Upcycled jersy dress to skirt

Image

I started with this dress which I felt the length was too short for me, so this weekend I decided to take the scissors to it. I cut round the armholes and across the top. I then sewed the sides where the arms were shaping down to the original side seams. I then sewed some elastic around the top to my waist measurement.

I’m quite pleased with the finished article a skirt with a length that I’m happier with.

Image

Heart Afghan Project

Image

 

This crochet Afghan Blanket is made with block Granny Squares, there are one hundred squares in total.

For those that want the facts I used double knit wool four 100g balls of white, 2 red, 4 different pinks and 1 dark red. I used a 5mm sized hook. There are twenty hearts which were sewn onto white squares and laid out to make a larger heart within the blanket.

The edging

Round 1: Double crochet into each stitch of the squares, two stitches into the corners of the squares, on the corners I did five double crochet.

Round 2: One treble,one chain, One treble into one stitch then miss one stitch and repeat.

Round 3: Two treble, two chain, two treble into the one chain on the “V” of previous round, and repeat.

Round 4: Three treble, three chain, three treble into the two chain on the “V” of previous round, and repeat.Image

I started work on this just after Christmas it was supposed to have been for a competition but it the finishing date was long past when finished, think it would have only been finished on time if I didn’t have to go to work every day. 

A different journey

Cameron Von St James contacted me through my email and asked me to share his story of his wife’s’ cancer journey which I am very happy to do.

My Caregiver Story: Helping My Wife Through Cancer

I will never forget the day that my wife was diagnosed with cancer, malignant pleural mesothelioma. It was just days before Thanksgiving in 2005. We had only been thinking of what we were grateful for at the time. The birth of our first and only child Lily had come only three months earlier. The news was so shocking to my family. How could Heather have this deadly cancer? At a time when we were most happy, everything fell apart.

I instantly became my wife’s caregiver when we heard the news. I was going to be there for her no matter what. Together, we went to the doctor’s office that day, not knowing what was going on with Heather’s health. When the doctor said mesothelioma, my wife froze. She was falling apart beside me and I with her, but I wasn’t going to show anything but love and support for her. The doctor was really clear on one point. Heather was not going to live past 15 months without treatment. He started to talk about different places where we could go to receive treatment, including local hospitals. However, what we really needed a mesothelioma specialist. I said to the doctor that we had to go to see the specialist in Boston named Dr. Sugarbaker, who was known for his work with mesothelioma patients.  I had to believe that this man would be able to save my wife.

That day was the start of chaos. Heather was going to go through an intense surgery and treatment regimen. Mesothelioma takes about 95 percent of the people who have it. Knowing that, I faced each day as strong as I could be but often felt overwhelmed by what was happening to my family and to myself. I couldn’t take care of everything like I wanted to. I was working, helping Heather and taking care of a newborn. The stress compounded on some days with the doubts, and I found myself on the kitchen floor, sobbing. I had nightmares of what life could be like without Heather. I saw us spending all we had to save her and still losing her. However, I could never show these fears to Heather or anyone really. I had to be a rock for my family.

Help came when we needed it the most. Family, friends and even people we had never met heard of Heather’s story and wanted to do something. They gave in so many ways, both big and small, and we appreciated every offer of help we received. Heather’s parents were especially helpful. They helped us with childcare for Lily while Heather had her surgery, and even chipped in to help us pay our expensive medical bills. I don’t think that I ever could thank these people enough for what they did for my family. That was another huge lesson that I had to learn. You should always accept help when facing a crisis. In the beginning, I was reluctant to accept these offers of help, especially financial help.  However, I had to learn that there is simply no room for pride in a battle with cancer.  Every offer of help can lift a huge weight of your shoulders, and at the very least will remind you that you aren’t alone.

My family’s journey has proven that you can make it through dark days. Today, Heather is cancer free. She beat mesothelioma after undergoing months of surgery, chemotherapy and radiation treatments. I’ll always remember what it felt like to overcome this challenge with her. That’s what has made my family so strong all of these years, and it’s what will continue to make us strong enough to face other challenges.  Now, we hope that by sharing our story we can help inspire others in their own battles today.  Never give up hope, and never stop fighting for the ones you love.

Thanks again Cameron for sharing this with me and allowing me to publish this on my blog.

The roads straightens again

This past week I finally returned to work after being off for the last eighteen months. I thought I would be changing my career but fate decreed otherwise so I’m back working with children. I didn’t realise how much I’ve missed the kids. Only one child commented on my speech but that wasn’t until Thursday by then I found it easy just to say I’d been ill but was now on the road to recovery. I thought it would be difficult as my cancer was in my mouth but the children accepted me as I am still with no teeth.

I think it will be another year before I have teeth again and felt I couldn’t stay off work that long it was starting to drive me a little nuts not to mention lonely being at home on my own all the time. It was time to get back out and face the world again.

So my journey continues on but going a little straighter now. I didn’t even have to go through an interview the part of the process I always dread.

I attended a back to work job-club with McMillan up in London on Friday which has helped this is the first one they have run I would strongly recommend it to anyone if you get the chance.

My new job is only a short term job so will be looking out for another position in May.

Before and After

2013-02-12

The picture on the left was taken in 2008 after my first cancer treatment and whilst still married to my ex-husband. The picture on the right was taken last week. Admittedly I have been aware of what I eat since this last bout of cancer.

Since the first picture I’ve lost 8cm off my hips and 7cm from my waist. This has probably been made easier by the fact a lot of foods that are not good for you I can’t eat anyway. I do now consciously watch what I eat and exercise on a stationary bile and use a pro swinger.

I’m quite proud of the new me.

 

Help Your Credit Rating!

images

I’ve been for work for eighteen months now and have found myself in a difficult position as the bills still keep rolling in. I’ll soon be ready to go back to work hopefully so I was looking into how I can help my Credit rating as it seems to have been flushed down the toilet so to speak.

So here’s the check list I found by looking around

Ways to help your Credit ratings.

  • Make sure you are registered to vote.
  • Have a credit card which you pay in full each month or use no more than 30% and make sure you pay the minimum each month.
  • Close down accounts that you don’t use.
  • Pay any bills on time.
  • Don’t keep applying for credit wait at least 3-6 months between application as this can damage your rating.
  • Have a land-line phone.
  • Check your credit report make sure it is correct.
  • Make sure bills are in your name.
  • Pay bills by direct debit.
  • Open a higher interest credit card and use as mentioned above.
  • Disassociate yourself from ex partner.
  • Put a notice on your credit rating file why you may have become a bad payer or default payer.

I also found the below item which may be of  assistance to some

The Equifax credit score test

To help you work out how you might score when next applying for credit, Equifax has developed the following Credit Score quiz.

Quiz

Questions

Yes

No

n/a

Are you regsitered to vote at your present address?

10

0

Do you have at least two active credit accounts – such as a credit card, store card or loan?

10

0

Are all your credit account payments up to date?

15

0

0

Have you missed any payments on your credit accounts in the last two years?

0

10

0

Do you have any County Court Judgements (CCJ) or been declared bankrupt?

0

25

Have you ever defaulted on a credit agreement?

0

25

Have you ever applied for more than two items of credit in the last six months?

0

 5

 

Scorecard

90-100 – Excellent. Your score shows that you would be a strong candidate for credit
70-89 – Good. Your score shows that you have a good chance of being granted credit
50-69 – Fair. Your score shows you may have some problems obtaining credit
0-49 – Poor. Your score shows you may have considerable difficulties in obtaining credit.

Check out here for credit rating companies.

https://www.noddle.co.uk