Sunday, May 22, 2011

Kickin' Cancer to the Curb

You've heard me talk about my friend (my age, which you all know now is 40 years old, although I think she may still be 39), who is battling breast cancer. She has completed her treatments and is now on her way to a brand new life. A life, I might add, that she is not taking for granted, and one that she lives to the fullest.
Last night she had a fund raiser event for the Avon Breast Walk, in hopes of someday finding a cure for this horrible disease.
Breast cancer affects approximately 1 in 8 women in their lifetimes. My grandmother is a breast cancer survivor.
Part of my right to passage when I turned 40 years old, was to get my first mammogram. It was a bit scary, and a bit complicated, but I'm here to say that it's SO important to have it done yearly. Don't neglect your mammogram because you are scared (even if you have a valid concern, like a lump). There's always someone who will go with you to get your mammogram done. Don't neglect your mammogram due to cost. There's lots of free clinics out there that provide mammograms at no cost to women. And remember to check your breasts monthly. Know your own body! Let's kick breast cancer to the curb, not only for our generation, but for the next to come!

Stats - Hooter Hat (knit with the owl cable as the focal point).
Size 8 bamboo and addi turbo needles.
Yarn: Debbie Stoller's Bamboo Ewe - in Pink of course!
Pattern: Heavily modified form of a combination of hat patterns. Contact me if you want the exact formula I used.

Thursday, May 19, 2011


Milestones....I've reached a few in the past months while I've been away from the blog.
I've turned 40 years old. Just typing that number makes me cringe a bit. Saying that you are 30-something never bothered me in the least, but 40? It bothers me a bit. People start saying things to me, like, "Well you don't look like you're 40!" What exactly do they mean? People whose children play sports or sing in concerts with my children haven't turned 30 yet. This is amazing to me. It's not as if I feel any older with turning 40. For Pete's sake, it's only a couple of days over 39. But the mental stigma of turning 40 is throwing me for a loop, and I find myself questioning myself and my life more and more.
But then we move onto the next milestone that has me feeling older than....well....39 years old.
My oldest daughter is graduating from high school. This year, my "I'm not wearing a dress, or anything that doesn't involve pants and a t-shirt-type of gal, surprised the socks off of me (unfortunately, they weren't wool socks), and went not only to the homecoming dance (in a dress, no less), but also took a date, who was a friend of hers, to the Senior prom. Shocking. To celebrate this most momentous occasion....I thought she needed a knitted accessory. Now, in case you haven't been reading this blog long at all, you may realize that I'm not good at knitting deadlines. Work deadlines- no problem. Knitting ones....yikes. I'm almost always knitting something last minute on Christmas Eve. Well, this was different. My baby was going to the prom, she had a thin-strapped gown that though she loved, I could tell made her a little bit uncomfortable.

SO....after she decided that she wanted to participate in the prom, we went dress shopping. True to her form, she chose the first dress she had tried on. I should just listen to her when she says, "This is the one, Mom." Instead, we searched for a couple of hours,sighed way too much, and grouched a bit throughout the mall hallways. It all ended with, "I told you that was the one, Mom." So, we got the dress. I came home and dug through my pink yarn for the precious knitted accessory I was dreaming about. Now, lest you think I'm an organized knitter, and stash all of my pink yarn in one place.....I shall put you at ease. There's pink yarn (and yarn of any color) stored just about everywhere in my house. But fear, not! I suddenly remembered that I had bought some sale yarn (who doesn't love sale yarn) at a shop in Tennessee years ago (probably about 4 years ago), and decided it might be a perfect fit. It even had some silver in it (There was also silver in my daughter's dress - go ahead. Click on the photos, I'll wait - find the little circles of silver in the material?). It was not the softest yarn I've ever knit with, but by gosh and by golly, it did match her dress pretty well, and to its credit, it did soften just a smidge with washing.
Then came the horrible decision of what design to knit for my jeans-wearing, t-shirt-loving gal.....I searched my again, lest you think all of my patterns are in one place, rest assured, they are not. I searched and found this pretty butterfly tattoo shawl that I posed (graceful way of stating that I showed it to her without getting my hopes in an uproar) to her. She loved it.
So I gregariously began knitting her shawl. I finished it way before the prom, but neglected (as per my usual) to block it until the week of the prom. The night before the prom, it still felt damp on the blocking boards. I guess this isn't the time to tell you about the three shawls just waiting to be blocked in my living room closet? Nope, I didn't think so either.
Back to the prom....she wore the shawl (It had dried nicely on its own), as evidenced by the photos in this post, and I couldn't be more proud of my daughter, who has grown from a t-shirt-loving, jeans-wearing, black-sneakers-only, please, little girl, into a sweet young woman.
I'm totally smitten with her, as any mother would be. Even a 40 year old one!