Monday, March 30, 2009

Hoo. Catching our breath

What a week.
The Fool had a computer conference in San Jose, and as we had frequent flier miles to spare and a relatively portable life, Jamie and I went along. The Fool spent his days in the company of geeks, and Jamie and I, with stroller and train map, explored the San Jose area. We opted not to drive, as neither of us wanted to lug the car seat around with us, and I didn't want to navigate unfamiliar highways with Jamie yelling at me.
San Jose is not the most interesting place I've ever been, unfortunately. Japantown was good for an afternoon of walking around (and some fun sushi the night before with the Fool).
Jamie and I went to the children's museum one afternoon, which was great. They have a room set aside for crawlers, with different surfaces for them to crawl over - stairs, undulating slopes, that kind of thing. There are mirrors and lots of toys, and dioramas of stuffed animals with handles and levers that make them wiggle. Jamie was fascinated by a crocodile. The only drawback was that the room was really warm, so I had to keep fighting to stay awake, which made me less-than-fascinating when the other mothers tried chatting. I'm sure they thought I was stoned.

The next day, he graciously accompanied me to the quilt and textile museum. It's a small museum, and now, they have a traveling exhibit of works from China, so they didn't have anything displayed from their permanent collection, which I was curious about. I took this picture of a woven hanging before I saw the sign that said "no photography." So it doesn't count, right? It was my favorite piece.

Jamie was also kind enough to go to the lace museum with me, although halfway through my slow circuit of the room, lost his patience with looking at lace altogether, so we beat a hasty retreat ... to Purlescence Yarns, just a few doors down.

They are very nice to women with screaming babies there. There's a changing table and room to nurse and bookshelves that small people can practice pulling themselves up on, and a little friendly dog who likes to meet people. (Jamie was puzzled by the dog; you can totally tell he's being raised by cats.)
In short, it was the kind of place that upset babies and frazzled mothers can regain their composure enough to pick out sock yarn.

(I decided Socks That Rock was a regional product and counted as an appropriate souvenir.)
We also visited another yarn store in the neighboring community of Campbell. Green Planet Yarn specializes in sustainable fibers and non-wool yarns and I got a huge kick out of seeing all the different kinds of stuff I could knit with. I made it out of there with some made-for-the-store stitch markers and a package of cable needles, although the racks and racks of O-Wool were super-tempting.

Down the street from Green Planet Yarn is a used bookstore, where Jamie and I found not only some books, but Isbn. Here he is. I love working cats. Even if their job seems to be mostly about sleeping in the sun.

Over the weekend, we went to Cincinnati for Pigtown Fling, a big contra dance weekend. It was huge fun. Jamie got to meet more of our friends in the contra community, big and small. He also continued his explorations of the world of solid food. Here he is, sharing a banana with the Fool. I think the arrangement was that Jamie wanted the peel and the Fool ate the innards. We're still working on some of the nuances.

I gave Adina her new monstersocken, which were a lot of fun to knit. I might do this pattern again. It's from "Knitting Socks with Handpainted Yarn."

I've been knitting a lot of things in dark green recently, and I feel like branching out some tonight. I've got some fun Mini Mochi sock yarn in rainbow stripes that I'd like to knit, but I don't know how the yardage will hold up. Perhaps it's time for me to overcome my unreasonable prejudice against toe-up socks. Someone in knit group mentioned a pattern that starts with a small square you pick up around for the toe. I should go hunt for that.

(story from our sordid past: When the Fool and I were not dating, but I kept seeing him at contra dances, I decided one night to attempt conversation. He was wandering around the back room of the Abbey Pub during the break, honking on this weird instrument. I asked him what it was. He said curtly, "It's a melodica," and went honking off. I thought to myself, "Wow, he's not so friendly, is he?"
Anyway, dear, this one is for you. It's a melodica. I had to pretend I was very interested in photographing this statue of McKinley because I feel a little weird taking pictures of people, even when they're doing their thing in a public park for everyone to see.)


ColorJoy LynnH said...

I wonder if they were talking about my pattern, First-Time Toe-Up Socks. My pattern matches your description, in any case.

You can get the pattern at Ravelry as a download, here:

I also offer them mailed out, good quality paper/ink/protector, but with a $1 mailing fee and that waiting-for-the-mail thing. Those are on my ColorJoy web shop.

Loved reading about your adventures with a little one. You sure don't get bored, do you?

LynnH in Lansing, MI

drlaura said...

re Mini-Mochi, you can see some finished socks at CPYsocksandmore as well as on the CPY site FREE sock patterns including some by a lot of designers such as Wendy... typical for 1 sk is a 7-8 inch leg and then a good 9.5 in foot with leftovers.
for myself, i get a 6 in leg and a 9.25 in foot and have enough for a baby sock.
blessings, :L, DrLaura "CPYsockguru"
ps send us pics and we'll post on our blog and link to you
pps we'll have lots more pics in our upcoming '50 Socks-50 States" book.

Julie said...

Regarding your story about the Fool, I'm reminded of the first time I saw him. He was sitting out on the patio at our work playing some instrument. (It wasn't foreign to me, I just don't recall.)
Me to the boss: There's a strange guy playing music on the patio.
Him: That's weird ... wait, did you ask Meg if he belongs to her? Strange ... music. I'd ask Meg.