Monday, November 14, 2011

College Road Trip

Hi Knitters,
My senior son was invited to spend a weekend at Ohio State University in Columbus and so we packed up and took a college road trip. It was a most beautiful weekend weather wise, you could not have asked for more. We had campus tours, a football game, and time to enjoy that good old campus atmosphere that we are so used to in Madison.
One thing we learned about OSU is that it is big, bigger and the biggest in just about everything. The campus and facilities are all topnotch and a lot are brand new. You can see the stadium in this view from a library window.
This is the main campus area and it looks like many other Big Ten campuses but again, it is just huge. It truly is a lovely and nostalgic college. You can really tell that people love OSU when you are there and with good reason.
I was struck by this sculptural art piece outside one of the campus buildings, so simple but it could tell many a story.
That's my son in the shorts and blue t-shirt. He is with his group of swimming recruits for the weekend. He had a good time and was thoroughly impressed. I don't know what will end up happening for him and his college selection but what a great place to visit either way.

On the way to and from OSU we had many hours in the car which enabled me to sit and knit to my heart's content. I worked on all kinds of projects that have been languishing including that handspun Hitchhiker shawl (I don't have a photo of my progress). I completed a bunch more of the points but I have to say I get bored very quickly on that project. I can do it for a bit and then I have to move on to something else. I hope it doesn't turn into another Citron for me which is a year and a half in the making so far.

I knit up a quick pair of the Outsider Mitts, a free pattern I did for Spud & Chloë, in our high school colors. These are a gift for a swimmer on my daughter's team. I knit them in the super-bulky Outer yarn on US size 13 dpns and I am telling you if you want a fast and cute gift these are it! I could knit these a million times over because they turn out great and they are quick and fun.
I finished my Door County Cherry socks. I am in love. Madelinetosh Merino Light is the yarn and it is lover-ly! I have been shuffling about my house in these and they are exquisite.
My college sophomore son sadly told me the other day that he lost his Surefire Hat that I made him at least 5 years ago. I am not making it up when I tell you that he wore that hat everyday for most all of the day in our cold Wisconsin months and for years. My other son has two of these hats due to losing and finding one while I knitted him a spare. Both boys wear their Surefires constantly and it makes me incredibly happy.
Well, of course I told him I would whip him up another Surefire Hat in an instant. The originals are knit in Tahki Donegal Tweed but I recently had acquired some of Brooklyn's Tweed Shelter for a book project I am working on and I had some leftovers just waiting to be used up. The colors happened to be just perfect and remarkably similar to his old hat. I gave it to him last Saturday and he put it right on and wore it the rest of the weekend. Nothing is better than that.

I have talked about this pattern quite a bit but only because it is a hat that is so loved at my own house. If you are looking for a teenage boy or man hat with earflaps you should check this one out. The Shelter looks and worked fantastically well, too, if you are wanting to try out that new-ish yarn.

TC is knitting away on her Noro scarf. It is so pretty and rustic and halo-y. Good stuff and right up TC's alley.

She brought this to knitting club last weekend along with the start of a baby hat that you can see a bit of in the photo above. She comes and goes with her knitting but it never seems to leave her completely.

I started a Mini-Fairy-Along on Spud says! This week I am posting in progress shots on Spud says! and I started a thread on the Spud & Chloë Ravelry group for people to post photos and share their progress. I needed a new sample for an upcoming class. I am teaching a fairy knitting workshop this coming Saturday in Madison at the Knit Circus Mini-Retreat along with the fabu Amy Detjen. I signed up for Amy's colorwork class for the afternoon so I am really excited about that. It will be my first knitting class and I am starting with the best instructor in the biz. That's pretty sweet.

The fairy project is from the Knit Simple Holiday Issue 2011 and is called Flora & Fairies.

On Saturday I went for a run while TC was at her knitting group at a nearby church and when I came home she had set up shop in my tiny studio to stitch up a charity blanket. It made me really, really happy and I just had to share. Oh, and to be young and sit on the floor to stitch up a blanket... I can't do this any more due to various aches and pains but I enjoy her being able to do this.

Isn't it a great blanket? The church collects knit and crocheted squares and then pieces them together to make fantastic patchwork blankets to give to local charities. TC said that all of the squares are supposed to be the same size but they always end up all different sizes. I had to laugh at that because that's what always happens with knit and crochet patterns. Everyone works and measures differently, right?

My sweet and juicy Peachy finally got her Bella's Mitts! This project was over a year in the making. Patient Peachy never forgot though and has been asking about them. A long car ride to Ohio was exactly what I needed to get these done. She could not believe her eyes when I gave them to her. She is in love with her new mitts and just in time for the new Twilight movie, too. That new one is looking a little racy in the ads isn't it? Not so sure about that.

TC modeled the new mitts for me early yesterday. I used Knit Picks Wool of the Andes in the Pewter colorway. The yarn is a bulky weight, and I knit on size 9 dpns. I did quite a bit of modifying but you wouldn't need to as it is a great pattern. They are shorter in cuff length than the pattern calls for, too. We wear coats in these parts and to have a cuff going almost to your elbow with a bulky yarn isn't functional. Also, I ordered two hanks of this wool from Knit Picks and only used one hank so I may whip up a matching hat for Peachy in the future.

I hope you are well this week, dear Knitters. I am contemplating another fun giveaway this week but I'll see how things unfold around here. It has been the busiest fall on record for my little family and me. I am looking forward to less travel and fewer deadlines and more home time in the coming winter months and into the spring. I am snuggling in around here for sure! Light that fire and put the teapot on....

How about you?

best, susie


Nickycarp said...

My sis got her PhD from OSU and loved it there. Great school and a fun place to be! Go Buckeyes!

SSK* said...

My freshman son hasn't been home since August. When I saw him last week, the ONLY thing he requested from home was his Mom-knit hat! There is something about those hats that the boys love!!!

Laura said...

Susan, what a great post. I loved the hat and the fact that your sons love this hat so much. I am going to knit one up and see if my guys fall for it. Thanks for sharing about your family, it is so sweet! Keep up all the wonderful designs, I love your knits!

Patricia said...

Ah, the Surefire hat. My favorite, and I have knit at least a dozen of them! Everytime I give one as a gift another relative requests one. My son has worn out one and is on his second. I have been knitting them with S & C Sweater. Good luck on the college picking...we are in the middle of that as well, only it's my first child doing it. Oh the bitter sweetness of it all!

Elise said...

Has he checked under the couch in his dorm/house. I had knit my son up a hat last winter per his request. It was my first double knit project and it felt so warm and cozy. He found it like I said behind the couch!

Kepanie said...

Every project is so darn awesome, Susan! TC is so amazing w/that blanket. Love how your son loved his hat and asked for another. I bet someone snatched it up b/c it was just too irresistible.
What size are your sock blockers? Do you use them for any socks that you make or do you tend to make the same sized socks as they're usually for you?

barb :0) said...

I have ALWAYS loved you ... but seriously Ohio State !!!!! I am a Buckeye ... thru and thru and was enrolled as a freshman at Ohio State !!!!! Thank You for all the lovely comments .... Columbus is my FAVORITE city ... ever :0)
Good Luck to your son and GO BUCKS !!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

LOVE your projects-glad you got to work on so many of them on your college trip!

My son graduated in May-got his masters' degree from OSU-great school. All the best to your special young man and his swimming and college choice!

karen alho said...

Dear Susan,
I think you need to find something to keep you busy!

I am long since past the empty nest syndrome and I still don't accomplish nearly as much as you do! How on earth do you get it all done?

Enviously yours,
The-one-sweater-and-one-pair-of-socks-a-year knitter

Laura C. said...

LOVE your blog and was so excited to read that you and your son had a great trip to Columbus. We live just north of OSU and are always driving to Columbus for the malls (and yarn shops). I'm a native Ohioan, so I'm a little biased. ;) I just printed off the pattern for the mini-turkey and am so excited to start it!

LaLa said...

Love the Spud and chloe mittens! I'm going to add them to my, "I need a gift FAST" list.

Ellen Bishop said...

Seeing the OSU photos just made my day...I graduated from Ohio State years ago and these photos brought back so many wonderful memories! My niece's son who is just seven years old is on a swim team at OSU...starting young! GO BUCKS!

mountain girl said...

Susan, I LOVE the green mittens! Are they very warm? I knitted up a bulky pair once (different pattern) and was so disappointed because somehow they weren't as warm as I had imagined. And here in the Colorado mountains we need warmth!

Pooch said...

One of my sons is an Ohio State alum. One of the things we always joke about is the official name: THE Ohio State University. Look at some of their mailings. I wonder if THE is still in use. Funny.


Regina said...

I'm loving all the mitt patterns. I am going to try to knit some up over Christmas break! Thank you!