Last time I posted here, I was surprised that it was already November. Time keeps flying fast and December has started; with its cold, short and rainy (that’s Irish winter: it rains instead of snowing, pretty much like during any other season, but the rain is colder and accompanied by equally cold wind) days, Christmas songs on the radio and me decorating our apartment with Christmas ornaments without any self control.
I’m really enjoying the cold weather and the darkness, they don’t seem hostile but friendly, and I try to take daily walks even on the worst days. I’m also in holiday mood and surround myself with shiny, red, green and white decorations. Even the lipstick I use these days is more red than usually, because Christmas! All of that is strange because I’m normally not a very sentimental or holiday-loving type of person. Maybe that’s just a sign of getting older?
About two weeks ago I decided to resume my hibernating Pineapple Doily project. In fact I don’t think I should call it a doily anymore – it’s already a full sized tablecloth, and it’s not even finished yet. I decided that it will be a gift for my parents – they’ve recently bought a new table for their dining room and even though the table is rectangular, the tablecloth is big enough to cover it in full despite its round shape.
The title of my post may sound like I’m a little surprised, and it’s not without a reason. I’ve spent all October at home, with just a few days in the middle of the month when I felt able to go out, and having a whole month just pass me by feels weird. Suddenly the trees are almost leaveless, and the days are visibly shorter. My cats are a little more fluffy with their thicker, winter fur, and much more cuddly as it gets colder.
When I last updated my blog, I was on the mend from pneumonia, and able to go out again. Well, that didn’t last long (not more than a few days): the Boyfriend caught a cold and 2 days later I had a cold too. Just that, while his cold ended after a week, mine turned into another chest infection – and another round of antibiotics and feeling miserable. Maybe it wasn’t even another infection, just the previous one that hadn’t really had a chance to be fully cured.
Anyways, it’s finally better again, and I took my last antibiotic tablet today. I’m feeling well and even the fatigue is gone. I still need to have some blood work done, to check if all the medications haven’t done any damage to my liver, and because I’m losing my hair in chunks – but I hope it’s only going to get better and better from now on!
While I’ve been stuck at home all those weeks, I knitted another pair of gloves. I used the same purple yarn as in the stripey jumper, and I’m absolutely proud of them. Even though, when you have a closer look, you can see that I really shouldn’t, because I made a huge mistake in the pattern!
I’m getting better, but it’s a slow process. I’m not taking antibiotics or steroids (other than my regular inhaler) anymore, and I started taking daily longer walks this week. I’m still quite weak, and still cough a bit. I’m also terribly bored… seriously, I’m a person who loves being on my own and spending time at home, but I also like being outdoors, and being active. 3 weeks of very low activity seem to last forever and I’m already planning some awesome hikes and trips once I feel strong enough.
The weather matches my mood perfectly (although today it’s actually quite nice for a change); it’s windy, rainy, and dark. So in order to defeat bad mood, I took out some Noro Kureyon sock yarn from my stash and decided to knit with it, just because working with all these beautiful colours make me feel a little better. I used it in two of my most recent projects.
So far, October hasn’t been a very good month for me. Some time at the beginning of the month I started feeling sick with a cold. But as days went by, it hasn’t gotten any better – in fact, I’ve been feeling weaker and more miserable with each passing day. Finally the Boyfriend told me that it’s ridiculous to just expect it to pass on its own, booked me an appointment with my GP (because I still thought it was just a cold), and then I found out I had pneumonia. Luckily, it is mild and only located in one area of my right lung (seriously, it’s a bizarre feeling when I cough and feel exactly where the inflammation is!), so I avoided going to hospital and could be treated at home. It’s been two weeks now, and I’m still taking antibiotics and steroids, but it is much better. I am weak, I cough (but significantly less than before), and Prednisolone makes me feel awful as it usually does, but the pain in my chest is almost gone and I can see some improvement. I even went out for a while yesterday, and while I couldn’t walk much, it felt really nice to breathe in the fresh autumn air. I am going for a review visit tomorrow again and I really hope I will not need another round of medications – or at least that I can stop taking some of them, because my stomach isn’t taking it all very well and my sense of taste is also almost completely gone. Fingers crossed.
So while I’ve been at my worst, I couldn’t really knit, read, or do much of anything. I’ve been mostly sleeping a lot (I actually got some additional meds to help me sleep as Prednisolone kept me awake at night… or day) and just trying to survive till another day when I could hopefully feel better. Only in the last few days have I started knitting again and it was so great to feel the yarn in my hands!
Here is what I made last week:
Two hats made with another single odd skeins of yarn – they’re going to be given away to a homeless charity, because they are really warm and I think they’re going to be useful at this time of the year. I’m really happy with the Fair Isle one – it’s the first time in months for me to try colour work again and it went so much better than any of my previous attempts! I didn’t really have any problems with controlling the tension this time. It might be a sign to knit a new Fair Isle sweater?
I’ve been in such good mood recently, I’m loving these chilly, early fall days and beautiful colours around. And knitting with wool without any discomfort like it happens in summer!
I’m also busy with the video-conferences for work this week, but at least today my projects were only discussed in the morning (next days are going to be much more intense though) so I could still clean up the apartment, do a few loads of laundry, go for a walk, prepare dinner and I’m planning to hit the gym in the evening too. You know, to make up for hours of sitting in front of the PC in the coming days!
One thing regarding video-meetings: cats and internet cameras don’t mix well. Especially if one of your cats tries to eat more than she should (because I wasn’t watching so she could eat both hers and her sister’s breakfast) and then throws up on the floor behind you while you are desperately trying to ignore it, but also remember about it to avoid stepping in that by accident and hoping that none of your colleagues noticed anything.
But let’s focus on pleasant stuff, shall we? May I present you my latest finished knitting project, a new autumn/ winter skirt:
Summer is really over… and yes, I know I already wrote it before, but now the fall is here for good, with the leaves changing colours and its chilly, crisp morning air. Although according to the weather forecast, the temperature can rise to 21 degrees Celsius tomorrow, I’m skeptical. We’ll see when tomorrow comes. For now, even though I love the weather outside, I struggle a little with how cold it is in our apartment. I turned all the heaters on, but they’re not really working yet so my new blanket is a real blessing now.
Cats also tend to sleep in more cozy places, where they can feel a little warmer. Such as this old Ikea wardrobe that they had claimed a few years ago and use as their bunk bed combined with playground. We don’t keep our clothes there anymore (except for some rain coats I wear when I run and other equally bad looking but useful stuff), we just gave up and bought a normal wooden wardrobe which can be closed securely.
Look at my new crafty purchase! It’s a beautiful yarn bowl from the Flying Tiger. Not something I’ve been planning to buy, even though I’ve thought about it a couple of times because of my cats. They always hunt my yarn so I have to be extra careful not to drop it while knitting (and the ball of yarn tends to jump all over my desk or coach which gives them many opportunities to catch it), and they always shed, even if it’s much less now than in summer. We buy lint rollers in Ikea in crazy amounts and I keep vacuuming all the time, but I can’t eradicate the fur in 100%. And when I drop the ball of yarn to the floor, it inevitably collects some cat hair which end up knitted into my work and I hate it. So yes… that, combined with a good price (6 euro) convinced me to give it a try and buy a yarn bowl.
It took me two weeks to knit my new cardigan, a Drops Design free pattern called “Sweet as Honey” – and it’s definitely one of my favourite finished projects so far! I usually find that raglan cardigans tens to slide down my shoulders a little, which can be really annoying – but this one doesn’t. It fits just as it should. It’s also knitted in my favourite yarn weight, fingering – thin but warm enough for this time of the year. I used hand-dyed Irish Fairytale Yarns merino with silk and I love this yarn – merino wool gives makes it warm and soft, while silk content adds a little sheen and makes the yarn more sturdy. The colourway I chose is Old Oak – it’s a very warm, medium brown shade, just perfect to pair up with red or green.
Ever since giving up on the idea of knitting something summery, I’ve been working on my new cardigan, Sweet as Honey by Drops Designs. So far, so good! It requires more focus and attention than my most recent, mindless knits, but it’s going well and I’m really enjoying it.
And I thought that it may be a good opportunity to share my yarn winding method with you!
I don’t have a winder and I don’t feel the need to buy one, as I actually enjoy winding yarn on my own – except for lace I guess, but I don’t use it very often so it’s not a big deal. I do it at my work desk, because the arms of my chair are just what I need.