Sunday, September 09, 2007

All for fall.

Whelp, it's certainly been a while since I posted last! I was still in L.A. and had just finished my niece's folklorico skirt; since then, I made a whirlwind visit to Chicago to help care for my mom (who was just out of surgery) and then back to Austin...the day before the semester started! Obviously, some things had to be prioritized--preparing a syllabus or blogging? Oooh, tough decision. I don't even think my students know how close we came to just winging it all semester. :-)

Thanks to everyone who left comments on the skirt I made for Isabel! She wore it to her recital and according to my sister, danced to the left while everyone else danced to the right. When asked later if she had forgotten the steps, she simply said, "no." Apparently everyone else had gotten it wrong.

Knitting has been progressing at a sluggish rate, but the planning? Ooh, the planning for fall knits. I pretty much pushed myself to finish the lace tank from Vogue Knitting (spring issue, I think?) just so that I could cast on with some wool.

I begrudgingly did the crochet edging around the sleeves and neck while starting the third season of Angel, and now it just needs a few ends woven in and a good blocking. I would have just soaked it, but because it's Euroflax linen, I want to run it through the wash to see if the yarn will soften up some.

Meanwhile, since my birthday's coming up, I treated myself to a set of Addi lace circs and a skein of Smooshy sock yarn at my LYS's monthly sale (all 20% off). Even though I have a stash of sock yarn waiting for me, I couldn't wait to cast on with the Smooshy, which poses here with some Cascade 220 I have queued to knit Stephanie Japel's Back-to-School vest from Fitted Knits.

I was literally standing there at the LYS, minding my own beeswax, when a woman came up to me and asked me if I'd seen the Smooshy. I was all, the whuh-huh? She pointed to the stock on the lower shelf and declared it to be the softest yarn that made the warmest socks. And that her Sockapalooza pal was very happy with the pair she'd made out of Smooshy. Well, with that kind of testimonial (and the name Smooshy), how could I resist? I picked out this green, which in person looks positively incandescent. (I also privately marveled at how she threw out the concept of Sockapalooza without wondering if I would even know what the heck that was, in addition to what the heck Smooshy was.)

Speaking of LYSes, Austin is getting a new one! Woot woot! But before I tell you more, I know you'll get a kick out of the little story about how I found out it was coming...

At the end of last semester, I was grading papers at a favorite local coffee shop, when I noticed that three women next to me were having a business meeting. (Noticed or eavesdropped? Potayto, potahto.) One woman looked super familiar, but I couldn't remember where I knew her from. Well, I continued grading papers, but I heard them talking about sock yarn. Could have been some other thing going by the name of Regia...

Finally, one of the women pulls out a bag of Claudia's Handpainted, and I just could. Not. Restrain. Myself. I leaned over and commented that I couldn't help but notice all the yarn and were they by any chance opening up a new yarn store? (Pause. Bated breath.) Then I realized that the woman I'd recognized before was Karli, who used to work at really what's the only LYS in Austin (there's another in Cedar Park). I mentioned this and a friendly discussion ensued during which Karli threw a skein of sock yarn at me to see what I thought of the color. I got to help pick out a color for the stock, y'all!

Anyway, it turns out that Karli and a partner were planning to open an LYS called Gauge (cute!), and they took my email and blog url down. I just got an email from them letting me know that they just opened. Hurray! It's almost like having another birthday present. For you Austinites out there, the address is 5406 Parkcrest Drive Austin, Tx. 78731.

Coinciding with the start of a new semester and a new season, is the arrival of a very special someone in my house. Meet Joaquin P. Pickering:

Joaquin's creator is the lovely and talented Floresita of Things I've Made, and to celebrate her blogiversary, she held a little contest offering up some monkey love, which I won! If you do nothing else today, you have to go see the portraits of Joaquin with his brothers and sister, taken before he embarked on his journey from NYC to Austin. As soon as he got here, he devoured the felt bananas I had waiting for him! Here here is perusing my book collection and considering the perennial question--is he a Sandra Cisneros fan, or an Ana Castillo devotee? Hmm. Take your time, won't be an easy choice!

For next time--an FO post!

* All for Fall is the name of a children's book I used to have that I read to pieces. I don't remember exactly how it went, but it probably had lots to say about falling leaves and new school supplies and hot cocoa. Maybe even something about wool sweaters.


At 5:28 AM, Blogger Karen said...

Hurray, you are back!!! I've missed you. What fun news in your post too - a FO that just needs blocking, some new sock yarn (which looks so pretty posing with the 220), a new LYS AND a cute little monkey. Eeeeeeee.

At 5:41 AM, Blogger Ashley said...

Woohoo--new yarn store! That's so exciting. All of it's so exciting really--new FO (which in my experience with Euroflax will definitely soften up in the wash) new monkey, new yarn---so much goodness! And getting your syllabus done too-that's just gravy :)

At 6:35 AM, Blogger floresita said...

Ack! Joaquin on your bookshelf - he looks so at home there... and I just have this feeling... just maybe.... he prefers Sandra? So happy to see he arrived safely! :)

At 7:07 AM, Blogger meg said...

hey lady. even better news - another store called the knitting nest is opening on slaughter lane this tuesday (tomorrow). she has an amazing stock of yarn. i cannot freaking wait!

At 7:30 AM, Blogger Yaya said...

Wow, 2 new yarn stores in Austin! I have to check at least one of them out this weekend while in Austin for ACL.

At 8:24 AM, Anonymous amanda cathleen said...

Lovely new yarn! Smooshy has to be one of the best yarns out there!

At 8:55 AM, Blogger a friend to knit with said...

so glad you are back!
you have been very busy!
can't wait to see the lace top....yes too fun to work with wool right now.......
early birthday gifts are the best!

all for that name!

At 12:14 PM, Blogger lo said...

How does the Euroflax behave when washed? The flax project that I am working on is threatening to never end ever.

At 4:03 PM, Blogger Jennifer said...

Wow! You've been busy! That's so exciting about the new yarn store, and the fact that you got the early scoop... Cool!


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