|View of the city from the top of Mont Royal. You can see the St. Lawrence river just behind.|
|Hiking up Mont Royal, a beautiful green space in the heart of the city.|
|Parisian style Metro signs.|
|Happy otters at the Montreal Biodome.|
|Part of the Olympic Stadium.|
|Old Montreal and a view of the basilica.|
|Notre Dame Basilica|
|Rue St. Paul in Old Montreal – it was bustling and beautiful.|
|Dinosaurs at the Redpath Museum on the McGill campus.|
I disappeared for a bit there, but I’m back now. I spent the week in Montreal for a scientific conference where I was presenting some of the work I’ve done for my Ph.D. I enjoy going to conferences for the most part, and it can be really exciting to learn about work being done in my field of science. But there usually comes a point when my brain cannot hold/process any more information, and I must make an escape, even if it’s just for an afternoon.
Montreal is a beautiful place to escape in – enough sites and culture to keep you busy for days. I enjoyed hiking up Mont Royal (say it really fast and you’ll understand why the city is named Montreal) and overlooking the city and river. I also loved the cobblestone streets of Old Montreal, which has a heavy European presence. It’s also highly touristy and, unfortunately, was absolutely packed on the Sunday I chose to stroll through. I definitely want to go back again when I have more time to enjoy the atmosphere, the architecture, and the shopping.
Overall, it was a fun trip (and I got to ride the train for the first time – whee!), but not exactly rejuvenating. One of those trips where I’m glad I have a weekend to “recover” before hurling headlong back into work. June is going to be a heck of a crazy month for me, I can tell already.
The weekend was a little dreary (but warmish, at least), so I took the time to finish up my boating socks. They are so fun. I’m wearing them as I
speak blog. They are also surprisingly soft for socks knit with ‘bargain’ sock yarn. This Stroll yarn is probably one of my favorite sock yarns that I have worked with so far.
Knitting: Some sparkly business casual socks for me and some basic toe-up cabled socks for A.
Operation Honey: I’m at 17 hexipuffs so far this month. I doubt I’ll make my original goal of 40, but I should make it to 20-25 at least.
Reading: Still working on Miserere which is turning out better than I thought. It has an interesting premise that involves religion and history in our world along with fantasy elements in a different world, so it’s keeping my attention.
Watching: I’m finishing season one of Hannibal (talk about nightmare inducing tv), so to balance that I’m also watching season one of Chuck on Netflix for some lighter viewing.
Loving: More fruit is coming into season! I can finally afford strawberries! I can feel summer coming. I can’t wait for peaches and mangos and all things sweet and lovely.
Linking up with KCCO and yarn along.
Knitting: My knitting this summer has become quite predictable. Yet another pair of socks are on my needles. This week I’m working on the Edwardian Boating socks with some handpainted Stroll yarn from Knit Picks. The long floats and linen stitch really make these a fun knit and make the most of the short color changes in handpainted yarns.
I have also cast on a simpler pattern for some socks for A who was dropping some not-so-subtle hints that he wanted another pair of socks. Picking patterns for him is always harder because I am apparently just drawn to patterns that are much too girly… but this is coming from the man who thinks even cables are too “dainty.”
Reading: I finally finished The Girl Who Fell Below Fairyland and Led the Revels There. It was such a fun read. I’m now starting on Miserere (I got lost in those ‘er’s) by Theresa Frohock which is a bit different than I thought it would be… but I’m only a few chapters in, so I’ll give it a chance.
Watching: I am in desperate need of some suggestions for Netflix viewing… I feel like I’ve watched everything, which I know isn’t true. If you’ve found something wonderful and have just been waiting to tell someone about it, here’s your chance – I’m up for anything!
Linking up with KCCO and yarn along.
I know that this is a knitting blog and all, but it seems like all I do is sit around and knit (and drink sangria). I swear, I do go outside every now and again. Lately, my outside excursions were only when necessary (long cold winters make a hermit of the best of us), but the spring fever bug bit me good this weekend – I could not be cooped up inside. So I got out and enjoyed some of my favorite parts of the city.
This just in…. I’ve officially jumped on the hexipuff bandwagon. What is a hexipuff, you ask? Why, just these teensy, multicolored stuffed hexagons, of course. They are made of leftover bits of fingering weight yarn. My slightly crazy, squirrel-like hoarding of itty bitty sock yarn scraps (and some not so itty bitty scraps, too) finally has a purpose. (I planned it all along, I tell ya. It was all part of the plan. I am not a crazy yarn lady). And the purpose of a pile of hexipuffs? Well, they are just fun and cute, so do you really need a reason?! But ultimately, the hope is to assemble my collection into my very own beekeeper’s quilt. It’s a bit of a long term project, so to keep me motivated, I’m giving it a ultra cool
top-secret name: Operation Honey and will update my progress weekly.
Weekly catchup time.
Knitting: This week I’m hoping to finish my My Cup of Tea socks. And, of course, hexipuffs!
Operation Honey progress: 10 hexipuffs made, 30 to go to make my monthly goal of 40.
Watching: Season 7 of Psych is finally on Netflix. Finally. I have been waiting for-ev-er. I was missing the crazy antics of Shawn and Gus.
Linking up with KCCO and yarn along.
Another weekend, another reason for sangria. This is becoming a bit of a habit, isn’t it? At this rate, I feel like I should start a blog meme for Sangria Saturday.
For me, homemade sangria is a fun way to take advantage of in-season fruit. It’s still a bit early on in the spring up here, so there’s not a lot of local fruits available. (No offense, Georgia, but Ontario peaches are some of the best I’ve ever had.) Till then, I’ll just use whatever is on sale at the market. This week I thought I’d try a mango, strawberry, raspberry, and mint combo. Homemade sangria is so easy – in just a few steps you have something fresh and slightly inebriating (just how I like my springs/summers).
In a pitcher, add:
1. Fresh mint – smooshed a bit (I believe the technical term is crushed, but the action feels more like smooshing to me). I basically just use the bottom of a glass to smoosh it and release it’s awesome minty powers.
2. About half a pint of some fresh raspberries.
3. Some sliced strawberries – eye ball it.
4. Some diced mango… again, eye ball it. I like my sangria with lots of fruit. It soaks up lots of alcohol, but I can convince myself it’s good for me because it’s fruit, and you are always hearing you need to eat more fruit (it’s not my fault no one specified how I was to obtain this extra fruit).
5. Now the good stuff. I went with a bottle of Sauvignon blanc, but almost any white wine with a bit of a fruity taste will work. I also add in a bit of lemon-lime or grapefruit soda.
6. Ta-da! All done. It’s pretty, it’s yummy, it the perfect weekend drink for sipping and sharing.
Try your own fruity combinations and have fun! Be sure to share if you stumble upon something simply delicious (like there’s a sangria that isn’t…please.)