Sunday, June 28, 2015

Summer of shawls?

I guess that is what this summer is turning into!
I did a real block on the Antarktis yesterday:

I will probably steam out the edging too.

And the vamping on Drachenfels continues:

I worked on this last night while watching the documentary "Antarctica" on Netflix. It is terrific--all about what it is like to spend a year at McMurdo station in Antarctica. Also, it is a great hot-weather movie because, well, Antarctica. Highly recommend.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Bad (bored) knitter

Don't judge.

I got bored with Antarktis (as I do with most things) and thought it would look just fine with maybe 20 fewer rows (maybe 40). Here it is before I blocked it:

And here it is after I dunked it in the sink and stretched it out in the shower:

Yep pretty much exactly the same so I think I will do a 'real' block with blocking pins tomorrow.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015


I love summer. OK? It is hot and dry and sunny and lovely here. Yes it will be hotter over the weekend, I don't care.

I could go around singing this song all summer.

I'm spending days doing some work, hanging with dogs, working in the garden, knitting, and reading for fun (I'm reading "Gods and Kings" or maybe it is "Kings and Gods" about fashion designs John Galliano and Alexander McQueen. It is really good).

This will be finished some time soon--Antarktis:

One of my favorite summer plants is our butterfly bush. It makes the front yard smell great. The back yard smells like pine so it is very lovely to go back and forth between the two!

Sunday, June 21, 2015


I kind of sort of started vamping on the pattern...big swaths of garter stitch were boring me.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Making stuff

I've been busy trying to not be busy.

I need to do three presentations and finish the MTurk book before we leave for NZ. As of today, the presentation power points are done, and I have the notes I need to prepare the talks. I can always review on the plane. The book is at a point where I can turn over some of the work to my grad student, Matt, to pull it all together. I do need to spend a bit of time on the references..I'm thinking an hour a day is about all I can take on those.

So after a 4am panic yesterday I'm ok today. :-)

And knitting is being knit.

This is another hap--Antarktis--which is a fun knit and looks cool. This is knit with sock yarn.

And Drachenfels is OTK:

Just started, but it is actually straightforward enough to knit while reading, so that's good.

Today I read a short book, "The Daylight Wife". Very short. If it wasn't so short, I would have given up on it earlier.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Fiber related

Today is my 20th wedding anniversary--we are going to one of our favorite restaurants for dinner. We exchanged little gifts with the thought that we're going away in a few weeks and might buy something special while we're away. And when I say away--we're off to New Zealand for two weeks! We're excited and kind of freaked out about everything we need to do to prepare (which really consists of making a list. A nice long list).

Today also was a special day fiber wise for me...I went to Aragon Alpacas, where Brownie and Atom live, and we bred Brownie to a male named Bubinga. After shearing, Ann had Brownie's fleece tested and hers was the softest of all the fleece she tested this year (she has a LOT of alpacas and only tests about a third or so every year). Bubinga's fleece was either third or fourth softest. So if the breeding takes, we could get an incredibly soft little cria in a year.

I wasn't a very big help with the breeding, because the alpaca can do that very well by themselves. It was kind of odd to be a 'spectator' though. Brownie did great (she was a 'maiden' meaning she isn't 'proven' yet meaning she hasn't had a baby) and they make a cute couple (although apparently Bubinga will also be bred with another maiden, so my visions of alpaca wedding bells has flown out of my head).

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Graduation, Ten on Tuesday, And Other stuff

Graduation was yesterday. It was a long and crazy day.

The "Big" ceremony was at 9am. It begins with a parade called the 'Duck Walk" which goes from the center of campus to the ceremony cite, the Matthew Knight Arena:

The way the 'parade' is supposed to work is that the graduate arrive outside of our student union, they go gather around the 'banner' for their school, and then one at a time, each school marches down the street, led by the banner carrier and two professors serving as 'Marshalls'.  Marshalls tend to volunteer, except this year only one person volunteered from the School of Journalism and Communication (my school) and so I was asked to Marshall so I said yes.

Anyway, the parade didn't work that way. The schools weren't kept very separate, and at the designated time a giant mob of people starting walking to the arena--no organization, no one telling you where to go, just a giant mob of people.

Like, 1500 would be my guess.

The map above says the walk is .7 of a mile, but in reality it was longer since we had to walk all the way around the arena, down the loading zone into the bowels of the arena and then on to the stage. Chris had his phone tracking steps and he said by the end of the day we had walked over five miles (because we had to do the walk again in the afternoon for the J school graduation).

Anyway--in the morning it took almost an hour for that whole group to walk to the Arena and get seated. Then the ceremony was pretty boring. Then we walked back, I did some work for a few hours, and then put on the mufti and did it all again.

My colleague Nicole (on the left)  took this photo at the start of the walk (my colleague Chris is in the center) when we were happy and not sweaty and before the scrum began.

Today's Ten on Tuesday is the "Summer Bucket List"

1. Read. I really want to try to get into "The Magic Mountain" and "Godel Escher Bach". Perhaps the 12 hour flight to New Zealand will be good time for that.
2. Work on my arms. I have slacked off the weight lifting (small hand weights) and want to get back on that.
3. Garden. Get our front yard and back yard into shape (they're small, it can't be that hard).
4. Get research projects going--I'm fortunate to have some funding and now have to get off the stick on getting the projects going.
5. Knit of course--but I don't have any big plans except maybe get stuff that is in the works done.
6. Spend more time with alpacas--we are going to breed Brownie tomorrow and I want to spend more time learning about them.
7. Learn to weave?? I just saw that one of our LYSes is having a four-day weaving workshop on Wednesdays at the end of the summer. That might be a fun thing for me to learn.
8. Kayak new places.
9. Hike new places.
10.Ride my bike. We have some nice bike paths near us but we live at the top of a long yet slight incline which always puts me off riding my bike. I am going to try to work on that this summer. Tim has an idea to try to ride a mountain hgihway next year so I have to address the slight incline thing for that to happen.

Have to nap now after this long post.