Friday, October 27, 2006

Knitterly generosity, circulate!, and celebrity spottings

I will always be amazed at the generosity and kindness of spirit so often found in our international knitting community. Last week, I posted a message to the KnitList that I was considering using Panache for toddler hats and mittens. I wanted something buttery soft for them, because I don't want my fellows growing up into men who hate wool and don't appreciate knitting. (I am so afraid of this that my boys get more say in what I knit for them than most tots probably do.)

Several people responded with helpful comments, but one lady, Kathleen, did one better. She personally emailed me with the offer of a sample. She had used it for a sweater, and had some left over. I was floored that she would just offer this out of the blue to a stranger (not that it's so expensive, but I mean, this meant that she not only had to find it in her stash, but she also had to package it, write out an address lable, drive over to the post office and spend $4.05 in postage for someone she's never met). Amazing. Not only that, but she actually got it in the mail that day or the next, and I got it two days ago. There's so much in the sample that my swatch might actually end up being some sort of a Panta, although I think I remember swearing to myself I'd never knit one of those...
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The Regia silk is what I picked up at the LYS yesterday (I suppose that it has a few things that I'm interested in) =) These are destined to be Christmas socks for my mom. I know what pattern already, but I can't remember the name. It's from Fall Vogue Knitting. I'll post more when I cast on.

The following I've included for the sake of all the pregnant (and pregnant hopefuls) out there. I think there's several billion in our knitting community at the moment (have you taken a look around blog-land lately?) This is a topic that is so important, and from what I understand, nutrition is badly misunderstood or people are just sorely underinformed by their caretakers. (I could go into the whole "you are your own caretaker thing", but the following is a bit long, so I'll spare you)

(Oh, another aside before I get started: if you have no interest whatsoever in what I'm about to say, skip down to the last paragraph, because there's something that may be more interesting to you there there.)

For my last two pregnancies, I was very careful about removing refined sugar from my diet. At my prenatal visits, my birth assistant had told me that especially because my mom has had trouble with varicose veins in her legs (from pregnancies), that I needed to be very careful about staying away from white sugar. She explained that when refined sugar (white or brown) hits the system, it causes the walls of the veins and arteries to thin, which can allow the blood to pool and parts of the veins to bulge out. This ends up as varicose veins. For pregnant people this is especially a possibility because of the huge weight of the uterus and the 200% increase in blood, which often makes circulation sluggish anyway, particularly in the legs.

There was one time when I was pregnant with Max that I finally broke down at one point (maybe 7 months pregnant or something), and went to Duncan Donuts. I'm pretty sure I only had one doughnut, but within an hour I could hardly walk. My legs were throbbing with pain. I put them up, put ice on them, a hot water bottle, but nothing helped. Finally I called my birthing assistant, and she told me to take 1 Cayenne capsule, 2 Yellow Dock Root, and 2 Vari-Gone (a Horse Chestnut Seed blend for vascular health by Nature's Sunshine) either every meal or once every two hours -- can't remember -- for 3 or 4 days. My digestive system hated it, but within the first day the pain had subsided, and by the end of the week there was no pain left at all. I didn't eat any more doughnuts until the day after Max was born.

It's interesting though, how memories can quickly fade. With Sparky, I stayed off of sugar from when she gave me this information at about 2 months, and followed through for my entire pregnancy. With Max, I cheated through the first trimester, then got into gear for the second, jumped off the bandwagon for that doughnut, then finished out the pregnancy sugarless. With this baby...well, let's just say that up until today, there has been no bandwagon. Doughnuts? I'll have half. Cookies? I'll try Sparky's. Frosted Mini Wheats? Fiber is good for me. Straight sugar candy? Why not. If I'm craving it, I'll have it in moderation.

This week I've discovered German chocolate. I had some after lunch, and then some after dinner (I place the blame for the second serving squarely on my neighbor, who brought over two huge bars for me to try. I only had a few chunks...)

This morning Max woke me up unusually early at 6am (bad dream?) I got up to give him his bottle, and when I got back into bed, I noticed that familiar throbbing ache. I was so pissed off that my sleep had been disturbed, and then to add insult to injury, I instantly knew that I'd brought this leg pain upon myself, so then I was mad at myself. A fantastic way to start the day. I made myself fall back to sleep on my left side (the best side for circulation when pregnant -- has to do with where the vena cava is located; lying on the left side relieves uterine pressure and allows optimum blood flow to mother and baby), and by the time the boys woke me up at 7:30, my leg felt a good deal better. By the time that we got home from our morning trek through town, however, my leg was not really feeling so well. At breakfast I took my last Cayenne cap and 2 Vari-Gone, and I'll continue to take 2 Vari-Gone at each meal for the next few days, but this sucks. I suppose I'll have to order some more herbs on eBay. My leg is up on the desk as I type.

I really wish that I would have been more careful...unfortunately I found this incredible pudding yesterday made by Dannon, available only here...I might have picked some up...I might have it in chocolate and vanilla. Who will eat the chocolate if I don't? Is it a good idea to let it go bad? Oh, so many questions.

On a random note, I saw Catherine Keener the other day (Being John Malkovitch, Capote). I think it was on Tuesday, the boys and I were out walking around town in the morning, and I saw this lady walking down the street towards us. We had almost reached her by the time she got in her car, so I had a very long time to keep looking back at her and wondering "where do I know you from?". I felt like she must be a shop keeper...or a familiar shopper...but definitely someone I'd had a few real conversations with. I could not place my finger on it. Yesterday it dawned on me that it was someone from a movie, and this morning it hit me out of the blue. I looked up her picture online, and sure enough, it was her. Or perhaps her sister Elizabeth? Can't find her pic. However, Catherine has a very distinctive face, so I imagine it really was her. I'll let you all know if I see her again. I know you'll be holding your breath.

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