Friday, December 31, 2010


Has it already been a week since Christmas Eve?? It's been a blur of still more food, fun, friends and family, I can tell you that! Yesterday morning I took Audrey to the train (to go up to Parksville to visit our mutual friend Bev) after an overnight visit here with us ... and then got to spend a few quiet moments alone at Clover Point to watch the sun come up .... aaaaaaaahhhhhhhhh.

Then Jason stopped in before supper to collect his last Christmas gift which I hadn't finished yet -- this was my favorite knit this Christmas, partly because I knew he has just the right quirky sense of humor to enjoy the finished product -- and, as I predicted, he loved it!
(It's called the sock monkey hat, of course, and it's a free pattern on The wrist warmers he's wearing are crocheted, and were a gift from a friend of his...)

Today I'll drive out to the ferry for the 5th time this week, to take Hailey, who has to be back in Whistler this evening.
Then I think I'll do nothing ... for the next three days. Except knit, of course... my reward for doing all that Christmas knitting? I cast on a shawl for myself! It's called '198 Yards of Heaven' on Ravelry, but I'm knitting it in a bulky weight yarn and adding at least one repeat of the pattern, so it'll be a lot more than 198 yards by the time I'm done.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010


Every year, I wish for a Christmas full of family, friends, fun and food ... and so far, every year, that's what I get! (I also wish for love and peace, and get those, too...)

We had our big family dinner at Mischa's, as usual, but on Christmas Eve this year instead of Christmas Day. That allowed us to 'chill out' on Christmas Day ... after brekkie and gift opening, we ate leftovers and just hung out together for the rest of the day.

It's all about the boys...

My pics are all lousy this year (I'll blame the lighting in Mischa's apartment)...
Michael and Mischa were there, too, but I didn't get any pics of them -- or of Mischa's new guy, Joe, or Mike from Galiano, or Jeff, who were all there, too!

I think the biggest hit under the tree was probably the tech deck park that Joe created for the boys...
Tech decks are miniature skateboards - and Joe, being a pretty decent carpenter, created a to-scale miniature skateboard park for them!

I did oodles of knitting, really I did .... and never took a single picture before I gift-wrapped everything and gave it away! Everyone got socks, of course, and I managed to finish a lap blanket for Jason, hand towels and wash cloths for Hailey, cowls for Julie and Trisha and a toque for Joe. What I *didn't* finish was a small project for Jason and pillow cushion covers for Mischa - still working on those this morning!

Joshua arrived day before yesterday, and today my friend Audrey arrives from Calgary for the day and overnight; then tomorrow we'll have dinner at Penny and Robin's -- and then I'll be ready for this...

Friday, December 24, 2010


It's 6:15 a.m. on Christmas Eve Day, and I've just wound the last hank of wool I'll need for the last Christmas present I'm knitting. It's a man-size toque in a bulky weight yarn, so I should have no problem finishing (she says as she knocks on wood with crossed fingers...)!

We're having our family dinner at Mischa's tonight, so I'll go put the turkey on this morning, and then leave the girls to do the veggies while I go to Knit'n'Cafe this afternoon.

From our 'house' to yours, I hope all of you have the most blessed Holiday Season ever, and may much love, happiness, health and peace be yours (and ours) in 2011!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010


Anyone who knows me knows how much I love Christmas, but today is also one of my favorite days of the year -- "the return of the light" is always worth acknowledging!

Even though I'm rarely up past 10 pm, I made an exception last night in order to see the lunar eclipse. There were a few clouds trying to block it from time to time, it was really cold out (the wind was blowing abou 35 kts), and we had to strain our necks to look almost straight up above us, but I managed to get a few shots of it. This one's my favorite (in the rigging of our neighbor's sailboat):
And, since I was out on the dock anyway, I got a picture of a few other lighted boats in the marina...
MUCH knitting has been taking place, and still much more to do -- I got my flu shot yesterday and my arm's a bit sore today, so I hope that doesn't slow me down!

Last Friday at Knit'n'Cafe, we presented Kevin and Sidney, the owners of Serious Coffee, where we meet, with a little Christmas 'goodie' bag in appreciation. Catherine M. knit the hats! (Didn't you know we're the SERIOUS knitters?)  :)

Aren't they adorable? (And the hats are pretty cute, too)!

Saturday, December 18, 2010


I was talking to Mike on Galiano this morning - he called to tell us that their power was out (it's blowing 35 kts out there right now) but that he'd fired up his generator and had a heater going so he was okay.

I said that I'd have to go down to Clover Point this morning for a little 'storm watching' and he commented that there shouldn't be any boat traffic to speak of since anyone out in that would be a complete idiot.

I remembered, when he said that, that someone told me a few weeks ago that the Port Angeles ferry, which crosses the Juan de Fuca Strait at least twice a day (double that in the summer) has never missed a single crossing! So I googled that, and here's what I found!

Pretty amazing, and I'm sure it's absolutely true -- I've seen it out there in pretty big seas, 'tacking' like a sailboat to keep the bow into the wind.

The Coho is part of the Washington State ferry system, but she's been a fixture in our harbour for over 50 years, so she 'feels' like ours!

Today's agenda: MUCH knitting. I just found out yesterday that someone I wasn't expecting will join us for Christmas  this year, so I have to whip up a toque today! :)

Thursday, December 16, 2010


As I'm sure it is for most of us, it's a busy time!

We had a lovely drive up-Island to have lunch with Julie day before yesterday ... except for the snowing at the top of the Malahat. Well, Michael liked it, I didn't! Driving back from Ladysmith we could tell that it still looked pretty gloomy at the summit, and then saw one of the Highways signs, and it said, "MALAHAT .... SLUSHY AND SLIPPERY" ... and since it was also almost dusk, we opted for the 'World's most beautiful shortcut' and took the Brentwood ferry instead!

I had to be back in time for the Victoria Hand Weavers and Spinners Guild Christmas potluck, which was also lovely! Everyone brings their own place settings ...

... and we had an amazing variety of food:

The Guild had also issued a challenge to create tea cozies, and several people responded, so they drew names and exchanged their cozies last night -- some very clever and artistic ideas, that's for sure!

The evening finished off with a white elephant sale, which meant that (even though a few folks went home with fibre that the previous owner hadn't wanted) there were lots of laughs!

I spent yesterday running errands and shopping with Mischa, and today .... I think I'll go be a spinning imposter at Wendy's house. I *do* have knitting to do....  :)

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


So I stopped in to Value Village on my way home from running other errands yesterday -- I buy the Michael's Craft Store plain white paper gift bags, and like to decorate them with cut-outs from recycled Christmas cards, so I needed to find a package of old assorted cards. I found some, but then this caught my eye...

I don't usually go for those little ceramic 'village' sets that are so popular at Christmas, but this one was a bit different. It's bigger, for one thing -- about 6-8" tall. And it's pale blue, and had a blue Christmas light inside it - so it would fit in to my 'winter wonderland' scene in my living room really well. Besides, check out this detail....
The chimney cap in the fist picture reminded me of a little knit toque, and then, in this one -- have I just been knitting too much, or does that look like the end of a scarf to you, and a bit of I-cord under the windowsill?

So I paid $3.99 for it, brought it home and plugged it in ....
... and was turning it this-way-and-that to admire its cuteness, when I noticed this detail ....
Isn't that just about the most adorable Christmas decoration EVER??

Monday, December 13, 2010


After Knit'n'Cafe on Friday I had to pick up a yarn donation in the north-east corner of the city -- since I rarely get over that way, I decided to drive up on Mt. Tolmie, which used to be one of my favorite spots! It's still lovely...
I had a date with Gibson on Saturday -- we went to the Santa pancake breakfast at a local community centre and then for a horse-drawn wagon ride through downtown. LOTS of fun!
 Yesterday I started the day in one of the nicest ways I know, other than curled up here in our 'LazyBoy.' 


Curled up in front of the fire at Starbucks is a nice treat sometimes! Came home long enough to put a beef stew together in the crock pot, and then spent the day mostly knitting -- here at home, then down to Clover Point for a bit. Met up with Penny and Robin there, and invited them back to share the beef stew for dinner! 

So it was a lovely weekend all around, in spite of the fact that it's been raining pretty much non-stop. Today I have some errands to run and then more knitting to get done, because tomorrow I'm going up-Island to take Julie for lunch for her birthday.

Thursday, December 9, 2010


I can't believe I haven't posted since we got home from the Carol Ships Parade! It's been a blur of activity, though, I can tell you that -- knitting activity, of course, and once again, nothing I can show you!

Well, almost nothing... here is the completed test knit mitt (which I still can't tell you anything more about until the pattern is published)!
I used Noro Kureyon, which I've never been crazy about, and this mitt still didn't convert me. :) The pattern itself was fun to knit, but I just wish I'd chosen a more interesting colorway.

And here's Michael in his equivalent-to-Sunday-go-to-meetin' clothes (in other words, the most dressed-up he ever gets!) -- a nice wool sweater (which I didn't knit) and his captain's hat. All set to pilot us safely through the dark of night and the organized chaos in the Lighted Ships Parade.
 MUCH more knitting left to do -- and only 16 more days to do it!

Today I'll be hanging out with Gibson for several hours ... he's sick so he can't go to daycare, so I'll only get knitting done if he's napping.

Oh, in case you missed it -- I published my first-ever pattern on Ravelry a week or so ago, and two people have already finished knitting at least one project! Here's Grace's and here's Esther's:
It's so fun seeing different people's yarn choices and colors! (Esther's is a much prettier pink than this shows, actually). And for anyone who missed it, here's the pattern!

Sunday, December 5, 2010


Here we are in the Inner Harbour for the Christmas parade...
Once it starts to get dark, the Legislative Buildings and Christmas tree lights come on, so this was our background, in every direction...
 The harbour ferries, who did a little 'water ballet' to start the Christmas light parade:
 The Market tent at Ships Point where hundreds of spectators gathered:
 The Wind Walker, just before dark, taken from the causeway...
And close up!

About 25 boats participated, the biggest one we've ever had here, I think. Here is a not-great pic of a few of the other boats, including the 1st-prize winner (the brightest one, a local sailboat called Pegasus). 
It might have been the snowman riding in the kayak, or it might have been the 8' tall red candy cane on the stern, or it might have been the spirited crew aboard (Michael and I, our daughter Mischa and boys Gibson and River, sister Julie and niece Trisha, and friends Penny and Robin, Mike from Galiano and Marian) who belted out Christmas carols almost the whole way -- or it might have been a  combination of 'all of the above' -- but the Wind Walker won SECOND PRIZE!! Not too shabby, huh? Second prize consists of: a night at a fancy-dancy local hotel, about $475 worth of MaryKay cosmetics (most of which I gave to Julie and Trisha, I'm not a 'cosmetic' kind of gal), and one more thing that I can't mention here because it will sort of be a Christmas present for someone we know and love.  :)

It wasn't *too* cold, and there wasn't *too* much wind, and only one boat hit a rock (so we heard, but apparently no damage was done), so we all had a pretty good time!

Michael and I will stay here until tomorrow mid-day and then head back to our marina. Knitting time!

Friday, December 3, 2010


(Yes, that is how we spell harbour here in Canada!)

We are just getting ready to cruise (6 blocks away) over to the Inner Harbour for the Carol Ships Parade -- we take advantage of the two days free moorage, and usually pay for a third just for fun. I'll have some internet access, and we'll be back here in our marina by Monday mid-day for sure.

Here are a few pics Robin and Penny took of the start of our September holiday -- out in the open Juan de Fuca (you can see Race Rocks lighthouse in the distance behind us if you click on the pic to make it bigger) and then going through Enterprise Channel behind the Trial Island lighthouse.

I won't have pics of the Wind Walker fully decorated until at least after dark tonight because we aren't quite finished!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010


... is what Michael and I have spent most of the day doing.

You'd think that would be easy on a boat, but when you have a reputation to live up to, not so. After all, in two of the four years we've participated in the Carol Ships parade, we've won prizes -- 2nd prize three years ago, and 4th prize last year. Here was our 2nd prize look...

So every year we try to come up with new and wonderful ways to light up the Wind Walker for the cause. :) When we get it done, I'll try to post a picture!

Meanwhile, today's Gratitude Challenge was ...
It’s been two weeks since you started The Gratitude Challenge. Write about how The Challenge has changed your perspective thus far.

Hmmm.. to be honest, it hasn't really changed my *perspective*. I've said before, I truly am a grateful person on a daily basis for most things. But yesterday's exercise was interesting ... and I failed miserably, which means, in a way, that it was successful -- at least I see how negative or judgmental I can be sometimes, so that's a good thing! And I'm enjoying the 'use your five senses' idea, too.

We won't finish the boat decorating until tomorrow, and then, on Friday morning, we'll move it over in front of the Empress and stay there until Monday. Several people are joining us for the event, so that will be nice -- and then more knitting time! :)