22 April, 2015

Fayoum Girl Schools

Apache has built and run, 201 Schools 
between Fayoum, Giza and Minya, in Egypt..

Some of them also founded by employees. 
A small handful of people are responsible 
for maintanance and follow-ups, 
with regular visits every week. 
They try to visit each school 
about three times a year.
Visit the Springboard organization, here.

These schools has one classroom, 
where students of several ages 
are divided to study with their own grade level, 
by sitting in smaller groups. 

The area has public schools, 
however, the custom here is 
that boys attend these schools, 
that is often a good walk from home. 
Because of this distance, 
girls are kept closer to home, 
for protection. 

The girl schools are often right inside the village, 
and gives an opportunity for them to attend. 
The ones I visited had 1 to 3 teachers. 
Possibly from the village, 
some of them often bringing their own, 
young, children. 
These girls are a delight, 
sweet, beautiful and eager to learn.
I consider myself very lucky 
to be able to visit some of these schools. 
About once a week, 
a small group is traveling to visit with the girls. 
We have brought water color 
(brought water too, 
- some schools have no running water) 
paper and plastic cups for painting, 
card games, Jenga, 

Twister, beads, 

and what ever else we thought 
they would like to play with. 
The girls has welcomed us with songs,
 role-play and acting. 
Although the language spoken is Arabic, 
we have been communicating 
with single Arabic words (one pick up a few) 
and hand gestures. 
They all know how to count to ten in English, 
and also words like welcome, and bye bye. 
Each time we have visited about 3 schools.
We had so much fun playing with them, 
and I look forward to next time already.

Since some of the schools 
are located in rural areas, 
roads are not always in the most perfect conditions. 
Even a 4- wheel drive land-rover is challenged 
when the road (track) is not wide enough.

I have so far only gone with them to Fayoum,
This is an area south west of Cairo, 
 in the Sahara desert. 
Water is channeled from the Nile, 
and make it possible to farm. 
Life goes on along the channels, 
so passing through an early morning, 
women are cleaning dishes, 
and washing clothes,
kids are swimming, men fishing, 
and animals drinking from the stream. 
Life seams peaceful, 
and the stress of city life is basically none existent. 
In many ways the impression one gets, 
is being back in time,
although some technical items have found their way. 
It is not uncommon to meet a farmer 
riding his donkey, 
as he is talking on his cellular phone. 
I love the people here,
very friendly and welcoming,
waving and smiling.
I am sure we look very strange to them,
having a totally different picture of "normal"
then we do.
A good opportunity to learn about eachother.
Have a nice day!

23 March, 2015

No - Buddy dog sweater

So our daughters mixed breed dog,
is moving far north,
heading for a life 
with long winter months.

He is a bundle of energy and joy,
and gets into trouble about every 5 minutes, 
so his name more often sounds like 

Since we were lucky
to get to babysit him 
for a few months,
(They blame me for spoiling him,
but how could I not! 
Look at him, he is so cute!)
the opportunity was there
to make him one,
so he is well prepared.

I would try it on
and he would basically freeze 
in position,
feeling a bit uncomfortable
I assume...

But moving from Texas
to the most northern US state,
leaves no room for
sweater hesitation,
sorry Buddy! 

22 February, 2015

Sweater from Sandnes Garn

This sweater pattern is from Sandnes Garn,
found in one of their discontinued catalogs.

As far as I know
it is only written in Norwegian,
but I might be wrong.

The catalog can be found on their web-page.
Look for it a bit down
in the middle of the page.
Name of catalog: Til Fjells #0411
Pattern number 23

I struggled just a little bit
with the sleeve stitch amount.
The pattern suggested a huge increase
following the ribbing.

I assume that since the pattern is dated,
wider sleeves was the style back then.
 I increased 14 more stitches instead of 32.

Running out of yarn
My second issue was
- running out of the main dark grey color.
Body was done,
and only one sleeve was done.
Several cm left on the second sleeve...

No skeins left in the LYS,
and I was heading out of the country 
the next day.
One of two options,
give up or be creative!

I unraveled down 
past the stranded pattern on top,
devided the last yards of grey 
between the 2 sleeves,
and added some pattern rows
to the top of the sleeves.
It worked for me....

Attaching the sleeves

Sleeves was attached
with invisible horizontal seam,
from the right side.

Following the instructions on this
might be helpful.

On the sleeve side of the seam,
- stitch as on the video above,
and on the sweater side of the seam,
(in a straight vertical line)
grab the bar between the stitches.

Neck shaping
 Many patterns suggest working
back and forth a given numbers of rows,
as you approch the very top
of the sweater, to form either
a front or a neck shape.

In this case the sweater was worked
straight to the top,
no neck bind-off or decreases.
The neck shape was formed
using contrast color yarn and 
a tapetsry needle.
Then steeked and cut as for 
the front closure and sleeve openings.

The increase method
 at the front part of the collar
was also changed.
 The pattern suggested a 1 stitch increase
on each side every 2 cm.
As the color is worked back and forth
in k2, p2, these increase stitches
were to be worked 
in a continuation of the k2, p2,
ribbing pattern.

It would in my mind be very visible 
right at the front of the sweater,
So I decided to increase
in the purl stitch columns
closest to each side of the collar,
 from 2 to 3 purl stitches for the first increase.

Next increase was done the same way,
but in the next purl stitch column
in from each side.
Third increase in the third column,
and so on.

Last little detail,
was hiding the steek stitches.

Some patterns include how to
work a knit lining of the raw, cut edges.
This pattern did not.

Since low on extra yarn was an issue,
I basically handstitched
a strip of fabric for protection,
and visibility of, the other wise,
quite ugly edges.

Hope this was helpful...
Have a nice day!