Saturday, January 28, 2017

On the Mend

I believe the worst is over. Friday, I slept in till almost noon & got up without a headache!! My neck & back are stiff but not painful & I could actually scratch the top of my head with BOTH hands - whoopie. I planned on going to my favorite Truck Stop cafe for lunch. They usually make some type of Broccoli soup on Fridays & I like it a whole lot - especially with a Chicken & Swiss wrap. And sometimes I get lucky & get to take the leftovers home. Yesterday was planned & turned sideways .  .  .  .

My buddy, little Ron, who will be an official Pensioner in March, called up to take me out for a coffee. Our schedules often don't mesh & last time I could go, he came down with some sort of head cold & when he could go, I was down with whatever I just had or iced into my driveway. We keep on the lookout for food bargains for each other which is really great. Ron likes Tim Horton's so we drink a lot of it when we get together. I let him drag me out for coffee next to Walmart.

Most of the time I ignore Walmart but in the past, it was the one place I could find cheap, warm, men's sweat pants that fit the man of the moment. And they all came with pockets. I can go to any department store & buy women's sweats for three times the price but they don't have pockets. And the fabric is so much thinner. I've spent the last few years since I wrecked my knee in my Ex's old sweats - they're warm, easy to get on & have deep pockets to put keys, phone, whatever into. This is very important when cold knees mean pain & unsteady knees mean you need to carry things in pockets.
So, I dragged my butt into Walmart. They had sweats but they're REALLY cheap. And no Stanfield's sweats!! But I got bath towels in gorgeous Aquamarine instead. And new pillow cases - with Tyrannosaurs on them for FIVE BUCKS!! Then, to top it all off, I got 3 Primulas for the pot in front of my door in bright spring colors!!! A bag of Avocados for $4 & a tray of boneless, skinless chicken breast halves for $13. WOW. I was so tired after an hour of walking around that store that I came straight home, put the meat away & went for a nap!

On the Needles - another scrappy blue sock .  .  .  .  same song, different verse .  .  .  I had automatically started another sock & then remembered how much I needed thin, short socks last year when it got warm. I love the Kroy 4 ply but it's really too thick for summer wear. I have to wear socks in my sneakers & I need my sneakers for stability - I roll IN on one foot & deform regular shoes so I wear sneakers with a built in anti-pronation support. So, I thought, why not???  I dug out all the lightest yarns & decided to knit myself a couple of pairs for summer. This will be Car & Coffee Knitting.

Meanwhile - back at the Crossover Sweater - too much trouble to make it a cardigan. It will be what I intended in the beginning but several inches narrower than it was. I don't know what I was thinking but it's frogged back to the row where I joined the body & tied off the arms. I've measured it against my favorite zip-front jacket for width so I'm off again to finish it for Spring.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Just a Little Weirdness

Crab Cactus blooming it's heart out
I'm trying to recover from something weird & strange. I did wonder for a brief moment if this is part of 'natural aging', an injury, heart problems or 'All in my Head'!!
About 10 days ago I woke up with a stiff neck, terrible headache, aching ribs & pain in my upper back when I turned my head or tried to raise my arm on that side. All I wanted to do was sleep. I suspected I 'kinked' my neck in my sleep. And so I swallowed a handful of pills while I heated up my "Magic Bag" before heading back to bed. Heat is always so comforting but doesn't really do anything for the pain. I don't think the pills do anything either. I decided if I was going to die, I'd rather die at home in MY bed. By the time I actually got washed, combed & dressed the next day, I was too exhausted to drive to the clinic & wait all day to see someone. So I went back to bed & slept some more instead. And I slept for most of the week although I made sure to get up, drink & sit up for a few hours afternoon & evening. Coughing hurt my head & chest so much I decided I didn't need pneumonia on top of it!!
I'm still making "Old Woman" noises when I get up, I still need to go back to bed in the afternoon & the neck & head still get worse as the day goes on. And my joints still all hurt. Hell, even my tongue hurt at one point!! But I'm sick & tired of the whole thing. This morning a customer apologized about not getting back to me because he'd put out his neck somehow & had this terrible headache. He's been suffering with the same symptoms as I have!! We came to the conclusion we have a VIRUS of some kind. Maybe this is the one that wasn't included in this year's flu shot. A crappy Virus!!

On the Needles - I did finish that second scrappy sock. Someone has already spoken for it. And out of habit, I automatically started another. I think I was halfway through the ribbing before I realized what I'd done!! I blame it on whatever I have - it makes for a fuzzy brain too. Might as well start on the 'Gift Sock' basket.

I pulled the Cross-over pullover out of the UFO basket too. Since I frogged it back to the yoke I haven't done anything else to it because I wanted to finish the sock & sort the UFOs first. I really NEED a house cardigan but I like that cross-over yoke a whole lot. Maybe I should just make it into a cardi with a side tie??

Update - Got up this morning feeling a lot better. I actually went for my mail & to Hen Long grocery for fish balls & more Pho soup cubes. My back & neck are stiff but no awful headache. I can raise my arm & turn my head reasonably well & only my hands, bad knee & hip still hurt a little. My finger joints keep cracking - I hope it's just from not being used  .   .   .  Did I mention all the ginger & garlic I've been knocking back in my PHO soup????  I've been drinking gallons of liquid. My recommendation - if you get it, go to bed & sleep as much as you can. Drink, drink, drink. And make sure you sit up for part of the day.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

I Won't Complain About the Rain

The sun is shining out there & the sky is blue. And here I sit, looking out at all the snow & ice left in my driveway. It has been melting & then freezing at the bottom of the slope. My visitor today just about fell as he got out of his car at the bottom of my drive where it's all black ice. Where is the rain when you want need some???? I'll be enormously happy when it rains for a week.
It hasn't mattered a whole lot that the drive is icy because I've been chained to my desk doing paperwork & filing reports. At least I don't have to get dressed to do it!! It's surprising the amount of paperwork a year end generates - and we aren't even talking about taxes yet.

I meant to do a lot more knitting than I've done. I haven't even finished the second 'scrappy' sock yet - but I'm just about there. I did frog one of the sweaters I had on the go - three started from the very same pattern - I thought it was a bit much so the one I liked the least - WENT. I have other plans for that yarn.
That's TWO UFOs gone - one almost finished & one frogged. 

It's Marmalade Month. I follow a blog called 'Food in Jars' where it's marmalade season. I don't do much canning anymore since there's only ME here to eat it but I love the Food in Jars small batch recipes. Often, a recipe will make two or three half pints or several 'fish' jar amounts. This is very good for the apartment dweller or small home owner with limited space. Food in Jars covers everything from cook books to counter-top fermentation to equipment. Lot's of Give-A-Ways - even for Canadians, tons of good advice & of course, the recipes.

Monday, January 09, 2017

More Bloody Snow

Freya's Fish Mitts
So after the last bit of snow - yeah, another 4 or so inches - what is it with all this snow anyway??? Can't we just get a 'skiff' instead of 4 inches??? This last 4 inches was deadly - heavy, wet, sticky & it blocked up the end of my drive again. I can get OUT but getting back IN is another story. I took the chance on Saturday & went grocery shopping - out of fresh stuff again!! Boy, do I EVER miss my old Oriental veggie store in the neighborhood!!! So I drove out with a thump & a thud & got stuck when I came home. I was JUST ABOUT into my drive when I got stuck on the icy ridge at the bottom with one snow tire in the hole in front of it. And vans don't rock very well. So I'm out there in the dark with my little pointed, fold-away shovel - good for latrines in the bush & scooping up gravel when you're panning for gold. And very good for chipping ice WHEN you can see. My neighbor saved me by pushing & chipping when he got home. I could see he felt sorry for me & I was feeling pretty damn sorry for me too by the time he showed up. That's it - I'm not coming out again until it rains for a week!!!
And to add injury to insult - all that chipping & digging gave me a really sore shoulder & an arm I couldn't raise by the next day. Still really sore today although I can move the arm a lot better!! It's really a pain in the ass this getting old .  .  .  my Ex & I used to dig up half of our street & the drives of all the old folks that lived there before tramping over to the local cafe 20 years ago . . . . .

And that brings us to knitting. I finished the latest scrappy blue sock that's been laying around unfinished. Tick. And last night I started it's mate. Tick. I'm a row or two from the heel & on a roll. This will be the last scrappy blue sock for a while. I have some lovely Kroy 4-ply singing it's Siren Song from the Personal Stash!! Remember These??? All lovely Kroy that I got for my birthday. Yeah the big Six Five.
I love the 4ply. Since I live on cold cement floors, it keeps my feet toasty warm & still fits into my shoes. And there's purple - my favorite color - in three quarters of these balls!!! I love my crazy friends who remember me, even when I'm in cantankerous Hermit mode.

Monday, January 02, 2017

Here We go Again

Just Outside my Door
The Wet Coast is continuing to get a real winter -  I can still hear the boys laughing at the Tire Shop a couple of weeks ago when I insisted on SNOW tires instead of the good All Seasons that I had all round .  .  .  .  there's another 4" of really heavy, wet snow we got for New Year's on top of the snow left in my drive. The poor old Cedar in the side of the yard is really full & I hear we're getting more before the weekend. Like I said before, I can't remember so much snow - even back in 2009 when we got a real dump over the Christmas holiday. But, the bills are paid, the cupboards are full, I still have Gummies in the bag & was out for coffee in the middle of it all on New Year's Eve when it really started coming down. I AM glad I don't live in Mission, about an hour up the Valley, because they got over a foot!!! My niece, waaaaay up the Valley, is snowed under & looking for her own tractor with blade. These days I wish I was a hellova lot younger & had MY own truck & blade.

There's a million things on my desk but I just can't find the motivation to pull the rag out of my ass & get to it. I've been laying about for the last ten days drinking tea, solving Jig Saw Puzzles, watching Marathons & Christmas Specials on TV & have lost my MoJo, I guess. Maybe I'll get up early tomorrow, find a good Audiobook & get the old routine started again. Maybe I should just make a big pot of Italian Soup to help it along!! Or some Dirty Rice. 

Almost Full

And speaking of the old routine, it's time to wind off that huge bobbin of wool I spun up on my old Indian spinner which is a lot fuller than in this picture. I think I've been looking at it for about a year now. I love those big bobbins but winding them off on a niddy-noddy is a royal pain in the old 'nether regions' as EZ used to say. But leaving all that wool on the bobbin isn't getting it dyed or knitted now, is it??? I think I have actually spun ALL of the 'knots' of spongy fibre
the Knot
from the Grab Bag I ordered & shared with my friend Gail more than 10 years ago. Gail loved the wool/mohair roving in the bag while I preferred the more rustic 'knots'. The roving was silky & practically spun itself - so beautiful!!! But I wanted to knit a simple textured Kimono - so the more rustic nature of the 'knots' appealed to me. And I think I've managed to spin them all. Only took me 10 years or so. haha

I have a dozen skeins in the bin so far & probably that many on the current bobbin to wind off. I've spun it to a fingering SIZE but it's woolen spun so it will definitely knit up thicker. And I want to dye it before I knit it up as well. Waaaaay back when I first started to spin it, I wanted a splotchy, speckled yarn with lots of white but I'm not so sure anymore. It's really dirty here on the Wet Coast - everywhere you go. White does not remain white very long, especially if you're out in crowds, eating out, drinking coffee out, sitting, resting your arm anywhere or using buggies & public transport. I don't want to be washing it all the time. So it may end up with a blued background under the splotches. If I'd realized then, what I know now, I would've ordered the GREY Grab Bag!!