Thursday, October 29, 2015

Sous Sous Update

Yup, that's the front and in about 30 or so rows I'll be done with it!

I was pretty confused about how the pattern would come together because the back has shoulder shaping and the front does not. Now I realize the shoulder shaping means that the sweater will be straight across the back but high-low across the front. It just kind of came to me this morning how it all worked.

Because the pattern has no schematics, but whatever.

Anyway--now I'm going to move full speed ahead. The other thing with this is because there is so much 'ease' that the top part of the sleeve are made from the existing front and back. So that's cool! Once I finish the top and sew the shoulders, I pick up stitches for the sleeves and then knit about four inches of sleeves to finish it off.

Which is good because I'm ready for Sous Sous to be done. I do love this yarn and I do love this pattern or else it would end up in the Pile of Never Ending Wips.

What else? I"m reading "The Clasp" by Sloane Crosley (I think) and it is quite good. We continue to enjoy "Indian Summers" and "Home Fires" on Masterpiece (although I refer to the latter as 'Home Fries'). The only problem with Home Fires is that every guy is a jerk.

I'm waiting for the arrival of our vet for a house call. Our cat Stella is brain damaged and one way that is manifested is her inability to go to the vet without freaking out totally. She is on Phenobarbital to control a seizure disorder and those silly drug people, they want a visual confirmation that Stella is still alive and we're not running a black market phenobarbital business out of our house. So our terrific vet comes over and gives her a good look see (as much as possible for our Stella) and then all is good for another year. We're very fortunate that given Stella's very rough start in life (hence the brain damage) she is relatively healthy and we're used to her quirks right now and have integrated them into our life. We're also fortunate we have a great pet sitter that she appears to love more than us and can care for her when we're away.

And Ducks play tonight. Go Ducks she said wearily/warily.

I'm still collecting data so if you have a moment please take this survey:
 Help a knitter out and give me your thoughts on Rav!

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Tot: Daily Blogging Ideas

According to Carole, November is NaBloPoMo and I don't know what that stands for but it means blog every day. Most of us don't blog every day because of a. time and b. content and in fact I like to combine my  knitting-reading-viewing into one post since it makes my life seem much bigger and richer HA HA. But I'm up for trying NaBloPoMo and here are my tips of things to blog.

  1. Monday: weekend recap including the favorite thing you knit on.
  2. Tuesday: ToT of course
  3. Wednesday: musings on what you might like to knit in the future
  4. Thursday: amusing anecdote that you found online that may or may not be related to knititng
  5. Friday: little knitting rant because we all have them.
  6. Saturday: weekly recap including the favorite thing you knit on
  7. Sunday: an unusual or out of the ordinary thing that happened to you
  8. Bonus day: a beautiful piece of knitting you found on the Internets
  9. Bonus day: a link to a friend's blog who had an interesting post on something (hey, it is NaBloPoMo and there's likely to be lots of content you can link to!)
  10. Bonus day: a poll or question you ask of other knitters
Like my poll from Sunday--pink or red for mitts? I like the pattern so much that I'm going to knit mitts in both colors, but right now I'm starting with the pink (and I just erased that I was starting with the red so that shows you my level of commitment).

One more poll: I'm collecting some data for a study on electronic 'word of mouth' and if you are a member of Ravelry (even if you're not active), would  you take three minutes to answer a few questions for me about your reactions toward messages and posts on Ravelry?

Click here to go to the survey!

Thank you for your help with that!

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Help me!

So I"m going to make the Traveller's Mitts and I have enough yarn in two colors of Panda Cotton.

Panda Cotton is 60% bamboo, 25% cotton and 15% elastic nylon so this should make good cool-not-freezing-cold knitwear.

Color 1: "Lacquer Red"
Color 2: "Fuchsia"

My winter coat is black, I have scarves in every color, if I do wear a hat it is usually black, so what color should I use?  Leave a thought in the comments please!

In other news:
  • All Blacks won and will meet Australia in the Rugby World Cup final next Saturday!
  • We watched "Woman in Gold" with Helen Mirren last night--it was good--about Nazi Art Thefts
  • I'm reading "The One and Only"--this book goes really fast--it is pretty lightweight and if you like football (Twinnie) it might be a good read from the library.
  • It is raining, that is nice.
I'm looking forward to your thoughts on the color I should use!

Saturday, October 24, 2015

All Blacks, Current Knitting, Planned Knitting

Today--HOORAY--the All Blacks/Springboks semi-final is being aired on NBC! Starting at 11:30 Pacific! It isn't live but the game is going on now--so I"m avoiding Twitter and FB so it will be like watching it like! GO ALL BLACKS!

Now that we have that out of the way:

 Here is the front of Sous Sous. Right now it looks just like the back but the separation for the next starts very soon (after the fourth repeat) and so this will start going faster as the stitch count decreases. I also realized that since this is oversized there is a lot of sleeve knit as part of the front (you'll see once I put it together.
I also saw a pretty pattern on Rav last night called "the Inara Wrap" and thought I'd like to do a wrap that is sections of cables separated by sections of Moss Stitch (because I'm all about the Moss, 'bout the Moss, no garter) so I kind of sketched it out. Nice yes? It would be knit  starting with the moss section on the right and the cable sections use the cables that start and finish without going to the ends of the knitting (kind of like the cables on Tucker and on the other sweater I have with this type of cable--don't remember the name but it was from IK a few years ago). The Elsebeth Lavold books I have provide several charts for these types of cables so I'm kind of exciting about designing and knitting this. Stay tuned!

Also, there were two free patterns on the Rav yesterday--Traveling mitts and Traveling hat, that have a traveling cable which I like. So I got those and put those on the list.

Did I mention: Go All Blacks!

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Fast week

This week seems to be gong by very fast...what happened to Wednesday? Oh I taught for three hours and then graded 18 papers. So here it is on Thursday and time for an update.

I've been working on the first of two Christmas stockings to match the new Christmas tree skirt, and here is the first one:

This is the front, as modeled by my arm in bad lighting.
And this is the back.

This isn't as fun (sadly) as the tree skirt--it is in the round which I tend to like, but I have to use magic loop which kind of slows down the rhythm. But it has gone quite fast and so there's that. There will also be a red band (a knitted braid) at the top.

In other news:

-almost done with week 4 out of ten. Then comes a term of sabbatical. Can't wait.
-brought two new books home from the library. Realized I had already read one. The second one, called Pretty Girls, is just too violent.
-I need to finish The Martian but it gets a bit sciency sometimes (and it also gets me nervous).
-Comet goes for her annual exam to the vet this morning. Sample collected and it is only 7:13. Still need to get one from Pilot though.

Top that, readers!

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

ToT Travel Tote time!

What are ten things that I put in my travel tote?

I travel a couple of times a year--not a big traveler as it isn't one of my favorite things and being an introvert it is difficult to be out of my comfort zone. But part of my job is travel (conferences) which are kind of fun sometimes. I'm waiting to hear if I'll go to two conferences next March--one in Florida and one in Seattle (will go to Seattle no matter what I'm guessing). So when I go--what are ten things in my travel tote?

  1. Knitting--it always starts with knitting. Generally socks and non-metal needles although honestly I don't think anyone cares any longer. I also used to carry a self-addressed stamped envelope in case they got confiscated but I stopped that a while ago.
  2. Glasses. I wear contacts but always feel better if I know where my glasses are at all times.
  3. Wallet. 
  4. Phone with boarding pass on the display. I think this is one of the most awesome things on the planet. I'm not addicted to my iPhone and several days can go by without using it (except for Two Dots) but since I have a habit of losing boarding passes (where do they go?) I love this ability.
  5. Pen. For the Sudoku in the airline magazine.
  6. Eye drops for dry eyes that I forget to a. put in the baggie with other things and b. put in my eyes during the flight.
  7. Lip gloss.
  8. Kindle.
  9. Laptop.
  10. Cords (power and ear buds)
I wish I wasn't so connected to the laptop (haha see what I did there?) that I didn't need to carry it everywhere!

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Remember Tucker?

I haven't knit on Tucker for a long time--this is the sweater with the cabled yoke. It just takes forever in stockinette, around and around. Well, I picked it up yesterday and got the body done (that is, the body up until the sleeves get joined in) and now I'm doing the first sleeve.

SO EXCITING! Not really. I'm getting Tuckered out but must persevere.

In other news:

*All Blacks DEMOLISHED France in the knock out.
* Ducks beat the Huskies (Vernon Adams was back and we needed him)
*Started "The Martian"--it is really good. I'm proposing a new class for next year called Science, Literacy and Communication" and I might include this book.
*Had a fun lunch out with Tim at Hop Valley Brew Pub.
 *Rain but not nearly enough

Hope your weekend is going well!

Saturday, October 17, 2015


It is out getting blocked in the garage. I love it (of course). And started on a stocking too.

In other news:

*Symphony: we went to the symphony Thursday. It was....different. There was a 12-tone concerto (which means I think that the composer tries to use all 12 notes in order or simultaneously throughout the piece) followed by a piece that was accompanied by a ballet. The music was called "Estancia" (I think) by Ginastera and it was about a day on a ranch in South America. The music was gorgeous. The ballet was...different. It was positioned as not having a story and not related to folk dance and yep, it was neither of those. We appreciate experimentation. Let's leave it at that.

* I finished a book called "That Part Was True" which you should not read. You might want to because it was a. short and b. episolatory and c. set in part in England but you should not read this book. If you start it, you think you might better finish it since a. it is short and b. it can't be so incredibly twee throughout but you should not start it. I have no idea how this book got published. I got it at the library so I don't feel that bad about hating it.

*ALL BLACK in the 'knock out round' today. Go All Blacks.

*Our Ducks play U Washington--perhaps our most bitter rivalry. I'm guessing we'll lose. But Go Ducks anyway.

Have a good weekend!

Thursday, October 15, 2015

The heat is (literally) on

For whatever reason, I have it in the back of my head that October 15 is the official date that the heat can be turned on. We've had a few chilly mornings and I must admit I have turned the gas stove on a few times but today it was downright chilly (I wore mitts for our morning walk). So cue the Eagles, the heat is on.

I did the first button band on the tree skirt and like it:

The book that this pattern is in (something about Christmas) also has a Christmas stocking pattern that matches--I think I might do two, one for me and one for Tim, and do them in reversed colors (mine would be natural with red, Tim's red with natural trim). I just really like this project so much! I'm also going to dig out my copy of Loop d Loop and see what else Teva Durham has in there that might be attractive to knit. Zooming through Rav, I also saw a fun scarf by Fiona Ellis in her Modern Cable book which I'm pretty sure I have. Plus of course I have stuff on the needles. But I"m really going to miss this project!

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Round up!

I have about ten rows left (tiny short rows) but I think I'm done!

I think once it is blocked it will look perfect.

I'm also thinking about adding a button band on the two sides so I can button it closed (as opposed to tie it closed)--I've seen a couple of these skirts done with a button band and it is very cute.

This is one of the best projects I've ever done!

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

ToT: Weekend at Sheehan's

I blogged twice this weekend so there isn't much more to say, but here goes: this week's Ten on Tuesday is ten things you did this Columbus Day Weekend. It wasn't a three-day weekend for either of us but I'll add some of the stuff I did yesterday anyway.

1. Home Show! Where we fell in love with the idea of a sauna in the house.
2. Walks with dogs--we got in two good walks together, and I took them for another walk yesterday when I got home from work.
3. Ducks. Argh.
4. I watched the Patriots game and knit--got another wedge of the Christmas Tree Skirt done. Probably finished the wedge during SNF.
5. Made chili--it wasn't quite cold enough but yum!
6. Got lunch out on Saturday at our favorite pub, Chow.
7. Got a carry out lunch on Sunday and sat outside since it will start raining some day.
8. Finished "The Dark Web".
9. Raked leaves. The wind blew a lot of leaves around to cover our front walk and I took care of those.
10. Graded (well that was yesterday).

Meet Columbus Day weekend, same as every other weekend!

Sunday, October 11, 2015


A few things are done:

1. The back of Sous Sous

Now on to more of the same on the front.

2. "The Dark Web": not as salacious as I anticipated. The author actually ends with 'there's a lot we can learn from the activities on the dark web.' Glad I read it but could have lived with out it.

3. Summer?
After a hot and humid morning a storm blew through yesterday and rained quite a bit. Now it is delightfully cool.

4. The Oregon Ducks
So done.

In other dones--a spider built an incredible web in our back yard that blew down in the storm. Today:

One done, another begun.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Round and round

The tree skirt is growing:

And I guess at some point it will tell me when it's done--when it is a full circle. It looks like about 2/3 of a circle here.

Tim is a bit worried it will be too short--I think it will block out and grow a bit, or else as I told him I could wear it as a skirt. Ho Ho Ho!

We went to the home show today, with thoughts of our house in mind. We want to put in a Tulikivi (a big old stove) and we also saw a few examples of in-house saunas. They are priced pretty inexpensively and that was a bit of a surprise. Tim also thinks he might be able to build one so we're thinking about that too. A sauna might be lovely on the coast!

Thursday, October 08, 2015

Getting crafty

We had craft night at our house last night. Tim wanted to learn how to needle felt--he wants to make a needle felted ornament for his friend Thomas for Christmas. So I got out the big organized (sort of) bag of needle felting stuff and we felted.

Thomas lives in Germany, and was visiting his sister in Georgia this summer. Tim was in St. Louis visiting family and flew over to Georgia for a quick visit with Thomas. One of their activities was a kayak trip that ended with Tim towing Thomas due to Thomas's back. There's a great video of Thomas looking very, very relaxed in the kayak on that trip.

Thomas (or his sister, we aren't sure) sent Tim a little canoe ornament to commemorate the trip, and Tim needle-felted a little Thomas last night. I was very impressed with the hat.

While he was doing this (with my help, but not much at all) I did a little Christmas gnome.
Pretty freaking cute. And it stands up by itself.

I'm slowly acclimating to the new school year, although the schedule (three three-hour discussions each week) is challenging. I have a new group of honors students and a few have already self-identified as special snowflakes. The new PhD students seem good. I have a few new interesting projects going on with some of our PhD students too. The politics are awful but I'm working on putting those aside. After I say my piece, of course.

I finished "The Battle of Versaille" (fashion history) and it was fine--as I wrote previously, I was unaware that there wasn't really American 'high fashion' before that event. I'm also reading "The Dark Net" about the dark side of the Internet. I had read/heard several interviews with the author when the book came out so there's not a whole lot new but it is still interesting.

And this is still in progress:

I'm about to start the decreases for the neckline and then it should finish up fast!

Tuesday, October 06, 2015

Ten (seven) things

Today's ten things is ten things to do to be supportive when someone dies. We all encounter death, and Carole just lost a good friend. Her list is a great summary and I'm wondering what I could add to it.

The deaths I've dealt with the most in the past decade have been of our animal companions. We don't have children, and I love all of our pets. We had a bad spell where we lost three of our dogs to cancer in a relatively short period of time--probably five or six years. So my list is from the perspective of losing our dear animal companions.

1. Don't say 'it was just a dog/cat/whatever'. He or she wasn't just anything---he or she was my good friend and I spent more time with my dogs than I do with most people.

2. Don't say 'you can just get another one.'  Because while I can, I'm probably not ready to yet.

3. Don't talk about the worse disease that your dog/cat has.

4. Share a remembrance about the pet.

5. Send a card.

6. When sending a card, don't reference that it seems weird to send a card for the death of a pet.

7. Talk about how odd it was for you when you lost your pet--how you still see him or her walking around corners or hear him or her scratching at the door.

Loss is hard, no matter what type of loss.

Monday, October 05, 2015

Two more wedges

If my counting is correct, I have five wedges done of the pie--I think I'll do 11 and so I'm almost halfway done!

I continue to love working on this and how it looks--it is good 'football knitting' because there are so many long periods where nothing happens in football!

Reading: I finished "Fates and Furies"--the story really tilts in the second part and I honestly liked the first part better, but it was still pretty good.
Cooking: tonight I'm making slow cooker beef and brocolli: here is the recipe! It is cooking right now and I have to tell you the sauce is really really good!
Walking: I really miss my first-thing-in-the-morning three (ish) mile walks that I do all summer. I've been going in at 7:30 for my 9am class and Tim needs to get out to drive up to Corvallis on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. I've been walking the dogs when I get home and try to take half hour walks during the day at school--I've been still averaging about 10K steps every day so that seems to be working out OK.

That's all from here for now!

Sunday, October 04, 2015


Yesterday was glorious (from a weather perspective). Tim and I were both feeling weighted down by events of the week so we went out for lunch and then drove into the 'country' (for lack of a better word) to find a place selling pumpkins.

It didn't take long to find a place--It was called Larry's Berries or Harry's Berries or something like that--anyway, it was an 'honor system' place and the sign read that all pumpkins were $5.

Oh this isn't a very good picture, let me take another one and put my shoe in it so you can see how big they are.
They are big.

The one on the right is, according to Tim, close to 50 pounds--it comes up to my knee. The one on the left is probably about 20 pounds. We think we got a good pumpkin value.

In other news:
-I knit a lot on the pink thing and screwed up a cable so had to tink. Not fun.
-Yay Ducks!
-I'm reading 'Fates and Furies' and now really like it. It took a bit to get going (not long) and is really good.
-I'm also reading 'The Battle of Versaille' which isn't about war but rather about fashion design (the first 'big' show of American designers in Paris). I didn't realize there was no real original American fashion industry until the late part of the 20th century, so it is interesting in that way.

Hope your Sunday is lovely!

Saturday, October 03, 2015

Pink thing

I'm still working on the back.

I'm on the last set of the cable repeat before the decreases though.

I also finished another wedge but I'll save that for another day.

Tough week--too much bad news.