"Properly practiced, knitting soothes the troubled spirit, and it doesn't hurt the untroubled spirit either." ~ Elizabeth Zimmerman

9/29/08

I Finished Some Socks!

I got some wonderful news this morning. I no longer have to give myself the Lovenox shots. I am done with that medication.

HURRAY!!!!!!

The swelling has gone down a little in my leg. I actually have an ankle sticking out on the left side. I'd almost forgotten what it looked like. I missed my ankle. I'm glad to have it back. I'm still in quite a bit of pain, but I'm forcing myself to do things. This morning I actually took a shower. Required standing on the painful extremity for more than a couple minutes, so I think the fact I accomplished it is awesome. I need to get back on my feet. Or someone needs to show Sweet Hubby where the fresh food aisle is in the grocery store. I am so missing fruit and veggies.

I encouraged SH to go to work this afternoon. He's starting to go stir crazy. He said he'd come home at 5:30. So far, I'm doing okay without him, more or less.

Last night I got the last 4 inches of that second Opal 1296 sock done. Yes!!! Here's a pic I took about half an hour ago.



Petticoat 1296 socks

Pattern: I winged it. Basically my standard top-down 2-circular needle sock pattern with the following stitch pattern for the leg:

Rnd 1: K3, slip 1
Rnd 2: Knit.

Yarn: Opal Petticoat in color #1296

Needles: Size 2 Addi Turbo Lace Circular.

Cast On: September 6, 2008
Completed: September 28, 2008

Have a great day.

9/28/08

Starting to Feel Human

Wow, I can't believe 2 weeks have gone by since the initial surgery and I'm still flat on my back. It's almost surreal. Course, that could be the drugs working their thing on my brain.

There is some improvement in the leg. A lessening of the pain, and the swelling is down just a tad. Hopefully, we're headed in the right direction.

The thing that really bugs me is if not for this stupid clot in my leg, I would be in great shape! My tummy feels SOOOOO good. I can even eat yogurt without feeling sick an hour later. I'm amazed at how much that hernia was affecting my digestion.

In the drug induced haze, I have been knitting. I'm about 4 inches away from being done with the second Opal 1296 sock. It looks okay to me, but who knows what I'll find when I'm finally off the drugs and the purple haze floats away.

Sweet Hubby is doing his best to take care of me, but I'd give my left arm for a salad, or some fruit, right now. There's only so much fried eggs and toast a body can take. I need to get well so I can go back to providing my own meals and eating good stuff.

I'm still entertaining myself with tv and dvd's. Last night, though, SH stuck a Matt Damon dvd in that was probably one of the most boring and depressing movies I've seen in a long time. It's called The Good Shephard and is supposed to be about the CIA. It was pure torture just having it on, even after I long stopped watching it and started hitting myself in the head with a small pillow to find relief. There was no way I was going to get any decent sleep after seeing that (can you say NIGHTMARES!). So we stuck in the Disney movie, Cars. Ruth and I watched it to clear the other movie out of our heads, even if it did require staying awake until 1:30 am to do so.

Have a great day.

9/23/08

OW! owowowowow...ow...OW!!!!!

There is a reason why this blog has been quiet the past several days. I've been under the weather.

The surgery, held on Monday the 15th, went fine. It hurt, but it was tolerable. Then, Wednesday the weirdness started. My left leg started aching, and charlie horsing, and feeling really.......weird. By Thursday afternoon I was in absolute agony. Never in my life have I ever felt such pain. My leg was swollen up 2 to 3 times it's normal size, and walking was out of the question. My doctor said "Take her to emergency."

In emergency they did an ultra sound on the aforementioned leg and discovered that I had developed a rather nasty blood clot. It's stopping up the traffic and causing me severe distress.

The cure is no fun. I get to lay around with my leg elevated on pillows, me high on the drugs. I get to take blood thinners and anticoagulants, along with pain killers and whatnot. I'm giving myself shots twice a day, in the tummy! Never in my wildest dreams would I have thought that getting rid of an annoying hernia would lead to this. I hate hyponeedles! But here I am, in the worst pain I've ever had in my life, wanting to have a good cry and totally feeling sorry for myself.

The really depressing thing is I can have NO RUM! Sob.... Just laying around, downing and shooting drugs, and feeling miserable.

The good news? My hernia is gone, and that is the only area on my body that doesn't hurt right now. I'd laugh, but I can't find the humor.

sigh.


I so need a hug.

9/15/08

Today Is The Day

It's surgery day today. Don't know when I'll be back. Hopefully, tomorrow.

Have a great day!

9/14/08

A Possible Solution

We are now the proud new owners of an electric fence around our satellite dishes. It's solar powered, which makes it uber cool.

Tommy gives it his nod of approval

It's a small fence, but juicy. I slept with the bedroom window open last night. I kept waking up all night hoping I'd hear the sound of a 'snap' and hooves thudding into the distance.

My awesome brother in law, Dan, and his wife, Sue, came over to rescue us. Sue knows a lot about satellite dishes. They helped us repair some of the damage. We've got the dish that picks up 2 of the 3 satellites working. So we have 2/3 of our programming back. The other dish, which pics up HD channels, is damaged beyond our ability to repair it. It needs help from the Dish professionals. We can live without those channels for now. I will call them in the morning and schedule a repair visit for some time after I've recovered a bit from the surgery.

Miss Molly popped in for a visit just before I went to bed. She was more interested in the leaves on the birch tree, and the plums on the ground under the plum tree, than satellite dishes. I asked her to leave. She did.

I didn't get much crafting done. No beading, and maybe 5 rounds on the sock. It took hours to fix the dishes. I enjoyed spending the day with Dan and Sue though. And, on our way to Home Depot we picked up our future son-in-law so he could spend the rest of the day with us (daughter Sarah was out of town). In the evening we all went out to dinner at O'Malleys in Rathdrum. All in all, despite the influence of Murphy's Law at the start, it turned out to be an enjoyable day.

Have a good one.

9/13/08

Moose Attack!

A disaster has happened! Last night a moose used our satellite dishes to sharpen his antlers and broke both of them. The thingy-ma-bobs that stick out in front are broken off and hanging by their cables. The right dish was bent over, but Sweet Hubby bent it back, and the dishes are all scratched up. And me just 2 days away from surgery! Why now?!? I need my DVR.....sob.




Sweet Hubby is going to see if he can fix them. Dish Network can't send anyone out for at least a week. I NEED my DVR!

On the good news front, I finished the first Opal 1296 sock last night. I've already cast on and started the second one.




And now for something completely different. This spider has set up residence in the corner right outside the back door.



I don't know what kind he is, but he is seriously creeping me out. That body he's cartin' there is the size of a quarter. I thought about putting my hand up there to give you some size perspective, but I was too chicken. He/she looks like they could bite pretty hard. I need to get Sweet Hubby to remove it for me. Satellite dish fixing first! I need my TV!

Have I mentioned I love TV?

Have a better day than I'm having.

9/12/08

Cool! I Scored 3

While prowling around the Ravelry forums, I came across this interesting color test. It tests your ability to distinguish colors by hue. I did pretty darn good, which surprises me because I am so blind. Even with the glasses I have trouble with blurred sight, and forget night vision. I know I use color more than anything else to navigate the world. Just didn't know I was good at it.

________________________________

Your score: 3


























































































Based on your information, below is how your score compares to those of others with similar demographic information.
  • Your score: 3
  • Gender: Female
  • Age range: 40-49
  • Best score for your gender and age range: 0
  • Highest score for your gender and age range: 1409

________________________________


It's a fun test. If you want to give it a try:

Color Hue Test

We got our first frost. Oddly, it didn't bother the flowers, or the tomato plants on the deck. My Dahlia's are still alive. Cool! Now we're going to have a few days of hot weather.

Have a great day.

9/11/08

Shorn Like a Sheep

Sigh. That's how I'm feeling right now.

I had long hair. Really long hair. Down to my waist hair, and no bangs. I've spent the past year growing my bangs out (they got below my chin) to see if I'd like it that way. I didn't. So yesterday, I decided to go get my bangs back, and get the hair trimmed up a bit, more to the middle of my back, and styled so it framed my face nicely. In other words-back to what it was before I grew the bangs. Brandi, the gal who has cut my hair the most in the past was not in, so I decided to let another gal do my hair.

I have photos to show what I wanted. I felt fairly confident she'd do a good job cos she does my daughters hair very well. This is, more or less what I wanted.


This is what I've got (minus the red stripes of course). Well, to be honest, it is longer than this. Long enough to touch my shoulders anyway. It essentially looks like this though.



There was more hair on the floor than left on my head. I am not a happy camper. She did a beautiful job of cutting. The layers are perfect, the bangs are exactly what I wanted. It frames the face nicely. She just got carried away on the trimming it up part. Her words, to be exact "It came out shorter than I thought it was going to." Yeah, you think? I go into shock every time I look in the mirror. I had long hair for a long time. I love having long hair. Well, phooey.

The good news is my hair grows very fast and in about 3 months it will probably be more the length I wanted. I'm asking for Randi next time. She knows how I like my hair. Other good news-both Sweet Hubby and Sarah like it. It's the first time in ages Sweet Hubby has actually said anything nice about my hair. Maybe I need to rethink this?

Have a nice day.

9/10/08

WIP Wednesday 9/10/08



This week we are having absolutely gorgeous weather! Mid 70's to 80's. The air is crystal clear, and smells wonderful, if a bit autumnish. Perfect for knitting out on the deck. I got some major knittage done yesterday.

First of all, the first of the Opal sock. Got all the way to the heel flap last night.




I'm winging this one (making it up as I go). I decided to try a slip stitch pattern that makes a sort of faux pleated pattern (something from my machine knitting obsession days). It doesn't show very well in the photo, but in real life the texture shows up very nicely.

I also spent a couple hours working on Pierre Pirate. He has a head, with a nose, now.

I had quite a time with that head. I got it all done only to discover I'd put his nose 2 stitches too far to the left. He looked kind of mutantish, so I frogged and did it over. I'm really glad I did because not only is the nose in the right place, but I managed to perfect it's shape too. I have to say, this is the best short rowed nose I've made thus far. Next- - - arms!

Yesterday was the finals for the 2008 Knitters Hunk competition. This is the first time I've participated in this contest. It required looking at photos each morning of such hunkiness as Hugh Jackman, Patrick Stewart, Alan Rickman, Hugh Laurie, etc, and voting which I liked best. A tough tough job, but someone had to do it. The winner for this year is Hugh Jackman. His Knitterly hunkiness can be seen on the Hand Eye Crafts blog-location of the contest. I'm kinda sad the contest has ended. I was enjoying starting my morning with that task.

Have a great day!

9/9/08

I Haz Dahlia

Wow! I can't believe it. I have grown a dahlia-and it's blooming!



This bouquet has the dahlia-a Red Dinner Plate aptly named "The Big WOW", some Stargazer Lilies, and Butterfly Bush. I wanted you to get a sense of the size of this flower, thus a pic of the whole bouquet. And it isn't even open all the way yet.

I'd let it finish opening on the plant before picking it, but it got down to 36 F degrees last night, which scared me. Actually, the fact we haven't had a frost yet is a miracle. Usually we get the first one in the first half of August.



I have 4 dahlia's growing against the house. This is the first one to bloom. Two others have buds (I'm not holding out much hope they'll open before it gets frosty), and the 4th is a very healthy and lush green plant with no buds at all. Not sure what's going on with that one. This is the only Dinner Plate I planted. The others are supposed to be Spider dahlia's.

When I clipped the stem of that flower, the scent brought a ton of memories back. My mother grew dahlia's in our garden when I was a kid. It was a hobby, as well as practical. She did flowers for people. Weddings, funerals, parties, and she did them for our church. Dahlia's are great for the big fancy bouquets needed at these types of events.

One of my Mom's dahlia's was a bright yellow Dinner Plate. It had HUGE blooms every year. In fact, they were way bigger than dinner plates. One year she took a pic of one on my sisters head. It looked like one of those great big brimmed southern belle type hats.

In the fall there would be special services at church (holy days). She would take me with her to the huge wholesale dahlia gardens a few miles from our house and we'd cut buckets of them for the floral arrangements she needed to do for church. There'd be every color, size, and style you could imagine. I'd forgotten how wonderful those gardens were.

Funny. I never learned how to grow Dahlia's from Mom. She never let me help her with that. A couple years ago I started yearning to have them in my own yard. I bought a whole bunch of bulbs and planted them in the garden. I don't know what I did wrong, but I got no flowers. I had plants. Pathetic spindly ones. There were flower buds, but they got frosted before they had half a chance to open. I dug up the bulbs like you're supposed to in the fall, but almost all of them had rotted. I don't know what I did wrong there either. Waited too long?

Anyway, last year, I decided I didn't want to inflict my brown thumb on another set of Dahlia bulbs, so I didn't grow any. However, the call of the Dahlia is still heard within me. So I decided to try again, on a much smaller scale. I read up on how to grow them (it's supposed to be easy-always the kiss of death for me), and now I have a bright rich red flower! I am so proud of myself.

They would have bloomed earlier if I could have planted them earlier. If y'all remember, we had snow waaaaay late this year. I couldn't plant them until mid June. I wonder if they can be started in pots indoors to give them a head start-like tomatoes can? Hmmm...I will have to look into that.

By the way, lunch with Sarah and Frank was nice. They just wanted to take me out to lunch. Isn't that sweet? We went to Pita Pit. I had a very nice time.

Have a great day.

9/8/08

WOW! Entry for September

I thought I'd get the WOW! entry done for this month while I'm thinking about it. This is a skein of Opal Petticoat 1296. It's purples, lime green, yellow, white, and a very nice heathery light brown.


I cast on for a sock that takes no thought with this yarn over the weekend. I am too anxious about the coming surgery to work on Bayerische. I found myself tinking more than I was knitting. It's just a bit too complicated for a mind that is dumping things out faster than I can put them in (I get real forgetful when anxious). So I'm putting it to the side for a bit, until I'm recovering, and more relaxed, and need something fun to work on.

Ah yes, the surgery. I met my surgeon, Dr. Holman, on Friday. I like him very much. He has a very kind demeanor, and treated me with respect, which I've found is a rare quality in doctors. He checked me out, told me what's gonna happen, what to expect for recovery, answered all my questions, and passed me on to the front receptionist to schedule the day. I feel quite confident in his abilities. He seems to know his stuff, and he's done hundreds of hernia surgerys over his career.

September 15th is the day, the time is 2:00 pm. He says I'll be in and out in just a few hours, barring any unforeseen circumstances of course.

Since knitting is hard for me to do when I'm anxious, and beading actually relaxes me when I'm anxious (so does counted cross stitch-but that's another story), I started a major beading project yesterday. I'm working on a Christmas ornament cover.


The topic for this month in my Yahoo beading group is netting. It occurred to me that I don't have to make jewelry. So I dug this pattern out. It's a Cathy Lampole design called Faith Victorian. I've chosen pale yellow and a dark red violet that makes me think of my Mom's blackberry jam for the colors.

Over the weekend I pretty much took it easy. I'm supposed to do that for the next few weeks. This hernia is pretty nasty and we don't want it to get worse.

On Saturday I went with Sweet Hubby in search of a new chair for his office. He wants a really really sturdy one. SH is a rather large fellow, 6'5", and not a light guy. Most chairs are designed for people who weigh 225 or less. If you weigh more than that, you automatically void the warranty when you sit in it. They tend to wear out in just a year or two for him. He wants something rated more for 300 lb, so it will last forever! Now, a large percentage of the population weighs more than 225. The stores around here seem to have missed that observation. We were unsuccessful. We came home in dejected defeat. He's gonna have to order something from the internet.

On Sunday, I puttered in the yard, enjoyed the sunshine, beaded, and watched movies. All in all, a very relaxing day.

Today I'm going out to lunch with Sarah and Frank. They invited me this morning. Hmmm....I wonder what's up?

Have a great day.

9/5/08

A Knitting Video

I don't know what to write about today. I just know I want to write, or something, anything, to keep my mind off the knowledge that I have an appointment at 3:30 with a surgeon. I can't knit when I'm this nervous. I may bead for awhile when I get done here. That calms me down some.

I can't help but reflect on this change in my life. What change you ask? I was raised in an extremist religious cult. My parents joined it when I was a baby. One of the things that was a no no was going to the doctor. The main reason was because going to a doctor for help with a health problem was viewed as a lack in faith in God. We couldn't even take an aspirin for a headache. We were supposed to depend on God healing us instead. We were taught that the medical profession was a great Satanic conspiracy to lure man away from faith in God. I look back on it now and think "How pathetic".

When I was 9 years old I fell out of a tree and broke my back. My parents did not take me to the hospital. They called the minister instead, who came over and prayed over me. I was paralyzed from the neck down for several hours. Being a parent now, I can't imagine how my parents could have done this? (Especially when they didn't hesitate to take my sister to the hospital when she broke her arm.) After the minister left, feeling came back to my limbs and whatnot. My parents saw it as a miracle from God. To be honest, my body was just doing what it does naturally. Healing itself. The break was not in a spot that would bring about permanent paralysis. I was a very lucky kid, and I know it. However, I've always had severe problems with my back because of that fall.

This is how I was raised though. To hate and fear the medical profession. It took some doing to get over that after we left the cult when I was 36 years old. I don't understand that kind of thinking, either, even though I thought that way myself. Does it never occur to these people that maybe God gave the medical knowledge to man to help heal us? It doesn't. I can speak from experience. I'm glad I don't fear and hate doctors anymore. If not for them, and medicine, I'd be in terrible condition.

I got a wonderful phone call yesterday. One of the folks who reads this here blog contacted Mary Martin about her Mortimer Moose pattern and said such nice things Mary just had to call me to say thanks. (She even checked out my blog and said it was beautiful and wants her son to see it so he can get ideas for her web site. I thought that was so sweet.) She's sending me her newest patterns-which will be appearing in the next Patternworks catalog.

For those who don't know, Mary Martin designs the cutest knit felted stuffed toy patterns. She also does wonderful Christmas stockings as well as other nice designs. Check her web site for more info.

Some time ago my daughter sent me this video. Thought I'd leave it with y'all today. It's pretty cute, and illustrates what can happen with the knitting addiction if you don't watch out.


video

I'm in the mood to make a Christmas ornament cover. So I'm gonna go dig out some beads.

Have a great day.

9/4/08

A Weekend in Seattle

Hi folks. I'm back. I had a wonderful trip. It's been several years since I've been to the land of my birth and childhood. I'd forgotten how incredibly green and lush it is there. Of course, it also reminded me of why I'm glad I don't live there anymore despite the green lushness (can you say "TOO MANY PEOPLE"?).

On Sunday, we acted like tourists. Doug, Ruth, Sarah, Frank, and I went to the Seattle Center, where we parked the car and took the Monorail downtown. We visited Pikes Place Market and wandered around a few of the interesting little shops in the area. It sure has changed a lot. Wow! It's 2 bucks to ride the Monorail 1 way. I remember when it was a dime. But, the market was the same as always. Exciting!

I found a bead shop in Pikes Place Market. It was a disappointment though. Hardly any beads. It was mostly jewelry for sale. All the good beads had been used up for that I think. They didn't have any seed beads or crystals that I could see, or anything unique and unusual either. I'd have thought it would be better than that, considering it's location.

After strolling around downtown, we caught the Monorail back to the Seattle Center and visited the Science Center. I love the Science Center. It's chock full of interesting things.

To be honest, on that day, I wasn't feeling well. The hernia was giving me quite a bit of pain, so when we got to the Science Center I spent most of my time trying out various benches and chairs, watching the rest of the patrons while my family walked around enjoying the various displays. The little kids were especially fun to watch. Their little faces so full of surprise and joy at the interesting things they were learning. It was quite entertaining.

At one bench, there was a chin-up bar near me. It was supposed to measure your endurance, or something like that. This really buff muscular young man, with a diamond in his ear, and a very cute chick on his arm, saw it and came over. He said to his girl "Watch this!" Then he proceeds to do several extremely impressive chin ups. He turns around, beaming, and says, "look what I did!?" to his girl. I, sitting on the bench wishing I was 20 years younger, smiled and said "Enjoy it while you can, kid!" He started laughing......

The highlight of the Science Center, for me, was the Butterfly House. You go inside a large room with tropical plants growing everywhere, and hundreds of beautiful butterflies of all shapes, sizes, and colors, flapping around you. It was so....awesome! They would actually land on me. One landed on Sweet Hubby and rode his shirt sleeve for a good 20 minutes. I spent almost an hour in there, and would have stayed longer if I could have.

We also had a family party the night before, to introduce us to the brides family. The nephew was worried that we would overwhelm them, being such a large and boisterous group and all, and her coming from a small quiet family. Not to worry. I talked to the brides father a bit. He thought it was all wonderful.

My nephew's wedding was very nice. I enjoyed it immensely. Of course there was the reception, which was awesome. There was a DJ who played a fantastic variety of music, and taught us all the basics of Swing dancing. It was so much fun! I also have to say, anyone who would hand out individual little perfect to-die-for-they-were-so-good cheesecakes instead of slices of wedding cake is okay in my book!


My nephew has found a wonderful girl to marry. She brings out the absolute best in him, which I think is amazing. We are all very glad to welcome her into the arms of this crazy family.

I did get a tiny bit of knitting done on my Bayerische sock #1. Here it is.


Got the results of my blood tests back. I got 2 surprises.

1) My cholesterol is down, to healthy levels. A battle I've been waging for 2 years, and I've finally WON! (Doin' the happy dance!)

2) I'm extremely anemic. Well, no wonder I haven't had any energy of late. They are worried that my hernia is leaking blood into the digestive track, so today I took another test to determine if that's the case or not. Personally, I don't think it's the case. I've been anemic before. I'm prone to it. So, back on the prescription iron supplements I go.

Tomorrow I meet with the surgeon, Dr. Holman, for the first time. I'm a bit nervous. Sweet Hubby has offered to go with me if I want. I think I want.

Have a nice evening.