You are currently browsing the monthly archive for September 2009.

Being back at uni is strange, the moment you walk into town it feels like you were never away and whatever adventures you had in the intervening time are nothing but smoke and dreams, yet at the same time everything is changed and you run into these moments where things are the same yet so very different.

I had a good trip over but caught a stomach bug somewhere along the way which maybe for a hellish first night here and a few uncomfortable days. I’m over now thankfully but the whole thing set me behind in setting my life to rights and I still have all these little things that need to get done. I only just went and bought clothes hangers today, despite the fact that I’ve had things strewn across my room for the last week. I feel like I did a good purge last year and I have a lot less junk in my life, tons of more clothes I’m afraid and more shoes too, but less of the useless crap I used to have scattered around.

It’s going to be a busy semester, the one module I’ve had a class meeting for today is going to be a lot of outside work which while I’m looking forward to it, I’m worried about all the other parts of my life too. I’ll get to that when I can I suppose. I have to go into town to get my bike tires pumped up and prehaps buy a new bike lock, the key for the old one sort of snapped off, and then I’ll be off to my weather class.

I can’t belive that I leave to go back to school tomorrow night. I’m not remotely near to being packed though I have everything I need. All I can do is hope that everything will fit in my suitcases, I have seemed to collect a bit more clothing than usual this year. I finally actually went clothes shopping and actually managed to find some tops that I liked so I’m good for that for the up coming year. I also managed to get myself an new pair of flats from Clarks and some running shoes, so that I actuall do ct5k.

Monday was my birthday and on Sunday night my brother and his girlfriend came down from Boston and we had a little party. It was very nice. The next day I went on a whale watch with my mother which I unfortunately have no pictures from because I forgot my camera at home. It was beautiful out and we got to see quite a few humpbacks.

PA190012 birthday roses

I had some more successfull days out at Beavertail where I hope I got enough data for the North American side of my dissertation. I lucked out majorly on the weather both days and got some calm days with relatively little seas.

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I did say relatively. There were only a few time I had to scramble back to avoid getting wet, and evne then my feet got wet a few times. My shoes stink to high heaven from the salt water.

I neve finished the pair of socks for my dad, I tried but I only got to the end of the gusset decreases. It would hve only taken me about a day or two more so those will go bak across the Atlantic and I’ll send them home when I finish them at the end of next week (hopefully).

Tomorrow will be all packing and then it’s jetting off, it’s only a 6 hour flight so that’s nothing.

So I’ve collected a bit more yarn in the past week which needs to be shared.

First up some Malabrigo Lace I picked up when I was buying needles in colourway Pearl Ten. I’m not sure what I want to do with this but it sure is pretty.

And some traditional Laine des Pyrenees I bought from spinspanspun at etsy. It’s a rustic bulky wool however I don’t know how much is in each ball, I need to unravel one and measure. I got five balls of the stuff in a traditional red. If there is enough I’m hoping to make Jane Richmond’s great cardigan Sedum.

I visited my friend Hannah the other day and as a birthday treat she let me raid her mother’s stash. I pulled out some Cascade Ecological Wool in 8061 which is a sort of tawny beige colour. I’m hoping to make Kate Davies’ owls though I’ve got about three skeins and I might have enough for something else.

I also grabbed five balls of Moda Dea Cartwheel which is an aran weight 100% wool yarn. I got it in the Misty colourway. I wish the yardage for each ball was better, only 77 yards and I’m a bit stuck on what I would use it to make. It has a beautiful slubby texture but I don’t want to make another hat or scarf. Maybe I can incorporate it with something else into a project.

For my birthday my mother gave me 50 dollars for yarn and knitting stuff so I don’t know if any other yarn will be hitting my stash in the near future, other than the few pieces I’m in need of buying to destash (silly concept but it works).

In other knitting news, I have my first commission. My brother’s girlfriend is paying me to knit her niece a dress. I’m very excited about the project and the prospect of getting paid for it of course. I’ll be knitting Little sister’s dressfrom Tora Frøseth Design with Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino in Grape.

Last Friday I managed to get my mother to take me past our local yarn store so I could pick up some sock needles for my Jaywalkers. Incidently she was going to a baby shower on Sunday and had been racking her brain as to a present. While we were there she was admiring some baby sweaters and asked me offhandly if I could knit a baby hat as a present. I said I could so we purchased some yarn and went home. The hat soon was joined by booties and we went out again for needles for the hat and another ball of yarn. Barely a day and a half later I had knit a hat and booties which personally I think are the cutiest things and they went over very well at the baby shower.

Gooseberry

Pattern: Gooseberry Hat by Suvi Simola

Yarn: Katia Sugar 4 ply in 3505

Needles: 3.5 mm / US 4 dpn

This hat is truly adorable and a very fast knit. The pattern calls for sport weight yarn but with the needles called for and smaller yarn my gauge was still a stich lower than the gauge called for. Personally I thought the hat came out a little large but I think the baby can grow into it.

Saartjes

Pattern: Fleegle’s Seamless Saartje Booties by Fleegle

Yarn: Katia Sugar 4 ply in 3505

Needles: 2.5 mm / US 1 1/2 dpn

These booties are I think what I’m most proud of. Each bootie took me about three hours to complete. I made the mistake of attempting them with dpns which is not the easier ordeal, I’ve since bought a curcular needle that I can try them out on. Learning the Turkish cast one was interesting and usefull, I’m always interested in learning new techniques.  Of course, the straps and buttons were being completed mere minutes before we had to make it to the baby shower. These are something I would definately make again.

 

I spent my day herePA140031

doing some SCIENCE

SCIENCE!

with my trusty quadrat.

Here I am in the mists of counting periwinkles

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and then the waves came

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though I managed to stay dry for most of the time.

Overall it was a successful day. I forgot that the eastern US measures tides in feet while the UK measures them in meters, quite a difference there in how low you can get on the shore. Even so I saw some interesting stuff that already is seeming to prove my hypothesis about there being more algae on US coasts. I’ll head back down to Beavertail next week when there’s a very low tide and see if I can get farther down. Otherwise I’m off to Sandwich tomorrow for some more. The tides are not ideal, I’ll be working from low to high but I”ll take what I can get.

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Irish Moss

Look what came in the post today

It’s the yarn from the swap I did with SpinSpanSpun over at ravelry.

90 yards of silk merino dk handspun handdyed deliciousness. I have no idea what I’m going to do with this as it’s not a huge amount of yarn. It’s on the light side of DK, probably closer to sport weight than anything else, so I might go with some wristwarmers of some such.

I was impressed with the quality of the yarn so I went to check out her etsy shop. The majority of her yarn is too expensive for my wallet (but it would be worth it if I did want to splurge). Though I did buy about a pound of bulky traditional french wool that she was destashing. I’m not sure about the yardage on it but approximately 500 grams of bulky wool for 20 bucks is a steal. I’ve tried to extrapolate what I think the yardage will be based on other bulky wool, I’ve got everywhere between 500-800 yards so I’ll just have to see when I get it. Either way, it will make something nice. Maybe my first cardigan or vest.

And another picture of the gorgeousness

There wasn’t enough wind today to justify going done to the boat so I discussed my needs for my dissertation and my dad and I went about getting together and building my quadrats and level. I feel like the quadrat is a little smaller than I’m used to, I think I’ve used 1/2 meter sqaures before rather than 1/4 but it makes it more portable. Everything we’ve made so that I can take it apart and fit it into my suitcase for when I head back over the pond. It’s a really good feeling to get things done finally for it. Now we need to just add the hardware for the level and drill holes for the wing nuts on the quadrat. I need to paint some rocks red (these won’t be going over the atlantic with me) and I’ll be all set, I”ve even gotten a measuring tape and a notebook.

We went down to Newport to watch the polo this evening. It was alot of fun and something quite different. All we want to do for next time is get seats closer to the pitch and actually understand the rules. Alot of the time we had no idea what was going on, it didn’t help that we couldn’t hear the announcer or see the score board. We’re pretty sure that the visiting team (from England) won.

I’m going to finally start on the second sock of the pair I started with my mom last April. She didn’t take to it quite as well as she could have, I don’t think her big hands are really suited to the intricacies of sock knitting. Anyhow I screwed up the foot length so they’re for my father now rather than her.

Pattern: Turn a Square by Jared Flood

Yarn: Berroco Ultra Alpaca in Peat Mix and

Plymouth Yarns Boku in Brown

Needles: 4 mm/US 6 and 4.5mm/US 7

This is a christmas present for my brother. I’m very pleased with how it turned out, it is a very easy and effective pattern so the fact that it’s nice is really down to the designer. If anyone is interested, the pattern can be found for free from the designer’s blog brooklyntweed or on ravelry. It’s nice to get one of my christmas presents done early, now it’s wrapped in tissue paper and hidden in the back of the cedar closet for the next few months.

Summer is definately winding down. Pretty soon school buses will start showing up again. As it is most of my friends here in the States are already back a college, many of them started classes this week! It’s strange for me to think that I still have three weeks before I head back to uni and about a month before classes even start. I’m looking forward to getting back into the grind of things, it makes you feel like you’re actually doing something.

I’m starting the data collection on my dissertation soon so I finally got over my fears and emailed my advisor back about the changes to my research question. I went back over his email from earlier in the summer and while he wanted to me to refine my questions and thinking about how and why I would do my research he more or less okayed it which was something that I had forgotten over the course of the summer. This puts my mind at rest while I go out to collect my data next week (hopefully). I have quite a bit of work ahead of me in terms of getting everything together that I need, it’s not much, just a quadrat, a level, a tape and some painted rocks but most of this I have to build so it’s also a matter of getting what I need and then actually making it. I believe that I’ve refined my fixed cross stave level to a buildable/usable point where I don’t have to be up until all hours of the morning trying to figure out how to make this thing. Note to self : check tide tables for next week. It’s a shame that I’m missing some really good tides over the weekend but what can I do, these things happen in science.

On the knit side of things, I didn’t go to the yarn shop. I will at some point though I have figured out how to jury rig the pattern so that the left over alpaca will be enough. I have also joined in a swap over at ravelry which means I’ll be getting a tiny skein of DK in the post soon

I got out of my Indonesia mandated knitting hiatus with finishing my version of Jared Flood’s Turn a Square which will be my brother’s christmas present. I used dark green Berroco Ultra Alpaca left over from Sarah’s scarf and varigated brown Plymouth Yarn Boku which gives it’s it a decidely tree like appearence. My brother is well known for a large head, both literally and metaphorically so I hope it will fit. It is currently on my bathroom floor being blocked, and I tried to pull it out as much as possible to give it some more length.

I was debating making another scarf for the the brother’s girlfriend againt his year so I’ve been trawling ravelry for a good hat which I can use some odds and ends on. I found Kate Gagnon Osborn’s Opus Spicatum which is a herringbone fair isle tam. It’s designed for smaller amounts of yarn which is perfect but I think the small amount of Ultra Alpaca I still have left will be just too small of an amount.

I’m hoping to head to the yarn shop tomorrow to see if I can get the needles for the jaywalkers so I’ll see if I can pick up a skein of some worsted.