Tuesday, 31 July 2012

What is next...?

Yeah, still feeling like crap.

I rather expected to hear from the hospital with some concrete date for at least an appointment at the clinic as a prelude to another wait for an appointment with the surgeon.


Went to see my lovely GP a couple of weeks ago, she spent a week (in between patients, moving house, feeding her darling husband and her Just The Four Boys) trying to call the surgeon and being put on hold and put through to the wrong people and had to give up. She told me to take my knitting, a good book and front to A&E and prepare to wait 12 hours but that would be surely better than waiting 12 weeks.

And after progressively feeling worse and worser I went to A&E at St Vincent's in the city  last Monday afternoon. I did take knitting but by then I felt so totally crap I could scarcely walk let alone cope with any sort of activity.
I must have also looked pretty nasty too cos I only waited about ten minutes after they saw me, and was whisked into the inner sanctum. AND ADMITTED - WITH A REAL BED! - WITHIN AN HOUR!!!!!! Yep, not a gurney in a corridor but a real bed, back in my Hep-Biliary Ward where I was last year.
Had an ultrasound and another CT scan, lots of  fasting and painkillers, and great care. And then slung out on Wednesday night with a promise of a hot date with the surgeon in clinic on Monday week.
Seems I have had a bleed inside one of the cysts, fortunately not a large one (bleed not cyst, they are still a decent size sadly). Maybe helping S4 move house wasn't such a good move after all. I thought it might precipitate action, so I did achieve that!

In the last six weeks since I last wrote I have just been flopping around knitting and doing very little else. Apart from moving S4. He came back from his wonderful adventure of a semester studying in Germany, and had to move house. The relationship he has had with his girlfriend didn't last the distance. They got together when they were 17 or 18, and these last seven years have been times of great change and growth for both, and each, of them. I am very sad about it cos I love her too. However, he has settled in a house with two girls (women) he was at school with from The Maine. they are older and have real jobs, are not students, and that makes for different dynamics. They are lovely. One of them I have known for twenty years - am I really so old that I have friends who I once babysat???!!

And S3 returned from his two month placement in Belfast. What an experience for him! He is in final year (maybe, perhaps there will be post grad study in the future) of Youth Services and has to do a placement in this final semester. So instead of two days a week for the rest of the semester he was able to roll it together in the mid year break. Belfast was extraordinary, can't wait to read his reports when he has completed them. Working with gay, transsexual and bi teens many also homeless in the midst of some riots and conflict was a totally different experience to here. Being asked if he was Protestant or Catholic, and not being able to avoid it be replying he was atheist. "Yes but are you a Protestant atheist or a Catholic atheist"...!!!!!

I will add some photos shortly - next week shortly, not in the next hour shortly. I am staying at The Sweetheart's at the moment. My house is way too cold for someone who can't chop wood. So there are pics of my latest knitty creations on my computer at home.
I made a circular jacket with matching hot water bottle cover for Molly Moo for her 7th birthday. The jacket started with 8 stitches and then spiraled out with "afterthought sleeves" (same technique as "afterthought heels" on socks). I used 12 ply wool and it worked up really well, and it fits her!
So successful was then jacket I decided to make one for me as my Olympics project. Sadly, I ran put of yarn as I was doing the I-cord cast off, and then felt too unwell to continue. Thought I could extend it to be my Olympics AND Paralympics project but hospital has put an end to that.  Only got the casting off to do but it is both time and yarn consuming. I am knitting I-cord 3 stitches by 12 rows  and then looping then and weaving onto the three stitches after the next three. It will make sense with photos... However, there are about 1,200 stitches, three circular needles to hold them all to cast off...

And I am making socks, and a shawl that is 4 ply variegated sock wool, and some wristies forgone of the nieces who is I. The. Northern hemisphere. And both S1 and S2 are going to be daddies. S1 is the father of Molly Moo, and their baby is due December 8. S2 and his beloved are having their first darling on Valentines Day. I am so excited. Do so want to be well, I have lots of travelling to do between Hobart and Baranduda in the next months. Years even!

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Knitting Needle Holder

I made a roll to keep knitting needles in.
Some of them at least...

Layered pretty floral with vintage heavier turquoise and some white and turquoise striped cotton materials and sewed then RS together, then turned them trough so the long strip was lined.
Then, sewed some channels on the turquoise side, and stamped sizes onto vintage belt lining, cut it into squares and vliso-fixed each one to a channel.
It is all tied up with lovely tape measure binding that S4 gave me for Christmas last year.

Here are some little photos of the progress:

How much better, eh!

I was inspired by the roll I made for my lovely pens and pencils (again - SOME of them!!)

Monday, 16 July 2012

Porridge Coloured Wool

And I dyed some of the other porridge coloured wool:


This is going to be fun to knit with, as well!

Wristies and sockies

Just after Mum's Big Oh birthday my baby sister fell out of a car in an awkward moment and broke both her wrists (crawling out the back of a 4WD and her jeans hem caught on the tow-ball).
Here she is drinking gin at our nephew's wedding:
Ten weeks later she is still in strife with them, needs surgery (cos the hospital she went to didn't apparently do the right thing. The hospital AT WHICH SHE NURSES. So if they can fuck up the brokenness of someone they know and care about, what happens to strangers???? Just wonderin'.)

So I made her a pair of little wristies to cheer her up and protect her wrists and to tell her I love her heaps:

The bright multi-coloured wool is a soft and cuddly soy/wool mix, the turquoise is 8 ply pure  wool. Despite what it looks like it is really a 2Purl 2Plain rib, and with a picot cast-off (how smartie pants am I getting with my knitting, eh!)

I also made wristies for The Sweetheart to wear in his freezing cold office:

Is Opal sock wool, all ribbed to be stretchy and snuggly.

And lacy socks for my all singing, all dancing Bollywood Princess Parvyn Kaur Singh (Google her name - there are thousands of links to all sorts of delightful youtube sites, and to her songs. She is gorgeous!)
I added ribbons through the eyelets just for fun.

The lacy pattern is an easybubs "P5, K4tog, (YO, K1) 6 times, K4 tog, P5 (should still be 22 stitches - or whatever you started with!). Then, K three rows. Rep". You can do any number of purl stitches to fill in the side of the rows. I did the soles in Continental knitting so they would be thicker, and added an extra fine thread into the toes and heels. Two at a time, toe up - THIS is the method I used but there are lots of vids and pages showing how to do it. So much easier than one at a time, and really doesn't seem to take that much longer. Also, essential for lacy socks cos then the patterns are matching...

Sunday, 15 July 2012

The Doona Solution

For years I have climbed inside the doona cover and then grasped the bottom corners of the doona and backed out, turning the doona cover inside out with the doona inside. And after a shake it is all beautifully flat and ready to sleep under.

I don't know why I thought of this - but it started cos I dyed a heap of ratty white (ish) t-shirts denim/indigo blue and am (still) cutting them into spiral strips with the long term plan of knitting something with the ensuing yarn. There were about 15 t-shirts so it is a lot of cutting.


What if I sewed a loop of the t-shirt yarn to those two bottom corners of the doona, and two long strings (actually one sewn in the centre to make two) to the inside bottom corners of the doona cover then all I would have to do is tie the long strings to the loops, flap the lot and instantly the doona is inside doona cover!!!

So I did it:

Easy as. and yes, it is a slightly grubby doona, but it is old, and it is way too cold and wet to worry about washing it now. I shall do that when summer comes around again...

(Obviously before I dyed the t-shirts., too)

PS - this is for you, Hayden so you wont ever have to struggle with your doona and cover ever again!

Happy birthday my Mummy!

A couple of months ago it was my Mum's 80th birthday.

And we all got together for the first time since 1996 (or thereabouts - though judging from the hairstyles it could have been the 80s...).

How funny are we?!

This was at the house that our Mum built in the bush out of Castlemaine.
From sandstone she dragged out of her own ground. AND it was double-rock walls too!!!
She was in her fifties when she did this, and didn't have any help until she got up above head height and was starting to stand on wobbly 44 gallon drums for scaffolding. Whereupon, she paid a bloke $10 to help her. All up, including the 15 acres of land, her house cost her $30,000.
She started this in 1986 - couldn't come to Melbourne to see newborn S4 in July because the slab had just been laid and needed to be looked after (and besides - "if you have seen one newborn baby you have seen them all..."!!!).

And here all we are 16 years later (goodness, how difficult it is to get us all in one place!!!):

We haven't changed that much...

Cos here we are when we were all little.
With three other cousins (they are the dark-haired ones!). It isn't such a crash-hot pic cos it is 50 years old and the colour has died a tad.
This was in the Mallee at our farm.
On the swing that our Dad made for a Christmas present (he didn't actually MAKE it - he got one of the farm workers to weld it up from pipes and a slab of timber. Lethal, but no-one ever got whacked with it. That I know of, anyway!). It fitted all of us, and was the most wonderful swing!

How CUTE are those little brothers!!!
And middle of winter and we all have bare feet!
Alpal's pant legs are filthy - and LOOK - he has a dolly!!!!
(And Noela and Marion look like they are also wearing shoes and socks - far right for Noela and Marion is in between two dark haired cussies in the middle of the swing. Softies!!).
This would be about 1962.

Saturday, 14 July 2012

Update on Health

So you can ignore this post if you don't want to know about the latest medical stuff.
Latest debacle.
Bloody, bloody doctors at St Vincent's Hospital in Melbourne (you know who you are. If you don't then look more closely at the Hep Biliary Clinic...).
Went to the clinic last Monday, again sat waiting for hours to get in. However, feeling just a tiny bit smug (very tiny bit) cos my lovely GP and I had done all the blood tests they had requested last year - Tumour Markers, and Hydatids - which had tacked weeks onto my waiting list.
And then I got called in, some idiot asked me for my medical history, so I said "It is all on the computer" and he said "Can't be bothered looking there, tell me to save me looking", and so I said that it had taken two hours to give my history on admission last year, I had had almost everything out, or looked into, and had haemorraghed at every opportunity.
He also flicked through the disc of CT pics I provided - because he couldn't find the ones that had been sent to them, also took all the copies of blood tests I had duplicated )couldn't find the ones which had been sent to them...) and asked me to get them copied at the desk and added to my file.
Then, poked my belly and told me I needed to have a colonoscopy and gastroscopy to find out 'why I was bloated'. Said it is cos there is frigging great cysts in my liver. It was like this last year, I had surgery, litres of fluid were drained, I was 5 kgs lighter and was back into my size 10 jeans cos I was again skinny.
He very patronisingly told me the liver is a very static organ which doesn't expand. So I need colonoscopy and gasroscopy. Sign this form.
WTF???? Liver certainly looks distended in the CT pics. And so it should, with another maybe 3L of fluid inside it already.
BTW, one of the cysts is the same one from last year, returned and bringing two siblings (cysters, hahaha) which have merged into one.
Last year, they spent some time explaining how the cyst had been 'deroofed' and stitched open so it wouldn't refill.
Instead, on the CT scan it is very obvious that this never happened - the cyst was drained and A CLIP PUT ON TO CLOSE THE DRAIN HOLE.
So it can refill????
Seems so....

Anyways, he gave me the form to sign and take out to the front desk and they will send me a letter letting me know when the oscopies are to take place. Which will be up to six weeks...
So I cried in his rooms, and then at the front desk in front of every other patient waiting, and then went and sat out in the gutter in Victoria Parade and bawled my eyes out.
And then had to catch a tram to Southern Cross Station and the train back to Castlemaine for 1.5 hours. Sniffling and snivelling. So humiliating, but I couldn't help it (and how different is it now? Here I am telling total strangers about snot-faced wailings...).
I am so over this being sick thing. Only had about a six weeks of heading back to being lively. I knew as soon as I could only eat two prawns at my nephew's wedding that something was wrong.

I measured myself today. Bust - 103cm. Waist ("waist"???) - 106. Hips - 109.
Perfect figure. If you like pyramids.

Knitting lots.

It takes brains...

I made a brain hat for Smellie 3. I don't think he is too impressed with it, actually. Is a knitted beanie with about 45m of I-cord sewn on symmetrically. I used the left over wool from the cardi I made - the one where I ran out of wool and had to "fussy-cut" the darker pink bits out of about 6 more balls for the yoke,  leaving the pink and milky-cocoa pieces behind. Perfect for brains, however!!!!

This is the cardi:

Porridge to jumper...

I bought a heap of rather ugly porridge coloured wool at the op shop. Five ply, mostly wool with a bit of nylon in it. Twenty balls in all (hooray!). For about $20, double hooray!!
And I skeined it, then dyed it with purple Rit.

And admired it for a while before winding it into balls with my new swift and ball winder (eBay treasure!).

And I started making a neck down jumper using lovely lovely Noro that was a surprise from my gorgeous dancing singing Indian friend Parvyn