school’s out forever …

… I wish.

But classes are over and I have a week of glorious freedom before the final essay drafts come in.  Yay!  I’ve actually been thinking about my *own* work.  <gasp>  Because I have plenty of it.

I’ve only ever hinted at my occupation here on the blog … because, well, it’s mostly about knitting, right?  But my work affects my knitting and my blogging (or at least the time I have to devote to both), so it doesn’t seem completely out of line to talk about what I do.  I’ve also been shy about revealing too much about myself … I didn’t want to come off all freaky-weird and overly bookish.   Remember: knitting. 


Anyway, all this to say: I’m a graduate student in German at [ETA: an Ivy League University] and have been for four years.  That means I get paid to read books in German, write about books in English (I’m no native speaker), and teach German.  This sounds idyllic.  What they never mention in the viewbook, though, is the crippling, soul-destroying doubt and insecurity that will plague your every moment, thought, presentation, paper, etc.  Not to mention the guilt that will suck the joy out of the moments you’re not working.  At least for me.  Because I got it in my head that I wasn’t here to learn but just to *be* smart.  Very different things.  This last year (thankfully over) was an orgy of failure and rejection: no fellowships, no writing, bad exams, no idea why I was here or what I was doing or what I was interested in.  I basically stopped working, focused on teaching, and dreamed on escaping to … anywhere.  An academic mess, really. 

Things have been better lately, though.  Not that I have any answers, but I’m okay with my bad exams, my master’s degree that took 3 1/2 years to get, my slow progress towards a dissertation proposal, my incomplete coursework.  I’ve never been an academic mess before … now I’m figuring out how to stop feeling like one.  It’s no self-help journey of discovery; it’s more about doing the work I’m supposed to be doing. 

I’m moving to Germany in the summer for a year of study at a university there and even though I’m scared about a lot of things (especially losing Mr. B.), I’m super-excited about getting out of town.  [ETA: Ivy League Town] may be lots of things, but it’s never really been the place for me — academically or otherwise (friends and the wonderful Mr. B. excluded).

So here I am on campus, trying to get some stuff done.  Like reading.  See:


  Basement café on a beautiful day. 

But not before I took some pictures of my knitting … as I was rushing out the door.


Lizard ridge squares 1 – 3.

I have to say, I was one the fence about square #3.  The alternating green was somehow too emphatic — it is just so very green; the ridges don’t blend like in the other squares; the colors are so starkly separated.  But it’s growing on me. 


The purple at the top kind of saved it for me.  This is the Noro 88  I used for the Halfobi way back when; alternating ends of the ball definitely gave the square a different feeling. 

I’m certainly not suffering from anything approaching miter-madness, but the squares are awfully fun to make.  An eighth done, only 21 more to go …

I’ve also determined to keep on slogging with my sister’s Rebecca wrap sweater with eyelets.  Why it has that little appropriate-for-beginners flower on it is beyond me. 



I ordered some more ggh soft kid in purple — a year or more later and from a different store — and got the same dyelot.  So now I have enough matching purple mohair to … what?  Make lots of sticky, hairy garments?  I was thinking I might search for something appropriate in my newly-acquired Victorian Lace Today.  But first the cardigan.  It really is cute: check out Anna’s longer version.

To change subjects: Sockapalooza 4.  I’m excited and nervous … first real socks and all; first exchange, gifty thing.  I found some lovely yarn and lots of possible patterns, but it still needs some thought.

Okay.  Time for real work.      


I thought, since I really don’t have many readers (any readers?), ebay might be the better option for yarn sales.  I’ll do that sometime soon.

yarn for sale

So I’ve decided to destash.  I’ll be moving to Germany sometime in the summer and a good bit of my yarn will have to be left behind.  Instead of just throwing it in storage with my other stuff, I thought it deserved to find nice new homes where it could be loved and appreciated. 

If you’re interested in purchasing, send me an email.  I’ll send an invoice.  Viola.

I’ve tried to be clear about the condition of the yarn — what has been used, how much has been used, what has been used and rewound, etc — but I’m happy to answer questions.  I don’t have any means of figuring yardages for the yarns I’ve swatched.  I do, however, make small swatches.

I’m also open to haggling.  Although I really did try to make the prices fair, if you’d like to suggest something, please do.

Shipping is not included in the prices, but I’ll try to keep it cheap unless you request a super-fast service. 

Everything will be sold on a first come, first served basis.  No returns just because I’m trying to get rid of the stuff.

Anyway, take a peek.  I’ve never done this before, so patience would be greatly appreciated.

In other news …


The buttony raglan body is finished.  I’m on the fence about this sweater — it’s really big on me and just kind of … hangs.  The yarn is rather heavy and the shape too big and boxy (my fault, not the pattern’s).  I don’t know if I’m going to finish or frog … I’m giving it a few days before I decide. 

slog, slog, slog-a-long

As you might have guessed, I’ve discovered the slogalong.  As you might not have guessed, I am strangely beguiled and energized by the presence of an official site dedicated to all things slog. 

Is it bad that most of my projects seems to fit in the category right now?

Here’s square no. 2:


The wonderful Mr. B. mentioned that I’d have a nice scarf if I give up on the blanket idea.  Clever Mr. B.  A definite enabler of my horrified, oh-my-God-what-have-I-got-myself-into feelings about lizard ridge.  Lovely?  Yes.  Expensive?  Undoubtedly.  Completed?  Not so likely.

And the buttony keeps on coming.  This time I didn’t even take it out of the sack.


I’m on the bottom ribbing; still inches to go.  And arms.  I’m not sure the yarn is going to hold out on me.  That merino chunky knits up like nobody’s business: gone in a flash.


A couple of new buttons on the newly streamlined sidebar.  I haven’t been participating regelmäßig-like in either Project Spectrum or Knit from Your Stash, but I thought even my intermittent participation deserved a button.  I *have* been keeping both in mind a lot lately.  My yarn buying has been curbed; my colors are all over the place and lots of fun … with special honors going to the LMKG chevron scarf. 

But to truly welcome in my newly official Project Spectrum status, it’s time to finish up the big green monster: the buttony raglan.  Luckily the scarf extraordinary fits the next installment of Protrum to a T.  It’s sock yarn, right?  And Noro!  How could I forget Noro?  I feel I might be getting the spirit but not the letter of the Protrum law …

Alice the intrepid explorer of cupboards will keep me on top of it.


[p.s. My KfYS button is from  Saved on my own server, of course.  Her KfYS was far superior to any others I have yet to find.]

cadbury creme egg.

It is once again time to bid farewell to my favorite part of Easter.  Until next year, beloved Creme Egg.

I thought I’d update the as-late rather neglected blog while enjoying my scrumptious Easter feast: leftover tikka masala cunningly disguised as brunch or dinner or something.  Splendid!

I also have lots of pictures.  It’s been a stressful bit, right now: rejections right and left; future plans to … um … plan.  Needless to say, the knitting hasn’t been a number one priority.  Procrastination, on the other hand, is doing a land-office business.  I’m even procrastinating on my knitting … moving from one project to another without really finishing anything. 

A case in point:


The buttony raglan: so very close, yet so very far from completion.  I have about 40 more rows on the body and then the sleeves.  I really like it … and would like it even more if I could just get it done.  It might even still be cold out if I hurry.


This is procrastination project #1.  You might recognize the beginnings of a lizard ridge.  And you would be correct.  This is only square two; so far, I have a napkin.  I was quite intimidated by the pattern at first, but once I learned to count and figured out how to purl the wrapped stitches (avec wrap) it was smooth sailing. 

Square one:


I managed to eke out one more pattern repeat than directed and since I don’t have an unlimited Noro budget upon which to draw, I thought I might be able to save a bit of yarn by doing rectangular blocks.  We’ll see. 

And the copy cat project:


Now with 100% more homage!  Yep, I broke down (har har) and bought the required Socks that Rock colorways (i.e. Farmhouse and Watermelon Tourmaline).  The heavyweight StR is great … I don’t know how to describe it, almost like string it’s so compact and tight.  Does that make sense?  It also kind of smells strange.  I’m hoping that will wear off with time and love and washing. 

But just look at all that pretty:


It might even get a trip to Shea … opening day tomorrow! 

still sick …

… but feeling better, almost like a functioning member of society.  I graded quizzes yesterday — with not major mishaps to rectify — and might take a stab at essays today.  In the coffee shop.  Yep, that means I’m considering a shower.  The final stages of the cold have been reached.  I hope.

My time on the couch hasn’t been all British mysteries and sneezing.  Nope.  I’ve got something to show for myself:


Ta-da!  The EZ very warm hat.  I somehow managed to miscount (and mis-pickup) the number of stitches on the yellow version, so some fancy footwork was necessary to get the pattern to fit, albeit with an extra pattern repeat.  The crown decreases are equally funky.  I briefly considered frogging but decided that my dad won’t notice … especially if he keeps the blue on the outside.  Thus:


I’m also attempting to fix the "cold head" problem with accents of "itchy" ascribed to the manos hat:


The extra malabrigo seems to be doing quite nicely so far; I picked up the stitches just above the ribbing then increased 16 stitches over four rounds to even out gauge issues.  My only worry is that I won’t have enough yarn … it might turn quite patchworky in there.

It’s not all knitting around here, though.  Alice found a real mouse last night; she’s been strutting around the house like the mighty huntress all day.  (Even mighty huntresses sometimes get shut in bedrooms while their keepers try to steer frightened rodents out of the house, only to watch them disappear into the recesses of the kitchen appliances.)