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Saturday, December 22, 2007

Last Chemo & Christmas!

Well, yesterday saw me leave the cancer centre after my last chemotherapy!!!! I still have to have one medication infused so I still have my port that's the last chemo!

A couple of days ago we went out to visit our friends who have and are still working on their new house in the country for dinner. They decided to cut down their own tree now that they don't live in the big smoke and it's the fattest tree I've ever seen! So fat that the ornaments have trouble hanging down! But it's beautiful. The next evening we got our tree together and did the yearly thing of discovering what ornaments you have! I now have two angels as when I got a new fancy one last year I couldn't bear to part with my ages old corn husk one! They both grace the top of the tree. My Dad asked if they got along... I said of course, they're little angels.

Here I am in my chair with my smidge of hair just as the last drips of Taxol go through. Today I'm tired but that may be the laundry I did and the bathroom I cleaned. But I cannot believe that I'm on the other end of the six months of treatment.

My first view of the chemo room at the Cancer Centre of Eastern Ontario here in Kingston was daunting. I didn't want to have to sit in there in green vinyl chairs looking very hospital like. My first treatment I was shaking and was so glad to have my level headed girlfriend there to actually hear all that the pharmacist was saying..... I've given myself my own injections, push the saline syringe as the nurse pulls the needle out of my port, trundle happily back and forth to the washroom with my drip stand. The marvelous volunteers bring a drink and a warm blanket and keep checking on you. The nurses check all your signs and chat about their last night getting together after an exam or getting the kids to bed. There is laughter in the waiting room as, when, after a long wait a nurse comes out and calls a patients name three of us who have been ganging up all put up our hands! This week one woman had us in fits of giggles as she got up and acted out how her vegetarian friend stuffed her first turkey!!!

While this has been going on I managed to start working on orders and got out two to Rochester NY. I got a lovely call this morning to say one had arrived (which means the other lady's will have too) and how much she loved it. Another order was picked up here at the studio yesterday. Now I have to work on the wedding dress for New Year's Eve.

I reknit the back when the fitting showed we needed it wider and longer. I changed the gauge which helped and re tweaked the pattern in Garment Designer and the next fitting went better and I knew what to do with the front fit wise. I'm trying to get hold of the bride to for another fitting then I will be able to get on with the other bits of it.... sleeves and godets in the skirt.

In a couple of weeks after the wedding I'll be able to show it on my web site.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

The Power of Pink

My very good painter friend Vera Donefer gave me as a gift a series of photo sessions with her son-in-law Rene Calderon (brother in law of Laura Donefer). We've done all hair, short hair just before it all fell out (one of which is on my web site home page) and the other day he came to do the 'bald'. It was just in time as my hair is rapidly making it's reappearance!! Woopeeee!!

Rene is submitting a black and white print to PhotoSensitive project of cancer survivors, there will be a book in 2008.... anyway I digress.

Rene's elder daughter Marcela came with him to help and I met a beautiful young woman in her mid teens (all of Rene's kids are to die for beautiful) who is very creative in her own right and she got to see what a messy working fibre studio is like.

On Sunday I got a call that Marcella had made me something so they dropped over. The pic above is of the T shirt she painted for me (and not just your common or garden unisex T, this one's cute!). The card she wrote is equally beautiful with here own illustration on the front.

She explained to me that the vine starts up at my 'port' location on my left chest and winds down under my right (affected) breast to signify the 'life' my chemo is giving me........

Too moved for words!

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Isotopes and New Hair.

Up early this morning to high tail it down to the hospital for my MUGA (MUltiple Gated Acquisition) scan, still feeling fortunate that I was home to take the call to grab what they had. While I waited for the radioisotopes to be mixed with, or whatever they have to do to, my blood another lady came in for exactly the same thing. She'd had the same cancellation then the call back to get in first thing. She must have been up waaay earlier than me as she looked bandbox fresh with every hair and stroke of makeup in place. As we chatted I learned she was dealing with cancer which had metastasised into her liver......! What do you say?

Each time I hear the news I think myself fortunate that I got this diagnostically precious thing. The nuclear med technician said she had to prepare for the next lady, her stuff was dying as we spoke!!! This stuff doesn't keep more than a few days.

On to brighter note, I decided I wanted my head photographed each month so I could see the progress of regrowth. Here is the December one. Hair has been growing back for the last three or four weeks, enough so far to keep a miniscule layer of warm air next to my scalp so it's not freezing as I go from house to studio (two steps outdoors).

I think my head looks like that of a little old man! I was born with more hair than this!!

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Other Art & News.

My friend Georgia came with me to chemo last week and brought five Bottles of Hope that she had made. These ones were beautiful and this photo doesn't do them justice but was in my treatment chair and took this on the spur of the moment. Check out her blog for pics of her 'ladies' kaleidoscopes.

Well, we had our gallery Open House at Sandra Whitton Gallery. It was a cold and freezing rainy day but we did have some brave folk turn out to look at the wonderful collection of art.

Here is a shot of two of my designs among the other work.

Proprietor Sandy showing off her Barnett Design knit.

That was last weekend, this past Wednesday, my lovely ex assistant Shawna starred in an
exhibit at the Hotel Dieu Hospital Johson 7 waiting room. They mount exhibitions there every four months and it gives the patients some wonderful things to look at. In general it's wonderfully visual place to be, first with the art and second, with the 7th floor view of downtown Kingston and the harbour.

Here's Shawna standing in front of one of
her floral paintings.

Here are her African Women paintings brightening up the waiting room.

Then, last but not least today I received a phone call early to say that my MUGA scan (heart) which was scheduled for Monday, was now put off until Mid January because of the downing of Chalk River where the radioactive isotopes are made for the world. Then I read about it on the front page of our paper. As many of you might know certain drugs for breast cancer can do heart damage so a MUGA is given every three treatments. I've had three and want to know if my heart is still healthy, it was scary knowing I might have had 5 by the time I got my scan. Then an hour later I was called to tell me that if I could get my butt into the hospital by 7:30 to morrow morning they could squeeze me in!

Later I took my 88 year old Mum to the Cathedral for a concert and, though late, found a parking spot right by the door! No dropping her off then searching!!! I got home and found that my husband had moved the new obscenely huge TV to where I wanted so now my living room once again resembles a living room and not the Odeon cinema!

With that kinda luck I shoulda bought a lottery ticket... but I'm immensely fortunate to be able to have my scan.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Caring Clients

Just a quick note as we head into the week where the One of a Kind Chicago starts, I've started to get emails from my lovely US ladies to find out why I won't be there this year and it's wonderful to know I'm cared about so much. I adorer all my clients and so will miss that big city bunch who stop by my Merchandise Mart booth to touch base, catch up and often to add to their wardrobe.

This will be a quieter December for my husband and me, no blazing through Michigan's storms but also not stopping into lovely little yarn shops en route!

I have done one or two local one - three day shows and now have three pieces in Sandra Whitton Gallery in downtown Kingston. I'm off there in an hour for the Meet the Artists open house, it's snowy so I hope we have some keener's turn out as it's a wonderful showing.

I'll report back afterwards!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Knitted Wire

On Sunday I and two other crafty friends hit the highway to go take in the One of a Kind in Toronto. We all found ourselves at loose ends for five minutes and two of us have done the Christmas version on and off over the past couple of decades and were curious on how it was going.

Called up three other friends to meet us there and when we all got together my friend Sonja (part of my Cleveland Inspiration 2007 team), pulled these wonderful little knit 'jackets' out of her bag. I'm always amazed at what Sonja can find in her bag but this beat all!

The little short one is knit of copper wire with red beads, the longer one is knit out of brass wire with blue beads. Sonja said that the brass had a spring which copper doesn't have, and it was frustrating trying to work with it. Copper just stays where you put it, I know, I've tried it.... but I never got this far!

Too bad my friend doesn't have a web site she's soooo clever!

Friday, November 23, 2007

News & OOAK..have they done it again?

Just a quickie with some news:
* I have about a 1/4" of fuzz on my head.

* Three of my garments are being shown in Sandra Whitton Gallery for the next month. Kingston's Downtown Art Walk is on today until 10pm.... I'm going no matter how cold and snowy!

* SWGallery open house December 1 & 2, I'll be there on the Sunday 2 - 4pm.

* Ontario Craft Council notified us that they will not be at the One of a Kind Toronto as the powers that be of that show are not permitting them. I don't know why but this isn't the first time the OOAK has thrown some spanner in the works of mild mannered artisans furthering their crafty lives!!!!!!

* Heading down to the One of a Kind this Sunday for a look see and to say hi to colleagues I haven't seen in ages and won't be joining in Chicago this year.

Stay Tuned!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Polymer Clay......& Life...

Well, the November meeting of our polymer clay
group in this end of Ontario was attended by just
Georgia and me. However we got a lot done. I wanted to learn about Gera Scott Chandler's 'fabric' claying as I might be able to use it on my buttons (which might lead to a whole new sweater design!)

The piece you see here seems to be mine as Georgia showed me another way to do the Skinner method on two pieces of clay and them combining them with cutters from one piece to the other.

Our aim was to make some Bottles of Hope to give two to an old and dear friend of mine who is wrestling with cancer and I was to visit him later that day.

It was a huge amount of fun and I really learned. I made some buttons using that technique which I will post on my web site 'More' page soon. I seem to be selling my buttons at every show to hand knitters and some of them never get posted.

You can see some of the cutters I use: heart, star and small round for dots.

Here are some of the coloured Skinner method bits that Georgia made for her bottles. She had some larger bottles so they were easy to do and we had fun deciding on what kind of stoppers to make.

Here is what we ended up with. I was sooooo excited about what I had done I selfishly decided to keep one for myself. I think I will eventually take it down to the chemo room at the Cancer Centre of Eastern Ontario where I have just two more treatments to go.

The red one with yellow and the pink swirly top are Georgia's.

I was privileged to be in the chair next to a chap who was given a few months to live back in 1993 and we chat when we are in the waiting room at the same time. I told him to choose one from the selection and he was thrilled and said he'd been coveting one particular one.

I'm, at the moment preoccupied with my luxurious head of hair..... OK...well the fuzz that seems to be staying despite what the symptoms sheet of the Paclitaxel tells me...seems like a full head of hair to me! Even my left over stubble seems to be getting longer. However I only possess about 20 eyebrow hairs and three five eyelashes between the two eyes! Until I have to deal with more serious stuff after the chemo is over I will allow myself to be vain. I won't leave the house without eye makeup.

I only have to deal with 'fluey aches, heartburn and night sweats but am thankful I don't seem to have the neuropathy (numbness and tingling in my fingers and toes) I have a bit of pin's and needles but I am able to type and knit and generally do fine work! Yeah!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Great Polymer Clay Workshops!

I finally got some photos out of Sonja's camera from Inspiration 2007 in Cleveland last month. The ladies in the Button Making workshop did will in experimenting with polymer clay for buttons for their knit (and sewn) creations.

I had everyone choose four half blocks of colour, so they had four colours to work with, 1oz each, but with instructions to share and swap. Later I had some extra so they were able to pick up some Pearl, Gold and such.

Isabel here got some hook and eye 'eyes' from my stash and made a lovely set of shank buttons. I hope she has a garment in mind as she did a beautiful job, I think she had some yarn in mind, hence the blend of colours in her buttons.

Here we have some mixing of black, copper and a russet shade which she may have mixed herself.

Then she curved them a little and laid them in a folded 3"x 5" file card and we fired them that way. They came out beautifully!

Here's Rose helping a newbie get use to the PC and giving her hints and tips on using her tools and creating using her colours. With two busy classes of 19 and 16 I sure needed the extra pair of eyes and hands!

It was also a great chance for an exercise in colours and putting them together. I was surprised at the colours chosen, I ran out of some and had lots of others left over.... like purple, even though I had a fairly even balance of blocks of colours.

Rose is well versed in polymer clay but we work differently as she makes jewellery and I buttons mostly and some pins for my garments. So she had different information to throw into the mix for the participants, like using Pearl-Ex and such.

This past weekend's class here in K'town went well and was a great way to spend a really rainy
Saturday! With 9 participants I gave a demo first to give them an idea of how I work and the process. I gave them some hints and tips to be noted down along with some handouts and then let them go with tools and this time 8 colours.

I cut the clay into quarters and every one started with eight chunks in differnt colours, later they were able to pick up more in different colours

As these women were fibre artists and not really
clothing people they played more sort of freefall! Putting colours together, running them through the pasta maker and seeing what came out and where it might go from there. Here you see two pieces by Robin who ended up doing these tiny scenes, we loved the 'ocean' (above) and then her 'sunset'... I think it looks like a beautiful one.

These two pieces are about the size of a large postage stamp!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Button Making Workshop

This Saturday Ocober 27th, I will be conducting a button making workshop here in Kingston from 10am - 3pm.

Email Robin for details if you would like to participate, there is still some room.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Not Knitting...Wheeee!!!

This photo illustrates what I was doing yesterday rather than knitting..... well I did get work done later but this was taken during a visit with an old friend who is a bike freak! We used to date way back in high school and he did me the honour of breaking up with me when he got his first bike (a cherry red Triumph if I remember).

No I didn't drive, though I do have my motorcycle license (use to have a small one back in my 20's) but this is the biggest bike I've been on and I hadn't been on one in years. I used to drive another old boyfriend's Honda 350 back in the day! My brother had a BMW R90S and took me for a ride but wouldn't let me drive it. This was my first time on a Harley!

Being a beautiful day it was great for momentarily escaping from chemo and cancer.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Fibre Friends' Work

Over the weekend I visited with a couple of friends, one in person and one on a long distance call with the internet involved. They have done some lovely work so I'll show it here.

First there is this lovely box made and embroidered by my East Coast friend Deirdre. I just drooled over it and would love to see it in person one day. It is embroidered over Dupioni silk.

The other one is a beautiful baby outfit, jacket and booties, knit by my buddy Rose. Wouldn't that just look soooo lovely in a woman's size? I just happen to love things knit in all over garter stitch.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Studio Tour Sunday

Well, we've had a good weekend, lots of folk showed up on Saturday and sales were made, pamphlets handed out and lots of chat, hot apple cider, sushi and cookies.

Today is quieter so we're taking time to explore the internet. Web sites on knitting, polymer clay and also looking at Etsy as I would like to set up a 'store' where I might move odd items like samples and such. Stumbled across a great one about men's knitting.

We've had folk from Finland, Australia, Britain and towns around. it's been homecoming weekend here in Kingston at Queen's University so the town has been filled with alumni sporting old Queen's jacket with various dates on them, I saw '92 last night which isn't far back but I've seen 60's an earlier in previous years. I went out to collect our sign from the corner and had to wait while the Queen's Golden Gaels pipe band and cheerleaders did their thing in the road just outside The Ports (Portsmouth House pub) which is the nearest pub to the football field where Queens played Waterloo yesterday.... I still don't know who won! But the people in the red tunics and kilts looked happy.

Here are photos of Georgia and me with our respective work.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Tour Food

I will once again be having a preview evening tonight in my studio and it's the wine and cheese type (the rest of the weekend is hot apple cider and cookies) so when my friend Harvey offered to show me how to make sushi I was hot to learn something new.

Now I've never been known for my culinary skills .... well not until I remarried at 39 then something kicked in, but I do love to add new things to my repertoire. Apparently I did well and here is a pic of my first plate of California rolls. I put in red pepper, avocado, carrot, English cuke and imitation crab. We polished off the whole plate and I have some pot aside for this evening.

If you're coming there's lots of California rolls!!!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Town & Country Studio Tour

One of my cardis in the window display of Kingston Frame Works.

This weekend is the Town and Country Studio Tour in Kingston and I'm looking around my studio and wondering if I can ever tidy it up!!!! Then...after the tour is over can I ever find the stuff I tidied away! Same old problem, I've been doing studio tours for about twelve years and I still find it a daunting task.....but I won't stop, I love having folk visit my studio.... especially when it is tidy!

Anyway, when I get that done and we get set up I love the whole weekend, people come by with fall leaves on their shoes, windblown hair and I serve them hot apple cider and chat, laugh, catch up and they shop. Whether it's something they can take home or perhaps order for next year or learn about how I do what I d0 it's all part of the studio package.

This year as last, with my friend Georgia's help we will have an evening preview on Friday night 6 -8pm with wine, nibbles and even goodie bags. If you live in Kingston area please drop by.

........well.... back to sorting out my stuff so I can see the floor!!!!

Monday, October 08, 2007

In My Element.

Monday night in my studio and the new fall TV programs are on. The one I was watching is Project Runway Canada.

It's on Slice TV, hosted by Iman and Brian Bailey and filmed in Toronto.

I've watched Project Catwalk UK, Project Runway (put onto it by my step daughter) and it's always the last hour that I work in my studio so I'm usually sewing a sweater together, or doing some hand work (so the machine doesn't drown out what I want to here on TV) at the ironing board. I feel like I'm a fly on the wall in the contestants' studio (pictured here) and it's like having work mates, except these ones are often immature in their work practices with others in their workroom. Also I'm amazed at what some of them come up with given the brief of that day.

This day, the premiere, they were told to rifle through some other contestant's personal luggage and take four pieces. They were to make an outfit out of these four pieces.....aaaaaarrrrgh! Someone cried 'don't take my cashmere'. If it were me I'd have run like the wind on that second thought.... well maybe. The next day when they were to start, each was given the opportunity to take back one piece, one girl got to get her leather jacket back!!!! Heaven knows what would have happened to it otherwise.

It's a great program to watch for inspiration and to see creation in progress, makes my solitude in my studio feel like a part of a group for an hour.

Oh and there's the bitchiness.... and that's just the guys!!!

Friday, October 05, 2007

Flowers and Fur.

Well, Sunday at the Run for the Cure was a great day, I ended up eating chicken breast for supper and started to feel good as I usually do heading into every third Monday - day four after chemo.....then Monday arrived and everything fell apart again. I felt I had had chemicals poured into me, everything smelt, tasted of chemo drugs my other half called the nurse, I said he was over concerned but she was really needed. I got sick again along with a short black out...scary. She stayed with me for two hours until hubby had picked up some needles for her to give me the IM version of the anti nausea drug.....and so on.... and so on. Anyway, this is me the next day feeling marginally better posing with a bouquet of roses and baby's breath sent by an old friend in Britain. She had remembered I was married with pink roses and baby's breath!!!

Then another dear friend, painter Vera Donefer, (mother to Laura Donefer - glass artist)stopped by with some beautifully coloured mums! How cheery these flowers are.

I was also sent a really neat kit to knit myself a hat for the cold weather. Susan Watson Ellis (jeweler). It came with a pattern but I, of course, want to knit it my way. You are supposed to work the fur and the slub cotton in alternate stitches but I'd like to try working the fur first so that it's face framing (as hair is) and work the cotton, perhaps mixed with some wool for warmth, for the rest of the hat. It's a lovely colour and will go well with my black winter jacket..... if I can figure out what I want to do with it. A set of circular bamboo needles came with but they are somewhat short so I'll seek out a longer set in my studio so I can measure around my head... Susan is a non knitter.

This all came from JanKnit's Studio in Haliburton Ontario. We were up there last Summer but I must have missed it....not like me at all!!!! Even my husband heat seeks yarn stores after hanging around me for a couple of decades!

Well, now that I've declared the ownership of this yarn and the Paula Lishman fur yarn I will have to post pics of the hat when I get done!

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Run for the Cure Kingston

Today was the nationwide Run for the Cure for Breast Cancer and what a great day for it here in Kingston Ontario. Hundreds turned out, the weather was great, tears were shed, laughter shared, money raised and fun had.

My sister took me as I was three days out of chemo and a bit wobbly.

......more to come...

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Half Way!!!

Today was my fourth chemo of eight... I'm half way through! I'm almost dreading the next four as they are a new drug Paclitaxel (for me) that can cause numbness in fingers and toes..... and I MUST knit, it's my drug of choice!! Apparently Melissa Etheridge stopped hers as she was scared (justly so) it might permanently affect her career.

I'm going to ask for the cold gloves (blood vessels constrict, less drug to fingers) and try to endure them (on and off) for the four hours it takes to infuse this one.

Today my doc said that I had a great support 'knitwork'!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Quick Knit!

Woman: 'Doctor I'm constipated'
Doctor: 'What are you taking for it?'
Woman: 'I take my knitting...'

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Hair and Boobs!

Just a quickie with no photos but after a trip to visit a plastic surgeon yesterday I feel so much better about any pending mastectomy! Left thinking 'Hey! the upside of all this (besides some weight loss) is new hair and maybe even new boobs!"

Now for pics and some hair and boobs but in polymer clay can be found at Gera Scott Chandler's blog, following her workshop at Georgia's Beek's Lane Studios last weekend.

Love it!

Monday, September 17, 2007

Inspiration 2007

Whew! Just back from Cleveland, Ohio, where the first Inspiration machine knitting seminar happened this weekend. Fabulous!

I guess I'm saying Whew because I taught two days worth off classes one week after my third chemo treatment and was so energized I flew through until I ran out of fumes somewhere during the last class. However I got that energy and enthusiasm back in spades from the women in those classes and I had a ball!

I had wonderful help and support from my dear friends and traveling companions Sonja and Rose who took care of and watched out for me.

Here are a couple of photos of the Button Making classes which ran two hours each day and eventually got just about everyone absorbed and many being amazingly creative when I had heard ' I can't do this!'

My teaching room eventually looked
like my studio, a total tip! But that's when your mind runs free and you just go to town with whatever creativity you have .... or might have had back when you ten and were not afraid of mixing weird colours and making odd shapes.

I was also pleased to be able to visit with a woman I admire, Su
san Lazear, who runs where I get my Garment Designer software. She's well travelled and brought to the seminar the world of colour, design in knitting, and (though I couldn't attend) fashion trends forecasting from her trip to Italy.

Here we have an after fashion show shot late on Friday night. Rachelle Moffat is examining one of my cardis as she wants to make her own buttons, her knitting is so beautiful and different from mine I cannot wait see what she creates. Then there is Carol Scott, Susan Lazear and my friend Judith and Rose with her back to the camera. My friend Sonja is behind but I have this super picture of us. Sonja knit me a hat using soft thick yarn and some needle felting. It is my first really warm hat and with a little cotton cap with keep me cozy through the Winter. I even wore it during the seminar when the AC in the hotel got to be too much!

Sonja also took a bunch of picture which I will post when I get them.

I was told to eat, sleep, nap and my bunk mate
Rose put up with my gorging myself on healthy snacks late in the evening in bed while we watched What Not to Wear!!! I find that during my chemo if I feel like eating and can find something healthy to pig out on I just go ahead as I know there will be endless days of no appetite, so thanks Rose with putting up with my munching.... even though we had had a good dinner!!!

I also thank the girls for packing light as I had to cram a lot of stuff into my little car.... but we did it... including a couple of bottles of wine though we were just too pooped to do them any justice!

Here are Sonja and Rose in front of our baggage!!!!! just before we squeezed it into my car. I thank them and my friend Judith soooo much for their help and support. I thank Sue Jalowiec for putting on this great conference, I thank the other instructors for being their own wonderful selves though I only got to chat them briefly.

I also thank the great women who stretched themselves to create and to listen to me in my classes, who came up to me with words of encouragement for both my teaching and my health.

Now I feel great about coming back and holing up in my studio to knuckle down work!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Colour! Colour! Colour!

A set of my hand made buttons.

Recently a friend steered me to 'Stumble Upon' as a great time waster or a resource.... I'm in love!

I put in knitting, fashion, w
eb design, graphics and some others as my key interests so that when I surf only sites I'm remotely interested in come up and I get sites that I would not normally find ..... a recent one didn't seem to have a home page but who cares, it has the colour wheel. It's a colour tool site - and I realized it has a great application in knitwear design as you can play with accent colours on a main colour background. It's great for inspiration or if you have some colours on your shelf that you want to make up into something spectacular and need to play with the colour sequence first.

Give it a whirl and have fun!

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Sheep Dog Trials

Sheep - yes, but dogs you say? Yes, this was my third or fourth year at the Sheep Dog Trials at Grass Creek Park just east of Kingston Ontario. My Mum used to spin and weave so was invlolved in the Sheep to Shawl event there and elsewhere and kept saying I should take a table in the craft tent...... well who listens to their mother?

Amanda Milliken who runs the shebang (sheepbang?) is a client of mine and asked me as well so I finally gave in! Why didn't I do this before?! I have such a blast there, it's and easy show to do and I get to net work with other woolly folk.

Above I am fanning myself next to display (it was really hot this year) with my new custom hat over my buzz cut.

Here is Anne from our local Wool-Tyme store, a wonderful store, and we spent some time looking at a cool knit hat in the latest Vogue Knitting that I can wear when this Winter when I still won't have much hair. I knit some swatches and ran them by Ann. I'm a fine machine knitter and can think off th top of my head about gauges and necessary yarns and such but I go to Ann when it comes to boning up on hand knitting.

Also making it a fun weekend was the close proximity of my great friend Georgia and here work from Beeks Lane Studio.

As there are functions in the tent in the evening you move your booth about a bit each of the three days which made for interest. I moved the second day to make room for the four teams in the Sheep to Shawl event. Each team of women have four hours to comb and card the wool from the fleece they have chosen... fresh from the sheep, spin and ply the weave a shawl to particular dimensions. The weaver arrives with her loom already warped (if that's what it's called... I'm not a weavar) and ready to go as soon as there is plyed wool to go.

They are judged on time (points lost for going over) the weave, accomplishing the correct size i think it was 20" by 72" or thereabouts, and the winning team is announced. The shawls are taken home by one person, to be washed (they are still full of oils) and dried and are brought back the next day to be auctioned off.

I love this event, something going from the back of an animal to the back of a human and no one gets hurt!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Just a Quickie!

No photo for this, though I should get one of my other hat... if anyone had any doubts or wondered about Ads by Google, I found '' on mine this morning but already knew about it throught my friend Gwendolyne's blog. I got two great hats (one of which I'm wearing for chemo in my last post) from this site. They are reasonably priced and great quality.

...... just a heads up :)

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

My Spanner in the Works

Well, most of my friends and colleagues know by now that I have breast cancer. Now I'm incorporating it into my blog as my colleagues, fellow knitters and artisans have been incredibly supportive through my journey. This photo was taken on our vacation in the Outer Banks NC where I am taking in truckloads of negative ions and sea air. I had my biopsy the day before we left so here I'm in that no man's land of knowing I well receive some sort of diagnosis on our return. The weather cooperated and we had a wonderful time.
Every now and then I would touch my 'lump' and wonder.

Fast forward to last Monday when my husband's band mate and our ne
ighbour offered to shave off what was left of my hair! In this photo he has more hair than I do!!! And I'm talking to my Nova Scotia knitting buddy.

Anyone who's been through this will know the discomfort of that itchy head, slept-on-tight-rollers feeling that is totally alleviated when bald. No,
I don't love it, I've not had short hair for over two decades but it's comfortable. Also as my time is taken up with fatigue and stuff it makes taking a shower VERY quick.

Here I'm in one of my hats, tied with a scarf for my second chemo treatment. Because I am also on antibiotic just now it combined to make the side effects worse .... but I'm coming out if it and have went back to knitting yesterday afternoon (after the nurse left). This had really thrown a spanner in the works as far as my business goes. No knitting after two surgeries (chest too sore) then soooo many appointments that I barely get back into the studio before I have to head off to something or try to remember what supplements or meds to take..Whew!

I want everyone on 'my team' to know just how unbelievable they've been and to have them there as I go through this is immense...


My sister Judith and me.