Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Doctor Phoned

I got a call from the doctor this afternoon. I don't really understand what the ultrasound showed but they said I need to go see a GYN. So I have an appointment to see him on Monday at 10:15 am. Something about cystic lesions and the wall of the uterus being thicker than it should. She said it could be from the femara I was taking for 5 years after the breast cancer. If you are not familiar with it, femara is similar to tamoxifin but I wasn't able to take tamoxifin because I had a blood clot when Joseph was an infant. Since you are at an increased risk for clots when you take tamoxifin I had to take the femara instead. My boss is going to love me by the time all this is over with. I've been taking quite a bit of time off going to the doctor and doing all these tests. I imagine that when I go to the doctor on Monday I'll probably have to have more tests. I really really need a definitive answer as to what's going on soon. I think I'm going to go insane if I don't have answers. The stress is beyond beyond.

Playing The Waiting Game

I don't have any news to report on the health issues. I went for the pelvic ultrasound on Monday and I go back to the doctor on Monday for the results. I spoke to the doctor after I finished the test (the lab and her office are in the same building) and she told me if she gets results earlier she will call me and let me know. The back pains are coming and going and everytime it is better I think I must have passed the problems and that's it for now. Then the pain comes back so I guess this will take a while. I just keep drinking like a fish and I will have another ultrasound in a few months to see if everything is gone. I'll just have to wait it out and pray things don't get caught where they shouldn't be.

On the knitting front, I've made some progress on the Forest Path Stole. I even took the project with me to our snb last night. I am more and more comfortable working with the linen and when it is done and washed I believe it will just bloom. The project is getting a nicer feel to it the more the yarn is handled. Since I'm working from the cone it will be a lot of fun to see what it will be like once it's washed. (Can you tell I didn't do a swatch and treat it like I would the finished project?) I'm now on tier 7 and rolling along. I almost had a horrible disaster that I was thankfully able to fix. When I was doing the last rectangle on tier 6 I noticed I had dropped a stitch on the right triangle from tier 5. I wasn't about to rip back 2 tiers. Michelle had a crochet hook last night and I was able to pick up the end stitch that dropped and was happily on my way once again. I was prepared to fudge it if I needed to but I don't see any difference. Progress will slow some once the knit off starts. I'm still waiting for details on that. All I know right now is I have to use 4mm needles.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Neverending Saga

I went to the doctor today. The stones are in both kidneys but they should be small enough to pass. Thankfully, there is no obstruction so if I keep drinking like I have been I should be alright. The problem is that the ultrasound showed something on my ovary when they checked the pelvic area. So I have an appointment to go back for a pelvic ultrasound on Monday. I am really trying not to freak out because of this but I am having a difficult time. I can't wait for the SnB on Tuesday because it will give me some time out and my brain a chance to stop worrying.

On that note, I needed a yarn fix today. I'm trying to stick to my yarn diet as well as my life diet. I didn't do so well on the life diet last night. I had more of the sugar free cookies than I was allowed to have. I am allowed to eat 2 every 4 hours. I ate 6 straight last night. Not as bad as I would have been in the past but I hate the fact that I ate them. I'm over it now and I don't have anymore and I don't think I am going to buy anymore either. On the yarn diet I bought sock yarn today. Since it's allowed on my yarn diet I didn't break that one. I bought the Meilenweit cotton at The Knitting Basket. The shop is across the street from where I live and I had to be up at the mall so I couldn't resist getting something.

Blue Ridge Silk Works is having a sale. It's called I Hate Winter sale and their dyed roving is also on sale. Of course, I couldn't resist saving 40% so I ordered some roving. That order arrived today. I love the colours and the roving is so soft. I finished spinning the Matahari roving I was working on as well as the first bobbin of the confetti. Once the confetti is done and plyed I might try this roving. I'll see what my mood is when I get there.

I also bought another Golding spindle. The funny thing is this. I bought a .6 oz Golding and I had a really big problem with wobbling. I returned it and exchanged it for a .9 oz. spindle of the same design. I love the way this one spins but I feel it's on the heavy side. When I returned the first spindle to Golding they said it spins fine. That's why I opted for the heavier spindle. For those that don't know, Golding is coming out with spindles in lighter weights than they have had. This spindle is .45 ounces and it spins like a dream. What I don't get is why I don't have trouble with this spindle and I did with the .6 oz one and they said there wasn't a problem with the spindle. I find that hard to believe. Anyway, this one is great and I am pleased. I might exchange the .9 ounce again but I hesitate because I got dinged by customs twice and I don't want to get dinged a third time.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Relief & Anxiety

I got a call from the doctor's office at work today. They got back the results of the ultrasound and I have kidney stones. I have never had this problem before but now I wonder if all the times I've had similar pains it's been the same thing and the pain stopped when I passed the stones. I don't understand how I could possibly get these things when I already drink between 3 and 4 litres of water every day. It's a must on the weight loss program I'm on. The amount you have to drink depends on your weight and although I don't drink as much now as I did when I first started on the program I still drink a lot every day. So, the relief is it's kidney stones. The anxiety is it's kidney stones because I have NO idea how to get rid of these things. I'm going to see the doctor tomorrow to discuss it and I'll go from there.

On the knitting front there is no progress. I haven't touched the needles since the weekend. I've done a little spinning but I still have to finish the confetti bobbin. I hope I'll get that done tonight.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007


I went to the doctor yesterday for my physical. The doctor ordered blood work, ECG, chest x-ray, abdominal ultrasound, and a colonoscopy. I called the doctor's office today and I got back the results of the blood tests and all the results were normal. I am still waiting to hear from the doctor when I will have to go to the hospital for the colonoscopy. I was told it could take 3 weeks before I get an appointment. The requisition has been faxed over to the hospital so now I just have to be patient. I am not looking forward to the test at all but something I need to do because of my age and history. I go back to the doctor on Monday to get the results of the rest of the tests I've completed so far.

On the fibre front, I managed to get some spinning done. I started spinning some fibre I got from Matahari Spinnery a while ago. I've already spun some of this up but I wanted to try and do more and compare it to what I did when I first got the wheel. Then I received my order from Copper Moose yesterday. I had ordered the confetti and purple twist. I couldn't wait to try the confetti so I stopped what I was doing and pulled out another bobbin and did this last night. I am going to try and fill this bobbin and then finish the Matahari fibre. I only have 4 bobbins for the woolee winder so I will have to clear those before I can finish spinning and ply the confetti.

Not much knitting going on the last few days. I have 2 more rectangles to go to finish the 4th tier on the Forest Path stole and I haven't touched the blanket since the weekend so there hasn't been any progress on that either. I think I needed a break and something that would engross me so much I would forget about my back and the tests etc.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Frustration Abounds

No knitting or spinning news to report. I didn't manage to get any spinning done last night and I am still working on the castle section of the blanket and tier 4 of the stole.

I am so frustrated at the moment I can't even put it into words. I just got home from Dr. Poon's office. In the last month I gained .2 pounds. That's better than gaining more but the thing is I don't understand why I am not losing. I go back in 3 weeks and I will keep a strict food diary. I had planned to after I went to see him last time but I just didn't get around to doing it. I have to bring it with me when I go for my next visit so I will definitely be keeping it over the next 3 weeks.

The only things I can think of that are the culprit are the cream in the coffee (which isn't more than 2 TBS and I only have 1 coffee per day except on SnB nights when I have 2) or the salad dressing. I used to just use the Kraft Calorie-Wise Italian but I got sick of it. Since the program is low carb I started using creamy salad dressings with 0 carbs. Maybe the fat content is getting in the way. I don't really know.

Paul bought me a heart box from Laura Secord for Valentine's Day. He had bought me the Bossie spindle but that arrived early so I guess he wanted to get me something to hand me on the 14th and that was his choice. I said thanks but no thanks and gave it to him to eat. I didn't even have a bite. I REFUSE TO GIVE UP!!! I just keep telling msyelf it will start to fall again and even if it doesn't you are better off at the current weight than you were at the old weight so just keep eating the right foods no matter what.

On the positive side, I gained 1.7 pounds of water according to the body analyzer scale but my fat % went down by 1.1% and my fat mass went down 2.4 pounds. So the question remains WHY AM I NOT LOSING WEIGHT???

I have an appointment on Monday for a complete physical. I haven't had one in years because I didn't want to go on the scale (stupid I know but I still hate getting weighed). I have been having some pains in the right back (around my waist area) and with my history I decided it was time to check it out. I've had these pains before and the doctor has always said it was muscular. When I mentioned it to Dr. Poon today he also said it is most likely muscular but I don't want to take any chances. I've been stressing over this a lot and once I finally made the appointment to see the doctor I've started stressing even more. I'm glad the appointment is on Monday so I can just get it over with. Then I can go for whatever tests the doctor decides I need.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

It's A Good Thing...

It's a good thing fibre isn't included in my Knit From Your Stash 2007 rules. I don't think I could resist the fibre, especially since I'm a new spinner and my fibre stash doesn't come anywhere near my yarn stash. Here is what I received from Crown Mountain Farms earlier in the week. The roving is Superwash Merino in the following colourways:

Ain't No Mountain High Enough.

It's My Party

Maggie bought this colourway and spun it into the most gorgeous yarn. The socks she knit with it are amazing. I just couldn't resist getting the same stuff.

Finally, this is Wild Thing.

I always find it interesting how much different the yarn looks once it's spun. The yarn doesn't look anything like the roving. I can't wait to see what these rovings are going to turn into.

I ordered the starter dye kit from Knit Picks and it arrived today. Now I have to decide how I want to use it. I received a kilogram of polworth roving from Knit Knackers and I think I want to try and dye at least part of it. What I have to decide now is if I want more colours of this dye or if I just want to use what I have. I think I am going to get more supplies, pans, bottles, etc. and then do some playing around before I actually dye the roving.

On the knitting front, I'm working on the FPS when I am at home and on the baby blanket when I go out. I am in the middle of tier 4 on the stole and I hope to get through tier 5 or 6 by the end of the weekend. I am 1/3 of the way through the castle section on the baby blanket. Since the baby isn't due until May I can take my time working on it.

Tomorrow is Friday Night Spinners night and I am going to spin tomorrow night. I haven't decided what I want to spin yet but I haven't had time to spin for over a week so I'm ready to pull the wheel out.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Weekends Are Great If You Don't Have To Work

I don't know what I would do if I had to work weekends. I know what that's like but it is so much better to be able to do whatever you want to do on a weekend. Speaking of doing anything you want, I just finished the third tier on the FPS. I can't wait to finish it and then wash it. The yarn is going to bloom once it is washed and the stole will look a lot better. I am starting to remember the fern and lily of the valley. I should be able to remember the birch leaves pattern by tomorrow, I hope. Once I can remember all the patterns each of the tiers should go much quicker.

I also managed to get some work done on the baby blanket yesterday. I've completed the first star section and started the castle section. I believe the three balls of yarn I originally bought should be enough. Now I just have to decide if I want to return the extra ball I bought on Friday or if I want to just knit a sweater set. I'm leaning towards exchanging the yarn but we'll see.

We're supposed to get snow tomorrow. I hate that idea because tomorrow is SnB night. I'm a certified chicken when it comes to driving in the snow. That won't stop me from going though. I'll just drive as slow as molasses and hopefully it won't be so windy that you have white out conditions. If we don't have those driving conditions I should be fine.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Entrelac Fun

I managed to cast on the Forest Path Stole last night. I finished the first tier and finished the first block of the second tier when I realized I did the wrong pattern for the first block so I had to rip it back. Since I could put the needles down flat I decided to take a picture of my progress. I am using 3.25mm needles. Right now I am using the Knit Picks Options but I don't know if I am going to have to move to longer needles at some point. I hope not. What I like most about the Options needles are the cords. I love the needle tips as well but I find these cords even easier to work with than the Addis. I was going to try using the longer Addi's but the cord is much stiffer than the Options and I didn't feel like boiling water to soften them up. Once I take the needles out in the cold I'd be right back where I started so I didn't bother. I can only work on this project at home. I am not going to go out with the cone from place to place and I don't want to join unless I encounter knots in the cone so I'll work on the stole when I am at home. I'll work on the baby blanket when I go out. It's much more portable.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Uncle Uncle

I have knit the Forest Path Stole before when it first came out in Interweave Knits. There is a KAL going on that I wanted to join. I am so busy with other stuff I thought I would have to forget about it and I didn't bother to put the button or anything on my sidebar. I've been reading the posts to the blog and I can't take it anymore so I cry uncle and will cast on tonight. I did some spinning on Wednesday so I will not spin tonight and get started on this.

When I finished the FPS I was going to knit another one right away in a pale pink yarn but I've changed my mind. Since I am knitting from my stash this year, I have a 100% linen cone that I will be using for the pattern this time. The inside of the cone says Crystal Palace Yarns and the colour is Jade. I must have bought it from Elann or I got it on ebay some years ago. I've had it for quite sometime. I'll just split up the knitting - one night working on the blanket and one night working on the stole. It should help with the boredom of doing the second blanket in a row.

I went back to The Knitting Basket this afternoon. I still am not sure if the yarn I bought for the blanket is going to be enough. I know the yarn is now discontinued and Farida only had 3 balls left. I was going to wait to buy another ball until I was sure but I was afraid she would sell out. With my luck I would be doing the cast off and run out of yarn on the last row. I didn't want to take that chance so I picked up one more ball and if I have enough I will either exchange it or knit a sweater, hat, and booties, or knit whatever I have enough yarn for.

On the spinning front, I finished all of the fibre I was spinning last weekend. I had to test out the Woolee Winder and I love it. The spinning and plying is so much easier I can't believe the difference. I also was able to fit all of the plied yarn onto one bobbin. I am not sure that would have been the case with the other bobbin. I ended up with 225 grams and approximately 1,022 yards. I am guessing that is pretty close to fingering weight since I get about 200 yards to 50 grams when I buy sock yarn. That would be about 4 yrds per gram and this yarn works out to about 4.54 yards to the gram.

Well it's off to cast on for the FPS. I'll take pics of the progress.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Secret Pal 10

I've never participated in a secret pal before. Now that I have a blog I would like to give it a try so I've signed up. I'm just waiting for the confirmation.

Here is the questionnaire for SP10.

1. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with? What fibers do you absolutely *not* like?

I like natural fibres that are soft. I can't use or wear wool that is itchy. I don't have a problem with superwash wool but things like Lopi I can't wear. Same goes for mohair.

2. What do you use to store your needles/hooks in?

I have a ziplock pouch that a friend made for me.

3. How long have you been knitting & how did you learn? Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced?

I've been knitting for almost 40 years. My mom taught me one summer so I wouldn't bug her. She needed to keep me occupied. I consider myself advanced except for colour knitting. I don't do colour knitting at all.

4. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list?

Yes, it's under my email address.

5. What's your favorite scent?

I like lavender/lilac.

6. Do you have a sweet tooth? Favorite candy?

Yes but alas I don't eat candy of any kind anymore because once I start I can't stop.

7. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do? Do you spin?

Yes, I learned to spin about 3 months ago using a top whorl spindle. I now have many spindles and an Ashford Joy spinning wheel. I also am experimenting with dyeing yarn. Next I want to try and dye fibre but I've been a little too chicken to try so far.

8. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD)

Country, Rock, Classical, most types except rap which I don't even think is music. Yes, I have an MP3 player.

9. What's your favorite color(s)? Any colors you just can't stand?

Lavender and purple are my favourite. I am not fond of green.

10. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets?

I live in Toronto with my husband of 15 years and our 12 year old son. I have 6 children that are in New York City and 6 grandchildren.

11. Do you wear scarves, hats, mittens or ponchos?

I wear scarves and ponchos but I don't usually wear hats or mittens.

12. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit?

Socks, shawls, and doilies.

13. What are you knitting right now?

A baby blanket for my future grandchild that's due in May.

14. Do you like to receive handmade gifts?

I don't usually receive handmade gifts.

15. Do you prefer straight or circular needles? Bamboo, aluminum, plastic?

I prefer circular needles and my favourites are Addi's and Knit Picks Options

16. Do you own a yarn winder and/or swift?

Yes I have both.

17. How old is your oldest UFO?

I have an intarsia sweater I tried to knit for Joseph about 10 years ago but I never finished it because I can't stand colour knitting.

18. What is your favorite holiday?

Victoria Day because it is close to my birthday and that means I sometimes have the day off work.

19. Is there anything that you collect?

Unicorns and monopoly games are the first things that popped into my head.

20. Any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on? What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have?

I subscribe to Knitters, Interweave Knits and Spin-Off. I can't think of any books right now but I love lace and socks and I have a lot of books on both subjects.

21. Are there any new techniques you'd like to learn?

I would like to learn needle felting.

22. Are you a sock knitter? What are your foot measurements?

I love to knit socks and only knit using the magic loop method now. I wear a size 8 shoe.

23. When is your birthday?

May 22nd.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

What Goes Around Comes Around

I've been tagged by Chelle and since I tagged her, it's only fair she should tag me back. I'm not going to tag anyone this time since this meme is so similar to the one I already did. Feel free to participate if you so desire.

So here goes:

Six Weird Things About Me...

THE RULES: Each player of this game starts with the 6 weird things about you. People who get tagged need to write a blog of their own 6 weird things as well as state this rule clearly. In the end, you need to choose 6 people to be tagged and list their names. Don't forget to leave a comment that says you are tagged in their comments and tell them to read your blog.

1: I can be very loud. I am not sure if that's because I grew up in a house with 5 brother's and sister's or because my hearing isn't what it used to be but when I talk I am sometimes reminded that I am shouting. (OK Joseph just read what I typed and said: "Sometimes??? You're ALWAYS loud.")

2: I'm very ticklish so much so that when I was growing up by brother's and sister's loved to corner me and I would fall apart without even being touched, all they did was point a finger at me. My dad used to tease me about it all the time. I've gotten a little better over the years because now I have to be touched inorder to be tickled but I'm still very ticklish.

3: I'm getting more and more gray hair. I know that's not unusual when you're almost 52 but I noticed my first gray hair when I was 18.

4: I have absolutely no patience at all. One time we had a problem with our Bell bill and Paul didn't want me to call Bell until he found the bill. I didn't wait of course and then I had to call them back anyway because we needed the specifics of when the bill was paid etc. and we couldn't give them that information without having the bill in our hands.

5: Paul said one of the weird things about me is I dye my hair blonde. It's actually darker, I think, with blonde highlights. Why that's weird I have no idea but that's what he said.

6: When Joseph was born I knew he was going to be my last and I wanted the nursing to last as long as possible. I nursed him till he was almost 4 and by that time I was ready to stop but didn't know how because I couldn't resist when he would come over to me and ask to nurse. He finally lost interest and just stopped nursing on his own.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Early Valentine

It's been FRIGID outside lately. This morning the windchill was around -30C and we should hopefully have some relief by Thursday. I was feeling a lot better when the postman came to the office this afternoon with 2 boxes for me. One box was my Woolee Winder. I ordered the winder at the end of last year and I was just getting ready to email to find out when it might be shipped when it showed up. It is different spinning with the woolee winder than with the flywheel that comes with the Joy. It's great not having to worry about hooks but I have to get used to it. I'll need more practice before I become comfortable with it.

The second box was the order from Journey Wheel. Paul ordered a featherweight spindle as a Valentines gift for me. I picked it out but he ordered it. It's 13 grams and is from zebrawood. This spindle spins like a top. I am amazed at just how much it spins. It gets to the floor and it's still spinning. Right now it is so light and it's easy to spin very fine yarn. I don't know how miuch it shows up in the picture but it is the finest I have been able to spin either on the wheel or on a spindle since I started spinning.

Sunday, February 04, 2007


It is amazing to me how different I feel when I don't seem to get time to knit or spin. As I mentioned before, I did not have time to knit or spin since Tuesday. By the time I got home from work yesterday I felt like a complete mess. We were going to go over to my in-laws but since Paul and Joseph weren't feeling to well we decided to stay home.

Out came the wheel. I haven't had time to spin, wheel or spindle, for almost 2 weeks so I wanted to spin more than knit. This is what I manage to work up between last night and today. I still have one more skein I want to spin and then this bag of pencil roving will be completely spun. I think that's a first for me. By first I mean actually spinning all I have of a particular roving.

I think each skein comes out better than the one before. The skeins are balanced. There was no twist of the skeins when I took them off the noddy. The plying is so much better. I found 1 spot where I missed a little curl that got through but I will deal with that when I am knitting. Now all it needs is a bath and I'll figure out what the weight is. I still think I am getting mostly between dk and fingering with a bit of lace mixed it. I just have to get enough guts to try and spin it so fine that it looks like the thread will break and trust that it won't. I was afraid that those thin spots I had would break when I was plying and I didn't have any breakage at all when I plied this time. I think I will try that when I am ready to spin the silk. I am just not confident enough to tackle it yet. I am thinking I will wait until I have my wheel class before I spin either the silk hankies I have or the dyed silk roving I got from Joybilee Farm. That should happen sometime in the spring. Since it's already Februrary (where did January g0?) spring is just around the corner. It's so cold out right now thought of spring are welcome.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Was Hoping For Pegasus

I saw this on Sandi'sblog and as usual I couldn't resist. Since I collect unicorns I was hoping for a unicorn or pegasus. I know there is a pegasus because Lisais a pegasus but I was a chimera.

You Are a Chimera

You are very outgoing and well connected to many people.

Incredibly devoted to your family and friends, you find purpose in nurturing others.

You are rarely alone, and you do best in the company of others.

You are incredibly expressive, and people are sometimes overwhelmed by your strong emotions.

Not much knitting or spinning going on around here. I haven't even touched my knitting needles since our SnB on Tuesday. How frustrating is that?? I have been so busy with year end at work I come home exhausted and just about manage to eat dinner before I want to just konk out. I had to work late yesterday and I'm going back in a little while to finish things before the bookkeeper comes on Sunday. She thinks she doesn't need more than 2 hours to just check over all the work I did and clean up some stuff I am not sure about. I hope she's right. I am in serious need of some knitting or spinning time.

Friday, February 02, 2007

Baby Pictures

Usher finally managed to send me some pictures of the baby. I'm still trying to decide who he looks like and I can't tell yet. Henny says he looks just like Usher. They haven't named the baby yet. That will happen on Sunday, I think. It all depends if he is still jaundice or not. I'll know Saturday night what the situation is. I didn't include a picture of Deena with the baby because the only pictures they sent me were with Deena sleeping and the baby was on her chest. I didn't think she would appreciate me putting those pictures on my blog so I'll post when I get a better picture.

This is Usher and the baby.

This is Henny with her nephew.