Saturday, April 11, 2015

Better! ...and then worse. Um.

I got a nerve block at the beginning of March. That and the milder weather combined to make me feel better. So I went insane, unpacked moving boxes (THERE ARE STILL MORE HERE OMG JULIE WTELF?) and cleaned half my kitchen.

Now I have an appointment next week to go in and arrange another nerve block. Whoops.

The good news is, in terms of drugs and my health, I can have pretty much unlimited nerve blocks. I'm only limited by the assholes making decisions at my insurance company. But I'm covered by two policies (military retirees, hub's work) so even then I should be good. Also, my pain doc gets operating room space to do this stuff one day a week at a plastic surgery spa, so the whole thing is just hilarious from start to finish. (We've all started calling nerve blocks "spa days".) They have to do the block in an OR 'cause they stick needles in my neck and if they miss I can quit breathing, so yay, life support equipment and all kinds of trained people nearby. I've had four now, and the three with this crew have all gone so smoothly I almost didn't even have a sore spot after. (The one at University of Pittsburgh Medical Center gave me a migraine for a month. I intend to rag on them incessantly, for the rest of my Old Sailor's Bitch Wife time on this planet.) So, the pain thing is leveling out, in that I've got qualified care that's serious about making things work, but it's not leveling out because as I feel better, I do more, and actually need more pain drugs.

Needing more meds as you feel better is weirdly common, and with experienced people, you only get eye rolls and "We know, we know."

I'm rambling. But anyway. Oddly better yet not. Bodies are weird.

When I'm not cleaning or throwing things away, I finished the pink to orange spin. Got really crap yardage, like 200 yards, so I'm dyeing 8oz (this was four) and trying again. Because damn it, I want a really elaborate shawl in this gradient, DAMN IT.

Been knitting. The chart I'm on looks like this:

Something about the fiber has made Honu goony, and she's been scent-marking it every chance she gets.

So far all she's done is rub her face on it, so I've let her live. That can change if the evil fucker starts messing with it.

Spun some tencel and wool, got crap yardage. WTF do you do with 185 yards of something?

Also spun a cabled yarn, copying the structure of a 15,000 year old cord found in the caves at Lascaux, with the paintings.

Twenty yards from four ounces of fiber (!!!!) but at least this is six ply, really thick, and practically bullet proof. I'm actually teaching a class on cabled yarns at the end of May at Natural Stitches. Just sayin'. This went to the shop as a sample. I get better sign-ups when there's something for people to touch and fondle.

I'm also experimenting with hawser plying, but that's how they make rope and so far my efforts are pretty bad. Pictures when they don't suck.

Also, fed up with the shitty yardage I've been getting, I started on a practice run for some lace yarn I've wanted to do for years. Orenburg lace (Rav link) is traditionally knit with yarn made of one strand of silk and one strand of "goat" that's essentially cashmere (they're right over the mountains from Kashmir). I'm doing the same, but with an American-ish twist. Western Europe, for sure: one ply silk, and one ply angora.

So far I'm working on the silk ply.

It's pretty slow going, but it's really shiny and kinda blue. Love it. Will dye the angora the same way I dyed the silk. (Bottle cap for scale, by request from my Kiwi friends. They pointed out most of them have never seen an American quarter.)

So, yeah, same old, same old. Once I finish this purple lace monster (I'm on row 205 of 257, but each row gets longer, exponentially) I'm going back to the blue and white stranded color sweater I started last winter. It needs sleeves. Two. TWO SLEEVES.

In the mean time, Honu is laying on my lap, and occasionally reaching out to smack the ruler that keeps my place:

Elizabeth Wayland Barber is giving a talk in Pittsburgh Tuesday night, and I'm going. After, there will probably be shrieking over fiber history. Or Scythians. Or frozen tombs containing felt fabric in Kazakhstan. Or something.


Donna Lee said...

Some yarns must smell more "sheepy". My cats used to like to roll around with certain skeins but not others. Cats are weird.

I've wanted to try a cabled yarn. I'm just sure I'll get crap yardage........

Barbara said...

Feel better, work more, have more pain... yeah, that makes perfect sense.

Nice spinning. Can't wait to see the pink to orange shawl. I will NOT learn to spin.

ali said...

i love that orange gradient and the color combo in the cabled yarn. :)

i'm not a spinner, so this is purely out of curiosity-- do you actually measure out yardage after spinning or calculate an approximation of the yardage in some way?

Janis said...

It's great that you're feeling better, even if it does require an increase in medication! 185 yards should make a fairly closely-fitted hat, so long as the yarn is a DK or Worsted weight.