Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Remembering Toronto

First week of August eight youth and three adults from my church flew to Toronto for a week of adventure and ministry with Youthworks. I’m preparing for a group reunion next week and realized that I never blogged about the trip.

It was everything you’d expect from a short term trip –new experiences, different foods (for us it was bubble tea), very little sleep, high emotions, God experiences, new friendships, struggles, and just the right mix of surprises. This is what stood out:

  • Surprise leader switch three days because of medical reasons.

  • Waiting in the airport 8 hours because the new male leader was Scott, my boss and Sr. Pastor who had to preach before flying to Toronto. We didn’t leave because our rental van needed the license class Scott has (and I don’t) to drive.

  • Street walk organized by a downtown shelter and lead by a former addict who shared his experience and the realities of life on the streets.

  • Spending two nights (Tues and Fri) in the hospital with one my students. She’s okay now and the trouble was caused by a preexisting condition.

  • My ministry site, St. Jude’s Academy of the Arts which is a is a non-profitable organization that reinforces academic programs for "special needs" adults ages 18 and over. Working with the students there was the best part of the whole week.

Below you’ll find some pictures from the trip


The Whole Group

New Hope Team in Toronto

Waiting in the airport

The Glass Floor of the CN Tower

Visiting St Jude's

Face Painting


Rock, Paper, Scissors Winners!

Starting Is The Hard Part

I've started the second sock. More accurately, I’ve started the next sock more that six times. The first four times the cast on stitches didn’t go right. When I finially finished a round realize I wasn’t following the pattern. The next issue was not I kept having stitches slip off. I am not sure why by starting a new project is the hardest part of knitting for me. I feel like a frog –rip it, rip it (not my joke ravelry forums call ripping out stitches frogging).
After two days of false starts the sock is underway (I hope). Since I now know I can knit a sock the knitting updates will be less frequent.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

50% Finished

The pattern has been found. It was hiding under books on my night stand. The funny thing is I don’t knit in my bedroom; maybe the cats moved it. Once it was found I was able to finish one half of a pair of socks. If the second sock takes the same amount of time the set should be done by October 7th.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Project Update -Decreasing Begins

The title would be more accurately read “Decreasing Should Begin.” Decreasing and in turn finishing the sock has been put on hold. I’ve misplaced the pattern. I have a good idea where it might be…maybe. I had another set back today. I think I’ve made the socks a size too small. And to any knitter who might be tisking over not doing and swatch or “being to garage” I did a swatch and that is not the issue. The socks size are correct for the pattern I was wrong on the future owners show size. Maybe they’ll stretch or something.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Project Update -Heel Cap

I learned how to turn out a heel yeasterday. It turned out well, at least I think so.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Project Update -The Heel

It doesn't look like much but I started the heel today. The instructions are intimidating but I am pressing on. My first ever sock is half done.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Thankful Thursday

The last Bowl of Stew(art) Thankful Thursday was mid-June. Without even noticing the weeks slipped by and next I knew it was mid-September and I was out of thanksgiving practice. Nothing cataclysmic has happened without the weekly thanksgiving but my general outlook has been…hmm…less? So I am returning to my roots. Seven good things to reflect the week:

1) Morning prayer with the girls (only downside is waking up earlier)
2) New projects
3) Story ideas
4) People who volunteer without being asked
5) TV night
6) Coffee with mentors who have become equals
7) True creative criticism

Next Project Update

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Project Update

New Socks On the Go

Shops that sell wool, yarn, and other knittable fibers are my temptation and salvation…my bane and my muse…my guilt and my joy. They make it hard to say no.

I’ve been on knitting hiatus since May. This is partly due to the busy nature of summer, partly because it is hard to think of winter needs in warm months, but mostly because I misplaced the sock pattern I wanted to try. The pattern was successfully located about a month ago. Only by the time it was found I had lost interest in the yarn I had bought for the project.

It looked like the hiatus would continue indefinitely till I made the fatal mistake of stopping in Knit-n-Stitch “only to look” last Friday. I need to remember that yarn shops are dangerous places and there is no such thing has “just looking”. The store had just got in a new shipment of sock yarn. These balls were dyed in most beautiful shades and hues. The moment I touched that fibers I was in love and a half hour later I walked out with a small bag continuing enough yarn to complete my project. So much for “just looking”.

It has been a change getting back into the knitting groove. There were a few issues with remembering how to cast on and using four needles. After five failed beginnings the project is now well underway with two inches completed. I have a picture but blogger's picture posting feature is giving me issues. I'll add the image later.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009


Tonight I pulled out a classic youth event from my high school days –a DU. DU stands for destination unknown. How it works is only the host locations (normally a youth’s home or someone in the church’s place) and the youth leader knows the destination. Drivers are selected and form a caravan that travel’s to the location. If possible a longer root is taken that passes other possible destinations to keeps people guessing the whole time.

This was one of my favourite things as a youth but I was unsure if the event would translate which is why I put off planning one till now. I was unsure how it would go. A few different youth made comments (to other people) why would I go someplace when I don’t know the location “it might be boring”. I was afraid that attitude would scare more away.

But we had ten come, even better there were four new people. The teens in my car acted just as I hoped. The whole ride they were guessing and second guessing themselves. The lead car even pulled up next to a house we normally visit…but then kept going. No one could figure it out. We even surprised the youth whose house we were going. Everyone seemed to have a good time. Our host had amazing food ready, a projector and wii was set up, and I brought obscure board games. To top it off there was a giant trampoline, hide and seek in the dark, and two kittens. It was a good night. If feel more confident about youth ministry this fall that any pervious year…which is good because yesterday marked the start of my fourth year at New Hope.

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Ponyo = Joy

Friday was one of those days, the kind that just seem to go from bad to worst. Plans fell apart, people let me down, and I became Eeyore with a rain cloud gloom following me around. It looked like the whole day would be gloomy until 3:30pm when I made my mind up to have fun.

Becca agreed to join me for dinner and a movie. The only question was what movie. After checking online I was ecstatic to see Ponyo was playing in Halifax. It took a bit of convincing (not Becca's movie type). We then invited one of the girls in the youth group who I knew loved anime.

Ponyo is the most recent animated movie written and directed by Hayao Miyazaki (Spirited Away, Howl’s Moving Castle, My Neighbor Totoro, and Princess Mononoki). The story is inspired by the Little Mermaid and a traditional Japanese story. This is of a goldfish named Ponyo is exploring and is rescued by a five-year-old boy and then desires to become a real human girl. Her sea wizard father is against the idea. But the strong spirited fish makes a choice that almost floods the world.

The show was enjoyable. There are some great animated sequences. There are also some very bizarre sequences. If you’ve seen and enjoyed any of Miyazaki’s work you should like this. The best part for me was the going out with people. It is good to have friends.

I give it three starfish and a goldfish.