It’s great

to have the windows open and a cool, crisp autumn breeze blowing through!  My favourite time of year.

As I’d mentioned, I had finished a pair of socks – they turned out very nice!  I have some socks knit with Regia that are 10+ years old.  Such a durable yarn.

Regia "Africa" Colour

Regia “Africa” Colour 4059

Ravelry project page is here. Nicely matched!  I started another pair of socks and have some yarn picked out for some sock yarn hats.  I’m enjoying working my way through some of my sock yarn stash.

I tried an interesting new recipe the other day – brownies made with an avocado!

delicious, moist and chocolatey!

delicious, moist and chocolatey!

I’ve seen a few wheat-flourless brownie recipes that use almond flour or coconut flour, but this one uses no flour of any kind.  The thickening agent is the avocado.  It’s not as firm as a flour-based recipe, but still fudgey and delicious!  Will make again.

I also came across this chicken recipe that looked tasty:

skillet cilantro lime chicken

skillet cilantro lime chicken

I don’t like cilantro, so I was going to substitute parsley, but I couldn’t find fresh parsley when I got groceries, so I used some dried.  I think it would be nicer with fresh, but next time.  Also, in reading the comments on the recipe,  people suggested doubling the sauce.  As I had five big chicken breasts, I doubled the sauce.  Next time, I would not double the amount of chicken stock, but would double the cream and butter.  The sauce was quite tasty, but thin.  I expected it to be creamier.

All is well is hound-land:

Ava ...

Ava …


Rufus …


and Chopper enjoy Mondays as that is the “change the bedding and dog blankets” day.

And all is well in derby and Crossfit land.  I have games booked to the end of the season (end of November) and I’m going to a couple of Crossfit competitions – as a spectator.  Maybe next year my wod-buddy and I will enter.

good times at our new home!

good times at our new home!

I am so happy with our new crossfit – the class schedule is great, the coaches are phenomenal, and the energy and vibe is so positive and empowering.  They offer a “gymnastics skills” class once a week.  In Crossfit, gymnastic skills are body weight movements that can be quite challenging.  It’s not doing somersaults and cartwheels.  Ha!  Anyway, we have gone to two so far and each time I’m completely worn out at the end of it.  Can’t wait to see what they have in store for us this week.

The WFTDA playoffs have begun, so I have been watching the games as they are uploaded to YouTube.  Some really great derby being played on the road to championships in Minnesota in November.  I watch the refs as much as I watch the players and game play.  It’s a great way to hone my rules knowledge.

Is it Autumn yet?

It got down to about 3°C last night – it was delightful!  The house got really cold overnight, but we didn’t turn the furnace on.  Just got another dog up on the bed.  Ha ha ha!  I do enjoy the fall weather.  I’ve been looking forward to trying a lot of new recipes, and with the cooler weather it makes one think of soups, stews, hearty meals.

I tried another new recipe in the slow cooker, this bbq beef recipe.

slow cooker bbq beef

slow cooker bbq beef

I made the sauce that he links to in the recipe.  When I tasted the sauce, I thought it was a bit too spicy, but when it’s mixed with the shredded beef, it’s perfect.  I couldn’t find a chuck roast, so I used a round roast.  I think I needed to let it cook about another hour, but it was getting late.  The meat was fine, but it wasn’t falling apart tender.

We started at our new Crossfit gym yesterday.  It’s a great space and such good energy there.

happy endorphins!

happy endorphins!

Looking forward to some awesome programming and making some gains!

And today is Rufie’s third “gotcha” day.  In September 2012, after we had lost Apollo so suddenly, Bill met Rufus at the greyhound picnic and brought him home.  I was away for derby that weekend.

this was him a few days after he came home.

this was him a few days after he came home.

And here he is the other day:



I’ve got another pair of socks on the go.  I forget sometimes all the wonderful sock yarn I have acquired in my travels and could happily knit socks for a long time!  I’ll post a photo next time.

Chicken Enchilada Soup/Stew

I had a few recipes I found on Pinterest that I wanted to try.  This was one of them.  Chicken Enchilada Soup.  It turned out really good.

chicken enchilada soup

I used about two pounds of boneless, skinless chicken thighs (on sale!).  I added two cans of the fire-roasted tomatoes.  The recipe calls for two cups of chicken stock.  I added one cup, but I think next time I won’t add any.  I made the enchilada sauce (as suggested in the recipe) and used all of that and I feel it would have been enough liquid.  I didn’t want a liquidy soup, more of a stew.

The flavour is very nice – not too spicy, just right.  I did use the “mild” green chiles (little tin in the Mexican aisle).  Definitely will make this one again.

Titanic Socks!

I finished these the other day – wow, I love this yarn!

Biscotte & Cie "titanic" colourway

Biscotte & Cie “titanic” colourway

Here’s the Ravelry project page.  I did my usual women’s medium sock formula.  The yarn is Biscotte & Cie “Felix” sock yarn.  Beautiful colours and fabulously soft!  I have a couple more skeins of this yarn in my stash.

I have started another pair of socks, just basic pattern, but I want to get another pair of No-Purl Monkey socks on the needles.  Such a fun pattern.

Looking forward to more Fall weather.  We can feel a hint of coolness in the breeze, but it’s still hot enough during the afternoons that we need the air conditioner on.  I’m not a fan of summer at all; give me crisp Autumn mornings and cold winter days.

Gratuitous Greyhound Photos:



Rufus is worried.

Rufus is worried.


Ava is content.

Ava is content.

Muffin Fail

So while I strive to eat clean, sometimes you just need a treat.  I came across this recipe on Pinterest – it looked okay.  It’s “Five Ingredient Blender Muffins“.  Natural peanut butter, ripe bananas, chocolate chips!  Perfect!  However …

muffin fail

To be fair, the recipe is for “mini” muffins, but even taking that into account and lengthening my baking time, I still had some problems with about half of the muffins not baking in the middle.

Next time I will only fill the muffin cups half full and that should work. The ones that did bake all the way through tasted great! I used not even 1 Tbsp honey and they were plenty sweet enough with the ripe banana.

my favourite pic from Saturday

my favourite pic from Saturday

Our reffing crew was in Kindersley Saturday night.  The “official” game photos haven’t been posted yet, but Bill took this one with his phone.  My go-to “you can’t do that” (like the hockey ref) when I can’t spit out the correct verbal cue.  LOL!!

Still lots of derby games before the end of the season in December.  Keeping rolling on!

Chopper’s Gotcha Day

Another week or so has gone by.  Still busy with Crossfit and derby.  On Saturday we had a “ref education” day where the players came to skate so we could learn.  We had a great turnout.  It was five hours long and there was lots of sneakery and crazy scenarios thrown it to keep us on our toes.  Fantastic day of learning!

taking a break!

taking a break!

Yesterday was Chopper’s First “Gotcha Day” anniversary with us.

his first jaunt in the yard with is new brother and sister

his first jaunt in the yard with his new brother and sister

He’s definitely settled into his retirement and put on a bit of needed weight in the past year:


I finished (and shipped off) the purple socks I’d been working on.  They turned out great!  The Ravelry project page is here.

purple "No Purl Monkey" socks

purple “No Purl Monkey” socks

I had forgotten what a fun pattern it is to work on.  After the first few rounds, it is easy to memorize the pattern repeat.

Still can’t decide what sweater I want to make next, so I took some of my newest sock yarn and started some socks.  This is Biscotte & Cie “Felix” self-striping sock yarns.  Simply fabulous!

this colourway is "Titanic"

this colourway is “Titanic”

I have a few more hanks of this yarn in different colourways, so I will probably use them up next.

The summer is flying by

but I don’t really mind.  I don’t like hot, humid weather.  We just had a long weekend holiday (the Monday was a civic stat) but since I’ve been “retired”, I don’t count the hours until time off/extra days off.  But everyone had some nice weather for their long weekend.

Bill and I have been keeping busy with little projects around the house and going to Crossfit.  Plus I’ve been doing a lot of reffing this season.  The past couple of reffing outings have not been a great deal of fun due to some shitty attitudes, but I hope the next three Saturdays will be an improvement.  I’m not sure – it seems to me like derby is waning a bit, at least in our province.  Lots of low attendance, games being cancelled, teams losing players.  Hard to say what will happen; our league had a great recruitment event last month, so hopefully they can retain the new skaters.

I’ve been stuck a little at Crossfit; my power lifts haven’t really improved a lot in the past number of months.  I think I will need to devote some time at “open gym” to building strength up.  Last night we worked to a one rep max for back squat and since a year ago, I have only increased that by five pounds.  And I had done 162 earlier in the year, but could only do 155 last night.

We’ve gone on a few bike rides around the city on our Rotary Trail.  Just waiting for the city to finish the latest section then it will be almost completely linked/ringed except for a very short portion where we can just ride on the street.  I traded my bike in on a new one; this one has 8 gears vs the 3 speed I have had for a few years.  It’s nice to be able to get up a bit of speed on the straight/flat areas.

current socks in progress

current socks in progress

I hadn’t made this pattern for several years; after a few rounds of the pattern, it came back to me.  It’s quite easy to memorize once you get going.  This yarn is very nice, too – I like the vintagey look to it.  I have one sock ready for toe decreases, and will have the other one there later today.  Could possibly have these done and mailed out by the weekend.

Still no decision on what I’m going to knit next for a “big” project.  I love knitting socks, so I might just knit a few more pairs until I find something that I can’t wait to cast on.  I do have yarn for a few sweaters …

The poopers are doing good.  Rufie has adapted well to having only seven teeth.  He gets a little extra chicken from me when I’m in the kitchen and he’s around.  Ava has slowed down a lot over the summer.  She is happy to just stay in and recline on her couch and enjoy the air conditioning.  We took her out the other day for a short walk – then Bill and the boys went on their usual long walk.  Ava was getting shaky legs towards the end, but she was happy to be out in the fresh air.  It wasn’t a super hot day, so quite pleasant for all.

Queen Ava

Queen Ava

Baby Girl is 11.5 now.  Her health is good, she is just getting up there in years.

Rufie working hard

Rufie working hard

The boys are good companions for each other.  Chopper needs someone to play with, and Rufie needs someone to make him run and burn off some flab.

Chopper in his favourite spot

Chopper in his favourite spot

We decided against going on our “big” West Coast vacation this year.  Ava really prefers to be a homebody and with three hounds, it’s a bit of work with a certain amount of stress.  So we will hang out at home and see where we are next year with regard to our hound family.

The past two days have been cool, overcast and drizzly.  I really like days like this.  I’m sure we’ll get more 30°C+ temps before summer is really over, but I’m happy with the hint of coolness in the breeze and being able to have the windows open at night and not need to run the a/c all the time.

Yay Socks!

Still trying to decide what my next “big” project will be. So I have cast on some socks.


No Purl Monkey Socks

This is a lovely Online Supersocke yarn in their “vintage colours” line. I’m doing two at a time.

That’s a big plane

Last week our local airport had a three-day “air fair”.  The middle day had the Snowbirds and a CF18 demonstration team, but we went to Crossfit instead of watching that.  On the Thursday afternoon we drove out to see the static displays.  It ended up being only the B17 on display, but that was okay because that was the big draw for me.

The Commemorative Air Force in the States has a number of vintage war birds that they have restored and maintain in flying condition and they tour the continent.  Three years ago, they had their B25 Miss Mitchell attend a one-day air show here.  This year, it was to be the B17 Sentimental Journey and the B25 Made in the Shade.  Unfortunately, the B25 didn’t make it from its date in Manitoba – mechanical difficulties meant it had to be taken back into the States for some work.

the details!

When we arrived, there weren’t very many people around.  After we finished our walk through, the line up was stretching far.  I wanted to shoo them all away so I could get a nice photo.

B17 Sentimental Journey

As was usual in WWII, the planes all had nose art.  This was Betty Grable.

nose art!

If you click through onto the CAF site, they have info files on each of the planes.  Here’s the pdf for the B17.

The engines


the ball turret

In the documentation, it tells us that there were seven gunner positions throughout the plane.  The bombardier in the nose also had to man a gun when required.  The ball turret and rear gunner were probably the most precarious.

Bill in the waist section

the cockpit and instrument panel

We really like aviation history and Bill particularly likes WWII history, so whenever we have the chance to see something like this, we will go!  There are more photos on my flickr album here (scroll down to see the plane photos).

“I’ve lost count” Sock Yarn Hat

I had started this hat back in April when I was making sock yarn hats.  It was set aside for the Lush cardigan and the shawl.  I don’t like having multiple projects underway, so put my mind to finishing this before starting something new.


Ravelry project page is here.  I still had some of these two yarns left over, so have started another hat just to have something on hand in case I need no-mind knitting.

I am still contemplating my next project, but it might be Itineris.

In other news, after a couple of days of cooler temps and some rain, we are back into the 30°C+ range temps and higher humidity.  Blah.  Very thankful for our central air conditioning.

Ava agrees!