Crazy as a Loom

Saturday, November 30, 2013

I'm back.

I'm ok, honest. 
I guess I have been pretty quiet here lately.   I haven't had much to say.   Amazing, right???
Sometimes it's just that way.  

What's that phrase............"you act like you've lost your best friend?"
Sometimes life  leaves  you feeling  that way.

I've been keeping busy.  Weaving on the towels on my AVL......loving the pattern, and especially loving it with this variegated blue 8/2 I found in my stash.

I've been taking Roy for frosty, early morning walks.

At home, I've been sewing socks together, for rugs.

I have had some awful headache days, when there are storms.  But on clear days, my headache has been pretty doable.  And you know I will always take that.
I have books from the library, lined up, and I'm sitting in front of the fire reading them whenever I can, escaping to other worlds.

I recently read........We Are Water, by Wally Lamb......very good.  And one that surprised me........The Enchanted Life of Adam Hope, by Rhonda Riley.  I highly recommend both of them.

The cats are all fine.  Next still resists coming in.  He has his solar house, and a heated bed in the barn, and another bed on the porch.  Every time I bring him in, he cries and cries, and is not happy until he's outside again.

Miss Puss says:  he's stupid.

I think that's a bit harsh, don't you???

This little girl brings smiles no matter what the weather.

Love for my family puts it all in perspective.

Thanks for worrying about me!!!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

I want to be Stella

You know Stella right????   

I listened to myself telling you how I was not on top of my game.  When I woke up this morning, I decided I needed to work on this.
I need to get my groove back.  No matter what.

After taking Roy for his morning constitutional, I headed to the studio.

 When the cats were all fed, and the stove was roaring, I started to take the studio back.
Not that it has been taken away from me, but the last two years have been a struggle.   I haven't been
pulling my weight, and the only reason the business has stayed open has been because of LOIS, pure and simple.
I couldn't have a better helper or friend.

But she can only do so much, and the place is looking rough.

So first, I cleaned the kitchen counter, it is always the FIRST sign of pandemonium.

Then I cleaned the stove and  the toast and tea center.

Then I moved into the living room and cleaned up my "winding station", and put away the 50 cones of thread I had stacked about.

Then I cleaned all around the AVL which has been pretty much the only loom that I can comfortably work on.

THEN..........I cleaned my desk, and had lunch on it.

And  a lovely lunch it was.

Finally, feeling that I had actually made a DENT, I did a little weaving.
I find this pattern mesmerizing, and I love trying it out in different colors.

I know that I haven't been "perfect" at anything these last two years.

YOU who have FOLLOWED my journey here, know that it has been somewhat difficult.  I am in no way looking for sympathy.  I have had a good life, and if it ended tomorrow, I would still not need sympathy.  But I do need family and friends to understand where I've been and where I am today.
Mostly, they do.

Two years ago, in June, my dog died.  Poor Eddie, I found him in the pool.   Yes, he was 14, blind and deaf to boot.  But the trauma of it was gut wrenching.  That seemed to be the start of a whole lot of bad luck.
So 6 weeks later, I fell and hit my head.  The infamous "head meets rock" story.  After 5 hours in the ER, I went home thinking that I had actually gotten away with it.

Two weeks later, DH had a stroke, which came with its own recovery issues.

Soon after, the damage done to my head became evident, when the headaches came and took over my life.
This was followed by a year of doctors and tests, medicines and injections, pain and more pain, no end in sight.
Finally, August 2012, first surgery, followed by months of recovery, March 2013, second surgery, more recovery, October 2013, third surgery.
All this while my mother, who lived with me, declined in health, became more difficult to care for, couldn't be left alone, and eventually died.
And not to forget the ray of pure sunshine that came with Baby Dale, a few days before my mother passed away on September  22nd.

So yes, you could say that the last two years have been stressful, and just plain hard at times.

There have been many days when I ended up on the couch with Roy and my slamming head, wondering if this was what the rest of my life would look like.  I have been depressed, discouraged, disheartened.  Overwhelmed.  Both sad and angry.
Then I would kick myself in the a**, get myself up and out the door.  I would dig down deep and find hopefulness, and I would become determined to take my life back.  I forced myself to work when I could, walk the dog, act "as if" my life were normal, even though it was far from normal.

 I have been distracted, and not my usual self, for a long time now.   Too long.

It is SO TIME to get my groove back.

Friday, November 22, 2013

From the top

       I am always saying that I should do this, or I should do that.  I am guilty of putting off things that I want to do, for one reason or another.

I have several friends who live varying distances away from me.  I am intent on visiting them in the near future. In fact, I am making a promise to myself that it will happen.

 This week I took a day and drove 3 hours to see one of them. 

Even though I haven't seen her in probably 20 years, it felt like I had just seen her last week.
We picked up right where we left off.

This is the view from her front door.  That is the Connecticut River.

With my zoom lens. 
Not much sun, but it was still beautiful.

As I get older, I think more about old friends.  Is that true for everyone?  

I know I haven't been very good about blogging lately.
I apologize.
I have been doing a lot of thinking, re-evaluating, questioning my direction.  I'm at some new crossroads, one I don't entirely feel comfortable with quite yet. 
Consequently, I don't have much to say.
I'm speechless.  
Hard to believe I know.

I'm taking naps, long walks, keeping my life as simple as possible.
Trying not to get upset about things that I cannot change.

I still feel off balance, not on top of my game.
It's a strange feeling, one I am not used to.

So pleasing  myself with a visit to an old friend is just what the doctor ordered.

This is the view from behind her house........where we went for a walk.
It was stunning.

A new perspective is always a good thing.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Into the weekend.

I had another cat at the studio yesterday.    This one didn't shed.

It was a good day at the studio.
Time for reflection. 
Settling in.
Being grateful for all of it.
Knowing that acceptance is still the answer to all my problems today, as it has always been.

 Then we took Roy for a walk.  The weather has been just beautiful the last couple of days

 Roy will drink from the river, but notice that he won't get his feet wet.
That is out of the question.
 The sunlight was lovely.  I needed it.  I am still somewhat in shock after last Sunday.

 I have continued to feel better all week.
It has been such a gift, that I have refused to let anything get me down.  Hopefulness sustains me, after two years of tough going.

I just put a bunch more dish towels on my web site, and found a new pattern that I LOVE.
What do you think?  Is it a keeper???

 I will weave it in several colors, and eventually I will anticipate every shed.
In a totally zen kind of way.

 For the first time in a long time, I am looking ahead.
Staying in today, but with a lovely anticipation for the future.

 It doesn't have to be complicated. 
It really doesn't.

Friday, November 15, 2013


Not blogging as much as I used to.  I feel lots of the time like I'm in a brain fog.  That would usually upset me, but I'm going with it.
I have to tell you about my "healing" experience.  I've been holding on blogging about it, didn't want to jinx myself.

Last weekend, I had the opportunity to meet with  Brant Secunda  (scroll down the page on this link)
for a healing.  Miss Skeptical here decided to throw fate to the winds.  I figured that he had as much chance of fixing my head as two neurosurgeons with hammers and a drill, who pretty much admit that they are clueless in my situation.

It was nothing like I expected.  The warmth and love and goodness in the room were palpable.
The actual process didn't take long.
My daughter and I went together, and when we walked out........there should  be a drum roll RIGHT I went to get in the car to drive to the main lodge, I realized that I did not have a headache.  For the first time in two years.   I tearfully turned to my daughter, and asked her what I realize now was a pretty comical question: "Where the hell did my headache go?"
I shook my head.  It was still gone.

Do you know, or can you imagine, what it felt like to be without my horrible companion of two years?  I have become so accustomed to it, in all of its variations, but mostly its CONSTANCY, that suddenly I felt lightheaded, and a little confused.
My headache stayed gone for an hour.  We went and had a lovely buffet lunch with the group, before we left for home.  It was heaven, I tell you.  A simple lunch with good people, and NO HEADACHE.
I can't even begin to describe how I felt.
Hopeful.  Free.  New.  A little unbalanced, in a good way.
When my headache came back, so gradually that I hardly noticed it, it was dull for the rest of the day.
I was ok with that.
It was still a relief, especially since I had driven the two hours down there with a smasher, asking myself if I was crazy or what, not staying home on the couch.

The next day, I woke to find that someone must have hit me across the face with the proverbial 2x4.
It was an awful day, and I DID stay on the couch with Roy.
Brant relayed that it would get worse before it got better, that he was still working on it for 5 days.
Be patient.  Wait.

I am not a hysterical kind of person.  My kids refer to me as Inspector Gadget, because I always get to the bottom of any mystery.
Not this time.
I don't understand it.  But more than that,  I don't care.  I'll take it.

Today has been 5 days, and for whatever crazy reason, my head is better.  Not perfect, but better.
I have had a whole day of a TWO.  And then mostly THREE.  No off the chart days since Monday.
I am tentatively impressed.
Who wouldn't be?

And I can't ignore one clear and simple fact.   FOR ONE HOUR, I did not have a headache, for the first time since October 2011.  I don't know what happened, but it is clear even to a doubter like me, that SOMETHING HAPPENED.

So today, I am going to enjoy my 8 year old granddaughter.  I don't get enough chances to do that.  Lots of times, I haven't felt good enough to do that.  She has no school, and her kitchen was accidentally destroyed by fire yesterday,  so she needs a quiet, no stress day with her Mimi.
And that's what matters.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

All the news that is news.

I think we should call this one "Black Jack".........although we don't really know if it's a Jack or a Jackie........either way, Next does NOT want this intruder near his dish.
So poor Jack has to eat out in the driveway.

And we're guessing that, while not exactly feral, he has reason to be afraid of people in general, cause he runs if it even appears that you are coming outside.

But Black Jack has ideas of his own, and we've seen this before.  It was exactly how Nuff started out.  They did the posturing, they fought, they tolerated, and then they became buddies.
I hope that it happens this way again, so Next won't be alone outside.  I have tried to bring him in, and he really doesn't want to be there.  

Next just really wants to make it clear......I AM the boss, this is MY place.
If you agree, then there's food and water, and a couple nice places to sleep.
A solar house, too.

 I had a BAD week last week, right through yesterday.

 But I am doing a Scarlett O'Hara impression, refusing to think about it.

On the studio front, Crazy as a Loom is still in business, in spite of my dual role as a SLUG.

The fall delivery of socks and loopers is all packed away in the barn.  The yard is cleaned and looking GOOD.  (thanks, Claire)

I am keeping a schedule that should embarrass me, but doesn't, not really.
I get there, I do some stuff, just nothing like I used to.
Times have changed.
Trying to find my new normal.
And occasionally, I weave.
Have mercy.
Thank goodness for 75 yards of warp that will keep me busy for quite a while. 
And tomorrow,  time for a visit to that sweet girl, and her Mommy, who is also a sweet girl.

Here she is in a sweater that her Mimi (that's me) made her.
Heart be still.

Friday, November 8, 2013


How times change. It used to be that I would pop up every morning, take Roy for a walk, and head to the studio.....and that was just the beginning of my day.
NOW, if I can do those two things, I feel that I have climbed a small mountain.  Anything after that is all good.
 It's ok.  I'm adjusting.   I really am.  I am a little shocked that I am, but I am.

Here's a ray of light.   Baby Dale, our little princess.

 Talk about perspective.

I have spent more time on my couch in the last two years, than I ever have in my entire life.
While it may sound strange, it has taught me more about myself than I would ever have imagined.
Roy, however, had it down from the get go.

Vicky over at WestraWorld has "choose joy" on her sidebar.  She talks about that decision a lot, as she walks the path she's on, and it's often a tough one.
I admire her more than I can say.  She inspires me.

I choose JOY, too.

And btw, TOMORROW is Lois' birthday........I'm not saying how old she is, but I know she'd love to hear from you all.

Happy Birthday, L!!!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Checking in.

Just a few photos and a hello.  I know you've all been wondering where I've been.

Whoever said recovery from surgery on your head was easy?
The Alleve that the doctors put me on twice a day, to inhibit bone growth, started to have some nasty side effects.  So I emailed my doctor, and he told me to stop it.  So I did.
About a day and a half later, I felt like someone had hit me in the forehead with a baseball bat, complete with nausea.  
At first, of course, I thought the worst.  I worried. Here we go again.

Then my daughter suggested that maybe I was having a 'rebound' headache from taking the Alleve twice a day for 3 and a half weeks.

The overuse or misuse of pain relievers -- exceeding labeling instructions (such as taking the drug three or more days per week) or not following your doctor's advice -- can cause you to "rebound" into another headache.
When the pain medication wears off, you may experience a withdrawal reaction, prompting you to take more medication, which only leads to another headache and the desire to take more medication. And so the cycle continues until you start to suffer from chronic daily headaches with more severe headache pain and more frequent headaches.
Pain reliever overuse appears to interfere with the brain centers that regulate the flow of pain messages to the nerves, worsening headache pain.

The next 48 hours were horrific.  Not just a headache, but a sick headache.  Oh, joy.

But I think it is letting up at last, and I think she was spot on.  Just what I needed, right?

I feel pretty much like a slug.....getting just about nothing done.   I have managed to keep Roy walking though.

The weather has been crazy, cold then wet, then warm, then windy.
With occasional sunshine.

 Poor Lois has been holding the fort.  
With not much help from me.

I am hoping this passes quickly, and I can get back to my "old" headache.
There's nothing like the devil you know.

 I read a story today about a young man who fell out of a tree stand, while he was hunting.
He crushed C3,4,5, and was paralyzed from the neck down, on a ventilator.
They extubated him so he could answer their question:  do you want to be on life support, or not.
He didn't.
They left him off the machine, and he died several hours later, with 75 family members and friends in the room, singing to him.

One thing that I have always been terrified of, is being paralyzed.  I would also choose the alternative.

I am glad they gave him the choice, and didn't try to make it for him.
I'm done letting people "inside my head", for real.

This is going to be a table runner, it is much thicker than the towels.

 Here are four more towels off the AVL.  Red.


  Still doing a day at a time.
Dreaming of better days to come.  
Welcome to my world.

Because every thread counts

Because every thread counts