Thursday, June 30, 2011

Yarn Obsessed

Lately I've become obsessed with yarn. 

I know, I know... what is up with that eh?! 

Alright let me explain... :  I'm currently in the process of stitching the family Christmas ornaments on plastic canvas which, again this year, will be one pattern but in multiple colours.  Unfortunately I can't really elaborate much on that because last year I accidentally gave away what the ornament was by posting it on my flickr page before I mailed them out! 

Duh!  Guess I just wasn't the brightest bulb on the tree last year eh! 

I've got 9 ornaments to stitch but I usually make 12.  Sometimes the extra ones get stitched and given to church members, sometimes they don't get stitched at all and end up in the scrap plastic canvas bin.  So far I've got 7 stitched. 

In my yarn stash I had quite a wide array of colours but I wanted colours I hadn't used yet so I went on a shopping trip to buy a new yarn, or two, or three... you get the picture!  I have since become obsessed with yarn. 

My yarn stash has grown and I recently discovered a specialty yarn store not far from my home!  Oh yippee, yahoo... hooray!!!  My empty wallet says thank you!

Anyway, this past weekend I took some crochet lessons on YouTube to learn how to Zig Zag stitch an afghan which will use up a good helping of this yarn stash.  But now I've seemed to become interested in knitting slippers like mom used to make. 

I remember mom always made us slippers with big pom poms on them.  They didn't look quite like these but were similar only they were fluffier like watermelons (well we called em watermelon slippers anyway)... I searched the internets but couldn't find an image of them but I do have an old photo I'll scan and post later so you'll know what I mean.

Anyway, I think I'm about to get out and learn how to knit slippers!  And believe me, I don't know how to knit a stitch!  So wish me luck! 

At this rate I'll have a kabazillion works in process!  Perhaps I should finish something first before starting something new? 

Nah!  Where's the fun in that!


Wednesday, June 29, 2011

It's A Grand Ole Hodgepodge

Wednesday Hodgepodge is brought to you today by From This Side Of The Pond
Did I mention how much I enjoy Wednesday Hodgepodge?  Well, you will too, so click the link, follow her blog and join in the ever so addictive fun! 


Blog hops are a great way to get to know folks from other sides of the pond *shugs shoulders*

click the link... go ahead, you know you want to!!! 





It's A Grand Ole Hodgepodge! 


1. What makes you stand to your feet and cheer?


Football, Hockey & Soccer!  Those games are so stressful I can't help but stand up and cheer... it beats staying put in my seat and biting my nails. 


2. What's your favorite patriotic song?

 Um... O Canada I guess. 


 
3. Do you believe that opposites attract? If you have a significant other are you opposites?


Sure why not.  Tony and I aren't exactly opposites though we're pretty much alike in many ways.

4. You're going to get a behind the scenes look someplace-where would you like that someplace to be?


I'd like a behind the scenes look at our government.  Sure I could sit and watch that channel that nobody really ever watches unless they're looking for a cure for insomnia but that doesn't give me any details.  I'd like to know for sure that those folks in parliament aren't just entering a room then taking a seat and talking just to hear their voice.  I want to know that they actually have notes or discussions off to the side about real issues.  I want to know if government really cares about the taxpayer.  Ok so they probably don't but I can dream can't I?

5. How far would you have to travel to ride a carousel (merry-go-round)?


I'd have to head over the bridge to LaRonde.  That's a theme park owned by Six Flags I believe.  They have a carousel there, not sure if it's only for kids but how hard could it be to talk a niece or nephew to hit that ride with me?  Not hard at all.

6. When was the last time you saw fireworks? What was the occasion? Do you enjoy fireworks?


We had fireworks last week for FĂȘte Nationale (the Quebec national holiday that was last Friday even though Quebec isn't a nation but anyway, there still were fireworks because some Quebecers are in denial I suppose).

7. Of all the 'beauty products' you own, what item do you consider to be the most overpriced?


I paid 8 dollars for a mascara that was supposed to make my lashes look longer and fuller and all it really does is make them look darker.  I didn't get my $8 worth, perhaps $4 but definitely not $8.

8. Insert your own random thought here.

I seem to have become addicted to Earl Grey Tea.  It tastes rather lovely.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Project 365: June 12-24

I haven't done too bad with taking the photos for Project 365 these past couple days, my problem still lies with the posting of them in a prompt manner but that will soon change I hope.

Project 365 button designed by http://richgift.blogspot.com
Project 365 is hosted by Make Music From Your Heart To The Lord.  It's a great blog hop and a great way to see how folks go about their day to day living... get to see their neck of the woods and share in family traditions, vacations, or down time.  Basically it's a pretty neat idea so why not click her link, follow her blog and join in!
So here goes my update continuing from where I left off since I have no clue what week I'm up to.
Monday June 13

On my morning run which has become something I truly look forward to each weekday, I've been stopping and taking photos of gardens and deciding who has the best garden that day.  Well on this day this was the prettiest one I seen.  I like how the few flowers are nestled beneath the tiny tree.


That morning I didn't run as long as usual because I wasn't feeling all that great.  I was tired, had a slight headache and major PMS so I only clocked in at 19 minutes and ran just over a mile and a half. 


I really like this little app that keeps track of my distance, calories burned, time and also maps my location.  I won't show the map of my location even though I run through many neighbourhoods simply for change of scenery.


I'm slowly starting to see some progress (either that or I've stopped being so hard on myself).  I can see a waistline appearing though I still resemble a "pear".   *giggles*

Tuesday June 14

It's been a couple of months since the city announced that all the potholes were filled. 
Liar liar pants on fire!!!


This pothole is big enough to swallow a Smart Car or a Volkswagon Beetle.  Ok maybe not but it's pretty big and deep too.

Seen some pretty flowers on my run today.
Wednesday June 15
I couldn't miss today's flowerbed even if I wanted to.  It was so bright and pretty.  I spoke with the owner of this garden when he seen me photographing it.  I had to tell him I found his garden to be the loveliest today so he said I should thank his gardener but she was in having her coffee (he meant his wife)... I had a giggle at that and he said he'd pass on the message!


One full week after the wind and rain storm that hit Montreal and knocked over trees... some of the trees were still noticiably in the street waiting to be removed!  One thing about Montreal, it all depends on which neighbourhood you reside in.  Some neighbourhoods cleaned up the fallen tree debris the next day or even within three or four days but there's always one borough that will leave things a hot mess until you either call, send nasty emails or land yourself on their doorstep with an angry look threatening not to vote for them in the next election to get something done! 


One week is unacceptable for this.  The city guy with his big truck passed by twice and both times instead of just hawling off the tree branch he "fixed the orange pilons that toppled over".  Sad, so sad.

Thursday June 16

On my morning run I got winded and had to stop, catch my breath, pick my lungs up off the ground and I heard the trees singing.  Not just the birds in the trees but the wind through the trees.  Sounded lovely so I snapped the photo of the tree.


When I got under way again I spotted a nice wishing well on someones lawn.  I was tempted to go throw a nickle in and make a wish but with my luck they would either release the hounds at me (probably some small dog that would cling to my ankle) or they'd call the cops stating some sweaty unsighly woman was lurking around their front yard. 


I also spotted a tiny baby sparrow in the street.  I thought he was hurt because it looked like he couldn't fly but I was wrong... check out the video I took and listen to the birds!


Friday June 17

I took the bus this morning and the grafitti scratched into the window was disgusting.  Eventually these vandal-kids will get jobs and check out their pay stubs and question why 24% of their hard earned pay goes to the government.... then I'll step up and tell them it's to pay to clean up stuff like that and I'll point to this photo. 


Though the grafitti was awful, the sunrise was supurb!


On my way home I listened to some birds sing, chased a squirrel...


And saw another rabbit.  I'm still not used to seeing wild stray rabbits in the city.


Later in the day I got my hair cut again and spotting  the neighbourhood garden was renovated.  I liked how it turned out!  Folks who live in apartment complexes don't have access to yards where they can plant vegetable gardens so the city offers up some, though at a cost, they obviously go over quite well with the gardeners.


Saturday June 18

I made muffins!  I had this recipe I'd found online a while back that was for an Oatmeal Date Walnut cake.  The first time I made the recipe I followed it and made it as a cake as intended but something about it being a cake just didn't go over very well.  It crumbles as a cake when you cut into it but it tastes so delightful I thought it would be better as a muffin. 


I have since always made this recipe as a muffins.  It makes 12 full muffins.  They are great as a breakfast replacement or an early morning snack and are high in fiber (my inner pipes like that!).  I kept six and gave six to my eldest sister.  She loved them!

 

Monday June 20th

Sidewalk repair has begun.  I got next to no sleep for a couple of days because the city jackhammers were tearing up the sidewalks and replacing them.  I really shouldn't complain since I trip over the broken sidewalks from time to time but lack of sleep made me cranky.


The highlight of this day was when my coworker brought me a loaf of home made whole wheat bread.  This is awsome when toasted!!!!


Tuesday June 21

Look at this lovely rose bush!



Wednesday June 22

There were some unusual plants adorning the front lawn of a house I ran across today.  I really liked them enough to photograph them.  I should have gotten closer, they look alien like in this photo but up close they look like giant Aloe plants.


Friday June 24

Today was a long weekend holiday for us.  It's a Quebec only holiday (not Canada wide).  The FĂȘte Nationale holiday (though Quebec isn't a nation but anyway).  I didn't do much Friday.  It rained all day and I mean RAINED!!! Poured from the heavens!  I got drenched coming home from work in the morning but still went out for a run.  Saw sprinklers on watering a lawn... IN THE POURING RAIN... didn't make sense to me but anyway.  I spent most of the day asleep.  Woke up around 3:30pm.  We had roast beef for dinner because Tony had the day off and was quiet as a mouse so I could sleep so I figured the least I could do is cook the man a delightful dinner.  Later in the evening I took some crochet lessons from Youtube and began the ZigZag stitch of an afghan that will use up most if not all of my left over yarn.  See I got one row done! 


And that should bring me up to date!  Until next week! 

Take care and God bless!




Thursday, June 23, 2011

Mail Call

So for the past couple weeks Canada Post has been on strike or lock out or whatever. 

Bottom line is I'm not getting any mail

I purchased an afghan crochet hook from Mary Maxim and won some craft supplies on ebay but haven't received anything thanks to the strike.  To add insult to injury, I can't really purchase anything else on ebay as some sellers are posting "not available to Canada" due to the strike which makes sense since some buyers tend to get uptight and post negative feedback if they don't receive the item in a timely manner and won't even begin to take into consideration that the mail service is halted!  *shaking my head in disbelief*

I've been keeping tabs on the news reports and I'm not sure I want to really voice an opinion on this because I can sort of see both sides of the argument but here goes anyway:

  •  - One side wants increase in wages (but in my opinion there are many folks who would just be grateful to have a job at this point since their unemployment is either running out or ran out or are just getting back to work after being off for months from a previous layoff).

  • - The other side wants the workers back on the job because it's stressing the Canadian economy (loss of sales which will cause companies to downsize and more layoffs that will effect the unemployement rate). 

See, tough to choose a side on this.  Yup, sure I want my merchandise from ebay and Mary Maxim and I also want my back issues of magazines that are piling up (they can keep the Hydro, Gaz and Phone bills ... better yet, they can pay them!) 

Seriously though, imagine how many people don't have automatic withdrawal for their bills or those who dont receive their invoices via email... their accounts could possibly show late payment even if the payment is stuck in the mail or they don't receive a bill to take to the bank and pay!  And what about those who don't have direct deposit for their pension cheques (though Canada Post says those are being processed I still have to wonder about that).

sigh. 

Tough situation for everyone meanwhile small courier companies are profiting by scooping up customers who are left high and dry by Canada Post.  The good thing is at least those small businesses won't be laying off employees anytime soon. 

A Minute In Susan's Mind

Note to self:  Hand sanitizer and paper cuts do not mix well.

Ouch!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Wednesday Hodgpodge: Sunshine And Summertime

It's Wednesday... it's Wednesday!!!
Yippy,
yahoo,
horray!!!



Wednesday Hodgpodge is brought to you by From This Side Of The Pond.

Click the link,
follow her blog,
join the fun and become addicted to it like me!

This week's Hodgpodge is all about Sunshine and Summertime....



8. Insert your own random thought here.

Believe it or not, I am doing this question FIRST. I know it's crazy but I get stressed out and draw a blank when it comes time to instert a random thought here.... now as for my random thought... I hope Wednesday I will be able to get some sleep during the day and that those city workers with their jackhammers are done tearing up the street in front of my bed. Yes that did sound like it came from a cranky woman now didn't it... sigh... sorry, I'm going on only 3 hours of sleep.

1. Summer's here-whoohoo! What's your favorite sight, sound, AND smell associated with summer?

I love the summer sunrise and sunsets. I see the sunrise every weekday morning when I leave work, and watch the sunset every weeknight on my way to work.... breathtaking!
The birds in the morning are a lovely sound of summer. Don't hear much if any in the winter.
And once I smell that BBQ coming from someone's yard... it takes everything in me to keep from inviting myself over!

2. Fireflies or lightning bugs...what are they called in your neck of the woods?

BUGS! They're called CREEPY BUGS!!!! ok, I call them creepy bugs but I haven't seen any in the city here. I've seen them when I visited my Grandma in Nova Scotia, she called them lightning bugs while I ran screaming EEEK BUGS!!!!


3. What is something in the past week that reminded you of your childhood?

The local swimming pool! I ran passed it and seen so many little kids splashing and playing that it reminded me of when we were kids and spent every day of summer vacation at the park in the local pool.

4. Define 'the good life'.

I've got to agree, "the good life" is one with good health, good relationships and God first and foremost!




5. Tell us what we'd see if you took a snapshot of your desk/workspace.

I won't bother to tidy up my desk because I cannot post a photo of it. Right now my desk is littered with documents relating to the job. I've also got a bottle of water, a mug of tea (the mug is red with a white polarbear on it). My cell phone and ipod are laying around the monitor base alongside some staples, my asprin and rubber finger thimble. My pen is.... hmm... oh, it's shoved through my hair so not on the desk!

6. Peaches or watermelon? Yes, you have to choose.

I love them both, they're both a watery mess when I eat them...not something you want to see but since I HAVE to choose... hmm.... WATERMELLON!




7. Ever been skinny dippin'? Is that too much for the Wednesday Hodgepodge? Rest assured we won't need details...unless of course you feel you must but keep in mind this is a family friendly blog so keep it G rated please.




Nope, never been skinny dippin! I'm too shy for that!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Glitch Fixed!

Ok, I hadn't noticed before that non blogger users were having difficulties posting comments to my blogs!  So I had my friend (a.k.a.: Miss KnowItAll) check it out and she fixed the problem.  So as of this moment, all non blogger users, basically the whole wide world that is the internets can now post a comment to my blogs should they desire to do so as the comments will no longer be embedded below the blog, but in an annoying pop up window!

Thanks Miss KnowItAll!  :-)

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Wednesday Hodgepodge: Traveling Into Hodgepodge

It's Wednesday....

HODGEPODGE WEDNESDAY!!!!

I almost missed it...

I ALMOST MISSED IT!!!!!!!!!!!  UGH!!!



Hodgepodge Wednesday is addictive a fun blog hop, vertual meet and greet hosted by From This Side Of The Pond. 


Click her link,
Follow her blog,
Join in the fun.....

This week we're traveling into Wednesday Hodgepodge.


1. What is one thing on your bucket list? If you don't have one let's pretend you do.

I want to see an iceburg for real.  I figure taking an Alaskan cruise would be the best bet but when I mention that to the husband he nicely reminds me of the Titanic so we'll see.

2. What makes a good dad?

A good dad is one that's there for his family no matter what the situation


3. Are you afraid of insects? Which ones?

Yes, yes I am afraid of insects.  Very afraid.  I'd go so far as to say I'm terrified of insects.  Each and every bug ever created by God terrifies me... yes that includes the so-called cute ladybugs and butterflies.  Spiders and grasshoppers are in a league of their own.  Want something done in a big hurry... threaten me with a spider or grasshopper and I can assure you what ever it is will be done at lightening speed!
 4. We're barbecuing...what's on the grill at your house?

Grilled chicken.  Yum!


5. Do you believe playing is more important than winning?

Yes, playing is more important than winning unless we're playing for the Stanly Cup.  Which, by the way the Montreal Canadiens were eliminated in round one.... sad, so sad.  Our hopes went with Vancouver but they lost too so I'm a sore loser right now.  :-(

6. Do you tan? Use self tanners? Visit tanning salons? See your dermatologist at least once a year?

No, no, no and no. 

7. Five years ago I would never imagine that today I would...

I would never imagine that today I would have really really short hair.  Since December 2008 I took the plunge and went from sort of long to very short (about an inch long in the back).





8. Insert your own random thought here.

I drew a blank today on this question today.  sigh.  I should have answered this one first!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Exercise Meez


I'll get that couch potato out of my system yet!!! 

Meez 3D avatar avatars games

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Project 365: May 17 - June 11

Project 365 button designed by http://richgift.blogspot.com



Ah,  I've been itching to get myself updated on all the photos piling up on my ipod. 

Project 365 is a picture a day for the whole year, a blog hop, virtual gathering hosted by Make Music From Your Hear To The Lord

I 'm enjoying this blog hop but my oh my it takes real dedication!   I refuse to give up even though I'm short a couple of days but I hope all is forgiven.

I'm just going to continue from where I left off on my last P365 post...
Tuesday May 17th


It rained so bad with major wind gusts that pretty much every trash bin along the roadside had an umbrella stuffed in it.  I guess the wind was just too strong!

=================

Wednesday May 18th

Tuesday night I went to work in wild wind and rain.  Wednesday morning on my way home there was a bit of fog.  The St. Joseph's Oratory dome is almost completely engulfed by the fog thus I was unable to see the lit cross.

===============
Thursday May 19th

This trash bin made me smile in a way.  Look how all the trash and cups are stacked in there.  I'm glad to see that folks in the neighbourhood are taking care not to litter (aside from the tiny piece of paper on the ground by the bin).


Tulips were in full bloom!!  This year the city went back to planting tulips along the mediums that separated the two directions of traffic.  It was really nice to see.  Each road had a different colour - the ones in this grainy amateur photo are red... and on the next street they were yellow.
===============
Friday May 20th

There was no escape from the fog this morning!  I felt like at any minute a pirate ship would sail out and some skeleton pirates would take me hostage. 

 ... no.. .  no ... wait....

a big spider looking alien would reach out and grab me! 

Sigh.  It's clearly obvious that not only have I seen both versions of The Fog, but also The Mist.

      

But seriously, it looked really creepy, even more than the other day.  See... this time the Oratory is completely covered in fog.  Now that creeped me out!  My heart sank when I couldn't even see the building... any part of the building even as I drove past, even the front steps weren't visible behind the gate.

 
 

When I arrived home the fog/mist soon started to lift and I was able to head out for a jog.  Funny thing happened on my jog too...  in front of one house (as I ran around the block) I saw a lot of baby squirrels, then when I passed the same house again I saw a big raccoon, the third time I passed the house I saw this:.... you have to see it to believe it!


=====================

Sunday May 22nd

I finished up some incomplete craft.

==============
Monday May 23rd

...was a holiday... The Queen's Birthday or Victoria Day or there may be something else it's called that I don't know of like Dollard Des Ormeaux day or something of that sort. 
*shrugs shoulders*  I give up!

Anyway, this is usually the long weekend when planters get their garden gloves dirty.  I took this photo of a soon to be flower bed with it's freshly laid soil.


while on my jog, I seen a lovely flowering tree!


 and this is what the ground below it looked like:
 
 
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Tuesday May 24th


We picked up a new runner for the hall. This photo doesn't do it justice in my unasked for opinion.  The runner is beige and brown with leaf design, nice, and simple. 


I made a stop off at the used bookstore in the hospital to drop off a bag of Harlequin Romance Novels.  On my way out I spotted a group of kids having a sing-along on the lawn.  Ok that's a real grainy photo but remember I'm on the other side of the road with an ipod taking this photo so cut me some slack.

====================

Wednesday May 25th


Let the roadwork begin!  sigh.

===============

Friday May 27th

I made a run to Walmart to pick up some yarn.


=======

Monday May 30th

I took a photo of my ipod screen and had no clue I did it until I was surfing through my saved photos and then I was clueless as to how I did it... so I googled how (fyi: hold the power button and the home button down at the same time)


=======================

Tuesday May 31st

I purchased a coke and used the pin under the cap to get a free song from itunes.


=============

Friday June 3rd

This is what a shin with shin splints looks like:


Ok, yes that's MY shin, looks normal doesn't it... but it hurt like the dickens and I still went jogging when I got home too!

I spotted a big bus parked out front a school to take kids on a field trip.  Ha, when we were kids we had them yellow school busses (a.k.a. Uncle Harry School Bus).  We never had those fancy smancy air conditioned Voyageur Grey Hound type of busses like this!

I also seen some pretty purple flowers!


...and lots of traffic mostly going one direction!


=============
Sunday June 5th

Read a magazine that came in the mail this week.


==========

Wednesday June 8th

Spotted this on the side of a building.




I got this app on my ipod that records the days I jog and the distance, calories and maps out the route with google maps gps too! 

I jogged for 20 minutes and 20 seconds on Wednesday morning and went 1.62 miles.  Alright so I was jogging slow but every bit helps this couch potato!


================

Thursday June 9th

We had some wicked storm last night!  Thunder, lightening and lots of wind.  On my jog you know I couldn't resist this photo op.  The storm downed a tree near a home that's under construction.  Pylons and yellow caution tape were put around it so nobody gets to close.


Another tree uprooted in a park.


And if you look close you can see the top branch of this tree must have been hit by lightening as it's sheered right off (you can see the broken beige branch at the top of the photo and the branch on the ground).


And I jogged for...38 minutes and went over two miles though I suspect that mileage may have been from shaking the ipod to take these photos!


And this is my "sweaty glow" with my bandanna on my head and my ipod in my ears! 


===================

Friday June 10th

A beautiful morning this was.  I swung by the outdoor market on my way home then when I looked up the street  I saw what I always look for.... what a beauty she is atop that mountain!


But it was a rather cool morning.  Yesterday's storm caused the temperature to dip a bit.  It went from 27*C down to 14*C overnight...

 

And it almost looked like it was snowing for all the fluffy pollen floating around.


And as per usual this time of year... one of my favorite things to blog about is the abandoned furniture alongside the curb.  Usually in June the students vacate their apartments and then in July it seems to be everyone else.  So, as of now, that's the only one I've seen ... a couch and couple of shelves by the look of it.


This is me after my jog, it may seem hard to tell that I dropped almost eight pounds since I didn't upload a "before" photo since starting out jogging on May 9th.  But here is my today photo:

 

All refreshed and without my "chipmunk cheeks" I would say that jogging suits me just fine!


===================

Saturday June 11th

Look at my new walking shoes!  I can rest my feet in these while at work or on the go when I'm not jogging since we know I'm not a sandal person really and I despise flick flacks (a.k.a. flip flops). These little guys are comfy like runners but look cute!


==========

And there you have it!!