Devine site

A little bit about my day, my family, and my knitting.

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Lookie What I Can (Finally) Do!!

I am just SO excited!! I made my first REAL cable item, a hat from Top Down For Toddlers, the book I received for Hannukah/Xmas, using yarn I received at that time. The yarn is from Knit Picks. It's Merino Style 100% merino wool, vanilla.I was coerced asked to make this sweater set by Alison. I must admit that I was really nervous about making the cable, and the silly thing is that I knitted and frogged the top part about three times, but had absolutely no problem with the cable. If I say so myself, it's not bad for a first try.

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I am now working on the sweater, and once again I was nervous excited about making the cables. After the first few rounds of working the cable pattern I am sweating confident that it will look great when I am done.

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I got all of this knitting done in the past few the hospital. Gerry was operated on last Wednesday to remove the fluid from his heart lining. The surgery was short...less than an hour. The worst part was waiting for the cytology report on the fluid and.....drumroll's NEGATIVE for malignancy, which means that the fluid was most likely a result of the past surgery. Ol' Ger is still a pain in the butt doing fine and will be coming home tomorrow. That's great news for me, since I worked each day and then spent each night with him at the hospital, getting home in time to set out my things for the next day, fiddle a bit on the computer, go to sleep and start all over again. It really will be nice to have him home though. In about 2 weeks he will start Interferon treatment, which goes on for about a year. Hopefully he won't feel too badly (though we heard the first month is really tough) and will be back to work in about a month and a half. As an aside....because I care about all of you who read saving grace through all of this was that Gerry purchased an AFLAC Cancer policy about 5 years ago. Of course, he wasn't counting no getting cancer so young, but knowing it was in his family, he figured he'd get it and be ahead of the game. This policy is not health's pays YOU for out of pocket expenses. You can read about it for yourself, but let me tell's WONDERFUL!!

A note for my Secret Pal 7 - the yarn that I used to make the Vogue Hat (shown in my previous post) was sent to me by my SP6. It's 100% merino - DK/lt.worsted weight yarn. As there is no color or any other information listed (beside yardage) I assume she dyed it herself. Thanks again, SP6!!

Monday, January 23, 2006

It's All About Me!

Ok - so once again I am borrowing something from another knitter. So Heather....thank you for the outline!
Another meme. They are fun to fill out and fun to read (most of the time).
4 jobs you have had:Teacher, waitress, clerk in a bank, receptionist
4 movies you could watch over and over: Independance Day, Love Actually, An Affair to Remember (with Cary Grant), Armaggedon
4 TV shows you love to watch:Just got hooked on 24; Sex and the City; Inside the Actor's Studio; Desperate Housewives
4 places you have been on vacation:Hawaii; Puerto Rico; Italy; Israel
4 (actually, only two) websites you visit daily: Creative Genius;Knit1Crochet2;
4 of your favorite foods: rice; anything raspberry; chunky Skippy peanut butter; lamb chops
4 places you would rather be right now:Maui; at Alison or Becca's house( I miss my girls); getting a massage .
4 favorite books:The Thornbirds; The Notebook (and anything else by Nicholas Sparks); The Nature of Water and Air (by Regina McBride); Harry Potter books.
4 bloggers you are tagging: No one.

Now it's your turn! I'm sure Heather won't mind, and who am I to tell you not to take it from me?

Sunday, January 22, 2006

The Hits Just Keep On Coming!

Just got back from a week in Houston, Texas. We went there so Gerry could be seen by doctors at MD Anderson Cancer Center, a consultation for treatment following the surery to remove the melanoma he had in his chest. Let me tell you....this was a wonderful experience. No one wants to HAVE to go through this, but if you do, MD Anderson is quite a place.
We arrived last Sunday afternoon. We had booked the Jesse Jones Rotary House for our lodging. This is a hotel that cater to patients and their families, attached to the medical center. It's a lovely hotel. They have a patient services department. As soon as we were settled, they had us come down to register for the medical center (in the hotel), gave us an orientation and overview of the services at our disposal. They have someone who will research things for you, a reading and lending library, a patient to patient network so you can speak with someone who went through a similar experience, and more.
Gerry was given many tests...CT scans, xrays, bloodwork, opthamology exam. They determined that he is not a candidate for their clinical trials (wrong tissue type) and that he is "cancer free." That actually means that they can't see any cancer. He does have 3 little nodes on his lower left lung but they are too small to determine whether they are a danger to him. They have to be checked by CT scan every three months. While in Houston we did see two movies...Casanova and Glory Road. Casanova was a cute movie, but Glory Road was exciting and was a small window into the world of the ''60s in the south and all that went with it. We also took some time to see the Johnson Space Center/NASA. Gerry is a fan of the I did get some knitting done - on the plane, in waiting rooms, on car rides. In just a few short hours I made a hat from Vogue FIRST Vogue pattern. Ok, so it was very easy, but it IS from Vogue. I got the pattern in a solicitation letter for Vogue Knitting magazine.

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I also began work on the Basic Cardigan from Top Down For Toddlers by Deb & Lynda Gemmell. I used Shine Twist from Knit Picks. It's 60% Pima Cotton and 40% Modal, color Harvest. It was a gem to work with....very, very soft. I got to finish it when I came home, making the hat as well.

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I finished Mom's Texture Shrug. It came out really nice, and I hope it fits her. This is the third shrug I have made from this pattern. I can't wait to retire it to my archives for a while.

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I am now working on Classic Cable and Hat from TDFT. I am using 100% Merino wool from Knit Picks, in cream color (Alison picked it out and put a condition on my receiving it...I HAD to make the Classic Cable sweater with it. The cables are a challenge for me, so I started on the hat, figuring it would be a little easier. Hmmm, we'll see!

As for me, I had my own medical experience. Ya know how sometimes you get a little stabbing pain in your side/ribs and you think it's just gas? It usually is and then goes away. I had that on and off for a few days, and then Wed night it "attacked" me at full force. I could barely move. It only hurt when I breathed in or moved. I was able to get into bed and slept all night on my back (and I am a side sleeper). The next morning I got ready for work. Suddenly I had to take a deep breath and I saw stars. I knew it wasn't a heart attack, but we drove to ER anyway. After some tests and two shots in my hip, I was sent home with the diagnosis - muscle strain. I have NO idea how I got that. Now I am taking a pain reliever and a muscle relaxer. The muscle relaxer works so well it relaxes my whole body and makes me sleepy. The pain is better but still hurts if I take a deep breath, yawn, sneeze or laugh.

And still more...After seeing Gerry's surgeon last week, we were told that Gerry has to go back into the hospital for 3 days. The dr in Houston found a pericardial effusion...water on the heart lining....of significant size. Gerry's surgeon looked at the CTScan and said it had to be removed ASAP. It's causing Gerry to have shortness of breath and chest pain. So he will go in on Wednesday. We are now hoping and praying that the fluid is not malignant, which IS possible since the melanoma was laying on his heart lining. The hits just keep on coming!

To all you Pittsburgh Steeler fans - congratulations! We saw the game today with friends who are MAJOR Steeler fans. I know you are all thrilled and eager to watch them in the Superbowl. Right now the other game is on. I have to root for N. Carolina because my son-in-law is from NC and his dad is a fan, but it doesn't look too good at this moment. But, as Yogi Berra used to say, "It ain't over till it's over!" And this post is....over!

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

All About Me (again)!

It's time for Secret Pal Seven, and so once again I am posting the SP survey. I am NOT looking at my last survey...who knows, I might have changed my views a bit. So to my new Secret Pal (7) - heeeere's ME:

1. Are you a yarn snob (do you prefer higher quality and/or natural fibers)? Do you avoid Red Heart and Lion Brand? I am becoming a little bit of a snob. I don't like acrylic foo-foo yarns, regular acrylics or most Red Heart yarns (though I DO like Caron's Simply Soft and Bernat Babee (sp) yarns for baby items. I do like Lion Brand Wool-Ease and Cotton Ease, as well as better quality and natural fibers (if soft).
2. Do you spin? Crochet? Crochet - yes. Spin - no - too much involved.
3. What do you use to store your needles/hooks in? A box in the closet!! But I carry my Denise needles everywhere I go.
4. How long have you been knitting? Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced? I have been knitting since my early teens. I consider my self to be an intermediate knitter.
5. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list? - No.
6. What's your favorite scent? (for candles, bath products etc.) I like Vanilla, and do NOT like anything sweet (except for Sugar Cookie candles).
7. Do you have a sweet tooth? Favorite candy? I don't have a sweet tooth. However, my favorite candy is dark chocolate covered raspberry jelly rings.
8. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do? While I used to "do 'em all" I just concentrate on knitting and sometimes crocheting.
9. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD). I like light pop, some country (Shania, Garth, Faith), and plays all, car only plays regular CD's.
10. What's your favorite color? Or--do you have a color family/season/palette you prefer? Any colors you just can't stand? No psychedelic colors, not partial to orange. I like to wear black, blue (love denim), white and beige.
11. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets? Married 2 1/2 yrs to a wonderful man. We have 3 dogs...his, mine and ours.
12. Do you wear scarves, hats, mittens or ponchos? I live in S. Florida, so usually - no! And definitely not ponchos.
13. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with? Optimum by SWTC; Plymouth Encore; Bamboo by Crystal Palace.
14. What fibers do you absolutely *not* like? Most acrylics (see above), and "foo-foos," and anything scratchy ( do not like knitting with chenille).
15. What is/are your current knitting obsession/s? Knitting "top-down" - just received book Top Down For Toddlers!
16. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit? Baby and toddler sweaters and hats.
17. What are you knitting right now? Toddler sweater from TDFT.
18. Do you like to receive handmade gifts? yes, but unless someone really knows me, I prefer NOT to get sweaters as they might not fit (all that work for nothing).
19. Do you prefer straight or circular needles? circular or short straight needles.
20. Bamboo, aluminum, plastic? Bamboo ( but I do like my Denise circs).
21. Do you own a yarn winder and/or swift? yes, just received them as holiday gift.
22. How did you learn to knit? Not sure...either by an aunt or a neighbor. It was so long ago.
23. How old is your oldest UFO? 9 months - needs to be sewn together.
24. What is your favorite animated character or a favorite animal/bird? No favorite dogs.
25. What is your favorite holiday? Xmas/Hanukkah
26. Is there anything that you collect? I seem to collect yarn!
27. What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have?Creative Knitting; Family Circle Knitting.
28. Any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on?Sorry - no.
29. Are there any new techniques you'd like to learn? Need to learn Fair Isle.
30. Are you a sock knitter? What are your foot measurements? yes, I enjoy knitting socks. 8" circumfrance; 9" heel to toe.
31. When is your birthday? (mm/dd) - June 21 (first day of summer)

Hope this helps!!!