30 April 2006

The Promised Pink Post

Show us ya pink bits! yelled someone from a building site a few years ago.

So, for your edification, here they are.

pink slippers
This shot is for Telfair who is currently knitting a pair of socks from this yarn. This slipper pattern is wonderful; it can be made into babies’ bootees, or children’s or adults slippers. We each have a pair in this household.

pink dilly bag & bones
A little dilly bag found in an op shop last year for one dollar. I use it to carry my digital camera and spare batteries about with me.

See the bones outside the window? Big ‘roo bones found last weekend at the National Park at the end of the road. There was also a skull in the collection but it was too manky to touch so we left it there. Son #2 carried the rest home and has firm intentions of building a dinosaur.

pink dilly bag
Here it is close up. I’m a sucker for tiny florals.

pink cushion & chaise
Tapestry cushion on the pink chaise. It is here that I recline while Mr Soup feeds me peeled grapes and fans my weary brow. Ha.

pink candle
By a happy coincidence, the candle on our dining table currently is pink! Usually it’s bog standard white paraffin. Beeswax if we’re feeling decadent. This month it’s pink for some reason. I see the table needs a wipe.

pink brooch
Close up of my favourite brooch. Someone asked about it during Show and Tell, so here it is. Purchased at the Arts Centre Sunday Market, sorry I’m on limited time and not linking (just posting a gazillion photos … hmmm)

pink kangaroo paw
Dwarf kangaroo paw. I bought three of these over a month ago and haven’t yet found the right place to plant them.

pink sky
The view.
Sunset two nights ago.
Because I can’t help myself.

28 April 2006

I got the blues real bad

Thank you so much for all the book recommendations for Son #1. I’ve made a list and can now head for the library, all confident like. I’ll post the list so anyone interested (Lazy Cow said she was) can copy it. Cos I’m community-minded too.

Remember the green post last week?
Here’s a blue post. I have a weakness for sky blue, particularly paired with chocolate brown. All pictures taken yesterday.

(My blog renovation was inspired by a knitting swatch I did recently of cranberry coloured yarn on pale duck egg blue needles. I was so taken with the colour combination that I mentally filed it away for future quilting projects, but was inspired to make a more immediate change in my virtual life.)

blue dragonfly
Ooh, slightly out of focus, I see. Although the plastic lizard below it is beautifully sharp. Let’s pretend I meant that.
Glass and metal dragonfly on a spoke, given to me by my mother when she visited at Christmas. She also gave us a yellow butterfly. They’re in my herb beds.

blue basic uniform
Yesterday’s ensemble. I warned you I only have one basic outfit these days, didn’t I? I just substituted the long sleeve pink tee for a blue one. I’m so unoriginal.

blue sky
The glorious blue of the autumnal sky.
It’s been like this all week but ends tomorrow apparently.

blue book
Latest discovery at the local secondhand bookshop.

blue doll
Wittily posed in front of my collection of Russian literature (from the days of my first undergraduate degree).

blue wild iris
A late bloom on the dietes.

blue tupperware
Vintage tupperware found at the op shop yesterday. One dollar each!

blue hat
Son #3’s hat in progress. He is knitting it on circular needles, but as you can see every now and then he forgets which side is the right side, turns it inside out and knits stoically onward. It makes it more interesting, Mummy. You have to love the attitude of a seven year old.

blue painting
Son #2’s underwater study. Painted one morning last week before school when he accidentally got up an hour early and then found he had masses of free time instead of the usual rushed few minutes before being bundled out the door.

blue hills
Blue mist and hills. 7.14 am, 27th April, 2006.
Sorry I keep posting shots of this view. I can’t help myself. I wonder when the novelty will wear off?

I am enjoying colour coordinated posting.
Tomorrow, pink?!

27 April 2006

Show and Tell, and a literary request

Show and Tell this week is your street. Here’s mine.

I took these standing directly outside our place, looking further along the street. Just around this bend it becomes a dirt road. We head that way on our way to school every morning, and this morning saw seven kangaroos. All before 8.45 am. Not bad.

mystreet up

And back the other way.

mystreet down

And beside me as I snapped, a baby gum tree still wearing its baby leaves. (Which I picked to accompany some Tim Tams on their long journey across the seas recently).


And now I must head off along that very road to collect the wee ones from school.

Before I go, I have a favour to ask of all you librarian types and/or parents of older children. My #1, aged 12, has reached a whole new level in his reading and is craving mystery and crime books. He’s way beyond the Famous Five mystery type of stuff (although he loved them last year), and is currently devouring all the Agatha Christies he can find in the library. But he’s hankering for more, and not being a fan of the crime genre myself, I am not much help. I don’t want him reading Ian Rankin or anything gory, with sexual violence and torture and so on. The odd shooting, stabbing and garrotting is fine (I can’t quite believe I am typing this …). Can anyone suggest some good mystery/crime authors for Young Adults? Actually, a very young innocent non-streetwise wee thing, really. Hardy Boys … too young? Alfred Hitchcock? Sherlock Holmes? Help!

24 April 2006


The view outside my study window.
The rest of the rooms in this house (apart from one bedroom, oh and the laundry) have floor to ceiling windows and look out over a sublime view for many many miles. My study faces the other way and looks at the cliff stretching above the house.


There are two callistemons planted in the garden bed there, and it wasn’t until this week when the startling greenness caught my eye after a heavy bout of rain, that I realised one of them has weeping foliage.


There is also a plague of fishbone ferns. But their removal is a low priority at the moment, and they do photograph nicely with the sun shining through their fronds.


21 April 2006

My son the morphine addict

So, you know how women who live together start to menstruate at the same time? Well you may have noticed that two weeks ago, all these women who blog together have had their children in hospital at the same time. Blackbird, Babelbabe, Surfing Free, Bec, My Float. All on the same day(s).

Being a couple of weeks behind in world fashions is nothing new for me. You know, I like to dip my toe in gingerly before I join the trendsetters. Ha.

So. This morning Son #2’s wrist was still out of action. Hmmm, not just a bruise perhaps? Maybe a nasty sprain? He and I dropped the other two at school and headed for the doctor who eyed me dubiously when he heard it had happened, uh, three days ago. Yes yes, guilt guilt, I know. He sent us off for x-rays, saying it was probably just a greenstick fracture and he would put it in a cast for a couple of weeks. My guilt levels were rising rapidly by this stage. My baby has a FRACTURE and I gave him a bandage and Panadol and didn’t go near a doctor for three days! In my defence, he was still riding his bike and wrestling with his brothers rather than lying pale and wan on the couch clutching his misshapen arm.

We returned to the doctor clutching three x-rays. He took one look and whistled. That’s no greenstick, that’s a big break. And it’s angulated. I can’t plaster it here, you’ll have to go to the hospital and have it straightened and set.

Oh god. I am such a bad bad mother.

And so passed a full day at the Royal Children’s Hospital, a place with which Son #2 is already intimately acquainted due to surgery at the age of four. Ugh. The doctors informed me that in order to set the bone they would have to anaesthetise him. Maternal guilt levels reached a crescendo.

Happily they spiked the laughing gas with chocolate syrup which made him giggle and gave him the world’s largest chocolate moustache, and he developed a strong attachment to the morphine which was administered through an IV drip (My baby had a drip! In hospital! For the broken wrist that I ignored! For three days! Oh god!) He charmed all the doctors, laughed hysterically (with the assistance of the gas) when they gave him a stethoscope to play with, requested top ups of the morphine (That stuff is really good!)and was generally very brave and gorgeous while they manipulated his poor arm and put him in a very impressive plaster cast up to his shoulder. His shoulder! We thought he had a bruised wrist! Oh I'm going on and on I know!*

We arrived home hours and hours later, exhausted, dehydrated, starving and emotionally traumatised but as always, thankful that it was only a broken bone rather than some of the things we were witness to in that place.

He vomited quietly all over the bathroom floor and spent the rest of the evening on the couch finishing the fourth Harry Potter book.

I just put him to bed a few minutes ago. He turned his pale beautiful face up to mine as we eased his huge heavy white arm into his pyjama sleeve and said Mummy, for my next birthday, can I please have some more of that morphine?

* Apologies for the prolific use of exclamation marks in this post. I am feeling a little overwrought.

However I've just read all your comments on the previous post and am feeling slightly better for hearing that many of you ignored broken bones too. Phew.

20 April 2006

Ten random, footloose and fancy free

Snitched from the topographer.

1. Laksa for lunch. Followed by a cup of English Breakfast and one of the tiny eggs the children didn’t find on Easter Sunday (see Monday confessions post). Delish.

2. Drop off a bundle of papers at work and while I am in the old neighbourhood, ring my best friend and invite myself over for tea and sticky bun.

3. Two Golden Ashes and a Claret Ash on our school route, wearing their glorious autumn best.

4. Listening to Bach cello suites on Son #1’s iPod while he’s at school. (Told you he was a 12-year old classical music nerd).

5. Coming home and sniffing the delectable aroma of woodsmoke in the house.

6. Planting two poas and a sedge in the garden. I adore native grasses.

7. Loving the quote from someone somewhere that child-rearing is like knitting without a pattern, with unknown yarn, and without swatching first. I wish I’d said that.

8. Mice like chocolate. Better than they like RatSak.

9. Reading A Gardener’s Guide to Eucalypts.

10. Thinking I’d better take Son #2 for an x-ray tomorrow. He hurt his wrist skateboarding (or more accurately, falling off his skateboard) the day before yesterday and despite stern and serious bandaging, arnica and comfrey, it’s not improving. A bad sprain perhaps? If they tell me it’s broken I will have to commit hari-kari with all the bad mother guilt. (This one not so fancy free).

Your turn. Ten random, footloose and fancy free.

Show and Tell: an outfit

Show and Tell this week is an outfit. No mention of what kind of outfit … a nightclubby type of outfit? A sporty outfit? A wedding dress?

Totally lacking in inspiration (and you will remember that my wedding dress has been shown on this blog before), I present to you my everyday (well, yesterday) outfit.

The basic version.
(With an unmade bed in the background. Sorry).

outfit basic

Yes, I do the skirt over the pants thing quite often. (Because my knees are 42 years old and thus not bared terribly often). This one isn’t a dress or skirt though, it’s a bum wrap. Yes, you heard. It’s Italian, felted wool, tres posh and was in the $20 bin at a local boutique, still bearing its $149.00 price tag. (It’s a rectangle of boiled wool, with three darts in it, no hemming anywhere in sight, and held together with a kilt pin. Would you pay 149 bucks for it? Me either.)

outfit hippy

The hippie version.
If I change the shoes and add a tie-dye bag, I fit in nicely in my new neighbourhood. There is a plethora of women wearing Birkenstocks and organically grown caftans in this area.

outfit with jacket

The basic outdoor version.
Or I can put the funky op shop shoes back on, add a jacket, witty brooch and pretty scarf from the $2 shop and I look perfectly presentable dropping off a bundle of work at the office after taking the children to school, putting the bins out and walking the dog.

outfit hair out

I even wore my hair OUT today. Which I haven’t done since March 3rd.

19 April 2006

The Great Chocolate Biscuit Adventure

Jane and I have indulged in a wee online chocolate biscuit Taste Off. Jane was recently singing the praises of a particular English biscuit on her blog and I foolishly claimed that the great Australian icon, the Tim Tam, could NEVER be beaten.

The challenge was taken up and Exhibit No. 1 arrived in the post yesterday afternoon.
Marks and Spencers’ Extremely Chocolatey Biscuits.

choc taste off1

I managed to hold three small boys off for about … oooh, thirty seconds while I performed bloggy duties.

choc taste off2

There were two flavours included in the parcel; the common garden chocolate variety (which is anything but common or garden) and the orange special. I nibbled on the orange version and thought to myself, hmmm, pretty darn good, but sorry, Tim Tams still take the cake.

Then I tried the other kind (the ones with the holes, up there in the picture).

Oh my heavens!

I am a convert. You win.
Pity I live on the other side of the world from a Marks & Sparks.

Jane generously included three extra sweet treats of British award-winning organic chocolate


… (love the name Space Hopper), and …

book & card

… a beautiful blue and chocolate brown Denyse Schmidt quilt card. Wrapped in gorgeous colour coordinated paper was a Persephone book, which I am greatly looking forward to getting my teeth into. After I’ve brushed the chocolate off my teeth, of course.

Thanks so much Jane. That was fun as well as delicious.
I hope your Tim Tams arrive soon.

18 April 2006

self portrait tuesday


This is a repeat from last year, but I thought it was appropriate for Easter, and the self portrait theme for April which is ...

April Foolery.

More self portraits here.

17 April 2006

Sunday Confessions on a Monday

1. I’m always late. I do my best not to be like this, but … So my Sunday confession is on a Monday.

2. I do many things in a shoddy half hearted way. I do my best not to be like this, but … So the hot cross buns this year were hot even-tempered buns. I just wanted them in the oven and out again so I could eat three in a row for lunch. Hence, no crosses. (They’re only flour and water anyway so they don’t exactly add to the taste).

3. There are still three tiny eggs that the children didn’t find during the hunt. I’m not telling them. They will be my morning tea tomorrow when they’re all safely at school.

4. Wanting to slap Son #2 when he told #3 in a fit of pique that it’s actually Mum who hides the eggs, not the Easter Bunny.

5. Not realising that listening to Watership Down in the car to school and back all last week was perhaps a trifle insensitive in the lead up to Easter. Also insensitive: giggling at the look on Son #3’s face yesterday when he was about to bite the ears off his chocolate bunny and Son #1 said in an evil whisper Yours looks just like Hazel, don't you think?

6. I finished The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time this morning. You know, the one about/written by the boy with Aspergers. It touched me and made me feel really guilty for being so grateful, so very grateful that Son #1 doesn’t have Aspergers. Cos heaven knows I worry about him enough, and he grew out of all those Aspergers tendencies a couple of years ago. And my confession is that I just wasn’t a great parent to him when he was younger. From very early on we knew he was different, but you tend to be dismissed when it’s your firstborn and people assume you’re being just another ignorant first-time parent. But he never cuddled or snuggled, arched away when you touched him, and freaked out when his routine was interrupted. Then as he got older he became obsessed with things. Like, really obsessed. Not like other children whose mothers said ‘oh yes my little girl is obsessed with pink!’. No, he was OBSESSED with red. He lived, ate, breathed and totally immersed himself in red. For months. A year or so later it was space, then geology/rocks/minerals, and then, bizarrely, french horns for eight and a half months followed by violins for nineteen days. Other parents thought it was sweet and interesting, which it kind of was, but it was also spooky. Then he developed tics, which could be verbal or physical. And which made him look like a freak. And teachers/shopkeepers/strangers in elevators would take me aside and suggest I seek help. Each tic would last a few weeks before being replaced by another mind-alteringly annoying/embarrassing tic, and sometimes two tics would overlap for a few days. Plus there were odd neurotic fears and dislikes that didn’t make sense [to people who weren’t Son #1]. By this time we had had Son #2 who is quite a conventional personality and so this merely threw #1’s weird behaviour into relief. And so I did a bit of internet symptom-investigation which is always a dangerous thing (ie. at the moment I have a painful lump under my left armpit. Try Googling that and not hyperventilating at the results) and it came to pass that I discovered all sorts of things like Aspergers, Multiple Tic Syndrome, Transient Tic Syndrome, Tourettes, ADHD etc etc, many of which are linked and there is kind of a sliding scale of severity. And lo it was terribly scary and saddening but oh my giddy aunt everything fell into place and I learnt about triggers and I also stopped hating his behaviour and hating myself and thinking I had made my child this way. I also learnt that without Aspergers Syndrome and other high functioning autism the world would be without the majority of its computer programmers, engineers and astronauts. Not to mention mathematicians. Son #1 is as hopeless at maths as I am so I knew there was no chance he would become a Rain Man or anything.

But having a reason was so helpful. My rage and sadness eased. Naturopathics and homeopathics helped with the triggers and also some of the tics and symptoms. And life went on and we all learnt to live with Son #1’s "funnies".

But then something happened. He turned nine and reached a sort of crossing. The tics gradually lessened to the point where he now gets them only when he’s extremely tired or stressed (Triggers Number One and Two), the obsessions mellowed into Healthy Interests, and most miraculous of all, he became a cuddly affectionate child who is generous, thoughtful, and loving toward others. The odd behaviours segued into more socially acceptable eccentricities, and I stopped being embarrassed by him every time we were in the presence of others. And then, THEN, [and I will never stop thanking the gods above for this], he found music. Yes, it was an obsession for a long while; he lived, breathed, ate, thought music all day long. But with the discovery of music, he found himself. He learnt to interact with other people more easily through the language of music. He found an outlet for all his frustrations and difficulties. He discovered his place in the world.

And my confession(s)? Guilt for feeling so grateful that he (mostly) grew out of all those syndrome-y symptoms. Guilt for not being a better parent to him when he was at the outer edge of the ‘normal’ spectrum. Guilt for all those years of wanting him to be firmly within that ‘normal’ circle. Guilt for not finding the courage to accept him for who he was but always pushing him to be what I wanted him to be. Guilt for finding him so much easier to love these days.

14 April 2006


I love the change of seasons.

fire fairy

We clear the nature table of its summery shells and beach related trinkets, and choose bits and pieces to reflect the new season. Leaves, seedpods and an autumn fire-fairy complement an old embroidered linen found at the op shop.


Son #3 made the Easter basket at school. See the seed pods? They come from a particular gum tree and are known as witches fingers. (I feel a eucalyptus post coming on. I’ve become obsessed with gum trees since moving here …)

easter tree

The eggs we have decorated over the years are hung carefully on a branch.


egg 2

The hot cross bun dough is rising in the kitchen as I type.

Happy Easter to you and yours.

13 April 2006

Corners of my home: kitchen window


Hmmm, it’s hard to photograph a window. This is my kitchen window, just above the sink.

The tile is handmade and features the feet of Son #3 when he was about two. My parents’ next door neighbour is a ceramic artist; she made the tile and pressed the painted feet of the rather bemused child onto it. I used to use it as a trivet to protect our beautiful wooden counters at the old house, but here it lives on the windowsill, the better to appreciate its charms.

The wee Japanese bowl came from an op shop a few months ago. I couldn’t resist that duck egg blue shade. It cost a whopping 50c.

And the tiny painting of a fairy seahorse (complete with wings) was a souvenir from our Easter holiday in Sydney exactly two years ago. Purchased at the famous Paddington Markets.

The kitchen in our old house was blue and white, a colour combination to which I have always been partial. Here the kitchen is a sort of ugly green, so my blues don’t go terribly well. However it has meant that my two green and pink Portmeirion teatowels get an airing, hanging on the oven next to a hot pink handtowel. So there are advantages.

I recently found out that aesthetically unpleasing laminate can be painted over. I am quietly plotting.

Corners of my home courtesy of Amanda. More corners of homes here.

10 April 2006

autumnal fruits and Soup doings

buerre bosc

So much has happened that I haven’t had a chance to blog about.

• Son #1 has decided to join the local strings orchestra. I am more thrilled than I can express. It will be soooo good for him to be around other musical kids, making music together, meeting new friends, and pushing his shy little self just a tad.

• The week before last, Sons #1 and 2 along with their class, got to speak, live, to the two astronauts who live in the International Space Station! Supposedly one can hear the whole thing at this link by clicking on Audio Library on the bottom left, but of course I can’t get it to work. If anyone does, it's the small Victorian school on 31st March, and my kids are the first and third last to ask their questions. Son #1 asked a musical question, surprise surprise, and #2 asked if one’s blood runs normally in space. (Answer: no, it runs up. So after an hour or so the astronauts have to lie down with their feet up). All the children did brilliantly, and we were so proud. They had been preparing for weeks, had learnt all about space, how to handle a radio (say your name, ask your [carefully vetted] question, and say Over) and they were soooo excited. As was the whole school community. There were about a hundred overexcited parents and grandparents crammed into the hall, bright-eyed, nervous, proud and trying to be silent. As Son #1 was first, he got to do all the audio checks with NASA before the ISS came into radio range for its eight short minutes. He repeated his question loudly and clearly about four times, then when it came to the real thing and he found himself actually talking to William Macarthur Junior (the Third, joked Mr Soup) (can you tell he’s American?) he fluffed and stumbled over his words. No matter. It was a wonderful evening. Yes, I got teary. Yes, I forgot my camera.

• On the weekend our new community held its annual festival. Wondrous! All sorts of things … a billy cart race, a duck race on the river, market stalls, live music, dinner at the pub for the Soup Family, and then a mesmerising and haunting visual and musical performance by a woman who grew up on a farm at the end of our road in what is now the national park (home of the kangaroo mob pictured in previous posts). After the show we bought the book of her paintings and she signed it for us. When I looked through it the next morning, I saw that the final painting is spookily similar to my misty morning photograph.

• Son #3 begins his first extra curricular activity tonight (apart from swimming which doesn’t count because it’s essential in this family and all the children do it whether they like it or not). He is doing circus skills. Much excitement all round.

• Son #1 has just been granted an interview at our preferred (Steiner) high school. Now all he has to do is charm them. The letter only arrived this morning and I am nervous and anxious, but cautiously optimistic. How could anyone meet #1 and not want him in their class? Please, my invisible friends, keep your fingers crossed for us.

9 April 2006

Pearl Buck Swing Jacket #1

pearl buck #1

I feel as though I’ve joined the modern world.

The talented (she knits!) and erudite (she’s a librarian!) Jeanne (she has a divine blog!) is hosting the Pearl Buck Swing Jacket Knit-Along and I am participating. No matter that I can’t get the I-am-participating button to appear over there on the right near the self portrait tuesday button; no matter that some people in the knit-along have already finished (gulp) their jackets; no matter that I am also in the middle of two other knitted projects at the same time. I am participating!

I dawdled and deliberated over yarns, being unable to find (or afford) the Jaegar Extra Fine Merino DK skeins, and decided in the end to go with the trusty Bendigo Woollen Mills 8 ply pure wool, in Cranberry. It’s gorgeous to knit with, comes in enormous 200g balls (that’s the equivalent of four standard balls) at only $10 each, and best of all, even if one doesn’t get around to mailing off one’s cheque until Tuesday, they still deliver by Friday, enabling one to happily cast on at 7.30 that same evening during Backyard Blitz.


Doesn’t the colour go well with my rug? Please ignore the dog hair.

I swatched carefully. This is a stage I usually skip (all the serious knitters are wincing now and in need of a good lie down) but as I’m now accountable to approximately twelve fellow knit-alongers, I thought I’d better. The swatch confirmed me as a ferociously tight knitter (breathe, Suse, breathe), so I have gone up one needle size. However the 4.5mm needles feel unwieldy and chunky, so I will start with the yoke as it’s the smallest piece, and if it’s too big I can start again and won’t have lost too much work. If so I’ll have to make a concerted effort to calm down and knit more nonchalantly, which hopefully will ease the tightness.

We shall see.

6 April 2006


morning mist

Autumn has settled seemingly overnight.

This morning I awoke to see mist hovering above the river in the valley, winding through the blue-green landscape like a giant white serpent. The ash, oaks and hawthorns scattered thinly along the roadsides are glowing with golden and red hues and the odd pink gum leaf is apparent, but the majority of the bush remains its usual delicate greyish green.

The bark peels off the trunks of the manna gums in long brown ribbons, catching in the forks of the branches and creating wonderful natural sculptures silhouetted against the sky.

red leaves

The air has a bite to it and suddenly we are reaching for our woolly hats and scarves. In the evenings we light and gather around the fire, nibbling fresh walnuts from a friend’s tree. Surely it was only two weeks ago I was wearing a sleeveless dress and sandals?

I feel much more connected to the earth and seasons here. At the city house we had central heating which cocooned us from the elements. Very comforting and, it must be said, addictive, but I am enjoying the nip in the air and the smell of woodsmoke in the house. The children have happily taken on the new experience of collecting kindling and making sure the basket by the fire is full of logs.

autumn harvest

1 April 2006

a wall hat

A couple of weeks ago at the local hippie market, Son #2 became enamoured with some exquisite felted hats. Being a thrifty, crafty Waldorf child he decided he would not dig into his pocket money and purchase one, but would make one himself.

That afternoon we assembled the necessary ingredients.
Washed fleece
Liquid soap/detergent
Bubble wrap
Old net curtain
Plastic bag

Now, I have felted one or two items myself, but they were flat, not shaped. Son #2 was not the least bit daunted. We can shape it over a bowl, or a balloon, Mum. It’ll be easy.

It was not easy.

We photodocumented proceedings.

felt before

The assembled fleece, ready to go. Note the coloured fleece all to the edges, as he wanted the crown of the hat to be plain, with colour all round the brim.

felt after

All done!

But try as we might, we could not manage to shape it into a hat.

felt wallhanging

Never mind! It can be a wall hanging for my bedroom! says he.

There is something hugely satisfying about felting.
You take a bit of fleece from a sheep, wet it, soap it up, bash it about a bit (#2 loved the bit where you shock the fibres by throwing the felt violently to the ground fifteen times) and voila, you have made a piece of fabric.

It gives me that same feeling of safety that having a pantry full of homemade chutneys and preserves gives me. That knowledge that if the apocalypse comes, I can still feed my family.

Now if the aliens land, I can clothe my family too.