Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Cat Scan

I came in to use the computer and found Sayuri sleeping on the flatbed scanner. Does this mean I have a free cat scan?

Friday, October 12, 2007

UK Postal Restrictions

I will soon be posting a package for knitting mystery swap. I was looking on the USPS site to get info about customs and mailing to the UK and found some of the mailing restrictions somewhat humerous:

You can not send:
Cards decorated with mica or ground glass or similar materials unless they are placed in envelopes.
Goods made in foreign prisons, except those imported for a non-commercial purpose or of a kind not manufactured in the UK. (This is why they don't allow sheep in prison)
Horror comics and matrices. (When Knitters Go Bad...)
Obscene articles, prints, paintings, cards, films, videotapes, etc. (No naughty knitting!)
Perishable infectious biological substances. (Why?)
Seal skins except those from an accepted source. (What is an acceptable source?)
Switchblade knives. (Don;t touch my knitting or I will rough you up)
Live bees. (Yea, this was on my list of things to mail in a package)
Live queen bees must be accompanied by an import license issued by a UK Government Agricultural Department and a health certificate issued by the appropriate Government Department of the country of origin stating that the bees are free of disease. (Where does one find a vet who treats bees?)

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Tit Bits

Yesterday, in honor of October being Breast Cancer Awareness Month", my local yarn shop, Babetta's Yarn and Gifts had a "Tit Bits Workshop" where we learned to knit prosthetic breasts for women who have undergone a mastectomy. Babetta graciously donated a fantastic yarn called Super Taj Mahal which is a cashmere, silk and virgin wool blend. It was an amazing experience to sit in the class and listen to the stories the other women had to share. Some were breast cancer survivors, and others, like myself, just knew a close friend or relative who has had breast cancer. One of the women in the class was a very petite Asian woman named Helen who weighed all of 95 pounds. She has never been able to find a prosthetic that fit her properly because she is so petite. She was there with her daughter to learn to make her own.

The class was taught with permission from the designed Beryl Tsang. She is a breast cancer survivor who has such a fantastic sense of humor and great out look. Check out her article from Knitty with the pattern: http://knitty.com/ISSUEfall05/PATTbits.html (I do like the comment about weighted titties being confiscated at airports as "dangerous projectiles". Can you see the headlines? "Hijackers Use Flying Tittie To Take Over Plane" Will be have to register our Tits as "lethal weapons" next?)

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

A Tribute

My Grandmother had a saying that people are like books. Sometimes you only get to see a brief chapter or a couple of pictures. I think it only appropriate that we view Peggy’s life as a book. There certainly were a lot of “characters” in her life.

I grew up knowing her as “Mrs. McClymonds”. She was my neighbor and the librarian at Carmichael Elementary School where I attended in the 70’s. Always driving her old Rambler and sitting behind the desk in the library.

As I grew older, I used to love going up to her house on the 4th of July, which was one day where she let Bob & Bill run wild with fireworks which for a little kid was just the coolest thing.
She and my Mom were great friends who talked almost every day. They also had their little routines. We have a small celebrity in our neighborhood, “Captain Carrot” who jogs by almost every day. Mom & Peggy knew when he would go by and keep watch and then call the other to get them to the window to watch him go by. They were also the self proclaimed “Wild Turkey Watch” of Carmichael. They would call the other to give them updates on flock movements.

After my Mom passed away, she became like a second Mom to me. She never forgot a birthday or an anniversary. I have since come to learn that she had elaborate filing and organizational systems that helped her keep track of these things. She helped me with my knitting questions and was so excited when I knit my first pair of socks.

I learned more about the earlier chapters in her life as I grew older and she moved from being "Mrs. McClymonds" to "Peggy". I learned of her losing a brother in the Normandy invasion . I learned of her having another brother who was a Brigadier General in the Marine Corp. I learned of her youth on ranches in Nevada and I learned of how she met her husband who was just coming to the ranch to buy a pig and ended up with a wife.

The last few months I have also learned about her strength of character. Eleanor Roosevelt said “A woman is like a tea bag- you never know how strong she is until she gets in hot water” . I saw that strength as she battled her failing body these past few months. She never lost her sense of humor or her beautiful spirit.

While this chapter is over, there is an epilogue. She has left her legacy in those she leaves behind. Her family is as close as ever and have definitely inherited her strength and her outlook. They are writing their own life books now, but they have a wonderful reference book to refer to.