Friday, February 28, 2014

Russian Crochet Shawl - Australian Town and Country Journal NSW 1870 - 1907

I love the wording in this turn of the last century pattern.  Use grey and blue single Berlin Wool, No 9 Bone crochet hook, useful for personal wear or to give to the poor.  Doesn't that conjure up vignettes in your mind.

The colours of jumpers and cardigans of my childhood were grey and fawn, with a band of Fair Isle, yes that was it.  I did have a fluffy white bolero and a pink one with spakles in, but that was for special occasions and parties.

Australian Town and Country Journal (NSW : 1870 - 1907)
National Library of Australia
Useful Work Patterns.


This shawl is easily worked, and is very warm
and useful-either for. personal wear or to give to
the poor. Grey and blue single Berlin wool in
quantity according to the size of the shawl, the
chief part of which is worked with, grey, the blue
being used for the border. Bone crochet needle,
No. 9.- Commence with grey wool with 4 chain,
turn, and work 3 double crochet In the third chain
from the needle, 1 double crochet in the last of the
chain. The double crochet throughout the shawl
is to be worked by inserting the hook into the
small horizontal loop at the back of the stitches
of the preceding row so as1 to form ridges. 2nd
TOW: 1 chain to turn, 1 double crochet in the first
double crochet of last row, 1 double crochet in the
. next, 3 double crochet In the centre stitch of the 3
double, crochet of last row, 1 double crochet In
the. next, and 2 double crochet in the chain that
turned. . 3rd row: 1 chain" to turn, 1 double cro
chet in the first double crochet of last row, 3
- double crochet In 3 consecutive'stitches, 3 double....
crochet in the centre stitch, 3 double crochet" in
3 consecutive stitches, and 2 double crochet In the
chain that turned. 4th row: 1 chain to turn; 1
double crochet In the first double crochet of last
row, 5 double crochet in 5 consecutive stitches, 3
double crochet* in the centre stitch, 5 double ero- :.
chet in 5 consecutive stitches,- and 2 double cro
chet in the chain that turned. Proceed in this
manner,, increasing two consecutive stitches on
each side of every row till the centre part of the
shawl is as large as you wish it to be. Then
join on the blue wool, and work 4 rows in the
same manner; join on the grey wool, and work 6
rows; 'join on the blue again, and work 4 rows;
now return to the grey wool, and work 4 more
rows. For edging round 2 sides of the shawl:
With grey wool, 1 treble lu the first double crochet
stitch of laBt row, 2 chain, another treble in the
same place, miss 3 double crochet of last row, and
repeat. Increase a little round the point by miss
ing only 1 stitch instead of 3, and work the 2 treble
stitches Into the centre stitch of the 3 double cro
chet. 2nd row: 1 treble under the 2 chain of
last row,"- 5 chain, 1 double crochet in the first of'
the chain stitches, 4 chain, 1 double crochet In
the lower part of the last double crochet, 1 treble
under the same 2 chain the last treble ls worked
into, and' repeat.


Thursday, February 27, 2014

Lacy Fishnet Shawl

I finished this the other week.  Its a little shawl made out of what is called fishnet yarn.  The same type of yarn I have made the scarfs out of.  So I asked the Boy what he thought "It looks like it comes out of the sea mum" well I guess that's why they call it fishnet yarn.

I should be modelling it but will have to wait for a spring day and wearing the right dress.  It is very bouncy and full.

It was a heck of a job figuring out how to turn the yarn and crochet the second row, but eventually after many attempts was able to see the light.

It's a fun project to work on.  The pattern says two balls of Patons Pirouette yarn, but mine took three.

Will post pattern in the future.  Is anyone interested in it?


Wednesday, February 26, 2014

11. The Woman and The Seed Tour, The Met King Tut And Temple of Dendur

King Tut was meant to be the living image of Amun Ra (sun god).  Notice the snake on the crown, the serpent was revered by the Egyptians for wisdom.

The Temple of Dendur, a 1968 gift from Egypt to the United States in recognition of support given to save Egyptian monuments threatened by the rising waters of the Nile, was built around 15B.C. when the Roman emperor Augustus ruled Egypt. Although small in comparison with the famous temples in Egypt, and built in Lower Nubia, south of Egypt's ancient border, this is a graceful example of a typical pharaonic temple.

The Temple of Dendur was commissioned by Augustus (Octavian in 15 B.C).  The winged symbol on top was Horus/falcon god/sun god.  Symbols come into existence and then are given a rebirth down through the ages, in various forms.

Nazi Germany used this symbol

 as do Bentley

 and Mini Cooper.

Also notice the winged symbol in the Egyptian jewelery above.

Symbols have become an integral part of life today, and we never think of where they originate from.


Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Tea And Symphony At The Highlands

It has been a long winter, I know everyone thinks the same.  On the way to work for months there had been a sign  strung up Tea and Symphony at the Highlands Sunday 23rd February, then for at least a month it was buried under a snow pile, so I totally forgot about it until some brave soul resurrected the sign out of the snow.  So last week I phoned to see if there were any places and there were, so hubby, friend and I decided to go.  I meant to go last year, but did not.

It was a lovely sunny afternoon, even though the parking lot was just mud, Mr. B parked the car so us girls were dropped at the pathway.  Just lovely to get out and do something a little different.  In fact that has been one of my new year resolutions, for want of a better word, to take hold of the opportunity here and now.  Not say I'll do that another time, you never know when another time will come.

The Copeland String Quartet Chamber Music Concert with guest performers of Dr. Cecilia Kang, Clarinet and Amy Leonard, Viola.

They played Clarinet Quintet K581 In A Major by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Viola Quintet, K515 in C Major.

I have never been to a live performance like this, very soothing to ones soul.

In the Intermission they had Afternoon Tea.  Some of what was left above.

The Tea urn lady.  I did go back for a second cup, just right.

The Highlands was first owned by a Quaker, this area in Pennsylvania was settled by a lot of Quakers, a lady at The Highlands, was telling us, a Quaker could not just have a second house for the sake of having it, even to escape the Yellow Fever, so it was a working farm.
Wishing to provide his family with a refuge from the yellow fever epidemics sweeping Philadelphia, Anthony Morris (1766-1860), a wealthy politician and merchant, purchased just over 200 acres of land in Whitemarsh, Montgomery County, in 1794. Construction of the elaborate country estate, “The Highlands” was completed by 1796. Morris suffered extreme financial difficulties and in 1808 was forced to sell The Highlands to Daniel Hitner (1765-1841). Hitner sold the property and its accumulated 300+ acres to a Philadelphia wine merchant, George Sheaff (1779-1851) in 1813.

During the Sheaff family ownership, which spanned more than a century, there were numerous improvements made both to the Georgian mansion and to the landscape. After George Sheaff’s death in 1851. His heirs sold part of the estate and the youngest son, John, retained 59 acres including the mansion and adjoining outbuildings.

In 1917, two years after the death of the last Sheaff heir, the property was sold to Miss Caroline Sinkler (1860-1949), a native South Carolinian with strong ties to Philadelphia.

The house and gardens had deteriorated, but through the efforts of Miss Sinkler, the property regained its elegance and prominence as an historical treasure. 
Miss Sinkler’s niece, Emily Sinkler Roosevelt, and her husband Nicholas, purchased the property in 1941. The Roosevelts gave the property to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in 1957.

In 1975, The Highlands Historical Society formed to preserve, restore and interpret the historic mansion and grounds from 1794 to the present.

Above what it looks like in Spring time.

The murals are in fact French wallpaper depicting on the right the Hudson Valley and the nearest is Boston Harbor.  There were two large ones opposite depicting the natural arch bridge in Virginia along with Niagara Falls side by side, some license was taken here.  Also an Indian mural, but I'm racking my brains on that one. Louise and I loved all the archways and fan light windows.

Mark Ward, Cello.

Eliezar Gutman Israeli-born and a member of the Delaware Symphony Orchestra, as were all the Quartet.

Thomas Jackson, Violin and Nina Cottman, Viola.

The Copeland Quartet and visiting Viola, Amy Leonard.  My favourite was actually the first piece with the Clarinet, I love to listen to the clarinet.

Mr B. and I.

Some of the grounds around The Highlands.

In May they are having a Community Day with historic games, 18th century style ice cream and Colonial dancing, with costumed guides, so Louise and I hope to go to that, sounds fun, plus the trees and flowers should look beautiful.


Thursday, February 20, 2014

Fontina, Parmesan, and Roasted Red Pepper Scones with Smoked Paprika Butter

Fontina, Parmesan, and Roasted Red Pepper Scones

Makes 12 scones

1 3/4 cups self-rising flour
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
3 tablespoons cold salted butter, cut into pieces
1/2 cup coarsely shredded fontina cheese
1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese*
1/4 cup very finely chopped roasted red pepper
1 cup plus 1 tablespoon heavy whipping cream, divided
Smoked Paprika Butter

Smoked Paprika Butter

Makes ½ cup

½ cup salted butter, at room temperature
½ teaspoon smoked paprika

• In a small bowl, combine butter and paprika, stirring until thoroughly blended. Pipe or decoratively swirl butter into a serving dish.

Make-Ahead Tip: Smoked Paprika Butter may be made a day in advance, covered, and refrigerated. Let come to room temperature before serving.

Fontina, Parmesan, and Roasted Red Pepper Scones

• Preheat oven to 400°.
• Spray 2 (6-well) heart-shaped pans† with nonstick baking spray with flour. Set aside.
• In a medium bowl, combine flour and black pepper, whisking well. Using a pastry blender, cut butter into flour mixture until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add cheeses and roasted red pepper, tossing to coat with flour. Add 1 cup cream, stirring until mixture comes together as a dough. (If mixture seems dry, add more cream, 1 tablespoon at a time, until uniformly moist.)
• Using a levered 3-tablespoon scoop, drop dough into wells of prepared pans, patting dough to create a level surface. Brush dough with remaining 1 tablespoon cream.
• Bake until scones are light golden brown and a wooden pick inserted in the centers comes out clean, approximately 15 minutes.
• Serve warm with Smoked Paprika Butter, if desired.

I do love a savoury scone.  My mum had a friend who we always called Auntie Gladys and we would often visit and one of my most vivid memories is hot cheese scones straight out of the oven with lashings of butter, yummy.

So I think I'll give this recipe a go.


Friday, February 14, 2014

Hygge and The Almost Nearly Perfect People, by Michael Booth

I ran across the Danish word Hygge twice this week, on North of 49 , then again on this BBC Radio 4 series that was on this week.

A love of or need for hygge is an important part of the Danish psyche. Hygge is usually inadequately translated as "coziness." This is too simplistic: coziness relates to physical surroundings — a jersey can be cozy, or a warm bed — whereas hygge has more to do with people's behavior towards each other. It is the art of creating intimacy: a sense of comradeship, conviviality, and contentment rolled into one.

Sounds like Afternoon High Tea shared with friends to me, that might be the Brit definition. 

I listen to BBC Radio 4 on my iPad, so very interesting. You can probably listen to it for two more days.  I think you might enjoy it.

BBC Radio 4 A Series of 5 Episodes

The Almost Nearly Perfect People:  The Truth about the Nordic Miracle

Journalist, Michael Booth's timely new book sees the author embark on a revealing and often humorous journey through all five of the Nordic countries to discover the secrets of their success. 


  1. Denmark, the Happiest Country in the World

  2. Modern-Day Icelanders and Their Viking Past

  3. Norway and Its Oil Riches

  4. Enigmatic Finland

  5. Sweden, the Perfect Society





Snow Drive To Work And Work Orchid

I thought that I would share my drive to work today after the twelve inches of snow that fell yesterday.

This is a barn that is up for rent.  It's very typical of a Pennsylvania barn.  I always think it would make a wonderful artistic craft center, but I'm sure there is no heat, would have to look out for a pot bellied stove.

Old stone walls in front of the barn.

Colonial style house.

Several houses in this area have a very French style look, especially with those steep pitch roofs with the windows in.

I think a lot of people stayed at home another day.

I bought an orchid for my desk at work.  Just to look at and make me happy.  Plus I have never had a small multiple flower orchid.  The colour is a little different, a mustard yellow and deep maroon/brown.


Thursday, February 13, 2014

Snow, Ice, Sleet, Wind and Rain

Yes that was our day today, snow, ice, sleet, wind and rain.  As I woke up this morning the wind was howling and the giant chimes I have hanging from the ash tree were chiming away.

I have heard a pair of turtle doves cooing every morning as I leave the house.  The birds were out in force this morning looking for food.  Above and below is a female cardinal,  you can see that her feathers are puffed out for maximum warmth.  The male cardinal is striking but isn't she lovely in her blush of red against the snow?

Here is an American robin, looking well.  I also saw a blue jay, you used to see them every day, but you do not see them so much anymore, so lovely to see the blue jay.

I made a cover for my Bible which I'm pleased with. I used grey wool felt and blanket stitched the edge.  It took me right back to when I was ten in Mrs. Brown's class, where I made a similar Bible cover out of blue felt and blanket stitched in yellow, yellow was my favourinte colour at the time. I got to add the little felted heart sent to me by Mereknits.  Also plated the three different coloured silks to make a page marker.

Finished a scarf I promised to a friend.  It's in a lovely peacock blue, it's hard to capture how lovely the colour is.

I knitted and crocheted today, Mr. B. cooked up a storm in the kitchen.  Chocolate chip cookies, another blueberry cake, which he says tastes better then the first one, and that one was good.  Also he made a chicken pot pie for dinner.

Did check on my emails at work, but I think the whole East Coast was at home.

Tink has been with me all day in her basket.  She would not settle down until I brought it in for her.  She wanted to sit on my lap but I was busy.

Another family day at home.  The boy did have to work tonight though.  I've been listening to BBC Radio.


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