Friday, April 20, 2007


Flipknits are here, and they're beautiful [baby]!

I'm as proud as an - well, as an author looking at 10,000 copies of her new books!

When the driver from the shipping company dropped off the HUGE pallet of books, I told him that they were all books.

- You must really like to read, lady!

He was joking. He was actually really funny, and when I told him what I did for a living and what the books were, he asked where he could sign up to take a knitting class (this was after I mentioned Men Who Knit, and we bonded over our love of doggies)

I ripped open the plastic surrounding the pallet, cut through the straps and opened up a box of each type of book and - to my great relief - they were perfectly beautiful! The mix up noticed in the proof of the knit book pages glued to the increase book covers (and vice versa) had been fixed. The covers are lovely and the color clear, they're beautiful books!

I sent out all of the individual orders and many of the wholesale orders - on Monday I'll send out the rest, so those of you who pre-ordered (THANK you!) will be getting them in the next few days!

I donated a box of the books to the Minnesota Knitters Guild to hand out at the Yarnover tomorrow. I'll also have complete sets to sell in my classes - but mainly I just want to get a bunch of them into the hands of knitters so I can see the flipping happening. I'm so easily amused. Maybe I'll have all the knitters do the wave tomorrow...

Friend Time
My new friend Catherine came by this evening and was so helpful - what a gift it is to have someone stop by and lend a hand - she helped me get many 4-packs of books assembled and packed. THANK YOU!

Her son and Maxie have developed a great friendship - there aren't words to describe how happy I am to see Max eagerly anticipate a playdate with his new buddy. She also took Hannah to try a synchronized swimming thingie, which I think Hannah enjoyed more than she admitted.

Although I do live in St. Paul, I couldn't turn down 2 nights in a hotel for some rest and relaxation (and a whirlpool!) This is the "me time" that I've been pining for - and Gerry's just 10 minutes away with the kidlets!

This evening Max & Hannah and their new buddy and Catherine and I went down to the pool (the kids swam, adults watched) and Hannah gave some of the new synchro moves a try. She's not half bad, and I hope that she decides to give it a whirl. Swimming is such good exercise! And I was especially glad that - given how helpful the kids have been - I was able to give them a little swimming treat tonight!

Gerry's stayed at home to rest, and for a bit of alone time himself.

Medical Stuff

Today we saw the oncologist and got the official diagnosis of Multiple Myeloma. He outlined a treatment plan for the next few months and started Gerry on Thalidomide & Dexamethasone right away. The next step is Zometa, an intravenous drip, which will reduce the calcium in his blood and thus help his energy, strength and - not least - his outlook. I am so proud of how he keeps his sense of humor - his joy - in the midsts of what must be a very scary time, not to mention uncomfortable and painful.

We heard from a good friend that he'll be in town in 2 weeks for business and would love to visit. Gerry and I are BOTH so excited to see him - it will be very good for both of us, but especially for Gerry. It's hard that he hasn't had a chance to develop any male friendships, I can tell he misses that.

When Gerry's strength improves and he's feeling better, it will be time for high dose chemo and stem cell transplant (the cells would have been taken from him) I'm not sure how much I understand all of this myself . Gerry - one of the smartest folks I know - is a little foggy due to the pain meds and calcium in the blood. So I have to educate myself and get on top of it. Knowledge is power, and we have a lot to learn and think about.

It seems though, at this time, that we're looking at about a year of this before we return to our regularly scheduled lives. And, as I said yesterday, a year is fathomable.

Just look at where I was a year ago tonight...

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Anonymous benne said...

Annie, I've been following your blog and I wanted to pass on some encouraging thoughts to you. A friend of mine, mid-forties mother of three teenaged girls, developed multiple myeloma several years ago. She went through all the treatments and now, several years later, is doing very well. It was about a year before she felt herself again, physically and mentally, but she's healthy now. I wanted to let you know on a personal level that recovery and wellness is real. I have your family in my prayers on the journey to Gerry's recovery.

Congrats on the flip book!

April 21, 2007 9:12 AM  
Blogger rho said...

I was thinking in the shower the other night (I know, I know - a strange place to do your thinking but it is quiet time with no phones or people bugging you ya know?) I know you have been feeling bad about the timing of the move and Gerry needing his friends now and they are so far away - BUT the universe could have been watching out for you by having you move when you did so you would be where the perfect doctor would be for Gerry. Remember God does work in mysterious ways ;D

and WHOO HOO on the books!!

April 21, 2007 10:19 AM  
Blogger Shannon said...


Having lived through my father's Multiple Myloma diagnosis, I can empathize with what you and Gerry are going through. Just wanted to let you know that you are both in my thoughts and my prayers during this very challenging and frightening time.
Thanks for all you do for the knitting community. Now hopefully we can be here to give you support and love during a difficult time.

April 21, 2007 10:38 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Annie, my heart & best wishes are with you - as a cancer survivor (many millions of us!) I've some idea of what you're facing - my husband surely has a much better idea. It sounds like you're energetically, smartly getting home base in shape to provide necessary shelter & comfort in the very demanding times ahead. Your wonderful, protean creativity is putting its shoulder to that effort, so you'll be best able to do all you want & need to. I agree w/another of your readers - your creativity's in your DNA - and it's focusing on first-things-first essentials right now, even tho it might not feel that way to you. But it sure looks that way to me & I'm sure even more so to those who know you best. You give so many of us so much pleasure, I hope that's encouraging and a comfort. Congrats on your new book! Be well to you all. Lilly

April 21, 2007 4:58 PM  
Blogger Megan said...

Annie- I don't know anything about Multiple Myeloma, but I have your DH and family in my thoughts and prayers during this trying time. Congratulations on your flip books, they look awesome!!

April 21, 2007 7:34 PM  
Anonymous anne marie in philly said...

now that you know who the enemy is, you can fight it with all your might.

gerry, as a cancer survivor myself, keep your sense of humor at all times. from personal experience, no one wants to hear "poor poor pitiful me why me". but if you can relate your experiences with a joke and a smile (even though you personally don't feel like it), you have won.

a book that helped me during my trial was gilda radner's "it's always something". I still have it - passages yellow highlighted that spoke to me. inspirational book for me.

(((((hugs))))) to you and your family.

April 21, 2007 7:54 PM  
Blogger Penny said...

{hugs} I don't have any words of wisdom but know that lots of people are thinking lots of good thoughts. I look forward to these flipbooks and hope that one of my LYS have purchased them. I will send an email to one of them right now. If not, I might order a bunch and my holiday presents are done! :)

best wishes.. lots of thoughts.. glad that MN is being good to you all.

April 21, 2007 10:02 PM  
Blogger Lynne said...

It must be good to have a nice firm diagnosis. Chemo won't be fun but there is a good reason for it and it will help Gerry get better.
Your creativity will return when you are not so stressed - you are probably thinking Big Picture stuff not the fancy bits at present.

April 22, 2007 2:13 AM  
Anonymous Martha said...

Sending lots of good thoughts your way. As a recurrent ovarian cncer patient for 2 years I can relate to the upheaval going on in your house right now. When I was reading your entry I was thinking, somewhat humorously, that prehaps Gerry should now start his own cancer blog. Then I realized I should tell you about an extremely wonderful cancer blog written by an NPR journalist about his cancer journey. It is extremely inspirational and moving. It has developed a huge following in the cancer community and the comments are often as motivational as the blog itself. I have looked at lots of cancer-related blogs on the web and nothing comes close to the beauty and insightfulness of Leroy Seiver's writings and thoughts. The web address is
My other question for you is if you have told the kids about the diagnosis yet? I was sickly for about four months before my diagnosis and I didn't know it until afterwards but my kids (then 10 and 16) worried to themselves that I had cancer. After they were told they were actually relieved to know that I could be treated and taken care of. It is scary for them to see a parent suffer without knowing what is going on. If you haven't told hem yet, think about doing it sooner rather then later - they'll probably take it much better than you think they will. My very best wishes to you and your family. Love, Martha

April 22, 2007 8:40 AM  
Anonymous Neil said...

Our books arrived today. Thanks they are great.

Our thoughts and prayers are with you and Gerry as you battle the disease.

April 25, 2007 12:42 PM  

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