Sunday, December 25, 2011

Life's blessings

Print Friendly and PDF
Life is full of blessings, sometimes you have to look a little harder to find them.

Such has been the case for this year's Christmas for us.

Being on assistance meant not having anything for Christmas since we had no money to spend. But circumstances, friends, family brought home to us that the true Christmas is having friends and family and appreciating them. We already knew that, but we needed a good solid nudge to be reminded.

My darling sister soul gave us some very thoughtful gifts, of which my favorites are the book Crochet Master Class edited by Jean Leinhauser whom we lost this year. A great loss to her family, friends and the crochet indie design industry.

I first came across this book at our local library. Fell in love with it and it was moved to the top of my crochet wish list!  And now, lucky me, I have it thanks to my darling sister! She also gave me a second book, Bring Colour to crochet. A beautiful collection of stitch patterns done in colours that make each pop off the page!

After those, a new windup toy! Yes, silly things please me such as small wind up toys. This latest addition to my growing collection is a Santa Claus riding an old fashioned train. Love it! :)

My husbands favorite was the Belgian chocolate letter of course! quickly followed by new socks and warm mittens.

Then from a sweet friend we received some much needed supplies (paper towels, tp & tissues)... the super soft expensive ones! Two of her gifts also pleased my husband to no ends, Belgian chocolate truffles and cookies!

I also received windups from her! One is of a cute penguin and the other is a Santa and both were lovingly put to bed in a super cute Winnie the Pooh gift box. Love love love them!

And a surprise came to our door earlier this week. Someone I got to know in the class I was taking this past fall received a turkey as a gift from her job, but she already had more turkeys than she knew what to do with. She offered it to us! So sitting in my freezer waiting for New Years` is a lovely 15 lbs turkey! A most pleasant surprise since our hamper from the Salvation Army held potatoes, cabbage, squash, peas/carrots, but no meat. So there is our meat! :)

So for all those who despair and feel that this season has let them down, consider that there are people out there a lot worse off than you are. This season has certainly reminded us to be thankful for small blessings and wonderful friends.

So to all my friends, family, crocheters and knitters around the world; I wish you all a Merry Christmas (or a Merry Celebration of your choice) and keep the faith in your heart. When things look at their bleakest, open your eyes, look around and reach out, ask for help, you matter and that is the most important thing to remind yourself of.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

CBC's 75th anniversary - Childhood Memories

Print Friendly and PDF
November 2nd was the 75th anniversary of the CBC. Part of The National's news broadcast was a look back at the shows that people watched.

I had completely forgotten about these childhood shows until I saw clips of them. A flood of memories reminded me of the black and white TV we watched during breakfast, supper and the evenings. At that time, the TV was in the large farm kitchen, the better for my mother to watch over my brother and I while she did dishes, cooked and cleaned.
Most Canadians know The Friendly Giant, and Mr Dressup. But for the most part, only french speaking Canadians remember these 60's shows.

Bobino et Bobinette
A show about a brother and sister, the brother always good, the sister, not so good. He would help her out of whatever scrape she got herself into with lesson learned.

A puppet with his friend the bear who would only have one word menum menum. Today's generation would think we were nuts to love this show LOL

A doll who sat on a bit chair with a book of stories with a lesson learned from each. I watched part of an episode and can't fathom for the life of me what I saw in this show. LOL

La Souris Verte
Dix moutons Neuf moineaux Huit marmottes Sept lapins Six canards Cinq fourmis Quatre chats Trois poussins Deux belettes Et une souris Une souris verte! This was the intro song.

Sol et Gobelet
Two of the most hilarious characters ever seen. The show was live and full of ad libs which meant the studio cameras had to adapt quickly.

A Japanese show about a hero who fought invaders. Yes, even then I was a nerd and watched sci-fi LOL

I know most english speaking readers will have no clue about these shows. It's ok, I look at english children's shows from back then and don't get it :)

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Voicing Hamilton revisited

Print Friendly and PDF
Yesterday I had my third class at the library and it was fantastic. I'm absolutely rediscovering the enjoyment of learning and attending school that I had forgotten how much I loved. But I also absolutely appreciate and love not being harassed by ignorant/petty/bigoted students who parroted their parent's views on metis children.

The morning was spent listening to a short lecture by Daniel and then interacting with the author of one of the textbooks we received at the beginning of the class. I finally appreciate poetry in a way I never did as a teenage student. I also figured out why my appreciation has changed, experience, maturity. It's amazing how your mind suddenly finds relations and understanding where in the past, poetry was just words that didn't make a whole lot of sense and defied explanation as to their usefulness.

Once again, an amazing delicious lunch was served. I did not catch who had organized it, but kudos to them. It was appreciated and enjoyed by all.

The afternoon lab was spent in small groups reviewing the book of poetry and images and figuring out what each person saw in a lot of the poems and photographs. So much insight, so many ideas and interpretations and it was fantastic that everyone got to contribute to the sharing.

This reminds me of how different this teaching approach is to what I remember higher education being like 30 years ago. I love the interaction between teacher and student. The teacher is not so much a "teacher" as popularly defined but more of an elder sharing their life experiences, the influences that shaped their knowledge and allowing us to peek into their past. I also love the fact that we are all respected as individuals and that each of us have experiences worth sharing relating to what we are studying.

We also got a chance to discuss what our end of class presentation will include. In the group I was a part of, one of the students will be doing a series of paintings comparing several public buildings in Hamilton then and now and their final destination  in the 200 years that have ensued since their beginning. A couple of students in the study group will be doing a photographic presentation, but unfortunately did not catch as to the subject of these presentations. I love the selection of various medias that everyone will be using for their end projects. These will showcase Hamilton at it's best and at it's worse both current and historically.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Go the F**K to sleep!

Print Friendly and PDF
 I had to laugh when I came across this gem of a book. It will raise eyebrows I'm sure, but if you're a parent, you will recognise the mental soliloquy that is stuck on a never ending loop as you try and get your little one to fall asleep every night. It may not be peppered with swear words, but I'm sure we've all substituted or added some invectives along the way.

This is definitely NOT a book to read to your little ones, but definitely one you will want to read before you go to sleep. Great way to get rid of the frustrations and reminds you that you're not the only parent who wants their darling child to go the F**K to sleep!

The fact that it is read by Samuel Jackson just puts the candle on the cake LOL

There is even a Facebook Page you can love.

My darling daughter was one of those children who refused to go to sleep. She'd happily climb into bed but that was it. I would read Dr Seuss to my darling daughter, 1, 2 and sometimes 3 books and she'd be sitting there wide-eyed while my eyes were falling shut. One night I handed her the book and asked her to read it. It was quite interesting to watch a 3 year old reading a story that she'd heard so many times she didn't need to know the words. She'd just point to the pictures and tell me about each one.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

All about her heart

Print Friendly and PDF
I have a daughter, a beautiful kind hearted wonderful courageous daughter.
She arrived in this world today, many years ago.
She greeted me with a smile and a sigh before going back to sleep.
She greeted me with love and trust in her eyes, that I promised to uphold each and every day.
She gave me her heart to hold, to love, to cherish and protect.
She gave me her soul.

I watched her grow up
I watched her figure out her way in this world,
I watched her crash and waited
I helped when she asked

I stood by, calmly and patiently waiting for the angel within her to grow and come out.
I hid my aching heart watching the difficult moments she lived through
I sent my love, on wings of angels, hoping that it would be felt and strength gained from it.

My arms are always open to comfort, understand, love.
My heart is always with her, every day a new challenge to overcome
My smile is always ready
My kiss, always warm on her forehead irregardless of what life throws at us.

To my beautiful daughter,
May she never be taken for granted.



The little girl in this video reminded me so much of my own daughter at that age. The quiet dancing, from the heart, from her soul. I had to share this as I only have the video in my mind which is much more difficult to share :)

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Voicing Hamilton

Print Friendly and PDF
I had my very first university level class today!

It is part of a pilot project that McMaster University has created to help those who cannot afford a university education get a taste of what being an adult student can be like. The course is in the Humanities studies and is called Voicing Hamilton. We will be looking at the history of Hamilton from the viewpoint of various native Hamiltonians who have written books, personal histories, photographed, and poems about it's people and the city itself.

The class is on every Saturday until the first Saturday of December. The morning session will be a lecture and discussion on the materials we had to read during the week leading up to the class. There will also be special guests who have been invited to share with us their viewpoint on Hamilton. The afternoon will be breaking up into smaller groups and beginning to work and develop the final presentation on our personal take of Hamilton, in other words, making our voices heard. We will have the assistance of McMaster arts and science students who volunteered to help with the course. These students will also enjoy learning alongside of us all about Hamilton. The nursing students graciously offered to cover for lunch and today's was excellent with 4 varieties of pizza along with a delicious mixed greens salad, coffee, pop, tea, and desert! cookies, squares, mincemeat pies, and apples.

The wide range of people who are attending this course will make it that much more interesting as we (they) cover a span of experiences from newly arrived to long time resident. The disparity in ages also gives the viewpoints an interesting twist which I feel will make the class that much more interesting as we have people in their early twenty's to people in their retirement years. The Spectator has a nice article in the Saturday paper about this class.

I am looking forward to hearing our professor speak about Hamilton. He is a well educated man, broad minded, and comes across as a receptive participant and is as excited as the rest of the students in the class, perhaps even more excited as at the end of the first day, the dynamics of the group were already becoming distinct and the various ideas, suggestions and as end of course presentation ideas were voiced, sparked even more discussions and created even more excitement as everyone realised that "Yes, we are doing this!"

There are 2 people who figure in this undertaking; the first is the coordinator, Jeanette Eby, she is the go-to person, the one who contacted various groups and urban cores to recruit students. She was also the face of Voicing Hamilton during the selection interviews, the scheduling and organizing the nitty gritty stuff that makes this class tic. The second person, which I first met during the Meet 'n Greet a few weeks ago is the professor; Daniel Coleman. I had no knowledge of this man before this class started, but from the moment I shook hands with him, I knew that there was a gentle soul, someone who truly cared about what information and wisdom he imparts to those who take the time to listen. He is an energetic man who loves to learn just as much as he loves to teach or maybe teach is the wrong word, but more loves to share what he has learned along the way with people. And by sharing, he also learns new things himself, so the class is more of a symbiosis than the typical teacher student relationship. He would be an amazing native story teller... perhaps he was in a previous life...

During the meet `n greet a few weeks ago, one of the things that was discussed was each of us choosing a subject and media to present our voice of Hamilton. I had 4 distinct ideas of things I wanted to further explore relating to the city of Hamilton and it's inhabitants. After today, I have narrowed my choices down to one, the one that I feel will satisfy my own curiosity and thirst for knowledge as a Métis person. What impact did the settling of this area have on the tribes and peoples already living here and where have these people gone in today's Hamilton. Now what remains to figure out is how I will present this research once it is completed. I found it very exciting that once I had voiced my choices, that I had several people already willingly contributing sources of information for my research. Just by that action, I knew that was the subject I had to do, not just for me, but for those around me, for the peoples and for Hamilton. 

I look forward to next week's class since by then I will have read several chapters in the book "Hamilton; A People's History" by Bill Freeman. and jotted down some thoughts. Hopefully by then, I will also have an idea of what media I will use to present my research. So far, I have a sense that it will be organic in nature; since I am a tactile and visual learner, I tend to present my findings in a tactile/visual medium. I know while I can write somewhat well, I'm always hesitant of writing a long involved thesis and have no one interested in reading it. Certainly, it would represent my findings as well as my feelings on those findings and possibly some conjecture, but in the end, would anyone else care? I feel that a more 'artistic' presentation may attract more attention and make people 'look' instead of glance.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

The joys of Fibro

Print Friendly and PDF
If you remember, in November 2010 it will be the anniversary of when my neurologist informed me that I more than likely (99% sure) have fibromyalgia. He recommended I get a family doctor and get the ball rolling to confirm the diagnosis since my health would not improve with time if left to it's own devices.
Last week was the appointment where my doctor finally admitted that yes, I have fibromyalgia. Since last November, I have spent many hours being poked, prodded, tested, retested,  siphoned for blood, etc... to rule out other causes of the multitude of symptoms I experience daily.

To that initial fibromyalgia diagnosis, autonomic neuropathy can now be added, again, not something I was expecting to hear, but something that finally explained why my body wasn't listening to me anymore. Autonomic neuropathy is something I have no control over unfortunately. So far, symptoms have been somewhat uncomfortable but am thankful that they are not as bad as they could be. It does make my days a tad more difficult to plan out since I have no advance warning when something will cease working for a few hours/days/weeks or when it will start working properly again. 

And since last November, I've also developed Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) This joyless problem stems from not sleeping well because of pain in various parts of my body. Even when I do manage to sleep, it's never enough, and not getting down into the healthy sleep levels that recharge your body means I am constantly exhausted, irregardless of what I am doing. Some days, the best I can do is crawl out of bed, make myself breakfast in stages, and make it to the couch to sit there feeling like a zombie and hoping I'll wake up sooner than later. There are days I literally have to crawl back into bed 2 hours later, too tired to keep my eyes open and if I push the issue, I get physically ill if I don't go lay down. Now picture this happening forenoon and afternoon just about every day and think of all the things that you do in one day that I cannot even come close to accomplishing in a week. My home is a disaster, doing dishes is an all day chore done a bit at a time, vacuuming is out of the question, laundry takes a day plus to get done. Even small loads that I hand wash to stretch the time between big loads wipe me out. Cooking is done in stages when my husband can help, otherwise it's whatever is found in the fridge that doesn't require cooking or involved prep time. Being on a fixed income also means no take-out on the days where even looking in the fridge provides nothing edible. Getting groceries using the city's transit system is nothing short of a feat of physical and mental determination just to get it done. And these days, getting groceries means spending hours in food bank line ups every week to get enough to eat for the following four or five days.

I am thankful for the help I do receive and those who give it freely and lovingly know who they are :) The world needs more people like you :) And I finally am seeing the rewards of what Pay it Forward means. I am on the receiving end now instead of the giving end and at first it's hard to accept, but once you get the epiphany, it makes it easier to say thank you and to accept the help given so lovingly and kindheartedly.

All of the above is also on top of the long list of physical ailments I already have like diabetes, COPD, IBS, Carpal tunnel in both wrists, migraines, food and med allergies, peripheral neuropathy...and I probably forget some since today is a fibro fog day meaning that my brain feels like it's sitting in a large vat of cotton batting and just couldn't be bothered to do anything that involves thought.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Water under the bridge & A New Beginning

Print Friendly and PDF
I know, it's been a while... a long long while... ok, so I've been avoiding posting here. Why you ask? or wonder? Because I felt that I had nothing of interest to post. My situation in life is dire at the moment, literally living from hand to mouth and even that is precarious. So instead of posting something depressing, I avoided it by not posting at all.

I am grateful for my family and friend who have been supportive to the enth. Without them, we would be much worse off and believe me, we're a hair's breath away from rock bottom.

So after all this, why am I posting?

Well, for quite a while now I've been designing patterns using crochet. I have quite a collection of patterns that I've been terrified to publish because as my own worst critic, I felt they were not good enough. But with prodding from various people and encouragement I'm finally going to do just that, publish my patterns! Some will be free, some will be for sale. So without further ado, I present you with my new crochet blog Lokipan Crochet Designs 

I will be posting all my crochet related work there and keep this blog as my personal blog. At times, this one may not be as busy since I will be very busy with designing new patterns, testing them, etc..

You may wonder, why the name Lokipan ...Well, I am a long time retired dairy farmer, our stock was not the usual cows but close to 400 dairy goats. They are inquisitive, gregarious, intelligent and tricky animals, hence the Loki part, and Pan is the god of goat/sheep herders. It all fit neatly together. When I think of the name, I think warm, friendly, loving thoughts. I miss my goats especially every spring. That was when we would be deluged with kids, such beautiful, warm, cuddly babies, completely entrusting themselves to my arms. There is nothing in this world that smells nicer than a newborn kid. The only way I can describe it, think of a warm sunshiny day, fresh cut hay, a light breeze blowing off the lake over the fields. That is the smell of a baby goat.

So join me on my designing journey!
I look forward to seeing you soon at Lokipan Crochet Designs

Friday, June 24, 2011

SCNA9 is the jerkiest gene in the planet

Print Friendly and PDF
A friend sent me this link to an article announcing that the SCNA9 gene is the jerkiest gene in the planet. Since it seems that they have now determined that this is the gene responsible for neuropathy, I'd like to send it back. Mine's working overtime!

But until they can discover some kind of miracle cure, I'll stick with taking my amitriptylenes. I've had the "burning man" description and I agree completely, it's beyond any kind of pain scale anyone can come up with except maybe for this one.

Realistic Pain scale

I've woken up with every inch of my skin screaming in pain and it literally felt like I was on fire. What woke me up was a nightmare where I was being chased by a giant wielding a sword made entirely with flames. I couldn't run fast enough to get away and I woke up as the blade came down on my back. I wanted to scream but the pain was so bad I could only gasp. I guess it was my brain trying to deal with the overflow of false pain messages the nerves were sending.

Hmm... I think this pain scale would also be good for my poor husband considering the muffled screaming I hear more often that I want to admit and there's not a dang thing anyone can do about it. Poor guy.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

June already! SHEESH!

Print Friendly and PDF
Well, latest update for us. We are now officially on Ontario Works (welfare). My doctor has filled out all the paperwork to get me a special diet allowance and also the paperwork for work exemptions. After talking with my worker late this afternoon, she suggested that it might be a good idea to bring the ODSP application package to my doctor and see if he'll fill it out. It would make life a lot easier for us.
At this point, OW covers our drug expenses which is a boon. For the 1st time since I was diagnosed with diabetes I actually have all the tools to take care of myself and it feels wonderful! With drug expenses covered, we've actually got a wee bit of money to spare now compared to none in the past! Let's hope this doesn't come crashing down around us. I know, skeptic, but believe me, if you were in my shoes, you'd be wondering too. I've had the carpet yanked out from under my feet so many times now, I keep looking over my shoulder.

On other news, I'm learning or have learned filet crochet and I love it! The design options are huge! I've got several projects on the go right now involving filet crochet components. Since I plan on publishing these patterns, I'm not going to go into too many details. At least I can say one is a blanket and the other is a woman's top. 

I've also come to learn how to reverse engineer clothing that's already made being displayed in photos. And also to figure out vintage pattern jargon. All these are a tremendous help when designing a pattern. Let's face it, there's only so many ways you can make a top or a blanket or a skirt, etc... so it comes down to stitch choices and colours. I base my patterns more on stitch design than colour since everyone prefers certain colours over others and why limit a knitter or crocheter when there are so many colours to choose from? Same goes for yarn types. Why make someone feel bad because they can't afford the more expensive yarns for specific projects. I'd rather leave the type of yarn chosen to the person who will make the pattern. Personally, I don't have the funds to buy pricier yarns, I depend largely on my daughter and my best friend supplying me with over stocks and low cost yarns or second hand yarns. Why not repurpose yarn which I've done in the past. Buying a sweater that was still quite good but the design was atrocious. I've ripped many sweaters back in order to reuse the yarn, still do when I happen to see one at the 2nd hand store. I doubt I'll ever be a yarn snob since for most of what I design, I prefer acrylic. It's easier to work with, doesn't stretch or shrink and is great for kids clothing. The only time I'd prefer using wool or alpaca, etc is for winter accessories like hats, scarves, mittens, cowls etc.. Nothing beats wool or alpaca when it comes to keeping the cold away from your skin.

Soon I should be able to post photos of these projects as well as others that are currently in the works. The design process is quite organic for me. I have an idea, I write it down and sketch what my mind has conjured up. I leave it for a while since it's not fully worked out yet, and every once in a while, something will pop up and back I go to my notebook to add to the original idea. I liken it to making a stew LOL except that in this case, my brain is the stewing pot!

I've also been rather busy test knitting and crocheting new designs for SmoothFox. I always love testing her patterns since they are so well written out and beautiful and useful. Take the time to go visit her blog. Down the right hand side you will see a huge list of free patterns as well as patterns you can purchase. It will be time well spent.

Another bit of news, although this one is quite sad. A crochet icon passed away yesterday. Jean Leinhauser was a prolific crocheter. She published a multitude of books, co-owned a huge group on yahoo with Rita Weiss called Crochet Partners. She was also very active with CGOA (crochet gild of america) as a judge and reviewer for crocheters applying for their master licensing. She always had time to answer a question relating to crochet. I had the pleasure of receiving a few of her supportive emails over the years and cherish those. She brought crochet to all of us in a simple yet well thought out process. She will be missed by all of us who crochet. Doris Chan, another crochet icon posted on her blog. What she says covers it all as far as I'm concerned. RIP Jean. We will miss you but as Doris said, we will continue to smile and soldier on.

Photos of Jean are rare considering there were only 3 when I did an image search on Google. The one I did find has Jean in the center square where she belongs.
Jean Leinhauser, 2nd from left and her best friend Rita Weiss, far right. The dynamic duo!
If you knew Jean, you also know she loved her dogs. Anyone wanting to make a donation, in kind or items made, please pass them on to your local animal shelter in Jean's name. Thank you

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

2011 until now

Print Friendly and PDF
 So far 2011 has not been the kindest to us. Between not having work to having sporadic work to not having work and my health and my husband's health, it's been a roller coaster for the two of us.

My husband's kidney stones have ramped up. Since the beginning of this year, he's passed a dozen or so larger stones and myriad smaller ones that we just don't bother collecting anymore. All this means he's in constant pain. He rarely gets a day when there is no pain and those are cherished when they do happen. At least his blood pressure is stable but his digestive system is also having issues.

My health has also been an up and down coaster with diabetes, COPD, IBS, neuropathy and chronic pain (fibro) hounding me every step of every day and that doesn't include the panoply of side effects of having chronic pain like painful to the touch skin, unexplained rashes, difficulty sleeping, restless leg syndrome, tremors, etc... It just never seems to let up and I'd rather not think about it because then things hurt worse. I have oxycodone when it gets really bad, but I'd rather not take those. I've heard enough horror stories that I only use it when the pain just can't be ignored anymore. 

Because of the various health issues, it also means numerous medical appointments, tests, etc... which most employers frown upon and since I've waited for 6 years to finally get a family doctor, I'm not about to try and switch to someone who offers evening and weekend office hours. And most places when it comes to tests and blood work don't open evenings and weekends. It also makes finding suitable work that I can do very difficult.

With the high stress levels, not having work, not having money to pay rent, bills, meds, not having nutritious food, all those things just add to the already overcrowded pot of misery we seem to be stuck in and haven't found a way out of yet. Next Tuesday, we have an appointment to meet with an intake person with Ontario Works (welfare). This is our last desperate effort to find a way to support ourselves. Let's hope there is some help from there for meds and rent.

So this is all to explain why I haven't posted for so long. It's hard to find joy or rejoice when there's not much to rejoice about. Well, I guess we can always rejoice at the fact we still have an apartment and health as good as that may be ....

I'm writing this now, so I can attempt to move on emotionally and stop focussing on the sad parts of my life. There's enough of that going around, I don't need to add to the pile. And yes, some might call this depression, but I don't feel sad 100% of the time, I still laugh when it's funny, and still care very much for my husband, children and myself. I just needed to get this off my chest.

I'm the Frog!!!!

Now don't take me wrong, we have a small support circle, my daughter and my best friend help as much as they can and we appreciate it. But I also realise that there is a point where enough is enough. I just hope that things turn around very very soon for us...

Tuesday, April 26, 2011


Print Friendly and PDF
Earlier today, I read an article about hoarding yarn, fabric, etc.. One of the commenters said the following: 
“I told my husband there is a special place in heaven for men married to women who crochet (and collect yarn). He just rolled his eyes.”
I still have tears rolling down my face from laughing so hard I had to run for the bathroom!
That is so my husband! 
He grew up with a knitter/crocheter so he knows about SABLE ! Stash Acquisition Beyond Life Expectancy
I inherited his mom’s small collection of knitting and crocheting paraphernalia when she passed away in 2001. Thankfully, he along with my daughter and my best friend are enablers. 
One person called the various collections that we choose to ignore Elephants...

As for Elephants, oh yes, we have quite a few between the 2 of us.

Collections that he will never part with...
  1. Assorted painted miniatures of fictional characters along with the supplies for painting such.
  2. Enough books to start our own lending library (about 1/4 are mine) LOL
  3. Computer parts, old monitors and ancient towers
  4. Magic the Gathering decks from when he competed
  5. Poker paraphernalia
  6. Board games! lots of board games we never play anymore! : ( stored in MY bedroom/office/craft room. My bedroom is NOT THAT BIG!
  7. Graphic Novel (Comic book) collection
Collections I will never part with...
  1. stamp collection
  2. yarn and yarn accessories: breakdown of yarn: 10 large rubbermaid bins, 4 large boxes, 3 under the bed type storage bags, 8 reusable shopping bags, 2 large fabric bags and a nylon laundry bag. Most of which is stored in my bedroom that also serves as the office. OH, and my daughter is bringing another bin’s worth of yarn. See above about enablers LOL My daughter found one of these vintage hinged velvet-lined carrying cases 2nd hand that has multiple storage boxes within. It’s packed with knitting/crochet paraphernalia.
  3. 61 gigabytes of patterns, magazines, books, photos about knitting and crochet on a separate drive (computer has 2 hard drives and 2 external drives)
  4. the 1/4 portion of books of which about 1/4 are about knitting and crochet
  5. a plastic reusable shopping bag filled with fabric for lining hats, dresses, bags & purses
  6. tiny wind up toys which my BFF enables me! :)
  7. beading supplies stored in a 3-drawer bin on casters (could use one more)
We live in a small apartment and storage is at a premium. No storage locker so it all has to live with us. For most days, I can easily ignore the collections, but other days I would give anything to have an extra room that I could store everything in and not have to look at it all the time! Don't take me wrong, I love my yarn to bits! I just would like to not have it stare at me in the face wherever I turn LOL

There seems to be an afinity for nerds/geeks and fiber lovers to attract each other.
May be because we are hoarders at heart?
Don’t speak a normal language? and we understand each other on a cellular level?
Whatever it is, I love it!

Do you have one of those you share your life and living space with?

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Another year gone by....

Print Friendly and PDF
When I write about my sister's passing, it's because of 2 things.

I cannot forgive myself for not going to her earlier, to be at least able to tell her just how much I love her and to say goodbye. This year brought this back to me after watching the Japanese people fight their way through the most horrible earthquake and tsunami to hit in many years, even worse in magnitude than the Haiti earthquake, worst than hurricane Katrina's devastation of New Orleans. But what struck me as very different was the way the Japanese stoically took it all in, did their best to continue with life as best they could. Something amazing in the face of devastation on a grander scale. The quiet acceptance, the pride, the courage to carry on, helping each other out. All those traits I saw in my sister's battle with cancer. And the videos of the devastation in Japan brought it all back to me as if it was just days ago that my sister passed away, quietly, with dignity.

And the second reason... I miss you Rox, so very very much. I know you are watching over me. I thank you for the gifts you send me along the way. The way people come across my path, people I can help even in a small way. I thank you for those and I hope you keep sending me more. Maybe, just maybe, this way I can redeem myself for not being there for you when you really needed me.

Relai pour la vie
Relay for Life - My sister
Her wings - Now she has real ones
1969 - 2009

Rest in peace dearest sister. I am doing my best to walk in your footsteps each and every day.

Monday, March 7, 2011

International Women's Day March 8, 2011

Print Friendly and PDF
Are we equals?

A short 2 minute film narrated by Dame Judy Dench with Daniel Craig as James Bond 007 starting off as the usual well-dressed spy who then goes and dresses the part of a woman. The figures read out by Judy Dench bring the horrible reality of how badly women of this earth are treated. Even here, Canada, USA, Europe, countries who claim to be civilized, yet there are women every day who are killed, maimed, raped, abused and die at the hands of their husbands, boy friends, and ex's. 

One hundred years ago, suffragettes fought for women to have the vote. At the time, women were considered little more than chattel. Have we changed? You be the judge....

If you want to learn more, you can join the great Equality Debate and do your part to stamp out the inequalities of our world.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Another one bites the yarn!

Print Friendly and PDF
Another conversion achieved! Thanks to the ladies of Ravelry...

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


Print Friendly and PDF
My apologies to all. Time got away from me somehow.

I have been working on a post but it's taking longer than I expected. Soon though I will be back, same bat time, same bat station :)