Thursday, November 29, 2007

Where is the time going?

Not the weeks - they seem to be standing still at the moment (despite the fact that I am freaking out about the move which is in less than 7 weeks ) but the hours are just flying by. I had to cancel coffee with D&T today because there is so much to do that I am just not getting done - but I am no longer in paid employ, so what's the crack?

True, there have been a couple of days that have seen me in bed until 1.00pm hangs head in shame - but this is a side effect of my new meds - honest ;0) but here we are, it is 16.33 precisely and *all* I seem to have done is sort paperwork, iron and tidy the house. You can always tell when I have deadlines that I am avoiding because I develop a deep, intimate realtionship with my iron.

The house tidying was kind of essential - my folks are housesitting while we go to Zurich this weekend to finalise the lease. The ironing was also kind of important - I don't want to appear as a complete slob until my new neighbours get to know me a little better ;0)

Speaking of moving, the movers come to do an estimate next week - I have to have all of the rbbish thrown out by then - I really do mean that I HAVE to get it done. I have that strange feeling that when I get back from Zurich there'll be no knitting until it is done ;0(

And as the camera and pc still refuse to recognise the existence of one another, here is a gratuitous kitty pic.... ....stop laughing at her ears - you wouldn't like it!


Saturday, November 24, 2007


As the title implies, there isn't much of a theme to this post...

On Monday I took the train to Edinburgh to meet up with Eleanor, a friend from my nursing days - you know the type of friendship, where you might not see each other for months, years sometimes yet it is as if you last met up the other week. We treated ourselves to lunch at Harvey Nics, and a very fine lunch it was too. By way of a gift before I depart these shores, Eleanor presented me with a beautiful Oxenburg Scarf. EDIT: There should be a picture of the scarf here, but my camera is playing up again...Grrr!

When I haven't been gadding about I finally got started on the clearing out that must be finished before the movers come - honestly, it is quite scary just how much rubbish there really is.

Inbetween times, there has been a fair amount of both knitting and spinning. I decide that I did not like the singles that I had spun for Icarus and sunsequently plied it with a Tencel singles. I now have the beginnings of a shawl which is a bit of a contradiction - the summers are definitely summery, but the weight is inherently that of a winter shawl... The Hourglass Sweater is coming along. I have had to frog it back to the joining round, since it was too short along the raglan. And of course, having increased the depth from armhole to neck means that I neede more yarn. Let me tell you, having practised spinning more consistenly of late it was rather hard getting the slightly 'slubby' effect of the original batch - another reason to make sure that enough yarn is spun before the knitting begins.

The cats are settling well into their new homes, I have been too busy today to dwell. Mind you, it has been a bit emotional transferring the last picture that I took of them.

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Thursday, November 22, 2007

Failing to keep it all in perspective

...the cats, what else????? It's ridiculous, I know it, I tell myself this at least 10 times a day. No one has died. The cats are having a ball. I've come to the conclusion that this is just like the break up of a relationship - wait a minute, it IS the break up of a relationship...

It's true that my 'relationship' with my cats is all in my head - after all, as long as they are warm, dry, fed and treated kindly it matters not to them who is providing the creature comforts. I, meanwhile, have even found myself dreaming of them - you know the kind of dream where they are lost, I find them but then am not allowed to take them home....

So, no matter how much I berate myself, the fact remains - there are 3 cat-shaped holes in my heart which just refuse to close.


Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Diagnosis delight

First up - thanks for all the support re the cats. In some ways I almost feel that I have no right to be upset since Number Guy and I made a decision to go to Switzerland which ultimately, despite our plans to the contrary, meant that they couldn't go. Still, they do have great homes and that is the best thing (well, best after being with us, of course....).

I saw the GI consultant today. He really is a lovely man and the fact that he gave up some of his time to see me before his over-full clinic began makes me like him even more. And even better - I now have a firm diagnosis. Put simply, the pressure in my oesophagus is too high. When this happens further down the the GI tract, one has Irritable Bowel Syndrome, which I also have symptoms of, as it happens. This was all shown by the manometry tests that I had 2 weeks ago. I also had a pH test done at the same time and this was also worth the trauma and having it in situ for 24 hours since this has shown that I also have acid reluxing into my oesophagus where it just shouldn't be.

So, treatment options. First is lifestyle - I have to contimue avoiding the things that make it worse. Mr X said that chocolate and cheese before bed really is a bad idea since they containe tyramine which has adverse effects. The good news is that he has said that I don't have to avoid tyramine-containing food completely, just be sensible about what I eat and when. I also need to continue with the positive changes inr espect of stress reduction. He feel that in cases such as this complementary treatments are potentially of benefit.

But he said something else which made me like him even more - just in case I was worrying that he thought all in my head he said emphatically that this is a very real problem and is not 'all in my mind'. Now I also want to point out that I am not denigrating psychological/psychiatric problems, which are also real in every true meaning of the word. It is simply that that since others health professionals could not come up with a diagnosis I had to suffer their condescension as a result - there was no acceptance of the fact that my problems were real and that they simply couldn't find out the cause - so I just feel better being able to wave this in their face. It would be great if others' prejudices/assumptions about different types of illness didn't exist, but they do.

As well as the lifestyle I will continue to be treated with what is actually an anti-depressant. Again, Mr X pointed out that this is not due to the psychiatric properties (I am 'scunnered' but definitely not depressed) but for the side-effects which act on the autonomic nervous system, affecting the muscles of the GI tract. It can take several months for the full effect to bcome apparent so this is a bit of a long haul. I will also need to take a Proton Pump Inhibitor such as Nexium to deal with the ongoing acid reflux.

And....on the cardiac front, the medic that I saw on Friday is fairly sure that the SVT is caused by the meds I take for the, bit of a viscious circle going on with this.

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Monday, November 19, 2007

Isis and Athyr

They left tonight for their new home - they're going to be thoroughly spoiled by their new owners - lovely couple with an adorable daughter (anyone who knows me knows I don't say this about many children, so that will give you an idea of just how lovely she is!). Many tears shed....

...and just to take my mind off it, I have to have an x-ray tomorrow to see if I have a kidney stone. Tell ya, I'm sure getting my money's worth out of the NHS before I leave these shores.

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Sunday, November 18, 2007


Gone to new home today :0(

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Saturday, November 17, 2007


In time-honoured fashion, instead of getting on with whatneeds to be done, I have been knitting and spinning. Here is the knitting: It's the Hourglass Sweater in my Blue Faced Leicester hanspun - I'm at the exciting, nail-biting stage - will the 178 yds that are left be enough to finish it.....? Fortunately if I reun out, I do have some more fibre left to spin up some more. I'm completely in love with BFL - so soft and squsihy. This yarn looks very homespun is quite slubby. I like it, don't get me wrong, but I am trying to become a much better spinner - I want my next garment to be smoother so that #slubby' is a n option not the default ;0)

I think I will knit this jumper/sweater again but next time I think I will make it longer. I may well do it in the next BFL hanspun - I have ordered some in Natural, and depending upon the exact 'shade' of natural, we'll see what colour it ends up.

The spinning involved the plying of the Crown Mountain fibre that I spun up for Icarus. I decide that I just didn't like it as a singles yarn. Not wanting to Navajo ply, but wanting to maintain the coulours as they are, I spun some Tencel and have plied it together - much netter - pic later once the camera is recharged.

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Monday, November 12, 2007

New blog

I have decided to separate my move to Zürich from this blog. So, info about the move will be documented on I heart Zürich . I am not promising complete separation, but the basic nuts-and-bolts will be over there.


Saturday, November 10, 2007

Mixed emotions

It is a huge relief to have found all of the cats a good home. I obviously do not wish to give out someone else's private details - suffice to say that a youngish couple with a lovely daughter are going to spoil our girls rotten.

One of the couple grew up with Siamese (her mum was a breeder) so they know what makes them special. They came to our house to meet the girls first and then we visited them at their place today. We are both devastated to have to do this but are delighted that they will be much-loved where they are going.

I have only one concern (which we have discussed) - the lovely leather sofas. Our cats are not destructive, but I am sure that most cat folk would agree that there is something irresistable 'moreish' about the scratchabiity of animal hide.....

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Thursday, November 08, 2007

One down.......

So, this morning I made the final arrangements to rehome Blue - ulp. She is going to a very good home. She will be with one of her litter sisters, Alice, and an older full-brother. We have not taken any money for her, but as she is on the active register she can have some kittens (there will be no more than 3 litters, spaced well apart). So for every kitten which is sold her new owner will make a donation to the Scottish Rex club. That seems fair all round.

Still feel like Judas, Mind.


Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Why the cats can't come

In Switzerland, if someone decides that they would like to rent a property they have to fill in a form with lots of questions, get employer references etc. I guess that is pretty much like the UK. However,as I understand it, this is not the actual application - passing at this point simply means that one goes forward to be considered.

When the accomodation was marked as 'pets allowed' I think that mean one cat, not three. Last week we were in the situation where the accomodation at the top of our list simply decided 'no pets' - it could be that there was someone else who didn't have pets, I am not sure. One of the other places said we could have two cats, somewhere else that we could have one.

This was a real dilemma- we weren't guaranteed any of the places, whether or not it was 0, 1 or 2 cats. We obviously couldn't split the Siamese girls up, they have been together since the were about 3 and 6 weeks old. If they both couldn't come, then none could come. Then Friday, just as I was still struggling with this ( and still no accomodation) a decision was taken for us. The rabies vaccine for the 2 girls had failed. Now, the blood test can only be taken 21 days after vaccination. It can take 4 - 6 weeks to get the result. Christmas is coming up, that slows things even further. That meant that even if we could take them, we faced the prospect that the re-vaccination still wouldn't take ...that would mean that we could be 2 or 3 days from going and 2 cats to rehome. Of course a good home cannot be found on that time scale. Added to this,Isis had been particularly traumatised by the blood test. She was unhappy all day afterwards and I didn't think it fair to put her through that again when the chances of her coming were slim. So - difficult, but the decision had been made for us.

Blue - I was given a little hope on Monday - her vaccine has worked. Maybe, just maybe, we would get one of the other places. But no.

So, we are expecting Blue to go to someone who has one of her litter sisters, which is nice (will they have forgotten each other?). We have some people coming about the girls later this week - they have been warned to expect a very heavy grilling. That's before we even see their home. Believe me, if we don't think they are suitable, they aren't getting the cats...

So, heavy hearts. Don't get me wrong, this is a fabulous opportunity for us. The cats will get a fabulous home, but it is still a wrench


Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Every silver lining has a cloud...

So, we have just had accomodation in Zurich confirmed. This is great. But the cats can't come....they've been put through rabies vaccinations and blood tests but they just can't come.

Handknit socks and Mary Janes

Some things were just meant to be....

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Monday, November 05, 2007


I'm sure I've has this kind of title before, but now it is ARGH! +++++++

I'm sure that many folk are the same as us - there are things that need doing to the house, that would have been much better done at the time so at least you get the pleasure of the completed work. But life gets in the way. Before you know it, 3 years have passed. And you're moving. Not necessarily to Zurich, mind you, but THOSE JOBS still need to be done.

I shouldn't complain - my mum and I had a very pleasant weekend - yarn shopping, lunching, having coffee, driving by lochs, more coffee, more driving, dinner at Kember and Jones , visit to Jennifer, going to the Tramway for knitting ......

Meanwhile my dad and Number Guy were installing a new bathroon suite.

This morning the thrill of having heating and hot water palled just a little when I realised that the house looks like 10,000 Gremlins were doing their worst.

So apart from telling myself to get a grip and appreciate that I don't have to do a 10 mile round-trip to carry water home eaach day, I'm doing the other obvious thing. Leaving it all behind to buy a pair of Mary Janes


Thursday, November 01, 2007


I think I'll need at least one more, if not two, if Icarus is to become fully fledged.

I forgot to put something next to the yarn for scale. It looks quite thick in this picture but in fact it is more like laceweight.

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