Saturday, March 23, 2013

Ramblings on a Snow Day

Cajun bean soup is cooking in a cast iron pot on our stove, soon to be followed with cornbread from a cast iron skillet (do I sound like I'm from the South or WHAT!!!), there's a fire in the wood stove, and the kittens are sleeping (of course they are....they played ALL NIGHT LONG! I'm still in my pjs at 3:35 in the afternoon, sitting on the sofa watching Hallmark movies (right now it's a cute one called Elevator Girl). The snow keeps on coming down. It's a perfect day to do nothing but veg out! (Remember that phrase?)

Anyone who knows me knows that hardly a day goes by without some knitting project keeping me busy. Today would be no exception. I've been working on a seed stitch sweater for a while now, but put it aside to make some chemo caps and a lap afghan for my niece, Pam. All her projects are now completed and are in her hands in Arkansas. So I've picked up my sweater again.

Knitting is an escape for me, much like writing. Some of my ideas come when I'm furiously clicking my needles. Most of my characters are invented in the wee hours of the morning while I'm knitting on some project. It's funny to think to think about really. For instance, imagine this: while I was working on this red cable knit ski cap, Faerie Wright came into being; or, Reginald O'Keefe was born out of this fingerless glove. The more problems I had with it, the stranger he  became. 

The latest character is Washie Somers. Her name actually came from a great-aunt of mine, Washie Wesson (some name, huh?. I vaguely remember her. She was REALLY old when I was little but I remember thinking she looked like a super old Indian. I later found out she was. Her mama, my great-grandmother was Cherokee (Or so the story goes).  Anyway, Washie Somers came to be while I was knitting the afghan for Pam. The color I made the afghan is a sort of periwinkle, a soft color, delicate. Washie is a strong woman, yet delicate as a flower when it comes to raising her daughter. I think she will be a nice addition to the already budding characters of Faerie, Susan and Augusta.

I've added some pictures. The first one is a photo of the afghan I knit for Pam; the 2nd is a photo of one of the chemo caps and the last is of the most recent snow. Enjoy !

Happy Palm Sunday tomorrow. From all of us in Colorado, it wouldn't be Easter season without SNOW!

Friday, March 15, 2013

Update on My Niece

I just received an email from my niece's husband. Here's the lowdown. She's looking fashion forward in her hats and scarves, but that's an easy task for her. She's always been a cutie.

Between chemo treatments, she's been able to go to church with her family, go eat some greasy spoon cooking at the Ozark Mountain Cafe (?) and go hiking at her favorite place in Little Rock, Pinnacle Mountain. That's no easy feat for a non-chemo patient! You go, girl!!!!!

She just finished treatment number two and is feeling puny again.

The family really  appreciates all your thoughts and prayers. She is spending time this weekend with her big brother and his family, who live in Houston. Pray for this time. Seeing her this way will not be easy for him. But, that aside, she is excited to see him and get a hug from her big bro.

This is short and sweet, but so many of you have asked me about her. By the way, I can tell you her name now and a little something about her.

 Her name is Pam Hathaway. She is married to John and he is a gem. Her two teenagers are Caroline and Jackson. Pam is an attorney for the Supreme Court of Arkansas. In high school, she was a cheerleader for the Fighting Jackrabbits of Lonoke High School, Lonoke, Arkansas. And she went to school with Paula Jones (of Bill Clinton administration).

She is funny, athletic, loves a good glass of wine, likes to hike Pinnacle Mountain (see picture below), participates with the Race for the Cure (now she fighting for her own cure), and has a mother (my big sis) who is so proud of her she could almost burst with pride.

Keep praying for her and her family, and for my sister, who aches from a mother's heart because she can't put a bandaid on this and make it all better.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

A Compassionate, Tenderhearted Man

I am one blessed woman! Can I get a witness!!! I cannot begin to tell you what it is for me to live the life I live with the man who calls me his wife.

I'd like for you to know him as well as I do. Where do I begin? well, let's see. First of all, Don sings like nobody's business. I've never heard anything like it in my life! And take my word for it! I've been around for a L-O-N-G time and heard lots of singers, and his voice is Amazing!!!!!  But if his voice were taken away today, I'd still have this wonderful man, who is a prince among men.

Hokey? You bet. But sometimes it needs to be said. As I've mentioned before, we've gone through a hard time the last few years and it's been my pleasure to stand up for him in ways I never though I'd have to stand up for anyone. And I wouldn't have done it, if not for his character. He's trustworthy, kind and above board in his personal and business life.

In our time together, Don has taken care of me when I'm sick (which has been a lot!!!), prayed for me, cried with me, held my hand, hugged my neck, wiped my tears, brushed my hair when my hands hurt too bad to hold the brush, cooked our meals (he's a pretty darn good cook. I love that in a man!!!)...

You catch my drift, right? I mean, he isn't Superman, but God knew he was the one for me. He came into my life at a time when I was searching, living life as a single mother, working hard to make ends meet. We met while singing on worship team at Woodmen Valley Chapel in Colorado Springs. Meeting for coffee turned into hiking dates, movies, dinner and after two years we married. He came into the relationship with eyes wide open. He was marrying a woman who was ill, struggling daily with health issues...big ones.

And he's never wavered.  That's who he is. To know him is to admire him. For me, besides the Saving Grace of Jesus Christ, he's been my most appreciated  and welcome gift.

I LOVE YOU, Don Peterson.

Monday, March 4, 2013

To My Favorite Niece

From the time she was little and sported a head full of red hair, she was a living doll. I remember well a much-anticipated family dinner when my sister, her husband, and their two children, came back from California where they had been stationed at Camp Pendleton.

We sat around the table and my niece asked for "chicken corn". Confused looks all around until my sister explained that her tiny daughter equated fried drumsticks with corn on the cob. I have never forgotten "chicken corn".

Another time, my sister brought her little ones into our father's cafe and she asked her Papa for a cheese sandwich without the bread. From then on, I fondly associated sliced American cheese as a sandwich without bread.

Time passed, my favorite niece grew into a lovely woman with two children of her own. she's a fine mother; her kids love her; she has a husband who adores her. In fact, we all adore her. And we are proud of her. She's been successful. In high school she was a cheerleader for the Fighting Jackrabbits of Lonoke High School, Lonoke, Arkansas (and was a classmate of Paula Jones, from the Clinton years.) She was a beauty queen; she was beloved by her classmates. She went on to college, then law school and is an attorney for the Supreme Court of the State of Arkansas.

Just before Christmas 2012 she received bad news. Breast cancer had invaded her otherwise healthy, trim, fit and well cared for body. A few short days before Christmas she underwent a double mastectomy and is now receiving chemotherapy treatments to be followed by radiation because of the type of cancer she has. It is one that can reappear at any time anywhere in her body.

She's had two treatments and her hair is gone. Long strands fells out so she's done the G.I. Jane thing. I've knit her several chemo caps, as has my good friend, Sandy. She complains of feeling cold. I'll knit her a lap afghan. I'd rather give her a hug.

My favorite niece is sick. I live 1200 miles away in Colorado. My heart is sick. And all she's asked from me is to keep up the "knee mail". So I'm spending time on my knees for my favorite niece.

If you think about it, would you shoot up a prayer or two on Favorite Niece's behalf? She'd really appreciate it!

I find it odd that a young woman who has done the Race for the Cure more times than I can remember is now fighting the good fight to get her own cure.

By the way, Favorite Niece, is my first niece and until the birth of her daughter, my only familial niece. So now you see one of the reasons why she's my favorite....