Monthly Archives: June 2007

Blogging al fresco *

I’m laying low today…….enjoying the quiet of an empty house and no commitments, and trying to keep a sinus headache at bay.  I’ve been fighting this pain behind my left eye for days, and I’ve come to the conclusion that I’ve more than likely got a raging sinus infection going on.  For now, I’m doing what I tell my patients to do; rest, lots of water, sudafed and motrin.  If that fails, tomorrow morning I will ask my office mate for antibiotics.  I suspect that the instigating factor to this particular plague is the neat fact that what I’ve always believed to be an ash tree in my backyard is evidently some sort of cottonwood, that has chosen this year to drop a blanket of fluff over it’s territory.  What a mess.

Estes was great, as expected.  All of the prompt among you have already posted reports and photo’s galore, so I may just leave it at that.  I came home with bobbins for the Ashford and the Lendrum (which I took along and spun on while camping—-pure bliss, I have to tell you.  Ellen has pics on her blog), a small bit of Llama in a pretty colorway that is magic to watch on the wheel, and two bumps of Bond/Corriedale that I want to play with.  What I didn’t come home with was a drum carder (verrrry close) or a loom (verrrrry, verrrrrry close).  Logic won out, thinking to myself “shoot Lisa, you don’t have time or energy to knit up the stuff you have, when are you going to have time to weave?” and “I can always rent a drum carder to process 1 pound of alpaca!”   The other thought was that these are not fesitval only products and I can really pick up one any time I like.  Of course, I will not be able to use the excuse that I’m buying it for Brad for Fathers Day 🙂

As is always the case, it was very hard to leave the park.  Our final morning, Brad and I were both commenting on how we wish we could just stay, perhaps call in sick and stay the rest of the week.  Being the responsible (cough) grown-ups that we are, we packed up and headed home, stopping for coffee, lunch and shopping on the way.  Once home, life takes over and before you know it another weekend rolls around and I’m wishing I was back in my litttle camper in the mountains. 

I’m still shlogging through the baby blanket—–last night, a bunch of us from work were together for a bbq, and I got a chance to cuddle with the little gal who will someday get the blanket.  She is ever so tiny and petite, and such a sweet little thing.  She came almost a month early, (that’s my excuse for not having the blankie done) and though she was over 6 pounds, she is still really small; Brad held her for a time and she is barely more than a handful, (sorry, no pictures).

When my hands tire of cotton and garter stitch, I swap over to the mindless garter stitch mohair shawl.   (Speaking of shawls, I had a great chat with Miriam at Estes—-keep your eyes peeled for a new project in the fall Knitty.com).  Seems that my mind is craving simple stuff right now, so this is about my speed.  I really must get the sweater done for my niece’s baby boy, as we will be meeting him in a few days.  My plan is to knit this on the plane and at the beach, finishing it up before we get together (think I’ll make it?  I have half a front and a sleeve to go, plus the sewing up).

I think I talked about the upcoming pilgrimage to the homeland in the last post—–just 4 more workdays till vacation YAY!!!!!  Things at work have been, well, less than pleasant, with a supervisor who is a micro-manager kind of guy, and leadership that is less than positive.  I won’t outline all the difficulties here, but the environment as a whole really must change, or I may have to change jobs myself.

I want to say thanks to all of you for your kind words of encouragment lately.  Ya’ll have been awesome!!   Thank you Margene for you warm greeting at Estes, thanks Ann for your sweet comment, and thanks to all of you who still check up on me.  This week will bring the three month mark since diagnosis and there have been major changes; I’ve lost about 13 pounds, my labwork is almost normal (between lifestyle changes and medications) and I’m not quite as overwhelmed as I was.  I still have days when I feel frustrated and unable to cope, but they are becoming fewer.  One of the hardest things for me is being in a situation where there are lots of food choices, like at a bbq or get-together, and trying to decide what I can eat.  I’m finding (redicovering, perhaps??) a compulsive side to myself in that I just cannot bring myself to cheat.  I’m getting better about asking for what I need, and saying no to the things I know are not good for me.  The real test will be how I do out of my controlled environment, on vacation (did I mention that vacation is just a few days away??)

And now I think I may do a little spinning before it gets too hot (suppose to be 90-something today) and the headache requires more motrin and a nap. 

* al fresco—-we (our merry band of knitters) had a little discussion up in the park regarding this term, whether it means “out of doors, outside” or “in the nude.”  I’ll leave you to decide what it means in this context 🙂

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It’s about time……

…….to do something about the blog.  There are many excuses reasons I could site for being so long absent, and I may share a couple.  But the fact remains I’ve been away too long and I miss hearing from you all.   My friend Ellen chastised me the other day for not updating the blog and I told her that one of my reasons for not doing so was that I didn’t want it to turn into a “bitchfest” with me whining about my current health issues. 

I was again chastised. 

…..so like I said nearly two months ago now, for the time being, the blog is what it is.

Reason number one that I’ve been away is that almost every spare minute I’ve had since my diagnosis 2 months ago has been spent reading up on what it is that I’ve been challenged with.  I’m a believer that knowledge is power, and the more we can learn about a particular thing, the less scary it is and the more “in control” we can be.  Thus, I’ve read quite a bit about diabetes (and when I’ve had all I can take of that, I’ve been spending time again in Middle Earth).  Here’s some of what I’m learning:  First,there’s a lot to learn and know.  A trip to Borders is a mind boggling thing when I look at the shelves full of books about diabetes.  Some are excellent resources, others bunk, but the mind reels nonetheless.  So far, my favorites are Diabetes for Dummies (which was the first thing I bought) and my new favorite has a title that takes up the whole front cover but in short is called The First Year.  I am recommending both to my patients.    Second,doing everything right does not necessarily mean you will get a perfect outcome.  This is a complex disease, and there are too many variables to count.  Some days are good, some days are not, and it’s hard to predict which will be which.    Third, that even though I am a nurse, I have a basic understanding of many disease processes, having something myself has brought a whole new level of understanding.  Along the same lines, I have a new compassion for my diabetic patients, and now understand why so many just give up, becoming noncompliant (as we label them in the field).  This is not an easy thing to have, it takes much thought and planning everyday.  Unlike other serious illnesses, it does not go away (I’ll pause here to say that with excellent diet control and significant weight loss, there are some people who do not require medication, but they still have diabetes, short of divine intervention).  Diabetes, for me, has been a life changing event.  It is something I go to bed thinking about, I wake up thinking about, and have in the back of my mind throughout the day.  I’m trusting that soon I won’f have to use so much of my conscious mind to keep things in control, but for now, I just don’t know a better way. 

On to other things.

The Moderne Log Cabin baby blanket is coming along, but I must say I am really getting tired of pink cotton and garter stitch.  I was going along fine, working on it until I was sick of looking at pink, and then working on something else for a while, but the intended recipient chose to make her debut about 3 weeks ahead of schedule, and now I’m guilt ridden that it is unfinished and unable to pick up anything else.  I reminded myself that this is precisely why I vowed to give up deadline knitting.  Add to that, there is still the sweater(I’m in the middle of the intarsia star—-and reminded that I hate intarsia), and there are now two more wee bairns expected at the office; one in July and one sometime late this year or early next.  If I knit for them, it’s booties, baby.  I can’t wait to give my hands a break from cotton.  I’ve bought some fantastic yarn lately, that I can’t wait to do something with.  So far I’ve been able to ward off startitis, but it’s knocking at the door.  I have two yarns that I bought just to swatch with: Misty Alpaca Chunky in charcoal for an Einstein, and Kathmandu Aran in grey for the Notre Dame sweater in the spring edition of Interweave KnitsOn a whim, I bought two hanks of Mountain Colors, Mountain Goat in a colorway called Glacier Teal. 

It was an impulse purchase—-just couldn’t put it down, the color is so rich, but I had no idea what to do with it when I bought it (not like me).  I’m thinking perhaps of a Clapotis??  I have something like 500 yards.  Any ideas? 

The new spinning wheel and I are bonding—-I finally had the brilliant idea to use a fiber that I was already well acquainted with, and knew how it behaved to learn the new wheel.   Okay, so I was a little slow to figure that out 😦  Anyway…..the wheel is spinning beautifully, it has the most comforting whir, and I love everything about it.  While the Lendrum is playing around with the mystery fiber that I brought home from Estes last year, the little Ashford is spinning up my “birthday fiber.” 

Speaking of Estes…..it is just two weeks away!  I can’t wait!  I’ve had my camping reservations for some time, Brad has his fishing gear ready to go, and I have money in the checkbook—-the benefit of having a job.  Lot’s of the girls from the knitgroup are going up and sharing a condo—we are planning a cookout at our campsite for Saturday night.  We even figured out if I could eat s’mores.  It looks like it will be a great time, again.

Vacation plans have been made—-the annual trip to the homeland is fast approaching.  We decided to try something different this time, flying into Portland, Oregon, renting a car and heading first to Longbeach for a few days.  I’ve reserved a three bedroom beachfront condo so the kids can meet us there, and then we’ll head to the Seattle area.  In addition to a couple days at the lake, we’ll celebrate a 95th birthday and take in the annual family picnic.  We’ll get to meet the newest family member, Leonardo (born in Australia—-must finish the sweater, must finish the sweater….) and enjoy some fresh raspberries off the farm.  If we’re really lucky, we might have time for some sailing 🙂

Now, I’d better get back to the blessed baby blanket, before the child is walking.

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