My Three Year Anniversary

Today marks the three year anniversary of my liver transplant. It also marks the day that my son would have turned three.

It amazes me just how far I have come- both physically and emotionally:

There was the week long coma I had to recover from with my own realization of what I had just been through. The learning of new medical terms and medications. The month long healing from the operation. Dialysis every week while waiting for my kidneys to start working again. The staples and tubes getting removed. Four months of physical therapy to learn how to walk and feed myself. Bi-weekly blood draws and Prograf level changes. Learning to take care of our son with his own set of disabilities. Being diagnosed with post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Watching our son die and somehow finding the strength and will to carry on. Writing that first letter to the family of my liver donor. The volunteer work with the American Liver Foundation. The willingness to share my story in hopes of helping others. Finishing the sweater that was meant for our son and in doing so, rekindling my love for knitting. Joining the Boba knitting group and meeting Cookie A.. Coping with my Sickle Cell Anemia and its attack on my new liver. Accepting the fact that I could never get my old life back, but must now learn to create a ‘new’ life for myself.

I’ve come a long way, but it has not been a lonely journey. I would not be where I am today without the love and support of my doctors, family and friends. My biggest thanks goes to my husband. He is the person who has allowed me to lean on him so much without complaint or showing any sign of weariness. I always knew he was the love of my life. I just never knew he would become the hero of my life as well. Honey, I love you!

To Cory, my donor, and to all those who have made the decision to become organ/tissue donors- I thank you from the bottom of my heart. Without your selfless act of kindness, I, along with thousands of others would not be here today. Thank you for making the choice to give someone you may never meet, a chance at life.

You are welcome to join me tonight in raising a glass in celebration of my anniversary. May these three years be just a small part of the many years of happiness and good health to come!

Salut!

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September In Is Vogue!

If you haven’t heard then you’ve been stuck in the house knitting alone in the bedroom for far too long. Turn off the TV- trust me, your recordings of Glee and Doctor Who will be there when you get back. Now is the time to grab your girlfriends and gear up for an event that’s even better than the kids going back to school.

VK Live! In Los Angeles 2011

 
 
That’s Right! The show that took New York by storm is making its way to the other fabulous coast with plans to make the event ever bit as tantalizing as a shopping spree on Rodeo Drive!
 
Don’t believe me? How about a  Red Carpet Marketplace Champagne Preview hosted by Deborah Norville. Yes, you read that right. THE Deborah Norville, anchor of Inside Edition will host VIP registered attendees as they stroll, with drinks in hand, to get first dibs on all the good stuff an hour before the market opens to the general public.
 
You can also attend the Gala Dinner & Fashion Show  which will feature a talk with the master colorist that all color work knitters bow down to- Kaffe Fassett.
 
And treat yourself to the creme de la creme of classes offered by such celebrity names as Meg Swansen, Cookie A., Shannon Okey, Shirley Paden and Nicky Epstein – just to name a few.
 
If you need more convincing of why you should go, maybe you should take a peek at what you missed at the New York Show:
 
 

Ysolda The Sweet

Ysolda Teague

 

I just got finished reading Ysolda Teague’s interview in the book, “Brave New Knits”, by Julie Turjoman. Ysolda is one of those knitters that makes you daydream about living the life of a knitwear designer.

Her blog is filled with beautiful pictures, her patterns are a dream to knit, (like the Orchid Thief Shawlette that she contributed to the book), and everything she does just seems this side of adorable.

I first learned about Ysolda through a tweet from Cookie A. I follow Cookie A on Twitter and when I saw her mention Ysolda’s name I became curious. (Any knitter with a cool sounding name has got to be knitting some awesome stuff, right?)

I went to Ysolda’s site at www.ysolda.com and discovered just how warm, funny and charming she really is. My next stop was on Ravelry, where I found her amazing patterns. With each pattern more lovely than the next, I can see why Ysolda has such a great fan following.

When you get a chance, stop by her blog, http://ysolda.com/wordpress/  and read a few entries. Soon, you will feel like calling Ysolda up and inviting her over for tea and beautiful knitting.

I Got The Button!

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So last Thursday night I got to hang out at the Ravelry Happy Hour that happened at Stitches West.

Me, always the shy girl, stayed low-key and just enjoyed people watching.

I saw some familiar knitting celebrities such as  Cookie A.,  Adrienne and Kristine from a Verb for Keeping Warm and Jessica, Casey & Mary-Heather from Ravelry, of course.

I was super excited to finally get my hands on one of those cool Ravelry ‘Hello my name is’ buttons that I always see people wearing.

Even though there was a cash bar there, I talked myself out of the liquor line realizing there might be some raised eyebrows seeing someone with the name, Liver Chick, drinking a long island ice tea.

I did meet a couple of nice people and got to see a parade of wonderful shawls & sweaters that people wore to the event.

I wasn’t able to attend any classes or go shopping at the market, but for a couple of hours I got to feel a little less like a solitary knitter and more like a member of kick-ass knitting family.

Knitted Socks…My Form of Heroin

I’m online way too much for my own damn good. If I’m not in front of a computer, then I’m on my Android surfing the web. What am I doing online? Mostly, I’m checking out sock patterns and interviews with knitting designers.

Yes, my sock habit has now grown into an addiction. I am even seriously considering becoming a sock designer myself so that I can share my love for the forgotten art of  two straight needle sock knitting.

Am I crazy? Why, yes. But I was crazy before I started knitting socks, so that doesn’t count. Besides, some of the most interesting people in the world are crazy. Yet, I fear that my addiction may now leave all other knitting projects at the waste side.

Maybe it was sitting across from Cookie A at the  weekly Bobaknit sessions and watching her knit away at her socks that caused my downfall. I’m thinking one of those ridiculously tiny double-pointed needles that she works with must have stabbed me in the leg at some point and that’s how I became infected with the sock knitting disease. (At least that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.)

Sock knitting has now become the Bella to my Edward.

I’m telling you all this so as I make my way towards the deep end of the knitting pool for the eventual fall, you are my witness that I was of stable and sound mind and knew exactly what I was getting into.

(And yes- to answer the question already forming in your head- I will be posting pictures and patterns here of my sock designs.)

Sockupied- Is it worth it?

Since its release by Interweave late last year, the talk among many sock knitters is the eMag known as Sockupied. I’m on Interweave’s mailing list and remember the email announcement of this new eMag. Introduced as, ” the groundbreaking new way to knit socks”, Sockupied was launched as a new format that would change the way we knit socks. Well, I think that was a little over exaggerated. Basically Sockupied is a semi-interative knitting eMag. It has some great videos, helpful hints and tips and a few downloadable sock patterns. But the argument among knitters is not what Sockupied contains, but whether or not its contents are worth the $14.97 price tag.

Well, the true value of this eMag depends on how you feel about its contents. If you’re a stalker of Cookie A, then yes, her interview and sock pattern is well worth the price. If you must have in your possession every sock pattern that Ann Budd has ever made, then you have no choice but to buy this eMag. If you are always looking for the next great knitting hint and tip then this eMag is a must for you. If you are a snob nosed sock knitter who is always trying to one-up her knitting friends then you should already have Sockupied.

But, what is my personal opinion? I really don’t like magazines that I can’t physically hold, flip through and make notes in. But that didn’t stop me from seriously considering purchasing this eMag. However, it is hard for me to justify buying a sock knitting eMag for $14. 97 that only has about three downloadable sock patterns when I can purchase Ann Budd’s “Getting Started Sock Knitting”, for $12.24, “The Sock Knitter’s Workshop”, by Ewa Jostes and Stephanie van der Linden for $12.90, or “Sock Innovations”, for $15.61, on Amazon.com.

To me, there are just so many free forums, chat groups, online patterns and videos dedicated to sock knitting now that if Interweave wants to make an impact on the sock knitting community they are really going to have to pack more punch in their eMag to justify the cost in this economy.

To learn more about Sockupied or to place an order:

http://www.interweavestore.com/Knitting/eMags/Sockupied-Windows.html

My Secret Love Affair

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I have a confession to make. I am in love with another. All this year I have been having an affair behind my husband’s back. I have managed to keep it a secret until now. I feel that in order to be forgiven for my sins I must confess my wrong doings. So, here it is, the truth- I’m I love with hand knitted socks!

I can tell you exactly when this affair started. It was at the second meeting of the knitting group I attended. At the meeting I was introduced to Cookie, as in Cookie A., the sock goddess! (Yes, the knitting angels allowed me to knit in the presence of sock knitting royalty.) At the time I didn’t know who she was but from her conversation at the table I figured out she made money designing socks for us knitters. The idea of making money by knitting is still a strange concept for even a crafty chick like me. So I did what most curious girls with access to a computer would do- I Googled knittined socks. Oh, the eye candy that appeared on my screen was enough to make my knitting needles a bit horney.

Well after about an hour or so of sock knitting porn, I found a pattern for knitted socks on two straight needles and I’ve had an affair with them ever since. I recently joined a sock swap on Ravelry where I got my first pair of knitted socks all the way from Australia. I tell you, slipping those socks on my feet was something close to erotic. I loved the pattern, the feel of the yarn, the way they enveloped my feet in pure warmth. Honey, I’m telling you its enough to make you want to throw away every cheap sock you ever bought from Walmart.

So, there is my confession. I’ve been honest enough to air out my dirty laundry with you. Now it’s your turn. What knitting love affair are you in or have had in the past?

Monkeying Around

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Currently converting Cookie A.’s world famous Monkey sock into a two needle pattern.

My small swatching has yielded a wealth of information that will help me make this pattern and many others convertable to two-needle knitting.

And yes I will share my findings with all of you. I know my fellow two-needle knitters are just dying to get their hands on this pattern.