Thursday, September 14, 2017

this time last year... a birth story.

this time last year... well i was feeling quite uncomfortable to say the least... after staying in hospital the night before, i was well into full blown labour after having my waters broken and being put on a pitocin drip a little after 8am.
those first few contractions were funny, but their strength grew and grew and i wasn't giggling about them for long! i was soon asking everyone within earshot 'why would someone do this more than once???'
after a few hours, i was getting pretty uncomfortable and decided to give some gas a go for pain relief... it really didn't seem to do much, but it gave me something to concentrate on when i felt those contractions coming.

the midwife checked on my progress when i started mentioning more pain relief and i was relieved to hear i was nearly fully dilated and soon was feeling the need to push!
fast forward an hour and a half, i was still pushing and getting nowhere quickly. except tired that is, i was pretty tired by this stage... actually, i was exhausted!
my gp was called in, and strongly recommended an epidural to give me a bit of a break, and to let the contractions do some more work before perhaps having a go at getting bubs out with some help. i accepted gratefully. after 30 minutes or so, i was resting a little more comfortably, though could still feel every contraction through my left side.

another hour or so later, our little fella had made a little progress in coming out but not a huge amount.
we made the decision to use some extra measures to help get him out so off to theatre we went! bb had to get changed into some beautiful scrubs and i received a pretty wonderful top up to my epidural which meant i couldn't feel a thing from my ribs down.
i knew i was in safe hands, and that we were about to meet our bubba, but i was also shitting myself with nerves and couldn't stop shivering!
our beautiful gp went to work trying to coax our little one out, first with the vaccuum extractor, and then when that wasn't particularly successful, some forceps. it was very strange working with her and the midwife, pushing when i was contracting, but not being able to feel anything at all!
with those forceps, our son was born! pretty much tearing me asunder on the way out though, even with an episiotomy to try and stop it!

a minute or two later, we were here...



with me, tired, overwhelmed and completely in love. and the little fella, well looking a little grumpy to be honest. could you blame him though? what a day!

a year on, i can't believe just how different we both are. and just what an experience becoming a mumma has been, humbling, eye-opening and completely life changing.

the battle wounds have healed, time has passed and now i kind of get why folks would go back for more. what a trip!

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

nicole talks knitting.

in the last taking stock post i wrote up, i mentioned wanting to start a v-log but not being sure about the logistics...

well it's taken me the better part of a day, but the first episode is now up on youtube!

it's all about what i'm knitting at the moment... and i'm hoping to maybe pop one up every couple of weeks. will see how that goes he he!

pour yourself a cup of tea (if you're into tea that is!) and have a watch!



what do you think? are you a knitting vodcast watcher? what are your favourite ones to watch?

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

sock tales.

my lofty, knitting-a-pair-of-socks-a-month goal is really not being met at the moment. i am SO behind!!

the problems started with this pair...

vanilla socks knit in hand-dyed bendigo woollen mills sock yarn

cast on in the car on the way to wool gathering in may, they languished as i worked on more enticing projects (a cardigan! as yet, unphotographed oops!) and didn't get finished until the start of july!

i then cast on these ones for my mother in law, thinking they would be quick as she was only after a pair of ankle socks...

beginning a pair of vanilla socks again after running out of wool. also pictured, wine.

i got this far before realising there would most definitely not be enough wool...
ever the perfectionist, i started again, this time with contrasting pink toes (yep, that's them above) and to make myself feel better, cast on ANOTHER pair to try and make myself feel better before i ripped out all that work i'd done...

the story so far of a pair of clare devine's skua socks, knit in pink cascade heritage sock

these new ones are coming along nicely, and the little bit of lacework in the panel is quite compelling to knit... but i can't help but feel a little impatient as we're at the end of august and neither my JUNE or JULY socks are completed!
going to knuckle down on them for the next couple of days and see if i can't make good progress on both pairs before the month is through!
and then maybe get started on august's socks too...

wish me luck!

Monday, August 21, 2017

taking stock.

ag basking in the winter sun in bateman's bay breakfast of thick cut bacon, sourdough, poached eggs, hash browns and beetroot relish at coffee collective a basket of delicious and fresh curry ingredients, ginger, chilli and turmeric knitting away on a motel room bed in albury hand-rolled victorian oats with bass dairy milk and plums from our tree the contents of the 'ultimate candle making kit' from crafty candle supplies

now feels like a good time to touch base and take stock. here goes!

Making : progress on my knitting list. slowly.

Cooking : quite a few dinners as to plan. one or two indiscretions. but mostly to plan!

Drinking : water. well trying.

Reading : into some things a little too much. need to lighten up a little!

Trawling : is a word that reminds me of fishing.

Wanting : to get a v-log started i think... it feels like it might be a nice thing to do. but the logistics involved are kind of making me shudder.

Looking : around at toys on the floor. ag sure has mastered pulling EVERYTHING out. thankfully he's starting to learn to put things away again. kind of he he.

Deciding : what to do with the rest of the evening. more blogging, or a bit more knitting?

Wishing : for the usual, more hours in the day... would get a bit more sleep and a bit more knitting done he he.

Enjoying : having an 11 month old. except for the biting. i could do without that.

Waiting : to see what happens tomorrow... some things might be on their way to changing, but then again, maybe not. tomorrow should reveal a little.

Liking : that i got to spend a few hours today with some pals. meeting halfway is a nice place to meet.

Wondering : why my mouse key has just become so unresponsive... you don't realise how much you use something like that until it stops working well.

Loving : having the fire lit every night. so cosy!

Pondering : a capsule wardrobe type thing. reducing, refining and filling in the gaps. less brain power required on the daily sounds like a good thing to me!

Listening : to podcasts in the car. they make solo drives so much easier!

Considering : what needs to be done tomorrow... and what i can get away with not doing to fit in more knitting time!

Buying : groceries. but only once a fortnight. it's kind of wonderful.

Watching : the handmaids tale on sbs on demand. bit late on the bandwagon but thoroughly enjoying it. in a terrified way...

Hoping : i can avoid any game of thrones spoilers until tomorrow.

Marvelling : at the passage of time. how is august nearly done already? didn't winter just begin??

Cringing : at how much darning there is to do... i need to have a darning week i think. no knitting, just duplicate stitch and hole mending!

Needing : to pick up a book from the library.

Questioning : how i've neglected to share so many knitting projects over here lately! lots of things have been coming off the needles (like those socks on my feet in the background up there...) but their stories have yet to be told. i need to get to catching up!

Smelling : the hyacinth bulbs that have popped up. they were gifted to me last year and i replanted them in a pot and promptly forgot about them. such a lovely surprise!

Wearing : pyjama pants. so comfy.

Noticing : the days getting longer. it's wonderful.

Knowing : i need to create a few regularities to my days... yoga, drinking more water, more outside time and heck, even blogging! a little bit every day will no doubt make for a happier me!

Admiring : kate's beautiful socks. maybe some colourwork socks are in my future... definitely something i haven't tackled in my sock adventures this year!

Opening : that box of candle-making goodies! super excited to get busy making some beautiful candles!

Closing : the arms on my glasses, as i take them off for the night. they're filthy (all the time now thanks to baby sausage fingers) and it's easier to see without them!

Feeling : like i need to give my hair a good wash. and by wash, i mean rinse. i've gone off using shampoo as my scalp has been most unhappy when i have used it and would you know, i haven't even missed it! my hair has been happy without it!

Dreaming : about a yarny road trip, a la julie at wool on wheels. wouldn't it be nice?!

Hearing : a possum on the roof, so loud!! cheeky things have been going to town on the mandarin tree, hope they leave some for us.

Celebrating : turning 29 last week. officially in my 30th year and not quite sure what to think about it he he.

Pretending : like my baby won't be one next month. how quickly has this year flown! gollllllly!

Embracing : simplicity. well trying anyway he he.

what have you been up to lately? keen to take stock too?

Monday, August 7, 2017

meal planning monday.

boy has it been a while between drinks when it comes to meal planning monday posts... as in, well over a year, oops he he!
turns out this moving to the country and having a baby caper tends to mess with one's ability to organise meals... well that's not necessarily true, we've been eating just fine, but it does cut into the time you have to find pretty pictures and tappy-type up posts for blogs.

anywho, enough dwelling on the past, time to get to planning!

a snap of the calendar whiteboard on our fridge, filled in with a month of meal plans

as you can see from the picture, rather than work on a weekly schedule, bb and i sat down and nutted out a whole month!
i'm hoping it helps free up brain space and means that we should only have to do one or two grocery shops for the month, which we can then supplement with fresh fruit and vegetables from our local. not to mention, it should help stop our favourite meals from becoming boring.

now i'd best be off to write up some lists, i've got some grocery shopping to get done!

how do you go about meal planning these days?

Monday, July 10, 2017

green love.

it's been a wee while since i shared what was going on out in the garden, but what a perfect time to share now that everything has well and truly slowed down a bit!

lemon tree, full of lemons!

the lemon tree is absolutely laden once again... best get to some lemony baking i think... lemon butter, curd, tart, cake! oh the possibilities!

despite it being super chilly outside, there are one or two things ready to go into the ground...

little broad bean seedlings poking their heads up out of the seedling tray

a few broad beans...

and some sugar snap peas too!

sugar snap pea seedlings, in desperate need of a plant out!

hopefully they're ok with our frosty mornings once i get them in the ground!

these little lettuces are coming along slowly, with some wee beetroot in the foreground too.

garden bed with tiny beetroot sprouts, butter crunch lettuce seedlings, and established kale and rainbow spinach plants in the back

and way back there at the back, some kale and rainbow spinach keeping us well supplied with greens to put into soups and pasta sauces and well, just about everything to be honest!

in this bed, we've got a good mixture of stuff! hopefully the combination of lots of different leafy bits will keep the cabbage moths confused and give everything a chance to grow nice and big without getting eaten to the ground by caterpillars...

a section of our patch, featuring big butter crunch lettuces, garlic and cauliflower plants

wish me luck on that one he he!

what's growing in your garden at the moment?

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

plastic free july.

a little collection including a reusable coffee cup, a stainless steel water bottle, a stainless steel straw and cutlery set and a crocheted mesh bag

it's july (!!!) and this year, i've decided to join in with the plastic free july challenge, in a bid to reduce some of our consumption of single use plastics...

i'm definitely on board with reducing the big four, being straws, plastic bottles (such as water and soft drink bottles), plastic bags and coffee cups, but i've set myself a few additional challenges too!

the first is to cut down our use of disposable nappies!
we've got a good stash of cloth nappies ready to go, so it's just a matter of making sure they're what we reach for when it's nappy change time!
BR> the second is to avoid the drive thru. nothing we buy there is any good for our health, our budget, and the amount of single use plastic that you end up with is crazy town!

the third and final challenge i've set us, is to start a collection of soft plastics that are unavoidable at this stage, to recycle at our new local redcycle point. not buying food items in soft plastics would be the ideal situation, but i definitely don't have time to be home-making everything we need at this stage in life he he.

are you joining in with plastic free july too? what are your favourite things to do to reduce waste?