Jun 27, 2006

Oh No She DIDN'T

EasyV Neck - Glampyre - 1

Oh yes I most certainly DID darlings. That right there is the beginning of a sweater. Now I know that some people with only the highest and most discerning standards for high quality yarn purchases are dry heaving right now at the site of this yarn, but pardon me this mini soliloquy...

I joined some very worthy Stash Busting-a-Longs for Summer (check the sidebar buttons) and while calculating the staggering yardage of my stash, I realized that no less than 40% of it is acrylic yarn. Big honkin skeins of it. Everywhere. Furthermore it's OLD acrylic yarn. Yarn that I bought when I was a completely naive 1st time mom-to-be who just KNEW she was going to have endless hours to fritter away at home with her newborn. Rocking and knitting, nursing and knitting, knitting while dinner simmered away much to her blissful delight. Foolish, foolish girl!! This yarn languished for nearly 5 years in boxes/bags/crates in the garage. It moved from one house to the next in its all its unknit glory. See, in typical Type A / ADD fashion, I didn't just buy a few skeins to try out this new found distraction...err...hobby. I bought every skein in every color Good Old Wal Mart had on it's shelves. And what did I do when I couldn't figure out what needles to buy? Ask my educated crafty fellow shoppers or perhaps a helpful store clerk? HECK NO! I just bought one pair in each size; more plastic and aluminum 14" needles than is safe for a home with a newborn really. I started the front of one triangular wannabe halter top mystery thing (still out there) and that was all she wrote.

Until now. In light of the aforementioned stash busting challenges, and my recent sign up for the Knitting World Cup, PLUS the fact that fasting from food for 7 days taught me quite a bit about my consumption habits in general, I have decided that this yarn must go. This. Yarn. Must. Go. And I don't mean go to some gauge swatch random sampler afghan atrocity that will pill and collect dust in the linen closet. Oh no. This yarn will be USED dangit. Used for things that will be WORN and CHERISHED.sweaters, and wrist warmers, and hats and scarves, and anything else I can think of (mercy - its like 260yds per skein!!).

I made this stash, and now I'm going to roll around in it, needles at the ready!

Jun 25, 2006

A Good Hot Read

Click the photo for some interesting reading I found about one of the ingredients in the Master Cleaner lemonade...

A good way to spice it up! If you've used this hot little number before and have a recipe or suggestion for it's use - please share!

Jun 24, 2006

Hunger is Not a State of Emergency

Are you just cringing and crying out for some knitting content already? Sorry. Can't help you.

Master Cleanser Day 6 is winding down, and I feel like I could take a cue from it and crawl under something. All the way home from a scrapbooking event today I thought about quitting - more precisely, I thought about F-O-O-D. I had just come from my first public appearance with someone who knew me and hasn't seen me in a while..."Wow girl! You're wasting away!!" she says. Music to my ears? Well, a little, yeah. And I was there, armed with 6 servings of lemonade and fired up. But that was 7 hours ago. Now I'm thinking that the veggie soup hubster made would go down the old gullet right nicely. Like if I just tipped the pot to my face and poured.


Okay then. But I did notice something peculiar though. In the last 2 days I have been in 4 different stores chock FULL of food. Food I like! Today's stop @ Whole Foods was the one I feared the most, but a girl needs her organic lemons to stay the course. Well, when I walked in, I had the same realization I had in the other three places, I saw food all around me. Even saw some people eating food in the cafe. (the nerve!). There was a wine tasting, enticing music, organic cookie samples....but I had no impulse to pick up or even get closer to any of it. No real impulse to GET some food. Just thoughts about eating food and food in general the whole way there, and the rest of the way home. Is it just me, or are there about 246 Dunkin Donuts between my house and...everywhere! Needles to say, my brain was crowded with completely random thoughts like "I really enjoy sushi". "Hmmm, I wonder if I could do the vegetarian thing for a while, then re-introduce fish, like after the 2nd day?" "Would finely chopped carrots make a good breakfast mix?" See what I mean? Mau knows what I'm sayin.

Not to mention that now it turns out I'll be flying on Last Lemonade Day (Day 10), and away from home on the Food Reintroduction Days (11-13). I seriously go back and forth every 5 minutes between quitting and kicking myself for even thinking about it (can you actually even control your thoughts though when you think about it? I mean by the time you realize you've had a thought it's too late really...but I digress).

Positive Mental Attitude. My skin looks amazing. I haven't seen my face this smooth and unweary looking in forever and 4 days. The spots continue to fade (and also itch a little, but I just ascribe that and everything else to being another outlet method for the detox. The first time I fasted, my entire face broke out in a rash...good times). I don't think I've lost anymore poundage just yet, but these jeans are telling me that the shape is shifting. I'm not completely sick of the lemonade and will soon start to employ my diversion tactics to keep guzzling it (a friend once mentioned lemon/syrup/cayenne shots - might have to give that a go). Right now I'm drinking it hot like tea and it's a whole new world bay-beh.

Let's see what Day 7 has in store for us, shall we? Can't be too bad. Only a fraction of what Sean has signed up for, so I won't punk out. And besides, quitting is just for...um...well, quitters. Right? Unless you want to offer some horror story that might justify me turning this Crazy Boat around right now??! No? Okay.

As you were.

ETA: *For those of you considering this fast or another healthy cleanse/diet overhaul, I MUST add that the benefits of this kind of cleansing are in no way reflected in this lunatic raving you read above. This is just the reality of what happens when your brain wakes up to the fact that your body is taking matters into it's own hands and choosing self-preservation. Your brain wants waffles; your body wants to clean house. It's a conflict that can make one say (and write) all manner of things. Don't judge a fast by my personal day-to-day accounts. Try it for yourself. And if you do...share. MWAH

Jun 22, 2006

You Ever Just Feel Like Chewing?

Today was definitely one of The Wall days. Those days during the fast where every 20 minutes you just want to give in and say, "This is silly. Just chew something already". It didn't help that I was only awake for about 10 minutes before the first hollow stomach feelings started. What I was feeling wasn't plain old hunger, it was like a loud space in my midsection, one that would not be ignored.

Strife #2 was that I hadn't taken the detox tea last night, and so what awaited me this morning was the Internal Salt Bath. I can't fully describe the lurching my stomach feels at the thought of this particular cleansing method. It's a visceral anxiety that very nearly outweighs the benefits of this "wash out". The Salt Bath is 2 Tsp of uniodized Sea Salt in 1 QT (32 salty ozs!!!) of water. And you have to drink it ALL on an empty stomach, then position yourself near a bathroom for 1-2 hours. Yeah. It's like that. It took much chastising and pushing and cheering (of myself mind you) to get it all down...but it did it's work and Day 4 was off to a better start.

Things didn't improve much physically throughout the day. I wanted to eat several times today, and at one point I actually felt mad, angry at the whole...I dunno....concept.

But just like the hunger pains, it passed. I'm here wrapping up Day 4 committed to continue. The Spirit is willing, so The Flesh will just have to come along for the ride.

Things of note today:
- Slept pretty well again, although not nearly enough hours
- Showering is just wonderful isn't it? And after a dry brushing your skin is SO silky, love it.
- 8lbs down now, right on track

Interesting tidbit from
the book:
"Alcoholics, smokers, and other drug addicts will receive untold benefits from this diet. The chemical changes and the cleansing have a way of removing the craving and the many probable deficiencies. The the desire for the unnatural types of stimulants and depressants disappears."

Gotta run. The tummy rumbles.

Tastes Great. Less filling.

Day 3 comes to a close...ETA: 75 hours foodless and I'm still here!
Better than that really, I feel pretty good. Day 3 has historically been somewhat of a turning point for me and others that have done the Master Cleanser. Usually this is the day when your body gets it's wake up call..."Wait a minute...are we seriously not eating? Like for real?? Not even some lettuce!? A mint??? Something??!!" Add this to the fact that if your detox is progressing well (and I gather that mine is), you're starting to hit those little pockets in your digestive system where all your favorite goodies have been hanging out for ages. When that detox tea comes to scrub them out...it can get nasty. Headaches, nausea, low energy and just all around grumpiness are common. I didn't get those symptoms today though, but I'm not out of the woods yet. Days 5 and 7 have their own daunting reputations.

Warning (again): some of this discussion may be more than you ever wanted to know (though I will keep it as constructive as I can), but writing about this is part of the process for me, and for those that are interested I hope you find information you can use.

So, what can I tell you about today....

I have seen the enemy, and it's name is mucus. Ew! Yes, I know, see Warning above. Seriously though, there are schools of thought that say the colon is the center of all wellness or disease, and if it's lining is compromised with excess mucoid material, when you attempt to get rid of it with a cleanse, it hurts like a mo fo' (think cramping on crack). Just can't sugar coat it, sorry. But at the same time, it's truly liberating to say that there was bad stuff in my body, and now I'm kicking it out. Good riddance.

On a less grody note (did you guys say "Grody", or "Grody to the Max" when you were younger? No? Hmph, must be a Canadian thing, eh?)...I'm trying to make this less about the weight loss, and more about the detox, so I tried 2 things today to help it along...I did some
dry brushing and I created my own detox-friendly moisturizer for after showering. It's a combination of olive, coconut, tea tree, lemon, and clove bud oils that I mixed together in a small bottle, then gave myself a good rubbing. Divine! We should pamper ourselves like this more often. Not to mention that I'm trying to skip the conventional deodorants during the fast (gotta love working from home) so I put some in the key areas and No B.O. Rad! (No? Didn't use that one either? Ok. *sigh*)

If you're still reading, kudos. Way to hang in there. I promise there will be some knit chat here shortly.

Things I have already noticed:
-Down 6 pounds since Monday (clearly water weight, the real fat burning comes later and 2 lbs per day is to be expected throughout until you reach your proper weight)
-My eyes have cleared up without Visine or additional sleep (working on that)
-The Mystery Skin Spots have ceased to multiply
-I sleep well and don't wake up feeling hungry (that never ceases to amaze me)

Plans for the coming days:
-MOVE MY A**- can't hurt to burn off some extra calories, especially when my energy level is up
-Drink much more lemonade - I'm always bad about fitting in more than 6 servings
-Read more about vegetarian living - but that will have to wait until AFTER I stop craving things like chicken wings and can resist the forceful urge to swallow one whole while I'm preparing it for the girls.

Interesting Tidbit from the book:
"Even though the lemon is an acid fruit, it becomes alkaline as it is digest and assimilated. It is, in fact, our best aid toward proper alkaline balance. There is no danger [with lemons] of 'too much acid'"
Go lemons!

In Knit News...

I have FINALLY finished knitting Adachi's Cardigan!!

I left it blocking early this morning after a 2:00am finish time with a Love Note next to it for her (to rid myself of all the negative energy brought about by excessive cursing as I neared the end). It's better than I expected! I used Classic Elite Provence cotton yarn in Rosa and Japanese Lilac. This pattern is the Basic Cardigan in Top Down for Toddlers by Cabin Fever. Adachi loves it, which is truly what matters, but I love it too because I was able to try out Fair Isle and Left-handed (Continental) knitting successfully.

I am now free to move about the stash and eliminate other Unfinished Objects.

Send some good vibes and healthy thoughts my way, and I'll gladly do the same. MWAH!

Jun 20, 2006

Consumption Junction

Hi. My name is Marce...and my last food consumption was about 10pm Sunday night the 18th.

That's right darlings, it's Fasting Time again here at Chez Cleansing. Join us won't you? Discussions of a digestive nature are just around the corner, and there may even be some philosophical babbling that will inevitably dissolve into just plain old whining. Intrigued? Read on.

So, as you know my (most adorable and already wise and cuddleworthy) nephew was born last Friday. I started checking the 'ole travel calendar to determine if I could spend some uninterrupted Aunty time with him and lo and behold, entire WEEKS without a plane reservation lay ahead. This meant that
(a) Super Aunty will be heading north for some sisterly rescue
(b) My job truly has some perks, and
(c) Fasting Time is here again !

As I said before, fasting is so much of a mental exercise that one must have the time allowance to go through all the stages without too much else getting in the way. So here I am, on Day 2, closing in on a full 48 hours of no chewing, and I'm feeling alright. For those of you that I haven't yet chatted up about this, here's a photo summary:

Throw in some limes and some sea salt and VOILA! That’s it. That's my diet for the next 10 (or so) days.
You may well ask yourself "Why?? Why would a person NOT eat for days and days on end??" A good question...one I asked myself today in the Super WM grocery aisles as I was picking up produce for the NonFasters I am living with. (When you're not consuming food, society breaks down into 2 groups: you and the NonFasters - fairly simple.) The answer will come in many forms over the next several days as this process always causes me to be somewhat reflective. For now, I will say that it's just time to clean house again. My old familiar cravings and habits have me at a point where I'm not happy with my energy level or my body's condition. And let's face it, no girl likes extra poundage and wobbly bits reminding her of her habitual weakness for chocolate everything.

So we lose the consumptive urges, and more importantly lose the “WHY” of eating and find new, more lasting motivation to fuel the body with food. In this process, I get to really examine things like, when do I get hungry? What usually triggers a craving to eat something yummy but nonsensical? How much does food play into my self-soothing when things are crummy? (quite a bit really). These and other questions will be my sustenance over the course of the fast.

Here’s today's excerpt from my fasting guide The Master Cleanser book by Dr. Stanley Burroughs:

“At last the basic cause of disease is no longer a mystery. The basic cause is the habits of improper diet, inadequate exercise, negative mental attitudes, and a lack of spiritual attunement which combine to produce toxic conditions and malfunction of our bodies.
The elimination of the cause of illness is the obvious and only way to healing and health.”

What’s your most recent health quest or body image revelation? Have you fasted before? If so, what was it like? If not, and you want to join me, be sure to share your experience. I’m all ears…I’m not cooking and I got nuthin’ but time.

Jun 19, 2006

He's Here!!


Welcome Joshua Michael Morgan!!

Born 9:13pm, June 16th, 2006 (sharing Grandma Winsome's Birthday!)
7lbs, 5oz / 20" of total cuteness

Ok, so with all bias aside - HE'S ADORABLE!!! And so alert already; feeding REALLY well. When I get my 4 rolls of film developed, I'll share the shots of him with those little eyes open :0)

Mommy & Daddy and doing great! Such relief and joy is a wonder to behold I tell you.

Oh a knitting I will go, a knitting I will go....

*sigh* Loving life right now.

Jun 11, 2006

From The Mouth of Babes

I told you this would have to become a regular feature

Mizan: Mommy, I want to tell you something about love

Me: (heart pounding already) Ok, honey. What?

Mizan: Love is a part of your body...

Me: Mmm Hmmm. And how does it feel?

Mizan: Good.

Me: Yes it does. What else do you want to say about love?

Mizan: Well...it doesn't make a sound.

Me: That is so true honey. Anything else?

Mizan:.......The tile is scratchy.

I couldn't make this stuff up people.

Jun 9, 2006

Emerald Lane News


* the Things To Be Knit list, oh my how it grows

Jun 8, 2006

If All I Have Is This

Then I want for nothing more.

I was recently reminded about the importance of gratitude. This principle ties in with my desire to be more present, and to live in the experiences of the moment as a way to remember and really treasure the small things. I struggle with this many times because I get bogged down in what isn't, and what should have been, and what can't be. But I'm learning that what's really important and what keeps us from complete disconnection is gratitude for what is, what was, and what could be. I have started to embrace this principle of gratitude more now by asking myself "What things are you grateful for today?", and I strive to make that list longer and more real each time.

What things are you grateful for today?

Jun 3, 2006

Stash Enhancement Xpedition Vermont Style

For those of you that sent such kind, encouraging words about the fasting – thank you!!! Unfortunately I had to cut it way short this time because my business trips have me all kinds of nervous about being stuck in the airport and not able to get my fasting lemonade and fainting at the ticket counter, and…well, you get the drift. Once my travel schedule clears a little (no end in sight!), I’m all over it once again and I hope you’ll join me. Also, In lieu of a 10-day fast, I have put myself on a permanent fast from chicken (leaving only fish for animal protein in my diet) and also alcohol. Hey!! Stop that snickering over there in the peanut gallery! It can be done.

Warning – what follows is a photo heavy post. If you are not in a position to download/view photos quickly, or you’re just plain tired of yarn porn and shots of green, divert yourself from this page immediately.


What can I say? It's breathtaking, and it’s Fiber Mecca. Yes, yes, I know I did actually go there on business, but who wants to hear about that?! Let’s talk turkey….err…alpacas rather.

I did my usual Google'ing before the trip (“yarn stores near [whateverthenameofthecityisthatiamsupposedtobeinthisweek]”) and was thrilled at the many many little pinpoints on the map that showed up between the airport (in Burlington) and my destination 2 hours south (Rutland, VT). Absolutely every person who has ever been to Vermont says the same thing – it’s beautiful. And they ain’t never lied. No billboards, lush green grass, clean streets, humungous trees, the most darling antique shops, yarn stores, blacksmith stands, fruit markets, maple syrup vendors, yarn stores, furniture shops, yarn stores, and green mountains. Project Spectrum for May threw up all over this state. See in Jamaica, mountain living is prime real estate, so when you look to the hills, you see a mass of homes, albeit precariously perched, right on up to the tippety top. Not on this stretch of Route 7 baby. The mountain areas were pristine and breathtaking.

At lower altitudes I drove the one-lane highway past dairy farms and gorgeous pastures, all the while doing my best not to swerve the car to get a better view of the rushing streams and hidden pathways. Talk about nature and nostalgia. It was Summer Bible Camp '90 all over again.

Before going I jokingly said to Drew that if it’s truly as lovely as people say, I just might not come back, and since I actually saw SUNLIGHT in the northeast US for the first time since November, the temptation was strong indeed. Not to mention that I nearly tripped over this shop just a few miles into the drive.

Darlings it was bad. I even bought yarn at Ben Franklin! They have a person on staff that conducts a Knitting Clinic every Tuesday and I was first in line (I am now officially unstuck on the striping for Adachi’s Cardigan though – woo freakin hooooooo! Thank you Clinic Mistress Laura.)

Side note: I’m knitterly in LOVE with Cascade 220 yarn – affordable and it felts like a dream! I may use the other 2 skeins for some lace knitting.

Cindy inspired me to try the Irish Hiking Scarf and tackle cables for the first time, so I cast on for that on the first leg of the trip, and with just a little time spent on my private balcony at the Inn at Rutland B&B (Ok, so my job is sometimes completely awesome), I got as far as this:

This pattern is splendelicious. These are right leaning cables (C6F) and I did them all without using a cable needle or dpn; I just followed this great tutorial. Thanks to massive flight delays on the way home, I was able to knit at least another 2”. Knitting...it’s cheaper than therapy. Ommmmmmmmmm.

The true buzz though was my carefully planned visit to Ed & Debbie’s Maple View Alpaca Farm. I can barely do this experience justice with words, so here are some snapshots first:

Alpacas people. Like real alpacas. Up close. I touched one (read: fondled in awe) that was just born last Tuesday (the wee brown one above called Calix). Debbie and Ed answered all of the questions I managed to stammer out while just gazing at the grazing. Then I went into the little store and the super soft alpaca yarn started throwing itself into my already overstuffed carry on. Before I knew it, my credit card had climbed up on to Debbie’s register and the deal was done before I could protest. I’m innocent I tell you! Yarn just follows me home lately (and it’s really rather pushy about it).

I got a nice packet of info about Alpaca Husbandry and starting your own farm so if one day I just suddenly stop posting…well.

C’est tout for now. I'm in Clearwater, FL this week. Miss you something awful, and wish you were here but you know how to reach me! On this trip, I’m seriously considering spending all of my non-work time doing some substantial, actual knitting instead of just looking for more places to buy more things with which I plan to knit some day.

Had you going there, didn’t I? Holla at your girl!