Friday, October 22, 2010

Am I Afraid of Committal?

So here I am.  Back again.  After two exhausting rounds of anti-biotics.  A few weeks ago I had a terrible sinus infection.  This week I have missed work because of bronchitis. 

I was sitting at home this evening watching one of my favourite movies, Julie & Julia.  I like the character, Julie Powell.  She reminds me of myself.  A writer who truly believes you are not really a writer unless you're published.  Although, technically, I suppose I am published.  I wrote an article for a magazine a few years ago.  I keep a copy of the magazine by my bedside, buried under 20 other books and magazines.  Pathetic, I know.

Anyhoo, I was watching the movie tonight and had the urge to sit down and write to you.  It's been too long and my writing urges have not been met.

Why am I afraid of committal?  Now, don't get me wrong, I do commit to many things.  For example, I have been married to the same incredible man for almost 19 years now.  So, it's not that I can't commit to everything.  Rather, I suppose I am afraid of rejection.

I mean, why haven't I submitted the short stories I have written and have stored away on sheets of paper, coil notebooks, and in my computer files.  Why haven't I submitted my photography to various magazines and other publications.  I am ultimately afraid of being rejected.  Of being told I'm not good enough.  Why should I care so much?

Look at all the writers who submitted hundreds of manuscripts before some editor thought their words were interesting enough to share with the world.  Many photographers submit hundreds of images before one is selected to be "the one".

One of these days, I will be that writer or photographer.  Until then I work on my craft and write to you. 

Sunday, September 19, 2010

The Man Cold Season Is Upon Us!

Hello loverly peoples,

Ladies, does your man suffer through the cold season like a trooper?  Or is he like this . . .

. . . damn, I hate Man Cold season!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Sand Castle Guardians

Today was the most amazing day I have had in a long time.

Listening to this...

It was definitely food for the soul.  What a great way to end the summer!  I went on the most amazing boat cruise for a couple hours.  I have talked about how much I love being near water in a previous blog, but I can't emphasize just how therapeutic it is for me.  The weather could not have been more perfect and I couldn't stop capturing images with my trusty camera.

I tweaked the contrast and saturation on this one -- I love how it turned out.  I could have sat and watched these guys all day if I had the opportunity.  There is something comical about seagulls.  Especially when food is involved.  They each have their own unique personalities, colours, markings, and walk.  Some are fat while some are slender even though they eat everything in sight.

How does one even leave this setting?  Well, my ride was leaving, so really, that was the only reason I tore myself away from this beautiful location.

Wouldn't you want to stay too?

Monday, September 6, 2010


Life, originally uploaded by Knit Girl...(in & out).
Can you believe it has been twelve weeks since I began my list of 1,001 Things I Did This Summer? It began as a meager project to help pass my time while living without TV for the summer months. It certainly did not grow into a list of 1,001 things, but I learned a lot.

The first thing I learned was I could actually survive without watching TV during every spare moment I had. My family and I did so many things with our free time: played games, did puzzles, went to the fair, played golf as a family, read books . . . and so much more.

Granted, toward the end my efforts to record every possible moment fell apart. I honestly became bored with the project. The fun and spontaneity left me around week eight. I found myself reluctant to record new events and experiences. I prayed for the next four weeks to pass quickly. Not because I was looking forward to getting our satellite service turned back on (which we have decided not to do). Rather I must admit I was frustrated that I didn't complete more than 200 things. I certainly wasn't expecting to reach 1,001 items, but 200 seemed almost fruitless. Once I began working full-time, keeping track of the few items I was able to complete each day seemed . . . pointless. After all, wasn't the whole exercise to use the summer to really live life?

What I failed to realize when I began the project was this would be the first summer I had worked full-time in more than a decade. I didn't realize by the time you work 8 to 5 you still need to come home, cook dinner, and clean up the dishes. By this time, it was almost 7 o'clock and I must admit I was pretty exhausted from such a full day. So I had a couple of hours to try to cram in as much “stuff” as possible. By week eight I was done. All desire to try new things had left me. I must admit most nights I was ready to crawl into bed around 8 o'clock and sleep until I had to get up in the morning and do it all over again. But I tried to persevere.

The second thing I learned is that being a parent and working full-time is very difficult. I honestly don't know how people do it. I am so thankful that for 10 years I was able to be a stay-at-home mom. That in itself is a difficult job. But what I was able to do in a 16-hour period of my day, I now only had about two hours of time. Chores were neglected and excuses were made. I would be frustrated that I had to complete all this “household stuff” when I knew I also had the task of trying to complete a seemingly impossible list of things that were new and interesting. It was no longer fun . . . it had become work.

I have been working full-time now for just over a month. I still feel completely overwhelmed and disorganized. Now that school has started, there is a whole new element thrown into the mix – homework and extra-curricular activities. I have been questioning myself lately whether I am up for the task. Because the full-time work is not going to disappear. Nor will school activities, exercise, music, writing and other creative activities. And throw on top of it all a very busy church life . . .

. . . my head is reeling!

The final, and I think most important, thing I learned is that if we hadn't discontinued our satellite service for the summer months I would still be doing the same thing. Coming home from work, eating dinner, sitting in front of the TV for several hours, snacking, doing nothing physical whatsoever, and feeling crappy by the time I rolled into bed. I would be angry and depressed that “life is passing me by and I have nothing to show for it”. I would be feeling sorry for myself that “I never do anything interesting”.

But instead, I have read books I've been meaning to read for months . . . years. I have listened to and appreciated new music. I golfed more this summer than in my whole life. I began a life-saving exercise program. I attended two glorious weddings and several 50th wedding anniversaries. I have seen a bride and groom dance their first dance as husband and wife. I have seen a husband tenderly embrace his wife of 50 years as they danced after almost losing her to a heart attack. I have celebrated life and I have mourned death.

I have lived.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

1,001 Things I Did This Summer -- Part 9

Okay…let’s try this again.  I am going to try to capture everything I have been up to over the last several weeks.  It’s not a perfect or complete list, but it is a list nonetheless.

189.          Read High on Arrival by Mackenzie Phillips.  She is an amazing person with an equally amazing story.  It is a must read for everyone.  It made me count my blessings that I was raised in such a stable environment.
190.          Had a shopping date with my daughter.  I love Girl’s Day!
191.          Got our new iMac – it is absolutely delicious!
192.          Read Three Cups of Tea by Greg Mortenson.  I realized I ordered the junior version from the library – didn’t care . . . read it anyway.
193.          Started reading The Book of Negroes by Lawrence Hill.  Such an amazing story – can’t put it down (except when I have to go to work, of course).
194.          Still working on knitting a shawl for my cousin’s wedding.  I realized today, sadly, it will not be completed for this weekend.  Grrrrrrrr.
195.          Celebrated my husband’s 40th birthday and my MIL’s birthday (do I mention her age?  Better not . . .).  A great time visiting with old friends and catching up with family.  To my niece, Chloe – you are an amazing young woman with a vibrant personality.  Your sense of humour is extraordinary and your vocabulary is prodigious.  I wish we could have spent more time with you!!!  You must come visit us in our local FarmVille. (…p.s. i LOVE your hair!)
196.          Watched horse races.  Those animals are absolutely amazing!  It was incredible watching them.  We placed a few small wagers.  Some races we won . . . some were not so lucky.  Let’s just say we are not retiring any time soon.
197.          Went to my parents’ cabin for the weekend.  It is the one place where I truly feel at home.  I spent my summers there while growing up.  I marveled at the trees we once planted which now reach higher than the cabin itself.  I’m still kicking myself I forgot my camera.  However, I did a lot of knitting, reading, and playing games.
198.          Watched a couple of movies:  The Bounty Hunter starring Jennifer Aniston and Gerard Butler {swoon} and last night I watched Date Night starring Steve Carrel and Tina Fey.  Great date movies although I was alone for the last one . . . .
199.          Got my daughter off for first day back to school . . . can you believe she’s starting Grade 6?  I was watching her get ready and wondered, “So when did you grow up over the summer?”  How is it that she just looked like a kid last week, and now she’s looking more like a teen?!?!
200.          Ate ice cream . . . more than once!

I hope you all have a lovely week.  I will probably not be writing again until next week.  I have a busy week ahead and we leave Friday for a family wedding (God’s richest blessings to Meaghan and Mike). 

Thanks for checking in everyone!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010


Classic, originally uploaded by Knit Girl...(in & out).
I am not sure where the breakdown occurred. I'm not even sure how to pick the pieces up. I have dropped the blogging ball on my 1,001 Things I Did This Summer. Life has gotten so busy since I have began working F/T that I am still trying to keep my head above the water.

I am still here my lovely readers. I have just been a bit distant lately, even though you are always on my mind. I suppose I feel I have let you down. I see you check-in only to find nothing new has been written. I love writing on my little insignificant blog and, for some reason, many of you keep returning (to which I am eternally grateful!!!).

I try to imagine you as old friends who are checking in to see how I've been lately. Isn't it wonderful when you have friends who are in the exact same boat you are? Life seems to become so complicated with work, friends, keeping up on the housework (although I am currently surrounded by tufts of dog hair drifting around the hardwood flooring), extra curricular activities for you and the kids, church, getting your hair name it. When did life become so unnecessarily complicated? You come home at the end of the day and your body indicates you are too stressed out. Your neck and back muscles cramp up so much that you physically have to turn your whole upper body to see who is talking to you. You can't seem to take deep cleansing breaths. You have become irritable with the whole world. And to top things off, some animal has gotten into your garbage and has pulled it from one end of the alley to the other. But a true friend understands because she is going through the exact same thing.

I look for simplicity in my life and, right now, I am really not seeing it too clearly. I have seemed to come to a crossroads in my life. I can keep heading straight which may continue to lead to stress and unnecessary busyness. I don't want to go back from where I came -- that's a whole train wreck that needs to be walked away from.

So I can go right or left. Either way, I don't know what I will find. That can be scary for a lot of people. For others, the unknown is embraced and relishing the thoughts of new experiences can be a real rush.

I am sitting with the engine idling wondering whether to signal left or right...

What would you do if you were me?

"I seldom end up where I wanted to go, but almost always end up where I need to be." ~ Douglas Adams

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

I've Been Gobsmacked

Hello everyone,

There will be no instalment this week of 1,001 Things I Did This Summer... {gasp}.  It has been a pretty busy week and to be honest, I didn't keep track of one thing.  It was a bit freeing, really.  It felt good not running to my notebook to jot down the latest thing I did.  If I could be forthright with you all, I really didn't do too much out of the ordinary.  I worked, I read, I knit.  I also cooked the occasional fabulous dish, but that is neither here nor there.

Speaking of cooking and all things culinary, I have discovered the joys of Gordon Ramsay.  I have never really found him to be anything but offensive.  I think I watched exactly half an episode of Hell's Kitchen.  I find his language offensive and his actions border on abusive with the contestants.

However, last night that all changed.  Masterchef has certainly caught my attention.  I found an episode last night on and I can't wait for tonight's episode to be uploaded.  I have seen a different side of Chef Ramsay...and me likey!

That's all for tonight -- I need to be up early in the a.m.  I have started a running program called Couch to 5K and I must admit the runner's high can be rather addictive.  Plus my pants are practically falling off...gotta love that!

Have a great evening everyone -- stay cool!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

1,001 Things I Did This Summer -- Part 8

Hi folks,

Sorry I am a day late on this.  Yesterday was a holiday Monday here in Canada so we took advantage of the time off.  Also, you will note the list this week is not very long.  I worked full-time plus an extra seven hours so any free time was spent either sleeping, reading, or knitting.

I have been following Weight Watchers and had a great week.  I lost weight and increased activity -- gotta love that! we go...

182.  Watched Avatar.  I actually had to lay my knitting down to watch the movie which is what I was not expecting.  I had hoped to get at least half of the next repeat section completed while "watching" the movie.  It turned out to be an excellent movie -- looked fantastic on the big screen TV.   Very imaginative.
183.  Watched the Austin Powers trilogy (again).  I absolutely love Mike Myers...and he's Canadian to boot!
184.  Our town had a weekend-long festival.  We took in many events including the throne races (racing with a toilet, or "throne", mounted on a platform with bicycle wheels and two racers), beer gardens (although the only beer I drink is root beer), music, a parade, fireworks (but I didn't bring my camera), pet show (our dog Sam didn't win...but we'll keep him anyway), and a demolition derby (which technically I didn't attend -- hubby and daughter did -- but I definitely could hear it).
185.  Monday was a holiday here in Canada -- we went shopping.
186.  Started reading (second time) Kate Jacobs' The Friday Night Knitting Club.  I love this it, love it, love it.
187.  Bought a fan -- it's stinkin' hot in our house.
188.  Started training for a 5K run (I have always wanted to run a marathon...this will be a great place to start).

Alright, ladies and gentlemen.  That's all she wrote -- hoping this coming week will be a bit more exciting.  Hard when you work full-time...didn't realize just how much free-time I had on my hands before my work hours changed.  Have a great week!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Look up...Look waaaay up

So this was taken about a month ago. We went to the local fair and had a fantastic time! I didn't have my camera with me so I snapped this one with my husband's phone camera.

There is something exciting about a fair. I really like going at night -- all the lights, the noise, the crowds. This year we went during the day. We rode rides that were dangerous, ate food that was bad for us (mmmm...elephant ears...), ignored "carnies" who wanted us to lose money on their games. It was great.

I haven't been on crazy rides for a few years now. When my daughter was younger, we stuck to the kiddie rides which was thrilling for her. Then.

Now she is eleven and is a pure adrenaline junkie. She wanted to do the rides that would make Evil Knievil shudder. Her daddy is a bit limited as to the rides he can partake in. He is one of the unfortunates who get nauseous just doing a donut in the car. So the responsibility was laid in my capable hands.

We first walked around and picked which rides we would definitely try so we knew how many tickets to purchase. We rode ride after ride -- some were delightful and made me giggle. Others were terrifying and my laughter sounded more like a deranged cat lady. But I would not let my adrenaline-seeking daughter know I had the slightest bit of fear. I wanted to be the cool mom who did all the crazy rides. The mom who looked death square in the eye and laughed out loud while shouting, Ïs that all you've got!"

One ride in particular really tested my limits. I can't remember the name, but there are about three carts dangling off a long arm. There are approximately five or six arms that extend out from the centre. As the ride gets moving, the arms spin in a circle. The carts, dangling from this arm also spin in a circle. The music is loud and the wind is blowing through your hair. My feet, at this point, are glued to the floor of the cart and I cling to the flimsy bar across my lap. Okay, I smile to myself, "this ride rocks!" I catch the occasional glimpse of my hubby on the ground shaking his head and probably wondering what is wrong with me.

Now the ride is speeding up (if that is at all possible) and I have realized the cart we are in is now spinning perpendicular to the ground and the ride has now reached warp speed. I hear this manic giggle and realize it is me. I shout out to my daughter (over music which is ear-splittingly loud), Äre you okay?"

Äre you kidding? This is amazing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" I was hoping to be the stronger one. Clearly my role has been overtaken by an eleven year old. I am now the one needing consolation. I am the one who wants to get off this crazy ride.

Finally, after what seemed like an eternity of waiting for the cart to snap off and hurl through the air, I feel the ride slowing down. The kind ex-con operator of this contraption thanks us, ever so politely, for coming on the ride.

My legs hit the ground and they are pretty wobbly. Ökay. That's it for me. I am done!" I knew I just couldn't do another ride like that. It is at this point my daughter points across the crowd and says, "Let's finish with that one!" It is just as I have feared. The Drop of Doom.

Let me catch you up on this one. You are sitting in a chair, strapped in, and sitting in a circle around the center post. Click, click, click. The ride slowly inches you up, up, up until you reach the top. At the last second you are dropped about 20 or 30 feet back down to the ground in a two-second period of time.

Okay, I psych myself up, I have just done the worst ride ever. This is going to be a cakewalk. We all pile onto the ride and up we climb. Click, click, click. We climb higher and higher. At this point we are at least 15 feet higher than the next tallest ride. Oh Sugar Honey Iced Tea! Maybe now would be the point of the story where I tell you I am terrified of heights! I know we are almost at the top and there is nothing I can do. I can't even brace my feet on the floor of the ride because my legs are just dangling with nothing underneath them. Then I hear it. Snap. I am now free-falling through the air and I hear myself screaming out for my mommy. We reach the bottom and I swear to God, myself and my family that I will never ride that deathtrap again in my life.

Never again.

Monday, July 26, 2010

1,001 Things I Did This Summer -- Part 7

Good morning everyone. I hope you have all had a great week. Here’s how my week went:

162. Lovin’ this song.
163. Stayed at our friends’ cabin.
164. My work has now changed from very part-time to very full-time.
165. Spent some much need time returning phone calls and e-mail.
166. Practiced organ – I play at church this weekend. My dream would be able to sound like this.  I do not sound like that!
167. There are two movies coming out which I’d love to see starring Steve and Will – you gotta love those two guys. Check out this second trailer for the Schmucks!  They keep me laughing every time.
168. The shawl is coming along. Although, I find I do have to go downstairs by myself where it is quiet and I have nothing to distract me.
169. I love John Travolta when he plays a bad guy. Okay, I’ll say it . . . I am just in love with John Travolta. Warning – the language in this movie is pretty spicy if that sort of thing bothers you.
170. One of my new fillings came out while brushing my teeth. I called the dentist’s office. They couldn’t fit me in. “What do you mean you can’t fit me in? I’m walking around with a gaping hole in my mouth. I think you can fit me in! Hello? Hell-oo?” Bollocks!
171. Waiting for an appointment to get the hole in my head repaired. Which lends to great anxiety and extreme hyperventilation, because I just LOVE the dentist and wish I could go every day and have him poke around in my mouth with sharp needle-like objects. No, it doesn’t help when you show me the shiny instrument and what it does and how it will just “slip along the tooth”. It’s a bloody hook that you are putting in my mouth which is going to make me leap out of my chair and hang from the roof each time you touch a sensitive area! And, no, it doesn’t make a difference that you’re sporting a jaunty Hawaiian shirt – it doesn’t make you more approachable, you filthy hippie!
172. Organizing myself now that I’m working full-time. It’s almost fall. That’s when I usually buy my annual gigantic calendar that comes with fun graphics . . . and stickers. I think I’ll look for one a little earlier.
173. Last night we got home from town. One of my purchases was new underwear (not that you want to really know about that!). I hate buying underwear because of the sizing charts. One brand says this size will fit while another tells me something totally different. It’s all so very confusing. Anyhoo, I pulled out a pair when we got home and held them up. Surely I must have grabbed the wrong size. They look as large as the UNIVERSE!
174. I’m hitting the treadmill tomorrow . . . the panties fit!
175. I decided to forgo my usual night snack. I opted for a glass of water instead . . . {sigh}.
176. Woke up early before church. I really should put on my sneakers and take my dog for a long, long, long, long, long walk.
177. How do people fit in an adequate workout program when they work full-time? Okay, let’s be honest. I didn’t work out even when I wasn’t working full-time. Hence the reason I am walking around in panties that could house a whole indigenous tribe!
178. Privately wishing we had “The Biggest Loser” in Canada. I’m obviously not good at motivating myself to get moving. We don’t have a gym in town. I still haven’t moved my clothes rack out of the way of the treadmill (which reminds me – I have laundry that needs to be hung up . . . BRB).
179. Signed up for Weight Watchers Canada – yay me!
180. Attended an old-fashioned threshing show. They had 10 threshers running at the same time. I believe one of them dates back to the 1930's. Pretty impressive they still run so well. It was fun watching the older people whose families would have had something like them. They were all smiling and having a great time. There was even an 87 year old man out there pitching hay. Wow!
181. Watched So I Married an Axe Murderer. Now my daughter knows where my husband and I get so many quotes that we use in conversation from time to time. Such a great movie.

Well, that’s my week in a nutshell. BTW, I just called the dentist’s office again this morning hoping to get in before my 12-hr shift at work. This is how the conversation went:

     “Hi this is Becky. I called on Friday about my filling that fell out. I would really like to get in this morning to have that repaired.”

     The receptionist snickered, rather rudely, and said, “I’m sorry. That’s not how it works. We are totally booked up for the rest of the summer. We’ll put you on a waiting list and see if there is a cancellation.”

     “Uh, but I just had the filling done a few months ago.”

     “Well, the dentist will warranty his work. However, we have absolutely no openings and not enough chairs. You are going to have to wait for a cancellation.”

Now, the thing that ticks me off is that I have to walk around with a hole in my mouth which is rather irritating and throbs from time to time. Why do they not have certain times reserved for emergencies or situations like mine. I mean it can’t be good to have this huge cavity exposed for God knows how many weeks I’ll have to wait.

You know what? Perhaps I’ll just go to YouTube and see if there is a video on how to repair one’s tooth at home. There has got to be a kit or something available at Wal-Mart or Costco.

Update:  The dental office just got me booked in for tomorrow morning.  Oh yeah {sniff}-- she could sense I was a coiled tiger inside just waiting to spring.  Yeah, I gots that kind of power over peoples.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

True Blue

True Blue, originally uploaded by Knit Girl...(in & out).
There is something amazing about water. I love being near it -- it calms me. I think that's why this canoe caught my eye. The colour of it just popped out at me against the brown of the dock.

This week, my job went from part-time to full-time. Which lends itself to crazy work hours and reduced "me" time. It has forced me to re-organize my life and how I must spend the hours I do have free to its fullest.

I find when I am stressed, water relaxes me. The colour, the movement . . .and sometimes, the stillness. It leaves me feeling peaceful and rested. Like this image does. I'm so glad this canoe caught my eye. The boat seems to invite you in. To float on the water. To just drift and let the water carry you.

We have had a lot of flooding this summer in the area where I live. Many farmers were not able to plant crops. Homes and vehicles were ruined. Water is a very powerful force which has the ability to even carve paths through stone over time. We live in a country where we can just turn on the tap and pour a glass to refresh us. Even though there has been such devestation, there are many blessings.

Water is amazing.

"In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters." (Genesis 1:1-2)

Friday, July 23, 2010

I Am A Reality-Show Addict

“They include watery eyes, runny nose, yawning, loss of appetite, tremors, panic, chills, sweating, nausea, muscle cramps, and insomnia. Blood pressure, pulse, respiration, and temperature all elevate.” (Information found at

Now, I don’t mean to negate the true effects of a person suffering from heroin withdrawal, but I have recently experienced several of these symptoms within a split second.  No, I do not do drugs, and I am not an alcoholic.

I am a reality-show junkie.

As many of you are aware, my family made the decision to cut off our satellite service for the summer months in order to use our free-time for good and not evil.  So far we have accomplished so much and tried new things that would have otherwise been avoided because we were always attached to the boob tube.

The other night, I was working at the group home and one of the participants wanted to watch a particular show.  So I grabbed the remote and started cruising through the channels.

As I breezed past channel 23 the oh-so-familiar theme song hit me.  It was like a sailor hearing the song of a siren, enticing me toward the rocky shoreline.  I kept surfing through the channels, but the seed was sown.  My heart began to race, my palms got all sweaty, and I felt my temperature rising.

It was the theme song for Big Brother.  As I write that last statement,  I feel slight shame that I, an educated woman, would like a racy reality-show like BB.  I could tell you that I only watch it because I find the social dynamics of people trapped in the same house interesting and intriguing (which I do).  I could tell you that I watch it because I always cheer for the underdog (which I generally do).  I could even tell you I watch it because I want to see dysfunctional people work out their issues (which I do).

But the reality is this.  It is one of my favourite summertime indulgences.  I like the cat fights.  I want to see if I can figure out which one is the saint and which is the sinner.  But what I really want to see is which couple will heat up the screen with a summer showmance.

Petty.  I know.  Adolescent.  Absolutely. 

It’s my vice . . .

Hi.  My name is Becky . . . and I’m addicted to reality TV.

Monday, July 19, 2010

1,001 Things I Did This Summer -- Part 6

This week’s installment is brought to you by the number three . . .

137.  Played a round of golf and had a lovely lunch with the family.
138.  Discovered, with much horror, my dog has fleas!  Off we go to the vet’s office so as to arm myself with everything necessary in decimating these unwanted creatures.
139.  A big addition added to my ever increasing laundry pile, Mt. Washmore, because of #138.
140.  Started my shawl and ripped it out a total of four times.
141.  Became increasingly frustrated with my lace shawl. It is now in the garbage.
142.  Started my shawl with a thicker wool.  What is up with cobweb lace weight???  I believe I have actually suffered about 25% vision loss due to the uncanny belief that I could actually complete such a large project with such teeny-tiny strands of wool.  Silly me.
143.  Did more laundry because of #138.
144.  Took a break from vacuuming, laundry, washing, and fumigating the house to go to the art gallery.
145.  I think hubby was a bit concerned for my sanity (because of #138) so he took us for dinner.
146.  Went to Wal-Mart and bought a bunch of movies on sale for $5.00 each.
147.  Did more laundry (because of #138).
148.  Unraveled the above-mentioned shawl.  I think I am not supposed to complete this one.  NEV-AH!  I will complete it!  I’ll be the mad woman screaming at her non-existent cats – but, hey, my shawl will be rockin’.
149.  Watched Memoirs of a Geisha.  Such an amazing visual movie.  Beautifully filmed.  I even almost enjoyed it as much as the book . . . almost.
150.  Weeded the front flowerbeds today which have been sorrily neglected this summer.
151.  Took about a case of Advil after spending 2 ½ hours bent over weeding the aforementioned flower beds.
152.  Having some trouble sleeping since it was about 29 degrees (Celsius) today which means inside the house, at midnight, it is approximately +60 degrees.  Crazy hot.
153.  Awoke at 2:21 a.m. to the most amazing (and terrifying) thunderstorm.  The wind was crazy, rain was flying in the window horizontally, we had a bit of hail, and there were about 100 lightning strikes per minute.  As the sky lit up, I would look for signs of tornados – thankfully there was nothing.  But I was sure ready to grab my daughter, hubby, and head downstairs to safety.
154. Had a great visit today with friends passing through town.
155.  Ate a creamsicle . . . yum!
156.  Sat out on our deck tonight until the mosquitos chased us back in.  For awhile is was lovely with the candles burning and the twinkle lights twinkling.
157.  Worked on a pair of knitted socks which watching Men in Black II.
158.  Frogged my lace shawl . . . again.
159.  Started my lace shawl . . . again.
160.  Attended a 25th wedding anniversary party.
161.  Played Keesdrow (my favourite game ever) with the family.  I am sad to report my hubby has currently taken the lead.  Rematch tonight!

That is it for now my lovely readers.  I hope you all have a great week!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

We Have Fleas!

Or more specifically, Ctenocephalides canis -- dog fleas.

Our dog, Sam, has blessed us with a lovely infestation of fleas.  I saw a couple crawling on him this morning and so I promptly went to the vet who gave me a topical treatment for Sam and a spray to use on his dog bed, his kennel area, and our furniture.  The good news is we pretty much confine him to the living room/kitchen area and he spends much of his day outside.  The bad news is that fleas can jump around and lay eggs.

So disgusting!  If anyone has some home remedies for ridding the house of fleas, please let me know.  I've been searching online and have found some useful information.  

So today I will be so happy as I have to wash even more laundry!

Grrrrrrrr ........ what a great finish to my holidays -- housework and laundry to the max.  So not happy right now.

P.S.  not sure why Blogger is inserting so many spaces between paragraphs...

Monday, July 12, 2010

1,001 Things I Did This Summer -- Part 5

Well, today's list certainly is not as long as the others. I feverishly worked on completing the knitted wrap I made to wear this fall for my cousin's wedding.  As a result, not a lot of things were added to my list this week.  Hmmm . . . correction on that one.  We did do a lot of things, I just forgot to write them all down until this morning so there are probably many things missing.

123.  Played Clue.  Who knew?  It was Professor Plum in the Ballroom with the revolver.  Huh!
124.  Wept just a little as I realized my daughter is definitely not a morning person like me.
125.  Went on a tour of an old Hungarian flour mill.  A bit more interesting than you might suspect.
126.  Toured a museum -- great artifacts.  They even had old spinning wheels!!!
127.  Did some shopping -- clothes, books, and food (groceries . . . big whoop!).
128.  Did some sightseeing.
129.  Swam in the pool . . . a lot!
130.  I love the song Bulletproof by La Roux.
131.  Do you have an app for this?  Gave me a bit of a chuckle.
132.  A new friend invited us out for dinner.
133.  Went to the local fair.  Went on some crazy rides and some rides I will NEVER go on again, ate food that was bad for me, and laughed so hard I thought I'd pee my pants!  Good times :D
134.  While at the fair, we decided to eat our dinner in the bleachers.  There I watched my first harness horse race.  As they paraded past before the race we each picked a horse we thought would win.  The bugle sounded and the horses were off.  My horse, #3 - Candyman, won!  Too bad I didn't place a wager -- great fun.
135.  I finished knitting the wrap I started last Sunday.  I still need to block it, but I can tell you right now I won't be wearing it to the wedding.  The colours are much too bright!  I'll just have to enjoy it during the summer months.
136.  I cast-on to knit a shawl for the wedding (round two).  This one is a lacy little number which will either be a success or will cause me to rip out my hair in chunks, thus leaving me with a very scary hair-do for the wedding in September.  Stay tuned to find out.

Have a great week everyone :D

Saturday, July 10, 2010

saturday a.m.

saturday a.m., originally uploaded by Knit Girl...(in & out).

I love tea.  There is just something amazing about tea that makes everything okay.  It can be enjoyed alone or in the company of others.  You can drink it hot or chilled, with or without milk, sweetened or plain.

This morning, when I awoke, it was rather dismal outside.  The dark skies threatened rain, so as the rest of the household slept, I snuck out to the kitchen and boiled a kettle of water.  I slipped on a pair of socks (hand-knit of course) and a sweater and went to the tea cupboard.  I opened up my newest purchase from David’s Tea . . . The Earl’s Garden.  The thing I really like about David’s Tea is that you can order online (which is great when you live in a smaller community).

Now, just listen to the description of this, my newest favourite tea: The Earl’s Garden – When he wasn’t in China discovering secret tea recipes, Britain’s second Earl Grey lived at Howick Hall in England, just like his ancestors had done since 1319.  And also like his ancestors, he was a keen gardener and outdoorsman.  This tea would no doubt have suited him, with the characteristic black tea and bergamot highlighted by strawberries, raspberries and essence o black currant.


So, with a steaming hot cup of tea I then moved to the living room, snuggled up onto the couch, wrapping my hands around the mug of tea, and just sat and listened to the birds singing outside.  Aside from their morning song, there was absolutely no other noise.  Peaceful.  Tranquil.  Perfect.

With warmed hands, I then picked up my knitting and worked on my project.  There is nothing more delicious than knitting with a cup of tea on an early Saturday morning!  It is the ultimate in relaxation.  I don’t need no stinkin’ spa to be calm (although I wouldn’t turn my nose up at it either!).

After a couple of refills (okay, four . . .) I took my mug over to the computer to check several blogs I follow.  I then ventured over to David’s Tea and marveled at their serving suggestions (many of which I have tried).  I came across a familiar one, mixed it up, and came to write at the computer.

As I write to you, the birds are still singing, but now there are also sounds of traffic, children playing, construction of houses in the area, and the occasional train.  And you know what?  The sun also came out (even if it was brief).


What a scrumptious Saturday morning!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

These Are Two of My Favourite Things

Two of my favourite hobbies are photography and knitting.  They are both activities that take nothing and you create something out of it.

In photography, it’s all about making the image: selecting your subject, checking your lighting, choosing a composition, selecting an appropriate aperture, and perhaps playing with the ISO (to introduce grain, or noise, into your image or not).  It is not just taking a quick snapshot.  It is a process of turning nothing into something – in my case, digitally.  Then, if you like “tweaking” your shot, there are many post-processing programs out there to help you fix anything you are not happy with – within reason of course.  But if you have carefully taken the time to make your image as your mind prefers to see it, you shouldn’t have to do much “tweaking”.  Although, it can be fun to play with some of the artistic brushes that are commonly found in your post-processing programs.

For example, here are two images I took several years ago.

This is the image after playing with the artistic brushes and combining two images together.

My favourite mode on my camera is the Manual mode (or M on the small options dial on your camera). Here you can really play with the light.  I tend to underexpose many of my images.  I love the “moodiness” it can create in the image.  It creates a whole different secret world than what your eyes are sometimes seeing.

Knitting, on the other hand, really can take nothing and make it into something.  In fact, a number of years ago I took a spinning class.  No, not the popular spinning classes at the gym where you are on a stationary bike.  I’m talking about taking wool and scouring (washing) it, brushing it, spinning it, plying it, and setting the twist so that you can knit (or crochet...though that’s not my thing) what was once a stinky mass of greasy wool with bits of straw, insects, and poop in it and creating anything.  Anything right from a chunky wool sweater to the silkiest gossamer shawl.

Currently I have four projects on the go.  Some are nearly completed and waiting for the final stage before unveiling it to the world while others are still just barely cast-on to the needles.  I tend to have several things going at once.  If I get bored, I start something new or continue something else I had been bored of several weeks or months (or years...) before.  Currently, my projects on the go are:  a felted shopping bag (all complete, just needing to be felted), a pair of socks (I got bored of them since they are rather plain with no funky pattern to them), a cardigan sweater (no great excuse except I got bored – which is rather surprising since it is full of cables, bobbles, and all sorts of intricate patterns), and a wrap which I just cast-on a couple evenings ago.

My favourite thing to do though is to combine my two favourite hobbies together.  I love to take pictures of my knitting.  Especially when there is some beautiful colours blending together or amazing textures.  I love that both my hobbies can sustain me every month of the year.  And, yes, I do knit in the summer, albeit, they are lighter projects (socks, hand-warmers for fall, wraps, etc.).  Knitting, like photography, is a very portable hobby.  When we are traveling, sometimes even on trips to the city which is only 40 mins away, I usually have a simple project to work on.  It passes the time and I don’t get bored.  So I love when hubby is coming along because I will always call “shotgun”.

Monday, July 5, 2010

1,001 Things I Did This Summer -- Part 4

Week 4's installment of 1,001 Things I Did This Summer brings you a variety of activities.  As I look at the numbers, where I am at on my list, I am beginning to realize that accomplishing 1,001 things was a bit ambitious on my part.  I think I’ll be lucky to break 400 things this summer.  I suppose I never factored in work, laundry, and other chores.  Plus, being a creature of habit, I am finding I am doing many of the things more than once or twice.  It really wouldn’t be fair to list them more than once – it would be a bit like cheating.  I really don’t want to be labeled as, “Once a cheater, always a cheater!

Let us carry on with our head held high, unashamed of never reaching 1,001 things by September 5th  . . .


93.  Laughed as my friend’s son exclaimed with delight, “Daddy, he’s bringing out the nitro!!!”  Please note, the excitement was because my hubby was going to run his RC car which is fueled by a nitrogen gas, or something like that – I’m not sure.  When he talks about it, all I hear is the voice of Charlie Brown’s teacher.
94.  Read a book out loud with my daughter.
95.  Had a family Wii night.  We played Wii Resort Sports.
96.  Started counting down the hours before my two-week summer holiday begins (18 hrs, 27 mins . . .).
97.  I tried something new today.  Dulce – dried seaweed from New Brunswick.  I really can’t say I enjoyed the salty-fishy experience.  As I was chewing and chewing and chewing (I soon realized with some dismay that as the saliva adds moisture to the dried seaweed, it really takes a long time to break down in your mouth) my co-worker exclaimed, “The kids just can’t get enough of this stuff!”  I simply asked him . . . “Why!?” Thanks T for the maritime experience of a lifetime (note: dripping sarcasm is implied)!
98.  We went to town and I caressed (for the billionth time) the Macintosh computer I have been coveting sooooooooo much.  They may have to take out a restraining order.  I’m not sure – it’s too soon to know.
99.   Stayed up until 1 a.m. reading – I haven’t done that for ages.
100.  Got up two-hours before my family and read some more of my book.
101.  Started a new layout in my art journal.
102.  I discussed with hubby the best way to refinish my spinning wheel so I can actually use it!
103.  Swam with the family in our pool for almost three hours.  My pale skin is actually beginning to show a hint of a tan!!!
104.  Happy Canada Day!  We are 143 years young.  We didn’t take part in fireworks this year as it was cancelled due to rain.
105.  I had a late afternoon shower.  This is somewhat new for me.  Being as I like to follow routine which dictates one must shower in the morning, it was rather liberating . . . a must-do-again on my list.
106.  Put on a “woody” perfume (the Natural from the Gap).  I think I’ve fallen in love with myself all over again . . . .
107.  Took a movie over to the church (so glad hubby is the pastor) and we watched Over The Hedge in air-conditioned goodliness.
108.  As one who prefers a more natural palette for my make-up, I tried my new lipstain (Colour Sensational by Maybelline).  The colour . . . #05 In the Buff – you gotta love that!
109.  Found three baby robins in the grass (will post pics this week).  We’re not sure if they fell out of the nest – we couldn’t find one in the trees.  But, mama kept bringing them worms – we’ll check on them in the morning.  I hope they’re okay since we’ve had hail and heavy rain tonight.
110.  Played Monopoly (The Simpsons version).
111.  Re-lovin’ the commercial with the gorilla playing drums to Phil Collins’ “In The Air Tonight”.
112.  Saw Twilight Saga’s Eclipse – best of the three so far.
113.  Another glorious day of swimming, suntanning, and reading.
114.  Tornado watch – how is one supposed to “WATCH” for them when it is pitch black outside???
115.  Spent most of my morning re-organizing my web bookmarks.  Didn’t I do that just before I had to change all my e-mail?
116.  Attended a 50th wedding anniversary.  The story of how they met was so romantic.  I was literally in tears by the end of it all.  Amazing in a time when divorce is such an easily accepted practice.  What happened to “until death parts us”?  I am so blessed to be married to such an amazing man for 18 ½ years.  Only 31 ½ years to go until our golden anniversary!!!!!!!  Love you, A.
117.  Mixed and mingled at the aforementioned anniversary offering sparkling conversation and hugs all around – so unlike me who would rather become a hermit crab most days.
118.  Most hilarious part of my day – my daughter turning to my husband and saying, “Would you please be quiet?  I can’t hear myself think!”  Classic – I think she’s heard that one before.
119.  I started reading Julie & Julia by Julie Powell.  I really enjoyed the movie.  Everything Nora Ephron does just sparkles in my humble opinion.
120.  Bought a copy of Oprah magazine.  It’s my first copy of O magazine (July 2010 issue).  The only reason I bought it is because it has a suggested list of 26 books to read.  My hubby is not the biggest Oprah fan in the world, so it left me feeling like a bit like teenage boy in the 1950's sneaking in a copy of his first Playboy magazine and hiding it under the mattress.
121.  Played baseball with my family.
122.  Watched in amazement as our dog Sam chased down a gopher, caught it, tossed it in the air and snapped it’s neck (killing it), then laid it down gently when hubby yelled “Drop”.  Sam turned and looked at me with a look on his face that seemed to say, “Mommy!  Did you see that!?”  It all took place in less than one minute.
123.  I started knitting a drop-stitch wrap to go with my outfit for my cousin’s wedding in September.  It’s made with Noro sock yarn.  If you are on Ravelry, you can find the free pattern here.

Well, that’s it folks.  I’ll be trying to update my blog on a somewhat daily basis this week.  I hope you all have a great day and I’ll see you again soon.

Monday, June 28, 2010

1,001 Things I Did This Summer -- Part 3

Good morning my lovely readers,

Behold I bring you the third installment of my 1,001 list.  Please note, I do realize there is no possible way I will reach 1,001 things by the first weekend in September.  However, I do intend to see how far I can get.  I must admit it was a very busy week preparing for my daughter's birthday and having our good friends arrive from Ontario for a few days.  So the upkeep of the list, I must admit, has kind of fallen to the wayside.  But we must forge ahead . . .


68.  Went to soccer wind-up.  The parents played a game against the kids.  I actually scored a GOOOOOOAL and had one assist for another.  I have been running with this small victory every moment of the week.  I think my daughter is tired of hearing the play-by-play by now.
69.  Went for our traditional, "Okay.  Daddy's left town.  We're going to A&W tonight for supper" meal.
70.  Played Kirby's Spring Break with my daughter.  I had absolutely no idea what was going on.  I just pressed a bunch of buttons on her Nintendo DS.
71.  I talked to a long-distance friend on the phone.  It is always so nice to hear her voice.
72.  We finally got the pool set up.  I think we were able to patch all the leaks . . . fingers crossed.
73.  Unfortunately there are still a couple of small leaks in the pool.  They are somewhere along the seams . . . need to do more patching!
74.  I finally organized my mini-bookshelf (i.e. my bedside table).  Now, instead of 20 books perched rather precariously, I now only have nine!
75.  I cleared a couple items off my list for A.P.D. two days before Friday -- I'd say that's progress.
76.  I actually planned a menu and wrote out a grocery list for the coming weekend -- a birthday party and company for a few days.
77.  I went shopping in the city by myself.
78.  I actually stuck to my shopping list and didn't buy anything that wasn't on it.
79.  I ate a hot dog from a street vendor.
80.  Helped hubby finish the patio area.  We've set up chairs, topiary trees, and a fire pit.
81.  I helped plan my daughter's birthday party.
82.  I bought one dozen pink roses for my girl (her favourite colour) in honour of her 11th birthday (one for each of her eleven years and one for the year to come).
83.  Wrote a love letter to my daughter in celebration of her birthday.
84.  Welcomed her tearful hug after she read her love letter.
85.  Made my daughter a special birthday dinner, had cake, and she opened her presents from hubby and me.
86.  Made daughter's cake for birthday party tomorrow.
87.  Eight VERY hyper girls . . . two parents . . . one very good reason to drink!
88.  I donned gear of mosquito repellent and fly swatters.  I'm still waiting for God's response on why He felt mosquitos would add a little something great to His amazing creation.
89.  I suffered a weeee bit of a meltdown . . . thank you Lord for my husband, the voice of reason!
90.  Welcomed friends for a glorious three-day visit.
91.  Had church service outside at the park followed by a lovely BBQ potluck lunch, games, bouncers for the kids.
92.  Took part in a three-legged race with hubby -- I think I may need knee surgery (he's rather competitive!)

Thanks for checking in everyone.  That is all I have for this week.  Have a wonderful week -- hope the weather is wonderful wherever you are.  {{{hugs}}} 

Thursday, June 24, 2010

A Love Letter to My Daughter on the Day of Your 11th Birthday

A Love Letter to My Daughter on the Day of Your 11th Birthday, originally uploaded by Knit Girl...(in & out).

My Dearest M,

Today is your 11th birthday.  As I write this love letter to you (with tears in my eyes) I am overwhelmed with joy and pride that you are my baby girl.

Eleven years ago today (at 1:10 p.m.), the nurse wrapped you up tightly and placed you in my arms.  I will never forget seeing your beautiful face for the first time and experiencing such a feeling of joy that you had finally arrived.  There were no other words to say to you except a tearful, “Happy Birthday, M”.  I remember feeling so tired and shaky, I was afraid I would drop this precious gift.  But there you remained – and you still remain tucked in so closely to my heart.

In 11 years, you haven’t changed a lot.  You were almost two weeks overdue and you still love to make a grand entrance into every room, waiting until everyone is waiting for you.  Your smile still lights up the room and you have the most amazing way of making me laugh right from the belly (the best kind of laugh in my humble opinion).  You remain close to friends and family and will stand up for the underdog in any battle. You are creative, musical, academic, and athletic.

You have just reached a magical time in your life.  It’s like that very special moment before the night becomes dawn.  A time where everything is quiet until the first bird begins to quietly sing welcoming the new day.  It’s that in-between moment before a new day breaks and anything is possible.  I suppose that is why you are now called a “tween”.  You are no longer a child, but not yet a woman.  Enjoy every special moment and squeeze as much out of it as you can.  For when the dawn breaks, every opportunity will lay at your feet, waiting for you to become the woman God has intended you to be.

I wish I could just freeze you in this moment of time – but I know I can’t.  Because you have such a strong, independent spirit.  You would smash through the ice creating waterfalls all around you.  The world is never the same once you breeze through a room.  You, M, are unforgettable.

You, M, are amazing!

Happy birthday my love and may God always be with you.

Love you always,

Monday, June 21, 2010

1,001 Things I Did This Summer -- Part 2

Hi-dee Ho,

It’s time for my weekly list of 1,001 Things I Did This Summer.  Although I didn’t reach this week’s quota of 83.41 things, I did much better than last week.  Are you ready for this?

26. Cheered on my daughter’s soccer team on Monday. . . they lost 0-8.
27. Cheered on my daughter’s soccer team on Tuesday.  They played like a completely different team – they worked together and encouraged one another.  They only lost by 1 point.  That is huge progress for them.
28. Went on a tour of an old historical homestead – it was absolutely amazing!  I love learning about how the pioneers survived such harsh conditions.  We have become so lazy and reliant on everyone else to do everything for us.  Back then, if you didn’t do the work, it did not get done – which was never an option. Hmmm . . . lessons learned.
29. Got some amazing images while touring the homestead – I was able to make a beautiful group shot with my co-workers (all 22 of them!).
30. Had a great visit with a friend until he called me "PUNK!".
31. Bought surprise presents for my hubby and daughter – just ‘cause I like them so much.
32. Had a golfing date with hubby.
33. After my two-hour golfing date with my hubby, we came home and worked on our yard renovations.
34. Note: I am literally unable to move after completing #33.  Unfortunately, we have another two or three hours of work to complete before the rain showers come.
35. Played fetch with my dog, Sam.  Actually, it’s usually more like I throw the ball and we proceed to run around the yard in circles as I try to retrieve the ball from him.
36. I showed my daughter how to assemble her new clarinet.  She is starting band in the fall.  I am sooooo excited (I was a major band geek in high school).
37. I proved I could still actually play the clarinet after more than a 20-year hiatus.
38. Made an angel food cake for dessert.
39. Left home after the buzzer went off for the cake.  I didn’t realize I forgot to actually take the cake out of the oven (which was still on) before leaving for the library.
40. After about 20 mins at the library, I realized the cake was still in the oven.  I rushed home (thankfully we live in a town that has no traffic lights) to save my “lightly charred” cake.  Edit note: the cake was just fine – the outside was a bit of a challenge to break through easily with the fork, but then it just meant I burned extra calories while trying to consume it.  So really, I didn’t consume any calories . . . unless you count the 1/4 cup of whipped cream on top . . . but let’s not focus on the negative.
41. I watched a couple YouTube videos on drawing Manga characters – my daughter wants to learn how so we watched them before school.
42. I finally picked a few dead leaves off the plant in the living room instead of sitting on the couch thinking, “I really should pick those dead leaves off the plant.”
43. Hubby and I went to visit one of our parish’s shut-ins.
44. Went to the city and bought a couple books that were on sale.
45. I started reading “The Translator: A Tribesman’s Memoir of Darfur” by Daoud Hari – an amazing story of survival.  I really appreciate living in a country where I am not afraid to wake up without wondering if today I, or my family, will be killed by rebel troops.
46. Worked on my sketchbook.
47. Bought a couple gifts for my daughter’s upcoming birthday.
48. I laughed as my daughter showed me her latest idea for a competition they should put on “Survivor”.  It involves lying on a couch and balancing a pillow on your feet above you as you lay on your back.  I told her she should keep working on it.
49. Learned about the song “O Fortuna”.  Listen to it here.
50. Developed an even stronger appreciation for Measha Brueggergosman – she never ceases to amaze me.  What a gift!
51. Went out for dinner with friends and family.  We laughed and enjoyed good food – what more could you ask for?
52. Declared every Friday to be Anti-Procrastination Day for myself.
53. Had an impromptu dinner and movie date with my husband.
54. Had lunch with a photographer whose work has been published in Chatelaine magazine and who has filmed documentaries for the National Film Board of Canada.  He has swam with whales and traveled around the world.  Sounds like my kind of job!
55. Renos in our back yard are progressing.  Today we had helpers which was a good thing or we’d still be outside until midnight.
56. Celebrated Father’s Day and our 18 ½ year anniversary of marriage.  My hubby is an amazing husband and father!
57. I practiced organ at the church for an hour and a half.  Folks, there is nothing more sinfully delicious than playing “Thy Strong Word” after pulling out all the stops . . . it gives me goose-bumps every time.
58. Watched with joy as hubby played with his Father’s Day gift.  Can you believe I gave him an iPad???  It really is more than a glorified clipboard – who knew?
59. Stayed for coffee and muffins after church and visited with a couple ladies I don’t see too often.
60. Happy Father’s Day to my dad, my father-in-law, and my hubby – they are all amazing men whom I love dearly.
61. I actually washed pots and pans after preparing lunch.  Usually I wait a day or two (or three . . . what?  Like you’ve never done that?) hoping someone else will do them first.
62. Called my dad to wish him a happy Father’s Day.
63. I did a photography portrait session for my next-door neighbours – there were 17 people in total.  It went well despite the mosquitos.
64. Started post-processing work on the family portraits.
65. Began reading Sherlock Holmes on hubby’s new iPad.
66. Watched “The Book of Eli” with my husband.  Beautiful tones and colour choices for the movie.  I can’t wait to watch it again.  Plus Denzel’s smile always lights up the screen.
67. Questioned God’s reasoning on why he created mosquitos . . . I’m still waiting for his e-mail reply so I can forward it to all my friends.

Okay people – that’s my list for this week.  Hope you enjoy checking all the links . . . this one was my favourite things to watch online this week.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Ani-Procrastination Day

One of my faults is that I am a procrastinator.  It is something I have struggled with for as long as I can remember.  My daughter, bless her heart, has not fallen far from this tree.  She also needs prodding and poking to help her accomplish tasks during her day.

Today it is raining.  I have decided to make it my new weekly Anti-Procrastination Day (cue trumpets here)!  I have a list as long as the Trans-Canada highway of tasks that need to be stroked off my list.  Perhaps I’ll take baby steps and just pick a couple.  That should fill me with a great sense of accomplishment.  Hmmmm . . . how do you pick from a list so long?  Do you select the one that’s been on the list the longest?  Do you go alphabetical?  Perhaps I could try to determine which has the most priority?  Do I pick several tiny jobs or one big huge project and break it down into tiny little chewable pieces?

So many choices can be overwhelming! Perhaps I should take a little nap and tackle the list when I wake up . . .

. . .

. . .

. . .

Just kidding!  Today I will mail out our Father’s Day presents (better late than never), submit the dates for when I played organ at church so the Treasurer can clear that off her books (I think it’s been a few months), contact my friend about travel arrangements to Saskatchewan, return a phone call from Wednesday, and re-tackle my ever-growing laundry pile which we have dubbed as Mt. Washmore.

Anything else is gravy. Speaking of gravy, I should be uber-organized and take a pot roast out for dinner and put it in the crockpot for the day. See, I can get things done.

What will you accomplish today?

Monday, June 14, 2010

1,001 Things I Did This Summer -- Part 1

Well, here it is folks.  The long-awaited list of "1,001 Things I Did This Summer" in lieu of watching TV.  I broke down the numbers for myself late last week.  In order to reach 1,001 I need to complete 83.41 items each week which means I need to complete 11.91 items per day.  Eeeeeek!

 I was not planning on incorporating work, laundry, or other chores into this list (since that is ongoing, and who really cares anyway) so I am left with the option of being rather "creative" with my list or come up short at the end.  I figured I'll forge ahead and trust I will complete the list on time.

I didn't upload any pictures for this blog entry -- but I do have a number of links you can visit as you read through this week's list.

1,001 Things I Did This Summer (Week 1 -- June 7-13th):
  1. Stood in the rain and cheered on my daughter's soccer team.
  2. Wrote several blog entries.
  3. Caught up on e-mail (153 message in my in-box).
  4. Worked on some photography.
  5. Started reading "The Memory Keeper's Daughter" by Kim Edwards.
  6. Played Cadoo and Yahtzee with my daughter.
  7. Did a much needed purge and clean of my closet and the rest of the house is coming along . . . baby steps.
  8. Started organizing my internet bookmarks.
  9. Catching up with my Flickr contacts.
  10. Danced in the kitchen with my hubby and daughter as we belted out a lively version of "I Am the Music Man".
  11. Watched YouTube videos of Julia Child and The Two Fat Ladies.
  12. Easily picked out jewelry and perfume to wear to work -- thanks to #7, the top of my dresser is cleaned and organized.
  13. Savoured a sweet, fat, juicy pece of watermelon with my breakfast.  Doesn't watermelon just taste like summer?
  14. Ate ice cream in the rain.
  15. Started going through 17.1 GB of pictures on my computer hoping to organize them (ha ha).
  16. Cursed the hacker that has required me to change my info.
  17. Stayed up late setting up new e-mail accounts and hcnaging contact info . . . darn hackers!!
  18. Blogged about my hatred for aforementioned hackers . . . still laughing to myself about the whole "kick in the crotch" thing.
  19. Laughed at my daughter when she found out the laptop has a calculator (that she was unaware of) -- her response was, "Sweeeeeet!"
  20. Made banana-chocolate chip muffins . . . from scratch . . . not a mix!  (OMG those smell amazing as they're baking!!!)
  21. Spent two hours with my daughter stamping and colouring her birthday invitation.
  22. Had a lovely Sunday afternoon nap.
  23. Drew chalk drawings on our driveway with my daughter.
  24. Played a round of golf with my family.
  25. Made the most delicious mushroom and cheese omelet for lunch -- yummmmmm!
Well, that's what I did this week.  I kinda fell short of this week's quota of 83.41 items, but I sure enjoyed keeping track of everything.  I have a lot plannned for this coming week.  What did you do this week?

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Off In New Directions

..., originally uploaded by Knit Girl...(in & out).

I hate hackers!  With a passion!  I know, hate is a strong word, but it is most appropriate.  Over the last few days I have been getting strange e-mails from myself to . . . myself.  A friend has suggested someone had hacked into my account.  My first thought was "gasp . . . my pictures!"  I realize this wouldn't be most people's initial reaction, but I have 17.1 GB of photography on my computer.  If I lost it, it would truly be my fault because I didn't back it up onto an external hard drive.  But we are fixing that problem today.

On another note, I am a creature of habit.  I've always thought I adapted to change well.  But folks, let's face it . . . I eat the same thing for breakfast every day, toast and milk,  which must be prepared the same way each time or it doesn't taste the same.  I think that's why I never get breakfast in bed.  At church, if I am not organist that day, my daughter and I sit in the same pew every time (hubby is the pastor so we very rarely get to sit with him unless we're visiting another church).  There are so many more things I could list, but I'm starting to see that perhaps it's not that I am a creature of habit.  Rather I am displaying severe OCD tendancies . . . hmmmmmmm.  Okay, let's not say I'm a creature of habit.  Let's just say I'm . . . "quirky".  That sounds much better than continuing to reveal my obviously neurotic personality!

So this morning as I was eating my toast,  uummm . . . my "porridge" . . . I found myself . . . okay.  Hang on there.  I tried to deny that I even had toast, you know, to change things up.  It felt too wrong and I'm starting to have a panic attack thinking I'm really starting my day without toast for breakfast!  Let us continue . . .

As I was eating my toast, I was reflecting on the great inconvenience this hacker has caused me.  I stayed up until 1:00 a.m.  last night changing my e-mail service provider.  I tried importing my contact information (which I was unable to complete until this morning) -- so now I'm tired and grumpy.  I'm still trying to figure out how to import all my bookmarked sites!  And, here's the kicker, now I am having to relearn a whole new e-mail program.  I am frustrated because I don't want to relearn a whole new e-mail program.  The one I was using was just fine, thank you very much.  Well, okay not fine as of late obviously, but for almost 10 years now I have never had a problem.  Things were going swimmingly and I was coasting through life virtually unchallenged by technology as we know it.

But now, a pimply-faced, greasy-haired geek has thrown down the gauntlet.  Okay draGonMasTer21352 . . . it is on like Donkey Kong baby!  You wanna face a dragon?  I don't think so man!  You have faced your last battle my friend.  You can go to your D&D gathering this afternoon bragging to your friends, and while your back is turned, I will fight back!  I have clothed myself in armour of new passwords.  I am looking into such secret computer . . . stuff . . . that even the Pentagon won't be able to hack in.  That's right, baby!  And while you are laying on the ground writhing after I kick you hard in the crotch, I will sit back and eat my toast.  And you know what?  I'm gonna have hot chocolate instead of milk!  

Yeah, I'm capable of change -- thanks for showing me the door!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

The Experiment

Reflections, originally uploaded by Knit Girl...(in & out).

So a few weeks ago, my beloved husband approached me with the idea of dropping our satellite subscription for the summer.  After talking it over we decided we would go ahead with this seemingly insane idea.  We called our daughter into the kitchen to tell her our plans.

“But, we’re gonna get it back, right?” my daughter exclaimed in horror.

We assured her it would be just for the summer.  It would be a great thing to bring us together as a family and to do things we wouldn’t normally have time for.  After glaring at us for quite sometime, as though we had asked her to amputate her right arm, she grumbled at us and said, “Fine. But just for the summer,” as if she were calling the shots.  Like that would ever happen.

So last week, my husband went online to cut off our satellite service for the summer months.  It was now official:  we would have no TV from Saturday, June 5, 2010 until Monday, September 6, 2010 (this is where I sheepishly acknowledge I have the date marked on my calendar).

We went away for the weekend to attend a family wedding.  When we returned my daughter, out of sheer habit, turned on the television to find the following message:  “ATTENTION: A subscription is required to view this program.  Please contact customer service to subscribe, or select a different channel.”

“Well, now what am I supposed to do?” She looked rather perturbed.

I suggested we could play a game, do a puzzle, or read a book.  With a sigh that seemed to emerge from her toes, she turned and went down the hall to her room.  “Well, this should be a fun summer!” she yelled back at me.

After a few days now, we seem to have settled in okay.  My husband has been away for a few days, so my daughter and I have enjoyed a lot of time together that would otherwise be dedicated to Hannah Montana or the Wizards of Waverley Place.  Last night we even played a game, nay, two games before she headed to bed.

This morning I was reflecting on how I will effectively use my free time during the summer.   I have decided to come up with a list of “1,001 Things I Did This Summer”.  I wanted to share this list with you at the end of summer, but I decided I will post the things I did during the week.  I’m hoping it will give you ideas on how to spend your summer and it will be a way for me to realize how much I can accomplish when I’m not sitting in front of the TV.  The list will be posted on Mondays every week until our satellite service resumes in the fall.  Who knows, maybe we won’t subscribe again.  I don’t know.  The possibilities are endless.  Stay tuned . . . .