Monday, March 30, 2009


March has sucked. I was going to say March sucked balls but then I thought that might be a little too crude even for my blog but now I've told you I was going to say it I might as well say it. March sucked balls.

Our family has been a big ball of stress the last few weeks. Early in the month Jennie passed away. The next day our Uncle Daniel died from a heart attack while shoveling snow. I am writing this blog entry from room 911 of the hospital my dad has been for 13 days and will likely be for many more days. [Good thing I'm not superstitious about numbers.] Last week my older sister was hospitalized in very serious condition, too. She's home now, but with a two very uncomfortable diagnoses. That's just the highlights. Let's not even discuss what has happened to my moving fund. If I could make the text of this blog post vibrate with stress I would.

Luckily I have two flexible jobs that usually allow me be at the hospital when other people aren't able to be there. The kickass Knitorious co-workers are covering my shifts for a few weeks while I help where I can with family issues and, hopefully, get Dyeabolical moving in the right direction again. I have been a little too flexible with Dyeabolical the last few months. I'm running low on inventory and I haven't stayed on top of advertising deadlines.

I should have 45 pounds of new yarn delivered this week. I'm taking a gamble that you all still love sock yarn but are yearning for some sport weight cotton to make super-bright-seen-from-space toddler togs and bulky rayon super soft chenille in super-bright colors for sinfully luxurious simple scarfs. If I ever start another blog I think I shall call it I Love Alliteration.

All my Dyeabolical plans kind of hinge on having time to actually get this done. You would think having a spouse who is frequently out of town would lead to MORE time to do things. You would think.

Hey, speaking of Dyeabolical, those of you who buy yarn online from me. How do you feel about swag? How would you feel about getting handmade soap as part of your swag?

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Picture time

I've been sitting on a few half-blog posts for a week now. 7-creative bloggers meme? I have 2 names written up. A blog post about not blogging? A paragraph listed. New yarns? I have the pictures done, but no write up. Life has been a challenging rollercoaster lately for friends and family. It has just been exhausting. I'm tapped out for words, so I declare it picture time. Here's what I've been doing when I haven't been doing nothing at all:

The perfect short row heel:
My best short row heel yet

Two acceptable sleeves, many tries later:

A birthday present:
Ravelry pic

Yarn for a pair of flame socks:
Ravlery pic--semi-solid blackRavlery pic--Mal's Lament

and a whole lot of dyeing:
Recent dyeing

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Leo Reads a Story

leo reads a story
Originally uploaded by sungazing
I can't stop watching this video. It is so charming and the creator so talented. I love how creative my friends are. Click on the link to view a bigger version of the video.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Can't breathe

I started writing this post on Tuesday. It's early Friday now and the funeral is over. I didn't go but it was on my mind all day Thursday. I don't know that I would normally share these things in a public knitting blog, but so may of you have thought good thoughts and prayed for the family over the past year and so many of you are genuine friends, even if we haven't met in person. It's kind of rambly. I would apologize, except I'm not really sorry that it is rambly. My friend Ann said whatever any of us feels right now is the right thing to feel. I'm going to go with that.

I feel like I can't breathe today, which is an improvement over Monday and Tuesday when I really could not breathe. Welcome, allergy-induced asthma associated with seasonal transitions!

The past week has been difficult for everyone. A blog friend lost her brother last week. Milo, a friend's pet and one of my favorite dogs to hang out with when I was feeling down was put to sleep on Saturday. Jennie died after such a long hard struggle which feels like a tragedy compounded on itself because it means Selena lost her daughter and we lost a friend on Sunday. Monday my uncle, Daniel, died from a heart attack while shoveling snow.

The Belleville News Democrat has a story about Jennie and organ donation in their lifestyle section today. The author of the piece recounts her experiences with Jennie and Selena and urges others to sign up to be organ donors. The final line in the article is that Jennie didn't have to die. I don't know that. No one knows if a second transplant would have taken better than the first, but I do appreciate the raw emotion, anger, sadness and frustration with which it was written. Hell, I was there. This whole past year has been in and and out of waiting rooms, worrying, praying, celebrating when Jennie was released to go home, running to the hospital when she was medi-vac'd twice back to St. Louis, then this past month. It has been a blur of stagnant time in that filthy ICU waiting room, feeling both hope and despair while we hoped for a transplant but had to face reality.
The issue of organ donation and transplantation is a complicated one, deeply personal and for many people, a religious decision. Regardless of how many organs may be available for transplant there are many variables. An organ transplant can save a life. It isn't a guarantee, but it is hope when a patient may have had none. If it so moves you, please register to be an organ donor. Myself, I don't know if my current license is signed, however I registered as a potential organ donor with the state of Missouri years ago. That overrides an unsigned license.
The article mentions that Selena's friends folded over 1000 cranes. Selena quietly began folding cranes a few weeks ago. I think she was up to 50 or so when she let us in on her plan. Between Selena and her friends we folded quite a few of them. It was important to Selena and she just laughed and handed us more paper when we complained we were part of a crane chain gang. It was something that we could do for her to give her hope and support.
The funeral was today in Naperville, Illinois and the cranes were strung on to garlands of 18 cranes each behind Jennie. Several people who traveled up for the funeral let me know how beautiful the cranes looked and although I was not there in person, that I was there with the cranes. I was no means the top crane producer, but I folded a fair amount.
My Uncle Daniel died suddenly of a heart attack while shoveling snow at his home. We weren't close, largely because he lives so far away. Aside from a visit or two when I was very young I don't think we have ever even talked, but he was still my uncle my entire life. There is not a lot any of us can do right now being so far away. I'm not sure there would be anything any of us could do even if we were there. If I had thought of it I would have sent a folded crane along with the sympathy cards.
[Comments have been disabled. Pictures of Jennie's cranes used by permission from Sungazing Photography]

Monday, March 2, 2009

Jennie Sutton

I feel like I need to write something heartfelt and elegant about the past few days, but right now I can't. But I do feel like I need to tell the many of you who have thought of, followed, prayed for and sent good thoughts for my friends Jennie Sutton and her mother Selena during Jennie's double lung transplant, recovery and complications over the past year.

Jennie passed away peacefully surrounded by family and friends yesterday evening. Many thanks to all of you, many of whom have never met Jennie, Selena or even me. Thank you for thinking about my friends and keeping them in your hearts. Please continue to keep Selena and her family in your thoughts during this difficult time.

If you would like to read more about Jennie's life her blog is here. If you would like to leave a note for the family, please feel free to do so in the guestbook. The family has received a lot of comfort from reading words of support from the many people whose hearts were touched by Jennie and her story.