Posted by on Thursday, February 14th, 2008

I can’t drive on Valentine’s Day.  I’ve done it six times, and three of those times I’ve been in very bad car accidents.  I’m not a particularly superstitious person, but I can do basic math and those are horrible odds.  So I arranged to take today off.  I also arranged to have PT and my doctor-mandated allergy test Wednesday afternoon, thinking I could use today to recover from both–limping plus angry needle-marks all over one’s arms do not a good impression make, after all.  I woke up yesterday to learn that the ice storm we had the night before had frozen my car doors shut, so I ended up calling in sick rather than adding terrible ice-removal tasks to my extra-crappy commute and half day at work.  A morning of leisure to prep for my four hours of allergy tests and PT that afternoon seemed a good option.  Cue accidental mid-week break, complete with power outages, errands, bad roads, scratch and intradermal tests, and stability tests (though only for my leg–no one looked into my mental state).

Lo and behold, my immune system decided to switch it up on me.  When I was tested for allergies a few years ago, I tested positive for allergies to dust mites and dogs.  Yesterday, I learned I was no longer allergic to dogs, but was suddenly allergic to cats.  Now, I know dogs can be very very smart, and I’m sure Kayo and Scott have both used some amount of their mental prowess to entirely win me over to the dog side.  But such a drastic shift of allergies?  What the hell would cause that?  Are Yarrow and Speedwell really so different from Scath that their dander is poison to me when his wasn’t?  I’m so confused.

Apart from the running around, I’ve spent the last couple of days on a number of worthwhile projects.  Priority one: trying to help out our young pin oak, which was having a bad time with the ice.  Pin oaks hold their leaves through the winter, so suffer more than most deciduous trees in such  storms.

The whole tree was bent pretty dramatically towards the ground Wednesday morning, so I did some judicious ice-removal, while simultaneously convincing neighbors of my continuing insanity.  Thankfully the ice has melted and this young tree is standing up mostly straight again.

Priority two: prove I still knit.

This is the lace cardigan I’m making for the sake of a  beer label.   I asked Aes and Phalen to brew some heather ale, and they agreed, while encouraging me to perhaps grow hops and heather and also do a label shoot for them.  So I have to come up with a lovely outfit that seems to evoke heather, and maybe Scotland, and the like.  So, of course, greens and purples and knitted lace.  I need to speed up, I guess, since it’s not that long until heather season.  Though, being lace, the sweater is further along than it looks.  I’m using a free pattern from Elann, though I’m not using the second lace pattern for the sleeves, and I am going to make it longer than the original.  It’s worked from the top down with raglan shaping, so the alterations should be dead easy.

And Hedgerow Mitts:

(Ignore the bump over my wrist there–my friend Tara gave me a beautiful bracelet, and I can’t bring myself to take it off right now.)
I started off a second pair of Hedgerow socks in some lovely Fearless Fibers sockyarn I had on hand. But then thought it was silly to make another pair so similar to my first, noticed that I was going to have too few stitches, and accidentally designed some mitts.  It may be a special kind of laziness that makes a knitter design a new garment rather than start over upon realizing things aren’t working out.  The first mitt is finished, and the second one is humming along.  I really like how this stitch patterns feels as mitts–it is very stretchy, and reminds me of those arthritis-therapy gloves turned pretty.

Priority three: shop for books and eat great food with my Mom. Nuff said.

Priority four: cut big pieces of fabric into smaller pieces of fabric.  I’m trying to do more with red, because the red-loving people need bags too.

Priority five: Order flooring!  Tonight, we buy bamboo.  Lots and lots of bamboo.  I know some of you gals go for jewelry, flowers, and candy–and I certainly like all of those things–but this is the best V-Day plan ever.   We get to replace carpets that literally make me sick with environmentally-sound bamboo floors, thus increasing the value of the house and making dancing at home easier, while employing a dear friend to do the work, all the while financing the project with the settlement money from that terrible car accident Scott was in a few winters ago.  It’s like a home-improvement hat trick.

Please remind me I said that when we have to pack up everything we own so that the flooring can be installed, ok?

Filed in blather,gardening,knitting,sewing | 13 responses so far

13 Responses to “Valentine”

  1. Taraon 14 Feb 2008 at 5:35 pm 1

    Oh yay! I forgot, until now, that I didn’t get to see you open your xmas present–glad you like it (hope you liked the other too). Yay also for tree rescue (I heart all quercus species). Boo for pet allergies.

  2. Janeon 14 Feb 2008 at 5:43 pm 2

    1. Your dog is really a cat, and your cats are really dogs. Head games.
    2. You are very kind to trees. I like that.
    3. Hedgerow mitts are a brilliant idea! Yours are beautiful, too.
    4. I like red.
    5. Will pandas descend when you have bamboo floors, and are you allergic to pandas?

  3. raineon 14 Feb 2008 at 7:56 pm 3

    i hope you had a nice few days off. OK, today at least 🙂

    So jealous of the flooring. I dream of all wood floors someday. See, being allergic is good for something! We put cheap laminate in the basement, and I did get pretty good at it. Except around door jams.

    Evil evil door jams.

    Are you guys installing it yourselves? If so, couldn’t you pack up a room at a time? Or maybe you’re already doing that..

    anyway – happy no car accident day 🙂

  4. kon 14 Feb 2008 at 8:19 pm 4

    I have a copper bracelet that I can’t wear, because every time I’ve worn it, somebody has cut in front of my car, as if I wasn’t there. (Maybe I should try holding up a bank with it on, and see if it really makes me invisible.) And see, now you’re talking about red. Everybody complimented me on wearing red for valentine’s day, without thinking that I own two red cars, a red backpack, red boots, red jacket…. Maybe I should make that jacket in red?

  5. Rachelon 15 Feb 2008 at 8:51 pm 5

    Oh no, I like red, too! I love your mitts, and can totally identify with that special kind of laziness. And I love the sweater too. Freaky allergies. Mine are trying to kill me today. I owe you an email. Totally not keeping it all together right now. (Wow, so many disjointed thoughts here that I’m tempted to go back and number my sentences like Jane did.)

  6. Marthaon 16 Feb 2008 at 7:34 pm 6

    Sweet Lanea,
    Glad you played the odds & stayed safe on 2.14. We need & want you on the planet.
    Re the kitty allergies, maybe the cats have some good ideas ^ .. ^ Yikes, seriously, what a bummer.
    Like the fabric color – quite striking.
    And love the idea of bamboo flooring. We sell Bambu at my job place & it is just the most fabulous stuff.

  7. junoon 16 Feb 2008 at 11:06 pm 7

    I’m glad you respected fate and the odds and stayed home.
    Yay for floors. And hat tricks. I love it when a plan comes together.

  8. Jinannon 17 Feb 2008 at 1:16 pm 8

    In spite of your “midweek break”, you’ve really been busy! Love the sweater and fingerless mitts – gorgeous! Glad you stayed safe on Valentine’s Day!

    Hmmm… I need to go check and see what bamboo floors look like…..

  9. kon 18 Feb 2008 at 4:22 pm 9

    Don’t they make a pill for kitties to take so their mothers don’t have to consign them to the evil that is new homes?

  10. Manderon 18 Feb 2008 at 11:24 pm 10

    I refuse to drive on Labor Day for exactly the same reason… the odds are definitely not in my favor on that day. 😉

    Love the mitts, just gorgeous!

  11. Francesca (Stuntmother)on 19 Feb 2008 at 9:28 am 11

    Forces beyond our knowledge must be respected — glad you are well. ANd I love the hedgerow mitts…

    We put bamboo into our house a little while back. We packed up the entire downstairs and moved it upstairs. It’s not as bad as I thought it would be, which means it was bad, but I’m not dead yet. And I loved the floor with a passion bordering on the pathological, not least because of the effort involved in making it so beautiful. Good luck with yours.

  12. Lellaon 21 Feb 2008 at 6:58 pm 12

    All Holidays are hard on travelers, and Valentine’s Day is a very BIG holiday! Too many people dreaming away(or gnashing their teeth) in their cars = blindness! Can’t be good! Glad you respected the vibes and stayed home, and SAVED THAT TREE!

    Love the hedgerow pattern, and those mitts really show it off.

    I’ve got a picture, FINALLY, of the bag, taken outside because flash just tricks away the right color. I just adore it.

    Sorry about the miserable allergies. How terribly unfair allergies are! You should be able to pick your own, then you could pick something in Africa or something, but would have to stay away from Zoos.

  13. bibliotecariaon 22 Feb 2008 at 3:45 pm 13

    Allergies are strange; personally I impatiently await the day that the shots work enough that I can have a cat, or two, without suffering sinus headaches, like the dust mites give me now.

    And I yearn for bamboo flooring.

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