Season turning

The long, hot dry stretch of the last three weeks is broken. Although there will likely still be some nice weather to come, I suspect this marks a turning. The forecast of rain over the weekend prompted me to collect my drying garlic in, clean it and begin to plait it. Yesterday, with thanks to Nikki's recipe, I made a winter flu formula. Using my still-quite-new-and-exceedingly fabulous whizz stick, I pulverised about 33 cloves of garlic with 500ml of apple cider vinegar. Then I added 4 T of honey and 1 T of cayenne pepper and whizzed some more. Voila! Spicy medicine for winter chills. I found it a satisfying way of marking the shift onwards from the summer harvest and I think I will make some each year. Maybe each year on Waitangi Day (Feb 6). Unless Lughnasa falls on a weekend, the reality is that I won't be in the kitchen making it exactly then.

Also a shift thing, Brighid and I mooched around the wool shop and I began to ponder making something for me for winter. After making two thick winter crossover things during the last two autumn/winters, I thought I'd venture into something a little finer. Still on a crossover theme, I am thinking of making a crossover cardigan (sort of like a ballet cardigan, in Cleckheaton book 942). There was a lovely soft green on the shelf in studio mohair (i.e. the yarn specified in the pattern) but I think it is time to stop this gentle stuff. When I was 20 and slim, I wore bright red a lot. Just because I am 37 and heavier doesn't mean I need to dress to blend in with the pungas in the back yard. I've bought a ball of bright red home to knit a sample and think about. Yes I know I said I would use up all those brightly coloured leftovers from children's projects before I knitted anything else, but it turned out that I am not going to do what I said I would do. Are you really that surprised? I do need to see how fluffy it is though. Remember the eighties and older ladies with far too much perfume and very fluffy sweaters? I'm not up for going there.

That mooch was after Brighid and I had hung out at the library together, perhaps the first relaxed non-busy thing we've done together since term started back. She is three and wandering around together just us is so precious. At the library I found a book on Irish gardens with a photo of a home made cold frame which looked most suited to our stash of old windows stacked against the side of the house awaiting deployment. I'm about to show that book to Favourite Handyman very soon.

Last night we went to a birthday party of a friend turning 65. I loved the invitation where it said a party to celebrate Paul becoming a burden on the state (and we all loved the party as well). Paul is a writing friend of mine and instead of a speech he read a story he had written about his community. It was brilliant and I now want to write a story for my Dad for his 70th later this year.

Sometime when I magic some un-tired time out of thick, fetid air, I am going to work on the final version of the programme for the opening of the Blackball museum of working class history. The launch is now on May Day, not Easter as we had earlier planned. More details to come - it is very exciting that this long-sought after project is really happening. May Day is the day after the Southern hemisphere Samhain. I need to think about where I want to take that idea. Exorcising the ghosts of capitalist oppression? We could get some pumpkins and have fun.


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