Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Ten On Tuesday- 10 Things You Like To Do Outside

Outside- well, I won't be doing too much outside, because I just took this picture:
At least the snow is wet, but the past few days have been over 20C, so it's a huge change.

To the list-

1. I like to knit outside.
2. I like eating outdoors, like on a patio or barbeque. In the shade.
3. I like watering the garden in the morning.
4. Walking around the neighborhood after dinner.
5. Swimming- don't do so much of that.
6. I like to schmooze around antique fairs.
7. Sit near the water, usually up north.
8. I like watching boats- not being IN the boat but looking at them.
9. Farmers markets on a Saturday.
10. I think I will try combing fleece outside this year.

That's about it.  I really have to stay out of the sun, and I don't really like hot and humid, but I love a warm and windy day.

 I am working on a pair of socks, among other things. This is Hazelknits, in Chuckanut Drive. I've had it in my stash since forever.
A very bunny-ish cross stitch.  Love rabbits.

Some clean kittens......

...and a sleepy squirrel.

Fleece out and may all your Easter baskets be filled.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Ten On Tuesday- and Birthday Week

The Ten On Tuesday was  "10 Foods That Belong Together"- I like food.
I got this cookie from my sister- it's her birthday week too!

1. Baked ham and scalloped potatoes.
2. Toasted tomato sandwich with MAYO.
3. Grilled cheese with ketchup OR zucchini relish.
4. Potato pancakes with sour cream.
5. Rye toast and poached eggs.
6. Tomato soup and saltines.
7. Steak with ketchup (I know, I know....)
8. Waffles and ice cream.
9. Fish and chips- malt vinegar.
10. Howard says he likes kitty kitty kibble with a side of cat treats.
Tino could not be reached for comment at this time.
 My sister got me this great t-shirt.  Notice the mousie swimming at the top.

Miss Mew is working with a local cat rescue, and we are knitting washcloths and making soaps for their fundraiser.
I gifted myself this Emma Bridgewater mug from Say Tea- my favorite store.
I made this Biscornu with rabbits-

Whole lotta critters going on.  Have a fab and furry week.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

No Foolin', It's April

I don't have much to show in the way of finished projects. I've been faffing (don't you love that word?) around with a few things.  The weather is finally getting warmer, and the garden clean up is calling to me.

I'm not ready.  This bear still wants to be in the warm den.  April always bites me in the behind. I decided this year that I would do some things that are out of my comfort zone, so I am going to new places, meeting new people, and trying new things.  April is also birthday month, which, depending on how you look at it, can be cause for celebration, or a bit of a breakdown.  I think it's important to mark special days in some significant way, so I'm having a filling replaced.  THAT will certainly be memorable.

My friend and I visited Dundas Park Kitchen. I had read a review in the paper, and rather than just read about places, I am actually going to go to them.  They are open for lunch and dinner during the week, and it was really good. The galettes looked incredible, but I had the special sandwich.

Miss Mew and I went to Markham Fairgrounds on Saturday to a cosmetic warehouse sale. It was invitation only, and we had a great time.  Alot of lining up, but what price beauty?  I scored some MAC lipglass and a few other goodies. After all that, we went out for some eggs benny- so all in all, a great Saturday. (is anyone noticing that good times mostly involve food?)

The Great British Sewing Bee

Season Two, has begun.  I don't know anyone who has seen this, that doesn't love it. Could it be because of this judge, Patrick?  A Savile row tailor, who looks incredible in his bespoke suits?  Or the policeman who sews for his daughters?  My bet this time is on Linda, who is incredibly sweet, and skilled- but you know, Chinelo- who doesn't use commercial patterns is very talented, so maybe. Heather, she of the pindog, is pretty good too.
I don't care who wins, as long as they show more Patrick.

I hope to do some spinning today, as well as some sewing this week. The ironic thing is that I am the type who can't work when things are untidy, but when I'm in the throes of a project things inevitably get messy.  I have cleaned off my sewing table and organized my supplies- so we're off to a good start.

Plan something special for April- Spring is here!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Ten On Tuesday- 10 Things Others Could Do, But Don't

This is a bit of a loaded subject with me. I am always rabbiting on about why I am doing certain things, when others aren't.  Probably because a) I'm better at it, b) I'm the one who wants it done, or c) if I have to ask, then it's not worth it. So, I am a shrew. A ranting shrew.

1. Vacuuming.  Alex used to do it, but he doesn't. So I do it. And you know, I really don't want to.  We have wall to wall in the basement, and just an area rug upstairs. But you have to do the sofas and ceiling cobwebs.
2. Weeding the garden. I can handle it, but I hate those ones that grow in the patio cracks, and I won't use weed killer. I've heard boiling water kills them.
3. Cooking. Why am I doing it?  I don't want to.
4. Grocery shopping. Mainly because if I send anyone else, we spend double.
5. Putting away clothes. I stopped doing it. Hey, I wash, fold and/or iron them, they can do the rest.
6. I match FC's ties with his shirts, and place them on the side of which pants go with them. 
7. Any gift shopping, I decide what, how much, and then usually shop for it, unless it's computer or car related.
8. Decorating. Because the alternative would be worse.  Our theme would be "Early Italian Ghetto"
9. Going shoe shopping with FC. Pure torture.
10. Purchasing underwear. See number 9.

We had a doozy of a snow storm last week, and a few milder days.  I don't mind if it rains, as long as it is warm out.  The snow was everywhere, and heavy, and there was nowhere to put it. It's almost all melted now, but the trees are bare nekkid.

 I have finished my Selbuvotter mittens.  I'm happy with them.

Alex was playing with the cats (rustling their jimmies- as he puts it).  I like these pics, it shows their personalities.

Fleece out, until next time.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Ten On Tuesday- 10 Things You Get Others to Do

The 10 on Tuesday was a little complex, so I narrowed it down.

1. FC cleans the litterbox.  He just does.
2. FC takes out the garbage and recycle.
3. Alot of the time, I don't put gas in my car, the guys do it.  I can,  I just sometimes don't.
4. FC and Alex barbeque.  It's a guy thing.
5. The guys also cut grass, although I do shovel snow. I pull the weeds and do the gardening.
6. If there is a toilet issue, FC takes care of it.  I clean it, but I don't unclog it.
7. Once, we had critters. FC proved to be an excellent mouser.  He would check the kill in the garage every day.
8. I don't pay any attention to eavestroughs (gutters)- I don't climb ladders or get up on the roof.
9. I get my daughter to touch up my haircolour- she's good at it,
10. Anything on the computer that goes wonky, the tech support here handles it.  Computers don't really interest me that much.

So there. In case you're wondering if there is anything I actually do- I can supply a list.  I could take care of most of that (except perhaps the toilet)- but hey, I don't.

In exciting wonderful other news, there are kittens. Not my kittens, Miss Mew has a mommy and her 6 kittens she is fostering.

There are 3 boys and 3 girls- all but one gray and white. They have the tiniest little tails, you could just elope with them.  The rescue she works with are amazing people, so dedicated and finds wonderful homes for them.

On Saturday I went downtown with my sister and Miss Mew and I saw these t-shirts. I got one for Alex and one of his buddies. This should up their street cred no end.
And in knitting news, I am working on some Norwegian Mittens from the Selbuvotter book.  This is Rauma Finullgarn, a truly amazing yarn.

So that's all I have today. Spring is definitely coming. I'm just not sure I'm ready to come out of hibernation yet.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Ten On Tuesday "I Feel"

The Ten on Tuesday is to complete 10 sentences beginning with " I Feel"- this should be good for a few laughs.

1. I feel- cold, because it is really cold again outside.
2. I feel- crummy, because I have had a dry cough since forever- 3 weeks?
3. I feel- happy, because I get to spend time outdoors with my family, walking in the park.
4. I feel- better, because I'm not eating after dinner.
5. I feel- hopeful, because warm weather is coming, but I am mindful to enjoy the seasons, even winter.
6. I feel- inspired, because I have alot of creative projects on the needles, wheel, etc.
Some sparkly roving that I'm spinning from Tintagel Farm. Sparkly sparkleness-
7. I am proud that both of the beansprouts are doing well in their jobs, and are successful. Miss Mew got a new job at a larger firm, and is on to bigger and better things. She's a hard worker.
8. I am astonished at how much time and money I spend in the grocery store.
9. I am lucky I have the partner, and friends that I have.
10. I am glad that this is the last sentence.

On Saturday, Miss Mew and I hopped on the subway and went to Honest Ed's.  This is a Toronto landmark, aka Edwards of Bloor.  The last time I was in there had to be 30 years ago, and I am not kidding when I tell you it has not changed one bit.  It is unbelievable what they still sell in there.  We had a blast.  Unfortunately, the store has been sold and will be closing down, but while it is still there, I wanted to visit again.  Ed Mirvish was a great man, and a great Torontonian.

In knitting news I am working on some new designs, and feeling the love again. 
The squirrels are out- tons of them.  Signs of spring.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Ten On Tuesday- Love, Love, Love

Todays topic, in view of upcoming Valentine's Day is 10 Favorite things that are red.

1. Cherries (thanks Nicole)
2. Lipstick (my favorite MAC "Baby's On Fire") which is discontinued.  It has sparkles in it.
3. My new Hunter Boot socks are red.
4. Pomegranates.
5. Beets (purply-red)
6. My daughter's favourite colour is red.
7. FC's truck (NOT my favorite vehicle or colour)
O.P.I. Nail polish- "The Show Must Go On"- shimmery red sparkly!
9. Red Amaryllis
10. Dorothy's Red Shoes in The Wizard of Oz (sparkly!)

I don't personally wear alot of red, or indeed have it in my house. But in the right amounts, and if it's sparkly, I like it.

I am down with a mild chest infection (congestione) so am pretty much schlepping around, watching Judge Judy and Doctor Phil.  A sad state of affairs.
But I did finish my Fair Isle Cap, using the J&S Shetland Heritage yarn. It's finer than Jumpwe Weight, but you get clear patterning, as it isn't as hairy.  This is one of those caps that fold into itself so you have 4 layers over your ears.

The kittens wish you a lovely Valentine's day, especially Valentino. I'm not sure if he came to the foster home on Valentine's but we kept his name, because he suits it.


Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Ten On Tuesday- 10 Things I Like About Winter

Like my blogbuddy Bridget, I love winter. I think that's because in the past few years, I'm really not liking summer at all. We get days of brutal humidity, and the heat is intense, and I am not into it.  I end up sitting inside until after dinner, when I can go and walk.  So, what is the point.  I am fair skinned and it just doesn't agree with me.

So why is winter great?  Here ya go:

1. It's cold. No perspiration.
2. I'm a knitter- we live for this.
3. I'm now a spinner- don't need an excuse to be indoors.
4. Tea.  I drink tea in the summer, but it tastes better in the cold weather.
5. I get to wear my moccasins.  I love my moccasins.
6. My men's worksocks- which I even wear with my skirts. It's a look, you know.
7. Outdoors looks so pretty covered in snow.
Here is a pic of the backyard this morning.  No tracks in the snow. We've had alot of snow this winter.
8. Getting in bed, under the flannels, and reading a great book.
9. I love soup, especially homemade.  Nothing like coming home and having some homemade soup.
10. My fireplace. It's gas, but I love it. It's so warm.

I could have probably listed more than 10. I am looking forward to some of the Sochi Winter games, especially the ice skating.

I have a FO.  I thought it would be interesting to check out Craftsy, and chose the squirrel sweater.  I am not a fan of the yarn, but I was more interested in the techniques, how they are presented, and Amy Detjen is a Meg Swansen/EZ scholar, so they are very technique oriented.  And it's a good class- Amy is a very engaging teacher, funny, and explains and demonstrates well.

I knew I wouldn't be happy, because I didn't like the recommended yarn from the start, so it wasn't so much about the finished product.  I did make a few alterations, but well, here's what it looks like.
The neckline is baggy. I may fix it. I may not.  Once I'm done with a project, I'm done.  I think I'm done like dinner on this.  But my short-row technique has improved, I enjoyed the stranded yoke, and all-in-all, I got what I paid for.  Onward to something I am totally stoked about:
A while back, Jamieson & Smith aka The Wool Brokers came out with Shetland Heritage.  Recreating the natural dyed colours of classic Shetland yarns, this is very exciting. It is slightly finer than the jumper weight, so I decided to try one of the kits for a hat inspired by one in the collection of the Shetland History Museum.  It seems to be much softer as well, and lovely to work with.  Love it.
I have plans to make some accessories for Twisted Traditions, and it has been a problem finding some hand mannequins that didn't creep me out.  These are fabulous- made of light wood and totally poseable- and come in different sizes.  I think they look fab on their own, but also useful. You can get them from this amazing seller, where else, on Etsy.

So let's see, I have some wonderful upcoming projects for this year, spinning fiber, my fireplace, tea, and snow outside.  Life is pretty good.

And the kittens, let's not forget the kittens. Howard is doing his kittyloaf impression.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Every Picture Tells A Story

Hey.  How are you?  I've been hibernating a little, because it's been really snowy and cold.  I did, however, go for a long walk with the daughter, niece and sister last Sunday, and that was fun, but man, was it icy. I'm lucky I didn't go ass over teakettle. Went to the gallery and saw a new exhibit- Mary Pratt.
My niece brought some yellow tulips over on Saturday.  I love how they look in my Burleigh milk jug. I was never a yellow person at all, but now I love it.

How is 2014 going so far?  I feel a shift towards better times, a happier sort of year. I realize it's a bit early in the game to decide this, but 2013 was a bit of a washout, and while change is hard, it is also good.  I am going to keep that positive thought. Most people on my radar are moving toward positive things.

On the knitting front, I have been inspired.  I have a few new things in the works, and am working on finishing up a few WIP's- (cough) like the squirrel sweater from hell.  I hope it works out, but most patterns and projects are a leap of faith, aren't they? 

Lately, I have re-acquainted myself with my beloved Shetland yarns.  And even spinning some, as for some reason I haven't worked much with it.  I know alot of people think Shetland is scratchy, and yes, it can be.  But I have been knitting with it for years, and it is wonderful.  It has body, takes colour well and wears beautifully. It is my favorite yarn to work with.  I'm having a lovely time spinning some laceweight on Mr. Reeves-
And I finished a boatload of Three Waters Farm BFL- the colour is "The Gloaming", browns, deep purples and hot pink. Marvellous.
1322 yards will be a sweater, one fine day.

The kittens. Oh, the kittens. Howard is wonderful, just a little gem of a cat.  Valentino, well, is a bit of an unruly teenager at the moment.  I wrapped them in the Cat-In-The-Hat blanket and they stayed there for most of the afternoon. 

Animals make me laugh.  Fleece out, until next time.

Friday, January 3, 2014

Hold the Hallmarks

We were together,
I forget the rest.

Walt Whitman

I subscribe to a money e-mail, Smart Cookies (this will take you to an Instagram link), and while I am not a person who thinks romantically about my life, and don't anyone ever dare give me a Hallmark sucky card, I have been thinking about the subject of resolutions, and why we make them.

Basically, money and fitness are the two subjects that are the biggest.  But change is hard, isn't it?  So maybe I need to think in terms of "feel good factor"- the things that make me feel good or accomplished and look at it from that angle. 

I sure hope that I am realistic enough to know that I will never be "rich" in terms of money, but money is a means to an end.  If I have a roof over my head, food and friends and family to share things with, then I am rich.  I won't deny that nice clothes and a car and enough craft supplies to sink a barge aren't nice to have, but they aren't necessary.  It is amazing how the things we thought we couldn't do without, are really, superfluous. 

It comes down to choices, and I am the first to admit that I can be compulsive when it comes to money. I hope I have reached a point where I can decide, based on how it makes me feel, to spend on something or not.

Sure, purchasing that new pair of shoes that I didn't need may give me a high for about an hour, but in the long term, no.  My big weakness is new yarn and new fiber.  Internet shopping.  It's too damned easy.  And by the time it arrives, the thrill is long over.

And it can all be justified. "It was such a good deal!"
                                          "It's only available for a limited time!"
                                          "I'll NEED that, it was on SALE!"

Sucker, thy name is Lorraine. We don't really want the things, we want what they represent.

When my spending is out of control, I know I am not in a good place.  I am going to make the changes.
Because when the bill comes at the end of the month, it doesn't make me feel good.

I am going to ask "how is this making you feel?"

As long as you aren't hurting others, do what gives you a sense of peace and accomplishment.  Because your feelings are what is important.

The only person you need to impress favourably in this life is yourself.