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Sunday, December 31, 2006

Happy Birthday Rhea!

Fifteen years ago Jim and I welcomed our first child into the world.
We fell in love immediately with our beautiful little girl!



Now she is 15 and she is no longer little. She has grown into a lovely young lady. She is caring and giving. She is strong and sensitive. She is smart and silly. She is creative and inquisitive. She is quite simply as amazing as she was 15 years ago!

Happy Birthday Sweetie!


No knitting content today so I give you a Trumpeter Swan that Jim saw swimming in the Whitby harbour this week.



Happy New Year everybody!

Friday, December 29, 2006

Christmas Completion!

Look what I got for Christmas!



One of Kessie's hiding spots this year was under the tree hiding behind all the presents. She also enjoyed "burying" her dog biscuits under the Xmas tree!

A good time was had by all in Windsor! We had lots of fun and food with lots of family!
My brother in law and his significant other hosted the dinner this year and the food was fabulous! For me it's not Xmas until you have turkey and all the fixin's. Kudos to Chef John!
Fun was had singing (I think that's what you call it) carols and Xmas songs together after dinner. I realized that I know the first few lines of any Christmas song! I could get the song started but then I had to leave it up to the rest of the "choir". Were we in tune? Most definitely not. Did we have fun? Yes!
On boxing day Judy came over the gift Rhea with her birthday present and to model the shawl and purse I made for her.


The purse is very hard to see in this picture.

There, close up on the purse. I made a big flower out of the shawl fabric as a purse adornment. The shawl is made from printed velvet. Enjoy it Judy!
Fun was had with her playing Mexican Train Dominos! Rhea won and we were all trying to copy her technique!

Now to prepare for Rhea's birthday on the 31st. She will be 15! Where does time go?

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Season's Greetings!




Well the count down is almost done. My gifts are all done!! A big sigh of relief... I hope you all are getting your gifts made on time for the big day!

We are off to visit family for a few days.

Merry Christmas to everybody! Relax and enjoy!

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Freakin' Out Here!!

Is it true??? Is Christmas really only 5 days away?? Achh!!

I am going to have to change course completely on one of my presents! I have been knitting, frogging, reknitting, refrogging but I just am not happy! I cannot make the item be what I want it to be!!! I admit defeat! So, as soon as the fabric stores open today, I am going to buy a length of something and sew. Pictures to be posted after Xmas!!

I have been busy with my 2 jobs (both of which I am enjoying) these past few weeks which means I have not been at the computer too often. I have been visiting sites but for the most part have not taken the time to even leave comments! But, I am thinking about all of you!

I have a bit of arthritis in my middle finger joints which is very achy these days. (do you think I may have flipped one too many people off???) I am going to try to find something to help with the achiness. Does any body else have arthritis in their hands? If so is there something you use that helps? What with knitting and, now, cutting fabric it seems to flare up often.

Right now my house looks like Christmas among the ruins. All I am doing about it is groaning and then trying to ignore!! Maybe tomorrow I'll clean??? Don't hold your breath!!

Hopefully pictures next time my friends!!

Friday, December 15, 2006

My Flower


I am a
Daffodil


What Flower
Are You?


And Daffys are one of my favorite flowers ! I can't wait for Spring!

Monday, December 11, 2006

Sewing & Knitting

Now that I have 2 part time jobs it is getting harder for me to finish my WIPs and take time to tell you all about them! I am taking some time to give you a brief update right now.

Charity Knitting...My Sorority Chapter is helping out a young single parent family this year so I knit 2 hats and 2 pair of mitts. Believe it or not these are the first pair of mittens I have knit since I was a teenager (way too long ago!). I had such difficulty then that it has taken me all this time to get around to it again. Now I am saying, "Hmmm...mittens are pretty easy!"



My Sorority chapter is having its Christmas dinner and gift exchange tomorrow evening. Guess what? I decided this morning that I wanted to make the stuffed Xmas trees to give to all the ladies! I saw them over at Suze's who got the pattern from little birds handmade. My what instant gratification (compared to knitting)!

This morning I cut out the shapes and started the production line.

All sewn after one bobbin change and ready for stuffing before 10 AM.

While watching Cityline I stuffed the trees.

Then after 11 AM I rousted myself and started a load of laundry, went to Swiss Chalet to hear Patrick's School band play and then have lunch, came home and knit some and then...I went to work.

Tonight after supper I sewed up the bottoms after putting some dried beans in the bottom of the trees for weight. Then I started embellishing with buttons. 8 are now completed. I only need to finish 4 or 5 more for tomorrow but I have another dozen ready to decorate!


Fun aren't they! A great way to use up some old Christmas fabric and odd buttons!

Hope you all had a marvelous Monday!

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Christmas meme

I found this meme over at Suze's.

Egg nog or hot chocolate?
OOh...eggnog with dark rum!

Does Father Christmas wrap presents or just set them under the tree?
Wrapped but beside the stockings.

Coloured lights on tree/house or white?
Red on the tree. Multicolour on the house and bushes.

Do you hang mistletoe?
Nope

When do you put up your decorations?
This year we started on Dec. 1st because I was having a family Xmas gift exchange on the 3rd. It is usually sometime during the first week of December but there is no official date.

What's your favourite Christmas dish?
The Christmas turkey dinner with stuffing, mashed potatoes, yams on a pineapple slice.

Favourite Christmas memory as a child?
Listening to A Child's Christmas in Wales (see last post)

When and how did you learn the truth about Father Christmas?
Do not remember. We always got prezzies from Santa even though we knew he was fictional.

Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve?
When I was a child I think that we did open one present on the eve. I remember doing it sometimes but I can't remember if it was always. I have allowed my children to open a present on Christmas eve if it seemed like the only thing that would calm them down.

How do you decorate your Christmas tree?
This year red lights and Santa decorations along with some that the children have made in the past.

Snow! Love it or dread it?
Love it on Christmas Morning. Other than that I can take it or leave it although I prefer the look of snow to the grey slush we usually end up with here.

Can you ice skate?
Yes but I haven't in many, many years.

Do you remember your favourite gift?
No, actually. That surprises me! We always got something that my Mom sewed for us and something that we probably asked for along with a few other small things but nothing that ever was extremely memorable. As an adult my DH got me knitting lessons one year and they changed my life!

What's the most important thing about Christmas for you?
Family and the idea of a day of peace.

What's your favourite Christmas dessert?
Plum pudding with hard sauce! Also love Nanaimo Bars and Shortbread cookies !

What's your favourite Christmas tradition?
Listening to Christmas music. But, I always loved a tradition that one of my cousin's family had. That was always leaving cookies and milk out for Santa on the eve. On Christmas morning there would be nothing but crumbs left, the milk all gone and a wisp of Santa's beard that got caught on the fireplace screen.

What tops your tree?
A lit angel.

Which do you prefer: giving or receiving?
Oh, both!

What's your favourite Christmas song?
Drummer Boy. Silent Night. Handel's Messiah, the whole thing!

Candy canes?
They are ok but not my favorite!

Now... I must get back to knitting!

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Christmas Memories

I have been trying to think about good things that I remember about Christmases as a child. So often I tend to focus on the more negative feelings surrounding it. I will have to explore why that is sometime. The happy things I can remember are eggnog with grenadine syrup in it (nice pink eggnog!), Xmas eve beside the fireplace and, mostly, listening to Dylan Thomas read A Child's Christmas in Wales.

We had a 45 RPM record that was always played on Christmas eve, at least I think it was Christmas eve. I remember that we all got nice and cozy in the livingroom, with the fireplace burning bright and all other sources of light off. We would all have a snack and an eggnog or other drink. And we would listen silently. Enraptured. The voice told the story of young boys and snowy Christmases past. Of fires and snowballs and cats and Uncles. It told of the excitement and the comfort of the day. It told of the look and the sound of the snow. And it told stories about some of the people in the town. My favorite part was always the singing of caroles and how bravely the young boys crept up to a large house to sing Good King Wenceslas. And then how "a small, dry voice".."a small dry, eggshell voice from the other side of the door" sang along. Then how the boys ran away. I still can imagine what that voice sounded like. I can still feel the tension and fear I felt as a child. But I also remember how I felt so sad for the poor lonely soul that was behind the keyhole. The boys had a warm and cozy house to go back to and the voice did not.

Yes, I think that will alway be my favorite memory of my childhood Christmases. I'd love to hear about yours!

I just got a call from Fabricland and I have a part time job!!

Now, on to knitting.....

I am knitting a stocking for raffle from Patond SWS - S0y Wool Stripes (70% wool, 30% Soya) colour 70530. I am following the pattern from Creative Knitting November 2006 except for I am knitting in just the one yarn and I am not sure I am going to put any snowflake embellishments on it. It is knit flat, seamed and then the heel and toe picked up and knit in the round. The instructions are a little hard to follow but after reading them several times I was able to understand them. To raffle it off I am going to put something inside the stocking. Any ideas?


This picture that follows is of one of my favorite Santas. I found him 2 years ago in a pharmacy and on sale real cheap after Christmas. His body is a ball of yarn and he is holding a pair of knitting needles. Could it be any more appropriate?


I also want to show you a snow man I knit many, many years ago. I have no pattern. I knit 2 balls, stuffed them and then attached them. Then knit a top hat and a scarf. I embroidered the face and sewed on the scarf and the hat. He comes out every winter to visit!



I cna't believe I just got a job at Fabricland! So I now have a part time position doing respite care and a job at Fabricland!! Things are looking good!

Saturday, December 02, 2006

I'm Awake!!

I have a problem.

I keep falling asleep.

While I am knitting.

I will be knitting away and suddenly I realize that I have been sitting and sleeping while half way through a stitch. I suppose I should be grateful that I have not dropped the stitch or the knitting. It is very frustrating! I need to get some projects done by tomorrow and because I keep falling asleep it is going very slowly. I suppose it doesn't help that beside me is this little girl!

I don't want to sleep while I am knitting. I used to have the same type of problem when I was in University. During lectures in big lecture halls I would often find myself nodding off while still taking notes. If only I was in Uni now! I would be recording the lectures! But...knitting is another thing. I can't take notes and transcribe immediately afterwards, I can't, somehow, have automatic sleep knitting that keeps the pattern and drops no stitches. I have tried. When I feel myself getting tired I think (erroneously) that I can just close my eyes and carry on knitting. (This works best when knitting in the round.) Eventually I wake up in mid stitch. I try to carry on 2 or 3 times after the first snooze but then I have to lay the knitting aside and have a nap.
I suppose that you are wondering why I don't get up and make a strong coffee and do some other things. I wonder that too! But, at the time sleep just seems the best thing to do!
I need some tricks. Some staying awake tools! I need to learn not to relax while knitting. Oh, ye of wakeful knitting habits! Share some of your secrets! Please!!


Saturday sky...We have sun!!! After 2 or 3 days of dismal rain we have sun!!
I took a few moments to sit in the corner of my couch and bask in it this morning!


Here are a few more of my Santas.


I thought this bowl of ornaments looked so good in the morning sun today! Almost like a bowl of jewels!
Now....

I have to clean this house!!! Company tomorrow!

I hope you too are enjoying the sun!

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Go Away Rain!

Part of today was spent preparing the house for Christmas. What else can you do when it is wet and dreary outside and you don't have a job and the next day is the first day of December? It never even seemed like full blown daytime at all today. Perhaps that accounts for my melancholy mood. Although I must say that I am getting really tired of waking up with a sinus headache or a migraine every morning!! It has to stop soon!

My DH and I have been collecting Santas for many years now. We used to be able to put all of them on the mantle but now we just have too many. So this is what our mantle looks like this year.



I'll get pictures of the 2 other locations we displayed our Santas soon.

We got our tree up last night and today the lights got put on and the decorations started. I had to restrain myself because I know the children like to put on decorations too. This year I am aiming for red and Santa ornaments only. We'll see how it goes. I have hung all my angel ornaments on the banister above my angel figurines. I'll have to take a picture of that too for you!


These are three of my knit, felted and beaded trees. The two smaller ones turned out really nice I thought. The large one was not felted because it is not wool and it bothers me that you can see the filling through the holes. Lesson learned. Use a tight knit when not felting the tree. I have them sitting on my coffee table. Unbreakable and cute!



Tomorrow and Saturday are going to be spent finishing up the presents for the family that is coming on Sunday as well as housecleaning! You'd think with all this time on my hands I'd be up on the housecleaning wouldn't you?

Tonight is Grey's Anatomy but I may not be watching until tomorrow because I have been invited to a jewellery party. Not sure if I am going to like anything but it is a chance to visit with a few neihbours.

Rain, Rain go away!! Santa's Reindeer want to play!!

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Did Some one Say Chicken?

May I present to you Santa and Mrs. Chicken! Such a hoot to knit! After I knit the green one I decided to make a Santa. Such cutenes belongs on Cuteness over load! The original green pattern is from the Toving book from Sandnesgarn. I used the Tove which is a felting wool but to me it doesn't felt the way I want it to. The purl ridges are still very prominent. I find it actually looks half felted. Other than that though I like the look of the sitting chickens.






I also like the ornament. which I have also done as a Santa.


Can you tell I am getting into the Christmas spirit?




Next time...Beaded knit and felted trees! Ah yes more Christmas fun!!

Friday, November 24, 2006

Knitting for Sale!



Really bad picture here but I put a black button as embellishment. Monika was asking what type of handle I was going to do. As you can see I did just a simple I-Cord handle. It was hiding in the last photo!

I am supposed to be joining a friend at a craft show tomorrow so I have finished all these purses to sell. All are felted except for the 2 little purple ones which are made out of linen yarn.


I also completed these scarves, Fetching gloves and kids hats. Now lets hope I actually sell some stuff! I think it is a small craft sale and I have no idea what to expect!


I have been knitting some chickens that I will show you as soon as I get them completed. They are felted and you all know how much I love felting things!! I should be finished tonight so hopefully you will get to see them tomorrow!

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Productivity

The last two days have been quite productive for me. Feels good being productive so it does.

Yesterday I got out some older FO's to wash and get ready to take to a craft sale on Saturday. While I was doing that I blocked my Meditation Shawl. I could not believe how much time it took to shape properly! If I am going to be doing many more shawls I need to get some blocking wires!! I laid everything out on my bed and prayed they were dry enough by bed time. They weren't quite but dry enough to move....not that I had much choice in the matter!

Kessie was a little put out because she did not have access to my pillow. Yes, mean Mommy, I closed the door.


And here is the finished result in the backyard. Do you think I should put a fringe on it?

It is interesting how the sun changes the grey so much isn't it? The first picture is more true to colour.

This is a purse I felted. I really, really like it! Done in Peer Gynt 100% wool and knit in the round. I decreased every 5th or 6th stitch at the top of the paler red band then knit till I felt done and then increased at every stich with a YO, knit 3 rows and cast off in a picot edge. Cast on 2 stitches, cast off 6 and repeat. It was very floppy before felting and I love how it ruffled! I think it needs a bit of embellishment but I haven't hit on anything in my stash of goodies yet. I was thinking maybe some black seed beeds scattered around the brim...Do you agree or do you have any better ideas?



Last night I went to see a family about doing some respite care for them. I think it is going to be a good type of job for me. I have to spend some time with the family first and get to know the young man a little bit but I have a good feeling about it. If it seems to work for me I will probably try to get some more placements.

I feel happy today! Do you think that maybe I made the right decision in leaving the daycare? Well...YA!

Monday, November 20, 2006

A Monkey and a Red Fox

I present another FO! The Sock Monkey Hat from Knitty. I altered it a bit for a bigger head (24") so I cast on 66 stitches and decreased accordingly.
It has been a long time since I have knit a hat and I forgot how quick they are to knit! I believe that there may be more hats knit for Christmas presents. I think this may be the only Sock Monkey I do...but maybe not!

My first Christmas present exchange will be on December 1st so I am trying to get all the knitting done for that group first.

Time goes by slowly but carries on...I am still off work and knitting furiously. At the moment I am felting yet another purse and am getting ready to block the Meditation Shawl. (Yes, it is done! ) I am now trying to decide if I should put a fringe on it once it is blocked.

I was to see a family tonight about doing some respite care for them but the visit has been put off till tomorrow and then I think I will start getting a few hours a week with them. I am hoping that respite care works out for me, at least with this family. We'll see. The young man has a lot of physical and developmental issues. I also went for a brisk walk up to the corner to fax off my resume to a couple of places. I'd say that I seem to have come to the decision to move on.

I attended another guided meditation a week ago Wednesday and found my power animal. The power animal is an animal that comes to you in meditation with a lesson to be learned. Mine is the Red Fox. According to the info I have read I need to learn about privacy and adaptability among other things. I will be getting a complete info package this coming Wednesday.

I am finding the meditating is a great help. It slows my mind and allows me to relax and be more connected with all that is around me.

I hope to have more Fo's to post this week! To all a good week!

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Uno

Uno

You.
Can.
Only.
Type.
One.
Word.

No.
Explanations.

1. Yourself: complex
2. Your boyfriend/girlfriend (spouse): caring
3. Your hair: short
4. Your mother: fighter
5. Your Father:intellectual
6. Your Favorite Item: books
7. Your dream last night: non-existant
8. Your Favorite drink: cuba libre
9. Your Dream Car: hybrid
10. The room you are in: north
11. Your Ex: none
12. Your fear: hate
13. What you want to be in 10 years? enlightened
14. Who you hung out with last night? Alva
15. What You're Not? linear
16. Muffins: poppy
17. One of Your Wish List Items: travel
18. Time: seven
19. The Last Thing You Did: ate
20. What You Are Wearing: sweats
21. Your Favorite Weather: sunny
22. Your Favorite Book: big
23. The Last Thing You Ate: ice cream
24. Your Life: full
25. Your Mood: thoughtful
26. Your best friend: admirable
27. What are you thinking about right now? words
28. Your car: Montana
29. What are you doing at the moment? typing
30. Your summer: fast
31. Your relationship status: smooth
32. What is on your TV? remote
33. What is the weather like? rainy
34. When is the last time you laughed? earlier

(stolen from Rabbitch--and then from KT!)

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

See?

My DH is an avid Birder. He is out in all kinds of weather observing and listing the birds he sees. He saw me knitting countless Fetching fingerless gloves and put in an order for a pair for himself.
I knit the gloves exactly as written except for making the 4x1 rib 20 rows in length, repeating the cable 3 times at the finger end and then doing a straight cast off instead of a picot edge.
And, here you are. Manly Fetching gloves. Perfect for using the binoculars and the spotting scope and the camera.




Bird Boy gloves!

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

106th post

I realized the other day that marking anniversaries of being part of blogland is part of being part of the blogging nation. (Ok, I hope you can figure out that sentence!!) I realized this after my 100th post which is why I am now marking my 106th post!!
Yee Haw!!

I actually do find it unbelievable that I have kept it up this l0ng! And I don't seem to be slowing down much. Well a little..I used to post every day and I was going to try and post every day this November. But you've all read about the emotional upheaval in my life these past few weeks.
I am progressing in my healing quite well. The doctor and the counsellor that I have been talking to seem to agree that I am not going off the deep end and my stress was (is) situational. Otherwise I'd be going bonkers in other parts of my life. I am actually very calm and happy in the rest of my life.
I have started keeping a daily handwritten journal and that is helping more than I thought it would. I have been having so many dreams that it is good to write them down soon after I get up. Oh, but I have been working out alot of things in my sleep! For the first time though I am really listening to them and trying to understand what my inner self really needs. I keep coming back to creativity...I need to be able to express myself creatively.

Isn't this an amazing picture?


Eye of a needle
Originally uploaded by Rune T.


I have been knitting. I got some more Patons Classic and knit and felted a bag. I finished some fingerless gloves for my DH. I completed another felted purse. I also started and ripped many little projects just because of lack of concentration. Running through my mind is a piece inspired by Norval Morrisseau.

I'll post some pictures soon my friends!

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Making a Good Life

Just a visual demonstration of what I am going through right now.


What my life feels like right now.



What I am turning my life into.


This is usually where my cat-dog Kessie likes to sit when I am sitting at the computer. All 12 or so pounds of her. She looks out the window and
makes my left arm numb and impedes efficient keystrokes. Sigh.
She is the boss of me.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Field Trip!

Today My Mother and I went on a field trip!

We went to Kleinburg to the McMichael Gallery. One of my favorite native Canadian artists has a show on there. Norval Morrisseau. The Shaman Artist . His work is awe inspiring and mystic. The effect it has on me is almost beyond description. I love the bold colours and the native shapes and the stories the pieces tell.

Imagine this painting 5 feet tall and 3 feet wide. It just sucks you right in.


The McMichael Gallery its self is quite beautiful. It is set in a forested area and have many large windows that bring the outdoors in.
Here is my Mom in one of the sitting areas and her view is the following picture.

There are rest stations all over with such glorious views.

After our trip through the exhibit and our rest stop we had to visit the store (well, of course!) I got myself a pretty pair of native inspired silver earrings. A family Christmas gift (which shall remain a secret until then!) and pictures of these fun knitting kits.

The Szechuan Scarf

and a Cup of Yarn.

Too funny! Yarn, scarf pattern and a pair of knitting needles! I didn't look at the price. But fun marketing!


Then last but not least I had to stop by one of my favorite paintings by Canadian Artist Lawren Harris. There is something about this piece of art that relaxes me absolutely and totally. I could look at it for a long time and never get tired of it. It is called Mount Lefroy.

Lawren Harris is part of the Group of Seven. The Group of Seven is a very important group of artists in Canadian art history.



I really needed this recharging field trip! I am refilling my creative cup and enjoying the process.
Next step.
Refinding my self esteem. I don't think it is too lost!

Monday, November 06, 2006

Calendar Show and Tell


Playing along with the Calendar Girls! November 2006. We use this bird calendar because my DH is an avid birder. The bird in November is a Kestrel. We named our dog Kessie after this bird. It is smallest and prettiest bird in the hawk family.

I would like to thank my blog world friends for the continued words of support and wisdom!