The Little Things: Summer To-Do List

Trillium, Ontario's provincial flower, are currently blanketing the forest floors. Reason enough, to get out and hike! I took this last week at Lemoine Point Conservation Area. Click to see better detail : )

I am so excited about our growing, Summer to-Do List! Phill and I both love the outdoors, hiking, camping and nature. Now that we are living back in Kingston, we have an ever growing list of things we want to do in and around the area. I grew up here, and there are lots of places I want to re-visit with my husband, as well as lots of things I never did. Sometimes when you are from a place, you see less of it then you mean to. Here is our list as it stands right now:

  • Camping, camping, camping!!! (always the top item on our list.)
  • Yurt camping at Charleston Lake Provincial Park. (We are going to check the yurts out this week when we are hiking at the park.)
  • Spelunking at the Warsaw Caves. (I did this in Grade 8 and have always wanted to go back.)
  • Day trip to Sandbanks Provincial Park  (beach and swimming on a  hot day.)
  • Upper Canada Village. (We will be there on June 10th, Phill’s birthday, for the Medieval Festival.)
  • Boldt Castle (one of my most favourite places on earth. We took Phill’s parents here last year two years ago,wow, but we have never been there just the two of us. Romantic picnic day?)
  • Phill would like to take a kayaking course. (I’d love to do this with him but I have a fear of small boats.)
  • Hiking, hiking, hiking (We started our hiking for the year in February, but we are up for plenty more. There are so many great trails in our area.)
  • Cycling (I admit it is my fault we don’t do this as much as we could. I am a wimp when it comes the bike riding.)

We have our weeks filling up already. I am looking so forward to it. Something else I also love about our list is that we have a strict rain or shine policy about it. For instance we are going to Charleston Lake on Tuesday to hike and check out the yurts, and there is a rainfall warning. Wellies and ponchos it is! (Often we like doing things even better when it rains because there are less people around!) Expect lots of pictures of our summer adventures as the weeks go on : )

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Oh, life.

General update of the happenings that make up my life.

First off, I am back to work. This both simplifies and complicates things… but we are not going to get into that.

Secondly, I have decided to go back to school. I want to shift my role in my job into something more training and developement based and I am going to be doing some upgradeing to help that along. I am both excited and nervous about this.

Now that the mundane and genereally uninteresting update is done, now we can talk about fun stuff!!!

I completed my 40-Day Yoga challenge on April 22nd. My final tally was 35/40 days completed. I am really happy with that result. It was hard, but I really stuck to it and as a suprise, Phill bought me another unlimited pass for doing so well on my challenge. (Love that guy!) I am averaging 5 classes per week and am still loving it.

Our hotel rooms for Rhinebeck are booked! I am crazy excited about it already and jsut can’t freaking wait to go to the festival! We already have 2 camping trips set up for June and July and we are hoping to sneek away sometime this month as well.

We had our first mini-vacation of the year last weekend, UFC 129 in Toronto.

We had a great time and it was really cool to be a part of the first ever UFC held in Ontario and be a part of the largest UFC ever to date.

The entire fight card was great. We saw some amazing knockouts. And even though GSP is my favourite, I have to say that the Hominick/Aldo fight was my fight of the ngiht. I have to give it up to Mark Hominick, the guy is a warrior. He didn’t win, but damn did he ever not give up.

Mark's poor, poor face and head.

And as far as the George St. Pierre and Jake Sheilds fight went it was a good fight that ended the way everyone thoguht it would : ) And wow, the fan support for GSP was so amazing. Defening even. I am not very expereinced in how sporting events generally work, I only like MMA and wrestling mainly, but I would say that not much could match the hometown/country pride heard at Rogers Center that night.

We will definetly be attending any UFC that comes to Ontario from now on.

On our way home on Sunday we met up with Matt and Lara and spent the day at the Toronto Zoo, which is one of our favourite places, ever.  It was a very rainy day, but we had a great time and the Red Panda even made an appearance for us.

He is usually hiding in the trees whenever we are at the zoo.

We ended the day with some awesome Korean BBQ and then made the drive home. (We were sooo exhausted by the time we got there.)

And in knitting news, I have completed my first ever sock!

It was not as scary as I though and I am hoping to get the second one done soon.

I am going to end this blog off with a picture that makes me very happy. Sneed, Toki and Hoss are all doing great and are such great brothers. I am so very glad that we got the babies. They are bringing us so much joy and entertainment. Sneed even loves them. They are growing like monsters and I am pretty sure that we are going to have the biggest cats anyone has ever seen.

Our sweet boys.

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Stash Busting 2011: The Next Level

I have not bought a single skein or ball of yarn since announcing my yarn diet on January 19th. I must say, I am impressed with myself. Its a big deal. Really, it is. And because I have been doing so well, not buying, knitting up my stash I decided to up the stakes. I vow to not buy any yarn until October 15th, 2011. Why October 15th you may ask? RHINEBECK BABY!!!! YEAH!!!! Phill and I are headed five and a half hours south to the Duchess County Sheep & Wool Festival in Rhinebeck, New York, October 15th and 16th. Last year it was already too late to go once I figured out how close we were now. But this year, we are there! And it would be impossible (and cruel) for me not to buy yarn at Rhinebeck. So, I figure, if I want it that bad, I can wait until the festival. Go big or go home… or go to Rhinebeck and buy a disgusting amount of yarn and then go home.

And to make this even more interesting, over the summer I am going to try and knit Phill and I each a sweater to wear at the festival.

Speaking of knitting, I have been getting some done. Not as much as usual though becasue my new job and my yoga challenge have been taking up a lot of my time, but soon everything will regulate and knitting will return to normal. Here are a few things I have been working on.

I started my first pair of socks! (WIP)

I have made quite a few tinkle ball cozies. This one being modeled by the lovely Mishka.

I made a cover for my Kobo E-reader.

I made a black hat full of hatred and angst, at the request of a teenaged boy.

I am excited to start some new projects soon and I am already dreaming about the Rhinebeck experience. Come on October! (Also, our 3rd wedding anniversary is on the 12th of October so we will have to throw some romantical stuff in there as well while we are out of twon : )

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30 Days of Lists: Week #4… and a half.

The 30 Days of Lists project is now complete! It was very fun and very interesting. I really enjoyed sorting through my photos and seeing pictures that I had practically forgotten about. Every picture that I used in this project was taken by me with the exceptions of List #20, which is a collage of celebrities and List #28, which my husband took of me in Honduras. This has reminded me that I don’t take near as many pictures as I used to and that I should rectify that.

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The Little Things: Knitting Patterns Published

This week, I published my first knitting patterns. It is not like they are in a book or magazine or anything but thousands of people from around the world will be viewing them on Ravelry. Already they have generated a lot of interest and I am really happy that people seem to like them.

 

The first design is a Tinkle Ball Cozy.

This is a very quick project and can be made with very small amounts of left over worsted weight yarn.

Tinkle balls are the ultimate cat toy. They are cheap and cats LOVE them. But, they are annoying, especially if you have hardwood floors. Clackety-clack-clack-clack. So I set out to make everyone happy, kitties and humans.

These cozies allow the tinkle balls to roll, tinkle and still be very fun for cats, but without the racket of the hard plastic on the floor. Another benefit is that they do not fly so far when pounced on and not a one has been lost under the TV stand since the cozies went on. I have noticed that my cats have even more fun with them now because they can easily pick them up in their mouths and with their feet and move them around. Mine like to put them in their beds and baskets with them.

This pattern is very easily adapted to any number of desired tinkle balls.

You can view or download this pattern, here:

The second pattern is a slip-cover for a Kobo E-reader.

I wanted a very simple slip cover for my Kobo, so that when I tossed it in my bag it would have a nice little buffer around it.
This pattern calls for a DK weight yarn. The yarn that you choose should have some stretch to it so that the yarn will hug the Kobo nicely. I used Mirasol Yarns Hacho, which is perfect for this project, but has sadly been discontinued.

You can view or download this pattern, here:

 

I am really excited about having published some patterns and I am really looking forward to publishing some more. I started out small with some non-garment items but I hope to publish some more complex patterns in the future.

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30 Days of Lists: Week #3

My 30 Days of Lists Flickr set can be viewed HERE.

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The Little Things: Seven Days of Yoga

Seven days ago I began a 40 day yoga challenge at Feel Yoga here in Kingston. Today I completed 7 days of yoga. I did 5 Bikram classes, 1 Ashtanga class and 1 Yin class. Bikram was the first yoga I ever tried and I have been hooked on it since. I tried both Ashtanga and Yin for the first time this week. I was personally not very fond of the Ashtanga. I found it was very hard on my ankles and wrists and I really missed the hot room. Yin yoga on the other hand I LOVED! I felt so stretched out and flexible afterwards. Happy and clear as well, which I attribute to the lovely, bubbly yet mellow instructor, Bonita. I am really proud of myself for completing my first 7 days, and I am looking very forward to completing my next 7.

I can feel my muscles getting stronger… let alone getting stronger, I can actually feel that they are there! I can see changes in my body, and the roundness coming out already. I love the instant motivation that doing Bikram gives me. When I can see and feel results on day one, it makes me want to go every day. I also have far more energy then I usually do and have been feeling much more positive. (Something I am also working on.) Other changes that have come along naturally with all this is being more conscious of what I eat and when. (I am terrible for not eating until about 3:00 p.m.)

All and all, this experience has been great so far. It is most definitely the best thing I have done for myself in a long time.

PS ~ I lost 5 pounds this week!

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