Thursday, February 12, 2015

Let me tell you about...

I can't help it. I get excited when people talk to me about things I like. I think I come across as a sales man, or some sort of ambassador. Like years ago when I worked in the importing business, I spoke so passionately to my American customers about Vancouver, you'd like I had profit sharing with the Tourism board.  And readers of this blog can surely tell that I will happily talk about dogs, my dog, your dog, all dogs -  at any time and anywhere.

But I surprised myself yesterday when I was sitting in a waiting room and a man asked me if my boots were Blundstones. Why yes they were. And are they steel toe? No they aren't. He told me he wears steel toe Blundstones for work and loves them but didn't know they were sold elsewhere and had non-steel toed versions. I then proceeded to tell him that there are mens and womens and even kids sized boots available. And in nubuck and brown and suede too. As well as blue and red and other colours. And told him where in Vancouver you could find such a selection. Again, you'd think I owned the shop!

My husband would have frowned at me after about 2 minutes and encouraged me to not make a fool of myself. But I did. I just couldn't help myself.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Blogaversary - 9 years!

Today is my 9 year blogaversary. I just can't believe I have been writing for so many years. In the past I've written about all the things that have changed since I've started but since I've done that a couple of times, I thought I'd try something else.

This one is hard for me, but I'll see if I can go it - 9 THINGS YOU DIDN'T KNOW ABOUT ME:

1) When I was a small child, I was convinced I had been reincarnated from a dog
2) I didn't go to kindergarten - I went to daycare from age 3 to 6 instead
3) I've only lived without a dog for about 3 years in my twenties when I lived on my own in apartments
4) My family isn't into sports, but I was. I put myself on the track team (high jump and 4x100 relay) when I was in elementary school, as well as track and the tennis team in high school. I also played field hockey in grades 9 & 10.
5) I seem to have an amazing memory for songs and lyrics. Unfortunately I have a terrible singing voice.
6) I am learning to speak Dutch for my trip to the Netherlands with my mom this year.
7) When I was 15 I entered a hand-sewn quilt in the Vancouver -Pacific National Exhibition (which used to have a cooking, baking and arts/crafts section for judging like a traditional farm fair) - I won a ribbon
8) I used to ride a motorcycle
9) I prefer driving a standard transmission car

whoops! there's the list! That wasn't as bad as I thought! Did you find it interesting?

Happy Blogaversary to me and Way Out Wear!!!

Monday, February 09, 2015

A Spring-like walk in Winter

We have been having some lovely warm weather here in the Vancouver area - pretty much the only part of Canada that is not only above zero degrees celsius, but also in the plus digits - 11 to 13 degrees, with a warm wind coming up the Pacific coast bringing an unseasonable but welcome 15 degrees the other morning.

I had to buy Eco another bag of food, and so I decided to take her along for the ride since there is a nice off leash park nearby. This is the first time I've left Eco in the car when I went into a store. I really don't like doing that but the weather seemed to be favourable and it was a short trip inside - plus she got lots of treats when I came back.

After the shopping it was off to the park when he was over-stimulated by so many new smells. She didn't calm down as I tried to cross a football sized field to get to the dog area. She started her off leash experience with a swim and followed it with a sprint through the trails.

Eco is normally a super happy labrador, but I tell you she was 10x  happier running in those trails. She would run ahead and then come racing back to ensure I was following her. We ended up getting so high in the trails I was in line with the setting sun, and could not longer hear the traffic or the people below. I tried to take a shortcut on what I thought was a trail, but when Eco started to look like she couldn't follow the trail, I trusted my dog and returned to trail that she confidently followed. We soon emerged at the other end of the park, exactly where I wanted to be.

She was soaking wet and full of mud but very happy. We came home and went straight to the tub where for the first 3 minutes I thought I was washing off her chocolate colour - that's how much mud came out of her!

Monday, January 26, 2015

Blogging vs Facebook?

Many days I have come to this blog, started to write a post and then deleted it - either because I didn't have time to finish it or I didn't think that you'd want to read what I was writing.

I'm sure this has happened to many others, but since I joined Facebook, and 'liked' several craft pages and several bloggers, I get all my updates through there, and so I just don't visit my blog any much as I should. And I'm not visiting others blogs either - which is a real shame as you're all taking the time to thoughtfully choose your words and post interesting content.

Are you finding a decrease in traffic too? Are you on Facebook and have you moved away from your blog? I'm struggling with the answers to these questions. But then every now and again, Facebook makes an announcement about how it's showing the posts of organized posters (i.e. not individuals) and business accounts, and I've heard some people/groups/companies say they were leaving Facebook because they refused to pay the fees.

Just the other day, one person wrote that they had over 2,000 followers yet only  their reach was only 60+ people. That's a pretty low return. Of course, Facebook tells them they can get more followers if they pay. And that's where many people are resisting.

So my question is this - do you also have a Facebook account? Do you feel you've left your blog for Facebook? Or are you leaving Facebook for your blog?

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Bunny Slippers for a Rabbit

A friend of mine asked me to make her bunny slippers for her rabbit - here's what I made:

And this is Charlie modelling them!

Sunday, January 04, 2015

The Underside of a Dog

This is what it looks like when Eco is standing on a platform of playground equipment and I am below her:

Good thing she doesn't drool!!

Saturday, January 03, 2015

Putting the "Happy" into "Happy New Year"

Although there hasn't been much activity in the blog there has been lots activity on the other side of my computer. Not only did I have plenty of custom knitting orders in December (which I loved!!!) but once things died down, I decided it was time to rearrange my work room.

I am an employee that works from home and have a desk dedicated for my job. Although I'm constantly on the lookout for new and improved ways to work and process the jobs and to become more paperless, I still have lots of files and papers on my desk -this is not a place that I do any other work. In the same room I had a nice little desk with a hutch that I considered my personal desk, but I had buried it behind craft supplies and couldn't access the drawers or doors. I decided that it would be good to have one desk for work and one desk for personal use. The personal desk could have pretty things like candles and flowers on it. I also thought it would be good if they could be across from each other as this would put them both near the window and both near the baseboard heater plus all I would have to do is turn the chair around from one spot to another which would save some space.

This simple idea, however, took three days to do. It involved unloading two 7' tall Bonde (Ikea)  bookcases and moving a filing cabinet. It also involved getting rid of as many things as I could. The task is now complete and I am happy with the results. The room is still fuller than it should be but I am happy with it and will continue to work on it. And I still have 3 knitting orders for January, which also makes me very happy.

As well over the past two weeks I was able to sit down with several wonderful ladies who've not only supported me in my knitting business but also in my dance. It is a wonderful feeling to connect with such amazing people. I also had a long meeting with my dance instructor discussing where I'm at and how I'm feeling and this has also renewed my excitement for dance and the future.  I know it sounds cliche but it's definitely been a journey in so many ways.

For me, and many others I talked to, 2014 was a tough year. It's not the worst year of my life, and tragic things didn't necessarily happen, but it was hard - not much came easy that's for sure. And interestingly, it was the same for many others. But I do believe that those tough things won't exist this year and I really think the tough past was a prelude to good 2015. I already put all  the hard work into building the foundation and feel I will reap the benefits this year.

I've suffered from depression and low moods throughout my life but I'm feeling really good about things right now. I'm feeling happy and I feel hopeful. I don't write resolutions but I do 'set intentions' (so to speak) for my future and I feel confident about the upcoming months. Dance class starts on Monday. Next weekend four of us are going to Seattle for a three day dance intensive training. Jp and I are both working and money's not as tight as it had been. I am hopeful my brother and I can mend our relationship this year. My mom and I are planning a trip to Europe this spring. I don't want for anything but look forward to peace and happiness and contentment. And this is the song floating around my head: