August 12, 2011

Progress Made!

I haven't entered any knitting in the local county fair in probably 20+ years. The group I knit with on Tuesday evenings decided that each person should enter something ... I chose my SS 2011 Shawl (blue ribbon), Recuperation Socks (blue), DH's Christmas 2010 Socks (red), and Market Bag (red). Most of us are already planning to enter again next year.
I've been working on the Summer Mystery Shawlette pattern by Wendy D Johnson for dd, Alcariel. She knit the shawlette, but I'm expanding it to a full shawl using Brooks Farm Acero yarn, purchased at Estes Park Wool Market in June.

I added 192 sts CO sts to the outer edge of the shawl, 433 sts total, which increases the repeats of Chart 3 to seven times! I'm halfway through the second repeat... each repeat decreases the sts by 48. I am under 300 sts now ... the rows are getting shorter instead of longer.
I started the above socks for Sock Summit from the striping yarn available from Three Ewes Twisted in Fiber. Before I forgot how to do it, I added the after-thought Crystal Heel from the class dd and I took at SS. I still have about 1.5 inches to knit before doing the toe ... on the first sock! I haven't knitted single socks in over three years ... always used 2AAT on magic loop after learning about the technique. At least with the striping yarn, I will be able to match the length closely.

I've finally finished kitchenering the toes of the plain vanilla socks from some Paca Ped yarn I picked up on a week's retreat last summer in the southern part of the state. I wished I had used the afterthought heel when I knitted these socks last fall, but didn't, so they pool on the instep.

Oh... I've officially retired from teaching school! I've really been enjoying my care-free summer ... not having classes, workshops, curriculum, or lesson plans to do and having the $$ I spent on classroom supplies and school clothes .... to spend at Sock Summit instead.

At the doctor's appt yesterday, the surgeon said I should be a "poster person" for total knee replacement and the importance of sticking with therapy suggestions to prevent stiffness. He couldn't believe how well I was walking ... was really delighted when I told him my physical therapist asked another one in the practice to watch my "gait" and tell which knee I had replaced ... he chose the wrong knee because I was "favoring" that one. Don't have to see the doctor until next April for the year check-up.

August 6, 2011

I'm Back!

. After several months of physical therapy and prescription drugs, an orthopedic surgeon said the only thing to do was total knee replacement. So, ... finally April 12, my new knee was in place. Not being able to sit for long lengths of time ... I was told to get up every 20 minutes and walk for 10 minutes ... which I faithfully did for the first six weeks after surgery. This summer I have event gone for a couple of "short" bike rides around town. Most people who saw me walking then, couldn't believe how well I was doing. I would like to say that was my reason for doing so was just to feel better ... NOT! I wanted to be ready to go with my daughter, Alcariel on Ravelry, to the Estes Park Wool Market in early June and then to Portland for Sock Summit 2011 in late July. Estes Park was okay, but I did use my cane a bit for support especially when standing in one place for longer than a couple of minutes. All this time, my knitting was severally affected by my not being able to sit for a couple hours each afternoon or evening.

We just returned last week from Sock Summit ... I was able to keep up, most of the time, when walking places ... met friends made in 2009 at the first event ... renewed those acquaintances this year ... made new contacts in the knitting world ... participated in classes and listened to lectures ... exchanged "sweet corn" stitch markers with other participants ... knitted in the convention center's lower hallway each day ... and started to make plans for the 2013 event that was "rumored about" at the meet-up. The best thing was the marketplace with many beautiful yarns, needles, bags, patterns, etc. that have come to live in our house, at least until the yarn is all knit.
I did finish a Dane Shawl in the ST-1 (a colorway chosen by Steph (the Yarn Harlot) and Tina (from Blue Moon Fiber Arts), the two bravest ladies to take on such an event for the second time. Here's the blocked shawl and also a close-up. It was orange, rust, green, and a golden yellow knitted in BMFL STR lightweight. I did purchase a sufficient amount of yarn in the 2011 colorway chosen by the same two ... for a shawl for the next conference ... haven't picked the pattern yet.

January 11, 2011

Preparing for Recuperation

First of all, I have been terrible in keeping my knitting blog updated. As a teacher, I have to maintain a website, blog, wikispace, etc. for students to consult. Well, that takes a lot of time. Since this is my last year of teacher, next year there won't be that excuse.
In mid-August before school started, I took a "tumble" while wheeling a small cart with supplies on it from my car into school. Actually, the cart began to fall and I ended up astride it. II was diagnosed with a severely strained knee and went through six weeks of physical therapy. The pain never went away and actually became worse. So, the end of November, I was back at the doctor's office. He referred me to an orthopedic surgeon about 55 miles west of home. I was given an appointment for Dec. 19 only to have it cancelled the week before when the surgeon suffered an injury and needed to have "a procedure" done ... the receptionist said that he wouldn't be accepting new patients until the 3rd to 4th week of January. I didn't want to wait that long, so I was given an appointment on Dec. 29 with the other knee specialist in the same office. He gave me a cortisone shot that "zapped" all pain ... but for only six days! He did say it wasn't a fix, but a temporary relief from pain. I would need complete knee replacement surgery within 4-6 weeks. Well, I called the office the end of last week to schedule surgery only to be told the "knee docs" and their staff were at a conference and would be home mid-week. Knowing that I won't be as agile as before ... at least for a while, I decided that I need to prepare for the recuperation time.
This past week-end, I was able to get knitting projects ready to knit ... a sweater for my dog, a shawl for a friend, a vest that has been a WIP way too long, and I sweater that I started last year at this time only to discover that I didn't have enough yarn for the long sleeves that I wanted, instead of the 3/4 length on the pattern. I took care of the most important "stuff", at least to me, first.
Since then I have been making double batches of some of our favorite meals to put in the freezer so the dh can take them out and easily make lunch and supper. So far, I have made hamballs (put them in cupcake tins to freeze), Swedish meatballs, a couple of soups, some beef gravy made from the crockpot drippings of a beef roast (for hot beef sandwiches), and still hope to make a couple chicken casseroles that we like. We won't starve!
Here in the midwest, we have endured another two-day snowfall and are just waiting for the wind to pick up later today to give us the blizzard status. We received 8+ inches of the light, fluffy snow that glistened under the streetlight last night, so when the wind comes, it will blow. Before the snow, we did have freezing sleet, so that roadways are very slippery. We have had two days of school cancelled, so will have those added on the end of the school year.
I try to post some completed projects later on today ... can only sit at the computer about 10 minutes before my knee starts aching.
Happy knitting, everyone! TLGB