Thursday, December 28, 2006

What a day! From smiles to near tears in hours!

There was a good reason why my body didn't want to wake up this morning! It must have known what my day was going to be like. It started out wonderfully if you don't count the fact that I didn't get to sleep in as late as I prefer. That's not generally enough to put me in a bad mood. Today started with a wonderful gift arriving from my KnitTalk swap partner even before I was out of be.

Gail B., you are far too generous! But thank you so very much for everything! This bag is beautiful. And that's just the beginning of all that she sent. Check out all this stuff! There are lots of patterns, 4 pair of Essentials wood circular needles, 2 sets of double point needles (for socks) and enough sock yarn for 3 pair in purple, hot pink and white, a binder page that will work great for needle storage, a pocket calendar and a Banana Bread scented candle! I can't wait to go put my feet up and browse through the pattern booklets.

After the requisite shower, shampoo and teeth brushing hubby and I headed off to Jo-Anne's to use the gift card I received from my friend Bernice P. for Christmas. The store was busy and short of checkers, but no sweat I still had plenty of time before my 1:45pm doctor appointment. I didn't expect that to take long because all I needed was a prescription renewed. My doctor is almost always on time, and today was no exception. She and I had a conversation about my blood glucose levels and agreed that if they aren't under control in 60 days I should try a shot of insulin at night. Still no sweat, I can deal with that. So, you ask, what's the big deal.

The trip to the pharmacy was the spoiler! Fortunately the pharmacies are in the same building, because I had ordered two prescriptions via the internet that still had refills available that would have to be picked up at pharmacy 1, and the new prescription would be at pharmacy 2. After a 20+ minutes of waiting in pharmacy 2 I heard my name called and went to the counter. The pharmacy tech asked about my medications, then proceeded to tell me that two of the meds I've been taking for over a year shouldn't be taken together! Whoa! My mind started reeling! Are these people using me as a guinea pig allowing me to take meds that shouldn't be prescribed together - and why hadn't anyone ever noticed it before - especially seeing I'm taking the maximum levels of each of them? Breath in, breath out! Then she tells me "don't worry about it, I've got a call in to your doctor and we'll find out what's going on". After another half hour of waiting I go to the counter and ask them to just go ahead and fill the new prescription that I'll stop taking the other medication. To which she replies "the doctor just now called and says it's ok to take them together (hmmmm, think I'm about to do some internet research), but we're out of the one you ordered via the internet. When I go to pay for the one they do have the cashier says that will be $31.37. Imagine my surprise when my co-pay for this med is usually $5.00. I think my normally low blood pressure went to the boiling point about then. I questioned it and was told that they were giving me a 200 day supply instead of the normal 100 day supply. When I questioned the fact that my highest co-pay was supposed to be $15.00, I didn't understand how it could be so high even for a 200 day supply. I asked for my membership and credit card back and left because I was so frustrated I was afraid I was going to say something I'd regret. I then headed for member services, again thankful that it's in the same building. At member services I was told that they aren't even authorized to give me more than a 100 day supply but if I had requested a 200 day supply (which I could do if I were going to be outside their service area for an extended period) they can charge more - by why so much more I never did quite figure out. Meanwhile the member services rep was even confused when she talked to the pharmacy manager. We finally ended up having them dispense a 100 day supply for which I paid the proper co-pay of $5.00 for the one prescription they had, and they are to call me when the other prescription is available. I was so angry by time I left there all I wanted to do was come home where I knew there was calm!

But that wasn't going to get the grocery shopping done. I have to admit that walking around Costco and the grocery store did a lot to ease the anger and frustration I was feeling, so that was a good thing. Plus we stopped and had dinner between Costco and the grocery which probably helped too! I don't cope well when I'm hungry.

I'm off to check some internet info on those two meds, then I'm going to put my feet up and browse all the patterns Gail sent me! I need my knitting to soothe the savage beast in me!

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Holiday Joy Tinged With Concern

On Christmas when I called ds#1 and his family to wish them a Merry Christmas they shared with us that ds has been diagnosed with glaucoma. They are confident they caught it early and that it can be controlled, but of course there is still much concern for him. He, however, doesn't seem terribly concerned. Unfortunately he could not get in to see the specialist until the end of January. Please keep him in your prayers.

Dd#1 will take tests again in mid-January to make sure she is still cancer free. She is feeling well and is in great spirits. Gs#1 will be married on a cruise in January and she is looking forward to the cruise and getting away, as well as the wedding. Unfortunately we won't be able to join them.

We were able to talk to all but one of our 7 kids (she has an eye infection and was sleeping) and all 7 of our grandkids! That alone made Christmas a very special day as they're scattered throughout California, Arizona, Texas and Colorado.

We host the family celebrations for my hubby's family on Christmas Eve and this year we were blessed to be able to share it with 20 members of the family from age 1 to 86, covering 4 generations! We had a wonderful dinner cooked by my two step-daughters who asked to be able to do this as their gift to the whole family. The menu was varied, and delicious. As with most holidays there was far too much food, and nearly everyone took home leftovers and still we had more than enough for a few days of no cooking bliss. Christmas day started early with the opening of gifts and ended as a lazy day, of no cooking or cleaning. Just a quiet day with an afternoon nap while the girls visited family in a nearby city.

Santa must have had a healthy size knap sack when he came to our house this year. Hubby and I didn't do a lot of buying, but we were gifted many wonderufl things by family and even neighbors, but especially by hubby's two daughters who LOVE CHRISTMAS!!!

I received nearly all of the books on knitting that I'd asked Santa for, as well as a couple I hadn't asked for. My ds#1, dil, dgd gifted me with the book Knit 2 Together by Tracey Ullman and also a subscription to Interweave Knits. I also received Victorian Lace Today by Jane Sowerby, Knitting Beyond the Edge by Nicky Epstein, Bags - a Knitter's Dozen from XRX Publishing, Knitting Around by Elizabeth Zimmerman, The Yarn Stash Workbook by Laura Militzer Bryant and Sensational Knitted Socks by Charlene Schurch.

From dd#2 I received a gift certificate from which also bought knitting books. From my knitterly neighbor I received a gift card for Jo-Anne's.

From the two who Love Christmas and who were able to be home for Christmas I received so much . . . an iPod, and a laptop computer (both were theirs but they were upgrading and I'm the lucky recipient of their current electronics (as well as everything I need to get started with them including a gift certificate to iTunes) - I don't look at them as used, just warmed up! Also, I received about 40 balls of various novelty yarns that will be perfect for the scarf project. Knitting books, and more knitting books and magazines from hubby too (listed above). I'm sure there are things I'm forgetting, but I got so much it was quite overwhelming. Oddly enough, it was getting the books Knitting Beyond the Edge and Victorian Lace Today that brought tears to my eyes. The iPod and computer just brought exclamations of "You did not" and "No Way"!

My dear fil also gifted us with cash, so a portion of mine was spent to order the Options needles from knitpicks, along with some of the extras and some small size circulars. I didn't order any yarn as I have sooo much now and I thought it would be too tempting to start something new instead of finishing dd#2's sweater that has been a wip for much too long.

On my needles are a multi-directional scarf in Katia Mexico # 5851, and a design as I knit sampler scarf in a basic acrylic in a gorgeous purple (for our mail lady - late Christmas gift) .

As soon as I purchase the prize(s) I will be announcing the start of a contest to name the "scarf project" that you can read about in earlier posts. I'm hoping to purchase the prize or prizes tomorrow and then post the start of the contest. So put your thinking caps on and check out your ideas on the internet to make sure the name isn't already being used . . . (try to pick something really original so we won't be confused with any other charity projects) and then stay tuned for the announcement about the prize and dates of the contest.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

My table runneth over . . . with scarves

There are no words to describe the reception I received when I had the pleasure of delivering 50 more hand crocheted and knitted scarves to the Sister Mary Pia Cancer Center on Monday.

It rather caught me by surprise because the first donation was received with polite thank you's, but little fanfare, or real interest. This time it was totally different. I only wish each and every one of you who have knit or crocheted for this project could have been there. I was invited into a small library where one of the ladies in the office tried to explain to me how thrilled and thankful each and every recipient has been. She said she wished she could video tape each patient as they choose their scarf, because their expressions of delight in being thought of were priceless and that I have no idea, without seeing their faces, what a wonderful thing we all are doing. I confess tears were about to flow. Never in my imagination could I have realized how one small nudge from God could become something so very poignant and touching. I have each and every one of you to thank, and when she asked for my name and address I truly wanted to add each of your names and addresses to that slip of paper too! The only credit I can take for the success of this project is the small credit for making that initial phone call and making the deliveries, which is an absolute pleasure. Sure, I knit a few of the scarves, but I haven't been the person who knit the most scarves in either batch.

Also, a big thank you goes out to Nellie, the manager at Office Depot on Trinity Drive, here in Stockton, CA for a recent donation of the small merchandise tags used to label each scarf. She donated a box of 500 tags which will be used exclusively for the scarf project. On this tag I write the first name, and the first initial of the last name of the person who made the scarf. I also list the fiber content of the yarn if I know it, and laundry instructions. Any notes or cards sent with the scarves are also attached to the scarf.

By the first of the year I expect to start a blog just for the scarf project. And you'll all be notified when it happens. I've had a few ideas for a better name for the project, and a couple of suggestions but it seems that each one I research on the internet is being used by someone else, or one that is so close to the same that it might be confusing. So I'm thinking of starting a contest to come up with a name that we can use long term. This will probably happen right after Christmas . . .so stay tuned.