Monday, July 21, 2014

Meanwhile, back at the ranch...

Yes, we have been busy working, and spending 3 weeks making modifications to a single shirt pattern.

My sewing room has been rearranged a bit. With all of the garment sewing that I have been doing, my baby has gotten quite a workout. She has done seams, basting and winding bobbins with nary a complaint. I even got a friend for her - a cute kitty sewing basket to store all of my tools such as markers, scissors, rotary cutter, pins, tape measure and other fun notions to make sewing more pleasurable.

Well, there has been a stranger lurking in the shadows. This stranger has been shoved unceremoniously into a box and left all alone for 4 long, uneventful years. When we packed for this move, I rescued the stranger and brought him to the new house... Where he sat... In a box... For 4 weeks.

After the 4 weeks when everything had settled down to a dull roar, I took the stranger out of the box, moved my sewing machine to the cutting table and put the stranger on my sewing desk... Where he sat... For a week and a half. I hadn't worked with the stranger for years, what do I do?

We go to and order The Complete Serger Handbook  and we read. We fill our head with knowledge. The last time that I used my serger, I only used 1 stitch and really knew nothing about it. I learned a lot from the book. I went to the local fabric store and bought 4 cones of serger thread to match each of the dials.

Yesterday, I took the plunge. I took all of the white thread off of the machine and decided that I was going to thread the serger. Upper Looper in pink, yupp. Lower Looper on yellow, right needle in green and left needle in blue. Turned the handle and no nifty stitches were made... Rats... Unthreaded all of the machine and tried again. Threaded upper looper, lower looper, right needle and left needle. Can you see where this is going? Turned the handle and again, no pretty stitches... GRRRRRR...

At this point, I figure the sewing gods had it out for me. I threw my hands up, got my iPad, opened up YouTube and searched for a video on how to thread a Singer Serger. The sewing gods smiled down upon me and I found an awesome video on how to thread my serger. We threaded the upper looper with no problem. We threaded the lower looper and just after threading the last step, I found my problem. The lower looper thread wrapped around something when I pulled it out and that is why the stitches would not form. Once correctly threaded, inserted a few pieces of scrap fabric! Awesome!

Here is a pic of the stranger

Yes, the serger is threaded in nifty shades of clown vomit! I played with sewing samples where I changed the tension on each thread to see which settings would work the best. I was ready to make my first serger project.

Do you see the mat that the serger is resting on? That was my first project. It is a pad with a pincushion next to the machine. In front is an attached bag for fabric and thread scraps, a pocket for scissors and another pocket for other stuff I need while sewing. Right now, it is holding a pair of reading glasses that did not get lost in the last 7 days, LOL!

The project was fun and I learned some neat stuff. The mat itself is quilted. I have not done machine quilting but thought this idea was brilliant... I had some scrap duck cloth, bought some batting and put an old pillow case on top. I sewed the 3 layers together on my regular sewing machine. I serged all of the edges, serged the scrap pocket and put some heavy interfacing in it to give it some support. Then I used some clear vinyl that I serged then sewed into the front. The project took a couple of days but was a lot of fun. Now, I have a place to put all of the things I need when sewing or serging.

I really did enjoy the bit of quilting I tried. I have a couple of projects that I would like to try using quilted fabric for a base. I will start easy with a pencil case for my sewing basket. After that, I would like to try and make some kind of bag. Maybe a messenger bag or a purse with a TON of pockets to fit my electronic gadgets like cell phone, e-reader, car keys, paper pad holder, pen holder and all that other fun stuff that drives me nots when it is loose in my purse.

I also need to get back to the shirt I have been modifying. I have done a bunch of tissue fitting and have sewn up my muslin. I have not put the sleeves in yet but the bodice fits very nicely. On the next garment, I will document all of the steps. I was only able to steal 45 minutes here or 60 minutes there and did not have time to document. Or maybe I am just leery of the sleeves not fitting and I am putting it off until my mom comes to visit on the 1st so she can help me... Yup, I think I need Mom help for this one.

Friday, June 06, 2014

Fun with Dusan and Nancy

We have moved to our new place. We are out in BFE in a data black hole. It took us a week to get any internet service. We went from a speed of 30 MBPS down to a whopping 1.5 MBPS. This will take a bit of getting used to.

So we have unpacked and I decided to start playing with my Magic Fit Pants - part of the Designing with Dusan series. I worked on the dress pattern then on the pants. For a little extra help, I took out my Fitting Finesse book by Nancy Zimmerman. I was curious how close I would get by just using the instructions in the Magic Fit Pants kit.

The kit claims that it will fit all sizes (28 inch to 60 inch hips). I followed the instructions and drew the pattern onto a roll of paper. When I double checked the final pattern to my measurements, I was very happy to find the created pattern was really close. I made one change - adding 1 inch to the high hip area. Crotch depth measured within 1/2 inch of my measurements.

I was able to get the pattern on paper and pinned to my bedsheet muslin. Tomorrow, I will cut it out, sew it up and see how the first fitting comes out. I am really excited!

Once the pants are fit, we will work on the Magic Fit Dress.

I have finally started a notebook to track my sewing adventures. Is find that I am making calculations, changes and fitting stuff that I end up doing over a couple of days. With the notebook, I can pick up my changes where I leave off when I put my sewing down.

I am now going to need to make window coverings for our bedroom and living room. I have never made window coverings before. That will also be covered in future blog posts.

Have a great day, everyone!

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Moving - what treasures we find

The posts will be sparse until the first of June. Hubby and I are packing our belongings and moving to the new place. It is a bit smaller than our current place (OK, it is a LOT smaller) but it is in the middle of nowhere and the place is beautiful. So, we are sorting what goes to new place (sewing stuff, books, clothes), what goes into storage (brewing stuff, some wool, a spinning wheel) and what goes to the thrift stores.

While I was going through some boxes from our last move, I found this treasure:

The copyright date is 1974. It is instructions on how to make bodice, skirt and dress patterns with some awesome tools like bust and waist dart markers, French Curves and a cool instruction book to make "Mod" fashions. I paid $2.50 for this treasure at a thrift store in Tempe, AZ when Shaelyn and I were out hunting for fabric at the SAS store by ASU. This gets packed in the "must keep open until we move because I am still using it" sewing box. 

*Dances around the room singing "Happy Happy Joy Joy"*

Monday, May 19, 2014

Fun with Darts

Today, I have finished altering my pants sloper pattern. I cut it out of muslin and worked on the first fitting. My biggest worry is making sure my rear and my tummy fit into the pants. I did not put in a zipper since I didn't think I would need it. As I have played with the fit today, I have discovered that I need to pick up a zipper for the last bit of fitting.

Here is the first result:

Snark is being my fitting kitty. As you can see, I have not placed any darts in the pants yet. These pants need darts. I do like the room, so I think the side seam increase worked well. So I decided to start with my back darts first.

The back darts seem to work well. I just realized how flat my backside is... The front darts are what I am working on next. I pinned a couple of up and down darts on one side....

I also tried some slanted darts on the other side
I like the slanted darts. At this point, I realized that I actually DO need the zipper to keep adjusting the fit... Rats... So I will put the sewing down and run to Wally World for a zipper. Once I have placed it, I will put both sets of front darts in to see which one looks better. Then I will finish the waistband and make sure the final look is good.

After the pants sloper is finished, I am going back to the dress. I am going to undo a bit of the overlap that I put in to get rid of the gaping in my neck and high bust area. Then research the bodice, adjust the armholes and then that dress should be ready to make.

We think we have found a couple of places to rent. Lots of box packing starting on Wednesday. I will still have sewing to keep me somewhat sane, LOL! When we get settled in the new place, I am going to spend a day or three working with the serger and getting it up and running. I will need it for the pants and some knits I would like to start. I have a really cool blazer that I am dying to start!

Happy Sewing, everyone!

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Get to go into work early, whee!

Why do I have a problem getting sewing related tasks done?

This is Ashley, aka Boo aka Buddha Cat. She is my resident sewing room kitty. I am working on altering a pattern and she decided to help. She also loves the ironing board, especially if the iron is on and I am pressing seams.

I changed my mind about my pants slower pattern. I read on the inner-webz-tubez that there are 2 different crotch styles for pants - American style and European style. The European style is cut differently and has a longer backside crotch. So, I decided to try the Burda pattern for pants sloper.  I am making a couple of minor alterations since I am bigger than the largest size they sell. I am adding some width and increasing the crotch depth.i hope to get that done before I leave for work at 1:30.

Tomorrow, I will cut out the pattern onto a bedsheet and do a first fitting. I will post more pictures as I work on the pattern.

After work, I also plan to go over one of my Craftsy classes. I have enjoyed both of the classes I have taken: Fast Track Fitting and the second class In The Details. She really has a logical way to go through alterations and it is the method I have been using successfully to alter my patterns. As a beginning sewer with drafting experience, it made so much sense to me. 

Time for me to eat and head off to work. Have a great day, everyone!

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Yes, MooKitty sews too!

Yes, I realize it has been 4 years since my last post.

I am restarting the blog as a craft blog to include knitting, spinning, weaving, sewing and brewing. Since I am working on bits of all of them through the year, I will put my updates here!

Today's sewing: fitting muslin for dress and fitting shell for pants.

The dress is from Simplicity pattern number 1419. It is a cute little summer dress. We have done numerous alterations such as neckline, waist, lengthen torso and increase hips.

Here is the front view. The dress fits pretty well.

This is the side view:
Twisting a bit but it is ok too. The problem? The sleeves and armholes are too tight. Since I am still a beginner, I will put this project down for a day and research how to fix this issue through alterations. Will likely do the alterations and the new bodice top tomorrow. My goal is to get this dress ready to sew from real material by June 10th so I can get some use out of it while it is still summer.

So, moving onto today's second project:
This is a pet tern for a pants shell. Why make this? Well, this will be the base pattern that I will use to base all of my pants on. When I got this pattern ($5.00 Vogue Pattern Sale) the largest pattern size they had was a size 14. So, I used some tracing paper to trace the pattern and today, I will work on the first set of adjustments that will be sewn in muslin (aka bed sheets). I will be making inseam, waist, hip and crotch adjustments for my measurements then sew up the pattern and see how it fits.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Finally cleaned up the Brew Room

A few weeks ago, I decided to start brewing again for the first time in a year. I decided a yummy chocolate cherry vanilla cream stout would be great as a first beer. Well, the fermentation went kind of wild and this was the result...

This was the ceiling after the stout exploded. The walls, ceiling and bathtub were all wrecked when a cocoa nib got caught in the blow-off tube and allowed pressure to build up to the point of the explosion... I lost about a gallon of the beer from this one..

Now the brew room is all cleaned up and ready to go again. In the foreground you see what is left of the beer that exploded all over the bathroom. In the back you can see the orangecello that is settling. The flask on the stir plate is the yeast starter for the yeast that are going to be used in the Pumpkin Pie Ale that I will be brewing this weekend...

MMMMM... Limoncello!

I finally got around to bottling up another batch of Limoncello that has been sitting for a month. This is the first batch of clear Limoncello that I have made and it looks really yummy. I did accidently put an extra 1/2 cup of syrup in the batch but we will see how that works with this batch. I have a couple of batches of "orangecello" going. One batch is getting some vodka and the other one has just had the sugar syrup added. It should be ready to bottle in 2 - 3 weeks.

The large bottle in the milk crate is the Tupelo Honey Mead. I made this back in Feb of 2009. I am hoping to bottle this sometime this weekend and try it. We were aiming for a dry mead, we will see how it turns out... Snark is in the sink, she is my new Jr Beer Rat...

Well, I took the first try... Hmmm... I think this needs to age a while longer. Yes, it has been in the carboy for a year and a half but it needs more time. The first taste is Rocket Fuel... It has a nice complexity in the middle and ends with a nice woody taste. The beginning? I think my hubby's description "Prison Wine" is a good descriptor. I will ask another one of the brewers to give it a second opinion. I really think another year or three will pay off on this one. Time is good to all meads that will wait...

Friday, July 02, 2010

Hey, is anybody still out there?

This was the ringtail cat that was living in my toolset at work. Isn't she/he a cutie???

OK, I took a break from blogging for a couple of years to let life pass me by. Time to get back into it. I am still hanging out on Facebook doing the farm thing but I need to put my brewing, knitting, spinning, weaving and SCA stuff somewhere so I thought I would bring this blog back to life...

Currently, working in the solar industry for about another week, then off to find greener pastures where my engineering skills will work for me :-) I am excited about a change in life right now.

This weekend will be fun. We have a Pumpkin Pie Ale ready to brew (all-grain) and I am going to mix up some Sangria for the weekend. No big plans, just cleaning, playing silly farm games and brewing beer. I hope to be able to get the mead bottled (that I made a year ago February) but that depends on how well the back holds out. Right now, it is not up for bending over a bathtub and washing out a few dozen wine bottles. I am dying to take a taste of it (18 months worth of aging, it should be OK right about now...) and will try it once I get it bottled.

SO GLAD that I keep recipes on the blog. It makes for a great place to find things when I lose them. So here is the recipe for this weekend's Pumpkin Pie Ale:

8 lb 2-row Pale Malk
1 lb British Caramalt
1 lb Toasted Malt
1 lb wheat, torrified
1 lb rice hulls
60 oz pumpkin
.25 lb molasses
1/2 oz Magnum hops
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon allspice
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon clove.

Bake pumpkin uncovered for 1 hour at 350F to caramelize some of the sugars and gelatinize starches. Mash at 152F for 60 minutes. Pumpkin should be included in mash. Be sure to use rice hulls as the pumpkin will make a sticky sparge. Boil for 60 minutes. Add Magnum hops at the beginning of the boil. Add Molasses with 10 minutes left in boil and add spices with 5 miutes left in the boil. Cool and add English Ale yeast and put in Carboy for 3 weeks. Bottle and allow another 3 - 6 weeks for carbonation.

Time to head to the brew store and the SCA meeting tonight.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Arts and Crafts Day

And we have a new drink recipe too!

This is the loom I have set up for tablet weaving. After much searching, I was able to find the book "The Techniques of Tablet Weaving" by Peter Collingwood. It was supposed to be the "Bible" of tablet weaving, and they were right. Man, this book goes into some great detail about all sorts of things you can do with tablet weaving. I know, I needed another string hobby like I need a freaking hole in my head. But, here we are! This is the loom all tied up with string and working on a new pattern. We were given the looms in our Beginners Tablet Weaving class at the SCA Collegium a few weeks ago down in Tucson. WOW!!!

Here was my second weaving pattern. My DH, Mike, wanted a strap that he could use in orange and black so I made this for him. It was a lot of fun to make and didn't take all that long once I got the loom working. My mother in law is really going to give me an "I told you so" when she comes down to visit in August. She has been trying to get me into weaving for a while but I didn't think I would be interested. Then, I took this class and the rest is history. She will be so happy to have another weaving buddy! We can spin yarn together and now we can weave together. The loom is portable so I can take it up to Santa Fe when we go over and visit later this year.

Here is the newest pair of socks! I decided to cave into peer pressure and try some Noro Kureyon Sock Yarn in color 185. This yarn is OK. Now, don't get me wrong, I absolutely LOVE the colors. These colors are so awesome. When I got finished with the heel, the sock begged me not to do 2x2 ribbing and ruin the gorgeous color but to do stockinette all the way up the leg and do 1x1 ribbing on the top 1.5 inches. Such pretty socks. I did find one knot in this skein but it spit-spliced nicely so there were no problems. I have 4 more skeins of it in my craft room (it was buy 4 get one free) so I am looking forward to a few more pairs of socks like this. When I first started using the yarn I really hated the feel of it. After trying on the socks a few times (to make sure they fit well), I think that the yarn is really great and pretty soft. I will see how the colors make it through a wash before passing final judgement on this sock yarn.

New drink recipe!!! I found this Sangria recipe that really kicks some serious butt! It is really good and pretty rich...

1 Bottle Red Wine (use a good table wine, not wine in a box or cheap red wine. I found some Menage a trois at Sam's Club for $7.99 a bottle that worked really well)
1/4 cup Apricot Brandy
3/4 cup Brandy (use at least a VSOP for this recipe)
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup lemon juice (fresh squeezed is best for this recipe)
1 red plum
1 peach or nectarine

Mix the apricot brandy and regular brandy in a pitcher. Stir in sugar and dissolve. Add lemon juice and bottle of red wine. Mix well. Chop up the plum and nectarine and add to the mix. Refridgerate for 6 hours (preferably overnight) to let flavors mix well then serve over ice.

This recipe is WONDERFUL for hot summer days. (Ask me how I know this...) The big thing to remember with this recipe is the better and fresher your ingredients are, the better this sangria turns out (aka get ripe fruit and don't get too cheap with the brandy and wine). You don't need to get top of the line red wine (it would be wasted on this recipe) but DO NOT use wine in a box for it, either.

We still have mead brewing in the bathroom with no additional "mead-canos". I am hoping that my JAO recipe will be clear in a couple of weeks in time for Highlands War in August. I love SCA events!!!

It looks like I am headed back to work next week. I will edit this post with more details as I get them.

Last week, we went to the True Colors tour and saw Cindi Lauper, the B-52's, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, Wanda Sykes and this new group called the Puppini Sisters. If you get a chance to see the Puppini Sisters, go see them. They are a retro 40's musical harmony Jazz kind of group (think The Andrews Sisters for vocal style) and they were a load of fun! Their cover of "Walk Like an Egyptian" was a hoot! I picked up their CD and it is awesome!

Friday, June 20, 2008

More fun projects to work on

Oh Boy! OH BOY! What is cooking in the cauldron today? Some Eye of Newt? A little bit of Frog Hair? Let's throw some honey in there, some oranges, some cinnamon and call it mead! This stuff brewing on the stove is my first official batch of mead. We were at an SCA Collegium a couple of weeks ago and they had a Beginner's Mead Making class. This is the recipe that they handed out so I thought I would try it... I got it all loaded up into the 3 gallon carboy then I found a really great website for mead makers called GotMead and found out I didn't have to cook it. This batch will hopefully be ready for the holidays when the entire family comes down to Arizona. Attention family, this should be some pretty yummy stuff...

They have a bunch of really good recipes on the site so I thought I would try mead batch number 2, also known as Joe's Ancient Orange Mead. This is a VERY simple mead that anyone can make with common household ingredients. We made 3 gallons of it with Desert Blossom honey and 2 gallons of it with Orange Blossom honey. I am hoping that this batch will be cleared and ready to drink in August! Yummy! Chris came down from San Diego last weekend so he helped me make this batch! This stuff is fermenting like gangbusters! I am looking forward to trying some of it when it clears and is ready to bottle.

In the shower in the guest bathroom, we have batch #1 (the small bottle) and last night's newest batch. It is a cherry cyser (mead) that I am also hoping will be ready in time for the family coming down for Yule. We learned some valuable lessons from batch number 3. We used cherries, apple juice, yeasties and Orange Blossom and Mesquite honey. We mixed it all up in our sanitized food grade bucket then transferred it to the carboy. We did not leave nearly enough head space in the carboy. When we got up this morning, we discovered what happens when you don't leave nearly enough head space in the carboy...

Holy Crap! It's Engineers Gone Wild!!! This is the ceiling of the shower in the guest bathroom. What is that weird red stuff on the ceiling? Cherry puree from the latest batch of mead. I did not take a picture of the whole shower since it was pretty gross. I was able to get it cleaned up in about an hour. So, when anyone asks me "Why do you ferment mead in your guest bathroom shower?" this is the reason. When your mead turns into a "Mead Volcano", clean-up is a breeze! If this would have been in our mud room or the laundry room, I would still be cleaning this mess up 4 hours later! Yes, the picture above is the shower AFTER I got done cleaning cherry puree off of the walls, carboys and tub. The big bottle is the new batch. I am working with the fruit cap every couple of hours at this point until fermentation settles down a bit. I just found out the limit on fermentation for personal use is 100 gallons per year... Hmmm, what to make with the other 86 gallons???

Yes, there were other great classes offered at the collegium. The first one I took during the weekend was Beginner's Tablet Weaving. OK, I already spin wool, knit and crochet. Did I REALLY need another string hobby? It looked like a fun class so I thought I would sign up for it. It was SO GREAT! I have already made a few belts and I am currently working on something that will become trim on my tunic.

Which was another great class that they offered, Newcomer's Garb Basics! They went through patterns for tunics and basic undergarments for SCA garb. I have some nice, lightweight cotton that I want to try to use and make a couple of tunics for myself and my hubby so we have something to wear under the "nice" clothes. There was also an awesome herbology class I was able to take that taught me a lot about using herbs for more than just incense! Way too cool! We learned so much over that weekend that we are still working on processing all of it.

We got our plane tickets for my High School Class Reunion up in Minnesota in August. I almost died when we got the prices for the trip. We paid $300 round trip per person flying from Phoenix to Minneapolis. I thought we would have to pay at least twice that amount with the cost of fuel going nuts like it is... I just started driving my car again last week (stick shift) and in the 8 weeks that I did not drive it, gas went from $35 to fill the tank up to $50 to fill the tank. WTF??? I have also discovered that I can drive a stick shift without having to bend my knee. It is all in the ankle and keeping the seat back as far as I can put it back. By using my foot and ankle to work the clutch rather than the whole leg, I am keeping the pressure off of my knee and it doesn't hurt to drive. It is SOOOOO nice to be able to drive again! I feel like I got my independence back!

The knee is still healing. I have been doing PT 3x weekly. It is slow, but it is getting better. Can I stand on my feet for a 12 hour shift yet? Not even close. I can do about an hour before I am in some serious pain. It may be a few more weeks until I am back at work. So, until then, I will be making some mead, weaving some trim and belts, sewing up some tunics, getting into some new meditation techniques and celebrating Litha! More adventures as they happen!

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Oh Boy!!! Trader Joe's!!!!

Better late than never, I have been meaning to post the Ren Fest garb pic for a while, here it is :-) My mom was asking me what it looked like since we are planning to wear it when we head up to Minnesota for the Ren Fest up there (and my 25 year class reunion). The only thing missing from the outfit is the mouse... I will probably throw a pic up here in my SCA garb soon too...

We FINALLY found Trader Joe's! It is down in Ahwatukee on Chandler Blvd right across the street from my PT clinic! Man, I have missed their Mac and Cheese and the chocolate covered cranberries! I loaded up on some of the fizzy lemonade and limeade along with some of their fabulous hummus!!! Next, need to get some "Two Buck Chuck" for cooking!

Right now, I am working on moving all of my stuff from both my old computer and my work laptop onto my new computer and external hard drive. It is nice because now I know where all of my music and pictures are. The bear of it is trying to get rid of the duplicates. Some songs in my library have 1 copy, some have 2 copies and about 80% have 3 copies. I have gotten rid of duplicates up to the letter "D". This is going to be a long night... Next, I need to copy my address book from my work laptop into my home laptop... Then I can let most of my friends know that I am not answering email in that account since I am at home on medical leave...

I have discovered a new comic online. For any cat fans, this one is really funny, it is called Two Lumps and details the adventures of the feline brothers Ebenezer and Snooch. We have a kitty named Ashley who looks and acts just like these two, so the thing is a hoot...

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Mr Sting is really HOT!

Fromage is taking it easy!

Wow! Over Memorial Day Weekend, we went out to see Elvis Costello and The Police in concert. What an excellent show! First, imagine Memorial Day Weekend in Phoenix... The temp during the concert was an unusual low 60's during the show! NO KIDDING! We were wearing jeans and sweatshirts to an outdoor concert at the end of May! (Gotta love cold fronts!) Elvis Costello did a great job. The special surprise during the concert was a duet with Mr Sting and Elvis doing "Allison" together. They did a great job, their voices blended so well together! What an excellent duet! The Police were also great! They did most of their hits and 2 encores. Mr Sting was SO HOT! I didn't think he was "all that and a bag of chips" when I was younger but DAMN, he has aged so well! I have been joking with some friends that if Mr Sting had been my English teacher, I never would have become an engineer, LOL!!! Next up is Crosby, Stills and Nash then Cindi Lauper and the B52's...

Speaking of the B52's, did anyone else see The Daily Show on Monday? Fred Schneider of the B52's was putting part of Scott McClellen's new book to music, it was absolutely drop dead funny!

This weekend, we are headed down to Tucson to the local SCA get together. They are going to do a "collegium" with lots of classes going on with stuff from archery to rapier to brewing to crafts. I am hoping to learn to brew mead and learn to tailor some more authentic period clothing. We are also having some of my "spiritual sisters" come down from north Phoenix come down to stay at the house with us for the weekend...

The knee is still out of commission. I started doing PT last week and have another appt with the ortho doc on the 25th of June. The MRI did show a small tear in the meniscus and we are hoping that PT will help heal it up.

My roses are still in bloom. I have 6 of them in the living room in a bowl of water right now, it smells so nice in here! The blooms are beautiful!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

The weirdest thing is going on outside

The End of the World is upon us! Prepare for the End of Days!!!! First, the temperature didn't reach over 100F today. The skies got dark during the daytime... Then the heavens got angry. First, they started flashing bright lights at the humans below, then they started arguing in loud tones. During this display of light and sound, the heavens then let out this strange substance that fell to the ground. It was colorless and very wet to the touch. This has been going on all day. I am not sure what is happening. This is Arizona, it is always hot and sunny here. I couldn't figure out what was happening so I took a picture of the heavens and posted it here so someone tell me what are the strange happenings that are occurring here???

Cute? THEY ARE EATING MY ROSES!!! GRRRRR! Last night, Mewstradamas caught a kangaroo rat and brought it in the house... While it was still alive... Nice to know that the kitties still catch those mousies...

Saturday night is the Elvis Costello and The Police concert. I am getting really excited!

We just came in from town and the temp is 50F. Yesterday, it was in the upper 90's, day before that it was 110F. I kinda like this rain stuff...

We are back to the wool dyeing again. I wound another 6 pairs of socks into the striping pattern, I just need to dye the wool and set it then it will go onto the Etsy site...

Time to snuggle up with a good book under a nice, warm blanky and listen to the rain on the windows. It is a treat we don't get enough of here in the desert...

Monday, May 19, 2008

Playing catch-up again

OK, I have officially gone stir-crazy...

I hurt my knee at work (not because of work, just overwork or something) about a month ago. What is the injury? That seems to be the $64,000 question. I have been to the workmans comp Dr (just to have them tell me I didn't have a work related injury) then to Urgent Care so I could get a note to be off of my feet for a week until I could see my primary care Dr. I got in to see him, he told me I had injured my knee and (tried) to set me up for an MRI. Gotta love HMO's... A week later, I got the MRI appt made for the following week (at6:45 am...) I got the MRI done and followed up with my primary care Dr. He said that the place I got the MRI at gave him a diagnosis that was "clear as mud" and then referred me to a orthopedist. Guess how long it takes to even GET an appt with an orthopedist? 3 freaking weeks!!! So, a month later, I am still at home, having a LOT of pain in my left knee and still have another 2 weeks until maybe someone can tell me what is going on.

Now, for folks that know me well, you already know that I have ADD and can't sit still to save my life. This has been a wonderful opportunity to sit for the last 4 weeks! I AM GOING FREAKING BAT-SH*T!!!! There are a few HUGE changes going on in life on top of the fact that I am not able to walk so on top of being restless and not being able to do a thing about it, I am also getting really depressed. I don't deal well with change, either...

A couple of neat things have come about from my forced rest. First, I have been able to work with yarn again. I am still wrapping yarn and I have posed some stuff on my site. I can't wait to get the dye bench cleaned off (when I get the ability to stand for any length of time without pain) and start dyeing wool again!!!

Second, my wonderful hubby and I found a really cool group to hang out with and start doing activities with. OK, so it was only a matter of time on this one... We went up to Prescott, AZ over the weekend for an SCA event and had a BLAST. Well, hobbling around a primitive campground is not the easiest thing to accomplish in middle ages garb but it can be done! I found another kindred "fiber spirit" at the event who was spinning on this gorgeous Reeves spinning wheel (not a Schadt-Reeves, a real Reeves wheel signed by the craftsman)... OMG! I was in heaven! We talked about spinning, about fiber, about the SCA and had a blast. We watched the fighters and I also learned some basic Medieval needlepoint stitches and had a great time at feast and around the campfire that evening. Mike and I were not sure we wanted to camp out (since this was our first SCA event) but we had SO MUCH FUN that we wish we had brought our gear and camped out (yes, crutches and all...). There is a Collegium going on June 7-8 down in Tucson that we are going to attend that has some classes on how to make an SCA persona, all sorts of newbie stuff and some other cool classes like making beer and mead! No spinning or fiber classes are going to be taught, but I will bring my wheel to the classes for the weekend...

SCA is the Society of Creative Anachronism. It is a middle ages re-enactment group. WOW! The folks at this group were so nice! I am going to be working on fiber arts related stuff and working on period-correct outfits for myself and Mike. Mike will be checking out archery and other activities that work well for him. We had the King and Queen at the Championship last weekend. I am really looking forward to participating in this activity! I have crocheted 3 snoods so far (yup, I am going nuts not being able to walk... I haven't crocheted in over 10 years) and found out that wool socks are a great thing to have in the mountains in May. I am looking forward to the Highlands War in August and the Estrella War in Feb. I hear that the Estrella War has around 8,000 people show up for it each year... YIKES!

Now that I am sitting on my glutes, I will TRY to be better at posting on the old blog...