Saturday, December 24, 2016

A Deam Gift For The Knitter

Imagine  2 posts in a week after Months of being absent. I just had to share this with you all.  My wonderful Niece, who I have mentioned more than once in my Blogs, came to visit us for the Christmas holidays. She and her husband have a close friend, who has a background in fine art and Graphic Design. This talented Friend has used her wonderful talent to perfect one of my favorite subjects..

When Elizabeth Doherty, discovered knitting, she knew this was her destiny. Not only is she an expert and hand knits some of the most beautiful work I have ever seen, she has written a book that is a must for the serious knitter.  She has approached a problem which often plagues us all. Set -in sleeves and fitting properly.

The Title is  "Top Down  re-imagining Set-in Sleeve Design. The photography is wonderful !

There are 116 pages of instruction, patterns and graphs. This book was written with Quince & Co, an  American firm that makes Beautiful yarns . The yarns are primarily spun in New England from the wool of  native sheep. I am a New Englander by birth and can vouch for the wonderful things being done today in the manufacture of hand spun yarns.  is their website for more information about them and their products.

When I opened this book I was thrilled to discover that this talented woman had written a note of encouragement to me along with "Happy knitting".  I have been knitting a long time, but I will probably never achieve the level of expertise  she has shown us in this book. Her finished products are exquisite and masterfully executed.  Bravo!
This book is a must,-!                

I send a special Thank You to my Niece, who knows about my own knitting and yarn addiction,  She knew the perfect gift for me.
A big Thank you to Elizabeth Doherty for recognizing that this is a problem for many and for writing this beautiful book of instruction and tutorials!

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

The Journey!

In 2016 I began a journey that is on going.  It hasn't given me much time to devote to my blog, and I am pretty sure because of this I probably have dropped off the grid, I rarely talk about personal things, because my daily life  couldn't possibly be of much interest to others?  My only reason for doing so now, is to reassure those that may read this, that there is hope and many blessings that come from the things in life we cannot control.

During a routine physical examination in December of 2015 it was discovered that I had a Right Atrial Myxoma in my heart. This is usually a benign tumor that attaches itself inside and to the heart wall and continues to grow until the heart can no longer function. What a surprise this was--My heart is healthy and I do not have any arterial or heart disease. Of course the only option is to remove this alien thing that that is moving each time my heart beats.  We made plans to do so, A cardiologist friend recommended a heart Surgeon who is very familiar with this diagnosis. Within a month of my surgery date, alas, different symptoms emerged that signaled another diagnosis. This would change our immediate plans

I must say when your Gynecologist  says to you, "I am sorry but you have Stage 3 endometrial cancer", there isn't much of a reply to that one,  while you sit there trying to digest this and wonder --now what?.  This meant that very few options were available for me because of the heart. It was one of those "Damned if you do, Damned if you don't" moments.

Now the journey began of visits with a wonderful Oncologist and Radiologist. I am fortunate that we have great medical care in our area. I now had 4 physicians who were working together to find a solution to this double "Whammy"!  It was decided, because of the heart tumor, which was growing in size, to give me 34 radiation treatments.  I went every day until I was finished and then had to wait for the pet scan. Now my energy level was diminishing because of the tumor. I am by nature a very optimistic person and truthfully I didn't spend a lot of time thinking very much about this. I tried to continue doing every thing as I normally as I had been doing. It soon became apparent that I would not be able to continue this way. My husband and I discussed fully all  the ramifications of surgery, because you see I am 80 years old!  Would this worth it at my age? I had so many questions, anesthesia, heart lung machine--how would all of this affect my general health and brain? Would I be the same person?  Somewhere along the line I just had to learn to trust that it would be alright.

I have always been a busy and productive person and I am told that I am very young for my age, that is not ego speaking, that is all of my Doctors who convinced me that I could do this and recover. When the Pet scan came back with  the best report one could ask for,   Remission!!!!! We deiced to have the heart surgery as soon as possible. The next step was open heart surgery, which took place Nov 3, 2016.   Physically this was not the easiest thing I have ever done. I had not been a patient in a hospital in 52 years. My working days as a nurse were certainly different than the sophisticated care of today.
 I could not have asked for better care anywhere, but what I really discovered were the "Blessings"!  I never knew how many loved us both, the prayers that were lifted up for us, the meals that have been delivered, the offers to clean the house, the visits , cards and phone calls.  My etsy teams kept in close contact with Jim. I have met some wonderful and caring people along the way and made new friends!  Because of something I could not control I have learned to be patient and to appreciate more each day, those around me.  Our faith is very strong, and while we knew that we had the best medical science possible, and as wonderful as it is,  it doesn't always have the answer, so we turned it over to God! He is the great physician and always has the answer!

So far my Heart surgery appears to be a success, and each day I am stronger. I choose not to dwell on the negatives but to  cherish every day that I am given . I am told that my positive attitude was 90% of my recovery.  The people around me made it possible  for me to go forward and not look back. My only reason for writing this blog has been to share this journey with others who are going through similar circumstances and to say,\enjoy the people who love you, don't dwell on things you cannot change, When you don't feel well, tell yourself that tomorrow will be better.Take one day at a time and praise  God for every blessing!

I wish for everyone who may read this  a wonderful holiday season and may 2017 be the best year we can all hope for.      Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!