Sunday, September 27, 2009

Into the Interior

Had a great trip to Kamloops in the middle of the week. This is Erin at her new Twist of Fate shop. She has a great connection with the yummiest of fibres. I bought a big bag of Fleece Artist.
When you drive two and a half hours away from the Fraser Valley, up the Coquihalla Canyon, you come to a semi-arid ranchland that has been my sister's cowboy dream.

These are the little dogs. She also has 3 big dogs. They love living on a ranch with horses and beef cattle.

The babies are already getting big.

She lives on a lake that took a big hit from the dry, hot season. I said it gave her more beach. She'll get lots of snow that will run off and fill up the lake again (we hope).

She has friends who have a weekly kayaking date. We joined them eventhough I am not seasoned. McConnel Lake was small and smooth. Just big enough for a group of ladies.

The serenity started to kick in.

We love her beautiful brown chickens and their large fresh eggs. D had great astronomy viewing and I even finished a baby sweater on the drive. This is the first sweater since the summer began that met my own knitting expectations. I'll have pictures of the pink sweetie and the stash enhancement as soon as I'm done with all the family gatherings this weekend.
When I go away, it's fun to catch up on all your blogging I missed, too.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Autmnal Denial

On the Sunday afternoon (between a day and a night shift) I gathered with 50 walkers to support our camp. The first days of autumn are sunny and warm here and more temperate and welcoming than any summer day.
They went up Teapot Hill while I tallied the sponsor money with one of the local ministers. They're all women up our end of the valley.
We had lots of fun and still I had enough energy to look after some of my favourite patients with some of my favourite nurses. It went well.
Today we drive up to Kamloops to see my sister at her ranch. I love taking pictures there! Looking forward to some good knitting on the drive. Lucille was growing at the rate of a new baby, so she had to be replaced. A simple stocking stitch rectangle seems to be the extent of my skills presently. J came over with lovely knitting that made me want to branch out, but her good advice is to just do something I won't be ripping out.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Set Up

The prayer shawl is off the needles. This is my first entrelac project. The wool is from a cone of single ply I bought on Saltspring and it still looks like a whole cone.
Dianna was vigourously blocked to 27 by 55 inches. I couldn't find my blocking wires. But I did find my keys (fell off in the car) and the little address book I bought to list my passwords.
I'll walk this over to Joy's house as soon as it's dry. Notice the black paw on the side. Carly is ticked off that I took the best patch of carpet.

I've already cast on Lucille in this inherited ancient Beehive baby yarn. I like the colour and it's really soft. The hospital doesn't want white sweaters because they don't photograph well. I have a ton of white, so if this one works out, I'll make another for a co-worker. As usual, I think it may be a bit big. But of the 8 I've already made, there are varying sizes.

I also cast on a brioche scarf for Scott (I'm sure he doesn't read this blog from university). The example at the store was chunky baby alpaca, but the Ambiance "Markoma, a 50/50 wool acrylic is plenty soft and teenage friendly. I'm still in the grey-brown colourway, but the softness overcomes that.
So I have two simple patterns for nights, yay.
I was supposed to walk up Teapot Hill today in preparation for our Camp Walk-a-thon, but I have retorn my heel and have to save my steps for work. I will get some good knitting done.
And tonight is bookclub. Yay. We have chosen our books for the year and I'm the moderator for the greek dinner meeting tonight (Three Cups of Tea and House of Mirth). We've tried to set up a more book focussed meeting and lost a member in the process. But we will still have lunch with her, like we did yesterday at the Airport Cafe. Diana loved her sock bag, the noro sock yarn and the highlighter tape that was her gift. What a blessing to have knitting friends.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Fall Welcome

A new planter at my front door to welcome the season and my guests. The orange pansies await the company of pumpkins next month.
My sunflowers have decided to be spectacular. They are all bouquet quality. Sorry birdies. But they greatly cheer up my sink.

The other fall flowers are grand here. I met a nurse from New York who was worried about getting all her hikes and walks done before the end of summer. No, the fall is one of our best seasons.

There is hope in knitting. I am working on the final row of the Dianna entrelac shawl. The little triangles are quick and she should be blocking soon. I so very badly need to get on with another project. There are some very charming points to this shawl, but was still bunging it up at the very end.
I need to knit two baby sweaters ASAP. I'm heading into a working weekend so I may be able to knit on my breaks and between care on nights.
I am just starting to feel the rhythm of my life return. No sleeping teenagers. No dodging the hot sun. More choices. Baking in the morning. MMMMuffins.
We will be eating a more salad-based diet with the young carnivore at university. I hope to get back to losing a bit of weight. I get my orthodics checked today, so I'll find out if I can get back to my long walks.
Yesterday I knocked myself out with writing minutes and reports and researching for my volunteer work that really ramps up in September. I hope to be investing to not work so hard in the future, but you know how some of us just do the work.
Right now I wish for the work to be knitting. Welcome Fall.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Shelving A Good Idea

Cheapo ladder shelving (fromWallmart) that suits my design aesthetic and a bedside table that I love. I did hide the cords after. This shelf, with previously bought fabric boxes, holds my hand-knit sweaters and shawls. Every time I reached above my clothes rod in the stubby closet, I would say, "I hate this." It only took 12 years to progress to this solution. The shelf is next to my adored armoire which I actually use for clothes (not TV). I had the most gorgeous little "Edward" help me get it in the van. All the supplies were in the box and they both went together as smooth as Kid Silk Haze.
What trouble trips up your day that could have a simple solution? I subscribe to Unclutterer
so I get lots of inspiration. Right now it's a bit exhausting as I've gone on an organizing streak. My pattern is to spend lots of time in the assessment phase and then go blitz.

I decided to buy the camera bag eventhough it wasn't on sale. I did a lot of research before I bought D his big case and I couldn't get my other choice for any price. The girl at London Drugs
(I must get her name!), who sold me the camera after all, went through the choices with my camera specifically. The Nikon D60 is a smallish SLR, but has the bump-out handle, so some bags are just too tight.

Lots of room. My camera is safer, and I already took it out for a shoot.

The entrelac shawl is all I'm working on. It is still slow going as I 've been running around like crazy. I gave blood on Friday and then went to a gigantic funeral. Do not do those activities in that order unless you want to be sitting on the back stairs with your head between your knees and making your bestfriend cross for missing the the tea because you're "feak and weeble".

It has been hot and cool. The morning dew is gaining momentum. I hope to make stricter lists in my In Box to not forget so much this week. If I'm lucky there will be some daytime knitting with full brain.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Seasonal Anticipation

The scarves are finished and blocking. These are more completed Christmas presents. The dog is drying, too. With the house to myself, I vacuumed, washed the floors and bathed the dog. Fresh start. Soon the doors and windows will be closed and I want it to smell appealing.
I picked a few of my reluctant sunflowers for my "by the sink" bouquet. This was a great idea last year to lift my spirits. I don't usually pick flowers in the summer, but these are in rows for cutting. I was worried I wouldn't get any flowers because they were planted late, but later is good. Gardening is like knitting: nothing immediate.

The corn is being harvested early. The skies rain in the morning and then clear up. I took my bike out last evening to do a few errands and it was so pleasant.
I printed the Nursing Unit (NU3) Newsletter for September yesterday and did the layout for October's this morning. I'm new to the unit, but I'm trying to reflect them back on themselves. People are responding positively. I made a Nursing Merit Badge with Grumpy's face to award those who are patient with difficult patients/ family/ staff. I kept the same cartoon of a doctor talking to a patient and just changed the words. This is fun.
The entrelac shawl got a bit of attention last night with no ripping. I have about 3 more rows to make a small prayer shawl for my petite friend. Each row grows in squares.
Hey Teach is upstairs but now I doubt I have enough yarn. Talk about a grumpy project. I have to cast on a baby sweater, but I really want to work on another alpaca scarf. Maybe I can convince myself I need it set up for my next set of shifts.
The turkey noodle soup is on the stove and it feels like autumn. I'm learning 2 new songs on the piano and setting up some guitar accompaniment for church.
I took out my sweaters and put them in new fabric boxes on the shelf. Now I must label the boxes. Every time I organize something, I give myself the gift of time to find it next time.
If only others would put things back like they do at work. OCD for good.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Start Again

First day of school here. Emily got up with encouragement and walked to school with (++) encouragement. In nursing, the plus, plus means I was a bit of a bully. They got home from San Fransisco last night and are exhausted as they head into this short week.
I had last night off because I had worked a shift for a friend already. So we had a great hen party with potluck that worked out before it was even thought of, the movie of our book club book (House of Mirth- not the best adaptation) and knitting!!
I finished the alpaca scarf and it is time to reassess my knitting queue.
November is nephew number 5's birthday so I should at least cast on the sweater I have rechosen to make him. It should not be too taxing. First I should finish the entrelac shawl. It is coming along well, but I was glad to cast off the scarf at the end of the movie so I didn't have to bring it out and stretch that part of my mind last night.
I must finish Hey Teach. It is starting to affect my knitting happiness. I'll get it out of the basement today and reassess my stumbling blocks.
I have a baby sweater to knit one of my nurses and the September charity sweater. Thanks to Stash and Burn One Skein September for a new vintage baby sweater. This is just the sort of friendly tip that makes me happy to be part of the on-line knitting community. Great pattern, great advice just when I need it.
Unfortunately I can't have too many projects on my needles or I get nervous. And right now I'm still needing something kind of simple.
Same thing with reading. I either knit lots or read lots. They steal from one another unless it's audio books. Thank goodness out library has lots to choose from.

Here's Scott at UVic. They have already had a few parties and done a walk through of their classes. The rest of the campus is very green and lush on the edge of the ocean with a freaky number of bunnies (formerly domestic) hopping about.
Good luck to everyone on this first step.

Thursday, September 03, 2009

Seasons Change

Today is the first chilly rain in so many weeks. We're used to regular weekly rain and moderate temperatures, so this has been a very hot, dry summer. Lastnight I watered the plants at 10 pm by the light of the full moon. This morning God had given them a good soaking.
I like how the grey skies make the greens come out. It was sprinkling on Dan and Scott as they loaded his things into the van. Yes, Scott, my 18 year old son, moved to UVic this morning. I'm not sure he packed everything he needed, but it's his turn to learn those mistakes. They have stores in Victoria and he has a good room mate. They have spent all summer working on a video game that is almost ready to launch. His room mate is already making money on a "facebook application". They sure can ahndle one another's company.
I am confident that the small Engineering faculty will be a good nurturing ground.
The Tuscany shawl has started to behave and I'm anticipating the next stitches. This is a relief. The rows are too long to take to work tomorrow, so I'll carry the alpaca scarf, but I felt relaxed enough to pick up the entrelac Dianna shawl.
There is not a lot of knitting done on this shawl, but it represents a lot of learning. My dear friend was at a meeting with me yesterday ( a bit of a swirling, overwhelming meeting) and told me her husband loves his cashmere cozy. Now I'm motivated to finish this for her.
My daughter gave me a terrible ride on the teenage rollercoaster yesterday. I was lucky to survive intact and with the impression of supporting her. And bonus: I had dinner with my best friend and her son before he left for UBC. I don't know how to steady the teenage storm. I hope while she is the only child in the house she may mellow a bit. Grade 11 is the least stressful year of our highschool and she has lots of friends. She cleaned up her room (finally!!!).
I took her shopping for a few new clothes on Tuesday, and some for me.
Today I hope to relax a bit, prepare food for my work this weekend and go to an inservice at the hospital. Not too ambitious. Just riding the changes of the season.