Monday, November 30, 2009

pin cushion

tapestry needle holder-business card-2

For over two years this business card was my pin cushion. One day, my son asked, if there was not something invented to stick the needles in to. I said, sure, it's called pin cushion, which he knew of course. Until that moment, I haven't ever thought about making one for my tapestry needles. Luckily I saw this lovely pattern on ravelry, most colorful, and eye popping.

pincushion side A with tapestry needles

That day, I had some left over Noro Silk Garden on my coffee table, so I grabbed it, printed out the patter and set to work. That was back in May. I seem to remember that for me, the pattern was not crystal clear written, but I got it anyway, through trail and error. Anyway, I really love how it turned out. Especially that it has two sides, both nice. I'm tickled with the Edelweiss buttons.

pincushion side B

I would have liked to tuck the sections more tightly, but you just can't with that yarn. Still, I'm quite happy with it.

pincushion side A

pattern: by Liselotte Weller
yarn: Noro Silk Garden, 0.75 ball, don't know the colorway
hook: 3.5mm
size: large, 10 rounds
start and finish: May 26

This weekend I've been knitting quite obsessively on the Johanna shawl.

afternoon tea with chocolate covered swiss cookies and Johanna shawl
Afternoon tea with Swiss chocolate covered cookies, knitting away on Johanna.

It's finished now, just blocking. Hannah requested another "you snag" wrist warmers in black for herself, and the only other thing on my needles right now is my cardigan.

Garter Yoke Cardi, first sleeve halfway

I'm on the first sleeve. There is nothing more annoying than knitting a sleeve in the round, while the rest of the cardi is hanging like a sack of potatoes on it, and after every row you have to untwist the whole thing. Needless to say, it's slow going. After about an inch of knitting, I put it away and do something else. I might finish it this year, or not.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Dog Park!

At the beginning of November I finally remembered to take the camera with me, when we went to the dog park. We go there 3-5 times a week, never on weekends. It's too crowded on Saturday and Sunday. Whole families go there, from Baby to Great Aunt, and maybe their pooch too, if they don't forget to take him. It's just plain crazy on weekends.

There is always someone there, if only a couple of dog walkers, who come with two mini vans and bring about 20 dogs with them. This was one of those days.

dog park Nov. 3-3
you can click on the photos and go to flickr and look at them in the original size if you want to

This is Biko, she LOVES to go to the park. She thinks she's the Queen, and has to greet and meet every newcomer, be it four or two legged. She's always on the move, sniffing, and peeing. She even lifted one of her hind legs to pee twice! No kidding, she's female and does that. Queen indeed.

dog park Nov. 3-5
I was crouching there when she came running, checking out the competition.

Well, Biko is coming back to check in. In the background there are lots of dog walker dogs. It's also the mud area. By the way, as I stood up from my crouching point, I saw that right beside me was a big dog turd, just missed it by a foot step.

dog park Nov. 3-8
Happy kept close to me at first, but with her encouragement he ventured away from me soon enough. This was a good day for him. Usually he spends most of his time there on his back, because one or the other dogs plays rough. He's really a big chicken and squeals like a pig, even before something really happens. As I said, this was a good day for him, nobody was interested in him much. Sometimes we take his Frisbee with us, and any and all dogs, big or small can take it away from him, he's that "generous".

dog park Nov. 3-6
Here he looks as big as the brown dog, but was really smaller. He's just standing a little higher. He is scared of small dogs, so he watches this one carefully.

dog park Nov. 3-7
Of course he has to pick the blind guy to sniff butt, the one who can't chase him away! Got to learn sniffing butt at some point, right?

dog park Nov. 3-9
Biko and Happy went by me heading in the other direction. The entrance is at the far left corner. Biko is looking to the right. Can you see the two lumps far back, when you look up from her shoulder?

dog park Nov. 3-10
Here you can see those "lumps" a little better. It's a couple of senior dogs, the dog walkers brought along. They always lye down side by side and watch the others fool around.

dog park Nov. 3-11

This guy was looking at Happy funny, who just wanted to sniff his butt, but thought better not this time.

dog park Nov. 3-12

I felt really honored when I saw the two seniors get up and waddle up to me! They came all the way over to greet me. I must have looked quite interesting with my camera pointing in their direction. I didn't even think they saw me, but they did. Well we said Hello, and went on our way.

dog park Nov. 3-13

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

You Snag

you snag x 2 Sept. 18-4

Hannah asked me to knit a couple of wrist warmers for her friends. She choose You Snag by Ms. Pixie Riot, found on ravelry. She could have easily knit them herself, but sure, why not.
The black ones are for a young man, and I made them like the pattern suggested. The other ones are for a girl. There I dropped stitches only every other column, so they would not be so wide. I used left over yarn from socks I've knit, on 2.75mm needles.
They were going to Australia, and arrived safely, and were received with joy.

you snag x 2 Sept. 18-2

Since I was already knitting wrist warmers, I made a pair for her too. She likes stripes, and this was the only self striping yarn I had in stash. I think they are too colorful for her, but I like them. They are too snug on my hands, but should fit hers well.

fingerless mittens for Hannah-2

pattern: Jacoby by Berroco Design Team
yarn: Regia 4-ply, Nation Color # 5399
needles: 2mm

Great and easy pattern.

fingerless mittens for Hannah-3
It's incredible hard to take pictures just with one hand.

fingerless mittens for Hannah-1
Usually I don't bother with matching stripes, but this time I wanted them to match, and it was kind of fun. I made the thumbs longer than the pattern called for.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Shetland Shopper and Seaside Tote

I made this Seaside Tote and this Shetland shopper back in May and June of this year.

sewn knit and crochet shopping bags

Ever since they started charging for plastic bags, I've used sewn, knit, crochet, and other reusable bags for shopping.

Shetland shopper 1-5

pattern: Shetland Shopper by Gudrun Johnston
yarn: Luna, ,Viscose/Cotton, color # 9711, 2.5 balls ~ 273 yds
needles: 3.75 for base and top, 5mm for lace main body
start-finish: May 27-30

Shetland shopper 1-1

If I were to knit this again, I would make the handles sturdier. The bag itself stretches from here to China. You can load it up, and it will take everything and the kitchen sink, except that I don't think the handles could take it. Whenever the cashiers at the store fill it up, their eyes almost pop out, because it stretches so much.

Noro Sakura market bag finished-3

pattern: Seaside Tote Bag by Stefanie Gage
yarn: Noro Sakura Color #4
hook: 4.5mm (G) for bottom base, 5mm (H) for main body
start-finish: June 17 - 20

Noro Sakura market bag finished-1

Here I did a different top. I knew I didn't want to hang it from my shoulder, but fill it up and carry it like a shopping bag. This bag does stretch as well, but not nearly as much as the knit one. It does do it's job well. I loved how the base turned out, but the main body stitch pattern got boring fast. I could not wait to finish it. Anyway, I'm all set with bags for now.


Here's one tote bag I did not make myself, you all know where I got that from! It's a great size, and the fabric is not as stiff as I thought it would be. I like it. It can handle a lot of yarn! :o) Here in the photo it sits on a hand stitched table cloth my mother sent me. I have to iron it before I actually use it. Well, that's it for bags right now. I DO love me some bags!

Bob Chasing Yarn Tote Bag

Oh, and I almost forgot to show you this cute little coin purse I've got from Cindy.

coin purse by Cindy 2paws
Thank you, Cindy! :o)


Friday, November 20, 2009


At the beginning of October we took an overnight trip to Ottawa. Biko and Happy got to come with us. I'm telling you, never again! The pups were real good in the car. But after being in the car for a day, with bathroom breaks of course, they had quite a lot of energy to disburse. I shudder when I think of those two days.
We found a pet friendly Hotel, and after a lengthy walk in the evening, Biko was quite content.

Oct. 8th-Howard Johnson Hotel in Kemptville, Ontario-3

That could not be said of Happy. He was like a whirlwind, and could not settle down. He reminded me of a five year old on a sugar rush.
Oct. 8th-Howard Johnson Hotel in Kemptville, Ontario-2

I tried to get a good picture, but he soon discovered that he could jump from one bed to the other, and for the next half hour or so, did just that.
Oct. 8th-Howard Johnson Hotel in Kemptville, Ontario-4

He also learned something new on this trip; Biko ever so helpful showed him how he could drink from a toilet! Never before and never since!
These are the only pictures I took on this trip. And that's O.K. it's better forgotten anyway.

The pups behaved well, until about 2 hours from home on our way back. They just had enough of this never ending car ride. It was dark, raining, we've caught a cold, and felt terrible, and they started to fight. In my desperation I threw back my last apple, and that broke the spell. Happy was working on it for about 5 minutes, but that was enough to calm them down.
I even brought along some knitting, but needless to say, I never unpacked it.

Well, live and learn!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009


I'm trying to get my backlog of finished knitting shown here, that sometime in the near future, I'll be able to blog "real time". This pair of socks must be the oldest FO right now.
Back in May there was a Mystery KAL on ravelry and I participated, because the designer was Yarnissima.
Even though I've bought sock kits from her, this was my first pair of socks I`ve knit, which she designed.
Finished Kiila May 24-6

I must admit, I was a little disappointed because the design was so simple. I'd expected more somehow. I didn't like how the transition from the cables on the foot to the cables on the leg was executed. Other then that, I don't remember much about it.

Finished Kiila May 24-5

pattern: Yarnissima
yarn: Jojoland Melody, 100% wool, color # Y20-2043, 2 x 50g
needles: DP 2.5mm
start-finish: May 4-24 (it took so long, since we got one clue each week)

This past weekend, I enjoyed reading more than anything. I still knit a little on my Triangular Scarf with Leaf Pattern by Nancy Bush, but Stieg Larsson's Trilogy just kept me enthralled I could not help myself. I've only got the two first books The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, and The Girl who played with Fire, leaving me antsy to get my hand on the last book. Thank god it was released this October in English in the UK, and now it`s on its way to me, albeit the Royal Post`s ongoing strike. I hope my package slips through.


Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Shredder for rent!

Happy Oct. 22-2

He works fast, and on a low noise level. He can go on for hours, and only needs a few pets, and some treats to recharge his batteries, before he resumes his work. He's not limited to single sheet paper alone, but shreds cardboard, high gloss paper, envelopes, newspaper, flyers, you name it! Once he gets started, he is hard to stop, but even if his work is hard, he'll not complain. He will not rest, until he's done, and satisfied with his work. He comes cheap too, no need for electricity.

Happy Oct. 22-1

Anyone need a shredder?

Monday, November 16, 2009

Moose and Donkey = Trinity Hannah!

I've been waiting to tell you this, and finally she's arrived!

Welcome, Trinity Hannah, Baby girl (born on November 12th) of Kelly and her husband Moose!

I've been reading Kelly's blog for quite some time now, and always thought she and her husband are a lovely couple.
Back in September I sewed some bibs, and burp cloths, as well as some socks for the little one, she called Tadpole (I'm sure not any more).

gift for Kelly and Moose-6
Since Kelly calls her husband "Moose" I was looking for a fabric with Moose on it. I wish I could have found something nicer, but that was all I've got.

gift for Kelly and Moose-7

It was hard to find a fabric with a Donkey on it, and I'm still not sure this is one, but let's say it is.

gift for Kelly and Moose-1
This bib I made for fun. I could not resist the "I am a Canadian!" on it. :o)

Newborn socks for Kelly's Baby-1

I like the look of these socks, but I had to rip out the heel twice, and didn't think the third time would be the charm, so I just did my usual square heel. I just didn't get the heel in the pattern. I like the garter stitches down front, and back.

pattern: Garter Stripe Baby Socks by Jennifer Hoel
yarn: left over Bambino sock yarn by Sockpixie
needle: 2mm
size: newborn

Congratulations to the whole family!


Wednesday, November 11, 2009


It's my birthday today. I'm very grateful that I have family and friends who think of me on this day. I don't take it for granted, since I know not everybody is that lucky. Thanks, everyone!

The one thing which comes to mind is, that more than half of my life is over, and I could/should be in better shape. That this is not going to happen any time soon, David surprised me with a "homemade" Austrian style chocolate cake, almost like a Sacher Torte, but not quite. One I've made many times myself in the past, and I like it. (He ordered it from an Austrian Restaurant in the next town.)
I've got another pair of socks from Hannah. She sent me this lovely package with handmade organic soap called "Happy Carrots", an embroidered sachet filled with Lavender, and this weird, totally cool little mug. She writes the most touching cards too.
Some time ago I mentioned to David, that if there are always reruns on TV, they should show Northern Exposure more often. I used to love to watch that series. I'd like to watch it from start to finish, and look what I've got! The complete series in this fun bag. He does listen to what I say - sometimes...
Today I'll be thinking seriously about my life, past and future.

Monday, November 09, 2009


Originally I wanted to knit these mittens for myself. Ignoring the size given in the pattern (average women's adult, 7" circumference at palm), I cast on. I'm not an average woman, and my dimensions at the palm are 8.5". After the first mitten was done, I was fully prepared to rip it out again, and start over with modifications to fit my large hands. On the other hand I had a perfectly good (riddled with mistakes) mitten all done, finished, ready, so I asked Hannah if she would like them. I don't think she dares to say NO, so she said yes, she likes them, and the other mitten was cast on. I always make mistakes with the first of a pair, be it mittens or socks. Once I know how it's supposed to go, the second one turns out right. The second one here, would be the right one. Same here.

I fully intended to knit myself a pair, right after I finished these mittens, but got sidetracked with stranded colorwork instead. Ha, yes, I've an attention span of a three year old, and a memory like a gold fish. At least that's what my son says, I can't remember.

The pattern is from "Made in Brooklyn" by Jared Flood. I wanted his booklet so bad, that when it got published I ordered it right on Classic Elite Yarns website, and they use shopatron. The postage was more than the cost of the booklet! I really feared, it would be sold out, and I wanted it, I wanted it bad. So here's the first finished pattern from it. More to follow...

The yarn I used is elann's Peruvian Collection Highland Wool in the color # 2117 using 4mm needles.

The cuffs were a big PIA to knit, but the rest of the mittens went very quickly and easy. The only complaint about this booklet so far is, that it's printed in a too small font. The charts are so small, it's hard to read them, maybe I should go look for a magnifying glass. I've tried to enlarge the mitten chart pattern, but it got all blurry, so I had to look at both, the print out, and to be sure at the booklet. That's a bit annoying. The top of the mitten gets a three-needle bind off, which is not my favorite, unless it's a shoulder seam on a pullover. I liked how the decreases were worked, real clever. While knitting I didn't see the nice structure of the mittens, it came out better in the photographs. In all I'm pleased with the mittens, and I think Jared has absorbed some of E.Z.'s knitting genius. I'm looking forward to see more of his designs.
And as of yesterday evening, I've officially started on Holiday knitting. Didn't even know I would do much of that this year, but the closer it gets to Christmas, the more gift ideas I get.

On the Happy front, we had some success. Thanks so much for all your advise. It has been tested on him - all of it! We found a winning combination of long leash, exhausting Frisbee play with two pieces, so he would bring back one, and run after the other. As it turned out, he choose the rubbery Frisbee over sausage, and that's what makes him come running and into the house like the wind. He'll only get that one from now on when he comes inside.

For now I'll still leave the leash on him, until he really comes reliable, when called to go inside. I don't want him to get more practice in ignoring me.

Oct. 26-Happy with his new frisbee from Sabine-5

That would be the super, better than sausage Frisbee, and soon to be Superdog! ;o)

Friday, November 06, 2009

Happy's first snow!

Well there he is, real time Happy as he looks today! And I've not even caught up with my blogging yet, but last night we had our first snow, after a very weird day of sunshine, scary cloud formations, snowball shower the size of peas, wind, and a drizzle of rain. After dark before bedtime I went outside and to my joy and amazement, we had some snow!

You should have seen Happy's face! He didn't want to step on it, he sniffed, and looked at me, gingerly took a few steps, looked at me, licked the snow, and so we went all around the pool, until he finally took his pee. This morning though, it was business as usual, even if the stepping board was a little slippery.

Nov. 6-Happy's first snow-1
Throw the frisbee, throw it, throw it ....

Nov. 6-Happy's first snow-8
a lot of sniffing and snorting (by the way, this was early morning, while Biko was still in dreamland)

Nov. 6-Happy's first snow-7
Did you hear that?

Nov. 6-Happy's first snow-10
I'm sure there's a big, old bear in the bushes! (it was just a falling leave)

Happy's frozen paw print Nov. 6
From last night, a frozen paw print.

We have a bit of a problem with this teenage fellow right now. He does not want to come inside, when we are finished playing. No trick or sausage makes him come close enough for me to grab him. He just knows all I want is for him to come inside, and it's so much more fun outside!
I tried leaving a leash on him, but the first one was too short, he learned quickly how close he could let me come before I had him. I tried a very long leash, and he promptly ran a figure eight around 2 trees and got tangled up real good. By the way, I put the harness on him, and on that the leash, so he wouldn't break his neck. With the long leash I was just untangling him all the time, so that was not the solution.
At the end I left him outside by himself, with the door open, and I could watch him through the window. He had a grand time, periodically looking at the door, and the first time he came inside after about 20 minutes. The next time it was about 10 minutes (totally covered in mud, I had to give him a bubble bath), and today he came after 5 mintues. Progress! Anyway, with temps tropping, I don't like to leave the door open too long. I sure hope he gets over this phase soon! Any other suggestions?