Tuesday, December 12, 2017

It Finally Snowed! Knitting Progress & Reading On

Hello Friends,

I hope you are doing well. We had our first big snowfall here in Toronto yesterday. I was out driving to get groceries and it was coming down a bit, but by the time I was leaving the store there was a lot more snow coming down and snow on the ground. I think it is finally time to get out my winter boots! I have managed to wear my sneakers outside until now because it hasn't even been that cold. Today I went for a walk and enjoyed walking through the snow and taking some photos. Below are some photos I took today of trees in the neighborhood that show the amount of snow we got.

Lately, I have been mostly trying to get my school work done. This morning I was working on some Excel training and just have an exam and some projects left for that course. I am currently entering exam week so I am excited for my exams to be done, then I have completed the courses for my certificate. I will be applying to get the certificate once exam week is done. I can't believe I will be done soon, then I will be finished school for a long time. I kept going back to school for certificates and my degree last year a couple of years ago. Now I am hoping to be done at the age of 29 haha. I know people go to school at any age. I might go back to do certificates or upgrading of skills.

I bought this picture of the quote "It always seems impossible until it is done" from IKEA a couple of weeks ago. I love it because this year I have felt like this whole plan of finishing this certificate and getting a job in a new field was impossible, but now I am almost done and things always seem so hard or impossible but then before you know it, it is done and you have accomplished what you set out to do. I am happy to have this picture up in the office now to remind myself of this every day. To keep persevering even when things seem impossible and they will never be done, one day you will accomplish it. This could also apply to difficult knitting projects! :)

It always seems impossible until it is done - Nelson Mandela
In knitting, I have been working on finishing up the second jumbo Christmas stocking. I have a large portion of it finished now and just working on those last few rows now and the toe shaping. I have been using the pattern Jumbo Christmas Stocking in a Jiffy- Striped  by Jennifer Jackson on Ravelry. These stockings really are what they say in the name JUMBO. We can sure fit a lot of stocking stuffers in there. My boyfriend and I are expecting a lot of stocking stuffers from each other now. I am looking forward to being able to hang them up soon once they are both done.

I started knitting the Wool and the Gang Farrah Billie Jean top and it is coming along nicely. I did have to frog quite a bit of it because I realized an error in my tension quite a ways back so I had to take it apart unfortunately. But I'm not in a rush right now to finish it and I have some gifts I am working on now so it won't be a huge priority right now to finish the front piece. I will be focusing more on this project in the new year.

I have still been reading the two books: My Not So Perfect Life: A Novel by Sophie Kinsella and Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed. I have been focusing more on reading My Not So Perfect Life because there is a long hold list on this book on Overdrive, since it just came out this year. When my loan is up I have to wait quite awhile to get it back. So this time, I have been trying to read it a lot more before I lose it again. I have been working on my goal to finish 10 books this year so I need to start reading a lot more and pick up some books I had stopped reading earlier in the year in order to get to my goal. I am currently at 7/10. Three more to go!

What are you reading and working on this week?

Joining along with Frontier Dreams for Crafting On and As Kat Knits for Unraveled Wednesday.

Thank you so much for visiting my blog today, if you would like to keep updated on when I post, please follow me on Bloglovin', Google Followers, and you can also subscribe through email at the top right corner of the blog.

Have a great day!

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Blogmas: Decorating Our Christmas Tree

Hello Friends,

I hope you are doing well. I finally got my Christmas tree yesterday and my boyfriend and I decorated it today. It is a bit smaller and lighter than our tree last year which was good because it was easier bringing it in the apartment and will be easier to clean up when Christmas is done. We used the same garland as last year and we bought some new lights. They are Noma lights and are in the colors white, red, and green. I am very happy with how the tree looks in our living room now, it definitely feels a lot more like Christmas now.

My boyfriend and  in front of the tree

Take two

My boyfriend decorating the tree

All finished!
Below are a few of my favorite ornaments I have been putting up for the past few years. The first ornament is a knitted red car with a Christmas tree on top that my mom bought me for my tree last year from Ten Thousand Villages.

The next ornament is the two marshmallows wearing Christmas hats and holding a heart that says "Our First Christmas" that my mom bought for my boyfriend and I because it was our first Christmas last year living together. The knitted mouse was a purchase I made while at the Christmas market in the Distillery District a few years ago. It is so cute and I love that it is knitted most of all!

 We also put up some Christmas lights in the window this year. They are up on the inside of the window held up by using command sticker hooks. I am happy to have some lights on the front window now to spread a bit more Christmas cheer along with others in our building who all have lights up in their windows too. We are looking like a very festive apartment building now.

Thank you for visiting my blog! This week I will be working on finishing knitting the second stocking, Knitting the Wool and the Gang top, and working more on knitting some Christmas gifts. I will also be working on finishing course work and finishing up this semester. If you would like to keep updated on when I post, please follow my blog through Bloglovin', Google Followers, or you can subscribe by email at the top right corner of the blog.

Have a great day!

Friday, December 8, 2017

Blogmas: A Bit of Decorating for Christmas and Knitting Updates

Hello Friends,

I hope you are doing well. I decorated a bit for Christmas yesterday and today and it feels wonderful to have decorations around in the apartment now. Christmas decorations always make a space feel so much more cozy and inviting.
I put up a wreath on the door of the closet at the end of our hallway and then hung up some ornaments and the bow on it. I also added the cute reindeer onto the hook as well to add something extra to the wreath this year.

Wreath on the closet door in the hallway
 I decorated the small tree that sits beside my desk in our office. I added ornaments and garland and the pretty angel on top from Ten Thousand Villages.

Small tree beside my desk in the office
Below is  one of my favorite ornaments on my little tree. It looks like my red car carrying lots of Christmas presents on top!

I just purchased the two green cushion covers below from Dollarama for $3 each and I am really happy with how they look on the couch. I also love the cushion with the writing 'Merry Christmas' on it that I purchased from Michael's last year. So glad I did, I love it! The gray and red blanket is a Beaver Canoe blanket from back in the day when I worked at Target Canada. I remember passing by it so many times while working and thinking when it goes on sale I will buy it! I am glad I did because it is so comfortable.

That's it for now for decorations. I have a bunch of little Santa figurines and other small decorations which I did not both to take pictures of each of them. I have also shared many photos of them throughout the years if you would like to look back here. I still have all of them and scatter them around each year. I will be getting a Christmas tree this Saturday December 9th, so I will be sharing photos of the tree next week. I am so excited to finally put up the tree!

I got to knitting the Wool and the Gang Farrah Billie Jean top again. I had stopped because I realized I made some sort of mistake with the knitting. It looked like a tension issue to me.. I frogged back the work and took it away because it was pretty obvious even in the front of the piece that the stitches in that row were all looser and would look bad in the front piece of the top. I always feel better once I frog the work and just start knitting again. I find I always feel like putting it off and procrastinate a bit on ripping it out hoping I don't have to but in the end it is for the best! I finished knitting the heel flap for the stocking and beginning to work on the final part of the stocking, the foot. I am looking forward to being done and hanging both stockings on the wall for Christmas. I will be starting to knit a couple of secret projects very soon as Christmas gifts which I will share after I gift them.

Thank you for visiting my blog! If you would like to follow my blog to keep updated on when I post, please follow me on Bloglovin', Google Followers, and you can subscribe by email at the top right hand corner of the blog. Also I added a list of other ways you can follow me on social media on the side panel of the blog under the title Find me.

Hope you have a great day!

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Blogmas: Finished Knitting Mitten Ornament, Knitting Updates, & Reading On

Hello Friends,

I hope that you are doing well. I have been working on finishing up with my Office Administration courses. They are all done next week which is hard to believe and I have started the job search process and will be looking for a new job in the new year. I have also been busy finishing up knitting my mitten ornament to decorate the Christmas tree. I used the pattern called Mitten Ornament by Red Heart on Ravelry.  I have been working on finishing up that second stocking as well. Today I enjoyed a nice cup of hot chocolate while I was knitting and writing my blog post.

Finished mitten ornament and stocking in progress

Love this mug I got around Christmas last year 
Mitten ornaments on the tree

Obsessed with the cinnamon buns I got from IKEA, there aren't many left!
 I have not knitted much on the Wool and the Gang Farrah top because it is hard to tell from the photo but I think I messed up the tension halfway through because there is a space at the back so I will be frogging about half of this. I need to figure out the technique of how to put a needle through just to before the mistake happened so I don't have a lot of work to do finding all of the stitches again.

Wool and the Gang Farrah Billie Jean top front piece progress
 I did not really post a progress post on the vegan challenge, so I will just update quickly in this post. I did the Challenge 22+ last month for 22 days and it went well. The final day though, I did cheat and had cheese. I enjoyed the challenge because it showed me how many options there are other than animal products to eat and that I don't have to order food with cheese all over it all the time and make some small changes. At this time however, I do not think I will be going vegan anytime soon. I love the whole vegan community and what they are working towards but it is hard giving up so many things that I love. I am still currently vegetarian and am happy with this for now.

I started reading My Not So Perfect Life by Sophie Kinsella again because I got the loan back on Overdrive, I have been reading it so much lately. I am on page 488 of 728 on Overdrive now. It is at a very interesting part in the book right now and I want to read on to find out what happens. This is the best kind of reading in my opinion, when you wonder what will happen next and it interests you. I always think back to the level of obsession when I was reading the Twilight book one Christmas. I remember that Christmas when I could not put the book down it was too good. I would love to be so into a book to that level again. I am also still reading Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed and it is also a page turner. I am looking forward to reading both of these books this month. It seems that books always come in two's for me lately, but it is because I lose my loans, then get them back again when I am already reading a new book then it is hard to juggle both. I am determined to finish My Not So Perfect Life this time before I lose it again. At this rate it is very possible. I am currently at 7/25 books from my goodreads goal now. My newer goal is to try to get to 10 books read this year. This may be possible if I finish some of my outstanding books.

I found this Santa hat in my Christmas things today and had to take a selfie with it! Ho Ho Ho!

I have joined A Blissful Lemon again with another link up. This one is called Blogmas: Naughty or Nice 2017. I am excited to do a link up again. In November I did the NaBloPoMo challenge where I wrote a post everyday. This one does not require us to post everyday but when we have time and it has to be Christmas related. I love this because around this time of the year all I want to talk about is Christmas. Speaking of Christmas, I have started decorating and will be posting an entry this week about decorating the apartment for Christmas. I am getting a Christmas tree this Saturday! Can't wait to decorate it and share photos with you soon.
Photo source

Joining along with Frontier Dreams for Crafting On, and AsKatKnits for Unwraveled Wednesday.

Thank you for visiting my blog, if you would like to keep updated on when I post, please follow me on Bloglovin', Google Followers, and subscribe through email at the top right corner of the blog.

Have a great day!

Sunday, December 3, 2017

Why Christmas is So Special to Me & Childhood Memories

Hello Friends,

I hope you are doing well. I had a good weekend visiting family and going to a march with my friend. Today I enjoyed having some time to relax today and get a few things done. I was planning on decorating for Christmas, but I think I will be doing that tomorrow. This time of year is always so special and I find myself listening to music way earlier than I need to and most people do (October) and get excited sometimes even earlier in the year. This year I did Christmas in July posts and felt excited even then. I decorated my desk a bit around that time too with my elf and some other Christmas decorations. I am pretty Christmas obsessed and around this time of year I listen to Christmas music everyday, eat chocolates from the advent calendar, and decorate as much as I can.

I was thinking one day that I love Christmas especially because of how much effort my parents always put into making it special for my sister and I. They would put a lot of Christmas decorations up and we would all decorate the tree with Christmas music filling the room.  Growing up, we always had the same traditions every year too which made Christmas so special to my family and I. We would go to church on Christmas Eve, then go to my grandparent's house and open lots of gifts. When we were there, we would always have After Eight chocolates so even today I think of those special moments at my grandparents house when I have those chocolates.

This weekend when I was visiting my parents, they got out many boxes of old photos from years past. They had retrieved them because I asked to take some old Christmas photos for this blog post. Of course, my dad, mom, and I ended up looking through the photos for a couple of hours reflecting, laughing at funny expressions my sister and I had, and looking for some Christmas photos for this special post.
Me on Christmas Eve at my Grandparents '94 (Age 6)
Excited to open gifts

Already playing with my gifts. I remember loving to play with this barn

I have always loved the night before Christmas just as much as Christmas day. When I was a child, the anticipation of Santa coming was exciting and I was so excited to see what presents I would receive. When my sister and I were growing up, my parents used to leave some gifts unwrapped that were from Santa. When my sister and I would go to the tree to open our presents, we'd be so excited to see what Santa had brought us.

Throwing it way back to when I was around two

I love the retro television in the back
'93 (Age 5)
I remember going to the Christmas bazaar held in the gym at my elementary school and being given some money to go shopping for gifts for my parents and my sister. There would be tables set up with items we could buy and I enjoyed looking through to find the perfect gifts for my family. This was always a special memory my sister and I have of being able to go around and shop without our parents at that age and being so excited to bring home the gifts for our parents and then wrapping them.

Around 9 here, loved my denim dresses

Christmas is so special because of all of the family time we have at this time of year and traditions old and new. Every year there are new memories and traditions made and I keep the old ones like visiting my grandparents in my heart and memories. I still love to spend Christmas day with my family, opening gifts for hours, having a big breakfast, and then lounging around all day looking at our gifts.

My dad, me, my sister, my mom, and our first cat Pookie '93
I have memories of bundling up and going outside to the backyard and spending hours building snow forts and having snowball fights with my sister. We would sometimes come back inside from being out in the cold and have hot chocolate. I also remember all of the times my dad took my sister and I sledding and skating. I also went skiing with him a few times. I loved all of these outings and always had so much fun.

My dad's aunt knitted these cute sweaters for my sister(left) and I(right) 

There is so much joy that I feel around this time of year spending it will my loved ones. My boyfriend and I are also making new memories together such as seeing A Christmas Carol the play last year, decorating our tree, going to the Christmas market, and visiting his family. This year I will be spending Christmas Eve and Christmas day with my parents and sister like old times which will be so nice. We still go to church on Christmas Eve, open our one gift of pajamas, open Christmas crackers and have some treats. Of course we end the night with watching the classic It's A Wonderful Life every year. Christmas day morning is busy and fun, looking in our stockings and opening lots of gifts. These traditions make Christmas special to all of us in our family, and I always look forward to the time we spend together.

Thank you for joining me in remembering some of my special childhood Christmas memories and traditions. What are some special holiday traditions you share with your family and loved ones around this time of the year?

Thank you for visiting my blog! If you would like to keep updated to see entries when I post, please follow me on Bloglovin', Google Followers, and subscribe by email at the top right corner.

Have a great day!

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Final Day of National Blog Posting Month (NaBloPoMo)!

Hello Friends,

I hope you are doing well. It is the final day of National Blog Posting Month (NaBloPoMo)! I made it! I did miss posting one day, but I am proud that I posted 29 days out of 30. The day I did not post, I realized it was because I was not organized that day and went to see my family but did not set up a post ahead of time and got busy. I know for the future to work on them ahead of time so I can get them posted.
I really enjoyed this blogging event and so glad I did it even when I had my doubts that I would not be able to do it at first. I thought I would run out of things to talk about and be posting bad content. I am glad it did not come to that. I realized I had a lot of post ideas I had thought of writing about already in my notebook and never did and then this event was a great push for me to think of topics and kinds of posts I had not posted on here before. I enjoyed writing the 25 questions TAG, the book review, and the "what blogging has given me" post to name a few that I have not done before.
I also enjoyed visiting other people's blogs who were part of the challenge and reading their posts. I discovered some new blogs to follow and met some great people. I really like the small community that develops over a short period of time when joining a challenge like this. Thank you Aimie from Blissfullemon for hosting the blog posting month! I hope your site is back up and running soon!

I would like to do this again next year, I think it is fun to have these challenges and it shakes us up a bit to think of different ways to meet the required one post each day.

My little lit up Christmas tree and knitted mitten ornament

Tomorrow is December 1st and the first day of advent and I have my Lindor Advent calendar ready to go. Of course, I will wait one day to have it because of the vegan challenge I am doing which ends on December 2nd.
I can't believe Christmas is now 25 days away! I am so excited. I also can't believe I haven't really decorated yet either. I have put up my small artificial tree beside my desk and put on a couple of ornaments, the mouse and the mitten ornament I knitted. I think with all the course work I have had, writing extra posts on my blog, and Christmas shopping it has been pretty busy this month.  I will be decorating fully this week and then putting up the tree sometime mid December.

My go-to Lindor chocolate advent calendar for the passed few years.

Thank you so much for visiting today! If you started visiting my blog from the NaBloPoMo challenge, please post a comment and say hello. I would love to know if you started visiting after I did the challenge and hope you keep coming to read my posts. If you would like to follow my blog and keep updated on when I post, please follow me on Bloglovin', Google Followers, and you can also subscribe by email at the top right corner.

Have a great day!

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Knitting Progress and Reading On

Hello Friends,

I hope you are doing well. Today I was working on some school work and it is not too long now until I am finished my courses. I have been job searching lately and seeing what kind of work environments I am interested in. I still have some time before my courses are finished to take time to find the right thing.

I have also been knitting today and was working on knitting the second stocking. I have also been working on knitting the Wool and the Gang Farrah Billie Jean top, and the second mitten piece to go with the first mitten ornament.

Progress on top, stocking, and mitten ornament
The second stocking is coming along nicely, I am just on knitting the rows for the heel flap. I hope to have this stocking done soon so I can hang up both stockings together to decorate for Christmas.

Progress on second stocking
I have made quite a bit of progress on the front piece of the top for the Wool and the Gang Farrah top. I really love working with the yarn that came in the kit. I have never worked with up-cycled denim before so it is something new and fun.

Progress on WAG Farrah top

I finished reading the book Not Working by Lisa Owens a few days ago. I really enjoyed reading it! I wrote a book review about the book which you can read that here. I am starting to read Wild by Cheryl Strayed. I know I am pretty late to the game reading this book. It was voted best fiction on Goodreads in 2012 and has mixed reviews on Goodreads. I decided to go for it because I enjoyed reading stories about women who at crossroads and challenging times in their lives and to see what they decide to do and how they heal. Eat, Pray, Love is one of my favorite books/movies of and hopefully Wild is similar. I have wanted to read Wild for awhile now ever since watching an episode of Gilmore Girls and Lorelei Gilmore decides to go on her own hike with her extremely large backpack to make sense of things in her life and find clarity. There were lots of other women there as well and they kept asking each other if they were there because of the book or the movie and formed cliques based on that. I remember thinking that II would like to read it one day to see what the fuss is about.

What are you reading and working on this week?

Joining along with Frontier Dreams for Crafting On and AsKatKnits for Unwraveled Wednesday.

Thank you for visiting my blog today! If you would like to keep updated on when I post a blog entry, please follow me on Bloglovin', Google Followers, and subscribe by email at the top right corner of the blog.

Have a great day!

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