Thursday, June 30, 2011



Four Feet in Heaven

Your favorite chair is vacant now...

No eager purrs to greet me.

No softly padded paws to run

Ecstatically to meet me.

No coaxing rubs, no plaintive cry

Will say it's time for feeding.

I've put away your bowl, and all

The things you won't be needing;

But I will miss you little friend,

For I could never measure

The happiness you brought me,

The comfort and the pleasure.

And since God put you here to share

In earthly joy and sorrow;

I'm sure there'll be a place for you

In Heaven's bright tomorrow...
by Alice E. Chase

Monday, June 27, 2011

FO my Citron shawl

Noro yarns are revered by lots of knitters. I must admit that the colours are stunning. When I saw this yarn in my local yarn store, I immediately knew I wanted to make something for myself with it.

The Citron pattern is very easy to knit.

Some rows are very long to knit...the rushing parts have a few hundreds stitches near the end. But it does add to the charm of this little shawl. I say little because it measures only 14 inches in length. Long enough to wrap around my neck under a coat but not long enough to wear alone over my shoulders. If I could have found a second skein, I would have made this one a little longer.

The only problem I have with this shawl, is that it's really not soft. It seems that Nora yarns will soften when washed but this one did not get much softer.

Pattern: Citron
Needles: 3.5mm
Yarn: Noro Kureyon Sock Yarn

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Build it and they will come

Well, maybe that title should be Build it cause they are coming!
I was holding off talking about it on my blog until they were actually here but...I can't wait we go!
This past April, we purchased four female alpacas! Yes, that's right, the dream is almost reality now!
We purchased our herd from our friend Norma from Misty Haven alpacas.

Our place is almost ready for them. Hubby has been putting the finishing touch on the 'barn'. I had spoken about it before, here.

But the biggest job for him has been the fencing. Posts are being put in the ground every weekend. More than half are in the ground. He will give it a good push this week to finish this job. (That's Anouk out in the field taking a break from mothering her little one.) A little more sun and less rain would help tremendously!

Then, the fencing will be going up with the help of family and friends.

The winter hay was picked up last week!

And to make things that much more exciting, two of our alpacas gave birth this week.
Cria # 1 is a beautiful dark brown female with a white patch on her muzzle and above each eyebrow. She is a little beauty!

Here is super proud hubby with her

And cria #2 is a white female, super sweet and so dainty. But she's in constant motion! A ball of endless energy! Her poor mom has her hands full!

In a few weeks, they will be transfered to our very own backyard and we will be able to enjoy watching them from our deck! Can't wait!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

A day with an old friend

When it's been too long since you have spent good quality time with your favorite friend, it's a real treat to do so for a whole day.
My friend and I did such a thing today.

Wanna see her picture?

Here she is.

Years ago, my sewing machine used to be my constant companion. Now, I take her out only occasionally.
I started sewing when I was 12 years old. And I sewed a lot, all the time, making most of my clothes and most of my children clothes till they were in their teens. I even sewed my wedding dress because I could not find what I wanted in the stores and prom dresses for both my daughter and myself.
My fabric stash was quite impressive back then.
Now, I don't sew my clothes anymore. I pretty much only sew for our home. Curtains, roman shades, duvet covers, slip covers...

Todays rain meant indoor time. So out came the sewing machine and with a search through the fabric pile, I came up with a couple of things I could quickly make today.

Here are the completed projects.
Pillows on the sofa badly needed some updating. At the end of the morning, I completed red and yellow pillow covers for the rec room sofa.

Last night, while reading a few of my favorite blogs, I came across this very well illustrated tutorial for a small project bag. It's actually a lunch bag but I will use it for small knitting projects. You can find the tutorial here.

 Using left over fabrics is always perfect for these small projects.

 The bag is lined with a blue and white gingham.

It has a drawstring top on the inside so that you can hide your project and protect it from dust and dog hair!

So all in all, a good productive day. 

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Rhubarb in season

I am not a gardener at all. So what we grow around here must be really hardy and able to tolerate some degree of neglect or my lack of knowledge in gardening.
But still, I love to grow herbs in pots and in flower beds. My numerous lavender plants are thriving well enough. We almost always have tomato plants growing on the deck.
And let's not forget the strawberry rhubarb plant by the back door.
Now, this is as hardy as they get. I usually completely forget to water this plant and it still keeps on giving, year after year.

I made our favorite rhubarb coffee cake on the weekend from a Homemaker magazine recipe. This recipe was published in their May 2002 magazine. Yes, it's been around for awhile and I make it every year. 

I checked to see if the recipe was on their website but I did not find it. So in case you would like to make this cake here it is.

¼ cup brown sugar
1 tbsp finely grated orange peel
½ tsp cinnamon

2 cups flour
¾ cup granulated sugar
2 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
1/3 cup melted butter
1 cup orange juice
1½ cups chopped rhubarb

Preheat oven to 350F. Grease 8'' pan. Combine Topping ingredients in a small bowl. Set aside.
Stir together dry ingredients (first five ingredients for cake) in a large bowl. In another bowl, lightly beat egg; blend in vanilla, butter and orange juice. Pour egg mixture into dry mixture and stir just until evenly combined. Spread half in prepared pan. Top evenly with rhubarb (I actually put in almost 2 cups of rhubarb to make sure that every inch of the batter is covered withit). Spoon remaining batter on top and gently spread even. Sprinkle topping evenly over surface. Bake for about 40 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Serve warm or cool. Enjoy!

Monday, June 20, 2011

FO Baby girl blanket

As my mother is destashing, my stash seems to be growing! That's not exactly how I thought it would end up but some yarn is just too nice to let go. Many, many years ago, my mother and grand mother used to order yarn from Bèrgère de France in Montréal. They would order lots and lots of yarn! My grand mother would knit constantly but my mom would mostly stash it!! (Just kidding mom!)

With all the babies being born lately amongst our friends and family, I thought I would get a few items ready for those baby showers coming this summer.
Eventhough I don't often knit with acrylic yarns, I knew that the washability of this yarn would be appreciated by busy parents.

This blanket starts from the center and is knitted on circular needles. It's one of those mindless knitting project. I always love to have one of those on hand when I want to knit and watch tv or expect to be interupted often.

 The colours are for a baby girl in lavender, rasberry and white. I also made the hat that was included with the blanket pattern. I have enough yarn to make a sweater or booties too.

Pattern: Hopkins Hat and Blanket (free download from Knitcircus Magazine)
Needles: forgot to make a note of it!
Yarn: Barisienne by Bergère de France

Puppy news:
She is growing like a puppy! Well not surprising since all she does is sleep, eat, eliminate...
Now 16 days old and with opened eyes.Her ears are starting to open up as well so she will soon be hearing us walk in the room! Doing her best to get off her belly and use her legs. She actually barked this week! With no littermates, we will have to entertain her till she can be introduced to one of our super gentle golden.
She loves to use the stuffed toys as a pillow.
What's her name? Not sure of that yet. She was born by c-section and when we stepped out of the vet's office, there was a penny by the car. I immediately thought of calling her Penny and register her as Lucky Penny. But hubby doesn't seem to like the name too much so we are still working on this.

Monday, June 13, 2011

FO: Wisp scarf

I love scarves and wear them at least three seasons of the year. The weight of the scarf will depend on how cold it is outside and how long I will be out.
The first time I made the Wisp scarf pattern was with a colourful lace yarn I had purchase while visiting our daughter in Calgary.

The muliple colours in this scarf allows me to wear it with so many jackets. Because it's so light, it can easily be worn till fall, winter and spring.

Pattern: Wisp (free on Very easy lace pattern.
Needles: 5mm
Yarn: Schoppel-Wolle Crazy Zauberball

A week ago, I completed a second Wisp scarf just in time for my mother's birthday.

Good thing I took a few pics while blocking the scarf because I never got around to it after I gave it to her. Love my blocking wires from Knit Picks. I use them for most of my blocking.

Pattern: Wisp
Needles: 5mm
Yarn: Knit Picks Alpaca Cloud

Puppy news:

She's now 9 days old! She can be seen here at 2 days old. As the only pup, she has no competition for food and can drink all she wants, whenever she wants...her little belly is solid like a rock!
Her eyes an ears are still not opened...this will probably happen this week.
(The stuffed toy will be used to compare her growth from week to week.)

Monday, June 6, 2011

First FO Monday

I have several finished projects that I have not added to my Ravelry's project page and that I have not added here. Yes, life is busy!
So I will commit to doing this by showing you a completed knitted item every Monday...for the next few weeks (we'll see how long I can keep this going!!).

I will start with a scarf that I've finally knitted from a kit from Misty Haven Alpacas. This was my first lace project and also first time knitting with lace yarn. I had to frog it several times. I kept getting mixed up and having either too many stitches or not enough at the end of a row. So I ended up putting it away for a while thinking I did not like lace knitting. But this beautiful yarn kept calling me and I got back on it this spring. What helped me tremendously was to use stitch markers every 10th stitch to help me keep up with the stitch pattern. Then I could immediately see if I was missing a stitch or if I had one too many.

Am I ever happy I finished this lovely scarf.

 The pattern was designed exclusively for Misty Haven Alpacas.

The yarn is 100% alpaca, 2 ply.

I would knit this pattern again and again.

The alpaca yarn is so soft and light. The colour is almost a chestnut brown, the reddish is not showing up much in the pictures.

As for dog news, Anouk had a very small litter on the weekend...only one large puppy. Mom and pup are doing very well.

I'm heading out to enjoy this sunshine! They are predicting more rain this week.