Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Just in time!

Here are the finished socks! at 9:40 pm. Details tomorrow (or the next day depending on how crazy it gets tomorrow, things will get back to normal soon!)

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

almost there!

Yesterday I was seriously stressed about getting my April socks done...okay not really stressed, but almost resigned to the fact that it wouldn't happen! This weekend was great, but ended up with lots of busy things not involving knitting....rearranging furniture to accommodate new furniture, cleaning, shopping, laundry, organizing my shoes (really---DH built some shelves in the closet) Anyway, once the house was together very little knitting time remained. I did make the heel.
Heel flap:

Turning the heel:

So my mom is serious about learning to knit socks (she's diving right first project scarf here!) So I wanted to detail a little more about the heel for her! (I can't wait to be home and get you started mom!) Grandma has her going well on the basics! YEAH! Thanks Grandma! Can you tell I'm excited?
So that was all this weekend....then yesterday my needles just flew! I'm not sure why the foot is going so fast but yesterday I got over 3 repeats done (and made dinner, cleaned the bathroom, picked up, did dishes, and did my school work) Not sure where the energy came from either, I have 1 repeat and the toe to do! Woohoo! That is totally doable, even with dinner with my advisor's advisor tonight and church tomorrow night! So I think the April socks will squeak in. (I'm starting my May socks early....I don't like this rush...I'm not sure how people function at Christmas when they are trying to finish a dozen projects at once)
Oh and last week I got a pic of the albino squirrel that lives on campus (I mentioned seeing him here). So very weird!

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Knitted Giraffe sighting!

If you are a giraffe enthusiast (like I am) you may know that there aren't that many patterns out there to make these adorable creatures! I have found an awesome crochet giraffe (Radley) He is fun and cute, but not knitted. As I like to crochet that isn't a problem, but I'm always on the look out. In fact many new visitors come to this blog looking for knitting giraffe patterns (fancy that!) While there are a few out there, which I've linked to on the side, they leave a little bit to be desired in my opinion. But look at ysolda's pic. In the back row is the most adorable knitted giraffe sitting proud and tall. Her elephant and bear went of a field trip and met some new friends. Some of the animals patterns are available, but I didn't see the giraffe. Have no fear, I've emailed the store asking about the pattern! We will sure try to get it, because he is sooooo cute!! Further, if you run across super giraffe patterns please let me know. I will be happy to link to them for all giraffe lovers looking for a pattern.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

A cat who plays!

So I had a post all ready for you Wednesday all I had left to do was add the pics. I had written in the early morning anticipating a crazy day. Well now is when I'm finally posting it. Please forgive my quietness this week and next, it isn't that I have a lack of things to say, but with the semester ending things get crazy....I'm never sure why the semester gets so crazy, it isn't that I have exams because I don't, but guest lectures, visitors, research, etc. Then everything seems to stop once classes are over (that is when my house gets clean :) ) Anyway things are good here, so here is a short update, plus kitty stuff!

**previously prepared post, with updated sock info**

In light of no new knitting....well that isn't entirely true, I've got 9 more rounds before the heel! (woohoo), but it looks just like the last one, so not very exciting. So I thought I would share some fun pictures of my cat. (no kids=spoiled cat)

For some reason she likes to play under the family room rug. I'm not sure what the appeal is, but she rolls, sleeps, and even cleans herself under the rug. My dad would say the cat has "issues."

She is fun to watch when she is in the "rug" mood though! Hope you all are having a super week!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

A gator!

While DH and I have lived in Louisiana for almost three years, we just had our first alligator spotting! DH went to visit the Old River Control Auxiliary Structure north of BR to seeing the very swollen Mississippi river not realizing he would see this too:

Spring has definitely sprung here! See our Jasmine plant on our back porch all in bloom. It likes to cascade up and cling to anything it can and now is covered in little white blossoms!

One of our favorite trees is pictured below. It is a sweet olive tree and is covered with little clusters of white blossoms. Not only is it pretty, but it smells heavenly!

Okay, how about a little knitting talk too! In the past I have shied away from grafting toes on my socks. Why you ask? Well every time I've done it I haven't been 100% please with the's okay, but I can never get it to look just right! In response, I've taken doing a star toe most of the time. Now when working on my Old Navy, I wasn't sure a star toe would look as good and I just having trouble not following the directions! But I remembered a post Knitting Daily had done about grafting! So I gave it a try and got the best grafted toe I have ever done! It still was a little awkward, but...I like the results!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Half way there!

I'm not sure why I always think I will get to post of Friday. I should realize that it isn't going to happen, but...somehow I hold out hope. See Friday is when I meet with my advisor and tell her what I've been doing all week, and there is always that last minute scramble! Thanks for all your prayers regarding my presentation! It went super and everyone seemed really interested.

On to knitting news....sock one is done! I'm super pleased with how it turned out. The pattern goes really quickly especially once you get used to doing the cabling row. When I was doing the leg, I got to thinking maybe I should shorten it just a little so that I make sure I have plenty of yarn for the foot. I decided not to, then I had to take out the heel and redo it, and again considered making the leg a little bit shorter...but again decided not to. So talk about knitting on the wild is what was left:

Hopefully the second skein is as generous :) So I'm halfway to my Pair-a-month challenge, not too many days left in April, so I've already cast on for sock number 2. Speaking of the PAM challenge, my partner and I agreed on our rules. We didn't really like the idea of giving/buying yarn for a pair of socks....we're both on budgets and my partner is on a yarn diet...maybe that would have really motivated us to get our socks done, but anyway....we decided that we would give a gift ($5-10) of yarn, tea, or books (it need not be new) I think this will work out well and not break the bank. On other news, my mom has decided she wants to learn to make socks (I think) See what happens, give mom handmade socks which she loves....she wants more....she's going to try! I can't wait. She has knitted before a little bit a long time hopefully my grandma can get her comfortable with some basic knitting skills before I get there and then she will be on her way!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

1 piece down, 3 to go!

Yeah! as promised here are pics of the back of the sweater. I realize that they look really similar to other pics you've seen here of the sweater, but I'm done with the biggest piece and totally excited! I'll block it once the other piece are finished, that way I can make sure the seams are the same length. The neck shaping directions were a little weird, but I think came out ok, we'll see when it goes together.

Just to refresh your memory this is from Classic Knits. It the the V-neck sweater pictured on the cover. All the designs in this book are really classics. Nothing fancy, just what I would call staples in the wardrobe! The yarn is 100% alpaca gifted to me by my awesome grandma (and is now discontinued) Oh speaking of the yarn--the back took about 2.5 skeins! I had 11 total, so I think I'm in great shape!

On a side note, I've been shopping for luggage. Yep, with Scotland on the horizon I definitely need some better luggage. What I have is okay, but worn and I've got to be able to pack for a month--how do you pack for a month? Does anyone know how to pick good luggage? It is all so confusing and so many prices!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008


You all are so sweet and encouraging! Thanks for helping me move past the chicken pot pie incident! I resisted the urge to write a non-nice email or post an unpleasant note. I got to thinking that that wouldn't be the best witness--so as you suggested I'm thankful for how God provides for me and hope the said individual enjoyed their lunch!

Unfortunately there is no new progress to show you today, but.....tomorrow the back of the sweater will be done (this morning I got to the point where I just have to do the minor neck shaping and cast off) Yeah!!! Yesterday was productive in nonknitting matters. I got my presentation all ready to go! (I'm going to practice today) and my grading got done! (but it only left me 1 hour of knitting time last night) It was so nice to wake up this morning without all that hanging over my head!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

April socks....

....a work in progress! So as mentioned before I've joined the Pair-a-Month challenge. My friend J agreed to partner up with me. We are still negotiating all the details, but will keep you posted. Who knew that joining a KAL would get people offering to buy me yarn--in exchange for socks! (thanks mom!) Here is the progress so far! I'm knitting Old Navy socks by Abigail.

I'm using Knitpicks Risata yarn in navy, which is a cotton wool blend. It is by far the best cotton sock yarn I've used and may become a new favorite--remember I live in the hot south now! (But these aren't for me!) Sorry the navy is hard to photograph. Here you can see the pattern better stretched out on my favorite coffee mug!

The pattern is going super fast! Most of the time it is just a 2 x 2 ribbing, but occasionally you do a whole bunch of cables! I've learned to cable without a needle. It was scary at first, but now is going fairly quickly (but those cable rows slow me down--but they are so worth it) I have less that a pattern repeat to go before the heel--we're at 6.5 inches right now!

In other sad news....yesterday at lunch I had a very rude surprise! Sunday night, I made one of my DH's favorites--homemade chicken pot pie. It is more work than I normally do for dinner, but he is always so appreciative. So there were leftovers. I packed them up for lunch and off to school we went. I put mine in the fridge at school to wait for lunch. lunch it was gone! Yep, gone! **sigh** I hope who ever ate my pot pie enjoyed it, I on the other hand had to go buy my lunch, which wasn't as good as my anticipated pot pie. I guess I've learned to not use the community fridge! It is sad that it has come to that, but no pot pie, lost container, .... I guess I just am thankful I could afford to go buy my lunch! Today my lunch is safely packed in my backpack where it will remain! Thanks for letting me vent, now off to do some real work! I have a talk about my research to give Thursday and I definitely need to give it some attention!

Monday, April 14, 2008

Blanket is ready for baby!

So as promised here are the pics of the baby blanket! Overall I really enjoyed this project--even with the different edging construction (I guess that was part of the fun) Thanks for your help picking the pattern! This was the first time I used Bernet Softee Baby yarn. (I think I have enough to make another blanket--I always overbuy because I hate to run out) So I may make another one, just to have around for the next baby, we'll see. The yarn was okay. I think I prefer Lion Brand Baby Soft, but this wasn't bad!

This weekend I had a first--I went to an LSU gymnastics meet with some ladies from church! It was great fun. I have always liked to watch it on tv and thought it would be fun to do that, but my lack of balance caused me to never try (I have been called the Leaning Tower of Leah--another story for another day, probably better told by someone other than me) It was exciting to watch it live--plus LSU did super! I definitely plan on going to more in the future.

Friday, April 11, 2008

I've been talked in to it!

So I read a few days ago about a knit-a-long (KAL) that Kaity and her mom decided to do called The Pair-A-Month Challenge. The idea is that you knit a pair of socks a month. Simple. I thought it might be fun, but then there is the idea that you have a partner and if you don't complete the pair you give (or buy) them yarn for a pair of socks. YIKES! On my yarn budget that sounded difficult, but if you complete the socks no problem. Then there is the pressure of it. I knit to relieve stress not to put myself on deadlines, etc. But then again, I think I made about a pair a month last year after I learned how to make socks. So after confiding some of this to Abigail, she talked me into it. I joined! Raverly has a group if you're interested. I've ask a friend in town if she would want to be my partner. (She understands budgets and we might make up our own consequences) I haven't heard from her yet. Otherwise I might just go it alone, or get really daring and pair up with someone I don't know! So this morning I cast on for...

Abigail's Old Navy socks! It seemed fitting that I would use her pattern to start off the challenge! and I had some navy yarn that seemed just right! Plus I'll get to learn to cable without a needle--something I've wanted to try to do! I'll keep you posted on the progress. Since we are already to April 11th I've got to get moving!

How is the baby blanket? Done! Blocking as we "speak." Monday I'll have pics of it in all it's glory. How about the sweater? This weekend I want to finish the back, cast on the front and work on the socks. Sounds doable and fun to me!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Random Things

Thanks for the kind thoughts about my teaching yesterday! Overall it went well. It wasn't quite the same as having your own class, but it was a nice change of pace.

I saw this on Christina's blog and thought it would be fun. Leah isn't the most common name out there (I like that by the way) so I thought I would find out!
LogoThere are
people with my name
in the U.S.A.

How many have your name?

On a really funny note, if you type in my mom's name it comes up zero, yep mom you don't exist according to these people, so I don't know how reliable it is! Oh well it was fun and gave me a chuckle!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

An Amazing Transformation!

It is amazing what one more round will do to my funny looking curls! Now it looks like a prefect edging! See those all stretched out and happy...looking just right. It is definitely an interesting construction that had never seen before, but it wasn't hard. In fact with the edging only being 3 rows it goes really fast. I'd say making the curls is the worst of it.

Here's a larger view just so you can remember how silly it looked!

In other news....I get to teach today! I must say I'm excited! Some semesters I teach a class of my own, which I always enjoy, but is a lot of work. I taught Calculus for the first time last semester and felt swamped the whole time. This semester I'm grading for a professor. The work isn't as enjoyable, but there is so much less of it and it is not stressful that I enjoy the break. But the prof is out of I get to fill in. Not quite the same as having your own class, but I'm looking forward to this afternoon. Hopefully it will go well!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Old projects!

Let's see....very little crocheting or knitting progress to report. Yesterday I didn't get home until 6:15, made dinner, finished grading while dinner cooked, did laundry, watched KU win the basketball tourney and went to bed. I guess some days are like that--you just have to get some real work done. I definitely felt productive though! In light of that how about an old FO?

  • Pattern:These are Eunny's Endpaper Mitts
  • Needles: US 2 dpn
  • Yarn: Knit picks Gloss in Woodland Sage, Knit picks essential tweed in Inca Gold (less than 1 skein each)
  • Made for: Me, but they were too small (I was worried about this because my hands are larger than most women's) so they were given to my wonderful SIL!

These were a fun knit! I was my first time doing any colorwork and I enjoyed it. I'm not sure I would make them again, but....maybe in a solid color. I'm not sure how practical they are, but...I liked the process! Hopefully I can show you tomorrow how the curls turn into some nice edging!

Monday, April 7, 2008

What do you call these?

The baby blanket is coming right along and I might be finished this week! WooHoo! So I starting the edging yesterday, it looks so weird!

See these little "curls", you make 96 of them around the blanket! They look like Cheetos to me or maybe like little tentacles, definitely not something I've seen before. Looking at the pattern I see what is going to happen, but right now it looks kinda crazy!

Here's a close up of the middle part!

I hope you all had an enjoyable weekend! I have every intention of posting Friday, but boy was that a busy day and it just didn't get done, but Friday we got to welcome baby Madison Rae into the world!

My cousin L had her baby! (I'm not sure what that makes my relation to Madison?) Mom and baby are doing well! Unfortunately I have to wait a little while to give this little one a hug, but she is loved already!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

First project

Last night (as I was working on the baby blanket) I began to ponder what to post about today. My sweater is 4 inches longer than last time I showed you (but really it looks the same and the back isn't finished yet) The blanket is a full 9 inches, but again not very exciting. I did hear the baby shower for this baby is May 10th, so I have plenty of time (they had discussed mid April and that had me a little worried) School is going well, but nothing interesting to report ( I'm looking forward to the weekend to recover from the conference last weekend), church...good. Okay so really my life isn't so interesting. Then I looked down at the blanket I was covered in (I know--it's hot in BR, but DH likes to keep the AC low and sometimes I give in so he is comfortable and I'm cold) So what is so special about this blanket?

It is my first hand knitted project ever! (I think I may have done a machine knitted project before this, but that will be another post) My grandma let me pick out the yarn and she bought it for me (see how lucky I'm to have such a great family) I remember it took me forever, even though the yarn is held double and knit on large needles. I remember taking it out each winter and working on it, but years later I still use it often. (I probably finished it sometime in junior high) It isn't perfect, there are visible mistakes in the simple pattern, it's a little fuzzy and has gathered some lint over the years, but it is just right for me. If you are a knitter, what was your first project? (yes some nonknitters read my blog....I'm working hard to converting them) :)

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Moving right along!

Last night I started the baby blanket! Does this mean I'm done with the back of the sweater? Nope! Let's just say a day with a high over 80, lots of humidity, and alpaca don't mix--at least not last night! So I went for something a little "cooler."

I can't believe how quickly this is going! I've done almost 5 inches! (I need 25, then I do a border) It was really nice to crochet! I must say I've missed it. (I don't have another crochet project in mind at the moment--except a doily or two, but I guess we'll see) Here is me try to get some close up shots! So many blogs have such artist pics--well I try....practice makes better, right?

How about another Knox story? I know, I know, so many cat stories....we don't have kids we have a cat, but she is just so entertaining and sweet....I know I'm obsessed, what can I say....she makes me smile and laugh! On with the story....this morning I got up before DH (this is normal in our house) Knox got up too and went out to the living room for a minute (we don't give her free reign of the house at night--she has her claws and we have new furniture---she doesn't seem to mind), then went back to the bedroom, crawled under the covers and curled up at DH's feet to sleep in with him! (She is known to crawl under the covers to sleep, but not normally when a human is in the bed too, and very rarely with DH.) It was a tender morning for the two of them :)

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Ready to go!

One of my Spring Break tasks was to apply for a passport and yesterday it came!! Not even 10 days after applying. I had heard horror stories of it taking forever and wanted to make sure I had mine in plenty of time, which now I do!

Maybe you're asking where exactly I'm going? (I know I haven't told you yet) Well it looks like my advisor is going to be in Scotland for at least a year (maybe permanantly). So I'm prepared to go visit! At this point I'm just trusting the Lord to direct my path. Completing a Phd long distance seems daunting (as if it wasn't hard before) But, I have had great peace about each decision I've made along the I go to grad school, which school, what area, who to be my advisor. So while this path doesn't look ideal to me, I know that the Lord had this planned and will be faithful as He always is! So now I'm ready too!

I've decided (with all your help!--thank you!) to make Option 2 for the baby blanket! As soon as the back of the sweater is done I'm going to get to work on it. It sounds like the baby shower will happen sooner than I thought, so the sweater will be on the back burner for a little bit! Have a super Tuesday!