Sunday, August 31, 2008
"Do you mean, she's the line-up?" one of them asked. He was still shocked about it when he was telling me about it the next morning. "I told them they obviously didn't know much about knitters," he said. "I just had to educate those Muggles!"
Awwww! Well, he may not knit himself, but after that, I think he's earned an honourary exemption from Mugglehood. He walked me to the bus stop and sent me off with an encouraging "Have a good accident!"
I trekked up to Three Bags, and found other knitters coming out of the woodwork almost as soon as I got off the bus. We were the first in line, but were almost immediately joined by another woman who told us she'd been walking up and down the street, waiting for someone else to line up so she wouldn't be alone. There were a handful of other Ravellers that I knew: beentsy, Plae, and yarnpiggy. We went over the sale list, our wish lists, and planned our strategies together. And it's a darned good thing we got there early!
The very nice staff at Three Bags came out with a plate of mini-cupcakes for us while we waited patiently. (And, of course, we knat.) In return, we let them get out of the way when they opened the door, before herding in like a bunch off...well...sheep! It were a bit crowded in that tiny shop.
It took me about 35 minutes to find what I wanted/needed (and I was rather impressed at my restraint!) - and about 45 minutes in line for the till. Fortunately, I had my knitting. And other knitters to talk to. (Really, what other group of people would consider the invasion of personal space and fondling of strangers' clothes to be the height of etiquette? An odd bunch, but they're my peeps!) On the way out, I had another cupcake from the cupcake tree:
Beentsy & I waited outside for yarnpiggy for awhile (we lost Plae almost immediately - she is a most efficient and self-restrained yarn shopper!) A woman on her way out of the store came up to me: "Hey, I know you! You knit on my bus every morning! That's a new sock. What are you using....?" Knitting does bring the world together!
Eventually, after a coffee down the street with beentsy, I made my way home with my treasures. Happy coincidence, Jel was at our neighbourhood cafe when I walked by. She came out and grabbed me, and I got to do another show and tell. And Mr.Q played the role of excited spouse quite well. (Ummm...even when I told him how much I really spent. I thought his eyes were going to pop out of his head, but he just gulped and said nothing.) He even came outside with me this morning to photograph the new stash:
There's some Cascade Eco-wool (another larval sweater); some Dream in Colour Classy (for baby sweaters) and Smooshy (supposedly for a swap, if I can bear to send it away); one skein of Malabrigo Lace (white, for a scarf of some kind) and two skeins of Silky Malabrigo for touching and fondling and loving forever.
In other, non-yarny news, Mr.Q did indeed get himself to a dentist yesterday afternoon. One that's reasonably close to our neighbourhood, and who comes recommended by several of his co-workers - always nice to have a recommendation for that kind of thing! His tooth has indeed abscessed, but can be saved with a root canal rather than extracted. The dentist sent him home with antibiotics and Tylenol-3s in the meantime (and we got to try our new prescription cards - rather than having to sent out receipts and wait for re-imbursement - that's fun!) And Mr.Q is feeling much better this morning. Which, because I'm not entirely heartless, makes me happy.
And it's a long weekend, which makes me even happier! Going to tackle a bit of laundry, then we're going out for a play date. TTFN!
Saturday, August 30, 2008
Frankly, I'm not. He's been kvetching about this particular tooth on and off for months now. Months. And I have been telling him for all those months to go to the bloody dentist already. He keeps muttering on about how we don't have the money.
Well, maybe we don't have the money, exactly. But thanks to his job, we have frackin' dental insurance! F**k a duck in a hurricane!
I took some painkillers in to him a few minutes ago. He looked up at me with sheepish eyes and asked if I was mad at him. "No, not mad. Just trying not to say I told you so."
"Oh, you can go on and say it."
"OK then. I told you so."
I just hope he can find someone open on a Saturday that can help him. I won't be around to find out, though. I have a Very Important Date. Which is why I need my sleep! (I got myself all packed up before bed tonight, to maximize efficiency. Camera: check. Knitting, for waiting in line: check. Cell phone charged: check. Phone numbers of fellow bloggers, to finalize our strategy in the morning: check. Credit card hidden and unavailable to me: check! All stowed in my Ravelry bag, chosen not just for knitting hip-ness, but for sturdiness and size. I do like morning S.E.X.!)
OK. The pitiful moaning seems to have stopped. Perhaps I'll try going back to bed. I'm not as heartless as I sound. But I am tired, very. Also a little PMS-y & thus the filters are down and I'm more likely to call bullshit. I do hope he feels better soon. But I'm not feeling like coddling him much at the moment!
Monday, August 25, 2008
We met up with Sis and her husband yesterday and all went out to Steveston for an afternoon adventure. It was a perfect day for strolling and window shopping, but first we had to fortify ourselves. Pajos Fish and Chips has a stand right on the wharf - best fish & chips in the Lower Mainland, in my opinion!
Sunday, August 24, 2008
Hope you're not too old for cuddles just yet, kiddo! Even if you are going to be taller than me by Christmas...
Friday, August 22, 2008
The correct answer, for extra Quimby-bonus-points, is: "Why, she needs all of them!"
Such an interesting variety of colours! Like a rainbow in the fridge, but without the pot of gold or the leprechaun.
And of course, being all enviro-geeky and stuff, I couldn't just toss 'em all; I had to clean out the containers to be recycled. (Does all the water I had to use cancel out the recycled plastic?)
Thursday, August 21, 2008
One of the Damned Mittens:
The thumbs fit a little funny, but I don't mind. I love that they're more fraternal mittens than identical. No taxi driver will miss me this winter!
The Touch of Whimsy hat & scarf were a bit of an adventure. I had 2 skeins of Malabrigo worsted...one wasn't quite enough for the scarf, but I wasn't sure how much I'd need for the hat. And I really wanted the hat. If only to have a couple of knitted pieces that match when I wear them at the same time. But I didn't want to break the yarn - it's pretty bulky to join.
(Doh! I could totally have spit-spliced it. The Noro, too. I just thought of that this very moment. I'm such a git sometimes!)
Anyway. Because I hadn't thought of spit-splicing at the time it was relevant, I needed to find a way to do the hat from the same skein that the unfinished scarf was still attached to. What to do?
Why, knit from both ends, of course! I can be clever sometimes! Though this was a bit of a pain to move around, it worked quite well:
The finished set will be most tasty to wear when the weather cools down (more). Plus, frankly, the colour looks fabulous on me:
That little coil of yarn next to the hat? That's all the yarn I had left over when I bound off the scarf. I was pretty happy about that, too. Malabrigo, like good chocolate or wine, is not to be wasted. (Who am I kidding? Like any chocolate or wine!) To give you a better idea of how little remained:
Finally, I had to take all my FOs out into the yard to play:
Who's going to be a toasty warm Quimby this fall? Hmm? (And, despite the hat-and-scarf set, who's also going to be a walking fashion disaster? I can only hope that the Knitting Police have sharper, pointier sticks than the Fashion Police!)
Feeling the Ravelympic love:
Now to find that can of Strongbow hidden at the back of the fridge to celebrate!
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
So I am coping by re-organizing my stash; trying to plan my next project(s); discovering other long-forgotten WIPs (half of a Fawkes sock! I thought I'd screwed it up, but am delighted to report that, in fact, I haven't!); putting Tuscany on scrap yarn to see how much further I have to go (about 4 repeats...the pattern only calls for one more, but I want it longer); etc. etc.
I haven't quite got to the point of re-organizing the kitchen cupboards, but that's not far off, I don't think. At least I'm a constructive procrastinator. I tell you, I was never a better housekeeper than in university when I was trying to avoid starting a term paper!
However, I've got a secret weapon up my sleeve: my public library. My neighbourhood branch just sent me an email to say that one of my requests was in: the first season of Stargate SG-1. I figure it's time to rectify the gaps in my sci-fi geekiness, and this is a good place to start! Plus, it's oodles of uninterrupted knitting time.
In other exciting news, we had to de-flea the cats yesterday. Which is not as tedious as it used to be - merely a matter of applying (Very Expensive) goop to the beasties. Trouble is, as soon as I get one, the other two know what I'm up to, and it's a real adventure trying to get them, too. Also, I think Bagheera must have licked Brigid's medicated neck, and he was throwing up all night and this morning. I almost slipped in some on my way to the bathroom this morning. Good times. He seems back to his usual self today, so I'm not too worried. (Though it's hard to tell when all he does is sleep anyway.)
Last week, he spent most of an afternoon like this:
Dignified, wouldn't you say? A regular testament to feline grace.
Monday, August 18, 2008
Here she is, doing one of the things she does best:
(And, I might add, also doing a great job of not laughing while we surprised our middle sister by singing Wild Thing at her wedding. As part of the ceremony. Heheheheh. Good times!)
Happy Birthday, Baby Sister! Moo!
Saturday, August 16, 2008
As the night was still deliciously mild and the full moon was out, I thought it would be nice to walk him to the bus stop. Went into the bedroom to change my shirt, happened (thankfully!) to look up...and there was an ENORMOUS spider on the wall above the bed. Above my side of the bed.
I think I may have woken the upstairs neighbours when I screamed. I knew I wasn't being melodramatic, either, when Mr.Q came running, saw the beast, and blanched himself. Usually he "liberates" the arachnids, taking them outside. This one got squashed and flushed, post haste.
Walking him to the bus stop after, I was most grateful. I pointed out that it's a good thing I saw it before he left, coz I'd probably have called him to come home and rescue me. Came home, went to wash my feet before bed...
There was another one in the bathroom. IS another one in the bathroom. BIG. Trapped under a yogurt container till Mr.Q comes home.
Not sure I'm going to be able to sleep for awhile! Guess I can use the adrenaline rush to get another bit of knitting done. I'm kind of afraid to go to bed now. I'll be checking the bedding quite thoroughly, at any rate. Can you tell I've kind of got a thing about spiders? Not my favourite. I would not do well in the tropics, I suspect.
(Did I mention that they were/are HUGE?)
Mr.Q gets mega-double-chocolate-fudge-brownie points for offering to turn around and come home, when I called him about the second one. Unless I hear the plastic container move, though, I should be fine. I hope.
Friday, August 15, 2008
Making dinner tonight was a bit of a frustrating endeavour at first; all day I'd been craving a salad with lots of tomatoes and basil and bocconcini cheese. Perfect for the hot weather. Except that what I had thought was fresh basil in the fridge was, in fact, cilantro. And the bocconcini had very definitely "turned" - stinky! Terribly disappointing. And disorienting, too - now what?
Why, scrambled eggs, of course! With some brie melted in. Mmmm!
In the middle of the muddle, though, trying to adapt dinner plans at the Very Last Minute, Mr.Q started reading me random bits of trivia off of Wikipedia. This can be distracting at times, but usually it's a good way to keep him entertained and out of my way in the kitchen. Tonight, I was startled by a joyful squeal: "Right on! That's cool!"
"What is, oh darling husband?" I asked with great wifely interest, as I gracefully whisked the eggs, being careful not to splatter my elegant coiffure or my stylish heels-and-pearls. (Hey, it's my blog! I can play make-believe all I want!)
"Uranus has a moon with the same name as me!" He was quite excited about it.
And because I am such a paragon of ladylike virtue, I resisted the obvious cracks.
Seems part of me, at least, is still in high school after all!
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Charade socks, in Dream in Colour's "Smooshy" sock yarn (Dusky Aurora colourway). Going to be awfully delicious on my feets!
Finished all but the Kitchener-ing at my sister's last night...We had a great ol' gals' night, with movies and ice cream (two kinds of Haagen Dazs!) and some exceptionally lovely blueberry wine, which she'd brought back from her recent trip to Nova Scotia.
We watched Sweeney Todd - interesting! Anything with Johnny Depp is going to work well for me. Very weird, very gory (lots of obviously-fake-but-still-gross arterial spray) and Johnny Depp in tight pants....Followed by Smart People - a slow start, but quirky (I like quirky) and I was surprisingly impressed with Dennis Quaid.
Tonight...back to the Black Hole of Doom, aka the Touch of Whimsy scarf. The never-ending Touch of Whimsy scarf. The scarf which has sucked all the whimsy out of my life. Or at least, out of my knitting. Remind me that I don't want to knit another scarf for a long, long time. At least the Black Hole of Doom is also a Black Hole of Malabrigo. That's some comfort.
'Scuse me while I go curl up under the table with the last of my gin.
(How many pairs of blue hand-knit socks is too many, do you think?)
Monday, August 11, 2008
(Side note: I called Mr.Q en route to the get-together for a little encouragement - I was feeling kind of shy, going to meet a group of total strangers. He said all the right things, and then closed with this: (really, how could I not keep him? He's perfect!) "...and if you have an accident at the yarn store, have fun, don't worry about it, we'll figure it out later." Swoon!)
(And of course, walking into this group of total strangers was just fine, since it was, after all, a gathering of My People.)
Anyway, at the yarn store - not one I usually frequent, as it's more for spinners, but that also means New Yarn to fondle! - there was lots of enabling going on; mutual fondling that was perhaps only borderline-appropriate for a First Date; an intriguing discussion of who does and who doesn't smell yarn when they pick it up, and how their Muggles react when they do...and a Quintessential Canadian Moment.
To set the scene: In the store, there were about 6 of us, a single other customer, unknown to any of us, and the store clerk. Across the (tiny) store, my ear was caught by one of my teammates, humming to herself. I perked up: "Are you humming the Log Driver's Waltz?"
"Yes, I think I am!" she replied. To which one of our group said, "What song is that?"
She was answered with a collective gasp from everyone in the store. "You don't know that song?" "You know, that old National Film Board short." "You realize they might take away your Canadian citizenship for that!" And spontaneously, in unison, the solo knitter and I started singing the chorus, with several others humming along. It was very surreal, and very funny, a scene out of a cheesy musical or maybe Men With Brooms. (I so heart Paul Gross!)
"Nope, never heard it," said the knitter in question. "But I do know Land of the Silver Birch..." Which, of course, necessitated another in-store sing-a-long.
I love knitters! And being a Canuck. (The nationality, not the hockey team. Let's not go there, shall we?)
(And I walked out with only one skein of yarn: Misti Alpaca hand-painted sock yarn, in their tasty "Blues in the Night" colourway)
Friday, August 8, 2008
Yours truly is a member of Team Canada, competing in the WIP Wrestling event. (That's Work(s) In Progress, for the Muggles). I have part of a sock to finish, a third of a scarf that needs a hat to match, a lone mitten...all needing some attention. I mean, I can't wear them while they're full of pointy sticks! This is the perfect kick in the arse to get them out of the way - clear some space for the new projects, like the "sweater" (in its larval form) that I brought home yesterday. (Never mind the other UFOs - the cardigan, the Tuscany shawl...)
Today isn't so much about knitting fiercely; rather, it's about pacing myself, getting the lay of the land...time trials, if you will. I have patterns printed out and handy, skeins wound, singles waiting for mates, and a perfect little set-up for an "arena":
And an auspicious omen - my Ravelry T-shirt arrived today. Perfect timing!
I've trained hard for this, I feel like I'm at the top of my game. I'm honoured to be representing my country, and I'll do my best to be deserving of that honour. Good luck to all my fellow Ravelympians.
Go Team Canada!
(omg - I think I hear an ice cream truck outside - I didn't think they did that anymore. Tres cool! Though the "music" is as bad as I remember...sounds of summer, baby!)
Thursday, August 7, 2008
And a note about this last pic - taken with my cellphone, so not the clearest - on a morning after an all-night jam/open stage/camp out. Two women were playing their "brunch set" - classical pieces on violin and flute, quite lovely! Shiloh clambered onstage, grabbed the guitar, and, perching herself front and centre, proceeded to get right into the music. The guitar was not plugged in, for the record. And no, she doesn't know how to play...but she will! She had some pretty fancy fingerwork going on. Quite the little rocker chick in the making, non? (Uncle Q was most impressed!)
Happy birthday, monkey-girl! Lots of love, from Auntie Q & The Tickle Camel! (And Nina, too!)
Wednesday, August 6, 2008
I served the salmon with some roasted rosemary nugget potatoes, and a salad: baby romaine tossed with a balsamic vinegar reduction, topped with tomatoes, dried cranberries, and honey-roasted walnuts. Quite delish! And it met both of my requirements for making it a regular-ish meal: fast and easy. (I do love meals that are fast, easy, and don't get a lot of dishes dirty, but look all fancy...a bit of culinary sleight-of-hand, really!)
(Laurie asked about the frozen yogurt recipe: I didn't use one, I just faked it. Took some plain yogurt, stirred in some honey and some frozen raspberries, put it in the freezer, stirred it every once in awhile. It was really good, but next time I'd puree the raspberries first - the big frozen chunks were a little difficult to eat. And let it soften a few minutes before serving.)
Mr.Q went out to a band practice after dinner, and I was catching up on some blog reading...out of the corner of my eye, I caught a movement by my foot. Looked down to see which cat it was...and it was a mouse - ran right up to my foot, saucy little beggar! The cats? All asleep in the bed! They are so fired!
I carried a couple of the lazy beasts into the living room and put them down in front of the shelf that the intruder had run behind. They took it in turns to stand watch, very intently, for an hour or so. Then got bored and wandered off. At which point, the mouse ran right up to my foot again.
Now, I'm not afraid of mice at all, but I don't exactly want them running around in my house, either. Especially when we have three cats that are supposed to keep the critters out! There's a lot of construction going on in the neighbourhood, which always means an increase in critters running around...but still!
Anyway. When Mr.Q got home, we pulled all the records off the one shelf that we couldn't see under, and had a good look around, but couldn't see anything. The cats came back and started on guard duty again. (So intent, they were! I tried not to laugh at them, for fear of offending their dignity, but it was quite funny) I didn't hear anything last night, but one of the beasties is napping on the still-empty shelf, and seems too relaxed for there to be a mouse nearby. I'm hoping somebody had themselves a midnight snack last night.
But I'm also not leaving the bread or anything on the counter, just in case! Eeep!
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
Thank FSM he wasn't drooling, as his head was on my pillow! 'T any rate, we eventually got everything assembled in a manageable way, had a fairly painless trip over to Bowen on transit (Umm...Bowen Island community shuttle schedule - very, very wacky. But the drivers? The friendliest, most helpful bus drivers either of us have ever come across!) and found our way to the B&B - a self-contained suite looking through cedar forest at Howe Sound.
We spent the better part of 3 days reading, napping, sipping coffee with Baileys (or mimosas), staring out the windows, and sitting in a hammock chair looking at this:
We did have that fancy-pants pizza on Sunday at Tuscany (pear and caramelized onions with Brie... mmmmmmm!)...I even convinced Mr.Q to wear something other than a T-shirt:
Doesn't he look handsome in the garden? (The facial expression, I can only assume, was related to his "I look like a Hare Krishna" whining. I pointed out that, since he was neither wearing a yellow bedsheet nor sporting a shaved head, he was being just a teensy bit melodramatic. He did stop when his beer arrived. Which is good, or I would have started chanting..."rama rama hare hare...." He insists on referring to Krishna as "the cool blue dude." I refuse to rise to the bait.)
Anyway. Dinner was great. Though I was a git and didn't think to bring my Tuscany shawl for a perfect photo op at the restaurant...doh! Afterward, we had time for a walk around the harbour before the shuttle left. Random photo outside a cafe:
Unfortunately, we didn't have time to play!
One interesting thread through the weekend was Mr.Q's choice of reading material. He was blasting his way through Edgar Rice Burrough's Barsoom series, which led to occasional random outbursts and pronouncements: "Woman! Fetch me a beer! I, Zimbu, Jeddak of Lothar have spoken! Deny me not, or suffer my wrath!"
Etc.etc. Needless to say, he had to get his own damned beer. And bring me a drink while he was at it! It seems that "Zimbu, Jeddak of Jeddaks" is best known for his deadly Eyebrows of Eternal Peril. Mr.Q was practicing, even on the ferry home. Quite chillingly effective, don't you think?
Which got rather a few looks from the tourists on board, but honestly, I was too busy giggling to care. One thing he will never be is boring! (Plus, truth be told, I get a kick out of the old-school bombastic pulp writers, and ERB was one of the best)
And now we are home again, and I've got the hundredth load of laundry going (or so it seems!). Trying an adventure for dinner - Mr.Q called from work this morning and asked if he could put in a request for dinner - "something light" as he was feeling a bit sluggish after all the cheese over the weekend. Since he almost never asks for anything special, I am happy to indulge him. So I thought I'd try something new and summery, salmon with peach-ginger salsa. And an attempt at home-made frozen yogurt (with honey and raspberries) for dessert. Which may or may not survive until dinner, as I seem to have to "taste" it every time I go to stir it....oops!