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Coming Up Roses
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Coming Up Roses

The view from here is quite pleasant. The goal I have been working towards for over two years is nearly complete: I finished my Library School comprehensive exams successfully on Saturday afternoon. While I will not officially find out the results until after Thanksgiving, I am not terribly worried as I feel pretty good about what I wrote and what positions I argued in my essays. Most importantly, it is over. If all goes well, and as planned, I will graduate this December with my Masters degree. Things are "coming up roses"!

Life is definitely good.

Exhibit A: Without a weekly study group to attend, I had the whole Sunday free to do whatever I pleased. So, Kris and I made a nice breakfast, I read a book in its entirety, and I knit for most of the afternoon and evening. It was absolutely cathartic. It was still hard to break the thought that I should have been doing something else (namely, studying!)… because that was not the case!

… and this is what I accomplished yesterday afternoon…

Wool Mitten

This is the Basic Mitten pattern from last fall's Family Circle Easy Knitting magazine. It is such a fast and easy pattern, and I couldn't be happier with the way this one turned out. The yarn has been in my stash for so long – it is the beautiful Ironstone New Wool in colorway 5011. I bought it over two years ago – that is ancient history in my stash – and I was so excited to cast on for a project with it. After using it, I wondered why I waited so long. The colors are magnificent. Now for mitten #2 and then I will have Warm Hands!

My, How Fetching

My, how Fetching! Yep, I joined the craze – I saw these little darlings popping up all over the blogosphere, so I gave it a whirl. A few hours later, I had an adorable mitt! This pattern is fun and addictive. More in my future, no doubt. I am using a random ball of Karabella Aurora 8 that I picked up a few months back, and wow, what a yarn. I had never worked with this before. I love the "sproing" of the yarn. It is so cushy. Very cozy. Needless to say, I didn't waste any time casting on for its mate.

Yes, I realize they are not socks ;)

Exhibit B: Knitty rewards for hard work. It's good to give yourself a little "pat on the back" after you accomplish something big, right? So, to congratulate myself for completing my grad school work, I treated myself to a pretty Fair Isle knit kit.

Dale of Norway Heilo wool

When I asked you back in September for some advice on where to start with colorwork, many of you mentioned that a hat was perfect for a first project. So, I listened. After seeing Keri's beautiful Flenten hat last week, I decided a Bea Ellis kit was the way to go. I chose the Kristen hat, as I really liked the snowflake motif. My colors are slightly different than the model, more of a navy and an ecru. I hope I can do it justice! I am very excited to try this!

My other big reward comes this weekend, as I will be going to Stitches East on Saturday and Sunday!


I don't have an exhaustive shopping list or anything – I am really hoping to find some Noro (Norovember, anyone?) for the beautiful Lady Eleanor wrap from Scarf Style, and some laceweight yarns.Of course, if I see something else that stops me "dead in my tracks", I reserve the right to purchase it. ;) Going to Stitches? Let me know! and say hi if you see me, I would love to meet you!

Exhibit C: I leave for vacation in 10 days! Kris and I take one big vacation a year, and this year we are headed to San Francisco and Napa Valley. I am very excited to see this part of the country – I have only been to SF's airport! I am looking forward to exploring the city, checking out some museums, yarn shops, and hopefully meeting some knitters! For the latter part of the trip, we will be staying just outside of the town of Napa. I will celebrate my 26th birthday with some delicious wines and beautiful scenery!

Exhibit D: I think I found my life's calling. I am not saying that lightly! It may require some more schooling… but that is something that I am completely willing to do if I can make my passion my life's work. I am so excited about this opportunity. Yes, I know this is all very vague, but I feel this is the best way at this point so I don't jinx myself! More details as they come in, my friends ;)

Exhibit E: Socktoberfest has been an utterly amazing project: Fun, successful, inspiring, rewarding, and educational. I could not have hoped for anything more. Thank you – strike that -


for the wonderful month. Yes, I know it is not over, but I just couldn't post without saying how grateful I am for your participation and support.

…and finally, one more exciting reason why life is good right now: I am going to see one of my favorite bands tonight! The Decemberists are in DC and you bet your bippy I am picking up their new "Sublime Stiching" limited-edition embroidery kits! I can't wait ;)

*Knit, crochet, and be merry, my friends,
for tomorrow Socktoberfest is over!

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94 Responses

  1. Kelly

    Congrats on finishing your exams! All your knits look great.

  2. Risa

    Congrats on finishing your exams!! It sounds like we will be joining the ranks of the MLIS at around the same time.
    Let me know if you need pointers to great LYS’s in SF.

  3. Liz K.

    What a post! What a weekend! Congratulations on finishing your comps, and thank you for hosting another fabulous Socktober. You really outdid yourself, Lollygirl!

  4. Nonnahs

    What a wonderfully happy post! Congrats on all rosie things, Lolly! I’m so excited and happy for you!

  5. Carole

    It takes a while to get used to that free time, I’ll tell ya. But it’s great once you do! Congratulations!

  6. Jenna

    Master’s degree?! Awesome job, Lauren! Seriously. Have a blast at the Decemberists tonight, I’m very jealous :)

  7. gray la gran

    wow! lots to respond to …. i think saushine is going to stitches east. i have a good girlfriend from nc going as well, she’s a crocheter.
    fair isle. yep. i have a small project with the same yarn to try my hands at stranding yarn! my pattern is for socks, but i think they might end up being leg warmers instead.
    lady eleanor? sign me up! i put that down to make the hoodie, and i need to start over because my gauge changed when i began to knit and purl backwards (vs. turning).
    vacation … i am jealous.
    socktoberfest is/was too short! i haven’t finished a pair, but may post two finished singles tomorrow :)
    fetching is very cute … it’s on my to do list, from stash (yeah right!).
    take care!

  8. rania

    i am so jealous that you’re going to the Decemberists tonight (even though I just saw them last night ha!) well, you know, jealous is a good way. They were totally awesome and I’m sure you’ll have a great time! Next time they’re in town we should go on the same day (or both days) yay!

  9. cookie

    Can’t wait to read what your life calling is. Maybe a professional knitalong coordinator? :-) Socktoberfest has been so awesome. Thanks for all the work. Norovember sounds like fun! I think I have some in the stash….

    Have fun at Stitches. I am already anticipating Stiches West in February. Every time I get a little down, I think to that and get a nice fuzzy feeling.

  10. Brenda

    Congratulations on completing your exams! When you go to Napa be sure to go to the Artesa winery in the Carneros district (between Napa and Sonoma valleys). It has fabulous wines, great views toward San Pablo Bay and a really good tour also. If you want more Napa winery suggestions, just email me. We live only 40 miles away, so my husband and I have gone there many, many times.

  11. Jenna Pink Monkey

    You sound much more relaxed, together and happy from a few weeks ago, which is wonderful. I’m glad that this chapter (haha) of your life is over and you can have more time for knitting, reading, and hanging out with me :)

    I LOVE the colors in those mittens, what a perfect match. Also, I can help you with your hat now that I have colorwork skillz.

    YAY, excited for Saturday!!

  12. Laura

    Yay for no more studying!

    You know, say what you want about FCEK, but I actually USE the patterns in there more than any other mags combined. Glad to see I’m not the only one who gives them a look.

  13. gleek

    congrats on finishing up! that must be a load off your shoulders for sure. i remember, right after i graduated college, how sunday nights i always felt anxious. it was hard to get over that whole feeling of “don’t i have homework due tomorrow?” :)

    i’m curious how much aurora 8 it took to make the one fetching. i have some aurora 8 leftover from my zigzag scarf. maybe there’s enough to make a pair?

  14. Donna

    Congrat’s on getting to the end of library school. I don’t thing anyone who hasn’t been there really understands what it takes to be one of us. I think it is the greatest profession a person can strive to achieve. It is not always easy, but it is always worth the effort and sacrifice. If you can knit too, well that just show that we are indeed a superior race…………….

  15. Jami Howard

    hey there missy! hope things are well for you these days!! i just posted a new blog on my site, you should check it out…there is a video from the show :) much love!

  16. Not Hip

    Thank you for organizing Socktoberfest….I have really enjoyed all the interviews and tutorials on your blog. Thanks for putting in that time to benefit all of us.

  17. georgia

    congrats on finishing shool (for now). i’m excited to hear what your life’s calling is! you’re lucky to have found it at such a young age.

    have a wonderful vacation! and thanks for another great socktoberfest:)

  18. Mintyfresh

    Congrats on hitting such an awesome milestone! Love that you knit one mitten and one fingerless glove, but not a pair of either :)

    SO SAD that I can’t go to Stitches this year. First time in like 7 years I’m missing it, and this year I’d have been able to meet up with bloggers!! Boo.

  19. Saun

    YEAH. Finally someone I know will be at Stitches. I hope to see you there. I’m taking a class Saturday and maybe going to the Student Banquet. Let me know what you have planned.

  20. Tracey

    Thishas been an amazing month. Thanks so much for all your hard work in hosting this amazing KAL. Please say this will be an annual event.

  21. Staci


    I remember what it was like ten years ago when I was finished with my state board exams. It’s such a strange – but good – feeling to suddenly have a lot more free time. Enjoy it! You deserve it!

  22. Teresa C

    I finished my socktober socks just in time! I can’t figure how to upload them to the flickr group, but there are photos on my blog. Thanks Lolly, this will probably be one of the very few knit-alongs that I do. I love it!

  23. Mary

    Love the mitten! Love Fetching! And love the snowflake hat – looking forward to seeing how it turns out!

    I’m hoping to go to Stitches on Saturday, so hope to see you there! :-)

  24. Kim

    OOH, that Fetching is fetching, and I suddenly have a brilliant idea for what to do with some gorgeous scarlet Arucania Naturewool that’s hanging out in stash! Thank you, Lolly, for the inspiration!

  25. Satu U

    hi! I´ve made some socks and they are in my blog, if interested…. the last picture is published today….

  26. Jenneke

    Congrats on your masters degree and enjoy the free time you have now! Well deserved free time, I might add. I had great fun this socktober and my hubby totally agrees: he has a pair of socks now!

  27. potikare

    Bravo for all your achievements!:)

  28. Julie
  29. Old Knitter

    Absolutely perfect mitten…it looks as though it fits and stays on your hand as a mitten should. And fetching???? I’m interested, but cold fingers? I’d love to make them, but worry I’d have chilly finger tips.

  30. Kim

    Congrats on finishing your degree! I can’t wait to hear more about the great career move.

    I’ll be at Stitches on Saturday. I’ll be working for my friend Susan at the Y2Knit booth (#624) from 11 to 12 while she and her sister, Jill, teach a class. Stop by and say hi if you can or maybe I’ll run into you somewhere. It’s my first time at a yarn show so I’m sure I’ll be a little dazed and confused, overwhelmed by the smells and the colors.

    I’ll probably be wearing my pink Icarus Shawl. See you there!

  31. carrie m

    lolly, congrats on another successful month! you do so much for blogland, really.

    i have to tell you that last night i dreamt that you won the U.S. open against justine henin. it was really strange …

  32. katie

    Yay for finishing school! And so many other reasons to celebrate… reading a whole book? Ah, I remember the days when I would read for fun instead of for class…

  33. Stacey

    Good for you! Congrats on finishing! I know when I completed my MBA it was like a HUGE weight lifted. To this day It took a while to accept the fact I didn’t have to be studying or writing every minute of my free time!

    Love the mitt and fetching – I have to make a pair of those!

    You will love fair isle – I’m itching to do some more soon. maybe I’ll find a kit at Stitches!

    You have lots going on – finding what may be your life’s calling! That is incredible. I truly hope things flow and work your way – it is a special thing to even have a clue as to what it is, so I wish you all the luck in persuing it!!!!!!!!

    Can’t wait to see you on Saturday!!!!!

  34. BethC

    Congrats! On the knits, the school, and life’s work!! Thanks for a great post.

  35. Vera

    Congrats to you! I just purchased one those fair isle hat kits too even though winter isn’t every harsh where I live, but I thought it would be good practice in the technique.

    Thanks so much for Socktoberfest!!!! I really enjoyed it and learned so much (and brought tons of sock yarn too).

  36. Laura

    Well?!? How was Colin? :)

  37. Tara

    Congrats! I can’t wait to hear about your life’s calling, I’m sure it will be fantastic!
    I can’t believe The Decemberists have a stitching kit?! I simply MUST have it!

  38. Zarah

    Way to go – I knew you would do great on your exams! I can’t wait to hear about your “life’s calling” – the perfect job, perhaps? Also, thanks for letting us know about Norovember, what a fun idea!

  39. Karen

    Sounds like life is good! Hope your life’s calling works out for you! Happy upcoming 26th birthday, birthday twin! ;-) My birthday plans involve bowling and maybe a nice dinner in DC :)

  40. Suzie

    Congrats on finshing up your exams and finding your life’s calling. I’m still trying to figure out what I want to do when I grow up! We must be on the same knitting wave length, though! I just finished a couple of pairs of Fetchings and I am knitting Lady E in Silk Garden for Norovember! Have fun this weekend at SW and on your birthday trip. I live in SF—you’ll have a blast here and in Napa. You probably don’t need any more recc’s for the city or Napa, but my two fave restuarants in the wine country are Bouchon in Yountville and Cindy’s Backstreet Kitchen in St. Helena. Enjoy it all!

  41. Heather

    I wish I were going to meet you this weekend, but I’ve decided to stay home and nest, since I’ve just moved apartments. Thanks for hosting Socktober, it’s been informative and good motivation!

  42. kiki

    Thank you Lolly for socktober 2006! i´m looking forward to see you all here again in socktober 2007!

  43. beth

    Congratulations on finishing your exams! Great job on your Fetching and remember, Socktoberfest is just a guideline:)

  44. Kimberly

    I did it! I knitted my very first real pair of “adult” socks during Socktoberfest. I have done baby socks before, so to make it a challenge, I used a non-picture pattern for the Mystery Sock KAL too. Thanks for inspiring us all!

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