After completing the green sweaters for Trevor and myself last year I have been knitted out. It really did not help that the sweaters did not turn out particularly good though Trev likes his and Markus has stolen it now and refuses to take it off. I love my kids and they love me but that does not mean I am not down in the dumps as a kniter. Time to pick that stitch back up…

You might remember how after the sweater marathon I decided to only do accessories and only use stash yarn? Well that is kind of hard. Doable though…

Step 1: Pattern: I picked this one. It’s simple and it makes a shawl – something I have not made before.
Step 2: Pick yarn: I have a lot of yarn but not a lot of yarn of the same colour. I tried swatting a few different combinations…

some of which were terrible!

I finally decided on this combination of colours,
but not in that order.

I have some ambitions of adding pink.
If I do it will not be until the edge.

So, what do you think? Worth it or another dead end?


Remember how in a post a few months ago I was saying how I would really like to improve my sewing skills, possibly by taking a course? Also remember how once I am done working, sleeping, managing the household, playing with my boys, keeping in decent enough shape and maintaining some contact with likeminded individuals outside of my immediate family I have no time for anything whatsoever? So, no sewing courses for me. I do have a project that is complicated enough satisfactorily completing it would involve acquiring those elusive skills. The challenge: make a cycling cap I would not be embarrassed to sport in public.

Luckily, I suffer from occasional insomnia which gives me that extra 6 to 8 hours a day I would have otherwise spent sleeping. Last March, while my dad and sister were visiting, I used one of these opportune “white nights” to practice my sewing skills in making a hat.

It is supposed to be a cold weather cycling cap functionality list of which would include hiding helmet hair, soaking up sweat and keeping my ears warm (super important, I have very sensitive ears).


The hat was obviously absolutely terrible. The only reason I did not immediately trash it is because it might be a good prop if the kids ever do “Bob and Doug McKenzie” style skit for a school talent show.

My dad, not wanting to say anything about the hat in question, changed the subject by asking me to replace the liner in his winter hat.


Sure I can replace the liner, but in the process I have borrowed his hat for indeterminate period of time to attempt to reverse engineer the design and make a similar hat for myself. No, I have no desire to dress like a man of my dad’s generation, but the hat itself has excellent shaping and with lighter fabric and a single seam added between the forehead and the visor, this would make an amazing cycling cap.

Then for a while I did nothing due to actually sleeping at night. I did purchase a real cycling cap (summer version, no earflaps) to compare and contrast.


So today I was so sick I could neither go to work nor get anything done at home. It is just a cold I think, but it has got the best of me. I watched about four hours of television at which point I needed to do something more constructive or I would go crazy. It was time to do the first prototype of my dad’s hat.


Yes, that is a shopping bag that got ripped earlier this week when I attempted to carry milk from Costco’s cart to my bike. I put it in the recycling bin, but pulled it out when I was looking for strawberry container I could make the hat’s visor out of.

Anyhow, the point of this post is to take down notes on the prototype hat so I can fix it in the next edition as I am highly unlikely to remember the details without writing them down.


– The back of the hat should not end in a little triangle
– The central seam should only go up to the top of the head
– Side seams should be much more slacked
– Both top and bottom line of the central panel are slightly curved

Let’s hope that the next prototype turns out a resounding success.

Spring cleaning


Ever since the days started getting longer I have been so excited about spring. I don’t mind the occasional snow storm because April is supposed to be snowy, but I can feel the weather getting warmer. And when these little friends start showing up for the party you know it is going to get better.


I’ve looked through my Ravelry page and realised I’ve only knitted three items this year. Admittedly, two of them were sweaters and as such a lot of work, but still. This year only accessories and only stash yarn. I challenge myself!

I also have another little challenge on the go. I want to do Costco run on the bike. Partially because I’ve never done it and thought it almost impossible and partially because it just sounds crazy and who does not want crazy??? So yes, 20kg of milk, 10kg of flour or other grains, and five kilos of fruits and vegetables. Maybe a little of meat and fish to make things interesting… Can I make it home or will I be calling Chris from the bottom of Palladium drive to pick me up with the minivan? Tune in to find out.

The Fourth Lake

One day when I was about 10 the lakes in Maksimir froze and we went skating on them. I don’t remember who I was with or how long the ice stayed or even which of the lakes we skated on (probably the Fourth…). The ice was smooth and dark and I would swear I saw fish underneath though it was probably just sticks. It was really nice.


What does that have to do with Trev’s sweater? Absolutely nothing!

Film: Les Miserables

Wizard Markus

It’s been well over a year since Markus was born and I feel that I have finally managed to get back on track. I have caught up with workload at the office and am back on a normal sustainable schedule. We manage to spend a few nice hours with the kids in the evening and for the most part we have been able to make and eat good meals.

The house is still full of clutter and though it annoys me it is probably going to stay this way for a while since I have to ration my vacation days for the fun stuff like actual vacations. On the positive note, we have implemented a strict kids clean up their toys or else policy and it is working so far (a full week!). Now we just have to get them to clean up our junk and we’re set.

Speaking of vacations we’re planning a few new things for this year. PEI is our big destination but hopefully we’ll get a few more short trips. Some camping and biking I hope, with obligatory leaf peeping for my b-day. We’re starting to look at summer camps for Trev, crazy!

As far as fitness goes I have shifted into a new gear. Last six years were all about pregnancies and caring for babies and my “wellness” (what a stupid word, even apostrophes are not making it any cooler but it is too close to my bedtime to pull out a thesaurus) routine was aligned with this. The challenge now is to find a way to stay in nice shape given limited time and decreased tolerance of fitness classes and fads that comes with age. Though I was perfectly happy to take aerobics classes, lift weights at the gym and not eat for half a day just so I can enjoy an evening yoga class in my twenties I am highly unlikely to do any of that now. I am putting my money on different variations of biking by spinning in winter and doing at least one longer ride per week in the summer. That is the plan anyhow.

I was considering taking a sewing class but am leaning towards getting some sort of self guided lesson instead. That is, I was planning that until my sewing machine cracked for the third time since October. That $200 to repair the thirty year old clunker that I though was a great idea turned out to be a complete waste. Oh well, that’ll learn me. I am going to start looking at new machines though I am not planning on actually purchasing anything until the fall. At least I have knitting.

And yes, I am going to find new theme for the blog background. I guess I am not a fan of the clean and uncluttered web page look. To counteract the boringness of the page, here is the picture of my little wizard: (edited, the picture is now on the top of the post)

It is not shown here, but while I was not looking Trevor brought in a huge stick into the house. It did not take long for the redheaded Merlin to find it and turn it into a staff. Fortunately for most domestic applications he prefers cutlery.

Happy Craftsmas

Last week I succumbed to the flu. I ended up staying home for three days without being able to do much. I was lucky we had enough food in the freezer to get through the week. If there was a silver lining it was that I had a perfect opportunity to finish up some crafting projects.


I finished this hat last year, but it took me unit this winter to figure out what to do about it. Because it is patterned, it had to make it a bit longer than useful. Also, because it is fingering weight wool it is pretty light so I wanted to line it. I had some fabrics in hand but they did not match. Eventually I paired it up with merino training hats I got to wear under helmets. Now that the decision has been made, all I had to do was block the hat and check it off as done in Ravelry. Ding!


Another thing that I have been wanting to do for a while is quilt. Trev decided that he wanted a turtle outfit and I got a perfect opportunity. I dropped the precision and neatness because I had to finish the project before Trev moved on and, really, whoever saw a meticulous turtle?


Finally, I finished the green sweater I have been making since this summer. It is not jet checked as finished in Ravelry. I am still debating adding pockets and I have to buy some buttons or a clip. Once that is done I will block it. I am not in any particular hurry to do this and I will wear it a bit to see if any ideas pop into my head.

And now I think I will take a short break from crafts. Chris got me the Canada Reads 2013 book set as well as a subscription for Bicycle Quarterly so I will be busy reading for a little while.

Merry Christmas and happy New Year!