whoosh.

That, my friends, is the sound of deadlines passing. I’ve managed to stay on top of the stuff with deadlines set by other people, and I’m working on accepting that perhaps I was too ambitious in setting some deadlines for myself this winter break. Really hard to be in the right mindset to finish up a chapter draft while my house (and let’s face it, life) is in disarray. I do not like being in between. I know this about myself, and I should’ve been kinder to myself about what kind of writing was manageable during this period of transition. Lesson learned (let’s hope). In the meantime, I’ve got a head cold, and I’m mostly packed up. Heading to DC today, and hoping to leave the cold behind. Want to see some pictures from this week?

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Boh, contemplating the view from our friend M.’s window and wondering if anybody is going to fix him a drink.

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I finally blocked Agnes, and the neckline is more relaxed now (and so much more comfortable). The length is better too, though if I were knitting this again, I’d add a few more inches so that it hits at the hip when I’m not pulling it down with my hand in a pocket.)

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More Hudson Bay Inspired Blanket knitting. I love the way this is turning out. Endless garter stitch has been exactly what I’ve wanted to work on lately, so this is definitely coming with me to DC.

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Sweet, sweet dog. He’s settled in now at my parents’ house, and it sounds like all is well. The house has been so quiet without him here, and I’ve found myself listening for the padding of paws and the jingle of his collar. I know he’ll be much happier where he is, but this will be the longest we’ve ever been apart.

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A stunning sunset. Almost as if the universe wanted to leave me with a reminder of how much I’ll miss my cozy lake house. Fingers crossed that my subletter takes good care of it while I am away.

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Time to work through my last to-do list and hit the road. More from DC!

golden weekend.

In surgeon-speak, a “golden weekend” is a weekend you’re not working or on call. For my dear friends in St. Louis, these back-to-back days of family time are precious — and noted as such on the calendar that hangs in the kitchen. I had a golden weekend of sorts. I managed a kind of balance between writing the dissertation, playing in the kitchen, prepping class, and walking with Boh amidst golden light and fall leaves.

Oh how I love fall.

Fennel slaw from The Sprouted Kitchen: A Tastier Take on Whole Foods. Do you read their blog? You should. And you should totally consider purchasing their gorgeous cookbook. This fennel slaw was simple and unexpectedly delicious. And after spending a couple of evenings flipping through the cookbook, I was inspired to make this pot of white beans:

Even though I didn’t have all of the ingredients called for, these beans and leeks are amazing. (And I say “are” because I’ve eaten them for two meals, and I’m psyched to have them again for lunch today, maybe this time on toast.)

I dug out my Agnes to wear while I worked on Sunday morning before the sun warmed the house up. I tug at it a little bit — it is slightly short, and the neck is a bit snug. I don’t think I ever blocked this, so once my dining room table is free (I’m slowly moving everything back into the kitchen), I think I’ll give it a good soak and pin it out to dry!

I almost wore my Kerrera on the walk I took with Boh, but I decided I’d be too warm. (That turned out to be a good choice. Soon…) It also needs blocking, or at least the collar does.

And in the knitting department, I present to you Yoda Thorpe! Since snapping this photo, I’ve used the sides of a coated green hanger to thread through the ears, and now it needs some more seaming to support the additional weight. I think M. is going to be a fabulous Sexy Yoda for Halloween.

There’s a pile of grading waiting for me today, which means that instead I’m making granola, doing laundry, and generally catching up on life this morning. Pretty soon I’ll have no choice but to sit down to comment on papers…

quotidian.

These days, I’m up well before the sun, and now that the semester is in full swing, there’s less time for lazy mornings. (For me, anyway.)

Morning oatmeal. I’ve been eating mine with a splash of milk, some agave syrup, and a spoonful of crunchy peanut butter.

Agnes. Perfect for weekend work.

A Bon Jovi pencil. Necessary for writing comments on student papers.

Rutabaga and turnip soup, with New Mexico chile powder.

Boh behind my desk chair, keeping me company.

Pasta with green olives, garlic, and crushed tomatoes.

Resting (Boh) and knitting (me) on the couch. Knitting pictures soon! (I just want to let something I put in the mail yesterday get to where it is going.)

angle of repose?

Boh and I have spent much of the last several days snuggled up on the couch re-reading some Wallace Stegner. I’d say Boh has found his angle of repose, wouldn’t you? (My Agnes sweater is perfect for reading late into the night.)

Also, I’ve been seeing a pair of pileated woodpeckers in the yard with some regularity over the last couple of weeks. I only had my phone handy, so this is the best I could do. Isn’t s/he lovely?

autumn is for knitters.

You know, like Virginia is for Lovers. Snapped these last two shots this morning before dashing out the door to meet a friend for breakfast. It is a grey fall day, perfect for a knitted layer like whisper, which is currently adding just the right amount of cozy to a day of reading on the couch. (I’m reading, not writing, today because I finished a draft of my prospectus last night. It’s still very much a draft, but it feels good to have something real on paper.)

agnes in action.

I’ve been wearing Agnes pretty much since I returned home from last week’s research trip to the land of Mick. (How great is it that knitting friends live near archives?!) The weather has turned chilly and extremely fall-like, and Agnes is serving exactly the purpose I imagined for her: a cozy warm layer for mornings and evenings. (I’m wearing Agnes right now, and if I weren’t typing, my hands would be in the pockets.)

Stay tuned for some accidental socktober knitting — I’ve just turned the heel on my second unfancy sock!

FO: agnes.

Someday I hope to take pictures of this sweater in the wild (and in natural light). But for now, I think I have to accept that these pictures, snapped last night in my ugly hallway (and while the sweater was, to be honest, still a little damp) will have to do, because it is going to be almost 80 degrees outside today. Beautiful, but not Agnes weather. (And I might be pouting a little bit about that.)¬† Blocking has loosened up and evened out everything, of course, and now Agnes is perfectly cozy without being sloppy, if that makes sense. You can still see the spot where I dropped down to increase several times after the fact — on the back of the right shoulder (which is why I took that silly picture)– but it is way less noticeable than it was before blocking. When I make this again (because I could probably use at least two more of these sweaters), I might double up the purl rows at the pockets so that whatever contrast color I choose stands out even more. Also, I think this sweater will be an important part of my dissertation writing process.

On that note, here’s another installment of “fake-it-’til-you-make-it” here at Chez Rooster. On Saturday morning I realized that I needed to put on a button-down shirt to make myself do some writing. And it worked. Never have I been so happy to get 200 words out of my fingers and onto the screen.

And here’s my next project from Wool Book One: Avery. I’m making this cowl in two skeins of Malabrigo in the perfect shade of rusty red-orange. To wear with my Agnes, of course.