Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Being the Patient

Last week I went though surgery on my toe to fix an ingrown toenail.  The procedure that was done was called the Vandenbos Procedure.  In the past 6 days of healing I have discovered something about myself: I may make a good nurse, but being the patient is really not my thing.  I believe that this has something to do with my nursing background.  At work, we spend our time hoping for the best outcomes for our patients, but also planning for the worst - we need to be prepared.  Over the past days I have found it very, very easy to fall into the "planning for the worst" rut.  I have incorrectly thought that I've sustained almost every negative outcome that could come from this procedure (from sepsis to necrosis).

This process has so far been a revelation for me.  I truly did not realize how hard being a patient is.  In school we have been taught about the negative effects being ill or postoperative or in pain has on the patients' state of mind - but until I was put into the patient position, I never really understood.  I also have realized that worrying about the worst case scenario is not helping me heal one bit.  I have decided that I need to take a step back and let my doctor worry about the worst case scenario and take on a more hopeful view of things - afterall, think of all the beautiful shoes and sandals I will be able to wear this summer once I am fully healed...

Thursday, 6 February 2014

Top Five Gift Ideas for the Man in Your Life

Since Valentines Day is coming up quickly - and since my house seems to be the place where projects go to die lately - I decided to round up my (technically Brett's) best gift ideas for the man in your life.  These gifts range in price from $23 to $200, so there is something for everyone's budget!  If you are like me, then buying gifts for men is not at all easy so I hope this can help.

1.  You can find this Ralph Lauren decanter here.
2.  For these Villeroy & Bach old fashioned drinking glasses, go here.
3.  These cuff links are great for a car lover, but metalsmiths has a huge selection of all different kinds of novelty cuff links.  To see more, go here.
4.  For the technology loving guy in your life, an iPad case would be nice.  There is a huge selection on etsy - you can find this one here.
5.  A nice pocket knife is a staple item for most men (particularly my farmer husband).  Again, etsy has a huge selection.  You can find this one here.

Tuesday, 4 February 2014

How to Cable Stitch

Hello!  We will be using this cable stitch for an upcoming scarf tutorial.  So, like I did with the back and front post double crochet tutorial, I am going to preface the scarf tutorial with a simple how-to for the cable knit stitch.

As you can see in the above picture, each of the two cables twist a different direction (the top cable twists to the left and the bottom twists to the right).  To change the direction of your cable is very easy, as the two techniques are almost exactly the same.

To start a cable you cast on the amount of stitches you need to make your project the appropriate width.  The cable is done on a knit section that is flanked by a purl section on each side.  For example, the above is done with the following sequence: K5 P3 K4 P4 K4 P3 K5.  The cable is done on the K4 sections.  You will have a certain amount of normal rows between the row that you work the cable into.  I did 5 normal rows of K5 P3 K4 P4 K4 P3 K5, then on the 6th row I worked my cable into the K4 sections.

What you need:
Any yarn you like
Appropriate needles for your chosen yarn
A cable stitch holder (mine is like a short double pointed needle with a little "v" in the middle)

Details of working the cable:

Essentially, to work the cable you simply slide the first 2 stitches of the K4 section onto your cable stitch holder (step 1).  Then you put the holder the the front (for twist right) or to the back (for twist left) and knit the last 2 stitches of the K4 section as normal (steps 3 and 3).  Then you go back to your 2 stitches on the cable stitch holder and knit those (step 4).

I hope this tutorial wasn't too confusing.  If you have any questions, please put them into the comments section for this post and I will be sure to answer them promptly.  Also, if you'd like me to post a video of this stitch, let me know!  I love knitting with a cable stitch because it allows me to measure my progress easier and it is a pretty easy way to make your project look fancier than it normally would.