Sunday, 22 April 2012

Back to the Knitting Basics

I started knitting about six years ago.  Thanks to and youtube I picked it up super quickly and really enjoyed spending cold winter evenings knitting while watching television.  All day at work I would dream about making a cup of green ginger tea once the kitchen was tidied from supper and setting up the sofa with a cosy blanket, the phone, remote control and whatever knitting project I was working on.  At that point I watched a lot of television shows and it made me feel a bit better knowing that at least I had something to show for the time spent sitting in front of the T.V.  I didn't do any really intense knitting like sweaters or socks or anything, but I made some little pouches, many hats and lots of scarves.  I loved learning knew stitches and had just started learning how to cable when I got pregnant with R.  Then I didn't knit again until a few months ago.  And I had to start over from scratch.  I didn't even remember how to cast on.  So I knit R a little scarf to get back on the waggon. 

Then I made her a  hat, that turned out a little too big but will be great for next year.  After that I came across this pattern by Rebecca Danger for Bunny Nuggets.  They are just so cute and quick to knit up.  I've been having a hard time with my tension and knitting way too tight, and my stitching up skills need some improving but R just loved the first one -so I knit another.  And there is now another one in progress! 

I probably won't do much more knitting now that the weather is getting nicer and I have way too much yard work and outdoor projects to somehow tackle this year with an overactive toddler.  But so glad I dug up my old stash and I definitely won't let myself forget everything again.  It's totally crazy and hard to believe that I'm getting older and forgetting things so easily these days...!

Saturday, 3 March 2012

Happy 2nd Birthday R!

This post is three months late, but since I'm trying to get back into the habit I'm going to edit and post everything in my drafts folder.  Yikes!

I can't believe that this little monkey is two. 

Three different kinds of dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free cupcakes and the best gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free brownies ever.  Thank goodness for "Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World."  I felt like a real hero that day considering everything we were dealing with in the weeks leading up to her party (losing my job, unfinished bathroom reno) and the worst insomnia ever. So happy everything turned out so nicely and everyone had a nice time, especially R!

I LOVE the printable Girly Monkey decorations I bought on Etsy from Paper Glitter.  Sadly with everything that was going on I ran out of time and didn't get to use them all.  But at least R is using all of the leftovers for crafts!

Sunday, 24 July 2011

Time Flies

Today we celebrated T's 12th birthday.  I can't even believe that twelve years ago I was sitting in the hospital holding this cute little loaf of bread wondering what we were going to do with the rest of our lives. 

We had a small BBQ with some close friends and family.  The menu was almost entirely gluten, dairy, egg, soy, and nut free which made it easier for me to relax and let the babe run around and eat socially with our guests.  We had T's birthday cupcakes after R went to bed since I didn't have enough time to make friendly ones for her, and my mom made him "bad" (so bad they're good) cupcakes with real butter cream icing.  The day turned out pretty well considering how last minute it was. 

T loves his new hamburger shirt.. And R somehow managed to get into her
pool an hour before the party, without her bathing suit.

Happy Birthday T!

Friday, 22 July 2011

Chemo and Kitties (A great band name, I think)

I haven’t posted anything in almost two weeks because things have been so hectic around here. But to keep things on track I’ll complain for few minutes before I’m back to the grind.

J started chemotherapy yesterday. He was diagnosed with testicular cancer and had surgery last month. The whole thing was terrifying and super stressful. Thankfully for us, testicular cancer is one of the most curable cancers out there. If caught early (which it was in our case) it is over 95% curable. The doctors he has seen have been wonderful, but we had a real problem with some medical secretaries. I’m not sure if they are all as terrible as the ones we’ve dealt with lately or we’ve just been comparing them to our GP’s best-ever secretary. All of the oncology nurses at our nearest major hospital were really great though, which was more important, and a huge relief.

It was incredibly sad to see some of the chemo patients that are receiving high-dose, long-term treatments. On top of the sadness of being there, we were both uneasy since we weren’t sure how it all worked, and how J might be feeling afterwards (he is quite sick today, and I’m sure the intense heat wave we’ve been experiencing isn’t helping. )Thankfully there were volunteers that walked around and chatted and brought refreshments. Joking around with them really broke our tensions. If I ever win the lottery and don’t have to work anymore I will definitely volunteer some of my time to wear a yellow jacket and hand out drinks and cookies. And donate lots of money, of course!

I bought J some new outdoors magazines beforehand and brought some knitting that I haven’t touched in ages to pass the time, but we mostly chatted with an elderly woman who was alone, and constantly sucking on an electronic cigarette. This thing was really neat, and looked about 80% real (100% from a distance) and every time someone walked through the door, she would (in a raspy Irish accent) say, “It’s a fake, it’s a fake, it’s not real, eh? Its okay.” She was a real character and obviously a real hit with the nurses. I couldn’t believe how many patients there were without friends or family with them. Being there is terrible enough, but alone?

When we got home R was grumpy because our cat Russia kept meowing during her nap. My friend had been babysitting for us and couldn’t figure out what her deal was, and tried her best to calm the cat with no success. An hour later she gave birth to a kitten on my bedroom floor. She is six years old, and we never had her spayed since she only went into heat once for about two days when she was a year old, and not since. She’s mostly an indoor cat, and only goes out into the yard with us during the daytime. There was one night in the spring that she accidentally got left outside until morning, but since she was clean, and (very) angry with us when she came inside we figured she had hid under the back porch all night cursing us. This still might have been the case, since I’m rooting for the possibility of Immaculate Conception. Whatever the case, she didn’t look pregnant at all, just like she put on a few pounds… I’m not stupid, and I’ve seen many pregnant cats in my day, with their wide lumpy guts and swollen teats, and she was nothing like that. I can’t remember when the (perhaps magical) night was, so it’s possible that she delivered early. I feel really bad that we will now have to find homes for four kittens in 8-10 weeks.

With this new cancer scare, J’s family being ridiculous, existing dietary issues, unfinished renovations and now unexpected kittens…I’ve been feeling a bit overwhelmed. It’s hard to fall asleep at night because my mind is running on about things to be done, and things that can’t be done right now. Hoping things settle down over the next few days since T’s 12th birthday is on Sunday and my sister and her daughter are moving home from South Korea on Monday after almost 10 years. I’m going to try my best to get organized over the remainder of the summer and set some real solid goals for the fall.

And selfishly, even though I feel guilty about contributing to the cat population in our region, I’m sort-of-kind-of-maybe looking forward to having some cute kitties roaming the house in a few weeks.

Monday, 11 July 2011

Happy Belated Birthday Canada

This Canada day was very quiet.  I wasn’t up for any company, and since none of our close family or friends was planning anything either, I decided to take the day to just stay home and relax.  We did get one BBQ invite from an old friend, but I declined just to avoid the food allergy explanation…. and to avoid chasing a toddler around making sure she doesn’t grab a cheesy or nut, or any other allergens that like to hang out at BBQs.  

I’m so glad we stayed home. It was a well-deserved, restful day. Having no work, no errands and no visitors for a day doesn’t happen very often.  We sat on the patio, ate lots of fresh blueberries, and made some baked french-fries. 

So even though this is a very super late Canada Day post, uploading pictures within two weeks of taking them is a big improvement for me.  I’d like to get into the habit of clearing the camera every week so I don’t run out of space. 

Saturday, 2 July 2011

First Blog. First Post.

For most of my life I’ve wanted to become better at three things.  Writing, photography and cooking.  I’m hoping that this blog will inspire me to put forth more effort in all of these areas. 

I’ve been following a list of blogs for several months now, and I made a decision before the new year that if I didn’t get productive and start my own blog, I wouldn’t allow myself to spend several hours a week reading about other people’s lives.  To be clear, it hasn’t been time wasted.  The blogs I have been following have been specific to new challenges I was faced with shortly after my second child was born.  After hundreds of hours scouring the internet for information, facts and statistics, it was the stories of other parents with allergic children that provided real comfort and reassurance that everything would be okay. 

So I’ll be honest when I say I haven’t written any more than a few sappy birthday cards in many, many years.  My grammar isn’t great and I seldom remember to spell check my work.  I’m not very organized, so sometimes my posts won’t make perfect sense.  But at this point in my life I’m going avoid wasting anymore time trying to make things perfect (like the box of picture frames in my basement that I haven’t decided just how to arrange…) and start posting.