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August 2009
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October 2009

What's Going on with the Knitting


The last time any knitting was shown on this blog was a month ago!  The last post was about my breakup with Rosamund. Ah, Rosamund, we hardly knew ye.  While I blogged about it on a Monday, the decision she had to go was made that weekend. What took her place was a sweater out of the beautiful blue/purple/brown/gray Noro Silk Garden (color 201) I had in my stash.  The sweater is the basic pullover from Jane Ellison's book, Knitting Noro.

That weekend I made good progress and while home over Labor Day weekend I made more progress.  Since the yarn is worsted weight the sweater grew quickly. By the time I returned to the hospital for surgery I had the back finished and the front about half done.


The colors are some of my favorites and the idea was to have a big cozy sweater, something like sweater shirt, to wear this winter.  I'll need it more than ever now!  The problem is it is just too heavy, in gauge, yarn and needle size, (healing chest muscles can't handle the weight) and I had to set it aside. When I am able to knit it again the finish line should come quickly.  I'm still planning on finishing my 12 sweaters this year. 

Another project I didn't have time to tell you about was Daybreak by Stephen West. Two skeins of Malabrigo Sock were purchased and designated for another shawl, but Daybreak won the day.  The colors are, Boticelli Red and Stonechat.  I love the way the mix and blend.  I finished it the day before surgery, but have yet to block it.  It will be sometime before I can crawl around on the floor and pin it down. It's a nice shoulder shawl/neck wrap and it will be well worn this winter.


Since the sweater was too heavy and Daybreak was already finished, I had to find something new to knit, something lightweight, and lace seemed to fit the bill.  On top of the stash was an already wound skein of Blue Moon Geisha (color Korppi). The base color is black, but the lavender, blue and green that shimmer through give the fabric an iridescent look.  It's rich in color depth like abalone or a black opal. The original plan for it was Juno Regina and I stayed with that plan. I cast on a day or so after coming home and have knit no other project since.  She grows quickly, she is gentle and tender and I have enjoyed every stitch.


She has, however, been set aside (but will still have some attention) for a project I'm very excited to share.  I'll be back in a couple of days to tell you more. 

My Dream Team

The first few days at home were rough, but everyday since has been better than the last. I'm walking over a mile a day (almost 2 miles), but spending most of my time napping, knitting, or visiting with friends.  Our bodies are very resilient and mine amazes me daily. 

The one thing I must do is acknowledge the team of doctors, nurses, CNAs, along with the hospital, IMC that made it possible for me to go on.  (The IMC link has pictures and info on the campus.)  I am very fortunate that this facility is 4.4 miles from my house (Smith's checked the mileage as he was back and forth frequently) and that it houses a fabulous team of cardio specialist.

The man on the right is one of my favorite people in the world.  He is Dr. Doty, a very skilled heart surgeon, all around great doctor and man.  He would show up, unexpectedly, at all my tests or procedures (as long as he wasn't in surgery). He is kind, gentle and very caring.  On the left is Dr. Shane, one member of the large team of PAs (most of whom I met) who monitored my care and progress.  Both men came to see me the afternoon of my release and stayed to visit for several minutes.  Dr. Doty even signed the pillow, seen in the picture below, above the valve he replaced.



Torg was the only CNA who washed my hair and bathed me while I was flat in bed. He rigged an ingenious way of making a shower head out of a glove finger so he could wet my hair, then wash and rinse it.  He also created a dam of sorts that went directly into a waste basket and kept the water out of my bed.  He wore bunnies or fairies on his scrubs and his shoes never matched (crocks: one salmon, one green).  He made me laugh often and was as gentle as anyone I've ever met.  Every nurse who cared for me was gentle, knowledgeable, caring and always walked in with a smile.

Knitting has been accomplished and one project, in particular, I am very, very excited to share.  I'll be back soon.

Saturday Sky Touch of Fall

From the second day out of surgery I have been walking.  Short distance, tiny steps at first, but before I left the hospital, longer stride, almost a mile per day.  It is the perfect time of year to walk, as our fall is cool, sometimes crisp, but the sun is true and bright. Tinges of fall color dot the mountain and valley trees.    It feels so good to breath deeply and enjoy the rich season before us.

The Answers

I'm doing well, but time at the computer is a little painful so a quick post full of answers to Susan's questions...

6 Siblings...5 sisters, one brother.

My white Honda Accord 1991 was the only car I've ever loved. License plate NDLEPNT

Least favorite month is's looong, with short, cold days and usually has too many days without sun (due to the inversions).  

My favorite song changes day to day, that's true, but one of my very favorites is Visions of Johanna by Bob Dylan.  I love Dylan, period.  White Room was on a list of songs from the year I graduated high school.  Cream is still a favorite group and back in 1968 I loved White Room (still do).My iPod is a Blue Nano. It saved my sanity while in the hospital.

I have been to NYSW twice and had hoped to make it back this year. How grateful am I hadn't followed through.  Hopefully I'll make it again in the next couple of years.

Where in the World

It wasn't my intent to disappear so quickly, but events conspired to keep me away and there was nothing to do except go with the flow of my life in that moment.  I wouldn't be here otherwise.

When I was able to log into email I was overwhelmed and overcome by your kind, caring comments of support.  I still haven't been able to get through them all, but I will and, while I can't comment to each one of you, I want you to know how much your prayers, support and good vibes helped me through this ordeal.  With all the love and kindness that has come my way there could be no other outcome than the best.  I will try to write a proper post and tell the tale of the last 21 days, but for now I can only muster this post...a big, BIG THANK YOU post. 

To all my dear friends near and far thank you for your constancy, your love, your emails, cards, texts, visits and phone calls.  A very big thank you Susan for taking over the blog and gathering gifts to give as prizes, as well as the wonderful comments for me to read. It was a lovely gift of time that kept the blog from being dormant too long. And thank you, Susan, for the joy and laughter you brought to my hospital room each time you dropped by.

Shelley and Cheryl came by often and I can't thank them enough for all they have done to help and support me each day. 

Cheryl visited me nearly everyday and often came bearing gifts. Not only did she show up with delicious (gluten free) treats to entice me to eat (and for Smith to enjoy), she took the time to knit me a shawl.  It was the perfect size to keep my shoulders warm while sitting up in bed and I have worn it nearly every day since returning home, as it's the perfect weight for coolish fall mornings and evenings. 


It's Gabriel's Wings knit with Sundara yarn, a silk blend, and Cheryl calls it Sky Blue Pink.  It's the perfect name and the perfect pattern. I hold it close to my heart. 

The next day she came in with a bag of toys, fun things to make me laugh. 


She brought the sublime and the ridiculous, both wonderful and appreciated, but, seeing her smiling face walk into my room meant more to me than anything. 

A grrl may be in the hospital for days (on end), but she still wants to have fun. 

Posting will be spotty, but as soon as I can gather the strength for another post I'll tell you why the long hospital stay.  Thank you again for your love, support and caring. I couldn't have made it through without my band of allies, every one of you.

(A big Happy Birthday to my dear friend Carole!)

Lucky Thirteen

Thirteen people correctly answered all 5 questions in the "All About Margene" contest.

I assigned a number to each and then used to select a winner.

Teyani step on down!  You win the prize basket filled with Utah goodies!

1.  A $25.00 gift certificate to my Ravelry pattern store.

2.  A set of dpn protectors made by my friend Warren.

3.  A bar of awesome Blessed Juno soap.

4.  A package of Green Goddess tea from the Tea Grotto.

5.  A skein of Sleeping Dragon yarn from Blazing Needles.

Thanks to everyone who participated.  I think we were successful at keeping Margene entertained for the week. 

And, so, without further ado I hereby relinquish my duties as Zeneedle guest blogger.  Margene's been making great strides so she may soon feel well enough to post again.

I'll leave you with one more photo of Margene's mountains.


I took this one on Friday night at a high school football game.  Just as the players and cheerleaders turned and faced east for the National Anthem, the clouds parted slightly and a rainbow appeared.  Right on cue.  I just wish I'd brought something better than a cell phone camera.



All About Margene - Fifth and Final Question

Ok, you made it this far.  Just one more question and I'll leave you alone.

How many siblings does Margene have?

Today's prize, the last one I'll add to the prize kitty, is a skein of Sleeping Dragon fingering weight (superwash merino) yarn donated by Cynthia, the proprietress of my LYS, Blazing Needles
The colorway is called Splendor.  Cynthia and I picked this skein because it's dyed by a local woman and the colorway evokes images of Margene's mountains. Here's a photo of those mountains from the perspective of my backyard, a little to the north of Margene.


I heard from Margene yesterday and if all goes well she's being released from the hospital today. Yay!

I'll be posting the contest winner tomorrow or Sunday.


All About Margene - Fourth Question

I confess that yesterday's question was perhaps a bit unfair.  Seems our Margene changes her mind frequently when it comes to her favorite song.  But that unpredictability contributes to her star power; right?  So if you got the iPod Nano part correct, I'm counting your answer no matter what song you guessed.

Since yesterday was about a "like," I thought it would be fun if today's question is about a "dislike":

What is Margene's least favorite month?

Trust me; this one's easier.  Plus, at the very least you have a 1 in 12 chance of guessing correctly.

The prize kitty is happy to welcome a bar (and some samples) of Blessed Juno soap, hand-crafted by Laurie right here in Utah and generously donated by her. 


Awesome stuff.


All About Margene - Third Question

Day 3 of the contest.  All the rules are in this post.

Today's question is a little harder and also in two parts:

What is Margene's favorite song?


What kind of iPod does she own?

Today, in keeping with the Utah theme, I've added some tea from the Tea Grotto to the prize kitty. 


This is one of my favorite teas from the Tea Grotto.  You're lucky I just opened a package of this blend (a birthday gift from Cheryl) or I'd be closing the comments immediately so I could keep the prize. 


All About Margene - Second Question

Today's question is auto related and has two parts:

Margene currently drives a Toyota Camry.  She once owned the same car for more than 12 years.  What brand was that car?


What does Margene's license plate say?

I've got a lovely prize to add to the prize kitty today. It's a set of dpn protectors made by Warren, a local knitting celebrity.


I saw Margene last night and she looks great.  She was definitely amused by your comments so keep them coming.