I mentioned lace in my last post, and that's because I actually finished something, and that something is lace. A whole object (not just the first half of a pair), yay! It feels like it's been a while since I've done that; this whole summer has been about trying things out and playing a bit here and a bit there, practicing my dillentantism, but the school year approaches, and I'm finding myself slowing working my way back into a more disciplined mindset. (Slowly, I said, slowly; so don't go expecting any imminent miracles of productivity.)
This is the Pear and Trellis scarf (one of Anne's patterns). I hadn't knitted this pattern yet, and goodness knows why, because it's completely addictive, and very intuitive, and the results are lovely. It seems to work nicely with this variegated yarn (not all lace does), but I'm betting it would be equally gorgeous in a more monochromatic yarn (a silk blend, mmm...).
The ends are pretty all on their own, which is nice. And the lace pattern was intuitive enough that I had no trouble tracking what I was doing -- I knitted most of this while watching the Tour, with its many exciting moments between Schleck and Contador, not to mention the need to watch Cav come out of nowhere to take sprint finish after sprint finish. I miss the Tour already...
So, to recap, this is the Pear and Trellis scarf (Rav project page here), knitted for my friend Vivienne's birthday (she doesn't read the blog, so no spoilers here). I used Punta Yarns Merisock Handpainted yarn, on a size four needle. It knitted up quickly and blocked beautifully. I loved the yarn, and am very happy that I bought a skein (in a different colorway) for myself.
In other news, I'm ramping up for the school year, which starts for Older Daughter on Tuesday (an ungodly early date to start school, if you ask me; we're just starting to get our first beach-worthy days around here!). Although Younger Daughter and I don't go back until the end of the month, I put my syllabi together last week, just so I could see how all the dates work out, and I typed up all the end-of-chapter exercises from the new edition of one of my textbooks, so I could see how they go, and post them online for easy access. Of course, the posting part has been delayed by the fact that we are switching our online class support program again. This makes the third time since I started here. I always wonder whether our administration realizes how much time that takes; it certainly isn't something for which there's a code in our workload reporting -- just one more time sink that no-one acknowledges (like the difference between teaching the same class to 35 vs 45 students; no-one wants to admit that it takes more time to do that, even though it seems eminently obvious to me). Ah, well. I have a few more weeks to wrap my brain around that, and to build my containers before classes start.
We are also still hanging fire with regard to Older Daughter's orchestra, although it looks like the superintendent has succeeded in entirely gutting the middle school music program, as well as the majority of the high school music program. He has also cancelled the technology class (it's supposed to get folded into science; one wonders if those teachers are getting paid more for their increased workload), and he combined (get this) foreign language and PE (so students spend half of the period time during the week doing one, and the other half doing the other). He insists that it's to allow students to spend more time on the basics (because it's all about the test scores, doncha know). Furthermore, they've put Older Daughter into algebra again (the usual eighth grade math) even though she took that class last year and passed it. I've asked Rick to do battle on that one; there's only so many windmills at which I can tilt at a time. When did we become a nation with no regard for education? (Nota bene: I don't consider passing standardized tests to be "education"; I freely admit that this is a personal bias.)
I will defer the full-fledged rant for another day, I think, and go and spin some lovely BFL instead.