Monday, October 30, 2006

Happy Almost Boo Day

So here it is- the night before Halloween- when all through the house, the sound of squirming and hurrying could be heard-"I need healthy snacks for tomorrow's party" and "My tail won't stay on since the dog tried to eat it", with a little "Hon, do you have my clean orange t-shirt?" (as in what do I want with his clean orange t-shirt??) Soon, my pretties- soon I will have the witch hat on, and I will be in charge.

Added on later-
Just read over my entry- pretty glum. Gotta get over that! As promised, here is a picture of my "loot" from SP9- I only added one ball of each to show you- the Paintbox is lovely (yes, even though it has blue in it!) and the hand dyed sock yarn- excellent colours for me! (Thank you again, SP9).

A. went out to Brownies tonight with her black cat costume on-she looked really sweet-but Bear wouldn't let go of her tail! And then he bunted her with his head and chest a few times- all the while laughing his head off!!!!! He is such a funny beastie. We have decided that he is going to go out on Halloween as a big white dog. He has got the costume bang on! On to other news about the Bear-We are very worried about him- seems he might have some previously undisclosed health issues. He has had the *ahem* runs since we got him, and since the vet has eliminated parasites, food allergies, stress, etc., he thinks that now he wants to test for some other more serious things. This has me very worried.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

I do love being a Secret Pal

I had not "done" a lot of the SecretPal things, until recently. I have taken part in the KnitSock Kit Swap- loved the giving and the getting. Same with the Funky Scarf Swap-it was really great. Now I am involved in the Secret Pal 9 thing-and this is really looking good. So far, I have a package ready to go (my "pal" is going to be away for a week or so, and let me know that there wasn't anyone to pick up packages, so I am waiting a bit before I send). I guess she likes duller colours for herself-so I put together a Fleece Artist sock or mitten kit in burgundies (the kit with the mohair), and some sock yarn (some hand dyed merino from ebay) that has the same colours in it. And some other little goodies. I like making the package look really cool. And this week- I GOT A PACKAGE from MY pal. Oh my-how spoiled can a girl get? Some stunning sock yarn with some stretch in it(new to me- can hardly wait to get my hands on it)-and she dyed it herself! How cool is that? Burnt oranges, some ivory, and just a touch of Shrek green. My kind of thing. And she also included two balls of Paintbox-a self striping yarn (all wool)- in predominately blues and greens with a dash of rose-yeah, I am utterly phobic about blue- rarely wear it (must have been scared by something blue as a baby!)-but I think it would make a great entrelac hat. I'll post pictures on the weekend- blogger has been a bit dicey of late-and I don't feel up to fighting with it. More later........................

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Okay- I think I have it now....

I am still giggling over the dalmation suit for Bear- talk about a case of confused identity! Anyhow- I think I have it now- I am making it out of a lovely bricky-red tweed -Patons Shetland Chunky. I am such a sucker for tweed- I adore the Rowanspun Tweeds-they have such life and light in their colourways. And Patons- well, it is getting better. I have always been a huge fan of Patons Classic- it is exactly that-great stitch definition, wears well, felts beautifully. I have found, in the past, that Shetland Chunky tended to pill-so this is a small experiment. Anyhow- back to the sweater-look at that yarn- it has flecks of all kinds of colours- and that rich, deep red-really something. It will look great on a poodle. Have you noticed, by the way, that many people, upon seeing a standard poodle, will refer to the dog as a "she"? When questioned, they say "Oh, I just assume all poodles are girls- they are so pretty!" or "I just can't imagine this big poodle being a boy." I was never great at biology, but in order to keep a species going, doesn't one need both genders? Just saying. So the sweater is underway- a sporty model- knit up in seed stitch rib-show off that tweed well. Pictures when I have something to show (other than a red blob on the needles)
Have a good week-the goblins will soon be here!!!!!! (Hmm- and what should Bear be? A. is going to be a black cat, so is her friend form next door-2 black cats and a white dog???? I actually tried the cat ears on him- they looked way cool!)

Thursday, October 19, 2006

I got me a Funky Scarf!

Ta da! Annie and Bear got into the show-Annie loves the scarf- keeps on patting it- and well, Bear goes wherever Annie goes! Isn't the scarf cool? It is from Lesley at Duchess of Gravity (see her here), and, clever little bird that she is- she made it out of recycled silk shirts!!!!!! She also included some lovely tea (a yummy green and white tea blend), a postcard of Denver, Colorado, and a hysterical card- that has all of the tags from the shirts on it!!!! (The card even looks like a shirt!) Thank you, Lesley- you have truly outshone yourself!!!!
And as for Bear (whom I call Bruce most of the time)-although I should call him Walter (hey- you know the book- "Walter, the Farting Dog")(now you know more than you want to know)- is most interested in destroying an entire couch.

He looks fairly harmless, right????????

On to other news- spent a lovely evening at a local Starbucks with the Kingston SnB girls-heard some great news (way to go, Jen), and had great conversation! Thanks, ladies!

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Bear's New Duds

Since it is getting colder around these parts (we have already had snow- but it didn't stick), I thought I should get started on a sweater for Bear. So, a little stash diving later-out comes a few balls of Mondial Merino Plus. This is awesome stuff- 52% merino, 48% acrylic (yes, I know, I am not an acrylic lover, but the acrylic in this yarn is hard to spot- it is so soft and easy care!) The colourway I have is 238 -see it up there? It is a black/white/bit of blue mix. Sure- that would work-a bit of red around the neck and legs- it would look great! Instead, it looks like dalmation fur!!! A little Cruella de Ville!!!!!!!!!!I just CAN'T put a dalmation coat on a standard poodle! So back into the stash it goes! I actually have 10 balls of it (1250 meters) -some knit up and then reballed. Any ideas of what to do with it? Anyone interested in it? (I am always up for a sale or a trade!) Email me - deb(dot)sean(at)sympatico(dot)com) - but take out the brackets and the words and put the right symbols in-if you are interested!

Sunday, October 15, 2006


Oh my secret pal emailed me and said she had a good idea for a little something for me-I am sooooooooooooo excited!!!!! I have been involved in the Knit Sock Kit Swap, with great results! (Even made a friend on that one! Hi Becky!) And the Funky Scarf Swap is just winding down now. (It was a great lot of fun) Now this one-it looks quite promising. Maybe you folks can help-the person I am giving to is in Europe. I am in Canada. Since I am not very familiar with things that she wouldn't be able to get easily, is there anything you can think of? Leave me a post to get my brain juices going! Thanks-

Thursday, October 12, 2006

The Funky Scarf Thang

Ta Da!!!!!! Here is the Funky Scarf, for the swap. It is made up of all kinds of luxury yarns- about 24 different ones-including Fleece Artist and Colinette and Noro and angora and hand dyed things and silk and mohair and beads and ribbons and metallics-including some beaded dangles on each pointed end. I also slipped in a little book locally made from hand made paper- so she can use it as a place to record her stash-it is just small, and could fit into a knitting bag quite easily. It will be shipped off tomorrow! I hope she likes it!

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Secret Pal 9

Hmm- these are to be posted (and answered, I suppose!) on my blog for the Secret Pal Swap. So here goes........................................
Actor-Love Sean Connery
Actress- hmmm- Sandra Bullock
Animal-dogs -schnoodles and standard poodles are my current fave
Band-I always loved Santana/ a lone singer would be Michael Buble
Beverage- Iced Tea (not much of a drinker, I'm afraid, but when I do drink, I love me a Harvey Wallbanger)
Book- Oh my- I have lots of favourites-I am going to say the Harry Potter series, just because they truly changed the way kids read, and also upped their level of sophistication. If it is adult books- hmmm-too many to even name
Bubble Bath-nope- allergies
Candy-white chocolate with roasted almonds
Color-schizo pink or slime green or pomegranate red
Flower-My dad used to give me yellow roses. And I love tulips
Food-Chinese-really, really good take-out, from home- roast turkey with all the trimmings
Lip Balm-lately, I have been partial to Mint Orange by Butterfly Weed Herbals
Lotion-Neutrogena daily moisturizer/self tanner
Movie-again- so so many- The Wedding Date, or any of the Star Wars, or ....-list to come
Song-I kinda like Hotel California, in the Eagles (When Hell Freezes Over)
TV Show-Stargate,(as well as the Atlantis version) or CSI, or NCIS, or...well, space and blood and guts
Vacation Spot- somewhere warm, but not hot, with lots of nice knitting stores, and lovely lovely people that bring you anything you want............
I wonder if that tells people more about me? Hmmmmmmm

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

My Boy

You know, I really AM knitting. I just finished working on the Funky Scarf Swap -I just need to sew in the ends, and then off it goes. And I am working on the various and sundry sweaters that I have going-mostly Big Blue, and the entrelac, and the moss green one. But I had to stop for a bit and show you my new boy, all washed and pretty. Don't we look happy?

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Okay- how many of you had bets out there??????

This is Bear. My Standard Poodle. I just adore him. He is just 14 months old, and was "previously owned". A lady had bought him to become her service dog (she is disabled, and needed a large dog to help her) But he didn't get as big as planned. And apparently has the kind of personality that suits a family member more than a working dog. So we went to Toronto last night, and met him, and the owners met us, and everyone agreed that it was a good match.

He bonded immediately with A., the 8 year old. In fact, he sat on her lap all the way home (He thinks he is a bit smaller than he actually is) And he slept with her for awhile last night. And this morning, when we got up, he bounced in and treated us like we were his very best friends. I just love him!
And he is not a replacement for my sweet Bouf- he is very different, both in size and temperament.
PS_I am thinking of calling him Dave. He doesn't answer to Bear, so I wonder if I should just go ahead and change it?

Friday, October 06, 2006

Secret Pal 9

Thought I should do at least one of these Secret Pal thingies. So here is my questionnaire...........and my answers as of a Friday afternoon after a v..e..r..y long week at work.

1. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with? What fibers do you absolutely *not* like? LOVE wool and silk and sea silk and of course, cashmere. HATE crunchy acrylics. And really really thick yarns. Not wild about thick and thin stuff either.

2. What do you use to store your needles/hooks in? My dps are in a metal pencil case that looks like an Egyptian tomb. My circulars hang in a fabric holder in the closet. And everything else is in a tool box (I have a lot of needles)

3. How long have you been knitting & how did you learn? Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced?
I have been knitting since I was a kid-first sweater-I was about 13 or 14. I design as well. I would say I am advanced-never met anything I couldn't knit.
4. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list? Nope. Should I?

5. What's your favorite scent? (for candles, bath products, etc.) I have so many contact allergies that I no longer use scented anything. But candles-can't miss with spicy "fall" scents.

6. Do you have a sweet tooth? Favorite candy? Is the Pope Catholic? Of course I have sweet tooth. I love white chocolate (get migraines with brown chocolate)-white almond bark is a fave. I also like Jelly Belly jelly beans.

7. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do? Do you spin? Don't spin-but I paint. Watercolours, mostly.

8. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD)My car plays MP3s. I like blues, Bonnie Raitt, currently wanting the music from the Wedding Date movie.

9. What's your favorite color(s)? Any colors you just can't stand? I love pinks and reds and purples, as well as greens. I wear a lot of black. Recently decided I like dark brown. Don't wear beige or blue (think I got scared by something blue as a kid!!!!!!)

10. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets?I am married with a daughter (Annie-8) I recently had to put my much loved dog down (still hurts)

11. Do you wear scarves, hats, mittens or ponchos? Scarves, wraps, hats, mitts, gloves-YES! Ponchos-no-I find I look too much like a table with a table cloth.

12. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit? Anything once. Rarely knit anything twice. I like textured knits, too.

13. What are you knitting right now? Oh-6 sweaters and 1 scarf. (Okay okay-I can't commit)

14. Do you like to receive handmade gifts? Yup. But useful things, not merely decorative.

15. Do you prefer straight or circular needles? Bamboo, aluminum, plastic? Circs are my choice, bamboo and aluminum, depending on what I am knitting. Wood, too.

16. Do you own a yarn winder and/or swift? Yes, and yes.

17. How old is your oldest UFO? Oh-let me see- about 2 years old. It is a sweater made out of self patterning sock yarn.

18. What is your favorite holiday? CHRISTMAS!

19. Is there anything that you collect? Um-yes, actually. Odd pins and brooches.

20. Any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on? What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have? I currently subscribe to Knitters, Vogue, Interweave Knits, Cast On and Creative knitting. But I am re thinking some of them. I am currently craving some of the Horst Schultz stuff, or Morehouse Knits, or Dazzling Knits. (the modular stuff)

21. Are there any new techniques you'd like to learn? toe up socks.

22. Are you a sock knitter? What are your foot measurements? Yes- I wear a size 10 shoe (ladies) and I don't like a really high leg. But we can get more personal if needed.

23. When is your birthday? (mm/dd) February 10th

posted by Deb, all answers subject to change if I can think of something better, but I will post if I change any answers!

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

My mother would be so proud......

You Are 44% Evil

You are evil, but you haven't yet mastered the dark side.
Fear not though - you are on your way to world domination.

Thanks to

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Sunday Thoughts........

Some of you know I am a teacher (and for all of the others-now you know). Yup-long suffering, bladdity blah blah blah. Truth is, even though it is considered "stylish" to dis your job, I LOVE what I do. I have been doing it for 25 years, so I had better like the job. I have taught a real range of things. Kindergarten to Grade 8, Core French (I still have nightmares about some of that), a Grade 9 class (short while), OAC economics (partly in Europe) and university classes (at the Faculty of Education at Queen's University). And I have written a bunch of stuff (believe it or not- I actually AM quite literate!!!!)-like Family Math, and I co-wrote a unit in the Grade 7 science textbook. So I try to expand the job-making it different all the time so that I don't get bored. Now that I am at the end of my career (I still find that hard to swallow), I have decided there must be a way for me to actually make my mark in a physical way. And it all started thanks to my superintendent of education (think-BIG BOSS). Now to backtrack a bit-this superintendent and I were teachers together way back when. While we never taught in the same building together, she and I would get involved in projects together. She is musically gifted-can do amazing things with kids. And, she often needed backdrops and such for her musical presentations. That's where I came in. I used to paint them for her. (Most memorable-the three houses for the pigs-each one done in the style of a different master) Fast forward to the present-this superintendent spoke to my principal about the state of our school-as in "Why wasn't Deb allowed extra time and materials to paint murals to cover up the uglier parts of the building?" So-this has opened up doors for me. Because of this comment, I have been given pretty much free rein (reign?) on this mural. And also opened up the possibility of doing more murals in the school. With kids. I am beyond excited. This is a very cool thing for me to do. I am NOT doing the graffiti like murals that often show up with kids and tend to look pretty much the same as all the other ones. I can't bear those. So-as the job progresses, I will post a photo or two. But if you have any particular expertise in this area-let me know. The other result of all of this is an acknowledgement that I really do know what I am doing in the art area-and that I should be teaching more art classes. Love it.

PS- The mural that I am currently planning is a three panel piece-three monkeys (all dressed up in art deco style clothes)-the first "Hear no Evil"-and you can guess the other two!