Monday, July 24, 2017

A quick run through southern Ontario

Stephen and I had a bit of a local holiday last week. We rented a car and went south to Lake Erie.


The water in the Great Lakes has been extremely high this year, and in many places there just wasn't any beach!

Here, for example, is Stephen at the very end of Canada, at the south point of Pelee Island. Usually it looks more like this.


But we liked going through the woods, looking at the marshes, tasting wine, sitting on the porch of our B&B, and trying to remember stuff about the War of 1812.

We took a tour at Fort Erie and watched them fire off muskets (thinking, "that would be a good summer job for our kids!").


Here we are on Queenston Heights.


We couldn't spend a week in the area and not visit the Falls.


Someone long ago carved my name into the wall.


Everyone needs a sign to stand in front of these days. (You can see that we didn't end up at the falls on the nicest day of our trip!)


When the weather is no good, it's always possible to shop indoors.  We went to the village of Jordan, which was marketed to us as a quaint and chic, oddball, little town. But really it is a big winery, a big hotel, and a few little shops. We enjoyed a drink and a snack at the bakery and happened upon the Dye Guy in his shop, where I just had to buy some yarn to make socks for the kids.

For Elaine, Confused Hydrangea:


Arthur gets Deep Sea Shrimp:


We stopped at many wineries over the days.


We enjoyed a couple of bottles on the trip, but brought home about a dozen more!

At our first B&B down by Point Pelee, we had a house to ourselves and we would drive out to dinner in town and then come home for a bit of wine and cheese and crackers on the porch. One night we sat in the dusk watching fireflies, which is not a thing that happens in downtown Toronto!

The second B&B was right in Port Colborne and we could walk to dinner, but really only had our bedroom to sit in at the house, so we would just have a cup of tea and read our books!

On our last night we went to Lake Erie's Long Beach. It is pretty long, but it ain't BC's Long Beach!


Way out there near the horizon, you might be able to see three little heads. We walked a way out into the nice warm water, and believe those folks are sitting on the bottom. This beach would be much more impressive in a normal year, but with the lake so high, most of the wide, flat beach is under water. 

Now, time to sort out the house, get Elaine back from camp, moan about the dang squirrels eating our attempts at sunflowers and all that late-summer stuff! 

Friday, July 14, 2017

Been Shoppin'

Someone in the local knitters' group on Ravelry posted that they had donated a shedload of yarn to a thrift store in Stouffville -- an hour out of town and not anywhere I would usually go.

But! Today we had to go out that way to drop Elaine off at a camp thing for a couple of weeks, and, well, the thrift shop was kind of on the way home...


I got three packs of yarn for a grand total of $45. Fifteen balls of Rowan denim, plus a pattern! I have to rip out that knitted bit, but then, what fun we'll have!

Some Cotton Fleece in one of Elaine's favourite colours! Enough for a cardi or shrug or comfy slouchy something, I think.


And gorgeous rusty reds and browns, also Cotton Fleece.


There were several bags of wool that I didn't take, although I could have had a year's worth or more for less than $100. Another thing I didn't take was this set of Ferrari espresso cups. When we get our palazzo in Rome...


Thursday, July 13, 2017

Three things

Where would I be without Think Write Thursday?

This week we are supposed to recall three good things that happened this past week. I am running around like the proverbial chicken, so perhaps it is good that I stop and think about this.

Last Sunday I volunteered at the Maker Festival at the Toronto Reference Library, at a booth for the EDIT exhibition I will volunteer at in the fall. (I did have a fine time although I have some problems with this whole "maker" culture... it's like the world is a huge Michael's store and all we have to do it put the prefab bits together and we are makers. Whoo-hoo.) What I did for most of the day was show passers-by how to fold papers into flexagons. The paper we used was decorated in advance with all the little triangles and diamonds and after making about ten million of them, I got pretty good at it, I must say. Around 1 or 2 pm (my head was buzzing by then) we ran out of paper, so I moved to another place where I stood around and looked useful, but really I could have gone home and no one would have missed me, I'm sure! I am really looking forward to EDIT and you will surely hear more about it.

Yesterday I went to the Textile Museum for a pre-show tour of the new exhibit of Japanese textiles. OMG. Astonishing! If you go to that link and click on the pictures, you will see some great kimonos and things. I did not know that Ikat weaving meant that the threads are dyed before being woven, and I am used to Ikat being sort of stripy and splotchy.

This is an Ikat woven piece:


How do they do that, make such precise and delicate and exact patterns? I will have to go back and take pictures of every single thing.

Third excellent thing: last night I went out and played Scrabble in a pub and won and had a good time. Yay me.

Back to chicken-running-around now! See more Think Write Thursday posts here.

Thursday, July 06, 2017

Hello July

Oh, I don't know where I've been for the past little while: obviously not blogging.

I made a dishrag.


Today is Thursday, it's garbage day, it's Think Write Thursday. And our theme for today is Hello July. And hello cool looking pansies.


July -- busy busy busy.
  1. I have to go to the dentist twice! Very sad, I say. 
  2. I have to take my daughter to the thrift shop to get some disposable clothing because....
  3. She is going to do a two-week course doing some archeology in Southern Ontario where there is lots of hot digging in the dirt and no laundry facilities. 
  4. While she is away, Stephen and I will go see some Ontario sights like Point Pelee and Niagara wineries
  5. Before we go, we'd like to get the bathroom painted. 
  6. This is supposed to be Arthur's job, but he needs some parental nudging. 
  7. Surely that is about all. 



Monday, July 03, 2017

At least I've seen the duck


There's been a bit of controversy about this duck. It's big, it's got nothing to do with Canada Day, but we paid for it and I like it. 

Perhaps some day soon I will share some knitting with you all. 


Thursday, June 15, 2017

Here we are, Thursday again

This week we are meant to discuss being halfway through 2017. Did we have goals, are we meeting them...

My January posts were mostly about my Christmas holiday, and I didn't do a big, hopeful, detailed, bullet-posted list of things I hoped to accomplish in this year. I did enough of those in the past, I think, to learn that I never keep to them! I have the same unfinished sweaters lying around the house as I did in January, and probably in January 2016 as well!

One thing I am keeping up with is the vintage accessories. One a month, on track to get another one done in June, a ski hood/scarf combo. And I manage to fit in a few other things as well.


Latest: a shawl I could say I designed myself, although I didn't write anything down and would be hard-pressed to recreate it. I started from the top centre and increased at the edges, and twice in between. When I realized that would make a half-hexagon shape, I stuck bits on the ends to make it longer and less deep, and then continued on with the two decreases. It was doing this: \_/ and then it did this: \---/. Much better as a scarf, right?


The yellow is that garish, yes
And I can show off my new patio table as well. No more ripply glass, just sleekness and annoying reflections.  


I finally took all the leftover bits from this (yellow and brown unicorn tails, dark green sock yarn and a green Zauerball) and made a huge tassel which I hung off one corner. But that was after this photo session, so no documentary evidence. We'll see if it lasts!

So, that's me on a Thursday halfway through the year!

Other Think Write Thursday posts can be found here.


Thursday, June 08, 2017

Summer bucket list

Today we are told it's time for a summer bucket list on Think Write Thursday. (I don't recall hearing this term "bucket list" for the first 50 or so years of my life, and now everyone has one. I'll gladly make a to-do list, or a list of places I'd like to go and things I'd like to do, but I would never call it a bucket list.)

So, what would I like to be doing this summer?
  • Spend a week in Southampton, watching an eclipse and hanging around on the beach.
  • That is my only plan. 
We haven't booked a faraway trip at all yet. Elaine might be doing a course away from home for a couple of weeks this summer, but we have no plans for ourselves. Unlike last year, we don't have to take her to Calgary! 

Maybe we'll enjoy the city: 
Maybe we'll just weed the garden and paint the bathroom! 

My bucket doth not run over, it seems.