Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Be still my textile geek heart!!!

I have just found the most amazing podcast on traditional textiles from a wide variety of cultures. The podcast is called Voices on Cloth - Maiwa Podcasts. The episodes are from lectures given at past textile symposium sponsored by Miawa. I've only listened to a few of the podcasts so far but I've enjoyed what I've heard. The first one are excerpts from a lecture on Slow Clothing.

There is another symposium coming up this Sept-Oct. One of the lecturers is Dr. Elizabeth Wayland Barber. Dr. Barber is the author of Woman's Work - The first 20,000 Years. The book is my favorite book EVAR!!! and should be required reading for anyone who is a spinner and/or weaver. The book will be the topic of Dr Barbers lecture. That high pitched noise your heaing is me squeeing in delight!!!

There is also a series of stores in Vancouver BC. You can find the website at:

TTMMH - Podcasts

One of the things that makes me happy are podcasts. You can find some of my favorites if you scroll down the page. I got into listening to them because I was interested in the subject matter which is the reason why most people listen to them. But recently I have come to love them for another reason. I've spent several months of forced inactivity. Either I've been to tired or in to much pain do the things that I'm passionate about. It was making me really sad, but at some point I worked on reframing my idea of what being creative meant to me. By listening to people who are passionate about a particular subject, like knitting, Buddhism, or Creative Arts Therapy, I can participate vicariously when I can't in reality. But its more than that. I've been able to fill up my creative well with ideas that have come to me while listening. I've been able to (even thought its rather one sided) connect with folks who love the same things I do. That feeling of connection has gone a long way to help me deal some of the isolation and loneliness that comes with being sick. I've laughed and you know they say that laughter is the best medcine. So if you've never listened to one just plug a word into Google or Itunes and I just know that someone out there has a podcast that will suite you. If you haven't listened to one in while come back to them. Perhaps you'll even be ispired enough to create one of your own.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Things that make me happy

I haven't talked at all about psychology since I graduated from school last year. That's been for a couple of reasons, one of which was I was rather burnt out by the time I was done. Being so burnt may have in some way contributed to my having RA. We may never know for sure but I am sure all the stress didn't help matters any. Since my diagnosis earlier this year I've been going back and re-reading some of the books on Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Mindfullness, and Positive Psychology. I've been able to look with fresh eyes and a slightly different perspective on how these approaches to psychologic health can be used to help clients with chronic illnesses, well, since now I am one.

One of the simplest things to do (either on your own or with the help of a therapist) is make a list of things that make you happy. By spending just a little time refocusing your thoughts from whats wrong to whats right with you, about you, and in your life you can change how you feel emotionally as well as physically. So for the rest of this post and in future posts I'm going to share things that make me happy.

Todays happiness is: My Ipod. Yes one of things that makes me happiest in the world is my Ipod. Of course the music can help lift my mood, but its more than that. I have always had trouble turning my brain off when I'm trying to fall alseep. I find that if I have some background noise I'm better able to that. I used to fall asleep in front of the TV in the living room or have the radio on next to my bed, both of which was disturbing to my husband. When I got an Ipod and the right set of head phones I could have my back ground noise and not disturb my husband. An Ipod uses less energy than a TV and I can easily set the sleep timer feature which is something I could never figure out how to do on our TV. The memory capacity even, in some of the older models of Ipods, means that I can have a variety of media at my finger tips. I have a wide range of music, I love audio books and I even have some TV shows on my Ipod now. I love not having to choose a group of CD's (or way back in the day tapes) to take with me when I go out. When I have to sit for 2-3 hours getting my Remicade infusion I have everything I need to help pass the time. When my husband gave me this device I don't think either one of us had any idea of just how helpfull I find it. Yes, my Ipod is truly one of the things that makes me happy.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Summer of Socks '09

Yesterday was the kick off party for SOS09. We all plugged in thru stickcam and cast on at 10:00am. The conversation was pretty quiet while we all counted our stitches. It was nice to see the folks who showed up all though not all of the folks had webcams so I didn't really see all of them. We chatted and knit and had a very nice time. It ended to early for me because most folks had father's day obligations. But we'll have other virtual play dates. Here's the progress on the sock I started. It's a plain toes up sock knit out of Panada Cotton. The socks are for my friend Alys. It had to be frogged once because I lost track of the increases but now I'm well into the foot. I think it looks like a big red tounge at the moment.

I tend to knit cotton very tight. In fact to get guage I'm up two needle sizes and spot on. If I wasn't on Remicade I know I wouldn't be able to knit this because I would just hurt way to much. I'm not totally out of pain while working on this but if I keep my Handeze Gloves on (think support hose for your hands) and an icepack on my left shoulder then I'm fine. Its nice to know I have some way of knowing that the drug is working.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Its was a good mail day!

No bills! Look what did come! The colorway is called Circus and was dyed by Pigeonroof Fibers. I'm going to spin it for a SAL that's being host by the Spindlers group on Ravelry. The theme for the SAL is Bollywood and I really think this fits the bill. There's 5oz of merino in this lot and I know I'm not going to get it all spun. I just need to get a small skein of it finished.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Farmers markets

So I was surfing around the net today and came across Buy Fresh Buy Local. You just plug in your zip to see whats going on in your area (sorry this is just for PA). I found that my town has its own market that will start up July 4th weekend. Lansdale, who have thought!

You can also go check out Farm to Philly to find local eating, sustainable agriculture, and other resources in the area.

Nom nom nom!

Been waiting for this!!! has opened for business. Its kind of like Ravelry except its for weavers.