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


WIP Wednesday November 30, 2011

Here's a WIP Wednesday post for ya.

I'm working on some fingerless mitts for my dad. Just a basic stockinette pattern. Nothing fancy. I'm using some dark navy blue Cascade 220 Superwash wool. I love this yarn. It is SO nice to work with. This is just the first mitt. It's knitting up very quickly.

This is the cowl I started and then decided to save for the plane ride to Maui.

The yarn is Melody superwash fingering weight from Jojoland yarns. This is the first time I've worked with it and I like it very much. It moves in the needles and hands very smoothly.

This morning I went to Yarnies and while there I picked up another ball of the Melody so I can make a matching pair of fingerless mitts to go with the cowl. Of course, I'm assuming I have enough time to get that much done before Christmas. Heh heh.

We're leaving for Maui in 2 days. I can hardly stand it I'm so excited!

If you're interested in participating in WIP Wednesday, please join us.

Live long and prosper. \\//


Owlings II

Another Christmas gift finished. Owlings fingerless mitts.

Owlings II

Pattern: Owlings by Kerrie James
Size: Womens medium

Yarn: Cascade 220 Superwash in 874 Medium Brown Heather.
Content: 100% Superwash Wool
Needles: Addi Turbo Circular size 5.

Cast on: November 9, 2011
Bound off: November 27, 2011

Updated comments: 12/27/2013 Apparently someone posted a link to this page and it went viral amongst the knitters. This note is for them. This is not MY pattern. If you read above, it is someone else's design and I have linked to it. It is no longer a free pattern. It was at the time I made these mitts. I've also noticed the designer is committing copyright fraud, so I would be cautious about buying the pattern. She can not dictate how many items a person can make from her pattern, nor can she require a paid license to use the pattern to make things to sell. Doing that is copyright fraud. That is because the mitts are a useful item in the USA and are not copyrightable. You can't license something that isn't copyrightable. Also, licenses are for trademarks. Not copyright. See Pattern Copyright

Comments: As I did before, I made some modifications to this pattern. I made the wrist part a little longer and  added a thumb gusset. 

I sewed on size 8 seed beads in chartreuse for the eyes.

I made a new hand model cuz the old one was falling apart. I acquired a much thicker piece of cardboard that is white on both sides (the old hand model was bright orange and yellow on one size cuz I cut it from the lid of a shoe box.)


I thought of some more Christmas gifts that need to be knit. As I mentioned in my last post, I've cast on for a cowl. It will be a Christmas gift for a friend. I am hoping I will have enough yarn left over for a matching pair of fingerless mitts.

I also cast on some fingerless mitts for my Dad. It occurred to me that he could probably use a pair. I'm doing them in a dark navy blue superwash wool.

I am enjoying these quick knit projects. I'm thinking about starting a pair of socks to take with me to Maui-as a project. Not finished. I feel the need to take a couple projects to work on. It would be nice to sit on the beach and knit for awhile. I also want to knit on the plane. It's a 6 hour flight. I need something to do!

Haven't seen any wildlife since a couple days before Thanksgiving. No moose or deer. The turkeys that were hanging around left. I think they knew that Thanksgiving was coming. It's hunting season now in this area too. I'm hearing gunshots almost every day. Especially from neighbors doing target practice. Nothing says Happy Holidays like the neighbors firing off their guns (sarcasm here). One of the drawbacks of living in the wilds.

Live long and prosper. \\//


Simple Woman's Daybook for November 27, 2011

November 27, 2011

Outside my window...
The sky is dark and grey. The trees have lost their leaves for the winter, and all is quiet out there. I see frost on my car. The cold has returned.

I am thinking...
that I wish I could enjoy my sleep as well as my grandkitty Lindy.

I am thankful for...
my house. It may be small, but it's warm and cozy and keeps me sheltered from all the nasty weather.

From the kitchen...
UGH. It's a mess. Dishes weren't done last night.

I am wearing...
I am being lazy this morning. I am wearing my black nightshirt with the lace trim around the neck, and my new leopard print fuzzy robe. I bought the robe to wear after my surgery cuz my purple fuzzy robe is looking kind of raggedy. I'll get dressed after I'm done writing and posting this.

I am creating...
Still working on the Wheat Rib sock pattern. I think I will make a tutorial on how to do the stitch pattern for the beginner knitters out there who might have some difficulty with it. I am also working on the Owling mitts, the snowman cross stitch, and Luis the seahorse. I've started a new knitting project. A cowl for a Christmas present. I'm thinking about taking it on the plane when we fly to Maui next weekend. It's one of those projects that would be perfect for a plane ride.

I am going...
to Maui! We leave next friday. We're driving over to Seattle on friday, spending the night at a hotel across the street from the Sea-Tac airport, then boarding our plane to Maui early the next morning. I can hardly wait. Temps have been in the 70's and 80's there all this past week.

I am reading...
I finished Invisible last night. It was kind of a disappointment to me. There were aspects of the plot I didn't like. The author uses this mystery novel to proselytize the Christian religion. Not what I read a mystery novel for. Other than that, it was fairly entertaining though I almost didn't finish it, but I wanted to know who killed the murder victim. This book was a freebie for my Nook. I'm glad I didn't have to waste money on it.

Now I've started Too Close to Home by Lynette Eason, another murder mystery. It was a Nook freebie too. I've not read anything by this author either. I figured since it was free I'd give her a try.

I am hearing...
a train going by. We live near some railroad tracks. Trains go by fairly often. Sometimes as often as every 10 minutes depending on the time of day. The track is a main line to Canada. Most of the time I don't even hear them when I'm inside the house. I've become used to them.

Around the house...
it's looking pretty good. I've been putting up Christmas decorations this weekend. Ruth and I got the tree done yesterday. I've put out some of my silk flower arrangements I've made with poinsettias and whatnot.

One of my favorite things...
is tinsel garland. I've acquired quite a collection of it. Some of it is quite fancy.  I think I'll see if I can get Ruth to help me put them up today. I like to put them around all the doorways in the house. It really makes things festive when they're up.

A few plans for the rest of the week:
Packing, packing, packing! It's all that's left to do before the trip. I also plan to go to Rathdrum Knitalong on Tuesday, and Yarnies on Wednesday. I have my blood test on Wednesday afternoon. On Thursday I've got an appointment with my surgeon for a check up. This one will determine if I can swim in Maui or not. I hope he says yes.

Here is a picture for thought I am sharing...
My lovely tree for 2011.

Live long and prosper. \\//

If you want to join The Simple Woman's Daybook, click here.



I had a wonderful Thanksgiving. Everything went very well. I sort of puttered through out the day working on one part of the meal for a bit, then resting, then working on some more, then resting. The house cleaning got done the day before so I didn't have to worry about it. I even had time to knit. It was one of the most relaxing Thanksgiving meal preparations I've ever had. My turkey turned out fantastic. Well, everything did. We had a wonderful meal. I was pretty tired by the end of the day, but not excessively so.

On Wednesday I dropped into Steins Family Foods in Rathdrum, the grocery store nearest to me, to pick up a few last minute things and get some flowers for the table. The florist at that store is extremely talented. I just love her work. Anyway, here's what I brought home. I think it's absolutely gorgeous!

Besides cooking and knitting, I also uploaded a new pattern to my pattern blog. It's for a hat made with the popular furry yarns. Go here for more info.

Fuzzy Hat

I've been working on a pair of fingerless mitts, to be a Christmas present. I've got the first one done, and I'm halfway through the second one. I'm using the Owlings pattern but, as usual, putting in a few of my own modifications.

The biggest complaint I have about this pattern is there's no thumb gusset. It's so easy to put one in, and they fit so much better with it.

Today we got out the Christmas decorations from storage. Ruth and I put up the tree, with it's lights. Tomorrow we'll add the ornaments. I am super happy to have it up now. It brightens things up so nicely.

All that snow we had? It's almost completely gone. The snow I was expecting in my last post never arrived. Instead, a pineapple express blew in. We've had blasting winds, rain, and warm temperatures. It actually got up to 55 on Wednesday. The snow melted like crazy. I kind of hope it stays like this for awhile. I don't want to get a lot of heavy snow while we're gone on our trip because if the load gets too much on the roof, we won't be here to shovel it off. We kind of worry about that when we travel in the winter time.

Here's something that's just plain funny. My cat, Chenille, has this little quirk. She likes to store her favorite balls in the water dish. This morning there were four of them in it, and she also added a twisty tie and a piece of plastic she's found somewhere.

She uses the water dish as her personal toy box. Such a silly girl!

Live long and prosper. \\//


Happy Thanksgiving

To all of you who celebrate it, Happy Thanksgiving! I hope you have a fantastic day.

To all of you who don't celebrate it, Live Long and Prosper. \\//


Weekend Projects

As promised, I'm blogging about what else I was working on over the weekend. It was a cold and very snowy weekend. We got 8 inches of new snow. So I had no desire to go anywhere. I decided to see if I'm recovered enough from the surgery to do some beading. I worked on Luis. Before the surgery I was embellishing the front and back with the swarovski crystals. I actually finished that step, but then discovered I'd managed to slant some of them in the wrong direction. You want all the crystals to slant the same direction. So over the weekend  I did a little frogging and fixing. Luis is starting to look decidedly Seahorse-ish.

Christmas is coming soon. As usual, my thoughts turned to the cross stitch picture of the little snowmen that I started 6 years ago (good heavens!). I found myself longing to work on it, so I dug it out and worked on snowman 10 of the 12.

It feels good to be cross stitching again.

Yesterday I worked on the Owling fingerless mitts I'm making for a Christmas gift. I'll have a pic of that project in my next post.

We got rain last night. Lots of rain. Such a surprise. We were expecting a couple inches of snow. It knocked down the snow we had a couple inches. It's all wet, slippery, and gloppy out there now. Tonight we're supposed to dip back down into the frigid zone and get snow again.

Two very young turkeys have taken up residence in our yard the last 3 days. They were born earlier this year. I know this because of their coloring and the fact they still have feathers on their heads. They discovered the Parkarosa Bird Buffet and can't seem to get enough of it. Sweet Hubby blew a nice trail all the way around the house with the snow blower (for the cats) and they've been hanging around in it. This morning they were out front munching on bird seed. Sweet Hubby complimented me on the lovely animated Thanksgiving decorations I put up. Hee hee!

Speaking of Thanksgiving, we are having dinner at our house this year. There will only be 8 of us. My brother-in-law Dan and his family are coming over. I think I can handle that. Especially with Sweet Daughter here to help me. I went shopping for the turkey and fixings yesterday. I wanted a fairly large turkey-I was thinking 20 pounds minimum, but the largest one they had was 17, so I settled for that. It's plenty big enough for 8 people. I was just kind of hoping for a bit more leftovers than we'll get.

I also bought fixin's for The Day After Thanksgiving Dinner. It's a Park family tradition. We all gather at Dan and Sue's house the friday after Thanksgiving and have a huge pot luck. We bring our leftovers (that we're willing to share anyway) and something new to add to them. I'm going to make my well liked Strawberry Jello salad for the occasion.

I have a strong desire to put the Christmas tree up before Thanksgiving. It's the dark. It's getting to me. (I have to turn the lights on around 3:30 now.) I don't have time. Got too much to do before the big dinner. I did talk Sweet Hubby into putting the lights up on the house though. I helped him. It is so nice to have a bit of color out there now.

Today is Tuesday, so I have Rathdrum Knitalong. I'm looking forward to it. I've got an idea to propose to the group. I want to do a lesson on fixing mistakes. I've come up with a swatch that everybody could make with mistakes knit into them on purpose and I'll teach how to fix them. Dropped stitches, a purl where a knit should go, how to unknit one stitch at a time, how to rip and put the stitches back on the needles, stuff like that. They need to know this stuff so they can fix mistakes without my help between meetings.

Live long and prosper.\\//


Wheat Rib Socks are Done

I have not been idle. In fact, I've been quite busy. I finished the Wheat Rib socks.

Wheat Rib Socks

Pattern: Under construction by Me.

Yarn: Fortissima Schoeller Esslinger by Schoeller Stahl (discontinued)
Color: #21
Content: 75% Superwash Wool/25% Polyamid

Yarn: Trail Socks by Fleece Artist yarns
Color: Wine
Content: 80% Superwash Merino/20% Nylon

Needles: Addi Turbo Circular size 2.

Size: Mens Medium (size 8 shoe)

Cast on: August 1, 2011
Bound off: November 19, 2011

Comments: These are knitted from the toe up. I designed (created?) the Wheat Rib stitch pattern.

I usually prefer knitting socks from the cuff down, but the stitch pattern won't work in reverse. So I had to adapt.

They also feature a short rowed heal.

I did a 3 by 1 twisted rib for the cuff. I just adore twisted rib. It has just a little bit more oomph aesthetically than plain rib.

 I am currently writing up the pattern with plans to post it on my pattern blog. I need to test knit it some more before I'm confident enough to let it go public.

This is not the only thing I've been working on. I will tell you about the rest in my next post.

Live long and prosper.\\//


Bucks Playing

I had a nice weekend, I guess. Went to a Funeral on Saturday. It was someone I didn't know, so I was spared the crying and feeling wretched part, which was nice. But it was a friend of my husbands family, which was sad. Anyway, that was the big activity for Saturday. I detest funerals.

On Sunday Sweet Hubby and I went into Coeur d'Alene to visit Costco. We needed a few things. Man, is that a big store when you're not quite recovered from surgery. I was so exhausted when we got back to the car. I just wanted to lay right down on the ground and take a nap. I expected to feel really awful on Monday cuz I was certain I'd done too much. I felt fine Monday. That was a nice surprise. I feel fine today too.

Sunday afternoon we had some visitors. A flock of 10 Turkeys came to enjoy the Parkarosa Bird Buffet.

It looked like there was a big hen and a bunch of not quite full grown ones-probably were hatched last spring. Here's a close up of one.

You may have noticed the snow in those pictures. Yes. Four inches fell between Friday and Sunday morning. It's been slowly melting ever since. It's been so cold during the day. Upper 30's and low 40's at our house. It feels very winterish.

Today we had a couple of Whitetail bucks visit us. I saw them first as they were grazing on grass at the bottom of the hill, near the satellite dish.

They both raised their heads and looked at each other for a minute.

Then they started banging their antlers together.

They weren't going at it hard enough to be a serious fight. Just a bit of gentle poking and pushing, so I figure they were probably just playing with each other.

After a few minutes of that, they stopped and went back to munching on grass. Eventually they wandered off into the woods together.

I've never seen anything like that before. I'm glad I had my camera so I could capture it for posterity.

I've gone back to working on the second Wheat Rib sock. I finished the heel and have started the leg. I've got about 2 inches of leg done now. I need these socks to be done before Christmas cuz they are slated to be someones present, so I better get my rear in gear!

I also have started a pair of Owling fingerless mitts in a light heather brown for another Christmas present. It is probably going to be the extent of the Christmas knitting for me this year. I don't feel like making much more than that. Especially since I did so much gift knitting for folks last year.

Tomorrow I am planning on going to Yarnies. It will be my first time back since the surgery.

Right now I've got a load of laundry in the dryer that is calling for me. So I better get to it.

Only 2 and a half weeks left until the trip to Maui.

Live long and prosper. \\//


Seed Stitch Striped Mittens for Men

At last, it's all done. My first mitten design. It's for guys, or ladies with big hands.

Seed Stitch Striped Mittens for Men

Pattern: Seed Stitch Striped Mittens for Men by Me.

Yarn: Clarks "O.N.T," Wondura (discontinued)
Color: Dark Green
Content: 100% Orlon Acrylic

Needles: Addi Turbo Circular size 5.

Size: Mens Medium (8.5 inch hand circumference, 11 inches long)

Cast on: September 30, 2011
Bound off: November 9, 2011

Comments: I started out with the intent to make stockinette mittens, but decided to make it interesting by incorporating some seed stitch stripes. I've written up the pattern  and you can find it, free, on my pattern blog.

I love the texture. They knit up quickly too because they're made with worsted weight yarn.

The pattern features a knit in thumb gusset for comfort and fit.

For extra warmth, but ease in care, I recommend superwash wool.

Christmas is coming. They'd make a nice gift for the man in your life. Or, better yet, knit a pair for charity in memory of someones beloved fur kid.

I'm donating this pair to Knit Wits in memory of Tuxie, my friend Judy's pug, who passed away yesterday. Rest in peace Tuxie. You will be missed.

Let me know how you like the pattern.

Live long and prosper. \\//


A Very Sweet Gesture

Last month, when Tommy died, I posted the news in the Sighthound Splendor group on Ravelry. One of the Ravelry members, kerrylinnet, saw my post and asked if she could knit a pair of mittens for charity in Tommy's name. I think that is one of the sweetest things anyone has every asked me. Of course, I said yes. Recently she let me know that she finished them and posted them in her Ravelry notebook. I have her permission to share the picture with y'all here on my blog. Here is the pair of mens sized mittens knit in Tommy's honor and donated to the Global Knit organization.

Thank you so much for this kerrylinnet. You have touched my heart and honored my precious little boy in a beautiful way.

Ravelers are such wonderful people.

Live long and prosper. \\//


WIP Wednesday November 9, 2011

How about a WIP Wednesday post for today? I've been working on the mitten pattern. I finished the hand part of the second mitten last night.

I finished the top differently than the first one. I wanted to see if I like a kitchener stitch finish, or the gathered finish. Here's how the two look.

I think I prefer the kitchener stitch finish. So that is what I'll put in the pattern. I should fix the gathered mitten so it matches the kitchener stich one. However, I hid the tail so well I can't figure out where it is to undo it. So I'm thinking about just leaving things as is and hoping no one notices.

I think I've found all the mistakes in the pattern I've written while test knitting it, but I'm not feeling real confident after what happened with the Rainbow for My Hands pattern. I really hate having errors in my patterns. Well, I hate errors in all patterns, but especially my own.

So, you may be wondering how I'm doing? Okay. Healing, slowly. I went out on Monday and did too much and paid for it on Tuesday.

First, I had my post-op appointment with the surgeon. He said they tested the items removed from me and there were no cancer cells or pre-cancer cells found. That is always good news. He also asked me if I knew how much my uterus weighed? (That, in fact, was the second thing he said to me after saying "Hello Linda.") Good heavens! I will never be able to live this down. I think my dismay must have showed on my face cuz he then went on to reassure me there was no way they could have known before the surgery that it was that large cuz the ultrasound didn't really show it. Sigh. Other than that, the appointment went well. I'm coming along nicely.

I do not need to be on hormone therapy even though my ovaries are gone now. I am not having hot flashes, so I am home free. The doctor thinks I was far enough through perimenopause that it's had no effect. I say, yay!

After that my daughter had an appointment with her counselor, so I sat in the waiting room for an hour waiting for her. I took my Nook along and read rather than knitting.

Then I went to the DMV office to renew the license on my car. It expired last month but in all the surgery fray I forgot to take care of it. I got lucky, there was NO LINE at the DMV. I was fully prepared to have to wait 2 hours. So that was a very nice surprise.

After that we went to Walmart for a few things. Our local Walmart is a huge superstore. So, even though I only needed a few things, they were at opposite ends of the store making for a lot more walking than I should have done. I was exhausted by the time we got back to the car, so we came home and I had a wee nap.

Tuesday I felt wretched. I ached from head to toe. Even my hair ached, and I felt sort of sickish. So I took it easy, except for the trip into Rathdrum to attend the Knitalong meeting at the library. I enjoyed it, but it sure wore me out. I took a nap when I got home.

Today I have an appointment at 2 to get my hair cut. It's the only thing I'm doing today, aside from puttering around the house. My hair looks so awful. I will be glad to get it snipped back into shape.

If you're interested in participating in WIP Wednesday, please join us.

Live long and prosper. \\//

Edit to Add:

I forgot to tell you how much my uterus weighed. 3.5 lbs. Yup. I lost 3.5 lbs having surgery. Actually, more, cuz that doesn't count the fallopian tubes, ovaries, cervix, and assorted sundry fibroid tumors floating around. Not a diet I would recommend though. It's rather painful.


Random Thoughts

I'm having a brain fog kind of day. In other words, I feel like my brain is in a fog. Every so often it clears up a little bit, then goes foggy again. I know it's the drugs from the surgery. They take time to get through my system. It's still a bit disturbing though. The fog makes it hard for me to concentrate, think, and stand up without feeling like I'm gonna fall over. I have to really think things through before I make a move. There's a lot less pain in my body now. That is a good thing.

Yesterday it was a beautiful sunny day, although very cold. The high was 39F. I dug out the winter coat and went outside for a bit anyway. I even walked to the mailbox and back. It was nice feeling the sunshine on my face. The birds seemed to be in a joyful mood, swooping, flashing by, and twittering themselves into a very loud chorus. I think they were enjoying the sunshine too.

Today it's grey, cold, drab, and silent out there. No breeze, not a single bird tweet. It feels like the whole world is holding its breath, waiting for something awful to happen.

Snow is in today's weather forecast. Just like that, autumn is done. Winter has arrived. There is no pussyfootin' around with the seasons in north Idaho. No gentle drift from one to the other. One day it's autumn, the next it's winter. It even smells like winter out there. I went out and walked to the mailbox and back anyway.

I also got daughter Ruth to help me fill up the bird feeders and put out the suet cages. It's time to open the Parkarosa Bird Buffet for the season. Belly up to the bar, birds! The seed's on me!

After coming back into the house and getting warm again, I folded and put away some laundry. Wow, did that ever wear me out. Such a simple task. So much energy expended.

Now I'm working on this blog post and watching Season 3/second disk of Boston Legal. You know, there are an awful lot of former Star Trek stars in this show. In the episode I'm watching right now we've got Captain Kirk (TOS), Odo (DS9), Quark (DS9), and Neelix (VGR).

I have been working on the heel of the second Wheat Rib sock. I'm writing and knitting at the same time. I knit a bit, write it down, knit a bit, write it down. It's a slow process trying to work through the brain fog. The next step will be to type up what I've written on the computer. Eventually, I'm going to have this pattern done.

Live long and prosper. \\//



Is anyone out there?

Whew! Yes, I'm still alive! And I'm finally starting to feel halfway human. It's been a difficult past week and a half and I'm so glad to be past it.

So, the drama over robots or not was still going on when I arrived at the hospital early that Friday morning. In fact, the nurses weren't even sure how to prepare me for surgery. The confusion scared the you-know-what out of me. I was left laying on a bed, anxiety levels high (not even a Xanax!) for almost 2 hours. Finally, my doctor showed up, obviously quite frustrated, and told me the insurance company had changed its mind again and were refusing robotic. This fight was going on between the hospital and the insurance company. Not him and the insurance. Something about a charge the hospital wanted to add on for using their facilities or something stupid like that. In the interest of getting things done, he was chucking the whole robot idea and doing a regular laparoscopic hysterectomy. He assured me he'd done lots and lots of them and I'd be fine. I put my trust in him. 30 minutes later I was all hooked up and on my way to the operating room.

I'm told the surgery took quite a bit longer than expected, but all went very well. I was also told, many times, as the night in the hospital progressed, that I had the biggest uterus they'd ever seen. It was epic! Doctors and nurses were all coming to my room to tell me how they'd never seen such a big one and....... all very enthusiastic and excited to say the least. One doctor-with his hands demonstrating "It was THIS big!". Clearly, these folks enjoy their work. They offered to show me a pic. I declined. All I wanted was more morphine, thank you very much.

My ovaries and tubes are gone too. I will never have problems with the baby making equipment again. Yay!

Now, I'm cold all the time. I used to be cold all the time. Then one day a few years ago, I remember feeling like a switch had been turned on and I was hot all the time. That was when the perimenopause got started, along with lots of hot flashes. Things must be reverting back to normal. I welcome being able to wear long sleeves again in winter time.

I am not taking hormones. I assume I don't need them. I'll ask about that next week when I see my surgeon for a follow up appointment.

I have not done much of anything. It hit me harder than I was expecting. My brain has been in a perpetual fog. I'm wondering how many times I've called my surgeons office to schedule my follow up appointment. I know at least twice, cuz they told me so. I hate what happens to me when knocked out with drugs.

I've watched a lot of dvd's, and some really bad television, (Who decided weddings are supposed to be so painfully theatrical?), but mostly I've been sleeping, walking, sleeping, trying to eat, and sleeping some more. I'm finally totally off the painkillers, and my appetite is coming back.

Now, to get back to doing fun things, like knitting, and beading.

The weather is beautiful today. The sun is shining and the sky is bright blue. The leaves look so beautiful in their oranges, yellows, and browns. But, it's frigidly cold out there, and snow is predicted for the coming weekend. Winter will soon be here.