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Archive for the ‘Work’ Category

Living between the venues for the 2010 Winter Games has turned out much better than anticipated.
Sure, there’s little to no snow and driving was held up for 7 years in the making but…now that it’s here, might as well enjoy it right?

Miga, Excuse MeWe took our Daycare kids to 2 Olympic events — and they were fantastic! We had the best weather, the nicest volunteers and some pretty happy kids!

 They were delighted to see the mascots in person – convinced they know each other from waaay back. Pretty darn adorable.

One exception: At the Whistler Olympic Park an overzealous RCMP member ‘confiscated’  my knitting to ‘destroy’ it. Here’s the dangerous knitting on that morning’s bus:Olympic Knitting on Bus

The good news is: VanOc is having my needles (yep, the volunteer and I managed to convince him to take just the needles and not the whole thing – which was a relief because it was the 2nd sock!) brought to me. That’s right: BROUGHT to ME!

Sleeping on the hillI was utterly amazed by the fantastic and personal response I had when I reported what happened (I had called ahead to make sure knitting/needles were acceptable to bring and was told it was A-ok). Even in the midst of a much larger problem, VanOc took excellent care of me and that totally added to the entire Olympic Experience.

While I didn’t get to spend that day on the hill knitting, I still had a good time. The kids paid little to no attention to what was happening – and even though I tried to, I could not tell at all what was going on! (and yet they said there was not enough French…) The day was spent sliding up and down the hill overlooking the X-Country races, drinking coffee and laughing. Pretty good day I’d say. This little one crashed for about 15 minutes — all that fresh air!

vfds 085Our 2nd day was at the Whistler Sliding Centre – and it was fabulous! We got seats in the bandstand above the finish line – so we had a perfect view of the athletes.

Security didn’t even blink at my knitting so…a good 4 inches was completed there and now the heel is ready to be turned on a very old WIP (can you say 2006? I knew you could)

Olympic Knitters Meet UpThe next morning I drove into the city for a Ravelympics Knitters Meet Up.

It was wonderful! I met lots of knitters (and failed to meet others — sorry!), had a fabulous breakfast (stuffed French Toast!), toured Sweet Georgia’s studio and scored some gorgeous yarn to commemorate the event.

Joining a table of 20 or more people knitting in public was good for the soul. 😀

Lolly and IA big Thank You to Lolly and Felicia for organizing this great Meet Up!

Sweet Georgia's StudioHere’s a glimpse of the studio — it’s a truly beautiful space – and that’s not even including the fibre!

Studio CourtyardThis is a view of the courtyard outside the studio – those are clematis: Blooming! Clematis.

The studio was filled with natural light and the twitter of birds on the wing in the courtyard. So restful.

In ending I’ll leave you with a glimpse of my Ravelympics project (that has no chance of being completed in time, but…I learned a few new skills)

Here is the Don’t Tell Me What I Can’t Do! Shawl from yesterday afternoon:

DTMWICD! Shawl the 2nd

Overheard at the Olympics:

Finnish Santa5 yr old girl: That’s not Real Santa ’cause he’s just wearing a bathrobe. looks him over again And black pants.

7 yr old boy: Oh when are they ever going to stop for a commercial break?! of the female skeleton competitors

5 yr old boy: Quatchi, it’s me your son! waves mini Quatchi toy to mascot a good 100 ft away!! Dad! Quatchi Dad, I’m over here. pause pause+ a few more Quatchis!!!  Ok, I’ll see you at home Dad. I love you!

6 yr old boy: This is a so healthy hot dog ’cause this bread is better than a bun for you. Buns aren’t good for you. Those buns. of his $8 hot dog made wtih a baguette style bread 

5 yr old girl: O Canada….a true piece of love, in all the son’s sweet hands. Unprompted and at top volume!

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Craft Hope for Haiti Shop Spreading seeds of hope one stitch at a timeThe internet is abuzz with news of Haiti and how we can each assist as we are able. Over at Ravelry there are patterns tagged for  Haiti Help  – parts of the proceeds will be given to Doctors Without Borders. So…if you were going to be buying a pattern soon, and you do it before Jan. 31st you’ll also be helping DwB/MSF

Yesterday the children at the Daycare asked to work on helping the ‘sad people’. They decided that they would make crafts and have a craft sale. Pretty sweet of them and whoever buys the wallpaper and construction paper hats, the faux fur cuffs, the pom-pom people they’ve made so far.

Two of the little girls have had everyone write their names on paper so that the ‘people in Haiti know who loves them’.

They are donating their empty juice boxes and bottles from home and offering to ‘just bring some money’. We’re sending the money they raise to MSF. They aren’t affiliated with any religions/churches and very little, if any, of the monies are used for administrative purposes.

Not all of their ideas were workable, they wanted to gather wood and bricks and send it on the boats from Canada, but they all came from the heart. Which is pretty amazing.

I thought it might be a good time to remind people of the government initiative that all of us be ready for a disaster – they reccommend being self sufficient for up to 72 hours. This is really important for us on the West Coast since we live directly on a major faultline — eek!

A daunting and potentially stressful task, contemplating the worst but it could make a real difference for you and your loved ones.

We are ready for the Flood

In November a friend who teaches Earthquake Preparedness for teens and families helped me complete my readiness kit.

Yes – that’s my Emergency Knitting kit – it’s clipped to my pack ($10 2nd hand, pretty awesome find). It holds 2 complete projects with instructions, needles, tape measure, beads, darning needle and scissors. I have one complicated project from the 7 Deadly Spins club and one plain vanilla sock project.

This pack, that I was relieved to learn I can put on and carry unassisted, has food, medicine and water for 1 week, plus the tools to build a temporary shelter.

My friend told me about an awesome cooker and I highly recommend it. It is lightweight — like a feather! — and lasts for hours.

Naturally I have a leash, food, treats and a sweater for Kira in my pack too. 😀 She’s my baby!

Altogether assembling my kit cost between $60-$80. If anyone wants I can send you a copy of the supply list I used.

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I’ve seen this at a few blogs I read and thought I would try it out…let’s see if I keep it up!

this week’s theme: 10 Things You Plan For

1) Waxing — your hair has to be a certain gorilla-length to make it worthwhile

2) Vacation — though even that I leave to the last minute

3) Blog posts — I’m going to try not to over think them – HA! that should be interesting…or not

4) Gifts — I love to buy or make them — it’s the joy of the giving.

5) Projects — sometimes. Most of the time I’m pretty impulsive.

6) Reading —  just a necessary part of each day!

7) Work! I do the scheduling of the children AND staff. This Fall was particularly complex. Let’s not even talk about it.

8 ) Fine viewing. I am cable-less and online-less at my Little House in the Woods. So I either have to finangle some burned discs or pirate my way into a viewing … which reminds me, LOST is only how many weeks away?

9) Eating. Yeah – I should plan that. Since tonight I am likely having an apple and maybe some Kentucky Bluegrass Fudge Pie with whipping cream So you know, fruit AND dairy. As soon as I get home I am running right out the door again. Poor pets. 😦

10) Sleep. I like planning a little nap during the day where I can — usually it happens on weekend afternoons — could be part of the reason there is a shortage of FO’s & project news here… Just sayin’ ;-D

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Whoa! Where does the time go??

I will finish reviewing Lost — this season was incredible? wasn’t it? The posts are in draft form, I’ve just been outrageously busy since like April!

Here is a glimpse of just some of the things occupying my time:

Been Awhile

Left to Right – Top to Bottom

1> I fostered 3 kittens for the local SPCA. Lots of fun, but a LOT of work. Naturally, I wound up keeping one – I’m pretty sure they know that will happen! I kept the fluffy black and white one on the end. Chaplin. One of my cousins adopted the black kitten, Poe (great name hey?). Right now I am kitten-sitting Poe while she is at ComiCon — the two boys are having a blast together.
The girl at the SPCA might need me to foster more kittens – they have 25 in the shelter! Madness!

2> I have 3 chickens! I’m hoping that at least 2 of them are hens — I would like eggs. They started out as the cutest little puffballs. This is Reepicheep in my arms.

3> Spending lots of times at the beach, the lakes, the river (freezing glacier run off!!) and the pool. This summer has been a scorcher so far.

4> I completed my RCM 1st year and received First Class Honours on my Exam! Such a relief — my 1st ever piano exam. I’m really looking forward to my 2nd year this Fall. I find it a great balance between calming and challenging myself. (if that makes any sense!)

5> Been on a few roadtrips – personally and work related. We have been going on near-daily field trips and this summer’s program is turning into a great success. 🙂

6> The chickens have grown! They are hardly recognizable as the little balls they arrived as. Last weekend I built them an enclosure. Myself! With a door that opens and closes — myself! I’m amazed. Their adorable coop was made my a family friend and they love it. Their enclosure is located outside my kitchen window — they seem to get a real kick out of peering in at me when I do the dishes/cook – which is what they are doing in this pic.

7> mmmm….Clafoutis! I adapted Alicia Paulson’s Blackberry version to use some of the abundant and delicious raspberries in my landlady’s garden. I had only made a WW’s version before and it was good. This however? This is heavenly. The tart of the raspberries contrasts nicely with the crystallized raw sugar the custard is poured over.

8> I started a small garden at my new place. This is it shortly after transplanting seedlings — it’s jungly these days. Even the green peppers are growing – due to the scorching summer weather I’ve mentioned earlier. The chickens love exploring the backyard and I’ve discovered that, likely because they arrived on the same day, the kittens watch but don’t interfere when the chickens are out and about (not that I leave them alone!) I hope they are helping to keep the garden tick free. Ugh. 
In addition to the clafoutis, I’ve also been experimenting with SouleMama’s Ruby June. I tried the rhubarb syrup but found it rather tasteless – so next I made a raspberry syrup. It made a divine drink! Very nice with sparkling soda and actually alright added to ice water.

9> Seen some great movies and some not so great movies. The latter was not-so-great because it was viewed with a very sensitive child whose first words to follow the intro: “I know one thing, I’m going to have nightmares tonight.” While sparing us from potetnially gory footage there were still a lot of ominously intoned “he won’t survive for long” & “if they don’t…they will surely die” . Sheesh.

10> Lots of BBQ’s already. This is a great year for it. Loving the quick and easy recipes that lend themselves to summer weather cooking. mmmmm…the company is the best ingredient though. ;-D

11> I finished the 365 Project…not that it’s up to date yet…but the photo’s have all been taken!

12> And what is summer without reading? Getting a surprising amount of reading done depsite all the other activities AND since I have started quilting! (pics coming soon)

What have you been up to?

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Dog Days of Summer

Our Summer Program is in full swing at work. We are off on field trips every day. We’ve been to some pretty amazing places already but we are also getting plenty of time back at our building for dressup and K’nex building.

Despite my best efforts, when left to their own devices this is how the children see knitters:scan0005                 

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As Grannies. Though perhaps cool Grannies since they are wearing sunglasses indoors….? The wooden sticks beside the rocking chair is their cane. Don’t you love how they hold their needles? And check out that ‘tangle’ of wool as they call it themselves!

365.24See, I do knit in front of them!

This was on a field trip to a local campground and I’m working away, Magic Loop style on my Monkeys. Kira joined us – she loves being able to run around with the children. When she needs a break, she finds me and curls up on my knee.

She’s really quite tolerant of the children.
Check out these flowers one of little boys picked for me!

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He’s a little enthusiastic!

How have you been spending your summer so far?

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What next?

I have made some real progress on my Alaskan Jacket. Look!

Actual Blocking!

Not only did I finish the back and the 2 fronts, I washed them and blocked them!! There’s a first time for everything. Oooh was that water dirty too – and now the pieces don’t smell faintly of iron (I have no idea what that was about!). I was sold on this process by the dirty water alone.

Here are the 2 sleeves just before posting:

Sleeve-sies

I should finish them tonight while I watch the sobfest I taped last night – otherwise known as Biggest Loser.  Spring Break, the house to myself and watching shows like In Treatment (brilliant){Gabriel Byrne with his accent} and No Country for Old Men (bloody brilliant – ha! literally but that is not what I meant) gave me lots of time to knit. The Size 11 needles didn’t hurt either.

I have adapted the pattern a little – the double moss stitch just looked like nothing with this yarn — Briggs and Little Heritage, a major steal on E-Bay — so I wound up using Sand Stitch (thank you Barbra Walker!) on the cuffs and the fronts. I’m really happy with how this stitch shows up.

Also over Spring Break: New Pets

Guppie-ton

And on a field trip:

Woodsie

How cool is that? This was one of 2 wood/stump carvings outside of Science World.

ETA: Just took Kira for her evening stroll and what do I hear? Frog Song!! Spring, spring, spring is here. Last night – no frogs to be heard. Tonight – serenaded.

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I’m back again – for good? Life has just been way too busy lately – I haven’t blogged, I haven’t read blogs…but I have been on Ravelry…and Facebook…and watching Lost and ‘Vivor.

It’s Spring Break – and while that means time off for most people, it means more work for us! But that’s alright, we have a lot of fun. In the last few days we’ve been on 3 field trips. Yesterday we had a blast at PlayDome – an indoor carnival at BC Place.

The day before we went to the Aquarium. We had a gorgeous day for it.

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For once our kids were actually into watching the fish/sea creatures – so we weren’t rushing from one exhibit to another. I have to tell you – in the Tropical section (which is really beautiful – ponds, flowers, butterflies, birds, a sloth) it’s an entire eco-system. Fabulous right? Except…that includes spiders. Spiders as big as an adult’s palm! Literally.

No pic – I was worried it was an escapee and actually spoke to an employee (I bet they get that a lot! spiders aren’t most people’s favourites) It was crawling up a wall just outside the tropical eco-system. Ughhhh….I quickly diverted our group to the pygmy monkeys because there was no way I could keep my cool while they examined that spider closely.

Aside from the belugas and dolphins (not together) – this was one of my favourite guys to watch.

Righteous!

They seem so calm. And wise.

I’ll share a few Overheard at Work with you from that day:

6 yr old boy: It’s getting complicated in here. he points to the singers performing They’re singing, that lady’s blowing bubbles and now this guy comes. he points at a person in a beluga costume It’s just getting complicated. he shakes his head sadly

7 yr old boy: Just to warn you – you’re ex boyfriend’s here.
9 year old girl: Who?
7 year old boy: looks around to be sure he isn’t overheard You know, The Slob.
9 year old girl: Ohh…. looks worried.
point of interest – 7 year old boy is wearing baggy pants, 3 mismatched shirts, his hair is uncombed and his shoes are untied. Don’t even get me started on the ex-boyfriend bit and the need to determine which ex-boyfriend.

On our way out we had to walk one foot on the sidewalk, one foot on the lawn (yeah – people are pushy) and it had been raining the past few days and was kinda muddy and sinky
6 year old boy: Michelle! Get out of there – it’s Sandquick! You’re gonna suck down in the Sandquick!

8 year old boy to teacher: My friend’s are always telling me to hug my girlfriend. And I say: Dude! That’s sick.
Teacher: Are they? Why is that sick.
8 year old boy: rolls eyes Ummmm…her B-words are like out to there!
Incidentally, this fictional girlfriend is…a teenager! At least I hope she’s fictional.

In the meanwhile there has been knitting — I really will post about it soon. And squares have been rolling in:

These soft, squishy yellow squares are from Pam in St. Paul Minnesota

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These lovely blue squares are from Charity in Northern BC.

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Thank you ladies! There are more I need to photograph and post. Thank you all so much – my Mom is on vacation right now and knitting squares like crazy. So…there should be at least one blanket in the next 2 weeks.

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