Friday, 12 January 2018


There's a word that I'm sure my Scottish ancestors used a lot at this time of the year: dreich, meaning grey and gloomy and dreary and bleurgh! Note: for proper effect it should always be pronounced with a strong, back-of-the-throat guttural that sounds as though you're clearing phlegm!

Dreich! Dreich! Dreich!

They said it. A lot. In January.

Fast forward to the present time, and every January, carrying on an old tradition, I have a serious moan about how much I hate January. And, at the risk of being repetitive, I'm at it again! Can I just get this off my chest? I HATE January. It's such a dreich month: cold and grey and dreary, with nothing to look forward to for ages.

The other morning the WonderDog and I went for a walk around the Common. All over the Christmas holidays we've had the Moscow State Circus camped out there. It was really exciting when they came back in the heady days of early December. Have I mentioned that I love the Circus? I never actually go, but I love the (here today, and gone tomorrow) idea of the Circus.

But now, even the Moscow State Circus is packing up and moving on. And you should see the mess they're leaving behind: dead grass and mud all over the shop. It's just the sort of thing you'd expect jaded January to serve up! Let's hope the Council can get it sorted out in time for the daffodils.

And then on the other side of the Common we came upon a mountain of discarded Christmas trees. I've said it before, and I'll say it again: there's nothing like a mountain of discarded Christmas trees to let you know the party's over.

But it's not all bad: we've got the totally marvellous Waltham Abbey Wool Show to look forward to on Sunday 21st January. How inspired of the clever organisers to hold such a happy event in the dreich depths of January! Hooray!

In anticipation I've been busy with my needles doing bright, cheerful knits to lighten my seasonal blues ...

... and boiling up my dye pot to bring a host of colours to life.

During the last days of the holidays Emi helped me with some cochineal. He especially enjoyed grinding up the ladybugs in a pestle and mortar, testing the ph of the brew and adding acetic acid to bring it down to where it needed to be.

And then we had a go at over-dyeing some of the yellow from last week with a little indigo to make green - just like in Emi's art classes when he gets to muck around with big tubes of paint. 

And, as always, I've got a good book on the go. I'm reading my first Celeste Ng novel: Tiny Fires Everywhere, which, so far, has proved to be a ripping good read. At the heart of the book is a custody fight over an abandoned baby, and I'm amazed by how sympathetically the author has drawn all the protagonists. She never lets you forget that everyone has their backstory and their reasons for doing what they do. Let me just say that it's one of those unputdownable books that will keep you up all night ...

Happy Friday, and all the best for the weekend,

Bonny x

1 comment:

  1. Oh, my, the colors from the dyepot are glorious! I don't know which I like best...

    I have the winter doldrums, too...we have had dreary day after dreary day. I am ready for some sun. Maybe if I pulled out yellows and oranges in my fabric and did something with them...that might help and be the equivalent of your knitting bright colored things!