Stretching My Skills with Sally

I had another AJ day and it was as wonderful as ever. My only problem is definitely a first world problem!


I yet again couldn’t sleep in, so I was up in plenty of time for my run with Dennis. He picked me up and we went to Burnaby Lake Park with the plan to run the end of the Central Valley Greenway which runs from the lake to a very busy road. This bike path does carry on, but only on roads so I vetoed going further.

I had warned Dennis this morning that I wouldn’t be able to run fast as I was concentrating on weight loss right now (read being very careful with my calories) and I had heard on a podcast that if you’re concentrating on weight loss you can’t expect speed.

Well my run started slowly, but then the next four kilometers were all very close to 6:00 kilometers. At the end, I was five seconds off of my fastest five km ever and boy was I kicking myself for that slow start.

This path would be a great place to try for a 5km record as it’s 2.48km out and it is about as flat as it gets around here.

This evening I also did 28 minutes of yoga. When I was at the library I took pictures of a yoga sequence in a magazine and decided to try it out as I know I need to do more stretching. The sequence was okay, but I ended up adding a whole bunch of other moves to it. I really need to sit down and make a list of yoga moves as when I’m doing them, I can’t think of any!


I hit the library to return a book today and though I was not supposed to get any more books, I of course came home with four more. I plan to go curl up in bed and read as soon as I get this post up!


I knew I had no choice but to get at least one of my Fresh Prep meals cooked up today. I decided on the Veggie Machine Tahini Bowl. This recipe said it would take 25 minutes, however it took me 40 minutes. You start by roasting sweet potato and chickpeas and cooking rice. You then marinate kale and red cabbage and make a tahini dressing. You layer these ingredients and top with cilantro and avocado.

There was nothing difficult about this recipe and it did have a good kick of spice to it. Fresh Prep did forget to include the rice spice, but they have given me a credit for it, so that was kind of them and I didn’t notice it’s absence. I would definitely get this one again, but also feel that it would be quite easy to alter at home according to personal taste.

Baking (Stretching My Skills with Sally):

Last year I tried a few of Sally’s Baking Challenge items and quite enjoyed the challenge of trying new things. Most of the people in my life asked why I was doing this, thankfully there are people like Abbey! I was talking with Abbey of Three Cats and a Girl and we decided to both try these challenges and then link up to talk about our results, so please check out her attempts too. I was really interested in doing this because I knew she would be doing the recipes as called for while I would need to convert them to gluten free and dairy free. I should say that I change as little as possible and just sub in gf and df ingredients to see if the recipe will still work.

For February, the challenge was Perfect Swiss Meringue Buttercream Frosting. I have to admit that I had no idea what this frosting was as I hadn’t heard of it. After making it, it reminds me of the frosting on a DQ ice cream cake and that used to be one of my favourite parts of that cake, so I’m glad I made it.

The recipe only takes five ingredients- egg whites, sugar, butter, vanilla and salt. I was doing really well with the egg whites and sugar and I did get stiff peaks, however, once I added the butter and vanilla, my frosting was quite runny. I put it in the fridge like Sally suggests for this problem, but it never recovered.

The recipe didn’t seem super tough, but maybe I shouldn’t say that as I wasn’t particularly successful. One thing I would say about this recipe- I wouldn’t attempt it without a really good stand mixer!!!

These are my poor cupcakes which I will force upon my running buddies tomorrow.

Thanks Abbey for taking on this challenge with me:)


All the rest of my day has been taken up with knitting (oh and a little stitching so I have something to show for the SAL next week).

I seem to be averaging a Hat a day, so today’s hat is he Kitimat – another free pattern on Ravelry. This is actually named after the city North of me by many hours. The pattern page shows it in gray and white which I loved, but I also really liked it in my purple and white worsted weight. The pattern was really simple to follow, though I did find it a bit long. I also learned that I may use my Michael’s gift card for a Pom Pom market!

Finally I also made another small headband which got me to my stash goal. Every skein used now is just gravy!

That is my big problem- I want to make a sweater, but there are so many I want to make that I just can’t decide. It has gone past fun to debilitating. I am wondering how everyone else chooses what they are going to knit next?????

Well my books are calling me… right

Have fun!


A Great Learning Day

I had ProD today and normally I really resent having to sit and listen to someone lecture at me about theoretical things that I can’t apply in my classroom, by today was an excellent day of learning!

It was nice to not have to jump out of bed this morning, though of course I did at my usual time since I can never sleep in when I have the opportunity.

My ProD program didn’t start until 10am so I got done seriously lovely knitting time on the couch first thing this morning.

We then set out on a nature walk. I always want to take my students outside to learn about nature, but never feel like I know enough to do so. Then when I saw this opportunity I thought it might be the perfect chance to rectify this problem.

The walk was taking place at a place I run quite often which includes forest and dyke area as well as being right beside a river so it had a lot of diverse environment for us to look at. The talk concentrated on bird life and we were actually out for about three hours! I learned about the Northern Flicker that eats ants and then immediately grooms itself so as the formic avid from the ant will kill the parasites on the bird. I learned about robins, hawks, pillared woodpecker (we saw a female because it didn’t have a red mustache), the European starling that is not indigenous to BC,but is now present in huge numbers, the toohee which is like a zombie because it has red eyes and it’s a ground eater so it’s usually what I’m seeing on my walk to school when I hear rustling on the ground. I learned that an eagle’s wingspan is 6 feet- the size of one of my brothers. I learned lots more, including the six toilet papers of nature 🤣

It was an awesome ProD because I feel like I learned things that I can actually use when I’m outside with the kids on Monday😀😀😀


After the session was over, we stopped for lunch at a small cafe there. I actually had to walk half a block down to a soup place as there was nothing but sweets that I could eat at this cafe. I did end up having a wonderful vegan, gluten free chipotle corn chowder for lunch that was so yummy!


On the way home I stopped at the grocery store and picked up a piece of rotisserie chicken for dinner as we were much later than I was expecting, but I wouldn’t let myself have it until I had gotten out for a run. With writing report cards every day I haven’t ran since Sunday ☹️. I just did a simple run over to the park and it was crazy busy as everyone was trying to get some fresh air before the rain started. I had a pretty quick run which was good since it was short! I may need a specific running goal as I’m not getting much running in:(. If anyone has a good suggestion, please let me know.


When I got home I had to read the message from my financial advisor before I was allowed to start knitting, and yes I do make these bargains with myself a lot.

I’ve had a very productive knitting day! I finished the June Hat which is a free pattern on Ravelry. I had picked it just to use up two small balls of yarn, but I love it!! I decided not to put a Pom Pom on it do that it is reversible.

I want to make this hat several more times in several more colours!

I then used up another small ball of yarn by making this headband. This will just go into the donation basket, but I do think it’s cute.

Finally I have started another hat – the Kitimat- which is another free pattern on Ravelry, and which I think I’m going to love too! It has already used up another small ball so I am one skein away from being at my mid March goal.

Hopefully I’ll be fine this hat tomorrow! I am also thinking that I will keep stash busting and then only let myself buy as many skeins of yarn at the show as I am below my goal number. Maybe this would keep my stash under better control.

I have never been a huge hat knitter, but I am really enjoying it. I think my next project needs to be a three colour cowl or shawl.

Also, what would you make with this single skein?

I have about 165-190 yards.

Well I need to head to bed as I have an early run in the morning.

Have fun!


Knitter Help Please

Well the day was good except for two moments.


We did Writer’s Workshop this morning and made cards for one of the little boys who was off having his adenoids removed this week. I love it when we can make writing purposeful.

After recess we got through two math drills and then the children were off to library. I got most of the prep for next week finished at this time, though as I write this I realize I forgot to find a video on fact families. Oh well, Monday.

Finally this afternoon we worked on our community art some more and once again the children were doing great! We aren’t quite done though so we’ll have to give more time on Monday.

I did lose my cool twice today- once when a little girl reported that another little girl was trying to pull down her pants. Grrrr! I gave her a very stern talking to and made Er apologize. I hope she got the point, but with this little girl I really doubt it☹️. The second time was when I asked the boys to clean up and they went as usual straight to talking. Can they not just do as they are asked when they are asked?!?!?!😖

Other than those two moments, it was a pretty good day.


After spending three hours finishing up report cards, I got to come home and start knitting. I have finished determining the weight of each of my yarns and have them sorted by weight. It was great when I pulled out a pattern and could easily grab the two balls of yarn that were required.

The hat I have started is the June Hat by Meghan Kelly- a free pattern on Ravelry. It is super easy or so I thought. It calls for you to slip every 11th stitch with the yarn in back, but mine is not coming out like everyone else’s:(. Theirs looks like a raised knit stitch, but mine looks like the same stitch carried up. Please someone help…

Update: It would help if I read more carefully, I think I have it now:)

We’ll I guess I should go to bed.

Have fun!


Woah Wednesday

What I learned today…I don’t like people who feel the need to flaunt their power just because…😖


We started the day with an assembly for pink shirt day. The kids were pretty well behaved and the assembly itself was good- probably because two teachers planned it. I think the best part was the video or Don’t Laugh at Me by Mark Wills. Of course, I don’t think any teacher actually paid attention, going by how many pointed out the cute cop to me🤣🤪

We also got through a lesson on reading strategies and a lesson on using the number line to do subtraction. I so love having my prep in the afternoon (I switched as another class was having a field trip) as then I have all this great morning time to actually teach! With just a minute to sword fight, etc my students were then able to focus for a full 20 minutes during the math lesson. I felt like singing hallelujah!

This afternoon we started a Social Studies art project that the kids were super engaged in! Hopefully I’ll have photos tomorrow.

We ended the day with one of my students reading a book to the class. She was so proud and it seemed like other kids were interested. Thankfully that will be their sharing for April.

I ended my work day with another three report cards and then had to run very fast down the hill.


Well my tooth fell out again last week and I managed to get into the dentist today. He cemented it back in again but is putting in a request to do a standard bridge. Oh yeah, more dental work. It’s pretty sad that I was able to explain dental work terminology to some confused teachers at lunch.


When I got home my first order of business was to finish the kids Bookclub book as the other teacher still needs to read it too. This month we read, The Science of Breakable Things by Tae Keller.

It was a good read. It deals with the very serious topic of depression in a way that is appropriate for kids. I did find it overwhelmingly sad though and wondered if a few more lighthearted moments could have been added. I also wondered how a therapist husband hadn’t explored therapy or meds before the situation got dire?


I didn’t have time for a Hallmark movie tonight, so I just made up a workout. I really wanted to go for a run, but it was already dark when I got home. I did a minute of jogging with four pound weights in each hand between these moves:

25 shoulder presses

40 squats

20 front raises

40 plié squats

40 reverse lunges

20 bicep curls

40 bridges

40 Russian twists

40 second plank

20 full sit ups

25 crunches

25 reverse crunches

20 dips

25 pullovers

I did each move with 8lb weights, but that won’t be lasting long as I promised myself I would move up to a new weight in the next month.

I figure it is better than nothing, but I sure hope I get a run in tomorrow!


I got permission to share my test knit! I test knitted for Josée Paquin, which I was super excited about as I love so many of her patterns. I got to do the Laughing Out Loud Hat which was a gorgeous solid colour hat with a nice spiral design.

The hat was a great excuse to buy and try out Brooklyn Tweed: Shelter yarn in the colour Pumice. This yarn sure knits up softer than you’d think and it was great to knit with. I wouldn’t say it had great stitch definition though.

The pattern was super easy to follow and knitted up quickly, so I would definitely recommend it!

Tonight, after I finished my workout and the Bookclub book I got to sort and determine yarn weights for the odd balls that have been living under my coffee table. I have a goal to use up 8 more skeins before I go to Fibres West in Mid March so I printed off some hat patterns today and figure I’ll tackle some of these small balls.

Well, that’s all my excitement for today (said facetiously)!

Have fun!


Trivia Tuesday #41

It was a good day, but with odd moments.


It was actually a pretty good day. We got through a community poem this morning and the printing of m. We got through the counting back strategy for subtraction and a community ABC mini book.

More important to me was that I got through all but one reading assessment and three more report cards. It is so great writing report cards in the same room as my friend as with the little people who drive me crazy in many ways- she is able to tell me what sticks out to her when she’s in the room and I comment on that.

A few years ago when I had older students I had a chart where they got a sticker for every 100 minutes of reading. I have been at a loss to figure out how to motivate my students to do their home reading as so far only two boys have brought in five home reading sheets (how many they’ve had time for). So today, I started a chart where they get a sticker for every home reading sheet they bring back. I am hoping this will light a fire under a few of my competitive children and get them to read!


After work I had a massage, and read some more of the kids Bookclub book.

I had a real hankering for protein and had some chickpeas in the fridge so decided to roast them up. I used a recipe from the Oh She Glows cookbook which called for a little bit of olive oil and then garlic powder, onion powder, salt and cayenne. They were so good! I didn’t use precise measurements, but just sprinkled a bit of each on. I highly recommend this recipe. Back on parchment lined pan for 20 minutes at 400 degrees, shake the pan and hen bake for another 15 minutes.


It was tv night. I knew:

Which city did Cheers set in?


What was the cul de sac in Knots Landing:

Seaview Circle

Who was the teacher in Head of the Class?

Howard Hessman

What was the name of the boat on The Love Boat?

Pacific Princess

Where did Three’s Company take place?

Santa Monica

What were the two character’s names on Mad About You?

Paul and Jamie

What were the three girls names on Full House?

DJ, Stephanie, Michelle

Which show is Doogie Hauser now on?

How I Met Your Mother

Who played the Big Head on 3rd Rock From the Sun?

William Shatner

What character did Drew Carey play on Drew Carey Show?

Drew Carey

Who was Kevin’s girlfriend on Wonder Years?


Are Fred Savage and Ben savage related?


Who played the Nanny on The Nanny?

Fran Drescher

Which war is MASH set in?


What was the name of the father in Frasier?

Martin Crane

What was the name of the daughter in All in the Family?


What is the movie that continues Breaking Bad?

El Camino

Well that’s it for me!

Have fun!


Another Pain?!

I woke up this morning with a painful right eye and it got progressively more sore all day. I finally got into the shower and let the water run over it. I’m hoping that between the shower and a good night’s sleep it will go away!!!


Ugh my students just don’t seem to be improving. It makes it tough to keep going when you don’t see any results from your efforts. Maybe tomorrow there will be a glimmer.

Today we wrote a journal and I have to admit they worked well and most got a good amount done. Of course there are still those ones who think that one sentence is enough. I got a couple of children to the point where they could do a bit of editing and we had time to read a couple of them. I only had to make one little girl reread because we couldn’t hear her at all. It’s a good thing I have to write this because t made me realize the day started better than I thought.

Math after recess wasn’t bad either as we started subtraction today and just did hands on practice with manipulatives. I was supposed to be counting back on the number line, but they were engaged so we kept on with what we were doing. I wish there were more of me as it wasn’t until nearing the end that I got around to one little girl and realized she was still trying to add:(

I got three children’s reading assessed during the quiet time and silent reading and we got a lesson on lacrosse. I tried to do a lesson on a new reading strategy- trying a different vowel sound- but they just couldn’t sit still.

They weren’t great listeners during lacrosse either which was super embarrassing since we had the captain of Vancouver’s professional lacrosse team in to do a lesson. It was great and included the history of lacrosse too. The guy was great and you could totally tell he has kids himself.

I also had a talk with my kids about the fact that while they might do something well, there is always room for improvement. So many of my students want to be perfect the first time or think they are perfect the first time. I have a colleague who calls it the result of the confetti generation and I can certainly see that.


After writing four report cards I headed home to finish up my test knit. I have finished and love the end result. I have sent an email to see if I can share about it, so you’ll know when I know:)


I knew it would be super easy to wimp out of working out today so I arranged to have Lyndsay text me later to make sure I had.

I did a simple Hallmark workout again, but tried to get a few new moves in. I did a minute of jogging while lifting or holding 8lb weights between each of these moves:

Burpees, froggers, squats, plié squats, push ups, dips, upright rows, around the world lunges, bicycle crunches, Russian twists, pullovers, Bridges, twisted mountain climbers, military press, bicep curls, front raises, crunches, reverse crunches, plank.

I’m glad I did it, but was much happier once I was in the shower!

Have fun!


Maybe I Should Make Plans

Lol as I sat here tonight with a few more knitting projects done, I wondered if perhaps I should be making plans for my weekends other than sitting on the couch knitting.


I did start the day with a very brisk walk with my running buddies for 5.5km. After yesterday’s 10km run, I didn’t want to run again, so decided to just walk and it was a good decision as even with walking there was a horrible head wind!


After a lovely tea with the group, I stopped for groceries. I was hungry so picked up steak, extra milk, crackers, cheese, and luncheon meat, though thankfully I left all but the bananas, apples and rice cakes at the checkout counter. I shop at the same store every Sunday after my run so they’ve gotten to know me and a few of the cashiers were giggling at me today🤣


I have literally spent the rest of the day knitting. I have finished the Rose City Rollers, Littles Edition socks today and when that didn’t use all the yarn up, I also made a tiny hat. I keep telling myself to try a new sock pattern and I think i will after this one as I wouldn’t mind something with a leg. I do like how this pattern goes so quickly and fits well. I still prefer to knit the socks on DPN’s as the decreasing at the toe is also easier on the DPNs than on the circular – there is no counting required on the DPNs.

The little hat is probably too little to be useful, but maybe I’ll donate it to the Christmas market in December and some little girl can buy it as a doll hat.

I have actually started another knit, but it’s a test knit so I’m not sure I’m allowed to talk about it. It is going really well and will be done soon:)

Well I’m off to bed!

Have fun!



It was a painful day in many ways!


Dennis picked me up for a run this morning. I thought we were doing a 5km so I was definitely not in the right head space for a 10km. Then we also had to deal with a zillion puddles so it was painful dodging too. Also figured out that my calves weren’t really hurting- it was the inside of my left heel that hurt which is my “tell” that my running shoes are done. We got ten kilometers done, but it definitely wasn’t our fastest and we both felt kind of dead.

This evening I did a hallmark workout as I am a workout behind my runs. I continue to like to include cardio in these workouts, though I was thinking today that maybe I should be doing extra sets instead. I’ll think about it more before deciding. Tonight I kept to a minute of jogging between these moves: burpees, froggers, dips, bent over rows, pushups, pullovers, front raises, lateral raises, stanchion raises, bicep curls, squats, plié squats, bridges, mountain climbers, crunches, reverse crunches, bicycle crunches, 30 second plank, right plank, left plank.

I was happy to get a workout over a half hour and will continue to try to go for longer.


I have to admit that I have spent most of the day knitting, and have been using up the end of a skein of sock yarn making a pair of socks for myself. I knew I wouldn’t get matching socks so I decided to try a technique that’s on my list to try this year- two at a time. I have been enjoying the process as it makes both socks go quickly and there’s always change, but I have the socks on two different needles. One sock is on double pointed bamboo needles which is lovely but the other sock is on an 8″ Addi turbo with blunt ends which I am not enjoying. The 8″ and super small needle is making my hands and wrist hurt and the blunt ends slow me down as they don’t easily go between the stitch and needle. I guess I’ve learned that I need another set of DPNs at this size. I am also trying out the Rose City Rollers Littles Edition. I have made lots of socks with the adult version but decided to see if the kids six fit me better. I am hoping to be done tonight so I had better go start knitting again!

Have fun!


Hip Hip Hooray for the Weekend!

It was a pretty good day- amazing what a good book can do.


I sat on my couch this morning and seriously thought about taking the day off so I could read my book, but I didn’t and work wasn’t that bad, though I did sneak in reading every break I could!

We got through our self reflection for the report card, drained compliment rockets and did a kindness sunshine with our big buddies.

Not a lot accomplished, but no one got punched for a change so I’m going to count it as a success.


I quickly headed home after work to go pay my utilities bill and then went to pick Gus up at school. We went for ice cream and then looked for material for a new blanket for him. Finally we also hit Wendy’s for dinner. I do love my time with Gus!!!


Last night I started a new book, not expecting a lot because I’ve been in a reading slump lately. I read: The Two Date Rule by Tawna Fenske.

It was awesome! This is the story of Grady, a bush firefighter and Willa, a web designer. Both have a lot of baggage, like every adult does, but somehow they find their way to each other.

I loved how complex these characters were. Multi dimensional and interesting! Willa is battling demons from her past and Grady is scared of the future. Their problems seemed realistic and how they dealt with them was too.

The pace was great- moves along without a lot of head games and it had more showing than telling which I appreciate.

There were so many swooney moments, but my two favourites were the excuses he kept coming up with about why their meetings weren’t a date and the calendar he created.

This was a great book that I just couldn’t put down.

Thanks to the author, publisher and NetGalley for the free ARC in exchange for an honest opinion.

Well I’m going to go organize some knitting patterns and then head for bed.

Have fun!


Friday Eve

I can’t even decide if it was a good day…


I felt behind all day! We got through list writing in Writer’s Workshop. I love teaching list writing-so funny to see what they’ll list off!

We started our student perspective for the report card but only got through one question so we’ll have to tackle that again tomorrow.

This afternoon we brainstormed jobs in the community and then went outside to play.

Not a bad day though there were issues at lunch between my boys. I wonder if they’re ever going to learn??


After writing another three report cards I got out for a very short run. I wish it could have been longer since it wasn’t raining, but I had to get home to shower.


So I had a date tonight… We met for coffee and he did buy my tea. He has a good sense of humor and actually reminds me of my brothers. Unfortunately I have no idea what he thought of me as he didn’t mention getting together again. I guess we’ll see.

Well that’s it for me!

Have fun!