Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Spring Has Sprung

Today is my day off.
To celebrate a day with fluffy clouds in a blue sky, Jackie and I decided to walk around the nature trail.

We drive over to the trail because to walk over, around the trail and then home again, would be a bit much for us.
We will be able to do that feat a little later in the season.
As soon as Jackie realizes where we are going, she starts bouncing up and down on the seat.
I have to get a video of that somehow so I can show you.

Along the trail, it is still rather barren of leaves. This makes it easier for us to a little bird watching.

When we arrived back home, we decided to check out the garden.
To my surprise, quite a few things are starting to make an appearance.

As well, my super special lily is growing in our front garden!

Now, the big deal about this particular plant is that I have never actually seen it bloom.
The first year, those pesky lily eating beetles devoured it.
The second year, frost and snow killed it.
Maybe this year will be our year!

After all the outside time this morning,
it is time to just sit back,
watch a few shows,
knit on my socks

and take a nap.

Hope your day is going just as well!
Talk with you later. :)

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Let's Not Wait

I started off this year thinking about nothing and everything.
The last few years, I had quite a few disappointments. Most were simply beyond my control.
This year, I am trying to do something a little different.
By nature, I am a planner.
I need to organize.
I need to think ahead.
Be prepared.
It stems mainly from my anxiety.
I am a worrier. My head is constantly filled with what ifs.
I am not sure how to eradicate all those nagging thoughts.
My first plan is to start small.
Little steps.
Some situations, I simply do have to wait and plan.
They require more work and lots of budgeting.
Then, there are other situations where I can forge ahead.
One of my ideas is to use up all my sock yarn.
I have all these gorgeous colours and textures at my fingertips.
I have not even thought about using them, because once I do, they are gone.
Some yarns simply cannot be replaced because they have been discontinued or was one of those rare finds where I was in the right place at the right time.
Some have memories attached.
Well, no more. Let's not wait.
I am going to knit up all those gorgeous colours.

That would be The Baroness guarding my stash!

I have joined several groups on Ravelry whose main goal is to knit socks.
Groups like Sock Madness, Two at a Time, The Great Sockening.
This is a simple concept that I can take part in from the comfort of my pajamas.
So far, three months in, I am off to a great start. Already, seven pairs have been knit.
My Pinterest board has been seeing a lot of new and interesting patterns.
So far so good.
This is doable.
And fun!
As a bonus, I have even learned a lot more new techniques.
Who knew there were so many different types of heals?
Simple Skype Socks:

I might have shown you these before. I just love this pattern. I knit at least one pair every year.

Nutkin Socks:

I do like these socks from an artistic standpoint. I'm not sure about the strength of the heal. I wonder if it will stand up to normal wearing and multiple washings. The pattern is simple to commit to memory.

Twisted Madness:

This is one of the sock patterns for the Sock Madness competition I am currently enjoying. It really challenges your knitting skills.

Penuche Twist Socks:

My photo and yarn choice does not really do this pattern justice. The cables mirror each other on the left and right socks.

Hermione's Everyday Socks:

This pattern was inspired by the Harry Potter heroine, Hermione. I love these socks. They wear very well and feel sturdy. A good work sock.

Dropping Madness Socks:

This is another pattern for the Sock Madness competition. As soon as my brain realized it was ok to actually let certain stitches slip, I started to enjoy these socks. The heels are An Afterthought knit heal. Not a very easy concept for me. The second heel went much better with a lot less swearing.

Here is a tutorial I found helpful from KnitGirlls:

This is my current project, Brainless:

Right now I seem to be on the part of endless ribbing and an occasional cable.
Still fun.
This was another new type of heel I learned, Fleegle Heel.
The tutorial is for a top down knit, but this pattern is a toe up knit.

While I have been happily knitting along, I binge watch Bellevue. A fantastic Canadian series that was actually filmed in L'Ile-Perrot, in the province of Quebec.
This looks like a gorgeous area of the province I would love to visit. Which leads me to my other plan.
I want to travel.
I want to see more.
Places I never thought I would ever visit.
It will not happen this year. Nor likely the next.
I have some more saving to do.
But, it will become a reality!

I think we all experience those disappointments.
We are led to believe at a very young age that by the time you reach age such and such, you should be married, have your first home, have this many children etc. etc. etc.
It is tiring. Especially when raised by a generation for who those standards were the norm.
As we can see in most recent years, there is no norm.
Sexuality is more fluid. A family does not always mean a Mom, Dad, brother and sister.

So my life has not turned out like I thought.
I'm ok with that.
I do not have 2.5 children.
I already have had a failed marriage under my belt.
I come with lots of emotional baggage. A bit of debt that is slowing disappearing.
I do have a nice home.
It is not the biggest, fanciest place on the street.
It needs a lot of work.
The people inside this home are amazing.
We still need a little fine tuning.
Someone in my house needs to buckle down more when it comes to school work.
Someone else needs to ensure this happens.
It is a work in progress.
But, the key thing, it is moving forward.
We are all constantly learning and adapting.
I am ok!

I have rambled enough I think.
Talk with you all later.

Monday, February 27, 2017

Retro Expo

Little Man has started March break.
To celebrate, we both visited Montreal's Retro Expo.
It took place at the Delta Hotel.

For Little Man it was just an exposition of really cool, really old stuff.
For me it was a look into my childhood.
The event itself was fun.
For a five dollar entry fee you can take a stroll back into what it was like to be a child of the 80s and 90s.
I stood looking at all the merchandise thinking, so and so had that toy, he had that one. I was never allowed that one.
It was really great fun.
Little Man found his happy place at the video game table. They had everything from Gameboy to the original Nintendo console, Game Cube, Sega and all sorts in between. Since we have quite a few of those consoles still in operation, Little Man came home with a couple of games. March Break will now be Simpsons action packed!
I came home with a mission to track down Shin Megami Tensei Nocturne. I was addicted to that game a number of years back. The story line was fantastical and in depth. I am looking to purchase another copy of this game for a reasonable price. I do not really want to sacrifice an organ. I might need it later.
It was a wonderful day!

While we did not actually take photographs within the event, we did take a few on the way home.

While I am not sure what this week will bring, we will make the best of some down time and quality video gaming marathons.
I hope you are all well
Chat with you later.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Winter Wonderland

It has been snowing pretty steady for the last few days.
The week began all nice and calm.

Now we have about two feet.

Jackie is thrilled!

Tommy? Not so much.

After all that fun outside, Jackie and I are resting, knitting and making cookies!

The cookies I made are called Jell-O Cookies.

The recipe is super simple and the ingredients were already in my kitchen.
These made very excellent cookies!

I am still going very strong on my sock knitting obsession.

I completed a pair of Time Traveler Socks.

I have also started on another pair of Simple Skyp Socks.

These are my go to socks when I want relaxing knitting. The pattern is simple that you do not really need to count your stitches or pay too close attention to what row you are knitting. Perfect for binge watching Pretty Little Liars.

When I have sufficiently defrosted, I will venture out to the garage and continue on my painting.

I'm not exactly sure which direction I am heading with this painting but, I am certainly having fun trying to get there.

I hope you are all well.
Chat will you later.

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

It's a Bit Weird Over Here

That is the only sentence that really fits.
We have all had a very odd week. I still look to certain spots where Rebel used to like to chill. I can almost hear that very distinct meow.
It sounded as if he was saying Mom. The 'O' was more of an aaw sound. Imagined the way Fran Drescher's character used to speak on the sitcom The Nanny.
Napoleon still looks for his older brother. That is the hardest part to deal with because you cannot really explain to a cat where his brother has gone.
We spend a lot of time cuddling.

It helps us both get by.

I did a little painting this past week.

It is a watercolour titled, Red Rhode Island Hen. It is based on a photograph I took a few summers ago of my mother-in-law's chickens. Those little characters are quite interesting to watch. They follow mom around like she is the Pied Piper of Chickens.

I have also been knitting.
Mostly socks.
I completed a test knit of which I am really proud, at the moment called, Branchiocaris.

I just started another pair called Time Traveler.

I love the yarn I am using. I wish I could locate the band label. For the life of me I cannot recall the name or even the type of material used.

Jackie has been great company, though a bit mischievous.
She assisted with laundry the other day.....

After laundry was complete, we needed to recuperate.

It is a bit too chilly to venture out this morning. We are going to rest inside and binge watch Sherlock.
I hope you are all well.
Talk with you later.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Thank You

This morning I made one of the toughest decisions of my life.
I had to say good bye to my best friend.
He had been in my life for 20 years.
I like to think we chose each other.
That thought makes me smile.
I said good bye to Rebel this morning.
It was time.
He told me so.
There will never be another cat like that.
Someone to share a Big Mac and a glass of rye while we watch the Leafs.
If it was not for him, I would probably would not even be here.
He needed me.
I made him a promise to always look after him.
He looked after me.
He gave me a reason to get up everyday, go to work, come home, and enjoy life.
He would help me fall asleep, which is no easy task.
I return the favour this morning.
Right now I feel a little empty.
I am also really grateful that he chose to share his life with me.
Thank you Rebel.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Good Morning

I hope you are all well!
We visited my parents in Ontario for the holidays and had a wonderful time.
A very stress free, come as you are, just enjoying the company.
Gifts and jokes were exchanged.
A lesson to Grandma and Grandpa in texting was preformed.

I'm not sure how much of the lesson will be retained, but everyone enjoyed the experience.

When we returned home we were relieved to see that Rebel had indeed survived the holidays. He is eating a little more. Still have trouble remembering what he is doing from one minute to the next. But, he really enjoys playing with the decorations on the Christmas tree.
Napoleon proceeded to get in my face and give me hell for disappearing for a few days.

We were very lucky to have a loving furchild babysitter. Jo's mom is awesome to the fuzzy children. Spoils them and makes sure everything is good before she makes her way back to her own home and fuzzy children.

Mom loved her Bird Mittens

I finished my Cthulhu Mittens, but unfortunately ran out of the blue. The thumbs were completed in black.

On Ravelry, there is this thing called The Great Sockening. It is just fun to say the words to be honest. A group of knitters dedicating this year to be The Year of the Sock! What fun. So many different patterns and techniques, I had to get on board with this event. I love knitting socks. They travel well and never leave me feeling bored no matter how simple the pattern.
To start off my year, I cast on Aquaphobia Socks

I am knitting two at a time in Loops & Threads Luxury Sock yarn, colour Canyon.

I also did a little painting.

It is watercolour based on a photo we took during the fall at my Mom's house. I titled it Feeding Time.

My day is moving forward rather quickly.
My fuzzy children are relaxing in various parts of the house.

Time to shower, eat and start the day.
Have a good one everyone!