Category Archives: daily life

Happy New Year

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Hello 2022. My brain is having a hard time catching up to the fact that it’s two years since we first heard about The Disease That Shall Not Be Named. It wasn’t last year that my workplace was shut down for 7 weeks, it was two years ago. I feel like 2020 and 2021 have just blended into one long year. A VERY long year!

Anyway let’s focus on the here and now.

Shall we talk about the fact that our winter has been bitterly cold in recent weeks? I think the lowest was -30°C but mostly it was around -17 for quite some time. When it warmed up to -5 the last couple of days it was quite pleasant!

We’ve had lots of snow that’s not had a chance to melt between falls so the roads have been icy and the piles along the sides of the roads and driveways have just got higher.

Mr Fixit is back at work after his week off. Oldest son has had a month off due to his workplace accident but should be back at work tomorrow. Youngest had two weeks off and returned yesterday.

I just had a bonus 4 day stretch – my first New Year’s Day off in 7 years!

Last night three friends came over to knit and drink tea and generally be loud and funny.

The ‘Fuck the Cold’ hat is coming along (pattern is a free download on Ravelry). I cast on on the 1st and I’m halfway through the trees/moose section. Some of my friends are also making this – we are having a knitted colourwork makealong.

And my stashbusting worsted weight granny blanket has grown to 23 inches across in just a few days. My colour order is black/colour/grey/colour. I’m expecting to use up all my random medium weight yarn and hopefully end up with a king size blanket.

As I sit here on the couch writing this before heading down to my sewing room I see snow falling again, the neighbour clearing his drive again, and I’m glad I don’t have to go anywhere today.

Be careful out there!

Blogmas Day 5

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A beautiful start to a cold day.

I was at work again today. In between managing the store and helping customers I got some more tidying done and I got that feeling of satisfaction that you get from accomplishing a worthwhile task. I probably should have taken a photo because it won’t stay tidy for long – most customers seem to have absolutely no respect for the fabrics or the fact that the staff have to clean up after them.

After work, it was time for the staff Christmas party. I think this is the first meal out I have had in two years. The last time I recall being in a restaurant was the staff party in 2019. Pre-plague.

The menu included a couple of vegan options so I had an Impossible burger in a bun with fries, a non-alcoholic Heineken, and a dreamy creamy peanut butter pie with non-dairy whipped cream.

We had a Secret Santa gift swap and sung a really bad rendition of the 12 days of Christmas!

Today’s Advent yarn is a pretty green and it is joined by a blue bead.

I forgot to recommend a blog or vlog yesterday. I’d like to give a shout out to Arne & Carlos who are widely known as knitwear designers, live in an old converted railway station in Norway, have a regular podcast and are running a knitalong for Advent making tiny sweater ornaments. They are lovely guys and very entertaining.

I’m having a hard time keeping my eyes open so I think it’s time for bed. Tomorrow is the first day of my week off and we will be driving north to our cabin retreat.

Snow!

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The morning after out big storm, we woke up to a light dusting of snow. And today, a couple of days later, I was at work and there was light snow falling most of the day, enough that I had to brush it off my windows before driving home tonight.

The temperature is hovering around freezing but it’s supposed to reach 4°C tomorrow so I doubt the snow will be around for long. Thanks to Mr Fixit my winter tires have been on my car for a few weeks already.

The alien worm is shrinking. I reached the end of the lavender section tonight. So far, I have 16″ knitted.

I am finding this O’go yarn very pleasant to work with. It’s soft, not splitty, and I’m pleased to say that the transition from one colour to the next is done with dye, not a knot.

This is perfect Netflix knitting. Every row is the same!

Go with the flow

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I drove into town today to do some shopping. On the list to buy from two different stores was mostly food. However I thought I’d pop into Michael’s to look at the beads and the yarn.

I found some cool beads that I can’t show you yet because I’ve already had ds3 distribute them among my yarn Advent bags for me to open later.

I also bought two of the Caron O’Go Big Donuts. Five hundred yards of yarn on each and no calories!

I have already started knitting the pattern shown on the packaging: the O’Go with the Flow scarf. It’s knitted in mistake rib and is super easy and was the perfect thing to do while having tea with a friend this evening.

The pattern is free on the Yarnspirations website. I can’t help thinking that the put-up looks like some sort of alien worm out of Doctor Who!

BC has been hit by storms this week that have dumped a huge amount of rain, causing flooding, mudslides and collapsed highways. We are basically cut off from the coast and already seeing gaps in the supplies at the grocery store. No bananas! I commented to the cashier that it was an emergency when I couldn’t get bananas.

We had a short exceptionally heavy thunderstorm mid-afternoon. It was crazy driving through it, with the rain, wind, leaves, thunder and lightning, but thankfully it didn’t last long. It did however take out power to many homes and businesses in the area, though our neighbourhood was spared.

The wind was rattling everything around the house earlier this evening but all seems quiet now. I hope all is well where you are.

A perfect Saturday

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Mr Fixit and I had a low stress day today. We popped in at a friend’s house to see if he could fix her tumble dryer (it needs a new belt so it won’t be a quick fix) and then stopped in at our local library. I had a few books waiting for me (crochet ones) and I also found some fiction.

After lunch we drove over to a pottery market where lots of vendors were selling their wares. We didn’t buy anything but it was fun to admire all the handmade gorgeousness.

Our favourite tea shop was kinda sorta on the way home (only a minor detour) so we stopped for a tea and a snack.

I had an Almost Joe Fog with soy and maple syrup and a decadent slice of espresso Nanaimo bar (vegan of course).

The Nanaimo bar kept me going through some more sewing and how I have six of the hanging storage pods made and in situ.

The pegboards aren’t exactly pretty but they make me happy when I hang stuff on them.

Dinner is cooking- we’re having organic brown basmati with red lentil dal – and then I shall have a cosy dark evening to enjoy with a plethora of choices. Do I sew, knit, crochet, watch the Mandalorian, read or…?

Do you love this time of year with the longer hours of darkness and colder weather? I do.

Sewing day and some FOs

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Well, the clocks have fallen back an hour and I’m finding myself waking earlier, around 6am, and being ready to crash around 9pm.

I don’t mind. It’s nice to see the sunrise. And I feel like I’m accomplishing more.

Today I had some friends over for a sewing day. I set up my living/dining room with an ironing station, a cutting station and a cleared-off dining table for our sewing machines.

My plan was to make these Christmas stockings in the smallest size (one of my friends made the same pattern in a larger size). The source is https://learncreatesew.com/free-patterns/holiday-seasonal/christmas-stocking/

That was fun.

Afterwards I made three of these…

Source is here…https://youtu.be/bfId3UN6_bQ

The fabrics are all from the store where I work. I added Thermolam fusible fleece to the stockings to make them a little more squishy. The hanging storage pods are just canvas and cotton as they will be hung from a pegboard for sewing room storage.

Last week I completed another sewing project from a library book – a tailor’s ham and sleeve roll filled with flaxseed.

The dishcloth project is finished now. I ended up making 20 solid-coloured cloths from the cotton stash plus a scrappy one. I’m saving the nice ones for gifts.

The socks haven’t progressed at all, but I did start a new crochet project. I’m making a Purrmaid!

It looks pretty odd at the moment but I promise you it’s a cute pattern for a cat/mermaid designed by Robin of the YouTube channel Hooked by Robin. (I like her, she’s British and has turquoise hair! We must be related!!)

I did get literally stuck into the slipstitches that shape the curve of the tail to the extent that my yanking and twisting pulled the metal hook head sideways inside its handle. It actually came right out and needed to be glued back in. I hope it stays in while I finish this project.

I definitely need an easy relaxed bulky project next after all this cotton crochet which can be quite tiring on the hands.

There’s still a couple of potentially productive hours left in the day. Maybe I could whip out three more of those storage pods.

August FOs

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I just realized I left you hanging, partway through my All That Jazz cowl and the sashiko project with the green fabric.

Well, both are finished. Here’s what I made from the pieces of denim and green cotton.

That was fun.

And just yesterday I bound off the knitted cowl made from Lion Brand Mandala.

It’s been washed and yanked about every which way to try and even up the stitches a bit. The maroon segued into the blue, so one strand traveled throughout, and then I added contrast with different parts of the same colourway.

I am very pleased with my corrugated ribbing – it’s only the second project I’ve made with that feature.

And today I spent a few hours in my sewing room, accompanied by various podcasts from Kate at The Last Homely House, sewing a bag for a yoga teacher.

Do you like the play on words? Namaste Llamaste! I couldn’t resist it when I saw the llama fabric and buttons at work.

And I can’t believe I used to be scared of sewing vinyl. It sews like a dream.

We’re having a cooler week, thankfully, but there’s still a lot of smoke in the air. A new fire started just south of us two days ago.

It’s a little worrying to see that view from your home. It quickly grew and spread and caused homes to be evacuated in the area. We’re ok here but I have friends who have had to relocate until the danger is past.

There’s an even bigger fire north of us as well that makes this one look like a campfire.

I feel like I have smoker’s lungs now and I’m pining for clean air.

I hope all is well for you guys reading this and that you’re able to enjoy your creativity.

Just a quickie!

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I have a knitting WIP!

I’m making a Fair Isle cowl. The design is called All That Jazz and it’s free on the Twisted Yarn’s blog here.

I see that Phil published her pattern five years ago so that’s probably how long I’ve had it in my Ravelry queue. I downloaded the pdf the other day and let me tell you it’s the clearest pattern I’ve ever seen. A nice large chart makes it look very doable even if one is daunted by the complex appearance of the finished object.

Just 88 rounds and I’ve done over 20 of them already and I’m only two days in.

Highly recommended.

I had a very enjoyable day off today. It started with a 9am fitness class which was a mix of cardio and strength. And this afternoon I had a coffee with three friends at a coffee shop followed by a bit of a browse at a nearby thrift store.

I found a few treasures including a pack of four half-metre cuts of batik prints and a package of curved rulers which will help me with bag design and maybe even sashiko.

I also am waiting for some sashiko thread and needles to arrive from a new-to-me source, Wawak. I ordered them tonight and even though they are in the US they say I should receive my parcel on Monday. Yay!

Staycation days 2/3

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Day 2 involved some housework, because I like to feel I’ve done something domestic before settling down to crafty pursuits.

Once the vacuuming was done and the bathrooms cleaned, I went back to the sashiko stitching. I spent so long on it while watching Netflix that my right hand ached later in the day.

Tuesday evening we had a yoga class so that was the exercise of the day.

Day 3 started out with a 9am Bosu Blast class. Eek, it was a challenge for this lazy girl. I sweated a lot! We did burpees, planks, dumbbell work and more on a timer and I couldn’t keep up with it all but I did my best.

After that, I went and bought food to stock up the fridge and popped into the dreaded Wal-mart for a nose around. The staff were restocking the yarn department and it actually looks better than it has in ages. I didn’t buy yarn but I did get a few T shirts for work/the gym.

After dinner, I met a friend at the beach. It was a cooler day, with a maximum of 29, and by 7pm it was 25. With the wind coming off the lake it actually felt cool (for the first time in a month) and I spent some time adding to my sashiko pieces.

There weren’t many people about but we did share the beach with about 50 Canada geese.

It was such a relief to have have a cool evening. I even pulled out a knitted wrap to keep comfortable while I continued to read my massive library book before bed.

Today the plan is to decide on a crochet or knitting project for the Ravellenic Games (Ravelry’s equivalent to the Olympics) because it starts tomorrow. And I should be able to finish the sashiko stitching so that I can move on to making something out of it. I also have a small additional sewing project in mind. I’ll update you again tomorrow.

Staycation!

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Before inventory at work, I booked a week off. I knew it’d be something to look forward to, after the extra shifts and overtime, and now I’m appreciating my good planning.

Day 1: I looked at the week ahead and booked myself into some gym classes. Monday, I just did a regular self-directed workout, with some treadmill time and some weights machines.

I did laundry, cleaned up the kitchen and mopped the floor, and then treated myself to a few blissful hours in my sewing room.

This is another boro/sashiko project, probably a bag, but this time I’m covering the whole surface with stitching. I’m not rushing it, just stitching away while playing YouTube videos or Netflix, and it’s very relaxing.

The weather has been in the 30s every day, and even in the basement it’s been uncomfortably warm. Add to that the hot flashes that I’m getting every day now and sometimes I’m mopping my face as my glasses slide down my nose.

I’ve been reading a series of novels by Robert Galbraith (aka J K Rowling) which are detective novels. I read the fourth one in the series first, because I picked it up at the library not realising it was part of a series. And I only realised that J K Rowling was the author once I’d finished it. So I requested the rest of the books from the library and quickly devoured the first three.

The book above is the fifth one. Admittedly it’s a large print version, but still, it’s huge compared to the others. If you’re interested, the first book is called The Cuckoo’s Calling.

What do you think of this adorable pincushion? One of my co-workers left this week, and I gave her one of the bags I’ve made as a leaving gift. She gave me this with a lovely note.

I’ve been eating quite a few apricots this week. Our tree produced a fair few this year, and even though some fell on the ground before I could get to then and others were occupied by earwigs, I still got to enjoy those little packages of edible sunshine.

Our valley has been hit by smoke again this summer from the numerous wildfires around the province but I am grateful that we are only breathing smoke and not having to deal directly with fires in my neighbourhood.

Take care, everyone.