Tuesday, February 28, 2006

The Nature of Blogging

One of the things that I've found so interesting about blogging over these past... oh 3 and a half years, is how it's still so continally changing and morphing and reinventing and and stretching and forgiving. It's cool that blogging changes with the blogger. You can find blogs out there about everything and nothing. Some are more interesting than others.

Anyways, the point of this post is that this blog keeps changing, so sorry if you're not into the evolving nature and the craftiness. Although as of late I've been reading a lot of craft blogs, I don't think Mikao's World will ever evolve into a hardcore "craft blog". Life's about too much more besides crafting (although the act of crafting and creation is cool and all, and I'm pro-crafting). And my layouts are never cute enough anyways. :)

Monday, February 27, 2006

My February Hometown Six

Here is my February Hometown Six submission... I don't know what I was thinking when I came up with this month's challenges, even I didn't get finished! So partial submissions and postings are totally okay! :)

1. Town Hall/Village Office/City Building/etc:
This building is right on Main Street.

2. Main Street:
I took this photo in January, so it was before the Great Deluge of Snow. This is at one of the main intersections, Main Street and Brunel Road, right in the middle of town. I was counting and I think there are only 6 stoplights in town. You can see the Town of Huntsville building up the street there on the left. And Yog's on the right (they make frozen yogurt, it's so tasty), and the Christmas store is right next to it.

3. Local Transit/vehicle mode of choice
The local transit buses are very elusive, I think I've only ever seen them maybe twice in a year and a half of living here. They look like handibuses. And I'd like to point out that I took this photo yesterday (and yes, that is a Christmas wreath, it even lights up at night!).

4. Shopping Complex
This is totally a cheater photo, because a) I took it for January's challenge and didn't end up using it, and b) it doesn't even have the mall in the photo, just the sign. But we have a mall... it has a Zellers (like Target but not cool), an A&P grocery store, a Tim Horton's in the teeny tiny foodcourt, a CD store, Northern Reflections, Ricki's/Bootlegger (clothing), and a few other assorted little stores that change regularly.

5. Cultural Centre/Theatre/Something of that sort:
The Civic Centre is right beside the Town building, it was an addition that was finished last year. There is a big theatre in it and they always have all sorts of plays and musicals and other cultural evens. I went and saw a weird local film there last year and it was the first time they had shown a movie and the DVD player overheated and we didn't get to see the last minute or two. That statue there in the front, that's Tom Thomson. I like it that someone put a scarf on him.

Here's a better photo of the front of the building:

6. Local Police/Police Station/etc:
This was the part that I didn't finish... I'll post a photo later on though when I have the chance to drive by and snap one.

Feel free to post your photos at your leisure, they don't have to be posted in February.


Stay tuned for the March Hometown Six on March 6th, and I'll post a roundup of everyone's February posts by the end of this week.

Sunday, February 26, 2006


It's really cold here. So Leonard asked for a touque and scarf set.

Remember the Pants?

So MC Hammer has a blog.

Recently Seen

Flightplan: Last summer when I was in Ann Arbor, Michigan, watching Redeye, they had a preview trailer for Flightplan. Whoever I was sitting next to in the theatre (don't worry, I knew them) I leaned over and said "We should go watch that instead!" We were stuck watching Redeye though because all the other movies we wanted to see were already sold out. Anyways, now that I've seen both, my foggy summer memory tells me that Redeye was better. While the special features section of Flightplan was very well made, I didn't feel the same for the rest of the movie. It had an interesting plot I suppose, and when you watch the special features you get an idea of how intense the set was. My friend Laura gave the movie two thumbs down.

Love Song for Bobby Long, I watched this movie because my roommate rented it, I had never heard of it before. It was okay, but had a bit of language. And seemed long in parts. But I like the way she decorated her house. :)

Just Like Heaven, when this came out in the theatre I remember seeing commercials for it and thinking it wouldn't be a very good movie. But then the commercials came out for it coming out on DVD and they seemed of a different tone. And someone recommended it to me because it had that guy from Napoleon Dynamite in it. Overall, I highly enjoyed it. It had a bit of a weird story plot, but I'd say it was a gooder in the end. I'd definitely watch it again.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Brrr.... It's Cold Outside!

And we have ALL KINDS OF SNOW. Believe me. I wish I had a photo to post. I'll take some this weekend. I'm also planning to work on my February Hometown 6 photos (hint hint hint for any who were planning on participating, this is the last weekend in February already! :) ).

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Patient Birds

I have to admit I'm not very patient with my craft photography. By that I mean I'm too impatient to wait for the weekend to take photos in the afternoon light so often the lighting is rather cruddy in my photos. And usually I don't have anyone around but myself to model creations, and that doesn't always work so great.

But, anyways, you can find out more information (and purchase!) this cool new design here.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Orange-y Exchange

An internet friend approached me about a craft materials/finished products exchange, and although we aren't finished crafting yet, I thought I'd post the raw materials.

Oddly enough, we both ended up sending packages filled with oranges and yellows and greens primarily, I thought that was kind of neat/humourous. :)

What I sent is on the left, and received on the right:

(both images are clickable for better viewing).

The deal is to craft something with the contents of the package we received, but we're free to add to it and to not use everything, as the inspiration so strikes.

I haven't started yet, but plan to get to it this weekend... I have plans, big plans. :)

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Blue Roses

This is the shirt I mentioned yesterday that I was working on on Sunday... I really like it. However, my roommate said, upon first seeing it, with a great amount of disdain in her voice, "Uh huh. That looks like an apron. Are you going to wear that in public?"

Luckily, I think it's super cool and I am looking forward to warmer weather.

The light blue floral fabric I got at a thrift store (but it was new and unused) for a dollar, the royal blue seam binding trim I got later on at the same store in a large package with about 15 other trims/seam bindings/rick rack/etc. for $1.50. So in reality, it cost me about $1.50 including thread and stuff to make.

Gifty Swap

I saw a post on love, joleen for Gifty 3, which is basically a fun mail exchange... so I signed up.

I had a fun time putting together a package for my Gifty recipient but unfortunately I didn't take a picture of what I sent. It included a lot of beads and a fun pencil case and I forget what else... but it was cool. :)

Anyways, turns out the person who I sent stuff to also had me to send stuff too (I wasn't sure if this would be the case or if we'd have different people to send to and receive from.

My exchanger was Shokufeh, from Hawaii, how fun. I thought it was cool how we are from such different places. And so, the other day I received my lovely package in the mail:

Two kinds of fun fabric, a little card with a dragon fly on it and a note, a small 'made in Hawaii' rubber stamp, small Chinese paper lady, all tied with a shiny ribbon.

Here's a close up of the more Hawaiian-print fabric of the two:

And here is the Japanese crane fabric, which I love:

I don't have any plans for either of the fabrics yet, but I can't wait to use them. Especially the crane fabric! Right now I'm taking a bit of a break on new projects and am trying to finish up a few ones that have been floating around for awhile.

Monday, February 20, 2006

I'm Ready for Spring Break

So it just keeps snowing and snowing and snowing. ALL THE TIME! Like it won't stop. Well, it stops for half an hour maybe and then it starts again. Everyone south of here complains because they have no snow. COME AND GET IT.

Friday though, Friday was nice because Thursday night it snowed and rained and sleeted and froze and made all the cars covered in a sheet of ice, and the roads a trecherous turmoil, so I didn't have to go to work. Well, more acurately, I couldn't go to work. I worked away at chipping ice off the windshield and rear window of my car in stints of about an hour, finally at about 2pm it was in a somewhat driveable condition. I say somewhat because there was only about a 5 inch jagged circle on the driver's side window without snow on it, I had lost all stamina and wrist power by that point.

Anyways, it was lovely to have a day not at work, an extra day... I cannot accurately describe how nice it was. I didn't do anything particularly triumphant (other than the digging out and de-thawing of my car), but it was so nice to not be at work.

Saturday I left home at 6:10am (and I'm not a morning person!) and went to the Today's Teens Conference in Toronto with the drop-in centre I volunteer with... it was so good. Not only good seminars and speakers and such, but so good to be in the context of a Christian community of youth pastors and youth workers and volunteers and people committed to working with teens. I really enjoyed myself and took home some new knowledge and practical learning. The day reminded me of the passion that exists when working in ministry and with youth... made me think a lot about where I'm currently at, where I want to be, where God wants me to be.

And also, it was a nice surprise to see a few people I recognized from my years at Briercrest, and even had the welcome opportunity to speak to an old classmate and friend. It's neat to meet up again with people you've lost contact with and catch up on lives and ministry and such.

Sunday I slept in a little bit, went to church, got a few groceries, did a bit of cleaning, and spent the evening working on a fun shirt I dreamed up during the announcements at church (I probably think about making stuff too much ;) )... almost finished it. I took a few pieces from one pattern, some from another, and traced sleeves on a shirt I already have to come up with what I wanted. I'll be done it tonight, but it's more of a summer/warm weather shirt than a FRIGID UNRELENTABLE SNOW kind of shirt.

In other news, I've gotten a couple of fun craft supply exchanges in the mail lately, I'll try to photograph them tonight if I remember so I can post them. Work is busy these days (I'm not sure it ever isn't), and all I want to do is clean my desk but I never have time! Remember spring break? I wish that they gave work people spring breaks, that would be awesome!

In the meantime, Plumb has a new album coming out February 28th, how great is that? You can check out some sneak previews here.

Hope you had a great weekend. :)

Thursday, February 16, 2006


I posted awhile back about how not one, but TWO bead stores had opened up in my town around Christmas time, and now one of them has become one of my regular Saturday morning "errands" stops (the other stops including the Salvation Army thrift store, usually one of the two dollar stores, and sometimes a grocery store and Wal*Mart). I much prefer Sugar Beads to Big BB Beads (neither of which have a website), and find I usually spend around $8 each time I go there and I always come out with quite a few bead options to work with.

The necklace above I made this week with some peacock blue (or is it Tiffany blue?) beads I got at Sugarbeads, 24 beads for 75 cents. I used two and a half strands. The mother of pearl pendant-y thing I got off of a hairtie I bought at Dollarama (I totally just bought it to take apart, I think it had 6 of those on it maybe? It was awhile ago so I've forgotten...). I love that colour of blue, it's one of my new favourites though, I haven't always loved it. Probably stems from this dress.

I know. I totally look like a midget.

There, that's better. :) Wait, I still totally look super short.

I'm not really that short.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Dear Heather Yoshiki

a) You didn't call me.

b) I totally have no idea where you live since you moved after Christmas, or what your number is, so I can't call you.

c) What?

d) Holly emailed me.

e) Holly didn't answer her phone when i called her for confirmation.

f) Your sister didn't answer her text message.

g) Finally I turned to drastic measures, Todd's blog.

h) Heather!

i) (my work number)

j) (my home number)

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

February Theory

1. Someday, Larue
2. Wait for Me, Rebecca St. James
3. For My Love, Bethany Dillon
4. I’m With You, Avril Lavigne
5. Love Song for No One, John Mayer
6. If You Could See What I See, Geoff Moore and the Distance
7. Only Alive, Jars of Clay
8. Show You Love, Jars of Clay
9. You and Me, Lowana Wallace
10. A Page is Turned, Bebo Norman
11. You And Me, Lifehouse
12. God Bless the Broken Road, Geoff Moore
13. Good Thing Going, Carolyn Arends
14. Fly Farther, Jars of Clay

Monday, February 13, 2006

Nothing Says "I Love You" Like One of These Guys

More info here.

Maybe We Can Order Secret Decoder Rings?

I figure since my co-worker not only discovered my blog but basically told my boss that I have a blog (maybe I should change my name to Heather Armstrong?), I can exercise the full freedom of publishing the texts of our conversations.

After my doctor's appointment this morning where he referred me to a specialist:

Susie: Hey Michelle, we can have a Carpal Tunnel Club! You and me and JoAnn.

Michelle: Yeah, and we can make badges and stuff... Oh wait, except we have carpal tunnel and we can't make anything.

FYI Disclaimer: It's not too terribly bad yet, thank goodness. Hopefully going to the specialist will help and I'll get those kool wrist braces. That, or I'll just quit my job.

Friday, February 10, 2006

Happy Olympics

Please click for closer tag inspection.

I've been saving this image for awhile, I snapped it at Zellers. Zellers is like the Canadian version of Target, but not cool. They have all this Olympic gear.

Who doesn't love "fake suede"?

And what's up with Roots outfitting the US Team again? I think it's hilarious that a Canadian company makes the uniforms for something so big as the Olympics.

Junior or Whatever

Me: So I just phoned a church and asked to talk to someone in charge of Accounts Payable and they put me through to a guy who answered the phone "Rob Martinson speaking." And I chuckled.

Annonymous Office Person: Why was that funny Michelle?

Second Annonymous Office Person Who Also Happened to Have Went to Briercrest:
It's only funny because of Robert Martinson yada yada yada whatever the number was.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Dr. Henry Hildebrand

Dr. Henry Hildebrand, founding president of Briercrest Family of Schools (my alma matter), passed away yesterday at the age of 94:

Born in 1911, Henry Hildebrand migrated to Canada with his family in 1925 to escape the growing Communist tyranny in southern Russia (Ukraine). In 1935 he accepted an invitation to come to the small town of Briercrest, Saskatchewan, to lead the Briercrest Gospel Assembly. That same year Briercrest Bible Institute was founded. In 1946 the institute moved to Caronport, Saskatchewan, and a Christian high school was created. The Bible institute grew to become one of Canada’s largest Christian post-secondary schools (now known as Briercrest College and Seminary).

On October 24, 1979, Dr. Hildebrand was invested by Governor-General Edward Schreyer with membership in the nation’s highest civil honour, the Order of Canada, for his leadership in Christian education through Briercrest and the impact of his life upon Canadian youth and society.

Dr. Hildebrand had a passion to honour and share God’s Word, and he was deeply committed to seeing this happen through Briercrest. Dr. Hildebrand offered up his life to see this dream break into reality, labouring diligently to extend the vision of these schools far and wide. Throughout his life, Dr. Hildebrand had been closely tied to the activities of Briercrest, having served as president for 42 years and then as Chancellor and Chancellor Emeritus until his death.

Dr. Hildebrand finished well, exemplifying his life long passion to honour Christ.

- from the Briercrest Passport Online

More info here.

Introducing Leonard

Okay, so my friend Susie the Snitch's Mom (her mom is not the snitch, Susie is), gave me a whole bunch of faux fur.

What do you do with faux fur? You make stuffed animals of course. (I couldn't bring myself to make a purse with it... that would be... wrong.)

Anyways, I had never made a stuffed animal in my life. I didn't even really know where to begin. I mean, I could make up a pattern, but that could turn up with an interesting animal.

So, over the weekend I checked out a couple of stuffed animal books out of the library and low and behold (or is it lo and behold?) I found a prairie dog pattern. But I modified and adjusted it a bit because it wasn't quite cool enough.

And, Leonard was the result.

I gave him to Susie. You know, the Snitch.

Hometown Six: My January

Okay, here it is finally. Although oh so very late. I present to you six signs of the place I currently reside in for January's Hometown Six Challenge.

In Ontario it's weird, because town limits are weird. Like they start a way out and not on the edge of town. And villages are parts of other towns. I'll never understand it. Anyways, this is the sign that welcomes you to town on Highway 11. It was after 5pm and snowing.

This is one of the highway signs directing you which exit to take, or as they call them in Ontario, "interchanges". I can remember when I first came to Ontario asking Mrs. Yoshiki what on earth an interchange was because there were always signs announcing "Ajax, 2 Interchanges". Also, all the local county (I think that's what they're called in Ontario, out west we call them municipalities) roads seem to be named after the county, thus "Muskoka Rd. 3", "Simcoe Rd. 3", etc.

This is by Wal*Mart, on the Centre Street extension. They made the street longer so it would go to the new business area where Americanism is taking over the forest and rocks. Our town has this colour theme going on for all the downtown signs.

I wanted to take a picture of a sign that was temporary... so here is the Winter Festival banner on the bridge that goes over the river right by the main downtown area.

The aforementioned Wal*Mart-and-other-stores business area.

This is the very first photo I took for this challenge. I was so excited about it too. Except I was driving, and the sign was behind me, and there was lots of traffic. So I tried to take the picture while driving pointing the camera sort of behind me. And I knew the picture didn't work but I thought I could try again the next day. Except the next day, they had changed the sign!!!

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Blogger Problems

Blogger is still experiencing problems today so I am unable to upload any pictures. And, besides the January Hometown Six photos, I have some sweet prairie dogs pics to put on here too!

Monday, February 06, 2006

February Hometown Six

I am posting this in a rush.... but thank you to everyone who participated in January's Hometown Six Challenge! Now, without further adieu (it being February 6th and all), here you will find the six photo challenges for February from your "hometown":

1. Town Hall/Village Office/City Building/etc.
2. Main Street
3. Local Transit/vehicle mode of choice
4. Shopping Complex
5. Cultural Centre/Theatre/Something of that sort
6. Local Police/Police Station/etc.

It was great to see such a wide variety of people participate in the last challenge, and feel free to participate in this month even if you didn't participate last month. Some of you might be in a smaller area and some of the challenges will require a bit of creativity.

Have fun, and I will post next month's challenge on March 6th. I look forward to seeing everyone's photos. It's neat to see a bigger glimpse of where you call home.
Hometown Six: January

As promised, here is the round-up from January's Hometown Six Challenge:

Unquenchable Songs and Endless Praise: Neely, here and here.

World Wide Wood: Peter and Rebecca, here.

Randomnicity, Rob, here.

What in Tarnation: Christopher, here.

News-Head-o-Rama: Michael, here.

Mikao's World: Michelle, here.

Rob's Whirled: Robert, here.

Thursday, February 02, 2006


I've put a few things on sale over at my Etsy shop, so take a look. :)

I'm currently in the midst of a few half-done projects, a robot, several cut-out (but not sewn) purses, a shirt, and a custom order. Hopefully I'll get a few of them accomplished this weekend, but my hands are starting to hurt... I am hoping hoping hoping I do not get carpel tunnel (spelling?) from work.

Because that would suck suck suck.

Tagged Again!

These tagging memes, they're dangerous... you just end up tagging people who have already recently done the meme. :)

Four jobs you've had in your life:
1) Registrar, Outdoor Education and Year Round Ministries
2) Craft Co-ordinator
3) Cook's Assistant
4) Typist

Four movies you could watch over and over again (not to be confused with favourite movies):
1) Garden State
2) The Truman Show
3) How to Deal
4) My First Mister

Four TV shows you love(d) to watch (among many others):
1) Buy This House
2) Party of Five
3) Flip This House
4) My So-Called Life

Four places you've lived:
1) St. Jean Baptiste, Manitoba
2) Green Lake, Saskatchewan
3) Stouffville, Ontario
4) Caronport, Saskatchewan

Four places you've been on vacation to:
1) Prince George, British Columbia
2) Brockville, Ontario
3) Chicago, Illinois
4) Bancroft, Ontario
(I interpret the term "vacation" loosely!)

Four places you would rather be (or where you'll like to visit?):
1) London, England
2) California
3) Home
4) a wheat field somewhere.

Four of your favourite foods:
1) My Mom's turkey pie
2) Chinese dumplings
3) Jasmine Rice
4) Dilly Bars from Dairy Queen

Four websites you visit daily:
1) Blogger
2) beetlegrass
3) wee wonderfuls
4) Ocoee St.

Four tagged:
Sometimes I think that I shouldn't perpetuate memes. Like people get mad at you for tagging them. Or you figure out that they don't read your site as much or as thoroughly as you think they do. So don't get mad at me. :) Some of you have probably already recently done this anyways... but it's kind of a challenge to come up with all new answers!
1) Rachel
2) Mike
3) Neely
4) Tamara

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

More Pictures From The Weekend, Because Really When Am I Ever Likely to Do That Again?

As a disclaimer, this series of photos includes some of the most unattractive photos ever. I blame it on the jackets. And the toques.

The horrid horrid down-filled extra jumbo-large jackets (this picture does not accurately portray just how exactly terribly horrible these really were!)

These are the pucks they got the second day, they kept running out (you know, getting lost in the snow). These pucks just had French on them.

I decided if I was going to be at this jumbo big hockey event, I had better pick a favourite tearm. Ridiculousness of name and colour of jerseys were all factors that led me to pick The Porkies. Unfortunately they weren't very good. I was the runner/rink assistant for one of their games, but I didn't pay very much attention to their score. I did pass one of their score sheets from an earlier game up to HQ, and they lost that one 23-2.

They all had the same last name on their jerseys. And they had a couple extra people with jerseys too, I think maybe dad was the coach. My friend and I decided that we needed to get our picture taken with a team, and I thought that the Porkies would be sweet. That opportunity however wouldn't present itself until later on in the weekend.

This woman won the prize for the ugliest snowsuit. I'm thinking it's gotta be circa the early 90's at least.

And look, her husband had a matching one! The hockey player in front is from a women's team called "The Bad Apples". They all had plastic apples stuck in and glued to their helmets. The womens hockey was a whole other league/level from the majority of the mens hockey teams.

Here you can sort of see some of the rinks on the bay. There were 24. At the official site you can see an aerial shot of them all.

We were bored so decided to take some cheese pictures. Like me in front of the Yamaha semi.

Have you ever heard of Tri-Lite TV? Neither have we. But hey, the pond hockey championship was enough to get them out to Muskoka!

The super-jumbo-large-Yamaha-blow-up-balloon-quad-thing. And just when we got done taking this picture we spotted the Porkies posing for pictures! This was my big chance!!!

But by the time I got down behind the large Yamaha blow-up thing, they had quit posing. But I ran down by them anyways. Now that I look at this photo, that man in the rubber boots behind me is standing awfully close. You can't tell, but I have both of my thumbs in the "thumbs up" position (which matches my facial expression nicely I think).

This is what I ended up doing all weekend...shovelling the ice/slush. I was a runner/rink assistant, and as such I was one of those that shovelled off the ice between games and between the two periods (it's pond hockey, they have weird rules... I should have taken a picture of the nets for you too). Some of the hockey players were nice enough to help shovel, they could do it much faster since they were wearing skates and we were not allowed to.

In the words of my friend Susan, the above photo sums up the whole weekend. This was around 3:30pm on Saturday, after they had called off all of the afternoon games (because the warm weather was melting the ice and it was turning to slop), after all the runners and officials had cleaned off the ice that we were allowed to clean off. We were waiting waiting waiting to find out what we were to do next, and I kept saying "Let's go home, no one will notice" (our shift was over at 5:30pm, and they weren't starting any more games until 7:30 anyways). Except there was one problem... they were holding our own jackets hostage and you had to sign in and sign out so people would notice if we left. Anyways, we stood around some more, and some more, and some more, and then finally finally finally they let us go at like 5pm.

This is me waiting for the shuttle to our parking lot. I have no words to describe how horribly awfully itchy those toques were.