Monday, September 28, 2009


I should be sitting on the couch right now, knitting Maxime a pair of mittens and watching last week's Heroes. But I got all my Amelia pictures from my stepfather, and I just couldn't wait to show you.
I've been having quite a bit of fun with the Mosaic Maker, it gives just the right amount of Artsy Fartsy-ness to this project, which is officially my favourite finished object EVER!

What can I say about this project? You know, other than that I LOVE it. Love the pattern, love the yarn (OMG, if you've never worked with Madelinetosh Tosh Worsted, you really don't know what you're missing. It's just scrumptious).

I knit the pattern as written, except I made the body a little longer (because my body is, well, a little longer than average). It's flattering, girly, the perfect thing to throw on on a crisp Fall day and still look feminine and put together. I highly recommend it (in case there was any doubt).

I'll leave you with the money shot.

Happy Knitting Everyone!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Hand Jive

Boy, am I beat. It's shaping up to be a DORMA week, rather than a DORMA-day, but I know a few of you are wondering how Phil's hand surgery went on Thursday, so I'm writing a quick post now, even though the couch is playing our song, heh.

So! It turns out that he had tendon AND nerve damage, but they were able to repair it, and barring any complications, he should retain full use and feeling in that finger. It really is quite a painful procedure, so he wasn't exactly in great spirits on Friday and Saturday. Well.... that changed when we went to celebrate his birthday on Saturday and got to enjoy a dance with a Brazilian Carnaval dancer!
As you can see, he really can Walk like an Egyptian ;)

By the end of the evening, we had all developed a sympathetic hand limp.

All joking aside, it was a fun evening. Good food (SO much food), good people, good company.

Earlier that day I visited my mom and step-dad, who also happens to be an amateur photographer, and we took a few pictures...

I'll tell you all about it... next time :)

Happy Knitting Everyone!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

More Candy

I've got a good two and a half hours of alone time this morning, during which time I plan to drink tea, have a second breakfast, and KNIT. Bliss! Unfortunately, the downside is that this afternoon I'll be accompanying Phil to the hospital, where he'll be having surgery on the FrankenFinger to repair the tendon and nerve damage he suffered last week. The surgery is fairly simple, apparently, but the recovery will be long and drawn out, natch. He'll be wearing an Arm Brace from Hell (I think that the technical name for it) for the next 12 weeks, with his hand completely immobilized for the next month. No more Guitar Hero in this house for a good long while!

So today I want to talk about buttons. When the Fall Twist Collective came out a few weeks ago, I was immediately smitten with the Piper hat, and thought wouldn't it be great to find a kickass vintage button for it. Then when I finished Amelia (pictures coming soon, I promise!), I had a really particular idea about the kind of button I wanted to give her just the right finishing touch. I had buttons on the brain, people, and it was time to pay my mother a visit and hijack her Bucket o' Buttons.
Ever since I was a little girl, I have coveted this bucket. I mean... just look at it! First off, it's got CANDY on it. Not only that, but it's got this whole illusion thing going on where the bucket has a picture of another bucket, which has another picture of a bucket on it, and so on and so on.... Fascinating (you know, when you're seven).

And in it were hundreds of what I considered to be jewels for me to sort through and categorize and count and play with. Honestly, getting my hands on this bucket was always a special treat, so I was really looking forward to diving into it now and finding the perfect vintage buttons to give my projects just the right effect.

Now, I've got to be honest. Most of the buttons in there weren't that great. I'd say about 80% were my grandfather's old dress shirt buttons, your standard white plastic schtick.

But there were a few in there that, even though they didn't work for the projects I had in mind at the time, I still got a kick out of looking at. And who knows, I might just find the right project for them someday.
Happy Knitting Everyone!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

I've got a good reason

I know, I haven't posted in a week, and I'm sorry. Yeah, yeah, broken record much? I hear ya. But read on, gentle.... uh.... reader. You'll see I had a good reason.

So, last time we spoke I regaled you with the tale of my incredible athletic achievement at the 10km race of the Montreal Marathon.

Next day I had choir practice (oh yeah, I decided not to quit choir after all), but hey, I've never been a once-a-day blogger, right? And Tuesday..... well, Tuesday the fit really hit the shan.

As we were sitting down to dinner, Phil was moving a flower vase out of the way on the dining room table when it broke in his hand and cut his left ring finger very badly. Very, very badly. We had to take him to the emergency room right away, it was bleeding so much.

The FrankenFinger

The kids were pretty freaked out, heck... I was pretty freaked out! It was a bit scary. Anyway, they stitched him up for now, but it looks as though he has tendon and/or nerve damage, so he's got an appointment with a plastic surgeon on Tuesday. *Sigh*

Tuesday wasn't all bad, of course. I mean... Little Miss Enabler was born on Tuesday!!! and you know what that means... I can FINALLY tell you about the garment I knit for her.

I knit her the Helena cardigan, using sumptuous Tanis Fiber Arts DK weight yarn in the Jewel colourway. I really like knitting cardis for babies, and this one was a really fun, enjoyable knit with a special details that really made the outfit precious.

I had plenty of yarn leftover (sadly, not enough to knit MYSELF a matching cardigan), so I decided on a whim to knit a little hat to go with it (y'all remember how THAT turned out).

I got to meet the Little Miss this afternoon (her name is Bronwyn Evangeline, a bit of a mouthful for my francophone children - and husband!), and I can just tell it's going to look fabulous on her.

I've got lots more to share with you all, but I'm going to call it quits for tonight. It's been a bit of a DORMA day, and I'm knackered.

Happy Knitting Everyone!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

The Race

Back in high school, we had an event every year called the "Olympiades", sort of an Olympics day, and I usually skipped it. I wasn't much for competitive sports, as a rule. But my senior year I decided that, not only wouldn't I cut class on that day, I would sign up for the toughest event there was, the 2400 meter run.

I trained for weeks to prepare, and actually ended up winning a bronze medal. Of course, there were 5 of us in the race to begin with, and 2 dropped out after about 1600 meters. I walked the last 300 meters, heh.

Fast forward 17 years, and high on my recent fitness success, I decided to sign up for the 10km race of the Montreal Marathon. I knew the half-marathon was waaay beyond my reach, but the 5 km race seemed to easy somehow... I hadn't run since high school, but I thought : Just stop dreaming about it and "wouldn't it be cool if"-ing about it, and just DO it.

And today was the day. The weather was perfect (not TOO hot), and at precisely 8:45 AM, 2733 of us began our race.

I wish I could describe the feeling of running your first race. Even when you're really not racing it to WIN it, it's still exhilarating. I'm so accustomed to running on my own, only hearing my own footsteps, my own breathing. But this morning there were THOUSANDS of us! It took about 2 km before the crowd thinned out and I could really focus on my own pace and breathing.

I know you're all wondering how I did, if I accomplished my goals...
  1. I finished the race :)
  2. I did indeed finish the race without stopping to walk :)
  3. And I did indeed finish within 60 minutes.
Wait... that's an understatement. According to Sportstat, my race time was 52:43.3, and my "chip time" (actual time from start to finish) was... 51:37.2!!!! 60 minutes? Pshaw! I finished 19th out of 284 women in my age group (30-34), 100th out of 1413 women, and 501st out of 2733 participants in the race. Not too shabby for my first time out, if I do say so myself.

Happy Knitting, Everyone!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

3 Goals

On June 6th I went out for my first run since high school. I ran for 16 minutes without stopping, roughly 2.5 km, and was quite amazed that I'd been able to manage it. I've tried to run 3-4 times a week ever since, gradually increasing my time and distance, in preparation for the 10km race of the Montreal Marathon.

The race is tomorrow, I'm super excited and nervous and - yes - even a bit scared. What if I can't do it? What if I get a cramp? What if I have to pee? :)

All kidding aside, I've got 3 goals for tomorrow's race:

  1. Finish the race
  2. Run the entire race without stopping or walking
  3. Finish the race within 60 minutes.
If I achieve these goals, I think I might earn the right to call myself a Runner. And who knows where that will take me next?

Happy Knitting Everyone!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Tap Tap Tap

Is this thing on?

Wow, it's a good thing I've got this whole blogging thing under control, eh? My last post was - yeee Gads - 9 days ago! I don't think I've ever neglected you this long, I'm sorry. Phil was sick (actually, he was very sick), work was crazy, and I still don't have the hang of the new routine with Émilie in school.

The good news is that Phil seems to be on the mend (knock on wood). Work is finally calming down, and can I get an Amen? The site redesign I was in charge of went online last week, the Web newsletter we launched went online yesterday, and everything seems to be running smoothly.

Émilie is adapting very well to kindergarten and Maxime seems to be adapting well to her absence at daycare. We're still not 100% on the new routine, and it'll probably change again once the homework starts rolling in (yes, she will have homework even though she's only in kindergarten), but we're getting there.

All that to say, things will be getting back to normal shortly. Thanks for sticking with me.

There's a definite crispness to the air lately. Fall is coming, and right on her heels is that frosty bastard, Winter. I'm going to be prepared this year, I tell you. I've vowed that the entire Dear family will be happily clad in handknit mittens, hats and scarves! I've been going through my Ravelry queue and the stash and have already cast on a hat for Émilie, Tretta (Ravlink)by Grumperina. I might also have to pick up the Fall Vogue Kniting, there are a lot of cute hats in there!

The good news is that, at least as far as hats and scarves go, the stash is, um, well endowed enough to provide multiple options, heh. But I'm sadly lacking in the fingering weight solids department, something I really need for the mittens I want to make for myself and my loved ones (Hello Selbuvotter! Do you hear me knockin'?). I had been counting on KnitPicks Palette samplers, but they don't appear to be available on their site anymore. Booooh!

Happy Knitting Everyone!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Taking Shape

This is the week where it's all going to come together into one magical moment and I'll finally have a handle on everything. Or at least, that's what I keep telling myself. It helps me get through the day. The big project at work, the new routine with Émilie's school, housework... I don't know why, but it feels as if this week I'm at the finish line. Never mind that while I focus all my attention on these specific issues, I'm letting an increasingly large pile of "little, unimportant tasks" accumulate behind me.

But at least I'm staying on track as far as blogging goes, right? I think this "taking pictures ahead of time" thing was a stroke of freakin' genius on my part!

Amelia is coming along swimmingly. I finished the second sleeve over the weekend and gleefully joined the whole kit and kaboodle on one circular needle, and am now knitting the temporary-crazy inducing raglan-decreases-while-simultaneous-buttonhole-making-while-simultaneous-neckline shaping.

I'm really looking forward to this project being finished. Not because I'm sick of knitting it (can I just say? Madelinetosh Tosh Worsted is so scrumptious!), but because the weather has turned decidedly Fall-like in Montreal, and it'll be wonderful to have a cozy cardigan to wear when going out. I honestly think I might burst of pride the first time someone asks me if I made it myself.

I'm also making very good progress on my Vesper Jaywalker (Ravlink) sock. Gosh this is a quick knit! I'm well past the gusset decreases as of this morning, and I only cast on August 14th. I know that might not seem like fast progress at all, but you have to remember that I really only knit on this sock in the subway on my way to work, roughly 20 minutes a day.

I really like the Vesper yarn a lot, this is my first project with Knitterly Things' yarn and it's quite soft. She has a lovely colour in her latest update, called Rawhide, that I'm trying to rationalize purchasing on the basis that it'd be great for Phil, heh. I'm resisting.... so far.

Happy Knitting Everyone!