Friday, 3 January 2014

Knitting and Mastermind and Home Spun

I have a couple of questions for you.

Question Number 1 - what would be your specialist subject if you were to go on Mastermind?

Question Number 2 - how do you genuinely (and be honest here) feel about home spun gifts?

I ask Question Number 2 because I have started knitting a throw...this is how far I am at the moment...

...and it suddenly occurred to me how nice it would be, for birthday gifts this year, to make up Much Malarkey Manor Hampers. You know, get baskets or boxes and fill with things like some variety of Andy-baked bread, a homemade cake or biscuits, a pot of jam, a lavender bag full of Malarkey lavender, a cushion or a knitted throw, and maybe a poem or a story tailored to the recipient, all topped off with a little knitted mouse or felt chicken...

'I'm not sure that is wholly ethical,' says Primrose sternly.

'I don't mean touchy feely felt,' I say. 'I mean a chicken decoration made from the non-fraying fabric called felt.'

'That's okay then,' says Primrose.

The four knitted heart squares are already big enough to form one side of a knitted cushion cover. Would that be a nice thing to have? Some people, I know, get a bit sniffy about homemade gifts. I wouldn't want to offend anyone by giving them something arty-crafty and home-produced when they would rather have a DVD box set of Inspector Morse.

And my first question is asked because I am knitting to Mastermind at the moment. It is a good programme to knit to because you don't have to watch it in order to join in shouting answers at the screen. Occasionally, when the contestants are being exceptionally feeble, I think, 'I could do better than that.' In fact, I have even got as far as exploring the application form. You have to have around 4 'specialist' subjects, because they record progressive rounds in a short space of time. This threw me somewhat because I had just reached the point when I thought I could maybe answer questions on 'The Life of Beatrix Potter' or 'Comedies of Shakespeare' without making a complete public fool of myself. But then I couldn't think of any other subjects. Perhaps 'Chickens' but that would be pushing it somewhat because most of my chicken knowledge is creative to say the least. Like, 'What is a chicken's favourite food?' - Answer - 'Chocolate hobnobs or Jaffa cakes' both of which responses might throw J.Humphries Esq into a bit of a tizzy. 

So, I just thought I would ask. You know. Just to spark a bit of BlogLand conversation on a dark, wet and windy January night.


Janice said...

My areas of expertise are knitting and wreath making. I'm sure they would have those categories, don't you think?lol

LynneFtWorth said...

I would love all those gift categories. Can you put me on the birthday list since I do share a birthday with your lovely granddaughter? LOL

Deanna M.

Countryside Tales said...

Homemade gifts are far superior to shop bought ones in my humble opinion. We did scarves, beaded jewellery, beer, hand and nail salves and photo books for family this year, and were given some homegrown chilli oil which was delicious.
Not sure I would cope with Mr Humphreys on Mastermind, any more than Mr Paxman on Uni C. Specialist subject?....the countryside perhaps? Or Anglo Saxon England at a pinch (and that's a very long pinch!).

Denise said...

Definitely wreath making, Janice! I reckon that would flummox them!!

Deanna, if you want to get your address to me, then I'd be more than glad to send you a little Malarkey gift on the birthday you share with Kayleigh! Let me know if you want my e-mail!

CT, I think you'd be excellent at Anglo-Saxon England. But what about moths??? Surely you are an expert on moths? And I am afraid if ever I tangled with Paxman I would tell him on no uncertain terms to shut up and get some manners! Can't stand him. Xxx

Countryside Tales said...

And to cut off his beard.

I remembered moths whilst I was checking the sheep in torrential rain this afternoon. I thought: 'ooh, I could have said moths in reply to Denise's Q about specialist subjects.' Can't think why I didn't.

Olly said...

I think home made presents are far, far better than something Boots or M&S have put in a plastic packet and called 'gift set' I'd love to get a home-made hamper like the one you're describing. This Christmas my friends all got soap and moisturisers made with my own beeswax - maybe they'd have preferred some Molton Brown but they knew I'd put a lot of time and effort into the presents.

Specialist subject: The Tales of Beatrix Potter. I reckon I could do quite well on knitting though. Or chickens.

Denise said...

CT, I am very disappointed that lovely Gareth Malone has grown a beard. Not good. Immediate banishment I think.

Hi Olly! We could join forces in a two-pronged Beatrix Knitted Hen attack on Humphries. We'd win, no problem. Obviously, we'd have excellent general knowledge between us! And yes, the more I think about homemade Malarkey hampers, the more I like the thought. Better keep my needles clacking! X

LynneFtWorth said...

Denise, I would love your email so maybe be can correspond other than your blog, and I love presents!