Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Boo! And Brr.

We had our first real frost last night. I had to put on my winter coat AND gloves for the 2 mile morning dog walk. It was still dark when we left the house (just around 7am) and I ran into a few people who had to use flashlights to see their windshields to scrape them. The temperature is 28 which is cold for this time of year--it should get warm today and won't be as cold for the trick or treaters tonight.

We are set with candy. I need to sweep a few leaves off the walk (it was windy yesterday--all day--and lots of leaves came down) and also remove the spiderwebs around the front door (although they are seasonally appropriate). We never know if we'll have 3 kids or 30 kids but we're ready!

Glaswegian is going slowly. I have done ten rows of the yoke. It takes a while---during the Duck football game on Saturday I knit eight rows, and during the first half of the Broncos game last night I did two rows.

Here is a close up. You can see the green mixed with the blue if you look closely.

Relatively soon, I think, I'll start decreases on the yoke so that will go a bit faster. So far it looks good, but it is still early days.

I hope your Halloween is particularly spooky!

Monday, October 30, 2017

Pre Halloween Quora

And Kathy is all about the sugar!

Have you ever had Milky Way cake? No but I have to go search to see what it is now. 
Oooh it looks good.
Have you ever had blueberry cookies with cardamom? Nether with nor without cardamom!
Have you seen Sugar Knits Chunky Moss Cowl on Ravelry? No but I have to go search to see what it is now. https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/chunky-moss-stitch-sugar-knits-cowl
Do you like a malted milkshake? Not that into the malt, I must say.
Do you like chocolate covered coffee beans? Not really.
This entire QUORA makes me sound anti-sugar. Rest assured I most definitely am not.

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Mindless Pooling

I cast on for these socks to knit in the car when we went to the Hood Canal. For a while, these were my only mindless knitting happening. And now they're done. And I'm a bit 'meh' with them.

I like the colors, and I love the 'hand' of this yarn. I just don't like the pooling. But since most of the time they'll be under my jeans, it matters little (I guess). Plus, I freed up some needles for future work.

Yesterday was a beautiful day--we went for a long walk with the dogs, then out to lunch. I settled in to watch the football game (Ducks won, finally) and Tim joined me for parts of it.

It was a pretty mellow day. Today should be equally mellow. I hope there's mellowness your way as well.

Friday, October 27, 2017

Friday Faces

The faces of Calypso, that is.

That's Tinkerbell on the right, Feather on the left, Calypso in the middle, and Trinket behind him.
He had some eye gook and Ann tried to clean it up.

He now weighs almost 50 pounds and is really filling out.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Never will I ever

This morning I saw a gorgeous sweater on Mason-Dixon's blog about the "It" sweater at Rhinebeck called Birkin. It caught my eye because it is pretty, it is knit all in one piece, and as my Glaswegian sweater has a similar construction, I wanted to see how much it looks like you have mummy arms--all tightly wrapped at the top (spoiler alert, it doesn't). The photos are gorgeous and I especially the love in black and white (never mind about weaving in, we're in Kim's fantasy land where weaving in never needs doing).

So I kept reading about the pattern on Ravelry and

did you see the yarn requirements? YOU NEED LOTS OF YARN. Because it uses fingering weight. Yes, that's pretty and delicate and all, but it made me think of 'never will I ever' in the knitting world, and Never Will I Ever Knit a Sweater out of Fingering Weight.

I thought this might turn into a long post on knitting Never Will I Ever but I really can't think of other knits I will NEVER knit. I try to be kind of adventurous in my knitting, and while there are yarns I don't really like and things I'd never think of knitting (mermaid tail blanket, anyone), if someone asked (nicely) I'd probably go ahead and knit that thing.

Do you have any Never Will I Ever for knitting?

Off to visit the alpacas this morning, apples in hand.

In other news, Liab is coming along:

I'm just about done with the leg. I really like this one!

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

So this happened.

I'm not sure when, but all of a sudden the body of Glaswegian was long enough to attach the sleeves. So that is what I did. Now comes some short rows and then the patterned yoke. So this has changed from 'mindless' knitting to 'incredibly mindful' knitting. And I got the stitch count way, way off but I'm not too worried (famous last words).

Let's see what else is up?

  • We watched two movies over the weekend---one was called "Match Point" with Jeremy Sisto (Billy from Six Feet Under) and it wasn't GREAT but it was good. A good family story if you need a not-exciting story. JK Simmons (Skoda from Law & Order) was in it too.
  • We also watched the Bernie Madoff movie with Robert DeNiro (after also watching the Bernie Madoff mini-series with Richard Dreyfus when it came out). It was pretty good (I love Michelle Pfeiffer) and was a bit more --I don't know--sympathetic? At least in the early part. 
  • I read a book by Marion Keyes called "The Other Side of the Story" which was a nice piece of easy-going Chick Lit, very appropriate for a rainy weekend.
  • This is my Big Grading week---I had 22 3-page papers turned in yesterday and will have 22 8-page papers turned in tomorrow. Good times! Need to get back to that now.

Monday, October 23, 2017


*What are the odds someone will come home from the store with what you asked them to pick up? 
Pretty good. Lists work in our house.
*Have you tried chocolate hummus? 
No, although I've seen that this is the new trendy food. It just sounds awful. I'm not a hummus person anyway.
*Got allergies?  yeah?  Which ones?
Where we live--the bottom of the Willamette valley--is pretty much a repository for allergens. Trees and grass tend to get to me.
*How many (non baby) blankets have you knitted?  
Two--although I just realized that I never seamed up the one that I made for Tim and I'm not sure exactly where it is. That needs to go on the list.
*Have you heard a ghost story recently? 
Don't like 'em.
*Do you get bleach on your clothes?  IF not HOW not? 
I only use bleach about once a year and that is when I do a load of whites. Generally, the whites are too far gone by the time I use bleach. So it isn't really a problem for me.
*Do you use stitch stoppers?
I don't know what this are. Oh. Just googled. They're point protectors, basically. And the answer is no, I just shove the needles into the ball of yarn and not worry about that superstition.
*What’s your preference: Spiders, Witches, Pumkins, Ghosts or Monsters?
Pumpkins with witches a close second.
*Creature Features: Favorites of yours.  Oldies…goodies.
"I Walked with a Zombie" which is about voodoo.
*Is there any Halloween candy in your house right now?
Yes. Four bags of kit kats we bought at Target last week. We are re-thinking our Halloween candy strategy given the recent uptick in stories about 'Switch Witches' and now are only giving out one thing of candy whereas before we would give two. It sounds so grinch-y as I write this but if you have read about Switch Witches you know what I"m talking about.

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Meet Liab

Liab is a free pattern on Rav and is a good one. The cabling is kind of intricate but there's lots of ribbing to break it up. I love how the cables creep around from the back to the front of the foot. I have about a third of the foot done and here is how it looks:

Kind of hard to see and not very exciting, but yeah.

The yarn is Wollmeise and the color is a rosy pinky red (less orangey than it looks like in these photos) and this is a fun knit. Cables always look better after a blocking, so they may look a bit sloppy now but they'll end up gorgeous, I'm sure.

The buttons for the cable sweater have also arrived, so I'll post some final photos of that soon.

It is meant to be a rainy weekend here (we're experiencing what is known as an 'atmospheric river' and yes, that is a real thing). The Ducks are playing at 1 so I'll probably knit and watch that. I also have just begun "La Belle Sauvage", the new book by Philip Pullman, and I'm looking forward to reading that. I discovered "His Dark Materials" during a period in between some Harry Potter novels and really like it. I even liked the movie of "The Golden Compass" but I guess no body else did since they never made the other two).

Next week is a busy grading week for me, as my class will turn in both short and long papers. Good times!

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Glaswegian update and blathering!

First off, thanks for all your generous comments about the blog. I have no plans to stop blogging---first, how else would I brag about Calypso, and second, I enjoy having all my knitting adventures in a single place.

I think one of the challenges of social media is that each of us become the 'star' of our narrative. That leads me to put on my"judgy" glasses without thinking twice. Yes, we all have a lens through which we see the world. But when I find myself to be constantly judging things that Idon't know that much about---especially when it comes to second hand reports of people and their actions--is not something I want to continue doing.

I get that many people use the Internet to vent, and if that works for them, that's fine. Venting gets stuff out. It's when the discourse around the venting that buildsa chorus of input that was never asked for in the first place that just wears me down. And when it starts spilling onto knitting blogs and communities, it is time for me to, as Bridget mentioned in the comments, be much  more selective about my engagement.  I'm pretty sure Facebook is going to go on hiatus for a while. I think I also may take a break from the Ravelry boards as well. I find that I really am not posting at either place very much any more, mostly because I just don't want to add to the unnecessary noise.

But anyway, I realize that this is MY lens and YMMV. 

Blogs are wonderful! I really enjoy learning about my blogging friends and what they're up to. Please continue to visit my blog to enjoy yarn and Calypso and whatever else I blather about. But I promise you--I will do my best to add more positivity to the world here.

Speaking of, here is the entire body of Glaswegian:

You  might recall I've already done the sleeves, so this is both fronts and the back. It needs to be 15 inches long (at least!) before I add the sleeves. It's maybe six inches now? It is going a bit slow since the yarn is that pencil roving and so much be handled a bit more gently than other yarns but I do love how it looks.

I'm reading a great book: "Seven Days of Us" by Francesca Hornak. It is about a family that is quarantined in the dilapidated family manor house when the oldest daughter returns from treating a deadly virus in an African country. Everyone in the family has a secret (of course) and as these come out, the family dynamics tilt and sway. It is alternatively hilarious and heartbreaking and one of the best books I've read in a long time.

Tonight is the symphony and I hope I can stay awake!!

Thanks again for your comments of support.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Tuesday thanks

I'm seriously thinking about getting off most of social media. And to stop following a ton of blogs. I'm very thankful for my bloggy friends and that many of you focus on being positive and optimistic--it keeps me going! I hope I can do the same for you.

Let's start with this guy.

Ann at the farm sent me these last night.  I realized that his fringe is growing over his cute/scary eyelids and that changes the way he looks a little bit. Do you love his fuzzy ears? I do. He seems to be a big fan of hay.

This weekend was Weave In Weekend at my house. I hate weaving in ends. Hate it. I hate finishing basically. But I sucked it up and finished the sweater, including the button band:

This last one is upside down, I think. But that is the back. Anyway--I ordered buttons and then this guy is done.

Also wove in ends on a bunch of things finished this summer:

^^ Dots by Casapinka.

^The blue sparkly scarf, sewn into a cowl.

One and done.

I tried to get the energy up to weave in all the ends in the fair isle sweater, but I was COMPLETELY EXHAUSTED AFTER ALL THAT END WEAVING IN.

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Saturday Catch up!

Hello all! Today is a beautiful Saturday--the rain of the last week has stopped, it is sunny and beautifully cool (it is 37 out right now but supposed to go up to the 60s later), and I'm sitting in a sunbeam watching Tim do the Saturday crossword and all is well in the world.

First up on the catch up, this guy who is two and a half months old:

 This final picture is Calypso with his Mom Tinkerbell and a slew of other alpacas. It was raining yesterday and Ann and I stood under a tree and hung out with them for a while. They don't mind the rain---they're at the point six months past their spring shearing tht they have plenty of fleece that keeps the rain off of them. As apples are just about gone, I took out carrots but didn't have nearly enough to go around.

If you're friends with me on FB, I posted a short video of Calypso chewing and yawning.

He's still nursing and while he'll graze on hay and grass, he still has not started eating pellets. Pellets give them most of the real nutrition that alpacas need, and while Calypso gets most of that from Tink, he also needs a few extra vitamins that Ann gives him once a week. He's growing slowly and he's really filling out. And his fleece is absolutely and amazingly gorgeous.

Second up today, behold the Nutkins!

I finished these off last night and like them a lot. I haven't blocked them yet but I do think the pattern will come out more when they've had a bit of a stretch. It is hard to believe that I started these when it was summer and now the heat is on and we've turned the gas fireplace on just about every evening this week.

So now I have completed my commitment to the I Heart Fall Knitalong!

Third up: we are about five weeks away from breaking ground on our house on the coast. It has been a bit of a slog but we are getting close! Pictures when it happens.

Fourth up: last night we watched the movie "Hero". It stars  one of my Twinnie's favorites, Sam Elliott (who has a house near by to Eugene). It was----OK. Just OK. It could have been a great movie but instead it was---OK.

Fifth up: reading. I've read the new Dan Brown book "Origin" (don't judge, I love Dan Brown) and also a charming little book called "Diary of a Bookseller" about, well, a diary of someone who sells books (in the town of Wigtown in Scotland). It's non-fiction. Did I mention it was charming? Now I'm reading Ken Follet's "Column of Fire" and I'm learning a lot about the religous turnoil of the Elizabethan age but it isn't as compelling (to me) as Pillars of the Earth.

I think that's my catch up for today! Enjoy the weekend!

Friday, October 13, 2017

N for Nutkin

I've been working on the second Nutkin, and I got all excited last night because I thought I was one row away from doing the ribbing:

Ah but it is one row and one complete repeat of the pattern (ten rows), but I'm a Nutkin Pro right now so I'm thinking this one can be finished this weekend. KAL win!

Jury Duty was what you would expect. In the 'orientation' the person doing the talk stated that there *would* be a trial jury selected that day but she didn't know exactly when that would happen. As it turns out 24 of the group (I think 80 or so people were asked to report) were selected for voir dire (spoiler, NOT ME!). What I DID find out, though, was that even though I had a low juror number (8), that number didn't mean I was 'first up' for voir dire--instead they have a computer randomly select the number of people they need for the jury. THANK YOU OH WONDERFUL COMPUTER THAT DID NOT SELECT ME. And so I was only there for a little more than two hours, I got a lot of work done, and so I've got my 'civic duty' box checked for a few years.

I gave my speech about Hello Kitty on Wednesday to a packed room (33 people) (small room). I think the free pizza helped with the turnout (22 were grad students). But it was fun and I appreciated the opportunity to give the talk. Ann from the farm came to hear it so it was fun to have her in 'my' world for a bit.

I'm going out to see my guy this morning (in the rain, most likely). Hopefully some additional pictures of him all shiny wet will follow.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Jury Duty

I'm off to Jury Duty, but here's a little Calypso to keep you entertained. He is meeting Shandy, one of the cats at the farm.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Two sleeves

I've finished both sleeves of the Glaswegian cardigan, and took them outside to get a picture in the sunlight.
These colors are much truer to life. I really like this cardigan (still) although I'm still doing the ribbing for the body. It is nice to think the sleeves are done, though!

It seems I just have a huge number of things on the to-do list so this will be short. I am called for Jury Duty on Thursday and I'm hoping that ends up being able to be a 'catch up' day!

Monday, October 09, 2017


Happy Indigenous People's Day!

Quick Quora from Quathy!

*Where do you go to meet new people?  
I guess the Internet, but I don't really have a huge mission to meet new people.
*What is the craziest diet you’ve ever put yourself on? 
I did the Diet Center in the 1980s and ate something like 600 calories a day for 12 weeks. I lost a lot of weight. Most of it is back. 
*Name something you’ve knit and never worn ….
An alpaca cowl, because it is just too hot!

Saturday, October 07, 2017


Much of the latter half of this afternoon was spent snoozing on the sofa with the dogs---I'm generally not a napper (unlike the Twinster) but today was just a napping day, I guess. But before that, I finished off the sleeves on this:

The sweater, that is, not the dog! That's Comet, of course. She is celebrating five years of being in our family. Look at that tail wagging! She's such a wonderful girl, and we're so lucky to have such a sweet pup in our lives.

The Thursday evening thing went fine. I was very nervous. Lauren loved my introduction, and several strangers came up after the dinner to tell me that they liked it, so there's that. That's a long day of 'work' (as most of the people at the dinner are donors, and one must be nice). Yesterday I met with more donors too.

I read "Origin" by Dan Brown (what can I say? I love Dan Brown. I always learn a lot from his books, mostly from all the googling I have to do to see if what he writes about is really true). Plus sometimes you have to read a book with chapters that are three pages long and end in a cliffhanger.

We went to Chow for lunch and I had a burger with three kinds of onions on it (prepared three ways, not three different onion types). It was great. I'm a bit onion-sauced stained but it is worth it. Don't judge!

Thursday, October 05, 2017

Cowl To Be

So this scarf will be a cowl:

I have to start finishing things (in order to be able to cast on) so I wet blocked this last night and then steam blocked it today. You can see the pattern in it but you can't see the sparkly yarn. Ah well.

Tonight is our Hall of Achievement dinner, when we dress up fancy (well, fancy for Oregon, which means basically not fancy at all) and celebrate people being inducted in to the Hall of Achievement. I said after last year that I'd never go again, but this year my good friend Lauren is being inducted and I get to introduce her, so we're going. I've been rehearsing my introduction all day and it sounds almost non-rehearsed. We'll see how that goes.

I dashed out to the farm with a bag of apples from a neighbor's back yard. Everyone is doing well and the alpacas are truly my balm of Gilead.

Tuesday, October 03, 2017


Why the odd title? Because Glaswegian is on the needles!

One starts with the sleeves, and here is the first one. I think the photos on the Rav site were taken in very, very strong daylight because I have the exact same yarns as the pattern and mine is much darker. It's OK, just hard to photograph.

Here's a close up of the fair isle:

And here is the yarn--it is a pencil roving of Lopi called Plotulopi. It is very long fibered and has absolutely no twist in it, so it looks very rustic, like handspun (well, my handspun). It reminds me of a long-ago loved Benneton sweater. It is a great value--300 yards for about $9.

And it comes in not a ball, not a skein, but a plate:

Here is how one website describes it:
"Plötulopi is an unspun yarn and is traditionally used for Lopapeysa, Icelandic color work sweaters. Plötulopi is fragile to knit with, but due to the long staple length of the wool, once knit, produces garments that are durable, soft, and comfortable to wear indoors or outdoors,  protecting beautifully in the elements. Plötulopi can be held singly, but also double or triple."

By fragile, they mean that the first few rows will involve a lot of the yarn falling apart, but it goes back together with a quick rub between the palms. I pretty quickly got used to it but you need to work this yarn very gently.

In other news, I started (and stopped) a lot of books, but right now I'm reading two. First is 'Young Jane Young' about a woman who tries to reinvent herself after a scandal. It is lighthearted and fun. The second is "Column of Fire" by Ken Follet where he revisits the town of Kingsbridge. I liked the Kingsbridge novels, but I never quite got into his WW2 novels.

We went to an interesting rehearsal for a Ted Talk on the subject of moral injury. Incredibly thought provoking, given by a veteran who served as a medic in Vietnam.

Other than that, it was quite chilly on my morning walk with the pups and Winter is Coming. Bring. It. On. !

Sunday, October 01, 2017

Quick Quora

*Tell me about a product you love: Ritter Sport dark chocolate. Especially with marzipan.
*How do you start a campfire? "Honey? Could you start the campfire?"
*Tell me why your are working with the yarn weight you are…. I'm actually working with some pencil roving and it is exasperating yet fun.
*Would you rather have tickets to HAMILTON or a Baseball play off game? Sorry Kathy, I'm picking Hamilton.
*Would you be frightened or thrilled to be on a space walk? Yes.
*Spices: cinnamon or pumpkin spice? Cinnamon is pumpkin spice yes? Fine. Pumpkin spice.
*Shoes your mother wore: I'm sure they were incredibly ugly because she had a weird shoe size and it was impossible for her to find shoes (she's still alive, and her shoes are old lady orthopedic shoes).
*Your knitting this weekend in three words or less: Pencil roving fun.
*Apples eat them , cooked or raw? Yes.
*New baby?  What did they name it? Calypso (softball question).