First week of the holidays

Oh, it’s been wonderful to get off the treadmill this week, although it’s surprised me how fast the time has gone.  Late mornings, pyjama days, no school runs … it’s been a much calmer Perry household this week!

Before I tell you a bit more about what’s been going on, I must first say thank you to everyone who commented or emailed me about last week’s Monthly Musing.  I really appreciated that you took the time to share your thoughts about children growing up – and I had another “where has the time gone?” moment this week when we went to buy small daughter’s high school uniform (she’s decided she wants to stay as “small daughter” for now, even though she’s nearly as tall as me!). She looks so different in her high school blazer compared to her primary school cardigan and keeps wanting to try it on again – at least when September comes, I’ll be used to how it looks!

She was a massive help to me on Wednesday when we unwrapped the Yarndale Sock Line socks that have been sent in so far.

We had quite a system going as she unwrapped them and read out the details and then I logged each pair of socks and photographed them ready to go on the Pinterest board (I’ve started uploading them so that you can see, and will be adding to them over the weekend).  I like to make sure that I have the details of where the socks came from and the size so that it’s easier for me to send them on to their new homes later, and also to tell you where they’ve gone.

We have over 60 pairs already which is really wonderful, thank you!  They’re from all over the world too – England, Scotland, Wales, France and the USA with more on their way from New Zealand and other places.  I think the thing that always takes my breath away about the Yarndale Sock Line is the generosity of everyone who gets involved.  Not just the buying of the yarn and giving of the time to knit them, but the cost of the postage (and it’s not cheap to send parcels at the best of times, never mind from abroad) and also the fact that these socks are a proper gift.  They’re not grabbed from a display rack on the way to the checkout; you can tell as soon as you hold a pair in your hands that someone has thought carefully about the yarn they’re going to use and about the pattern they’re going to knit.  Some socks are plain, others have a pattern knitted into them; there are first pairs ever knitted and umpteenth pairs knitted and they are all beautiful.  These socks are not just thrown together, they’re knitted with love for somebody that the knitter will never know, but they have still taken the time to share their skills to brighten someone else’s day. I am immensely grateful for every pair that I hold in my hands and hang up on the Sock Line as I know that the gift of the socks is much bigger than the pair of socks themselves, and I believe that whoever gets them will feel that too.

Still on the subject of giving (although in a different way), we’ve been able to sit down and catch up with a few films on our must-watch list this week.  One of them was I, Daniel Blake, which has haunted me for days.  It’s not the cheeriest film we’ve ever watched – it’s about the welfare system in our country – but it’s absolutely compelling viewing and is one of those films (like Made in Dagenham, about discrimination against women in the workplace) which every young person should have to watch.  Small daughter is old enough to understand what’s going on in this film but I don’t think I can bring myself to watch it again straight away so it’ll have to wait for a short while. Part of the story takes place in a Food Bank and it’s not right that our young people should grow up thinking that Food Banks are acceptable in today’s society; nobody should have to rely on them because they can’t afford to eat in any other way – often through no fault of their own.  I, Daniel Blake won all kinds of awards and it’s not hard to see why.  It was such a good film that I’d highly recommend it if you’re looking for one to watch although be warned, there can be no happy ending in a film like this, and there won’t ever be whilst there are people in our country who fall between the bureaucratic cracks.  In the meantime, I’m going to make sure that my contributions to the local Food Bank (and thanks to a scene in the film, particularly sanitary items) are more regular because who knows?  We’re all only a small step away from being the person in that queue – and often through no fault of our own.

OK, off my soap box now, and something happier to talk about instead.  I recently did a blind sock yarn review for Louise at KnitBritish – what that means is that she sent me a small skein of yarn and I tried it out without knowing anything about it all.  I’ve tended to keep my yarn reviews to no-nylon yarns these days (and there’s another coming up soon about the Northern Yarn Poll Dorset Lambswool that I knitted my Easy Cable Socks in now that I’ve worn them for six months) but I knew that Louise would have some exciting British yarn for me to play with so I snatched her hand off said I would be delighted to have a look at it.

It was lovely and I’d definitely recommend it if you’re someone who likes wool socks that don’t feel too woolly.  You listen to my review here on the KnitBritish podcast and find out what the yarn is too (the review is at 40:15 but there’s plenty in the episode before it that is definitely worth listening to as well 🙂 ).

I’m still working on my Bumpy, Curved Trailsocks although it’s been slow progress over the last couple of weeks as school events seemed to take over every part of our lives.  I should be able to get on with them over the holidays, though, and I’m looking forward to making a start on some of the skeins of no-nylon yarn that I’ve got lined up in my stash too.  Yes, yes, I’m quite sure I am doing that thing where I think I’ve got endless days to blissfully sit and knit whereas in reality the novelty of a pyjama day will wear off very quickly, but it’s nice to dream about it for a while!

Oh, and something very exciting has happened – Super Socks has been approved by Warrington Livewire as a suitable book for their library system and a copy of the book now has a new home in Culcheth Library!  It’s close to Black Sheep Wools which is very handy for anyone who borrows it and is suddenly struck by the urge to knit socks 🙂  The good thing about the library system is that any book can be borrowed throughout the borough so you don’t have to live in Culcheth, you just have to be a member of the Livewire service.  Hopefully there will be one or two more sock knitters as a result!

Finally, I hardly dare to tell you that I’ve nearly finished the sock tutorial post as I feel as if I’ve been doing that for too long now.  The blog posts are written, it’s down to finishing the video editing and uploading them to YouTube and that will take as long as it takes.  I’ve set myself a new deadline of before the end of the month and I’ll do my best to stick to that!

Well, thanks for making it through the rantings and ramblings, hope you have a great week! xx

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10 Responses

  1. suzyjune says:

    Christine, I'm really looking forward to your sock tutorial post. You have such a lovely blog and you write such interesting posts. I may not comment a lot, but I read each post you create. I wish I lived close (I'm in Texas in the USA), I would love to visit Yarndale just once in my life 🙂

    Enjoy your time with your daughter. The days when she will be home with you and your husband will be gone before you know it, and she will be out on her own. So enjoy these precious moments.

    • Winwick Mum says:

      Thank you, that's really kind of you to say! Yes, I'm well aware that time moves oh-so-quickly and both girls will fly the nest all too soon, so I'm doing my best to enjoy all of it (even the "clean your bedroom now!" moments!) xx

  2. Julie says:

    Happy school hols to you.
    Beautiful assortment of socks for the sockline.
    I'll have a listen to the podcast.

  3. Unknown says:

    I had hoped to go to a screening of I, Daniel Blake this week but was prevented from doing so by an ongoing health issue. I am determined to watch it…

  4. happy hooker says:

    A real thrill to spot my socks on your sockline photos. gives me a warm fuzzy (or should that be woolly?) feeling knowing I'm part of it. Well done you for all you do, even though I'm now addicted to sock knitting! xx

    • Winwick Mum says:

      Oh that's great, I'm glad you've spotted them! They'll be up on the Pinterest board too now as I've caught up with all of those 🙂 xx

  5. Amy at love made my home says:

    How fabulous that you have so many socks. I still hope to make a pair good enough to submit one day! Still need to finish my second pair yet! Hope you have a great summer.

    • Winwick Mum says:

      Thank you, and you too! Your socks are brilliant considering that you've not been knitting them for very long xx

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