Tuesday, February 26, 2008

First Stitches Purchase FO (Kind Of)

I couldn't help myself! I had to jump in and play with some of my Stitches loot right away. Lookee!

This is 100% bamboo from Fiber Fiend in the Stormy Weather colorway. 4 ounces, spun 2-ply, 245 yards. I hadn't spun bamboo before, but I went under the assumption that it would be similar to silk. I set my wheel accordingly and it spun up pretty easily.

Now. What shall I knit with it?

ETA: I just noticed the date on the band is wrong. I blame it on cold meds.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

On Sexy Voice, Sudden Illness, Dramatic Recovery and Stitches

I just realized that title sounds like a listing of Santa's lesser-known reindeer...

What a weekend. And it's only Saturday!

Mine started Thursday. I left work early to go have lunch with Jasmin. We had some Pho, knit for a little while at Purlescence, then headed over for the Ravelry meet-up at Stitches West. The meet-up was fun, and it was a pretty big crowd considering a lot of people had indicated they couldn't make it. I got to say hi to Kristi who is back in town for the weekend. Jeni and I compared our nearly-matching hair colors, and I saw Teenuh and got to meet her friend the OCK who was wearing one completely gorgeous hand-painted shawl. Abigail and Anabel were there, along with a bunch of other local knitter friends: Lori, Nathania, Kathy, Seltsame, Spinnity, Bogie, Lisa, Cookie, Cynthia, Pam, Sandi, Chloe and oh, a whole bunch of others. Like Teenuh, I had a great time when I went last year but wow. This year? So much fun. I know so many people now! I realized recently that knitting not only gives me a lot of satisfaction on a creative level but it's also responsible for much of my social life since I moved here exactly 2 years ago. This area has so many talented, amazing knitters who happen to be wonderful people - or wonderful warm people who happen to be talented knitters. Whichever - it's great and I'm happy to know 'em all.

Anyway, after the Ravelry party, Jasmin, Cynthia and I checked out the Market Preview for a couple of hours. It was nothing like Saturday's crowd but there were a lot of people there. I picked up a few nice things.

I picked this up at the Habu booth to make Gisela. I still can't get over the fact that 3 ounces of this stuff will really make an entire sweater! And it's quite inexpensive. Bonus!

Though I'd recently shopped at Webs with Christmas cash, I stopped by their booth to check out one of their recent arrivals, Colrain lace-weight. This cone holds 1400 yards of Merino/Tencel - easily enough for 2 projects. They have the same blend in a worsted-weight - I have enough of that for a sweater in black (no photo because I didn't buy it at Stitches and well...black yarn, sucky photographer...need I say more?).

This is Quiviut. One ounce of soft, soft, soft. I have been assured that if I can spin cashmere, I can spin this. This is going to be some kind of little lacy scarfy thing for me.

The last booth I visited was Lisa Souza. I'd heard of her but never seen any of her work before. She does beautiful work! I picked up some roving. The one in front is Superwash Merino in Marsquake (I think that's what it said - the label was hand-written) and the stuff in the back is BFL in Wild Things.

I also picked up a skein of her Sock! yarn - though there's enough of it for a wrap - 560 yards, I think. At least enough for a wrap for a short girl, and that's me! The color way is Milk Chocolate. How could I pass that by?

I'd been feeling ok all evening. I had a slightly scratchy throat which gave me one deep, sexy voice, but otherwise I felt completely normal. On the way home though, I found myself turning up the heat in my car. By the time I got there, I couldn't stop shivering. I had a fever of 101. Yikes. I had no idea!

I'd planned to be at Stitches all day Friday but had to stay home. I was glad I'd done at least a little shopping the night before; I hadn't planned to, and if I'd missed Stitches entirely I'd have been more than just a tad miffed. Luckily, I felt fine this morning - except for some major laryngitis - so I headed over to help Margit in her Fiber Fiend booth. I got to be Stamp Chick which meant stamping the Ravelry Passports for anyone who came by the booth. After that I cruised the floor, filled up my own passport with stamps, and kept an eye out for friends. I saw Janine, who was helping out at Maia and Brooke's booth. They've recently opened Tactile, and they carry some beautiful naturally dyed yarns and roving. I also got to see Hannah, Alison and AmpuT. Yay!

And of course I picked up a few more things:
Fine shetland from Pigeon Roof Studios in the Royale colorway. I've been ogling her stuff on line for months - it's as pretty in person as it is on the web. I believe you can check it out at Article Pract.

This is 8 oz. of 70/30 Alpaca/Silk from Tactile. Soft and gorgeous.

This is pure bamboo from Fiber Fiend in Stormy Weather. I haven't spun bamboo. If it's anything like silk I'll be fine. If not, well, I'll have to figure it out.

I also picked up this nylon blingy stuff in Flame (I think) in the Fiber Fiend booth. It's meant to add sparkle when blended with something else. I'm not sure what I'm going to do with it yet but I thought it was kind of fun.

I had hoped to stay the day but I started petering out around 2:30, so I headed home. Since then I've been resting and recovering from the fiber madness. Even though it goes through tomorrow, Stitches 2008 is over for me. I'm glad I got to it and it was fun, but I am beat!
Trouble is tired out too.

Meanwhile, Back At The Ranch....

Rachel has been spinning!

Yes, though you couldn't tell from the medical drama/smart-ass husband/meme stories of late, I've been creative.

Remember this?
Crown Mountain Farms roving (Superwash Merino) in Albatross.

Half of it (4 oz.) of it has become this:
Almost 242 yards of 3-ply.

My son's girlfriend Heather not only treats him well, she knits. Could I ask for anything else?! Anyway, she's been calling me lately, asking me technical questions, and telling me how she can't stop knitting, etc. Yay! I happened to have a couple of puffs of roving in my stash and I knew she'd like the colors, so last weekend I whipped this up for her. Heathers for Heather. It's 4 oz. of plain ol' wool, 2-ply, probably a light worsted weight.

She loved it. And now she wants to learn how to spin. My god she's PERFECT!! If she likes to vacuum other people's houses, that is. Otherwise she's close.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

I Married a Twisted One

But I love him.

Adopted in my name for a year at the Heritage Rose Garden as my Valentine's gift. I don't have a picture of it in bloom but here's a link. Purty, huh?

Saturday, February 2, 2008

You Made My Day

Thanks all, for your supportive comments! That issue seems to be a hot button for a lot of people.

Onward to lighter, happier things. I woke up the other morning to this:
Cindy put me on her list! Thanks, hon! She totally brightened my day. I'll publish my top ten soon.

4 Things

I also got tagged by Amy and Lisa for the 4 Things Thing. So here goes (and even though I got tagged twice and I'm so freakin' old (according to my ex-doctor and no I'm not bitter shut.up.) I could list 8 things, I'm not).

4 Jobs I've Held:

Executive Assistant
Facilities Supervisor
Purchasing Agent
MRP II Planner

4 Movies I've Watched Over and Over:

Young Frankenstein
Blazing Saddles
Rocky Horror Picture Show

4 Places I've Been:

Dominican Republic
Bogota, Colombia
Mt. Shasta

4 Places I've lived:

Bogota Colombia
Dominican Republic
San Jose, CA

4 TV Shows I Watch:

Law & Order (all of 'em)
CSI (original is best)
NCIS (I know someone in the cast)

4 Radio Shows I listen To:

Like Amy, there's a lot of NPR in my life:

Prairie Home Companion
Wait Wait Don't Tell Me
Car Talk
City Arts and Lectures

4 Things I look Forward To:

Stitches West
Hawaii in April (!!)
Cirque du Soleil - tonight!
Our new baby - Ha! Just kidding! No really. I'm kidding.

4 Favorite Foods:

Anything Italian
Creme brulee
Macaroni and cheese - the real kind with sharp Vermont Cheddar

4 Places I'd Rather Be:

Brown Ledge
Hanging out with Brian (husband)
Knitting or spinning somewhere
In Vermont (but with a great job like the one I have now)

People I Email Regularly:

Jasmin (if IMs count)
Dan (old friend from high school)

People to Tag:

I haven't had coffee yet - I'll do that later.

And In The Midst Of All The Activity...

I haven't forgotten knitting. I finished my plain ol' socks.

And I made dinner:

Portuguese Kale Soup!

Friday, February 1, 2008

Sticking Up for Yourself (and I Don't Mean Knitting Needles)

So. An entry or two back, I mentioned some positive news I received from recent bloodwork and expressed my frustration with weight gain. Over the past two years, I have gained over 30 pounds. I’m just over 5 feet tall. That is a LOT. Each and every time I’ve gone to see my doctor I’ve brought this up. Each and every time I’ve seen her I’ve told her about my increase in physical activity, the care I take with my food intake, you name it. I even told her about training for and completing the Avon walk (39.2 miles in 2 days) last year.

We adjusted my thyroid meds – didn’t help. She said that chemo and radiation probably trashed my metabolism. In November I complained again. ‘Well let’s test for fasting glucose, you could be in danger of getting diabetes.’. So I let the vampires take my blood. The response? ‘Glucose levels are higher than target. Diet and exercise might help’. Excuse me? What the hell have I been doing all this time?

This week I had an appointment with my Oncologist and expressed my frustration with the situation. She disagreed with the chemo/radiation theory. Yes they did make me gain weight but I actually lost it all until 2 years ago. Five minutes into our conversation, she says ‘something’s not right’ and tells me I need to see an Endocrinologist. She’ll call my doctor and get the referral going. Cool, right?

Wrong. Long story short, when I got home that night I had a voice mail from my doctor. She wants to send me to a clinic that specifically treats Diabetes 2 patients and to put me on a medication to treat Diabetes. ‘But’ she says, ‘one of the side effects is that it helps you lose weight’! Whee! Isn’t that grand? She fucking wants to medicate me for a disease I don’t have. Shortly after that I got a call from my Oncologist, who’s very worried because when she tried to talk to my doctor about my problem, the doctor’s response was ‘she needs to exercise’ and when it was brought to her attention that I do, she answered, ‘maybe it’s her age’. The woman didn’t believe me when I told her what I was doing to improve my health.

Needless to say – I was seething. Didn’t sleep at all that night.

I placed a complaint against her with Stanford (Yeah. Stanford. NOT Kaiser, the one with the bad rep.) I have to say, they have good people working to help angry and frustrated customers. Two hours later, I got a phone call from my doctor. “Oh, I’m SO sorry!” “Half of Americans are overweight and most of them don’t do anything about it but I know you ARE the 1% exception.” “Oh no you don’t have Diabetes, I know that, we want to prevent that and you’re doing a great job working so hard!”

I thanked her for her apology.

And told her she was fired.