Sunday, June 17, 2018

Yopping Update 51 - What? A new addiction??

Well I think this becoming a Grandmother thing has brought out the inner crocheter in me.  That is ALL I did this week once I finished the ubiquitous Paton's slippers.

I finished Princess Leia:

But I had to go to Michaels to get some more white yarn - and then this happened.

So I HAD to start some modular crochet blankets:

I had to rip this one out and restart because I realized it was a different size than these two and majority rules. 

I also joined the June Mandala CAL and this was my first attempt (well actually my second because I ripped it out after first attempt because it was wonky).  This one looks wonky but I think it will block out when joined with others to make a blanket. 

When I went to my Croatian lesson I told my friend about my new love of crochet and she showed me this cute fridge magnet called 'Nonice'. Nona is Croatian for grandmother so Nonice means The Grandmothers.

I think I am the one in the middle.

My friend also showed me some blankets she had made for her children using Tunisian Crochet.  I have a tunisian hook that I got at the FreeStore on my sister's island and so this happened when I got home.

I am going to make a sampler baby blanket with strips of different tunisian stitches.

There was an awful fire in our neighbourhood this week and many many families lost everything so a friend of mine had a yarn auction to raise money for them. 

I came away from the auction with 4 lovely skeins of Mad Tosh Vintage. I think there is enough here to make a cropped sweater.

This week I also went for a long walk with a dear friend and we saw these six cygnets with their parents:

and on Friday a beautiful swallowtail butterfly visited my hummingbird flowers.

So add to that two aquafit classes and last night's Polka Time event I can confidently say that this has been a good week. 

I have started to think about my list for the soon to start  Year of Projects 18/19.  I think there will be little advent knits/crochets and of course shawls, socks, sweaters, baby things and toys. 

To follow the other yoppers as they head for the finish of this year go here.

Have a great week everyone.

Sunday, June 10, 2018

Update 50 - Baby things

I finished the booties:

can you see a problem?  I made one with 2.5 mm and one with 3 mm.  Oops - guess I have to make another pair to match.

the diaper pants:

made with the leftover yarn from my classic tee.

and this owl hat:

I am very proud of my crocheting ability on the little owl.

I purchased two new skeins of sock yarn:

Each ball will make a pair of socks plus a pair of anklet socks.   So I guess I will be casting on some socks in the very near future.

I looked through my year of projects list and with two weeks to go I hope to finish a few more and the unfinished projects will begin my list for Year of Projects #8.  Who is with me?

To see how my partners-in-crime are doing check out their posts here.

Sunday, June 3, 2018

Yopping Update #49 - Casting on ALL the things

I finished another potholder and I am pleased with the size of this one because I think the design shows up much better:

I can finally share the big news around here.  We are going to be Grandparents in December and so of course I had to cast on a few baby projects:  booties, a bonnet and some diaper pants.

We will go to Croatia in December to meet the newest member of our family and I am very excited and have already started packing.

Casting on seems to have started me down a startitis rabbit hole, so I have cast on two more shawls, a pair of slippers for the mother-to-be, and another hemp potholder.

This is what my coffee table looks like at the moment:

The flashcards are from my croatian lessons because I am determined to be able to speak Croatian with my grandchild!

I did finish my May spinning and I am especially pleased with spinning the baby doll (gray) fleece that I had carded on my sister's little island.

The green is ounce three of the yarn I have been spinning.  One more one ounce bobbin and I can try my first ever 4 ply yarn.

I have signed up for Tour de Sock this year as a cheerleader for the Double-Double, eh? team (we are a Canadian Team and "double-double" (two sugars, two creams) is how one orders coffee at Tim Horton's - a Canadian phenomenon.  I like signing up to get the patterns - six patterns for ten dollars and I usually knit one or two, but I don't join the race.  All profits go to Doctors without Borders.

I will join Tour de Fleece in July - to spin every day during the Tour de France.  I won't join a team, but will spin for myself.   Part of July I will be on Vancouver Island so I hope to pack my spinning wheel, but if it won't fit with all my teaching supplies I will take along my drop spindle. No stress, just a few minutes of spinning everyday as I work my way through all my fleece. 

If you read my previous post you will understand that I do not need to put any more pressure on myself to meet deadlines or participate in challenges.

So that is it for this week.  I have been thinking of what I want to be called as a grandmother.  My brother suggested Grand-M-A  since my name is Mary-Anne.

I like it!

Or in Croatian it is Nona.  I like that too.

If you are a grandparent, what are you called?

To follow other yoppers as we head towards the finish line go here.

Oh ya, and I am going to join Year of Projects #8.

It isn't stressful, and I love following my other blogging/crafting friends.

Friday, June 1, 2018

Goals and Challenges are my Albatross

It seems like everything in my life right now is goal driven. 

Duolingo - I am learning French and Duolingo keeps track of my progress by how many days in a row I have practiced.

Memrise - I am learning Croatian and Memrise keeps track of my days in a row.

Headspace - Keeps track of how many days in a row I have meditated

Carrot and Fitbit - Can I make 8200 steps a day?

Am I drinking 8 glasses of water a day?

Am I doing yoga every day?

Am I planking 30 seconds when I wake up and 60 seconds before I go to bed?

Am I doing 10 squats every time I go pee?

Am I exercising 150 minutes a week?

I can become quite manic about keeping all my streaks alive and have found myself trying to 'fudge' my Headspace streak by going to the app and starting the lesson but not listening to it, or trying to get in my steps without really stepping. 



So, I am trying to let go of all the expectations I put on myself.  I have been feeling quite manic lately and even my knitting is getting away on me.  I have cast on three projects as of yesterday and I have three others I want to cast on RIGHT NOW.

This manic activity is kind of freaking me out. I can't trust that this is just what good mental health feels like, or if  "Houston, we have a problem."

My headaches seem to finally be gone.

That is a very good thing. 

My blood work is all normal.

That is a very very good thing. 

I feel like I have too too many balls in the air and I am waiting for one of them, or all of them, to drop.

I am waiting for the proverbial shoe to drop. 

I don't trust myself. 

I don't trust feeling good. 

I don't trust.

Oh sure, I am getting things done but still and all I feel somewhat out of control. 

So for now I am using the Serenity prayer as my mantra:

God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change;
the courage to change the things I can;
and the wisdom to know the difference.

I am letting my streaks go.

I am being honest with myself about what I can and cannot do in a day. 

I am listening to that still small voice that is whispering to me that I am ok.

Not perfect. 

But ok. 

And getting better every day.

Sunday, May 27, 2018

#48 - TPHPE for the win

Hello one and all. 

This week has been all about potholders!

First I finished the hemp potholder - chinese characters for Year of the Monkey.

Then I checked my queue and saw that I had planned to knit TPHPE pattern.

TPHPE stands for The Prettiest Hot Pad Ever. 

I added the row of crosses along the top because it wasn't quite square enough.  Now I have started another one and I am expanding the pattern row to every two rows so it will be square enough without me having to adlib. 

I did a second Tree of Life potholder/trivit with better contrast of colours.  I am happier with this result than last week's.

A friend at knitgroup said she liked the brown one from last week because it was a mystery similar to Where's Waldo?  Where is the Tree of Life?

My son and I did another geo-caching walk before he left town and we saw these cuties with their mom along the way. 

Last Monday the three of us (my husband, son and I, not the little ducks) went to the Museum of Anthropology.  It is such an amazing place and now I am reading about Salish Weaving after meeting with Debra Sparrow whom I had gone to school with until grade 8.  She was there demonstrating weaving as she worked on a piece commissioned by the Museum.  She mentioned this book as her reference when she first began weaving.

Here is one of Bill Reid's carvings that is honoured with a room all of its own. 

Lastly at Knit Group a gentleman arrived with two suitcases full of wool and material. He was moving and had been storing things for his mother-in-law that he now wanted to give away.  

I took this amazing bolt of material that I am going to make into bedroom curtains.

And this red and green felt for an advent wreath and/or christmas stockings.

And some acylic yarn I will send on to the Hornby Island Free Store.  

This wool I will use for scrap yarn projects like my little advent knits.

but this I will make into a shawl 

and this into .....something.  Maybe a baby blanket?

Also there was a completely finished sweater except the ends hadn't been sewn in and there was a hole in the front where I think the woman was trying to fix a cable she had made an error on. I picked up the stitches on either side of the hole and grafted the sides together with kitchener stitch.  Last night I sewed in all the ends. The cable isn't a mistake, it is a design element.  Right?

I thought it would be donated to some young man, but then I put it on and my husband said I should keep it.  

What do you think?

A good camping sweater for sure.

To follow other yoppers as we head towards the finish line look here.

PS:  On the headache front it is still with me, but I did go to the doctor and have had lots of blood/urine tests.  I am not letting it stop me and have been walking and even tried a Tai Chi class for the first (and not the last) time.  It'll take more than a persistent headache to stop me from getting on with life.  

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Yoppin Update #47 - Or is that 70?

I washed and dried some more fleece this week and spun some more of my May fiber.

I got two shawls on the blocking mats.   I am so happy with them both.

For about 24 hours I had NOTHING on my needles.  Panic ensued but then I checked my Year of Projects list and realized I had a Tree of Life Potholder double-knit in my queue which I knit up in two evenings.

The colour obscured the pattern so I am going to knit another this week with a better colour contrast.

I am using Cascade fixation which is cotton with 1% spandex.  It is lovely to knit with, soft and smooshy.

I also started another hemp, chinese-zodiac double-knit, pot holder for a friend's up-coming 50th birthday.  It is coming along nicely.

It will be the chinese character for Monkey.

But most of this week was getting ready for my dh's 70th birthday.  I surprised him by flying our son in on the morning of his birthday and then another surprise by having his best friend join us at the restaurant for dinner on Thursday night. 

He assumed that the surprises were over, but last night I had twelve friends and family surprise him as he came into the house from grocery shopping!  He WAS surprised and it was a great evening of laughter and stories, friendship and food.

For his birthday I started a "Hilo or Bust' jar so he can get to the Big Island to see the volcano before it stops erupting.   (He will wait until it is a wee bit more under control than at the moment.)

I withdrew from the test knit I was going to do because with these headaches still coming and going I didn't want the pressure of a deadline.  I will get to the doctor this week to try to see what is going on.  Promise.

My son has been introducing me to geo-caching and he accompanied me to find my first cache on Friday.  I now have the app loaded and I think in time I will start my own cache with some little knitted object.  Stay tuned. Near the cache we spied these cool fungi.  I don't think I would have seen them if not for us searching for the cache.

I had two good swims this past week and a few good walks in the forest.

Today?  Later I will go for a walk, but for now I am in my jammies relaxing after the hustle and bustle of planning last night's party.

It is so hard to clean the house without looking suspicious!  lol.

One last thing.  My son showed me the app bitmoji - so here I am:

My other wonderful yoppers are here