Recent Acquisitions

Somehow in the past few weeks, without much intention to, my fibre and yarn stashes have grown somewhat. Since I currently work as a yarn shop girl, it is an occupational hazard for some yarn & fabric to follow me home, I’ve been very good about it (for the most part).

But besides a ball or two of sock yarn, or a few meters of fabric now & again, I really haven’t added much to my stashed materials in a big way for quite a while. The stash is already quite healthy enough. Most recent additions in the past few years have been from visits to shops while travelling. And this month started like that too.

First of the acquisitions were from a recent trip to the county. While my parents were visiting in early August, we all went out to stay at a house in country near Cookshire-Eaton, QC for a few days.

Without fully intending to, we managed to work in a trip to a small yarn shop to round out our day of cheese tasting, junk shop scrounging & ice cream eating. Because my Mom needed some needles to knit mittens with, we ended up seeking out La Shoppe de Laine in Moe’s River, QC. And I’m very happy that we did.

I guess I should say that this isn’t really a typical yarn shop, mostly because the shop is located in an out building on the farm where Kathy and David raise a variety of animals and have yarn produced from their coats.

While the shop does stock some commercial & locally dyed selections which my Mom was drawn to (she loves angora), I had trouble selecting which of Chambord yarns I was going to buy. In the end I went with a skein of Rambouillet & a skein of Shetland/Baby Doll blend.

Chambord Shetland/Baby Doll Chambord Rambouillet

Also stored in the shop was raw fibre waiting to be processed & spun. Kathy mentioned that she was preparing for the upcoming Twist Fibre Festival and sold me some Lincoln Longwool Locks & raw Rambouillet fleece sort of as a preview to the festival.

Loose Lincoln Locks Rambouillet Raw Fleece

We also got to see some of her husband’s collection of Victorian sock knitting machines that had been set up with dates and information about each machine. He collects & refurbishes the antique machinery and also makes socks & leg warmers for sale. We stayed and chatted for about an hour & even met one of her cashmere goats.

Overall a wonderful discovery.

I think I’ll leave our visit to Twist Festival to another post.

Tropical Tradition

Yes, we woke up to this view everyday. This is why I make it my business to travel halfway around the world once a year when remotely possible.

It’s not the usual Christmas tradition, but it’s become ours. We figured out that we’ve been going to Hawaii off and on for 17 years now (almost every year). Not everyone can make it each time, my brother wasn’t able to this time. And some years my parents go on their own for spring break, like when their children get nostalgic for prairie winters. But this is one holiday tradition that isn’t hard to participate in.

What did we do while we were there?

  • go to the beach like it’s our job
  • got chased by 3 sea turtles
  • I stepped on a bee
  • fell asleep in the sun
  • read nearly 6 books
  • knit a pair of socks
  • watched so many movies, including Django Unchained, The Perks of Being a Wallflower, On the Road, Hyde Park on Hudson, Silver Linings Playbook and Promised Land at the Maui First Light Film Festival
  • drank many tropical drinks
  • got carded when we finally went out to a restaurant
  • played countless rounds of Dutch Blitz
  • reclaimed an email address I haven’t used in 7 years
  • ate lots of lobster, steak and orange cheese
  • went for hippie pizza with Luna & Sam

The beach where we usually put in our daily shift.

My Dad practicing the ukelele.

And I also posted a bunch of pictures on Instagram (which also got posted over here on Flickr).

IMG_2353 IMG_2309 IMG_2303 IMG_2300 IMG_2295 IMG_2282

 

Tropical Tradition

Fall & Early winter ended up being really quite busy. Unfortunately that means crafting took the back seat again. So much so that I had no idea what craftivities to even pack and take with me.

I’m currently partaking in my family’s rather awesome tradition of running away to Hawaii for Christmas. A great escape that makes all the hectic running around during the year that much more bearable.

While most active crafty blogs take this chance to pause and reflect, I’ve been rather too out of step to really reflect. And too far away from everything to really catch up on things at the moment. As ever, I have been making things but (again as has become the new habit) I’m behind in recording things. So I guess I have to postpone my reflections until later.

And hopefully I don’t get too caught up into the busys once I get back to Montreal. That’s the one thing I really don’t want for 2013. By invoking the “busys”, I’m not trying to say that this space or that crafting & making isn’t of importance to me. The opposite really. it means that other parts of my life have (annoyingly) been demanding too much of my attention and energy, which sucks. I’d like 2013 to have less of me face-planting on my bed when I get home. Rushing around is SO not my thing.

Easter in NYC

This past Easter weekend, I traveled down to New York and New Jersey with a couple of friends. We took the train. Whenever I tell people that, they kind of give me a weird look. Sure, it takes ALL day to get there but it’s super cheap (roughly $60 each way), they give you a bunch of leg room, the view can’t be beat, it’s very relaxing and traveling with friends is a party. I usually end up talking and giggling most of the time or watching out the window.

We have had this trip in planning stages pretty much since Christmas/January and I’ve been looking forward to it since going down last summer for a quick weekend visit. The past few months have been super busy at work. Combine that with the decision to move apartments and finding a new place for May 1st has made April a very very busy month. But it was actually really great to get away even if it was for only a few days.

Highlights:

  • Janina and I made friends wherever we wandered.
  • Museums close early
  • Home brewed Root Beer and cheese fries are always worth it
  • We went to the beach on Easter Sunday. The water was freezing, but it was still completely awesome
  • As always, traveling by train is my favourite.

Photos can be found on Flickr.

Train to NYCView from the trainTrees & waterRight by the waterRandom bit of forest.More random forest.Costal floodingMore costal floodingThe water was prettyTrees & water & power linesAmanda & the escalatorLocks & the wooden escalatorYou know this buildingAnd from this angle.Nintendo cards

Times squareNini & NBC...Because she is longLongcat is longUnion Square at duskUnion Square at duskCarousel at Asbury ParkCarousel at Asbury ParkHexagons!Magnolias in bloomPretty pretty magnoliasNini & the Central Park BathroomTile ceilingTile ceilingCool wall frescoesFresco detailEarth Day LitterEarth Day LitterView of Central ParkCentral Park West81st Street SubwayDisobey in SoHoAmsterdam CoutureTin roof in Stromboli PizzaThis one's for SusieUnion Square at duskAsbury Park on Easter SundayTiny mussel shells on the beachEaster Sunday at the BeachEaster Sunday SurfEaster Sunday SurfMore surf yoIt's cooooldLocks at the beachLocks at the beachAsbury Park Beach, NJAsbury Park CasinoAsbury Park CarouselAsbury Park CarouselAsbury Park CarouselAsbury Park CarouselAsbury Park CarouselView from the trainForest from the trainBye bye NYHello QCRegional Pepsi?Quebec at duskApproaching MTL

Home for the holidays

I headed back home to Alberta for the holidays this year (nope, no Maui this year) to visit with my family. It may have been an extra 10 – 15° cooler than Montreal, but my brother and I still had a great visit in the prairies.

My parents even had a Christmas tree for us to decorate. I haven’t decorated a tree in years. We’ve been meeting in warmer climates for so long that the tree and decorations have become fond memories. Though we were pressed by my dad’s usual last minute shopping on Christmas Eve and guests coming at 6pm, we did a pretty awesome job.

Most of our time was spent hanging out, enjoying the HD cable, PVR and Apple TV. Going out occasionally for a trip or two to the store. We even made a trip to West Edmonton Mall for crazy Boxing Day shopping. We were there for a 9am appointment at the Apple store so we made it through unscathed and well loaded with goods.

My dad bought himself a Fender Guitar playset from Costco (complete with mini-amp!) and spent much of the holiday tuning and learning chords. He let me play it a time or two too.

At an Xmas party of a friend of my mom’s, my brother and I invented a drink. The Holden Caulfield is rye & coke & a twist of lime (wool blazer optional). We ended up playing with the iPhones. My brother was evergreened my mom’s first iPhone, so we were playing APPs for a while.

Oh and I made some bread.

After 2 days of work, it ended up very yeasty-play dough tasting. Oh wells. There’s always room for improvement I guess.

And then we flew back to Montreal with a lovely sunrise. Though it always feels too short, it was a good visit.
A little bit of Xmas spirit
Mom makes lists
My dad + his Fender Guitar Hero Playset
Mr. Peabody + his Holden Caufield
See my ciabatta rise!
Ciabatta, rolls and bâtard loaf
Sunrise over the prairies

Hawaiian Holiday Hiatus


Aloha from an island in the sun.

I’m declaring an official personal holiday hiatus. I’m taking a holiday from winter and all winter related activities. Including shovelling snow, wearing mittens/hats/scarves/long underwears/sweaters, carefully planning what to do when I leave the warmth of my apartment to minimise the outside time and knitting.

Yes that’s right. I’ve run away for a Maui Christmas with my family and I didn’t bring ANY knitting or knitting related items. This is a full blown holiday. No stress related to misbehaving knit projects (in my attempt to be a sweater master, the sweaters have taught me a thing or two), no yarn related guilt/lack of inspiration, no shopiholia for new projects.

No Xmas stress of any kind (other than getting here but that’s a story for when I get back). Christmas shopping is non-existent on these family holidays.

Just beach & ocean & ice cream & lots of movies & hangout time & riding in slightly obnoxious generic SUVs that are just a bit too tall to be comfortable climbing in and out of for a shorty like me.

So Mele kalikimaka and Happy New Year to all and try to keep warm.