Thursday, 5 July 2012

A bunch of colors


I know, it's been a while, but wasn't much to say. Even now, all I have to talk about is knitting related.

First, I finished this project at the end of May, but only got around to taking a picture last week. The pattern is called Daybreak, by Stephen West, and the yarn is Berroco Vintage DK. It's the third time I use this pattern. I love it!!
The shawl was made for the OT school principal, as a thank you for all the help and support I had throughout my master's program (especially with the health issues). Her favorite color is purple, and she's always cold. So I thought this project would be fitting. And she loved it.

I have been working on a laceweight pullover (short sleeves) since April first. Like I said, it's laceweight, which means the yarn is tiny, and it takes forever. But the end is in sight. Less than a dozen of row until bind off, then a few rounds on each sleeve. And then, DONE!! No pictures yet, but will do when it's completed, washed and dried. Soon, I promise.

I've started planning my next project. It's an other shawl/scarf, but this time, for me. It requires three colors. It's called the Color Affection shawl. I've been looking in my stash and in stores, but couldn't find anything that had the right weight or the right color combination. Then I started thinking. I've been experimenting on dyeing, maybe I could dye my yarn to the colors I want. I have 4 skeins of blanks (colorless yarn). Enough to do some more experimenting, and three left for the final yarn.
Here's what I did. I took little bits of one of my skein, and dyed them in a bunch of different colors with different methods (food coloring, kool-aid and acid dyes).  Here they are, all 54 of them:

After playing with different possiblities of color combination (there was a lot of them that were really nice), my eye caught this one:

So I died them (the yellow and black are Jacquard Acid Dyes; the blue is food coloring: a ratio of 4:1 of neon blue and red):

The grey turned out black, because my techniques aren't quite good enough to make colors that are not saturated. I love the combo, and can't wait to cast on (but only when the pullover is finished).

I also started spinning. I kept on telling myself I didn't want to start spinning. But then, a few weeks ago, I met up with a group of spinners, and they showed me. All was fine, until I walked into a LYS (local yarn store) and stumbled upon the fibre and the spindles. A braid of fibre (75% BFL and 25% silk) and a spindle followed me home. That is how, last Sunday, I started spinning:

This Saturday, I write the OT national exam. It's a 4 hour multiple question exam. Wish me luck!!

Tuesday, 5 June 2012


last night was the graduation convocation.

here are some pictures

With my mom

With Dominique

With my inlaws

Shaking Michaelle Jean's hand

Shaking Allan Rock's hand

Holding my diploma

Holding my framed diploma

Holding my framed diploma and a sock-in-progress, because I'm a knitter and that's what we do

Wednesday, 30 May 2012

One of those days

Yesterday was one of those days.

As I got to work, I started getting ready for the visits I had to do, calling clients to schedule appointment to fill in the holes I had in my schedule. As I'm getting ready to leave and do my first visit, a collegue of mine comes over and asks me if I have Mrs X in my case load. I don't. She tells me the client urgently needs an OT home assessment for some equipment. We check the system, there is nothing about a referal in OT or equipment being loaned. My collegue and I go see the girl in charge of the referals in OT, and she checks her papers... nothing. Because I have a little of time in the morning after my first visit, I agree to go and see her.

I call the client to let her know I'll be coming, get her address, and then check on googlemap to see where she lives (because I don't know all the streets in Hull yet). Googlemap can't find the address, so I call the lady back and I finally find the place. At this point, I'm running late for my other appointment. And I can't reschedule her again, because I had to do that thrice in the past 2 weeks because I had issues getting the proper equipment for her. I now have the equipment and she's expecting me...

I finally make it to the first lady, try the equipment, and it's not appropriate. Darn!! I'll try and get something different and will call her to schedule an apt once it's ready. And I manage to pinch my arm transporting the said equipment, and now I have a nasty bruise (I also have a new bruise on my knee that I don't know where it came from).

I make it to the second client that morning, talk to the lady, figure out what she needs, which includes the piece of equipment in my car that didn't work earlier... I call the girl that is in charge of the equipment loans at the CLSC to see if we can switch the name on the bench and leave it there. She tells me that she had just sent in the demand for equipment for that lady (that was made at the hospital) and it's gonna be ready tomorow. Which means, I didn't need to go see her, she would have gotten a call a little later to tell her everything is taken care of.

I get back to the office. Return some calls, get my stuff ready for the afternoon visits. Then I go for lunch.

After lunch, I stop at the equipment depot before getting to the third client of the day, pick up his equipment, and go to the client. No parking!!! I was parked so far away... Install some of the equipment, but can't install one of them: they forgot to give me the screws (and I forgot to check)!!

Go back to the depot, drop the screwless equipment, pick up the equipment for the next and last client. I struggle getting the huge walker into the car (I drive a Honda Civic, not the biggest car). Get to the client, get the stuff inside, realising why the walker is so darn big: it's a bariatric walker, for obese people. My client is not obese, and I certainly did not ask for a bariatric walker. At this point, I am NOT going back to the depot (it's out of my way, and I have stuff to do before the end of the day). The client wants to buy some of the equipment, so they'll bring the walker back at the same time. But the Mrs won't be abble to get the walker in their car, so I do it.

It is now raining hard, and she can't figure out how to open the trunk or unlock the doors with the key, while I'm standing in the rain waiting. The walker does not fit in the trunk, it finally fits in the back seat with a lot of work and struggling. I finally make it back inside. She kindly offered me a towel to dry the worst of it. I say my goodbyes and get back to the office. As I turn the corner, the rain stops.

Back to the office, soaked through. I now have a voice mail asking me to go see this gentleman urgently. My day is over and the rest of my week is packed. Somebody else will have to do it.

It was good to get home, into dry clothes.

I still had the energy to cook dinner, and I still did that with a smile on my face.

I was, one of those days.

On the plus side, my mom will take Monday and Tuesday off to come to my graduation. It makes me so happy.


Monday, 28 May 2012


Next Monday is my graduation!! I'll receive my diploma for my masters degree.
I've asked 3 friends if they wanted to go, with no pressure because it's kinda boring, I've received a very enthousiastic Yes from all three of them. Yay!! I didn't ask D, he has no choice. :D

Today I had to go downtown to pick up the tickets, so I biked (about 17 km). And because friends meet at lunch time on Mondays to knit, I decided to join them (it forced me to leave the house early enough, and it motivated me more to bike there). I had lunch with Sue (Kari couldn't come). It was fun.

After, I went to Wallacks to get some dyes. I have lots of dyeing to do.
A bunch of us are planning on knitting the color affection shawl (rav link). It needs three different colors. So far I haven't been able to find the right colors... so I decided do dye my yarn.

Yesterday I cut little bits from a big skein intended for dyeing, put them in water in masson jars, put drops of food coloring in different quantities and combinations, add the vinegar, put the jars in a big pan, and simmer for about 30 minutes. And then I taged them to remember what's what. Here's the result.
The colors on the pictures aren't quite right. They're actually much brighter. Right now I'm leaning towards the 3rd pink from the left, the bright blue (5th from the right) and the last green on the right. But I'm not done. There'll be more tests in the next few weeks. I'll keep you updated.

Knitting wise, there isn't much to show, since I'm working on big projects... but one should be done soon (to give to the OT school principal at graduation).

Oh! the biking went well, but my legs are now very week, and my bum is tender. I now have a leek and cauliflower soup simmering on the stove, and I'll start on dinner very soon: butter chicken with brocoli and rice.


Wednesday, 16 May 2012

pictures pictures!!

It's been almost a month, I have no excuse other than laziness. But it doesn't mean I had nothing to say.

Here's a recap of what happend in the last few weeks.

We went camping during the last weekend of April. It was cold, but fun. We had sweet potatoes and filet mignon cooked on the embers... mmmm so good. And bread and marshmallows toasted on the fire. Also very good.
Toasting a piece of bread waiting for the meal to be ready

My mom spend a weekend in Ottawa, we did some shopping, we went to the Nordic Spa, she came to knit-night with D. And we ate a lot at restaurants. We had lots of fun. I love it when she comes over. I love my mom. She's the best in the world (I'm biased I know, but I still stand by what I say!!). Unfortunatly, no pictures of the weekend.

Then, it was Lili's birthday. She turned 2 last weekend. There was a party, in the yard, with lots of sun (and sunburn of course).

We gave her a giant teddy bear. At first she was affraid and needed to be saved by D (who was too happy to be the knight in shinning armor). She eventually warmed up to the bear, and now it's her's and nobody else can touch it.
D saving Lili from the big bad bear

Loving her bear in her bedroom

We also saw Cedric while we were in Montreal. He's still cute as ever.
Cedric with gramma (my mom) and grampa

Reading a book

Eating yogourt

On the knitting front, there has been little progress. I haven't been knitting much lately. But I did manage to take some pictures of two projects I finished a while back.

D's slippers:
Felted elf slippers in Istex Alafoss Lopi

And a scarf/shawlette for me:
Multnomah in Lang Yarns Jawoll Magic

I have some bird feeders in the yard, and they see a lot of traffic. I managed to snap a picture of the beautiful cardinal. I see him almost on a daily basis. I also see the lady cardinal occasionnaly.

See you soon

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Family time

I know I know... It's been a while... Again!! Sorry.

Here a summary of what happened since my last post.

Easter weekend
On the Friday, I went to Montreal, on my own (D was sick and stayed home). The drive went great. Got to my mom's around lunch, had a quick bite to eat and we went to the mall. I got some new clothes and shoes (purple!!). Back home, we babysat my nephew while my brother visited his wife at the hospital (she's doing great. Her recovery is super fast.)
On Saturday, I went with my brother to visit my SIL (and I drove downtown Mtl with help navigating).
On the Sunday, I visited my inlaws (D's brother's little family and D's parents) for lunch. Then drove back home.

Here are some pictures of the cutie pies:

I managed to give him the bottle

easter bunny

eating the eater bunny/dog?

lounging in the beanbag

quality time with gramma

happy little bugga

that's her "beautiful smile for the camera" smile

ponnytails and chocolate bunny

Last weekend
We went to Montreal, again. Taking the ferry accross the river from Hudson to Oka.
Self shot on the ferry

being silly

He always dreamed of having hair
Had lunch with D's brother's little family and a friend on Sunday. D wanted to spend time with his niece, since he hadn't had the chance on easter weekend.
High five

she loves the park

Being silly... again

So far, I've been saying how I love my new job. I did. Until today. It was one of those days.   Every time I left my desk for even a minute, there would be a message on my voicemail and a new problem for me to solve. And noone I trying to contact to solve those issues, were available to help me.

I stayed at my desk most of the afternoon, the phone stayed quiet, but I had visits from collegues for more problems to solve!! The clients I saw today were complex cases in which I don't know what to do.

I felt inadequate and incompetent most od the day. Except for one issue I managed to fix in five minutes.

I'm meeting with my supervisor later this week. I have a long list of questions for her.

Hope the weeks to come will be easier. Actually, I'm positive they will.

that's it for now

Wednesday, 4 April 2012


It was brought to my attention that I haven't been keeping up on the updates about my new job. I'm tired so I'll write a short one.

The job is good. I like it (and I better, because I spend the last ten years trying to become an OT). Like I said, I'm tired... I now it's gonna take me a few weeks or even a few months for me to get used to a new routine and having real busy days. I spend my days off, like today, sleeping in and lounging on the couch (I did manage a little dishes). I originally planned on doing my home visits on the first two days of work, and keeping the third one for my notes and my stats (just in case you didn't know, I work 3 days a week. My choice. They'd want me full time). Monday was a slow day. Yesterday, I made 4 home visits. And by the time I left the office, all my notes and my stats were done. Which means that I have nothing to do tomorow. I'll have to ask the coordinator to give my more referals... I think it's a good sign that I already managed everything she gave me.

On the back/rib pain front, it's getting better, most of the time.

And on the knitting front, nothing to show right now. I did finish a small scarf/shawlette and some slippers for D, but have yet to take a picture of them. I'm currently working on a sweater knit in lace weight (tiny yarn), which means it might take a while.

That's it for today. I'm going to bed really now.

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Pain update

The pain is still there. But...
Yesterday, I called to get an appointment with my doctor and there was a free spot today, so I trotted there this morning. She was late, as always, but told me that the pain is not fibro-related. It's just a muscle spasm. Still painful and anoying, but at least it's probably not something that will become chronic. She gave me a prescription for some massage therapy and some physio. She also told me that next time I want to see a doctor on short notice, she can always see me between patients instead of going to a walk-in clinic.

And how to I feel? Like crap. I have a headache, cramps (it's this time of the month) and my head feels like I might be starting a clod... I hope not. And I haven't knit a single stitch today yet... I still want to try and finish my current project.

Monday, 26 March 2012

Pain repport


I've had this sharp pain in my ribs on the left side, in the back, for at least two weeks. I thought it was getting better during the first week, then, it felt like it was getting worse again in the second week. I don't think it's muscular because it doesn't come up when I move much, but more if I sneeze, cough, laugh, take a deep breath or yawn. It also hurts when I lay down on my back or when I try to sleep on my side (the left side). Getting a good night sleep is really hard at this point.

I gave it time to get better, but after two weeks, I decided to go to the walk-in-clinic to see a doctor. After 2 hour wait, I finally saw the doctor, whom made up his mind as soon has he heard I had fibromyalgia (he was palpating so hard it was really hurting, but a pain that had nothing to do with the reason I was there, so I had to tell him about the fibro). He's probably right, but it still bugs me that the investigation stops there. I've seen it often when you have a chronic condition where every symptom is blamed on that condition without further investigation. I'll try doing the physio, and if it doesn't get better, I try an get an appointment with my doctor. But for now, I suffer and get little sleep.

In other news, I've been experimenting some more with dyeing yarn. with some Jacquard acid dyes. Let me walk you through it.
1- Build a niddy noddy (it a simple contraption that allows the making of skeins, normally made out of wood) with some plumbing pipes.

2- Seperate your ball of yarn into 5 smaller skeins (all still attached to one another).

3- Give each smaller skein a diferent dye bath in a gradation of colors, from bright yellow to dark red.

4- Let it dry and wound into a ball again.

And here's the other one I made that day.
This was my original insiration (it's dark red with some black in it). It's a little piece that I experimented on a while back and loved the result, but don't have enough yardage to do anything with it.

And this is what I managed this time. I think I might have mixed up the bottles of black and purple. Not quite what I wanted, but still very pretty. I already know what I'll do with this one.

Have a good week. I'm certainly planning on having one.

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

New job!!

Hey!! I know it's been too long. I've been wanting to write for over a week but I've been buzy and, well, lazy.

In the last week, I've been thinking alot about my new job. And not only thinking about it, but started it. (Woot woot!!)

I met with my supervisor on Friday, and she introduced me to everyone we could find in the building, and that's a lot of people. I don't remember most of the names and even some faces are blury. After walking for a while around in the labyrinth that is now my workplace, I was given 2 huge 4" binders full with documents for me to read. In the afternnon I was left to my own devices with my binders and a short list of names of people I needed to see. Everyone is very nice and helpful, especially when I randomly asked where I could find the people associated with the names on my list. I ended the day with a saturated brain, an exhausted body and a happy mood.

Yesterday and today were dedicated to more reading and some training on the different systems. Today I saw a client at home, wrote my recommendation, faxed it, wrote my progress note and did my stats. All for the first time as an occupational therapist. It also means that I signed as an OT for the very first time. It really is starting to sink in: I'm a health care professional. I'm an OT.

I'm starting to feel like a grown-up: working and making money (not quite yet, but soon enough I'll get my first pay cheque), driving to and from work, signing paperwork without it needing to be co-signed. I have an office (well, a cubicule actually, that will change once the person I replace leaves, as I'll be taking over her cubie, which has a window), my own phone extension. I don't have a computer yet (will get that once I move) or a work email (it'll come... eventually... I hope).

I have more to talk about, and pictures, but it's not work related. Yes, it's yarn related. Tomorow maybe.

Good night

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

Of cookies and yarn

Hey there.

Before I start telling you what I've been doing lately, I'll start by telling you how I'm doing: not so good.  Not really bad, but not really good.  I haven't been sleeping well for at least the last two weeks, which means my pain threshold is lower (meaning more pain) and my pain tolerance is also lower, making harder to ignore.  I think that the sleeping well is probably due to me starting the new job soon (orientation tomorow and meeting with the supervisor Friday next week).  It's positive, but stressful none the less.

Now, to how I've been spending my days.

On the skiing front, I haven't skied again, but I have new boots.  I'll be able to ski (giving that the temperature allows it) as soon as I find my old othotics and manage to fit them in the boots.  I know all of you want spring to come and stay, and I do too, but to be honest, I also want to try my boots this season.

Last week-end we went to visit my inlaws.  My niece really is cute and she runs everywhere.  I tried playing with her and giving her yogurt (I really thought that she would be my friend if I gave her her snack), but she stayed away from me as much as could manage.  I did manage a hug as they were on their way out the door.  The cutest thing she did was always calling for Papi (granddad).  Here they are together reading a book about crocodiles:

Now, about the cooking:  I've baked two banana breads and some lemon cookies last Thursday, and some gross banana-cheez whiz-olive cookies.  I know it sounds bad, and it smelled even worst, but the suggestion came from my brother-in-law a few weeks ago when I asked around for some new ideas of cookies.  I know he was joking, but I promised him some for his birthday.  He did try them and he said it wasn't bad and he was right (I ended up trying it myself).  The olive was only on top, so the banana and cheez whiz together aren't too bad.  I did make a video but I can't play it on my computer, let alone edit it to make it shorter.
Silicone baking pans make for fat banana breads

Yarn wize, I had been doing more dying.  It was also my sister-in-law's birthday.  I had a hard time finding what I could get her (she tends to buy what she wants when she wants it).  Then I had a flash of genius.  Her and my BIL are into buying locally whenever possible.  So that's what I did.  On my road trip to Log Cabin a few weeks ago, I got two skeins of local yarn (at least the alpaca in the yarn is local, and it was spun locally).  I also got some Jacquard dyes to over dye the yarn.  And then I stalked her Ravelry page to find a pattern she liked.  I have plenty of ideas to overdye more yarn.  Should get to it next week.

Picture taken by my sister-in-law

Picture taken by my sister-in-law

I've been knitting a Tee. It took just about over two weeks. I just have to show it off.

 I'm currently working on some funny slippers for D.  I get some pictures when they're done.