You are currently browsing the monthly archive for October 2008.

We’re back from the true windy city – Regina – following a whirlwind graduation weekend.  Here’s Chris all dressed up in his uniform:

Oops, wrong photo.

We returned to the winter city for a few short days:

The movers are working around us as I type but I made sure to hand pack my precious cargo.

I considered bringing it with us in our new car (photos forthcoming) but it scares me to think of leaving it in a lonely parking garage in Sault Ste. Marie as we sleep.

I now bring you an important bulletin:


One hand made sock.

Location: Corner of Maclaren and O’Connor in Ottawa at 9:30 a.m. Thursday, October 30th.

Please claim ASAP as I will be moving tomorrow.

My dear Ottawa readers, please pass on the word and distribute this picture as you see fit.  I can’t bear the thought of a sock knitter crying him or herself to sleep after so much lost effort.


I’m leaving tomorrow morning for Regina and Chris’s graduation!  I still need to:

  • shower
  • get my hair cut
  • pack
  • get car insurance (we bought a car by-the-by)
  • empty the dishwasher
  • fill the dishwasher
  • take the air conditioner out of the window
  • call for help when I get pinned under the air conditioner
  • watch my programs (The Office, SNL Special, Earl)

And yet here I am procrastinating serving my public.

I have a confession: I always thought fingerless gloves were stupid.  In my line of thinking, if your hands are cold aren’t your fingers the coldest part of that deal?  With a future of driving rather than bus stop waiting, however, I began to see how the need to grip something and not lose your appendages may be desirable. So I started these:

Mermaid Fingerless Gloves - Paca Peds in Fireside

This is two days worth of obsessive work.  Unfortunately with all that crazy knitting I failed to look at or feel them and therefore failed to realize that they both looked like and felt like crap. At ten-thirty last night I made the never fun decision to frog them and start again in Fleece Artist Somoko.  Unfortunately, Fleece Artist hates me.  I gently placed the hank on my swift and attached it to my winder but it saw around my clever tools.

This is after three hours of untangling.  Better add that to the to-do list.

I’m not much of an accessories knitter.  I don’t think I’ve knit a scarf since 2005. But in a stash busting effort and with Christmas knitting to complete I think I’ll be busting out some uncharacteristic scarves, cowls and mitts.

Melina contributed to my future scarf stash by generously buying me some Manos when we checked out the new Wabi Sabi yarn shop on Saturday.

I usually stay about as far away from orange as one can but I fell in love with this colour combo.  Thanks again Melina!

As soon as we got home I wound the glorious Swiss Mountain Cashmere and Silk I got in Regina and started designing a cowl.  And started again.  And again.  Finally I admitted I didn’t have the brain power to come up with anything worthy of the yarn and turned to the deftness of others.

I was very shy about taking photos by myself outside so I only got a few shots.  Bear with my weird faces.

I was very shy about taking photos by myself outside so I only got a few shots. Bear with my weird faces.

Pattern: Beech Wood from Ilga Leja

Yarn: Handmaiden Swiss Mountain Silk and Cashmere

Needles: 4.0 mm Addis

Started: October 18

Finished: October 20

I thought this would be a one day project so when it stretched into day two I became obsessed.  I did finish the pattern as written yesterday in the early evening but I still had quite a good amount of yarn left.  I was determined not to waste a scrap so i just kept going.  I probably added another thirty five rounds or so.  It’s big enough to pull over my head in the Manitoba gales.

And I discovered when I was pulling it off that it makes a cute kercheif.

I never was that taken by cowls but I think I’m sold.

One note: I wanted to make sure if fit over my head easily and I remembered that last year when we visited Veronique, Robyn was complaining about the smallness of a neck of a pullover she had made for Sean.  Veronique said she always uses a sewn bind off on anything that needs to go over a head.  I tried using her method but I misread her instructions and screwed up so I ended up using these ones from Knitty.  It took a while longer than my typical leapfrog method but it is nice and loose. I don’t want to ever take it off.

I’ve been meaning to unload some of the patterns I’ve amassed over the last few years before the move.  I finally got around to uploading them to the shop today! I only uploaded books that had kitschy and / or wearable patterns, the rest will go to charity.

Highlights include a brand new and super cheap McCalls 5525 – the same pattern I used for my trench (don’t ask me how I ended up with two):

Click on pictures to bring you to listings

A very awesome doll knitting book that I would totally keep if I could see myself knitting a lace layette for a doll:

The famous scary balaclava:

Seventies Awesomeness:

And some surprisingly wearable pretties:

I did a little research on Ebay and other online sites before posting and my prices and much lower than what I found out there. But as an added bonus I’ll throw in a free vintage pattern booklet to the first three purchasers of vintage pattern books!

Phew.  I need a nap.

Phew!  I made it through the election!  As expected, I did not win but I’m proud of how I did and how much I’ve learned.  In general the NDP took almost twice the seats we had at dissolution which is pretty darn great!

Anyway, I’m sure many of you are sick of political talk and I wish I could say that I’ll wow you with a flurry of new projects but with the holidays and a big move looming I don’t have much to show you.  If you head over to Ravelry you may just find a sneak peek, however.

I will cop out with some food talk.  I didn’t have time to cook my own meals to bring to my grandma’s this weekend so I ended up eating alot of grilled cheese and side dishes.  Desperate to eat something other than cheese and potatoes for once, I headed straight to Herb and Spice when I got home to cook some real vegetarian favourites.

Yesterday I made Smoked Miso Tofu which is one of my new favourite recipes.

I know Chris is just going to flip for this and I can’t wait to make it for him.  Although I don’t think there’ll be much tofu available in our new home.

For dessert I made Big Soft Ginger Cookies yet again, and promptly ate five of them.  Today I’m making some more favourites: hummus, walnut raisin bread and squash soup.  Yum!

I’ll be spending Thanksgiving with my family at my grandparent’s house in Kitchener as I have almost every year since we moved from California to Ontario when I was six. I love Thanksgiving.  Mostly because I love fall and desserts and mashed potatoes and my grandparents.

I baked two loaves of pumpkin spice bread and I’ll bring one down with a batch of NDP Shortbread Cookies!

I’ve never made pressed cookies before even though I have another cookie stamp I bought years ago.  They were slightly more fiddly but proportionately more fun!

I used the NDP Shortbread Cookie recipe that thoughtfully came with the stamp kindly sent by Ingrid.  I initially thought it a little strange that it called for both lemon and almond extracts but the two flavours really balanced each other well.

It will be “fun” to see what my family has to say about them.  When I told my grandma I was running she said “Jack Layton is a nice man.  It’s just too bad he isn’t running for another party” and my dad asked if I couldn’t have done something “less shameful, like prostitution.”  He was kidding.  But just.

It will be sad to visit knowing I won’t be seeing my grandparents for a while but I’m going to try to enjoy myself and not dwell on the negative.

Happy Thanksgiving my Canadian friends!  Whomever you vote for, don’t forget to vote!!!

Another pre-election project finished!

Pattern: Cabled Cardigan from Runway Knits

Size: Medium

Yarn: Jaeger Extra Fine Merino Chunky (discontinued) from Cumberpatch UK

Needles: 6.5 mm circulars.

Started: September 3rd, 2008

Finished: October 7th, 2008

Even though it skims my hips like the model’s in the book I feel like it looks short on me.  Hmmmm.

I took the advice of some Ravelers and made it with negative ease but I kind of feel I should have gone with the larger size so that the front overlaps.

*Colour is much more accurate in first two shots.

*Colour is much more accurate in first two shots.

I just realized from looking at these pictures that I’m going to have to reseam the right sleeve so it doesn’t have that bulge there.

Like my Ultracranberry Pullover this mother is warm.  Is it sick that I’m kind of hoping our new house is freezing cold just so I can get some wear out of all my incredibly warm sweaters?

It was really satisfying to have such a large piece knit up so quickly.  Gotta love chunky yarn and large needles.

In other news:

-I just did a pop interview for CTV.  Here’s a little insider info: I hadn’t even showered yet when the reporter called and said he would be here in fifteen minutes.  Good times.  Locals can watch it tonight at six.

-I got up at an ungodly hour yesterday to do an interview with CBC Ottawa Morning.  You can all listen to it here if you click on ‘Election Race in Ottawa-Orleans.’

-We’ll probably be buying a Toyota Matrix AWD.  We were hoping to get one used but they’re selling out faster than I can contact the dealers.  Keep your eyes open for me!

-Chris was named valedictorian of his class.  I’m so proud of him!!!

Now that my two debates are over and all the interviews I had scheduled are done I have a little time to post!

I started this trench before the campaign and worked on it a little here and there when I got a minute.  I think this was actually a blessing because it forced me to slow down and not do a rush job.

Pattern: McCalls 5525 view E

Fabric: Cotton Twill (I think) and satin lining from Darrell Thomas

Buttons: Plastic, also from DT – although I did try to find some vintage ones at the Ottawa Valley Button Club’s button show

Thoughts: I think a trench is a classic wardrobe staple so I’m pleased to finally have one.  It’s great to have something to wear with my growing number of dresses and skirts.  I’m proud of myself for tackling such a big project.  I’ve never made a lined garment before!  I had to redo the collar and pockets but I did redo them.  It’s warm.  I’m worried it may be a bit big.  What do you think?

Here’s the fancy lining:

I’ll get lots of use out of it now that the weather is cooling.  Now I have to make some scarves to go with it!

About a half hour before I left for my first debate on Monday I was winding myself up when a package arrived.  It was from the very kind Ingrid (who in addition to being sweet and talented also has the neatest handwriting – and I’ve worked with hundreds of elementary teachers!).  She had sent me an NDP cookie press to bribe the voters with!

Thanks so much Ing!

I initially refused to do the debates at all but now that they’re done I’m glad I did them.  People who were there were very complimentary of my performance and I feel very accomplished.  There are some commenters on online news forums whom I should not satisfy with my readership who are very unfair in their analysis and sometimes just plain wrong.  But I know I did my very best and made myself proud and that’s all that matters (or at least that’s what I keep telling myself!)

In other news Chris graduates in a just few weeks!  I’ll be flying to Regina on the 24th and then we’ll be driving out to our three bedroom, dirt cheap Force duplex in our 4×4 that I am now in charge of buying.  Stress and I are old pals at this point.

October 2008
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Please do not copy, repost or in any way distribute my photos, patterns, recipes or text without my permission.