31 Days of Music – Day 26

One band from the ’80s, ’90s and ’00s was The Beautiful South. Jacqui Abbot the and Paul Heaton are the main vocalist of the group. Both come from Merseyside, which was a surprise to me many years ago as I knew that The Housemartins Paul’s previous band was from Hull, as was the basis of The Beautiful South.

The song I picked today has two versions, the official version that could be played on the radio, and an explicit version, so I thought I would put both versions on for you all, first one clean, the second naughty. Take ya pick!

Got To Love Bargains

I love a bargain, and I am sure we all do, especially a knitting bargain. Today was one of those days. We have a garden centre about 4 miles drive from home, and I pass it each day to and from work. They tend to put up adverts every few weeks showing what the latest offers are. I was not due to be in work today, however, the accounts system had two technical errors on it, and I am the only one who knows how to sort any of the IT problems, so off to work I went for all of 45 minutes. On the way back I passed the garden centre and saw an advert for two large pots of chrysanthemums for £15, bargain as I know they are huge pots. I collected M and we went to get them and have a look at the plants.

They have various sections to the garden centre as well as a restaurant, book section (not just gardening or plant books), aquarium supplies, clothes section, hobbies and a pet section amongst other things. A quick visit to the pet section, we needed the flea and tick treatment as we were about to use the last of what we have. This stuff is only used as a precaution every 4 weeks as the dogs are always in long grass, so ticks are easy to pick up, but this product is made of natural products and no chemicals. When I used to take Mazikeen to puppy training the trainer asked if we all used flea and tick treatment, most held their had up, I did not, as our dogs have never needed to be treated and we check for ticks after being out in long grass. However, I said that we did not feel we needed to and if they did get fleas or ticks I would get a product from the vet that would do what I needed immediately rather than off the shelf products. She then said to the room that my dogs are therefore treated better as the products used for flees are harsh and had anyone noticed that the instructions state “wash your skin immediately of spilt”, “may burn” and “use gloves”. She said that if it does that to us imagine what it may do to our dogs. I inwardly smiled and carried on. She agreed that she would do the same as me if the dogs were to get either parasite. However, as this stuff is natural, smells really nice and I have tested it on my skin first, we now use it.

I also happened to wander (purposely) into the hobbies section and there it was the yarn sale section. This is a rare thing that they have yarn in the sale. The packs I bought are Caron Pantone “Tree Rings”. Each collection is £9, however, the sale price was £4.50. I got the last two packs and with all the other things headed to the checkout. The woman who served us I deeply dislike as she was rude to M and me when we went to the checkout one time telling us that someone else was in front of us, which they were not, they were behind us in the queue and she refused to do anything until we let them through. She was very friendly with the couple and finished chatting and serving them saying “see you tomorrow”. Therefore they were her friends and she was throwing her authority about to let them queue jump. I hate this shit and decided to speak to the manager and tell her how we had been treated, especially since M is disabled and struggle with his mobility, never mind having to wait in line for another 8 minutes. The manager said she would deal with it and let me know the outcome. She checked the cameras and saw that we had been told to move and therefore dealt with the woman reprimanding her as this was not acceptable.

So, back to the bargain. The yarn should have been £19 for the two sets originally, and in the sale £9, but when she scanned the barcode as I had them in my hand with the labels together she must have presumed that I only had one pack and I was charged £4.50, and the receipt states only one set. Grand saving of £13.50, but it went on. The total bill for all I had bought was £65.93, according to the till until she pressed the total button and it shot down to £37.63. I paid and quickly left and checked the receipt. All apart from one set of yarn was there, discount after more discount seemed to be applied together with a final £4 off. Now, we had our face coverings on, so she had no idea who we were, and being honest, I do not think that she would have remembered us. After all the discount it showed that the pack of yarn was £4.07, therefore each yarn pack only cost me £2.03½p for each set. YAY!

This is the fabulous yarn which is a bulky yarn made up of 60% acrylic, 20% nylon and 20% Merino wool. It is luscious to touch and I cannot wait to find something to make with it all.

31 Days of Music – Day 25

Lets up the tempo and hit the synth-pop/electronic genre. This band is a little on the unusual side of the Merseybeat/Liverpool music artists. I like the video as it is a scene of winter that I would like to see again. Last time we had really bad winter weather and meters of snow was 10 years ago.

Check out some more of their other songs as most of the videos are really odd and quite hypnotic.

Baby Blanket

My friend and his fiancé have just had a baby boy, and with that my knitting needles are at it again. I have made a blanket for his brother a good few years ago and Z still loves her blanket even though it is getting quite old now.

I bought pom-pom yarn over the weekend and started it and it was a load of crap. The yarn just was not right at all. The string between the pompoms was hard and almost like string, the pompoms were long, and at the time I thought the yarn was okay, but then working with it I knew it was not going to work. The cord between the pompoms is knitted into twice, and should then be hidden but this crap yarn seemed to made a feature of it, photo below.

WTF!
Shocking look!

After starting it on Saturday and feeling very disappointed I went onto LoveCrafts.com and ordered Rico Pompon yarn which I have used many times in the past and always ended with a great result. I picked their blue and white pompon yarn which looks really nice, better than the plain white. This is it so far. I only started it about an hour ago.

I am aiming to finish it this weekend, however, the band on the yarn states that three balls are required to make it, yet in the past I only used two. I am going to finish the first ball and if required order another to make it up to three, fingers crossed it arrives soon if needed. Once finished I will post a photo of it.

Tripple Shades

As requested by some of my readers, here are the three “A Bit of Ireland” afghans. The middle one in blues was the first, the green on the right was the second and the final one on the left is the latest one. I have other circular blankets I have made and will show them too.

31 Days of Music – Day 24

So far we have had a lot of pop and new wave music, but I feel it is time for the beats to go heavy, so today’s pick is Liverpool’s Loathe with Gored. Loathe is heavily influenced by two of my favourite bands, Slipknot and Korn.

Blocking

If you had read my previous ramblings about blocking you will know I was in two camps, especially since I have never had to do it.

Whilst at the hardware store I noticed 9 interlocking play mats for £4. Yes, only £4. Obviously, I bought them as this was a bargain I could not leave. I had seen on Amazon blocking mats that were £35 for exactly the same thickness and size, the only difference was the Amazon ones had squares so you could measure the knitted item on it to block. This is really not something that I required as I have plenty of tape measures so why bother. I bought a box of T pins for £2.49 and have all I need for the job saving £28.51p. Bargain!

I had made two of the squares for the Great American Afghan one of them was smaller than the other and needed blocking to the correct size, so I put my purchases to the test. I admit, I was very happy with the result. Both squares at now the same size. All I have to do is the other 22 squares. Who knows when that will be finished as my knitting is like my reading, I swap to different projects/books all the time back and forth.

Circular Blanket – Complete

This is the third blanket of this design I have made. I made us one a good few years ago, then M’s mum which we got back a few weeks ago after her death, and this final one is for the bedroom. One thing I was not happy about is a line that has appeared within the knitting where the rounds meet, and this is not on any of the other blankets, and I have made it exactly the same way and with the same needles. It will be placed over the headboard, so the line will be hidden, but again, not a happy bunny.

Pattern: A Bit of Iceland
Designer: Stephen West
Yarn: Women’s Institute

31 Days of Music – Day 23

To quote Mary Hopkins “Those were the days my friend…”, I am giving you a bit of nostalgia from my gig-going past. Back in 1989, I went to see Engine (another band from the banks of the Mersey) at the Tivoli in North Wales, never realising that it was being filmed as it was a last-minute gig that D asked me to go to. I had at the time never heard of them as my music focus was on the dark side, i.e. Goth. Somewhere in the crowd is me. At most gigs, we have managed to get close to the front, but I cannot remember if we managed it on that gig. So today’s offering is I’m A Bad Dog by Engine.

Just as a bit of fun, Mary Hopkins sang “Those were the days”, which was produced by Paul McCartney (Beatles) 52 years ago.

31 Days of Music – Day 22

Another band that was quite big in the ’80s was China Crisis. This track got to number 9 in the UK charts and was their highest-charting hit. Although they are still together and still touring they have not produced anything for quite a few years. This track ‘Wishful Thinking’ was recorded at the Paul McCartney Academy in Liverpool, now known as LIPA (Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts)

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