Wednesday, September 30, 2009

how do you spell relief?

How do you spell relief?


I went to my family doctor yesterday about the pain in my hip/leg/butt. I now remember what muscle is the culprit - the piriformis. It is spasming and irritating the sciatic nerve. After sitting in the waiting room for 45 minutes, I was in significant pain and discomfort, which the doctor must have seen on my face because he wrote me 3 prescriptions for pain relief. One of these is for a delightful concoction of acetaminophen, caffeine, and codeine called Tylenol 3. Now I can still feel the pain but I just don't care very much about it. I can see why people get addicted to this stuff and will make very sure that I take them sparingly.

The other two prescriptions are for muscle relaxants to take at bedtime. By the time I was heading to bed last night, I was starting to think that the muscle was releasing all by itself. However, by the time I got up and couldn't bend over to put my socks on, I knew it was just as bad as before. The doctor told me that the piriformis is one muscle that, when it lets go, it does so suddenly and completely. I'm looking forward to it.

Monday, September 28, 2009

uncorked whine

I haven't been spending a lot of time on the computer because it hurts to sit down. Actually it hurts to stand up too but not as much as sitting down. I have had severe pain in my hip and wasn't going to even discuss it here but I'm past the point where I care if I come off whiny.

The thing is, I didn't do anything to hurt it, at least not that I remember. I had some pain deep in the hip joint (probably fibro pain) that I tried to work out by moving it. I think that's what did me in. I just came back from massage therapy and the chiropractor. They told me what the muscle was called that is causing me most of the grief but I can't remember the name of it. Whatever its name, it's affecting the sciatic nerve too, which explains the pain shooting down my leg. Therapy was likely a good thing but, right now, it just hurts like h***. I have adjusted my laptop cart so that I can stand at it to post this. Sitting down at this moment is not an option. I haven't found a drug option that will dull the pain either.

I think the worst part of this is that I can't sit comfortably. Therefore, I'm not comfortable doing the things that keep me sane, like knitting. So I spent some time making funky batts for this week's spinning class at Golden Willow. Normally I don't have much use for funky yarns so I haven't learned how to spin them. The class is a good excuse to step outside my comfort zone.

Here's the funky batt that I'll be taking to class.
Don't ask me what fibers are in it because I lost track as I threw in bits and dregs of fiber, cut up yarns, and angelina. The spool of woolly nylon will be the binder yarn.

Although knitting has been put on hold for now, here's the start of a sock that I was knitting from yarn that I spun in fractal stripes. I used a BeeMiceElf SW Merino top in the 'Scenic' colorway. I split the top lengthwise and spun one single as it presented, giving me long lengths of the repeating color pattern. I stripped the other single many times so that the colors repeated much more quickly. When knit up, it gives subdued stripes that remind me of pointillism art.

And finally, our extended summer weather ended abruptly on the weekend. So much so that I was worried that we might get frost last night. I sent Dan out to pick off the tomatoes just in case.

Sunday, September 20, 2009


Notice anything missing?
The Schacht Matchless has gone to a new home. I decided that the Ladybug was easier to treadle than the Matchless so it was silly to have both.

I can spin on my Ladybug and Majacraft Rose with ease but plying still makes my legs hurt. The solution: an electronic spinner.

Enter the Ertoel Roberta....
First of all, she's gorgeous!

Secondly, she works beautifully and I have great control over my spinning! I can spin heavy to very fine yarn on her.

Thirdly, she's quiet!

Fourthly (is that even a word?), she sits comfortably on my laptop table so can roll around the house to wherever I want to use her.

Fifthly (?), she has massive jumbo bobbins, a pause control attachment, and she can operate on regular house current electricity or 9 volt. The dual power is courtesy of Cal at Shuttleworks. I ordered the single power model but when it was ready to ship, Cal noticed that the finish on the one he had was defective so he sent the dual powered one at no extra charge, bless his heart. As always, I recommend Shuttleworks highly!

While Roberta will never replace my beloved Rose and Ladybug for spinning singles, I love that I can rewind bobbins and ply with the flip of a switch from the comfort of my recliner.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


I got an email today informing me that both skeins of handspun yarn that I entered in the "I Made It On My Schacht" contest made it to the finals. I heard that there were approx. 400 entries and 80 were chosen to be finalists. It's even sweeter because I had to enter in the 'Expert' category for spinners with more than 2 years of experience; I started spinning 3 years ago and I definitely don't feel like an expert yet.

Here are the skeins:

3-ply sock yarn, Spunky Eclectic Myrtle BFL


2-ply Cormo/Sheltie.

So the two skeins (minus Robbie the Sheltie) are en route to Colorado already for the final judging and will be on display from October 8 to December 1 in the Schacht showroom.

Monday, September 07, 2009

lazy Labour Day

It was the last long weekend of the summer and we spent it at home. After a hot spell that lasted a week and culminated yesterday with scorching heat and high winds (yuck, remind me to stay away from deserts), there was a noisy thunderstorm in the middle of the night that brought cooler temps today. The late summer days when the sun is bright and the air has a hint of coolness are my favorites. Today was one of those days.

The dogs and I spent some time in the back yard.

Austin has been busy blowing all of his undercoat this summer. He looks like half the dog he was before.

Robbie still has all of his coat.

Have I mentioned that shelties like to talk? A lot?
Notice the swishy tail - yup, talking is fun.

It was hard to get a picture of Bentley because he was so busy checking everything out and finding good smells. He deigned to look back over his shoulder when I called him.

And then there's Pocus.
I swear that dog could have had a career in modeling. He looks pretty darn good for a 12 year old dog, doesn't he?