Saturday, July 30, 2011

Saturday Sundries

No classes until this evening, so I've had a few hours to do some Portland exploring. Wandered the Saturday Market for an hour or so with a couple of the roomies, finished off with a lovely fresh-squeezed limeade, and then a Vietnamese iced coffee. We all scattered on our separate ways, and I trekked up to Powells books. I was shockingly restrained, and thus Mr.Q will not find himself fielding an angry call from our landlord about an NSF rent cheque.


After the bookstore, I sat under an awning and savoured a fabulous Italian custard gelato, while listening to a 14-year-old violinist busking across the street. A perfect summer afternoon!

Off to the Convention Center shortly, for a secret...then a lecture, then a birthday celebration for GlennaC at a restaurant blessedly close to our hotel. (I have a feeling we won't be taking transit back! And I'm pretty sure i won't regret (much) the lack of a knitting light.)

(Or will I?)

Friday, July 29, 2011

Operation Awesome Sox

So I have some fun pics to share...but I'm using my wee netbook, and I haven't tried to upload photos from my camera to it before, and I don't understand the program it uses, so the pics are HUGE. So. Y'all may have to wait till I get home, where I know how to resize them! (I'm sure it's quite simple, but frankly, I don't have time for technical futzery just now! There are classes to take, and knitters to knit with, and Portland to hang out!) There were even vendors who accepted Canadian Tire money!

Day 1 was, unsurprisingly, awesome! I took a class on "Photographing Your Fiber" from Franklin Habit (who was wearing a utili-kilt. He was even cooler in person than I had expected!). There was a mother ship full of knitters, disguised as a convention center - and more of us than the IT conference around the corner, which kind of freaked them out. There was tasty food (a waffle "taco" folded around sausage patties with maple cream...OMFG!), great company, friends discovering the magic of Sock Summit for the first time, and reunions with veteran pals. There was Hipster-spotting Bingo (yarnpiggy won!) and freaking out the poor guy in the hotel elevator, when 4 of us wandered up to another knitter's our PJs and slippers, with bottles of beer and boxes of crackers. Poor guy.

Right! Off to breakfast, then coffee, then a class on ergonomics for knitters, then...the world!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Because really, I am 12

Sign on the train, which amused me far more than it should have.

Apparently, sleep deprivation & yarn fumes bring out my inner twelve-year-old boy!

I'm on a train

Commence the live blogging! I have had very little sleep, only one cup of coffee, a banana inhaled at the entrance to customs (can't bring fruit across the border!), and rather a little confusion trying to figure out TECHNOLOGY at the butt-crack of dawn.

Release the hounds!

Our car is already half-full of knitters. I think the customs agents were a little shell-shocked. I just hope we don't get kicked off the train!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Going a-viking

Normally, on a Sunday morning, Mr.Q will take the grocery bags (or the wheeled cart, depending on the week's list) up to the neighbourhood, to do the grocery shopping. It's a task he took on some time ago, and one I was more than happy to surrender! He likes the solitary walk, and we both like me not having to deal with crowded shops. So, it's a win-win! Sometimes, he'll come home with a bit of a surprise - a case lot of mushroom soup, or an experimental brand of peanut butter, because they were on sale. (I was a bit shocked the day he came home with 3 big bottles of dish detergent; but delighted last week when I thought we'd run out, but lo! there was another bottle under the sink!)

On the occasional weekend, though, I'll join him, as I did today. I was on the hunt for some last-minute necessaries for Sock Summit (three more sleeps!) and didn't really think Mr.Q needed to be the one looking for neon nail polish or blue eyeshadow. So, off we went, and had a lovely walk in the sun. We got up to the neighbourhood, and after accomplishing a few of our joint errands, we separated for a bit: me, into the dollar store, looking for a cosmetics bag to hold my knitting needles; him, to the butcher shop for some lunch meat.

When we met up on the sidewalk after about 15 minutes, he had quite the swagger on him, and he was positively smirking. Of course, I had to ask.

Apparently the woman at the butcher shop did a double take when he walked in. "I know you from somewhere," she insisted. Not a gig (the obvious scenario)...."I know! I've seen you on Ravelry!"

"But I'm not a knitter!" 

"No, really, I've seen pictures of you on Ravelry, modelling hats and sweaters and stuff!"

"Oh! That would be my wife's knitting!" He was quite proud, both because he was recognized, and that it was because of my yarny habits.

How randomly awesome is that?!  The Viking is famous! (Or, well, infamous...but we were both pretty tickled by the whole thing!)

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

One week till you look at me...

In just ONE WEEK, I'll be leaving for Portland, Oregon, and Sock Summit.

ONE WEEK! Squeee!

I'm kind of a little excited, if you couldn't tell. 

It just so happens that the Oregon Brewers Festival is the same weekend. And it's fairly close to our hotel. 

There's a whole passel of us taking the train down...and more getting on in Seattle. Trouble, with a capital T! 

(If, by "trouble", you understand that I mean: Too Much Fun!)

Monday, July 18, 2011

Fruits of my labour

There must be something in the water, as I've got two co-workers who are expecting babies in the next month. Their due dates are a week apart, and I know of two other impending sproglets due around the same time, give or take. So we had a double-shower for the work gals, which meant, of course, knitting. I've given up on sweaters, I think, as it turns out that babies grow really quickly when you feed them. (And it further turns out that not feeding them, even for the sake of fitting the knitting awhile longer, is frowned upon. Who knew?) So I'm back to hats. Big, stretchy hats. I knit two last week, a tomato and a blueberry:
It meant, of course, that I've fallen behind on my Sock Summit knitting (10 more sleeps!). But I'm pretty sure I can get 3/4 of a sock finished in 10 days, and the shawl I had envisioned...well, that will have to wait till the fall, I suppose. (I have a terrible feeling it's going to be more of a neck-shawlette thing, and I'm pretty cranky about it. I'm afraid to put it on longer needles to test the theory. It's in time out until I get back from Portland.) 

Meanwhile, I'm busy getting my classes prepped for while I'm away (which is enough work, in and of itself, to require a holiday of its own!), and playing Susy Homemaker while Mr.Q works a ton of overtime. So...busy as usual, chez Q! 

At least, for the human component. The feline members of the household are somewhat more...indolent.
Life, she is clearly full of trials and woe for our feline overlords!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Shut yer pie hole!

Apologies for the long-ish radio silence - the spirit was willing, but the sinuses were weak. I am just getting over the worst sinus infection ever, and aside from a lot of sleeping, drooling, and staring at walls, I have been incredibly...well, stoned. Yay, decongestants! I am happily feeling almost back-to-normal after 2 1/2 weeks of extreme grumpiness. So, a wee update!

I did manage to get out for a bit on Canada Day, and had great fun watching the Arrogant Worms with yarnpiggy

(Then, of course, I came home and napped for the rest of the day!)

Meanwhile, the cats have been getting up to all sorts of mischief. Especially Singe:

We found out a few weeks ago that he has arthritis in his lower back, and have him on glucosamine supplements that have already made a huge difference. I didn't realize how much he wasn't himself, until about 2 weeks on the supplements. He's been making up for lost time with several...offerings...of mice, in the middle of the night. Usually he brings them in live, so it's easy enough to rescue them and put them outside. 

There was the night, though, when I was awoken by a very disturbing crunching noise, right outside the bedroom door. I left the carnage for Mr.Q to clean up, under a yogurt container, under a big hardcover book. Stephen King. I thought it was appropriate. Beastie was far too smug about it, too!

(Attention, cat-sitters who may be reading this! He's only done that once, and is being actively discouraged from bringing home "take-out" with a squirt bottle. It seems to be working!)

Also, I've been playing with the KitchenAid again. We went to a BBQ party last night, and I offered to bring a lemon meringue pie for dessert. I got to play with my "new" rolling pin, too - and for the first time, the pie weights that Little Sis gave me to go with it:

I can't believe I used to make meringues without a KitchenAid. 

So shiny! And stiff!

Having trouble with the oven temp, though - it came out a little darker than I would have preferred:

I can only hope it tasted good, as there was so much food there that we didn't actually eat the pie! 

(Mr.Q was quite sad about it, so I baked another one today...Noms!)

We had planned to go to Stanley Park today to meet beentsy & enjoy a free performance by the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra. It's Vancouver's 125th birthday, and the City had a whole weekend of free concerts lined up. 

Unfortunately, neither transit nor traffic cooperated to get us there. After numerous thwarted attempts, we finally got on a bus...only to be told we'd be stuck in traffic for at least another 20 minutes. At that point, we gave up and went in search of beer. 

Random chicken on the seawall:

And finally, beer! I had a fancy British raspberry beer,  which was very pretty:

I've tried a couple other raspberry ales, and been quite pleased with the light, tart, fresh flavour - perfect for summer! This one was pretty sweet, though, and came in a REALLY big bottle, so it was a little much. Live and learn, I suppose! And I managed to console myself with a piece of lemon meringue pie when I got home. So, all in all, a successful day!

A busy couple weeks coming up, and then...Sock Summit! So stoked! Will save the squeeing for another day, though - must go medicate The Mighty Hunter!