enough yarn to knit a Tam, also with a little flower decoration. I am not a huge fan of the 'knot & string' art for whole things but for decoration it could do the job. I found this You Tube tutorial (via Ravelry of course).
I have still to finish Mr J's 'Colours of the Hebrides' socks, but as this is the second sock they are nearly done. A couple of car rides will finish them!

Other 'hot' wip (as opposed to almost hibernating) is a Woodland Shawl. Its lovely. I ordered extra yarn. It wasn't in stock. I found some in the UK (last skein in UK) on ebay. It came. It was WAY OUT as a match. I knitted some Cranford Mitts from it, whilst waiting for an order to come in from Eat, Sleep, Knit in yarn heaven (USA!). This was where the first two skeins came from. It arrived on Friday. It matches! Btw, Cranford Mitts is a lovely pattern to knit.

We had a wonderful long weekend last week (Bank Holiday) as my Mum, Dad, Sister & Brother in Law came to stay for 4 days. My sister is a knitter. She was knitting these. They are Nereid gloves. She gave them to me! Sisters are great!

Friday, 15 August 2008

End of the Rainbow?

August 14th. A level results day in England & Wales.
S&H gets his results.
The grades are very good, the place at Northumbria University for 2009 to study Sports Science & Coaching confirmed.
All very happy, relieved & PROUD!
Heart of hearts told us that he had worked hard & the grades were not in doubt but it was great to have them confirmed. There was gold at the end of this particular rainbow

A levels are NOT easier, they are just acquired in stages & therefore results are less of a surprise. If you are not up to a subject you know & can do something about it -like drop it, hence the high pass rate! Some of the 'knockers' should know better. Most of the students work very hard & under alot of pressure. So do their teachers. I have seen it now from both sides & it annoys me that we have created a society & a system where we are suspicious of success, then again I work in a profession where 'satisfactory' is 'unsatisfactory' (Ofsted) so what would I know?

I shall descend from my soapbox!

Thank you for the lovely comments about our photos of our trip so here is a little more of our travels in Scotland
Hebridian sunsets are renown & we were treated to a cracker after a day of rain on North Uist.

For those with an historical/ archaeological bent we visited a couple of fascinating places. the first is St Clement's church , Rodal (on South Harris). It dates back to medieval times but was restored in the nineteenth century.

Religion is important in the Hebridies. The Northern Isles are the domain of the Free Church but South Uist & Barra are Catholic & this is visually evident by the numerous shines found in the south, such as this one found in South Uist.
Whilst on Lewis we had to go back to the Standing Stones at Callinish. We took loads of photos but I need to do some editing as most of the best are 'portrait' & need rotating before I can upload them into blogger!

The stories of the Highland Clearances are bought home when you find abandoned crofts such as this one on South Uist. I spent sometime trying to envisage the people who would have lived there. Would this one have looked good in a plaid?
Moss had a fantastic holiday too! He loved the camper -very comfy but wasn't too sure about the ducks that stalk around the caravan club site at Braemar!
Since getting home I have made some progress on Mr Greenjeans, although I have made quite a few modifications so she doesn't look so much like the pattern -added length to the ss body, reduced the ribbing & changed it. Oh yes, changed the position of the button holes.... and added another! Still I like it but I am waiting for some 4.5mm dkp's to arrive -the one size I don't have- so I can finish it! In the meantime I have cast on a Woodland Shawl in Lorna's Laces Multi Sock. The colours are lovely -too good to hide.

I love to see the little counter tick along, telling me how many people have visited this blog. I write for me but I am fascinated by the idea that what I write & photograph might be of some interest to people thousands (or even 5) miles away. I hardly ever label my posts on this blog (I do on my Geography blogs of course, so how did you find 'the hill'? If you have the time or inclination I would love to know who you are & why you arrive 'OntheHill'! If you don't want to, then you are still most welcome!

Tuesday, 12 August 2008

Tales from the isles and other places

We are back to a very wet Yorkshire. We have had an awesome time away in our new truck camper. It was everything we hoped it would be and some more. Overall we had pretty good weather, we found some wonderful places to camp & we really had chance to just kick back & re-charge our batteries.... oh yes, and knit awhile! Our travels took us to North Uist , Benbecula, South Uist, Harris, Lewis, Skye, Moray Firth, Braemar & Northumberland for a final night before returning home.

I will just include a few pictures here to give a flavour of the holiday.
Camping by the beach on South Uist, Our 'Northstar' camper really was a cosy home!
A liitle knitting by the camper on North Uist (Yes it is a Namaste 'Malibu' bag!):

I could disclose these locations, but I don't think I will cos' we will be back!
Climbing the Quirang on the Isle of Skye, Moss thought it was great!

We left Skye via the old Glenelg ferry. Check out to support this great transport link & important piece of history.

I managed to finish my Fetching mitts and socks in a slipped stitch rib as well as making good progress on my suprise for our 'At Home in Harrogate' Summer swap.

We came home via the Cairngorms National Park, which is not a part of Scotland that I really have visited before. It was beautiful with the heather in flower.

We managed to take nearly 500 photos so I may share some more as I start to edit & organise them!