Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Dog Sledding!

What a great day!
Glen, Marc, Cristine and Kendra and I went dog sledding today from 7pm-9:30pm. We all got our own teams (Glen, Marc and Cristine and I had 4 dogs - Kendra had 3). We got a briefing on how to control the sled (brakes, drag pad and snow hook) and the basic commands for the dogs (cha = left and chi/chee=right)

Me with my team!

Basically, the dogs know what they're doing and control themselves. There's a network of trails with multiple paths side by side - at one point you'll be riding along side someone and then their path will turn into the woods and it's pretty much you and your dogs (unless you're behind/in front of someone). You get the opportunity to shout your commands when you want to switch trails. I got a really fast, well behaved team. At one point I was at the front of the pack with the lady who owns the teams and we had a race - what a blast!

Everyone seemed to really enjoy themselves. Glen fell 3 times mostly because he switched sleds/teams with Marc and Marc's sled was really hard to control.
It's a lot more work than you'd think it is and we're all probably going to be sore in the morning.

Here's a link to my Flickr set (click). The site is being weird so I haven't had a chance to add descriptions or anything yet.

I can't believe I've been here 5 years and hadn't had a chance to get out there. It would be something neat to do every year.

Temperature: -8C (windchill -13C)
Sunrise: 6:17am
Sunset: 11:29pm

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Crumpets (take two!)

I finally got around to re-attempting crumpets. My first batch the last time left something to be desired and apparently didn't taste like a crumpet at all.
Armed with a new recipe and a bit of patience we have SUCCESS!

They got the nod of approval from the resident crumpet connoisseur (unfortunately he ate his token crumpet before I could get a picture for posterity). Thanks again Mary Alyce for the crumpet rings!

Tomorrow evening we're going dog sledding with my brother, his gf and a friend. Our friend went last week and had so much fun that when she heard we were going she asked if she could join us. We're going to do a dinner here before we head out (I want to make veggie chili but we also have a bunch of random roasts in the freezer from a friend that we should cook up so I'll throw a roast in the slow cooker overnight and maybe make a pot of meaty chili for everyone else... I'm also planning a strawberry pound cake for dessert - how fancy!).

Check back late tomorrow evening or early Thursday for pictures!

Temperature: -8C (feels like -15C)
Sunrise: 6:26am
Sunset: 11:21pm

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Spring Forward Package!

Here's my latest secret pal package (for our single box "Spring Forward" swap)!!

This is what I got: Burts bees lotion (!!!), two boxes of tea: Earl Grey and green tea (my favourites! I had a cup of green tea today and it was SO good), a Kentucky magnet, a bag to put around my wrist for knitting in public - so handy!, a pencil, a ball of Austerman Step, a crazy sproingy sheep toy - scared the crap out of my cats haha, peep toys (woo! I don't like peeps but these toys are cute!!), some mints in a cool tin, dpn point protectors and a really cute card :-D
My SP also sent me all sorts of really cute e-cards. Thanks!!!!!!!

(and if you look close enough in the picture, you can see that we still have a tonne of snow!!)

I started doing some needle felting on another pair of slippers but no photos yet... I would've been done last night but I went straight to bed when I got home from work.

Temperature: -18C
Sunrise: 6:44am
Sunset: 11:04pm

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Knitting Content (and lots of it!)

Well, I've been a bit busy on the knitting front again. About a week or so ago I got a big box from Knit Picks with my order of "Bare" yarn (in fingering and worsted weight). I planned to dye up some yarn for my Secret Pal (and mys
elf). I got four skeins done and now I have to decide whether I want to send all four to her or not - I'm thinking I will since I have plenty of yarn left to dye. All that's left is to think of names for the yarns - I already have all my little tags printed out!

I also have quite a few pairs of slippers knit up (four to be exact!). I'm in the process of embellishing them so I'll post them as they're completely finished. Right now I have one pair finished. I've been wanting to do embroidery on my felted things for a really long time now so I had a look around Ravelry to see if anyone had done something similar. I found some really awesome FO's out there. This first pair is just an experiment to see how my free-hand embroidery skills are (I've only done cross stitch before). I'm actually really pleased with how they turned out.

I bought two sets of shoe stretchers (women's size 5-8 and women's size 9-11) and they have totally changed my slipper blocking! I used to stuff them full of shopping bags and put elastics around them to keep their shape then, a few weeks ago I made duct tape forms of my feet (stuffed them with shopping bags) but those didn't work as well and didn't keep their shape when stuffed into a stubborn slipper.
Shoe stretchers are BRILLIANT. The little black slippers went from a women's size 8ish (maybe even smaller, they wouldn't fit properly onto my size 9 feet) to a comfortable size 9 - the heel is in the proper spot, my toes aren't stretching out the ends - AWESOME! I'm blocking a pair of felted clogs that got very small in only one run-through in the washer. With my incredible shoe stretchers, they've gone from being teeny-tiny to adult size. Can you tell I'm totally impressed? They give the slippers/clogs a really nice shape to them too.

My next big excitement is about the BSJ (baby surprise jacket). I got the pattern from a lovely lady on Knitty quite a while ago and for the life of me couldn't wrap my head around it (I'm not so good at reading a pattern and then knowing in my head what it should look like). I have to say, I was really embarrassed I couldn't figure this pattern out. Anyway, I bought the BSJ video done by Meg Swansen and I totally got how to knit it. I ended up doing a "trail run" and using some scrap kitchen cotton and it took me about 12hrs. I'm totally impressed with this pattern and how it turned out that I think this might become my default baby sweater pattern - I love the fact that you only have to sew two seams and it's all in one piece (hello my languishing trellis baby sweater I'm looking at you!).

Anyway! That's my big update for now! Anyone with good ideas for spring-y names for that yarn, leave a comment!

Oh! As of today I've been in Inuvik for 5 years! Whoa!

Temperature: -13C
Sunrise: 6:58am
Sunset: 10:52pm