Woolly Jumper Weather

I think autumn may be my favourite season. I’m really enjoying it being cold enough to wrap myself in wool without melting. I find woolly jumpers, blankets and socks (not an exhaustive list) very comforting and a cotton sheet may be a lot cooler but unfortunately doesn’t have the same ability to make me happy. I’m knitting a cardigan with Eden Cottage BFL Sock in Copper Bucket which is a lovely autumny colour. The pattern is Serina Cardigan by Gretchen Ronnevik and I think it will be really nice when it’s finished but I’m currently drowning under every increasing rows of 4ply stocking stitch.

I live in Hemel Hempstead which is not renowned for its beautiful landscapes but there are some very pretty spots around at the moment.

Dandelions in the afternoon sun ©Rachel Gibbs
Autumn leaves
Colourful leaves (if I had to guess, from a maple) ©Rachel Gibbs

One thing Hemel is famous for is conkers (and a really horrible roundabout) as apparently there were a lot of horse chestnuts planted to commemorate the coronation of Edward VII. There’s even a conker festival held in Hemel every year by The Boxmoor Trust who have lately expanded into a Wood, Wool and Food festival the day before. I helped out at the first one a few years ago but thankfully I think the photo that made it into the local paper has been lost to the mists of time. The easy availability of conkers does mean I’ve been able to test the efficacy of conkers as a spider repellent, although the results are not promising. I have been able to develop a theory on how my fear of spiders is not just related to size but to the leg-to-body ratio, which is interesting but not particularly helpful when one is stuck in my bath.

We’re having an old school games evening at Guides this week and we’re going to be trying to play conkers, along with skipping and hopscotch. Last week they made bird feeders out of coconuts and I think the lesson most of them learnt is that trying to remove coconut flesh with a table knife is really difficult!

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