Thursday, October 6, 2011

Sleep And Energy / Coming To Life


Three nights on CPAP and I can honestly say that I'm feeling a lot better already. I don't go through the day feeling like a beached whale. I was actually awake yesterday morning 10 minutes before the alarm went off and I didn't hit the snooze button for an hour. Actually, I didn't hit the snooze button at all. I got up and did a load of laundry, played with the cats, fixed breakfast... Wow, what a difference!

I've even had DREAMS!!! Yes, I have not had dreams that I can remember in years. During my first sleep study, I didn't even reach REM sleep. Not fun. Oh, but now I guess I'll have to deal with nightmares too - now that was ever a problem before.

The sleep department at the hospital has a good program too. I was able to take 2 masks home with me to try. I can return and exchange at any time if I don't like them. One of them does kinda give me a fit. I'm laying in bed and then the air pressure ramps up and then the leaks around the seal start. Ugh.

This is the one I prefer:
The Two Little 'Buds' Are Called Pillows - They Go In Your Nostrils :)
Great Seal
This is the one I don't prefer:
I'm An Active Sleeper - It Doesn't Like That


Saturday, October 1, 2011

Good Intentions, I Do / Alive Again

Everyday at work, I tell myself that when I get home, I'm going to sley that reed, thread those heddles, start the weaving. And? When I do get home I'm often too tired to even think about it. I usually curl up on the sofa and watch a few episodes of Brothers & Sisters. I never saw any of the shows when it was airing on TV so I'm in catch-up mode with Netflix streaming. Then I fall asleep on the sofa and wake up a few hours later and drag myself up to bed. Not good.

There is something good that I recently found out though. I am tired a lot (even before these bad sleeping habits on the sofa). Way too much for someone of 45. I also have high blood pressure and didn't want to take medication for it. I wanted to get it down by cutting out sodium, eating healthier and getting good amounts of exercise. I started losing weight, and feeling good, but I was still tired a lot and the blood pressure was holding fast.

So I decided to check out other possibilities for my symptoms. Long story short - I found out that I have Sleep Apnea. Severe Sleep Apnea - a major factor with high blood pressure AND weight gain. Ugh.

Then I heard about the horrors of having to sleep with a mask on to force me to breath. And of waking up with marks on my face from the mask. I wasn't too worried about these things I heard though. I figured if it was going to help me then, so be it.

I just had no idea how much it would help. I did one of those sleep studies. That is how I confirmed that I had Sleep Apnea. The second time I had to do it, I slept with one of the masks on, attached to a machine. You know what? I was able to sleep with it on! Even better, I woke up the next day feeling refreshed and alert.

I saw the Dr. on Tuesday and he went over my sleep study results. Scary stuff. Really scary. I need a pretty high flow rate of air to keep me from snoring and having apneas. Apneas are when you stop breathing during sleep due to a number of reasons. My upper airway collapses when my body relaxes. So, basically, when I'm asleep, I'm suffocating. Way not good.

So, the great news is, on Monday, I go to pick up a CPAP machine (Continuous Positive Air Pressure). The machine will pump room air into a hose attached to a mask that's fitted to my face that will keep my airway open while I sleep - so I can breathe.

I'm really excited about it because I want to feel alive again!

I Think These Two Will Be Excited About It As Well!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Pumpkin or Blueberry?

How about both?
The Glaze Was A Little Runny

Pumpkin Blueberry Pound Cake - Right Out Of The Oven
I got this recipe from a fellow weaver who lives in upstate New York. Hilary, of Crazy As A Loom. I just found the recipe today and swore that I'd hit the store and get the ingredients that I didn't already have. And, I did!

Waiting For It To "Cool Completely" Before Topping With Glaze!
I'll post more pics once it's cool and has a coating of glaze.

Hilary was right. It's Yummy!
It's the next morning and the cake is cool and glazed.


Thank you, Hilary :)

A link to the recipe post is here.
A link to it's previous post with a tempting photo is here.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Strips and Stripes

…for a rag rug.

Easy Cuts With A Nice Sharp Blade
I’m finally able to work on the rag rug that will sit in front of the fireplace. I have my material all sewn together and cut into ½ inch strips - now it’s time to dress the loom. I have four colors for the warp and I think I will thread them in the following order:

DB = Dark Brown
GR = Green
MB = Med Brown
BL = Aqua

DB-4/GR-2/MB-6/BL-4 // DB-2/GR-6/MB-4/BL-2 // DB-6/GR-4/MB-2/BL-6


The Warp Colors
The way the different colors of material (5 colors/patterns) are sewn together, the length of  the repeat, and the overall width of the rug itself, should lend to a very interesting pattern when the rug is finished. Fingers crossed, fingers crossed!


On The Shuttles

Friday, September 2, 2011

The End of Summer Hibernation

May? It was May? Really?

My summer hibernation is coming to a halt. And what a mess I've made of the studio over the summer. Cleaning, cleaning - it won't be long...

But in the meantime, here is something new. Something else I love to do is cook. Here is some "Pain a l'Ancienne" - from "The Bread Baker's Apprentice - Mastering the Art of Extraordinary Bread" by Peter Reinhart.

Yummy!

A Very Wet Dough
Shaping / Stretching
These Look Happy
Another View
This Came Out Wonderful
With Butter and Jam

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Oops!

Red & White Bamboo
The original title was "Shawl In Red & White". But then months later, I realized that I had taken the photos and posted them here, but never hit the publish button. Oops!

But here it is. This was for a friend of Dr S.
20" wide x almost 72" long.

Nice!

The Recipient Was Very Happy
Now this weekend I'm off to the beach. And then we'll get back to this party. I have indigo seeds to plant, rugs to weave and then some...

Pattern Detail

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Crammed Heddles = Broken Warp Threads

Tencel Cross
Yi-kiddy yikes! I started threading heddles from the back of the loom - from the right hand side. There's a definite center mark where the heddles cannot cross. When I got to the center of the draft, there were still a lot of heddles that were on that side. I know I should have moved them, but, I didn't

I started threading from the center onwards to the left - leaving a jumble of heddles just to the right of the center line. Big, AWEsome, HUGE mistake!

What Was I Thinking?
Once I started weaving, the tencel thread rubbed against those heddles and snap! I usually start from the middle of my draft and thread in each direction so there is never this issue.

So, I wonder! What do you do when you're threading heddles? Do you count from the center out in both directions? Do you count the number of heddles you need on each shaft and move the extras out of the way?

Pattern Coming Into View

Now I'm going to unweave and rethread that side and start over.

When I see these two little munchkins asleep on the bed, it makes it all okay  :)

Maxwell and Fjola
That's My Little Girl! Fjola: Icelandic for Violet

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Nice And Clean

Material, All Sewn Together
So last night I set the sewing machine up - got it threaded, bobbin wound etc. Started playing.

I love it!  :)

I usually keep my eyes on Consumer Reports for a lot of my purchases. I prefer to purchase something that I know is going to be good quality. This sewing machine was a hot purchase from Overstock.com - it's a refurbished machine, but it looks like new. Just one little scratch on a plastic part - no big deal. I've had my eye on them for a bit and I finally decided to go with it. Recommended by Consumer Reports - and only $110.00 (instead of the reg new price of $400.00 ) - no brainer!

Nice Clean Line

Started piecing material together for my next rag rug AND the warp has been wound.

Colorful Warp

Look What I Got!

My very first. My very own. Sewing machine!

The Big Brother!

I guess it's sort of a self-bought birthday present. It arrived yesterday and 'the day' is today. Now I can get started on my next rug without having to borrow a machine or lug materials over to my parents, or my sisters house. I can do it right here, at home, when I want/need to. Feels good!

What Am I Going To Do
With 50 Stitches???

What's the magic b-day number?

45

Ugh   :-|

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

How It Flu

Who enjoys being sick? Well, sometimes, if you're able to stay home and get a few things done :) But other than that, if you're just home and can't do anything - what's the point? Get better fast!

I just got better from the flu - I guess. It hit me Friday evening like a brick on the head. And now it's Wednesday - my first day back in the office. I was able to do some work from home, thank God. But the feeling of being sick and achy and feverish and all. Ugh.

Glad I'm feeling better.

Gotta get back on the blogging track - not much has happened lately. Work is keeping me busy and by the time I get home in the evenings, I just want to relax.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Slowly Coming Together

New Shelving - nice!

I'm loving the shelving unit, but I want/need more shelves. I think 5 more should do it. They stained up nice and fast. One coat was enough.

Next, the light tan paint for the other walls - and then the closet doors.

Slow process, but it's processing.