happily, predictably…

10nov09

The cold weather has returned, and with it, a little bit of knitting mojo. Wrapped in my Mara shawl and with my Terra on my lap, I finally finished my Snowbird cardigan. All that remained was an inch of one pocket, sewing the pocket linings, and weaving in the ends. It took a couple of hours (and several podcasts), but I did it. Here’s a pre-blocking shot:

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(Forgive my bleary eyes and pjs.)

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And here it is, blocking on the dining room table. The sleeves fit perfectly, but the body is a bit loose. Shouldn’t matter too much because it is an open cardigan, but depending on how it fits when it is dry, I might (gasp) toss it in the dryer to snug it up a bit. Stay tuned.

10nov12

It felt so good to be knitting that I even managed a couple of repeats on my Bristol hat. (Funny how that happens when the deadlines feel overwhelming. I’ve got a conference paper, a talk, a job application, and some dissertation chapters that need finishing on my plate right now…)

Want to see what else has been going on around here this week?

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No idea what’s going on in this picture. (And please, disregard the newsprint filled with dissertation-related list-making on the wall behind him.)

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Last bare-legged day of the season, I’m guessing. (These boots are in terrible shape, but I can’t bring myself to retire them…)

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An impromptu dinner party on Monday night, complete with butternut squash galette.

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Glorious sunlight on the good walk we’ve been aiming to take at least once a week.

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Boh, not at all interested in the epic waterfall behind him.

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One of us will not be mistaken for a deer.

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Tuckered out. I woke up yesterday to find Boh with his head on the pillow next to me. Silly, silly dog.

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One more bit of silliness: sharks surround Manhattan. Just a little bit of Friday night fun with sharks from M’s sharknado Halloween costume…

Hope you’re all well. I still haven’t found a solution to my Feedly problem, and it feels so strange to be blogging while I feel so behind on all of your adventures. Forgive me. And happy knitting!

a little more.

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Because the weather has been glorious, I’ve moved all of my dissertation writing to the porch. This means Boh has moved the majority of his lounging to the porch as well.

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You know, except when it is dinner time. He knows when that is supposed to happen, and has been waiting for me right here.

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I’ve been making slow, steady progress on Snowbird — the pocket stitches are on stitch-holders, and I’m working my way down the rest of the body. I think the sweater is going to be pretty slouchy in the body, but it fits well in the arms, so I’m hoping I’ll love it and wear it a lot.

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One more. Sweet Boh at a nearby waterfall. We’ve been visiting this one weekly, on our way to get vegetables from the farm I belong to, and Boh loves it there. Happy weekend!

august?

Time for more apologizing. (And for getting used to a new version of WordPress. This is fancy!) I don’t know why I’m not knitting, and I don’t really know why I’m not blogging. But I’m not quite ready to give up on this space, and I hope you’re not ready to give up on me. I’m hoping to get back into a groove one of these days.

Until then, though, you get pictures of what we’ve been up to, both here at the lake house and further afield. Since I last blogged (in June?!), I’ve TAed an intensive 3-week summer course, joined my family for a week on the gulf coast of Florida, spent a weekend in the Catskills saying goodbye to a dear grad school friend who is moving/moving on to take a postdoc, given a paper at my first non-grad-student conference (yay!) and visited my younger brother in Colorado. (Whew!)

Want to see some of that? Here you go:

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During that three-week course, Boh spent a lot of time entertaining himself.

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And there were strawberries.

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Cuddling the papers to grade…

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Frolicking at a nearby park on our way to the farm.

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First farm tomato!

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Delicious.

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Writing.

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Bird-watching, coffee-drinking, breakfast-eating, all from the balcony of the condo my parents rented on the gulf coast of Florida.

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Seashells collected on morning walks with my mom.

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Beautiful beach.

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A snapping turtle greeting me (and Boh — see his nose in the lower left-hand corner?) in the Catskills!

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Catskills relaxation.

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And some more.

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Sam, my brother’s horse.

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Colorado National Monument.

And now — just today, actually — home again, this time for awhile. Time to settle back into lake house life, which I’m hoping will include lots of writing…

Thanks for reading, friends.

FO: nanny’s mittens.

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These little mittens have a big story. Long-time readers may remember when my grandmother, Nanny, gave me all sorts of old patterns and yarn. I donated the yarn and kept the patterns, along with a small ziplock bag with these mittens inside. They were finished, except for the thumb of the second mitten. (And there was a third, which looks to me like something went a bit awry with the beginnings of the thumb.)

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It didn’t take much to improvise a thumb for the second mitten, and now I’ve got a pair. I’m extra excited about this because there’s a great-grandchild in our family now, and this will be her first Christmas. I’m planning to take these mittens to show Nanny, and to remind her that she did most of the knitting, and to ask her if she wants to be part of my surprise: we’ll wrap them up and give them to our family’s newest addition, my cousin’s 11 month-old daughter. The mittens will be a bit too big for her this year, but I’m not sure Nanny will be quite as lucid next Christmas. Sewn, knitted, and crafted gifts from her were always a big part of our family Christmas celebrations when I was little, and I love the idea that there will be something made by her hands under this year’s tree.

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And there’s this guy, holding onto his favorite bone. It has nothing to do with the mittens, but I had to share.

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View from the porch, sometime last week.

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Homemade hummus with toast.

Stay tuned for more holiday knitting…if I finish it in time!

persistent.

Unfortunately, that’s the word I’m using (and the word the PA I saw today used) to describe my cough. Though I started feeling a lot better by the end of last week, there’s been almost a whole second week of coughing, which basically means I’m not sleeping super well. The good news is that the PA prescribed some codeine cough syrup to help me sleep. Here’s a bunch of pictures from this week: lots of dog cuddling, and some knitting and cooking amidst the paper-commenting I’ve been doing.

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Brussels sprouts and bacon, before and after.

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Tuesday it was warm enough on the porch for me to spend the day working at my yellow table. Boh took a really good nap out there.

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Dog cuddling and movie-watching.

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More dog cuddling.

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Peanut butter popcorn, this time with sriracha instead of vanilla. I might have eaten this instead of my dinner on Wednesday.

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The cough was keeping me up at night — tough to get to sleep while laying in bed. On Wednesday night I got out my sleeping bag and slept in my grandfather’s chair.

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Boh is also a master of sleeping in strange positions…

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Bristol in progress. I love how this is knitting up! I’m a couple of repeats in. Can’t wait to wear this! (Or at least see how it looks on my head.)

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My dear friend M. invited me over for dinner last night. This pear and blue cheese salad and some mushroom, rosemary, and cheese-medley pizza were exactly what I needed. (This hearty meal plus some nighttime cold medicine helped me sleep much more soundly last night.)

That’s what I’ve got for now. Happy weekend!

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 fromĀ 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…

into the woods.

The wild flowers along the lakeshore looked particularly green and vibrant yesterday.

Boh and I veered off a regular loop we tend to do at a park near our house. Instead of crossing a lovely wooden bridge, we took a small set of stairs off the south side, and found ourselves in the woods!

Boh loved our detour, and so did I. I’ve been walking in this park regularly since we moved to the lake house at the start of last summer, and this is the first time we’ve wandered along this path. We’ll be back, maybe even this afternoon!

While Boh snored, I dug out my languishing Buttercup. I knew I was close to finishing up the body, so I tried it on. (I debated whether to post this picture of myself on the internet because the neck is still too low and the body not quite long enough — both of which will be addressed before I’m done with the pattern — but I think this is okay to share.)

After snapping this picture (and measuring to determine how much more to knit on the body), I added a few more increase rows and another couple of inches of knitting. This morning I’m planning to listen to podcasts and finish up the feather and fan border. I will wear this sweater this fall! (Famous last words?)

I’m not sure Boh believes me. Or cares. I haven’t been knitting a lot lately, and I want to change that. I really enjoyed working on Buttercup last night — so much so that I worked until my hands were a little bit sore. I wasn’t quite ready for bed yet, so I sat down at my wheel.

I finished up spinning the first bobbin of Kitsune, a polwarth-silk blend from the Hello Yarn Fiber Club. I started this ages ago — maybe at the start of the summer? I’m not sure if this will stay as singles or if I’ll spin the second bobbin and ply them together. Either way, this will probably turn into a drapey shawl or cowl.

Boh and I are planning a quiet Labor Day — some knitting, some work, and a nice walk. Hope you have a lovely day!

weekend frolicking. also, buttercup.

Boh and I took a long, meandering walk with M. this weekend. This spot was new to me, despite being just a few miles from my house.

We walked through meadows, shady forests, and then with our feet (paws) in the creek. Boh loved it, and we’ll definitely be back.

That put Boh to sleep for the rest of the afternoon!

Which allowed me plenty of time to keep working on Buttercup.

I’m really enjoying this, and if I bring this with me to the lectures of my summer TAing gig (planning to check that the prof I’m working for is okay with this, but I think he will be), I think the stockinette portion will move right along.

This book is significantly larger than Boh’s head. Not that anyone is measuring. I’m off to campus for a couple of meetings today. And later, I have a date with the lake. (It’s a standing date, really, for any days where the temperature is supposed to reach into the 90s.) Stay cool!

tending to.

If I had to sum up the last week or so, I’d say it was filled with “tending to.” Tending to what? All sorts of things — small but lingering stuff on the to-do list, filing, travel planning, long-overdue emailing, etc. Also, a bit of tending to myself — an end-of-the-semester bug forced me to slow down. Boh and I even managed a few afternoons of reading on the couch.

Pure sweetness is what that is. On Saturday, still feeling lousy, but needing to get out of the house, I decided to tackle my extremely forlorn potted plants. (Forlorn is the nice way of saying absolutely dead, I think.) I’m actually pretty proud of my first ever herb collection — I managed to keep my rosemary, thyme, and sage alive well through a mild winter on the porch, though eventually they succumbed to neglect during the busiest part of my semester.

I snapped these right after potting them: sage, rosemary, basil, cilantro, thyme, mint, and some marigolds I picked up on a whim. (M., if you’re reading: I tried to take good care of those bulbs, but nothing happened, and then after I moved them outside, the pot that doesn’t drain developed a green sludge on the surface. So I gave up and planted marigolds.)

I haven’t done any tending of my yard, unless you count Boh’s “fertilizing,” but this year the wildflowers are amazing!

Also amazing? Asparagus. This has been my go-to meal of late: broiled asparagus witha little bit of olive oil, balsamic, salt and pepper. Plain for lunch, and with a fried egg on top for dinner.

Boh and I are headed out of town for the weekend: he’s going to frolic with my parents, and I’m off to a dear friend’s wedding. Getting ready to leave has been extra hectic because I’ve been feeling icky this week, and because the lake house won’t be empty while I’m gone. It’s graduation weekend, so a friend who is defending and her family will be enjoying my home in my absence. I sure hope it’s clean enough for them…

early morning fog.

I don’t remember which morning I took these pictures — early last week, I think. I remember taking Boh out first thing in the morning, and going back for my camera. I love it when the fog rolls off the lake and hangs low.

Also last week: a claw! On a train! I was stopped for construction when I noticed that there is work happening on the train tracks. The claw was picking up new railroad ties from inside the car it was mounted on and slowly placing them along the tracks as the train chugged along very slowly. So cool.

Also cool? Prescription sunglasses! I cannot tell you how excited I am about these. Last week I went running without my contacts! I took long walks with Boh and didn’t squint! I even indulged in a bit of people-watching from behind my new shades. These are going to make it so much easier for me to work outside — at coffee shops and on the dock. Hooray!

And this? This is the cowl that will not end. (Also, the sweetest dog.) I really want to knit until I run out of yarn, but I am also ready to be done with this project. I’ll probably split the difference and spend a few more evenings on it and then just bind off.

Boh says hi. And that he loves belly rubs.

I love this mug. It’s filled with honey and a splash of apple cider vinegar dissolved in hot water — a remedy for a super sore throat, which is what I was dealing with on Friday. I thought I was massively allergic to something that just came into bloom, but I actually think I came down with an end-of-the-semester malady. It morphed into a full-on head cold yesterday, and I think I’m past the worst of it now. The good news? My grades are done, and I’m planning to drop them off on campus first thing this morning! (Which means that my summer starts today! Not vacation, exactly, but I’ve got a month before my summer TAing gig starts, and I’m looking forward to settling into a sustainable rhythm with my dissertation research and writing. More on that soon, I’m sure.)

Happy Monday!