Sunday, October 14, 2007

Catching Up, Yet Again!

Wow, where did 2 weeks go? It's been an up and down time Chez CBM. Read oh, 8 books, knitted madly, made some deadlines and missed a few others. Ya know, the usual. STILL haven't tackled the problems with my email - now I can't get to my Yahoo groups, so I guess I better get serious about fixing this.

Onward to the knitting and other news:

I finished the vest I was making for Afghans for Afghans and sent it off on Wednesday, along with a nearly-matching hat and a pair of socks. Then yesterday I found where I'd put the other 2 pairs of socks. OK, part of the next A4A campaign is already pre-knitted. I used the vest pattern linked from the A4A website, and I don't recommend it. It's a nice idea, starting at the center front and knitting vertically all around, with just the shoulders to seam. But the increases and decreases which form the V-neck are done too fast, and that makes for curling. I put several rows of garter stitch around, which covered a lot of sins and ends, though I should have decreased more around the armscyes. This was made with leftovers of WoolEase, Nashua Creative Focus Worsted, Cascade 220 and Patons Classic Wool - the back is solid dark green.

I started and finished a Comfort Shawl for my dear friend Fran, who had her second surgery last week, relating to colon cancer they found last spring. Her doctors dragged their feet for approximately forever about doing the second surgery, which they insisted she had to have. First she was too dehydrated and run down from the chemo - well, duh!! She's 82, fergossakes! Then they couldn't get her heart rate stabilized. Twice. The last time, she was *in* pre-op when the Chief of Surgery at the local hospital decided it was too risky to be done in his hospital. After more dithering between her oncologist and her cardiologist, Fran forced their hand and made her own appointment at one of the best cancer centers in the area, where the surgery had been approved. Way to go, my spunky friend!!

When I talked to her niece yesterday, Fran was still in ICU and giving the nurses occasional fits, but the reports from the surgeons said they'd found no recurrence. Happy Dancing!! Hallelujahs!! Through all of this, Fran has kept up her snappy comebacks and saucy attitude, even though she's become very frail and pretty thin in the hair department. When her niece said they'd found no new lesions, I felt like a knot came undone inside me, one I didn't realize was there.

I'd hoped to have the shawl done for her before she went into surgery, but I'll take it over as soon as they move her to a regular post-surgery room. I made the shawl from some Schoeller + Stahl Hobby yarn, an easy-care wool blend I had in stash (thanks for the reminder, MT!!)

While I was blocking it, I re-blocked my Sun Ray shawl, which was a tad too small at 56in by 33in.

This time I got another 10in across, which makes it 66in by 33in, a good proportion and a better fit.

I also blocked a Sun Ray shawl that was knitted by Gaye, one of the most talented knitters in my seniors' group, using some donated alpaca. I blocked it severely, and the alpaca blocked out farther than the wool in my shawl, plus she had more yardage; the finished shawl is 8ft by 4ft, and it's as light and airy as can be. Gaye looks smashing in it, but the shawl will be for sale at our Holiday Boutique.

While Gaye was modeling her shawl, the rest of our seniors' group was sorting our yarn into bags by color. We have to do this periodically, and it's a big project. Here's a view of *part* of the 'leventy-hundred skeins of acrylic yarns we have in our stash.

And I close with yet another picture of the inventive efforts of our resident squirrels to drag an old rug off to make nests; this morning we discovered it wrapped around the legs of our patio table and strung clear up to one of the hanging pots under our lime tree. I'd toss the rug in the trash where it belongs, but we're enjoying the fun.


Madge said...

Lots of activity chez CBM - of both the knitty and the squirrely variety! Your shawls are lovely; Fran's looks so warm and comfy, and your Sun Ray does look better retrofitted. Hee.

Congrats on getting your A4A knits sent off, your needles organized, your seniors' yarn organized, too. Whew.

Happy Sunday!

Marlyn said...

Love the Sun Ray shawls!!!

Joan said...

Wow, it's a shawl extravaganza at CBM's! All beauties nd the blue comfort shawl is gorgeous. Your pal will be thrilled and the color will automatically brighten her day. I wish her the best!

dale-harriet said...

Those shawls are nothing short of BRILLIANT! The "comfort shawl" -- that looks like the very definition of "comfort", what a lovely yummy bit of knitting. Sounds like you enjoy the privilege of the company of Elder Ladies, aren't they a treat? My BFF is 84 and outknits, outembroiders, outcooks, outquilts and out-COOLS anyone I know!

Anonymous said...

Those are some intrepid squirrels you've got!

The shawls are all beautiful--and I'm delighted to hear your friend is doing well. Won't she feel wonderful curled up in your handiwork!

Cindy G said...

The aquirrels are going to be sooooo disappointed when the rug disappears.

Glad to hear that Fran is doing so well. She will love the shawl.

Lisa W. said...

gorgeous shawls,love seeing you post and hey..didn't you get your hair cut...looks very very cute! and the vesty is very sweet too...i can see a lot of use coming from it. best wishes to your friend fran.

Cindy G said...

Hi Barbara, any luck with your email yet? Now my main yahoo email won't let me in either, and I was wondering if you had any response from them. So far, I can't even get a live person on the phone after over an hour's wait.

Jennifer said...

The Shawls are beautiful!
Now if I could just get organized with my knitting things.... a miracle that would be.

Renee said...

HI, you've been officially tagged, so check out my blog for more details -- it's not a biggie!

Mary Tess said...

You're welcome. The shawls look beautiful and I'm very happy the surgery was a success. The yarn you sent to Grumperina is perfect for her. I'm looking forward to seeing the completed scarf.

smariek said...

I could have sworn I left a comment here a long time ago, but I guess it went to the Blogger Black Hole. I love your Sun Ray, it's gorgeous! I'm glad Fran is doing well and know that your shawl will give her great comfort. You've also given me the idea of using my Hobby for a shawl, I totally forgot that I had some.

Lucky Canuck said...

We have many a criminal squirrel here in Toronto. Plus, they're all very overweight. I think they belong to a gang.

Love all those shawls. I need to knit a shawl, sigh!