Tuesday, December 29, 2015

And we're off.....

I get emails from certain retailers- alot of which I have unsubscribed to, because it's really a bunch of BUYBUYBUY!!!!!!  One even had the audacity to advertise their Spring line, and you know, it made my heart shrink ten sizes too small.

Why does everyone do this? Boxing week (used to be Boxing Day) sales aren't even over, and now we're supposed to rush out and fill our closets with swimsuits and cruisewear?  Please.

We had a lovely Christmas. No one went overboard, (barring, perhaps the 26 lb turkey)- and I think we took some time to buy gifts that were meaningful and thoughtful.  Let's face it, as much as we all say that Christmas is for kids, we all love to get and give gifts. But you don't need to go crazy.
I did get some Karbonz needles, a new book, which I look forward to reading, as well as a kit from
The Shetland Museum and Archives- a fantastic source for all things wonderful.
Miss Mew got me this Toggenburg goat creamer from Quail. I think in the interest of preserving those ears, I should find another place for him, but isn't it wonderfully silly?
This is probably what alot of us feel like, some Grinch crushed into the sofa.

But Clawed is enjoying his toys- he had a great time.

See you in 2016-



Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Ten On Tuesday- 10 Things You're Looking Forward to Doing After The Holidays

1. Breathing.
2. Eating turkey sandwiches.
3. Not shopping.
4. Watching Dr. Phil in relative peace.
5. Starting a new eating regime.
6. Clearing out the lower level- I love a good purge.
7. Walking every day- and trying to get a long one in on the weekend.
8. Spinning
9. Knitting my gansey.
10. Reading my new books.

Don't get me wrong, I do like the holidays, but I also enjoy the relative quiet of winter. My son tells me we are in a Blowtorch year- between the highs and lows of the jet stream, so little to no snow this year. As much as I am disappointed by this, I can take advantage of it and walk every day.

Speaking of holidays- Santa came a little early this year.
I found this wheel on Kijiji.  It's a Rappard Wee Peggy.  The owner had not spun on her in years, but she came complete with 4 bobbins, orifice hook and complete flyer.  After a clean and a wax, I sat down to spin, and the fact that it is a single treadle is something I will have to train myself in. But she's cute and spins lovely.  I was looking for a Haldane (Shetland Wheel) but most are in the UK and hard to come by.  The Rappard was made in New Zealand and based on the Shetland style.
In knitting news, I am working on a pair of socks in Blue Moon Fiber Arts Socks That Rock in "Whoville". I am sort of making up the pattern as I go along.

The turkey is thawing, and I will make the stuffing and potatoes on Wednesday. The family will all be together on Friday.  What more can you ask? Presents are nice but having a dinner together is lovely and seeing everyone laugh together is the best.

My dear friends whom I have had the great privilege of getting to know in Blogland, I wish you the very best for this time of year, as well as 2016.  Wherever you are, whoever you're with- you deserve every good thing coming your way.

Clawed wants to know why there's a fake tree in the living room.  People are strange, Clawed.

Peace out.




Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Ten On Tuesday- 10 Gifts You Can Buy At The Grocery Store

I guess it really depends what grocery store you shop at. We have a chain here, Loblaw's, and some of the stores are very high end.

1. A selection of imported cheeses and deluxe biscuits.
2. An expensive balsamic.
3. A pricey olive oil.
4. Chocolate truffles.
5. Panettone.
6. Gift cards?
7. Some high-end tea or coffee.
8. A really good bottle of vanilla extract.
9. Exotic fruit.
10. Some wine at the outlet.

In Ontario, 6 packs of beer just hit the store shelves today. The government really controls the sales of beer and spirits, but I know you can buy them at corner stores in Quebec. Since I don't drink, it doesn't affect me at all.

On the weekend Miss Mew and I made shortbread and Candy Cane cookies.  Today I made some Ginger Molasses cookies, and I am done. They will be packed up and gifted and then I won't have to have the temptation in the house.

I made this ultra thick hat, The Vermonter.  I hope to wear it on walks, this is assuming we get any cold weather, and possibly snow.
I'm messing around with a sock pattern and still working on my gansey.
I thought today I would post a picture of Howard. He is defintely the alpha cat. He doesn't really like to be picked up, but will come for a cuddle if the mood strikes. Nothing happens around here without Howie knowing about it. He's goofy, but he's a sweetheart.

Fleece out-

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

It's Beginning To Look Alot Like....

Christmas. On the weekend FC put up the decorations and outside lights. Miss Mew and I (mostly Miss Mew) did the poor excuse for a tree.
FC got a new reindeer for outside- our other ones were sent to where the broken Reindeer go. He put up some new teal lights as well.
If I took a close-up of this, you would notice that there are no decorations on the bottom third. This is part of the joy of having theif-in-the-night kitties.
I whipped up some Santa themed bags.
I am adding some inches to my Whitby gansey.
I will begin a Christmassy sock- in Blue Moon Fiber Arts Socks That Rock "Whoville".
And here is a quilt I made many years ago- a paper pieced Santa mini quilt.
Just tell me if Santa is bringing the Little Stinkies....
Don't worry Clawed- Santa never forgets the kittens.  And we're fleecin'-

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

The Lost Week(end)

This week has been a bit of a lost cause, as FC is home working on major issues at work (figure that one out) and therefore, my creativity is suppressed.  I really wanted to get the presents wrapped and the tree and lights up- but it's not looking good.

I just got home from having my annual physical- which in itself is not bad. I like my doctor, and I don't need to have any invasive procedures done. It was not a surprise to me that I am overweight and need to address that, because it will impact my blood pressure and joints.  Other than that, I am healthy and since FC is in the same boat, we're in it together.  Of course, we know what happens at this time of year (marzipan) and with all the chocolate and stuff, but I can make a start.  Eating after dinner is a big problem and FC likes sugary drinks- so I will have herbal tea and he can do without.  You don't learn new habits, but replace bad ones. So I'm told.

I did do a few things. There has been an addition to the extended family and any excuse to knit with pink baby yarn:
The pattern is free on Ravelry, Cascade.
I also made a small hat with a tiny Rose at the top, in honour of her middle name.

Here are the blocked Frostrosen mittens, and I didn't go back and fix the palm. Who the hell is going to notice?
I got one of a pair of handspun socks done. I actually dyed these myself, and they're ok. Sonny O doesn't take much notice what colour his socks are.

Which brings me to some thoughts I have about what I don't get about knitting:

1. Why do people knit skirts? It is THE worst garment because of the stretch and it always hugs your balloon butt and sags at the hem.  I have yet to see an attractive one.

2. What is the point of yarn bombing? It's not attractive and my practical side says it's a waste of time and effort. Perhaps not materials, but I still am not seeing the point of it.

3. Magic loop.  Alot of to-ing and fro-ing for no reason. If you can use dpn's then you really don't need to Magic loop. I've been told I should learn it- and you know, I don't get why. If you do, then that's great, but I have gone this long and have done just fine.

4. Toe-up socks. I guess the theory is you can adjust the length of the leg depending on how much yarn you have, but I haven't ever had that issue. The cast on is fiddly and not enjoyable, and I have reverse engineered a few patterns and done them top-down. No biggie.

5. Intarsia. A pain in the behind.  I have done it for childrens' sweaters, but I really don't care for it.  So I avoid it unless I can get around it and do duplicate stitch.

Maybe I have been knitting a long time and am stuck in my ways.  I always try to give certain techniques and yarns a go when I feel it can improve my skills. But alot of it- not sure if they are actual improvements.  There is more than one way to skin a ....
...(ssshhhh....cat.)

Fleecin' out.


Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Ten On Tuesday- 10 Things You Are Grateful For Right Now

Since I am in Canada, I am assuming the T on T prompt is for Thanksgiving.  I think we'll leave it for our friends to the south. Actually, I am grateful that I'm not cooking another turkey.

In Chez Sheriff news, I have a new sofa, and the old one found a new home. I really loved the old one- the kids were kids when I got it 10 years ago, but it still will do nicely at my sister's house.
The new one is navy blue wide wale corduroy (Miss Mew says it reminds her of a pair of pants I made her wear as a kid).  I got co-ordinating pillows made in a bird print, and a matching ottoman. FC painted the walls "Late Wheat".
 I am knitting the thumbs of my Frostrosen Mittens (and I see I made an error on the palm pattern, aaaargh!)
 Made some project bags for Christmas.
 This is funny.  I found this cat toy that comes with pouches of catnip that you can put in the rabbit's pants. At Wal Mart.
And finally, we have a pic of the "Tinstigator" who is tutoring the kitten in the art of sneaking into the crawlspace.

Fleecin' out.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Ten On Tuesday- 10 Places Where You Hang Out

I can't name 10, because I don't really hang out much except where I knit, and the kitchen where I cook every day. I guess you could say I hang at bookstores, but not really.

I said I would have some FO's to show, but really I have finished only one thing.  I got some knitting done watching the annual  Santa Claus Parade, and this year the floats were really amazing.  Too bad it was so warm out, because it needs to be cold to be really good.

I've finished another Ka'ana Shawlette, in Blue Moon Twisted "Huegasmic".  I really love neon brights in winter, and this is a free pattern on Ravelry.
I have done a Frostrosen mittens, using Rauma Finullgarn.  Making these mittens using the authentic yarn used in Norway is a wonderful knitting experience.  Also, notice the DPN's- a friend recommended the Karbonz.  They are unbelievable and I really hope you try them and see what I mean.
 
I am also spinning a boatload of BFL that I dyed up in the summer.  

TinBad the Sailor.  He has been showing the kitten how to do bad things.  Doesn't he get that Santa Clause is Coming To Town?

Fleece out.









Tuesday, November 10, 2015

No-FO November

But look around
Leaves are brown
and the sky
is a hazy shade of Winter

It's overcast today (spelled that overcats), and a typical November day. Not really too cold, and this is weather I really love.  Not quite all the maple leaves are down, so you walk through all the dried up ones, and there is a beautiful smell of autumn. 

Not alot to report around here.  We're in the middle of re-doing the tv room, which is not a basement, this being a split level.  I am just waiting for my new sofa to get here and I'll do a reveal.  I will show you my new lamp, which I stalked the Costco site for.
I always wanted a dragonfly one- this is perfect. 

I think I pretty much have most of my Christmas things done, except for cookies and stuff. Next week is the parade, and I can just about deal with the constant commercials and stuff. I think it's a bit much when they don't even wait for Halloween to be over.  Kind of obscene even.
Clawed this morning. Last week he gave me a scare and stopped eating. His stomach was upset and I had to take him to the vet. I now suspect he was eating Christmas cactus- and it took a few days before he was better.  Now I have to get rid of some plants and put the rest up high where they can't get at them. Never a dull moment around here.
Howard and Tino on outside-strange-cat watch.  If I was that cat I would get a ticket to Alaska and never come back.

Hope to show you some knitted FO's next time.

Fleece out.




Saturday, October 31, 2015

Happy Hallowe'en 2015

This years pumpkin on the porch. Don't get too scared!

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Tuesday... no 10.

I am posting because I seem to be used to doing this on Tuesdays. I don't remember what the prompt was, but anyway, there is no list.

I am loving the cooler weather, and of course, it's Halloween on Saturday.  I adore the smell of pumpkins and burning wood and leaves- they should bottle it and sell it.

The knitting mojo was here for a while and seems to have disappeared.  I have been re-thinking my yarn stash situation and have come to the conclusion that there are many things in there that I have lost interest in.  Wollmeise? Meh.  Laceweight merino? Meh.  Dale of Norway? Blech.  Or maybe it's just general apathy with knitting. Could that happen?

This is a brand new book by a columnist at the Globe & Mail, Ian Brown.  The link will take you to an excerpt from it, and it chronicles his 61st year of age.  I really like him, and his humour and he brings up a number of subjects and facts on the aging process.  Highly recommended.

 I made this Chihuahua for Alex for Christmas. Last year he really liked his Wumpus so he's getting this.
 
I dyed and spun some BFL/Nylon and made these socks too.
Clawed is giving us a wink. He is the most darling, entertaining and loving of kittens.

Fleece out for now- and Happy Halloween!







Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Ten On Tuesday- 10 Things You Did This Weekend

If I can concentrate through the turkey stupor, I can come up with 10:

1. Cooked a turkey with all the fixins.

2. Celebrated my 29th wedding anniversary (well, FC gave me a card....)
3. Went to an amazing book sale place with FC, Miss Mew and the FN (Favorite Niece). It was unbelievable, and we literally had a cart full.

4. Watched the second season of Miranda.  Love her.

5. Laundry- lots of it.

6. Nope, the brain just can't get in gear.

I wish I had some knitting to show you, but I don't really.  I have finished one sock for FC and am working on a scarf for a gift, but that;s about it.
Here we have the Junior Birder/Squirreler sitting in the NEW WINDOWS.  I think they are way more thrilled than any of us, and we're pretty thrilled. When the windows are closed you hear absolutely nothing- what a difference. They are capped on the outside, so no more scarping and painting.

Here's to a short week- fleecin' out.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Ten On Tuesday- 10 Things You Wish You Could Learn Instantly

I don't know that I can think of 10- let's see:

1. Play piano.

2. Speak German, or maybe Italian.

3. Paint beautifully.

4. Dog grooming (I think I would like doing that).

5. Play the Stock Market.

That's all I can really think of right now.

We've been having a spell of humid weather, which is obscene in September.  Today it's supposed to cool off, and become more autumn-like. One can only hope.

A few happenings.  Last week when I was in Niagara Falls NY, I entered a raffle in the Kipling store, and I won a free backpack, pencil case and small pouch. They all have these cool monkeys hanging off them.
Cool huh?  Of course, we had to drive down and get it, but it wasn't too bad. There's practically no one at the border anyway.

Also, on Thursday and Friday we are having new windows installed. The front picture window and French doors were new 5 years ago, so now the rest of the house will have new ones except for the front and side doors.  I will be downstairs with the 3 cats. Tino knows how to bunt the door open with his head.
You know it's Fall when things start to look a little squirrelly.  A wonderful gift from a wonderful friend. I did tell you that I am a tea towel maniac?  The shop has everything you could ever want. And more.
The boys will be thrilled with the new windows.  All that open air for birding and squirrelling.  Of course, Clawed will be out of commission as of tomorrow for a few days.

Fleecin' til next week.



Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Ten On Tuesday- 10 Things You Love To Do With Your Best Friend

I am loving this cooler weather this week. As far as I'm concerned, it can't get cold enough.

1. Laugh until we cry.

2. Go shopping.

3. Have a tea/coffee.

4. Knit

5. Watch a movie.

6. Go on a road trip.

7. Yap on the phone (though I'm not a yapper per se)

8. Gossip.

9. Go for a long walk.

10. Admire and learn from each other.

Sounds kind of sucky, doesn't it. I have a best friend, but I also count DH as one, as well as my daughter (though I do wear the mother hat on occasion). I have online friends whom I hear from on a daily basis, so maybe best friend doesn't mean what it used to mean.

Around here, the Ash trees came down yesterday. The backyard looks denuded, but the dead trees were sort of freaking me out at night.  At the end of next week our new windows are being installed, so it's all go around here.

I spent the weekend in New York State. The Fingerlakes Fiber Festival:
I have some observations about certain things south of the border.

1. The Walmart carries things that we don't have here.  Pumpkin Pie Pop Tarts, Underwood Devilled Chicken and Duncan Hines Caramel Apple Cupcake kits.
2. No-one really drinks tea, and if they do, they drop a bag in hot water, and put cream in it.  They also have "sweet tea" which I assume is iced tea here, and we're talking New York State.
3. They still have pennies, and they won't take our Canadian ones.
4. The service in restaurants and stores is really good, and they are friendly.
5. I noticed a high number of people driving and talking on cell phones, so I'm not sure about the laws. You do still see that here, but I always give them the evils.

I did bring back some amazing yarn. This is from Jill Draper Makes Stuff.  It is Autumn in a skein, and I couldn't resist. For those of you who may think that that's all I got, there's this:
Isn't that the truth?

Clawed is scheduled for his procedure next week.  I am hoping that it will chill him out a bit, but alot of the time that doesn't happen.

Fleecin' out.