Looks like we’re moving!

I recently found out that we (My parents and I) will be moving to the Channel Islands in a couple of months time. I’ve never moved before. Yep. spent all 22 (nearly 23) years of my life in this here house. But that’s all going to change very soon.

Having spent my whole life in one place I have way too much stuff that has accumulated over that time and only 2 or 3 months to get ready to move. Add my rather severe ME on top of that and i’m sure you can see why this is a massive thing for me.

I’ve started going through things bit by bit already. And by I, I mean I’ve lay there while my mum has gone through stuff for me but I can still only manage this in small portions. We are going to have a front garden sale this weekend to try to get rid of the first lot of stuff.

It’s been quite cathartic getting rid of years of stuff but also quite depressing as well. Most of the things we’ve been through so far have been arts and crafts and i’m only getting rid as I know I am not well and won’t be well enough to use them any time in the future.

But the silver lining I guess is that the money we raise from the sale will go to Invest in ME. (And of course that there will be more room in the new place for the crafts I can manage!)

Some of the stuff we’ve found has been quite funny. I have massive tins of silver and gold powder paint from when I was about 3 years old. I’ve also found 4 sets of watercolours and a basically unused set of tubes of watercolours too. Who needs 5 loads of watercolours? I’m not sure but I certainly don’t seeing as I don’t even like watercolours!

I’ve also taken over 50 books off my bookshelves ready to sell. My shelves are looking quite bare at the moment but I’ve kept all the books I might want to read again or am simply too attached to let go of (I can tell you now that there are definitely more than 50 of them!). I will be getting a kindle next month for my birthday (did I mention that before? I’m mega excited to get it, I’ve never used an E-reader before) so it’s not like I will be running out of books to read. Speaking of which, I will be doing a look at my To Read shelf soon, and you can help me decide which books to read first to get through them before my kindle arrives/I depart.

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7 Boring Things I Wish I Could Do – ME Awareness Part 1

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I missed ME Awareness day last week (12th May) but it’s still ME Awareness month. I’ve seen loads of amazing posts and fundraising schemes over the past couple of weeks and I feel a bit bad that I never really do anything so I thought I would chime in with my 2 pennies worth.

I’ve been sick with ME (Myalgic Encephalomyelitis) for just over 7 years now. The last 3 or 4 of which I have been mostly bedbound. What does mostly bedbound even mean? I hear you say. Well, for me, I have to spend most of my time lying down or propped up in bed. I can get to the bathroom by myself but I live in the upstairs of my house as I can’t handle the stairs. It’s different for everyone though as there is a severity scale and even people who are at about the same level on the severity scale have different symptoms/ ways the illness affects them.

I’m going to do two posts for this. Next week will be some of the things that I would do if I got well tomorrow but for now I want to share with you some of the things I struggle with not being able to do a bit more in the day to day of living with this illness. One for each full year I have lived with it.

7 Things That I Wish I Could Do:

  1. To be able to get dressed everyday, or even a once a week. I live in pyjamas most of the time and I need help when changing clothes. Most of the clothes that I have now are just loads of pyjamas. They’re comfortable but every now and then I would love to be able to wear normal clothes too.
  2. Being able to stand up when I have a shower. Lots of people with ME use aids such as shower chairs or stools to be able to use the shower. For me, we have a shower over bath and to have a shower I have to sit down in the bath, then lie down between things (shampoo, rinse, etc.) to rest.
  3. Being able to have long hair.  This links to the previous point. I have had to chop most of my hair off as even with how short it is now (and I cut it very short) I don’t have the energy to wash it anywhere near as frequently as I would like. And that’s without the added energy sappers of having to dry or even brush your hair.
  4. The ability to go on the computer whenever I need to do something. This applies to most things as we have to plan for pretty much everything we do. But most people, when they think “oh, I need to do something on my computer” don’t have to add it to a list called; Laptop To Do and then wait for that one day a week where I have planned everything to have the energy to be able to go on and do it.
  5. Being able to get to the kitchen so I can get food or drink when I need it. As I mentioned briefly at the start, I’m stuck upstairs. My parents act as my carers, they have to cook and bring all my meals to me in bed. If I need anything during the day then I call them on the phone. On the odd days where no one is home (they both have full time jobs on top of caring duty) then I have a mini fridge upstairs on a desk (as I can’t bend down to get things too low) with something for lunch and any drinks I need (such as pre-opened bottles of water as I struggle opening them myself). Being able to just wander into the kitchen whenever I’m hungry would be pretty cool.
  6. Similar to getting to the kitchen, I would love to be able to get to the front door. On those days where no one is here and the door bell rings I just have to lie there. It’s very frustrating, especially on the occasions where I know its something that I have ordered online. It’s for me, it’s at the door but there isn’t anything I can do about it and I have to wait while they leave and bring the parcel to the post office so someone has to pick it up for me.
  7. Last but definitely not least, simply having something to say when old friends from school, or people you don’t talk to often, ask you what you’ve been up to. This normally comes up pretty soon in any conversation with someone you haven’t spoken to in a while (or even years) and you just don’t have anything to say. What have I been doing for the last few years? Oh, you know, lying here…. the conversation normally dies a quick death pretty soon after this, as you simply don’t have anything to say. It means that most of the people you end up talking to are sick too, as you don’t have this problem with them (which is great) but it also means you fall out of touch with family and friends a lot which makes the small world of living upstairs even smaller.

 

If you have any questions don’t hesitate to ask, it’s what awareness posts are for and feel free to share it as much as you like. Or if you have ME too, are there any things that you would add/change?

 

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Finished Cross Stitch

If you’re following me on twitter you have probably already seen this as I couldn’t wait to share but I’ve finally finished my first ever cross stitch project!

I ended up changing part of the pattern quite a lot and used 4 colours instead of the 5 the pattern called for but I think it came out great. I’m really happy that i’ve found another craft that I’m able to do at my rather low energy levels and I enjoyed doing this so much.

The pattern is from here, and is based on my favourite house from Game of Thrones. It’s quite simple as I wanted something I wasn’t going to go wrong with, lots of straight lines help I think (I still managed to go wrong on the spacing of the letters but you can’t tell so shhhh!).

WP_20150511_15_48_42_ProI’ve got another pattern lined up, all kitted out and ready to do whenever I get the chance to start it but it looks like life is going to get a bit busier for me over the next couple of months and the pattern is very much more complicated and bigger than this one so that will probably take me a year!

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Puff stitch Cowl

WP_20150428_14_55_06_ProI managed to finish the cowl that I brought on holiday with me. Thankfully I had just about enough yarn to do it (I actually had less than a metre left which does not go very far with the puff stitch!). It’s the first time i’ve made a cowl and it’s also the first time i’ve used the puff stitch but I think it came out pretty well. YouTube is a wonderful thing!

I wanted to show you the finished piece but it left me with a bit of a problem about how to photograph the thing as laying flat it doesn’t really look like i’ve done much more than you saw in the initial photograph I shared a few weeks ago! In the end I hijacked my mum to model it for me. It’s only fair as I made it for her so  she had to do a bit of work for it.

I made it using Sirdar Folksong chunky yarn with a 6.5mm crochet hook. I think I ended up using 3 balls of it but i’m not certain as part of it was from a frogged project so it might have been closer to 4 balls of the yarn.

And here is a photograph of it laying flat on its own. It doesn’t really show the puff stitches very well, but its lovely and cozy. I’m not sure why I decided to make a thick, chunky cowl in the beginning of summer but there we go.

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Cross Stitch Thread storage: A follow up

A few weeks ago, I wrote a post asking for suggestions and tips on how to store threads for my new cross stitching hobby. First of all, I want to say thank you to everyone who replied.

I looked into all of the responses and decided on buying myself some stitchbows to store the thread. I had never heard of these before but they are amazing! I was really worried about the time and energy that I would end up using just to wind all of the threads onto bobbins but with these you don’t have to do any winding at all. You just slip the ends over the stitchbows and Ta Da done. Barely any time or energy used. I thoroughly recommend these to any spoonies out there looking for an easy solution.

WP_20150505_14_07_09_ProThe stitchbows are sold in packs of 10, I bought mine for sewandso (which is where I buy my other supplies from, they’re great) for less than £1. As you can see from the photograph above, there’s a place to hold the part of the label with the colour code on so you don’t loose it.

You can also buy plastic wallets to store them in and binders to store the wallets in. I’ve only just started in the world of cross stitch so I have decided to use the wallets to keep all of the things for individual projects together rather than keep my small collection of threads in order for now. In the first photograph below you can see that I have all of the things I need for each project kept neatly together. I haven’t bought the binder that DMC sell for these as they fit perfectly well in an ordinary binder that I am using for other craft supplies. (Although at the moment they are just sitting on the desk in my room as I quite like having them to hand.) Each storage wallet can hold 15 stitchbows of thread in, which is pretty perfect for me as the second project I have has exactly 15 colours in. The second photograph is of a full wallet with all 15 colours in. You can also see the edge of the wallet with the holes for being put in a binder. I just thought I would share incase anyone else is looking for a low energy solution because, as I said, I had never heard of them before and they were the perfect for me.

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