Friday, September 17, 2010

Working on Manu, Dealing with Dad's Birthday

It's funny how I just can't stop knitting when I'm sad. I pick up the needles and just go. It is so much better than picking up the ice cream though. I'm sad because Dad's birthday is this Sunday. It will be the first one without him. It is extra difficult because I had my younger son on my dad's 49th birthday. So...I have to be able to celebrate for the boy and not be a depressed mess. It is a hard balance.

My son, Nathan Howard, is named after my dad who was Howard Nathan. He is the sweetest most understanding child in the world, so he gets it. I warned him that I will be sad, but I will do the best I can.

To bring this back around to knitting. I am working on Manu by Kate Davies. A beautiful, soft cardigan that is mostly stockinette stitch. It is knit out of sport weight and I'm knitting it on size US4 needles. Therefore there has been a lot lot lot of knitting. I knit the body to 19.5 inches. I am also knitting a size d (which is a 40" chest.) This works out to be a million stitches on the needles. I had a lovely break when the body was about 15" and I knit the sleeves.

Now, I'm not complaining, it goes, that is a lot of stockinette. I love, love, love the look of stockinette. It is simple and beautiful. I will be thrilled with the finished object as well. So, I work through. I guess it's the purling back that is the killer. I thoroughly enjoyed the sleeves because they were knit in the round.

I added 3" to the body. I have a really, really long torso. I added the length before the waist decreases. I also have the longest arms EVER. I knit 17" and they are 3/4 length. That's always good for me because I shove my sleeves up anyway. This time I actually knit the little puffy part. On my Ruby Red I omitted the puffy sleeves. I love all of the details of "Manu" so I am going to knit them all. Puffy sleeves, puffy pockets, pleats. It's amazing. I can't wait to finish.

Since the beginning of September I have been pretty exclusive to knitting Manu. I have finished the body and have attached the sleeves. I am working on the short-row shaping for the yoke. The pattern calls for "Sunday" short-rows. This is where you use snips of contrasting yarn as a place holder for the short-rows. I did this for the first 15 short-rows. I took my sweater to work and was knitting on it and realized I forgot my contrasting yarn, so the second half of the short-rows will be wrap & turn (Cat Bordhi style.) I can not wait to finish the short-rows and close the gaps.

I am looking forward to finishing this sweater. I will keep you posted.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Eating Clean

On February 3, 2010 I lost my dad. It was the hardest thing that I've ever had to go through. I know people go throught things their own way. Well, my way was to stop exercising and eat what ever was closest. The result is my weighing more than I've weighed in about 10 years. Now it's time for a solution.

Part of the deal is that my dad weighed 403 pounds when he died. He was only 62 years old. He had been fighting cancer, but it's really hard on a body to weigh that much. My struggle is not the same extent as his, but I do not want to go down that path. He would fight it, but it was so daunting.

That being said, I'm going back to what I know. I headed back to the gym and I hired myself a trainer. This was about 5 weeks ago now. I have been hitting the weights with her twice a week for an hour each time. She handed me a book about nutrition and told me it's not a diet, but a new way to live. All right, I'll give the book the once over. It's the Eat-Clean Diet by Tosca Reno. She talks about being prepared and having good things to eat ready to go. She also talks about how you need to cut out sugar and white flour.

I feel like I'm getting better at this each week. I started out just cutting out the big offenders. That's processed food, things with white sugar and white flour. I added in some more fruits and vegetables and was on my way.

I really want a place to journal my food and I thought a public blog was as good a place as any. I want to figure this out and be accountable. My trainer really wants this to be a lifestyle. She asked me today if I felt like I was on a diet. It still sort of feels that way. All I know is I feel a million times better. My little black cloud has lifted. I have energy, my body isn't hurting. I'm starting to lose a little weight. I think it will feel less and less like a diet the better I get at it. It just isn't second nature yet.

I have goals and I really want to achieve them. I want my clothes to fit again. That's the motivating factor. But I really want to gain health and wellness. It's easy to keep going when you feel a million times better. I want to blog and journal my food just to stay accountable.

Eating clean is my new way of living. I want to give it a chance to work in my life.