Archive for August, 2009

I’m back, baby!

August 28, 2009

It is so good to be home.  The surgery went okay, I think…an ovarian cyst and some endometriosis spots removed, nothing complicated or sinister (?!).  Now I just have to get through this frustrating few days of not actually feeling as good as I think I do and not being able to do all the stuff I want to do.  Also, I’m tired all the time but I can’t sleep for more than a few hours. 

At least it’s good knitting time.  Speaking of which…I have finally (after exactly 3 months) finished my entrelac scarf, gloves and hat set ready for winter. 

They turned out so lovely, and the scarf has softened up beautifully after blocking.  Now of course I have no reason to wear them for a bit longer, but they’ll keep. 

I haven’t touched the shawl since before I went into hospital, but I have made a good part of a sock.  It was good, mindless knitting which kept me occupied through pre-op nerves and post-op morphine haze:

Soon I’ll think about starting A’s jacket/cardi, but don’t tell him that, it’s fun stringing him along and letting him think it’ll be months yet.  At some point I’m also going to make a shawl for A’s cousin, then another shawl to take away on our cruise.  I don’t know what is with the shawl thing, but it’s what I want to do, so why not?


After a long, slow week…a frighteningly fast one!

August 22, 2009

So, now it’s all about the op.  It’s in 3 days now, and it’s hard to think about anything else.  I’m scared.  But I also want it over with so I can feel well and get on with my life again. 

I become so used to this restricted lifestyle that I find it hard to imagine a ‘normal’ one.  From previous experience, I know I’ll spend a week or two after the surgery feeling grotty and tired, but then I’ll start wanting to do stuff.  All the stuff.  All the things I’ve been unable to do for the last 18 months will be possible again.  I can drive, without thinking about how many painkillers I’ve taken in the previous 24-36 hours.  I can walk for more than 30 minutes without having to sit down for a while.  I won’t have to plan my time off work around what I have to do for work in the coming week.  It’s hard to believe in, but it’s what will keep me going for the next few days of worry and the following few days of feeling terrible. 

Anyway, this week has flown by.  I got all the work stuff done, handed over to the boss-man as planned and finished yesterday until further notice.  I’m planning to be back within 3 weeks…the boss-man has a contingency plan which covers my work until about December!  We’ll see who is more stubborn 😉

We had a good day on Tuesday – the cheque from A’s uncle cleared and we were able to pay off our loan.  We both got a mad adrenaline rush and danced round the house for a while, it was so unexpectedly exciting.  It feels so good to not have that hanging over us anymore.  We should never have borrowed it in the first place, but it paid for our wedding, my driving lessons and loads more things we wouldn’t have been able to do without it.  We haven’t borrowed for years now, apart from occasional additions to the credit card, so we’re improving at least. 

After paying the loan off, we moved the start of our cruise fund to a savings account and diverted the monthly direct debits from the loan company to the cruise fund account.  We’ll have enough to book by the end of December, or February if we treat ourselves to an outside cabin with a window. 

And even after all of that sensibleness, there was a little left over for treating ourselves.  A bought clothes, which always makes him happy.  I splashed out on a couple of knitting books, 3 CD’s and a skein of sock yarn form The Knitting Goddess.  I was looking for something pretty to take into hospital with me, thinking that when I’m waiting for surgery and nervous, and when I’m recovering but still in a daze, I’ll need something really simple to knit.  The answer is obvious – socks!  I can make them without a pattern now, and haven’t knitted any for a while.  This yarn is so pretty it’ll keep me interested:

That leads nicely into knitting news.  The shawl is still growing slowly.  It is now so big it fits the circular needle without magic loop.  Hopefully it won’t grow too big for the needle, as I don’t have a longer one! 

I’m also still working away at the alpaca/entrelac gloves, which I really wish were already finished.  I hated how they were going, really didn’t enjoy the pattern so last weekend I frogged them and started again.  This time I’m making them from the fingers down.  Goodness knows how, but it seems to work!  I couldn’t find a pattern to do it that way, so I’ve made it up and kind of like it.  I’ve done one glove to the cuff, and I’m now working my way through the fingers of the second glove.  Both will need the entrelac cuff adding afterwards. 

A is still nagging about his jacket – I had planned to get to it after the shawl, but I might be persuaded to start it sooner. 

I don’t suppose there’s much more to say for now – except please spare me a thought on Tuesday afternoon, and I’ll be back soon (fingers crossed).

Saturday Catch-up

August 15, 2009

It has felt like a really long week, full of ups and downs.  I don’t seem to have many weeks which aren’t like that lately, but there’s no point complaining.  I’ve made it through to Saturday and I’m chilling out.

Work-wise it’s all about preparing for several weeks off sick, after my op.  Not only do I have a lot of new year pre-development work to get done, I also ended up running the monthly regional reports due to an equipment problem.  That was 3 days I could have used more constructively.  I’m back on track now though, and should be ready to hand over to the boss-man on Thursday.

In the garden, everything is ticking along prettily.  The Royal William rose doesn’t seem to want to stop flowering.  Every time I think he’s done, I find yet more buds.  The slugs and snails completely stripped the sunflower my Dad bought me…leaves, flowers and all.  The lavender looks like it will flower soon, and has started to smell pretty good.  One of my apricot trees seems to have some kind of problem though, its new leaves are weirdly shrivelled and no more have grown in for a few days.  The other one is fine though, and catching up fast.

Knitting is at a plodding along stage again…plodding along at the cobweb shawl…plodding along on the alpaca/entrelac gloves.  I may have to take a knitting break for a while though, as A’s aunt wants me to make a cross-stitch picture for her new grandchild…due in October.  It’s a sticky situation though, as I made one for Auntie A’s first granddaughter which Auntie A paid for.  Then I made one for Auntie V’s granddaughter, which A’s Mum paid for.  No-one asked for one for Auntie A’s second granddaughter, and I’d moved on to knitting by then so didn’t feel inspired to offer.  Now, do I charge Auntie V for her second one?  Or ask A’s Mum to pay again?  Or do it for free?  I don’t like being in the middle!

Speaking of A’s family, we got a big fat cheque in the post this week, from the estate of A’s late uncle.  It was completely unexpected – we thought if there was money coming to anyone, it was to A’s Mum.  Well it did, but also to each of her children (the same for A’s Aunties and cousins).  It was sadly but also gratefully received…we are going to pay off our one outstanding loan two years early 🙂 .  We’ll be completely debt free now in less than 2 years, fingers crossed.  There’s even enough left after paying off the loan to start a ‘cruise fund’ for next summer.  Hopefully we can do the British Isles cruise we’ve been considering for the last year or so, and it would be really nice to take A’s Mum with us.

On to my family…Dad’s final divorce hearing was yesterday.  He texted me to say it was a long day, but all is settled and finalised.  He’s promised to pop in sometime today to tell me about it.  Fingers crossed it went his way in the end. 

Tonight we have Alan and Kat coming round for dinner.  Of course when I say dinner I really mean pizza 😉 .  It will be nice to catch up. 

Next week…I dunno, lots of work.  I might get out for lunch with Caron, if she’s free.  I’m hoping to go knitting in the library.  And I’ll be avoiding thinking about the hospital and surgery for another week.  I can’t put off thinking about it for ever, but the worrying can wait until the time comes.

A down day, then a better one

August 8, 2009

I was really low yesterday.  I think it was just a building up of pressure over the last few weeks (months?), followed by several release points.  For some reason I cope with stress and pressure at the time, but as soon as it is lifted I go to pieces.  I spent the morning crying over nothing, just spontaneously bursting into tears at random intervals.  Then all afternoon I could barely speak. 

Luckily, the boss-man told me to take an extra day off as compassionate leave so I didn’t have to worry about work.  And A knows to let it take its course and I’ll shake it off eventually.  By evening I felt a bit better and started to talk about it, then we got out for a good long walk. 

Today, I’m fine.  I’m tired and achy, but that’s not unusual. 

So, I promised photos…this week it’s all about the knitting:

That’s the pretty blue alpaca I bought from the yarn shop in Gorse Hill…

and that’s the almost-finished hat with entrelac brim I’m making with it.  There are about 2 rows of entrelac to finish, then it will need blocking.  I could have finished it last night, in fact I fully intended to, but then I got caught up in the lovely lovely cobweb weight shawl I’m still working away at:

Those little stitch markers are a lifesaver (shawlsaver?), as they clearly define the edges of each section and I can see fairly fast if I’ve made a mistake.  I didn’t have any small enough, so I found some wire in my craft cupboard, dismantled several bracelets and necklaces and made my own.  The wire isn’t the right sort as it’s far too flexible, but it works for now. 

Finally, below are a couple of new pretties bought in the last week:


The black one is a sample of the black chunky stuff I’ve ordered for A’s jacket.  I bought just one ball from a local shop, and knit up a few test squares to decide whether it would work in the pattern.  I think it will, so the other 20 balls are on order. 

The purple is a skein of Cascade 220, which I ordered for no good reason, really.  I already have a skein in an orange-yellow colour, and I just feel the need to buy this stuff.  I think maybe I’ll make a thick, stripy laptop cover one day when I have enough colours.  Or something.  Who knows?!

I think that’s all the news…this week I’ve got a 1:1 with the boss-man at work.  We have to discuss what of my work will need covering while I’m off after surgery.  That’s only just over 2 weeks away! 

Apart from that, I don’t think there’s much on really.  For which I’m grateful.

Mid-week update

August 5, 2009

As I didn’t say much on Saturday, I thought I’d add a quick mid-week note to catch up on all the stuff I couldn’t get my head around. 

I’m knitting away on my lace shawl.  It’s really coming along, but still takes too much concentration to do more than a couple of rounds each evening. 

I bought some lovely 4 ply alpaca from a local shop, to make a hat and gloves to match my entrelac scarf.  I’ve settled on a plain hat/gloves with entrelac brim/cuffs to match the scarf.  The hat is nearly done and looking good.

Next, A wants me to make him a cardigan/jacket type thing.  It has to be black, and he has a pattern in mind.  I’ve found a suitable yarn and ordered it from Get Knitted.  It should hopefully be here in time for my time off sick, which implies that…yes, miracles do happen…I have a surgery date!

I’m going in on 25th August, just 3 weeks away.  I only found out late yesterday, and only then because I phoned the hospital’s Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) to complain, for the second time.  Still, at least I can start planning around it.  We’ve already booked our October holiday on the basis that I should  be better by then. 

Now, what else…oh yes, in the garden everything is coming along nicely.  Some of my wildflowers are actually flowering, which is so good to see.  A second apricot seedling has popped up and is rapidly catching up to the first one.  And the neighbour’s cats have been having a butterfly killing spree.  We went out on Monday to find 3 cabbage whites in pieces on the path.  I’m no fan of the hairy creepy little bugs, but such wanton slaughter seems somewhat harsh. 

Last Thursday I went to Plymouth for work, which gave me loads of knitting time on the train.  I stayed overnight in a hotel in the city centre, meeting up with my friend and colleague T, and her partner, for dinner.  We went to an amazing Italian restaurant, where I managed to order the creamiest pasta dish on the menu – I’m not surprised I’ve lost no weight this week, I’m just amazed I haven’t gained any. 

The work meeting I went to Plymouth for went well, then T and I went shopping at lunchtime to buy some goodies for our team meeting this week.  As I was thinking of heading back for the train though, I got the message from my Dad about my Grandfather, so that was a really hard journey home.  T did offer to drive me all the way here, but I figured I’d be all right. 

I spent the weekend trying to get my head back together, and suffering extra pain from all the travelling and stress, but I took Monday off to rest a bit more. 

Yesterday I went to Bristol for the monthly team meeting, then today I made it to knitting in the library. 

Tomorrow is my Grandfather’s funeral, then somehow we’re back to Friday again!  Work is really getting busy now, as we start into the new academic year, and it’ll only get busier from now until xmas.  Still, I don’t like to be bored 🙂

Anyway, I’d better get back to work…photos as usual on Saturday.

This year sucks

August 1, 2009

I don’t have time, inclination or inspiration to say much.  My Grandfather died on Friday morning.  I’m ok, just very sad.

More another day.