I don’t watch Game of Thrones, but I’m pretty sure nothing says “Winter is coming” like a baby mouse scurrying around my dish rack. (Filled, of course, with no longer clean dishes.) This guy hid in this jar-shaped glass when he saw me. After I took his picture, I escorted him to the bottom of the driveway. And then I began the process of investigating for evidence of mice, and scrubbing and disinfecting everything. My love of old houses  means I’m familiar with this process, but I was a little cranky about discovering this mouse late on Tuesday night just as I had finished all of my prep for my Wednesday morning class. Sigh. I understand that the mice are just looking for a cozy place to hunker down. I’m willing to negotiate: they can have the basement (which has an earthen floor — there’s no way I can keep critters out of there), but the kitchen is off limits. Hopefully I can convince them that it is in their best interest to agree to my terms now, before the cold really sets in.

But enough about that. How about some pleasant signs that cooler weather is upon us?

I wore my wurm cowl yesterday. And I totally want another one.

I drank my Thursday morning latte pretty quickly at the coffee shop yesterday. (And finally finished a workable draft of that fellowship application I’ve been complaining about!)

I wrapped myself in my stripe study shawl and sat on the porch with my first cup of coffee this morning.

Aren’t the leaves lovely?

I’ve been spinning! These are Targhee singles in the Sprout colorway from the Hello Yarn Fiber Club (April 2011). In the background you can see what are probably my last snapdragons of the season. Even if winter is still a ways off, the first frost is near. I picked those at the farm on Tuesday afternoon. Happy Friday!


another post from last week?

Hi, folks. Rooster here. Another doozy of a week — the start of classes (including mine!), and the work of adjusting to a new routine, a new commute (from the lake house), a new pattern for Boh. Here’s hoping I’ll figure out where blogging fits into all of that very soon. All went well this week, but there’s just so much to do. And I’ll keep attempting to cross things off of my ever-elongating to-do list after I write this post. Guess what? I’ve got (gasp) photos of actual knitting!  (Though the knitting occurred last week.)

Here’s that vanilla sock in Plucky yarn I started earlier this month. I began the toe decreases on a bus almost two weeks ago, when I was headed to a bachelorette gathering. I only had super short hiya-hiya circular needles with me, and the decreases were not so fun to try to work with those — just not enough give to comfortably do ssks and k2togs, and the bumpiness of the bus didn’t help. I really should put this back into my bag (with the dpns I need to keep decreasing), especially now that my commute involves a short bus ride each morning and afternoon!

And here I am, working on the border of the wedding hap blanket I’ve been knitting…ahem…as a gift for two lovely people who got married in November. I’m so close. C+A, it’ll be done soon! Promise!

And I’ve got big plans for this yarn. Wedding shawl plans — for my best friend. She’s getting married in March, and she picked the yarn and the pattern. More on this soon. (On today’s to-do list? Wind this yarn!)

I’ve been wearing handknits, especially my cowls, this week. I love this wurm cowl so, so much. Handspun around my neck is one of the best things I can think of right now.

More handspun around my neck. Remember when I made this stripey shawl over the summer because I was sick and didn’t have the focus necessary to follow the instructions for the Daybreak shawl? (One of these days I’m going to actually knit that.) I love the colors, and the drape of this fabric of loosely knit singles is fantastic. And I love how it sort of goes with this cardigan I picked up on clearance at Banana Republic when I was visiting my parents for Christmas.

And then there’s this guy. No knitting in this picture, but an extra dose of cuddly sweetness. I’m happy to have Boh to keep me company as I tackle a draft of a grant application today…

more fall (this time, with handknits).

Yesterday afternoon I met up with dear friend T. and her very handsome son W. for a walk in a nearby state park. Boh was so excited to be on an adventure that he could barely hold still to have his photo taken!

The weather is growing cool and crisp, and these awesome birthday mitts from brokeknits were just what I needed. Hooray for mitt weather!

After our walk, it was time for me to get back to work, and there was no way that was going to happen curled up on the couch with a very happy dog. I put on my wurm cowl and headed out to a coffee shop.

I think this is going to get a lot of wear this fall and winter. Thanks, you guys, for convincing me that the colors wouldn’t be too crazy for me. Off to yoga!

dog collar, wurm cowl.

First, thank you so much for your concern about Boh. We both really appreciate it. He liked hearing your comments so much that he said it was okay for me to share more silly pictures of him in his ridiculous cone. (I probably would have posted them anyway…)

It is so hard to be this dog. Luckily, I’m not traveling this week, and had absolutely nothing planned for Labor Day except rest and recovery — for both of us. I did some knitting and spinning, went to yoga, and cuddled Boh (well, as much as one can cuddle a giant plastic conehead).

I finished my wurm cowl (though I still need to weave in the ends), and you were right — the colors aren’t too wild, and this will be the perfect cozy thing to wear with everything this fall. (And, since I’m paying my own heat at the lake house, I imagine this will help me to postpone turning the heat on until absolutely necessary…) I’ll take better pictures in good light with my real camera (instead of in a dark corner with my iPhone) very soon.

I also did some yarn untangling yesterday. I really should emphasize the “some.” This is a skein of malabrigo sock in Botticelli Red. I bought it right when this yarn came out — and the yarn universe wasn’t kidding when they said there were knots and breaks in this stuff. (ETA: I’ve heard that this was only really an issue with the early production of this yarn — I’ve wound skeins purchased more recently without a problem.) I first sat down to wind this yarn before heading to Chicago last month, and it was such a mess that I didn’t have time to tackle it before leaving to catch my plane. I did a bit more yesterday — but lost patience after about 45 minutes. Maybe I’ll try again soon, as this stuff is so pretty. I initially pulled it off the shelf to make Melissa LaBarre’s Skinner Hat, but that’s only going to happen if I can salvage most of a skein’s worth of yarn. Sigh.

By the end of the day, this guy was a bit more resigned to his fate: about ten days in the cone. I was so happy to see him sleeping/snoring in it, as I don’t think he slept much the night before. Sweet dog.

Hope the work week (or the semester, if today’s your first day back to school) starts off smoothly. I may be keeping my pajamas on for awhile longer, but I plan to be working studiously by the time 9 AM rolls around too.


This is me, knitting on my handspun wurm cowl, not on my couch. Why am I not on my couch in this photo? Because someone (ahem) cut himself on a piece of glass from the window he may have been involved in breaking this morning — BEFORE I poured my coffee. After cleaning up the glass, putting a makeshift bandage on Boh’s leg, and calling the animal hospital to figure out if we needed to come in (we did), I got dressed, and on the way out the door, grabbed my cowl-in-progress. I’m so glad I did, because I spent about four hours there today, at least half of them without Boh at my feet. The result? A clean wound (no stitches), antibiotics, a good bandage, and a very silly cone. (They call these e-collars. E for Elizabethan!)

Oh, Boh. I’m so glad you weren’t seriously hurt this morning. Let’s try to keep our paws on this side of the glass, okay?

handspun purl ridges.

This project is inspired by CatReading’s wurm cowl. (If you have time, look through her other projects — her knitting is lovely.) I wound up my Rhinebeck cauldron handspun on Thursday morning, and took it with me for the weekend. I cast on roughly 180ish stitches and got to work. A few mornings at my parents’ kitchen table with a mug of coffee, and an afternoon pedicure with my mom created ideal conditions for serious progress — I’m well into my second skein. The squishy-ness of this yarn makes it absolutely addicting to knit. I’m optimistic about the outcome, but there’s a chance this will be too wild for me. I guess I’ll just have to keep knitting to find out…

Boh enjoyed our weekend trip, but I think he’s happy to be home. I’m off again tomorrow for another research trip, but Boh will stay here with a friend of mine. (I sort of wish I could just curl up with Boh on the couch for the week.) After this trip, I’ll have a few weeks without travel, and I’m really looking forward to settling into a routine that encompasses more than just planning for and recovering from trips!