Friday, February 22, 2013

Best Things

 I love this hand cream. It was a gift from my MIL last Christmas and I have been saving it for special. Do you do that? Now it's almost gone, I feel as if I should use it every day. I have pretty strong allergies, and I'm not allowed to wear scent at work, church or at choir. So on days when I'm just kicking around, or hanging out with D or my friends, I like to wear perfume lotion. But when it's gone, it's gone. Maybe I should just save it.
And now I'm using up my sock yarn stash. This beautiful jar of blue yarn was waiting for a ripple blanket, but I was enamoured by the Tiny Owl Knits group on Ravelry and the ingenious design of this pattern. The hexipuffs are a delight to knit, and will be an ongoing project, maybe a baby blanket.
But now I remember I have other yarn started and stashed for other blankets. Don't keep them for good. There will be more yarn, and it may even follow me home.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013


Today people are walking around in shorts. For one day they discard their winter jackets. Hope is a snowdrop.
I have made it through more than 2 weeks of respiratory infection and ear problems. It's hard to believe that I spent half this month on my but or in bed. I watched and listened to podcasts, read a couple of Louise Penny novels and did a lot of very easy knitting.
I managed to complete the first clue in the Hoaloha Mystery Sweater Knit A Long (KAL) by Mel of Single Handed Knits. It wasn't easy because there was math and my head was pretty foggy. Today she delivered the second clue and I'm really excited about finding out how this will look. One thing I know is that it will fit.
I also knit the whole centre portion of the Icarus shawl in a beautiful lace weight alpaca. It was only this morning that I dared start the fancy edging. And I can do it.
It's hard to believe that on Saturday I could hardly walk the dog a few blocks, and on Monday I did a 12 hour shift. There are only 2 two nurses in the team, so when you show up, you have to be ready to pitch in. It went well and I was glad to be back and nursing at hospice.
On Sunday evening Dan and I cooked a spaghetti dinner for 60! It was a huge undertaking. One of our friends bowed out at the last minute, so we stepped in. Couldn't have done it without our friend Steve, who has worked in a restaurant and his lovely girlfriend, Kim.
But I am most grateful for our grown children who were able to cook and serve and help everyone with out being told what to do. They were wonderful.
Today is almost back to normal. Scotty is still home so we're having BBQ for supper instead of crock pot. I was going to do a whole bunch of errands, but I just did a few and I'm back because I still need some rest.
But I have hope in the sunshine that I'll be back to normal, back to work and back to yoga soon.

Saturday, February 09, 2013

Growth and Change

The Christmas Roses  (Hellebores) are still blooming at my front door next to the snow drops. They don't mind that the seasons have changed because it is still technically winter.
And I have a winter cold. So I have been watching Single Handed Knits video podcast from my beloved Kauai, and knitting on the simple part of the Icarus shawl for a friend who will take it with her to Hawaii. I am lucky that I am doing the body of the shawl while my head is muddled and not the intricate edging.
My front door welcomes you and spring. There has been sunshine that I can only enjoy from my chair in the sunroom and a bit of rain to keep everything green. Today I walked the dog her short walk which takes me to my favourite tree.
It spreads its branches over the empty lot and blooms regardless of the calendar. Both brave and fragile. I need to plant one. The tree in my front door pot is a witch hazel that I will plant in the back garden when I change up the pots after Easter. But next year I hope to plant one of these. Maybe my mom can identify it.
The beautiful waxy petals. Delightful.
My magnolia will soon bloom as well and continue until October. What a blessing to be surrounded by such grace and beauty, even if I see it through foggy eyes.
Soon everything will be a riot of blooming colour, I'll be up and running around and I may forget this small gift of the first blossoms. We grow and change with the seasons.

Wednesday, February 06, 2013

Not Knitting

I'm a little under the weather. Measuring the sore throat moving to the nose and then to the chest. Taking tablets and hot tea and ice water and all but charting its progress in my nursey way.
But I have been able to make and do a few things.
A foam ring, some novelty yarn and fake flowers makes a surprisingly cheerful wreath for my mother to mark the next sorority meeting. She was pleased with her birthday dinner at the local Chinese restaurant and the closeness we 15 shared between the generations as we admired and demolished lovely cup cakes.
I finished the silk scarf at Kamloops. I love the Falling Waters pattern that I keep on a card and can almost memorize. It has turned out in several different yarns. She be blocked and dry.
Ready to join the Haitian and local art for a fundraiser. Carlton is always working for his Help Haiti and Help Mexico projects.
Right now it looks as if I won't be able to go to Mexico for an Easter mission. There's always next year.
I have had enough brain for tunisian crochet and even figured out the purl stitch, working a dishcloth in honey comb as a primer. The shawl is perhaps a bit dense, but the stitches all woven and interwoven give me pleasure and the Ancient Arts Pieces of Eight merino and cashmere is soothing.
I have managed a bit on the shawl for a cruise. Glad I didn't take it out on my trip because I needed the magazine (Interweave Knits Summer 2006) to get me back on track. The long spokes are totally doable in this foggy haze I am living, if I put on an audio book instead of a video. I shall, after my soup.
This morning I have been kind to myself and dove into a wonderful book by one of my favourite authors, Anne Lamott. It's called "Help, Thanks, Wow" and it is a balm to my soul. There is always a better way to simplify things and she links metaphors as fast as my gum ball brain can shout out. If you can, take the time to find her writings. And be good to yourself, even if you're not knitting.

Tuesday, February 05, 2013

A Cowboy's Life For Me

 I took a few days to get away to my sister's ranch near Kamloops. It's only 3 hours away, but a world apart.
 Her Border Collie cattle dogs accompanied us on our walk in the snow and on the lake. I know they will get us home, even if we get stuck in thigh-deep drifts and have to roll down hill to get back to the trail (yes we did).
 On Saturday we did some calf sorting. They were getting their first inoculations. I was very helpful and moved the pole back and forth to keep them in the chute. Julie was on horseback with a few others. We just about outnumbered the poor heifers.
 Despite the activity, the little girls were quiet and well behaved.
 The ranches blend into one another along the snowy banks. I am getting to know the landscape a little, but it looks so different in the summer.

 We also picked up a miniature mule at a sheep farm. These were 4H sheep and so quiet and friendly.
 There were twins born that morning, but these 3 day olds were the cutest.
Julie and I swatched for our Single Handed Knits Mystery Sweater Knit a long (KAL). We both got gauge. I knit on a silk scarf to donate to Project Help Haiti and listened to Anna Karenina on the bus ride up. It was pleasant and the roads were clear.
We ate in restaurants a lot with friends of theirs, I got to visit with my niece at the wool shop and her 3 year old, as well as the niece who is expecting. We are all excited. Plus we went to the Hobbit!
It was a real holiday!