January is over, which means I’ve completed approximately one twelfth of my temperature blanket, excluding the final border. I plan to note highlights from my temperature blanket each month so I have details to look back on in future years.

The weather, temperatures and a massive ear-worm of a song have been ever present in my mind throughout the month. I thought checking temperatures every day would be a chore, but I’ve found one of the unexpected side-effects of making a temperature blanket is a deeper connection to my natural world. Something I am really enjoying and appreciating. I am more tuned into weather conditions every day, anticipating in advance whether temperatures are likely to rise or fall over the coming days.

Fun fact: ‘January’ – the song that has been plaguing me all month – was by a Scottish band called Pilot. It reached No.1 in the charts in 1975, staying there for three weeks. I was a toddler living in a remote part of Zimbabwe, so I assume this song entered my consciousness via dances at the mine club, only to re-emerge now, in January, decades later while I’m living in Scotland working on a temperature blanket. Incredible, that. If you read through to the very end of this post you will be rewarded by a rendition of ‘January’ being sung by Pilot on Top of The Pops, and then you too can enjoy this mahoosive ear-worm.

January highlights

1-7 January

Each month in my blanket will be marked with a blank hexagon using our chosen joining colour: Scheepjes Colour Crafter DK ‘Hasselt’. Around the 5th January the weather started to turn cold, very cold, reaching a low of -7C which lasted for two days through the 6th and 7th, before warming up again (relatively, speaking) . The two dark blue centres in the hexagons in Image 3 are Stylecraft ‘Aster’ (-6C) and Scheepjes Colour Crafter DK ‘Geerardsbergen’ (-7C) .

15 January

This is my favourite hexagon for the whole month. The 15th of January created this little beauty made up (from the centre outwards):

  • -6C : Stylecraft Special DK ‘Aster ‘
  • -1C : Yarnsmiths Create DK ‘Light turquoise’
  • -3C : Stylecraft Special DK ‘Turquoise’

It has really made me want to do a project where these sort of colours dominate.

17 – 18 January

In the run up to the 17th and 18th January the news was full of warnings about the imminent arrival of Storm Isha. Storm Isha certainly made its presence felt: airports were closed, flights re-routed to Europe, and we had a large tree in our garden uprooted. The two coldest days of the month occurred on the 17th and 18th January, with Stylecraft Special DK ‘Lavender’ representing a minimum of -9C on both days.

19 January

The first birthday in our extended family. Everyone from the northern hemisphere side of the family will have their birthdays marked with Scheepjes Colour Crafter DK ‘Geraardbergen’. My first attempt to mark the day was by using surface crochet, but this looked too heavy. So I took scissors to it and cut it out (recording the process on Instagram in my most viewed reel ever) and replaced it with the reverse side of surface crochet, which leaves a thinner line. I’m still not sure of the effect, so I will probably experiment with a different method before I join February hexagons into the blanket.

26 January

This was a weird day, although it looks just like others. On the 26th, the maximum of 11C for the whole day happened at 00:30 – bang in the middle of the night, a time when you expect the lower temperatures to be being recorded. From there it dropped to 10C at 1am, 9C at 1:30am, and then a full 3 degrees to 6C at 2am. 3 degrees in half an hour. From then on the fall in temperatures was steady, reaching 1C at 8am and a maximum of 7C during daylight hours. By midday the temperature had climbed back to 7C. I only know this detail because our weather station records data every 30minutes, otherwise I’d probably have assumed the high temperature was recorded during daylight hours.

Finally, that ear-worm

You’re very welcome.

Pilot, on Top of the Pops 1975

[Chorus 1]
Sick and tired, you’ve been hanging on me
You make me sad with your eyes
You’re telling me lies
Don’t go, don’t go

[Chorus 2]
Don’t be cold, don’t be angry to me
You make me sad, come and see
Oh, January
Don’t go, don’t go

[Verse 1]
Life gets me higher (Higher)
I can show, I can glow
I can wake up the world, little world
Gotta know you, gotta show you

[Verse 2]
Sun, like a fire (Fire)
Carry on, don’t be gone
Bring me out of my home sweet home
Gotta know me, gotta show me
You’ve been facing the world
You’ve been chasing the world