Sunday, August 6, 2017

Tiddley-Pom*

The last week has been abnormally cold with the temperature plummeting to 1 degree Centigrade.  For two nights I warmed up my bed with a heated throw and then decided that the time has come to buy myself an electric blanket.  Electric blankets have advanced since last I owned one; I can now do a quick pre-heat after which it turns itself off which suits me fine as I usually prefer to sleep cold.  But it is nice to get into a warm bed.

I have oiled and sorted my treadle spinning wheel which has been sitting idle since Herself died.  Since I mostly now use Ertoel Roberta, my electric spinner, poor Ertoel Emma has mostly been ignored except when Herself and I did spinning demonstrations for little Grade I children who  probably think that milk comes in plastic bottles and sweaters magically appear in shops.

At the moment I am using up some rolags which I produced on my blending board but the pressure is on to knit beanies for the homeless who are sleeping rough so I am using up my scraps and since I have been told that most of them like colourful beanies I am letting my hair down and adding stripes from the scraps which are too short for whole beanies.

There are three of us knitting beanies in my knitting group.  They are simple to knit and there is not much can go wrong even if we spend most of our time talking  -  so knit nothing complicated which might have to be undone later.  It is a great group where we share our skills and are happy to give advice if someone is having a problem.

My Ex and Wife-in-law are both in hospital at the moment.  Wife-in-law had untreated cellulitis and needed help to get around.  Ex tried to help her and lost consciousness three times so they were both shipped off the Charlies.  D2 has organised them into a private hospital where Ex can be treated by his own cardiologist and W-I-law can have her cellulitis treated.

Nobody knows
Tiddley-Pom
How cold my toes
Tiddley-Pom
How cold my toes
Tiddley-Pom
Are growing.*

A A Milne


Sunday, July 30, 2017

Claws

Today I performed the dreaded task of clipping the cats' claws.  This is always a fraught job because Poppy has arthritis in her right arm and doesn't like it to being handled so claw clipping is about as bad as it gets.

However, taking on board something which someone said to me about cat claw clipping I sat cross-legged on the floor and held Poppy like a baby  -  tummy up.  I still had to muzzle her but I was able to clip her claws without pulling on the leg and she hardly protested at all so maybe in the course of time she will allow me to do the job without the muzzle.  As the operation needs to be done about every three weeks it is something which matters a lot to me.  Poor baby, this has been going on ever since I first got her and it is nothing I have ever done to her  -  I've always been very conscious about only taking off the tips and not hurting her.

I am trying to get back to yoga after my double bout of vertigo but am finding the going hard as my balance is not good and I keep falling over if I do not concentrate.  I have decided to use a chair for support in the lunges which are my main problem and perhaps things will improve as I work at it.  Here's hoping, anyway.

Winter has finally arrived in Perth with only one day of official winter left and we have had rain, gales and low temperatures.  I had no clients last Thursday, something I applauded because the day was cold, wet and windy and I have to change trains to get to Visability and it means waiting for non-connecting trains at the Perth station on the way home.  Going to Victoria Park is not such a hassle because there in only an eight minute wait between trains and the Thornlie train is always already in the station so I can sit down and read a book until it is time to go.  But going home the Fremantle train pulls out just as the Thornlie train pulls in so I have to wait 15 minutes for the next one.

With the two places where I have been buying my clothes either moving away from Claremont or being taken over I am back to shopping online at a Muslim outlet which sells the most beautiful clothes  -  and skirts and trousers are international.  In the olden days after my trip to Iran I used to buy most of my clothes from this outlet which was based in Syria but the skirts and trousers which I have just received were posted from Jordan so I hope that they are all safe from the bombs and are able to keep on producing.

Things seem to be getting a tad chaotic in USA over the last few months and especially over the last week.  The antics from the Government used to be funny but things are getting worrisome  and goodness knows where it will all end up.  SAD!


Thursday, July 20, 2017

Those Red Satin Knickers


My knitting group is a very light-hearted affair and we spend more time laughing than we do knitting and no one attempts complicated patterns for fear of making a mistake.  I take all my knitting gear in a fabric shopping bag and when I put something in the bag it tends to stay there so my bag has become something of a joke since I can usually produce knickknacks like stitch markers, needle gauges etc. and one day someone suggested that among my possessions I probably had a pair of scarlet knickers.  I denied this but suddenly remembered my red satin frilly bikini knickers and promised to produce them at the next meeting, which I did.

How did I, a senior citizen, come to be in possession of a pair of red satin frilly knickers?

In the olden days when I was still working there was a Ponzi scheme amongst the staff.  One of those chain letter sorts of things where you received a letter with three names and addresses and instructions to copy the letter into three sheets of paper, delete the name on the bottom and add your own to the top, send a handkerchief to each of the people on your list and post your three new letters to your worst enemy and eventually you should receive 1,000 handkerchiefs.

Of course, it never works that way because mostly people throw their letters into the bin and send no handkerchiefs.  However the one I found myself a part of was not handkerchiefs but knickers and along with your name and address you needed to list the size of the knickers you wore.  Needless to say  -  everyone (except me) lied about the size of their knickers. Sadly I only received two pairs in all  but ….

The first pair fitted the first time I wore them but shrank to tiny after being washed but the other pair was a gorgeous red satin frilly bikini which was very comfortable and oh, so cool in summer so that when I moved into my apartment I couldn’t bear to part with them and for old time’s sake I packed them along with the rest of the clothes I brought with me.  And  promptly forgot about them.

As requested I produced them for the knitters and they were much admired and, I thought, forgotten. 

Last week, because I had given a spinning lesson to a friend of one of the group I was telling people about spinning equipment and was asked to bring my niddy-noddy along to the next session.  It clean went out of my mind so I popped back to get it (I live just across the road from the place where the knitting group meets) and I was asked to bring my red satin, frilly knickers for someone who had missed out on the first viewing a few weeks previously.  They are now back in my undies drawer shining their light under a bushel of regular knickers.


Sunday, July 16, 2017

I've been sick

I haven't posted for a couple of weeks because during that time I have had two episodes of vertigo, each of which laid me up for two days after which I spent three days recovering my balance enough to function in polite society  -  and during that time quite a lot has happened.

Firstly D1 flew into Perth for a couple of days; not to celebrate the birthdays of myself and D3 but to celebrate the 85th birthday of the father of one of her friends.  I had a good excuse not to cook for her (back of hand to brow "Mother, you KNOW I don't like mushrooms") and I took her over the road to Nolita which is the poshest and most expensive of our local restaurants but it has the nicest food.

On last Wednesday I went to Apple to get a cover for my latest iPad only to find that there were only two left for my model and the one which I opted for came from Queensland.  But delivery was free and I am very happy with it.  There is no longer any danger of the cats dancing on the Gorilla Glass.  I also bought a stand for my stylus and duly colour in my picture (app Pigment) of the day when the mood moves me.  I haven't got much further than games on the new one but I have THE BOOK (The Missing Manual) and am slowly working my way through.  So far I have discovered that the iPad refuses to read my fingerprint although it eagerly recorded it.  And I have yet to hold a meaningful conversation with Siri.

I was contacted by a friend of one of my knitting group who wanted to learn to spin.  She had the wheel, niddy-noddy and Lazy Kate as well as THREE merino fleeces but no idea what to do with them.  She had washed (not very well) and combed (not very well) some of the fleece but it has tiny crimps and was not very long  -  so is difficult for a beginner.  The wheel is lovely so she just needs to get the hang of spinning; like all of us when we start she began by holding the fibre too tightly and can't feed it out but time will fix that.  I did suggest getting a Corriedale fleece and use the merino to stuff cushions but if she learns to spin that she will be able to spin anything.

Last night I downloaded the latest version of Family Tree Maker.  Because I already used FTM 14.1 I was eligible for a free upgrade to FTM 17 if I enrolled in the Beta program which I obviously did although I really don't remember doing it.  Anyway, FTM 17 was rolled out two days ago but without the facility to sync which will come later.  For some reason I was one of the first to get it and although the instructions looked very complicated it turned out to be well  explained and easy  -  if I did it correctly and it will work (fingers crossed). 

To be truthful, I have really gone as far as I want to with my tree but there is always room for expansion  -  I could always add the 800 or so descendants of John Pidwell who mostly reside in America but that is really getting a bit remote  -  the brother of my great great great grandmother, a humble shoemaker who went to Canada and made good. And explore my German roots via the Samler family who were sugar bakers and probably very respectable but judging my their descendants their morals seriously deteriorated.  My mother's family were mostly not nice people.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Rebooting my watch

Back in 2011 I paid a visit to Sydney to attend D1's MBA Graduation and while I was there I bought myself a very pretty watch.  I had intended to get one of those ones which are powered by movement but was persuaded to get one which was triggered by light  -  something I had never heard of then or since although I am sure that they are still around.

It is a very pretty little watch, gold with a row of tiny diamonds along each side of the face and it shows the date  -  important; I can never remember the date.  It has run on light and kept perfect time for 16 years and suddenly it started losing time.  I searched out a watchmaker who specialises in that particular brand of watch and fully intended to take it to him next week but in the meantime I needed a watch which showed the date so I went searching downstairs.  Lots of shops sold watches but they were either too expensive for what I would be getting or they didn't show the date.

Eventually I wandered into the most expensive jewellery shop in the Claremont Quarter where I saw the prettiest black and silver Swiss watch with 13 diamonds to mark the hours and  -  a little window showing the date.  I had only intended to get a cheap watch to tide me over until I could get the solar one fixed but since I have a birthday coming up I decided to give myself a present  -  and there was a sale and I got 20% off  -  so I bought it.

I have been suffering from quite severe vertigo for the past week or so and since I could not do much I had a lot of thinking time  and I wondered if there was a way of shocking my solar watch back into working properly.  As I am into the vagaries of computers (I am still struggling with my new IPad) it occurred to me that a  re-boot was worth a try so I shut the watch into the darkest depths of my jewel box for 12 hours and then left it under a very bright LED light for a few hours and  -  would you believe  -  it has been running perfectly and keeping perfect time ever since.

I have rebooted my watch.

Thursday, June 8, 2017

i-Pad connected at last

my I-Pad is now connected to my modem  -  finally!  I have been using my Hotspot but that is not altogether satisfactory.  All that was needed was the password of the modem and all my searching for it was unsuccessful although I did find out some amazing strings of letters and numbers.  Techie found it in about 20 seconds but was surprised and muttered "What made me set that one?"  Anyway, after a bit of pfaffing around I have got it up and running but had to get in through Facebook and change the Facebook password which I have coded and recorded.  So long as I can decipher the code we should all be OK and D1 will be able to connect her I-Pad when next she comes to stay.

Yesterday we had a meeting of the four COTA teachers to try to agree to what is needed to get the COTA computers up and running.  I gather that Himself and I are the only ones who work in tandem so I am usually the only one who uses Boardroom 2.  Boardroom 1 died completely a couple of months ago, disappeared to undergo serious rehab and now works reasonably well.

Techie also came to sort out the connection issues of all my computers and to get my Wi-Fi printer printing from them all (but not the I-Pad which is the opposition brand).

Nothing else of any note has happened to me and I have been keeping myself busy but not achieving much of anything  -  but have knitted six beanies for the homeless from leftovers from my spinning and knitting.  I have been watching a lot of TV, what with things the way they are in USA and it is all getting very interesting.  And speaking of interesting  -  Techie thinks that Trump is doing a great job so by unspoken mutual consent we changed the subject.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

FAKE NEWS ...

My new I-Pad is NOT connected to my modem after all.  I was fooled by it's willingness to play games when it has no internet and it is only when I need to buy something at the Apple Store that it needs an internet connection.  When this happens I still have the hotspot to connect me so all is not lost but I have spent inordinate amounts of time trying to get it connected to my computer modem.

Just in case people are reading this and beaming me messages to look under the modem for the password  -  I have done that and tried every combination of letters and numbers on the bottom and have even gone to the modem's webpage where I found that the generic password is 'admin' -  that doesn't work either.  So all I can do now is wait until Techie can find the time to come and connect it or abandon him and find someone else to find the magic word (and no  -  "please" wouldn't work although I haven't actually tried it).

Tomorrow I am looking forward to a day when I have nothing at all planned  -  the first for weeks  - and I have a sinking feeling that my conscience will prompt me to get the floors and windows cleaned.

One of my clients brought her computer in today and it turns out that she has Win 8.1 but I was unable to connect her to the internet and have a strong suspicion that she has a dial-up connection.  Anyway, the computer is pretty useless as it has no editing, no minimising or closing pages, nothing!!  She uses it to play solitaire and that is about all it is good for.  I suggested that she have it sorted by a technician but she says that she can't afford that so I have offered to teach her Win 10 and she can use her library's computers.  However, the receptionist has given her the name of one of the other teachers who is an IT specialist and I am hopefully that he will take her on and sort her out.