Sunday, December 27, 2009

2009 knitting & crocheting review

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Going through the photographs tonight, I realised I've been quite busy this past year. These are just a few of the items I made in 2009.

There are a few that I particularly enjoyed knitting/crocheting; my daughter's Red Riding Hoodie, my niece's granny square top, my son's skull fingerless mitts, Samm's blue sheep and my wee sil's pink dress and shrug.

In 2009, I finally completed my first sweater using a pattern I adapted.

The piece that took the most from me emotionally was my Sister's Adamas shawl. Sadly, she never got to wear it before cancer finally claimed her. The shawl is with me and will be cherished for years.

Items I knit and or crocheted this past year:

  1. Red Riding Hoodie from DomiKNITrix
  2. Cave Girl bikini from Naughty Needles
  3. Viva la Violet Dress from Knit n Style issue June 2007
  4. Shrug sz 4/6 to match the above dress, my own design
  5. A baby wrap shawl Taylor by t does wool #
  6. A cell phone cozie, my own design
  7. A blueberry bag, my own design
  8. A strawberry bag, my own design
  9. A lovely blue sheep (Sheep in Sheep's Clothing by Frankie Brown)
  10. Pumpkins
  11. 3 sets of wristwarmers for co-workers using Twist on the wristwarmers by Diana Troldahl #
  12. Basketweave scarf, my own design
  13. Slouchie hats x3, my own design
  14. Owl neckwarmer, adapted from Owl Hat & Bag
  15. Fancy victorian style wristwarmers x3 for co-workers
  16. Bebop Cardi by Lion Brand Yarn
  17. Cushman Top by Kim Biddix
  18. A felted kitty binkie for Gambit, my own design
  19. Kaleidoscope eyes scarf, my own design
  20. Pools of color scarf, my own design
  21. A crochet cap by Teresa from The Art of Crochet
  22. First pair of real socks! from the International Socks of Doom pattern
  23. A teeny tiny turtle, pattern by Pear-kitten
  24. 2 chemo caps for my dear sister from Lacy Chemo caps
  25. 6 matching sets of the Travelling bivalves Cowl by Jenny Raymond (1 set each for mother/daughters in my life)
  26. A couple dozen washcloths using a stitch I developed
  27. Halloween faces and garlands, 24 double-sided faces, 12 twirlies and one garland
  28. Kitty Kat hat
  29. Assorted stuffed animals; catamara and a jubjub which garnered 1st and 2nd place wins respectively on Neopets
  30. A couple of Calorimetry hats
  31. Adamas Shawl x2
  32. One skein baby hooded sweater
  33. Pocketbook slippers, 6 pairs
#Pattern available on Ravelry

There are likely several that I've missed in the list. Items that were made and given away before I even thought of taking a photograph.

Items that remain to be completed in 2010:
  • My son's skull blanket (only the 24 skull squares are left to knit) the 24 border squares are done (my own design inspired by DomiKNITrix skull chart)
  • A plastic bag dispenser for my daughter (my own design)
  • A pair of socks for me (International Sock of Doom)
  • The giraffe from "Itty bitty toys"
  • Totoro
  • The Heelhead scarf for my husband's best friend Nick
  • The Kenobi Jacket for hubby (needs to be frogged and restarted)
  • A raspberry bag, my own design
Not too shabby considering the crappy year it's been otherwise. I guess I could call this the silver lining to the black cloud that insists on hovering over our lives these days. I just hope that 2010 will see that cloud dissipate and a fair breeze blows good things our way.

Happy Birthday to my darling son!

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Today, 24 years ago, we were blessed with a beautiful baby boy.

Happy birthday to my son.

Here he is pictured with, from left to right, his sister Karen holding grandma's cat, his maternal grandmother and her boyfriend.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

How time flies

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Now that I have time again, I thought I'd post. So here I am, 4 months after my last post dancing about getting the job of my dreams... How time has flown.

Update on the job of my dreams... turned out it wasn't the dream job I wanted. I should have known right from day one when I found out I would be working for 2 bosses from 2 departments. It might have gone better if they had not competed for my work to the point that I felt like the baby that King Solomon threatened to cut in half.

And to add insult to injury, one of my bosses turned out to be quite abusive. Didn't matter what I did, it wasn't good enough. She yelled and cussed at me pretty well daily. I didn't dare say anything because we needed the money badly and the job came with a health plan. Whee!.. yeah..right... not worth the abuse.

Last Monday, I worked late getting a powerpoint presentation printed and bound for one boss. (the one who was never satisfied) She lets me in on a "little secret"... that the other boss has been gunning to get rid of me... ."Oh wonderful" I think to myself. I've reached a point where I'm tired, emotionally and physically of all the crap getting thrown at me, so the next morning I face the other boss and ask her why she wants to get rid of me. She gives me a blank look and asks me where the hell I got that from. So I tell her, she flies into a rage and goes into my other boss's office and all hell breaks loose. I'm asked to go in the office, the one who told me the other boss was gunning for my dismissal denies ever saying that and it just goes downhill from there. Wednesday morning, the axe fell. I was dismissed. Never got a chance to defend myself, explain, etc.. just out, immediately. Talk about a slap in the face. Like I said, should have known that nothing good would come of this, working for 2 competitive bosses. Lesson learned.

Why can't I get a break? Doesn't matter what I do, I always end up on the losing end. What's wrong with wanting a decent job with decent money so we're not struggling from pay cheque to pay cheque? Seems that I always have to give things up, as if I can't have more than one part of my life that's happy. It's always a struggle for me and I'm tired of the constant fight to even have just the basics of life. I have a wonderful loving husband who is plagued with health problems that can't be healed. I get the wonderful job that on the surface looked like this was it, but turns out to be a pile of crap on a fancy cracker. Mind you, looking for work a week before Christmas is not what I'd call optimum time but I don't have a choice. Don't want to end up on the street. Scary when you realise you have very little to go on. Merry frakking Christmas to us. :(

Hey, at least I can get caught up on the housework. The apartment looks like it should be declared a disaster area and get federal funding. The only thing that I managed to keep up with tenuously during the weekends while I was working were the dishes and the laundry. The rest kind of slipped away from me. I was too exhausted to do much of anything on the 2 days I was off. I'd get groceries when we were low, dishes and laundry, get the recycling out and that was it. Even switched to disposable paper plates to lessen the dishes that needed washing, sad huh.

Doesn't help that my neuropathy kicked into high gear, preventing me from sleeping decently which meant I'd wake up tired and have to drag my way through a hectic work day with feet and hands sending my brain phantom pain messages strong enough to make my foot or hand jerk in response. The stress I was under didn't help my diabetes either with blood glucose readings yo-yo'ing from one extreme to the other during the same day. I know, you're probably thinking now that I'm better off without this job. I agree, but we need money to survive which means I have to work.

The last couple of months were so bad, I couldn't share with my darling husband since he had his own beasties to battle. His blood pressure climbed to scary heights for no apparent reason about a month ago. He gets palpitations, racing heart beat and never seems to be warm enough. He's on blood pressure pills which were upped but that didn't seem to help in the first few weeks. He's still getting a high bp reading and we still don't know why. 153 over 96 is NOT normal! A heart rate over 100 beats/min is NOT normal! And this is while he's just sitting there, never mind what happens when he climbs a set of stairs or tries to do any kind of physical work! Add to that chronic kidney stones and now you know why I couldn't share what was going on at work with him. Last thing he needed to hear was that I was struggling trying to keep a job that wasn't working out.

In other news, I haven't stopped knitting or crocheting. With a 5 hour round trip daily commute, I knit/crochet my way through hats, scarves, wristwarmers, Halloween decorations, slippers, cowls, anything small and portable. Some I took pictures of, most I didn't and gave them away. I know, silly of me not to take at least one picture!

Currently working on presents which I intended to send to family. I'll keep making the items, but they'll have to wait until I'm working again before I can send them out. At least I don't lack for yarn thanks to my wonderful daughter and friends.

I also created a slouchy hat pattern that I like well enough to wear it myself! It's a nice big slouchy beret. I hate tight hats and since I wear my hair in a bun most days, a regular winter hat didn't fit well or was too tight.

On my needles, I have a neck warmer for my husband. I'm using Bernat's wool blends in the off white colorway. I really liked the owl hat pattern I'd used in the past and thought it would make a very nice neckwarmer.

Friday, December 18, 2009

The Power of Sister Souls

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I received some wonderful gifts from a special friend, a sister soul, Samm. The box arrived in the post today and it really cheered me up.

I opened the box to find a darling project bag that she knit for me! and in the bag is a ball of sock yarn in really pretty colors. Guess these are next on my needles. She started something since giving me her short sock recipe. It's a very pretty pattern which makes the knitting fun and the socks fit perfectly every time! Also in the box was a book for Cat Lovers, Gambit immediately took possession of the book by laying on it. Guess he doesn't want me to read it in case I might find some incriminating information on his majesty :) There was also a very cute soap bag/washcloth for collecting bar soap ends. Since we don't use bar soap, the little bag will also be turned into a project bag. It's so cute with the green and white stripes. Add to the surprises in the box some Neopet collectibles and it just made my day. The best part though was a wee friendship bracelet that I found on the bottom of the box with the words LIVE (heart with the word IN) and MOMENT. It hasn't left my wrist. Samm, if you read this, thank you so much. You managed to cheer me up, make me smile despite the tears. Thank you.