Monday, December 14, 2009

An owl has landed!

An owl arrived this afternoon with a rather large package from Emma Wigworthy. The poor owl had long trip! I gave him a few owl nuts for his hard work and am letting him perch with Puck for the night, since it's cold and rainy here.

A little Montrose Magpie pride on the box:

A Montrose tote bag and note from Emma:

I can't believe all these little presents fit in the bag!

A mini-sock and doubleknit magpie bookmark:

A tatted bag and wee soap:

Absolutely gorgeous black lace mitts and wimple (like a smokering), accented with tiny pearlescent beads:

Three kinds of dairy-free chocolates, licorice flyers, Bertie Bott's Every Flavor Beans, and real English Breakfast Tea, in a tiny tin replica of the visitor's entrance to the Ministry of Magic:

A wonderful new book to teach me how to make self-patterning yarn:

A fun pattern for matching hat and mittens (and I really need some mittens!):

Beautiful autumn-y yarn:

And the tote bag and matching notebook, perfect for taking notes at the next Quidditch practice:

This whole kit is above and beyond amazing! Thank you so much Emma!!!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

No sheep for Pandora!

It looks like my spoilee is getting spoiled rotten this term! She already knows she's getting an awesome tote bag, because I had to make sure the fabrics were just right. But she doesn't know about the goodie I picked up from the local craft market, nor the special items that will be sheep-free (and alpaca-free) that are coming soon. Lucky girl! She doesn't know about the amazing patterns I've picked out for her (yes, plural!) or the other little things that will find their way into her kit. Ah, ignorance is bliss!

Saturday, November 21, 2009


Siobahn asked: What are you thankful for? What makes you happy?

There's so much!!! I'm thankful for life, for health, for the joy I'm able to find in the mess of the world, for my family, for safety, for jobs, for friends, for food! The things that make me happy are laughter, nature, wonder, beauty, adventure, and community. Oh, and food. I'm looking forward to the feast next week.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Shuntbumping finals

Wow, today was filled with action in the Shuntbumping Arena! It was the final round for crocheters and semi-finals for knitters. Of course Hermione took the trophy--I never doubted her skills for a second. More interesting are the finalists for knitting. Rowena is a powerful witch and she's quicker than lightening! Antonio ended up winning his match and will face off with Rowena now. Even though Rowena's been the quickest to shuntbump someone in every round, Antonio's a master knitter, so I think it will be an interesting final round next weekend!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

fill in the blank!

Boy this has been a productive week! I have been so busy and haven’t had much time to post! So, I thought I’d do a quickie to tell you about my plans for the weekend! Saturday, I am planning to sleep in and eat pancakes with my husband Paul. If I have time, I might also finish some WIPs since I haven’t in a long time. Sunday will be spent working on a shuntbumping project all over town and maybe winning if I’m lucky!

Saturday, October 24, 2009


So far, shuntbumping has been filled with excitement and surprises! I won the first round with this:

And then this morning I rocked the second round with these:

So far, so good. I'm concerned about Rowena, though. That girl really knows how to play!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Teasing my spoilee

Dearest Pandora,

You don't now how lucky you are that I'm your spoiler! I've already decided that you need some nice warm ____ and a matching ___. I thought maybe you'd like some ___ for them, and I know just how to ___. Of course, you'll be getting some sparkly ___, which you need. And then there's the ___ on your wish list. It's one of my favorite things, so I'll be sure to share it with you. Catch you later!


Saturday, October 17, 2009

Winnie departs

Well I for one am going to miss Winnie. I know she said she's going on "vacation" but who packs their potions kit for a vacation?! Her farewell letter talked about the Ministry of Magic and included a photo from there, so her last known location was clearly London, England. Who knows where her adventures will take her next?

Sunday, October 11, 2009

The expanded wish list

I didn't get this homework done last week before taking off, but I did have a lot of time over the weekend to think about my preferences. There are a few things I'm picky about, but in general I love surprises!

First off, I'm very practical. I have no use for beautiful things that aren't practical (except as excellent gifts for others!) and I like my practical things to be beautiful as well (for example, I have fun red spatulas and measuring cups). I always go for quality over quantity, and choose classic items that are likely to last me a good long time.

I've sampled a few brands of yarn but don't have any favorites for now. I'm more interested in the fiber content and color. I've been dyeing my own yarn (mostly wool) and love getting creative with color-mixing. I can't wait to try out some new fibers. I'm a little bit obsessed with superwash wool, since I dislike hand-washing things (because I forget about them and they soak for hours on accident).

My stash of yarn has been growing lately, and I believe I have too much sock and lace yarn (though people say sock yarn doesn't count toward your stash). I'm pretty much set up with projects for the next 2 years with socks & shawls alone!

I love to be warm and cozy! My favorite things to do during cool weather are to read, bake, and cuddle up with my husband and watch a movie. (And by "bake" I mean "bake and devour".) I love to drink Stumptown coffee in the morning and have tea in the afternoon. There's just something so soothing about a steaming mug when it's cold outside!

Monday, October 5, 2009


Even though Summer Camp ended some time ago, I have been reluctant to put away my badges and memories. It was so wonderful! I hope I can go back next summer, and maybe even be a cabin leader again.

I was really look forward to returning to Hogwarts, but then a special letter arrived: I've been recruited to the Montrose Magpies for a special season of quidditch training! And because of my leadership experience, I've been selected as Assistant to the Captain! I'm so excited! I know it means lots of extra work, but I'm really looking forward to it.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

I'm sad this will be our last full week at summer camp. We had an awesome time with the games:

My cabin rocks!!!

Let's see, we also built hammocks by the lake, I've made friends with the lake monster, someone put turned my shower water all orange (at least it wasn't pink!), and we've eaten far too many s'mores over the campfire. All in all, a fun summer!

I'm almost done with my kit for Rowena. I've been picking out items very carefully, so I know she'll enjoy them! I'm so glad she likes Herbology...

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Follow the Patronus!

Today was the last Summer Camp Game, which is bittersweet for me. It was really fun following Hermione's clues all over the place--she knows everything about Wizarding geneology!--and ending together in the chatroom was great. Each time another person joined us, it was time to celebrate another winner!

But being the last of this summer's games means that Summer Camp is drawing to a close as fall approaches. I'm sad at the idea of leaving camp, our charming cabin, the night-time bonfires, the practical jokes...and of course my campers. Pretty soon we'll be at Hogwarts again. I should feel excited to return to the castle, but knowing most of my campers will be sorted into other houses makes me feel strange. I've really come to love my Thestrals, and I don't want to compete against them.

Oh! before I forget: I was taking my morning swim in the lake when I spotted our DADA counselor sitting on the shore by himself. I'm not sure he saw me, even though I stopped and tread water for a bit. He was just staring out over the misty lake. I wonder what's preoccupying his mind these days?

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Wizardly Socks

Wow, has it been a crazy week! I took a little leave of absence from Camp during parts of the day to participate in a sock convention. There are so many crafty witches and wizards here! But I think the Muggles are starting to notice...

I went to a fun event at a local knitting shop and met some of the designers from Gladrags in London. I got to grill them with questions about their fantastic magical clothing. Lucky me!

I'm having so much fun putting together Rowena's kit. She's going to love it! It's already packed with goodies and delicious yarn and...well, I won't spoil the surprise.

My friend Hermione was stung by something this week. And not just once. TWICE!. It definitely wasn't a billywig, as she didn't get giddy and levitate. Actually, she did the opposite. Poor Hermione!!

In other news, I've been invited as a teaching fellow to NAIME, the North American Institute for Magical Education. How fun! I took a quick trip to tour the campus and get to know the other staff (they're all absolutely delightful of course), and to see the Summer Exchange students in action. They definitely do things differently at NAIME (but don't worry, it's not like Beauxbatons).

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Winnie's Potions

Well, it appears one of my own campers has sneaked a trunkful of potions into camp! All right, she does happen to be the Headmistress, so I suppose it's a benefit of being herself.

Here's what I suspect she's got stowed away:

Draught of Peace
Mandrake Restorative Potion
Babbling Beverage
Murtlap Essence
Forgetfulness Potion
Shrinking Solution
Wit-Sharpening Potion

There have been rumors that Winnie brought Mrs. Scower's Magical Mess Remover also, but only Squibs like Filch need it. Besides, she's a master at siphoning and scourgifying--I've see her in action!

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Summer Camp Game #5 Part 2

And now Part 2: the photohunt!











Monday, July 20, 2009

Summer Camp Game #5 Part 1

PART 1: Syllables

1. Man or mouse? (4) ANIMAGUS

2. Start spreading the news (4) DAILY PROPHET

3. Stick Tree Guardian (3) BOWTRUCKLE

4. Telescoping eavesdropper (5) EXTENDABLE EAR

5. Brassicaceae danglers (4) RADISH EARRINGS

6. Prohibited Growth of trees (5) FORBIDDEN FOREST

7. Metallic rosy-faced child with wings (4) GOLDEN CHERUB

8. Fleshless black-winged skeleton (2) THESTRAL

9. Lofty philosopher (5) HIGH INQUISITOR

10. Instructive Order (7) EDUCATIONAL DECREE

Part 2...still to come!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

this week at camp

This week has been very relaxing here at camp I've been swimming in the lake every day (did I mention I made friends with the lake monster?), knitting a hat along with my cabin, and cooking s'mores every night on the campfire. I know, I could just swish and flick a little heat the normal way, but there's something so endearing about cooking over a campfire like Muggles do.

The other counselors and I have been hiding eggs all week, and the campers are really good at finding them, despite the Unplottable charms we've put on them! I'm sure they'll find the last few.

All in all, pretty uneventful, until this morning. I went for my morning swim and then went to rinse off in the shower, when a cascade of orange kool aid came out of the shower head instead of water. No problem right? Just Tergeo it off and I'm back to my lovely light tan? Nope. Someone enchanted it to stick! I'm going to send Puck off to Weasley's Wizard Wheezes for some of that fantastic stain remover they carry.

Oh, and I totally know who did it. There's only one other counselor who has a huge stash of kool aid and is known to use it for more than yarn dyeing. Antonio.

Saturday, July 11, 2009


So this week we've been asked to face our fears. I went into the cabin one evening and heard a rustling noise coming from the bathroom. Thinking it was probably a boggart, I went to investigate. But the boggart turned into my worst fear, a giant spider!

I summoned up some courage and waved my wand bravely, shouting, "RIDDIKULUS!" And the spider changed form:

Well, that boggart was taken care of as soon as I started laughing at it!

Friday, July 3, 2009

Summer Camp Game #2

Part 1

In the second volume of the HP books by JK Rowling, The (#1)Chrome Cab Festers, we continue to learn the incredible adventures of Hogwarts student (#2) Parry He Trot and his friends (#3) Oral Weensy and (#4) Angering Her More. Belonging to the house of (#5) Dry Off Grin, they attend Defense Against the (#6) Ark Darts taught by Wizarding celebrity (#7) Oracle Dorky Light, a none-too-bright fellow who cannot even handle pixies!

In The (#8) Chrome Cab Festers, we also meet Dobby a (#9)See Flu Oh for the first time. Determined Dobby seeks to sabotage the return of (#10) Parry He Trot to Hogwarts and is pretty persistent but is unsuccessful. After a few weeks at school, the deceased Ravenclaw student who haunts the girls lavatory, also known as (#11) My Molten Grain, shows (#12) Parry He Trot and (#13) Oral Weensy an old empty diary that dropped through her ghostly form out of thin air!

Many nifty things continue to happen for the next several months… we won’t go into all the juicy details right now… however, the ending is prime reading indeed!! (#14) Parry He Trot finally kills Tom Riddle’s (a.k.a #15 Mold Voter) sneaky diary (which we now know is a #16 Crux Rho) and saves the sister of (#17) Oral Weensy, (#18) Gayly Nine Sew!!!

Oh! Of course, we must mention that the thickheaded (#19) Oracle Dorky Light unintentionally erased his own memory, so he won’t be back for book three, The (#20) Snob In A Froze Parka…

1. Chamber of Secrets
2. Harry Potter
3. Ron Weasley
4. Hermione Granger
5. Gryffindor
6. Dark Arts
7. Gilderoy Lockhart
8. Chamber of Secrets
9. House Elf
10. Harry Potter
11. Moaning Myrtle
12. Harry Potter
13. Ron Weasley
14. Harry Potter
15. Voldemort
16. Horcrux
17. Ron Weasley
18. Ginny Weasley
19. Gilderoy Lockhart
20. Prisoner of Azkaban

Part 2

17-4, 14-1, 9-6, 3-3
18-2, 3-3
19-4, 11-2, 9-3, 8-5, 15-9
7-1, 11-2
15-9, 11-2
15-9, 14-1, 9-6
13-8, 18-2, 8-5, 16-3, 6-5, 16-3, 5-3!

"When in doubt, go to the library!" ~Ron Weasley

Saturday, June 27, 2009


My patronus is an owl. I see wisdom as my guardian. Owls can be mysterious and aloof, but also quite determined when they want to be. That's a lot like me!

Friday, June 19, 2009

3 Truths & a Lie

Can you spot the lie???

1. My brother and I were due to be born on the same date exactly 8 years apart.

2. My favorite summer sport is water skiing.

3. My resume includes job experience as a lifeguard, event planner, receptionist, graphic designer, baker, teacher's assistant, missionary, and In 'N' Out Burger server.

4. I've never broken a bone in my body.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Camp Games Week #1

Part 1: "What's in your trunk?"

My truck was so full I had to extend it magically just to make everything fit! I mean, you never know what to expect at summer camp, so I brought several different kinds of sandals and swimsuits, a bunch of books, and of course my entire knitting stash. Here are just a few random things I brought:

Orlando Hoo the owl
orange zephyr tea
organic cotton yarn
oil for sunbathing
oven mitts
Oreo cookies
othello (the game)
octopus treats
origami paper

Part 2: Wingo! - Wizard Bingo

Part 3: Get to know your Spoiler & Spoilee

My spoiler, Arriana Stylos, has a bunch of wonderful projects, including a chic tilted duster. My spoilee, Rowena Bladvak, is clearly very skilled with socks, as she's made several pairs of monkeys! This pair is my favorite.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Summer Camp Begins

Summer Camp has officially begun...and I totally overslept the wake-up call. Good thing we have this kitchen in here. I just whipped up some pancakes with blueberries and then ran down to the lake. No one even noticed I was missing!

My campers are still getting settled in. It's so fun being a counselor! I'm looking forward to all the games and late-night chats and of course a few pranks. I'm already planning a couple...

The first of the summer games is beginning today. I hope our cabin gets a few points for glory!