Monday, June 30, 2008

On vacation!

Well the day has finally arrived!  I'm off to Seattle!!!  with one of my best friends to see one of our best profs!!!  (details about how the trip came together are here) This is one of the first trips in a really long time that is a true vacation...nothing that has to be done except some fun!  Woohoo! I promise to take lots of pics and share with you next week!

No worries for all of you though, I have a few posts planned for you!!!  Retro Rib Sock #1 is done!  I'm super pleased with how it turned out and DH is begging for one for him, I think he would rather I not give it to its designated recipient...which is still a surprise. (I've had trouble finding good guy patterns/yarn combinations...this one is a hit)

I also started my Secret Prayer Swap sock....3 inches of the leg done and I'm loving it! but not pics yet for's a secret :)

Friday, June 27, 2008


Thank you all for the lovely comments on the swallowtail shawl.  I mentioned that it might be screaming to go "live" with someone else.  Well last night I talked with my mom about the shawl:

Leah: Have you seen the finished shawl?
Mom:  Yes
L: Well I was kinda thinking it was screaming you.  Have you seen it blocked?
M: no, but you should keep some things for yourself! 
(mom gets on computer)
M: OH!!!!  That definitely screams me!  How did you ever doubt that?  We could "share" it.  (ie-I use it and when I die you could inherit it)
M: (laugh)

I proceeded to tell her we would see.  I might wear it a couple of times and see what I think.  I also think I have some cream lace yarn in my stash and I could make one for myself.  The cream would be a better color for me (and I would make it a little bigger by doing 5 extra repeats of the budding lace part).  Plus gray is my mom's color!  

I picked up some new yarn at Discontinued Brand Name Yarn and it came!  Here are some pics:

Cherry tree Hill Supersock in Island Red.  (a nice red that isn't too bright, nice and subdued)

Cherry tree Hill Supersock in Dove (almost grey, but has some green tones in it too...a hard color to describe, but very nice)

Cherry tree Hill Supersock DK in a purple blend (so I love this color and this was the reason I really placed the order, but I didn't notice the DK, so it is a little thicker than I thought, but I saw on Ravelry that many people have made lovely socks out of this yarn)

Louet Gems fingering weight (this yarn is to dye myself...I think I'm going to use Koolaid....I used this base for my May socks and really liked it, so this should be a fun project!)

Thursday, June 26, 2008


I think I'll just let the pictures speak for themselves! (They aren't too bad considering I took them all myself)

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Not a lot to show!

So the shawl is blocked!  Steve left yesterday morning, so last night I took advantage of the empty bed and blocked the shawl!  I'm super please with it.  Now it is awaiting its photo session....we tried to take a couple of quick shots this morning, but I wasn't pleased with them, so I will try again when I have more time to get them just right (It deserves nice pics)  I haven't decided yet if I'm going to keep this for myself or gift it.  It might be screaming to live with someone else....we'll see. 

On the needles (or soon to be):

1.  Another pair of Saartje's Bootees.  These have become my go to baby gift.  They are quick, cute, and fun to make!  I want to make a pair for a professor and a friend I met in Columbus.  I got one bootee done last night, so these should be done in no time.

2.  My prayer sock swap socks.  I have finally settled on a pattern (I think).  You can view it here.  I love how the pattern goes down the back of the heel.  I think it will be a good pattern for the yarn I have picked out and it seems forgiving on the size.

3.  Retro Rib socks. I am half way done with the foot on the first sock.

4.  Crochet some reusable grocery bags.

Okay that sounds like enough for now, and I definitely have other plans, but we will see.  These are the more immediate.  Next time I hope to have pics of the shawl!

Here is a  pic of Knox because we don't want a pictureless post! (it's an old pic, but too cute not to share!)

Monday, June 23, 2008

FO and friend!

We have the great pleasure of having one of our dear friends, Steve, visit us!  He got here last night and leaves tomorrow morning, but we are blessed to see him!  I made him an apple pie in honor of his visit!
So what have I been knitting?  I showed you a preview the other day and here is the finished object (unblocked)
Blocking must wait until Steve leaves!  It is a Swallowtail shawl by Evelyn Clark!  Lynda recently completed one and it had been in my queue, so I excitedly casted on!  Now I'm ready to see it blocked!!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Mom's first pair completed!

Here are Mom's thoughts on her first sock knitting experience:

Dear Leah,

Here's the proof (even if I had the wrong date on my camera!!!!) that they are completed!! Yeh!!! They are very warm and thick which I will enjoy immensely come winter. Learning to knit again was a very enjoyable experience due in large part to your teaching abilities and extreme patience with me. Thank you for helping out in all my ooopppps on that first sock and then holding my hand via the phone on the second. While I doubt I will develop the passion that you have for knitting I do look forward to a second pair. Who knows I may even try a pattern sometime- I like the thought of no purls. And a big thank you to all your blogging friends for their encouragement. Every facet of this experience has stretched me in good ways and I'm glad I let you talk me into giving it a try! I love you kiddo and thank you again for all your help. (Don't let anyone tell you that you can't teach an "old dog" new tricks)


I'm so proud of you Mom!  Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us!  [Technical details: Needles US 1.5, yarn: Knitpicks Gloss in Dolphin, basic sock with 2 x 2 ribbing at the top]  I also got her Ann Bud's "Getting Started Knitting Socks."  While I really enjoyed the book and it does have super pics of all the stages of sock making, I thought the written sock patterns were hard to read for a beginner.  There are tons of abbreviations and knitting lingo, so if you aren't super familiar with knitting patterns it is challenging.  Often just reading the pattern aloud made the meaning clear to Mom, but written out the meaning was hard to understand. ] Mom has a second pair planned, so this won't be the last we hear from Mom! :)  (Thanks Dad for taking the pic!)

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Public Service Announcement!

For all you giraffe lovers out there....ravelry has a new group: Tall Blondes!  Of course for giraffe lovers.  I had looked there for a giraffe group before and had never seen one, then J found this one that just started!  So if you have a passion for giraffes join up and I'll see you there!

In knitting news:  I got my yarn for the Pray Partner Sock Swap!  I love it!  Unfortunately no pictures until after the swap because it is supposed to be a secret!  While I don't think my partner (who I'm praying for) knows who I am, I don't want to take any chances!  I ordered it from the Yarn and Fiber Company.  They had free shipping on my order of just one skein.  Wow!  I ordered in Thursday and it was here Monday (I couldn't believe it was that fast with free shipping)  I ordered Dream in Smooshy! but the colorway is secret.  I'm excited to get started with it, but still trying to settle on a pattern.

Now a sneak preview for tomorrows post:

This is what I've been working on!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008


My No-Purl-Monkey socks are done!!  (You just do the pattern and forget about the purls)  It was super quick and I really like the results--a simple lace pattern!!

Yarn:  Knitpicks Gloss in Dusk (a lovely blue)

Needles:  US 2 dpn

Modifications:  I did my normal heel (this is the kind where you slip 1 knit 1) instead of the monkey heel which is just knit.  I think the added reinforcement of the heel is good!  
They will be in the mail (today or tomorrow) to their recipient!  I hope she likes them and that they fit (I think they will)

Oh, these are also my June socks for the Pair-A-Month challenge! :)

Monday, June 16, 2008


Yesterday while most people celebrated Father's Day (we did call and let our dads know we were thinking of them, but being far away, that was all the celebrating we could do with them) DH and I celebrated our 6th wedding anniversary!!
We went out to Ruth's Chris Steakhouse!  It was excellent and a nice treat!  I had a salad, filet, baked potato (with lots of toppings).  DH had filet, baked potato and spinach and we split a creme brulee (which was garnished with fresh fruit)!  We had never eaten here before, and we weren't disappointed.  The claim their beef is Midwestern corn fed beef and we would agree.  Growing up in Kansas we got spoiled with lots of good beef.  Since moving to Louisiana we  have been disappointed with the quality of beef we can get, but we have been thrilled with the seafood!  What an enjoyable evening and great way to celebrate!

Oh about the math puzzle....Michelle from myboringblog (which isn't boring) got it right (you can read her solution in the comments)  Way to go Michelle!

Friday, June 13, 2008

Random Math Puzzle!

So for lack of good knitting is a math puzzle.  I will post the answer another day.  Give it a try and see how you do!

You have 7 marbles that all appear to be the same, but one is heavier than the others.  You have a scale (one with 2 sides where you can compare 2 objects)  Your task:  Find the heavy marble, but you can only use the scale 2 times!

A neighbor of DH's family asked me this on our most recent trip.  When people hear that you are a math person they like to test you (or tell you how much they hate math)  I passed the test.  Did you?

Thursday, June 12, 2008


I'm not sure why I didn't think to check other sites for the yarn I wanted!  I did and I found a store that had it, plus free shipping!  I'm super exciting and giving Him all the glory!

Quick Update

There's really not much to report today!  I'm sitting in a coffee shop drink a cup of coffee (yum) getting ready to work on my research!  It should be a nice change of scenery.  My second sock is progress well.  I turned the heel and am almost done with the gussett decreases.  I'm think of starting a nonsock project next (even though I have another pair on the needles)  We shall see!  

I've got my info for the pray sock swap!  It has been awesome to devote this time to praying for someone I don't know while knitting.  I have been struggling to find the perfect yarn.  I really want it just right.  I had seen some online but was trying to avoid the shipping costs.  Then I thought some of the yarn I bought in Columbus could work, it wasn't perfect, but....I was settled about it either.  So yesterday I just decided I was going to buy what I had seen online because it looked perfect.  They were sold out of the colorway I wanted.  So I'm just praying for peace about it.   We aren't supposed to mail them until Sept 1 so I have plenty of time (it only takes me about 2 weeks to make a pair).  I'll keep you updated!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

New Toy

Yesterday I totally forgot that I would have something fun to show you this week! My new computer--a Macbook! My advisor got it for me so we can video chat next year. Woohoo! While I have been a Windows girl (the only hold out in the family) I'm super excited to switch to Mac. I grew up on them, so my parents are "mac people" and my DH and brother both have macs. Why I hadn't switched is a long story, for the most part I have switched over!

Isn't it cute!

Okay, okay, knitting content? Not much to show...I finished the leg of my sock and am ready to start the heel, but that isn't so exciting to look at. Now off to do some work (ie-stop playing on my computer) :)

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Finally we are all home!

It feels so good to have everyone home (DH, me, and Knox--the cat)! Can you see how happy Knox is sleeping on my lap, while I'm knitting of course? DH started teaching his summer course and I am working hard on my research! Hopefully some good progress will be made this summer!

I'm working on the second No Purl Monkey sock. I have 3 of the 6 repeats done for the leg! These will be my June socks for the Pair-A-Month Challenge and should be finished in no time!

Mom's sock update: Mom's knitting got delayed a little while I was busy in Columbus. She was ready to pick up the stitches along the heel flap and needed a little phone support which I was unable to give last week. Sunday though she and I got some phone time and she is doing well now! Working on the gusset decreases and foot (I haven't heard anything more from her since Sunday which means that all is well--I think) She has agreed to post about the experience once her sock is done! I'm so proud of her! Hopefully I have some interesting things to post later this week---but I'm not sure what those might be, but .... we shall see! Have a super day all!

Saturday, June 7, 2008

There’s no place like home!

Oh it feels so good to be home! I had a super time, brain was full of new things (still is) and I was ready to go home to process it and relax! So let’s see…how was the trip? Super! The conference was super! It was aimed at grad students (meaning I understood a lot—Yeah!) and had problem sessions after every lecture! This really helped me process the new material! It was also in my area, which means most of the talks I found interesting! Not to mention meeting new friends and old “conference” friends. The biggest surprise was seeing Greg—he and I both participated in a 6 week summer program 3 years ago to prepare us for grad school (there were 16 participants) Everyone went to different schools and when the summer was over I wasn’t sure how likely it would be to see these special people again. Then in the hotel lobby I see Greg!!!! In a related area as to what I do! It was fun to relive fun times and get caught up! I also roomed with Diane, a grad student from Michigan (I guess now she has graduated so she is really a postdoc, but…) We met a year ago and also roomed together at a conference last fall, so it was fun to see her again and catch up! Not to mention all the new friends!

Diane, awesome roommate that she was, drove to the conference and was kind enough to take me to a yarn store! Yep, Diane, a non-knitter, humored me in a yarn store! We went to the Knitter’s Mercantile! It was a lovely shop with a good selection (I don’t have much to compare it to, but…they had lots of sock yarn and I was able to feel some yarn I had only read about!) It was a super friendly store too! They let me wander around at my leisure, but were also willing to answer questions! They had comfy furniture where local knitters were knitting and chatting! It was awesome! And I came away with 2 new (to me) sock yarns to try!

1) Online Supersock Cotton in Beach Color—Tracy has highly recommended this yarn for those of us who live in warm weather climates! I’m eager to try it! It feels very soft and I loved the colorway!

2) Trekking pro natura (a wool/soy blend!) I have yet to knit anything with soy and I can’t wait to cast on with it and see what it feels like!

Now what knitting have I been doing? I have two socks in progress!

1) No Purl Monkeys (these were the trip socks because I knew the pattern was super easy to do on the go) I’m using knitpicks gloss in dusk! One down, one to go! Okay, so I didn’t get it completely done on the trip, but today all I’ve done is knit and spend time with my cat who missed me a lot :) DH is away until tomorrow! (Our trips overlapped this time) Needless to say we are both ready to be home, together, with no future trips for a while!

2) Retro Rib Socks. I worked on these before the trip. They are in knitpicks essential also in dusk!

More details on these socks as the second sock (rest of the first) progress!