To Camp or Not To Camp

To Camp or Not To Camp

Last night I dreamt of my brother Carl. We were young again, he was the happy little boy I remember and love. We were at my Granny’s house, a place where we were loved unconditionally, a place we felt safe, a place we thought was heaven. The summer’s day was warm, the breeze tousled our fine blond hair, we swept it back from our eyes as played by the back door. My Granny was in the kitchen, we could hear her through the screen door. Place. Some places are imbued with the spirits of those who loved and were loved in them. I look forward to sitting on my Granny’s porch again this summer, feeling that energy that seeped into the place over time, knowing.

Yesterday’s fine weather is still with us today. The neighbourhood is noisy though. The Hydro people are chopping down trees all up and down the street. Down came the front half of the beautiful white birch tree across the street from us. Down came the beautiful red maple two doors down and across the street from us. I cannot see further down the street from my windows, but I know the massacre continues because of the constant drone of the chain saw, and the roar of the chipper as the live branches are fed into its yawning maw. This spring is a season of destruction on our street. Earlier the immediate neighbours to one side of us chopped down a beautiful flowering crabapple tree. They explained it by saying that the bees were coming into their house, the children didn’t like the bees. But we live beside this tree too, and we know there was no issue with bees. They stated their intention to remove all the trees on their property within weeks of moving in, I remember. The real irony is that the family has moved to a trailer park near the husband’s employment for the summer, and rented out their house to a single woman. They aren’t even there during the blossom season! Luckily the trees on our property are not near the hydro lines, so we will keep them!

The new colour coordinated curtains for the trailer (tea towels bought on sale last year) have been ironed and will replace the mismatched tea towels that are currently covering the windows. Measurements have been taken to create a mattress cover for Attila’s bunk, which will be sewn from a queen size flat sheet. When these tasks are complete the rest of the gear for the trailer that was stored in the basement for the winter will be packed into Iris and we will be ready for summer camping.

We are toying with the idea of camping in Iris this weekend, but the nights are predicted to be a chilly 10C, certainly not comfortable. We have heavier eiderdowns that could be put to use, but the lure of our own warm comfy beds at home, and the handy bathroom, will probably win out until the temperature at night rises to at least 15C.

DSCF0641 market bag one The Market Bag, finished at last. The light coloured yarn was a virtual nightmare to work with, it frayed and split into fine hairlike strands constantly. The yarn for the band was lovely, it held its shape, looked very nice contrasted with the light coloured yarn. The handle is made from two different yarns, both bulkier than the bottom of the bag, both more difficult to work with, and I am not fond of the colours which are a darker brown. But, this bag represents yarn that has moved around with me over the last 45 years, and now all that is left are a few feet of of each type. I would make this market bag again, using yarn that I like, texture, weight, and colour. This pattern was made and displayed first by Bex, who made a lovely market bag, which inspired me to try it.

I am looking forward to using up all the spare yarn I have, so that I can justify choosing a project and buying yarn that I like specifically for that pattern.

Worldly Distractions


Date: 9:00 AM EDT Thursday 18 May 2017
Condition: Mostly Cloudy
Pressure: 100.9 kPa
Tendency: Rising
Dew point: 10.8°C
Humidity: 73%
Wind: S 15 km/h
Visibility: 24 km


“The easiest way for your children to learn about money is for you not to have any.”
Katharine Whitehorn

My children should be well versed!


  1. TopsyTurvy (Teri)

    What a horrible shame, all those trees being brought down! What’s the reason for that, is the street being widened?

    We’re lucky that our neighborhood has many trees. Our city puts trees on the outlawns and the neighborhood has everything from crabapple trees to ash.

    Hope you’ll post a pic of Iris’ interior when you get the new curtains up.

    Nice bag. Well done!

    I had a striking dream last night, too. First I dreamed that I was at this camp. I had a deck out on the water where I could just sit and enjoy the waves and beautiful weather. It was so real! Then the location changed and I was out in a meadow. I knew the meadow was composed of edible plants and I just basked among the greens, nibbling here and there. Such pleasant dreams. I woke up feeling quite rested and content.

  2. “Some places are imbued with the spirits of those who loved and were loved in them.”

    This is so very, very true. One summer when Emil was three I moved us into “the old Bartley place,” built in 1914 by my great-grandparents, lived in by successive generations of that family, and finally sold. It had stood empty for 10 years or so when Emil and I stayed there over a summer. We both loved that house, a two-story with no running water. And when I slept in one of the upstairs bedrooms, I had the experience of feeling the deep grief washing over my great-grandmother upon the death of her eight-month-old baby boy. It was quite something; maybe just my imagination, but … the emotions were real and they were powerful. Aside from that, I had many fond memories from my own childhood times spent in that house … and if I had the option of living there today, I would! -Kate

  3. Teri, the hydro lines run down the other side of the street, so hydro is removing all trees and branches they deem might interfere with their hydro lines. Unfortunately that includes some beautiful mature trees. Your neighbourhood sounds beautiful! Lately our municipality and now hydro (and our silly neigbhours) have been on a tree rampage, removing them for widening roads, hydro, and just plain disrespect for the environment.

    Thanks re the market bag, I am pleased with it, although I am keenly aware of its flaws. The flaws will not affect function, and three balls of vintage yarn are not gone from the yarn basket.

    I am looking forward to getting the new curtains up, it is picky work, as the clips are hard to manage, so I will devote an entire morning to the project, one of these mornings.

    Your dream sounds very pleasant. I wonder if the dream involving the deck and water view had something to do with your cottage plans!

  4. Kate, I am of the mind that what you felt was “real” in a way humans don’t fully understand. I remember we stayed in a Bed & Breakfast once, and every time I lay down in the bed a feeling of aboslute euphoria washed over me. I would get up, move around the room, sit in a chair, but nowhere else did that feeling come over me, and it occurred every single time I lay down in the bed. It was a lovely night’s sleep. I’ve always wondered what lovely experience occurred in that spot!

    To have lived for a summer in the house your Great Grandparents build is a rare experience, it seems so right.

  5. TopsyTurvy (Teri)

    Hydro fully removing trees that might interfere with hydro lines seems like throwing the baby out with the bathwater. You’d think just trimming branches will be enough.

    I don’t think my dreams had anything to do with the cottage, as we’d already decided not to buy the place when I had that dream. Maybe my mind just needed the vacation and took it on its own. 🙂 Fortunately, DH has several extra days off this holiday weekend, so that will give us some time off.

  6. Teri, I agree, it seems a bit extreme cutting down the whole tree. It makes me wonder if the property owners requested that the whole tree be romoved, as it didn’t look the same after trimming.

    An extra long weekend sounds like a real treat!

  7. my first bag:

    All of them:

    and using up the rest of the rainbow yarn for a bag:

    I find these bags addictive Maggie. I can’t seem to have too many of them! I gave the first pink/red one away to my neighbor across the street – and I sent the rainbow one over to London to my friend Chris who is a catholic priest and needed it for lugging things up and down stairs like I do! So I have 2 fewer than what I made. Oh and there’s this little gem and I plan to make 2 more of these because I have 2 more pieces of lavender soap to put in them.

    I even pulled out my knitting needles yesterday and started a wash cloth… which I don’t need but what the heck.

    SORRY for all the links! Are we having fun yet?

  8. I love the links Bex, so much fun to see your various projects. I am very impressed by your skill!
    I love seeing the market bag in all its incarnations, the appearance varies so much with the yarn. I think I might make a market bag to match my cotton cap, for grabbing last minute items for the vehicle when we are heading out the Rideau Camp. I was wondering what my next project would be, and now I have it!
    I cringe at some of the botches I made on my bag, figuring out how to start the handles was something I found very difficult, and made a mess of.
    I have yet to learn how to begin with a new colour of yarn in a way that looks acceptable. The way I did it will hold, it functions, but it isn’t pretty. That is how I learn, give it a go, find my weaknesses, address them, and then move on to giving something else a go to discover new and exciting weaknesses.

    We are having fun!!!

  9. Trial and error… same here. I have found “my” way of joining a new color (although now and then I try other methods) which is this:
    Cut original yarn color and leave about 5 inches tail. Tie new color around old color and knot it just once (one tie, not two to make a knot)… pull it up near the hook and use it for the next stitch.
    Hold the two tails together in the front of the row of stitches and crochet over them, catching them underneath the row of stitches you are doing… you can hardly see them at all. then when you’ve gone most of the way and hidden those tails… leave about 1 or 1.5 inches loose and crochet a little more, and take your darning needle and go back and weave those 2 tail ends backwards down the stitch row, once or twice… back and forth so they won’t pop out.

  10. Where I live, we have a long, laborious process in place, involving bylaws and permits, before we are allowed to take any tree down. What happened on your street would never happen here, without serious repercussions! I’m really shocked and saddened that they could do this. Trees are vital to the health of our planet.

  11. Diane, those are very strict rules, they make a lot of sense. I think the trees posed a threat to the hydro lines, which were there before the trees. People planted them in their front yards almost under the hydro lines, and they cause problems with service delivery. We are lucky, no hydro lines on our side of the road, and we have some lovely trees. We will only remove them if they die on us!

    We might plant some more trees!

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