Sunday, March 28, 2010

Miss Me?

I realize that you don't expect a post from me more than once every week or 10 days, but this time, I was really out of town!

With my mom, brother, and niece, I went to San Antonio to visit my sister and brother-in-law. I'm really lucky they still live there, because it gives me a good reason to visit the city I lived in for 23 years! Our visit, which was timed to take place during my niece's spring break, also coincided with my sister and BIL's move to the house they just bought. I'm sorry to say that I didn't take a single picture of their new-to-them house, which is adorable -- built in 1959, hardwood floors throughout, built-ins in every room, original tile (and not ugly colors!) in both bathrooms, big trees in the back yard -- you would love it!

I did get a chance to meet up with some of my knitter friends. We went someplace new to me - a great Chilean restaurant called Chile Lindo (that's a Yelp link - I thought they had a website, but can't find it). The empanadas were great and, of course, so was the company!

San Antonio knitters

The family also made our usual pilgrimage to Rudy's (the original one, in Leon Springs). There, I only managed to take pictures of the meat (turkey and brisket) and the remnants of the amazing creamed corn, although I also ran into some former co-workers. I also had lunch with some co-workers at Thai Taste, one of our favorite lunch places for years. (That link goes to CitySearch, where it seems to be one of those places reviewers either love or hate. I have to say that I love it - the food is great and the service is excellent. It's not fancy, but then again - it's also really cheap. It's also always busy at lunchtime, so it's fine with me if those people who don't like it stay away!)

I also had Tex-Mex at least four times (breakfast tacos twice, Taco Cabana for lunch, and Perico's for dinner). And when not eating, I was yarn-shopping! First I stopped by the Yarn Barn, where I bought Alisha Goes Around sock yarn (merino/bamboo/nylon) -- Alisha is from New Braunfels, just north of San Antonio --

Alisha Goes Around sock yarn

and a skein of the very decadent Hand Maiden Casbah (merino/cashmere/nylon) in Midnight, which will be a thank-you gift for my cat caretaker.

Hand Maiden Casbah in Midnight

And then, at the insistence of all those knitters up there, I made a trip up to Comfort to The Tinsmith's Wife. Wow! What a great place -- well worth the 90 mile round trip! There I met Bill, the owner's father who holds down the fort, and Laurel and Noro, who are extremely laid-back cats. The shop is very cute (as is, frankly, all of downtown Comfort) and they have a wonderful selection of yarn. I came out with three skeins of Mission Falls 1824 Cotton destined to become a baby hat,

Mission Falls 1824 Cotton

two skeins of Kollage Creamy (80% milk and 20% cotton!),

Kollage Creamy (Milk and Cotton blend)

and a skein of String Theory Caper sock yarn (merino/cashmere/nylon) in Bowmore, which will make a beautiful shawlette.

String Theory Caper Sock in Bowmore

And -- I finally finished the Bougainvillea socks! Love them! The yarn is Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock in cranberry.

Bougainvillea socks

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Bullets and No Pictures

  • I'm exhausted. "Spring forward" always kicks my butt, and this Saturday night was particularly bad. Due to multiple airline-induced delays, I was up until 4:30 Sunday morning.
  • Those airline-induced delays were because I was in Albuquerque for a conference last week. I've been to ABQ four times, always for conferences, but I'd really like to go back for a real vacation some time. It reminds me of San Antonio.
  • Speaking of San Antonio, my family and I leave for a visit there this Friday. It probably means I'll be up until about 4:30 Saturday morning; I'm really too old to do that twice in 8 days.
  • My San Antonio knitting project will be the incredibly boring blanket, which has been languishing at 40% complete since the Olympics.
  • Before I leave, I want to finish my Bougainvillea socks, which have been a focus in the last couple weeks.
  • And speaking of the Bougainvillea socks -- they are one of Anne Hanson's amazing designs, and last week, I won a copy of this gorgeous book in a contest at her blog!

Sunday, March 07, 2010

Harbingers of Spring (and a knitting-related question)

The snow is melting slowly, which is a good thing, as it helps minimize the possibility of flooding, and it's actually gotten above 40 for a couple days. This week's predicted precipitation is rain and fog, not snow.

Yesterday, a few geese returned to the pond.

The geese think it's Spring
Click to enbiggen

The pond is creek-fed (and in fact, the creek continues on beyond the pond), so where the water is flowing in, the ice has melted. Notice the goose standing on the ice, though!

I am very ready for Spring. This is the time of year when I really miss San Antonio, where it's already Spring and, if the wildflowers aren't already blooming, they will be soon.

Knitting-wise, I'm forcing myself to keep working on the blanket. I'm 40% done - it's easy to keep track of when you've got 10 skeins of yarn and plan on using them all! It's reached the bulky and non-portable point and is boring knitting, which is a deadly combination for me. Occasionally, I take a break to work on any of the several pairs of socks that are on the needles.

I need baby-knitting advice. I have a friend who is due in May and is not going to learn the sex of the baby. Although she's not a knitter, she always admires my knitting, so I want to knit something nice for her. However, the fact that I don't know whether I'm knitting for a boy or girl has me stumped. I do NOT want to knit another blanket - I'd rather do a sweater or maybe a hat and booties. Any gender-neutral suggestions, not just for patterns but for colors and yarns? (I think I have problems with this because I'm such a girly-girl...)

I promise knitting pictures next time!