Thursday, February 25, 2010

Knits and stuff

You didn't think I stopped knitting, did you? I did slow down a bit during my Canadian adventure although I was happy to knit on the plane going to and from Canada. One of the flight attendents even commented on my pretty knitting. :)
I did finish a pair of socks before my trip but didn't have the time to take pictures but here they are.

Scandanvian socks.

I absolutely LOVE these socks. They were a bit fiddly to knit because I used 2 different yarns which I carried or alternated on the inside to get this pattern that can be tricky enough but since I knit 2 socks at a time that means 4 balls of yarn and lots of tangles. The 2 yarns make the socks thicker and warmer . These were totally worth all the trouble I went through.
Next is another pair of scrunchie handwarmers. I think these are the 5th or 6th pair I've made and they're great. Use some self striping yarn and it ups the cool factor. :) I finished these this week.
Sorry I'm keeping these for me!
Now to figure out what to knit next...I did buy some yarn while I was in Victoria so I'm eager to try them very soon.
I did miss Valentine's Day with my Cheeseboy(s) which must have been a first in our marriage but we celebrate our love every day (heh)! So leave it to Hector to give me something unusual, unexpected adn totally perfect for me. One year was shooting lessons and gun which is very unusual but I dig it. Who would have thunk it? This year Hector got a subscription to The Hockey News a weekly magazine about hockey (duh) and my sock club membership. Hockey and yarn. My 2 favorite pastimes. A sock club membership through The Loopy Ewe which is very difficult to get into. You enter a lottery and hope for the best. I entered and got a spot. Woo hoo! So every 3 months or so, I receive enough yarn for a pair of socks (from a indie dyer in a limited color) and sock pattern. A nice surprise to anticipate.

My Canadian souvenirs. Not too bad since there were so many things that were so cute. I restrained myself.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

More Vancouver

Our first day trip to Vancouver was Feb.16th when Lupe and I had a very early start. We booked flights on Air Canada from Victoria to Vancouver and the super cheap fares were the first and last flights. That means our flight was a 5:30am (big groan) so our taxi picked us up promptly at 4:15am (double big groan). Taxis are pretty expensive there and it came out to $50 for a ride to the airport vs. the shuttle which is only $11 and unfortunately not available that early.

The flight to Vancouver was super easy and quick (only 15 minutes). Vancouver airport is very clean and we jumped on the Canada line which takes us right into downtown. Of course, it is still early in the morning so the streets are pretty empty of crowds. We had breakfast at Tim Hortons which is are all over the place. After that we walked around the corner and came across a long line in front of a department store called The Bay. Some people in line told us that this is the official Olympic Superstore for clothing and the doors open at 9am. It was only 7 am so we decided to wait and see what was inside. The couple in line in front of us began chatting with us and sharing helpful tips. At 9 am we started moving in and it was crazy. People were grabbing Canada sweatshirts and clothing by the armfuls while Lupe went off to search for the hoodie she wanted. Yikes. I was supposed to look for a USA hockey jersey but the section that we were in was only for Canada apparel and official Olympic related items. I had to leave the fenced off area and was warned that once I leave I'd have to wait in line again to get in. I think I shocked them by saying I didn't want Canada stuff but oh well. There is a lot of really cute Canada clothing but I bought plenty of red Canada mittens in Victoria. The Bay is really huge; 5 floors of stuff and they kept all the other countries clothing etc on the 5th floor (naturally). I saw Russia, Finland, Sweden and finally USA items but the USA jersey was $165  and a bit out of our price range. Lupe and I finally found each other and she got another sweatshirt. Phew, time to get out of there. We heard that the line is long all day long until midnight so we were happy to get in first when items were restocked.
It was almost 10am and time to start heading over to the Canada Hockey Place. We had fun walking through downtown checking out the buildings and sights. There are high rise condo building and offices and people hung Canada flags in the windows. We followed people to the hockey area and noticed a Costco right next door so I made a mental note for lunch the next day. :)
Security checkpoint and we get to enter early for the 12 noon game. Yeah. Hector found us some awesome seats in the 9th row in the corner so I got  a side view of the USA bench too. People started filling in and everyone is very, very nice. We met people from all over the world and saw some strange get-ups. The game was cool since the USA won over Switzerland 3-1.
After the game, it was time to explore! We were told that we MUST try Japa Dog so that's what we did after asking some wondering volunteers and other people. Only a line of 5 people at 3pm and I tried the #1 which is Kurobuta Terimayo with mayo, teriyaki sauce and onions. Absolutely tasty! Of course later in the week I saw at least 3 more features on TV about Japa Dog and the huge lines. Phew! We managed to avoid the lines.
We spent the rest of the day viewing the torch (day and night), gazed at city/harbor views from the Harbor Centre tower (day and night) and checked out Robson square where there is ice skating and a zip line. By 9pm I was extremely tired so we headed back to the airport. Our flight was scheduled for 11:45pm but the nice employees moved us to the 10pm flight at no extra cost. Thank You very much! We walked into the apt at 11:30pm so I went to bed to do Vancouver the next day but that's another story....

Friday, February 19, 2010


The week has flown by and we crammed a lot into our week. Yesterday we visited the Butchart Gardens which is really nice even in the winter. The weather has been fabulous with only a couple days of light rain.
We had to do the whirlwind tour since the last bus to downtown was at 3:30pm so we had an hour and a half to check out the gardens.

Here I am in front of the sunken garden.

Here is one of Loop by the sunken garden.

Japanese garden

More later...

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Vancouver 2010

Just a few pics to show my non-Facebook friends and family...

The view of the hockey rink from our luxury suite.

Amy, a fellow knitter from that I got our tickets from. She and her family welcomed us with open arms.

There a chain link fence keeping us away from the torch but small digital cameras fit through the fence. The next night Brandon and Kat went to the same location and sections have now been cut out so big DSLRs can fit.

Details next week.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Reclaimed yarn

Here is a sweater from Goodwill. 100% wool from Scotland.
It had a big hole that I found later but I was able to get some usuable yarn out of it. Most of the work is separating the seams and unravelling. Only about 1/2 of the sweater was reclaimed.
Crinkly yarn ramen. Into a cool bath, air dried then wound into balls which amounted to about 90 grams of fingering weight yarn (sock yarn).
Pretty in pink but the wool is very scratchy. I bathed a test strip in some hair conditioner and water to soften it up and it was much better. For $5, I got enough yarn for a pair of socks. Really nice sock yarn can go for $30/ skein so I think I did okay.

Tuesday, February 09, 2010


It's raining again... these pics are from the last 5 day storm we had.
Funny, you can see the neighbor's gate...before Hector's truck crashed into it!


While I was at Kathy's place watching the Super Bowl, Hector took the boys to our local mountains to test their new snow racer. Our friend Matt gave us this several years ago when the kids were pretty young so this was the year to take it out of the box and try it out!
It sorta fits both of them and you might be able to see that there is a steering wheel and brakes.
That racer looks pretty fast.
Plenty of fun in the snow....see the great snowman they built?? 

Monday, February 08, 2010

Sk8r Boy

My youngest son, Josh has HFA and he is pretty fearless which brings worry and pride. He does well in sports but lacks focus. Soccer and basketball are sports he enjoys but he doesn't seem to engage in the game. Josh just likes to run back in forth! :)
I got him inline skates for his last birthday and he really tried from the moment he put them on. Falling down didn't faze him at all plus he was padded from head to toe. Pretty soon he was skating around the park over and over. Then I got a chance to take the kids ice skating. Josh was all for it. After a brief period of unsteadiness, he got the hang of it and took off around the rink. For weeks, Joshua kept asking when he was going ice skating again. Then he wanted me to bring his inline skates to the park after school. I finally brought them after all the rains had passed and all the debris, twigs and branches got swept away. He happily skated alongside while Tyler rode his bike.
On Saturday, I took Tyler to the Kings game (9 wins in a row) and Hector took Josh ice skating at the Toyota Center in El Segundo which is a big ice facility where the Kings practice. Unfortunately Hector didn't have a camera with him but Josh had a great time. Apparently Joshua was talking to a little girl while skating and out of nowhere he spun around twice on one foot and kept skating. No falls. Hector said he thought that must have be a fluke but then Josh did his 2 spins again. Wow.
So as soon as basketball is over, I'm looking into getting Josh skating or hockey lessons. I may have found his "thing", he might not be totally focused with hockey but I know he loves skating.
Oh btw, he might have had some ideas about different skating sports because we have Mario and Sonic at the Winter Olympics on the Wii so both boys love figure skating ( yes) and speed skating. I can totally see Josh doing speed skating in real life since he loves to go fast. Hmmm....