A real frog.

No frogging to report, but here’s our real resident frog:

This little one has been hanging around our garden hose spigot much of the summer. Until moving to this house, I'd never seen native frogs and didn't know they could be so colorful.

Too bad my Mac isn’t a frog, especially since I doused it with water the other day while typing instructions for the pet sitter.  It was a tense evening in the Domesticshorthair household as my husband came to Mac’s aid in Mac Intensive Care Unit.  It survived the incident, suffering a few damaged files. Whew!  Unfortunately, something’s still a bit funny about it, and I can’t edit pictures very well yet, so my pictures are a bit funky right now.

As for knitting, now that Cabled Coat is off the needles, my attention has been free to look at other things, such as my friend Pamela’s sweater coat. So I set about studying it and jotting down how it was made. I even worked-out the stitch pattern.

My very first, rough attempt at the stitch pattern.

Does this mean that I will be knitting a similar coat soon? No. In fact, I won’t even venture to attempt knitting one any earlier than next spring or summer or even beyond, but I’d sure like to have a copy of it. I decided I’d better write down as much as I could before giving it back to Pamela (it’s getting really cold at night now), because she has never washed it and is afraid to because she doesn’t know what it’s made of and would hate to ruin it. I figure that if I don’t document sufficient information on it, it’ll eaten by moths, and be lost to all knitting-kind. If I don’t have a enough to do, I am writing a pattern (of sorts) at the same time as writing this post, switching between two screens: a feat for the unfocused mind.  As for washing the coat, despite her concerns, I had to wash it and now it’s a much brighter shade of yellow and I can return it to its rightful owner knowing that it’s in good shape to be worn, as well as knowing it’s well documented.

This is my last post before we go on our trip to Italy, France and Switzerland.  I’m so EXCITED!!  I can’t tell you how much I’d been yearning to travel out of the country, especially to Italy, and we’d had no plans for even thinking of such a trip for a few more years.  And then my sister won this trip, and now we’re going!  I’ve been studying Italian and French CDs right and left and I can say that I sound good enough, but I seriously doubt that I’d be able to communicate much without phrase books.  What surprises me, is that I’ve enjoyed learning French more than Italian, I guess because it holds more of a challenge for me (like learning Italian isn’t a challenge?!), plus, it was the first foreign language I was taught some of at the age of 4 at the preschool I went to, and I still remember bits of it. I am so looking forward to eating GREAT food on the trip.  My only other trip to Italy was 4 years ago as a chaperon to 11th-graders and all they wanted to eat was pizza throughout the trip; on the last day, I broke free from the group as they went to an Il Fornaio in Rome and I snuck into a little hole-in-the-wall panini place around the corner that all the suits were heading to.  It was excellent!  This trip is going to be great!  Because all of us are like-minded:  we want real food.

So I’ve finished my instructions for the pet sitter and next I’ll pack.  Packing.  What to bring?  Which knitting project to take?  I really want to take Grand Duchess, but I probably won’t, since it requires too much concentration, a steady hand and nothing but the best of lighting.  I’m thinking Bird’s Eye Shawl and Matcha Market Bag or Purple Autumn.  Purple Autumn is Evelyn A. Clark’s Autumn Lace Scarf for which I’m using Habu Bamboo XS-45 20/3 in eggplant. I really like the pattern (I think I like all of Evelyn’s patterns), although the bamboo lace is tricky to use because it’s pretty slippery and slips off of the needles very easily.  Hmmm, doesn’t sound like a good travelling companion, does it?