Wednesday, July 30, 2008


I was an 'angel' (that's someone who will step in when someone else's partner flakes out) in the International Scarf Exchange VI, and got a parcel sent off to my 'secret partner' in the UK. She's got her parcel now, so I can show you what I sent...

The scarf was a New Zealand wool and I knit a simple lace pattern so it wouldn't take too long, but be nice to look at!

And Barbara-Kay, the winner of my Blogiversary contest, got her package, today, too...

But I like her description of it better than mine would be ... (by the way, Barbara, that black lace-weight was spun here on Vancouver Island, too!) .... check out Barbara-Kay's blog here in case you missed it in the comments ....

And here's a picture I took at Clover Point yesterday, just in case you think all I ever notice is water and boats.... :)

This is Ruby, and she's six years old, and she was really mad when she found out I'd taken her picture! (I know because I chatted with her Mom and grandparents to get their permission to publish it -- granted -- but Ruby was not impressed that someone got away with taking her picture!)

I've met my writing/editing deadline, so I'll be back to regular posting (and knitting!) now ....

Tuesday, July 29, 2008


My trip up-Island went great -- the weather was wonderful and the van cooperated, and those are the two variables that are always in question on a road-trip. (Having said that, I heard a great line yesterday ... "worrying is like praying for bad things to happen.")

Sunrise over the Peninsula looks like this when you drive up-Island at 6 a.m. ... (that's the American San Juans in the background, and you can click the images to see them larger-than-life!)

Well, bad things didn't happen, and lots of good things did. Here's some pics from the rest of the drive up. This is Transfer Beach at Ladysmith, one of my favorite spots on the Island, and where I always stop to say 'Aaaahhhhhhhhh....'

Then, on the drive through Nanaimo, there's a public parking lot over-looking the boat basin, and that's always worth a 'pit stop'...

And here is a pretty typical west-coast 'urban' scene ...(but you really have to click on the pic to see the larger version to get the point...)

And I have a favorite little 'rest stop' in Lantzville, too... this is looking out over the Winchelsea Islands, which are an interesting mix of military use and marine park preserve!

Then on into Parksville, and I always go down to the beach in the community park first thing.... what a shock I got when I saw this:

It may look lovely to you, but that fence is a new installation, as is the concrete abutment and the 'berm' beside it. Apparently the beach there has been eroding terribly and then got badly washed out in a storm this past winter -- so they had to 'shore it up' and this is how that's done! Now you can't sit in your car and look out over the beach, you have to get out and walk out past the berm to see it.

I was barely in Parksville when my sister called my cell phone with my first moving-related 'task' -- to pick up coffee for her and the whole moving crew. In line at Tim Horton's, the guy in front of me got his coffee and turned around, almost bumping in to me ... and it was an old friend I hadn't seen for about two years!

I first met Jeff (and his wife and their family), about 17 years ago, when they moved to the Island from Alberta and Jeff became editor of the local paper. My writing career was just taking off at the time and I ended up working with Jeff for seven years as a columnist, freelancer and stringer. He and my hubby ended up friends and golf buddies, his wife and I became friends, and we watched their four children grow up.

When we moved down here to Victoria four years ago, Jeff and his wife had separated and I had left that newspaper for completely different freelance opportunities. Not long after, Jeff also changed careers... so, as these things go, we hadn't really stayed in touch. We left Tim Horton's together, and I ended up going along with him to coffee with some other mutual friends I hadn't seen for awhile -- a great start to the weekend!

Then off to my sister's new home -- a beautiful little farmhouse (twice the size of the apartment she vacated) on forty acres just outside of town. It's perfect for her and our niece! The house and yard....

And the fringe benefits... grapevines, for one:

And finally, the view out of her office/studio/sunroom is, of all things, a trout pond (and that's Mount Arrowsmith in the background)!

Needless to say, very little knitting got done (although I did manage some progress on the socks over our morning coffee...) and today I have a deadline, so I better get to work!

Saturday, July 26, 2008


It's 4:30 a.m. and I'm up early because I'm driving up-Island today to help my sister Julie move!

"Up-Island" in this case means to Parksville, about a two-hour drive away, and one of my favorite places in the world -- we bought our first home there, and lived there for several years when our kids were adolescents/teens. I always enjoy going back there!

Julie is moving to a bigger place because (and I'm not sure if this makes her really brave or really stupid!) she's about to become a 'second mom' to our brother's daughter, Trisha. Trisha lives in Bamfield, another beautiful place, but not a great one to raise a teenager -- so my brother Bob and his wife Wendy have arranged for Trisha to live with Julie, for the next four years or so, if it works out!

I'm taking those first socks, which I should be able to finish on this trip, and maybe enough yarn for a few more pairs.... hmmm.... I think I've successfully transitioned from shawl mode to sock mode -- who'd-a thunk it?

I'll leave you with this lovely view of Enterprise Channel at Trial Island. Back tomorrow evening!

Friday, July 25, 2008


... has a whole new meaning when you live on a boat.

Aaaahhh, this looks like a good spot...

And look, a perfect parking spot, too...

Dinner is served...

And look, a front row seat...

...where we can watch the trains, and boats and planes...

Well, okay, we were a bit early for the train, but it does arrive by crossing that bridge.

A perfect end to a loooooonnngggg day!

Thursday, July 24, 2008


I missed my Guild meeting yesterday, but I realized this morning that I never posted about LAST week's Guild meeting. Renate was our host, and her husband's a professional landscaper, so you can imagine what the garden looked like! Here's Esther and I knitting in just one little nook of it ...

For more pics of this amazing garden check out Esther's blog ... scroll down to July 16th if you need to!

Meanwhile, back at the Wind Walker, I'm swamped with stuff I'm behind on, so there won't be much play (or knitting) time today! If I get lots done, I can get to Knit'n'Cafe tomorrow -- I've turned the first heel on my first adult sock, and maybe by tomorrow, if I take little breaks from this machine, I can get the other one turned! Pics soon.... :-)

Wednesday, July 23, 2008


The other day we were heading into the Inner Harbour via inflatable, and saw this...

That remote control sailboat was sure being 'put through the paces!' That's two of the crew of the yacht 'Tigre D'or (there were two women in the same white shirts on the upper deck) in their spare time, I guess. Couldn't find out much about the yacht,but at least the crew was enjoying themselves...

And this is what the Juan de Fuca looked like yesterday ...

And, finally, I caught these two in the act (click on the pic for a close-up!)...

Still waiting for techie dude to retrieve my data from my old system so I can get back to work... it's a crying shame that I have all this KNITTING time, and can't concentrate on a damn thing! (Well, I do have a pair of mind-numbingly boring slippers almost done, and the sock cuffs are an inch or two longer, but that's about all ...)

Tuesday, July 22, 2008


... when she has a lovely new computer but no data recovered from the old one yet? Why, go to the beach, of course -- preferably with a couple of cute little boys!

So Michael and I, Mischa and the boys and Hailey went to Gyro Park for a picnic -- and I have the sand in my knitting (a pair of slippers for myself) to prove it!

It was lovely and fun -- and I really hope I hear from techie dude today. I have work to do. lol

Sunday, July 20, 2008

I'M BACK ... SORT OF ....

My dinosaur computer finally died for good (after spending $140 on it in the last three weeks to keep it alive awhile longer!) so I am typing this on the brand new laptop I couldn't afford. :-(

I haven't figured out anything other than the bare basics yet, so it may be a few days before I'm *really* back, but a few of you have wondered what happened to me, so I thought I'd just check in! It'll be Tuesday before I can recover all the data from my old hard drive so I can post pics, again, etc.

Wish me luck on this new learning curve.... I have a headache already. lol

Wednesday, July 16, 2008


I guess wealthy people probably don't worry too much about the price of fuel ... these are just two of the boats I've seen in and around Victoria in the last few days:

The second one is the 235-ft MV Utopia, one of the 25 largest private yachts in the world. More about that here if it interests you.

I have a pretty blue-toned scarf on the needles for a 'secret pal' as well as my first pair of socks (for ME!), and I'm off to the Guild meeting this morning ... we'll be knitting in Renate's garden! :-)

Monday, July 14, 2008


Still waiting to hear from Barbara-K, who won my blogoversary contest!

The black Interlude shawl came off the needles last night, just when I was getting really tired of it...

I'll get it blocked today. My other task today (besides the editing job I'm almost caught up on!) is to chase down some info on this beauty that came into the harbour yesterday...

It looks like an old converted passenger ferry, but I couldn't see a name on it, so I'll go get a closer look at it on the dock this morning.

It was pretty windy last night, and I was at Clover Point watching these dudes..

About a minute after I took this photo, the gal with the green kite did a pretty spectacular end-over-end and landed face-down in the water. I had my '911' finger poised on my cell phone, but she looked up, waved to her friends and got up and running again in about 3 seconds!

Sunday, July 13, 2008


So sorry for not posting the last few days ... like I said, I've been trying to play catch-up on my life since getting my computer back.

Thank-you to everyone who entered my contest, and especially those who had to read through my boring archives to answer those questions. I drew a name at my Friday Knit'n'Cafe (actually my friend Brenda drew the name, just to keep me honest!) ... and the winner is....


Congratulations, Barbara! Email me privately at skipper at mvwindwalker dot com with your mailing address, please, and I'll get this knitterly gift basket off to you. And thanks, again, everyone, for entering!

Thursday, July 10, 2008


Well, I am back online, but barely ... I had a major crash, and I'm having to re-install ALL my software. WHAT A PAIN, I wouldn't wish this on anyone!

So I'm all discombobulated, and 'way behind on lots of things ... paid work, for starters. :-) And blog contest entries, and daily event posts, etc. Aaarrgggghhhhh..... not fun.

However, thank goodness I didn't lose any of my personal files/documents, so I *will* be making the draw today at Knit'n'Cafe for my 'Blogiversary' contest winner. I'll be happy just to go there .... it's been a stressful week.

I got to see David Foster's yacht leaving the harbour the other day, though... note the transportation on the stern deck!

And the main highlight of the week was this ... if I love to cruise on my boat, and I love hanging out with knitters, what could be more fun than a knitting cruise? On Wednesday, that's exactly what 10 of us did ... and Wendy even brought her spinning wheel! Here we are getting ready to leave the dock (and thanks, John, for the great pictures!) ...

We followed the MV Coho (Port Angeles ferry) out under beautiful blue skies and sunshine ...

And encountered lots of other traffic...

Including this dude...

But we had a great time cruising out to Albert Head, where we knit, ate our faces off, and enjoyed the scenery...

Then, on the way home, we cruised in to Esquimalt Harbour just for a little scenic tour, and when we came out, it was a whole different picture. The wind had come up to about 25-30 knots, and it was a WILD ride home. Normally, when we see that the wind is picking up, we literally 'batten down the hatch' -- put dishes away, put our plants down on the floor, that sort of thing -- but this time it completely caught us off-guard. So my bookshelf emptied on to the floor, and some dishes that had been on the counter went flying. And to make matters worse, the fog that had been hanging about on the Strait all afternoon got blown in by the wind, and followed us home -- another few minutes and we would have been completely engulfed in it.

Michael and I know what this boat is capable of (MUCH worse than this was!), and we weren't worried, but I think a few of the knitters were. It IS un-nerving to have stuff 'crashing around' when we're cruising, but we were never in any danger. Funny thing was that our guests all assured us they weren't scared, and that they'd had a great time, and that the big wind and waves were just all part of the adventure ... but the mass exodus once we tied back up to the dock took about 3.4 seconds. I wonder if any of them will ever leave the dock with us again? lol

Monday, July 7, 2008


Yesterday I had a date with my middle grandson, River. We had to celebrate his passing into Grade 4, among other things.

What River loves is rocks. Lotsa rocks. So I knew he'd be delighted with a surprise visit to this place.

We made a day of it, starting at 8 a.m. with breakfast at his favorite restaurant, accompanied by his Auntie Hailey. Then we drove straight to Sidney to Mineral World/Scratch Patch -- and his reaction was *better* than watching the proverbial "kid in a candy store." We spent almost 3 hours gold panning (and yes, we got a few flecks!) and rock-hunting. What fun!

Then it was off to lunch, where he sorted and catalogued his treasures ...

... which included a piece of petrified dinosaur bone, his birthstone, some magnetite, and lots of other cool stuff!

Then we paid a visit to the Marine Ecology Centre on the Port Sidney dock, where River got to see tidal pools under a microscope, a real live water snake and a sea cucumber, and he got to touch some starfish, sea urchins and sea anenomes.

He had to be home at 4 pm for a family BBQ, but we still made two more pit-stops. First to a lovely playground in a park near the Anacortes Ferry, and then to Island View Beach...

... and it was pretty much the most fun I could have in a day without knitting a single stitch. :-)

Sunday, July 6, 2008


Well, that was fun!

I left home at about 7 a.m. and headed, of course, for Clover Point, where I cast on for my first-ever pair of socks. They were toddler-sized, and I used the pattern/tutorial here... - scroll down to 'Six Steps to Socks Success', which is a two-page .pdf, complete with diagrams of the process. It worked perfectly!

It was misty out toward the Trial Island light ...

And these dudes were already bird-watching into the mist as I cast on...

... and this dude was fishing from his kayak ...

I got the cuffs done, and by that time there was quite a bit of traffic at the Point, so I moved on to Trafalgar Square, where I took the picture of my first-ever turned heel, below. I finished sock #1 there, and then treated myself to lunch at the Oak Bay Marina. (If you're a local, and you've never been there, it was fabulous! I had a lovely piping hot chicken stew, a cheese scone and a coffee-of-the-Starbucks-variety ... and got change back from $10!)

Then I drove about two blocks away to a little look-out over Cadboro Bay where I cast on for the second sock and watched a beginner kayaking class ...

In the background in that picture (you can click on it to see the bigger version) you can see about 50 laser sailboats -- there must have been a big regatta going on at the Yacht Club, just around the bend.

Finished sock #2, and was home by 3 pm.

I'll be casting on a me-size pair before the day is done today. :-)