Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Crafty Days

I've been doing a ridiculous amount of knitting and crocheting of late.  It is easy to want to do, like today when it is the 26th of March and it is 13 degrees F when we got up.  I've made three baby afghans, and three are in progress, six baby hats, these felted knitted bowls and the big afghan for us to snuggle under.
I've also done plenty of normal housekeeping things and office work.  I've been trying to feel like cleaning out   the bedroom we've made into an office, and it is so discouraging because I don't know what to do with all the scrapbooking stuff that is in the closet.  I don't have room to put it anywhere else.  I NEED to finish some  books.  Which I would if I wasn't knitting.
Speaking of knitting, I like to felt things.  It is cool to knit up some yarn and throw it in the washer and come out with something that is thick and feltly and doesn't look quite like it did before.   I had some leftover wool given me by a sister-in-law,  (I'm a good dumping ground for yarn) and decided I wanted to try my hand at some bowls.  They worked up quickly and are just plumb cute.  

They felted very nicely in my front loader with a load of towels. 

As soon as it got cold last year, when I was on the couch I was snuggled under a big thick afghan that was Aunt Inez'.  I wanted to made another one that looked better in our living room.  The purply-pink just didn't match. So I used this green variegated yarn and it turned out just the way I wanted.  It's nice looking with our new brown couch and love seat.  I wanted it heavy so I used double yarn with size 15 needles.  I wanted it pretty so I knitted in cables.  I was so careful in binding off so it was loose enough and I was pleased with the way it looked and felt.  So, I threw it over the couch to take a photo.  Imagine my surprise and dismay when right there in the middle of the piece---I missed a cable.  There it was glaring at me, and what to do.  I didn't want to take it apart and redo it, it took me so long already.  

So, I didn't. It's too hard to make everything perfect.  I usually do go fix a mistake if I catch it before I'm all done and it isn't more than a few inches back.  

 I remembered hearing something once upon a time about quilters making deliberate mistakes in a quilt, so I researched it on google.  I found they are called humility blocks and the story is a myth. It is attributed to the Amish especially, but plenty of other quilters would say along with them, "I can make enough mistakes without making them on purpose."

My birthday was last week and I decided to do something I especially liked to do on that day, so I invited a couple of friends over for tea.  They brought lovely gifts.  I think I fall way down on the gift department for others. Jim and I went out to eat with some friends that were in town for high school speech.  We had planned on going out sometime as a family, but Lynette was working that night.  She made my cake early,  and we ate it after we got home. I smooshed mine all up with ice cream. That's malted milk balls, and it wasn't so easy to get them to stick up there.  While she was working on it, I would hear, "plink, plink, plink" and an occasional "auuugh", but it turned out nicely in spite of all that. 

Then on Sunday, we had dinner with my older daughter, and they made soup so I could eat what they had, too.  How nice of them.  It was nice to see them and play with the boys again.  Before we left, though, Zane was cuddling up on Papa's lap.  He acted like he was getting sick.  If that boy is quiet, it's not normal.

Now I can get back to crocheting. 

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Back to Our Regular Programming

I see two schools of thought when it comes to blogging.  The day to day chat of daily life, or the thought provoking posts meant to inspire.  It is too difficult to post the thought provoking kind all the time, although some people seem to be able to produce that sort of thing in the daily life posts.  I blog mainly because I want to write.  I want to chronicle my life and if thought provoking pops out, so be it.
Actually I like to read about daily lives. It's interesting how other people live and what they do.  

I said in my last post that I wouldn't be writing any more cancer posts. That doesn't mean I won't ever mention it again.  Cancer has been and the results are a part of my life.  My life, my way of life has been changed forever and my posts will reflect that.  But, it doesn't dominate my life and my way of thinking anymore.  It's still up there in my thinking, but not dominating.

Here I get ready to talk about ordinary life and I can't remember much of what happened in March.  Since when is life supposed to go so fast when you are ill?  I went to the theater boosters meeting and volunteered for treasurer and the scholarship committee.  This is the first meeting I've been to all year.  I've been grocery shopping by myself. I bought a bunch of new yarn, and finished a couple of afghans.  I have my tax stuff in to the accountant.  I've washed loads of clothes, cleaned house, knitted, crocheted, read, cooked, done office work for Jim, fed the cats and kept the fire burning,  Oh, and dishes, too.  I've not hounded my daughter enough to practice the piano.  We've been out to eat, had mother/daughter shopping and eating, in short, just normal stuff, and I'm enjoying it.  (Well, maybe not the laundry and dishes.) No wonder the time goes fast.  

Here are a few pictures of little things in March.   

Tumbler made in ceramics class.

Ditto for puzzle pieces

Flower meringue on mini lemon pies, by Lynette.

Mini cheesecakes and dipped strawberries.

My first coconut cream pie.  Jim loves it. 

Baby shoes from when I was a kid.  (Cleaning out closets.)

Cool t-shirt, made by Lynette, with bleach.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

The Elephant in the Room

Some parts of this post will be very hard to write, and some of it might be hard to read.  I want to sort of "wind up" my cancer/recovery vigil, partly to come to an end of only cancer related posts, and partly to remind myself of where I am right now, so that in a few months I can go back and look at the progress I've made. I really appreciate those who have followed me on this journey, because it is pleasant to read the comments of those who are encouraging me.  

Anyway....I was in Omaha today for a doctor's appointment, again, I'm getting tired of going to the doctor.  However, this was a two months out visit, and so will the next one be.  The visits are now turning into, checking over all my lymph glands to see if there are any changes and cleaning out my sinuses, debridement, it's called.  It entails the doctor looking up into my sinus cavity (which is truly a one big open hole) with a light and a forceps with a tiny alligator mouth on the end, cleaning out the crusted old mucus lingering there.  This is part of the healing process, it used to take an hour every month to clean me out, and it took twenty minutes today, and then some suctioning, So, the doctor was pleased.  It means the inside of me is healing.  He said that someday, I may not have to have the clean out done at all.   I know it sounds horrible, and while it isn't very pleasant to watch, it really isn't painful, just a little uncomfortable.   
A year ago this month I was self-doctoring for supposed sinus infection.  After spring break, I went to the doctor and got antibiotics for said supposed infection.  And that is where it started.  A year later, I have half of my strength back, no smell, little taste, a tired brain, and hardly any saliva.  My sinuses are still healing, draining and producing extra mucus which drains down my throat and I gag.  But, I have no tumor, and no residual cancer.  
Any recovery now will be virtually unnoticeable.  So, it is time to say good-bye to cancer posts, and onto real life.  

Now, about that elephant.
Sadly, one of the things I've had to deal with during my treatment and recovery is the odor that lingers in my sinuses.  Some days, it is a really horrible smell that can be detected at a distance from me, some days it isn't there at all, some days you have to be right next to me to smell it.  It is caused by all that extra mucus sitting around in my sinus cavity.  Since my sinuses are not normal at all, they don't act normal either.  The stuff doesn't blow or drain out of my nose.  I rinse twice daily to remove some of the mucus, but it doesn't all come out and what sits in there gets smelly.  Jim and I spent quite a bit of time trying to find a pattern to the odor, like, does it happen when I have a certain taste in my mouth, or when my nose runs a little more, or if I have more drainage than usual.  But, there is no pattern.  I can't tell when it's there, I have no sense of smell.  I have to depend on Jim to sniff me before I go places so I can rinse.  That helps.  Except when it doesn't.  I don't like this. It bothers Jim sometimes, and the poor guy has to live with me.  And what about other people?  It makes me hesitant about getting next to people and talking to them.  It can be very unpleasant to be next to me when it is really bad.  Anyway, I know what is going on, we are doing what we can and I hope this isn't a permanent condition.  It was very encouraging today for the doctor to say that eventually I won't need to have the mucus cleared out, and I am hoping I won't have the odor anymore after that.

I am looking at another year of recovery, for sinus healing, for a normal voice, for possible saliva.  So, I am ordering my life to live for right now, if it doesn't get any better than this it's okay. 
 I'm fine. 
Anything else is gravy.   

Monday, March 4, 2013

There IS a Photo, Really!

Like I promised, here is my picture, the way I looked on Sunday morning.  I really wanted to have this picture up earlier, but everyone else is so busy, I had a hard time getting it taken.  If my photographers that live here weren't busy, I was in my pajamas.  Or I looked tired.  Or something.  
My hair is long enough now it is over the tips of my ears, and long enough to give me bedhead.  It is a little fluffy and very soft. 
And there is something new about me.  Can you tell?