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25 October 2010

I've so much to do!

So much to do today, i hardly know where to start!

I'm 3/4s done with the front of the sweater.  It is knitting up quickly.  Part of me just wants to sit and knit and get that part done.  Sigh.

The sweater doesn't look like the pic, but i'm pleased with it so far.  I'm not finding cables difficult.  

Gena tells me i knit loosely because i knit Continental rather than English.  That's okay, i respond, because i adjust for it by using smaller needles.  "But then you are constantly having to adapt a pattern!" she said.  Yes, well, i don't mind.  Besides, i remember when i was a child and a neighbor was trying to teach me to knit.  Probably English.  I found that i was having a hard time for multiple reasons, but i know one was that i was knitting too tightly that every stitch was a challenge.  I soon gave THAT up!

I've said every year since we've lived here that i can "feel fall in the air" in August.  Don't know quite how to describe it, but there it is.  Today i'm feeling winter in the air for the first time.  I don't know quite how to describe this either.  It is not really any colder than the previous few days.  No snow is forecast.  Yet, somehow the wind that is blowing is bringing a winter chill that wasn't there before.  

We had the chimney sweep come a few weeks back.  Nothing in the chimney for him to do, although he told us that the fire had been burning too cool; the soot should have been black when it was pale grey.  He spent a lot of time with us troubleshooting why the stove has never been efficient.  He made some suggestions.  He cleaned out an air duct that was clogged (and i didn't even know there was that duct).   He didn't charge us a penny.  Said that he wants our business next year and all the referrals we can manage.  He said that this stove might just be a dud.

The darn thing has worked perfectly ever since he came.  I am pretty sure that it is working well because of the air duct cleaning, and i've been checking it daily since then.  The stove now works as it always should have.  Before, it was only putting out enough heat for a small amount of space near the stove.  Now it heats our whole living room and some of the upstairs well.  And it has been so much easier to start a fire, as well.  Before it was constant work, and took careful watching that the fire didn't die.

The chimney sweep made a couple of other suggestions.  One was to insulate and cover (with sheet metal) the area over the stove (because it is being used as an inset in the fireplace).  We've not done that yet, but plan to.  The other was to lay a few pipes on the the floor of the stove to increase air flow.  We have done that.  And we feel it helps, but i am sure the majority of the improvement is due to the air duct.  

Woo hoo!  Heat for the winter!  I'm excited.

I've been sleeping better.  Not more.  I wish i was sleeping 8 or more hours a night, but i usually average 4.5 to 6.  Still, i know i'm sleeping better because i know i've been dreaming.  Not that i remember the dreams, i usually don't.  But when i've been aware that i have been dreaming, i seem to manage better during the day.  I think they've been long, complicated dreams.

A couple of days ago i was dreaming long, complicated (conspiracy theory type, i think) when i got bonked on the head.  Opened my eyes and Duane's hand was coming down for the second time.  This is highly unusual, we don't usually bump each other too much while sleeping.  I asked him later if he dreamed he was stabbing me (for that was what it looked like, but part of that might have been the tail of my dream).  He was highly indignant!

We took N's 3 kids (and a cousin of theirs) to Oktoberfest yesterday.  As far as i'm concerned, it was wasted on the kids.  We missed all the fun inside, like the log cutting contest and all the dancing.  The kids mostly did carnival stuff outside (Sierra spent lots of time at the petting zoo).  Yeah, we spent money, but set some limits, too.  Sierra, the 8 year old daughter, has done ballet and some other forms of dance.  She didn't have much regard for the German dancing i enjoy watching.  We ate some nasty french fries (yes, i was bad and had a Pepsi).  

We were there about 2-1/2 hours.   Both Duane and i were pretty tired when we took the kids home.  But Duane was amazed to see me (he was with Sierra at the petting zoo, while i had the other 3 at the carnival attractions) carrying the youngest, Joshua, on my shoulders when we were separated from the other 2 for a bit.  I didn't carry Joshua much, but Duane was very much aware that 2 months ago i said i don't think i can do these events without a wheelchair.  :)   :)   :)  

When we came home, we both rested.  I think i only slept about 15 minutes (sleeping longer during the day creates a lot of problems for me), but i did stay resting for probably about 3 hours.  Still, when i got up i was fine.  Before, it would have taken me days to recover from such exertion.  I'm getting better!  I'm getting better!  :)   :)    :)  I also helped Duane stack some wood he had cut Saturday PM.  And i picked up twigs and bark for fire starter.  I did limit my work to about 45 minutes, and i rested afterwards, but my recovery time is so much less than it was.  I'm getting better.

I tried not to complain too much here, but i've seen my functioning decrease and decrease over the past year, especially since January.  I wasn't sure how much longer i was going to be able to continue our schedule at all.  I was scared, really scared.  

So this is more exciting than i can begin to express.

I am not fully WELL, by any means, but i am so much better.  I still have to limit my activity and monitor my energy.  Doing too much does mean relapse.  My new "normal" is probably still only about 30% of what a healthy person has.  But i'm able to do so much more than i did, with a far shorter recovery time.  Thank you, thank you God.  

Our cat Jazz wasn't well for a while.  The week i was home he was sneezing quite a bit (unusual for him, more common for Mac).  He was listless and didn't have much energy.  He didn't fuss as much (it seems he is always "talking" to us), and didn't struggle at all when we picked him up (usually he doesn't care for that at all).  I was starting to get worried when he wasn't much better after about 10 days.  Saturday i told Duane that if he wasn't better by today i would take him to the vet.  He either heard "vet" or his virus ran its course, because by Saturday afternoon he was much better.  Yesterday he was fussing at us like normal.  We kind of missed "sick Jazz," for we don't care much for "talky" cats.  However, i'm much relieved that he seems to be better.  Last night he was as playful as normal. 

I'm sure i had tons more to say, but i need to get up and start on my long "to do" list.

Is it beginning to be winter (or what you have as winter) where you are at now?



That corgi :) said...

LOL I think we never get winter here, but we do, you know what I mean. We complain when we have a few cool days (like in the 40s :)

I know what you mean about fall in the air and winter in the air. I can't describe it either but when we lived in Montana, I had those feelings of the change of season type thing....

I am glad you are able to be more active and do more things these days! I'm sure that is a wonderful feeliing to have and a joy to be able to participate in more things

I always think Oktoberfests are fun to go to! I am like you, I like German dancing.

I didn't realize there were different knitting styles, very interesting to have read that; glad the sweater is coming along!!


Lucy said...

So glad you're feeling a little better. Praying you have all the energy you need - and the wisdom as to how to spend it.

I can always feel autumn's (fall!) approach too, and certainly I can feel winter approaching now. Brrr.

One day, when I have no other projects, I will teach myself how to knit properly. But I always have so many projects!!

Kathi said...

I, too, am glad to hear that you are feeling better!

And, I too have a big "To Do" list, but honestly, I don't have the drive right now to do anything about it. I really need that desire to kick in!


Kathryn, I hope you and Jazz feel better in the coming weeks. It hit about 80 today and as you well know we don't get much of a winter around here in Lakewood :-)


Amrita said...

You knit real good Kathryn.

Maam used to make fabulous cables. I hav e her work.

My English missionary friend said she would knit a lovely fairisle sweater for me, with a very complicated pattern, but she left India and forgot all about it (smile)

I am facing a situation similar to what you faced in your previous church. But its the other way around, some people have to be disciplined and bemade accountable for their misdemeanors. Its a hard time for us.

Cindy said...

I enjoyed catching up on your posts. Thanks for the recipe you linked me to in your comment at my blog! Yum!

David said...

good news!
Praise God.

I have some old wooden shingles if you want for kindling.

Also almost everything we would need to put a Solar heater on your upstairs therapy room. If you and Duane are interested in free heat.

Amrita said...

David has shingles and I have loads of firewood to give away - if only I could send it over (smaile)

Rosemary said...

I love to hear that you are doing better and I'm crossing my fingers and praying that it will continue to happen for you. The festival sounds fun, isn't it a shame the kids didn't get into the more cultural aspects, maybe next year will be different!