gloomy Tuesday

silky

Well, better than a gloomy Sunday, I guess.  And it’s just the rain lending a gloom to this particular Tuesday — a very stormy, humid start to spring here in Nashville.  I’m feeling cheery anyway, since yesterday was my last day of teaching: goodbye intermeidate German!  Hello, dissertation.

Honestly, I’m freaking out a little bit about the prospect of a rather unstructured summer — I still don’t know where I’ll be when, which means I can’t really make any plans — and the amount of work that needs to be done.

Instead of panicking, I’m concentrating on the wedding shawl.

silky

silky

Or, the Inspector Clouseau Trousseau, as I’ve dubbed it.  It’s kinda pink after all.  And according to one especially crushing internet application, one of my celebrity lookalikes is Peter Sellers.  In addition to Elvis Costello, Steven Soderbergh, Larry King, and Yves Saint Laurent.  Without the glasses, it’s Mikhail Baryshnikov.  A superfecta I was sure never to guess.

So I’ve got that goin’ for me, which is nice.

silky

silky

But to get to the knitting.

So far, so good.  The silky merino is knitting up like a silky dream and it looks like the variegated colors will add a bit of interest without overwhelming the lace pattern.  As for the pattern, it promises maximum effect with minimum effort: straightforward and easy to follow, just repetitive enough to memorize easily and just varied enough to keep it interesting.

“Yes, well, life is not all shoot-shoot, bang-bang, you know.”

silky

Time to get to work.  Kurosawa!

i finally bought some coffee.

That’s the good news.  It had been a very sad coffee-less existence around here … all because I was
alternately too busy or too lazy or too reluctant to sit in traffic to get to the grocery store.  So dining hall coffee it was.

Dining hall coffee is not happy coffee.

Rainbow baby sweaters, however, are very happy.

stripes are nice

Very happy, indeed.  I finished up the sleeves last weekend, and now it’s just waiting for blocking and buttons.  The rainbow Boku is so cheery — I just hope the weather doesn’t turn too warm too quickly for this to get at least a little bit of use.

So I should probably get on those buttons.

stripes are nice

stripes are nice

My other project at the moment is a wedding shawl.  I love knitting wedding shawls — and this one looks like it will be no exception.  For a while, I was thinking of going the Rock Island route, but then after some further consideration, I decided that Trousseau was just too perfect to pass up.  I mean, trousseau?  Perfect.

And this Sundara silky merino (in orchid) is beyond magical.  So soft and silky.  And I think the color — pinky lavender purple — will be a nice contrast to the bride’s blue shoes.  Practical lady that she is, the color is also just neutral enough to work with a lot of different wardrobe staples … at least, that’s my hope.

silky magic

silky magic

Finally, we’re obviously a wool-loving household around here.  It still tickles me that Alice loves her kitty Kureyon blanket.  Obviously the perfect spot for a morning bath.

Alice!

And now, time to get back to work.  The semester is almost over and I think I might just make it.  There’s a lot to be done this summer …

sigh.

Yesterday was one of those days.  Grey, rainy, and cold — I didn’t want to leave the house, let alone venture out to a coffee shop where I’d have a fighting chance of getting some work done.  So yesterday was devoted to internet television and baby knits.  It did kinda feel like giving up, though.

arms

I finished up the body and cast on for the sleeve.  As you might have noticed, I knit this in the round instead of “on two needles” as suggested by the pattern.  It just seemed like simpler way to go, especially since I wanted to avoid all that seaming up and matching stripes.  So far, the yarn has been cooperative, stipes have marched along in their appointed order … with only one more sleeve to go, I’m hoping the luck holds.

[ETA: oops!  I never did mention what pattern I'm knitting (it was obvious enough to me after all): EZ's superlative February baby sweater.  Since the stripes were providing quite enough interest, I went with plain stockinette over the gull pattern.  Modified to knit in the round -- instead of flat, which is more interesting from a construction point of view, but also requires more finishing -- with only 6 buttons (chubby tummies should be available for tickling at all times), it really flies off the needles.]

In other news, I’ve got a wedding shawl to plan.

purple!

Right now, Rock Island is the frontrunner.  At first, I was ready to make the plunge and almost bought some lovely madelinetosh to try out, but then … the cat fountain broke and Alice has been a Somewhat Unhappy Kitty, so … that’s where the yarn budget is going this month.  Luckily, the stash is expansive and varied.

This purple laceweight looks like it might just get the job done.  Cat foundtain included.

purple!

And now, back to work.  The sun is out and it’s time to get busy.

good grief.

Hey, how’s it going?  So, yeah, you might have noticed that I just up and disappeared again after telling you about all kinds of fun Nashville adventures, with very little knitting content.

Sorry.  mea culpa.  Or, rather, I blame the semester.  There have been conferences (yes, plural), prospective students, classes to teach, classes to attend, meeting upon meeting upon meeting, a trip to Vancouver (awesome) for a conference presentation of my own (phew.), work to grade, grants to apply for, a mindfulness-based stress reduction class (oh, the irony) … did I mention that I’m also supposed to be writing my first chapter right about now?  It’s been hectic and harried in that way all semesters become hectic and harried.  I’m not complaining — there has been some really great stuff going on, like meeting with an academic press about my project (!?!), winning an essay prize for a paper on embroidery (!) * — but I am worn out.

february baby sweater

Anyhoo, the last couple of evenings — despite all the nagging little things to be done — I’ve come home and knit.  Some friends just had their second baby, and since the first received a few woolly knits, I thought: what better excuse?  That baby needs a sweater.  Despite the fact that it’s summer in the south.

Considering the likelihood that spring is pretty much over, I started with some Lion Brand cotton.  Unfortunately, that version was pretty darn unattractive.  And who needs an ugly baby sweater?  So I moved onto some Plymouth Boku from the stash in lovely, bright rainbow colors.

february baby sweater

Maybe there will be a few cool evenings?  Maybe this will still fit in the fall (I really have no idea about relative baby sizes …)?

baby sock

I also whipped up one, lonely baby sock (in Koigu) …

index!

In other news, remember last year when I was complaining about all of that indexing?  Well, here it is!  My copies arrived — and, boy, is that a lot of books (the index is in vol. 6).  My part was very, very small — compared, you know, to the 25 years my advisor spent editing the edition — but it’s still exciting to see the finished project.

happiness

Happiness is handknit socks on the feet of very dear friends.  Perfect spring breaks should always be commemorated with wool.

Okay, it’s off to campus for me … but I promise not to stay away so long!  I’ve missed you guys!

____________________________

* I don’t mean to toot my own horn (well, only a little), but I’m so excited to finally have figured out what I’m doing with my life …  Mostly, it’s nothing more than an index of perverse perseverance, stubbornness, and the power of friendship to keep one going … it’s weird because people in Nashville really only see that I appear to know what I’m doing, without access to all of the years spent slogging through desperate unhappiness that got me here.  It’s like the hidden iceberg …