Sunday, August 1, 2021

Yopping Update #5 - It was a spinney kind of week

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Good Morning!  We had some rain in the wee hours of the morning for an hour or so.  Yay!  I think it has been over forty days since the last bit of precipitation.  I am sure the plant world is very happy. 

I did finish my toque to match my gansey and my fingerless mitts.

Lovely free pattern Rainbow Indigo Fisherman's Beanie

I then started my gansey style socks called Sunday Best 

Colour is more purple than this picture shows

I didn't get much done on them because I was busy spinning the 250 gms of fleece (unknown breed). I spun directly from the fleece using the long draw method.  It was easy to spin from the fleece and the locks seemed to easily get spun into the drafting area.  Using the long draw method made it easy to pick out the grasses and such as I came upon them and this particular fleece must have been washed because there wasn't much lanolin in it, but after each bobbin spun (I ended up with four) my lap was full of dust and fine dirt that I would have to shake off.  I ended up with 346 metres of aran weight yarn.  Now I have to decide what to knit with it.  I want to knit something fairisle using it with the 250 gms of white I spun during Tour de Fleece. 

Speaking of Tour de Fleece I found out yesterday that I won a $25 Etsy gift certificate.  I already found something to buy - a hand tooled birch wood darning disk.  They are made in the UK but it does say they ship to Canada.  Stay tuned. 

Also this week my key fob cover was looking tatty so I double knit a new one out of some rainbow hemp I have lying around. I forgot to take a picture of the one I replaced, but trust me this one looks much nicer. 

My navy Frangipani yarn arrived on Thursday so I hope to cast on my next gansey sometime this week.  I just have to verify the recipient's measurements.  

The best news of the week is that on Friday (our 44th Anniversary) our son arrived!!  We haven't seen him since October 2019.  We have three weeks with him!! (Yes, all those exclamation marks are necessary)

Last night's sunset walk

There were quite a few errands run this week getting ready for his visit, and for a short camping trip we hope to take  with him later in August.  Bear spray, camping chairs, and a propane fire pit (because wood fires are banned in our province because the dry weather has sparked many, many wild fires).  I even reorganized the camper and bought a three drawer unit for one of the cupboards so my husband's clothes can be better organized than just one big messy pile to sort through.  It feels good to be getting things done in the house and in the camper.  Between my husband and I it seems like we have deliveries coming to our door almost daily! You are welcome Amazon. 

Okay - that's it for this week.  Despite this morning's rain it is supposed to get hot and humid again later today so I had better get some chores done before the heat starts to build.  I already had my swim this morning (my son came too), so after chores I will get my knitting out for certain. 

Tuesday, July 27, 2021

Swimming for my life

Can you see me?  June 2021

I am back in the pool.  Since July 13th I have been back in the pool.  I am now doubly vaccinated so I am back in the pool! I hadn't been in the pool since the first week of March 2020 when all hell broke loose and everything was shut down.  Remember March 2020?  Things were going to shut down for two weeks.  Two weeks!  And we all know how that turned out.

I managed 46 lengths my first day back.  That is 1150 metres.  (There was a swim suit malfunction, but I remedied this by changing suits the second time around.) The pool lets you book 45 minute sessions.  It took me a while to figure out the system of booking, and until I figured it out there were many times not available.  The pool allows thirty swimmers to book - up to a maximum of five swimmers per lane.  I have put my name on the waitlist a few times, and twice I have been successful taking a spot that someone else couldn't make. 

Most days there are only two to three of us in the 'medium' speed lane.  I feel very safe there.  I arrive ready to swim, and after 45 minutes I wrap myself in a big towel and drive home for my shower.  I have managed three swims a week since July 13th, and I am booked up until August 7th.  My son is coming to visit and I have booked him to swim with me too.  That will be awesome!

The last two times I have made 54 lengths in the 45 minutes.  It feels so good to practice my 'Total Immersion' swimming techniques and to feel strong in my strokes.  My arm is feeling good too.  No problem with the rotator cuff injury that plagued me through 2019 and 2020. 

I did manage to get in the ocean a few times since March 2020.  I went in on my birthday in October 2020 to celebrate turning 65, I plunged in on January 1, 2021 to celebrate the new year, and I swam twice in June - really swimming - not just running in and out as I did in October and January!

Anyone who reads this blog know that swimming is my life line.  Quite literally I swim for my life.  Swimming brings me peace and a momentary break from anxiety. For the 45 minutes I swim it is just me and the water and my strokes. Stroke, stroke, stroke, breathe.  Stroke, stroke, stroke, stroke, stroke, breathe.  And as I repeat the three strokes breathe, five strokes breathe rhythm I also say the 'Total Immersion' mantra to myself: Head down, Wide Tracks, Low Target, Patient Hand.  This mantra won't mean anything to anyone who isn't familiar with Total Immersion swimming, but it means a lot to me.  I have missed my long swims so much, and I feel with each session in the pool I am gaining some equilibrium with my mental health. 

We are going camping in a few weeks.  There will be a lake.  I have my swim buddy so I can safely go for some long swims and my dh will be able to spot me from shore.  I can't wait. 

I just read a post I wrote about my swimming from 2014.  You can check it out here, too. 

Oh, and by the way - I am still swimming upstream and sailing into the wind.