Monday, February 18, 2019

On Family, Learning, and Play


Today, in some Canadian provinces, is Family Day. It's a fairly new statutory holiday, and is most welcome in the long stretch between New Years and Spring Break. Coming as it did this year after a week of snow days and professional development days, students and teachers have had a very long break. Tomorrow it's back to normal. 

My parents came over this weekend. We enjoyed visiting, relaxing, reading, eating, and a couple of games of Scrabble. We went for a long drive and a short walk in Sooke before going out for lunch at Mom's Cafe, a diner that has been serving good food since 1964. They left on the ferry this morning. 


On Saturday our eldest daughter and our son came over with their families for a casual supper. I invited the grandchildren to bring along their marshmallow shooters, given at Christmas, saying I would provide the ammunition. It was wild and fun with grownups and children alike chasing each other around the house. Now I'm finding marshmallows all over - as in the plant above. It makes me smile every time I see one. Fortunately, marshmallows just dry up; they don't go soggy or messy. 


I like taking photos, but I don't know too much about exposure and the technical side of photography. I'd like to learn more. One thing I'd like to learn is how to take a photo against the light. After reading a few things on the Internet, I picked up my Valentine roses, dried off the stems, plopped them on an open book in front of the window and started playing. I was going for a semi-silhouette effect (new term for me) and I'm quite pleased with the way it turned out.
 

I've flirted with knitting over the years, but we're not in a committed relationship. After opening up a drawer upstairs and seeing all the yarn I've collected, I decided it's time to use it up. Crochet or knitting - that is the question. I discovered an easy dishcloth pattern that included a couple of new things for me and decided that would be a good start. I pulled it all out and started over a couple of times as it was all too tight. So, I've learned to increase stitches; I already knew how to knit and purl. Small steps, and I don't aspire to being a great knitter. The rhythm of push, around, twist, and through is a lovely one. Relaxing. Portable. It's good to have a portable handicraft, I think.

I know that many of you knit for I greatly admire your creations on your blogs. How did you learn? On your own, from a friend or family member, or in a class?

Linking to Mosaic Monday, hosted by Angie of Letting Go of the Bay Leaf.  

28 comments:

  1. ...this is a nice holiday, enjoy.

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  2. Well done you with your knitting, love the wool colour. My gran taught me many years ago and recently I’m never without something on the needles; usually socks. Utube is so good now for explaining all the ‘how to’s’ you will need.
    Glad you had a good time with the family. Enjoy your week. B x

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  3. How fun all the family activities this past weekend. I don’t know if I could handle a Marshmallow War. 😳 My mother taught me how to knit, but I prefer crochet. She was a good teacher, but I was not a great student. My dear friend taught me the “German” method of knitting. I didn’t really catch on. Your roses are lovely.

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  4. Nice photo of your mom and dad, Lorrie. So nice they could come and visit. And what fun to bring out the marshmallow shooters again and create a fun-filled Family Day ruckus. Good thing the ammo dries up so nicely. Your roses look lovely. I too want to get more adept at my photo taking. No knitting for me -- chuckled at you saying you're not a committed relationship. As for me, knitting and I are now at a permanent standoff. I tried to get the hang of it so many times, I now admire from afar. I like to crochet, although I haven't done it in many years.

    Wishing you a beautiful week ahead...
    Brenda xox

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  5. Your mom and dad look like they are doing great - wonderful!
    Sounds like a fun time had by all.

    I'm knitting those easy neck warmer cowls just about nightly when we settle in to watch something on TV - I must do something other than just sit there! I've been gifting the cowls left and right - people seem to like them better than long scarves. I've been a knitter since childhood so guess mum taught me. Used to make sweaters and such but now just want something uncomplicated that doesn't require me to look at it as I knit - I do them in moss stitch (or perhaps it's called seed stitch) which looks quite pretty. Good luck with your needles and yarns - it's fun Lorrie!

    Back at school tomorrow - probably going to be busy for you.
    Hugs-Mary

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  6. Your mom and dad look like they are doing great - wonderful!
    Sounds like a fun time had by all.

    I'm knitting those easy neck warmer cowls just about nightly when we settle in to watch something on TV - I must do something other than just sit there! I've been gifting the cowls left and right - people seem to like them better than long scarves. I've been a knitter since childhood so guess mum taught me. Used to make sweaters and such but now just want something uncomplicated that doesn't require me to look at it as I knit - I do them in moss stitch (or perhaps it's called seed stitch) which looks quite pretty. Good luck with your needles and yarns - it's fun Lorrie!

    Back at school tomorrow - probably going to be busy for you.
    Hugs-Mary

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  7. I have never had a very good relationship with knitting either; so a couple years ago I took a crochet class. I need to finish the scarf I started. Oh my, I can certainly see you in your mother or your mother in you. People say the same thing of me and my mother. My grandson would love shooting marshmallows, his mom not so much. What fun you all had! I love the thought of it.

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  8. Lorrie - when Canada established Family Day, I was responsible for two Canadian manufacturing plants. I was thrilled with the philosophy of the day, and your post brings that sentiment to life with pictures and words. A visit from your parents. A marshmallow fight with the whole family (which apparently is the gift that keeps on giving!) I admire you for trying some new "relationships", such as knitting. I knit very basic projects, such as shawls, and I have no idea how I learned. It certainly was not my mother, a dyed-in-the-wool crocheter! Thank you for participating in Mosaic Monday, and I hope the re-entry to school is not too rough!

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  9. Your roses are beautiful! Nice to see your parents. I don't knit. I learned to crochet once but found that yard is expensive!

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  10. Family Day as a public holiday for the extended weekend is a good idea. There is no Family Day in my country but Children’s Day and Respect for the Aged Day as a national holiday. Your parents look in fit; wish them healthy years ahead. I hadn’t known about marshmallow shooting. What a fun game. I’d like to let my grandchildren do that but marshmallow shooter is only imported, a little costly. Regarding knitting, my mother taught me the basics and I learned a little more at the mothers gathering of the primary school. I’d like to resume it but I become reluctant to stand up when knitting or crocheting. I like the color of your yarn. Blue is my favorite color.

    Yoko

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  11. I love the idea of marshmallow shooting, sounds like something my Grand children would love. Beautiful photos, like you I would love to learn more about photography so that I could better capture the beauty that surrounds us.

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  12. What a lovely Family Day you had. Your parents look fit, well and happy. We don't have Family Day in Finland, but instead a new Grand Parents' Day at the beginning of October. Don't know how widely it is celebrated. Your rose photo looks splendid. The light is so important in photographing, needs a lot of practise :) Wishing you a lovely week.

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  13. I love the idea of a national family day, Lorrie, Personally I feel families are not spending enough time together, it looks like your family made some wonderful memories. The roses as well as your other photos are so pretty, I too would love to learn more about photography and have thought about taking a course at our community college, I haven't knitted and crochet in years, good luck with your new projects.
    Blessings,
    Sue

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  14. Finally making my rounds on Tuesday since Monday was babysitting day! Your parents are so cute. How nice to have a good visit on your side of the water. Those marshmallow fights do sound like fun. For you it was family day for us it was President's day which can translate into family day except for the fact that it is not a given that you'll have the day off. Have fun knitting or crocheting, I can do neither. :) Nice shot of the roses. Hope your first day back at work after so many days off went well.

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  15. I just may have to get some marshmallow shooters! Sounds like the perfect game for us. Lately we have been having indoor snowball fights with pom poms. Your pictures are always wonderful! Enjoy your new hobby with knitting. 😊 Kit

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  16. Hi! It's nice to have a Spring Break. Thanks for sharing.

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  17. What a fun Family Day!

    I have a bad habit of relying on my camera's auto settings and would also like to learn how to use the different functions to capture better images.

    When I was a teeanger, a neighbour tried to teach me how to crochet, but it didn't stick with me.

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  18. It sounds as if you had a fun-filled time with your family. Here many schools are closed this week because it's the half term break, but a lot of teenagers who have public exams and ongoing assessments will be using some of the time on revision and assignments. They're never completely free from their studies and teachers will be doing prep for the next half of the school term. I began to knit when I was as a child. I remember being given wool and needles as a Christmas present and being taught by an aunt. However, I've only managed to do plain knitting, the same with crocheting. I think your photos are good especially the close-ups, but it's always useful to know more techniques. Wishing you a good rest of the week.

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  19. You're so blessed to have your parents, Lorrie! I love that there is a special day for Family. Your photos are always outstanding, I must say. I learned to knit when I was young, but I taught myself how to crochet, and I really prefer it. I hope you have a great week, and keep getting smiles from finding those marshmallows!

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  20. Hello Lorrie, your photo of roses and a book is beautiful (such a good combination: in Finland, like in some other countries, the World Book Day is called the Day of the Book and the Rose), but today I like especially the other photos. With their calming blue, grey, green shades, they bring the same serenity that your text does.

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  21. Happy Family Day!
    I was about to comment on a lovely white Christmas cactus. lol

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  22. I'm so currious about those marshmallow shooters! that sounds like something my grands would love. I'll have to look them up. I love that your parents can still come over for a visit! What a gift!
    My grandmother taught me how to do a simple knitting stitch when I was very small. It was fun but that is where I left off. I've never tried it since. I love seeing the finished product before comitting to liking something ... so when my Grade 8 Home Ec teacher had us sew cotton jumpers and the finished product felt stiff and strange, I lost interest. Kind of too bad, right? I suppose when you are good at it you know what to look for and you can fix things that don't feel right. I imagine you as a wonderful teacher.

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  23. The best way for me to learn was to go to private lessons about 3 times. :) I loved my teacher Jan

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  24. I can see you in your mother! That is so neat. ♥ I can knit and purl and that's about it, blown away by some of what I see online. And they all seem so fast at it too.

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  25. Gorgeous photos of your parents - but then, I always like your photos. I find the rhythm of knitting very calming when I am feeling stressed or anxious. I learned at school when I was nine years old - the whole class learned, boys and girls. We had to knit a glove puppet in garter stitch, just a simple rectangular shape with straight arms and with buttons sewn on for eyes. I'm sure I've still got him somewhere. My mother couldn't help me because she's left-handed and I'm right-handed, but my teacher got me there in the end. I carried on and when I was fourteen I knitted a rather spectacular cabled jumper in aran wool for my Girl Guide Knitter's Badge. I stopped knitting when I was about twenty-five and started again twenty years later, with a garter stitch scarf because I thought I had forgotten everything. It turns out that I hadn't.

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  26. Lorrie, that is such a lovely photo of your parents! Your mother's coloring and outfit is like a Dresden doll. And that sweet smile! And your father, he looks so distinguished, a man you would love to sit next to and just listen to his stories. Another Canadian friend emailed me about Family Day and the fun she had. That is a holiday I would love to see happen here in the US, with no other ulterior motive, just being together and enjoying time with each other.

    When I first saw your cactus picture I thought that was a white bud about to open! I love your roses in front of a bright window shot. Our youngest son who works for a production company gets amazing photos like that but when I see him adjusting this and that I just sigh and realize I may never advance out of automatic setting. And it does make such a huge difference so keep at your studying!

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  27. It sounds like a lovely time with your family. I am very excited you have picked up knitting again, hooray! Just be patient with yourself, it is those first few months of knitting that are the hardest. Once you get it it is like riding a bike, you won't forget and you won't even remember when it was difficult.

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