Based on a True Sweater

Jan. 26, 2006

40 Hours

That's about how much time I have left in this house. I'm looking forward to getting settled in our new place, but man I'll miss this house! It was built in 1914 and has been extended a few times, so it has lots of character. It's comfortable, well laid out, and has many beautiful details. Also, it has 4 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms, whereas our new place has only 3 bedrooms and 1 bathroom. (In case you're wondering why 2 people need 4 bedrooms: 1 bedroom for us, 1 guest room (which we use frequently), 1 workroom for sewing and painting and 1 office.)

Fortunately, the new place has some extra little spaces that are almost rooms in their own right, so we will still have enough space for everything. (For example, there's an open space at the bottom of the stairwell that is large enough to be used as a small office.) The new place is sweet and has nice touches that give it some character, and will make it comfortable and livable. But... it just doesn't have what this house has. I'll miss the recessed, moulded ceilings, the coloured walls, the open floor plan, and the few steps leading up to the guest room or down to our bedroom. I'll miss the way the house looks really tiny from the street, then you walk in and are surprised at how far it goes back, and how spacious it is. I'll miss the extra bathroom!!

I'll miss the huge trees in front that prevent any natural light from entering the living room. I'll miss the incredibly conventient proximity to Safeway (2 blocks!) and the Skytrain station. (Our new place has an excellent location for public transit and has just about everything we need within close walking distance, though, so I can't complain too loudly.) I'll miss our front yard in the spring, which is constantly teeming with little wildflowers that change very few weeks. The photos on the left were taken last April (click to make big). Even now, there are little daffodil shoots poking out of the ground.

Goodbye, little house, our first home in this new city. We will miss you. Thank you for being so good to us.

(Note: My blog will be down for a few days, and I will be without email access for that time. I hope to be back online Tuesday or Wednesday next week.)

Jan. 24, 2006

It's A Good Idea To Blog About The Election When You're Sleep-Deprived

Even when I've got cable, I don't usually watch election coverage. I vote, then I do something else until I can find out the results - I hate the suspense. Tonight after voting (I'm still up packing - so it's still last night for me) I went to the eighth-level-of-hell mega-mall near my house to run errands, and was treated to ambient election coverage via TVs in department stores. In the early stages I glimpsed and overheard, it appeared that the Conservatives were going to do much better than they did in the end. I'm disappointed that they won (that's a nice way to put it), but when I looked at the CBC summary, I am... well, less disheartened. The Conservatives have a smaller minority government than the Liberals did last time, and the NDP increased their number of seats by half. This might not suck as badly as I had feared.

Now go read Jodi and Steph if you haven't already. (That's me saying "Look over there!" because I am sort of shit at talking politics.)

Jan. 22, 2006

News Flash: Moving Sucks

Perhaps I'm just not going to get caught up on my blog entries after all. Perhaps I will just have to skip writing about our wonderful trip home for Christmas, and my subsequent trip home last weekend. (I was a birthday present for Bel. Long story, or I'm a lazy story-teller: take your pick.)

We're moving on the 28th. Zak's been away since last weekend, and doesn't get back til after we move. This is all fine and good, and I could wax eloquent about why this is all fine and good, but I'm a little busy packing, avoiding packing, and freaking out about packing.

Fortunately, because my husband isn't a cretin, we went out for my birthday before he left. Also, I have a couple of really nice friends who have taken me out for my birthday since then. Twice. Because, you know, birthdays that don't suck make everything better.

The photo above is, in the interest of randomness, a crappy shot of a little shelf I have on the wall in the guest room right now. (This was actually the best shot I was able to get. I'm not sure why I love this little display so much.) I know I can set it up again in the new place and everything, but still.... I'm going to miss this place. On the off chance you're curious, click to make big.

L-R: The Iron Giant, a little lamb I bought at Ten Thousand Villages, a fantastic head made by Sharon, a little wooden Christmas tree I bought in a Christmas store in Heidelberg, some tiny babies my mother-in-law put in my stocking the first or second Christmas Zak and I were together, a small piece by the ceramic artist John Chalk (there's a cool story behind that one), a vessel and stopper I made in ceramics in college, and a really amazing dragon head Zak made when he was 12.

Edited to add: I think I'll just give up the idea that my blog is meant to keep up with the events of my life. I so often want to write about something, but I don't because I feel like I should write a nice, long entry about something else first, then I let it get more and more behind til I have to just both ideas go. I do this very, very often. A bit late for a New Year's resolution, but I think I usually make birthday resolutions instead.

Here goes: I will give up the idea that my blog will record my life in any detail. This means that many wonderful things that happen in my life, like Spencer and Lisa coming to Vancouver to visit us, may not be covered in my blog. I will write about whatever I end up writing about, punctuated occasionally by knitting and crochet. I bet I'll write more this way. :)

Jan. 20, 2006


Oh goodness. Cleo has started a Spike-Along. She directed me to a finished Spike, which you can see here. I love how this one turned out, very Alice in Wonderland, yes? It is the first Spike I have seen aside from my own, and I am so excited.

The 18th was my thirty-first birthday. I think a knit-along is a pretty good birthday surprise, don't you?

Jan. 7, 2006

Christmas Knitting And A New Ring

There is, of course, a large entry I need to write about our trip home to Calgary for Christmas. First, though, I must show shitty photos of the Christmas knitting I did. (I neglected to get good photos - too busy having Christmas. Oops.)

I knit only four gifts this year, for my father, mother, sister, and brother. Here we all are together.

From left to right:

Sadly, my sister Shawn is very allergic to any yarn made of animal fiber. For her, I made the Triangle Shawl from the Interweave Crochet 2004 issue, in Butterfly Super 10 Cotton. I love this pattern, and I'm very happy with how it turned out in this yarn! I must make more of them...

My brother Dan specifically asked for a new earflap hat when I asked him what he wanted me to knit for him. I made him one with a flame pattern the first Christmas I was knitting, and he still wears it - but I'm glad he wanted a new one, because I have a much better idea what I'm doing now, and I use much better yarn! This one is made with 2 colours of Lamb's Pride Worsted, and some Kureyon (the brown/black sections). It was a design-as-you-go thing, using the same skull chart I always use (from Enchanted Knitting). I love knitting for my brother. Of the people I have knit stuff for, he may be the most appreciative, and the one most inclined to say "my sister made it for me!"

Here's a photo I took right after the knitting, before the steam blocking and weaving-in of ends.

My Dad's scarf is the one that you really, really can't see at all in this photo. I worked a nice, angular cable pattern in Rowanspun DK, one of my very favourite yarns, though I find it very slow to work with. I really wish I'd taken some better photos of this scarf, it is very beautiful and suits my Dad well. I was proudest of this gift, since my Dad has particular taste and is very hard to knit for.

Last but not least, for my beautiful mother, this entrelac scarf in Silk Garden. This was the gift that inspired the others. Though I love living in Vancouver, I miss my family terribly, and I loved the way knitting this scarf for my Mom made me feel close to her. The scarf suits her perfectly and exactly fits her personal style. It was an unqualified success!! :)

Here's a shot I took before I blocked it. This scarf was so fun to make, and I was stunned at how beautiful it looked.

Finally, can't resist showing this photo. Shawn and her boyfriend, Jeff, got engaged the day before our family's yearly pre-Christmas brunch, at the club my Dad golfs at. Jeff is a very old friend of Zak's, so I knew him before he started dating Shawn, and I have always liked him. I'm so happy for them!! :) (...and I think Shawn looks beautiful in this photo.) Click to make big.

Jan. 5, 2006

Bel Chanson

Life is good right now, but I can't seem to get the words together for an entry. Instead, here are some photos of the Chanson en Crochet I made for Bel for her birthday. I used parts of three different skeins of the delicious yarn Wendy made for me in 2004. I included 2 buttons, sewn back to back, so Bel could choose the one to suit her mood. I'm really happy with how it turned out.

Words soon, really...