Monday, February 25, 2013

Two Years…. and Counting

It has been two years (Feb. 7th) since I busted my knee… hard to believe it’s been that long and yet… where did the time go?

The biggest lesson in all of this rehab is that it’s a continual process – I need to challenge and work my knee every day.  Too much sitting around and it feels sluggish and stiff… but then so does the rest of me.

I am still working with a Dr. using the Active Release Technique – A process that I know has given me back almost full use of my knee.  It’s a very hands on method of working the various tendons and muscles of my knee and leg.  I know that the work he did on my knee earlier this past summer made a drastic improvement – I was able to play Ring Around the Rosie with my grandkids… something I would not have been able to do before because I did not do that side to side movement very well.  I now can easily get down on my knees and in Yoga can actually do the Childs Pose without sticking that leg out behind me… which really looked kinda silly. 

Now when I get back to going to the gym on a regular basis (soon, very soon!) I know I’ll complete the process of strengthening my leg… when you limp you don’t use your muscles right and then they don’t work the way they should.  The quad in that leg was significantly weaker but now that my limp is pretty much gone – I’m getting stronger in that leg.

I am gradually getting out from under this fog of apathy – now all I need to do is get this cold behind me as well.  I am less congested since I picked up SinuFix from a local natural foods store this weekend.  I had planned to stop by a drug store to pick up something but decided to stop and check out what natural remedies were available.  I’m happy with this stuff as it worked quickly to reduce the swelling I was having problems with.  I’m sure the 3 hour nap I took on Sunday helped as well… I still can’t believe I slept that long in the middle of the day.  But it sure felt good!

Friday, February 22, 2013

This Weeks Knitting…

All that’s left on my needles are these socks…

2 Up Socks 3

I’m using a Kettle Dyed Lancaster Yarn… lovely blue color! 

Blue Kettle Dyed Sock 2

I have used this 2 at a time technique using a worsted weight yarn before – but using a fingering weight yarn is taking a lot of time… tap, tap, tap… so when I get bored with these socks I finished a scarf out of Botanical Knits by Never Not Knitting.  Here it is before I seamed it…

Botanical Knits Scarf 4

All finished and ready to send off to my daughter… I used a Baby Alpaca Tweed yarn by Plymouth Yarns… love the feel of that yarn.

Botanical Knits Scarf 6

And because that was done I pulled out a free pattern I had accessed from Ravelry… Edelweiss Neckwarmer.  I started it one evening and finished it the next - Very quick knit!  Well quick because I’m also working on a cold and haven’t been doing too much else.  I blame that movie theater full of people last week… I hate going to 7 PM movies – 5 PM movies have about six people there!

Ed Scarf 2


This was a Universal Yarn – color is Wild Berries.  The pattern says that it’s adaptable to any weight yarn and you can easily change the length… so I’ll be making more of this pattern.

Check out what others are knitting on this week over at Judy’s Patchwork Times…

Monday, February 18, 2013

Good Sunny Morning…

Not sure how long the !Sunshine! will last today but I’m loving it – I’ve seen so little of it that the word deserves exclamation points at both ends.

I have mentioned recently that I’ve had a tough time this winter.  I don’t usually like winter anyway – I actively work against this seasonal lack of sunshine – but this winter has been much harder than it should be. 

I have finally figured it out… it’s a new medication I started a couple months ago.  I re-read the information sheet and then went online and read a more complete list of side effects… and then I quit taking it.

Now don’t go getting all concerned… it’s a PPI – proton pump inhibitor – to cut down on stomach acid… so I’m not really obligated to take it. 

Day by day I’m feeling better… so I’m sure I made a good decision.  I’ll make an appointment with my Dr. to discuss a more natural approach to handling this issue which is how I’d rather handle it anyway.

We had a good Valentines weekend here – dinner and a movie Thursday, dinner out Friday, a fun day exploring some new shops in a local community and lunch out Saturday, and Sunday was a day of knitting for me and a day in the wood shop for The Engineer.

Have y’all ever been in one of those Olive Oil & Balsamic Vinegar tasting stores?  My goodness…. YUM!  It’s a good thing there were lots of other shoppers… I really would have liked to have licked the little tasting cups clean!

We have used the regular Balsamic vinegar and plain Olive Oil – but a whole new world of taste has been opened up.

Honey Ginger, Pecan Praline, Fig, Serrano Chile Honey, Bordeaux Cherry, and Coconut in White Balsamic are the six 2 oz. bottles we brought home to try out.  We picked out balsamic vinegars this trip – next time we’ll grab some of the oils to try.  Seriously – I could have just come home with a little bit of everything.  Olio Olive Oils & Balsamic has a lovely shop in Lititz, PA (recently voted the Coolest Small Town) with a wide variety of product and FYI they ship too. 

I can’t wait to go back… when I do I’m going to ask for a straw.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Continued and Completed…

I am still working on the Wingspan shawl… so it’s officially what’s on my needles.  I am on my 6th wing…

Wingspan 3

Last Saturday morning I stopped by my Local Yarn Shop to pick up a pattern and yarn for a “Shawl Collared Cowl” (by Alana Dakos of Never Not Knitting – pattern also available via Ravelry as a purchased download).  I wanted to make this for my daughter in MA.

I have to tell you – it was very gratifying to cast this on the needles on Saturday evening and bind off Monday evening.  I will definitely make this again.  It was a quick project because it’s fairly small and uses a bulky weight yarn and I learned some new things about knitting too.  I used Plymouth Yarns Baby Alpaca Grande so it will be soft, warm and cozy.

Shawl Collared Cowl

This week I ventured out to locate buttons for it and took the opportunity to check out a couple different yarn shops – both within what I’d consider a reasonable distance.  They are larger shops than my LYS, both very friendly and they carry a wider selection – one also has a good selection of spinning supplies (a bad habit I will not get involved in).  A wider selection also means they carry a lot more of the pricier yarns.  It’s nice to know they are there and I can keep an eye on their sale bins. 

Check out what others are knitting on this week over at Judy’s Patchwork Times.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

New Habits…

They say that a new habit takes a certain number of days (something like 20 or so) to establish.

Over the past year and a half we have been eating better around here – less processed foods and sugars, gluten free when possible, more organic fresh fruits and veggies and meats/poultry without hormones and yada yada yada. We don’t crave the stuff that makes us feel bad and when we do have those things – well… we just don’t enjoy them quite as much as we use to.

But my new bad habit is tea.


For Christmas my youngest girl gave me a glass tea tumbler from Teavana with a sampling of 2 of their teas she thought I’d enjoy – and she was right.  Imagine my delight when I found that there is a store at our local Mall.  It is no secret – I hate going shopping (unless it involves quilt or yarn shops).  But I will venture out to the mall for these teas.  In January I went out and selected a sampling of several teas… which we finished this past weekend – so earlier this week I made another trip out.  I enjoy Chai teas so I’ve been working my way through all the different ones they offer… and they offer quite a lot.  And let me tell you - this tumbler… I LOVE IT.  It keeps my tea hot for a long time so it’s nice to have here in the living room while I watch TV and knit.  Right now I’m loving the Toasted Nut Brulee and the Maharaja Chai Oolong teas and the White Ayurvedic Chai Tea… they will most likely remain regulars at our house. 

At least this is a healthy bad habit I’ve gotten involved in…

…unlike my friend Beth who has been sucked into the deep dark hole known as Pinterest.  So Beth if you are out there and you can hear me… “step away from the computer”!

Go make a cup of tea…

Friday, February 1, 2013

Fly Away…

That’s what I’d like to do… fly away… someplace warm and sunny!

In lieu of being able to do that (darn it anyway) I’m working on a Free Ravelry downloadable pattern called “Wingspan”.

wingspan 1

I have one wing done and the second started.  I have no problem saying that I considered ripping it out trying to figure out the transition to the second wing… I just didn’t have a clue what I was doing… but hey - why let that get in the way huh?

OK – so I typed the above I think on Wednesday night… and since then I’ve gotten a couple more wings done… which includes knitting in reverse 2 rows because I forgot to increase when I started the third wing.  I’m way too afraid to just pull stitches out (especially with sock yarn) and expect to pick them up again – so I’ve learned to knit in reverse… kinda like backing down your driveway… just go slow!

wingspan 2

Last weekend I finished knitting some felt coasters… and a little bag.  It’s very interesting – almost magic – the way untreated wool responds to hot water and agitation… I did these by hand in the sink as the first item (a different tote that I’ll tell you about another time) didn’t work out so well in the washer – my fault but lets not go there today.

Anyway – the coasters – also a Free Ravelry download pattern (search felt coasters) I did up in a Lion Brand yarn from AC Moore.  A picture of my first felted coaster and one that has been knit but not washed.

felting coasters (2)

The washing process – I switched from using that juice mixer plunger lid as the heat from the boiling water I was using made the end come off – I ended up using a potato masher and then used my gloved hands to work each coaster – squashing and rolling and mushing – like making meatballs.

felting coasters (6)

Here they are all pinned down to dry… and yes that is money drying over to the side.  I had done a load of jeans and apparently washed some of my own money… How do I know it’s mine?  Well – if it had been my husbands money it would consist of something more than ones (unfortunately he almost always uses his wallet)… if it’s ones - it must be outta my pockets.

felting coasters (11)

Here is the little tote purse – a Pattern from Plymouth Yarn #F184 –  also available via Ravelry.  In the first picture I stuck some DPN’s in along the sides so it would lay flat to get a picture before I folded and sewed up the sides.


Felted but needs to be blocked and dried – tiny for sure.  Body is only about 6.5 x 4.5 inches not counting the handle section.


To see what other knitters (actually I think we are all quilters who knit) are up to – hope over to Judy’s Patchwork Times for What’s On Your Needles today.