I’ve noticed a pronounced drop in the number of spam comments since updating the blog, which is a welcome relief as these had been rocketing over the past few months. I’d noticed that the comments were usually on my older posts so as part of my update I’m closing all posts for comments after seven days. If this alone is the reason for the sudden drop in items caught by the WordPress spam filter then I can highly recommend it to other bloggers.

Whilst I’m considering this a win, I have to admit things have been slightly less rosy with my knitting. After working 20 more rows with the biscuity shade in my sock wool and still not being on the coloured section, it appeared that the leg was going to go on forever. I didn’t want that, so I ripped back to the end of the ribbing and snipped the wool so now the patterning starts immediately after the ribbed cuff. I’m glad I did it because I’m a big fan of how it looks now.

This isn’t the only change to the items on my needles. My secret project is once more a large ball of yarn and I am scouring my pattern books looking for the item I should turn it into. Much as I like the pattern I was following, it was turning out to be enormous. You could have camped in it. I don’t think anyone I know would be pleased to receive a hand-knitted yurt, although if I was to produce such an item I would like it to be in the colours of this particular yarn. It’s not a failure so much as a lesson learned.

Now let’s talk journals. I finished the Spark notebook on Friday 16th July so it covered two and a half months of my life. I was enjoying the paper a lot by the end; changing to that Gulf Blue ink really made the world of difference. I’ve moved straight on to a fresh notebook and this time it’s from the Stamford Notebook Company who I’ve written about on previous occasions. They produced the diary insert I’m using in my Filofax and I’ve been impressed with the quality of their products. The books are pretty comparable in that both contain 80 sheets of 210 x 130mm paper. The Inspired Stories (Spark) notebook was hardback and covered with a very tactile fabric printed with the stars and my word of the year. I’m not yet at the point where I can afford one of the hard-bound journals from Stamford Notebook Company so I chose the soft-cover refill designed for their leather notebook cover instead.

I decorated the front page of the new journal with another Neil Diamond quote (clearly it’s the year of Neil Diamond lyrics) together with washi tape and washi stickers from the Note and Wish web shop. The “Be Happy” sticker is from Filofax and I’m fine with the fact that it doesn’t strictly match the other pieces I’ve used on the page. The quote is written using the Namisu fountain pen filled with Graf von Faber-Castell’s Cobalt Blue ink. It’s taking me a little time to accustom myself to the fact the pen doesn’t have the Gulf Blue in it any more, but I’m prepared to let you into a secret – I have two new packs of Gulf Blue cartridges sitting on my desk so it’s only a matter of time before my dream team is reunited. In fact, I’m using the Namisu for all of my writing at the moment just so I can power on through the ink my grandson chose and get back to the ink of my dreams.

So there it is, my new journal up and running and keeping me company until the autumn. It will be interesting to see what I opt for next. My money is on one of the  Buckram covered notebooks by Stamford Notebook Company, but if I knew in advance what I was likely to do next, the world would be a very boring place.

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