Monday, November 30, 2009
Sunday, November 29, 2009
Usually they include a skein of yarn (enough to make a pair of socks), a knitting bag, stitch marker, and all sorts of other goodies. All themed to match. So far I've been lucky enough to receive a Cupcakes kit and a Frankensocks Kit. LOVE them both. Now I will say, that mostly my daughter gets the trinkets, but it is like receiving a wonderful surprise gift in the mail.
For the past couple of weeks it has been posted on her site, that there will be Christmas kits listed up. Being diligent, everytime I was near my computer, I'd quickly check. Nothing. After a week and a half, and despite it saying they'd be posted from Wednesday to Saturday this week, I was thinking the whole thing was a spoof. Until Friday night. When I woke up on Saturday morning, I was a little frustrated to hear they'd been posted at 2 am. Who is up at 2 am? Ok, soon I realize I will be, but still. At this point in time I still value my sleep. Even over Woolgirl kits. I assumed I had missed them. I wasn't even sure I wanted to buy one, but I did want to see one.
Last night at 8 pm, I sat down in my office (aka our blue couch) to work on some Christmas projects, and decided to take one more gander. That is where the madness started.
On one tab I had the Ravelry group open. The other to Woolgirl. And let me tell you. Those kits would be posted, then whoosh they'd disappear as soon as someone bought them. The "show" went on for 2 hours. There was Madeline Tosh yarn, there was Zen Garden, there were Hello Kitty kits, Peanuts, Santa, Rudolph. And, ahem, we knitters did something else in that craziness of page refreshing.
We crashed the site.
Jen (Woolgirl) came on Ravelry to tell us, we had not in fact been the cause, but I'm a little skeptical.
The last kit to be posted up was a Hello Kitty. I'm not typically a Hello Kitty fan, but that kit had a skein of sock yarn with cashmere in it.... and it was a delightful light pink. Swoon.
Not much Christmas knitting went on last night, but I did have a great time watching "the show".
Nate couldn't help but laugh. I now know for sure, I'm a knitter. And perhaps a yarn fanatic. And oh yes, a fan of Woolgirl.
Friday, November 27, 2009
I have been wishing for snow the past few weeks. And it arrived today. But I wasn't wanting this kind of snow.
It isn't the soft, want to run out and play in it type of snow. It is the snow that has caused chaos across our entire city. My Dad works about a half hour drive from my house. It took him 2 hours to get here tonight to pick up my brother. Nate? He left the South at 4 pm... it is now 7:40, G is tucked in bed, dinner has been eaten, kitchen cleaned... and he's still. on. the. road. Seriously. And, he is almost out of gas. He's hoping to make it to the grocery store near us to grab something to eat, park his truck, and walk home.... 2K.
If I was more steady on my feet right now, I'd be tempted to walk down our hill. My Dad reports that supposedly there is a line up of city buses, and behind them a motorhome, pulling a trailer, all stuck. And some young guy trying to direct traffic and telling people to NOT come up our hill. He wasn't all that impressed my Dad said he was going up anyways. I think the entire situation sounds photo worthy.
This snow isn't so bad if one is tucked inside under a quilt, with something warm to drink, a fire turned on, and some knitting on their lap. Unfortunately it all started late this afternoon leaving our entire city facing it during their commute home, and only a lucky few of us safe indoors.
If you read this in the next little while, please send some warm thoughts to Nate. He left dressed for 8C not -10C. I'm anxiously waiting to hear his keys in the front door...
Things like Warcraft.
And Tables on Diskette.
He suggested we get a new company laptop. Ok, no. A computer for ME.
I put aside a few extra shillings from work, and purchased this here little machine I'm currently typing on. It's not a Mac, and I love it. Yes, I'm a gal who must have felt sorry for that poor PC guy on the TV commercial.
And, for the past year, after logging in, it would tell me that before I could fully use the functionality of the system, I need to go to the System Manager.
Wonderful little window popping up in the corner, but no idea how to find said System Manager, or why I needed to.
I stumbled upon it a couple of months ago. And I thought what it was wanting to do was pretty nifty. Finger identification.
It scanned in my index fingers, and off we went. Or so I thought.
Next time I logged in, it prompted me to scan my finger, rather than entering my code. Heck sure!
But it has kind of snowballed from there. It started asking if I wanted to have my finger scanned instead of typing in a password to Facebook, Blogger, Ravelry. Um, ok.
But then it started getting a little pushy. Can I please remember your bank info? Oh, you want to read your blogger comments? Let me annoyingly ask to scan you for each comment left.
Problem is, I'm not sure how to un-scan myself, and it seems the scanner on my computer thinks that it knows more than me, or at least wants to.
I'm still a gal who can remember getting our families first cell phone (as big as a brick) and the day our 'big screen' TV came into our home, at 32". We thought it was huge. Will finger scanning, retina poking machines be normal in five, ten years time?
Everytime I log onto my computer lately, I wonder "how do I tell it to stop scanning me and give me a little bit of peace"?
Are Mac's this pushy?
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
I've never written about Grace's birth on my blog... most likely because she was already over the age of 1 when I started this site! But, because it is slightly relevant to this post, here's some details for you:
My labor with Grace was just under 48 hours from when my water broke.... total of 23 hours of active labour. My water broke May 3rd at around 5 am and G was born on May 5th at 2:03 am. It was long, and exhausting. Worth every minute of it for the little girl I have, but long. I was having steady contractions by the evening of May 3rd but was experiencing long latent phases where I wasn't dilating. By May 4th around noon we (my family and midwives) made the call I should be transferred to the hospital. I was 8 cm at that point, but Grace's head was cocked and she couldn't descend (we had been trying for a home birth). Laughing gas, extra saline solution, and an epidural later, Grace was born.
Last night I went for a prenatal massage. I have been seeing K since I started running marathons. She is not only my practitioner but also a really great friend. An hour spent with her getting a massage always makes my soul feel good, and most often the appts go over by at least half an hour. The entire time I swear we are laughing. And not just a light hearted laugh, but one of those laughs that is truly genuine. It's wonderful. Last night was particularly grueling on my left hip as she worked out all the kinks. I mentioned some random bone in my back kept cracking everytime I rolled over at night. (Random bone, because yes, I know that much about my back bones). She said it was my SI and recommended I see a chiropractor. Hmmmm..
Now I have lots of friends that see Chiropractors, and I even have a good friend who IS a chiropractor. But I've always been nervous about actually seeing one myself. K said that makes sense, given they did have a bad rap for awhile. Now, I'm not sure what bad rap there was, but I think my skepticism comes from my Father who is a skeptic (not sure for what reason) and a cousin who is an orthodontist who doesn't think highly of them (also, have no reason why).
The magic words that sold me and had me pick up the phone this morning to make an appointment? "If you aren't aligned it is harder for the baby to descend the birth canal."
Ok. Sold. If I have another long labour, I'm fully prepared for that. But, if I can make this process ANY easier, I'm willing to give it a go.
I'm going to see the Bone Doctor, or the Bone Crusher as my brother likes to say, later this afternoon. Supposedly she is well known in North America for prenatal care. I'm sure she is going to tell me I am completely crooked. We shall see.
Monday, November 23, 2009
Sunday, November 22, 2009
Grace's Rag Quilt
I picked up my knitting needles again this morning over coffee with a friend. With the quilt hopefully being done this week, I know there will be quiet times sitting with my needles on the couch again soon. Perhaps with cookies being baked in the oven :)
Are you gearing up for December? What is your favorite part about the holidays?
Friday, November 20, 2009
Then get a stretchy band of some sort. I saw some hip bands being sold last night at a craft fair - that would work.
Do you see where this is going?
Attach said heavy ball to the front of your stomach using the stretchy band. But attach it as low as possible.
Now, here's the good part.
Sit down. Now you can't sit like a normal person, back straight, or slouching, depending on your mood. Try sitting forward so that ball rests between your legs with your back at an angle.
That's where I'm at. Me and my belly, hanging out at an angle.
The little man is head down, but in a position that would cause back labour. I've been told to hang out at an angle. It's much harder than one would think. Or at least I'm finding it that way.
Mostly because it ends up that I'm perched at the very edge of a chair while trying to do everyday tasks - eat, sew, read Grace books... and it feels a little precarious. I have yet to try knitting this way. That may be a challenge as well.
Thursday, November 19, 2009
Being up so early without my knee high to a grasshopper beside me, has given me some precious quiet time.... where perhaps I should be cleaning the kitchen, putting away laundry, or working on my Christmas list.... but, I'm sifting through blogs, Facebook, and soon, Ravelry.
Here's an early morning treat for you. I haven't seen any of Lisa Leonards designs in person, but I've always loved the idea of owning one of her pieces. Lately I've had my eye on the Thin Cuff Bracelet. I won't lie - posting the above link gives me one more entry into the chance to win a $50 gift certificate.... but it also introduces you to a great designer (in my opinion) and gives you the chance to win. A wonderful Catch 22.
I can feel that today is going to be a great day over here. I hope yours is too!
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
From Friday night to Saturday evening, I sat with a stitch ripper and that quilt for every single spare moment I had and more. At breakfast Saturday morning, G actually looked at me and said "Mom, put the quilt down." That shows you just HOW much time I had already spent stitch ripping. And I had the whole day still to go.
A couple obstacles were in the way on Saturday, taking away precious ripping time. A hair appt, as well as a friends birthday party in the evening. Amazingly, when my Mom walked through the door at 6:45 to watch Grace so Nate and I could head out, I ripped out the last seam. I was ecstatic. And was almost a tad late for the shindig as I had to see just HOW much difference there was between the quilt top and batting.
Nate calculated the quilt shrank 41%. Just a bit more than the usual 5%. I knew it had shrank, but that number really surprised me.
Alot of love and time has gone into this quilt - three generations worth. My Mom helped me pick out all the fabric for it initially, and coached me through the quilting process. She and my Aunt sat with me one evening and helped me stitch rip it apart. And on Sunday, my Mom sat down with me again and helped me pick all the threads out of it so it would be ready for the longarm quilter. Two generations there. The third? My Grandmother.
My Mom's Mom passed away from cancer when my Mom was in her twenties. I wish I could have met her and I love it when I learn something new about her.
Saturday night I came home from the party and my Mom gave a tip - from her Mom to me. Dampen the quilt top and put it in the freezer. The next morning, I could iron it and all the wrinkles would come out.
And you know what? It worked. I was amazed. And in love with the fact that a bit of my Grandma had joined Grace's quilt. I think without that tip, I would have been ironing for a LONG time.
I'm not sure what makes a quilt an Heirloom. But I figure Grace's quilt must come close.
Tomorrow I drop it back off at the longarm quilters for round 2.
Friday, November 13, 2009
It's the Fleurville Lexie Tote. Ample room for Toddler Snacks and Baby Paraphenalia. I'm in love. And I feel blessed, so blessed, to have a group of friends who know me so well. That without me saying a word, somehow knew I was out there oogling diaper bags, wishing for a new one, but just couldn't justify it.
I brought it up to our bedoom last night, and brought it back down to the kitchen this morning. I already am travelling around the house with it. And despite Grace REALLY not needing a diaper bag anymore, I might just start using it anyway.
Fleurville is better than Coach anyday. At least for this Mama's lifestyle.
Thursday, November 12, 2009
I easily come up with excuses during pregnancy to avoid any type of exercise. I'm sick, I'm tired, I just don't have the energy. But, I've always had the focus that after the baby, I'd get right back into my fitness groove.
Not the crazy, I've hired a personal coach and will work out 3 hours a day, six times a week, like I did back in 2006. No, just the, oh heck, after Grace, let's go run 63K. Crazy talk.
And this time, I had the idea to complete a long term goal of running all the 5 Peaks races this coming summer. That too is ridiculous - running 5K or more on really tough trail... in the mountains.
But lately, the couch potatoness has really set in, and I've started having the thought "maybe I'm done with this running business." "6 marathons is enough" "Maybe running only 5K occasionally is ok" And I've been known to have the thought while driving and seeing runners slogging it out in the cold "that does NOT look like fun" "How did I used to ENJOY that???"
Then today, I logged onto blogger, and saw Mrs. Spits post. And you know what? It excited me. A post about someone wanting to learn to run actually made me giddy.
I think it's officially a sickness. And perhaps I'm crazy. For some people maybe running is just in their blood, and they can't escape an unnatural desire to put one foot in front of the other, for hours on end.
So despite I thought I was done, one post has appeared to convince me, that I'm not.
It looks like come the Spring, I'll be back pounding pavement, and probably running up a mountain. Just with one extra cheerleader at the finish line :)
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
For your courage, for your sacrifice, your bravery, and the life you have given me and my family.
Today, on Memorial Drive in Calgary, there are rows upon rows of white crosses. Each has a soldiers name, and the year they died. All from within the Calgary area. We stopped, took time to reflect, and walked through.
There were a number from 1914 - 1944. But there were some from 2006, 2007, and even 2008.
And as I walked the rows of crosses, all I could say was 'thank you', as I held back tears.
What a sacrifice.
Today I'm remembering those soldiers who gave us, and are giving us, our freedom.
And I'm remembering my Great Uncle Hayden. He fought in WW1, and died at the age of 18. His cross is at Vimy Ridge.
Let us not forget.
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
I'm ripping it from the back.
I then peel the Quilt Top back, which is practically glued to the batting. The best way to describe the batting, would be that it has felted. Which baffles me because the quilt was washed in cold water, and tumbled on normal heat. All the quilters, save one, that I have spoken to about this, have never seen or heard anything like it.
The sage fabric is the backing. You can see in the photo how much larger the quilt is compared to the batting, after the longarm quilting has been ripped out.
I'm about halfway... almost...
I've been trying to do about an hour a day. Once Grace is in bed, I settle down with the TV on for some background noise, and rip away at the stitches. I figure if I do a little bit each day, eventually I'll have it all apart. I'm still hoping before Christmas, so that she can have it back on her bed by her 3rd birthday in May.
Monday, November 9, 2009
This past September a 2nd round of Blogger to Blogger Book Exchange was organized, with an end date of Canadian Thanksgiving - October 12th. It was wonderful to see new participants from the first round, as well as some familiar faces as well.
I enjoy the book exchange for a few reasons. It makes the blog world seem a little bit smaller, and I love the list of books that always results.... both times there have been books I've never heard of before.
Erin - received The Kite Runner, from Sophie
Meghan - received A Girl Named Zippy: Growing Up Small in Mooreland, Indiana, from Elizabeth
Sophie - received The Sweetness in the Bottom of the Pie, from Cheryl
Mrs. Spit - received Labyrinth, from Meghan
Linda - Vinyl Cafe Unplugged & The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, from Erin
Carmen - Against Medical Advice & The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, from Linda
Elizabeth - The Friday Night Knitting Club, from me
Thanks to all who joined in! If participating in an exchange intersts you, let me know. I'd be happy to organize a 3rd round next Spring :)
Saturday, November 7, 2009
To add to the merriment, here is one Annie posted up a few weeks back. I love it for so many reasons.
Do you have a video you've seen lately that spreads a smile across your face?
Friday, November 6, 2009
In my stash I have:
6 pairs of socks to cast on (*ahem, after posting I realized there are actually 8....) Obviously I have a love affair with knitting socks...
I'm looking forward to a weekend snug at home, lounging around with my family, and drinking warm drinks. I hope you have a nice weekend planned as well!
Thursday, November 5, 2009
It is almost as if admitting it, has sent me into a handmade crafting frenzy. Christmas Eve pyjamas for Grace have been started, one of the nasty knitting projects has been cast on, and I've even organized a mailing list for the baby announcements.
And each time I sit at my computer, I feel guilty and close it up. Can't. Blog. Must. Craft.
Obviously I needed accountability.
But, I don't want to leave you stranded here without showing you a couple more procrastination craft projects from the month of October.
Without any furthur ado, here is:
"Procrastination Brought to you by the Letter A"
*On a side note, have you noticed Google the past two days is all about Sesame Street? Yesterday Big Bird, and today the Cookie Monster. Go check it out, it's terrific.
Monday, November 2, 2009
And to add to the sock merriment, and furthur delays, I cast on a pair of socks for Grace out of leftovers from my Rogue Roses. Unfortunately I was short yarn to finish the second sock, so have put these aside for a little bit. A kind fellow Raveler has some she is going to give me so I can complete Grace's set.
I like to think I am redeeming myself a little bit, as I've decided to gift the Mystery Socks as a Christmas gift. Now I've only procrastinated with one and a half a pair of socks for an entire month ;)
Sunday, November 1, 2009
I have two projects to start that require a different type of knit cast on than I'm used to. I wouldn't say I'm daunted, but it is much easier to do something else that requires less thought.
I also have two cowls left to knit for my midwives. Not challenging, but I've already completed two, so the idea of knitting them again, well, other projects are proving to be much more thrilling.
Even with the onset of November, I don't feel panicked, or pushed, to start these projects. And, I don't even really feel concerned that I'm not concerned. Which is a bit of a problem. I can't really escape the cowls, those need to be done (I can't gift two handmade items and gift two store bought items to the same group of people). That just spells tacky. But those other two, with the cast on that I don't want to approach, there is a strong feeling that I may go store bought. Just might.
So with all this procrastination, there is at least a week full of projects I can reveal. I'll post them up over this coming week.... and, if I run out, I'll make more just to keep the docket filled ;)
I also have no strong desire to take down my Halloween decorations.... if they stay up I can fool myself that I have more time than I really do.... right?