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August, 2005:

First Day Back at Work and Another Good Mail Day!

Yep, today was my first day back at the day job and I’m exhausted! It was really good to be back though, great to get to use my brain for the first time in over five weeks. In some ways it was as though I’d never left because I just settled right back in. But am I tired now! And the work doesn’t end because I have to do some KnitCast writing tonight for an interview tomorrow.

Yesterday was a public holiday in the UK and we went to St Fagans – the museum of Welsh Life because they were holding a summer craft fair. It’s quite a prestigious fair and if you want to have a stall there you have to be interviewed and bring your work along for examination. It’s quite tough to get in. I’m very happy to say that Jeni did get in, and why not since her work is excellent. I bought a few things of course including this pink and yellow yarn. The purple skein was a freebie from Jeni which was very kind of her.



I immediately cast on for the beginnings of a glove.



I’m using a pattern from Ann Budd’s Knitter’s Handy Book of Patterns. It’s a great book and I can’t sing its praises highly enough. If you’ve seen my Smittens on the blog, they were made from a combination of the glove and mitten patterns in the book.

I’ve been slowly getting back into walking again because my hips are still very painful after the virus.  They were quite sore on Saturday when I literally only walked around the block to a local fair where my friend Hannah had a stall. Hannah and I have been friends for about five years and she’s started her own business called The Green Emporium. She sells ecologically friendly products including cleaning products, including a fantastic natural vanilla air freshener that has no CFCs or other gases, just pure oils. It’s brilliant and the fragrance, I *love* vanilla, stays in the room for hours after you’ve sprayed it. She also stocks wonderful organic beauty products. You’ll also find lots of good eco links and info on the site as well.

So a little walk on Saturday had me shattered and then the walk around St Fagans, including a hike from a field where we had to park the car, nearly finished me off! The museum is great though and has lots of old buildings which have been rebuilt on the site. Sometimes they have a woman spinning somewhere on the grounds. I even saw a Rowan tree planted by a Cottage which was built in the 1600s. It was considered useful in warding off evil spirits in those times.

Today I came home to find a package from the fabulous Mariko!



Fantastic slippers!I’m wearing them right now, they’re so fantastic!




The best sewing pins ever plus fizzy, sherberty sweets – not to be used together of course!



And a Peeps basket! With a small package of bunny Peeps inside!



I showed this excitedly to Andy and he said "That’s not a Peep, it’s a bunny." So I had to educate him on the different Peeps varieties. He won’t make that mistake again! 🙂

BTW check out Mariko’s blog to see her incredible crocheted cat!



It's ok, I'm still here!

I’ve been been meaning to blog for a few days now, just hadn’t quite got around to it. And then I had Lynn’s comment and felt terrible! I thought I’d better blog now and put your minds at ease.

I had the blood test results on Tuesday, which included one for a type of cancer (!) and they were  good. My levels are coming down to normal. I have to have some more tests done at the end of September just to double check that they are still coming down.

The doctor says the results support his theory that I had a viral infection that caused my immune system to attack me. I still have aches in my hips and my right shoulder and they could last at best for a few weeks, at worst for a few months. He’s cleared me to go back to work on Tuesday, Monday is a public holiday here, and I’m very excited about that. I just want to get some normality back. And I’ve really missed my work and my colleagues. I’ve felt as if I’ve been under house arrest for the last five weeks.

I had put in a leave request before I became sick for next Thursday and Friday and I’m still taking those days off. So next week I’ll be easing myself back by only working Tuesday and Wednesday. I’ll be spending most of my time sat at my desk because the aches make too much walking difficult. I’m just going to have to see how things go.

My friend Hannah did some Reiki on my shoulder on Friday as a present and reckons that it’s healing which is good.

And speaking of gifts. Jeni gave me some of her wonderful hand dyed Silk Boucle on Monday and a pattern for this scarf.


It’s quite a quick knit and the pattern is available with purchases of her yarn. The scarf is fringed and before fringing is 153cm I think. It takes two skeins of the SB but if you used her sock yarn you could get two scarves from one skein. She has a better picture of the pattern on her blog.

And in today’s post a surprise parcel from Paris from the fabulous Kate Gilbert!


4 balls – enough to make quite a few of her famous bunnies!

KnitCast – It may be to optimistic of me to say that it’ll be ready by Monday so to be on the safe side let’s say Monday Sept 5th instead.

Felted Fuzzy Feet

They’re not as bad as I made them sound in my last post but they haven’t felted quite as evenly as I would have liked. But they’re very cozy and of course very bright!


The cuff of the right one (which of course is on the left of the picture) is more pink because Colinette sent me two different dye lots. It might have been difficult if it had been for anything else but because these are just going to be worn around the house it’s not a crisis. But I would have preferred the more orange tones to have been consistent throughout the Fuzzy Feet.



I’m still working on my second Agnes cardi from Noro Silk Garden. Will try and post some pics of that later.

Still achey but it’s early days yet.

Getting Better

Almost a week later and I’m feeling a bit better. The aches and pains haven’t completely gone but I’m feeling as though I’m on the mend. At least I can drink from a mug now and not through a straw as I was doing  last week.

I’m next seeing the doctor on Tuesday and should get the results fo my blood tests then. Hopefully they’ll shed some light on what’s happened to me. Thanks again for the comments both here and on the KnitCast Blog. I’m going to have a go at editing the latest edition tomorrow and with luck it might be ready to post on Monday.

And  I have picked up the needles a little. I read Lynn’s comment about knitting helping with the healing process and thought that it made a lot of sense. Knitting does help keep me sane so I’ve made a pair of Fuzzy Feet. Here’s one of them before felting.


Bright isn’t it! 🙂 It’s made from Colinette Skye in Rio.

I have since felted them but haven’t taken an after shot yet. They look ok but I seem to have mixed results felting Skye. The problem is that here in the UK we have front loading washing machines. As a result you can’t check on how an item is felting during the wash, you just have sling it in and hope for the best. When I made my two Stitch Diva Page Boy Hats, I hand felted the brims. I think I may have to do that with the next pair of Fuzzy Feet I make.

We’ve apparently had some very warm weather here but being shut in the house I haven’t been able to appreciate it. In fact it can get a little cold in the living room so I’m looking forward to wearing the slippers. Pictures of the finished items soon!


Possibly the Worst Week of my Life

because the shoulder injury was, according to my doctor, a red herring.  On the Sunday I found the pain, which had already affected both of my arms and hands, was affecting my legs too. I woke up on Monday morning and found that I couldn’t move my arms or legs because I was in such pain. That was really frightening.

I had to force myself to try and move my limbs and little by little I could move them a bit more and try and think through the pain. Andy had to help me sit up and see if I could stand. I had a little mobility but it was more of the hobbling around kind and it was very painful to use stairs.   


From bad to worse

Sometimes I can’t believe my luck. I’ve been on sick leave for two weeks with possible IBS and have been referred to a specialist since they have to rule everything else out before they can diagnose  IBS. I was starting to feel better on Saturday and was looking forward to getting back to work on Monday and then I strained my shoulder muscle. I was reached over in my craft room for  a skein of yarn and I must have over reached because not long after that I developed an excruciating pain in my right shoulder that progressively became worse during the night. The discomfort spread to my other arm and both hands and the pain was so bad that I passed out.

So the early hours of the morning were spent at an out of hours GP clinic and the city A&E dept (ER) where at 7am my right arm was put into a sling. So I now have to keep it in the sling for about 48 hours and do some exercises as well. I’m taking painkillers but I can’t take anything like brufen because of my asthma.

The worst part – I can’t knit. I also can’t even hold a mug properly.

It has to get better from this! 🙂