Friday, September 25, 2009

Back to school, on a couple of levels...

I got a job!

I've been working in an on-call capacity since the beginning of the school year, but was not caled very often...that is until last Thursday. On call last week for Thursday, Friday, Monday and Tuesday at the same school. Tuesday afternoon I learned that I obtained the position I was substituting in! Wednesday, I went to work in my new position - same as what I'd been doing since the previous week. Hooray! I'd applied for 5 positions, but this was the one that I wanted!
It's an elementary school, and I'm in the position of Education Assistant. I love this work.

Life is good.

In that nailbiting 2 week period of NOT having any work, I put the wheels in motion to start my next year of schooling - online through the College of the Rockies. If I were to go there, it would look like this:

But instead, because it's all online, it will look like this:

Yep, I'm in school as a teacher, and as a learner.

The courses I'm taking online right now are about crisis intervention and conflict resolution. Very timely considering some of the issues I've already come across on the playground!

Life is good, is busy.

(Doesn't she look so incredibly hip? How much hairspray does that really take?)

Thursday, September 17, 2009

More knit love

My Mom-in-law recently finished a gorgeous aran knit sweater for my DH. In the parcel she mailed us, she included the 3 skeins of yarn that she had not used for it...and surprise, surprise...I had a project in mind that takes exactly that much yarn!

The project is from the Fall issue of Interweave Knits, and it's called the Every Way Wrap by Okmin Park. If you click on the link in the name, you'll see several pictures of the model for the magazine...something to notice is that the cabled area is actually reversible! I'm learning how to do a cabled area that can be enjoyed from either side.

Also, this is the first knit I've done using the technique that has no cable needle - in all honesty, I don't think I'll ever go back. No way. This is just too slick. I can cable MUCH faster this way than I ever could before.

Anyhoo, that's what's got me busy in the evenings right now. That, and looking for renters for our house in Nakusp.



Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Summer green, finally finished

It's been moved from place to place, unfolded, refolded, moved again...and now it's finally finished.

I posted a picture of this sweater back in July, when I was still actively knitting it. Sadly, it has been shuffled about, claspless, until last night.

The main thing was that I thought I'd need to reinforce the front bands with ribbon, but, after trying to sew one on last night with no real success I thought, "finished is better than perfect" - and just put the pesky clasps in place.

I love it.

I loved the yarn to begin with (Ella Rae wool from Romania? I think?)

I spend a silly amount of time just enjoying the weight and texture of the sweater. This is done on 4mm needles, much smaller than the leftovers vest of a previous post. Somehow this needle/yarn combination just hits that textural 'sweet spot' that can be so elusive.

Hopefully I'll get called into work so that I can wear it out! Classrooms can be chilly, you know, and shorter sleeves ensures that I don't drag them through a student's (or my own) work.

And it fits.


The little clasps are from Fabricland (which a friend of mine not-so-affectionately calls "the F store")... *blush*



Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Change - long (photo heavy)

For a while now - about a year - I've been contemplating a big change for the blog. It is not what it began as, and has been bothering me that I've not changed it to reflect that.

This blog began as a way to connect with people in the quilting industry, to be part of that network, and to let my customers (at the time) know that I was working on things for them, and to announce things that were coming up within my career as a professional quilter. I've been very lucky to have met many, many lovely people through this strange media, most of them connected with quilting or crafting in some way.

We lived very rurally (in a way we are more rural now, but have greater access to services) in a small community, and this blog gave me a way to connect with others of similar interest in a place where few shared my passion with the same intensity.

Now, life is very different. I spent last year completing a certificate program in Classroom and Community Support Work through Selkirk in the garage...building the house. Now that we are in the house, the children are back at school and we have all the conveniences that modern life can afford us, I've had a little bit of time to look back and reflect on just how much our lives have changed.

It's pretty dramatic, really.

So, this is the post that will mark the transition between a blog that has been written as much for work as for pleasure to one that is a little more personal in nature. I didn't want to lose the name of 'Lisa quilts', as I still hope to do that in my life, but wanted the header to reflect a little more of what I do in other aspects of my life.

The sunflower in the header is the only one we have left that has survived the elk that wander through...probably because it is about 11 feet tall. All the leaves have been stripped off up as high as I can reach! Oh, well. We've been promising ourselves that NEXT year we'll landscape (and put up fences). This year is for building. It's tremendously hard for me to focus like that.

Because of our life in the garage, I've become reacquainted with my love of knitting. This is partly due to it's tremendous portability, the lovely textural sensation and technical challenge that knitting can be.

I've come to love the look of a well stacked firewood pile - and the stacking itself! Living here has necessitated my being more active outside, something that I love more and more.

Our boys are settling (after a year at this property) into what living out here is like. When we want to, we can go to the city - but we can stay home, make forts with friends and jump on the trampoline, too. They are happy to have room of their own now, and to have rediscovered all the possessions that they had that had languished in storage for a year. Moving into their rooms was like Christmas and Birthdays all rolled together. It was a gift for me, as their Mom, watching them create spaces that are as distinct as each of their characters.

In all honesty I feel a little at sea this fall. I'm ready to launch into the next phase in my life, but unsure what it will be at this time. Right now, I have one on-call position (which is not keeping me busy), and have just applied for another. I don't know what role I'm in unless all the family is at home in the evening and I know that I'm Wife and Mom. I miss being Student - that was a lot of fun and challenge. I look forward to having that role again, but know it will be after I've spent some time sharing the title of Breadwinner with my fella.

Our property is really to our tastes. My fella gets to drive his tractor, we get to build and explore, to dream and grow. We had the most wonderful experience on the labour day weekend of family arriving to help us with building a roof for our 10' X 40' tractor shed...we are truly blessed with love and willing hands.

We are closer to my parents, now. Among many little favours, they did us the tremendous favour of taking our boys to their house for the week that I was in an Autism course at the end of August. We get to see and play with them more often than we did when we were in Nakusp and I love the relationship that's growing between our boys and my parents. My sister and her family, while not physically closer, cross paths with us much more often - another lovely gift. Our boys love to be with their cousins, and it is a joy to me to have a caring relationship with my neice and nephews as they grow.

Life is finding a rythm again. There's a little more room in this rythm for contemplation and personal writing, for socializing and other things that feed our souls.

I feel like we're at a confluence point right now - a place where the path of our lives and relationships from Nakusp come together with the friends and experiences of the past year to create a much larger river. Our lives are richer for the experience, though at times it has been very hard. The joys have been as intense as the difficulties, and we strive to find balance in life each day.

It's a gift to be here, in this moment, looking forward and looking back.

I can't imagine what will happen next.


Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Knit love...

I'm waiting for some wool to come in. While I do, I've been using up odd skeins that have been hanging around...

This is 'Leftovers' from Knitty. My modifications include the fact that I didn't realize there were any body increases - whatsoever - and had to 'make up' the neck decreases and armhole shaping! It's not blocked yet, and there are a few ends to weave in, but it's pretty much ready for going back to school/work next week.

My winter coat will be Heroine, in red plum colour. Currently I'm biding my time waiting for the wool by making a Lucy bag. Chances are I'll have to make something else, too...there's got to be some sock yarn around here somewhere...