Thursday, December 26, 2013

A Great Day!

Christmas day was a blast!  Lots of food, family and friends-noisy with lots of good smells.  And all the gifts I made were loved, yay!

Millie was happy to get her Montana State colored fleece blanket.

Syd got a stuffed spleen from Uncle Dave in Texas.

Dog photobombing.

One reason for the good smells.

The other reason for the good smells, Christmas smells.

Some of us took the dogs for a walk and got in on a fantastic Christmas sunset.

Happy birthday, Jesus
I think she liked her pillow bed!
Today I called in tired, I'm glad I have a job like that.  I'll work a little longer tomorrow.  Right now I feel like I got beat up, didn't sleep much Christmas Eve-had a food reaction that kept me up way too late, then lots of work yesterday.  Fun work, but I was dozing in my chair watching the kids play a game.  I feel blessed that I have so many great people to share the day with.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas to All!

Here is a small sample of why I haven't been posting lately. That and I've just been slacking.

These are pillow beds, kind of a long quadruple pillowcase, just right for sleepovers or movie watching. The three youngest grands are getting these.

PJs for the older grands and the adults.

Made a bunch of these and filled them with tiny candy canes and kisses to give to friends.

Made a few of these, some are a gift for my new friend Sherry.
My health is great, trying to stay warm. It's not as bad as it was a couple of weeks ago. On my birthday it was colder in Montana than it was at the South Pole!  But Montanans are tough, we still went out to dinner and to a local production of "White Christmas."

I'll post more pics after gift opening. Gracie and I made something special for her mom-actually I made it, she got distracted by all the fabric in my sewing room so pretty soon it turned into a sewing lesson for three kids. I ended up teaching them how to sew on fleece and they made little scarves for their stuffed animals. Grace even put "To Rosetta from Mom" on the gift tag. Too precious!

Friday, October 18, 2013


Son Dave's girlfriend asked me to make her a bat purse for Halloween.  I suspect it's partly because they live in Austin, Texas, the city of the bats.  She sent me a picture she found on the Internet.  I hunted for quite a while to find a pattern, but I finally just drew it freehand.  It was pretty fun to make!

If you look closely at the lower left hand of the picture you can see Chloe photobombing.  That girl is such a ham!

Friday, October 11, 2013

Freedom! And 45 Years.

I am finally off my blood pressure medication!  It took two months, but it was very much worth it.  I've increased my walking distance to 1 3/4 miles, my lungs are so very much happier, the pounding in my heart has pretty much gone away, and the tinnitus is lessening.  When I first started walking I couldn't walk a block without wheezing and struggling for air.  Now I can buzz out almost a mile each way!  I cough a little, but I haven't had to stop to catch my breath is many weeks.  I am so grateful to the folks at Gesundheit, my favorite wellness store; my acupuncturist; and my God for getting me through this!  Bonus is, I'm really starting to trim up-no pounds lost yet, but my jeans are baggy-a definite sign.  I expect if I keep up the walking one morning I'll wake up to a stunning weight loss.

I have so much more energy.  I didn't think I was depressed or tired on the Bystolic, but as the dose was decreased, my desire to do things and my stamina improved.  Talking to my son tonight he thought it might have been a very mild depression.  Funny how you don't realize things until you're looking back at them!

My walking companions.  If they think it's time for a walk, they follow me around the house alternating staring at me, sniffing my feet to see if I have the right shoes on, and going to the garage door to hopefully get me to go out and get the leashes.  They are addicted to it.  I'm getting to the point where I get the itch to go out too-the only way one can continue an exercise program is to really enjoy it.

The other good thing about today is that it's our 45th anniversary.  I can't believe that many years have passed-I don't feel any different than I did back then, other than hopefully being a little wiser!  We went to a barbecue place for supper, then tomorrow we'll go to a steakhouse and a movie.  We're hoping to see "The Butler."

Ma and Pa in Mazatlan a couple years ago.

Friday, October 4, 2013

The Rest of the Pictures

Here are the rest of the pics we took the other night.

"Soldier Hill," Kris' group.  Notice they're pinching their vocal cords in order to get the high notes.

This gentleman is 87 years old.  He is carrying the eagle staff and led the procession of flags for the grand entry.  He then gave the invocation, "The Seven Directions."

Procession of the flags.

Two boys watching the drum-they gather around the group and listen, sometimes a big crowd.

L to R-Kris, Stan, me, and Amanda.  Yep, she was ready to pop!

Amanda made these for me while she sat watching the dancers.  Gorgeous!

This drum came all the way from Texas.
Amanda said this particular pow wow was a little different than the ones they have on the reservations.  Montana State University has a spring pow wow every April and it was different than this one, too.  Amanda called the group here "Urban Indians."

Whatever, it was a blast, and we felt so honored to sit with them and to be gifted with the earrings.  On Facebook later Kris said we are his forever adopted family and our son Steve is his brother forever.  It means a lot coming from an Indian.  Can't wait to see little Crazy Bear!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013


The couple that I made the blanket for were in Helena last weekend for a pow wow, so Stan and I made a little road trip to bring them the gift.  We had a blast at the pow wow and were so honored to sit with the dancers. Kris' drum group was the host drum so they played for almost every dance.  Made for a late night, Helena is about an hour and a half from here, but well worth it.

Amanda was due on October 8 but the drive back to Poplar (about eight hours) must have started things, she had the baby last night! Mahto Witko "Crazy Bear" weighed in at six pounds thirteen ounces and is beautiful!

I ran out of the multi colored yarn and it's been discontinued, so I edged it with the teal. I like it and so did they.

I'm on my Kindle and my other photos of the pow wow are on my laptop, so hopefully I'll share them later.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Baby vs Blanket

Working hard to get this done. The new parents will be in Helena Saturday for a pow wow. I want to meet them there and give them the blanket. She will be induced on the 8th, not sure I'd want to be so far from home, but there are hospitals all along the way. They'll be about 7 hours from home.

This is my first post from my new Kindle Fire HD. I couldn't post at all on my old Fire, so this is very cool!

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Something New!

I have never seen anything like this!  Our ornamental crabapple tree is blooming, in September!  The only thing we can come up with is either the bad July hailstorm traumatized it, or the extra hot late summer weather.  Pretty cool, though!

Proof that it's on the same tree with the ripening apples.
I tried to get my camera set so the date stamp would be on the picture but I failed.  You'll just have to take my word that it's blooming on September 5, 2013!

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Getting Back my Mojo

My sewing has been nonexistent all summer.  Don't believe I sewed the entire months of June and July.  Of course most of that was spent chasing grandkids and making my heart behave.  Now that it's acting better, thanks to my acupuncturist, my nutritionist, and my own persistence I feel like doing something again.  I'm walking with the dogs about 1 1/4 miles a day, which they absolutely love!  Yesterday I walked uptown to the post office and the coffee shop and they glared at me all day because they couldn't go!  I'm down to 1/2 a dose of my beta blocker, thought I'd do that for two weeks.  Then to 1/4, then off altogether!  I will be so glad, it really messes with my asthma and walking is not easy when you can't breathe.  My body still isn't sure what to do with all that adrenaline that the beta blocker was telling it to ignore.  Been cutting back on stimulants, which helps.

This cute little skirt is from a panel I got off a Jo-Ann's clearance table.  The ruffles are pre-sewn and all you have to do is get a length just a little shorter than the waist measurement and sew up the back.  Grace loved it, but she is hunting for a top to wear with it since everything she owns is either pink or purple!  Might have to do a bit more sewing!  Do you see Chloe's ears?  She is such a ham, anytime the camera comes out she is there!

I really wanted to freshen my top collection, so I did this top.  It's a New Look pattern, but the sleeves are from my tee pattern.  The original pattern is either sleeveless or has fluttery sleeves.  Ladies with chubby arms ought not wear fluttery sleeves!  This is the third time I've made the pattern and it goes together pretty well.
I made another tee, forgot to take a picture of it.  I also made a floaty jacket, something to wear over tanks, I have to get it back to the sewing room so I can photograph it on Alice.  Sigh, Alice has a better shape than I do!

Need to get shots of the baby blanket too.  The baby is due anytime so I'm really trying to make an effort to get it done.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Busy, Busy, Busy!

Lots of stuff going on, not sure why it's so busy but here we are at the end of summer.  How did that happen?

I took Sam to Starbucks for his birthday coffee.  He's playing a game on my Kindle.

Started a pair of socks to keep in the car.  It's been just too hot to knit something big, even though I should be. 

I love the colorway in this yarn.  I love this yarn, it's 50% Merino wool, 25% nylon and 25% bamboo.  Soft as a baby's bottom!

The blanket is growing.  I decided to make it for a friend who is due to have a baby next month.  Except she told me that she's been having contractions all day.  I might have to burn some midnight oil!

It's so cool how you just pick up the stitches instead of sewing the squares together.  I think I'd like to make one in two colors and do an even pattern instead of the random I'm doing here.  Gotta get this one done, first!
Still going back and forth to the doctor, but I think I'm on my way to recovery.  By replenishing my potassium I've pretty much stopped the afib and SVT.  But I was having a hard time finding a blood pressure drug that didn't have terrible side effects.  Gotta love allergies!  Anyway, I decided to completely wean myself off all blood pressure meds and control it with diet and exercise, with the blessing of my doctor.  It seems to be going well, it's only been a couple of days but I'm okay.  The doctor prescribed a pill that is half the dose of my current one, so when I started cutting it would be easier.  They are triangular shaped and halving them is fine, but quartering them makes crumbs.  The half dose will cut just fine and will be the equivalent of a quarter of the larger pill.  My acupuncturist is working to help the transition too, and has ordered some Chinese herbs to go along with his work.

I am starting to feel great, so grateful for that!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Another Party

Sam will be 8 on Tuesday.  This weekend his birthday wish was an overnight camping trip.  Then today we joined them for his family party.

Is he growing up or what?!!

Sydney got his cars out and he and Gracie spent a long time building a city under the picnic table.  Can we say, filthy kids?

Beautiful evening and the weather was perfect-low 80's.  The kids played and played while the adults chatted.  Grace even talked me into climbing down to the creek.  What a lot of fun!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Sad Day

I was in Bozeman when I heard there was a terrible storm warning for Manhattan.  I called Stan and he said he thought it would go around.  Well, it didn't.

Nice little pile up against the door!

My kale!

And Stan's tomatoes!

These leaves blew all the way over the house onto the truck.  The whole town is carpeted with leaves and branches.
Gardeners all over town are sobbing and fingering shredded bean plants.  Usually the storms go around Manhattan but not this time.  Other towns in Montana got it even worse-one town had many trees blown down and the last I heard they still didn't have power because of downed power lines.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Isn't this Cute?

Stopped by one of my favorite coffee shops today.  They've remodeled, including the bathroom.  Isn't this a cute idea for a light fixture?

I'm doing better-got on a more compatible blood pressure medication.  Found out I shouldn't have been taking the one I was.  Very dangerous for people with asthma!  I couldn't figure out why my asthma was getting worse and it was so hard to breathe-now I know!  I'm already breathing better and am walking all over the place!  The pharmacist asked if I had tapered off the old pill.  "No," I said, "They told me I could just quit."  No, I should have tapered-I've had a few problems, but nothing dangerous, and I'm almost to the other side.  I truly believe that if I stick to the new pill and the supplements for the heart I will be totally well in no time!  No more emergency rooms for me!

Anyway, if you want a light like that, buy some jars and pebbles and get a drill.  They really are cute!

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Getting There

Thought I'd better let you all know I'm still kicking.  I kind of lost three weeks of my life, a couple of bills got paid a little late and my house is a pit, but I'm breathing.  I got really frustrated with the cardiologist-what he wanted to treat me with was making me sicker.  One of my Afib triggers is when my blood sugar drops.  The beta blocker he gave me made my blood sugar drop-huh?  So I was really a mess.  We tried cutting the dose in half but as it built up in my system the side effects got worse and worse.  So I decided to quit it on my own-DON'T EVER STOP THESE DRUGS COLD TURKEY!  Yikes, my blood pressure was on the rise!  So I quickly got back on my old, milder beta blocker.  I added a bunch of supplements, too.  The cardiologist was talking all kinds of procedures and blood thinners but I just don't think I'm ready for that.

So I'm doing acupuncture and yesterday I saw a Chinese herbalist that consults at my local, wonderful, supplement store.  She reinforced what I'm doing and added a couple other things.  She reassured me that I wasn't taking too much potassium, and gave me a little education on how blood levels work with your body.  I was supposed to be there 20 minutes but we talked for over an hour!

At the end of the day I am feeling much, much better, the episodes of Afib and tachycardia are decreasing every day, and I am sleeping like a champ!  I am trying to reduce my stimulants as well, but I think a very healthy body can handle a cup of coffee every now and then.  My blood pressure is perfect and so is my heart rate.

Stan's brother wants to come over Monday to finish a door frame he promised to do a long time ago, so now that I've paid the bills I'd better get the house in some kind of shape so I can entertain his wife.  Stan offered to help and I am holding him to that!!

Millie will finish her pacemaker procedure on Tuesday, prayers are requested for that.  I really hope she ends up with more energy and a better quality of life, poor girl!

Sydney has been here for a little over a week, it's been great to have him back.  He'll spend a couple more weeks with his mom, then back to home for the school year.  I miss the little stinker when he's gone!  So do his cousins, they played and played yesterday.  Syd and Sam will be fast friends their whole lives.  Well, off to the post office then home to clean.  Cheers!

Monday, July 8, 2013

Those Plans...

Remember yesterday when I said I was going to visit Sherry if God didn't have something else planned?  Well He did.  About 7:30 this morning my heart went into supraventricular tachycardia.  Goody, now I have two kinds of heart malfunctions!  Actually had both for many many years but now I have names and a cause.  I called the cardiologist and at 9:45 when they hadn't called back I called them and told them I was going to the emergency room.  "Well, you can have a 1:00 appointment if you like."  Grrrrr-"No, I think this requires more than an appointment." 

Once again I could avoid triage just by saying "heart arrhythmia or chest pains."  Into the wheelchair and off to a trauma room.  Today didn't take as long, all the tests were run last Tuesday.  The ER doctor came in and injected a drug in my IV that would (hopefully) immediately pull me out of tachycardia.  It did, not necessarily a pleasant experience, but it worked.  They watched me for a couple hours and sent me home.  I blame my more recent troubles on the beta blocker the cardiologist gave me, so I'm skipping it tonight and taking my old beta blocker.  The I'll call them tomorrow.  I am just ready for normal!

The blanket is progressing, I'm getting into the next repeat of colors.  It's sitting out on the deck right now, finally got cool enough without rain so I can work outside.  Maybe tomorrow I'll feel well enough to go see Sherry.  Must call her!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Crazy, Crazy!

The saying, "People plan, God laughs" really held true for me this week.  First I agreed to have coffee with my new friend Sherry and a young lady we both know on Monday afternoon.  The young lady grew up with my son and it was great to see her again.  We were having a grand time when Sherry got up to go to the ladies' room.  A little background-the coffee shop tore up their floors and are in the process of varnishing and buffing the concrete that was underneath.  They never thought, however, that it would leave a 3/4" difference between the shop floor and the hallway floor, and the restrooms were down the hallway.  Sherry tripped over the ledge into the hallway onto the slate floor, shattering her kneecap.  Thankfully, the urgent care was right next door so I brought my car as close as I could, loaded her up and drove around to let her off at the entrance to urgent care.  I stayed with her until her husband showed up.  She had surgery the next day to have the very messed up kneecap reassembled.  Poor girl, but she's doing alright, I talked to her Friday and she is even cooking for herself.  I hope to go to her place for coffee and a visit tomorrow unless God has other plans!

Early Tuesday morning, like 3:00, I was woken up suddenly with chest pains.  I rode it out as long as I could and Stan took me to the same urgent care at 8:00.  As we walked in I turned to him and said, "Watch me be pushed to the front of the line."  "No way," he said, "There are others waiting."  I walked up to the desk and said, "I'm having chest pains."  The rest was a blur of wheelchairs, gurneys, EKGs, and nervous nurses who were trying to put in an IV.  The ambulance showed up in seconds, literally.  It's a small town and the EMTs are housed in the fire hall, about 5 blocks from urgent care.

So off I go, a little embarrassed, in the ambulance to the hospital which is 10 miles away.  The EMT told me I probably wasn't having a heart attack-we chatted the whole way in and my pain was mostly gone at that point.  I had a strong feeling it was an esophageal spasm brought on by my lovely acid reflux.  At the hospital they joked I got the VIP room-the trauma room reserved for heart attacks and auto accident victims.

Long story short, I was run through the testing-more (many more) EKGs, CT scans, blood tests, you name it.  At the end of the long day-5:00-it was decided I didn't have a heart attack and they could release me but the ER doctor, a woman, requested that I go to the cardiologist on Friday to have a stress echo test.  She said women present with different heart attack symptoms so she wanted to be super sure.  I had to see my own doctor on Friday, too.  I spent those days doctoring my reflux, which improved every day.  Now, for years, like over 30, I have had heart flutters.  I have had all kinds of tests, but have never been able to capture it on an EKG.  Friday morning I woke up in A fib and stayed that way.  When I walked into the cardio lab, I told them it was their lucky day!  We got a beautiful take and ultrasound of my heart flutters.  Turns out my heart is strong and there is no coronary artery disease (yay!) BUT I have A fib, caused by a leaky valve.  Had it all my life!  Crazy!

Anyway, all we have to do, since the leak is miniscule, is up my beta blockers and take a baby aspirin.  Oh yeah, and run their treadmill again every year.  Stan does his in January, my treadmill will be in July-we are heart patients together!  I feel lots better, and today the esophagus is almost completely better-took a long, long time.  I am have a little trouble adjusting to the beta blocker, been sleeping a lot, but I'll get there and if this one doesn't work there are others. 

Riding in an ambulance was never on my bucket list, but I guess I can scratch it off!

Have been knitting-I started this blanket the other day.  Had to do a little tweaking and ripping to get the hang of the pattern, but I think I've got the hang of it.

You pick up the new color stitches as you go, then you don't have to sew any blocks together, just hide the threads.  It's supposed to be a pattern for leftover sock yarn, I found the pattern on Ravelry, but I decided to use up some worsted.  I think it will work.  It's small right now while it's hot and by the time it grows the weather will be cooler.

Monday, June 24, 2013


I love to knit, and I do big projects, but once in a while I like instant gratification.  So I dug through my stash, including all the bits of Mom's yarn that I had put away after she died.  I found a pattern I had used before that goes quickly and went to town.

Fun and portable.  Now the only project I have going is a shawl I started in Mazatlan.  I suppose I should finish that, but I like to have a small project going that I can stick in my purse, like socks.  Better go start digging!  (I bought some more storage for my yarn, and when I started sorting-well let's just say I'd better not buy any for a while!)

Monday, June 10, 2013

More From Mother Nature

I pulled up Facebook tonight and everyone I know had pictures of tonight's sunset.  I think it's the prettiest I've ever seen:

What a show!