My current work in progress:

Seaforth designed by Alice Starmore, knit in British Breeds 5-ply Guernsey Wool on US 3 needles.


Columbus Day

And I think the temperature today hit 90 degrees. Yikes. It’s supposed to be 92 tomorrow, but I hear that we’ll be cooling down quite a bit in time for Stitches.

It’s Columbus Day, which means that federal government workers had a day off from work. Rather than spend the day lying on the couch, eating bon-bons and watching soap operas I went and had all my pre-surgical tests and blood-work taking care of. Good times.

Aside: why is it that after drawing blood and taping a piece of gauze over the puncture in your skin, phlebotomists use an adhesive tape that rips half your skin off when you remove it later? Yow!

I would like to tell you that after that I was busy and industrious, but I did recline on the couch and passed out for a couple of hours. But no bon-bons.

I, of course started a new sock. I actually cast on for this sock Saturday night and worked on it on Sunday. I used Fleece Artist Somoko in the “Seafoam” colorway. Here’s what it looked like.

New Sock 100807

New Sock 100807

Notice how I’m talking in the past tense? Yeah, it is history. While I love the Somoko, it didn’t seem right for the sock. I pulled out some Cherry Tree Hill in a solid colorway (in this case pink) and started over.

Butterfly Sock 100807

Butterfly Sock 100807
Liking this much better I am. It is a bright pink, but looks more red in the photo. I’m calling this pattern “Butterfly Socks.”

Who is that in the background of the sock shot?

This guy:

Polar Bear 100807

Polar Bear 100807

He’s a prize I got by redeeming points with a popular beverage company that rhymes with “Yoke.” He had a little Santa hat on that had their name plastered over it, but I removed it. He looked a little embarrassed wearing it.

Here is how Lucy spent her Columbus Day.

Lucy 100807

Lucy 100807

Checking out the box that my polar bear came in. And of course, like this:

Lucy 100807a

Lucy 100807a


  1. How do cats do that with their necks!?! Yes, the east coast is supposed to get autumn weather round about Wednesday, hallelujiah. Enjoy Stitches!

  2. Being a federal employee, too, I ate some bon bons for you… I like your new sock…whether in pink or virtual red!

  3. The Bear’s head looks a little big to assist in sock modeling, but those paws could be a definite possibility!
    Stay cool.
    Our temps here in Wisconsin are supposed to drop 30 degrees over the next 24 hours. Fall at last.
    The box picture makes Lucy look like she’s entering a black hole…

  4. What’s the new bear’s name? Inquiring minds want to know!

  5. What is about cats and boxes? Puma and are are packing out; tomorrow they come to get our furniture and . . . . . boxes. Puma spent packout day hiding under the bed. She just came out, looked at all the boxes, and went back under the bed. I’d go hide too, but I wouldn’t fit under there!

  6. I think Lucy had the right idea! First you play, then you nap. What a perfectly lovely way to spend a day.

  7. As another Federal employee I also spent the day doing errands and knitting…after a brief visit to my LYS. Last night I realized that I had yet to knit a Christmas stocking for a friend’s soon-to-be newborn. I am using the same pattern as I did for her first child’s stocking but in different colorways. Good luck with the surgery!

  8. I like the new socks, but I could see me doing them in Halloweeny colors since they look like bats to me :)!(Maybe wishful thinking for fall?)

  9. If Lucy loves that box, you could try giving her am empty paper grocery bag. My cats find them so much fun and end up in a position like Lucy.

  10. Why is it that we get a day off, we have to do “grown up ” stuff?!! Lying aroung eating bon-bons would be much more fun! Today was my birthday & I had to buy my own cake! Bon-bons would have been appreciated!!!

    Love the sock. And I love that Fleece Artist colour–even if it didn’t work.

  11. Silly (as in somewhat moronic) question time.

    Do you use a program to create your sock designs ie: Excel or do you putter around with a yarn swatch until you come up with a pattern you like and want to use?

  12. I agree that the sock looks better in the CTH. I *love* the polar bear!

  13. Yikes 90 degress. It was 54 here. I’m lovin it. Love you new socks in CTH. Beautiful pattern, will it go to Sheri? Lucy reminds me of my cats,all 5. Arn’t they something else. Spoiled little fur balls. Have a great time at Stitches.

  14. Lucy is such a cutie. But you already know that. So, when is the trilobite pattern going to be available?

  15. Many good thoughts and prayers will go with you into surgery. I’ll be thinking of you.

  16. My husband has been going through quite an ordeal with phlebotomists as well. He found out that you can request paper tape, instead of plastic tape, and it doesn’t rip half your skin off. Actually, for one hospital stay, they put a wrist band on him that stated to only use the paper tape. Maybe you could keep that in mind for your surgery, before they tape all manner of things on you. I certainly wish you the very best.

    I’ve been biding my time with the Loopy Ewe, so that I can get all of my favourite Wendy Knits patterns in one go. I keep missing my chance!

  17. I had a physical on Thursday and I’m still bearing the battle scar of that tape! plus I seem to have developed an allergy to it – I feel you pain!

    You must drink a lot of “Yoke” Wendy…is the Diet Yoke or Classic Yoke? ๐Ÿ™‚

  18. Other than all that pre-surgery stuff, I spent my day much as you did: relaxing and knitting. Is Lucy all ready to take care of you?

  19. Mr. Polar Bear (who looks like a ‘Lyle’ to me) will be needing a fair isle, won’t he?

  20. I’m seconding Jennifer. You may be allergic to adhesive or sensitive to it. When I had my hip replacement, the skin came off with the dressing when they checked my stitches. I’d forgotten that I sometimes had that problem with band-aids and so didn’t mention it. Now my chart states allergic to adhesive and they’ll use something that doesn’t take the skin with it. You don’t need that added owie.

  21. If you want to rid yourself of pesky tape without a few layers of skin, rub over it with baby oil (any oil will do in a pinch). Let it soak for a moment and the tape should slide right off. Just a tip from an old nursing battle ax who’s done a lot of lab draws and injections.

  22. I agree with you – I definitely love the sock in the pink color, though the other yarn is so pretty I can’t wait to see what you make with it! Lucy’s just the cutest thing, too… Good to see she’s enjoying Columbus Day!

  23. I spent part of the day getting a mammogram — and you think you had good times! I contend that if we can put men on the moon, we ought to be able to come up with better ways to do these things.

  24. Since you don’t like that horrible tape, and you are having surgery….did you know that there is a kind of goop/saturated wipe specifically designed to rub on the tape and make it come off easily and without damaging your skin.

    I don’t remember what it is called, and it can be hard to find, but a large medical supply place should be able to find you some, there are several brands available. Given what the tape did to a relative’s back, I try to tell everyone about this stuff, as a public service!

  25. Re: phlebotomists and tape

    I hate the plastic tape, and I never use it. With the exception of certain patients who…well, whose behavior warrants the plastic tape. My best advice is to either soak it off with baby oil like someone said in an earlier comment, or simply hold on to the gauze with pressure yourself and ask that they not put any tape on at all. In that case, just make sure you hold decent pressure on the puncture site for at least a couple of minutes.

  26. Theresa in Italy says:

    Is having a polar bear in the house any help at all in coping with the heat wave?

    Glad to hear it’s supposed to cool down—we are also enduring temperatures way above normal for October.

  27. I love that new sock pattern!! Will it, like the others, be available for sale? I’ve really been enjoying seeing all of your new socks this summer.

  28. It was Thanksgiving up here yesterday, and trust me when I say that I ate more than enough candy for the both of us!

    Is that a Wendy Knits! mouse pad you have there?!

  29. Other than the napping, it doesn’t sound like you had a fun Columbus Day. I’ll be at Stitches and will keep an eye out for you. I wanted to thank you for making the Hearts for Heidi pattern available. A friend (named Heidi) was diagnosed with breast cancer right about the same time you started working on them. She’ll definitely be getting a pair of those socks!

  30. You were totally right to go with the solid color for the sock. Neither the pattern nor the yarn was being shown to best advantage.

    Someone has already said ask for paper tape. From my experience, I’d say definitely.

    Also, when they slap on a cotton ball and tape and imply it has to stay there for 4 hours or whatever – bullhockey. Check on it, and if it’s not oozing, get rid of the tape, whatever it is.

    Took me a while to figure out that regular band aid adhesive and my inner elbow, and most of the tape adhesives that medical offices use, don’t get along. If I don’t take it off, I can have the imprint of a band aid in my elbow for a week or more. But this also varies by the part of the anatomy involved. There’s a reason that hair color tells you to test in the crook of your elbow. A band aid on one of my fingers is fine. Inside my elbow, NOT!

    Some people also do OK with what they refer to as ‘silk tape’. And the clear stuff they stick over IV lines (Tegaderm in some cases, or some similar product) is usually OK.

    And of course Lucy was in the box. What else is a box for?

  31. Just wondering if you are still “poo-free”?

    I’ve started, and have been “poo-free” for 5 weeks, butevery so often, after a long, sweaty day, my hair feels dirty. I go to sleepand ignore it until the morning, then “wash” as normal, and all is good.

    I’m just looking for comments on 6 months of use (I Think that’s whaty you are quickly approaching).

  32. I had a nurse refer to the tape removal as a “complimentary wax.”

  33. For once I am happy that I am not out east for Autumn. I miss it but here in Montana it’s nice and cool- Definitely fall temperatures! All my friends are complaining about the heat and I’m just like “Yay I’m not there to deal with it”

    Pretty Pretty socks. I’m actually not knitting socks right now (!!!) I’ve got a pair of fair isle mittens on the needles. Actually, not for long. I’m doing the thumb of the last mitten right now, then it’s back to a pair of socks & a baby surprise jacket.

    But still.

    Also- I had to work on Columbus day ๐Ÿ™ But I have to work on pretty much every holiday that happens to fall on my normal work schedule (I work at a 24/7 call center) so I guess I’m used to it.

  34. Many, many, many thanks for sharing the Earth shoes with us! I have many back issues and they have helped tremendously! May the knitting gods bless you with abundance!
    Denise and the Six-Pack + 1

  35. Ah, finally the cool breeze of autumn. Like the others, I have taken to requesting the paper tape – no adhesive residue. Now if only I could request no bruising :).
    Best of luck with your upcoming surgery. My dad’s past his surgery and can happily bike again (based on your description, I’m guessing you’re getting the same kind).

  36. The stitch pattern shows up much better in the pink sock. Very pretty.

    Every cat needs a box with flaps and s small scratchy thing on the outside to try to get while inside the box.

  37. I second the recommendation for paper tape. I’m allergic to some of the adhesives used in the tapes, and find that the paper tape doesn’t leave a nasty red inflamed place on my arm.

    And as a veteran of many phlebotomies, I was thrilled when my local blood bank went to using that sticks-to-itself gauze that the vet uses. No sticky on your arm and you get to sport a nice bright color so that everyone can admire your bravery!

    Healing thoughts for your surgery.

  38. Cherry Tree Hill Mmmmmmm ๐Ÿ™‚
    What a wonderfully considerate present for Lucy, I bet the yoke box kept her amused all day!
    Was it Caffeine free Yoke or Cherry Yoke….

  39. I love seeing your Lucy. I also have a sealpoint Ragdoll – I never heard of a Ragdoll Kitty until I got mine and the Vet told me what she was. I love her and she is beautiful. Her face is not fully dark – she looks like a raccoon. But otherwise she looks like Lucy. Her name is Sophie and I also have her sister who is all chocolate brown/black and her name is Molly. The are wonderful cats who are now 17 months old. I got them when they were only 7 weeks. Oh – I also am a knitter and enjoy your blog very much.

  40. Speaking as a lab tech, it is not generally the goal to hurt folks. We only use “paper tape” at my hospital, and advise folks to take it off after 10-15 minutes. It’s just there until your wound makes a nice firm clot so you don’t go leaking down the hallway. You can always ask for no tape, in which case you are responsible for holding gauze over the site until you clot.

    Remember, you are a customer as well as a patient, and should have nothing done to you that you don’t want or don’t understand. Speak up, and ask why, and why not. Don’t let the medical staff bully you, before, during, or after your surgery. It’s your body, darn it. Ahem… I’ll get down off that soapbox now. Good wishes for your surgery.

  41. I hope you keep that bear dressed in appropriate knitwear all year round. Winter is easy — hats, mufflers, mitts, sweaters, although preferably not all at the same time — but for summer perhaps a knit bikini? The bear (he? she?) is probably the only creature on earth that could wear one ๐Ÿ˜‰

  42. Cute bear. He looks very snuggly and huggable, especially when you want something to hug when you hurt.

    The phlebotomists I visit and the Red Cross chapter here use Coban ( wrapping to hold the gauze in place. I’m allergic to most tape adhesives (the silk one doesn’t make me react) so when they use Coban I’m a happy camper.