Monday, June 30, 2014

Missing Socks

Observant readers to my blog might have noticed that, in my quest for twelve socks this year, pairs six and nine were strangely missing. I mentioned nine in passing, but posted no pictures. Today I shall remedy that. Without further ado, socks number six and nine:

Dad Socks Mom Socks

Both pairs were birthday socks and they were presented to the intended recipients (my mom and dad) yesterday, so I no longer have to hide the pictures. (Yes, my dad's were given a month early but they've been ready since February so it's really surprising that I lasted as long as I did.)

Yay socks!

Thursday, June 26, 2014


Good news on the celiac front today. I had my follow up with my gastroenterologist. I gave Dr W the results from the blood work that the rheumatologist (Dr B - because "rheumatologist" is really long) had me do last month and he said that the changes were really good. All my numbers are either around normal or working their way there. My ANA marker (which indicates autoimmune disease) is even negative now! (That doesn't, of course, mean I no longer have celiac. It means that it's under control. Which is awesome.)

With the new test results Dr W has changed his mind; he no longer thinks I have a second autoimmune disease! Yay! He now thinks that I had a really bad case of celiac with lots of inflammation that was throwing everything totally out of whack. I still go see Dr B next week but Dr W said he really anticipates that Dr B doctor will say the same thing after seeing my tests. This is exactly what I was hoping he would say! Of course, I suppose I need to wait for Dr B to make it official next week but I'm still pretty darn pleased.

I have a follow up appointment in three months just to check on things and right before that appointment they are going to re-do my blood work again and give me a bone density test. (Dr W says he's interested in redoing my TTG test (the test they use to see if you have celiac) then, too. Anything over four is considered positive. When I was tested I was at >100. He's curious to see how quickly it will drop now that I'm gluten-free.) But until then, my directions are to just stay on my super strict diet and enjoy feeling better. Yay!

And in more happy-fun news on the celiac front, I have finished another pair of socks. I shall call them my wheat feet socks.

Celiac Socks

The yarn color is called golden wheat and the stitch pattern is repeating wheat stalks. Yes, both choices were intentional. They are my farewell to gluten socks. Call it a bit of catharsis.

They are ridiculous and I adore them.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

What? Is This Summer?

We've had almost two inches of rain in the past three days. It's raining right now and rain is forecast for the rest of the week. I mean, it's good because everyone needs the rain but we just don't have rainy weeks like this. At least each day it has rained there has been a long break where the sun came out and tanning was possible, but still. This is weird.

ETA: Correction: After today's rain, we have now had over three inches in the last three days. Wild!

Sunday, June 22, 2014

iPhone vs Flagstone

iPhone vs Flagstone

Flagstone wins.

In less than 24 hours, I have broken the juicing attachment to our food processor, damaged our food processor, shattered my phone's screen and flung my rings (wedding, engagement, and anniversary band) into the backyard. I was out by the pool and thought of getting my ereader, but honestly, I was too scared to touch it in case I managed to break it, too.

Thankfully, Dan is on the job finding out how to get replacement parts for the food processor and, in the mean time, I can still chop things in it. My rings were found after a short hunt (and we now have plans to get them resized). And we've already ordered a replacement screen for my phone that should come in around mid-week. (The phone is still useable. You just have to be very, very careful.) And Dan, ever the optimist, said that now for the cost of $45 and some curse words, he'll know how to replace an iPhone screen, because "everyone drops their goddamn iPhone".

Monday, June 16, 2014

Sweater Weather... Or Not

To my great shame, I have had one project languishing for the past six months, waiting for buttons. But today I finally sewed on the rest of the buttons... meaning my sweater is complete! And what timing - it's just before the summer solstice!

Tempest Sweater

Which means with the completion of my last socks, I have no outstanding projects! Woo hoo! Well, no real outstanding projects. Technically, I haven't finished the afghan I started for Dan back when we were dating. But I'm pretty sure if a project is older than a decade, it no longer counts.

The Real #12

It's official! I've knit 12 pairs of socks!

Helical Stripe Socks

And I'm not done yet! Though I'm not sure if I'm going to knit some lace-weight socks or my celiac-inspired socks.

But first, I simply must sew buttons on my Tempest cardigan. It's been sitting there, button-less, for almost six months!

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Thursday, June 12, 2014

I Almost Forgot

My parents came over Sunday and we all ended up in the pool. While we were hanging out there, we got an unexpected visitor.

Visiting Dragonfly
Visiting Dragonfly

Not the best pictures in the world, but they were taken with my phone. I don't think I'm brave enough to carry my real camera into the pool. (Dan was nervous enough about the phone!)

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

They Grow Up So Fast!

It was just a week ago that Dan and I had to return a baby bird that had fallen out of its nest. Then, all of the babies were just big eyeballs, gangly limbs and more skin that feather. But today, all four of the babies are flying!

All Grown Up

(Don't they have the most delightfully grumpy little faces? And yes, there are four of them. One is hiding.)

When we went out to get the mail today, all four baby birds zoomed out of the nest. They aren't the best fliers yet - one was having difficultly trying to land on our neighbor's wrought iron fence - but, man, they are fast!

I do hope they aren't gone for good though. I know they have to "leave the nest" sometime, but I enjoy having them around. (Well, I won't miss all the poop that is starting to build up on our front porch. Dan saw it and asked, "What happened to the fecal sacs?" Agreed.)

Sunday, June 8, 2014

News with Wings

Previously, I thought that the bird's nest on our front porch was a barn swallow nest but Dan and I saw a bird there feeding the babies yesterday and nope, not a barn swallow. Based on my Cornell Lab of Ornithology app and some googling, I'm pretty sure it's an Eastern Phoebe.

Eastern Phoebe

I've also learned a little bit about baby birds, including fecal sacs. Go ahead. Ask. I have pictures.

Anyway, the barn swallows are still around. Apparently our back porch fan is their hangout of choice.

Barn Swallows

And in other fun nature news, check out the guy I found trying to swim in our pool yesterday evening.

Large Tolype Moth Larva

He was a little over two inches long and quite the interesting little character. I rescued him from the pool then proceeded to camera-stalk him for a bit. Turns out he (or she really. I can't sex caterpillars, nor will I try) is a Large Tolype moth larva. I so hope I can see one of those moths around here. They are amazingly fluffy. Seriously, check it out! It's like Gidget in moth form!

Friday, June 6, 2014

A Few New Ones

Is everyone dreadfully bored with all the pictures of flowers growing in my yard? It's either that or talk about food, the current main concern in my life. This seems friendlier. And prettier. (Though I am eating really well lately. And have discovered that I love Brussels sprouts. And dates. And scallops.)

Soon I'll talk a little about knitting, though. I'm sure that's massively exciting. I'm half way through my "real" twelfth pair of socks. They are pink and stripy.

Until then, I give you some new flowers I found in our yard this morning.

Prairie Bluet
Scarlet PeaMorning Glories

Also, there is a bird's nest in our front porch area has four baby birds in it.

One fell out of the nest yesterday but it seemed okay when we found it, so we put it back in (Cornell Lab of Ornithology says that is the right thing to do). But now, I worry. I don't want another bird to fall out or for our comings and goings through the front door to scare off the parents. I'm half tempted to put a pillow or something under the nest in case it happens again. And maybe a "Shh! Don't bother the baby birds!" sign for package delivery people.

Because birds have not been able to successfully reproduce without me hovering over them. Uh huh.

ETA: Baby birds!

Baby Barn Swallows

Monday, June 2, 2014

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Say Hello to 11b

Dan socks!

Dan Socks

On Ravelry.

New Discoveries

Golden Dalea
Texas Bindweed
Purple Prairie Coneflower