Tuesday, February 26, 2013

General Musings on our Canadian Ski Vacation

Did you know Canadians measure temperature in Celcius and time in Military time? There's a big sign thing at the top of the mountain that tells you the temperature and the time, I'm mostly confused. People keep saying "it's negative 2" and I think they mean fahrenheit which would be super cold, but its really only 27, which isn't that bad. And why is fahrenheit so hard to spell? Also if its past 1 o'clock I have no idea what time it is because my brain doesn't work in military time. 14 hundred is hot chocolate time to me.

Canadian women wear lipstick when they ski. First of all, not a speck of my skin shows for the most part when I ski, and second, the last thing I care about is if I have on lipstick. I'm too worried about frostbite and falling and biting off my tongue to worry about lipstick. The fact that I own one tube of lipstick probably weights in on this as well.
I don't have lipstick on, I just pinched my lips.
Canadians use a lot of windshield washer fluid, and they make art out of the empty bottles.

People here speak French. The extent of my French language knowledge is: "Voule vou achoucher avec moi?" Not something I want to actually say to anyone.
Especially not him. 
I also know how to say "Bonjour!" For the first day I said it to a bunch of people thinking it would help me fit in. Not so much. It could be that I butcher the language so badly that everyone knows I am an impostor, or that no one actually says hello to everyone they see.

If someone around me is speaking a different language I automatically assume they are talking about me. Today someone definitely was talking about me, he was point his ski pole right at me. For the most part though I try to play it off as me being paranoid.

Every annoying thing I do I think "Oh no, I am THAT American".
This picture doesn't really fit here but I thought it was funny. 
I feel like I am in Hogsmeade or Diagon Alley when walking around the village.

Charlie crashed into me the first run of our first day and his skis ended up in the woods. Moral of the story is, don't take a black diamond on your first run with freshly waxed skis.

There is a trail named after me. Not really though. It was my favorite trail until I remembered how steep it is.

This mountain is huge. Seriously. It's really pretty too.  I do a great job of taking panoramic pictures that make it look like no one else is on the mountain. There really are people here, but I just wait for them to get out of the picture.

The best part about skiing is having Charlie next to me on the chair lift where he can't get away from me so I can ask him tons of questions and talk talk talk and he has to listen, or at least pretend.

Waiting in line for the first lift up to the top of one peak was well worth the wait. "Le Edge" we'll be back tomorrow.

Hot chocolate is delicious. I already knew that though.

This is how you keep your skis from getting stolen. When they aren't locked up I have to carry around the key in my coat pocket. I am so afraid that I will fall and impale myself with the key.

 You can ski right up to our hotel. Here is the trail.

These are my facial expressions when skiing. 1.) AHHHH 2.) Oh no, 3.)Eeek, I'm about to die 4.) I'm alive wahoo!
No lipstick was used in creating this graphic. 
 That's about it. We're having a great time.


Sunday, February 24, 2013

Photo A Day Challenge Week 5

18. Something You Don't Like: I was working on my purse and the corduroy kept flaking into little bits and getting everywhere. All over my white sweater and the floor. Now there are bits in the sheets since I sew in my PJ's sometimes. Small price to pay I suppose.

19. I am... finishing a long lost project. It's sometimes kind of nice to find a project that is nearly done and be able to finish it so quickly. I really just needed the size 6 needles for a different project so I forced myself to finish this project.

20. Where you stood: I sometimes wait all day to take a picture thinking something big will happen or something super interesting. Then nothing big, interesting, or out of the ordinary happens and I just resort to taking a picture of Penny because she is so so cute. Her big brown eyes do me in every time. The other day Charlie and I did tons of online stalking trying to piece together more of her back story. We have some pretty good guesses, and some sad realizations. We are so happy to have her though, sad things aside. She makes me smile everyday and is the sweetest little pup. I hope someday soon we'll have a place to live where she can play outside more often and hopefully have a brother or sister pup to play with.

21: Full: My suitcase is full. We did tons of laundry and packed up 3 pairs of long johns, tons of socks, sweatpants, a bathing suit, ski boots, and of course my fan. I cannot sleep without a fan inches from my face. Charlie hates this but I insist I am not the only person ever who does this. Please, if you do this as well let me know. We are at Mount Tremblant skiing with my in-laws. Try not to be jealous. Big difference from last years trip.

22. Make You Smile: Well it was the beginning of vacation so I can't complain about that. We drove to my Dad and Step-Mom's house for the night. Penny will be staying with them and their two dogs, who I call "Aunt Shawnee" and "Uncle Duke", while we are on our trip. She hasn't had much interaction with dogs since her injury so she was very excited to see Shawnee and Duke and play. The four human went out to eat, and I took this when we got home because I always seem to forget about the photo a day until it's bed time. It looks like I already am asleep in this picture anyways.

23. A Word: Since it snowed in Southern NH yesterday and today we decided we should drive halfway to Canada on Saturday and then the rest of the way today. So we stopped in Burlington, VT for the night. Charlie's uncle Hammond lives in Burlington so he took the four of us out around the downtown. I've only been to Burlington twice, once in 2007 for a diving meet, and in 2003 on a college tour. Anyways, we went to a German restaurant and enjoyed the food and beer. (I love a good Hefferveisen). I liked that a lot of the signs were in German, including this "reserved" sign.

Now we're off to Canada! I'll try to post, but I make no guarantees. I might be having too much fun skiing!


Bonsai Bag Part 2

Whenever I go on vacation I have the urge to make a new purse before we leave. I've been wanting to make another Bonsai Bag since my last one got so much use, but it a bit too faded to use anymore. While browsing Joann's I found a pretty purple corduroy and then panel fabric popped out at me, and I found matching piping. You might recognize the piping. Serendipitous fabric purchase. There was also no line at the cutting counter and I was out of the store before Charlie fell asleep in the car. Perfect. 

I forgot how big this purse is. It hold a whole lot of my crap. Or could, I'm trying to be better about the amount of stuff I carry around in there. 

Like my new twill tags? It's a lot easier to sew them in on the side seams. A lot of my purses and clothes have blank pieces of twill tape because the iron on transfer has peeled off. Hopefully having the tag on the side will reduce that.

I decided to opt for the zippered closure instead of the magnetic closure. Since we'll have our passports on this trip I wouldn't want to accidentally lose them! I figured a zipper would keep them more secure. 

The purse is ready for vacation, and I have 4 pairs of long johns packed. 

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Photo Challenge February Week 3

11: Entrance: This is one of the trails I take Penny walking or running on. I've never seen the gates opened before though. People have been snowmobiling a lot down the trails so they must be open for that. The snowmobiles scare Penny and bit and then she wants to chase them, but they do pack down the snow and make running a little easier. (*edit: I wrote this BEFORE getting stuck!)

12: Where You Ate Lunch: In my office, while catching up on work between students. Butternut squash/carrot soup and an orange, a very monochromatic lunch.

13: Walking: In an effort to go somewhere else to take Penny walking I tried to go to a trail we sometimes walk and run on. It was not plowed out however so I decided to drive a little further up the road and take a road that cuts around to the main road. That road was not plowed either! So, I just parked in front of a huge snowbank, put on my snowshoes (which I now keep in the car) and set out for a walk down an unplowed road. The snow was quite deep, wet and heavy due to the recent temperatures in the high 30s to 40s. Penny trailed behind me stepping in my snowshoe prints. There were tons of deer tracks. This is where we were when we turned around. We'll definitely go back walking there again. (*edit: this was also written before getting stuck, so much unintended overshadowing.)

14: Love Is.... Helping your wife dig and push her car out of a parking lot of snow, eating dinner in your smelly running clothes and dancing in the kitchen when you do the dishes. Not exactly the Valentine's Day we had been hoping for but we made the best of it.

15: Inside Your Fridge: I forgot and took this one on Saturday morning. Realized there was not milk for my cereal, it was hard but I resisted the urge to eat milk duds for breakfast.

16: Perfect: Yesterday was the perfect ski day. There was no wind, the temperature was in the high 30's, the conditions were great, and there was no one at the mountain. Charlie and I hardly waited in any lines.

17: In Your Hand: Charlie bought me a new pair of smartwool ski socks. We're going to Canada for vacation next week for a ski vacation. It is negative 6 degrees there right now. Hopefully these will keep me warm.

Hope you've had a good week. Only 5 more days until February vacation!


Perfect Piping Every Time

I love adding piping to projects. It adds a little extra something to a bag or dress. I've used it for lots of projects, mostly purses (you can see some past projects here, herehere, and here) It's taken me while to figure out how to sew piping without a huge hassle. It takes an extra step, but you won't regret it.  Here are my secrets to get perfect piping every time:

1. Pin the piping to the fabric you are using. In this case it's the contrasting piece of a purse. Match the raw edges. I like to leave a little tail at the ends just in case. 

 2. Sew along the already stitched line of the piping. Sew right on it! You can use a zipper foot, if you have one. Sew all the way around.

3. Check your work to make sure none of the piping stitches show. In this case there was a little section that showed so I placed pins to know where I needed to sew a little bit more. I sewed a little closer for the section between the pins in the righthand picture.

 5. Pin the other piece of fabric right sides together to the fabric and piping. Line up the raw edges. Now flip it over to the back side and sew on top of the stitches you made in step 2. Sewing on top of those stitches ensures that you will not be too far or too close to the piping.

6. Flip right sides out and inspect, fix any areas that might be too far and show the piping seems. Finish your project and enjoy!

Hope this helps anyone struggling with adding piping. 

I'm off to finish my project. It's super cold and windy so Charlie went skiing by himself while Penny and I sew and stay warm. 


Saturday, February 16, 2013

Saturday Skiing

Charlie and I went skiing today and it was great. We thought it would be busy due to the Massachusetts kids being on vacation this week. In order to beat the rush we left early (9 am). Then we got there and there was hardly anyone around. It was great. The weather was pretty nice, it wasn't sunny but it was not windy or too cold. We did tons of runs and hardly waited at all in lift lines. 

Then when we got home we took Penny for a walk. I wanted to take a family picture. This was the best one we got. The others are of Penny licking Charlie's face. 

Now I am working on a sewing project and listening to the best station on Pandora; The Lumineers with Guster and Bob Dylan added for variety. Did you know about the add variety button? 

Hope you had a good Saturday!


Friday, February 15, 2013

Friday Snowshoeing Adventure

Penny and I went searching for a new place to walk/snowshoe today. We figured this was NOT a safe place to park: 

We thought that this WAS a safe place to park, so we set out for a snowshoe adventure. 

It was beautiful. I am so happy that the days are getting longer and that the temperatures are not quite a frigid. I'm also happy that there is still quite a bit of snow to snowshoe in, and not just mud everywhere. Here are some things I saw: 

A very random wood pile in the middle of the woods. 

A tiny bird nest. Look how the bird used pieces of birch bark for the nest. 

A pop of color even in the middle of winter. 

A mitten stealing bush. 

An old barn. Right after taking this picture I was thinking about how if I were with my Mom she would convince me to go inside and snoop around. Right then she called me. She must have known I was thinking about her. I did not have the guts to go inside by myself. I'm a wimp. 

A creepy underground bunker or garage of sorts. I definitely was not going in there alone. 

A bathtub, maybe? Not exactly sure what this is for. Bathing? Collecting sap? Sledding? 

The barn was wide open I suppose I could have gone in. 

A beautiful sunset on a gorgeous day. 

Here's hoping you've had a wonderful day as well!


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