Thursday, December 31, 2009


This morning I took the The Girl to the train. It was lovely to have her home for the past 2 weeks. She decorated the house and helped a lot with the Christmas stuff. It had snowed overnight, I suggested that we leave a little early, then we were early enough to stop for some extra caffeine and a bit of breakfast for The Girl.

What happened next was the most 'random' thing. I have been meaning visit my friend J. There were opportunities to see her but I hesitated each time coming up with some sort of excuse and then feeling guilty. As I got out of the car in the parking lot of the train station there was J. Random? We had a moment to speak to each other, I said all I could say to her we hugged and parted.

When 'opportunities' like this happen, are they truly random? Or is it part of some great plan, I wonder?

It's New Year's Eve, the end of 2009, for our family a year filled with great opportunities and adventure, mostly good things; but for others this was a year filled with tragedy and sorrow. I think of them often.

Twenty Ten sounds like a whole new beginning; a chance to start again with a blank page.
I hope your twenty ten brings all good things!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Alright Everyone, get back to your knitting!

We watched 'The Goblet of Fire' last night. Those who are obsessed with the movie might recognise the line, those who are obsessed with knitting will be surprised by it.

Christmas is done, well the dinners, the guests and the chaos; now just the returns, completing gifts and the cleanup. We ended up having a Christmas dinner at our house, which worked out quite well. It just created a bit of strategic cleanup and menu planning. My family were terrific, they helped to organise the house and make the clutter go away. (Just don't look downstairs.)

This is the couch I found at the Salvation Army a couple of years ago. We have been trying to save up enough to purchase a new one for this area in our family room but every time we have just about enough money saved up for a new couch, something happens, usually involving a dental procedure. Since then its been known affectionately as my knitting nest. Yesterday, for the first time in about 2 years you could actually have 2 people sit on it. As you can see I have already slipped into my old habits, 24 hours later!

If you look carefully you can see 3 projects on the go!

Time to get back to a more normal schedule and look forward to new things for twenty ten, but you will excuse me as I take a few lazy days to catch up.

Hours are posted at the sidebar, Thursday I won't open until 11 ish and I am closing early.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

I'll be home for Christmas...

It's Christmas Eve, I am here at the shop thinking about all the things left to do! Fortunately I have a very understanding family. Tomorrow we will sleep in and be together just the 4 of us.

This past week has been hectic to say the least. We were down to one vehicle, with 4 drivers, all who had stuff to do. We opted one night to borrow Nana's wheels which meant a 'quick' moonlight walk for my husband and I. He remarked at the frosty temperature and I reminded him that only a little while ago he would have thought this as a great night for skating on the pond with the kids!

Christmas shopping for me became virtually impossible in the fact that I was never alone, except when I was at the shop. I have sent the youngest out to get 'refreshments' from Archibald's . I think it is completely wrong that both children are of 'legal' age.

Tonight I will be wrapping gifts of yarn and needles. (You would think that after 30 years of working in retail in one form or another that I would get this right.) Working on projects after Christmas has always been my best knitting opportunity.

This is beginning of my true Christmas Season; it will continue until I take the tree down on January 6th. I will listen to Christmas music, light candles to bring back the sun and spend time with family and eat and drink a little.

Thank you to all my new friends who come and visit me.
To all of you who took the time to send cards and notes, thank-you.

Merry Christmas.

(Christmas and New Year's hours are posted in the sidebar.)

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

All I Want for Christmas!

Remember when the kids were seven and they were happy to sing about their two front teeth!

What do I want for Christmas! Every year my husband says that finding a Christmas gift for me is the hardest thing he has to do. Forget the crops, the chores, climbing up and down 60 foot silos, doing endless repairs to equipment, milking 40 cows twice a day and being able to help deliver calves at any time of day, yet gifts to me are the most difficult!

Maybe I am picky, or just that I don't require much. I'm not a consumer of goods, a few good clothes, some nice shoes, I like what I like?

This Christmas I will be just happy to be home with our family. It's been a long year with both kids away for big chunks of time.

This year I will be thinking of those families who have lost important people in their lives.
We know of 2 families who are preparing funerals, both tragic and unexpected, therefore I am feeling a bit melancholy.
December is a dark and dreary month, but starting today the daylight hours are becoming longer and spring and new life will be here soon.

Enjoy the time you have with family and friends.

What do I want for Christmas.....Peace, Love, Joy, Hope...and to be done the knitted gifts!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Oh Christmas Tree....

Today after much discussion we put up a Christmas Tree.

During the early years we were able to 'harvest' our own trees from the woodlot behind the house. We always had a Cedar tree which was a lovely tree for decorating. By the time we took it down on the 6th of January it was green and lush. As the years went by it was harder to find anything that was a decent shape or size, some years we meshed two trees together. One year I noticed about 6 days into the 'tree' season that some of the branches were drying up, when I commented on the problem both the girl and her dad smiled and said "we wondered how long it would take for you to notice!". Notice that they had drilled holes into the trunk of a skinny cedar and filled the holes with branches to make a very nice looking tree.

Today's 'discussion" wasn't about whether or to put up a tree or not, but more about where we were getting it. He wanted to hike into the woods to look for another Cedar. I wanted to go to Price's Country Market to look for a 'real' tree. He didn't need any extra work right now and 'the Girl" and I both worked at Price's for a few years. To me the choice was obvious.

The next hurdle was how to get it home. We are down to one vehicle under 10,000 pounds, the pick-up is in the body shop getting a new door, the wind decided to make it into a sail! We could take the tractor and trailer, the dump truck things, or find the trailer and hook it up to the car. I convinced him that if we took a blanket we could put the tree on the top of the SUV, it has roof racks! Off we headed to Price's, they had about 6 lovely specimens left so the choice was pretty easy. I was in paying for it and the other goodies when Mark volunteered to deliver the tree right to the house, how easy was that!

The Girl decorated it and it looks lovely. Now there is the 'everything' else on the list....

I haven't posted any Christmas hours, because I really haven't figured it out. I will keep you posted. I was hoping to be open a bit tomorrow but we have some stuff to do in the morning that may take up a big part of the day.

This looks like a busy week ahead, there is still time for a bit of knitting!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Westward Leading Still Proceeding...

The Olympic Flame came through Bowmanville today! We stepped outside to watch the procession come through town. First came the elephant, camels, reindeer and other assorted animals from the Bowmanville Zoo! (Only in Bowmanville can you see the Elephants out for a walk and people say: "oh look the elephants are out for a it happens all the time!)
Then came the torch and its entourage of people and vehiclesAnd then we went back inside, like wimps and watched the rest on the computer..I love high speed!
Only a few more days until....keep knitting!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

City sidewalks, busy sidewalks, dressed in holiday style

The downtown is bustling with shoppers dashing around. Bowmanville has covered up the parking meters so there is free parking on the streets, but the ticket guy is still out illegal parking or staying all day.

Today I received an email from the Baba Tree Basket wrangler. He went back to Ghana to get more baskets. He wrote that when he comes back to the community the prices that the other guys pay for baskets go way up because they know he will pay top dollar for these baskets. Weavers now will come to him first to see if he will buy their baskets.

I was tempted to order another bunch, but I still have a few of these lovely 'yarn holders'. Great gift with a triple purpose: Renewable resource, fair trade and great quality.

In the new year, that's only a couple of weeks away I think I will introduce a new way that we can help those in the world that could use some help. After reading yesterdays post from Seth and reading the page about dignity:

"Dignity is more important than wealth. It’s going to be a long, long time before we can make everyone on earth wealthy, but we can help people find dignity this year (right now if we choose to)."Jacqueline Novogratz is the founder of the Acumen Fund and author of "The Blue Sweater".

Just thinking aloud.

Hope you are getting things done!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Dashing Through..

the snow, the rain, the crowds...the knitting?

I am in the midst of completing a big pile of knitting. Mostly store samples and couple of gifts. We did a bit of shopping yesterday, and came home with not much. Too many decisions!

Its Monday and I am at the shop waiting for the parcel, and also to be open for those of you who like me just don't have enough hours.

I am here today till about 3ish.

If there is time I will get some pictures posted...the one hour scarf is really very nice, great gift as a scarf or as a project for a beginning knitter.

See you Soon.

I have been reading this blog, mostly about advertising, branding and business stuff. Today he has a link to a free book with some inspirational messages...its lovely. The page about Dignity is...well go read it yourself.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Baby It's Cold Outside!

Yesterday the wind was bitter. Customers who came into the shop had that same 'frozen' look on their faces as they opened the door.

Perfect weather to show off all that knitting that keeps you distracted!

I finished the Noro Scarf I started last week. (Does that mean I get to start something else?) I have been waiting all week for a parcel, a special order some regular stock and new yarn. I received a call from the shipper to enquire about my location. Turns out it's been shipped to Oshawa, they have to send it back to the distribution centre and re-send it to me, I may get it Monday, and we all know Mondays are for Laundry!! (This is not a new company, one of my regulars...not happy!!)

Time to get those last few gifts done and think about some big project in January.

I am currently trying to come up with another Yarn Challenge, any suggestions?

Keep Warm

See You soon.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

A Few of my Favourite Things....

This phrase and the song that goes with it always reminds me of the couple who were like grandparents to us when we were growing up. This couple were the owners of the property we lived on and we looked after their 'Country' home. He was a bank executive and she followed him as they travelled around the world. A wonderful couple who were very generous and kind. At Christmas time they would invite us kids to come and help decorate the outdoor Christmas tree they had on the deck of the Cottage they used as a weekend retreat. As we decorated and visited with them the would put on the record of the Sound of Music. My sister said years later that she always thought that the Musical was a Christmas time play. The Christmas gifts to us were usually wrapped in brown paper and tied with a red satin ribbon! (Brown Paper packages tied up with string!)

A few of may favourite things came this week. A shipment of Buddy and Snap Cases from Namaste, Some new yarn from Sirdar called the One Hour Scarf it sells for $19.95 a ball and one ball makes a scarf! Great Gift...a new favourite thing for me! I have 5 colours!

I have been madly knitting all my UFO's and promised myself I wouldn't attempt to start anything new! (I am too embarrassed to tell you how many I have on the go right now!)

Musically I am listening to the new Blue Rodeo album, if you like them its a good one, another new favourite thing!

Winter, right now not a favourite thing.

Back to getting ready for the big day and trying to keep warm.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

The Weather Outside is Frightful

so stay inside and get that knitting done!

The drive into the shop was a little tricky. My usual commute takes about 6 minutes, today it was about 20, many of you drive a lot more and I don't know how cope. On a day like today I remember why I loved working from home. This would be a good day to put on a roast and just stay put, but I am here at the shop.

First on the agenda is to shovel the walk, why did I not bring the 19 year old to work with me?! That done I have a bit of paperwork to do and tidy from yesterday.

Yesterday I learned all about shipping a parcel to the United States. The Mission Falls trunk show is off to another shop, it's up to me to repack it and send it on its way. Everything needs to be done just right. Fortunately Angela and Rick from James Publishing helped me with this and we spent quite a bit of the day sorting out all the paperwork. I was trying to juggle the big box and lock the front door so that I could get it up to them and who should walk by but a friend with a strong back! He carried it up the street for me..the joys of a small town.

Bowmanville has a very nice downtown. We have some great shops; Roses coffee and floral shop; The Potting Bench for the Gardener and Bird Lover on your list (Ellen says that the men come and browse at her shop while wives are in the yarn store!). Other great places to visit are: the Glass Slipper,(women's shoes, need I say more!) Cathy's Gold and way up the street the shop Gather with gifts, women's and children's clothing and a great selection of children's 'retro' toys. Behind Gather you will find The Quilter's Boutique (formerly Gould's Cards and Gifts) Rhonda is a full time quilter, with lovely fabrics, lots of flannel.

Come and visit Bowmanville, but maybe not today. Unless you love a challenge!

Apologies to my grade 10 English teacher for all the grammar errors!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Its beginning to look a lot...

like Christmas?

We have Christmas windows, but inside the shop you won't find much in the way of Christmas decorations. I have decided to make the shop a 'Christmas' free zone. Don't get me wrong I love Christmas, its the extreme everything Christmas all the time that bothers me. I wanted to create a quiet restful place for you to come and relax. There is some lovely quiet, sometimes Christmassy, music playing but you won't find any decorations just yarn...a lot of yarn.

Speaking of Yarn. When I was out on Monday at that big place full of great yarn I re-discovered Noro Silk Garden and because I am weak I am doing another Noro Striped scarf. This is number 3..but they are just too much fun, just pick out two different colours and watch it evolve.

Then there is the multi-directional scarf that also uses a variegated yarn and this years new favourite thing the Gnocchi and Snowball scarf madness. Lots to knit...great gifts too!

Friday, December 4, 2009

It came upon a midnight....

Tonight Bowmanville's Downtown will be filled with shoppers as we begin the Holiday Season with the BIA's annual Moonlight Magic event. Like other years there will be the Tree Lighting, a visit from Santa, Choirs and Horse Drawn Wagon rides along the main street.

Most of the stores will be open late tonight, until 11 pm., we are ready with some interesting new finds, and a few clearance specials.

Come and visit us tonight and start your Christmas shopping Downtown. Bowmanville has some wonderful independent shops owned by your neighbours. It will be a little chilly, but not as cold as last year!

You still have time to finish a bunch of these sweaters in miniture:

you can find these on at Berroco.

Only 21 more sleeps! Yikes!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009


Yesterday I found myself driving to the big city. Two important things to do, well one very important thing and one because it was on the way thing.

The first was a trip to the airport to pick up The Boy! He is home, well he is in Ontario. He wanted to visit someone important before coming home, so as a good mom I drove him there first. I feel better now, its been a long six months for everyone. ( But now that its done, it went did that happen.)

On the way I stopped into the big warehouse filled with my favorite things...and brought home another big bag!

This week I celebrate one year of being open!

More about that later!