Friday, November 02, 2007


Dragons do NOT like CT scans!

Let me back up a bit.

Halloween was fun, even though I was feeling kind of yucky. I brought back these COOL heart and brain growing things from Toronto that you put in water for 72 hours and they get bigger. Ours didn’t just get bigger, they got HUGE! Halloween night, we put them on top of a box in the front window which was lit up from underneath. It looked VERY creepy and GROSS! My kids tell me I am a cool Mom to bring them slimy things!

Speaking of the dragonlets... I had a pirate and a teenage witch to escort Wednesday night. Apparently, Swiffers get better mileage than brooms. Who knew? Since the cold metal pole began to freeze Erin’s hands after a while... guess who got to carry it? Yup... the MOM. I just got her to add a bit to my “mom tax” from her treats to make up for being her Sherpa. The tax is my favourite part of the night. Just enough tiny chocolates to make the dragon feel like she’s had fun and then I don’t raid their bags later... well... maybe not much.

One of the highlights, this year, was being able to Trick Or Treat at Nanny and Grr’s house for the first time in their lives! Now that my Mom and John live a block away, it was easy to hit their house on our rounds. Nick drove the girls across town to Grammy’s house as well, but alas... they were out for the night! John answered the door all night with “Hennery”, one of his puppets. Their street is much busier than ours, so I ran my leftover candy up once we decided to turn our lights off. I really didn’t need the temptation around!

Another cute sight that night was this teeny dragon skipping around our neighbourhood. Wouldn’t it be fun if they made a costume like that in MY size? It wouldn’t be as cute, but it would certainly stand out at Trade Shows!

Today, I went for my CT scan. Nothing to eat after breakfast and a totally icky drink to chug two hours before I headed to the hospital.

Here’s the proof that the dragon swallowed it all, nose pinched to avoid the taste. I forgot that wouldn’t help for burps afterwards! YUCK!

I got to the hospital, took a number, stood in line and then followed the red dots on the floor as instructed until they ran out. I sat patiently while they hooked up my IV, drank a smaller glass of the icky stuff (berry this time instead of banana... but not much of an improvement!) and then headed into the room with the machine. That’s when the problems started.

Apparently, they don’t often try to scan 6’5” dragons! They had me scoooch as far down on the bench thing as possible so that just my bum to head was on there. Which was fine until the machine slid me through and most of me just hung out there in midair!

There wasn’t anything to rest my feet or legs on, so I just had to tense my ab muscles and hold them tight as they ran the dragon through the machine... several times.... holding my breath each time.... legs dangling behind...

Definitely not one of my more graceful moments!

Now, I’m home and drinking lots of water to flush my system like they told me. With every test, I hope they either keep ruling stuff out or find out what is causing all this pain and discomfort. I am getting a bit grumpy after 4 months of this!

The kids should be home any minute from school. Nick, bless his heart, is taking the girls and our godson to a hockey game tonight and I am just going to stay curled up here at home.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007


Trick or Treat from the Dragon! There’s a calorie-free treat to enjoy on our website’s newsletter for the next 48 hours. Just click on the word FANG in our NEWSLETTER and you can get your claws on this little chart to stitch!

Happy Halloween!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

CreativFestival Decompression

I’ve been at Weight Watchers most of the day teaching 2 classes, then racing around to pick up the girls with Nick from 2 separate Halloween events- a school dance and Explorers’ party. No wonder I just wanted to sleep and hide from the world yesterday, I knew how crazy today would be! The little white snowflakes falling this morning at the bus stop didn’t help either... ACK! Winter is on its way!!

So, what did I think about Toronto?

Dwaggy loved all the soft pillows and the cozy bedspread.

I really loved the shower that could be adjusted WAY up and the cool rainmaking disk in the ceiling. I got a little confused with 3 faucets to turn and a temperature dial to boot, but no serious freezings or scaldings of Dragon to report.

Toronto is big and busy! All the car accidents, sirens, homeless people, rushing bodies that don’t make eye contact etc. made me realize that I’ve gotten very used to living in a friendly little city of just over 110,000. I kept smiling at people and chatting with people at stoplights just to see if they’d answer back. It became a bit of a game... I also find the contrast of historic buildings and ultra modern ones very fascinating, so I kept pulling out my camera to take pictures...

I must have looked like a total tourist...

But how can you not be in awe of views like this?

This is one of the reasons I want to be able to upload photos and blog about them in the immediacy of the moment instead of having to wait until I get home!

The black squirrels are SO much more aggressive that our little red ones.

See the beady eyes on this one? Ok, so it’s just the camera, but I am sure this one kept checking to see if my ankles looked tasty!

The stitchers in all of my classes were totally awesome again this year. Many of them I now consider friends more than students and they are such totally fun people to hang with. I tried some smaller projects this year to see if I could push them out of their comfort zones by making teeny, tiny treasure chests out of perforated paper which we then filled with special beads and a tiny sleeping dragon with a teddy bear that we tucked into wonderfully unique felt beds.

I taught a class in beadpoint and encouraged stitchers to make designs with beads instead of Xs. We had more than a few beads go flying and some colourful language, but great results.

This is Andrea... she beadpoints REALLY fast.

She finished her project just 45 minutes into the 1.5 hour class and impressed everyone. Others told me to award a prize for the slowest person in the class, but then I worry that everyone might go slow on purpose!

We also played Monster Mix-up and I ended up doodling a communal monster near the end. It was designed by consensus... ie. Is it going to be cute or scary (show of hands). Can you guess that CUTE won?

I also LOVED the two lectures I gave. One was a huge blast and totally fun... the other was really important information to pass on. Honest... it had nothing to do with the power to make over 120 people “bow down” their hands like a giant game of Dragon Says. I was teaching stretching exercises at the time. They were a great crowd that laughed in all the right places. Maybe next time the mike won’t cut out halfway through the lecture though. I can feel how tired my voice is tonight after talking most of the day once again!

The CreativFestival truly is a unique event that combines so many crafts and classes in one space. It brings a huge variety of crafters together for 4 days, many of whom don’t venture beyond their comfort zone, but when you can get them talking about what makes them passionate, you can tell that deep down, we’re all the same. We love to make things and have them appreciated, which a Walmart-mentality world sometimes doesn’t value.

I truly needed to get away and get re-inspired. This festival made me realize what wonderful people there are in creative fields, how important good friends are (no matter what adventures you end up on), that I still need to be deeply involved in creating things with thread and that making people feel GOOD about the time they spend crafting beautiful objects is very important to me.

But it is time to make a mug of something warm and crawl into bed. The halloween treat is already up on the website early... share the link and SPREAD THE WORD!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Back... Tired... Smiling like an idiot!

OK. I’m back from the CreativFestival in Toronto. I slept until almost noon after a brief foray out into the freezing morning to put the kids on the bus then back inside to redose the sick husband with cold medicine and go back to sleep.

I have now unpacked both suitcases, tucked them back in the shed, answered or deleted over 195 e-mails, downloaded things from my camera and put away 90 percent of the post show mess. I will blog about everything tomorrow afternoon, but here are the highlights:

1) I really need to get some kind of portable device for doing Power Point presentations with, updating blogs, checking e-mail and uploading photos to or taking pictures with. I’ll have to start investigating whether a laptop or blackberry device would be better and how cheaply I can get one for.

2) Stitchers are REALLY fun people to spend time with!! All of the classes this year were really fun ones to teach and I think I may have inspired a few people to be more creative, try new things or combine techniques in new ways. Just wait until NEXT YEAR!

3) I love giving lectures and had a total BLAST when a room full of people “bowed down” to me. Ok... it was a stretching exercise, but it sure looked like that from the podium!

4) Laughter is very healing!

5) Good friends are worth their weight in gold, especially if you start feeling yucky or just need a hug!

6) Creative people need to be reminded about how FABULOUS their creativity is when the rest of the world tries to tell them it is a waste of time.

7) Dragons LOVE sparkly beads, new materials to play with and getting new ideas!

8) I have a kit to make a felted dragon.

9) ANY taxi ride in Toronto is a bit scary!!

10) I can’t wait for NEXT YEAR!!