Monday, December 31, 2012

Goodbye 2012... Another year in letterboxing

Goodbye, 2012.  What a wonderful year you were. In 2012, I found 151 boxes (down 50 from the year before), and planted 67 - weirdly, the same as the year before.  The vast majority of those were for Box ON!. I hosted a mini meet and the big Ontario meet, I crossed the border multiple times for events and regular letterboxing, and was in my first car accident.

My favourite plant would be Love in Suraksan - mostly because it's never been found and probably never will be, but it's my little seed of hope on the other side of the globe.  Only found once is my And a Bottle of Rum box down in Key West, a fun letterbox.

My favourite find this year was the Hockley Valley Hitchhiker Chalet by trailfeathers. The find doesn't stick out for me, but the age and history of this beastie really did it for me. This box dates back to 2007 and had some amazing Ontario letterboxing history in its pages.  It had sat for a while before I got up there; it's pretty far out of the way for most of the existing boxers in this province, but was a beautiful find anyway.  I had a great letterboxing day the day I found this one and this box in particular did it for me.

Despite my own personal downswing in finds, this blog has really picked up.  I've posted over 100 posts this year, and I'm getting a lot of traffic from Google.  A good chunk from Atlas Quest, but lots from Google. Weird. But I'm not here to make money from this blog, just wanting to post about my adventures and maybe inspire others to take a walk in the woods.  I've been stalking other blogs and am happy that Ms. Viking has really gotten blogging as well.

I'm looking forward to some great letterboxing in 2013 - and in particular to We Live & Breathe in Massachewsetts Massachusets Massachewbackasetts Massachusetts.  And I'm also looking forward to spelling Massachusetts correctly the first time I type it.

Anyways, I hope everyone has had a great year and I look forward to seeing you on the trails in 2013...

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Book binding and holiday cards...

So, I've been making my own holiday cards for a while now, and I've been keeping my favourite cards for longer still.  And the question had always remained, what to do with the cards after the holiday/event? Throw them in a drawer? A box? Recycle them?
My first book of Christmas cards.
Then while learning to bind my own books for logbooks, I came across something that stuck with me - just as you fold signatures for binding, each card is sort of like a little card-stock signature of its very own and therefore easily bound. Somewhere I saw how someone had taken their cards and bound them into books.  I can't remember for the life of me where I saw this - it might be in one of my books or I might have seen it online.  Credit is due somewhere, but it's not with me.

So this is my first attempt to bind up my cards.  I got some really beautiful ones this year and like that they are now in a book that I can shelve and perhaps bring out to look at if the mood strikes me.  It only took three episodes of Big Bang Theory to complete, so just over an hour.  If you can bind a book, you can bind yours too. 

Here's the stuff.  Beautiful carved images at the top, rest of my cards all around, and the stamps I carved to make my own cards this year on the left.

I used my own stamps on the cover - I forgot to keep any of the cards for myself this year, or rather, I ran out of cards and actually had to use purchased ones for some.

Bound and standing on their own. I ordered the cards from short to tall to make the book more easily flipped.  The cards each have a unique width so being able to see the next larger one behind it is nice.

Finished and on the coffee table.  My supervisor worked so hard that she here is enjoyed a well-deserved nap.

Happy trails!

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Last possible letterbox day of the year: thwarted.

So I'm currently standing at 390 finds and thought it would be lovely to end the year at 400.  How nice would that be?  I pulled together a whole bunch of clues for Kitchener-Waterloo, packed all my letterboxing stuff, and headed out this morning.

Well, I made it only about as far as Dixie Road exit on the 401 before I turned around.  I decided to give up after seeing 10 cars that had spun out along the highway and on/off ramps.  Ten is the magic number.  Drove home.

It was sad.  I really wanted to get a couple of new boxes... The boxes I would have been hunting were by a range of different letterboxers, some known to me, some not.  Damned snow.

Well, then back at home, sipping spiked coffee (hey! it's still holidays for me!) and carving up some new stuff.

Snowy trails!

Friday, December 28, 2012

Back in the saddle...

Spoilery, yes.  But only part of a larger image.
It's good to be carving again.  I'm moved in, settled, found all of my letterboxing paraphernalia, and am getting around to carving some images that I transferred a long time ago - Back in the Burlington days, actually. (I should probably stop transferring en masse - what happens is that I lose motivation with the specific images and then never carve them.  Then the rubber just sits in limbo.)

Hope you're all finding time to carve over the holidays!

Happy trails!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Happy Boxing Day!

Whatever your religous background, I believe any reader of this blog can agree to celebrate one particular day of the year: Boxing Day.

It has been well established that Boxing Day is the one day of the year that people from across the commonwealth gather together to celebrate the great hobby of letterboxing.  And so I'm just popping in to leave some cheer with the traditional Boxing Day poem:

May your trails be clear, 
With some clues for nearby.
May your boxes be clean,
And your logbooks all dry.

May your material be firm,
And your gouges be sharp.
Your transfers detailed,
And your carve on the mark.

May your boxing be wonderful,
Both near and afar,
Find lots in the New Year --
Wherever you are.

Wishing you and yours a wonderful Boxing Day. Sip some seriously spiked nog for me.

Lots of love,

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Just checking in...

Well, it's been a long time since I've posted here.  There probably won't be too many more posts before the end of the year (if any). But here's a quick update of my travels:

  • I've moved to downtown Toronto.  Mostly everything is unpacked, but I just can't find where I put things.  Case in point: I know where my OZ Cut is, can't find my gouges.  Little hard to do any carving in those circumstances...
Supervising the moving process.  Also can't find the gouges.
  • I bought one of those Helmer drawer sets for my letterboxing stuff.  I saw them in an Ikea a while ago and thought the shallow drawers and mobility of the thing would be perfect for my letterboxing stuff in my new apartment.  I was right, it's perfect.  Problem: Ikea is discontinuing them.  So go buy one asap! I was told what is on shelves is what is left...
Also, the Burlington Teen Tour Band finishing up the Niagara on the Lake Parade...
  • The marching season is over.  No more parades for me this year - luckily the weather was pretty good for all of them, so I haven't lost any fingers to frost bite. 
  • My Christmas cards are finally done and going out.  I carved my own again this year - three different stamps, two from images, two that I carved freehand (into my last bit of that awful crumbly stuff - now it is gone!). 
This year's cards, free hand carves on the last bit of the crumbly stuff.
Anyways, I'm off.  Christmas plans to plan, need to clean my new place, and getting prepped for a new job in the new year.  Oh, and I guess I also have to do some Christmas shopping.  Gotta go, busy.

Happy trails!