Pastimes Whistler Retreat

Wednesday night I decided to attend the 4 day Pastimes Knitting Retreat in Whistler. I told you I needed a vacation. I got a great one! Wish it would never end. I packed so much into it though I thought I would show ya'll the landscape. Peep photos coming soon. Be warned though that lots and lots of sillyness ensued.

We arrived Thursday evening around 7 p.m. and walked into the village for dinner. There seemed to springs of life welling up everywhere. I love water, the sounds, the textures, and the soothing nature of it. I think there are few things as beautiful. Even a single drop of water holds an immense amount of beauty. Water holds the power of serenity and reflection.

Friday morning I woke at 6 a.m. I headed out for a short hike at around 6:30. Oh my. The fog seemed to swallow so much of the countryside at that hour. It was beautiful. It was however too dark for my lil' camera to get too many good shots. I found an interesting nature trail. My fears over took me, bear maulings and all, so I tried to recruit someone to hike with me. to no avail. Later on I took a walk up the hillside. Stupid me, I started off at too fast a clip and burned my thighs before I was up the first incline. I didn't get up too far before resting and then heading back down. The countryside here is breath taking... for real... like I gasped multiple times at the beauty.

I would love to be surrounded by the delicate nature of this place every day, however I think I would lose the ability to be awestruck. I live with the gorgeous Mt. Ranier practically in my backyard and forget it's there until someone points it out and then I'm like 'Oh yeah, the mountain.' I definitely will have to make it to the retreat often, which is an annual event.

Saturday we spent the day in classes. Erik, however, spent the day photographing this exquisite wonderland. I am impatiently awaiting his gallery of work.

Sunday, we went horseback riding. Wow, the tranquility!!! We were able to do something as a group of friends, quietly, peacefully enjoying this land that will rip the words right out of your mouth. We stopped for a few more photo ops on the way home. I miss the fog. I miss the rocks. I miss the water and its craddling serenity.


Lots of knitting, lots of crap

I need a vacation. Like a really long one. Maybe a permanent one. Ever think it would be nice to be declared insane? Lock you up in a padded room. All alone. Where they make sure you don't get stressed? Of course, they would let me have my knitting because it's therapeutic. Sometimes. Ever feel like someone else's life would be better? Sign me up baby!!!

Yeah, it really has been trying for me lately. I've gotten lots of knitting done, woo hoo, kind of. Thank goodness for friends right now. They are the only ones keeping me sane. House is trashed. Kids are sick. Husband is sick. Not only is husband sick, because he's sick I have to give him some slack. It's like trying to reel in a shark on 10 lb line!!! Weeeeeeeeeee, run baby run. Yeah, so his Evercrack (thankies Erik for that term) has reached an all new high. I started playing again which is ironic. It has been my selfish time.

My last week has been like this. Monday, clean, take care of screaming kids, clean and sob into my pillow. Tuesday, clean, a break (better run for it) as a friend and I hung out for a while, go home and clean. Speaking of such friend. We discussed super powers. She has decided that her super power would be setting peeps on fire. I don't think she can call herself a super hero. Well, except the people she was talking about lighting up are villains in their own right. So... she would be doing the world a huge favor. She got a new car yesterday. A black beemer, a Z3 I think. I can just see her careening madly, knocking over pink frilly teenagers and the ones she misses she blasts with a fireball. LOL. I'm scared to go for a ride with her. The 'OH SH&$' handle will be well used. I thought my super power would be to read peeps minds, at will, and not have them know it. I reconsidered and decided that the more fitting power would be the ability to annoy peeps until they scratch their own brains out. LMBO. I'm not sure which skill is more disturbing, hers or mine. Any, back to life as we know it. Wednesday, um... can't remember so I'm going to guess it was so horrific I blocked it from my memory. Oh, if only I could chose to do that more often. Thursday, yeah yeah yeah, it was our knitting group's first time to meet up. Knitting with the ladies. Oh, my memory is going, the super power discussion actually happened on Thursday. My god! I'm losing it... well I lost it long ago... so what do you call it when you are sinking further? Anyway, I think you are getting the picture. Bunch o crap, little sleep and rats!!!

My kids start freakin' last night around midnight that they saw a rat. I'm afraid of the dark and the little ones' light bulb has gone out. Try to wake up Tim. grrrrr. Frickin frackin rotten fink. Um, he didn't get up. I grab the broom, flashlight, and emptied a yarn bin to catch it in. I have no clue what to do as we've never had a rat in the house before. We need a cat again. I sweep out every dark corner in all the room saving the little ones room for last. I heard something, leaped (more like flew) up onto Bella's bed waking her up. No clue what made the noise, but no rat found. Anywhere. It's now 2 a.m. I feel like having a heart attack. I hear rat scratching sounds everywhere. I can see them running all around in the darkness. How am I supposed to sleep? I guess with one eye half open.

Blah, blah, blah. Knitting, that's what you are here for. Shut up T, no one is listening to you!!! So I got a scarf made for Gracie, seed stitch out of Galaxy. Scarf made for Bella, stockinette out of Lucky. Scarf for myself, garter out of Pansy. I got my tank finished. Lousy picture. Give me a break. I am blogging, didn't have the drive to get a decent photo of anything. Got my vest made. Yes, it does look like crap in the photo. I had a problem with it. I washed it, laid it out to dry, and by carefully handling it grew several sizes too big. I washed it and dried it to shrink it back down. It still is a little too big... and wrinkly from the dryer. No brain power to work on it though. Oh, Rowan's hat turned out perfecto! Made from Oddyssey. Wonderful merino yarn. I will post the pattern later with fotos of Rowbug wearing it. I will include instructions on older child sizing and adult sizing as well.

And finally, a foto of my dagger. It is in progress. It originally was just a slab of steel. I've been using a hand saw, hand files and sandpaper to get it to the state it is now. I'm going to define the edge more and then sand, sand, sand till I get a mirror finish on it. The handle should be interesting as I'm going to carve it from wood after attaching it to the blade. I'm pretty impressed with it so far. A ton of laboring has gone into it so far and it ain't even half done.

Captain's log: Life is crap. Friends are good. Send truffles and no one will get hurt!

P.S. Grace says that monsters come in at night and do all the bad stuff. Like get into the ever precious dew, makeup, wipe their fingerprints all over clean mirrors, stuff like that. So, if you see a monster, kick 'em where it hurts for me please.


Pastimes Peeps BBQ

Check out the cute frog trying to get his lunch through the glass! He was so adorable following the bug along the window sill. Made me want to take it out to him. Course he wouldn't appreciate that gesture. There are a ton of tiny tree frogs all over the place at Amy's house. I love frogs.

So the Pastimes crew got together for a BBQ yesterday to celebrate our time together at Pastimes. I have no idea what Emmet was doing here, but he sure has a rapt audience. William, in the grey coat, is such a great guy. I wish I knew him better. I have never seen him in a bad mood. I wish I was more even keel like he is. The crew is going to get together on a weekly basis and I'm hoping he can join us being the big ole college man that he is. :p Over to the right you can see that Emmet is still carrying on. He's wearing the infamous Jack's Back. I love that sweater!!! Liz is standing to the left in the photo in the killer green sweater. I want one! It's from a pattern called Merino Top Down out of Jo Sharp Silk Road Tweed. I have some in dark purple for a cabled vest for myself. Liz is another even keeled person. Amy must have hand selected these people to try to balance out us freaks. LOL. Ok, so maybe I'm the only freak in the group and it takes a bunch to try to balance me out. snicker. Don't ask me how Amy snuck into all these photos. I think if you look real closely you can see her reflection in the frog photo. snicker. It's almost like where's waldo. Lol. In the photo to the left you can see Amy (of course), Liz (in the bee yoo tee ful sweater), Nancy (who I think felt it was her job to make sure I cried like a baby), and Kristen. I can't say much about Kristen as I never really worked with her. I do know the rest of the crew was quite fond of her.

And last, but not least, is Erik (seen in the background of this photo). Erik is Amy's brother. Ummm... :) See, Erik played a joke on Nancy and I last week. I got my revenge and boy was it sweet. :P finger lickin'. He looks very suspicious in this photo, doesn't he? hehehehe. So, after all my kind words about the Pastimes crew he felt that I should say something nice about him. I was going to be naughty, but I feel that we should call a truce as someone is going to get hurt so here goes... Amy holds Erik in high regard. That alone should tell you that he is a man to be respected. He is an intelligent, good looking, self-motivated photography in need of a girlfriend so... if anyone has an extra blow up doll, please send it his way. And if anyone wants to send me some flowers, I will be in the hospital... lmbo!!!


Well, it is done

What can I say? My dream job was to order all the merchandise for Pastimes. I was denied that dream job. I have no idea why, snicker. After months of soul searching I figured out what my next dream job would be. Receiving for Pastimes. Could you imagine? Being the first one to see the new yarns and accessories as they came in. I'm sure I wouldn't have held that position too long because for some reason not too much would make it to the shelves. I was actually going to approach Amy with the idea when she returned from the knitting cruise. *sigh* Another sad thing, I hadn't ever figured out the sales software. Over the last 2 years I had rang up about 10 customers. Now I'm pretty confident with the software after ringing up what seemed to be hundreds of customers. How sad is that! I just learned a skill that I will never use again.

Pastimes closed its doors October 2nd. Sunday was a rollercoaster ride of emotions. Nancy, above, is saying good bye to some loyal customers. Nancy, the dear heart, made me cry so many times. I was having a hard time all by myself, but with her having difficulty keeping the tears under control I lost it a few times. Emmet is helping another customer here finish her shawl. Amy is down further helping another customer. We had scheduled this time to say goodbye to customers, especially those who had developed relationships with us. Instead we got this. Ok, ok, I won't say anything more for fear that I will let my anger get the better of me. I know it may seem weird for me to get so mad.

There have been several other employees of Pastimes, but these 3 especially have made Pastimes what it is. They have been gracious, self-sacrificing, and unbelievably kind to so many that have entered here. Their combined knowledge of business operations, knitting and crochet, and teaching would fill a whole series of books. I respect these people so highly that I was disappointed with the way they were treated. I mean, come on people! Give props to those who deserve it. To those who have served you so that you could grow. Those who have served you and it should have been the other way around. Grrr.

I know that I'm a just a tiny fraction of the customers of Pastimes, but I would like to say thank you! Thank you for what you have given of yourselves! Thank you for everything!!!

I love you.