Tuesday, January 31, 2012

My Day

I did more weaving today than knitting. Last night I got a five-yard, yellow warp for placemats wound on the warp beam, and tied unto the front apron. I also looped together all of the yellow, plastic bag loops that I had already cut into long 'strings' to use as weft. Today I have woven two placemats,
but didn't have enough 'string' to do more. Only about half a shuttle-full.
So I had to cut up more bags.
I did that while listening to All Things Considered, so I'll be ready to do more weaving in the morning.

The first placemat has a flaw in the middle. One warp thread didn't get tied on to the old warp well, and came loose while I was winding on. The fix I tried while winding on didn't work either, so there are two threads side by side that are threaded on the same harness - i.e. going over and under the same weft threads. Before starting the second mat, I put the loose thread through the empty space in the reed and the empty heddle in the back harness, then hung it over the back beam with a weight. I don't know why I didn't do it that way before I started the first one.
It's sort of blurred, but that's a large clip from the office supply department. It is supplying just the right amount of tension. Of course, I need to move it down the thread as I advance the warp, but at least there won't be any misthreadings in the rest of the mats.

I also did some knitting on a shawl that I started a couple of months ago. I'm not sure why I keep putting it aside.
It's a lovely, soft, cotton yarn and an easy stitch pattern, that I think I have upside down here. I'm about 3/4 done - unless I run out of yarn before I get it the length I want.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Early spring?

We can hope, can't we?

I went to Dollar General in Fancy Farm this afternoon. As I went down my driveway, I saw a lot of daffodil foliage, AND several daffodil buds! It's almost a month early for that.

I took these two rugs off the loom yesterday. Today, I cut them apart at that white line you may see, and hemmed one of them. They are actually both about the same length.

One of them will be for my great-niece and the other for the silent auction at the Mayfield Art Guild's Gourd Festival in September. Red and black are the school colors for the Mayfield School system, and also, along with white, for Barry University which Lexi will start attending in the fall.

Now I have started putting a yellow cotton warp on the floor loom. I plan to make as many placemats as I can with a five-yard warp, using yellow plastic bags from Dollar General and ShopRite as the weft.

On other looms, I am making mugrugs and bookmarks.
 The mugrugs are on the BonHop loom, which is sort of a toy.

The bookmarks are on the 8-inch, metal Structo. It isn't really cockeyed, just appears that way because of the angle from which I took the picture. 

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Baa, baa black sheep

Have you any wool?
Yes sir, yes sir
Three (or four , or five, or . . . bags full.

Yes, those bags do contain wool. Looks like I need to put a new drive band on this wheel and get busy spinning.
Last Friday, when I talked to Marcia at the senior center, she asked if I could make some small felt balls for her cats to play with. The wool I have in the house is a breed that does not felt well, or is some I don't want to use for that purpose. This morning I went to the shed and brought in all of the wool that was out there.

I was glad to discover that some of it was dyed - with Kool-Aid.
 I took out a handful of each color. I started to card it, but then decided to just 'pick' it by hand to fluff it up.
Made quite a difference, didn't it?

I started forming the balls by hand (like rolling a ball of Play Doh) in a basin of hot, soapy water, and then put them in old knee-high stockings and ran them through the washing machine.

Two of them turned out horribly, but the other ten are OK. Most of them are larger than Marcia wants, but Alyssa's cats may like them.

Sunday, January 22, 2012


I've been on a dishcloth kick recently. I had one started at year end, but the other eleven are all from this month. Five of them will go to a friend of my sister in Florida, and the orange one is for my grandson's girlfriend, Jaimee, in New Jersey. I have tentative plans for the others, but nothing I'm ready to talk about yet.

I've also made a pot holder, also for Jaimee. It's not the best job, but I'm not used to double knitting. I am happy with the orange stitches on the veriegated side, which hold the two thicknesses together. What I'm not happy with are the edges. Maybe the next one will be neater.

I am also slowly (15 threads at a time) tying a red and black warp into the old one.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

But then some are smart alecks

Yesterday I decided to go to the Mayfield Senior Center for lunch, since I hadn't been there for several weeks. I was bookkeeper there for six years, but it has been six years since I retired. In that time several of the regulars have died or become too incapacitated to go to the Center - we are talking about senior citizens, after all. There are also 'new' people who are now regulars, whom I don't know. One of those new women often serenades the people on the piano during lunch time. She was playing yesterday, but was taking a little break when I got up to leave. She was talking to someone near the door to the hall when I got to that point. Seeing me, she said, "Oh, wait. Someone has asked me to play a song for you. Stand here while I go back to the piano and play it."

So I stood there. I figured it was probably Byron who had requested it. When she started playing "The old gray mare, she ain't what she used to be . . ." I had to laugh, I looked to where Byron was sitting and knew I was right. I went back to talk to him, and he admitted it. She also called over, "He's the one who asked for it."

But not all my friends there are smart asses. It was good to see Marcia. She didn't go to the center, except one night a week when the bridge club met there (and I was at home), but has recently started having lunch there a couple of times a week. She's one of the first people I met in Mayfield, because she is also an Episcopalian. When we closed St Martin's, she transferred to St John's in Murray (it's closer to Mayfield) and I transferred to Grace in Paducah (it's closer to Milburn), so we don't see each other often. It was very nice to talk to her for a few minutes.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Aren't friends great!

Friday through Sunday I stayed home and 'worked' - knitted, of course, hemmed the rugs I had cut off the loom, did a little weaving on two little looms (an 8" metal Structo and a BonHop. I think you can find information on them by Googling.) Monday I had to go into Mayfield to pick up a jug for the 24-hour urine collection Dr Winkler had ordered, and then dropped three rugs off at the animal shelter. I wanted to go to the senior center for lunch, but it was closed due to Martin Luther King Day. Yesterday, I stayed home.

Today was my busy day. I had intended to leave about 9 am, but I didn't get up until 8:30. By the time I showered, dressed, and had breakfast in front of the computer, while I checked email and did a couple of puzzles on JigZone, it was 10 o'clock. My first stop was the electric company to pay my bill. Then the hospital to return the jug I had picked up on Monday and let them take a vial of blood. By the time I got out of there it was 11:30 - too late to get to Paducah for the Wednesday noon service at Grace Church. So I drove past a 'drive-up' mailbox to put some bill payments in, and then went to Big Lots. I spent more than I had intended to, but I got quite a bit of food stuff. From there, I went through the bank drive through to cash a check so I'd have more than a dollar in my purse. Then I headed to Paducah.

In Paducah I went to Michaels for some Sugar and Cream 'dishcloth' cotton. They had it on sale this week for a dollar a ball. I should have gone earlier in the week - some of the bins were empty, and others almost so. I did buy quite a bit of it though.

Then I went to the coffee shop for the Wednesday afternoon knitting group. I was surprised that I had to park in the next block - I guess my guardian angel wasn't on duty. Or maybe she thought the walk would be good for me (I am too sedentary). I took with me eight of the rugs I've woven recently, and asked if anyone wanted them. They wanted to know the price, but I said whatever they wanted to give me, from zero on up. I came home with three of them.

I also had with me two 'wheels' of black, jersey fabric that had come from a pajama factory. It was about four inches wide, and the wheels are about ten inches in diameter. I want to weave some red and black rugs with it, but four inches is too wide; the red is half that. I asked if anyone had a saw that would cut through it. Valarie made a phone call to Jim, who builds sets at the Market House Theater. He came over in a few minutes, looked at what I had, and listened to what I wanted done. He took the stuff with him and said he'd see what he could do. He came back in an hour or so with four 'wheels', two inches wide - PERFECT!  He said he had wound up using an electric knife - like you use to carve your Thanksgiving turkey. He had to stop every few minutes to let the knife cool down, but it did the job. I asked how much I owed him, and he shrugged and said, "Anything more than a dollar but less than a thousand." So I gave him $20 from what people had given me for the rugs. I think that worked out very well. I may need to buy an electric knife.

Two more stops before I went home: the library to return two books and Kroger. I was too lazy to go inside the library, but they have a drive-up drop box out front. At Kroger, I stocked up on frozen vegetables and yogurt, as well as buying a loaf of bread. a pound of butter, and a few other things.

It was almost dark by the time I got home. Since I had made so many purchases, I did something I hadn't done for a while. I took my purse, knitting bag and coat with me while I unlocked the door. After I turned on a few lights, I took the wheelbarrow from the porch to the trunk of the car, loaded everything in it, and pushed it to the back door. That way I only made one trip. From there, it was easy to bring a few bags at a time into the house. I should eat well for the next month with just a few purchases of things like bread and butter.

Friday, January 13, 2012

I'm still OK

I had an appointment with my oncologist yesterday. It was supposed to be three weeks ago, but I had to change it because of things that were happening at that time. All of the lab results are within normal ranges, and the 'bone survey' that I had done in September showed nothing bad. I had figured that was the case, since I had not heard from his office. My blood pressure was 114/70, so I guess the one Atenolol a day is doing the job. I go back to him in April. I guess it will be every three months as long as I stay in remission.

Wednesday afternoon, I got a 'robo' call from our county judge executive about a Red Cross blood drive yesterday in Bardwell. Then yesterday morning, there was another one from him saying that the drive was still on despite the weather. I always feel bad that I can't give, but I know they don't want my blood.

When I got up yesterday there was slightly more than a dusting of snow on the ground, but nothing coming down. The roads I took to Paducah were mostly dry, even though I saw no evidence that they had been pretreated. About 3 pm, when I had been home close to half an hour, it started snowing again. Several hours later, the radio announcer said we were having 'snow squalls.' This morning there may be an inch of snow on the ground, but the sun is shining brightly. I went out on the porch about 8:30 to check the thermometer - it read 26 degrees. Not bad. So far this winter, we have not had any really cold weather, and almost no snow. I just hope that holds true for the next two months.

Now it's time to get back to my 'work' - knitting and weaving, One of these days, I'll even put a new drive band on my Schacht and order the part I need for my Louet, and then I'll add spinning to my 'work.'

Friday, January 6, 2012

Phew, it stinks!

One day last week, I thought I had a plumbing problem. I was thinking there is no way I can hire a plumber. The next day, the odor was gone. On Sunday there was a little whiff of it again. When Sara and Reggie brought Rose to spend the night, I went outside with them. Then I knew the source of the bad odor - the paper mill at Wickliffe, about twenty miles north of me. That smell doesn't often travel this far; the atmospheric conditions need to be just right - or wrong.

Tuesday I went back to the oral surgeon for a follow-up visit. My mouth is healing well. He said the stitches will come out on their own, but he did have an assistant trim them a bit.

Since today is Epiphany, I put all the Christmas decorations away, so things are back to normal. I hadn't put much stuff out, so the un-decorating didn't take long.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Change in Plans

Reggie was planning to go with Sara yesterday to pick up Rose. However Friday morning, on his way to work, he hit a utility pole. He has two broken bones in his right arm, and a lot (off topic, one of my recent pet peeves: I wish people would stop trying to make that one word) of bruising in other places, including his face. He was in surgery 4 1/2 hours Friday evening, getting metal plates screwed into the bones. The surgeon had estimated two hours, but found it was worse than the x-rays looked. I was surprised that he was discharged yesterday.

Sara stayed at the hospital until he was brought back to his room and settled in for the night. She got home at 2:20 am. I was there sleeping on her couch. She said she had slept a little in a recliner while Reggie was in surgery, and was afraid that if she went to bed and managed to fall asleep, she wouldn't be able to wake up in a couple of hours. So we left for West Virginia then. We had about four hours of driving before it got light, and got to Elkview WV about 11:30 (of course it was 12:30 there) Chris, his wife and father-in-law, and Rose got there 15 or 20 minutes later. They put all of Rose's 'Christmas loot' in Sara's trunk, and we headed home. We heard, "Are we there yet?" many, many times in the next seven hours.

When we got back to Mayfield, we picked Reggie up from his parent's house before going to theirs. Then Rose had to open all of the presents under their tree. Between NJ and KY, she got enough toys and clothes for ten kids, to add to the abundance she already had. I got home a bit after 9 o'clock.