Thursday, July 28, 2005

Welcome home Spirit!

My family arrived last night with my darling cat in tow - quite literally, as she was transported in a special cat carrier that is designed to be taken on planes and has wheels and a pull handle, just like a suitcase. When we got her home at first she wasn't too happy with me and spent all her time alone in the kitchen or foyer. As the night wore on though, she decided that forgiving me was better than sleeping on the floor and she ended up in bed with me: as I knew she would.

My brother did a great job of taking care of her, especially considering that she beat up his cat every chance she got, but there is one thing that he neglected. Spirit is a long-hair and needs to be thoroughly brushed once a week all summer long. When she arrived home last night she hadn't been brushed in I don't know how long and hair would fly around if you just looked at her. So this morning I have to spend a good half hour grooming her, which she happens to love so it makes good bonding.

It's amazing to have her home again. I've missed her so much. Pictures to come.


Monday, July 25, 2005

OK, who's with blogrolling?

I recently signed up for blog rolling mainly for two things that I liked about it: being able to see who's linking to me and being able to see just by looking at my own blog who had updated theirs. But I can't get either of those features to work. I'm starting to think that the "who's linking to me" feature is only available to paying users (am I right here?) and if so, I'm ok with it. But I know i'm supposed to be able to designate newly uptaded blogs. Is anyone else out there on blogrolling who knows how to do this?

In knitting news: I've knit all the Amber Waves squares that I could out of the yellow and maroon yarn the Brian the weaver gave me and it's exactly half the number of squares I need for a blanket. Perfect! I was thinking of doing the other half in not only a different colourway but a different pattern as well, but I've decided to stick with the pattern and just find complimentary colours. I've already memorized the pattern anyway and it's quite fun, with enough variety to keep me interested and enough of a repeating pattern so that I can remember what the next round calls for.

More pictures when I have the next colourway finished.


Sunday, July 24, 2005

Puppy update

I spoke to Nyron. As I predicted he wasn't thrilled about the idea of me taking in a puppy, but he also couldn't find a really good defensive postion on which to base his oposition. The only concern was that I get him while I still have time to train him before I get a job.

My dad talked to the owner. They (or rather, his wife) are sill not sure whether they are serious about giving him up. The husband is apparently pretty fed up with the pooch. Neither of them have the time to train him and he doesn't have a reputation for being the most patient person. Mom and Dad don't know how patient the wife is, so little Bedford's fate is still in the air.

Apparently they live in B-town, which is where Nyron lives, so if they do decide to give him up it will be easy to get him. Also, if they decide they want to visit him once in a while, I could probably be convinced to make some tea or something. : )

So basically I'm where I was this morning; I may or may not have a new puppy in the future. But even if it falls through, I can still fill my house with foster cats!


So many animals...

As I mentioned in a previous post, I've been inspired by that woman on freecycle who has decided to take in foster cats. When I went to the pet store the other day to buy supplies for Spirit who is returning home on Wednesday, I saw that the pet store actually has a foster program. It looks good, especially since they pay all the vet bills while the cat is in foster care. I decided it's something I would like to do, but I have to wait until Spirit is more used to being back home and "home" itself is more permenent.

Then my mom called. She called mainly to see about booking tickets for a musical in Stratford that she wanted to see while she's here (unfortunately, it's sold out), but then she asked, "would you like a pommie?".

My parents recently purchased two pommeranian puppies on impulse from a friend's pet store and I'm constantly hearing stories about their cuteness and their misbehaviour. In fact, while this conversation was going on, one of them chewed up my mom's cousin's favourite pair of $300 sandals. So when my mom asked "would you like a pommie?" I thought she was making a joke about how bad those two are and her wanting to give them away, so I said sure. She threw me a curve ball when she asked, "are you serious? Do you want one?" It turns out that friends of my parents also bought a pommie from the same litter, but they are finding that they don't have the time to train him properly and are getting frustrated. So there actually is a puppy in need of a home. Since we're family friends, we get first dibs on the little guy.

My dad's going to go see them sometime soon to see how serious they are about giving the neglecterino up. I have to admit, I really want him! I mean, I REALLY want him. But I can't just say "yes" without thinking it through. As parents everywhere say to their 5 year olds, a puppy is a big responsibility. Since I am currently unemployed, this is the perfect time for me to have a puppy, since I'll be home all day to take care of him and train him. But what about when I do get a job? And what about Spirit? She used to be really scared of even the smallest dogs but she's a little more used to them now after having lived with my Nova Scotia family who own three dogs. Still, she's never lived in the same house with a dog - the three live with my parents and she lives in the house next door with my grandmother and brother. And this will even further delay my taking in foster cats, since I'll have to make sure Bedford (that's the pommie's name) is trained and used to cats before letting in more. The house also needs to be properly puppy-proofed and much more clean and organized than it is now. This could be seen as a form of motivation, though (now hunny, go clean your house and then we'll talk about letting you have a dog), which really is a good thing. : )

Of course, the biggest concern is Nyron. I know he would never deny something that I really had my heart set on, but I have to take him into consideration with all this. A dog is not a temperary responsibility, he'll be living with us for years. And Nyron doesn't really like small dogs. I know that this is something he's likely to object to. We'll have to sit down and talk about it, but that can probably wait until Dad's seen the owner and sussed out the situation. Until then, it's just something to think about.

Spirit comes home in 4 days!!


Friday, July 22, 2005

Amber Waves of charity

I'm between projects right now and I'm still waiting for my backpack of yarn to arrive so I can't really justify buying more I've decided to stashbust with some charity projects. I'm using the acrylic yarn that Brian the weaver donated to make afghan squaresthat I'll make into a blanket for a shelter. I haven't decided what shelter/organization to give it to yet, so if you have any ideas, feel free to put your 2 cents into a comment.

I'm much more experienced at knitting than crochet, so I've decided to crochet this blanket. I'm using a pattern called Amber Waves because it looked fairly easy while still using a variety of stitches. Plus, it looks best with contrasting colours; the yellow and red stand out against each other really well.

I'm going to see how many I can make with what I have in these colours and if it isn't enough for a whole blanket I'll pick two more colours and a slightly different, yet complimenting pattern and put them all together.


Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Favourite quote from the new Harry Potter book:

"No, I was merely reading Muggle magazines", said Dumbledore. "I do love knitting ptterns".

Saturday, July 16, 2005

A little more than loose ends

When I knit I always keep the little loose ends that I cut off a finished piece. When I have enough I can use them as fibrefill in charity crafts, like some odd sock pet beds I'm trying to make for a woman fostering cats for a local shelter. Unfortunately, in the last year I'd only amassed enough loose fibre to fill half a sock. Time to call for reinforcements. I sent out a request on Freecycle for knitters to start keeping their loose ends for me. I thought I might hear back from a few people with the expectation of picking up their garbage fibre in a few weeks, but instead I got an email from a weaver in the city who said he had a few bags for me.

What I picked up wasn't at all the little inch long gatherings I had expected. The were full lengths of yarn a few feet long each. And a lot of them! Here's what he donated:

Twin Peaks of Acrylic!

Possible uses:
- teddies or dolls for Teddies for Tragedies
- chemos caps
- blanket squares for homeless/shelters
- mittens for Knit for Kids

Cotton Moutnain

Possible uses:
- slippers for women's shelters

That's all I've really come up with.

Here's some assorted linen that I really don't know what do do with. It's too thin to knit.

This stuff is kind of like a flat chenille stuff. The lengths are too small to roll into balls. I really dont know what to do with it.

So any thoughts? I'm taking suggestions on what to do with this. It has to be for charity, since it's all been donated.


Finished for Little Andy

I finished the pinafore top! It looks so sweet! Just right for the little Nibblet. Here it is with all the pieces blocked:

It blocked quite nicely, although the bottom green section still curls where the moss stitch becomes stocking stitch. And here is the finished piece:

It stands up all on it's own! It doesn't even need little Andy! : )

As soon as I finished sewing the pockets on, I realized that I'd sewn them on to the back piece by mistake. It really doesn't matter that much, all it does is change what shoulder the top button buttons on. However, I ended up sewing the side panels on the side with the pockets which would have been the right side if I had sewn the pockets on the right side but since the pockets were on the wrong side that made those on the wrong side, now. Confused yet? Basically I had to take the side panels off and re-stitch them. *sigh* But it's all finished now. I'll post pictures of the little guy wearing a few months, when he actually fits into it!


Friday, July 15, 2005

My first anonymous comment!

Wow! A lady named MaryKay wrote a comment to my July 8 entry (where I posted pictures of my new shelf and my stitch markers). How exciting! Not that I don't absolutely appreciate my friends who read my blogs, but there's something extra cool when someone who doesn't know me, and has no particular reason to be interested in my life, reads them. MaryKay if you have a blog let me know and I'll give you some linkylove. Also, I am planning on putting instructions for my stitch markers up once I can find proper diagrams for one of the knots in it.

It's been an extremely hot summer in the T-dot this year and this kind of perpetual heat makes me lethargic. Yet today, against all my best wishes, I dragged myself outside for a little walk. We had a nice refreshing thunderstorm last night so it wasn't as oppressively hot as it has been, but I still feel exhausted, even though I didn't walk that far. I feel good. I think it's my body's way of telling me a need to be more active by making me feel nice and energized. I'm between projects right now, so this would be a good time for it. I just can't seem to find anything I want to start at the moment, especially when I just made two mistakes sewing up Andy's pinafore top. One of them could be ignored, but the other made me undo all my sewing. : p


Tuesday, July 12, 2005

I'm almost done Anouk.

I've finished the front and the back, but I can't put them together because I need a #8 dpn for the 3-needle bind off. I know I said I was going to put buttons on both shoulder straps, but the moss stitch edging makes doing a button hole on the other shoulder very akward. At least this way Amy won't have to worry about losing one half of the top! This leaves me with a corn cob button left over, which I'll make into a stitch holder for Amy. I have some teddy bear and other cute buttons kicking around so I can make a whole series of them. I like the idea of giving Amy a little mommy gift just for her. Ater all, Andy was born, but it's Amy who did all the work!


Monday, July 11, 2005

Welcome to the world, little Edward Andrew Orford!

Amy has had her baby! Congradulations, hun! I can't wait to meet the little darling. It's a good thing I'm almost finished Anouk. The original pattern calls for Cascade Yarns Pima Tencel but when I did some research it turned out to have special washing instructions. There's no way I'm giving a new mom something that requires hand washing! So instead, I'm making this a stashbuster project and using some Bernat Berella "4" acrylic I had left over from Knit for Kids a few Christmases ago. It won't be as soft as the cotton/tencel blend, but at least she'll be able to just throw it in the washer and dryer. I'm also making some stylistic changes. Instead of the poseys on the pockets I'm going to knit ears of corn on a light blue background instead. Amy and I found some darling little corn buttons at Courage My Love in Kensington Market that will go perfectly. The pattern only uses three buttons, two for the sides and only one shoulder button, but I'm going to add a fourth so that it'll be easier to get it on him. I hear babies can be fussy when they are being dressed.

So, welcome Baby Andy!


Friday, July 08, 2005

If you give a knitter a hammer...

...she'll want to make a chest of drawers with it. I bought this at Ikea and put it together all by myself! (Well, I let my DB help with one of the drawers to make him feel helpful.)

I want to get some chalkboard paint so I can keep track of what's inside each drawer. And I've picked out some nice buttons to use as drawer pulls.

Now if we pull back...

It's my brand new craft shelf! Also from Ikea. My materials are now the most organized they've ever been! This is very exciting. I still have lots of stuff to sort, but it's certainly coming along. Of course, knowing my luck, just when I have everything sorted the house will sell and I'll have to pack it all up again. But at least it's easily to hand now.

Hmmm....what else have I been working on? Oh yah! Stitch markers.

I finally did find the jump rings the right size, but by then I'd come up with an idea for using cotton yarn and buttons. Once I have an idea for something I can't let go until I've tried it.

I'm modelling the buttons on my latest project: Anouk from Knitty for my friend Amy's little boy who should be born by now. Exciting!


Monday, July 04, 2005

My kitty's coming home!

My mom called today to tell me that she had booked the flight that will bring my little bro in Halifax out here to visit me in the big city. He comes out here every other summer or so for a few weeks. This year he's bringing with him our grandmother, our Torontonian cousin Sharon who will be returning home from visiting my family in Halifax and....Spirit! My darling precious cat! I will be sure to post photos when she - I mean they - arrive.