Saturday, December 31, 2011

Best of 2011

Like others before me (most notably, Jill) I decided to post a Best of 2011 in photos.  These aren't necessarily the most technically awesome images (and let's be honest - I use a point and shoot underwater camera - artiste is not what I am after) but they represent for me either a positive memory from 2011 or more accurately, a feeling of being in a place - most often at home in Whitehorse.

No surprise, most of the images feature bicycles in some way.  Next year I'll have to try and have memorable adventures in dresses so I can post a few of those too.

January - Me and Mingus on Lake Laberge, new year's day

February - Out in my neighbourhood trails with my new snow bike and my awesome Fat Tire Ballerina jersey. 

March - My first ride out at Fish Lake with Tony and Sierra.  

April - Maui.  Surfing.  I love that island.  Is it weird to love two such different places (the Yukon and Hawaii) so much?

May - Early season ride with friends.  This one I love because Monika's smile expresses how I usually feel hanging out with these women.

June - 24 Hours of Light Mountain Bike Festival at midnight.

July - Whitehorse's first DH race from the top of Grey Mountain.  My dog, my man.  Good things.

August - Leg 3 at the Soggy Bottom 100.  Kind of a horrible ride, to be honest, but still an experience to learn from.  And probably an event to go back to.

Sept - Mountain Hero in the fall.  Most epic, beautiful ride in the Yukon.

October - View on my way to work.  I am trying to commute by bike more often.

November - View at sunrise in Vancouver.  I just love the light in this one.

December - Sierra at noon.  Bike, friend, a successful fat tire event.  Not bad.

Happy new year, everyone.

Day & Dress #31

10:10 sunrise
15:57 sunset

today's high: -15C
tonight's low: -21C

The end of Dressember!

Setting up the camera and forgetting to set the 10 second timer.  Bonus fabric close up shot!

And yes, it really is a dress.
Boots - Hush Puppies
Jeans - American Eagle
Dress - Thrifted for me by maven
Sweater - Two of Hearts, Vancouver

It didn't seem that difficult this year, although I am looking forward to wearing jeans tomorrow - without a dress over top.  I think next year I will try and impose some stricter rules on myself (limit the number of dresses, perhaps or insist that I wear a dress for all activities - including bike rides) and see if I can do it as a fundraiser for a local charity.  I've got 11 more months to sort that out.

We are off to Atlin to ring in the new year.  Karaoke at the Rec Centre.  Should be good times.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Day & Dress #30

10:10 sunrise
15:55 sunset

today's high: -12C
tonight's low: -18C

Like the dress, not crazy about the fit.  It's comfy though.

Shoes - Franco Sarto
Dress - Whitehorse secondhand (purchased in early December)
Shirt - Regional Assembly of Text (the octopus is covered up!)

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Day & Dress #29

10:11 sunrise
15:54 sunset

today's high: -9C
tonight's low: -19C

I think today is the day where my dressember posts outnumber my posts about bikes.  I'm sure that will be rectified in 2012 but for now, dresses for the win!

It was beautiful out today - not the kind of day to stay inside and work.  But that's what I did.  My mom came for a tour of the Archives this afternoon and I got Ben to snap some photos of me in the parking lot.  Check out the glorious sun flare.

Boots - Hush Puppies
Tights - Hue
Dress - Thrifted
Belt - Have had it for ages, possibly thrift in Vancouver
Earrings - Argentina, a gift from my mom

I took a couple of selfies outside the Archives as well.  I wanted to get a better angle on my polka-dotted tights.

Not super successful so I broke down and took these at my (messy) desk:

This is another dress that doesn't belong to me.  My friend Margi picked it up at a Value Village in Vancouver.  It's homemade and has these super interesting pleats around the neck, wrists and at the bottom of the skirt.  I have to say, when I finally chose the black belt to wear with it, I felt a little like I was channeling Sandra.  Maybe not quite so funky, but the belt did make me think of her awesome collection.  (I was thinking of belts such as this one or this one.)

I'm glad this was a short week.  I can hardly imagine five work days in a row at this point and, happily enough, there's another holiday on Monday.  

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Day & Dress #28

10:11 sunrise
15:53 sunset

today's high: -8C
tonight's low: -11C

Back to work.  Blergh.  Another loading bay photo.  Gawd I need a haircut.

Close up in my office so you can see the awesome dress details:

Shoes - 4th Avenue Vancouver ages ago
Tights - Superstore
Dress - Gifted to me by Heather who bought it for herself and then shrank it
Sweater - Ann Taylor

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Day & Dress #27

10:11 sunrise
15:52 sunset

today's high: -6C
tonight's low: -9C

Mom and I went to the Canada Games Centre for a swim today - that's why I am still wearing this hat. Crazy wet hair.  

Boots - Hush Puppies
Socks - ? can't remember
Long underwear - Icebreaker (it has occurred to me that no one actually cares whether my tights are wool, polypro, Icebreaker, Smartwool or MEC but care. So there)
Dress - Frecklewonder!
Long sleeved thermal - Icebreaker
Scarf - Somewhere in Las Vegas
Hat - Sauce Headwear

Do you ever wonder what I am looking at when I stand here, outside my door, for wardrobe photos?  Voila - my backyard, neighbours' houses and the in far distance the community ice rink.  Pretty sky today isn't it?

I do not want to return to work tomorrow.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Day & Dress #26

10:11 sunrise
15:51 sunset

today's high: -8C
tonight's low: -11C

Lazy, lazy boxing day today.  My mom and I went for a walk with the dog and did a few short errands downtown.  That, and we ate leftovers.  It was a big day :)

Boots - Kids Bogs
Skirt - Winner's
Long-sleeved thermal - Icebreaker
Dress - Thrifted for me by maven
Necklace - Made for me by Paula (how cool is this use of a bike chain?!)

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Day & Dress #25

10:11 sunrise
15:50 sunset

today's high: -3C
tonight's low: -8C

I don't have seven siblings but work with me.  Creative license.

On the twelfth day of Christmas,
my true love gave to me
Twelve sugar cookies,
Eleven winos whining, 

Ten lemons baking,
Nine ladies spinning,
Eight skirts to choose from*, 

Seven siblings a-skyping,
Six dinner dishes,
Five golden toques,
Four folks at supper,
Three dogs napping, 

Two great friends,
And a bike ride in the fir trees!

Dressember was brief today (as I did not wear a dress while cycling) and features a dress I wore earlier in the month with wool long undies and an awesome hand-me-down icebreaker wool shirt from Paula.

Dress - Whitehorse thrift
Cardigan - Icebreaker hand-me-down

* I got a skhoop skirt - which one should I choose?

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Day & Dress #24

10:11 sunrise
15:49 sunset

today's high: -2C
tonight's low: -5C

For a person who doesn't really care about Christmas, is an avowed atheist and a pretty lame cook, it's odd that tonight is one of my favourite nights of the year.  But since we moved to Whitehorse in 2007 we have been cared for by our good friends Sierra and Tony every Christmas Eve.  Sierra cooks up an amazing traditional Norweigan dinner and Ben and I stuff ourselves full of lefse, aquavit, pinnekjott, lutefisk, and rommegrot.  I love traditions and it makes me all warm and fuzzy inside to be included in this one.

Nothing too fancy for dinner dress and nothing too fitted.  That delicious meal needed room to expand.

Shoes - locale
Tights - Superstore
Sweater - Whitehorse thrift
Dress - Narcisste Designs, Vancouver
Pin - Gift from Claire, Hollywood thrift store

Friday, December 23, 2011

Day & Dress #23

10:10 sunrise
15:49 sunset

today's high: 0C
tonight's low: -3C

Apparently I got dressed as an elf today.  That wasn't actually my intention but I can see the resemblance...

Shoes - Clark's
Tights - American Apparel 
Dress - Ann Taylor
Tunic - Vero Moda
Scarf - Yukon College bookstore

Out of work early and now to run around picking up food, booze and other necessary items for the weekend.  Hope everyone is having a super Friday!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Day & Dress #22

10:10 sunrise
15:48 sunset

today's high: 0C
tonight's low: -3C

Uh oh - Environment Canada says *today* is the solstice according to my little sunrise and sunset calculator!  I guess we have a couple of days where the sun pauses in the sky so really, it's not just one but several of the darkest days of the year.

It's an oldie today.  I think I bought this dress sometime between 1996 and 1998 from a Cotton Ginny store in the Pacific Centre mall in Vancouver.  I remember being so enamoured of the pattern.  I hardly ever wear it anymore but I can't bear, for some reason, to let this dress go.

Shoes - locale
Dress - Cotton Ginny
Cardigan - Zara
Necklace - birthday gift from my mom a couple of years ago

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Day & Dress #21

10:09 sunrise
15:48 sunset

today's high: 0C
tonight's low: -4C

Happy Solstice!  Five hours and 39 minutes of light today.  This is what 12:45pm looked like.

We went out and cut a Christmas tree today.  It's a spruce sub-alpine fir, apparently.  Someone on CBC today was going on and on about how spruce trees were the "grinch" trees of Christmas.  WTF?

And yes, under that parka there was a dress!  But there was also hat head.

Jeans - Gap
Dress - thrifted for me by maven
Cardigan - handed down to me by my friend Ursula

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Day & Dress #20

10:09 sunrise
15:47 sunset

today's high: -2C
tonight's low: -18C

My mom arrived from Ontario today!  I insisted on a dressember/wardrobe remix photo as soon as she got here (since the sun was about to go down).  

My parka - Yukon Parka from Salvation Army thrift store
Mom's parka - LL Bean

And Mingus is thinking about whether he'll get to sleep on a human bed tonight.  My mom's a softie.
Boots - Hush Puppies
Dress - Ports, wool, an etsy purchase
Cardigan - Whitehorse thrift

Monday, December 19, 2011

Day & Dress #19

10:08 sunrise
15:47 sunset

today's high: 0C
tonight's low: -16C

Dressember the 19th!  I'm wearing another one of Julie's dresses today.  Got lots of compliments on it too.  I've had a headache since I woke up and I can only assume it's because my head connected with the ground when I crashed at yesterday's fat tire festival.  Nothing serious but I do feel a bit beaten up today (head sore, body bruised, a neck that stubbornly refuses to turn).

And my mom arrives tomorrow!  She has been to Whitehorse twice but both times were in the summer and she hasn't yet been to this house.  Weather tomorrow is supposed to be mild so I am sure she will survive but two weeks of 'real' winter may do her in.  I know she bought a new parka just for the trip.  I'll try and feature her in my dressember photo tomorrow.

Shoes - locale
Tights - Superstore
Dress - belongs to my friend Julie, label says Made in Australia for Target
Cardigan - thrifted by my mother-in-law, Banana Republic
Necklace - was my grandmother's

A successful winter solstice bike race

I woke up this morning with a throbbing headache and a body that did not want to get out of bed.  I could blame it on the encroaching darkness (solstice is only 2 days away) but the truth is that my head hurts because at yesterday's 5+ Hours of Light Fat Tire Festival I landed on it.

I like to think that biking on snow is actually gentler than summer dirt, but the truth is that I fall off my mukluk more often and at weirder angles than I do on my mountain bike.  At least, most of the time, I'm moving more slowly in the winter.  Yesterday though, that wasn't the case.  The course included a short, steep downhill that ended in a big sloppy mess of snow.  Riding the hill wasn't too bad but, if you hit the mush pile at the bottom at the wrong angle and were going too fast, you were hooped.  Lots of people crashed in this spot.

Although I took more than 50 photographs yesterday, I do not have one of me wiping out on this hill.  I did, however, capture this series of Jonah taking a spill shortly after mine.

These photographs are remarkable primarily because Jonah is more often seen blowing past past other riders with his mad skillz and his huge heart than he is crashing his bike.  In fact, he started the race 15 minutes after I did and still caught up to me before the end of my 38 minute lap.  Not surprisingly, Jonah won the event by riding 7 laps (approximately 46km).  The team category went to the Pearson boys (and one girl) who also completed 7 laps.

At the end of the day 26 people participated in Whitehorse's 1st annual solstice fat bike race. Biathlon Yukon allowed us to use their facilities so we were able to stay warm even as the wind gusted up to 65km/hour.  The weather wasn't perfect (it was a little bit too warm so the snow was quite soft) but it certainly could have been worse had temperatures dipped into the -30s or if it had actually rained as originally forecast.

There were fatbacks, pugsleys and mukluks at the race, but no one tried a regular mountain bike. Given the softness of the trails, I think this was a wise decision.  

There were men, women, and kids at the race, but no one cried.

And yes, there were tricks and crashes and endos, but no one was hurt.  Some of us are just sore.

We are at that time of the year when the sun shines for only a few hours, but those of us in the north know how to make the most of what we've got.  It was a fun day.

There's a certain slant of light,
on winter afternoons,
~ Emily Dickinson