Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Another Reason for Second Sock Syndrome

The scene: Maryland Sheep and Wool. The Tess booth gleams in the sunlight and I can't resist. It's hot, and we're all sweaty and dirty. The booth is crowded, and Tess herself (the owner's daughter) is shockingly surly for someone in a retail position. I can't stay away. I get separated from my group. Where's Anna? someone asks. Oh, she's back in the Tess booth. Again. Steven remarks that these colors are really girly. And then I see this:

I love it. I have to have it.

Three months later, when I'm packing for my trip, I see this again and wind it up, and then toss it in my bag. On a windy day, when it's too windy for the wind-phobic Preschooler to hike (seriously, ask him how he feels about wind), I start a pair of Sunday Swing Socks.

And they are perfect. The colors align to spiral gently down the leg. This sock has no ugly pooling, no blotches of color. I don't have to think about strategies to make this beautiful skein of yarn continue to be beautiful in knitted form. Even in the gusset, where cuff-down socks tend to look their worst, this looks great.

How can I possibly risk making another?

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Things I Learned On the Way Home

  1. Not all Holiday Inn Express locations are created the same. Enough said about that, other than does anyone have a reliable but nice chain that they use while traveling?
  2.  A preschooler can watch Monsters, Inc. once, twice, even three times a day and not get tired of it. 
  3. I don't think I like this Zauberball sock yarn. I'm totally copying the Yarn Harlot because I'd tucked a skein of Zauberball Crazy in my travel knitting bag and thought "why not?" But the yarn, although interestingly plied and sturdy, is way too thin and rough. I guess I really do like my sock yarn with some "squoosh" factor. 
  4. It's good to be home.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Traveling Sock

This plain sock -- Miss Babs in Jingle Jingle B -- has been tucked in my bag and worked on in idle moments here in Wyoming.

Here it is on the road in southwestern Wyoming:

Here it is poolside at the condo complex (and really, I am watching my child, really):

Here we are at the Rockefeller Preserve (seriously, it's good to be a Rockefeller. This was their private land until 2000):

And finally, at Inspiration Point, above Jenny Lake:

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Wyoming Tradition

Wyoming Tradition, originally uploaded by bookscatsyarn.

Every year, we take a photo at the entrance to Jenny Lake. It's not even the most scenic view here, but it marks the beginning of our vacation. We didn't come in 2008, but otherwise the growth of our family is documented from our honeymoon in 2005 to now.

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

We're Here

So we’ve been coming out to Jackson Hole, Wyoming for the Grand Teton Summer Music Festival almost every year since our honeymoon (by the way, we’re celebrating five years of marriage on Friday!).  Jackson is located in the northwestern corner of Wyoming, south of the Yellowstone Plateau, and surrounded by the Grand Teton National Park and several National Forests. It’s kind of hard to get to. The first year we flew to Denver and drove up, ending up going over non-existent roads in the dark. The second year we flew (did you know that the Jackson Airport is the only commercial airport to operate in a national park?) with newborn Henry. The third year, I flew with barely a toddler Henry while my husband drove our car. Then we skipped a year, and last year, we all drove, breaking the trip with a visit with family in Oklahoma.

This year, my husband declared we were going to make the trip in three days, not four, which would require ten hours of driving per day. Okay. I can get a lot of knitting done. The Preschooler is generally pretty agreeable in the car, as long as he has his dvd player. We should have been fine.

That is, until we blew out a tire somewhere in Iowa. Fifty miles east of Omaha, we heard a dreadful noise. Thankfully, my husband was able to pull halfway up an exit ramp before the tire completely gave way. It was still a dangerous situation as he struggled to put on the spare tire while avoiding exiting trucks, but it beat the alternative. I was able to walk Henry up to a truck stop – because of course at the moment of crisis, he pipes up “I have to go potty!” – while my husband worked on the tire. He put the spare on…and then the car wouldn’t start. The car repair place by the truck stop did not have the tire we needed and moreover, didn’t have time to come out and jump our car.  Mercifully, the car insurance has roadside assistance and within half an hour, someone had come to jump the car and locate a tire.

Three hours and a pretty scary tire shop later, we were back on the road.  I feel lucky; it could have been so much worse, but we still had to drive for another six hours to make our deadline. We made it through severe lightning storms in the plains of Nebraska before we reached our hotel in Ogallala at midnight. Henry slept a little in the car but woke up crying and distressed to still be in his car seat. My husband was bummed out that he didn’t get his Runza, apparently a staple of his Nebraska childhood.

And to top it all off – since this is a knitting blog after all – this year is the year that I get carsick if I knit. Carsick! I completed Kelli’s Sunday Swing Socks and listlessly did a few rounds on a plain sock, but this was not to be the year I speed through projects as we drive through the Midwest. Co-workers, I cede the Summer of Socks and Lace to you.