Thursday, September 20, 2018

Not enough to do ...

Slow and rather disappointing start to the day. I shan’t bore you with the details, since the problems have been sorted and the remainder of my day at home was quite nice and fairly productive. 

I got a bit done on my Turtlepurl Wonder Woman socks. I am not used to matching socks, so this is rather a novelty! 



I also need to get a push on as these will be a part of my Wonder Woman costume for Halloween at work.



I am 48 rounds into the 90 rounds that I need on the body of Humulus
I just had to use my new Starbucks stitch marker that I got from Fibermancy!!

Because these projects on the needles just doesn’t seem like enough (on top of the Wonder Woman cape that I need for Halloween as well), I have signed on for the Till Death  MKAL  My only saving grace here is that they.are mittens and I should be able to keep up! LOL I’ll have to go stash diving to find a some yarn to knit them with.

Got a bit behind on my 30 Days of Flowers colouring, but I am caught up now - days 6-9. 

All of this therapy, along with the love of puppies, the support of friends, and doing some baking has made a massive improvement to my mood! I have changed what I can today and left alone what I can’t. I’m getting better at that and it makes a difference. 

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Treats!!

A long but productive couple days at work. I was so looking forward to getting home because I had remembered to take out steak, so I knew I was having steak and Caesar salad with a glass of red wine. If I had to choose just one meal to eat for the rest of my life, that would be it. I would never get tired of it!! 

I had stopped at the post box on my way in, and my package from Helen had arrived!! I texted her and she FaceTimed me, because the package I sent to her arrived today too!!! I left that envelope on the table until I had eaten and had my pudding in the oven. 

I live my most adventurous life through my friends. I’m a homebody by nature, and I have my puppies to care for. I know, handy excuse ... 
Helen sent me the most awesomely excellent coffee beans from her tour of the Seattle Starbucks!! If you could just smell these - sweet baby Jesus, I just woke up a bit! There was a wonderfully soft skein of yarn from Sin City Yarn  It reminds me of the colouring of orchids or gladiolus. The the fun bit - which I’ll have to photocopy to use because I don’t want to use it and then never be able to use it again. Dr Who Mad Libs!!  I don’t know if I have enough friends to play it with anyway ... maybe when Storm Crow Manor opens up in Toronto? 

Then I decided to make my fave keto brownies made tonight with Magic Butter. It’s a mug recipe that is primarily promoted as microwaveable. Fortunately, the recipe includes traditional baking instructions as I don’t have a microwave.

I thaw/warm the berries on the burner that the oven vents from while the brownie bakes. Then top the hit-from-the-oven brownie with Krisda chocolate chips so that they melt perfectly, the perfectly heated berries, and softly whipped cream. One generous single serving of absolute unguilty chocolately guilty pleasure!!! 

Gonna get some knitting done on Humulus, then sleep until I wake up. A small work errand to do tomorrow, but otherwise I anticipate much knitting!! 

Monday, September 17, 2018

Traditional Progress

Just a quick little update tonight. 

The carpet is drying nicely. The white noise of the a/c and the ceiling fan are for a function, so I am tolerating them. I usually try to turn them off for a few hours a day at least to give myself a mental rest, but needs must. 

A sunny day meant another lovely day to hang out some washing. Is fall cleaning a thing?? I’ve been in a mode lately ... today it was the shower curtains and liners, and a couple of blankets. They all now smell like sunshine!! 

I managed to sort out my gauge, though even down to 4mm needles I still need to be mindful to knit snugly almost or I stray into too loose territory. 
Wow - don’t the colours really start popping in that yoke??

Once Peter and Chica got used to the living room not having the usual things in it, (they are quite attuned to things in their environment and aren’t keen on change. Don’t know where they get *that* from -lol!) they were happy to have the extra playing space. 
A lot of people see stockinette/garter as boring; I love it!! It is so relaxing and soothing to me. It is also something that I’m known for - my even gauge, and nothing shows it off like stockinette! It’s a lovely way to finish off an evening. 

Sunday, September 16, 2018

My Ignorance Amuses Me

So I’m on series 8 of Masterchef Australia. Every year, they do this challenges, and for the life of me, I would’ve sworn on a stack of bibles that they were saying “diggerstation”. Between the accent and not really knowing what the word was, I just rolled with it. I finally decided to Google it. Big Surprise - no such thing as a “digger station”. Some research later, it turns out that it’s a “dégustation”. :facepalm:  What immediately came to mind is that bit in Tomb Raider where Manfred Powell says, “My ignorance amuses me”. “Digger station” - LOL!!!  

My knee is back to normal - phew!! I iced it to near frozen on Friday night. It wasn’t perfect Saturday morning, but I had to work. I think that the degree to which my knee got iced the night before and the amount of Naproxen and codeine that I can function on scared my knee into self-reparation! 

So I had today off from work. I think that I actually do not know how to relax. I mean, I get the concept, but I don’t know how to not do something productive. Unless I’m actually asleep or physically incapacitated, I need to be doing. So I had started deciding last night that yes, I really did need to clean the living room carpet. The stains had started to run into each other, and I couldn’t remember the last time that I had done it. I shifted furnishings and strayed last night, and then 6-ish hours later today, with a load of laundry done and hung as well, the carpet is clean(er). I don’t know how many more wash/rinse sucked I would have had to do to have it come out actually *clean*, but there is a marked improvement! 
I will feel the workout tomorrow - pushing and pulling the 25lb+ Bissell Proheat 2x (mine has yellow accents which I love!) an incalculable amount of times adds up. I was focusing on holding my core tight and alternating between my left & right arm, paying attention to being hard on the muscle and easy on the joint. I am pleased that it is done though, and while I don’t use it a lot, I have to say that this carpet cleaner is worth all the money! 

I had been making nice progress on Humulus  but the fabric just didn’t look the same as the stranded yoke. Sure enough, too loose. GAH!! I reknit the 2” after the sleeve division, trying to tighten up my tension a bit; still too loose. I’ve taken it back to just after the fair isle bit and am dropping to 4mm. Pretty needle tips on the Marblz!! 


Remember when I started out and said that I tend to knit more loosely on circulars - yeah, here it is. The fair isle was keeping the looseness in check.  It is easier to adjust needle sizes than it is to consistently adjust your tensioning to achieve gauge. Well, for me anyway. 
So here is to a night of backwards progress!!

Friday, September 14, 2018

Yoke

Day 5 of 30 Days of Flowers!
The lines are so tiny, it makes trying to stay inside them a challenge, but I don’t give up easily. Another Prismacolor lead  failure. 

I have made excellent progress on my friend Lynn’s Humulus  You can see the floats and the pattern. I really try to do my fairisle neatly, and don’t carry a float more than 3 stitches. Just another round or two then I’m onto the separation of body and sleeves. I really love that pink bit in the Dream State fairisle section!!  
Yes, that is a bag of ice on my knee. I really didn’t do anything, but after lunch I got up from the table and my knee just felt wrong. It’s not muscular, or a strictly weight-bearing pain. It’s a stabbing pain when I move my knee. Hopefully rest, ice, and elevation will get me through work tomorrow, then I can decide on going to urgent care or not. I did try a knee brace that I have (not THE knee brace which is for my right knee, but a good one from years back) and it didn’t help in any noticeable way. I hate mystery injuries that I can’t diagnose. 

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Humulus Le Deux

Made excellent progress after re-starting Humulus and the gauge is spot on. 
Because I prefer a tighter gauge than is generally called for in most patterns, sometimes I don’t realize I’m off until a bit in. This fabric, relative to the first go, definitely feels looser in a better way.









I’m definitely liking the gentle fair isle effect that the Spincycle Dream State is giving without having to change yarns! I love yarns that do the work for me. 
I made egg bites in my Instant Pot yesterday from this recipe  They can put a bit more dense than the Starbucks ones that I love, so I may reduce the steam time a minute or two next go. 





The flavor is good, though the flavor of the Swiss cheese that I used is coming through rather strongly. I’m not a massive fan of Swiss, so I think I’ll have a go with the Gruyère next time. 
I also need to let them cool down in the mould so that they come out less misshapen ... I was in such a hurry to try them though.

Today is day 4 of the 30 Days of Flowers colouring challenge with Johanna Basford. The colouring pages are a free download - give it a go!
Does colouring make you happier? I think so. It’s relaxing, except when I look at it and I’ve gone outside the teeny tiny lines. D’oh!! Still, I enjoy it. 
Except when the lead is broken all the way down and I just have broken tips. These are Prismacolor; I may pop into the art store in Barrie and see what other options there are.  

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Giant swatch

Well, it’s a giant swatch, but it serves its purpose and I know that I have to go up a size needle. 
Honestly, I think that the time invested knitting this was worth it. I struggle with circular swatches - the arranging of the yarn behind to do just knit rows. They use up a lot of yarn and in my experience, they aren’t as accurate as actually knitting around. 
I have also enjoyed knitting with both the Woolstok and the Spincycle yarns - this was not a hardship and I don’t mind that I’ll be in a state of déjavu reknitting this first bit. 

I don’t ham it up a lot for pictures - I mostly don’t like having my pic taken - but Julie caught me in a moment!!

 I love this pic (I ganked it from her blog). It is a sweet torture working her booth at the shows - I can’t have all the yarn and yet I want all the yarn!! She has so many projects knit up for inspiration and the colours!! 
I am wearing the Veronika cardigan in in Mad Tosh Chunky in Wilted Rose. Lynn and Sarah are wearing their Comfort Fade Cardis

Sunday, September 9, 2018

Wonder Woman Socks

One sock down!! I am a knitter who does not suffer from Second Sock Syndrome. I think that I’m actually faster on the 2nd one because I’m not measuring, I’m just knitting to a row count to match the 1st sock. 
I love it and Petey approves!! The Turtlepurl yarn is a titch thicker than the commercial fingering I’ve been using lately, so it knit up even a bit more quickly. I also had to adjust my toe shaping a bit to compensate for the fewer rows required. 

I have cast on for Lynn’s sweater. I find that swatching for a circular knot is rather challenging, so as much as I am an advocate and believer in swatching, I have skipped this step. I am not doing so without knowing that I may have to rip it all out and start over, but it’s a risk I’m willing to take. I’m generally a tight knitter, but knit more loosely on circulars, so I think it will work out. Gauge seems good so far, but it’s a bit hard to judge accurately with the short row shaping and rapid increases at the top of Humulus
Hopefully time will tell a nice story for me. 

Saturday, September 8, 2018

KW Knitters Fair

I love the yarn shows!!
I get to see friends that I sometimes only see 3 times a year. 
I get to touch the yarns that I see on Instagram and FB, and get to fondle and stroke them lovingly, arranging and re-arranging colour combinations. 
I get inspired and get to inspire. 
Thank you to Julie for allowing me to be a helper at The Needle Emporium booth. The number of samples and range of yarns that she manages to pack in to every show is just amazing!! It is a sweet torture to be so close to such stunning yarns all day. 

My first stop was at Fibremancy to get some stitch markers (that I don’t need but desperately wanted). 
There’s a double of one of these sets for a certain someone wink wink 

I was on a mission to get yarn for the Wonder Woman shawl  We have decided at work to do a superhero theme for Halloween this year, and I immediately called dibs on Wonder Woman since I’m working on the socks and had the shawl in my Ravelry queue. Mission accomplished at Indigo Dragonfly.

The absolute gem today was meeting an old acquaintance. I knew Sheryl when she was a young girl. As I passed by her booth today, peering in to see if there was WW shawl yarn, I met her eyes. There was a flicker of recognition, and I glanced back. I stopped, and she stood up. She looked familiar, but she remembered me first. I knew her from years ago when we lived in Milton. 
Sheryl is now in Midland and a skilled indie dyer with a wide range of yarn weights and colourways. Her company is Essence of Autumn Yarns  It warmed my heart to hear her say that I had inspired her with my knitting ☺️☺️ I bought a skein of her worsted yarn to make an Entrechat for our Mina. 
WOh - speaking of the cutest grand baby in my life!! Snapchat has never been so cute!!

 I spent some time Friday with Kyle and his little family (sans our Amin who was in school) and it did my heart good! I haven’t smiled so much in a long time. She is so alert and telling stories ... she is utterly captivating! And seeing Kyle be a daddy ... fills my heart with such joy. 

Saturday, September 1, 2018

What to do??

It’s been a long couple days at work, but I love working with Veronica at DQ, so the longs days pass quickly and are not onerous. 

My knitting has been neglected, but I have made some progress into the heel of my Wonder Woman socks. I love that Emily has put lively gold tones in the heel yarn - it’s not just a solid contrasting colour!!

I was feel a bit betwixt and between on whether to continue on this project, start the new one for our ‘Mina, or wind up the yarn and swatch for Lynn’s Humulus. But the longer I thought on it, the less knitting that got done. GAH!! 
So I went with my heart, not selfish, not work, my heart. I have cast on - look how tiny it is!!! I’m making the 6-9 month size so that our ‘Mina can get some use out of them.  
Thank you to Julie at The Needle Emporium for gifting this kit to me. What started out as a just a job turned into a friendship - more knitting magic ♥️☺️♥️

I am still eating to a keto diet ... it’s not a hardship; I don’t crave sugar. I sometimes think about pasta or a Blizzard, but I don’t truly crave them. 
When I do fancy a sweet, I make these brownies  They are not sweet in the sense that most people are accustomed to, but they satisfy me and I add a few berries and some whipped cream and I’m a happy camper!! My secret is in the butter. Remember at Christmas when Craig surprised me with the Magical Butter machine  The canna butter that I made is top shelf and 1/2 tbsp is sufficient to ensure a good sleep. 
So, back to my knitting until it’s time to sleep! 

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

The End of That, the Beginning of This

So I had a week off of my secular job to knit. What better vacation could a woman such as I have than a stay/knitcation?!



So Mr Darcy is off to Mr Steve, who is a new friend courtesy my friend Helen. Helen makes friends everywhere she goes and she makes sure that her friends have the opportunity to broaden their friend-zones too!  That’s our Helen ♥️💞♥️

I cast on my Wonder Woman 🧦 with Turtlepurl yarn that was gifted to my be said friend Helen ☺️.



 O. M. G. the sparkle!!! I love knitting them so much, I don’t think it’ll take long. 
I have Trenchcoat to make as a gift for another friend (yes, I now have more than one friend ... it’s a slippery slope, I might have to start using toes to count them!) Serenity, Mistletoe Kisses, and Save a Horse are screaming their siren song at me, but I must be a bit good. 



This is the next major project - Humulus  I can’t wait to see how it knits up!! I’ve seen the Spincycle yarn at the last couple of shows, but I’m not personally a fan of knitting up yarn held together to make a marled effect, but I love the look and feel of this yarn; it maintains a hand spun feel in a mill-produced yarn. So excited!! 

I also have a special little project to work on for a special little girl, but that will remain a surprise for the mo. 

So, best put my head down and make some fabric!! 




Tuesday, July 24, 2018

The Winding Way

I know. I keep saying I’m going to blog, and I do well, then I stop. Mostly it’s because I get stuck into a project and I’d just rather keep knitting than stop and write about it. I know, not super helpful to my 4 followers, but there it is. And then sometimes I wonder if I’m Instagramming and Facebooking it all, is blogging just redundant? 

But then sometimes I get the urge to write it down and catch y’all up, so here I am again,

I have started knitting Mr Darcy for a friend of a friend. See? There are times when being my friend has its perks. I converted it to straight knitting; it’s my preferred style, and given that the top of the body is worked straight and the sleeves done either on dpn or Magic Loop, I chose to knit in a manner that will be consistent throughout the garment to prevent any gauge issues that can occur when switching between styles.

I’m doing a quick mid-block to make sure that everything is good whilst I start on a different project.

I love/hate winding yarn from skeins into cakes. I like making sure that the yarn is caked lightly and softly and not all hard and strangled. But then there is a significant outlay of time to ensure this quality. I wind a cake at least twice, if not thrice. It always comes out too tight and hard the first time. 

It took about 45 mins to wind these 3 cakes of lace-weight yarn. The difference between them (R to L) is wound once, twice, thrice. It’s subtle, but you can see the difference and the feel of the cakes - vastly different!!

My wee granddaughter Mina is growing! And when I say “growing” I mean cuter!!


When she pulls a face like this, she looks so much like her older brother!! 

The puppies are doing quite well. They are still my comfort and joy on the daily.

Petey still has his sock fetish. He doesn’t chew mine, he likes them as a comfort item. Chica is still the smart one, cocking her head like she really understands. 


My current TV marathon is MasterChef Australia. I’m on Series 3 of 10 and I am just hooked. The have like 72 shows per series, so it’s truly a marathon, but I love it! Yes , the accent is a plus ;) I swear, my Android box is one of the best things that I have ever purchased! I wish that i had done it sooner, but I’m intent on making up for lost time - lol!!! 

Ok. Back at it. Gotta make the most of my days off :)

Sunday, May 13, 2018

The Perfect Mother

Happy Mothers Day to all those who care for the hearts and bodies of children - young, grown, and furry.

I had the opportunity to receive an advanced copy of The Perfect Mother by Aimee Molloy for HCC. Here is the link to my Goodreads review.

Off to work and an early lunch with my frown children. May your day be filled with love and loving memories!

Monday, May 7, 2018

Keeping On Keeping On

Now that we have jumped straight from winter to summer, Dairy Queen is in full swing!! I really love my job and the daily challenges that make it so far from boring. 

I am making some progress on Nicole’s sock.


I have a new project on the needles, so, as ever, the socks slow down. But progress is progress! 

I am keto’ing like a champ! My determination and willpower are unbreakable when I set my mind to something. This was tonight’s dinner - easy enough to put together after a long day and being rather too tried to really cook. I have recently discovered Haloumi cheese and I am quite taken with it! Salty with a nice soft bite to it. Without much flavour of its own, it pairs nicely with a fresh, bright marinara.

I have also tried guacamole. I have truly never tried avocado or guacamole, but quite convinced that i didn’t like it. In a bid to up the healthy fats in my diet, I decided to take the plunge and selected the Good Foods chunky guacamole from Costco. I may never eat an actual avocado, but this guacamole is now Life!!
The summer sausage is also from Costco. While I try to be ingredient-focused in my food choices, I love summer sausage, and this cotton-wrapped one from Noah Martin is just too good to pass up. It’s relative localness is also a plus. The amount of sugar is negligible, so it is one of my few exceptions.

On top of my secular job, knitting all the things, baseball season starting on Friday, I have taken on a reading assignment. The book is The Perfect Mother by Aimee Molloy. When i read the teaser for the book, I was quite intrigued and was thrilled when I was selected to read and review the book! I have to say that the presentation of the book was quite enticing.
I’m still early on, but the characters are being well developed; they and their interactions are quite believable. You are pulled in to their lives and that is what makes you want to keep reading.

So I’m quite occupied and have yet to cast on anything for my Wee Bean. I am saving and downloading patterns, so I’m not completely unprepared, I just need to get to it.

The puppies are well and Petey remains my constant little shadow.
I forgot to take their food out of the freezer last night, so it was also an easy dinner for the puppies. They seem to prefer the meaty bones with fibre roughage just plain, old dirt, on them. Silly puppies 











Okay ... back to something - the choices abound!!

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Frolicked

Another wonderful Frolic in the books!!
I scored my Folic colour way from Indigo Dragonfly  I have bought the special edition colourway in each base every year, so I’m quite committed. This year Kim added minis, and I was quite taken with them! 

Helen and I have been coveting the Burberry inspired colourway from Turtle Purl  and Purple Purl was carrying it, so into the bag it went!!

I spent my day at The Needle Emporium booth, doing what I do - enabling 🙂
I picked out a fade at the end of the day (with Julie’s help of course) for Fading Point  but I left with just the picture b/c I’m kind of maxed on knitting and while I love it, it just didn’t say “take me home today”. 
Normally I put together a fade or two and am giddy with excitement, so I went with my instinct. I also had a couple colourways picked out for a non troppo scarf, but left with those in memory as well. I know where to go when the time is right 😏💖


Friday, April 20, 2018

Something New

Making excellent progress on Nicole’s sock; I’m ready to start the heel flap! 

I went and got a nice close cut!

I’m enjoying rocking the short hair and the ease of styling. I’ve promised Amanda that I’ll start growing it out again once the blonde has grown out and been cut off. 

So my stomach has been giving me gyp for a few days, and my lower back has been relentlessly nagging at me. Wednesday after lunch with Joan, I thought that maybe something had been off. It was a bit of a rough drive home, and I had a soda water while watching Survivor hoping it would settle; not so much. I normally take a hot water bottle to bed with for my feet; Wednesday night it was for my poorly tummy. 
I woke up Thursday and things seemed to have settled. When I’m at home, I try to keep a 16 hour fasting period, so I usually drink water until noon or so. The pain came back, but not as bad as the previous day, so I thought I was getting over whatever it was. Then I had lunch. Not super. So I took to Google. The pain was dull, kind of like a heated rock gnawing in my gut. Result - probably an ulcer. I wasted no time booking an appt with my Dr. 
Sure enough, an ulcer is confirmed. I’m pretty sure it’s from long-term ibuprofen use, aggravated by some recent stressors. So I’m off that for 6 weeks while I take the ulcer Rx. I’ll have to take Tylenol for pain and try to not inflame anything worse than it is at the mo. The pain should begin to subside in a few days, but knowing that I don’t have stomach cancer (yes, I go there right away), and I’m not making it worse, I’ll be back to work tomorrow. 
In hindsight, the diagnosis explains the most unladylike quantity of burps I’ve been experiencing. Every time I swallow water, burping. Eating - burping. I also think the stomach pains started earlier, but I tend to not pay too much attention until a discomfort becomes actual pain. 

Petey has been a most excellent companion, steadfast and watchful, never more than an arms reach away, guarding me jealously. 

Chica came to sit with us one point, but kept her bone in her mouth, lest Petey or I decided that we wanted it. It’s gotta suck being at the bottom of the pack. But she’s a fighter and guarded that bone well. 

I tried a single-serving keto brownie tonight. Wow!!! I have fairly low expectations of sugar-free/low carb/keto desserts, and I really haven’t been craving any since I started this way of eating, but I had a hankering tonight. 
This recipe was seriously delicious, topped with a dollop of whipped cream, and will be my go-to dessert. As I’m generally not a fan of cooking in a microwave, I baked mine in the oven. 

We’re getting down to the wire and I’m going to have to stop putting off blocking my Veronika Cardi. Don’t worry - it’ll be ready for the Frolic!!