Kiwiyarns Knits

A blog about New Zealand yarns, knitting and life


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After the rain

It rained heavily last night.  The plum blossoms looked so beautiful covered in raindrops this morning.

I had to share.  🙂

Future plums!

Rain ladened blossom buds
Plum blossomSpring is on its way.

All this photogenic splendour is proving great inspiration for future knitting designs!

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The beauty of morning

There is something quite magical about the light in the Wairarapa.  It must be the plane of the earth in this part of New Zealand.  I don’t think I have ever experienced so many pretty sunrises as I have here.  It makes getting up early quite exciting!  The colours have been so particularly stunning on occasion that I have had to stop what I was doing and take photos!  They are not very good photos.  Too grainy, but they captured the light perfectly.

SunriseIt did not look real to me – the lurid imagination of a painter surely?  Such shades of blue and flamingo pink!

Purple morning

Violet sunrise – I have never seen this light before!

Purple sunriseCould they not be a skein of yarn from your favourite hand dyer?

And now, my favourite, a celebration of winter!

Cows on a frosty morning

A breathtakingly cold, clear morning, the frost lay thick like snow on the fields and in high, spiky tuffs on the fence and car.  Icy sparkles decorated the deck, shimmering like diamonds in the rays of the rising sun.

Icy deck

Slowly a mist rose, to veil the landscape in an exquisite, gauzy light.

Frosty morning

I rather did pity the cows their breakfast of ice.

If you are wondering, do not fear – I have knitting news to share.  I’ll be back later this weekend with an update.  🙂

A happy start to the weekend to you!

 

 

 

 

 

 


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An Autumn ramble

We’ve had a bit of bad weather this week, and by this afternoon, cabin fever had hit big time.  I dug the young man out of his bean bag and off we went down the road.

Country road

It is heartening to see how lush and green everything looks after the sun-baked brown of summer.

Culvert

The culverts are full of water.

Rainbow

Quite pleased I managed to catch this rainbow!

Hawthorn

The hawthorn berries have all been eaten by the birds, and most of the leaves have come off the trees.  Little buds have appeared, awaiting spring’s warmth before they burst forth.

Deer

There is a deer farm nearby.

Young bulls

There was considerable attention paid to the young bulls, who were just as curious about us.  They all came crowding to the fence to have a look.

Young bull

In fact, they took turns to pose for the camera. 🙂  This young chap has such a sweet face!

Curious bulls

Quite a few breeds in there, but don’t ask me to tell you what they are just yet!

Country road

It was nice to listen to the crunch of gravel under our feet, and feel the breeze in our faces.  It was slightly colder than I thought it would be – we should have worn hats!

Dog print

Small details were noticed, reminders of ones who had been there before us.

Toi toi grass

The toi toi grass flowers looked very picturesque against the grey clouds.

Bark

I love looking at detail.  This bark looks like it should be a yarn colourway.  Can’t you just see a pair of socks in this colour!?

Autumn toadstool

A little toadstool, so delicate.  It looks like a ballerina’s tutu, or just like a parasol that could be used by a mouse!

Future socks

Back home, future socks are swirling in my head.

Embossed leaves

These socks were favourite project of the week.  I’m completely in love with the colour and the pattern.  They were so addictive to knit, I think I might need to make another pair!  These ones are a gift.

Embossed leaves socks

The pattern is Embossed Leaves, and I knitted them in Knitsch 100% merino sock in the Asterias colourway.


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A trip to Castlepoint

It was a perfect day on Sunday.  Far too gorgeous to waste indoors.  I decided it was time we did more exploring of our new environment!

It has been a while since we went to the beach.  I decided some fresh sea air was just what we needed!

Castlepoint

This is Castlepoint.  It is quite spectacular.

According to this website, Castlepoint is one of New Zealand’s 10 most loved beaches.  The lighthouse at this beach is one of the two remaining beam lighthouses left in New Zealand.

The young boy certainly loved the sand – perfect for digging large holes!  I dipped my feet into the sea, but decided that it was just a bit too chilly for paddling.

Castlepoint beachI had a nice time in the sand too…

Knitting at the beach

After holes had been dug to one young person’s satisfaction, and sand dunes appropriately rolled down and enjoyed, I dragged him up to the lighthouse for a walk and a look at what was on the other side of the reef.

Lighthouse at Castlepoint

It took one’s breath away!

View from the lighthouse

The colour of the sea was stunning…

Beyond Castlepoint

Here’s a view looking back towards the bay.

Castlepoint village

A geology student would find the landscape fascinating.  There are fossils to be seen, and clear layers of seashells and sandstone.  There is some very entertaining information about the history of Castlepoint here.

More Castlepoint

We drove home, feeling refreshed and relaxed.  What a wonderful day!  How lucky we are to be living in such an amazingly beautiful place!

There are plans afoot to go back as soon as possible and explore more of the walks!

Sand dune at Castlepoint


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Morning

I’m not much of a morning person.  Don’t put the alarm on, and it’s not until around 8 o’clock before I decide to stir.  This morning, I was so tired after the week’s activities that it was 9.30am before my sleepy head decided to leave my pillow.  So nice to have a sleep-in!  Best of all, the young man’s homework assignment this week was to make someone at home breakfast in bed!  Yes!  Tea and toast with marmalade by my bedside!  🙂

Weekdays though, mean a dawn rising to get ready for work.  No lazing about in bed allowed!  There are benefits to getting up early.  My kitchen window faces east, and I love seeing the moment when the sun peeks up over the horizon.  It’s inspiring.

As we edge towards Autumn (hurrah!  It’s the last day of summer today!), my favourite type of morning is beginning to appear.

The sun’s rays creep forward, warming the cold ground… a vapour begins to rise.

Sunrise

It drifts, an ethereal veil over the landscape, creating soft colours and hazy shapes.

Morning mist

Shapes appear in the mist, the forms of cows grazing on breakfast.

Cows in the mistMagpies loudly warble their good mornings, blackbirds gossip.

For a few moments, I stand outside, enjoying the warmth of my woollen sweater, hot cup of tea in hand, savouring the fresh cool air, the still beauty of the morning, watching the world wake up and reveal itself, bit by bit.  There’s a certain magic in a beautiful morning. Taking a moment or two to enjoy is a joyous way to start the day!


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The third week

Has it really been three blissful weeks since we moved over the hill??  It doesn’t feel like that.  I was about to title this post “the first week”, until I checked my calendar!

Moving-in activities are still happening at the Kiwiyarns household.  The household arranging is slowly taking shape, crammed into the weekends.  It is starting to feel like home.  I spent a vast proportion of this weekend cleaning (the dirt, oh the dirt – it just keeps turning up!), planning, reorganising and finalising the final furniture “need” list, which has now been whittled down to one more bookcase and a cupboard to store the linens.  This house came with hardly any inbuilt furniture, so I have lost a lot of storage space.

I have learned a few new things this week.

E-cloths (also generically known as microfibre) do actually live up to their name.  The good ones, that is.  I have been able to clean the entire bathroom cleaner than I have ever cleaned any bathroom in my life: the water marks have lifted from the taps, shower fittings and walls – even the glass shower door!  They sparkle as if brand new!  All with only an e-cloth, water and a bit of elbow grease – no chemical cleaner needed!  I am very impressed.  Windows have been washed and are sparkling clean, I have been able to shift stubborn, grubby marks from the walls, and the dining room’s wooden floor now feels smooth and clean and walkable with bare feet.

I found a beautiful wooden bookcase at an op shop (charity store you may know it by for those overseas?)  It was water stained, but the structure was sound.  I decided I could repaint it and then it would look as good as new again. The paint ended up costing the same amount as the bookcase(!), but it was a fun weekend project, and now I have a lovely white bookcase to add to my design room furniture!  I also now have a healthy respect for master painters.

"New" bookcase

I used Resene Half Villa White in a Lustacryl base.  I ended up needing to apply four coats of paint before I got the finish I wanted. An entire 500ml tin!  Good thing the weather was hot and dry this weekend.

Unexpectedly, I learned about how to properly apply paint in the process.  My eyes glazed over when I went into the store to find paint.  So many types!  Which one should I choose!!? The hardware store salespeople were very knowledgeable, and helped me choose an appropriate base coat sealant and top coat, and instructed me on how to apply it.  I was given instructions on adding a small amount of water to the top coat paint so that it went on smoothly. The brush should never feel like it is dragging.  The cheap brush that I was clutching was taken away from me to be replaced with a nicer one that had finer bristles, which I was told would give my paintwork a much better finish.  Reminded me of knitting tools somewhat…  I also got tips on how to clean the base coat from the brushes and how to get rid of the resulting muck with as little environmental consequence as possible (apparently, methylated spirits will evaporate.  Leave the jar in a quiet corner, and it will all disappear and then you can get rid of the jar you cleaned the brush in without tipping chemicals into the water system).  What a nice bit of knowledge to acquire!  Such great service too! (Mitre 10 in Petone, in case you’re interested).

Then the boy and I went to Warehouse Stationery and bought another bookshelf (on sale – it was a bargain!) We had a great time putting it together.  He especially enjoyed hammering in the nails.

As a result, knitting has been a lot less than normal.  I have nearly finished a pair of socks that I am very happy with. They are themed after the Chinese New Year, using a vintage stitch pattern that I rather like.  The design is a little different to the norm, and I am pleased.  It may make a nice change for you too – to “ring the changes” in your regular sock knitting, to use an old-fashioned phrase.  I hope to finalise the design next weekend, if all goes well.  I’m using Whimzy Sokkusu O in Firefly.  Such a lovely canvas!

Fire flowers

And finally, we took an evening stroll in our new surroundings.  I thought you might like to see some of the pictures. I loved the way the light of the setting sun cast a gentle haze over the fields.  This dairy farm is heavily irrigated – hence the lush, green pastures.  We have water restrictions at the moment… I wonder how that affects dairy farmers?

Dairy farmOn the other side of the road is a different story.  Here the sun bathed the drier landscape in a golden glow.

Grass seed heads

Country fence

I find the country landscape to be intensely beautiful.

stump

Features that inspire, their organic structures impossible to replicate.

DSC02015 (600x800)

A splash of colour – wild peas growing beside the road.

More country landscapes

I wonder if there will be snow on those hills in winter?

Field flower

I would hazard a guess that if one could see ultraviolet, that this field flower would be almost flourescent in its brightness. As it is, it stands out, vibrant against the green grass.

Country road

The sky is so big, so wide!  I feel like I can spread my wings and breathe freely!  Can you hear the song “Country road, take me home, to the place where I belong…!?”  (The kids groan when I decide to serenade them with my cheesy song while driving along the road to home).  The boy was taking a great picture of the new moon.  He got a Canon camera for his birthday, and even though it is a beginner model, it has a most excellent zoom.  I am jealous!

Sunset

My shoe then very inconveniently broke, cutting short the walk.  We turned and shuffled back home, enjoying the beginnings of a rosy sunset.

I love living in the country.