Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy New Year's Eve!

This week is another somewhat lame Monday post, and I apologize. I worked a long, busy shift at The Beer Store today, and I'm tuckered out.
Here are a few things that happened this year:

  • Rick and I moved to the county
  • I got my job at The Beer Store
  • I've done some incredible craft shows
  • I've made some sales in the Etsy shop, for which I am grateful
  • I've made some plans and set some goals for the new year, which I will share in the next couple days
I hope you have a happy and safe night, and I will see you again next year!

Friday, December 28, 2012

My Week In Instagrams: December 28, 2012

Happy Friday! This week is almost through, and I for one, couldn't be happier. I have my final day of Christmas festivities with my mom's extended family. Hopefully that goes well. I can't wait to give the gifts to my recipients. I really think they'll love them.
This is some of what happened in my life this week. These photos aren't in any particular order. I really have to start putting them chronologically. I'll talk about them clockwise, starting from the top left corner.
I've been watching loads of Round the Twist podcast episodes. Carin knits lots of lovely stuff, and is really fun to watch.
This is one of the sweaters I received for Christmas. My mom got it for me when we were out shopping together a few weeks ago. I had completely forgotten about it.
My new knitting needles! My parents got me a set of KnitPicks Sunstruck needles, and I am in love! I have the Harmony wood, and now I have these, I couldn't be happier. Yes, they're fundamentally the same needles, but having the two colour options is a huge bonus.
My brother and his girlfriend bought me this fantastic light up flamingo. you might remember it from a couple weeks back. I think I jumped up and down when I saw him. He still needs a name, any suggestions?
My parents decided to change things up for Christmas this year, and do dinner at their place on the 25th. We're going to do it this way from now on. I am excited. The food was really good, and it was nice just being with my immediate family.
When Rick and I got groceries a few days before Christmas, I picked up some Pom Tea. I really like this stuff. I used to drink it a lot in high school, and got out of the habit. It's tasty, and good for you, two awesome things.
Work was nuts this week, and will continue for a little while longer. When I get home from work, I usually put my moccasins on, and put my feet up.
Last but not least, My parents got me some gorgeous yarn from KnitPicks when they got me my needles. This is all stuff for my Beekeepers Quilt, which I will probably start January 1st.

How were your holidays?

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Wednesdays Are For Gratitude: December 26, 2012

Every Wednesday, I post about things I am grateful for. They can be large or small, but they are all things that have somehow positively affected my life the week prior. Here is my list for this week.
KnitPicks / Having a couple days off work after some super busy days / My boss / Crown Royal / Beer / Richard / Winston / Polysporin / My cell phone provider being very helpful when I called / My parents / My brother and his girlfriend / Being able to enjoy the holidays with my family / The Walking Dead on Blu Ray (borrowed from a friend) / Everything I have received for Christmas

What are you grateful for this week?

Monday, December 24, 2012

Twas the Night Before Christmas

Merry Christmas Eve to all those who celebrate, and a very happy Monday to everyone else! I worked a pretty awesome eight hour shift today. My coworkers brought in food and pop and we all had an awesome day. It was busy in bursts, which allowed a lot of time to eat and drink and generally relax.
I'm just about to wrap my final gift which is for my brother and his girlfriend. After they get their gifts tomorrow, which I knit, I will post some photos of them wearing their goodies. I really hope they like them.
I'm going to cut this short so Rick and I can hang out for a bit. Be safe and have fun!

Friday, December 21, 2012

My Week In Instagrams: December 21, 2012

Happy first day of winter everyone!
It's almost the weekend! To be honest, I would rather it be midweek right now. Work is bonkers with people trying to stock up on beer for the holidays. Last night, on my till alone, I served over double what I normally do on a Thursday. We couldn't keep up! I had a couple jerk customers that practically threw fits when the debit/credit machine was slow. One guy was incredibly impatient and kept putting his card in before the machine was ready, which slows it down even more. So he yelled at me, and wagged his finger at me, and the next guy in line told him to calm the hell down or else. I don't know what "or else" meant, but I'm not sure I wanted to.
In any case, my week overall wasn't too bad. Here is my Instagram recap.
Oh goodness, I am a Dum Dum, I did the photos backwards! Just pretend the order of these is reversed. Sorry guys!

  1. Dum Dums. Lots and lots of them. My boss brought some delicious suckers into work for us. It keeps us happy, hyped up on sugar, and probably more productive. Seriously, Dum Dums have the best flavours: root beer, butterscotch, cream soda, mango, green apple and many more. Those are my favourites though. I'm not sure if his goal was to tell us how he really feels about us, or to keep us happy.
  2. My current mass production knitting. I'm making lots and lots of these little rectangles to be made into something awesome in the new year. I have about 10 of them made, and I want to have 50. I signed up for a craft show the first weekend of March, and I need to have more spring and summer friendly items available.
  3. A bottle of Walker's Blueberry Wheat Ale from Mill St. This is from their Summer Sampler. I still have most of that in my fridge. I really enjoyed this beer. Seriously, when I first took a sip, I put it down and said "Damn, that's good" out loud! I love Mill St products, and this one didn't disappoint.
  4. More beer! Only this is empty, and not mine. Part of my job is to buy back the empty alcohol bottles and cans that people bring back. When people put their cans back into the rings, I can't help but laugh at them. Number one, it's a hard thing to do. Number two, it's annoying as all get out because we have to remove them from the rings before putting them into our giant recycling bin. It's just a silly thing that lightens the mood at work.
  5. Tim Horton's dinner. I like their chicken wraps, and I got one this night. It's dangerous having a Tim's right across the street from work.
  6. Knitting! This is for the female family member. I will post a better photo, with details of what it is, after she receives it!
  7. Another beer! This one is Steam Whistle, which has been my favourite beer for a while. I had this before going out to a Christmas party with a friend.
  8. Winston has been a trouble maker lately. He's been banished to his bed. He tries to inch across the floor and come be close to Rick or it. I would hear his nails scuffle on the cement floor, and turn around and see him laying like this. This is his guilty look.
  9. I made gnocchi with mushrooms and sauce for dinner one night when Rick and his parents were gone. I love gnocchi.
Overall, this past week wasn't too bad. I got most of the rest of my holiday shopping done. I just need to wrap a couple things, and pick up one last gift and I'll be set!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Wednesdays are for Gratitude

On Friday, I mentioned I was going to change things up around here. Having an Awesome Wednesday and an Instagram Friday post were somewhat redundant, so I am switch what Wednesdays are for. This is what my week will look like:
Monday: A general update, about my knitting, Etsy shop, craft shows, giveaways etc.
Wednesday: Gratitude. I will post about things I am thankful for. It's keeping in line with the Awesome Wednesday post, but a wee bit different.
Friday: Instagram week in review. I will probably post an Instagram collage with a review of what everything is.
This is what I think everything will look like for now, but this might change, as one does. I don't want this blog to get stagnant; I don't want to get bored.
Anyway, on with the show! These are some of the things I am thankful for this week.
Richard being awesome and patient / Winston being much better behaved than he has in the past couple weeks / My job / My coworkers / Having the time to knit things I want to knit / Yummy food in our fridge / Songza / SwagBucks / Granola bars / Tim Horton's / Silly games on Facebook that give me something to do while knitting / The Round the Twist podcast / My yarn stash.

What are you thankful for this week?

Monday, December 17, 2012

This Space Intentionally Left Blank

In light of the events at Sandy Hook Elementary, the blog is going to remain quiet today.
You can donate squares to be made into memory blankets for the victims families Here.

Friday, December 14, 2012

My Week In Instagrams: December 14, 2012

This past week has been full of yummy food. I looked through my Instagram photos, and that's pretty much the only thing I took photos of. Fitting, though, as we ate some pretty good food.
Here is what's going on in each of the photos:
  1. Where I am currently in the gift knitting progress. Over halfway through the first two balls. I'm taking a bit of time off of knitting it, as I have some things that need to be finished before this one is due. I might push this gift back to give it to Christine when she has the baby. Much less stressful this way.
  2. We picked up a queen sized pizza. It wasn't bad, but not great.
  3. The pattern for the "secret" gift knitting. I'm sure Christine has figured out what it is by now, if she's been checking my blog. I hope she likes it!
  4. I made a couple corned beef and swiss sandwiches after work one night. Rick and I love swiss cheese.
  5. Winston has been really odd lately. Growling at Rick and I, and we can't figure out why. This cute photo was taking between a few bouts of him arguing with me. We took him to the vet, and he gave us some instructions to help get Winston back to being his calm self.
  6. Snack plate night! A Ritz cracker, some yummy salami, marble cheese and a piece of pickled garlic. Rick and I do this pretty regularly.
  7. We went to Windsor so I could drop off more earrings to Poppy. Rick requested that we go to Malic's Delicatessen, and get corned beef sandwiches. I got pastrami this time around, and it was damn good.
  8. Yesterday at work, I had crappy microwave macaroni and cheese. It's pretty gross, the pasta feels over cooked, but it is filling enough for me to eat at work.
  9. Today Rick and I went to the Chuck Wagon, around the corner from the chiropractors office. I wanted to get my brows waxed at the salon near there, but had to wait about an hour so she could squeeze me in. We ate in the mean time. I had a Monte Cristo, Rick had a clubhouse, bowl of Navy bean soup, and we split a plate of onion rings. I was really happy with my choice. My brows also look great!
I think doing an Iinstagram post, and an Awesome Wednesday post are kind of redundant. I am going to change the way I do things again next week.

In knitting news, I have a couple knitting projects to do for some family members. Neither of them read my blog, but I am going to wait to post about them until after they are received. I'm going to get to work right now on the one for the young lady!

Are you folks ready for the holidays?

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Awesome Wednesday: 12-12-12

As you probably know, today is 12-12-12. Nothing super special about it, but it's kind of a neat thing to see. I have a busy day ahead, going into Windsor to drop stock off at Poppy, and going for lunch with Rick, so I'm going to cut to the chase! These are the awesome things that have gone on this past week.

  • I restarted the baby shower gift. I lost a couple inches of progress, but I like the way it looks now even more than before. The only downside is, I think I might have to push this gift back to be what I give her at the hospital when she has the baby. It takes a lot of time!
  • Rick and I got pizza for dinner on Friday. The place we get it from is nowhere near as good as where we used to get it, but it's alright.
  • We watched Peace, Love & Misunderstanding. I really enjoyed it, Rick not so much. I like comedies, and he likes boring stuff.
  • I got new needles to use for the Beekeepers Quilt. I think they might still be too big. I'm going to swatch with straight needles of the same size to see if the fabric is tight enough. If not, I'll be back looking for smaller needles.
  • I posted a passive aggressive note on my Tumblr. There are certain people who have a problem with what I choose to do with my life, and who I've chosen to spend it with, and I finally said enough is enough. Posting it lifted a weight off my chest.
  • I posted about a sale in my Etsy shop!
  • I paid off a little more of my credit card. I'm just under 15% paid off! I'm hoping to pay it off in full by the end of 2013. It's on my list of goals.
  • Rick wanted McDonalds at 10pm one night. We ate a feast of crappy food, I was reminded that McNuggets are fucking gross, and had absolutely ridiculous dreams. I think the two are connected.
  • I picked up the supplies for snack plates at the grocery store. Every now and then, Rick and I make a bastardized version of an antipasto platter. Pickled garlic, peppers, sausage and regular pickles, some kind of salami, cheese and sometimes crackers. We snack on it usually while watching something on TV. It's one of my favourite kinds of meals. I love finger food!
What kind of awesome things have been going on in your lives?

Monday, December 10, 2012

A Sale In My Etsy Shop!

It's getting ever closer to the holidays, and money is getting tighter for just about everyone. For this reason, I have a discount in my Etsy shop for all of you fine people! Buy something for yourself, you deserve it.
Please note that I do not guarantee delivery in time for the holidays. If this is for a gift, you can pay extra for rush shipping. Convo me before ordering, and I can get you a price for that.
Use the code Blog25 to save a whopping 25% on everything in my shop!

Friday, December 7, 2012

Some Goals on a Friday

Today is the third consecutive day off work for me, and I'm taking advantage of it. I have a lot of things to blog about today, so I'm going to jump right in!
I started listening to/watching podcasts again. I got rid of all the old episodes I had collecting virtual dust in iTunes, and downloaded some new ones. My newest favourite is the Subway Knits podcast. Maria has such a wonderful voice for podcasting, and she really holds my attention well. This has been my background soundtrack while knitting Christine's baby shower gift (more on that later). I've also got some episodes of CraftStash and Round the Twist downloading, which I will listen to soon.
In addition to podcasts, I've been listening to songs online on Songza. My friend Jess introduced me to this, and I am really enjoying it. You can select times of day/days of the week/activities to have a soundtrack for, and they will give you a few options. For example, last night I chose "Thursday Evening", "Working (With Lyrics)", "Upbeat Indie" and finally "Female Indie Pop Singers". The first songs were from Emily Haines (of Metric), followed by Feist, Regina Spektor, Kimbra and some other wonderful artists that I really like. I'm definitely going to be using this often. I will still use iTunes, but this is a nice way to discover new artists.
I'm working on Christine's baby shower gift pretty aggressively. Her shower is at the end of this month, and I barely have an inch done. This photo shows the colours, but I undid it all, because the general consensus was that it didn't look great. I modified things a bit, and restarted. So far, so good. This is probably going to be the first and last photo of this on the blog until she receives it. I don't want to ruin the surprise! I have a couple other gifts for her, too. I think she'll really like all of it.

Now, onto the goals. I have a lot of things I want to accomplish in 2013. I did the 101 project a few times, and failed miserably. I think by having fewer goals, in a shorter time frame will allow me to stick to them a bit better. Here is what I have so far:
-Knit the stash. I have tons of yarn, and I need to start using it all. I think I'm going to do the skein in/out count again. This worked really well for me in the past. I will knit exclusively from the stash except in the case of special orders, if the yarn is more than 70% off, it is hand dyed sock yarn with a discount, or it's "souvenir" yarn. I need to have some exceptions.
-Blog more about what I am knitting. This is a knitting blog, and it seems like there isn't a heck of a lot of knitting content at any given time. I want to post about what is on my needles, and recently finished projects. I feel this will help me knit the stash more effectively. I can see what I've made, what I used for it, and it will probably give me more ideas of stuff to knit with the random assortment of yarn I have. I'm hoping to post Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and stick with that schedule, but it all depends on how much and when I work.
-Take more pictures. I have an iPhone with a decent camera, I have no excuse for not taking photos. I'm getting a new iPhone at the end of January, with an even better camera, so hopefully that will help encourage me to document more of my life. I won't necessarily share everything on Facebook or Instagram, but I want to have the pictures for myself.
-Get fit. I've gained over 30 pounds in the past year, mostly because of the anxiety medication I started taking November 2011. It increases my appetite, decreases my motivation, and makes me sleep a lot. All things that add up to a terrible weight gain. I want to start running again, which will probably be what I start with. I also want to get a stationary bike so I can pedal and knit at the same time. I wish I could build a bike that generates electricity, so I'd have to pedal every time I want to use my computer. That would be awesome, I think. (If this exists, PLEASE let me know!)
-Take better care of myself. I want to feel better about myself, and that starts with better habits. I need to eat healthier, put some make up on, even if i'm not going anywhere, and use the good shampoo more often. Little things like that will hopefully make me love myself again.
-Pay down my debts. I owe money to the credit card company, and to my parents, to the tune of several hundred each. This year, I want to really make some headway on both of them. My heart says to pay my parents back first, but my head says to pay the credit card with the 19.45% interest first. I will try to find a nice balance.
These are my goals. I won't say resolutions, but they're pretty close to that.

What sorts of goals do you have for the new year?

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Awesome Wednesday: December 5, 2012

Hello everyone! It's Wednesday, and that means it's my day off! Incidentally, I have tomorrow and Friday off, as well! That's pretty awesome, I'd say. These are the awesome things that have happened over the past 7 days.

  • I received my sock yarn minis! I love them, and I can't wait to be able to knit with them.
  • I did the Christmas Craft Show. I did really well. Not as well as Made in Windsor, but not bad at all.
  • I got FOUR custom orders at the show. I finished three of them, as well as another order I got a few days before. The fourth item, a shawl, is off the needles, I just need to weave in the ends. I also got another order for a head band, which needs to be sewn up and have the ends tied in.
  • I received my yarn from Midwest Yarn! That means I can start on Christine's baby shower gift. I'm trying to be vague about this, in case she reads my blog. I have two rows done, now it's time to get into the actual pattern part.
  • I went to my little brother's hockey game. They won, with a final score of 9-6 or something like that.
  • Mom and I went out for lunch together. That was really nice.
  • Rick and I are going for all you can eat sushi this afternoon. I can't wait!
Most of this stuff is from the weekend. I didn't do much else before or after. I do have some not so awesome news, though. Winston has a terrible ear infection, and it's completely changed his personality. Our normally loving dog has started growling at Rick and I. We're not too sure what to do, other than call the vet, and likely take him in. I hope he feels better soon.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

A Weekend In Review

I meant to blog yesterday, but I had quite the busy day, and ended up going to bed quite early.
This past weekend was probably my last craft show for a good long while. I did the Christmas Craft Show, in Windsor, and it was great!
You can click the image to see a larger version of the photos.
-Rick and I stopped at the post office on the way out to my parents. I got my sock yarn in the mail! I ordered a bundle of sock yarn mini skeins from Evermore Studios on Etsy about a week and a half prior. The yarn is even prettier in person than the photos lead me to believe! So soft, and a great variety of colours. I have the next couple days off work, so I am going to wind them into centre pull balls. I can't wait! I should be getting my DPNs from Midwest Yarn any day now, so I might allow myself to knit one hexipuff before starting the gift for my friend, for which I will be receiving the yarn at the same time.
-Friday night, my brother and I went to the bar that's a couple blocks from my parents house and had a Caesar. He turned 19 over the summer, which is the drinking age in Ontario, so we decided to hang out over a drink. We had a great time.
-Saturday morning, I set up for the craft show. I had a great space, on a corner, not far from the entrance. I had fantastic neighbours, and had a great time overall.
-I got FOUR orders for custom items on the Saturday of the show. The first was a cream cabled scarf. My mom bought me to Michael's to pick up yarn after the show, and I got a huge shopping bag full.I stayed up super late (I think about 3:30 am) so I could get the knitting done. I woke at 6:30, so I could finish it. It worked out well in the end, as I got it done not long after arriving to the show. The woman who ordered it came to pick it up in the afternoon on Sunday, and loved it!
-The second order was a crimson red lace neck warmer, the same as the ones I have in my shop. The colour is absolutely beautiful. It knit up quite quickly. I am definitely going to make another in the same colour. The recipient was one of my neighbours at the show.
-The third, and final order I completed, was a head band. I've seen similar items on Etsy and other blogs, but had never made one myself. I love it! It worked out really well, and much faster than I had anticipated. This went to my other neighbours, for their daughter. I am going to make more of these, no doubt about it!
-After the show, I went back to my parents, and decompressed for a while. We all went to my brother's hockey game, which they won. It's been a while since I've seen one of his games, so it was nice being back in the arena. I worked on my final order, a navy blue shawl, during the game. It's almost done! Just a couple more rows, and it will be ready to go. I stayed the night at my parents again, and left early Monday morning.
-Mom drove me home, where I unloaded all my stuff, and then she and I went out for lunch. We had fish and chips. Mine was in sandwich form. Absolutely fantastic. I've had food from Joey's before, but never the sandwich. I loved it! I had left overs for dinner at work.
-The last pictured is a screen shot I took when I was face Time-ing with Rick, and he changed the camera so I could see Winston. Poor little guy looked so confused when he could hear my voice, but not see me!

Overall, the weekend was great. I did very well at the show, and I enjoyed spending time with my family. How was your weekend?

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Awesome Wednesday

Half way through the work week, you can make it to the weekend! I've decided to move my "Awesome Thursday" posts to Wednesday, as I have Wednesdays off every week. It will make it a bit easier to be sure I get my post done before midnight.
In case you are new to the blog (a few of you are, thanks for following!) Awesome Thursday Wednesday is when I post things that have happened in the week prior, that I am thankful/grateful for. There have been scientific studies done that show people who show gratitude regularly lead happier, more fulfilling lives. I'm not one to argue with science! Here goes.

-I made some earrings last week. not a lot, I still have loads of supplies sitting around, but I made a dent in them. I'm probably going to make more tonight, when Rick and I get home from Arby's.
-I watched quite a few episodes of Duck Dynasty. I really love that show. Uncle Si is one of my favourite characters from a reality series. Everything that comes out of his mouth is golden. All his "Jack" and "Hey!" statements make me laugh. Jase is my second favourite person on the show. He really gets the other guys going. If you haven't watched this show yet, I strongly recommend it.
-I gave Winston a bath. Normally, I'm not much of a fan of this, but he was so good this time. He didn't try to get out of the tub, until I told him to. Another great thing about bathing him, is that he usually waits to shake off until we tell him to do so. This means I can close the shower curtain, and he can shake off, and not get water all over the bathroom. After we finished, he was so happy and love-y, it was great. He just wanted to come up and give me kisses for an hour. We played a bit after, and then snuggled and watched TV.
-I went to a craft show and the farmer's market on Saturday. Got a Christmas gift, and some miscellaneous other things.
-I bought a new sweater. It's a really nice grey cabled design, with a bright pink collar/button band, and black cuffs and waistband. I like it, and it was a great price.
-I found a light up pink flamingo at Canadian Tire. Seriously, the coolest thing I have seen recently. I am thinking of going to get one after Christmas, when they're discounted. I don't even have a lawn, but I would consider staking it into a potted plant, just because it's so awesome.
-Sunday I had my vendor show at the winery. I did very poorly, mostly because I was upstairs in a room that very few people came to. I don't know if I'll be doing this show again, because most weeks it's only the upstairs that is available. Despite doing poorly, I tried to stay in a good mood. I think I did alright on that front.
-I gave Rick most of his Christmas gift. I'm terrible at waiting for stuff like this. I got him some lavender and honey food things, and a sweater. The rest of his gift is a magazine subscription that I will be ordering this weekend.
-I got a couple custom orders, which I blogged about before. The first was for a Where's Waldo? style hat. I knit that on my loom, and made the pompom by hand. It looks awesome! I'll be mailing it in the next couple days.

Overall, life is pretty good. Rick and I are at Arby's currently, and I'm getting some work on my Tumblrs done.
How are all of you fine folks doing?

A Sale In The Shop

Getting towards the end of the month, many people feel a financial stretch when all the bills and rent are due. I'm included in this bunch. To make things a little easier, I'm giving a 15% discount in my Etsy shop with the code RentIsDue15. Also, if you spend $20 or more (before shipping) you will get a free pair of earrings in the colour of your choice. Tell me what colour you want in the Notes To Seller section, and I will do my best to accommodate your request!

Monday, November 26, 2012

A Little Big Discouraged

I try to be as upbeat as I possibly can on my blog, but sometimes that just doesn't work. This last week has bummed me out for some reason. I've just been in a less than stellar mood, and I can't figure out why. I think I'm getting a cold, so that probably has something to do with it, but it's not everything, I'm sure.
I haven't been working as hard as I could on my business, and I know that's a problem. I didn't do a Black Friday/Small Business Saturday/Cyber Monday/whatever sale this weekend, mostly because I am lazy. I really could have done something, but I preferred sleeping and knitting. Last year, I told myself that I would do it this year. Well, that didn't work out. I'm really bad a pre-planning things in advance, I usually just fly by the seat of my pants and hope for the best.
I really need to figure out how to make this business work. I love working at The Beer Store, but it's not something I want to do forever.
It's not all doom and gloom here, though. I have a couple custom orders to work on! My friend Paul asked for a red and white Where's Waldo? style hat, and I am doing that on my Knifty Knitter. I just started into the white body of the hat, after knitting a wide red brim. I haven't knit on one of my looms in ages, so it took a little while to get back into a rhythm.
I was also asked to make a neck warmer similar to the eyelet neck warmers in my shop, just a different size. My mom is picking up the yarn for that from Michael's this week, and I will work on it this weekend when I am at my parents. I have to make sure I bring all my knitting tools with me, otherwise, I won't be able to finish it for Sunday, when Rosina will be picking it up.
The last custom order is for a woman named Cassie who owns Walkerville Soap Works. She makes baskets up with her amazing soap, and asked for a lavender coloured one to go into a lavender themed basket. I'm about a third of the way through that, and I plan on finishing it tonight when I get home from work.
In any case, I am going to try to put myself into a good mood. I'll work on this hat, and play some games online.
How are all of you doing?

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Awesome Thursday: November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving to my American friends and readers. I hope you've enjoyed your dinner with friends an family, and are looking forward to the holiday season.
I worked all day today. It was supposed to only be a 3 hour day, but a coworker called in sick, so I covered part of his shift. After work, I grabbed a few sundries, and Rick came and picked me up.
These are some of the awesome things going on lately.
  • I received some supplies I ordered on TopHatter. I've already made some of them into earrings. I can't wait to do more!
  • I had an incredibly successful weekend of craft shows. I posted about this before, but it needed to be said again.
  • I spent the weekend at my parents, which is usually nice.
  • I picked up pizzelle and chocolate chip cookies from the Sprucewood Winery show. Super delicious. Rick has enjoyed a few of the pizzelle, and I ate the chocolate chip cookies.
  • Rick and I went for Pho. We celebrated my successful weekend of shows with some delicious Vietnamese food. We both got our usuals, and they definitely did not disappoint! The photo is of my pineapple bubble tea, and Rick's Winter Roll.
  • I had a pretty good week at work. Nothing too eventful.
  • I bought the Beekeeper's Quilt knitting pattern from Tiny Owl Knits. My knitting needles are on their way from Wisconsin, and I can't wait to start knitting!
  • I ordered a mini skein pack of sock yarn for the quilt. You can see it here. I love the colours in this pack!
  • Rick and I went to Arby's for lunch yesterday. I had a day off work, so we decided to be productive and get some TV shows downloaded.
  • We watched a few episodes of Doomsday Preppers. It's one of those shows that we just can't help but enjoy.
  • I entered a bunch of giveaways on various blogs.
What have all of you lovely folks been up to?

Monday, November 19, 2012

What a Weekend!

This past weekend was absolutely incredible. Thursday, I received an enveloped full of earring supplies that I won on TopHatter. I was super excited about that. I was hoping to receive them Wednesday, so I could crank out some more pairs for the weekend, but things didn't work out that way. Instead, I will make them tomorrow and Wednesday.
Friday, Rick drove me to Walkerville Brewery to set up for the Made in Windsor show. That building is beautiful! There were over thirty vendors, and each and every one had amazing items for sale. I was initially along one wall, but I moved to a corner that was closer to the actual brewing equipment. I think this may have decreased my total sales for the weekend, but I am okay with that.
Sorry about the frame on the first one.
I need to remember to either frame all of them, or leave them unframed.
The first photo is the view I had for most of the weekend. I was right at the end of the brewery, so I could see many of the tables. It was nice being there, and being able to see so much. The second photo is the front of my table, closest to the walkway between booths. The styrofoam head with the hat and cowl really grabbed a lot of attention. Overall, the Made in Windsor show was amazing. Every vendor I talked to did incredibly well, myself included. In fact, I sold so many items that one of my racks (visible in the fourth photo, at the second show) was getting empty! I can't wait to do the next Made in Windsor event!
The last two photos were taken at Sprucewood Shores Estate Winery, during their Holiday Fair, yesterday. They provided the tables, coverings, and chairs which was great. I had a really long table that allowed me to spread out my stuff and not have it look all jumbled together. I put one of my folding racks up on the table, as there wasn't room on the floor. This brought everything up to eye level, and I think that helped. I didn't sell much at this show, but I am definitely doing it again next Sunday. I just have to get some more items knit!
I used Square for a few of my transactions for the weekend. People seemed to be really impressed by it, and I made quite a few sales this way. Close to 20% of the transactions were done with Square. I also ran a few transactions for some friends who didn't have a way of accepting credit card payments. I highly recommend this service.
Overall, the weekend was amazing. I spent time with my family, which is always nice. My dad, who has never seen one of my shows, helped me set up at Sprucewood, and he seemed to be really interested in what I was doing.
I used Ribbet to edit my four pictures together. It's JUST like Picnik, and very quick and easy to use. I have only used it this one time, so I can't really say if I recommend it or not, but for something simple like this, it's a great option.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Awesome Thursday: November 15, 2012

And once again, it's Thursday! This past week hasn't been too eventful, but I did do some fun stuff.

  • I got an awesome email saying I was accepted to take part in the Sprucewood Shores Winery Holiday Fair this upcoming Sunday. This means a three day weekend of craft shows! It's every Sunday between now and the end of December, and I'm going to do as many as I possibly can.
  • Rick and I went to Arby's to download some TV shows and what not. We used to do this pretty regularly, but since I've been working a bunch, we don't go together that often.
  • The CEO Of Me Shop From Your Seat Showcase started! I've been getting some pretty good traffic from that. Still no sales, but there is still a lot of time for that.
  • Rick and I watched Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, and Safety Not Guaranteed. I liked all three of them. He rented another movie, that I didn't care for, and the first season of Homeland, which I didn't watch either.
  • I finally was able to put my foot up and ice my ankle. I twisted it last Wednesday, and yesterday I had it up and rested it for a while. It still hurts, but it does feel a bit better.
  • I got caught up on my TV shows that I watch. I really like 2 Broke Girls, and I was a bit behind in watching them.
  • I decided to quit my NaBloPoMo project. It was fun, and did force me to write more, but I felt like I was trying too hard. And blogging is supposed to be fun!
Nothing too exciting this week. How are all of you doing?

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

I Failed at NaBloPoMo, But 365 Will Go On!

"Bitch, why you gotta wake me up all the time?" Didn't do much today to justify a #365 photo so you get #winstonthesharpeiSo, even though I didn't complete NaBloPoMo, I will complete my 365 project. I'm not sure if I'll post these daily, or if I'll do a post every few days, we'll have to see how things go. I don't want to post a bunch of short, pointless entries just to share the pictures.
Anyway, this is Winston, all mad at me that I turned the light on so I could take a picture of him. Since this was taken, he has run around the bedroom like a crazy person, and wrecked all the blankets on the bed. I love this dog more than any other animal on the whole planet.

NaBloPoMo Day Thirteen: Waving the White Flag

This is the 650th post on this little blog of mine. I can't believe I've been writing here for this long. I don't always have something important to say, I rarely do, actually, but I love that there are people here that read my words. I would like to thank each and every one of you who follows me here.

Shortly after waking up, I started working on my bracelet collection. I wrapped the ends on all of them over the course of a little over an hour. I was doing other things at the time, so it probably only took me about a half hour to get them done. I think they look great. I had a couple people suggest I put beads on them, so I think I will do that after I get my initial twenty made. I have a lot of beads. It's just a matter of figuring out which ones to use. I can't wait to see how these are received at the craft shows. I think they're at a good price point, so that will help.

I took a look at the Facebook event page for the Made in Windsor show. I was absolutely ecstatic to see that there are over 350 people saying "yes" to attending! And another nearly 200 saying maybe! I know that these numbers aren't necessarily accurate, but they're huge! It's going to be such a great show, I just know it. I can't wait to see the other vendors. I've done shows with a lot of them already, but there are a few I haven't. Christine and Julie, the organizers, chose a great bunch of artists and crafters, most of whom have very unique items for sale, as well as a large following of fans which will bring even more people to the show.
Also on Facebook, I have recently had a surge of fans on my Knit, Nicole, Knit! page. I feel like I'm not using all my social media outlets as well as I could be. I don't want to spam people, but I want to get my shop noticed. I'm definitely going to have to work on this.

I think this NaBloPoMo series has reached the end of the line. Everything feels forced now. I'm going to take a day or two off blogging, and then be back with some real knitting content. Thank you for sticking with these posts, I hope you enjoyed them.

Monday, November 12, 2012

NaBloPoMo Day Twelve: Running Out Of Steam

This month, I am participating in the CEO Of Me Shop From Your Seat Showcase. You can take a look at the other vendors, and find an exclusive coupon code for my Etsy shop Here. There are a lot of cool small businesses represented, check it out! You can also enter to win $400 worth of prizes Here. It's an awesome event, and I am so happy to be taking part.
I slept in today. I could have been up earlier than 11:00, which is when I finally rolled out of bed, but I didn't have anything pressing to do. Some days I feel guilty sleeping in, but today wasn't one of those days. Rick had an appointment to go to, so he kissed me goodbye, and I snuggled under the blankets for another half hour or so. I finally woke up and had some nachos with dip for breakfast. Sounds unhealthy, but there were lots of veggies on the dip, so I'm counting it as a win.

I continued knitting a bracelet while reading some of my blogs. My new goal is 20 finished bracelets. I have thirteen almost done so far. They're all off the needles, they just need to have the ends wrapped, and tied. I graft the two ends together as seamlessly as possible, but I like to wrap the yarn and make them look a little more polished. I'm going to search through my stash for more fine yarn to make some different colours. I have a pretty good variety so far, which makes me super happy.
Most of my craft show stuff is ready for the Made in Windsor shows this weekend. Everything is priced, and the ends are all tied in, except for the bracelets. The only thing I have left to do is assemble a few more pairs of earrings, as well as package and price them. I might wait to do this, as I already have quite a few pairs made. We'll have to see how much free time I have this week. I don't work Wednesdays, so I might do all the rest of my prep then.

I worked a five hour shift tonight. It was incredibly quiet. It is nice at times to not have to do much work, but after a while, it really starts to drag. I played a couple games of Plague Inc to pass the time. I wish I'd brought knitting with me, but I somehow forgot it. I am happy that there weren't any problems tonight. I was a bit grumpy at the start of my shift, and I knew I wouldn't put up with the drama that happens there at times.

Rick and I watched Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter this morning. I'd seen the trailer, and a few people have mentioned it, but it wasn't really on my list of "must see" movies. I really enjoyed it. The vampires were really awesome, following what most folklore tells you about them, none of that sparkly bullshit.
We are watching The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, as I write this. I wasn't too into it when Rick told me the title, but I figured I would give it a chance. I'm actually liking it. Normally, I don't really care for movies with too many story lines running concurrently, but this one works well. There are no jumps in time, which helps me keep track of what is actually going on. Multiple stories with multiple time frames makes for a confused Nicole. In the end, everyone found their happily ever after. Everything is okay in the end. If it's not okay, then it's not the end.

Onto some fun facts.
40. If I am unable to open my own business, I want to work for an independent brewery. I love the culture that surrounds micro brews, and I would love to be a major part of that. There are so many awesome things that happen at all these breweries. I have no idea if I would ever be able to actually do this, but it would be awesome.
41. I am a terrible procrastinator. I always put things off until the deadline is breathing down my neck. Most craft shows, I am still adding price tags, and making earrings until midnight. I always tell myself I will do better next time, and not put it off, but it always happens.
Another great example of procrastination on my part is this post. It's 11:45 pm as I write this, and I am still several hundred words away from my goal. I am over a day behind in words, and I worry that I will never catch up. I can try and put the blame on things around me. Like having to work today, or the internet being unreliable, but really, it's my fault. I didn't do any planning yesterday, so I didn't have anything to write about. I spent more time checking my word count than actually contributing to it.
42. This one ties in with the last one. I am incredibly easily distracted. Not enough to warrant a title that starts with a capital A, but enough to be annoyed. I often start fiddling around with unimportant things, and I lose focus of the end goal. When I was in school, this was a terrible curse. Procrastination and a short attention span meant most of my projects were dragged together in the two days before the due date. I did well most of the time, so that didn't encourage me to change my ways. I know that if I go back to school, I will have to learn to change my ways.

Bracelet explosion!
Today's 365 photo is similar to one from a few days ago. In fact, many of my pictures have been similar so far. I will be doing more interesting things in the future, I promise. My life isn't all work and knitting. Wait... It actually kind of is, currently. Oh well! Anyway, more bracelets! I really like the way this one turned out. The colours are pretty accurate, and it shows just how many I have on the go. I'm almost to my goal! After I finish 20, I think I will make a few more that have beads throughout. I've seen some really pretty textile bracelets with beads and charms, and they are really pretty. I hope I can recreate something as good as them.

Overall, life is still pretty awesome. I talked with Christine, the organizer of the Made in Windsor show, today. We both have very high hopes for the show this weekend. That is what I am looking forward to most right now. I can't wait for the weekend!

I'm having a hell of a time finishing this post! Our internet is shaky, and I can't get to the site I usually use to count my words.
This post has 1149 words.
I am at 17 792 total words for this month.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

NaBloPoMo Day Eleven

At the office.When I woke up this morning, I had absolutely no desire to continue with this posting series. I had no desire to do much of anything, to be honest. I didn't even want to knit. I tried to watch TV but the satellite wasn't working. I tried playing with the dog, and he didn't feel like it. So, I woke Rick up and made him take me to Arby's. We come here pretty regularly, at least we used to, because the internet is much MUCH faster than at home, and we can actually download our TV shows in a reasonable amount of time. I had a back log of Duck Dynasty shows to get, as well as an episode of 2 Broke Girls.
Coming to Arby's is always an adventure. Today started out with us unable to get our usual table. Not the end of the world or anything, just a minor annoyance. So we sat at our second choice, and started to set up. There were people near us, which is never really a desirable situation, as questionable content sometimes pops up in our RSS feeds. That table left and it was quiet for a while. A short time after that, a screaming child came in for a bit. Then a little girl trying to get her Oma's attention by repeatedly saying OMA OMA OMA rather loudly, while said Oma was having a conversation with someone else at the table. I really try to ignore these things, but it's not always possible. Does this make me a bad person?
Anyway, today's 365 photo is of our sandwiches. More often than not, we each get the 4 for $6 deal. Two sandwiches, curly fries and a drink. It's enough food, for a good price. And, we can take our time eating it. I don't really like to sit around there for too long without having food or drinks on the table, because I feel like I'm getting in the way. That actually never happens, but I can't help but feeling like it's the truth.

I decided to wear my matryoshka ring from SOMETHINGMONUMENTAL today. I got a couple rings from Mandy a little while back, and I haven't worn them at all. It's hard to wear rings to work, because I'm terrified they're going to get caught on something and either break, or, even worse, break my finger. It's on my pinky, and I keep catching little glances of it dangling while I type, and it's making me smile. I love little matryoshki!

I spent a couple hours trying to get ad space up on my I Love Etsy blog. I have Passionfruit Ads on the YarnYarnYarnYarn blog, and that didn't give me any issues when I added the code for it. For some reason, it's just not cooperating with this one. Rick helped me with it, and I thought it was figured out, and it just pretended to be. I'll probably have to come back to it later and try again. If you have any tips for adding Passionfruit Ads to a tumblr blog, please let me know!

Like I mentioned earlier, I didn't even want to knit this morning. I have a few projects on the needles, but nothing was appealing to me at all. I don't know if I'm burned out, or uninspired or something like that. I just have to fall back in love with knitting, that's for sure. I spent some time looking at patterns on Ravelry. There are a few different items I want to add to my craft show arsenal, but I need to find some photos to get an idea of proportions and stitch patterns. I don't want to do anything too simple, nor too complicated.

Here is today's edition of fun facts about Nicole.
37. My brain is a sponge for useless information. The only time any of these random facts come in handy is when I'm watching Jeopardy. I wish I could remember names as well as I remember that Louis XIV was called the Sun King. Or to reply to important emails on time like I can remember phone numbers I haven't dialled in ten years or more. My random fact bank also includes things about random celebrities, strange song lyrics, a few scientific facts and other things that don't usually make for interesting dinner conversation. I seek out information pretty readily, usually by reading various articles online.
38. I hate being hot. When I lived in my first apartment, it was horribly laid out and my one little window air conditioner couldn't cool the entire place. I put a blanket up in the doorway of my living room, and lived exclusively in that room for the duration of the hot weather. It wasn't very fun. The really strange thing about this, is that I love super hot showers. I like being warm in the shower, and cold everywhere else. I've said before that I'm a strange person.
39. I play games obsessively. I get addicted to different games every few months. Whichever one is hot at the moment, I will play for hours at a time. Sometimes, it's a Facebook based game, but usually, it's on my iPhone. But I will play so often, that my phone battery will die several times a day. I'm currently on the lookout for a new one. I wanted to play RollerCoaster Tycoon, but I can't find a download for Mac. I also thought about getting Sims again, but that one is WAY too addictive. I just started Plague Inc. for iPhone, and it seems pretty interesting.
Okay, so I got distracted with Plague Inc. I played it for a while, and nearly killed my phone battery. This should make for a new game addiction.

I got a little more bracelet knitting done this evening while watching The Walking Dead. Finished a white, four wrap bracelet, and started on a white three wrap. I'm still going for some variety. I'm going to try making them with embroidery floss after I'm done with this one. It seems to be the right weight, and I have tons of the stuff. I've also been toying with the idea of adding beads into them randomly. Oh oh oh! And stripes and colour blocks. I have a lot of ideas, I just want to make sure they will sell before I make too many of them. I hardly sold any of the simple ones last craft show season, and I don't want a crap ton of them sitting around. Once I get the Made in Windsor show done, I will get some of them photographed and listed in the shop. I have a few other plans for them, as well, but I don't want to reveal too much just yet.

I put off most of the writing until late at night. Now, it's getting close to midnight and I am several hundred words away from my goal. The last couple days, I've been under my word count, so I am trying to play catch up. It seems like this one will be under, as well. I have to get some more ideas together so I can get a couple word heavy posts made and get back on target. My real goal is actually just 15 days or more, and at least 25 000 words. If I can make it halfway, I will count it as a personal victory. There is always next year, right? (Plus, if I do it next year, I can do more planning, rather than just "Hey, this sounds like a good idea")

This post has 1259 words.
I am at 16 643 total words for this month.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

One Third of the Way There! Day Ten of NaBloPoMo

Honestly, I am pretty surprised I've made it this far. I've made attempts at 101 in 1001 lists two separate times, and never gotten very far into them. Maybe because this isn't as long, and doesn't involve as many goals? I don't know, but I'm really happy that I'm still sticking with this. I'm just about a day behind in word count, but I'm sure I can make that up in the next few days.

I woke up around 9:30 today, and hopped on the computer pretty much immediately. My queues for my I Love Etsy! blog and my personal tumblr were getting dangerously low, so I had to stock them up again. I try to have at least three or four days of posts ready to go at any time. Both of them had reached one day or less. I added a whole bunch of posts to the YarnYarnYarnYarn queue as well. I really enjoy sharing the cool things I find on these tumblrs. I really enjoy the tumblr blogging platform as a whole. The social aspect of it is really cool.

Yesterday, I posted the photo of all the bracelets I'd made. Since then, I've finished a couple more. These bracelets whip up so quickly, it's great. I'm sure I'll reach, if not surpass, my new goal of 16 bracelets. The only ones I have left to do are the shorter, three wrap ones, so they go even faster. I'm thinking about making one up that is either or more wraps, just to show people what it looks like, so they can possibly order one in the colour of their choice at a long length like that. What colour bracelets would you like to see? I'm trying to get as much variety as possible.

In addition to the Made in Windsor show I have coming up next Friday and Saturday, I've signed up for a show on the Sunday. It will be at Sprucewood Shores Estate Winery. They're doing a show every Sunday between November 18 and December 30, from 12:00-5:00 each day. I'm going to do the first one, and see how it goes. If I do well, I will sign up for as many as I possibly can. It will be nice to have something weekly (or close to it) to look forward to. Plus, since I don't work most Sundays anyway, I'll hopefully be making some money, too!

The other night, I was on Tophatter, in the Supplies auction room, which is always trouble for me. I've purchased a lot of my earring supplies through there, and I may have... accidentally... yeah, let's go with accidentally, bought a whole bunch more. One of my favourite suppliers had a few auctions in the Standby area, with a pretty low starting bid. I decided to place that bid on a few of her lots, and I hoped to win one of them at that price. The first one came to auction, and the price went more than double the starting bid. Fine, okay, I still have bids on a couple more. I expected the same to happen with all of them, so I just left the auction, and continued writing my blog post for the night. When you bid on an item in Standby, that bid is automatically applied, whether you're present at the auction or not. I checked my email a couple hours later, almost having forgotten about the auction, and to my surprise, I won three of the six auctions I bid on! I was ecstatic! I really wanted to get more earring supplies so that I could bring more finished pairs to stores that are selling my stuff, but I just didn't feel like I had enough made to do so. I now have enough for probably 350 pairs! I have plenty of posts and backs that I ordered a while back, so once I get these, I will likely spend a few days assembling them, another couple packaging, and then we're off to the races! I love making earrings, and they sell well, so it's a win-win for me!

Steel toes and empties. A slow night at work. #365
I worked six hours this evening. It wasn't super busy, but busy enough that the time still passed at a reasonable speed. There were a few issues with our tills suddenly deciding to stop working, which caused some problems. Then, they started working, and our debit machines went down. We couldn't win! This happens far too often. We're supposed to be getting a whole new computer and POS system (NOT piece of shit, it's point of sale) in the new year, and that can't come soon enough. At least the guys I was working with were having fun. It really drags on if people are miserable. Any time I go into work in a grumpy mood, I try to get out of my funk, before I bum out anyone else. I really hate going into work in a good mood, and then some turd ball spoiling it for me. And I don't want to be that kind of turd ball.

Here are today's fun facts.

32. I'm incredibly clumsy. The most recent example of this is that this past Wednesday, when Rick and I stopped at the antiques store, I left, and was looking around, rather than where I was going, and I fell off the raised sidewalk, and twisted my ankle. It still hurts today. I've also stubbed my toes multiple times, and broken them a few times. A couple weeks ago, I fell UP the stairs, and I think I broke my toe. It still hurts now, nearly a month later. Tripped over a door once, and broke my arm. Yes, tripped over a door. It's unbelievable, until you meet me.

33. I'm very lazy. This one is kind of hard to admit, but it's very true. I don't like to clean, I don't like to work out, I don't like to do much of anything but knit, read blogs, and hang out with Rick and Winston. I'm trying to get into better habits of cleaning up after myself, and working out regularly, but it's fricken tough to start new habits. Apparently, it takes 30 days, or something like that, for a new habit to stick. I get lazy halfway through and lose all the ground I gained. I need to fix this. As soon as I am done writing this, I'm going to work out. I don't care if it's only for 15 minutes, I have to do something!

34. I moved out of my parents house when I was 20. I blogged about this when it was happening, but I'm not sure if my age was apparent. A lot of people told me that was too young to move out, but it was time. I had a good apartment, for a great price, fall into my lap, and I had a hard time saying no. I met Rick shortly after, and this relationship wouldn't have happened if I still lived with my parents, I'm sure of it. Since then, I've moved twice, which is completely bizarre, because I'd lived in the same house since I was a baby.

35. I often have the sense of humour of an eleven year old boy. Seriously... Lowbrow humour and I get along really well. In fact, I just had a conversation with two friends about farting, and laughed my ass off. I'm also a fan of the whole "That's what she said" line. I've almost ALMOST said it to customers at work, and had to bite my tongue. I don't think middle aged Mennonite men (the majority of our customers) would appreciate such humour.

36. I want to get braces. When I was younger, I went to an orthodontist at the insistence of my dentist. Orthodontist said I didn't NEED braces or anything of the sort, but if we (being my parents, who would foot the bill) wanted them, he would do them. We decided against it, because my parents would have had to pay a large percentage of it, as my mom's insurance wouldn't cover the majority. Now that I am older, I wish my teeth were straighter. They're not very crooked or crowded, but enough that I notice it. Maybe when we win the lottery, I'll get them. Hint: We very VERY rarely gamble, so that's not going to happen any time soon. I would also like to whiten my teeth. This is something I will probably be doing soon. I have whitening strips, I just have to read the directions, and get to doing it!

When I got done work tonight, I went to Shoppers Drug Mart to pick up some Red Bull for Rick and I. I drank a giant can of it while writing this post, and it made me feel like a hardcore partier. I'm kind of hyped up, and I have the energy to go work out. I spent some time chatting with some friends on Facebook, which is always nice. I don't get to see my friends that often because we live so far from the city, so it's nice to have a way to keep in touch.

This post has 1518 words.
I am at 15 384 total words for this month.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Day Number Nine of NaBloPoMo

It's Friday! That doesn't mean much for me, because I work today and tomorrow. I do have Sunday off work, though. I wasn't really feeling writing this post when I first started it this morning. My idea well is starting to run dry, and I don't want these posts to be contrived, as I mentioned before. I haven't really had a whole lot of knitting time, so there isn't much to update about in that department. And with work, I don't have time to gallivant around and do fun stuff everyday.

Onto today's fun facts!
28. I very rarely get sick. When I was young (like under 4 years old) I used to be sick all.the.time. I obviously don't remember this, but my mom does. Since then, I don't get sick all that often. I can't even remember the last time I had so much as a cold. I don't have any secrets to how I don't catch things that are going around. It's not like I wash my hands obsessively, seclude myself from people who are sick, or anything like that. I'm just lucky, I guess.
29. I've been on a plane exactly three times. When I was about 12, I went to the local hobby airplane hangar with my Pathfinder group for an open house they were having. (Pathfinders are an older group of Girl Guides: the Canadian version of Girl Scouts) With this event, all of the attendees could go up in a plane with one of the pilots. When my turn came up, I was matched with a really nice guy and his yellow, two seater Cessna. It was small. So small that he had to take his shoes off to be able to reach the foot controls. We flew around the county, and were up in the air for about 30 minutes, maybe a little longer. In that time, I flew the plane for about 5 minutes, and it was amazing!
The second and third times I was on a plane was going to and from Iceland. These flights were mostly uneventful. On the way there, we flew overnight, so most people slept. The way back, we flew over Greenland, which was pretty awesome.
30. The farthest I've ever been from home is Iceland. I've never been farther south than the middle of Ohio. So that means unlike a lot of people, I've never been to Florida, Mexico or elsewhere around the Gulf of Mexico. And honestly? I really don't think I'm missing out on much. I don't care what your opinion on that area is, it's not for me. I don't do well with heat, I don't like having sand all over me, and I don't like being surrounded by a million tourists.
31. I used to go camping all the time with my family. We'd pack up our truck and trailer, and head out on the open road. We've been all around Ontario, through Quebec, and across the maritimes (except for Newfoundland, unfortunately) And those camping trips were some of the greatest trips I'd ever had. I'm much happier to have seen that much of Canada, than any other country where I have to stay on the resort or risk being attacked.

Work wasn't too bad tonight. I had an eight hour, which hasn't happened in a little while. I wasn't working on empties, which was a nice change. Being that I'm the lowest in seniority, I'm nearly always doing returns. Nothing too eventful happened tonight. There were a lot of young people coming in, so I had to ID a whole bunch of them. Only one girl gave me a problem. All I could say was "Take it as a compliment, and give me your ID, or get out of my store." She had only turned 19 a couple months ago. Sorry, but you don't magically look old enough as soon as your birthday passes. We ID anyone that looks under 25, and most people, females especially, take it as a compliment. I'm working six hours tomorrow, so we'll see how that goes. Nearly the whole crew is in, so it should be a good time.

Right #knit #bracelets finished! So happy! #knitnicoleknit #365I am so happy with today's 365 photo. I told myself I wanted to have at least 10 bracelets made for the Made in Windsor show, and I am almost there, with nearly a week to go! My new quota is going to be two of each colour: one of each size. The filter on this photo makes the colours look a lot more saturated than they are really, but it's pretty close. The top row all wrap four times, and are $12. The bottom row wrap thrice, and are $10. My pricing is basically going to be $6 for the first wrap, and $2 for every wrap after that. So if there is a colour you want, in a specific number of wraps, let me know, and I can get making that for you!

It's now almost midnight, and I'm eating a bowl of sausage soup, that has no sausage in it. Dinner was at around 4, so I was a bit on the hungry side. This isn't really hitting the spot.

Short post tonight, but I didn't have much to say. I'll be back tomorrow!

This post has 866 words.
I am at 13 866 total words for this month.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

NaBloPoMo Day Eight: Awesome Thursday: November 8, 2012

For the first time in this NaNo series, I have writers block. I'm having a rough time focusing on this post, because I would rather be knitting. I have a whole pile of projects around me in various states of being finished that keep grabbing my attention. If it's not those, I start reading blogs in my RSS reader. Or I start browsing Etsy or TopHatter. I can't concentrate! Too many distractions! Oooh shiny things!

In yesterday's post, I mentioned that I was ready to cast off the teal shawl. Well, I did that not too long after finishing the blog post, and I really like how it turned out! It's a bit smaller than the other shawls, but still a great size for wrapping around your neck. You can't really see the yarn overs on the edge, but you can kind of see the open bits on the centre spine. I did the increases for this one a little differently than I usually do, which made them a little more visible. It made the knitting a little easier, and quicker, but I don't really like the way it looks. I will probably go back to the way I usually do the increases. I think I still have a couple skeins of this yarn left, and I will likely make another neck warmer out of it. I made two, and you can see one here. The other is nearly identical, and I brought it into Trinkets and Treasures yesterday.

Today is Thursday, so that means an Awesome Thursday is in order! Like I mentioned last week, there have also been studies done that have concluded that people showing gratitude can lead healthier lives with less depression and anxiety, sounder sleep and a better attitude towards others. I'm not one to argue with science, so on with the gratitude!
  • I started this fun NaBlo project! I'm a week in, and doing very well, I think. I still have a few ideas of fun things to write about, so hopefully the posts won't get boring.
  • On Friday, we went to the casino for the buffet. I posted about that whole day on Day 2 of NaBloPoMo, here. I had a lot of fun there, even without gambling.
  • I worked like crazy on YarnYarnYarnYarn, and got nearly ONE THOUSAND posts ready to go. That number absolutely boggles my mind. I'm going to be adding a whole bunch more this upcoming weekend, when I have a day off.
  • I knit a whole pile of bracelets. They come off the needles so quickly, I love them! Tomorrow, I'll post a picture of all the ones I have made so far. They look pretty awesome!
  • Obama won! I followed the results online, and it was pretty nerve wracking. I am quite happy with this, as well as some of the propositions passed, and voted down, in various states.
  • Rick and I went to Amherstburg to drop off stock to Trinkets and Treasures. The new store is nice, as I mentioned before.
  • I got paid from Trinkets! Not a whole lot of money, but considering I didn't have a whole heck of a lot in the store, I'm pretty darn happy.
  • Work today was pretty nice. We had some awesome customers come in early on, which made the slow day go by a little quicker.
  • When I got home from work, dinner was almost ready. Cindy made sausage soup again, and it was fantastic! I think I'm going to bring a bowl of it to work tomorrow.
Here are today's fun facts! I'm starting to have a really hard time figuring out what to put here. I would appreciate any suggestions/questions you have for me!
25. I have a hard time choosing my favourite anything, especially anything music related. For a couple years now, I've used a service called to track my music metrics. This has given me a pretty good idea of the bands I listen to the most often. With that, I give you my top 10 favourite bands:
  1. Fall Out Boy
  2. Taking Back Sunday
  3. Blink 182
  4. Rise Against
  5. Tegan and Sara
  6. Nirvana
  7. The Used
  8. Metric
  9. Say Anything
  10. Paramore
This is pretty accurate. I listen to all these bands quite often, and have multiple albums by each of them. Also, I'm not ashamed that I like these bands as much as I do. I don't believe in having "guilty pleasure" music. If you like something, own it.
26.I don't drink coffee! Until a year ago, I absolutely abhorred coffee, and anything coffee flavoured. I made it a goal of my 101 in 1001 list to learn to like coffee. I forced myself to drink it with a lot of milk and sugar a few times. I didn't mind it, but I definitely didn't like it either. Rick and I would share a French press of coffee a few times a week, in hopes of me learning to like it. It never worked. I don't hate it anymore, but I never actually buy it or anything like that. The only time I do consume it is from Starbucks, when I get a frappucino. But I don't think that even counts because of all the other stuff in with it. And, my favourite beverage at Tim Horton's is a white hot chocolate.
27. This ties in with the last one. If the idea of a certain type of food appeals to me, I will do everything in my power to learn to like it. I used to hate avocados and guacamole, for example. But I liked the idea of everything that is in guacamole, and the health benefits of eating avocados, so I kept eating it over and over again, to force myself to like it. I did the same with raw fish. And beer, actually. One of the other foods that I want to teach myself to like is hummus. I love the idea of it, and I just want to learn to enjoy it. People don't believe me when I say it's possible to learn to enjoy certain foods. It worked for me!

Two of my knitted items were featured in treasuries today! Being included in a treasury is always a nice treat, and two in one day is absolutely fantastic! The pictures are obviously very very small, so you can click them and see the treasury on Etsy, in all its glory. If you're feeling nice, you can Heart them!

The best day of the monthToday's 365 photo is the Steam Whistle truck doing its delivery at work today. I wanted to get closer to get a better shot, but I was the only one on the tills at the time, and I didn't want to make people wait. I spent most of the day at work, so I figured something work related was in order. There will probably be a lot of work related 365 photos, so I will try to mix it up as much as possible.

The internet has been acting really goofy for me all afternoon today. Things aren't loading quickly, if at all, or the router suddenly decides I need to log into it, all sorts of shenanigans. I'm hoping this post goes through without issues. It's a little on the short side, but like I said before, the short attention span was kicking in.
This post has 1215 words.
I am at 13 000 total words for this month.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Day Seven of NaBloPoMo

This morning started earlier than normal. I was up around 9. I think my theory of "late to bed, early to rise" is correct. I'll probably be going to bed later more often. I didn't have to be up this early, but it meant I had plenty of time to putter around before Rick and I had to leave. I made egg, mushroom and cheese wraps for breakfast, which were pretty tasty. I also had plenty of time to get my knitting together for the car ride we had on the agenda.

Earlier this week, we planned to drive the 40 minutes or so to Amherstburg today, where Trinkets and Treasures is now located. They've been open there about a week, and are doing fairly well. I had new stock to drop off, as well as take care of all the paper work that needed to be done. The new shop is beautiful. It's quite a bit larger than the last two locations, combined! The way Mel has the shop laid out is pretty nice, too. There are two pretty big windows at the front of the store. One of them showcases children's items, and the other has all sorts of things for adults. There is also a section of all kinds of beautiful jewelry, another with stationary and other paper goods, and other small sections so you can easily find what you would like to purchase. These cowls are a few of the items I brought in today. I also brought in a bunch of earrings, and a couple scarves. I wanted to bring more, but I want to make sure I have enough stock for the next two craft shows. Maybe I'll bring more in there after those are done. We'll see!

There is a "Christmas tree" in the centre of the store, that is made of old wooden ladders. Mel has this covered with a whole bunch of handmade ornaments. It's super awesome. She wrapped "presents" to put under it to add to that tree effect. I still have a few of my tiny winter hats on there. There are also hand painted bulbs, sewn ornaments, and quite a few others.
Overall, I really like the new store. I have a feeling it will do really well here. Amherstburg gets quite a few tourists, and I'm sure a lot of them would love to buy handmade goods. Not to mention, the people that live there really seem to like to support independent businesses.

On the drive there, I finished another knitted bracelet. This one was the bright blue one. I started a black cotton one right after. I only have an inch or two left to do on that one, and I will can it finished as well. I'm loving how these are turning out. Hopefully I can get more than 10 made before my next show in a week and a half!

On the way back, we stopped at an antiques store in Harrow. There was an amazing spinning wheel in the front window that grabbed my attention. It was in really good condition, from what I could tell, and was HUGE! Seriously, the actual wheel part was probably 3 feet or more across. The whole store was pretty big. And chock full of interesting things. We're planning on heading back there one day when we don't have Winston in the car so we can spend a long time in there looking at everything. I can't wait!

Onto some fun facts about me! I hope you aren't getting bored with this feature. Really, I hope I'm not boring you with this whole NaBloPoMo series!

20. Everyone close to me knows this one. I am very untidy and very unorganized. It doesn't matter what I do, I'm like Pigpen, with a dust cloud following behind me. I can tidy up the areas I use regularly, like the coffee and end tables, and the computer desk, but within as little as two hours it can be right back to square one. I am definitely much better than I used to be, but still not great. This is a big goal of mine: to be perpetually tidy. I don't mind a little bit of mess now and then, but I just want to be able to know exactly where everything is when I need it.

21. I work in retail, at The Beer Store, as I've mentioned before. I love my job, but there are certain things some people do that drives me right up the wall, and back down again. The biggest one, and it really shouldn't be, considering some of the crap I have to deal with there, is when people throw their money down on the counter, rather than putting it in my hand. After I give them their total, I extend my hand if they have the money out, and wait for them to put it in my hand. I don't do it before they have the money out, because it seems rude to me, almost as if I'm waiting impatiently. When my hand is out, and then they throw the money down on the (dirty/wet/beer and dirt covered) counter, and then I have to pick it up, it makes me want to throw it right back in their face. First of all, the counter is fricken FILTHY 90% of the time, no matter how much I clean it. In Ontario, our alcohol bottles are returned to The Beer Store, and you receive your deposit there. There aren't any bottle return machines at grocery stores or anything like that. Everything has to be processed by hand. People put bags of cans up on the counter, and inevitably, scummy, smelly beer spills out. I clean it as often as I can, but it still is pretty dirty. I digress. I don't want to stick my hand in that filth! So when people throw it down, I stare at it for a second, and then reluctantly pick it up and put it in my cash drawer. If the customer was exceptionally jerk-ish about it, I sometimes put their change back in the beer puddle. Rude? Maybe. But what goes around, comes around. This is just a faster circuit.
Does this make me a bad person? I hope not...

22. I am fluent in French. I grew up going to a French school from the age of 4 to 18. It was all French, all the time, except starting in grade 4, we had 40 minutes of English everyday. In high school, I took an English class every year, as well. I consider French to be my first language, as I learned all the grammar rules, spelling and what not in French before English. Now that I no longer use it regularly, I am losing my fluency slowly. We have a couple customers who come into work that speak French much more easily than they do English, so I try to have a short conversation with them if time permits. I'm trying to find some French blogs and podcasts to subscribe to so that I can use it more often.
My parents, my Mom mostly, made a sacrifice putting us in a French school. Dad grew up speaking exclusively French until he was about 10, and since then has lost most of his ability to speak it since then. Mom barely understands a word of it. They both missed out on a lot of our childhood school activities, because they were run in French. I don't want that to be for naught if I never use my French in a way to improve my life.

23. I have a bit of an obsession with pretty numbers. I don't like the way certain numbers look, and if it can be avoided, I avoid them. When I do deposits at work, and I have a lot of 20s, I try to deposit an amount that will be an even hundred. If I have 50s, I like the number to end with 250, 500, 750 or 000. When I count out my till at the end of the night, I am really satisfied when I have coins that are multiples of 5, or their total value comes out to an even dollar amount. I don't know how to explain it, but some numbers just... I don't know if "bother me" is quite right, but let's go with that. I guess I just find some numbers more aesthetically pleasing.

24. This one kind of goes hand in hand with the last one, so I am adding it today. There are certain numbers and dates that come up often in my life. Some of the numbers are 157, 23 and 13. The dates are my dad and brother's birthdays. I don't know what it is, but I see them often. A lot of times when I see commercials advertising something that has an end date, it falls on one of their birthdays. It's really strange. The numbers 157 and 23 are "okay" numbers, even though they don't fit any of the normal criteria for numbers I "like". I'm a strange person, I know.

I knit the last few rows on the teal shawl I posted about a few days ago just before sitting down to write the bulk of this post. I added a row of yarn over, knit two together just before the end, to add a little variety. And, the increases up the centre spine had a little openness that I wanted to mirror. I will be binding it off once I am done writing, and I will post about it tomorrow, or possibly the following day.

There's a windmill. #windmill #365Today's 365 photo is of one of the huge windmills we passed on the way to and from Amherstburg. He have a TON of these turbines in the county. They are a pretty common sight, standing tall above the flat horizon here. There's a lot of controversy about them around here. People saying they cause health issues, and kill animals, and that sort of thing. I don't know what to believe about all that, but I love taking photos of them. I have one Instagram photo I took in the early spring that I'm thinking of getting blown up and printed on canvas.

I'm currently looking for some new podcasts to follow. I would really like some yarn or knitting related video podcasts. I already follow Yarngasm, and The Dyer's Notebook. If you have any suggestions for others, I would greatly appreciate it! I follow a lot of blogs, and usually I read those while knitting, but lately, my knitting has required me to look at it more often than usual. Not so often that videos will be lost, but often enough to make reading difficult. Please leave some suggestions in the comments!

This post has 1785 words.
I am at 11 785 total words for this month.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

NaBloPoMo Day Six

I woke up this morning with a healthy feeling of anxiety. And by healthy feeling, I mean a terrible, horrible feeling. I wanted to just curl up and go back to bed, but I knew I had to get up so I could get stuff done before going in to work this afternoon, the main thing being this blog post. These posts do take quite a lot of time, which isn't surprising. I often start jotting down ideas in a draft post the night before, which I didn't do for today.

Rick and I watched Turn Me On, Goddammit! last night. A little while back, he watched a whole boat load of movie trailers online in a couple days, and downloaded all the movies he could find that seemed interesting. This was one of them. It's based in a small town in Norway, and revolves around a teenaged girl named Alma. There's a lot of sexual frustration on her part, which leads to some situations that turn her into an outcast amongst her classmates. If you don't mind subtitles, and are okay with some nudity, you should definitely give it a watch. I enjoyed it.

Not long after waking up, I watched the most recent YarnGasm podcast, by Voolenvine, aka Kristin. (I hope she spells it Kristin, I'm not 100% sure, sorry!) Her podcast is one of my favourites. It's actually the one that got me back into watching/listening to them after a long hiatus without any new ones. I really like how she does videos now, because it captivates my attention a little more. Sometimes when I'm listening to a podcast, I get distracted and start reading something, and then nothing gets absorbed. I have to go back and re-listen and re-read. Anyway, in addition to all the wonderful knitting content, she mentioned that when you get married, you often become "that couple" that wears the same thing, referring to her Pomme de Pin cardigan, and her husband's soon to be Cambridge cardigan, both in grey. Rick and I aren't married, and we often end up wearing the exact same outfit. A common one was Toms shoes or moccasins, dark jeans from the gap, a plain tee shirt in grey or black, and the same American Apparel cardigan in different colours. It has happened way too many times, and one of us always has to get changed.

I finished knitting another wrap bracelet. The blue one I mentioned yesterday is done, minus having the ends tied in. I also made a red one out of some red worsted weight acrylic, the same as the shawls I made last week. I'm starting on a bright blue one now, and I will hopefully get it done today, as well. I want to have 10 made for the Made inWindsor show. Anything over that number will just be gravy. And I like gravy. I'm trying to figure out the pricing for them currently. The cost of materials is next to nil, because I'm using a lot of yarns that are remnants from other projects that are too small for anything else. I have them for $12 each right now, but that might change. So if you happen to want one, let me know before I increase the price.

Now, onto some cool strange things about me! I'm only doing four today, because I got a little verbose in one of them, and I don't want to bore you too much.

16. I used to be vegetarian, but now I eat meat on occasion. I stopped eating meat altogether in 2004, just after the end of my grade 9 year. I stopped because of animal rights, primarily, followed by the environmental impact and because I really just didn't like meat, and it didn't like me.
First: animal rights. I still believe that factory farms, growth hormones, and the cruel way that most animals are killed are all bad things, there is no arguing that. Secondly, the amount of waste and pollution from this industry is huge. Overall, the energy needed for raising animals for meat is much, much larger than what growing food crops that would use. Third, I didn't care for eating meat. I had terrible allergies growing up, and red meat was one of my trigger foods. I couldn't eat beef without feeling incredibly sick after doing so. I stopped eating that first, followed by pork and poultry, and then I cut out fish and every other animal. I also made an effort to eat vegan options when possible.

Last summer, when working at the restaurant, my boss cooked a lot of meat from locally, and sustainably raised animals. This was something I could get behind. It wasn't organic, because that meant that if an animal got sick, they couldn't be treated, which could mean more suffering for said animal. But, they weren't pumped full of growth hormones and antibiotics, squeezed shoulder to shoulder on feedlots, or killed in a cruel way that caused a lot of suffering. I caved after a while, and had half a meatball from Rick's meatball sandwich I brought home for him one day. Unlike what I remembered meatballs to be (dry, and bland) this one was god. Juicy, well seasoned, and the sauce on it was wonderful. I started adding a little meat here and there into my diet; I didn't want to shock my system and end up sick. After a while, I was eating meat a few times a week, and then we went to Iceland. While there, I gorged myself on meat. It was raised locally, out in the open. The lamb we ate grew up gallivanting around the countryside, munching on green plants, and generally being free. I felt great eating this meat. Then I came home, and continued the trend of gorging. I felt like complete garbage. My system couldn't take the huge amounts of meat, and I felt sick. Now, over a year later, I still can't eat a lot of meat. I avoid meat from fast food restaurants, and any ground meats. I still eat a lot of vegetarian meals, because I prefer them, but there is definitely meat in my diet.

17. I want to open my own brick and mortar store selling handmade goods from around the world, along with well designed furniture from a few companies I already have picked out. I've wanted to open a consignment store for a while. Rick and I have actually looked into a few store fronts, to get an idea for the costs we would incur. We've talked a bit about names, what we'd both like to have in the store, and a bunch of other, more important things. Nothing is concrete yet, but it is definitely one of the biggest of my life goals.

18. I drink water. A lot of water. Since I was about 10, I've drank nearly exclusively water when eating meals. When I go out to restaurants, I sometimes ask for two glasses of water, or a pitcher left on the table. Some servers have ignored the request, and then scoff when I ask for glass after glass. I know I drink a lot of water, don't hate! Part of the reason I drink so much is another odd quirk about the way I eat (which is the next fun fact about me). Even at home, when I'm not eating, I drink a lot of water. I used to drink about 12-16 rather big glasses of water a day, now I know it's not quite that much.

19. This one is super weird. It kind of relates to number 5 from a couple days ago. I'm very particular about the way I eat. My food and drinks absolutely cannot be too hot, and they cannot be too cold. I have sensitive teeth, and this causes problems. Also, I'm way more about the texture of food than the taste. Stuff that is completely homogenous weirds me out. My mashed potatoes need to have lumps, I can't stomach so much as the idea of cream of wheat, and milkshakes are kind of gross. The only exception to this is soups, and only sometimes. Rick likes to blend the soups he makes, and this is completely okay with me if it's all root vegetables. Add anything else, and I need texture! I absolutely love Campbell's tomato soup, as long as I put a crap load of crackers, and some shredded cheese in it. As for the water, this is another strange thing. I need to take a drink of water pretty much every time I switch between foods. I take a bite of vegetables, drink, mashed potatoes, drink, meat, drink. I don't know what it is, but I've almost always done this. It doesn't usually cause a problem, unless I'm at a buffet. Then I know I'm filling up with water, but I can't help it!

My night at work was pretty uneventful. It's been pretty quiet the last couple days, so we knew some busy time was coming. Tonight was the start of it. It wasn't overly busy, but quite steady. The only remarkable situation was onion breath man. I always greet customers as they come in, asking them how they are and that sort of thing. One guy came up to my till, and after asking how he was, exhaled the BIGGEST breath possible, and it stunk like fresh onions. His breath seriously smelled like he'd eaten a ten pound bag of white onions, raw. It was disgusting, my eyes started watering, and I almost gagged in front of him. I couldn't believe it. Gross!

I spent a good chunk of the evening following the US election results, using a combination of a couple websites, Twitter, text messages, and chatting online. As of this writing, Obama is projected to win. I really hope this is the case. I'm keeping my fingers crossed until the official announcement is made.

Tomorrow, Rick and I are taking a nice drive to Trinkets & Treasures to drop off new stock and take care of some boring business matters. Tomorrow morning, I'm going to sort through my earrings and choose a few more pairs to bring, as well as some knitwear. I've sold a few things in the past months, so I need to get some new stuff in, and possibly remove the old stale items.
This post has 1725 words.
I am at 10 000 total words for this month.