Sour and sweet: 5 things 27.2.2017

1. The children are being fairly horrible to each other, and sometimes to me, which I'm convinced is a direct reflection of my failings as a mother. Not enough attention? Not enough discipline? Too much indulgence? Too much TV? Too much of my own grumpiness? The mere fact that there are so many possible causes is itself an indictment. (You don't have to tell me it's not my fault, I know I wouldn't stand for any other mother giving herself grief like this, but you still can't convince me I'm wrong. Lovely neighbour's kids are perfectly lovely to each other. So that proves it.) It's making me utterly miserable. Feel sure I should be able to find the magic trick to nip it in the bud every time they start up with each other, but I never can, it just becomes a three-way fight instead of two-way.

2. Went to knitting club yesterday and had a little trouble figuring out what I actually wanted to knit on. Fair to say I don't have my mojo back. But that's okay - one doesn't have to be fired up all the time. In fact, I'm starting to get almost excited about clearing away my WIPs, without the distraction of shiny new things.

3. We've enjoyed a couple of days of beautiful sunshine this week, and I even went out without a jacket once. The environmentalist in me is worried, but the rest of me is just grateful to feel sun on my skin again.

4. I spent the weekend helping someone prepare a booklet of beautiful knitting patterns for Edinburgh, and it made me so happy. I enjoy layout and editing so much. Applying those skills to knitting, and working with a client who trusts me? Perfect.

5. I've had fun playing along with the #yarnlovechallenge on Instagram this month. Sometimes I slacked off a bit - my pics weren't necessarily creative or great quality – but I did post every single day (so far; two still to go), which I'm proud of. As ever, I was terrible at predicting what posts people would respond to. Now there's a new challenge next month, from New Zealand designer Aroha Knits: #transformyouryarn. I feel a little exhausted just looking at the prompts. They skew significantly more woo than the Yarn Love Challenge and repeat a few of the more difficult ones (gratitude, community etc). All things I can write about plenty, but photos? Hm. But I guess that's why they call it a challenge, right?!

Nos 8 & 9 of #52recipes: grapefruit cake and carrot miso soup. (Are you bored of Smitten Kitchen yet? I'm not, see, so... get used to it!) Both were of course good, although the kids are still convinced they hate soup. Told Dude, "You like carrots, and this is just carrots," which was enough to get him to eat the three spoons in his bowl. But that's all.