Tracksy Web Stats A Knitter's Wonderland: May 2006

A Knitter's Wonderland

(To the tune of Winter Wonderland) Needles click, how they glisten, cozy sound, as you listen, they’re stuck everywhere, sit down if you dare, welcome to my knitter’s wonderland. Yarn abounds to overflowing, countless books increase my knowing. I need every bit; I care not a whit if there’s no pathway through my wonderland! In an evening I can make a mitten, start a shawl, a sweater, or a hat. But the question to ask any kitten, is “Do you think she’ll really finish that?”

Monday, May 29, 2006

No Actual Knitting Content

And I'll explain why in a minute. But in the meantime, we have cats in halters and ON LEASHES. Okay, maybe not totally happy cats but at least not totally freaked out cats either.

They wore their halters about two hours today and both got a little taste of being on a leash. Needless to say, Miss Blue was not at all enthralled by the adventure.
Here she is on the back patio, trying to lowcrawl with the leash on. It's the first time she's been outside the porch. Pretty big, scary world.

But she was walking and looking and then decided grass was not a good thing to have under her feet so we went back inside the porch. After removing the leash, she zipped inside the house, raced up the cat tree and promptly fell asleep on the top platform. Those 15 seconds outside just WORE her out!

On the other hand, our little Sugar Bear wasn't quite as afraid of the leash or the great outdoors.

She found things to sniff, things to look at, and tried to crawl into the lantana shrubs. She also was not interested in the grass underfoot. She didn't mind the bricks or the dirt around the shrubs, but that grass...I wonder if it felt prickly.

At one year old, she's the one who will adapt to all this and take it in stride. Miss Blue will probably never get used to the leash, though she's doing quite well with the halter (all things considered).

And here's a picture of Jim's birthday present. His birthday is tomorrow and we've talking about getting a grill for several years. Not that he'll be using on his birthday but it's nice to finally get one.

And I took some time to create a multi-strand Bible bookmark for my daily reading. I had six different bookmarkers I was juggling. It seemed just as easy to have one central ribbon. It took me weeks to plan out how to attach it to my Bible, then I realized I just needed to knot the ends, stick them down the spine and put the ribbons where I wanted them. Simplify, simplify!

Unfortunately these were very hard to get a good picture. What you can't see is the letter beads on either side of the colored bead in the middle. Just in case I forget what book is where. But I like the finished product and will be making another one (with fewer ribbons) for the study Bible I'm getting for my birthday. (Yes, Jim and I have birthdays only days apart but mine will be slightly compromised this year - no big deal).

And now the reason there is no actual knitting content. I was zipping along doing the front neck shaping on my side to side tee when I realized the stitch count was off. Not just off, but WAY off. I ended up having to rip back over 2 inches! So it's sitting in the knitting basket waiting for me to feel like working on it again. I hate frogging but I especially hate frogging when I could have been paying better attention.

Hope everyone had a fun, safe, happy Memorial weekend. Hug a vet, they deserve it!

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Knitty Committee Today!

We had a great turnout at Knitty Committee today. About 15 people showed up even though it was the beginning of Memorial Day weekend. And as usual I forgot my camera! I know Kay was taking pictures so hopefully she will post them on her blog.

This is such a great group. But it looks like they are trying to turn it all to the dark side. Bette is making socks, Sherry is making socks, Janet brought double points and she is making a premie hat but can socks be far behind....? I'm not making socks but I'd sure be able to WEAR socks if more of them showed up (not pressure, just a little hint).

Kay was working on a clapotee, Terri had a dishcloth going, Emily was working her cowl, Judy was crocheting an orange and black afghan, Kathy was helping her daughter with a Knit Wit which makes knitted tubes. I didn't see what Barbara, Laura, or Delores was working on. And I was working on my side to side tee-shirt. We were a busy group around the table knitting and chatting. It was great!

After KC, some of us wandered over to Gourmet Yarn just to see what was new. And wonder of wonders, they had charity knitting yarn for the Guild! It is always such a surprise to me, people are so generous. Of course it's all acrylic but that's what we want. At the last Guild meeting I noticed we were really going through the yarn so was very happy to get more.

Hope you are all having a fun, safe holiday weekend!

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Yet Another Dishcloth

Here is the latest DW dishcloth. These attest to how many dr appts I have that take forever! I believe this Sugar and Cream is called Denim Ombre. Anyway, it's pretty. No closeup. By now everyone should know what these look like!

I also finished the back of my side to side tee shirt and have started the front. Here is the neck and sleeve shaping.

And here you can see the length. I'll be adding about three inches of seed stitch at the bottom when I get it finished.

And here's a closeup of the stitches. I really like the slip stitch I added for texture. Even though it has a nice rainbow look to it, it just needed something.

Sugar has been hanging pretty close to me since the weekend. Guess she can feel the tension in the air with this next procedure coming up. She has pretty much been close no matter what I'm doing. Here she is watching me knit in my recliner. In about two seconds she decided the floor was no place for a cat and she was on top of my knitting in my lap. It's very hard to knit around a large black furball.

And talking about treatments, as most of you know, I'm scheduled for a Gamma Knife for the large tumor on June 1st. I'm still getting tests done to make sure everything is on track. Had a CT today to make sure there was no new tumor activity and am having another MRI done in the morning to rule out any other complications. I don't mind telling you, this is starting to get old!

But did manage to go look at a house to list and do a showing today. Will be listing a house tomorrow after dr appts.

Don't know when the next halter practice will be. Had planned to do it today but ended up too busy. Rachel asked how fitted the halters needed to be. I've found with other cats we've been able to train to a halter, if I can fit two fingers under the halter and it's just snug, that's perfect.

Sugar will be ready to try the leash the next time. Blueberry still needs to get used to the halter a little more before I freak her out with a long teal tail following her. And Rimsky just looks smug because he knows he doesn't need no stinkin' halter.

Monday, May 22, 2006

And the Halters Are On...

for the moment. The halters stayed on for a couple of hours this afternoon. Sugar was much more adaptable (though not happy). But she did display some unusual, even for her, behavior.

I was on the back porch, sorting yarn from the guild meeting and Sugar slept on the black plastic garbage bag. That had to be HOT!

She only moved once. And that was when I moved her to get the rest of the yarn out of the bag. I think she's going to be fine. We'll try out the leash towards the end of the week. She does walk kind of funny, like she thinks she's going to fall over but at least she's not as weird as Blue.

Blue lowcrawled next to the walls and refused to come out to the porch. I finally just picked her up and took her out with me. She wasn't amused.

She crouched next to the cat door and as soon as she saw I was back working with the yarn, she was back thru the door and up on the cat tree.

We have one of those misting systems around the screened in porch. I thought for sure the cats would enjoy it, but no. Rimsky liked it but he doesn't have to wear a halter..

Also finished another DW washcloth. I'll post the pic tomorrow. I'm too lazy to get up and take a picture. Actually I only got about five hours of sleep last night because of the steroid increase. And I am tired!

And if you didn't make it to guild you missed a good time! We had about 25 people show up. Some of the regulars were feeling under the weather due to allergies - and we still had a good turnout. Four brand new knitters, two who learned last month and had come back, plus our regular group.

If you have never come to guild, come. Our programs are very interesting, we can teach you to knit, and we have a great time.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

I Have a Dream

I have always wanted to take the cats with us when we go on day trips or overnight or weekends just to get out of town. To take cats ANYWHERE (because they think "anywhere" just means the vet), they will have to be able to wear halters and be on leashes. Well, except Rimsky. He is way too old to take anywhere BUT the vet's.

So my new idea was to start getting Sugar and Blue used to wearing halters. As it just so happens, I have two halters that fit them perfectly, after some adjustments. Here is Sugar in her jaunty, purple, small dog size, halter.

Of course she didn't like it at first (not so sure she likes it now) but after some rolling, backing up, and finally giving up, she adapted and wore it without a problem about an hour.

We were going to wear it again today but for reasons I will soon be explaining, we will probably try it again on Saturday. It still needs a little tighening to fit her better but she was being so good I hated to mess much more with her. Next week we will be adding the leash.

And here is Blueberry.

Notice she is NOT wearing her lovely teal halter. She is rolling around after being chased all over the house and she apparently believes she has won.

Here she is laughing at Sugar (who is still wearing her halter, btw). I tried twice to get the halter on Blue. Both times it was too big and she zipped right out of it. Now she won't come near me. So we are waiting until I can calm her fears, i.e. fake her out, that the halter episode is a thing of the past and I can actually get close enough to touch her.

Yes, I know it's mean to try to fake out cats, but I really think once we get past the scary halter thing, the scary leash thing, the scary car thing, she will LOVE traveling. Yes, yes, hope springs eternal!

The steroids have kicked in with all their glorious vigor. I'm sleeping four hours a night and eating 90 times a day. Makes for a kind of foggy afternoon but as soon as I take my afternoon steroid I'm good till about 9 pm.

I'm about half way through the back of my side to side tee. Will post a pic when I get a little more done so you can see how it's turning out. And hopefully by Saturday I'll have pictures of a grey blur in a teal blur. I know they say you can't out-stubborn a cat but I'm hoping I can at least out-fake one.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Let Them Eat Cake!

Today has been an interesting day to say the least! We had the second consultation this morning with the radiology oncologist for the Gamma Knife treatment. Everything ran right on time! So I go NO knitting done - can you believe it! So no photo content tonight. I don't know about you but I could go without seeing another one of those dishclothes.

This doctor is going to be gone on May 21st so they've moved my appt to June 1st with all assurances that the extra days will make no difference in the treatment. Still looking at an almost all day extravaganza but I'll have drugs and probably nap most of the day. She said I could bring knitting but why knit when in 24 hours I'll probably be tearing the whole thing out again anyway.

And about the cake - I haven't been able to eat cake in almost a year and a half. This may not seem like a big deal to most, but I LOVE cake. It's about my favorite comfort treat (right after vanilla ice cream which I haven't been able to eat for the same amount of time).

And it probably wasn't even real cake. We went to a Hunan Buffet where I was able to pick and choose quite a few items for dinner. Then I saw they had 1" lemon cake squares. So I tried one with some fake ice cream. AND I WAS ABLE TO EAT BOTH. I had three lemon squares and one chocolate square of cake plus 2 half bowls of fake ice cream! If I had know, I would never have filled up on regular food. Is God good or what!

So I told Jim he would have to start eating lunch there so he could bring a take home box of a few cake squares! He wasn't quite as excited about the prospect as I was but I'm sure I'll see cake once in a while now. And I just hope it tastes good every time. One of the problems I have with the steroids is flavors change from one time to the next. But at least I had cake tonight!

Sunday, May 14, 2006

An Interesting Weekend

I spent most of yesterday sorting through yarn for the guild. We have been gifted with so much! I wanted to put the thinner yarns together to make them easier to find. We have a ton of Paton's Canadiana, perfect for layettes. We also have some worsted weight for the larger hats. So it was kind of fun. I just like to organize things.

I also spent some time trying to figure out how to line my big felted tote bag. I had found a tote bag I'd made years ago (I sewed it - wow) and thought maybe I could adapt it to the felted tote. After ripping off the handles and doing some adjusting, I realize I could make it fit if I TOTALLY resewed it. Okay, that's not going to happen at this point in time. I was so disgusted I put both of them in the closet to be dealt with later!

Then today I ended up on the south side presenting a contract, then later doing some showings. I kept telling people it was Mother's Day but since I'm not a mother and we don't normally take this day off, working was okay.

Thought I'd show you the side to side tee shirt in progress. This yarn is called Santana and is a rayon, acrylic blend. I really like the way the colors change making it look striped. I'm just starting the neck shaping.

I took it out back to get a better light. I don't know if that helped or not. But here's a closer look at the color changes.

I added the reverse knit line for a little texture cause I thought just the color changes were boring. I think this is going to be very nice when finished. As it turns out, you make the back then the front, then sew the side seams. I had forgotten that.

Also, spent Friday at OU Medical Center, getting info on the Gamma Knife, which I'll tell you about in a second. But you know what you can do when you sit around waiting for drs all morning:

Does this look familar? Here's a close up of the colors:

This one is called Potpourri Ombre. I still have several balls of colors I haven't tried yet. I'm getting ready to knit and felt a little pouch JUST to carry one ball of cotton and the #8 addi circs.

Anyway, taking the items outdoors into the sun makes a difference I think. But it freaked the two little girls out. I was going out the screened porch door to take pictures and they just couldn't imagine that door opening.

Sugar is watching the cat door and Blue is sitting at the back door. They both sat there until I came in and closed the back door. Then they both went out the cat door. Cats are TOO strange.

So my big event, the Gamma Knife, is May 25th. I have to be there at 5:30 am!! The procedure takes about 6 - 8 hours of mostly waiting between each step. I saw the neuro-physicist on Friday and on Tues I meet with the radiology oncologist. These are the two people who will plan the right placement and doseage for the treatment. The one on Friday said I was an excellent candidate for this treatment and I have an 80 - 90% rate of complete removal of the tumors.

I also got to see the MRI's. The one when they thought they were mostly gone and the one from last week showing they were back. It was very interesting. They slice your head starting at the chin, then through your nose, then eyes, then the white and grey spots where the tumors are.

And the steroids have kicked in big time. Back to Olympic eating and puffy to the max. But my taste buds have come back (thank you steroids) so eating is not too bad.

Well, I'm off to work on my tee-shirt.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

I Obviously Need A Better Plan

than thinking socks could ward off tumors. Remember a couple of weeks ago I announced I was cancer-free. Well as it turns out. I am not. Those two little tumors in my head are back. And growing. And I'm not a happy camper in the least. This is starting to get old and is making me cranky. So tomorrow we go to OU Medical Center to find out about the Gamma Knife. And not just to find out about it but to get scheduled for it as soon as possible.

And what can you knit in two hours (that's how long we sat around at Mercy this morning)?:

What a surprise! It's another one of those darned dishclothes! This one is called Newport. Here is a close up:

The YI was out on the back porch hoping for another bird to accidently slip under the porch door so she pretty much ignored my picture taking. Early this afternoon, I noticed a little sparrow frantically trying to find its way out of the screened in porch. All three cats were glued in place as they waited for it to wear out and come down to a closer level. We herded them inside and Jim opened the screen door. That little bird was out like a flash. Of course the cats were also back on the porch in a flash, trying to figure out where their entertainment had gone.

So Sugar has been out there almost every moment since. Hope springs eternal, I guess. But I do have a picture of Blue. I had laid my prayer shawl on the bed (made for me by Tracy Terrell) and Blue discovered it. She burrowed in, turned around, and fell asleep. Here she is just waking up:

Seems like the only pictures I take of her are when she's just waking up. But when she's awake she won't hold still for a picture!

I've also been working on the side to side tee shirt but don't have enough done for a good picture. And of course tomorrow I'll be carrying yet another dishcloth just because it's good, mindless knitting.

And I'm thinking maybe I just need some more handmade socks...It couldn't hurt!

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Thursday Again

And I've made two more DW's. It's an addiction, a sickness, an easy, mindless two hour knit.

The dark one is "Jewels," the pink one is "Strawberry Cream." I finished one at Carolyn's yesterday. I have to start carrying my camera with me. She has a new puppy. He is just the cutest thing! He's a Cavalier King Charles spaniel.

And since this is the full extent of my knitting adventures, I thought I'd do the A-Z list.

Accent: Every so often, someone will ask if I’m from back east because of my accent. I say ‘ya’ll’ a lot, where do they get the back east accent?!?!?!

Booze: I don’t drink, haven’t in eons.

Chore I Hate: House cleaning but I can’t do it so we have a house cleaner come twice a month (chemical induced asthma – really!) I hate grocery shopping but Jim does that (and has since we’ve been married). I guess I don’t have a chore I hate.

Dog or Cat: Three cats – 14 yr old Rimsky, 6 yr old Blueberry, and 1 yr old Sugar.

Essential Electronics: Computer, PDA, Cell phone, Inhouse Wireless Internet, Cable Modem

Favorite Color: Purple, any shade

Gold or Silver: Mostly gold but I like silver once in a while.

Hometown: Tonasket, Washington

Inner Sanctum: Knitting, it is a real stress reliever.

Job Title: Knitting Realtor, Historic Homes Specialist.

Kids: Do the fur babies count?

Living arrangements: Hubby and three spoiled cats.

Most admirable trait: I don’t think I have one

Number of Places I’ve Lived: Five – Tonasket, Spokane, and Tacoma Wa; Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; OKC, OK

Overnight hospital stays: Three - when I was seven to get my tonsils out, in Oct for my surgery, in Jan because of the head thing.

Phobias: Spiders

Quote: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, lean not on your own understanding but in all your ways acknolwedge Him and He will direct your paths.” Prov 3:5,6

Religion: Full Gospel

Siblings: Three brothers and two sisters. Can you guess I’m the oldest?

Time I wake up: Around 7:30 am

Unusual talent or skill: Organizing, negotiating, delegating.

Vegetables I refuse to eat: Okra and lima beans

Worst habit: Impatience/bossiness

X-rays: Several. Broke my arm and then my hand when I was young. Have had several more over this last year.

Yummy foods I make: I used to make a wonderful cheesecake, pavlova, and crème brulee

Zest for Hobbies: Making up my own knitting patterns. If you can make a swatch you can rule the world (at least your knitting world).