Funny how things happen. All of a sudden just in the last week several people have mentioned that they miss reading my blog. It’s been 3 months since I wrote anything; to be honest I suppose I just got out of the habit and I have certainly not missed the pressure I felt to write regularly and post to the blog.
What opening line do you use when starting to write blog post after a long break?
Hi people I’m back! Bet you wonder where I have been. Or, simply start to write as though there has not been a break.
I think I will go for the last one with an apology to those who have missed the blog.
I’ve coped with the fatigue, nausea and destroyed taste buds that come with chemotherapy albeit since the change in regime in September, it has been manageable with a cocktail of anti-nausea drugs. In the big scheme of things my side effects have been nothing compared to what others go through so I am thankful for that. After the initial dosage which was too toxic for my body leading to unscheduled stay in Intensive Care with sepsis, I was taken off the intravenous drip and given half the dose of the chemo tablets. Fingers crossed that this milder (!) regime of chemotherapy has done its work and killed off any rogue cancer cells that may be lurking in my lymph nodes. My last chemo is next week, it seems to have gone on forever. The CT scan, due in two weeks, will tell all, but I have a good feeling that it will be clear. I am back at work three days a week, which is draining but satisfying, it makes me feel life is getting back to normal.
What have I been doing the last few months? Well certainly nothing in the garden. With the constant rain it is like a quagmire. I took a hoe to the bottom flower bed this morning just to loosen the flattened soil, and I wondered where the sound of rushing water was coming from. Turned out to be the waterlogged soil and as I moved one part, water was oozing up from another section. I decided to leave well alone after that, coupled with complete exhaustion after just 10 minutes! Another reason why the garden has not had much of my time.
Back to what have I been doing. I have resumed the gentle art of knitting and crochet. It has been most satisfying – I won’t dwell on it being tough on the budget! The local and online wool shops draw me in like a moth to a flame and I find it hard to resist the wonderful yarns on the market these days. I have a large stash (a knitters term for a collection of yarns) waiting to be used. I have discovered the brilliant website www.Ravelry.com which was described by someone as “like Facebook for knitters”. It is full of patterns, a lot of which are free to download, along with other members sharing their projects complete with notes and the yarns they used. The other website is www.loveknitting.com, their wools arrive in organza bags which makes it all the more special. I have bought the most wonderfully soft alpaca wools which I am totally obsessed with now.
Family and friends received a wealth of handmade gifts for Christmas. My daughters had gloves and neck warmers, and my grandson had his first football scarf and hat. This is knitted using a circular needle to give it is regulatory double thickness and in obtaining the length of 60″ I felt I was never going to get to the end. So glad I didn’t have a seam to sew afterwards, it was just a fringe that finished it off. The hat was minus a pom-pom as my grandson refuses to wear hats with a pom pom.
For my granddaughter I knitted her a Fairy Doll. I sewed and stuffed as I went rather than knit all the pieces first and then sew it all together once finished, it made her creation all the more fun watching her come to life so to speak. Her legs were a little longer than they should have been, giving an overall height of 14″.
Another of my many Christmas knits was a Christmas Pudding tea cosy, made to order for daughter #1. There are so many patterns on the Web eventually I cobbled one together of my own design, although a christmas pudding is a christmas pudding so there was nothing too original about it. I used a great fluffy white yarn called, appropriately, Snowflake for the icing top.
I’ve also been busy making a woolly hats to sell on my resurrected on-line shop AarTee Designs on Folksy. Although this is not been too successful, there are so many knitted hats on that website the competition is great. I found this when trying to sell handmade cards on the same site a few years ago. However, since being back at work I have made a few to order which have gone down well. I am donating £2 of every sale to Macmillan Cancer Support as the very hard working nurses have been a wonderful support.
What project do I have on the go now? Mainly it is a scarf for my Dad’s 90th birthday at the end of February. I am using a beautiful baby alpaca, in a random blue to purple shading, it is a dream to knit. It will be my constant hug to him as he wears it.
My blog may well now become more handicraft based than garden based but having written the above I remembered how much I enjoyed it. I do have a number of other knitting and crochet projects on the go but I will write about them another time.
It’s good to be back!