Friday, February 27, 2009

"Seeing Stars" on Ice - plus Motif #15 -Tatted Edging made into Star

Happy Birthday to another Niece!

Today (Feb. 27) is significant to me for two reasons.

First, one of my sweet nieces was born 18 years ago today (sister of the 21-year-old niece born on Valentine’s Day). Both girls have shown interest in the needle arts (one likes machine sewing, and the other learned to knit - from me, I’m proud to say – but she’s not tatting yet, although she wants to learn), but their school schedules keep them so busy, it’s difficult for them to find time. I gave each of them the small tatted red heart pendant (previous post) for Valentine's Day.

The second reason Feb. 27 is memorable is written a few paragraphs below!

Motif #15 – Tatted Edging formed into Star (ornament or sun catcher)

From Ann Orr’s Classic Tatting Patterns (Dover Needlework Series) Edging No. 12 (page.23)

This is the first ‘fancy’ edging pattern I tatted after I learned the chain. I discovered after making 5 points that I could form the ‘straight’ lace into a star

After making the star, I felt confident enough with it to try making my first long piece of tatting (about 30”) to embellish a black vest, which I wore as part of my first tatting costume (to be shown on a future post)

I use the stars both as Christmas ornaments and as window 'sun catchers' for all seasons.

I’ve been working on the continuation of my tatting story, but I want to get this particular post in today.

Also, I’ve never worked with beads to any great extent – I usually just added them to connect picots, or even sewed them on afterward (!) so I’ve been trying to understand how to plan ahead to load them onto the shuttle and work with them; therefore, I am doing some ‘active’ tatting these days.

But I have to share this next story today, as I know you’ll find it ‘interesting’ if not disconcerting

"Seeing Stars" on Ice - Feb. 27, 2002

"Happiness was" . . ice skating a few weeks 'before the fall', at a different rink.

Today is the 7-year anniversary of my ice-skating accident (at 58 years of age) when I broke both wrists in one fell swoop – so to speak – while trying to go into a backward turn during my usually joyful afternoon skating session at a new, beautiful indoor ice rink in our area. In a nano-second I went down. I won’t go into details, as it’s too painful for me to recall them. Believe me, I literally saw stars!! The year is easy to remember, however - two wrists, 2002

I was VERY, VERY FORTUNATE that I did not need surgery on either wrist, although the doctor said the left wrist would be a little crooked. (By the way, he was wonderful – great sense of humor that helped so much – and no ‘rolling of the eyes’ that I was skating at ‘my age’!!) The ‘crooked wrist’ verdict was okay with me, and it really isn’t that noticeable. In fact, it actually healed faster than the right wrist, which looks perfect (for which I’m also grateful).

I ‘attended’ the April Maple Festival (Brady’s Run) that year (just visiting the tatting group - the wrists were released from the casts two weeks later), and by August I was, happily, back with the group at historic Vicary House, although still a bit sore, and not tatting with great speed!

Needless to say I am GRATEFUL, GRATEFUL, GRATEFUL that it wasn’t worse. However, psychologically it was a bitter pill, because I LOVED to skate, and had roller skated or ice skated a good bit for many years, even through my early 40s. However, I did have a 15-year lull and was getting back into it because of the fabulous new ice rink, which was empty during the afternoon session when school kids were not there.

I was in ‘hog heaven’ having mostly the whole rink to myself. I have to say I was really getting into good skating form again, although a little shaky on the backwards stuff (literally my ‘downfall’!) . I loved hearing from young folks that I skated “pretty good for an older person” – one actually used the term ‘elderly’ (LOL ? ).

I have not returned to skating (although I very much wanted to) because I just can’t chance getting hurt again – there are knees, ankles and elbows also to consider! Not to mention my dear husband’s feelings, who had to do so many things ‘above and beyond’ during my recuperation. It really was not an easy time. (Did I mention that the casts prevented me from feeding myself?) Very sobering thoughts, and I had lots of time to think about it.

Sometimes you just have to let something go and realize that you have limitations – and accept your age!!!! (Still having trouble with that one!)

I can ‘celebrate’ the anniversary because the outcome was so positive and after six months I regained full use of both wrists. It was wonderful to drive again. And I no longer complain about doing housework (well, maybe just a little) – I’m just so grateful that I can do housework..

I was amazingly pain-free for four years, and again, was grateful, grateful, grateful. But in 2007 I started having some arthritis issues - at first quite painful and disconcerting, but fortunately within a few months the pain diminished (amazingly, on its own) and now I just have a ‘mild’ case, with many long stretches being pain-free, but still a bit stiff in the morning. Weather does seem to be a factor, but sometimes they will ache (either both or individually) for no apparent reason. I realize, however, that one can get arthritis without having had an injury, but injuries certainly increases the odds.

I have a great appreciation for the difficulty many have in opening things – especially with today’s packaging. I definitely need bottle opener gizmos! And I can highly recommend both a “Paper Pro” stapler and 3-hole punch (for all those internet tatting patterns!!) that are excellent products requiring minimal pressure. Therefore, I’m also indebted to the ‘gizmo’ makers.

The wrist issue is one of the reasons I’m not tatting or doing other needlework with ‘gusto’ anymore. I was doing some quilting one day, and the next day the wrists were very sore. Fortunately, tatting and knitting aren’t quite as much of a problem, but I try to limit my time. However, surfing the web is also a ‘risk’ factor (the mouse!) , and I try to watch my time there, too – although it’s difficult to stay away from the 'Net, and I do get ‘twinges’. (Did I mention I also love to play the piano – just for my own enjoyment, nothing fantastic. It’s just very important to me!)

I’m going to end this post here, and possibly go visit the rink, which I do occasionally, just for ‘old times’ sake. I love to watch the kids who are just learning, and especially the ones who are training to compete. How I envy them – their youth and agility!!!! But I’m still grateful, grateful, grateful that I can use my hands and enjoy all my other hobbies. (If I used the word 'grateful' often in this post, it's because I am just that!)


  1. The star is stunning! I don't think I'd ever have realized that I could make a star out of a straight edging. I just don't think that way... maybe someday I will!

    Thanks for sharing your ice skating story. I only broke one wrist last winter, and I wasn't ice skating... just hit a little ice patch in the driveway. My husband and I had talked about going ice skating last winter before the fall, but I'm just a little too frightened of broken bones. Maybe I'll take up swimming this summer!

  2. What an insightful story. I have suffered many broken bones but never two wrists at once....I can imagince how trying that time must have been.

    ...Would you be opposed to skating with body armour like wrist and knee guards? You could get back on the ice but with a little added protection. Just a thought...

  3. My grandmother was never able to tat again after breaking her wrist (although I also suspect it also had something to do with the stage of her Alzheimer's at that point and that she had too long of a break from it) - so I can understand how grateful you are to still be able to do all your wonderful handwork.

    It is why I will never, ever, ever go skiing with my menfolk. (I'll sit in the lodge where it's warm and tat, thank-you-very-much)

    Wonderful that you shared this story - I love blogs with personal information as well as tatting info, makes me feel like I "know" the person - well, alright, in this case I actually do "know" you - but you understand what I mean! Keep posting...

    (And I promise to respond to your e-mail soon!)

  4. That is so cool that you used to ice skate! Thank heavens you healed well and can "celebrate" the anniversary! What a lovely spirit and attitude you have.

    Your tatted star is just beautiful! I love the beautiful crystal you put in the middle!

    Thanks for sharing your story! :)

  5. How painful that must have been to break both wrists. Ouch!!

    The star with the crystal is lovely!

  6. I love the lace slippers. Can you tell me where I can get the instructions. I really want to make a pair.
    You do good work, keep it up.