Off Again

I am off on another short adventure. I knew I wasn’t having a big holiday this summer so it’s nice I get a few small ones.

Exercise:

I had a list this morning and got a few things done before my running buddies were ready. It did work a little better that I told Sarah if I didn’t hear from her by ten am I was just going out for a run on my own. We did a short run around the inlet and got 4.2km in. I’m glad I had the auto pause on so my pace didn’t plummet too badly. I am only 0.4km off of where I should be right now for the month. Not bad!

Knitting:

I knit like crazy last night but didn’t quite get the sweater finished, but I did manage to finish it up this morning. It was very long and lean when done and I’m wondering if I should have refrained from blocking it and just let it loosen up as I wore it, but I blocked it🤣

I’m figuring that large white stripe must be from where I added the second skein. Oh well, hopefully it won’t show up too much. I looked at a couple of different sweater patterns, but mainly figured this out on my own and if you’re curious you can read all my notes on my Ravelry page. I am pretty happy with how it turned out and can’t wait to wear it!

I have already decided to work my way through a pattern book I had bought two years ago. It is for skinny yarn, of which I have lots and I like 9 of the 21 projects in the book, so it should keep me busy for a while:)

Traveling:

This afternoon I headed out on the train to downtown so I could take a float plane over to the island. The plan is to visit my parents for two nights then my mom and I will work our way down the island knitting stores to visit my brother for a night or two. I’ll then go home.

So far I have enjoyed vegan cheese, garlic sausage and pickles and a glass of wine with my mom while availing myself of their WiFi:)

A good start to any holiday!

Have fun!

AJ

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Out, In, Out, In,…my life has a pattern lately

After being out all day yesterday, I had a much quieter day today.

Exercise:

I set the alarm so I would get up early enough to head out along a main road. It has little shade so I knew I had to get the run done early. I had forgotten how nice it can be to run the main road and get a lovely few seconds of break each block or so, as long as I have my auto pause on so it doesn’t affect my pace too much. I also discovered that it is 156 squares from the bottom of the hill to the top. For some reason counting squares really helps me get up the hill. The furthest I had to run was five blocks straight and I got 6.7km in which gets me completely caught up on my yearly mileage🎊🎉. Now I have two days to get a little ahead in mileage in case something happens in the future.

I also got a workout in this afternoon. I love my usual workouts, but have been feeling like I really need to do some concentrated weights, so today I went bottom to top, trying to hit all my muscle groups. I did 3 sets of 12 of each exercise with no rest between sets, but decreasing the weight each time. The amount of weight (in pounds) is what changed depending on the exercise. I did:

Calf raises- 10, 7, 4

Hamstring curls- 7s for all 3 rounds

Reverse lunges- 10,7,4

Squats- 10,7,4

Deadlift- 10,7,4

Bridge- 10s for all 3 rounds

Full sit up- 10s for all 3 rounds

Dead bugs- 2s for all 3 rounds

Stopped and stretched all my lower body muscles

Chest press- 10,7,4

Flies- 7,4,2

Bent over rows- 10,7,4

Bicep curls- 7,4,2

Overhead tricep extension- 10,7,4

Front raise- 7,4,2

Shoulder press- 10,7,4

Stretched all upper body muscles

I would like to find my 5lb weights and get rid of the 2s. I think I’ll try to get to this workout once a week at least as I really liked it, though I don’t like how difficult it is to get to my workout gear right now!

I finally also went for a walk this evening, just because it was so beautiful!

Knitting:

I was so happy to be able to start my sweater today. I had already decided I wanted to use the Cascade Heritage Prints yarn I had bought for the April Tank for a tee for myself. I quickly realized I didn’t want a v-neck though because the stripes didn’t line up properly. I ripped it all out and have started again with a crew neck raglan sweater, though I’m having to make up the pattern myself as there didn’t seem to be one for fingering weight yarn on Ravelry:(. Oh well, so far I’m happy with it.

I also spent some time starting to sort my yarn by weight. I thought this might be a better way now that I have multiple colours of one yarn. It would also allow me to see which yarns I could combine to make multi-colour projects. During this process, I also got some more of my yarn entered into my Ravelry stash. My goal is to have it all there so this also made me happy!

Reading:

I finally finished my latest NetGalley book, The One Who Stays by Toni Blake.

This is the story of Meg, an innkeeper on Summer Island who has a lot of soul searching to do when two men are in her life. She has had an open relationship with Zach for five years as he leaves for long periods as a commercial fisherman. However, Zach then enters the picture as a handyman around the inn.

I would definitely call this novel women’s fiction rather than a romance novel. Yes there were elements of romance, but there was a lot more introspection and angst than action. At one point I really wanted to tell Meg to shut up and have a glass of wine.

There were elements that I really enjoyed too though which saved the book. I recently heard Sarah Morgan say that a well written setting becomes another character in the book and this is definitely true in this book. Blake paints a beautiful picture of Summer Island as a peaceful, friendly, safe island where one can go to heal. I could see it in my head and wanted to go there. It also played a large part in the story.

The characters were interesting and well written. I felt like I could also picture them, however I really had a difficult time liking Meg!

Finally, the diary element of the story was very cool and the ending was super unexpected! It was sweet and surprising which made me happy I had finished the book.

Thank you to NetGalley, the publisher and author for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Well, I’m going back to my sweater!

Have fun!

AJ

Knit Saturday

If you don’t like knitting you may want to stop reading now as that’s all I’ve done today.

Exercise:

20 minutes of yoga and some ab exercises. I slept for twelve hours straight so by the time I woke up, it was just too late to go.

Eating:

I have been very good today since I was out yesterday and will be out again tomorrow. I’m trying to think of that 80/20 ratio for the week as a whole, which means only four meals a week can be out of the ordinary.

Today I had: a sausage patty, blueberries, cucumbers with cheese.

Knitting:

I have had enough of this blanket and so just want to get it done. I have literally spent most of the day on my deck knitting away. It was too hot in the house with the blanket over me, but being in the shade with a nice breeze on my balcony made it the perfect temperature to have the blanket on me as I knit away. I have one more pattern to go and then bind off, so I should be able to show it off tomorrow.

For something interesting though, I’ll tell you about some of my favourite knitting items.

1) Addi Turbo needles.

I inherited a lot of knitting needles so really don’t need to buy any very often, however when I do, they are always Addi Turbo. I love how smooth and light they are and the ends are not so pointy that my fingers start hurting!

2) interesting stitch markers

I bought myself a set of stitch markers at the last Knit City that had a Hogwarts theme. I use the largest one as a start of round marker and it makes me smile every time. I also like the stitch markers that are made out of silicon as they are pliable and don’t hurt when I end up holding them in my hand.

3) Ravelry

I love being able to keep track of all of my projects in one place and being able to search so many patterns! I do wish you could make the projects you’ve already done exempt from the search though as I always seem drawn to the same ones. I suppose that’s why I made it in the first place.

I also keep meaning to put all my needles onto ravelry so that when I see some on sale, I can tell whether I need them, though I probably don’t.

I also like that I’ve started putting my stash on Ravelry. It makes it easy to see what I already have when I’m at the store.

4) Knitty

I love this online knitting magazine. I always seem to find at least one pattern that I want to make and as I write this, I’m thinking I should make that a goal one year- make all the Knitty patterns I like!

5) Harry Potter Knit and Crochet House Cup (HPKCHC)

This is a group on Ravelry that I belong to. Each month there are about eight “classes” that you have homework for. I mostly do a project and then figure out which class it will work for. I love this group not so much for earning points or getting the house cup, but for the fact it gives me some ideas and guidelines for what to make each month. I just love being busy and this helps me decide what to knit next:)

6) Project/ Supply Bags

I am always on the lookout for cute bags to hold my supplies and projects. Lately I picked up a cute little bag for my needles in Alert Bay. I have a super cute bag for my stitch markers that says “I’ve got 99 Stitch Markers and I can’t Find One.” It definitely makes me smile! My favourite project bag right now says “It’s all fun and games until the yarn runs out”- so true!

I know that I could go on forever about knitting items, but I’ll stop before I bore anyone to sleep. If you have a favourite knitting item, I’d love to hear about it!

Have fun!

AJ

Getting Back To It

It’s been another quiet day, but that’s probably a good thing before the chaos starts again on Monday.

Exercise:

I met up with Sarah for a run this morning. We got a little lost, as usual, but it was fun!

This evening I managed to get out for a walk as well. It wasn’t running so I figured I had better get it while it was good:)

I also did squats and a plank for the second day. Need to start building up the muscle again. I swear they all atrophied while I was laying on the couch last week🤣

Family:

Well we finally settled on a place to rent for Christmas next year. It only took two days. It was a tough decision because there was one that was an amazing deal but required the kids to sleep on air mattresses if there was the gorgeous one with enough beds but double the price. We’re going to go with the amazing deal as we can do a lot of events for all that money. It’s tough to do group things as there are just so many different personalities in my family. It will be interesting to see if we survive our first family holiday together.😳

Baking:

I grabbed a few groceries after my run and made a batch of Bisquick biscuits to use up the bisquick I had in the cupboard. They looked good, but were super crumbly. I think it was just the nature of Bisquick, or at least that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

Movies:

I watched A Shoe Addict’s Christmas with Candace Cameron Bure this afternoon and loved it. It is such a cute movie! It follows the basic outline of A Christmas Carol but its shoes that move her through time. Most of the shoes were gorgeous so of course it gets my vote for being a good movie!

Knitting;

I also finished up the cowl I had started earlier. It used up three skeins of yarn and was a super easy knit while turning out pretty. It used Morena yarn and the free pattern off Ravelry called Cowl for Coba. This is a “no think” pattern that shows off yarn very nicely.

I am happy with how it turned out.

I have also spent some time weaving in ends on my temperature scarf. I feel like I may be old and gray before I get them all finished.

Well I’m going back to watch another Hallmark movie:)

Have fun!

AJ

Dragging

All day I felt like I was just dragging. It must be the time of the year as lots of other teachers were complaining of feeling this way too.

Teaching:

We made Christmas cards for seniors this morning and did a little bit more about pictographs for math. This afternoon we tackled a directed drawing of a poinsettia. My students are doing really well in the mornings but the afternoons are tough. Today was especially tough because we had an inside lunch:(

My day didn’t end great as one of my tough boys didn’t want to put on his boots because they were wet, so I left him in the classroom as I took the rest of the class out. I sent my co-teacher in to check on him as he hadn’t come out and he had hit his head:( ugh the first time in sixteen years I’ve left a kid alone and he hits his head☹️😫

Shopping:

I got invited by my co-teacher this morning to go shopping with her after school. I knew I should be heading home to run and clean the house, but I said yes. She got the gifts for her boys that she needed and I picked up some tea and chocolates to go with some friend gifts. It was nice to wander and have some non-work time!

Household:

It’s a good thing Knit night is at my house every other week as it forces me to tidy my place up. It doesn’t get super dirty, just cluttered.

Exercise:

The wind sounded horrible outside and I definitely didn’t want to go out in it! I texted Lyndsay and she had just started an at home workout so she sent it to me and that got me up and moving! I don’t know if I’ve just really been slacking or if these workouts were tough, but my legs were shaking by the end! I first did this sock workout and then I tackled this bosu workout. I definitely feel like I worked!

Knitting:

I have dug out three balls of horrible blue acrylic that has been in my stash forever and I have casted on for the Mosaic Coverlet which is a free pattern on Ravelry. I’m hoping this pattern will use them all up and then I will be able to delete them from my stash number. I didn’t want to make anything that would be against someone’s skin. I had never actually heard yarn squeak until I started with this stuff!

Movies:

I watched Stranded in Paradise tonight. It is about an HR woman who ends up losing her job and going to a conference in Puerto Rico anyways. The conference is a flop and lots of tough stuff happens, but of course she finds the love of her life. It was a cute movie and has a good message about thinking of whether you are actually happy.

Tea:

My tea today was cinnamon and orange spice. I really liked this tea and think it was perfect for Christmas time. It was reminiscent of those orange clove balls you can make and hang at Christmas time!

Well I’m off to bed in the hopes of not dragging tomorrow!

Have fun!

AJ

Quick Turn

After an amazingly wonderful morning, my students became different people in the afternoon:(

Teaching:

This morning we did a free choice journal that my students did awesome at! I was impressed with how much they were writing and how well they were writing. It was great to see them doing so well!

We started graphing after recess and then tackled Christmas in Mexico this afternoon. We learned that Christmas goes from December 12th to January 15th and that Santa brings presents on Christmas Eve, but the three wise men bring presents on January 6th. We learned that there are posadas leading up to Christmas where the front of houses are decorated and people move from house to house. They also break a piñata at the last house of the posada in Christmas Eve. I sure hope I got all the details right. I should write notes like my students do!

Knitting:

After leaving school quickly for a massage, I have spent the evening knitting. I did a new to me TinCan Knits pattern called Northward which is free on Ravelry. I love the fact that TinCan Knits include so many sizes in their patterns!

These are the two hats I have finished lately. I had planned on the teal one for me, but I think I’m going to put it in the Holiday Market pile for next year. It was an easy knit though and only took a couple of hours:)

I used Titan Bulky yarn by Mary Maxim. This was given to me and was quite bulky and I think the hat will be super warm with it:). It also got another skein out of my stash:) Unfortunately, I also broke my 6mm DPN needle. I think I now have a good excuse to hit Michael’s or maybe the LYS:)

Tea:

I was hesitant about my advent tea today as Honeybush, Mandarin and Orange sounded quite exotic to me! It turned out to taste mainly of orange and was quite delicious. It wasn’t a really strong flavor, but was enjoyable:)

Movies:

I have spent the evening watching Hallmark movies as I knitted. I watched Autumn Dreams which was very cute, except I was extremely distracted by the lead male’s unintentionally!

I also watched Walking the Dog which is set around Valentines Day. It was a cute movie with an interesting premise and characters.

Well, I’m off to bed!

Have fun!

AJ

Quiet at Home

The day didn’t go as I had planned, but was quite lovely.

Exercise:

I was supposed to run for an hour today, but I was super overwhelmed by that thought this morning, so just headed out on the inlet trail. I ended up doing 32 minutes. It was extremely wet, but at least it was something.

Family:

After getting dry and having breakfast, my cousin dropped off his truck and it was time to get my mom. We dropped off a few bags at the second hand store. It was raining so hard that my mom and I decided to have a day in. We didn’t do anything huge, but got a few small things done- my shoes sorted, my rug straightened and some outfits put together. I have discovered that I own nothing but solids and stripes:(. We are definitely going to have to do some shopping!

Knitting:

After taking my mom home, I have spent the evening knitting. One of the HPKCHC classes this month requires a quick project that takes less than an hour. I have managed to make a headband out do the leftovers from my scarf! That’s another skein gone:)

Clean November Challenge:

I so need to go grocery shopping tomorrow and get some fruits and vegetables. I got exercise in, no alcohol, drank two water bottles and didn’t do too badly on my eating. I think I’m going to have to plan my weekend eating too. I’ve decided that if I don’t plan then the goal will be to have three hours between my meals.

It has been a quiet day, but still nice!

Have fun!

AJ

Teacher Injury

My job is a dangerous thing🤣

Teaching:

Our day didn’t go to plan as usual, but I’d like to know when teaching ever does. We did a lesson on listening this morning with this super cute book, Howard B Wigglebottom Learns to Listen. He is just the cutest rabbit ever!

We were supposed to have an assembly today, but that was cancelled for some mysterious reason. It worked in my favourite though as we got another lesson on patterning done. I was worried about my students after Friday, but today seemed to go much better! One more concept of increasing patterns to go and we are done!

We were putting our sheets into our duo-tangs and I was helping the children learn how to 3 hole punch paper, when one kid pressed down really hard before I got my hand out of the way. My thumb is now black and blue and has a lovely indent in it. It better bounce back to normal quickly!

This afternoon we tackled why we have day and night. It seemed to go well, though I would like to find a video that explains why days get longer and shorter as I’m not sure I’m going to explain that very clearly!

The view at work. I love the colorful trees!

Health:

I hurried out of work today to get to a massage appointment with a new RMT.

But she had double booked herself:(. This was not a good first impression! I will give her a second try as a teacher at my school speaks highly of her, but I don’t know…

House:

I wanted to go for a run, but decided I should be responsible and finish up my cleaning. I did, but I’m feeling very guilty for the no exercise today:(

knitting:

Tonight was knit night which was a good thing as all I felt like doing was eating! It wasn’t the most productive night for me but I did get my afghan listed in my projects on ravelry and have identified the yarn I will use for my scarf to wear with t Shirts, and I started on a bag to use up some purple wool. It will be a great project as it will get rid of old stash and uses one of my new knitting books:)

Well, that’s it for me tonight.

Have fun!

AJ

Challenges

I read blogs that set yearly, quarterly, and monthly goals, but do I do that….😝

Exercise:

Well the spider in my bathtub got my heart beating this morning- nothing like seeing movement out of the corner of your eye! Thankfully they aren’t a big problem to me and my shoe took care of it. My running buddies kept my heart racing! I really do have the best running buddies though! I showed up to a planned 5km run and casually mentioned I needed to do 7km today. They said nothing, just changed the route and kept me company.❤️

We ran the river which meant it was awesome going out as it’s a slight downhill most of the way:) we ran from bridge to bridge which is not usual for me, but was fun. The way back was another matter as it was now slight uphill the whole way and actually some of those uphills weren’t so slight!

My average was a 6:38/km pace and I feel like I slowed down at least a whole minute per kilometer coming back! I must have been flying going down!

I also did a walk this afternoon, again in the pouring rain, to get the Monday Squad Runner mission. It was bucketing down and I could tell because I passed very few people which is rare.

I’ve already surpassed my running miles from last year and managed a nice 100km this month. I am thinking I would like to try for 1000km this year which means I need 101km more. It shouldn’t be a problem. Actually I may need to reassess that goal.

The other thought I had today was about running on Thanksgiving. Chelsea of The Dancing Runner was talking about how she runs before eating turkey and that seems like a good idea to me. I started thinking I’d like to try and do two loops of Burnaby Lake to see what kind of time I could get on a 20km. (I haven’t done a half marathon in 8 years and I’m a little worried I would be as slow as I used to be😏☹️). I routinely do about 12km here. This would be a great goal if I had eight weeks, but Thanksgiving is next weekend! Why do I always wait until the last minute to set a goal??? I haven’t decided if this is doable. If you have an opinion, please share it.

Household:

After a yummy tea, I had to take care of my adult chores. I got my groceries bought, laundry done, food prepared for the week, plants watered and some tidying done. I didn’t get to my teaching work, but decided I’d done enough adulting for the day!

Knitting:

I got my new stash put into Ravelry as I am slowly trying to get all of my stash on there. I also got caught up on entering my projects.

This is the headband I made last night and the cowl I finished the other day. I really like how the cowl turned out. I had made up the pattern and can’t decide if I should put it on Ravelry or not? I’m sure there’s probably tons on there already just like it, so I’m not sure it’s worth it. Again let me know if you have an opinion.

I also picked up the boat Afghan again today, and here comes the second crazy challenge I have set for myself today. My mom had said that they would be home for the week and I am thinking I should get this Afghan done this week so they can take it with them. This is the time of the year they really need it on the boat, so it makes the most sense, however, it also means I need to get three or four more pattern repeats done by Friday! I am crazy! I should have thought of this s month ago, not a week out! It means 31 rows a night and I’d be done in three or four nights. That’s quite the time challenge when each row has 230 stitches!

I think it will be top priority this week, but we shall see! Maybe I can talk my parents into staying a couple of extra days…

Ok, well I need sleep as there was no nap in my life this weekend:(

Have fun!

AJ

A Very AJ Day!

It was a day filled with things I love, but boy am I tired now!!

Knitting:

Well this was the second best knitting day this year! We only seem to have two yarn events a year in Vancouver and this was the second one- Knit City 2018.

I grabbed coffees for Brenda and I (on a side note- the tall at Starbucks seems to be getting smaller!) and off we went to Knit City. We were shocked when we got close and saw how long the line was to get in. It turned out it wasn’t the line we had to stand in, but there was easily triple the number of people than last year!

It was great fun looking through all the booths though some you couldn’t get near. Sweet Fibres seemed to be constantly lined up all day. I wonder what is so special about them? We went through the whole place twice. You should be very proud of me, I managed to only spend $160! Way less than I was expecting to spend! I was disappointed that there weren’t as many sales as there were last year ☹️. I guess they’ve determined they sell enough to not need a sale bin. I did wonder why people would pay the price for some of the skeins, though I almost bought a hand spun skein for $224!

This is what I ended up buying! I loved the stitch markers as they are the first I have seen in colours other than green and purple that are soft and flexible so I bought a variety of sizes. I also bought the scale as I looked at it last year and have determined I don’t like having to clean my kitchen scale every time I want to weigh my yarn!

I bought the bag as I like having project bags and my oldest brother always says, “sucks to be you”, so this reminded me of him!

The pattern is gorgeous and I like how the lace is on the front and the back! Brenda bought another simple sweater pattern that I will use the blue yarn I bought for.

The last skein of yarn is my favourite colour and the same colour as the $224 skein that I couldn’t bring myself to buy. I was going to make a triangle scarf out of it, but think I’ll use it to make the other sweater pattern my friend bought.

I am extremely happy with what I bought and have no buyer’s remorse:)

One of the neatest parts of the show was seeing all the knit goods everyone was wearing! It just made me want to get home and knit!

This evening I am working on the boat Afghan for my parents as the new month for HPKCHC doesn’t start until Monday. Oh, it was so cool that the first person I saw, actually the woman who sold me my ticket was Mel who is the lady I met last year at Knit City who told me about HPKCHC. Maybe next year I should volunteer to help at Knit City. That might be fun:)

I have decided that I want a scarf/shawl to wear with t Shirts

Like this look:). If anyone knows of a good pattern, please let me know!

Eating:

We had planned to eat at the food trucks at the show, but they only had five (I don’t think they were expecting the number of people the got) and they were horribly lined up. We ended up going to Pasta Polo so my friend could have the carbonara that she has been craving. I did try something slightly new this time. I had the shrimp and scallops marinara:)

I also ended up going out for Pho today as well. I feel like I don’t need to eat for a week!!

Running:

The fun wasn’t over with the knitting show as I met up with my friend Sarah and her dog Kula for a trail run. We did 1.5 loops and it was so awesome to be out in this gorgeous fall day! Of course, I saw a student right at the start, but that was fine, just a quick hello. Sarah fell, but was fine and I managed to stay on my feet:)

We also had a quick look through chapters and the grocery store, but I managed to come home with nothing:)

Now I’m tucked up on my couch and I’m hoping everyone else had as good a Saturday as I did:)

Have fun!

AJ