Tag Archive | Karyn

Anoka County Fair 2017

This is my 3rd year entering into our local county fair, and this year everyone but Ken had some sort of entry. It was a bit of a struggle to get everything done in time for entry, but we managed. I think next year we will plan in advance to include some school projects in our entries. Maybe make some pointed attempts to craft according to fair themes?

Well, from youngest to oldest… Echo! She was adamant she wanted a RAINBOW ribbon. This happens to be the participation ribbon for the children under 13. So there was a bit of a worry that she WOULD place with both of her pieces and thus get what she sees as the less pretty and therefore less wanted ribbon. Well, not a problem. While she did an amazing job, both of her pieces did not place. And she was still happy! Score! Crayon drawing was done using Art for Kids instructions (we love this site and pay for the subscription). 20170801_141417_HDRHer Legos  were a free form piece.20170801_140908

Trinity was a bit more prolific. She got a camera for her birthday (thanks again Gammie!) and wanted to send in 4 of her photos. 4 categories… animals, people, nature and flowers… all in colour. She didn’t do half bad!

Neko-Chan

Neko-Chan

Flowers

Flowers

Brothers

Brothers

Flowering tree

Flowering tree

And for her Lego piece – one with instructions.

In the cabinet since when we took it home we had to take it off the board and such.

In the cabinet since when we took it home we had to take it off the board and such.

Emanuel had 3 pieces this year. He remade his minion he had made and not entered last year with all Lego blocks, drew a picture and wrote a 4th Haiku to go with a seasonal series he had to write for an assignment. He copied out, arranged and glued down the whole written piece. Something to definitely be proud of!20170801_140932

20170801_14133820170801_141126Gavin put in 3 pieces. We tie dyed as a family, he chose to enter his shirt. Then it was a repeat of his Chinese New Year t-shirt theme – drawn on dragon! His third was, again, a dragon – this time in pencil. Not bad, not bad!20170801_141522

20170801_141611_HDR20170801_141437_HDRZander was a bit of a push. He was not motivated to make much of anything. I was really hoping he would work harder on the rug kit he got for Christmas, but we have hope for NEXT year with that one. This year it was his tie dye shirt and that was that.20170801_141641

I went all out this year trying to do a variety of pieces that will later be given out as gifts. According to the judges my top entry was my set of flower fairy dolls. They were entered under crochet dolls pair and ended up a Sweepstakes winner (I am still a little dodgy on what that means entirely, but the ribbon is pretty).20170807_143603

My personal favourite was the Haku dragon I entered under crochet storybook character. You can read all about our adventure to create this one and get the link to the pattern I used HERE. I have plans to make another in the near future.20170801_141739

I had a whole series of baby pieces this year. Many of which are slated to head over to a friend’s for her little one. Hat, booties, sweater, blanket. Not a bad little selection. I am still hunting for the perfect sweater pattern. This one was cute, but I agree with the judge, using the buttons it called for (toggles) was not quite right. So now that I have photographed it, time to remove the toggles and replace with some black buttons.20170805_142418

20170805_14234820170807_14373620170728_194446My second blanket entry this year was also a baby blanket. Just over sized to a toddler size really. Based on a blanket seen on the tv show Call The Midwife, I lucked out with a super deal on factory remnant yarn and ran with it.IMG_20170805_150002_388

I went all out with the critters as usual, Haku, the dolls… I also did a mini flower fairy as my solitary entry under doll. She is a small version of a larger one I entered last year. I also used a leaf pattern I had from another project to create a little leaf basket on her arm. 20170801_142351

For animals, my poor bunny lost out to FOUR Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. (although I have to say, aren’t they more storybook than…).20170805_142327

For the first time I also entered a doll I dressed with my own creations. My 18 inch doll was done up in a fall theme. Not bad for a first go!20170805_144032_HDR

I had 2 doilies… one in yarn and one in thread. The thread was with beads and everything – a wedding ring piece that I will now have to make as a belated wedding gift. (maybe)20170805_142232

20170801_142242I did up 2 Christmas ornaments – one in cross stitch (cardboard and beading) and one in crochet.20170801_142014

20170801_141954That leaves clothing… Adult hat (which made Karyn laugh when I made it), scarf (sloth), purse (it was a challenge!), and slippers (cuz I was hoping for suggestions to improve… nope).20170801_142310

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My other category was a fun one – a mermaid sack!20170801_142117

2 of my pieces did not place – my pot holders and my child hat. Not a huge surprise. Next year I will have to go with a funkier hat!

Sailor's Knot

Sailor’s Knot

Lacy Leaf Bonnet

Lacy Leaf Bonnet

So… Ken and I went on the Friday to see the pieces first hand. We had our poutine and cheese curds, got the kids cotton candy, and enjoyed ourselves! Another year’s fair experienced, we definitely have plans for the next! Wish us luck! And if you have the chance, enter a fair near you!20170728_191706

18 Years…

What does that span of time make you think of? Perhaps the length of a marriage, the first years of life from kid to adult, your total years of education – grades 1 through university. A long lived friendship. This week it marks the end of the time spent with a very unique and memorable cat for a very dear friend. IMG_0016

Ludere was a lion in a pussy cat body. He was totally and utterly committed to the woman in his life. So much so that you were always aware that Karyn was HIS human, he only occasionally deigned to allow other lessor beings to touch the cloud like fluff that was his amazing coat of white fur. Quickly followed up by a decisive swipe of a well armed paw.

In fact, that was pretty much a game between Ludere (otherwise known as Dere, or hell cat, or he who should not have back turned on, oh or pretty white fluffy danger kitty) and Ken.  Dere would lay down with his soft underbelly exposed, all sweet and fluffy, allow for a minute or 5 (always random) of lovely petting only to, without ANY warning, lash out claws extended. To add in some more fun, this would sometimes be combined with a little bit of “friendly” gnawing on the extended hand. 

My personal experience with Dere and petting were always with the supervision of Karyn. Usually with her distracting him with her affection so I could sneak in a quick pass over his back. I swear he could count hands, because that was always followed up with an intense stare and the knowledge that he could get me if he wanted… but he didn’t, not right now… but that was his choice, not mine. 

Ludere has been a fixture in all of our lives for as long as we have known Karyn. He is the stuff of legends, has been for years – like when he almost literally scared the pee out of our friend Sean. Or his relaxation (be it momentarily) around Esther – something that did have to be seen to be believed. 

Dere has been a fascination for our kids since the first time they were CAREFULLY introduced to him with the warning to – not touch the pretty kitty, just look. They have followed him around from a distance, tossed toys… from a distance… put food in his dish… from a distance… I sense a pattern! But, this has not decreased their fascination or love for him. Every FaceTime Trinity has had with Karyn has included a wish to see and or hear about him. Pictures have been drawn of the majestic white kitty, stories have been repeated about his intense stare and – that time I got to pet him while Aunty Karyn held him (down, possibly… not that they noticed that part). Dere is family. Like a cranky but beloved uncle that you just want to be around, but possibly does not want you around, because he REALLY doesn’t like kids (or is it people, well anyone but Karyn – really – we are merely tolerated and lucky to be in his presence).

So now, 18 years after Karyn brought home her adorable and slightly belligerent ball of fluff, we are saying good bye. Ludere will never be forgotten, his lengthy life has been full of anecdotes and adventure. He was a cat of action, except when he wasn’t (after all, cat = sleep a lot). He was a one lady man. He was amazingly photogenic, though I personally feel 90% of those photos perfectly capture his wish to take over the world by force and remove all excess humans – but only if someone were to do the work for him, because he IS a cat after all. 

Ludere leaves behind his beloved human – Karyn, his cohabiting kitten – Loki, and an extended family of admirers including his god daughter by proxy – Trinity. I think we will be talking of his feline exploits for years to come. Thank you Karyn for bringing home that tiny kitten with a huge personality way back in college. IMG_0017

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Now November

Hmm let’s see… November… AMERICAN Thanksgiving, a visit from Nana and Baba, full on fall weather, school, the beginning of the Christmas countdown. Because Nana and Baba were there in the right time frame we also saw Santa which you can read about in a previous post.20161123_162137

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Beach towels from their travels

Beach towels from their travels

Thanksgiving was a lot of fun. Not only did Nana and Baba take over the cooking and make a full on turkey dinner BUT the Novaks also joined us! The kids were beyond excited to have the 4 boys over and we adults had a great visit.img_20161124_231211

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Echo chose our seasonally coloured cake. I baked it.

Echo chose our seasonally coloured cake. I baked it.

And the twins decorated it.

And the twins decorated it.

20161124_173601Ken and I snuck off after Thanksgiving for basically a second honeymoon. For the first time in over 12 years we went out overnight WITHOUT kids. We went to a B and B that Karyn and I had visited previously in Wisconsin (different room). We hung out in our awesome room.

20161125_161515img_20161126_213308img_20161126_004401Went out for a delicious dinner at an old mill.img_20161126_004425

Dressed up for a dinner out.

Dressed up for a dinner out.

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20161125_18300220161125_191718Shopped at an amazing yarn place.img_20161126_134823

AND drove out of our way to an even more amazing wool place.img_20161127_131241

Oh yah I spent a little

Oh yah I spent a little

We even stopped in at a brewery for a tasting for Ken.20161126_144504

20161126_145307And visited the capital building.img_20161126_155637

It was AMAZING.

ALMOST like back home.

ALMOST like back home.

It really was as good as people say!

It really was as good as people say!

Breakfast

Breakfast

Wisconsin = cheese of course

Wisconsin = cheese of course

NAP

NAP

The weather went from sundresses and sunshine to snow and snowboots.20161110_133413_hdr

img_20161103_165205img_20161109_152440img_20161118_202542img_20161123_093838We spent plenty of quality time at the YMCA.img_20161129_001509

img_20161114_185445img_20161116_19221020161112_113929And Ken and I went to an open house at Shandai and Ravyn’s new digs.20161112_155802

We found time for Home Depot.img_20161106_002011

Crocheted in spare moments.

Cat butt coasters!

Cat butt coasters!

Fingerless dragonscale gloves.

Fingerless dragonscale gloves.

Hats for cats!

Hats for cats!

The girls had their nails done by Nana.img_20161129_184624

And the twins pitched in with some baking.img_20161129_123128

We decorated our tree. img_20161130_164329

And watched our local black squirrel run our yard like a boss.img_20161107_180213

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img_20161102_11400320161110_114009Can you believe we even found time for schooling.img_20161104_141811 img_20161108_155520img_20161115_160111

Prepping the Christmas countdown paper chain.

Prepping the Christmas countdown paper chain.

20161130_141557And a visit with the Schwartz family!img_20161118_234013

A trip to IKEA had us well lit and the girls in new beds. img_20161106_001855

img_20161106_231021November went by in a blink of an eye. But it was a fun blink!img_20161111_130831

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Christmas decorations at the YMCA

Christmas decorations at the YMCA

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