Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Out of focus

Yesterday was largely lost. I couldn't read, I couldn't knit....I couldn't see. Yesterday was my eye exam. Several months ago I saw the dermatologist, a follow-up appointment to check for any new bits of melanoma needing attention. He very seriously informed me that I absolutely had to have my eyes checked, they had to be dilated and the optometrist needed to look for melanoma on my retinas. Swell, thought I, that's just what I need, melanoma on my eyes. So yesterday I trotted off to the eye doctor and did that very thing. Now the thing I remembered most about this dilation thing is that your eyes are very light sensitive afterward....I went prepared with my sunglasses. What I didn't remember and what left me useless for the rest of the day, was that the solution that causes your eyes to dilate, also paralyzes your focusing muscles. SO, not only are you squinting, everything looks like it's underwater. You can see, for the most part, but try as you might, you just can't bring things into focus.....it was so frustrating. Knitting....not happening; reading....are you joking? The up side of this was that the very kind and good looking doctor got a really good look around and everything is healthy. I left the office with a new eyeglass prescription in hand and instructions to return in a year. Oh boy, am I looking forward to that. On the way home (yes, I took myself home, dumb*** me), I stopped at the fabric store for buttons for the cardie (dumb***) and chose little creamy half round buttons. I figured once I was there, I was GOING to leave the store with the buttons if it killed me (dumb***). They match okay, but I'm not sure they will be permanent. I forgot to buy backing buttons, so I'll have to make another trip before I can sew them on. As a reward, I treated myself to Vogue Knitting on the way out. The rest of the day was a wash, mostly spent on the sofa with my eyes closed. Because this is a knitting blog, for the most part, here's what I was knitting on yesterday, while I could still see. I'm calling it my stash scarf. The idea is this, you choose a few different yarns, in this case 3, and all ya do is knit. With color 1 knit a row, cut the yarn, turn the work and pick up color 2. Knit the row, cut the yarn, turn the work and pick up color 3. Same thing. You stop knitting when you run out of yarn or you think the scarf is wide enough, since it is knit lengthwise. The loose ends are turned into fringe when you're done. Easy Peasy. And now for New Word Wednesday. Today's word(s) is vade mecum which is a noun that means 1. a book for ready reference: manual 2. something regularly carried about by a person. I think it's fair to say that knitting has become for me my vade mecum. I rarely leave home without something to knit, usually something small that tucks nicely into my purse. For my husband, it's a backpack, stuffed with papers, textbooks, journal article. This used to bug the daylights out of me.....we'd go off to the store or somewhere and along came the backpack. He'd say, "you never know when you'll get stuck somewhere and wish you had something to do." He's right....and so he takes the "security backpack" and I take some knitting. We each have a vade mecum. What's yours???? This also brings up the topic of knitting reference material, is there such a thing as too many knitting references??? I think not, but just for fun, I'll tell you a couple of my favorites. The first knitting book I ever bought was Knitting Without Tears by Elizabeth Zimmermann, indispensable wisdom and technique presented with wit and humor galore. A must have, if you ask me. Another is Debbie Stoller's Stitch 'n Bitch, which is just chock full of good directions. Even though I've been knitting for a little while now, I still refer to this book for different ways to do things. And now I really must get going, it's a big day here......I am going to be teaching someone to knit! Yes indeedy, someone actually asked me to teach them to knit! Wish me luck.

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