Monday, June 25, 2007


So, no travel section this week, sorry. I think the travel section of my paper must have gotten swapped for the real estate section this week...

I spent the weekend in DC. This is how I packed:

This is how much knitting I actually did (I decided to frog and reknit the heel - and see how it fits this time?):

My reason for going to DC was to look at condos. After two whole days (total of about 12 hours) of looking at condos (I'd show pictures, but really, one unfurnished condo looks pretty much like any other unfurnished condo when you aren't there, and they're mostly a blur in my mind anyway), I'm pretty much wiped out. On the plus side, I found a couple of serious possibilities and may be making an offer soon.

When I got back, I found all of this waiting for me (in boxes) on the front porch:

It's lots of Peaches and Creme cotton (for washcloths), and some Mission Falls 1824 Wool (destined for the miter blanket). There's only one problem. See the pink yarn on the left? That was supposed to be purple. It was supposed to be going into washcloths to be gifts for someone whose favorite color is lilac and whose kitchen appliances are black (think washrags a la Mason Dixon in purple and black). That yarn, despite being named lilac, is definitely pink. Oh well, I've ordered some Mission Falls 1824 Cotton, that I know is lilac.

And tonight, I had more things that I should have been doing than I really want to admit, but a weekend of very little relaxation and not much more sleep plus a long day at school meant that I did this, instead:

It made me feel a little better, so it's ok, right?

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

In my defense...

Recently, there have been some questions as to whether I've actually done any knitting. There may even have been some suggestion that the Sunday Travel Section is no more than a ploy on my part to distract you from the lack of knitting by showing you pretty pictures of far away places. While I know it doesn't seem like there's been much knitting (funny how things go so slowly when you're actively (more or less) working on 6 different things), I really have been knitting.

Exhibit A: My blog post from last Friday/Saturday. I still haven't decided what to do about the lack of fitting...

Exhibit B: One finished Bayerische sock

I haven't started the second one yet, and I think there'll be a touch of SSS here. While I really like the pattern, I should have used a lighter yarn - the Patons Kroy 4 ply is too thick for the needles I'm using and this pattern. Plus, the sock is slightly bigger than I really like...

Exhibit C: Picovoli

This isn't actually the current state of Picovoli. I've made further progress (I'm about three rounds from starting the waist increases) this week, but I haven't been able to get any good pictures.

Exhibit D: The second Pomatomus sock

Progress has been slow here, but there has been progress. I'm now about half a pattern repeat (11 rounds) from starting the heel. (The tomato plant is my roommate's. I thought some of you might enjoy the picture for more than just the sock.)

So you see? I have been knitting.

P.S. I'm traveling this weekend, so the Sunday Travel Section might not get posted until Monday.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Sunday Travel Section: Edinburgh

This Sunday we go to Edinburgh, Scotland. I went there a few years ago with a group of friends, and we had a fantastic time, despite it being the middle of January and quite cold. We hiked up Arthur's Seat, which afforded a spectacular view of Holyrood Palace and the Scottish Parliament (as well as the rest of the city).

Walking around the city, we encountered this quartet:

I don't think I noticed at the time, but now I'm rather intrigued by their socks. Especially the bobbles on the cuffs...

Friday, June 15, 2007

On Socks

Last time, I wrote that maybe I'm starting to understand how Wendy can knit socks so quickly. Wendy knits lots of plain socks, and this is my first pair of really plain socks. This is also my first pair of toe-up socks, which has nothing to do with their going relatively quickly.

I started the toe-up socks for two reasons: the summer IK has a guide to toe-up socks, and I thought I should learn some new techniques to expand my knitting repertoire. I started the toe with an eastern (aka Turkish) cast on of sixteen stitches (much pointier than I make toes on top-down socks, but much wider than the recommended 8). I found the cast on to be fiddly and frustrating, and the toe maddening to knit until I got to the point where I started the ribbing. The foot went fine, and a couple nights ago, I turned the heel.

I did a short row heel, something else it turns out I'm not really a fan of. I thought it was much more awkward to work than a flap heel, and a bit harder to size than a flap heel. Compared to the balls of my feet, my heels are relatively narrow, so I worked the heel down to fewer stitches than recommended. I think I could have gone down two more stitches and gotten a better fit, but what I got was pretty good. Of course, working down to fewer stitches meant the heel would be longer than the guidelines, and I thought I'd compensated by going with a shorter than recommended foot, but I guess I didn't compensate enough.

Do you see the problem?

Trying the sock on after I turned the heel gave me a false sense of security, since apparently, I should have started the heel about four rows earlier. So now I can either frog back to before the heel (I don't really feel like knitting the heel again, though - if I didn't like it the first time, I'm not sure why I would the second) or shorten the toe by picking out the cast on, frogging a few rows and then grafting it shut (the problem is that I like the way the unribbed area of the toe looks now). What do you think?

In the meantime, I took this sock out to frolic in the garden.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Guilt free

I did cast on something else, and so far, it's coming along swimmingly. See? No guilt here.

I've also been making pretty good progress on the purple club socks. They're quite basic, and despite my winging it without a pattern, they're going really quickly. I'm beginning to see how Wendy can knit socks so quickly.

I think Lorraine is right - I do need more needles (and not just sock needles). I haven't been a Knitter for very long, and I've had an income for even less time, so my collection of needles and notions is quite small. As I discover I need something for a project, I buy it, and so slowly add to the collection.

Thank you for the nice comments about the vegetation in the pictures. The greenery that my knitting likes to frolic about in is my roommates' garden and potted plant collection. As someone who grew up in the Southwest, which is beautiful but not known for being green, I have an intense fascination with green vegetation, especially if it grows without being watered by a person.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Sunday Travel Section: Shenandoah

Last summer, I drove my car from Albuquerque, New Mexico to Boston, Massachusetts. (The route is not quite the one we followed, but it's close). I was driving with a friend, and we saw lots of fun and interesting things. One of the prettiest places we saw, though, was Shenandoah National Park. Skyline Drive was full of scenic overlooks, and even the road itself was pretty:

And in knitting, the latest sock had a pretty good time at a barbecue last night and is enjoying the sun and flowers today.

Saturday, June 09, 2007

Accidental casting on...

One night this week (I don't remember which; it's been one of those weeks), I was doing the grocery shopping. Going from the bread aisle to the checkout, I passed by the magazines, and saw the Summer Interweave Knits. Even if the cover pattern were the only one in the magazine I'd knit, it would have been worth getting, but there are no fewer than seven patterns that I'd like to knit.

The only problem is that I've been feeling a little bad about having so many works in progress, some of which I haven't even looked at, much less knit on, since last summer. Fortunately, the sweater I really want to knit is wool, and that doesn't mix so well with temperatures in the high 80s accompanied by humidity. So that one will probably wait until this fall. Still, there might have been a bit an accident...

But it's only a sock, right? And since I made some really good progress on the pomatomus socks, it's ok that I have three socks on the needles right now, right? Even if it means I'm using every size 1 dpn I own...

Pomatomus progress: first sock finished, and halfway done with the leg of the second.

I think I'm going to go knit. If I finish something, maybe I can start this without feeling too bad...

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Sunday Travel, plus Knitting

When I last wrote, I promised some proof that I've been knitting, so I'll start with that and get to the travel at the end.

My class-time knitting, Pomatomus, has been coming along nicely:

My collection of mitered squares for the blanket is still small, but it is twice as big as it was:

I even did some knitting on the Print o' the Wave stole:

For this week's travel, we're staying in Pittsburgh. As a city, Pittsburgh offers a quite pretty skyline and a very nice ball park. I'm especially fond of the ball park, since I went to the Padres/Pirates game there Wednesday night, had a great seat and a great time watching the Padres win. So, there are two reasons for going to PNC Park in Pittsburgh.

For baseball fans, this is the sort of view you can get for less than standing room only in some parks.

For the non-baseball inclined, this is the view of the city from the cheap seats (which also have a good view of the field, convenient for groups whose interest in the game is mixed).

And now I'm off to face another week of classes and homework. If I'm lucky and get to do any interesting knitting, I'll post mid-week. Otherwise, I'll see you next time for the Sunday Travel Section.