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Archive for October, 2007

Apparently laptop computers don’t bounce.

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Miscellany

A week ago yesterday, we had a knit-in at Alexander’s Pub in town here.  Glenda (who managed to avoid the camera- wait until next time) came for some knitting time where she wouldn’t have to answer the phone or jump up to wait on those pesky Wednesday-morning-customers and Doreen showed her neice Diana (I hope I’m not embarassing myself by getting names wrong; after all, it’s been more than a week) how to knit.

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 No kidding, Diana had never knit before, and with her Aunt’s help, and our cheerleading (and maybe a wee drink) she was knitting like nobody’s business by the end of the evening. 

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Heather was working on a scarf

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and I cut ribbing off a too-short sweater, in anticipation of Glenda getting more  yarn in.  I had even swatched, but as soon as I assembled said sweater, the yarn just did whatever the hell it wanted and now I need to knit 6″ of ribbing instead of 3″.  We’ll call it a design decision.  No pictures.  Just tired resignation.

In the meantime, I went to Calgary this past weekend to visit my sister and to drop off Geoff’s scuba gear with his girlfriend so she can take it to him when drydock in Freeport is over next week.  I had a stop planned at Custom Woolen Mills just north of Calgary to discuss some llama fleece processing questions I had (llama fleece issues are a whole other post), and being the seasoned traveller that I am, I had the camera battery all charged up the night before so I could take pictures of anything and everything and document the whole fun trip.  Took the battery out of the charger, popped it in the camera, put the camera in the bag, put the bag in the car.  Skipped the step where I check to make sure the camera is turned off, and of course didn’t pack the charger (because the battery was charged, remember?).  Long story short- no pictures of the trip, just after-the-fact shots.

I had a lovely weekend, and finally met Ruth who has been knitting hats for the homeless in Calgary (at an alarming rate, I might add) with my former stash.  She can whip up a hat in no time, but is scared of lace.  She and her husband were having a housewarming party, during which someone commented “This is just like a university party: wall-to-wall people!”  The only differences:  no-one was smoking (anything), no-one was drinking anything through a funnel, and it was 9pm and people were starting to go home.  Yep, just like university.

 I did stop in at Gina Brown’s twice (once alone, once with my sister who in two years of knitting in Calgary had never been.  I may have opened Pandora’s box.)  There was an interesting clearance section which Jean browsed while I didn’t resist temptation and bought this:

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Noro Kochoran.  Lucious.  I have no idea what I am going to do with it.  The colours remind me of the water in the Caribbean.  (excep the yarn is hairier.)  I am weak.

I finished the Starmore Ardvey hat from In the Hebrides, but I think it will be gifted.  It looks a little goofy, and instead of looking like a sea urchin, reminds me of an orange hat with popcorn stitch my Mum used to wear to walk the dog.  Shudder. 

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Am I wrong?  I don’t think so.  And trust me, it looks better on the dog than it does on me.  Perhaps it is because it is more structured than most of the hats being knit and worn today, or perhaps I should tweak the pattern so it doesn’t increase so much after the ribbing.  I have lots of red Briggs and Little left, so I may experiment.  ***I do hope I’m not stirring up any pot regarding Starmore and her former associates with this picture, reference and comment.  I will remove the whole shootin’ match if anyone threatens to sue me.  I hate this legal stuff. 

I had a brief stop in Ikea.  We went through the showroom and down the stairs to the marketplace, upon which I realized that in my excitement at being in Ikea I had left my purse somewhere in the showroom.  I ran up the stairs like a salmon swimming upstream and met the nice clerk carrying my bag to the lost and found.  She didn’t even ask me to identify it; the panicked look on my face convinced her that it was mine.  First time in the big city or what?  Duh.

Amy over at Indigirl had a big weekend.  You might want to take a peek.  Also, I have another link for you to check out: Our friend Kyle is experiencing firsthand the devastating fires in southern California.  Please keep him and everyone down there in your thoughts (and prayers, if you’re so inclined).  Sure, it’s all just stuff, but there’s also the life-and-limb consideration.   I am reminded that we are pretty immune from natural disasters (except the blowing-away-to-Oz variety and grasshoppers) here on the prairies, so it seems a little surreal to see the footage on TV.  I just wish there was more consideration of the “real people” instead of hearing how many celebrities have to relocate to their houses in the Hamptons because of the fires. 

I’m off to Andy’s soccer game tonight- he’s playing on an adult team so once he turns 19 in March he’ll actually be able to go for a beer with the guys after the game.  He says he doesn’t care if we go, so long as I don’t make any noise.  I’ve been warned.

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Untitled

As you are most likely aware, this past Monday was Canadian Thanksgiving.  It’s earlier than the American holiday, and my internet research tells me that our holiday is to give thanks for a good harvest.  Since we’re further north than the USA (southern Ontario notwithstanding) we finish harvest first so we get to overeat sooner.  Whatever.  We’ve been fed, watered, pied, and leftovered.

Spending time with family is usually at the forefront of our plans, but for me there is always a bittersweet undercurrent to the weekend.  It’s about Jon.

I went to high school with Jon.  He was a  speed swimmer, a smart fellow, a little on the goofy side, and for three years I had a crush on him.  He wasn’t “cool”, but I walked past his house several times a week on my way to my friend’s house.  His parents were what my mother would call “rugged individualists”, and nowhere was this more evident by the light fixture in their dining room which I could see through the front window as I walked by.  While other families had chandeliers, or pendant lights, Jon’s family had a 3-foot-high novelty light bulb, with a smaller working bulb suspended on the inside.  I thought that was so neat…Well, at any rate, Jon and his siblings were encouraged to be independent, and I think that’s one of the things I liked about him.  We didn’t date during high school, but I got up my nerve and asked him to a friend’s wedding a few summers after we graduated.  I don’t remember much about the wedding or the reception, but  we didn’t click romantically and parted at the end of the evening as friends. 

Jon went away to Edmonton for university and finished his 3 year science degree.  He came back to Saskatoon and started his studies in the college of medicine.  He would have made a fine doctor.  Thanksgiving weekend came, and Jon went to Edmonton to visit Shirley, his girlfriend.  By the end of the weekend, she was his fiancee.   On his way home from Edmonton, newly engaged, Jon’s car was hit head on by someone who pulled out to pass a semi without looking for oncoming traffic.  Jon died instantly.

Why do I still feel sad, 28 years later?  I still feel sad because the last time I spoke to Jon, we chatted briefly in a university coffee shop about his upcoming Thanksgiving trip to Edmonton , and he went about his business.  After he left, the girl I was sitting with asked “Who was that weirdo?” or words to that effect, and I did not defend him.    In fact, I agreed that he was somewhat odd.  I thought her approval (or disapproval) of my friends was more important to me than someone I had known for 7 years.  Even if he was eccentric (and he had that potential), damn me for not sticking up for him and being proud that he had been and still was a good friend.   The next time I heard his name, it was in the same coffee shop when another high school friend told me he was dead.  And I had not defended him.

Every Thanksgiving, I am reminded about Jon and I feel a tinge of guilt because of the way I brushed him aside, and every Thanksgiving I renew a silent vow to acknowledge and celebrate my friends, and rejoice in everyone’s individuality and eccentricities.  I am thankful that I had the opportunity to know Jon, and hope that the realization that I did a stupid, shallow thing can be an instrument in my constant struggle to become a better, more decent human being.  Forgive me, Jon, and thank you.  Wherever you are.

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Amphibian Remains

Remember the black cardigan?

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It has been languishing in a basket since completion, waiting for me to decide whether I was up to the major renovation that was required.  (shoulders too big, sleeves too long, neck too loose…Lynn had all kinds of suggestions for me.)  Today was the day.  You know how they say cleaning is good for the soul?  (Well, even if they don’t say it, they should.)

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I made a decision.  I feel better.  Sorry, Lynn.

Extra bonus points if you caught the reference in the title.

Have a good week.

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Thanks.

Happy Thanksgiving!  (or Happy Columbus Day, if you’re south of Canada and north of Mexico.)  We are between Thanksgiving dinners; Saturday with Mike’s family (17 of us, and not at my house.  Thankfully.), and tonight with my Mum and Dad (4 of us- a little more low-key!).  I’ve had enough ham  to last a week or two (Mike bought some big honkin’ ham through the restaurant, and consequently have enough leftovers to feed a medium-sized village for a long time.) but that just means that there are several meals in my future about which I won’t have to think too hard.  There’s another thing to be thankful for. 

I noticed at dinner on Saturday that whenever the topic of “blog” came up, the family looked at me funny, as though this was a weird thing.   I guess I just take it for granted now that everyone knows how it works, and that most people either read or write one.  Excuse me now while I retreat to my cyber world…

Seriously, though, I sit and drink my coffee and look around my house and remind myself that I am very fortunate.  Not just in terms of stuff (although I have way more stuff than I need), but in family and friends.  I have two sons, both of whom are responsible, respectable adults (or almost), who are fun to be around and serious when the occasion warrants, I have a loving husband who puts up with me and claims to love me no matter what tangent I’m off on, (sorry about the dangling preposition), and extended family that is warm and welcoming, my side and Mike’s, and good close friends.  My dogs like me, I am healthy (mostly) and I am happy with who I am and where I’m at.  I have needles, I have wool, there’s a fire in the fireplace, I have a cup of coffee, and all is right with my world.  I am thankful.

There has been some knitting happening, but there are no pictures.  I am waiting for a pullover front and back to dry (I blocked before I try to put it together; I even swatched!  Big week all around.)  and then I’ll do the sleeves.  Yeah, that’s right, I’m knitting without a pattern again.  I figure if I try this 20 or 30 times, it should turn out respectably sooner or later.   While it’s drying I may pull out the Beugler  shawl and see if I remember what I am doing. 

Have you checked out the 1000 Knitters project at the Panopticon?  Franklin added 2 rather noteworthy knitters to the files, and it also sounds like he had a good time at this “thing” he attended on Saturday.  I really wish there was more of that type of action here in Saskatoon.  I would even travel to Edmonton for that type of action!  (although that being said, I am not registered for this and I should be- I love Emerald Lake!  Last time I was there I had Mike and two teenagers in tow.  It is not a child-friendly place, which accounts for a good deal of the charm.

Two additonal notes:  Ruth at Knitting on Impulse has once again posted some spectacular photos- go have a look-see.  Also, I have a new button on my sidebar.  I love it.  I’m not sure what geographical area it came from, but it strikes that if a Canadian didn’t make it up, one could have.  It’s like a giant “get-out-of-apologizing-free” card for not blogging more often.  I got it via Dave at Criminy Jickets.  Give it a click and a read;  it should be required reading for everyone who blogs.  I love rationalization.

My next post will have pictures.  I promise.

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In Limbo

The scarf is done:

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and I didn’t trim any ends off.  I felted my two joins in the middle of the scarf, but what is left at the end is what was left over.  I was a little tense while I was knitting the last short triangle; the knitting gods must have decided to “throw me a freakin’ bone”.  This is just about the nicest colourway I’ve seen in a variegated fibre.  I think I have to keep this one.  Wallace isn’t keen, but he’s too hairy to need a scarf on all but the coldest days in winter.

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I’m not sure what’s up next, but I did get a pattern from the Beehive in Calgary for a fulled entrelac purse that looks sort of interesting.  It needs a spring closure across the top (which I bought but can’t locate at the moment) so I may have to invest in another one later this month when I go to Calgary to drop off Geoff’s scuba gear so his girlfriend can take it back to him when she re-joins him in the Bahamas after dry dock.  Well, there’s a long sentence for you.  I’m trying to reduce my punctuation footprint so I don’t have to buy comma credits.  We all have to do our part.

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