Friday, November 17, 2006

Latest purchase

I love needlework books...I have a great collection of cross stitch, needlepoint, stumpwork and embroidery books. But I always look to add to my collection. These 2 gems are my latest buys off TradeMe (a NZ online auction site like Ebay).

Bullion Stitch Embroidery From Roses to Wildflowers


A - Z of embroidery Stitches

All the books I have give me great inspiration, and I get a lot of ideas of what I might like to achieve as far as embroidered works go. If I could half of what I'd like to do, I would be happy.

Which brings me onto another aspect...UFOs or WISPs or Unfinished Objects or Works in slow progress. My dear friend Sandie has devised UFO/WISP Challenge 2007. So I am going to join in. Its a low stress fun way of finishing off all the projects that were once lovingly started with such enthusiasm, only to be lost in the bottom of a work basket, the back of a cupboard - anywhere these UFOs are often discarded.

There are many reasons why I have UFOs - generally I have become impatient or bored with what I have been working on, because I have seen and started another 'must do'. I guess the thing I have going for me with this challenge is that I still love all my UFOs. There are none I woulndt want to complete. But that is the problem....I have never completed them.

So with this challenge it is seeking out all the abandoned works and at our own pace, working on them. We can choose when and how we work on them. And as Sandie said, there will be plenty of inspiration to be had, just by seeing the other people in the challenge working on their UFOs/WISPs.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Finally they are finished

Over the past few days I have been taking every spare bit of time to finish the 4 ornaments I make each year for my DH, my 2 children and myself. If you can recall way back in April (oh how time flies), I started making rainbow gem ornaments using metallic and rayon threads. Now they are finished, I can move on to other things.

I have my 2nd lot of chemo this morning....the neutrophils have gone back up. So this afternoon I intend to relax and stitch up a storm...if Im not too tired :)

Saturday, November 11, 2006


The nurse came round this morning and the Picc line was still blocked. We were so depressed about it, because we really needed another trip to Christchurch like a hole in the head. Anyway today we decided to go 4 wheel driving, and when we came hole, I thought I would see if I could give the Picc line a flush. And guess what it is all cleared. Gave my nurse a ring and told her. we are all happy again :)

Spent tonight packing up my sons stuff to go to camp. Watch out Wellingtonians....year 7 & 8 from Reefton Area School will be hitting your streets tomorrow. I bet for a lot of the children it is the first time they have left the South Island. There is heaps of things planned for them, including spending a night in the Zoo, going to Te Papa, going to the TV studios...wich I was going, had my name down for it, but with my circumstances at the moment, decided it was best not to go. They are crossing over to Wellington on the ferry, so I hope the weather is good. 52 sick children crossing Cook Straight wouldnt be fun.

Friday, November 10, 2006

A set back!

Well I didnt have chemo has been put off for a week due to my low neutrophil count.

A basic explanation of neutrophil:
Neutrophil granulocytes, generally referred to as neutrophils, are the most abundant type of white blood cells and form an integral part of the immune system. White blood cells or leukocytes are cells which form a component of the blood. They are produced in the bone marrow and help to defend the body against infectious disease and foreign materials as part of the immune system.

Generally after each dose of chemo, about 7 - 10 days the neutrophils will be at their lowest and you are more susceptable to infection. Chemo kills bad cells but also knocks over fast acting good ones like hair and blood cells. If the neutrophils dont go up....normal range is 2 - 6 (mine are at .7) chemo has to be delayed so the body is not weakened further.

The levels should go back up by next week. Hopefully I dont have to go on a 4 week cycle, that would certainly string things out for longer. There are drugs that can be given to get the levels up if it becomes too much of a problem. Sometimes hospitalisation is necessary to protect against infection. The scary thing with this is, I have felt so healthy when in fact my body is very vulnerable to infection. The only thing that can get the levels back up is rest....if I was any more rested I would be horizontal.

Another setback is that I have a wonderful thing called a Picc line in my arm to use for chemo administration and blood tests....I have shocking veins that like to hide, so this line saves digging around looking for veins all the time. Well now the thing is blocked. I have been to Greymouth today to have some drug put in that will dissolve any blockages. The first lot didnt work, so my nurse came round and put some more in...and we will see if the line is clear tomorrow morning. If it isnt I will have to go back to Christchurch again, to get another line put in. In the meantime I have to sleep tonight with all these pressure syringes hanging off the line in my arm...don't ask!!!!

On a brighter note, I have a wonderful friend who lives nearby but is from Canada. Her Mum sent us both some breast cancer awareness goodies. There is a pink cap with a pink rhinestone ribbon on the front, a pink ribbon brooch with pink sparkly stones and lastly a 25 cent coin that was issued for breast cancer awarenes month.

Also here are photos of my childrens entries into their schools pet day. There were alsorts of competitions to enter.

My daughter entered the Pet Rock section and won with her family of owls.

And my son entered the Art section and won with his pastel portrait.

I was proud of both of them :)

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

The latest use for a cat!!!

Couldn't resist sharing this picture of the ultimate in plate holders :)

Note: No plates or Mistys were harmed in the making of this photograph.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

One finish in goodness knows how long!!

This is a quick picture I stitched for my daughters birthday as an extra gift. She loved it, and I am pleased with how it turned out.

On the health front, I am doing really well. Have my 2nd lot of chemo on Thursday. Saw the oncologist on Friday, and he said seeing I had hardly any side effects from the first chemo, its unlikely I will get any from now on. The tiredness may get worse, but I havent been overly tired the past 3 weeks, so I will see how I handle that.

Since the last post I have had a No.2 haircut and now I am sporting a No. 0. Feels funny. But I couldnt bear the thought of my hair falling out, so I got rid of it before it could. Its still not falling out - it wont be too far away, I don't imagine.

I have been busy stitching the 'gem' Christmas ornaments I started a while ago, so will put up a photo of them when finished.

A lovely friend sent me this years Just Cross Stitch Ornament Issue, so I have been choosing over and over which ornaments I am going to stitch....along with all the others from past issues I want to stitch.

I have sewn 6 doo-rags (fitted scarves) for my brightly garish colours, so will add that photo tomorrow.

I havent done anymore knitting, its getting too much for trying to get my cardi finished this year...but I will persist, because I really want to get it out of the way.

In between all this I have been planting out my vege seedlings and sowing more seeds, and working part time. It has worked out well, because being busy, has allowed me not to dwell on all I have been through and the treatment still ahead :)