Tag Archives: charity knitting

Help

To cut a long story short – actually I don’t need to do that since it’s a really short story involving a couple of etsy conversations since Wednesday.

I have the opportunity for me and my Myeloma Buddies to maybe appear in a UK crafty magazine, possibly in the bottom left hand corner of page 82, and need to send in a pics of me and the Buddies plus 50-100 words about why I support the specific charities.  Which raises two issues – what to say and what photo of me to send ie, with or without hair!

There’s only a small fee involved – just kidding – no money is changing hands although I am still waiting to get my 561,000 bing bongs from the guy in Gambia who I sent my bank details to.  That might have been a mistake as I’m starting to think that might be the country where they need a wheel barrow to carry the coinage needed to buy a loaf of bread.

As I was thinking about it this morning for the first time really, I only got the email on Wednesday, I started thinking ‘I’ll have to count the words myself’ as I use wordpad on the netbook which is a small step up from using an electric typewriter with built in correction ribbon – but I don’t use it enough to justify forking out for Word.  Then I thought ‘If I type it in wordpress that will count the words for me’ and that’s when it dawned on me that if I did that I could publish it as a post and ask for your opinions.  So here it is…

In 2009 I was diagnosed with multiple myeloma, an incurable but treatable blood cancer.  It generally affects older people, 50% of myeloma patients in the UK are over 71, but is unfortunately increasingly occurring in younger ones.  I was 39.  It’s only in recent years that the most advances have been made in myeloma treatment and two of the charities involved only with myeloma in promoting research, providing information and offering support are Myeloma UK and the International Myeloma Foundation (IMF) – both of which are excellent.  I realised that I could FUNdraise (to quote the IMF) by using my crafty abilities and started making the Myeloma Buddies which is fun.  Although by the time I’d made 100 for Myeloma UK I did need a lie down at the sight of orange yarn.

There’s 127 words so feel free to add, subtract, amend or just generally comment.

Fortunately with regard to the photo – I don’t have to rely on B and his ‘The pic is adequate if you can tell who it is’ approach as I’ll be seeing Auntie Ann tomorrow.  Oh, I do have another question – make up or no make up?

I also have another issue but its okay I’m not asking for help on this one and its on a par with ‘Houston we have a problem’.  The peritoneal nurse visited yesterday whilst I was having dialysis to flush my line and change the dressing.  Whilst chatting I mentioned that Bud had kicked me in the side that morning.  It’s a little quirk of his to kick out his back legs whilst lying at the side of you, fortunately he only does it occasionally but you certainly feel it – which can be verified by B, Auntie Ann and Chris – all of whom have cried out when its happened to them.  The nurse said ‘You shouldn’t have dogs in the room when you do the dialysis’.  This is due to shedding hairs and skin – in a way similar to dandruff but with particles so small they are not visible to the eye.  Well I was planning on doing the dialysis at night whilst in bed – the very same bed that I and less frequently we share with Bud!  Maybe I do need help with this as I’m not going to be the one to tell him.

Me Bum’s Sore

Okay not so much now but Wednesday and Thursday if I sat down without thinking about it and pressed up against a cushion in the wrong manner it made B jump. Not so much the sound of me actually hitting the cushion more the yelp I emitted. How come I had a sore rear end? Well…

Last Friday we went to the Blood Clinic and saw the Prof. My blood counts, neutrophils, white blood count and platelets were all well in the normal range with only my haemoglobin slighty low – which doesn’t seem to be unusual for me – plus the counts had been staying there on their own. I haven’t had a donation of a kindly stranger’s blood since 23 December. This and the fact that my ‘quality of life’ was so much better than eight to ten weeks ago gave the Prof the indication that all was going well however the only way to really see how effective the DT-PACE treatment has been is a bone marrow biopsy since my paraprotein reading is not a reliable marker on its own. He asked me how I felt about this as I was as fully involved in the decision making for my care, I said that I’d thought as much and indeed this was what I’d told people when they’d asked how we would know how things were going.

The mention of quality of life always makes me nervous. I’m not too sure why exactly maybe because one day I’ll have to say it isn’t good and will I admit to it at that time. After having been in a lot of pain with my collapsed vertebra I would say that my quality of life at that time was pretty low. For a while I couldn’t even get in a comfortable position to knit, well or sit, stand, lie down and laughing, coughing, sneezing resulted in me nearly, or occasionally actually, ending up on the floor.

When my back eased off, before it got worse, I’d said to a friend that I didn’t know how people coped with bad pain all the time. She said that they probably got used to it but I don’t think so. I truly thought that the pain I had before I was diagnosed was never going to go away and that was a horrible thought. So I think for me how I will potentially feel tomorrow is a measure of quality of life – that even if I feel particularly tired or throw up a lot one day it doesn’t mean that tomorrow or the day after will be the same. Let’s be honest no-one has a wonderful day every single day, even if its only due to a self induced hangover after an over indulgent weekend. Quality of life is the culmination of all days – and maybe letting the bad ones slide and making the most of the good ones.

Anyhoo, Tuesday, after dialysis, I went up to the Blood Day Unit for a bone marrow biopsy. The actually aspirate and trephine samples, done by the same lovely registrar as last time, were fine – okay it did hurt a bit but it’s not like it lasts for long and I only had to pause briefly mid sentence twice – and the subsequent lie down was uneventful. When the requisite ‘lie down’ time was up one of the nurses checked the dressing, which was wasn’t showing even a hint of blood, and I got up off the bed. I popped on my shoes and was stood chatting to the nurse when I thought ‘My bum cheek’s gone warm.’ I looked down and there was blood spotting onto my shoe and the floor. The nurse whizzed off for some gauze and I sat down on the bed, she popped the gauze over the dressing and I got to have another lie down. Fortunately I had dark brown linen trousers on and a long winter coat so the blood wasn’t easily evident – we discussed how stylish I would have looked having to venture home in a hospital gown with my stripy pink socks and flat tan shoes sticking out the bottom. The nurse also did an excellent job of removing the blood spots from my shoe.

The additional lie down meant that I was late for my ambulance ride home. B rang while I was lying there and said he would come and pick me up if it was there problem. When I rang the ambulance reception they said I could still have a lift home but, since I’d missed my allocated ride, it would depend on when a suitable crew got back and most of them arrived about five o’clock – it was currently ten to two. Needless to say B picked me up.

During the course of the bone marrow biopsy the junior doctor assisting asked me whether I did anything else other than knitting and crochet. The registrar answered ‘She’s not got time for anything else she’s a professional patient.’ On Thursday I had cause to think that if I got paid for my time at the hospital I’d probably have the best paying job I’d ever had. I was all ready to be collected at ten past six (in the morning) with B standing watch at the porch window and getting more and more antsy as time went on. At seven I phoned up to see where they where. The co-ordinator didn’t know but said she’d ring me back. B was having to call into work that morning so said he would take me and then go straight in. I rang back to tell them this and she said that was fine, they had sent a taxi but it would be quicker if B brought me, they’d let renal know I was on my way. I thought the mix up may have happened because I didn’t get a lift home on the Tuesday however, it turned out that the two guys on the ambulance ride home hadn’t been collected that morning either and it was only after they’d both phoned that they’d been collected by taxi. We then waited ages for our lift home. So after being ready with my coat on at 6.10 am I got back home at 3.20 pm. Mind you it’s giving me lots of time to be crafty. Here’s what I did yesterday…

I used some of the left over yarn from Bright Star and the pattern is a free one – Garter Yoke Baby Cardi.  I didn’t finish the cardigan yesterday as Auntie Ann and Uncle Ray visited as I got home and then I had to fit in a 3 to 4 hour nap and then tea – which I actually made myself with only a minimal amount of assistance, and that was just so B didn’t think he was leaving it all to me – and then more sleep.  That’s only the second hot meal I’ve made since I’ve been home, B has taken over as chief cook.

So, here’s the finished cardy…

Little cardys on the table, little cardys made of yarn and stuff

Firstly thank you for all the comments this week, actually just thank you for all the comments – my sister in law has told me I should reply more and although I am a bit rude in this respect I do read and cherish each and every one.   ‘Put that bucket down it wasn’t that soppy.’  I am feeling somewhat better today.  I had a kip (nap) after a tiny bit of shopping (whilst B hoovered – so I was well away) and I’ve generally only felt tired/fatigued really as opposed to unwell plus my temp seems to have maintained a respectable level.  

I may not have a new creative space (it’s currently still got the scrap quilts from last week all over it and knitting hasn’t hit a production high) so I thought I’d share these little jackets I made for the South Africa consignment via our GP’s receptionist (I really need to find a way to shorten that).

I wanted a quick cardigan pattern but something that could be un-problematically sized up – the five hour cardi pattern I used last year was more matinee style so, for me, didn’t size up well for older children.  I found Garter Yoke Baby Cardi, which I think is more jackety and would look just as good on a toddler as a baby.

I completed four.  One in Snuggly 4ply with novelty yarn trim…

One in double knitting…

This one has I-cord trim on the buttonhole border and I think is probably my favourite.  Here’s the back…

Another is in the remnants of the recent aran crocheting binge…

B liked this one best and picked it to be entered in the Rainford Show, which was fortunate as the one in Snuggly DK, with shell buttons, which he nearly went for…

 

 

 

 

 

had a little boo boo on the sleeve…

it may not be easy to tell from that pic (or it may be glaringly obvious) but I apparently gained an extra stitch leaving a hole!  It has since had a little TLC and it didn’t leave a scar.)  Oh, the shame!!!!!!!  (

But then again, look at this from the Early Autumn 2011 issue of Designer Knitting (previously Vogue Knitting)…

A missed cable on the sleeve and a wrong way cable at the bottom front. Now fair do’s if I’d done it for myself I probably (definitely) wouldn’t have undone (frogged?) the whole front to redo that cable but the one in the sleeve!  Plus if it was to appear in a magazine I would have… cut the sleeve out of the pic and put something over the one at the bottom!

Oh and I forgot to mention yesterday what B said to me on Monday (other than asking me if I wanted a jam butty sandwich – we were short on groceries – jam butty being the same thing as jam sandwich, in case you wondered, and I declined).  I was talking to B and I do have to repeat myself a LOT but Monday instead of ‘What Paula?’ he says ‘What Mum?’

‘WHAT MUM?’ WTF!?!?!?!?!?!?!

‘What darling?’ I said – or words to that effect.

‘Nuffin!’

‘Yeah, right!!!!!  Is that because I’ve been a whinging pain in the a*se the last few days?’

He just laughed.

Other Creative Spaces can be found here.

 

Getting a straight edge!

I seemed to have lots of bits of stuff unfinished and hanging around.  I still haven’t done the curtains for the bedroom that I started weeks ago but I have a valid excuse in that my right wrist wouldn’t at the moment cope very well with the lifting and manouvering of so much material.  It also couldn’t cope with cleaning the bathroom or peeling potatoes so B had to do those.

However I did add buttons to this…

and these…

which are the five hour baby cardigan pattern, which I adapted to make jumpers from, which also got buttoned and finished off today.

Then I sewed together my first every crochet clothing item other than a scarf…

and turned these – baby socks knit on two needles because I thought that would be way easier than four but holey moley how many loose ends to finish off can one baby sock have…

into these…

The above items are for a hospital in South Africa which is helped out by one of our doctor’s receptionist’s husbands and were brought to you courtesy of yarn supplied by another receptionist and some odds and sods I had.

And finally, although I did finish this yesterday, we have Candy Cane Buddy…

whose alias is Barber Shop Pole Buddy!

Why I love our GPs

I called at our GP’s today to pick up my Bonefos prescription and picked up a copy of the current newsletter.  I really should get one every month.  Previous ones have dealt with suggestions about comfy seats, apparently a no, no as it might encourage patients to visit, and TV’s in the waiting area, again a no, no for the same reason!

Along with my prescription I received a copy of a thank you for some stuff I had knitted and a bag of wool – Isn’t the NHS wonderful!

Tiny, Tiny Balls of Wool and Other Knitting News

I handed the charity jumpers and hats into the doctor’s receptionist and she asked if I needed any more wool. Now I never refuse wool if offered and said that if she had some I’d be glad of it. Next time I went another receptionist after confirming it was me that did the jumpers handed over a carrier bag of yarn which when emptied expanded like a life raft and I physically couldn’t get it back into the bag. Here it is…

Now I know exactly what most of this is. It’s the last bits of yarn left from a knitting project that are too large by about two inches to be thrown away but too small to be of any real use. I know I have them. You keep them thinking they may come in handy if you need a little bit of that colour and under no circumstances can force yourself to throw them away even though they are taking up space. Then an opportunity arises to pass them on and then whether they are used or not they are off your conscience*. So I’ve tipped them into a box so I can see what’s going on and am going to knit wonderfully stripy tiny things.

Extreme novelty type wool normally brings me out in a cold sweat and sends me running from the shop but I was given some balls of this type of yarn and so I thought I’d give them a go. Apart from the cuff for a Christmas Stocking I made these two neck warmers.

I think they are really nice but strangely since I listed them in my etsy shop they haven’t had any real interest. Meanwhile Tommy’s dinosaur is quite popular, so I think I need to get sewing.

And this

Became this

* I couldn’t spell that either maybe it’s because a friend says I haven’t got one.

Charity Knitting 2

Hurrah I found the hats – well the photo and here it is for your perusal.

To Do List

The current status of my To Do List from my previous entry

Charity Jumpers – finished 27th but made the yarn stretch not literally to another couple of hats

Belt for cardy – Finished Christmas Day while I was waiting for my husband to finish getting ready and worn on Christmas Day with the rest of the cardy

James Graham doll – finished and wrapped on Christmas Eve – see photo, he did subsequently end up with eyes and rosy cheeks.

Paper decorations – Up in the porch on Wednesday night by approx 23:30. A friend had just left and I was standing in the porch in my jim jams hanging decorations while the snow came down in completely gorgeous snow like manner, all thick and constant.

Steam clean floors – Done on Tuesday night – didn’t really help my sore throat and caused my back a bit of gip* – to the point where I almost considered taking Oramorph – but my floors looked fantastic.

* It’s good to be able to get that off my chest that because

a) I don’t know if anyone will read this, and

b) even if someone is (Hello), I don’t know you personally and I don’t feel have to feel guilty that I potentially could have @#$&ed up Christmas by over doing it.

AND additionally I made a holly dog collar for my sister-in-laws pooch.

Christmas Stocking

I knit a lot, hence Feresaknit because somebody already had Feresa, who’d have though it.  And I cross stitch and sew and will try anything arty although I’m not a big fan of glue! It likes me too much, more of it sticks to me that to what I’m trying to stick.

I’ve just finished a stocking for my friend’s grand-daughter. I did her two brother’s one each last year but didn’t get her’s finished ‘cos I wasn’t too well and ran out of time, so I knit her one instead.

I’ve always wanted to do something crafty for a living, I did once work for a double glazing company so I suppose that was pretty crafty – to be polite.

I recently set up a shop on etsy.com and have discovered that although I am creative, even if I say so myself, its really, really, really hard to photograph stuff. There’s all these arty looking photos, some selling similar things and my look like a grandma with old-fashioned tastes did them. Oh, there’s a hat similar to the ones I knit it looks so cool, mine look so cute in ‘real life’ but look naff in my shop. I think I need photography lessons. Now I know why they use fake food in recipe photos, pooling gravy developing a skin wouldn’t sell. I only buy cook books with lots of photos in and this would explain why my results never look quite like theirs – well that’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it.

Anyway back to my stocking. I’ve popped a pic on here just so you can admire it.

And now I have to get back to the hundreds of illogical things women do this time of year like

* Finishing off some baby jumpers for charity just so I have more room in the glory hole so I can have space to find the felt I need to finish of a James Graham doll for Christmas. What’s that you say, just move them are you mad!

* Shred some old bills so I can fit a pile of magazines I’ve been given off the ‘library’ (or bedroom 3) floor onto the book shelves.

* Steam clean everything with my new steam cleaner that arrived today.

* Make an elaborate green chilli for tea (or dinner if your posh) instead of oven chips, oven fish and a tin of peas.

* Finish knitting a belt for the cardy I’m currently wearing.

* Make some paper decorations to hang in the porch – oh, wait that is kind of relevant but not urgent. I’ll move that down my list of priorities but put it before wrapping presents, getting my nephews, mother in law and 3 dogs presents, baking and get to them after the other things.