It’s a chilly, cold, rainy day here in the Northeast – November.
When I left on Friday the trees in front of my house still had leaves, when I arrived home on Sunday they’d all fallen down. Driving around yesterday I saw one tree full of bright red leaves and wanted to get out of the car and hug it – convince the leaves not to fall off. I love Autumn, but it’s so sad when the leaves are gone.
I have one major teaching trip left in the year – Wisconsin the first weekend in December – and aside from that all of my time will be devoted to two goals:
1) Finish the sweaters for Men Who Knit and get them into the publisher in a timely manner
2) Begin working through the MANY amazing crochet patterns I’ve received and start compiling the 2007 Crochet Calendar.
The deadline for the men who knit book has come up quickly, so I’ve pushed back my other work until late December / January. I feel a little scared to do this – it cuts in on budgeted calendar time – but I feel it’s the most practical way to manage these two deadlines.
Right now I’m finishing knitting a bulky yoked sweater in an amazing new yarn from Lorna’s Laces which will be out next year – I can’t say much about it, but the colors are phenomenal and the fiber itself is a lot of fun to work with.
I’m also doing the finishing on a sweater knit in Summit Hill by Kraemer Yarns. It’s a very nice superwash – good price point – and it’s made in the USA (what a concept – love that when it happens!) I especially like the sheen of Summit Hill, I’ve used it to good effect for crochet and knit projects and I’ve been very happy with the feel and look of the yarn, even after washing.
I’m working on a pair of slipper-socks in a cool new yarn by Artyarns (also not yet available, but soon!) It’s a wonderful hand painted yarn which is also self striping – lots of fun to work with and a wonderful demonstration of Iris’s skill with creating complex and complementary color combinations.
I just received a few sweaters and items that require finishing (I asked some of the knitters to send garments unfinished so I could do some detail stuff at the end of the process) and I have a cool dog bed to stuff with fiberfill – woohoo!
Drew’s doing an amazing job on the men’s profiles – asking him to work on this book with me was the smartest thing I’ve done in the whole process!
One by one the projects are arriving – it’s very nice to see. I haven’t heard back from Lark on the package I sent last week – and of course when you hit that point between sending stuff in and hearing back every terrible thing that could go wrong crosses the mind. Maybe it’s lost, maybe it’s damaged, maybe they HATE the stuff and can’t bring themselves to tell you or maybe it’s taking a bit for them to work up a ‘thanks but no thanks’ letter. Oy. I think no matter what kind of success we have, there’s always a bit of niggling fear that our work is not up to snuff – at least that’s true for me!
WEEKEND POST MORTEM
It was a phenomenal weekend. I just love Maryland/VA area – I feel so at home there. 300 years ago my family landed in Maryland and eventually settled further West (into what would be West Virginia) so perhaps there’s some kind of land memory that I feel when I’m down there. For whatever reason, I really love being there.
I taught in Leonardtown for Ellen who owns Crazy for Ewe. Sadly, I didn’t get to see her shop as I arrived later than intended and left early on Sunday, but she was a pure delight! The women in the class were so accomplished, so confident and just exceptional students! Ellen arranged for us to have a delicious continental breakfast and lunch, and everyone did so well with the Cocoon Sweater class. The class itself was taught at a clubhouse which is part of Ellen’s development. A beautiful building, modern and spacious, but with a federalist feeling. There was a small apartment upstairs where I stayed – very lovely and cozy – and the light in the greatroom was the best I’ve had while teaching! I sincerely felt that I was teaching at home, and it was delightful! I have to go back down, though, to actually visit Ellen’s shop!
I arrived there late on Friday (pre-holiday weekend traffic was a bear!) and after a very homey dinner with Ellen’s mom and kids I settled into my home-away-from-home. The next day was a wonderful class, and I felt so happy to just sit and knit and listen to a good book on CD Saturday evening.
When I got up Sunday I knew I had a very long drive to Rockville (90 miles), so I left at 6:30. The light off of the water by the clubhouse was stunning – a morning I wil remember for quite a while! About 20 minutes into my trip I realized that I’d left my suitcase at the clubhouse. Damn. So I drove back – more light on the water – and picked up the suitcase. I was 40 minutes behind schedule, and although I made it to my class at Woolwinders, there was no time for make-up. Brave, brave students. And always so good to see Jacqui and Lew! And always such a treat to teach to a group as loving and receptive as seems to gravitate to Woolwinders!
After Woolwinders and picking up my inhaler (see below) I rushed to Alexandria, VA to Knit Happens for two more classes. Short ones – and makeup classes for ones I’d missed 2 weeks ago when I was in DC. I’d never met Kristine, but we’d emailed and when I met her I felt I’d known her for quite a while! It’s easy to see why Wendy loves this shop so much – the customers were intelligent and the classes were a joy! One student helped me schlep my bag back to my car, and I was on the road by 6:00pm for home.
I got home around 10-ish. Hannah was still up, Max was asleep, the dog and cats were thrilled to see me and Gerry never looked so good. I love getting home!
LISTENING TO THE DOCTOR
So my doctor yesterday gave me the lung lecture. I need to take better care of these babies – when I’m ill I need to rest, when I’m coughing I need to see her. She gave me my prescriptions with the admonishment, “Don’t fall of the face of the earth, do you hear me?” The last time I saw her, in early October, she’d given me antibiotics and a new inhaler, but I never did a follow up visit to tell her that it wasn’t working as well as she’d hoped. I think I kept hoping that it WOULD work – and I also think I used the $50 copay for an office visit as a deterrent. Not bright.
So now I’m in PJ’s, I’ve promised my doc that I’ll rest as fully as I can over the next week while I let the prednisone and new antibiotic do their stuff. I went through a bad spell of Asthma in the early 90’s, but since my pregnancies it hasn’t been as bad as it’s been this Fall. Walking up stairs, walking to the bus stop, taking a long drink of water, even showering – these are all things that make me feel as though I’m about to run out of air. Yes, I AM showering…
You can imagine how much fun I am to be around, huh? Somehow when I teach I pull it together after the first hour or so of class – I think the breath control required to speak to a group of folks helps me regulate my breathing – and my mind is totally off of me while I’m teaching, which is wonderful!
So this is a week of rest for me. Knitting, resting, computer work and teaching one class on Sunday here in NJ. I’m not going to make myself nuts cooking on Thanksgiving, I’m not going to push myself to do anything except sleep and knit and read and answer email.
And I have to give a huge shout out and THANK YOU to a student in my class at Woolwinders, in Rockv
ille MD. She noticed how difficult my breathing was, and I also made some off-hand joke about running out of my albuteral inhaler. Apparently I’d packed my almost empty one and left the full one at home. Yikes. She offered – being a doctor – to phone a prescription into Safeway and after the class I ran over (okay, slowly walked over) and picked up my inhaler and it got me through the rest of an extended teaching weekend. I barely have words to thank her for volunteering to help me – THANK YOU!!