Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Wool Week

Did you know that it's Wool Week?
Wool Week is the annual highlight of The Campaign for Wool which takes place every Autumn around the world. Celebrating the best of wool across fashion, interiors and artisan communities, the focus of Wool Week is to show the amazing capabilities of the world’s most natural and versatile fibre.
What better time to be Yarning Along with Ginny and friends?!

I have been knitting like I've never knitted before this week, what with catching up with my year-round afghan blanket squares, the Rose Red hat that I showed you on Monday and I finished off a couple of socks that have been sitting around almost complete.  I've also finished another project - a cabled cushion cover for my autumnally themed living room.

Cable knitted cushion cover

The pattern was a free one - Aran Pillow - and I knit this up with some of the new Blue Faced Leicester Aran 100% British wool which is just a pleasure to work with.  Mine is in Sage green to coordinate with my living room.  You can find the sage and other colours of the Blue Faced Leicester Aran (and other things too) in my shop, where there's still a further 10% off for the rest of October with the code ILOVEWOOL
I'm really pleased with the cushion and am thinking about using cushion covers as a way to progress my skills by making samplers that can be useful for more than just dishcloths.

21st Century Boys

This week I have been reading 21st Century Boys by Sue Palmer (author of Toxic Childhood, which I have not yet read).  A bit of blurb from the back: Sue Palmer looks at boys' development from birth to adolescence, considering how we can help the next generation of young men grow up balanced, happy and able to contribute to society.

At a recent visit to Cameron's school for an awards assembly (not just academic awards) I was struck by how clear the divide was between those achieving and those not  - it was almost completely a gender split with the girls gaining recognition and the boys not.
I want to find out more about why that is happening and how I can help Cameron to make the best of his opportunities, particularly because we live in an area where outcomes for young people aren't great, even without the extra personal hurdles that he deals with.

I have been surprised to find that a lot of what Sue Palmer recommends (so far) are things that I'm already doing/have done and it's reassuring to read research that backs up what my instincts are telling me.
I'm also finding it interesting to see more and more research emerging about the effects of screen time etc. on children.
The book talks a lot about things like ADD and Aspergers but really addresses all boys.  

I'm not even half way through yet but I'm taking it slowly because I really want what's being said to sink in but I already highly recommend it.  I'm going to seek out Toxic Childhood when I've finished this one.

What are you knitting and/or reading this week?


33 comments:

  1. I didn't know it was wool week. I'm knitting a pair of socks (surprise surprise) and have just finished a lacy cardigan, tho I may undo the cast-off and redo it with a stretchier one to make it hang better. Starting a lovely lacey shawl on 1st November as part of a pennies per hour of pleasure project for Medecins sans Frontier.

    I read a Sue Palmer book many years ago (when we had Asa, who was 20 last week). May revisit it to see whether I actually put into practice those things I thought I ought.

    Lesley

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  2. I didn't know it was wool week. I'm knitting a pair of socks (surprise surprise) and have just finished a lacy cardigan, tho I may undo the cast-off and redo it with a stretchier one to make it hang better. Starting a lovely lacey shawl on 1st November as part of a pennies per hour of pleasure project for Medecins sans Frontier.

    I read a Sue Palmer book many years ago (when we had Asa, who was 20 last week). May revisit it to see whether I actually put into practice those things I thought I ought.

    Lesley

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    1. That sounds like a lot of knitting, Lesley! I didn't know that Sue Palmer had been writing that long.

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  3. The book sounds interesting. My son did get achievement awards and was in a sea of girls as he stood on stage. I thought about it but never investigated. The aran pillow is fantastic! Great stitch definition.

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  4. Your cushion is gorgeous sounds like it was great project. I can recommend Toxic Childhood I read it some time ago and it is a a good read, would also recommend Set Free Childhood by Martin Large which is similar. I have copies of both if you would like to borrow? 21st Century Boys sounds like a good read too thank you for sharing I will put it on my wish list.

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    1. I too was going to offer a copy of toxic childhood to read, am sure I have it kicking about on the upstairs bookshelf somewhere.
      I will look out the Martin Large one :-)

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    2. Thanks so much for the book offers, ladies! I will look out for the Martin Large one, too.

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  5. Your cushion is amazing. Thanks for the info on Wool Week, hadn't heard about that! See how much you learn from blog hopping ;)
    x

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  6. Will be adding that book to my wish list. I love the Aran wool cushion it looks very cosy.

    San x

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    1. Thank you, San - I hope you're enjoying your woolly parcel!

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  7. Beautiful cushion. Never heard of Wool Week, how very interesting.

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  8. Very handsome pillow cushion. Definitely need to order that book....thanks!

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  9. I've read 21st Century Boys, very good I thought. Like you a lot of it was what I planned to implement as and when it was appropriate to Isaac's age. Lovely cushion! I've had some granny square cushion covers planned for years!

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    1. Thanks, Sarah. I have a granny square project sat idly waiting for some attention, too :o/

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  10. how beautiful your cushion is, i think i need to make one too! love the sound of wool week, thank you for sharing!

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  11. I will check out the books you mention, as being the mother of a boy, it sure helps to know how to guide and develop these little sensitive souls. I found 'Raising Boys' by Steve Biddulph really good in this respect - worth a read. And I still have my eye on your shop with the intention of indulging myself in a new blanket...

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    1. I think I have read a few Steve Biddulph books and enjoyed them. I hope you like the one I suggested.

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  12. I need to finish one wrap and one cardigan that have only the tiniest bit of work required ... but I can't seem to find the enthusiasm. I'm reading I am Somewhere Else by Barbara Glasson. We have started a Messy Church and I'm interested to see how other non-inherited churches have developed.

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    1. Oh, I've never heard of a Messy Church - sounds very interesting!

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  13. That is a very, very pretty pillow! Beautiful color and pattern! Also took a peek at the hat and wrap you made and I must say they're lovely.

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  14. I've got a cardigan and a wrap both of which are a gnat's eyelash away from being complete but I can't work up the energy to get around to it. I'm reading I am Somewhere Else. We are just starting to set up our Messy Church and I'm interested in the development of alternatives to the inherited church.

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  15. It was same at my school, girls recieved more recognition awards than boys. I think Cameron will do well with you guiding him regardless of the enviroment, my school was the worst in the area so we werent expected to do well either, Im sure like others so often do he will transcend expected limitations, he might have hurdles but he's had a good head start with you :)

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  16. When a friend recommended 21st Century Boys I wasn't keen to read it as I had read Toxic Childhood previously and found it to be a repetitive mish mash of what many parenting authors have been saying for a long time. However, I was really pleasantly surprised by 21st Century Boys, and come to think of it, I may well go back to it during the longer winter nights ahead and read it again.

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    1. I haven't read Toxic Childhood yet so I'm intrigued to find out how different they are.

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  17. Wow, you are a great knitter! I'm inspired to get beyond hats and scarves!
    Found you from Clover, or was it someone else's blog. Can't remember now. ; )

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