Sunday, June 24, 2007

Colors and Names

After reading about Grumperina's new colorway, Clara Barton (red, of course), I had to see what other colors were being named. I was delighted to see that the Schaefer Yarn Company has a colorway called Virginia Apgar!

Who, you ask?

Dr. Virginia Apgar was the pediatrician who developed a scoring system for projecting how babies would fare immediately after birth, taking into account color (pink or blue), crying or not, etc. The colorway was fittingly baby pinks and yellows.

. . .I wonder what colors they would use for Golda Meir?? (It sounded less stupid before I typed it. They'd probably use blue and white, of course.)

Monday, June 18, 2007

Crazy Busy

It's been over 2 months since I last blogged. I was trying to wait out Eunny but failed, alas. The reality is that nearly every aspect in my life has claimed priority over knitting since April 1!

Today I got braces! Yup, braces again. So much for any potential love life. It's part of the "finishing touches" following my surgery, but that doesn't mean it was optional or purely for looks' sake. Basically, my teeth are straight, but they no longer fit into each other to chew efficiently. I complained to my mother that this is going to make me look 13 all over again. She said that if braces take 15 years off, she wants them, too!

I'm making progress on the green sweater, more than I thought I would, and an impressive amount, considering what else I've been doing. It's not worth photographing yet, though! I'm going by the pattern in Vintage Knits (Knitting?) by Sarah Dallas, but I'm modifying it a bit through the length. I'm using my favorite cardigan (courtesy Target, props to Merona!) as a template. I'm really optimistic about this. This is the first time I've used US 3's or smaller on an entire sweater, so if it works, it will be quite a feat for me.

I've seen so many excellent knitted scarves lately. I'm enamored with the Morning Surf Scarf. All I can think about is winter and wearing scarves, and it's 95 degrees here! I don't think scarves will work with the stethoscope, though.

More later. . .

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Up to something

With as little as I've posted, you may think I've walked away from knitting.

Not quite, but I'm paring it down a bit. I'm gearing up for resuming my surgery residency in July, which means I've started nightly reading again. I'm out of school, but the learning never stops.

After Salina, I've got some cream wool to use up, and I've been dying to make a cardigan to go with a few dressy T-shirts. For professional clothes, I steer away from blouses, mainly for the wrinkle factor and the un-comfort factor. I'm always switching into scrubs and then back again to street clothes, reaching over patients' beds, etc., and blouses don't lend themselves to this. I prefer twin sets, or a dressy T-shirt with a cardigan. Plus, they travel so much better. But well-made cardigans can be hard to find, at least in the colors I want.
I've been enamored with this book from the get-go, but with designs using discontinued yarn, it's difficult to know what to do. I fell upon a yarn from Hobby Lobby that I think I can substitute with. . . .Yes, it's acrylic (gasp). Are you noticing a pattern with me?

This swatch on US 3's knits up at 27 x 34 = 4 inches. I'm not sure if I'll use this color or not.
This pattern from that book

calls for a gauge of 28 x 36 = 4 inches. I think I've found a substitute.

And in case you're wondering, it will be MINUS the FairIsle knitting.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Incognito. . .sort of.

Yesterday, in quick succession, I encountered three people who did not recognize me.

The first two were acqaintances from other labs in the building, and the exchanges went something like this:

Are you in Dr. ABC's lab?

No, I'm in Dr. XYZ's lab.

Really? Are you new?

No, I've been here for almost 2 years now. [insert big grin here]

Ohhhhhh, it's YOU! You look really different for some reason!

And then came the explanation.

The third encounter was with a colleague/peer in the surgery residency program here, also doing research. She knows me fairly well, compared to the other 2 individuals (I'll cut them a break for not recognizing me). In the five weeks since surgery, this marked the third time I've passed her as we shuffle from one building to another. The first 2 times, I grinned and I might as well have been a brick wall, because it just didn't register that this was me. This time around, I waved, and she finally caught on. She was amazed at the change the surgery has made to my appearance.

And the funniest part of all is that I don't notice a big change in my appearance!

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Lara, the Specs

I totally forgot this part.

Pattern: Lara, from Debbie Bliss Alpaca Silk Coll.
Needles: US8s, circs for required # of stitches
Gauge: 18 x 24 = 4 in (same as recommended gauge)
Yarn: substituted with Bernat Super Value in Navy (lest you be jealous). No swatching needed with this stuff. And it really is soft (despite being acrylic)!

Now for the good part. . .

Recall what they did to me and. . .Take a look now.

Perhaps I don't look that different to you (which is kind of the point), but the real difference is on the profile shot. My upper lip is still swollen, a la Marge Simpson, but that will go down. Every day I look a little. . .better? More like me? Call it what you like.

I ended up bleeding enough to win a blood transfusion, and lemme tell ya, it was rough going after that. I'm on loads and loads of iron supplements now, and we just did some bloodwork, so hopefully I'm back in the game as far as hemoglobin goes.

Update: Just got the bloodwork results, which are kind of funny. Retic count (immature red blood cell count)--OK. Hemoglobin--11.9 (12.5 is the minimum normal level). And ferritin, which measures your iron stores (which you can mobilize in cases of hemorrhage like mine)--12 (minimum normal is 50)!!! Obviously, I'm behind the gun and I'll stop taking iron, oh, say, in 10 YEARS.

Most importantly, I seem to be sleeping better (soundless and snoreless) now. We'll see what the next sleep study in a few months shows. But I'm definitely making it through the day now--and on a LOT less caffeine.

I'm hopeful.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

No, that's not radioactive waste.
My apartment building is situated along the city's arguably best-known and most beloved waterway. They tinted it green for SPD. And I do mean GREEN. This photo doesn't begin to capture how green it is. It probably glows in the dark.
Speaking of green, Lara is done (for about a month now), and you all should be green with envy! She's wonderful! I will probably wear a hole in this one. Soon.
I made several modifications to the pattern. Lara is supposed to be knit from side to side, starting at the left wrist. That's part of what turned me on to this pattern--the minimal seaming involved. This side-to-side method is also what turned me off--the cast on edge at the L wrist was different from the bind off edge at the R wrist, and the ribbed front edges were also different in this aspect.
R BO edge
L CO edge
See what I mean?
So I knit the sleeves separately and seamed them to the rest of the body (which was knit in one giant piece). I decided I could live with the difference in the ribbed edges, since I could just wrap one side over the other.
Another modification--since it was knit from side to side and therefore the "width" was actually the "length"--I added 26 stitches to each "side" (front bottom and back bottom). And an inch to the arms.
And I knit a little belt, 10 stitches of 2 x 2 rib.
Eat your hearts out, suckas! :o)

Friday, February 16, 2007

I'm still here

Four days later. . .

One blood transfusion, one small chipped tooth, four episodes of projectile vomiting (despite a naso-gastric tube and every possible anti-nausea drug), and nearly a foot of snow later, and I'm still here.

I've mentioned to some that I never underestimated the invasiveness of maxillomandibular advancement surgery (with genioplasty, we opted for it after all), but I seriously overestimated my own recuperative abilities.

Folks, I'll be the first to say that I totally got my rear kicked.

Fortunately, I'm not wired shut. I could have had to vomit through a wire grill. I'm very swollen and you would not recognize me yet. I'm plated 'til Kingdom Come, but I can get my mouth open far enough for ice cream. :o)

That's all for now. No pic. It's too gruesome.