Hey there! It’s been a while. I thought I’d update you on a few things. 

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I love how my cat is sitting on her tail.

LA County Yarn Crawl was fun. Although I didn’t crawl this year, I worked in my LYS and the traffic and the people were great. We had lots of fun things going on. Special yarns like the Ancient Arts Meow Collection. This yarn is inspired by the colors of cats and part of the proceeds from their sales goes to help stray and abandoned cats. Unfortunately I didn’t get any. I had my eye on a lovely Siamese colorway but it was snapped up by the end. Oh well.   

We had yarn from Oink Pigments and I did get some. I am making a shawl/wrap called Mashrabiya (Don’t ask me to pronounce that!) in three colorways. I am using Plum Drum Weekend, Geode Road and Silver Linings and alternating them every other row. It is coming out very pretty and looks like one variegated yarn. I just hope it blocks out nice and big. I’m almost done and it looks a little short to me. The yarn is very springy, so I hope it stays once blocked. Shoulda made a swatch. Oops. 

I got some of their lovely lace yarn in Blackberry Brambles. I have yet to decide what lovely thing I will make out of this.

We had the Coastal Gradient Cowl Kits and they sold out. That pattern is so cute. We had lots of other yarns and patterns to browse too.

I sold my stitch markers. Funny thing, I thought the beach themed ones would be the first to sell but I was wrong. The best selling ones are the Wizard of Oz themes. I just posted them at my Etsy Shop.

 Stitch Markers - Wizard of Oz,  Set of 6, Fits up to US 10.5 and UK 3 Knitting Needles, No Snag, Closed Ring, Knit or CrochetStitch Markers - Wizard of Oz #2, Set of 6, Fits up to US 10.5 and UK 3 Knitting Needles, No Snag, Closed Ring, Knit or Crochet

 

I finished my Watson just in time for Yarn Crawl. Actually I finished it to the point I wanted for now. It’s getting hot in So Cal so I left the sleeves off. It looks great as a sleeveless cardi, don’t you think?WatsonWeb

 

On Monday I finished my radiation treatments. They are so cute at the Dr.’s office. I got a certificate of completion for completing 28 sessions. I’m glad to be done. I didn’t have too many side effects and I’m managing well. 

Next week we’re off to Maui. It has been a long time since we’ve been on the island. We took our kids when they were small. I’ll be looking for yarn shops, but I don’t think they have dedicated stores there. I already found a quilt shop in Kihei, Maui Quilt Shop, that has a small selection of yarn and I just found Binky’s on Knitmap.com which looks more promising for yarn. They have a line called Maui Yarns. They also have buttons and beads. Yay! But no website… Boo! Who doesn’t have a web site?

We are looking forward to island hopping over to Oahu to visit Pearl Harbor. We might try to visit the big island too. I’ll have to do some research to see what else we want to do. Our friends are sending us ideas for some great hiking trails. That will be fun. 

Well, I’m off to do some research!

Bye for now.

Happy Birthday to Me!

This past nine months have been a whirlwind and our family has been so blessed through it all. I can truly say I am thankful in the midst of it for all the grace and mercy we received and continue to receive. Just yesterday we were humbled again when the Oncology Dr. and my nurse told us that most – 99.9% of pancreatic cancer patients don’t make it. Collette said that I am the .01%. Most can’t take the FOLFOXIRI regimen and the odds with the standard treatment aren’t great. In some people the tumor doesn’t respond. 

I had surgery to remove the tumor on January 6, just one month ago. My recovery has gone very well. I had very little pain and didn’t need to use the pain meds. The nurse had me walking the very next day after surgery and after about a week I was eating again. First a liquid diet, then some solids. I had a little trouble at first. Hospital food is gross! Now, just 4 weeks later, my appetite is back and my energy is too. I will be walking a 5K with my husband and our friends next Saturday. The link is at Westlake Village Pancreatic Cancer Research Walk/Run. 100% of the proceeds go to Pancreatic Cancer Research. 

The next step in this journey is likely to be radiation therapy. We thought we had understood that I would have more chemotherapy for follow up, but the Dr. said that if there is anything lingering somewhere else in my body, the follow up chemo wouldn’t get it since it is a gentler treatment than the one I have already had. He recommends radiation if the surgeon agrees.

So basically they hit me with the big guns and it worked. I can only praise God that it worked. He told me from the beginning that we would beat this and He came through. God keeps His promises. You can believe it! I sure do!

Oh, by the way, today is my birthday. Hence the title. It is a great one!

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Wow! Fall is (almost) here. Well not officially in So Cal, but we did get a teeny tiny bit of rain this morning. It has been so hot lately. I’m just glad it cools down at night.

So…. how did I spend my summer? I am half way through my chemo treatments. Yay! The tumor is shrinking. I’ll get another CT Scan in a couple of weeks to see how much more. Then we have to think about surgery. My husband’s company changed insurance and UCLA is not in the network now. We got a continuation of coverage for the chemo treatments, but the surgeon was denied. We can go through an appeal process and the liaison at the new insurance company thinks we should. One of the reasons we went with UCLA is that they are a team and my Oncologist recommended this surgeon as one of the best around. Well, it will work itself out. 

Ocean View

The view from our room

We were able to spend the 4th of July weekend at a beautiful resort in Laguna Niguel. I had an extra week off because my white blood count was low. The doctors said we should go enjoy ourselves, so we did.

A couple of weeks later we visited our trailer in the Sequoias at R-Ranch in the Sequoias. It was another restful long weekend. 

The rest of the time I have been knitting. What a surprise. I have completed two shawls, Lotta’s Lilacs and Ocean Breeze.

I made a 100″ scarf out of mink. Pattern to follow. I saw a picture and unvented it. I’ve almost completed a couple more projects, but I have to get the hang of the special bind off that I want to do. It’s a bit complicated.

Lotta's Lilacs

Lotta’s Lilacs

Ocean Breeze Shawl

Ocean Breeze

Askew Scarf

Askew

 I have also created a line of stitch markers. I love these beach themed ones. They are available in my Etsy shop

Beach Stitch Markers

Beach Stitch Markers

Marine Life Stitch Markers

Marine Life Stitch Markers

The Summer of Music

I’m sitting in the park listening to some great gypsy jazz a la D’Jango Reinhart. The John Jorgenson Quintet is playing. He’s an amazing guitar player.

We just heard about this free concert from our friend and decided to be spontaneous on a Sunday evening.

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Last Thursday we saw Aubrey Logan at Descanso Gardens. She’s an amazing vocalist. Check her out here: https://www.facebook.com/events/478450455570892/ and vote for her to win the Sarah Vaughn Competition!

A week ago we saw Bostix at our local amphitheater. It is a Boston / Stix tribute band. They were very good. We had fun picnicing with friends reminiscing about our high school days, because that’s how old we are!

Next week, who knows?!

The Year Of Hospitals

This morning I was thinking about how hard it is to start. I’m frustrated with needing to do things and wanting to just spend time designing. I’m fairly new at design work as you can see by the number of patterns currently available and how often I post them. But I want to! Things just conspire to get in the way. Maybe I get in my own way most of the time. Like trying to turn a lace pattern upside down instead of knitting the stupid project the other way around.

This afternoon I finally gave up on that and was working on some materials for a sock class I am teaching. My mom called and said she needed help. She fell and couldn’t get up. I raced from Burbank to Santa Monica. I finally got her to realize that she needed to go to the hospital. Now we are in ER waiting.

It was only two months ago that we admitted my mother in law to the hospital. She fell in March and fractured her ankle. She had been in a rehab facility for 6 or 7 weeks to get her strength back. Instead, she got worse. She had cancer in her liver and her ammonia levels shot up causing mental confusion. The day we got her to the hospital she couldn’t say more than yes and no. She only lasted two more weeks. We were able to have her come home on hospice and the family spent Mother’s Day with her. She passed the next morning.

So right now I am pretty upset. I want to cry but there will be time for that later I suppose.

I shouldn’t go on about my stupid knitting. There are much more important things right now.

All the time we were in the hospital with my Mother-In-Law I thought I should be documenting what was happening. Seems strange to start now. I just need to process. It feels like too much, but I know I can do this in His Strength! Philippians 4:13

Knitting @ 36,0000 Feet

I’m flying over New Mexico on my way home from San Antonio. The plane was three hours late but I didn’t mind. It gave me a chance to catch up on Rex’s sweater. I finished the back just now an I’m casting on for the front. I’m going to need some more yarn though. The double stockinette brioche pattern eats yarn like crazy! My hands seem to have gotten used to it. At first they were hurting, so I learned to hold the needles a little less tight.

This weekend was DH’s company Christmas party. A good time was had by all at Howl At The Moon. Especially one guy. He danced all night and was still dancing when we left at midnight! I wish I had that much energy!

I wasn’t able to knit on the sweater much this weekend so I was happy to sit at the gate plugged in to my knitting podcasts and knitting.

I can’t wait to get it done, not only because I’d like to give it to him for Christmas , but I have a design for fingerless mitts in my head that needs to get out. I’m thinking of knitting a mitt a month for 2013. Maybe I could publish an ebook. I think that would be fun! :)

I’m trying to write the pattern for the sweater as I go too, so look forward to that In the new year.

I forgot to say, how cool is this that I can post on my blog from 36,000 feet! Southwest WiFi is awesome!