Saturday, November 30, 2019

November 30 - 30/30

NaBloPoMo ends today and I am pleased with myself for posting everyday.  Writing can be my salvation at times, but at times also my nemesis.  It used to be that when I was struggling as a teacher I could write quite eloquently about my place in it all.  Now that I am retired and struggling with just being me I find often I am at a loss for words.  I know though that it is in those times that I need most to write. 

Today I was on the move from 10 am until just a few minutes ago.  It is 5:15pm.  The lasagne is in the oven and dinner will be ready in 30 minutes. 


CoDA meeting from 10-12
Lunch with hubby and then shopping for dinner fixings - 1 - 2:30
Make 2 lasagnas - one to eat and one to freeze 2:30-3:30
Go for a swim 4-5
Put on laundry - 5 - 5:10

Tonight I plan to sit and knit and watch Six Feet Under - a new Crave binge.  Ironically I am test knitting a pair of socks for a friend and her design is called KnitFlix and it is a perfect pattern for watching tv.  Not too complicated, and the pattern is easy to remember so I don't have to look down too much. 

While the lasagna sauce was cooking I made my wreath for advent which starts tomorrow.  In the morning I will light the first candle for the first week of advent.

So there we are.  November is almost over and in three weeks the days will start getting longer again. 

When I was in the pool a woman caught my eye and gestured to the clouds.  I had already been admiring the ones to the south, but the western clouds looked like little blue sheep with pink under them.  She said "When life disappoints me I just look at the clouds.  They are so beautiful".  "Yes", I said, "the clouds and the birds singing remind me of the beauty in the world."  I then dove under the water for a few strokes and when I surfaced I looked for her and she was gone. 

I think she was an angel. 

An angel reminding me of the beauty that is around if I just take the time to look. 

Friday, November 29, 2019

November 29 - Advent is coming

I can't think of a title for today's post.  It is the penultimate post of NaBloPoMo.  Even on days when I had nothing to say I posted because that is the deal I made with myself. 

November is over and on Sunday Advent begins.  I am looking forward to Advent.  On Sunday I am getting together with my knitting friends to start our Advent knitting.  I have some little advent knits lined up, and I hope to make one little star, or snowman, or shamrock, etc for each day until Christmas.  I also will be taking part in the Peace Project which is a knitting project starting December 1st until the solstice.  It is an initiative run by The Healthy Knitter and I am excited about this year's pattern.  It is a tribute to the Sandhill crane.  I saw my first ever Sandhill crane when we were in Yellowstone a number of years ago and I was smitten.  They almost looked prehistoric to me, and I think I have found the perfect wool to represent their gorgeous plumage.  I bought some wool that I have planned to use, but a friend is de-stashing and I think the wool I will be buying from her next Thursday will be perfect.  Stay tuned.

Today was Tai Chi in the morning, my croatian lesson in the afternoon, and then I helped my husband remove some branches overhanging the eaves of our house.  Tomorrow we will have to saw them up into manageable pieces for our compost bins.  Thankfully the sunny, dry weather is suppose to hold for a while - it is cold though.  Hopefully our furnace will hold out too.  It was making some awful noises this morning.  We took the fanbelt off and then put it on again and it seems to be ok now.  Fingers crossed.  I don't want to have to buy a new furnace!!  I also don't want to be cold!!!

Tonight I will be working on a pair of socks that I am test knitting for a designer friend of mine and I also have another Wild Mustard toque on the needles. 

I think I have the title for today's post.  Advent is coming.  Tomorrow I will make my advent wreath and on Sunday light the first candle.  Every week I add things to the wreath.  The first week I add stones and shells, the 2nd week plants, the 3rd week little wooden and felted animals, and on the fourth week Mary and Joseph. 

Advent - spreading light in the darkness.  May peace be with us all through these wintry days. 

Thursday, November 28, 2019

November 28 - Now it feels like Christmas

I was up my 7 this morning and after coffee and breakfast I headed to the pool.  I was home by 12 and had just enough time for a quick lunch before my dh and I headed out to a performance of the Grimm's fairy tale The Queen Bee.

This production happens every year at the end of November and it is a collaboration of students from the school where I used to teach and a group of special needs adults.  There is music and movement as the story is told.  The costumes are simple and colourful.  The striving of the young people is something to behold. 

Every year it seems the Christmas spirit can be a bit elusive, but every year this performance reminds me of the beauty in simple things. 

After the performance the sky was so blue and the sun so bright that my dh suggested we head over to one of our local beaches for a walk.  My first reaction was - at this time?  We will hit rush hour coming home!  However a little voice inside me said to go with it and so we did.  It was lovely and quiet, the waves lapping, the birds singing, and a huge bald eagle flew overhead for a time. 

After an hour we headed home in what should have been a snarl of rush hour traffic, but by the grace of God we drove home without any traffic woes. 

I am so grateful for today.

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

November 27 - Ticking things off

Yesterday I went to a support group for anxiety and made a goal for myself to do some things this week that I had been putting off.  I was due for my semi annual blood test, a follow up x-ray requested by my doctor and I needed to contact a different doctor to see if the referral he had made was in the works. 

Sometimes with my anxiety I just put my head in the sand - no news is good news right?  Or at least no news is, well, no news. 

So this morning when I woke up I was all set to go to my massage and then see where the day went from there.  At 9:45am I got a call from my massage therapist that they had no power due to last night's wind storm. 

Alright, I thought, first I will call that doctor and follow up on the referral.  Good thing I did, it seems like there is some snafu in their system and hopefully the receptionist will call me back tomorrow with an update. 

Then I decided to
a) make an appointment for the bloodwork for later in the afternoon, and
b) go get the x-ray. 

After the x-ray I planned to go to the pool for a hot-tub soak (since the massage was cancelled), but when I arrived at the pool the parking lot was oddly quite empty.  Yup, you guessed it the pool was closed due to the power outages. 

Not to waste the opportunity I called ahead to my local yarn store and they assured me they had power.  I headed there to buy some wool for a shawl I want to start on Sunday. 

Home I went with wool in hand.  (Not sure about one of the colours, but we shall see).

At 2:45 I was in the blood clinic.  I was done within 10 minutes so I headed out to run some other errands.  But, there I was on the same floor as the dentist I was seriously considering switching to.  I headed in and talked to the receptionist and within about 15 minutes I had filled out a new patient form, booked an appointment and had the email information I needed to go to my current dentist and ask for my records and xrays to be transferred. 

I decided to not avoid the confrontation and went right over to my current dentist to tell them I was leaving and to transfer my records.  No confrontation - they took my information and said they would transfer things this afternoon.  Wow, I guess my feeling that they didn't really care about my business was true.  I had written them a LONG letter in August expressing some concerns and was told I would get a response.  You guessed it.  No response.  My dh seems happy with his dentist so I am going to give him a try. 

Phew.  Good productive day.  We were home by 4:30 and I was knitting and catching up with The Masked Singer while dh put the finishing touches on our dinner. 

Here is my latest knitted project:

Oh, and I finished that darn bunny last night too.

Why do all my stuffies look so woe-be-gone!

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

November 26 - Picture this

By supper time I had all the bits and pieces knit:

And I spent about three hours turning all those little pieces into:
poppy buds

I realize the stamens look like tarantulas - but that is what the pattern calls for
Two little poppy brooches.  

Ok, I realize I am two weeks late for Remembrance Day, or to think of it another way - fifty weeks early!

Now I will go sew up that damn bunny.  

Monday, November 25, 2019

November 25 - Put and Take

When I was younger I used to help my mum "put and take" which is what she called tidying up when the counters where full of things that didn't belong in the kitchen, or the landing of the stairs was covered with things to go upstairs or down. 

Today I realized I needed a good effort of "put and take".  My study had things strewn all over the floor and desk - remnants of my week of teaching.  The coffee table was overrun with magazines, wool, needles, journals, novels, and other knitting paraphanalia.  It took a good hour or more to get things put away, papers recycled, and of course I took the opportunity to find what I needed to start another project. 

So now I am sitting on the couch (heating pad on my back) and trying to knit a little poppy pin that came in one of my Simply Knitting magazines a month ago.  I could be putting together a little bunny that I knit - but I am not in the mood for sewing things together.   

If the poppy pattern doesn't get easier I may just cast on another pair of socks that required no thinking. 

I have decided to spend December working on small Advent knits, one a day, and I also want to cast on a shawl but I need to get to the wool store and pick out the colours and wool I need.  Hopefully I will have that in hand by December 1.

Today I scored a THREE hour nap, and then went to the pool for a swim afterwards.  Throw in the dishes and the laundry and I would say it has been a productive day. 

Sunday, November 24, 2019

Yopping Update #21 - Christmas knitting has begun

So excited to have my sock knitting mojo back.  I finished a pair for me:

The last half of the foot on each sock is me trying to match the stripes using my leftovers in my stash because I only had enough yarn for half of each sock in the self striping.  This meant lots of ends to sew in, but I have been wearing them all week and I LOVE them.  This is the Rose City Rollers pattern which is super easy, and great fun to knit.

I knit a second pair, but shhhhhh Christmas is coming and I don't want to spoil any surprises.

Then this weekend I knit up the little kit that came with my latest Simply knitting magazine.

A little angel ornament for my tree.  I am going to count her as one of my advent knits!

I have been successful so far in posting every day in November for NaBloPoMo so if you want to know what else I have been up to you can check my previous posts.

I will end with a picture of me at the school's Christmas Faire on Saturday  My dh and I went to the cookie house and I scored a gluten free Gingerbread Man.. 

wearing all the knitted things!
And here is my grand-daughter wearing a grandma knit outfit.

Saturday, November 23, 2019

November 23 - Planting seeds

Today was the Children's Christmas Faire at the school where I used to teach.  I went to get candles and to enjoy having a cup of coffee while listening to the students play violin.  It turned out to be a day full of much more than that. 

I lost track of how many hugs I received from new students and ones I taught years ago.  Meeting the children of the children I taught.  Chatting with parents of the students I have had.  Exchanging hellos and smiles with the colleagues I still meet when I mentor or evaluate teachers at the school in recent weeks. 

It was overwhelming, but in a good way. 

And then this woman stopped me and introduced me to her daughter.  I had helped this woman and her daughter so very many years ago when I was a La Leche League leader and they were struggling with breastfeeding.  She reminded me that all those years ago I had told her about doulas and how they could help woman when they were in labour.  She hadn't been able to find a doula all those years ago.  But now she tells me her daughter, this lovely young woman standing before me, is a doula. 

"You planted a seed all those years ago", she said.  "Don't forget you planted a seed."

She, of course, had no idea how much I needed to hear that these days. 

We never can know all the seeds we have planted in this journey we call life.  We can never know what comes of those seeds.  I am grateful that today I was reminded that I had touched someone's life.  I am grateful she took the time to thank me. 

A simple exchange that has left me feeling so very very blessed.

Friday, November 22, 2019

November 22 - Guardian angel

It is almost time to sleep and I remembered I had a post to get in to fulfill my Nablopomo.
I am tired.  A good tired, but still I hope I sleep through the night.
Last night I dreamt I was dying and my family was all gathered around me and I was fighting the urge to close my eyes for that final sleep.  At 64 I knew I was far to young. 
I hope tonight my dreams are more hopeful.   I started knitting a christmas angel this evening. I pray she is watching over me.  Over us all.  

Thursday, November 21, 2019

November 21 - Getting things done

Migraine almost gone and I headed to school to finish off the evaluations.  I was home before noon and decided to load all the cedar bows on my front lawn (that my son had cut down when he was visiting last month) and take them to my school so they can decorate the school for the Christmas Faire this weekend. 

After a quick lunch I went to my support group at Hope Centre.  It was good to catch up with my friends there as I had missed the last two weeks because of work.  After the meeting I headed to my local vitamin store and redeemed a coupon I had for a free smoothie.  Kale, Pineapple and Mango blended with coconut water. 

Once home I decided to rake up the remaining twigs and branches on the front lawn and filled two compost bins with trimmings.  I finished just as the sun left the yard. 

Inside I went and made cauliflour soup for supper and then sat down for the evening to knit. 
I turned a heel on a second sock - which is still a marvel to me that one can create something three dimensional from two sticks and some wool - and now it is time for bed. 

Hopefully tomorrow the migraine will be completely gone as I have Tai Chi first thing in the morning and then I am meeting a friend for lunch and a Christmas craft market - my first of the year. 

Life is clickety clacking down a straight line track at the moment. 

I'll take it.

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

November 20 - No surprise

I was at work by 8 this morning and home by 10:30.  A quick trip to the pool and then I would have the whole rest of the day to do what I wanted and also to finish writing up the two evaluations I did this week. 

On the way home from the pool I was marveling at how the light was dancing and glinting off of everything.  Every thing. 

You would think I couldn't be fooled, but I was.  It wasn't dancing light.  It was the onset of a migraine. 

I made it home.  Drank a sugary drink, took two ibuprofen and headed to bed.  I woke up three hours later, a little headachy still.  I took two tylenol and drank a coke.  Caffeine helps.

I have since been sitting on the couch, kntting and keeping the lights low and the sound on the tv low. 

I shouldn't be surprised.  My body decided I needed a day to rest.  Really rest. 

I just wish I didn't need a migraine to remind me. 

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

November 19 - I got this

Things are shifting and in the right direction.  Today I spent at school evaluating two teachers.  I was home by 3pm and set to making lasagne for an early dinner. While it baked I wrote up the evaluations and then by 5:15 decided to call it a day and enjoy my dinner while watching another episode of The Crown.

Tonight I am going to a lecture on how to lower your biological age.  It has been on my calendar for ages and if it had been a month ago I would have cancelled.  But I am feeling stronger mentally and even my wonky hip seems to slowly be working itself out.

Life is such a journey of ups and downs.  When I am down I forget that I will go up again - sometimes with the help of the medical profession, but up none-the-less.  When I am up I think I will never be down again.

As Ferron says "Life don't clickety clack down the straight line track it comes together and it comes apart."

Wise woman that Ferron.

Wise woman.

Monday, November 18, 2019

November 18 - When I make plans God laughs

If you read my post yesterday you would know that for the first time in six days I was going to sleep in this morning. 


I was WIDE awake at 4am, and nothing I did could persuade me to go back to sleep so I finally got up at 4:45 to make coffee and to have a bit of a chat with my daughter over WhatsApp. 

Around 7:30 I was feeling tired so I headed back to bed for a fitful sleep until 10am. 

Up I got for another round of coffee with my dh and then I headed to the pool for my 30 minutes of arm and hip exercises.  I mostly walked against the current so I think I had a good workout. 

I did get some knitting in today while I caught up on Grey's Anatomy.  Now I am making sure I get this blog done before bed. 

I am working all day tomorrow evaluating two teachers so once again I have to wake up with the early alarm.  And on Wednesday too.  Hopefully on Thursday when I can really sleep in God will be busy elsewhere and let me get to it. 

My hip is s l o w l y improving and I will take it.  Any progress is good progress, right?

We have been watching the new season of The Crown and I have many many ends to sew in on my socks so I better get back to it before bed (which feels like it should be right now, but it is only 8:45). 

So yah, God is playing jokes on me right now. 

I would think he would have more important and pressing things to do. 

Sunday, November 17, 2019

Yopping Update #20 - and on the seventh day she rested

I have a finish - another little doll and leaf.

I really enjoy knitting these little gnomes, I have another leaf that needs a little gnome so I will be casting that on before the end of the week

I think my sock knitting mojo has finally returned and I have cast on a pair of Rose City Rollers.

I am knitting them two at a time because I am using leftover yarn and I have to finish them in another colour and wanted to make sure at least the top of each sock matched.  I am doing one on a 9 inch circular and the other on double points.

I taught 15 hours this week ending this morning so perhaps that explains my late post today.  I went to the pool after my class, home for some wonderful homemade chicken soup and then a long and luxurious nap!

I woke up to a quiet house - my hubby must be out doing one errand or another - so after doing the dishes I sat down to catch up on some of my missed tv episodes while I fixed a knitting problem on a friend's shawl.  Now it is ready to be blocked and I think she will be happy with the result.

There wasn't much knitting this week because once I got home from teaching at 7 in the evening and had supper usually bedtime wasn't far behind.  The socks were it.

I have been successful so far in posting everyday for NaBloPoMo and this week I got to the pool five times.  My hip seems to be slowly improving and my mood is definitely improving.  I plan to do NOTHING tomorrow, but on Tuesday and Wednesday I am back at work all day doing two teacher evaluations.   No rest for the wicked, as 'they' say.

I hope all my readers will forgive me for not answering all the comments you so kindly leave on my blog.  I read all of them, but as of late had not had the wherewithal to reply.  I have been trying to keep up with other Yoppers and Nablopomers and I hope now that teaching is over I can be more diligent with my replies.

Of course my weekly update wouldn't be complete without a picture of this adorable girl.  I was lucky enough to be on a video chat with her and my daughter as she took her first steps away from her mumma towards the table.  Her first steps up to now have all been to her mumma.

"Did you see that?"  exclaimed my daughter.

"I sure did!"  And it made my week.

We are heading into the dark and rainy days of November and I want all to know that I am lighting candles for peace near and far.  And for all of you whom I love dearly.

Saturday, November 16, 2019

November 16 - words to the wise

I heard these three steps today:

1.Give up the struggle

2.Show up

3.See what happens

Something to ponder.

It has been a long day, well, really a long week.  One more class to teach at 8 tomorrow morning.  
And so to sleep.

Friday, November 15, 2019

November 15 - Is it bedtime yet?

Up at 6:30am
At school by 7:45am
Teach from 8:00 - 9:30
Drive to Rec Centre
Join my Tai Chi class  (10 minutes late)
Finish class at 10:35am
Swim until 11:20am
Home by 11:35am to make lunch
Eat (and watch an episode of Chicago Med)
To school by 1pm to meet with student for 45 minutes
Home by 2pm
Prepping for tomorrow morning's lecture
It's 3pm now and still miles to go before I sleep.

I will head back to the school in about 30 minutes to put up by board work and look over my notes for my 5:20pm class.
Teach until 6:45pm.

And then will it be bedtime?

Probably not because I will need to eat supper (my dh is making chicken soup) and I hope to do a wee bit of knitting.

I plan to be in bed by 10pm.

And then?

And then tomorrow I will do it all over again.

I am tired.  But happy, so that is a good thing.

Thursday, November 14, 2019

November 14 - Half way to done

I am just about to head back to the school to do my board prep for my 5:20pm class.  Once this class is over I will be half way through my teaching week.  Tonight I will meet some friends for dinner and there may or may not be wine, but there likely will be whine.  And laughter.  Lots of laughter.

The teaching is going well.  A student told me today that she is enjoying my class so  - yay me.

I managed to get a swim in again today and although my hip is still wonky, it is not as wonky as it was as long as I am careful with it.  At least stairs are becoming more manageable even though long flights still require me to take steps one at a time. 

My ride is here so I am off. 

Wish me luck as we attempt two drawings - an eight pointed form with parallelograms and another eight pointed form with trapezoids. 

Should be fun?

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

November 13 - three down, seven to go

Three lessons behind me and seven more to go. 

Up at 6:45am and in the classroom by 7:50. 

The class went well, and after coffee with a student from last summer I headed to the pool.  I like going on Wednesday morning because there is a parent and baby class that happens in the leisure pool beside the river and I get a kick out of the expressions on the babies' faces. 

I was home by 11:30 for lunch and to do dishes and make the bed before heading back to school for tea with a friend.  After a quick catch-up we both settled down to do prep for our up-coming classes. 

By 5:20 pm my students were sitting in front of me and we were off.  The hour and a half flew by and there was laughter along with the learning which is always a good thing. 

Since I had all my prep done I headed home for leftover stew and to watch Survivor. 

It is a two hour special tonight, and we are just one hour in.  I have knitting to do, and as soon as this show is over I am heading to bed for, I hope, a good long sleep. 

Because tomorrow I do it all over again. 

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

November 12 - oops

It was going to be a busy day anyways but I had it timed exquisitely. 

Haircut - 11am - 11:50
Opening Session at School - 12 noon - 1pm
Eat lunch in car as I drive
Group at Hope Centre - 1:15 - 2:15
Swim 2:30

Then I would have the evening to relax and do a little more prep for my teaching which was to start Wednesday morning. 

When I walked into the noon meeting my dear friend said "Aren't you teaching tonight?" 

"I don't think so", I said sort of confidently.

The Executive Director was beside us and showed me the schedule.  Yup, I was to teach at 5:20 until 6:45. 


How had I messed that up. 

I still went for my swim, and I went over my lecture notes in my head while I did all my water exercises. 

Then home by 3:30 for a snack, gather up all my teaching supplies and loaded into the car by 4:30.

My dh drove me down and help unload everything to save my poor hip and back. 

I organized my notes, and rearranged the room a bit so all the students would have access to the blackboard

At 5:10 all was ready and the students started to drift in.  Two students were attending the class via the computer and nine others were sitting in front of me ready at 5:20.

It went well. 

After the class I put up the board work needed for my 8am class and then my dh picked me up and now I am home and just finished a yummy beef stew that himself made for dinner. 

So, ya, today had a bit of an oops, but it all worked out in the end. 

The cat is snuggled beside me, and I have a heel to turn on my latest knitting project. 

I am going to enjoy knitflixing for the next couple of hours, and then I have an article to re-read before my lecture tomorrow. 

The week of teaching started ten hours earlier than I thought it would, but I am ready so here goes.

Monday, November 11, 2019

November 11 - I will remember

My husband and I went to the cenotaph this morning.  We had to park quite far away and what with my hip and his knee we walked slowly through the fall leaves.  As we got closer we could hear the beautiful voices of the choir singing before the ceremony started.  They sounded like angels.

There were so many people there from the littlest of babies tucked up into snugglies on their mother or father's chest to the elders in their electric scooters.  As we settled into a place to stand the pipers started to play and the veterans/soldiers/cadets/mounties/police/scouts and others marched in.  I was very near tears. 

When the ceremony was over the parade started and it turned out we were standing right where everyone was going to march past.  I felt so fortunate to be there. 

As is my tradition I laid three poppies on the cenotaph after the crowds had dispersed..  One for my mother, one for my father and one for my uncle all who served in WWII.  I had been  blessed in 2004 to accompany my uncle to Italy with other veterans of the Italian Campaign and I must admit I had a little chuckle as the last post was played on the trumpet because he told me a little jingle he used to say to remember the tune.  It is quite irreverent so I will leave that between him and me. 

It was moving to stand in that crowd singing our national anthem, and responding to the different prayers.  It was lovely to hear a new rendition from the choir of Flanders Fields. 

I am just so very grateful.

I will remember.

Sunday, November 10, 2019

Yopping Update #19 - Time to start picking up the pieces

First of all a finish.
ignore morning hair. lol

I was quite happy about my estimation of where to start decreases so I wouldn't run out of yarn.  I call this a definite yarn chicken win.

That little bit of leftover yarn will start  another little gnome.  I had almost 24 hours with nothing on the needles and then last night I started another leaf bed which will be matched up with a little gnome.

I am please to report that my mood is improving thanks to the increase in medication and also my chiro appointment on Friday night has given me a fair bit of relief with my hip. 

I am happy about both things as I am scheduled to teach two classes a day starting on Wednesday.  I have started organizing my notes (nothing like leaving things to the last minute), and I have managed to get to the pool six days in a row.  It really is my life saving activity. 

This morning I went to a WW workshop because tomorrow they are introducing a couple of changes to the existing program and I wanted to get all the new material.  Fresh starts always feel good - new booklets and I will dig out my stickers and coloured pens to inspire myself. 

Tomorrow is Remembrance Day and even though I have a physio appointment at 9:30 I am hoping to get to the cenotaph before 10:30. 

Of course my Sunday updates wouldn't be the same without a grand-daughter pic, would they?

my little munchkin
This post also counts as my NaBloPoMo post number 10!

Saturday, November 9, 2019

November 9 - Procrastinating

After my CoDA meeting this morning I settled on the couch to do prep for the two courses I am teaching starting next Wednesday. 

I had to eat lunch. 

There were two episodes of New Amsterdam I hadn't seen yet. 

Wordscapes was calling me and I was ranked 10th in the weekend tournament. 

By 3:30 I gave in, turned off the TV and put my mind to sorting out my notes.  (There may have been a few tears).  Ancient Civilizations is in pretty good shape since I have taught it four times already. 

Freehand Geometry needed some attention, which it got, and then I spent an hour learning some geometric forms I can teach the students. 

By 5:45 I decided that a trip to the pool was in order for all my 'hard' work.  I am home now and dinner is on the way. 

And I have to go see where I am now in the tournament. 

On the hip front I think the chiropractor really helped.  I could go up and down the stairs at the pool no problem, and I slept the night through for the first time in what seems like forever. 

Progress people.  Progress. 

I didn't cast anything on last night.  GASP.  I know, right?    But I have decided to make another leaf and a little gnome to curl up inside of it. 

That's it for me.  Day 9 of 9 in NaBloPoMo - good for me. 

Friday, November 8, 2019

November 8 - Unravelled

I have finished the shawl - the last hour or so was spent unraveling the remaining dropped stitches.  Even the ends are sewn in, and I won at yarn chicken.  There will be pictures on Sunday - and maybe it will even be blocked by then.

Busy day today and almost time for bed.  Tai Chi and a swim this morning.  Lunch and Croatian lesson in the afternoon.  Knitting and Pizza making (and eating) this early evening.

 Just as we settled down to watch Electric Dreams  I got a call from my chiropractor.  He had just received the message I had left early this morning as he had been at a conference all day. 

"It is 7 minutes to 7"  he said.  "Can you come now?"

Oh, hell yes.  So I went for a treatment and I am hopeful that it will give me some relief. 

A quick stop at the store to buy a cartridge for my favourite pen, and we are once again home and settled on the couch. 

I have NOTHING on my knitting needles. 


I know, right?   I will have to remedy that before heading to bed.  I mean, what kind of knitter has nothing on her needles? 

This one, apparently.

Stay tuned.

I am sure something will be cast-on in the next few minutes. 

Thursday, November 7, 2019

November 7 - Unravelling

I am knitting a shawl which involves unraveling two stitches every 12 rows.  It goes against everything a knitter has been taught to allow a dropped stitch to unravel. 

It is fun though.  I look forward to those rows, and I suppose one could say that art is imitating life. 

When I drop the stitch, because of the yarn I am using, it doesn't unravel on its own.  The stitch needs help with a push and pull on every row as it ladders down.  The fabric is stable on either side of the dropped stitch so it doesn't lose its integrity. 

I am going to enjoy wearing this shawl.  It will remind me that even though I have moments, days, and sometimes weeks of dropping stitches of my life that doesn't have to mean that things have to completely unravel. 

It can, if I let it. 

However, I have the tools, and the support around me to stop the unraveling, and perhaps even pick that stitch up and get it back on the needles to carry on. 

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

November 6 - Better, Worse, No difference

In the past when I have been with my naturopath she has poked and prodded until she finds just the spot that sends my pain meter to a sharp ten.  Then she does something and asks me if the pain is better, worse or no different.  If I said worse she would move and do something different.  If I said better she would stay on that spot and tell me to let her know when the pain went away. 

I sometimes lied that the pain had gone away.  It seemed like it was taking too long, and I just wanted to move things along. 

Often I couldn't tell if it was better, worse, or no different.  I would often guess.  Or lie. 

Today I was at a different practitioner and as she moved around by body she would ask me how it felt.  I didn't know how to answer and often said 'ok, I guess', or 'I think it feels warm, or cold.'

Maybe this is why first my arm and now my hip are yelling so loudly at me this year.  There is no guessing, no 'okay', no 'I don't know'.  I hurt and I want to not hurt. 

My body is saying Pay Attention.  I am paying attention, now. 

I have thought that if I reach out for help I need to know what I am asking help for, or I need to know what I need.

Putting the cart before the horse I think.  Maybe it is just enough to know I hurt, and to know I don't want to hurt.

I will try instead to 'look for the gap', wait for the opening, and allow the process to, well, proceed and be open to the insights they may come towards me. 

Perhaps it is just enough, for now, to admit I am lost, and trust that I will be found again. 


Now there is a concept.

better?  worse? no difference?

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

November 5 - Time

I was awake at 2am.  My hip hurt, and I couldn't get back to sleep, but because I was awake I saw this message come in. 

I made my grand-daughter that sweater and I was so happy seeing her wearing it.  This morning we had a video call so I could see her dancing and playing the keyboard in same sweater. 

Then it was off to work for what was suppose to be 30 minutes but turned into an hour.
Next was the pool and I was to be home for lunch by 12:30 but came through the front door closer to 1 pm. 

A doctor appointment, groceries for dinner, laundry and making said dinner and there went the afternoon. 

Tonight my hubby headed out to a lecture and I figured I could work on writing up the evaluation I did yesterday.  It should take me an hour.  I decided to do it on the computer rather than in my messy long hand. 

THREE hours later I have mostly finished it.

So it is 9pm now, and I am going to knit a little and watch This is Us. 

Then to bed. 

Where does the time go?

And tomorrow? 

Tomorrow I have a massage appointment and coffee with a friend. 

That will be time well spent!

Monday, November 4, 2019

November 4 - It used to be pens

It used to be pens.  When I felt at odds with the world I believed it could be solved by a trip to a stationary store.  Coloured post-its, pencil crayons, felt tip markers could all sooth my ruffled feathers.  At least for a while.

Now it seems to be books.  I have two books I have downloaded from the library on my e-reader, one hard copy book from same library and I just bought another book with daily meditations for the year.  This on top of the book I bought while on the island not to mention the two journals I have recently purchased. 

"And?", you might ask.

Well, I have partially read one book on the e-reader, read about 4 pages of the hard cover book, and leaf through the meditation book daily, but nothing is holding my interest.  So it isn't the reading of books, it seems to be the acquiring of them. 

I think this is why I have decided to blog everyday this month.  Because maybe something will shift. Maybe I will stop looking for peace in a purchase. 

I was at school all day today observing three classes and meeting with two teachers.  It was a good day.  I think I was some support to the teachers, and I enjoyed my interactions with the children.  Mostly though I am content knowing that I made some money today to help pay some bills after some unexpected car and truck repairs. I am wondering if my time of working is coming to an end.  I like the extra money but don't like the deadlines and having to be somewhere at a certain time.  After I have finished these next two contracts I think I will decide to not take on anything until perhaps next summer.  Just a thought, but one that is percolating. 

After supper I did the dishes and currently there are cookies in the oven.  I have knit a little.  Watched TV a little, but mostly sat on a heating pad to give my hip some relief. 

So, even though I am very tired (stupid time change) it is too early for bed so I will hang in with my knitting for another hour or so. 

Here is what I read today as I leafed through The pocket Pema Chodron

#62 Look for the gaps

In my own training, I've been taught to looks for the gaps:  the gap at the end of each out-breath; the space between thoughts; the naturally occurring, nonconceptual pause after a sudden shock, unexpected noise, or moment of awe. Trungpa Rinpoche advised intentionally creating these gaps by pausing to look at the sky or stopping to listen intently.  He called this "poking holes in the clouds."
These fleeting moments of no-big-deal me, no internal conversations, no frozen opinions, are very simple yet powerful.  The utter freshness of just being present introduces us to unshakable confidence; a lionlike pride that refuses to buy into any negative or limiting story lines. 

So ya, it used to be pens.  I think, at least for a while, I will look for the gap. 

Sunday, November 3, 2019

Yopping Update #18 - It's the little things (apparently)


syd the sloth
And he has all 12 toes, because he is a 3 toed sloth! 

Quickly followed this week by this little toadstool baby:

why do all my dolls looks so sad?
I love the leaf pattern for this little baby to curl up in, and I plan to make some little gnomes with leaf beds too. 

re-did face - not so sad
Now that the little things are out of the way I started another shawl, because, well, I always need another shawl.  This one is Clapotis from Knitty and I have made it before out of iron gray for around the campfire.  This one will be for more dressy occasions I think.  It is a simple knit for netflixing (new verb) and I love get to unravel a row of stitches every 12 rows.  This was the yarn I got at Walmart for 1 dollar a ball.  I have 2 balls and will just make it as big as the yarn I have.  I love the fall colours.

And speaking of fall:

I am working all day tomorrow (I am tired just thinking of it), and what with the time change it already feels like bedtime and it is only 5:30!.  To be fair I have already gone to a workshop today and to the pool, plus lunch in the sunshine with my hubby and 90 minutes writing up a report for said work tomorrow.  Oh, and the dishes.

So now I am heating up some pea soup and getting my knitting so I can settle in to watch Heartland and the rerun of the season finale of Battle of the Blades.  Yesterday we filled five giant compost bags with limb trimmings and all that bending and stretching was not so kind to my hip.  So me and my heating pad (and my hubby) are on the couch until bedtime. 

That's soon right? 

PS:  I am participating in NaBloPoMo this month so this is post #3 for that. 

To follow other yoppers check out their posts in the sidebar. 

Saturday, November 2, 2019

November 2 - The purpose of life

This is a question I have been asking myself a lot lately.  The death of a dear friend last month hit me very hard.  He was so young and I kept asking myself what the point of it all was. 

Today as my 12 step meeting was about to start I received a message from a member of the group announcing the birth of his first child. 

I read the announcement out to the group and stated that perhaps the point of it all was simply Love.

A new child brings such joy and hope.  And love. 

It was a good meeting and once home I decided to tackle more branches and vines that were piled on the front lawn.  Between the two of us, and my husband's new chain saw, we bagged up five more containers for the compost.  The job isn't done yet, and my back isn't too happy at the moment, but still it feels good to get something done.  And besides I finally found my favourite shears which makes the job of cutting up all the vines so much easier. 

Then just before starting this blog post I came across this from a friend on facebook:

Note to Self

"What is my purpose in life?"  I asked the void.

"What if I told you that you fulfilled it when you took an extra hour to talk to that kid about his life?"  said the voice.

"Or when you paid for that young couple in the restaurant? Or when you saved that dog in traffic?  Or when you tied your father's shoes for him?"

"Your problem is that you equate your purpose with goal-based achievement.  The Universe isn't interested in your achievements...just your heart.  When you choose to act out of kindness, compassion and love, you are already aligned with your true purpose. 

No need to look any further!"

Are you listening, Mary-Anne?  


Friday, November 1, 2019

November 1 - White Rabbit

I always like the start of a new month.  The calendar is pristine.  Until I fill it up with all the appointments I have.  Now it looks very very busy.  But, there was that moment when it was shiny and new.  The first words I said upon waking this morning were 'White Rabbit'.  This is suppose to bring good fortune. 

I often think I don't do much of anything in a day, and yet my calendar tells a very different story. 

Today I have gone to my Tai Chi class, had a quick swim/steam/sauna, and then after lunch helped my husband chop up a pile of branches for the compost bin.  I have scheduled some work for next Monday and Tuesday, and now that it is 4 pm I think it is time to get my knitting out. I have started a new shawl and the colours remind me of fall leaves.  Yesterday I walked a bit in the crunchy leaves - the maples especially are so vibrant. 

The leaves are falling fast and furious and we have already filled two large bins of debris with one pile still to go.  There are more branches to trim away from the house, and sooooo much raking to do.

A little at a time.  Baby steps.  The weather appears to be holding for the foreseeable future so there is time before the rains are upon us once again. 

My husband is cooking us a roast for supper so soon the house will smell delicious. 

I am unofficially participating in NaBloPoMo - and I plan to post everyday this month. 

Wish me luck.