healing

A KAL in Support of Alzheimer’s Research

As more of my friends and family become victim to Alzheimer’s disease, I find myself more passionate about the fight against it. That’s why I’ve registered to take part on The Longest Day this summer to raise awareness (and hopefully a whole lot of funds) for the Alzheimer’s Association.

The Longest Day is the day with the most light (the summer solstice), which will be June 20 this year. It’s also the day that the Alzheimer’s Association calls on everyone to fight Alzheimer’s disease by raising funds and awareness for care, support, and research. For my part, I’ll knit from sunrise (somewhere around 5:00 am) to sunset (somewhere around 9:00 pm) Mountain Standard Time.

 

I’ve designed a special project for this event. The Fading Memories crescent shawl (available on Ravelry) represents the increasing holes in the memories of those afflicted with Alzheimer’s, in a colorway inspired by The Longest Day logo.

For every Fading Memories pattern sold, I will donate $5 to Alzheimer’s research.

 

 

 

The yarn I used is The Mystery of The White Plum gradient kit of 6 mini skeins specially dyed by indie dyer Schmutzerella Yarns. The yarn is 75% superwash merino and 25% nylon; there are 92 yards (20 grams) of each color for a total of 552 yards (120 grams). The Fading Memories shawl uses nearly all of the 552 yards in the gradient pack.

For every gradient pack sold (click here to order), Schmutzerella Yarns will donate $5 to Alzheimer’s.

 

I’m delighted to announce that other indie dyers and yarn shops have join in the fight by producing other yarns that work equally well for the Fading Memories shawl pattern.

Sun Valley Fibers has created a merino/cashmere/nylon gradient set of six 100-yard skeins (600 yards total) called The Longest Day.

Kits will initially be available at The Longmont Yarn Shoppe, in Longmont, Colorado, and later at www.SunValleyFibers.com.

For every gradient pack of The Longest Day sold, $10 will be donated to Alzheimer’s.

 

 

Emma’s Yarn, based at Four Purls Yarn Shop in Winter Haven, Florida, has dyed a special Hella Hank (80% superwash merino, 20% nylon; 600 yards). The color, called Bright Spot, is a reminder to look for the positive in any unfortunate situation.

For every skein of Bright Spot sold, $5 will be donated to Alzheimer’s.

 

 

The Bazaar Girls Yarn Shop and Fibre Emporium in Port Townsend, Washington, is offering three yarn choices.
They will donate 10% of proceeds of each skein of the following yarns sold to Alzheimer’s if you mention the Fading Memories shawl.

Elemental Affects Civility (70% US merino, 30% mulberry silk; about 600 yards) in the special Fading Memories colorway.

Available at The Bazaar Girls Yarn Emporium in Port Townsend, Washington.

 

Colinton Lace Blends (80% unbrushed mohair, 20% silk; 250 yards) in the Slate Variegated colorway.

You will need two to three skeins for the Fading Memories shawl shown above.

Colinton Lace Blends are only available at The Bazaar Girls Yarn Emporium in Port Townsend, Washington.

 

 

Jorstad Creek has a three-skein set (600 yards total) of Ursa Minor fingering weight (75% superwash merino, 15% nylon, 10% silver stellina): 1 skein each of Silver, Lavendar, and Sapphire. The kit colorway is called Stardust Memories.

Available at The Bazaar Girls Yarn Emporium in Port Townsend, Washington.

 

On June 20 (the longest day of this year), I’ll knit another version of my Fading Memories shawl and track my hourly progress through Instagram posts. Follow me at annbuddknits. Better yet, join me in the knit-a-long and support these yarn shops and indie dyers while donating to a great cause!

Either way, please visit my fundraising page and make a donation. You don’t have to wait until June to give — funds are welcome right now.

Thank you.

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The Longest Day Results

A heartfelt “thank you” to those of you who generously donated to my Longest Day efforts to raise funds and awareness for Alzheimer’s research! The official longest day was June 21, but I did my part on June 19 by casting on a sock at 5:32am and knitting until the sun set at 8:31pm. After 15 hours of knitting, I had completed one sock and most of the leg of the second sock. Yes, I will make the pattern available.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My fingers are more than a little sore, but I’m not complaining. I knitted at my local yarn shop Shuttles, Spindles and Skeins for most of the day and enjoyed meeting and knitting with people there.

My personal goal was $1,000 and my team goal was $2400 for a total of $3,400. I’m beyond thrilled to announce that your generosity blew past my goals and the totals were $2,526 for my personal page and $3181 for my team page for a grand total of $5,707!

I am truly honored to have a part in helping find an end to this horrible disease.

If you missed donating on my event day, you can still click on the link: contribute to my team.

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Getting Ready for The Longest Day

I’m excited to announce that I’m a team captain for The Longest Day, a fundraiser for Alzheimer’s awareness and research. My own sweet mother (Barbara S Walker) died of complications due to Alzheimer’s in 2016, but she started “disappearing” nine years before that. A day doesn’t pass without my thinking of her and how she supported me throughout my creative endeavors. I have many (too many) friends who have also been affected by this disease–as a patient, family member, care giver, or helpless onlooker.

For Team Ann Budd Knits, I’m celebrating my mother’s creative spirit by spending a full day knitting (an activity that my mother also enjoyed) from sunup to sundown. That’s about 16 hours with needles in hand (albeit allowing breaks for stretching). You don’t have to be physically present with me to join in this celebration of love and optimism. Simply join my team, make a donation, and spend a day (or as much of it as you can) knitting something special.

The official Longest Day takes place June 21, the longest day of the year. I’ll be on the road that day so I’m planning to do my knitting on Tuesday, June 19, which is still a pretty long day. If you’re in the area, I invite you to join me at Shuttles, Spindles and Skeins in my hometown of Boulder, Colorado, where I’ll be hosting a knit-a-long from 10:30 am to 4:30 pm and posting my hourly progress on Instagram (annbuddknits). You don’t have to be physically present to participate. Simply grab yarn and needles and spend the day doing something you love.

Of course, you can partake in the experience any day of the year.

Please join me. Click here to join my team or to make a donation.

 

 

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You Rock!

We knitters are such nice people!

I’m very pleased to announce that a total of 413 patterns were sold from my Ravelry site between Wednesday, September 13, and Wednesday, September 20, for a total of $1,900.25 raised for disaster relief! I’m going to add the difference to make an even $2,000 to send to The American Red Cross to use as they see fit to help the victims of the recent fires, floods, and fierce weather.

Thank you all so much for your support. I hope that the things you knit following my patterns will all turn out especially nice!

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Every Little Bit Helps

Between the fires, floods, and fierce weather, hundreds of thousands of people have been displaced, lost their homes, or worse. It’s hard to keep up with the devastation.

To help with the relief effort, I am putting all of my Ravelry patterns on sale for 25% off for the next week and will donate ALL of the proceeds to The American Red Cross. That’s right, the money I receive for the purchase of any of my patterns on Ravelry through Wednesday, September 20, will be donated to help those in need.

Just think, those socks, that sweater or skirt, or the scarf or shawl you may knit for a holiday gift this winter will also contribute to disaster relief. Please help.

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Remembering Mom

Barbara Walker, Feb 2001 color, cropped

Four weeks ago my dear mother Barbara Walker left us. The photo above was taken in 2008, before dementia took over. Although she did knit, she wasn’t the Barbara Walker of stitch dictionary fame. Instead, her artistic medium of choice was clay. She took a pottery class when I, the youngest of her four children, started first grade. By the time I was 10, she taught for the local potter’s guild. By the time I was 16, she co-founded an art cooperative called the Lodestone Gallery here in Boulder, Colorado. By the time I had children of my own, she was an accomplished sculpture.

I photographed my Park City Cowl on one of her spectacular pieces.

Beauty 2

A few days before she died, I held her fragile fist in my palm. Despite my efforts, I couldn’t coax her fingers open. I so wanted a photo of us holding hands. Instead, I got a tender shot of my hand supporting hers. Poetic proof that life is, indeed, a circle.

Holding Mom's hand

Shortly after she died, some dear friends send me a pair of miniature brass hands in recognition of Mom’s talents as a sculptor, and to commemorate the photo above.

Brass hands from Lori

These tiny hands rest on my desk where I can see them whenever I type. I rearrange them daily and don’t mind that tears of loss that well up in eyes when I look at them.

For decades, people have told me that I look like my mother. I didn’t care much for the comparison when I was in my teens, but now I take it as a lovely compliment.

Please take a few minutes to give your own mother some love. If not for yourself, do it for those of us who are unable to do it anymore.

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Post-Op, Day 4

I want to take this opportunity to thank all of you who have sent good wishes and support regarding my thyroid surgery. It means a lot to me!

I had surgery Wednesday, July 27. Being the first patient, I had to arrive at the hospital at the crack of dawn. After I was prepped, the surgeon autographed my neck to ensure he slit the right throat.

Autographed neck

The dopey grin is courtesy of the “happy juice” I was given to keep me calm. What a great plan — I was eager to accompany them to the operating room!

Headed to surgery

The next thing I knew, the nurse was calling my name and I found myself in recovery. About an hour later, I was discharged– somewhat groggy but in little pain. All I had to show for the experience was a small bandage at the base of my neck.

Ready for discharge

Now, four days later, there’s just a narrow scab and faint discoloration. I’m on the mend!I like the way the scar (along with my many neck creases) mimics my grin.

scar day 4

Oh, and in case you’re wondering, the pathology report couldn’t be better. There was no indication of cancer and I’ve been given a clean bill of health!

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In Retrospect

I recently had what should be the last X-ray of my broken arm. Just for reference, here’s my arm right before surgery (6 weeks after it broke):

xray Jan 29

Here’s what it looks like now:

IM-0001-1001

Although it appears that the surgeon wasn’t too handy with his hammer, the bone is now aligned and healing well. I already have full range of shoulder motion and my strength is slowly improving.

Through it all, I’ve had plenty of time to reflect on the experience. Yes, it hurt (more than childbirth, I think), I’m still a little loopy from all the pain pills and anesthesia, and I don’t think I’ll ever feel comfortable wearing a sleeveless top again. But there have been a lot of positives, too:

  1. The pain meds were fantastic (in fact, I sort of miss them)
  2. I got to stay in bed and sleep for days
  3. I didn’t have to make dinner, do laundry, or go to the grocery store
  4. Many, many friends showered me with sympathy, meals, flowers, and even gifts
  5. My hairdresser and massage therapist made house calls
  6. The sling offered a handy place to keep essentials
  7. My slept through the night for about three months
  8. I’ve slowed down and have become more patient
  9. I lost 10 pounds and have high hopes that I won’t find them
  10. I’ve come up some new and exciting ideas for AnnBuddKnits — stay posted!

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