Sunday, October 22, 2017

The sock train

With Jaywalker off my needles, I'm officially done with the KAL.  It was time to get back to my regularly scheduled sock knitting... which meant my On The GO designs. I have 12 designed planned, and only five knit so far. When I started, I'd planned to get them all done by the end of the year. Obviously, that's not going to happen.

Especially when I looked at the calendar.

I hate to use the C-word before Hallowe'en... but we're all crafters here. You've just got to think about Christmas early if you're a crafter.

I'm not making all my presents this year, but their are a few on the list. And if I don't want to go insane come December, I've got to get a wiggle on.

So when the Worsted Weight sock yarn I'd ordered at the start of the month arrived just as I finished up the Jaywalkers, I knew it was a sign.
Big heavy boot socks are just perfect for train knitting. This leg and most of a foot were knit up over one evening and one train trip home (about four hours).

This pair is for Dad. I'd originally made him a pair back in 2014 with the intention of them being used as hunting socks - some extra warmth for the bush. But Mom says he wears them all winter long - especially around the house.

The second pair will be for my brother, who not only goes hunting with Dad, but lives in Owen Sound... the land of cold and snow.

Unfortunately, this yarn has now been discontinued. I was lucky to get these balls... so if any one can suggested a good hard-wearing worsted wool/nylon blend (self-striping is a bonus, but not necessary), please let me know. Despite constant wear, Dad's first pair is still going strong. I'd love to make more!

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Saturday stash enhancements

The other day, Bridget over at the Ravell'd Sleeve asked about any new obsession we had...

I had to admit to at least one...

Ever since my last order, I've been stalking the site, filling my basket with favourites. I promised myself I wouldn't buy anything until the perfect Daily Deal came along...
Or should we say the "purrfect" daily deal.
10 inch squares of cat-themed fabrics in my favourite colours... at almost half price? How could I resist?

And since it's flat-rate shipping, you have the take advantage and fill your cart!

I filled mine with:

A fat-quarter pack of Wonderland-themed fabrics!
I'd actually preferred the blue version of this set (which is unusual, I'm not really a blue person), but it sold out before I could get it, so I didn't want to let this one get away. I had no plans for it - I was just so drawn to it (Alice is one of my favourite stories)... but this week a coworker revealed that she is pregnant, so this may have a use after all! (Unless I decide to keep it for myself - I really do love it).

It's a similar story with these dragonfly fabrics...
When I first discovered the site, these charm packs were sold out. I was so disappointed because the fabrics are stunning - vivid colours, bold prints and metallic details. When they came back into stock, I wasn't letting them get away. Again... no plan for these, but I'm sure I'll find a good use.

This charm pack is the only one that does have a plan...
...but it's a present, so I can't say much more.

And the site offers "mystery" charm packs at discounted prices, so I thought what the heck... I love a good surprise...
I wasn't disappointed. The pack also includes similar prints in a dark red. I'm not sure I love it with the purple, so this pack may get split into different projects... those purple ones would pair nicely with the set above...

I'd like to say this is the last of the fabric buying for a while... but Mom and I have a shopping play date this coming week... and both of us need a few more things from MSQC... we're just waiting on another good Daily Deal...

... and it is an obsession, after all!

Friday, October 20, 2017

Friday Felines

Somebody is growing fast...
He's now as big as Rupert, and it won't be long before he outgrows his wee ginger brother. It definitely takes more effort to pick him up these days.
Next month he'll be six months old and he's rapidly losing his kitten looks. Except when he plays or gets snuggly - then he's full on squeeeeee!
 All that floof is still soft, but he's getting so shiny too.
He loves to be outside, adventuring with Relic (at least as far as his leash will let him).
But he knows he's most at home at his mama's feet (and in her arms or on her pillow).

Thursday, October 19, 2017

FO: Jaywalker

The second pair of socks for the I ❤ Fall KAL is done!
The pattern is Jaywalker, but the dyeing on the yarn softens the zigzags a little.
 The main yarn is Twisted Fibre Arts Kabam (colour is Netherfield), and I had some leftover Jungle Cat in my stash that was just perfect for heels and toes.
Although I didn't plan it that way the "stripes" line up pretty much perfectly across both socks.  I don't mind mismatched socks, but this was pure luck.
I made a pair of Jaywalkers earlier this year, but even on the smallest size (76 stitches) they were too big for my narrow feet, so for this pair I went down to 68 stitches.
The fit is perfect - and they are done just in time... the cold winds are blowing! Perfect sock weather.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

The Relic Report

It's been a week since Relic's adventure and I'm pleased to say everything is healing quite nicely. He's been cone-free for a few days and has adapted to life as a house cat surprisingly well.
I was hoping we'd be able to convert him to an indoor-only cat. But with  a boy who's been on his own for at least three years... it's just not to be. I managed to keep him in until Tuesday, but by then he was getting pretty squirrelly.

So Tuesday morning I opened the door and off he ran.
But he was back shortly after, looking for a mid-morning snack. In fact, that's become his thing. Back and forth several times a day, grabbing nibbles and maybe a snuggle.
Come evening though, I shut the door and keep him in. He's not overly thrilled at first... but I think he'll get used to it.
And inter-cat relations are going as well as can be expected. He gets along fine with Burton as long as Burton doesn't get too pushy. A quick yell or light swat usually solves any transgressions. He and Peno mostly ignore each other - except for the other night when Peno came down for her usual snuggle with Dave, and found Relic in her spot. Dave got one heck of a look from Peno and I had to take Relic so Dave could go console the old girl.

Rupert and Relic though... well, I don't think they are going to be best friends any time soon. They can occupy the same room without issues most of the time; there's no real over-the-tip aggression where I have to step in (Relic is a surprisingly mellow cat), but Rupert is fond of a good hit-and-run sneak attack.

And don't let that picture above fool you - Rupert is HALF the size of Relic. Relic is a healthy 13.5 lbs of pure muscle, and Rupert is a dainty little 6 lbs 6 oz. If Rupert really pushes things, he's going to come out on the losing end.

I figure things will settle down in a month or so. And who knows... Relic might even join in on Burton and Rupert's nightly game of chase.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017


Though we only said our vows two years ago, it's been 15 years since our first date (and that's the day we count our anniversary from). Like any solid relationship, it's not perfect. There are ups, there are downs... there are times you want to walk away and leave it all behind.
But you quickly realize that life just wouldn't be as good without that person at your side.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Late bloomers

I know I probably sound like a broken record... but it's the middle of October and holy gardens batman! Yes, they are starting to wind down, but there's still a surprising amount of colour out there.
Out front those adorable little Toad Lilies have bloomed.
They are so small but just look at those speckles! I definitely need to get more next year.
The Strawberry Mango Smoothie Coneflower (boy, that's a mouthful) I bought this spring finally bloomed. It was considered a "designer" variety, and quite a bit more  expensive than my usual buys, but since I was using PC points, I splurged, and I'm glad I did. The Coneflowers really bring in the butterflies and this one is a nice unique addition.
The Iceland Poppies started using the Winter Sow method this year are still blooming. They've been such a consistent bloomer, and it's always a little extra thrill knowing you started them from seed.
And KathyB - this one is for you. I was so surprised when I looked out my window yesterday morning and saw the Lupin in bloom! It was a coin toss whether it would bloom this year or not and it was looking like it was going to be not. But I guess the gardens are just full of surprises.  These were started from seed too, so I'm extra proud.
And while insect activity in the backyard has definitely  dwindled - there's still a few industrious Bumblers grabbing what pollen they can. I'm glad my little gardens are a good source for them.