I've spent the time since my post about spinning in pointless circles having Deep Thoughts about my Process. (Please feel free to snicker now, goodness knows I did.) There have been some realizations during this contemplation that surprised me a little bit, and that I think will help. For instance, I've been trying this semester to do most of my research reading on the computer; I find articles (as I usually do) through various online databases that I can access through the university, and I can download them and read them. I was making this paperless attempt for a number of reasons, not least because it seems ridiculous to print these things out, but also because since the Upgrade Fiasco of Ought Nine I have not, for the life of me, been able to persuade my computer to see our home printer. This makes printing difficult at best.
But I came to the realization that when I'm reading actual pieces of paper, I can scribble all over them in a way that I can't do on a computer, and in a way that either putting little inserted notes into the pdf, or cutting and pasting quotes and comments into EndNote just doesn't match. It appears that I think differently while writing than I do while typing, and that I end up being able to work out what I want to say about what I'm reading, or how it relates to my research, when I'm reading hard copies and scribbling on them and writing little notes to myself on cut up scraps of paper, and I don't do that when I'm reading on the computer. No wonder I've been feeling frantic about this upcoming presentation. I've been researching and reading and doing what I usually do, and having no thoughts (mind you, it's not like I usually have great thoughts or anything, but generally I think something at some point). It's everyone's worst public-speaking nightmare: standing up in front of a bunch of people in one's intellectual panties. So, I bit the bullet and sent a bunch of documents to Rick to print, and sat down yesterday and worked through half of them and then took myself off for a walk and dang if I didn't have a thought. I'm hoping for another one today.
So that's something. This plan also means that I spend less time sitting at my desk, and more sitting in various other chairs, or even standing at the bar (the one in my kitchen, people, sheesh), which I'm hoping will mean that my leg hurts less. Good all the way around.
Meanwhile, the finishing of the shawl appears to have broken some kind of knitting dam. On Friday, I finished Younger Daughter's socks. She was delighted and wore them all weekend. They had to be forcibly removed (I figure it's OK to wear wool socks more than once, but by the end of two or three busy days on kid feet, it's time for some washing).
(As an aside, those are my feet modelling those socks. My feet. Modelling socks that fit my younger daughter. Not ready.) You can see that the colors didn't line up, which was no problem (in fact, Younger Daughter was delighted to have socks that didn't quite match), except for the fact that the first sock lined up absolutely perfectly with the colors so that the heel flap didn't cause a hard line on the top of the foot. That didn't happen with the second one, which I knew would bother me, so I decided after a few rows of fretting to fiddle a little bit to break up the line, and dropped down on every other stitch to create a slipped-stitch line where the color break happened. I think it helped a little.
I also finished the first of my Anemone socks.
I love this colorway. What you can't see is that there are little bits of a lovely bluey, sagey, green near the blues and purples, and I'm just charmed to pieces every time I knit those bits. It's kind of crazy, but there you go.
I'm about three inches into the leg of the second sock, so with luck I can get them off the needles in the next week or so. I need to slow down a bit on them, because my wrist is hurting quite a lot; for some reason this particular stitch motif causes me to tense up a lot in my right arm.
I also knitted for several hours on Rick's gridiron sock on Saturday morning; I put it onto two circulars, which is not my generally-preferred method for knitting socks, but which really does make knitting a big sock much more manageable (another result of the Deep Thinking about Process). In fact, I was ticking along very nicely until I took a good long look at the thing I was knitting and realized that it was the size of a small person's sweater, and that while Rick's legs are, like those of many mountain bikers, muscular and all, there is no way his calves could possibly be as big as the sock. Riiiip. I'll put them back on the needles again at some point, but right now I'm counting it as one less project on my list of WIPs.
There's more (how come I always think that I shouldn't post because I have nothing to say and then I just natter on and on?), but for now I'll leave you with this.
They just burst into bloom last week, and now the air around our back patio is filled with a deep vibrating humming. It's not just little honeybees, either. Check these guys out. They're longer and fatter than my thumb.