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It's all about Suffolk

16:54 22 November 2011

It's all about Suffolk

It's all about Suffolk

Lesley enjoys a season of confused cacti and nifty knitters

Lesley enjoys a season of confused cacti and nifty knitters

My Christmascactus is alreadyin full flower andobviously rather confused and so am I!

Festive goodieshave already startedappearing in the shops alongwith woolly jumpers, wintercoats and boots and yet herewe are still having to cut thelawn. Mind you this mildweather is really good for thebills as Ive only switchedthe heating on a couple of times so far!

Autumn has seen new students headingoff to university or college leaving theirmums in mourning because the houses aresuddenly so quiet.

I have to admit thatIm used to being home alone in fact Ireally enjoy it but every so often Tom orJohn come back to make sure we dont gettoo comfortable.

Last month Tom payedus a fleeting visit on his way fromNewfoundland to Durham. He poppedby to collect his books and clothes for thenew term and I had to make sure I was onhand to tell him where I had hidden allhis belongings. Hidden is his phrase asfar as I am concerned Ive put his thingsaway!

He was with us for less than 12hours but after hed gone it felt as thougha mini tropical storm had passed through.

For the past few weeks on my afternoonshow I have been getting people to phoneme and tell me about their jobs. Ive hadsome fascinating conversations with,amongst others, a former Paralympicsarcher, an acoustic engineer, aBuckingham Palace guardsman and acrossword compiler!

I also heard a greatnew word from a lexicographer nonebrity, someone who is a celebrity fordoing absolutely nothing except forappearing on the front of newspapers!The question is of course, why do we havesuch a fascination withnonebrities when there aresuch amazing people livinghere in Suffolk?

Over thelast few weeks I have beengoing to a well-knownslimming club and severalof the members there havesome truly inspiring stories.

Graham is a middle-agedchap whose doctor told himto diet because he wasasthmatic and on the vergeof diabetes. Last week he got his certificatefor losing six stone now he spends mostof his time on the allotment and hisasthma has completely disappeared.

Margaret has lost four stone and changedher life. She didnt ever leave her housewhen she was overweight and couldnteven get on the bus. Now she loves goingout and regularly catches the bus toFelixstowe so she can visit her favouritewool shop. In fact she has set a trend bytaking her needles and wool to the club.

Have you noticed how knitting isbecoming more and more popular?Recently Ive spotted adverts for Knit andNatter events and even a Kniteratti andone place Ive been meaning to visit forages is Halfpenny Home in NeedhamMarket run by Nicola and Jacqui.

Ifollowed the signs to 3 Station Yard andas I opened the front door it felt likestepping through CS Lewis wardrobe intoa magical land. There were tables coveredin swatches of pretty material, potscontaining deliciousbuttons and I hadto duck underwashing linesdraped withbrightlycolouredskeins ofwool.

Nicola sources her materials fromall over so youre sure youll findsomething unique. Her latest yarn is achunky wool sprinkled with glitteryflowers I was very tempted.

Upstairs, the Wednesday knitting groupwere settling down to create anythingfrom scarves to pullovers. They pay a fiverfor the workshop and get advice, tea andcake in return. They do all sorts includingfelting, crocheting, patchworking andrecently even ended up dying their ownwool with woad.

The knitters I met wereat all standards, from a total beginner to atextile artist. Nicola gets her first timers toknit a dinky little tea cosy rather like theone my mum used to own, but you knowyouve really mastered the craft when youcan turn a heel and make a pair of socks.Now theres an idea for Marks Christmaspresent!

Are you a keen knitter?What has been your mostambitious project?


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