Episode 34: Interpersonal Synchrony

In Episode 34 I have a lot to talk about!  I cover a little bit of knitting, snail mail news, information about BFL wool, and review a couple of audiobooks that I recently listened to.  In the classroom I discuss the research on interpersonal synchrony.

Welcome  to both new and returning listeners!  I invite you to join our amazing Ravelry group so you can participate in all the activities and contests and be eligible for prizes.  It’s always a pleasure to connect with listeners online as well as via snail mail.  I’m a huge fan of old-fashioned handwritten correspondence.  If you’re interested in writing to me, all of my contact information can be found on this site; click on the “About” tab at the top of the page.

This podcast is sponsored by Etsy shops Halcyarn Knitting Accessories and PHD Yarns.  Thank you so much to both sponsors! Listeners’ support of these sponsors is truly appreciated, and through them you are supporting this podcast and making it possible.

You can subscribe to the show on iTunes or you can listen on the audio player below.

Listen to the show:

SHOW NOTES

Reminders and Announcements

  • Graduating Class thread is open on our Ravelry group.  Post finished objects by the end of this month for a chance to win valedictorian prizes.
  • Year of the Sheep thread is open on our Ravelry group.  Chat and post pictures of your fiber adventures with BFL, our sheep of the month for February
  • February Read-along thread is open on our Ravelry group.  Join us in the discussion of Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World that Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain.

Operation Sew Smart Update.  I presented the money we raised to my friend Linda, home ec teacher at the local middle school, and she is excited to be able to order a new sewing machine for the students to learn on.  THANK YOU so much to all of our Ewe University listeners who generously donated to this fundraising effort!

Kris & Linda Small

Linda and me

Awards and Scholarships

  • Yarn Grant Competition — winner is Post #23 from WUPPERSTRICKER, who is Steffi from Germany.  Congratulations!

There will be more yarn grants to come; keep your eyes open for future announcements!

Around Campus

I’ve been sick with a bad cold, but the good news is that being sick in bed gives a person a lot of uninterrupted knitting time.  I’m going to be the academic reader again at graduation in May.  My dad came home from the hospital last week — yay!  But then my mom went into the hospital for a planned hip replacement.  It’s always something!  The Timber Ridge Knitting Retreat is going to take place on March 21.  Let me know if you’re interested in coming.  At the end of this week I’m flying out to California for a psychology conference in Long Beach.  I’ve been excited about collecting the yarn I’ll be working with during our Year of the Sheep celebration.  So far I have:

I still need to get some Cotswold for September, Polwarth for October, and Romney for December.

Thanks to everyone who has sent me a card or letter recently!  In the show I catch up with Postcrossing news and tell you about a post office tree in South Africa.

I’ve been watching and enjoying several new podcasts:

 The Academic Status of My Knitting Projects

Graduated

cowl

Freshman

  • Simple Skyp Socks by Adrienne Ku
  • Yarn:  Superwash BFL/nylon blend from Fiber Fan Girl in the Variegated Blue-Teal-Purple colorway
  • Needles:  US size 1 (2.25mm)

Skyp Sock 1

Year of the Sheep

Our February Sheep of the Month is Blue Faced Leicester, also known as BFL.  I provide some information about the history of the BFL sheep as well as characteristics of BFL wool.

A Review

I review the Quals base from PHD Yarns, which is a 10-ply 100% merino, worsted-weight yarn.  Listen in for my specific experiences with it, but overall I really enjoyed working with it.  Plus the color intensity is amazing:

A close-up of the leg warmers I knit last month with this base

A close-up of the leg warmers I knit last month with this base

At the Library

I review two audiobooks that I recently finished:

  • As Chimney Sweepers Come to Dust by Alan Bradley (2015).  This is the latest installment of the Flavia de Luce series, which I adore.  I give this book 4-1/2 stars.
  • The Dogs of Christmas by W. Bruce Cameron (2013).  I didn’t like this book as much as I expected.  I give it 2-1/2 stars.

In the Classroom

Today I discuss some fascinating research on interpersonal synchrony, including unconscious mimicry of others’ gestures, postures, accents, and movements, as well as coordinated movements which are matched in time, such as walking in step with someone else.  Research is showing that group synchronization has a lot of positive outcomes and even has a neural basis.  I’m amazed that people’s brain waves sync in addition to their physical movements and physiological responses like respiration.  I also talk about how the simple act of marching in unison, like police and armies do, affects people’s perceptions of adversaries and themselves.  Listen in to find out the details!

 

Episode 33: New Year’s Resolutions

I’m back with Episode 33 after a crazy, overscheduled, and stressful January!  Things are settling back down, though.  How are you all doing?  In this episode I talk about all the contests and the read-along we have going on in our Ravelry group, draw for December and January valedictorians plus other prizes, catch up a little bit with what I’ve been doing, discuss my recent knitting endeavors, provide some information about merino sheep, and review two audiobooks I’ve recently finished.  Then we go into the classroom and talk about some interesting research on New Year’s resolutions.  I am coming down with a cold, so I think my voice quality deteriorates throughout the show.  :(

Welcome  to both new and returning listeners!  I invite you to join our amazing Ravelry group so you can participate in all the activities and contests and be eligible for prizes.  I welcome your feedback — you can post comments here on the blog or in our Ravelry group.  You can also send me email on Ravelry, and it would be great if you sent me a card or letter via snail mail.  All of my contact information can be found on this site; click on the “About” tab at the top of the page.

This podcast is sponsored by Etsy shops Halcyarn Knitting Accessories and PHD Yarns.  Thank you so much to both sponsors! Listeners’ support of these sponsors is truly appreciated, and through them you are supporting this podcast and making it possible.

You can subscribe to the show on iTunes or you can listen on the audio player below.

Listen to the show:

SHOW NOTES

Reminders and Announcements

  • Each month we have a Graduating Class thread on Ravelry where you can post your finished objects and be entered to win valedictorian prizes.
  • We have a new Yarn Grants program, and our first Yarn Grant is 3 skeins of Wollmeise DK in the My Old Blue Jeans colorway.  You submit a proposal to make something with the yarn in a certain timeframe, and if your application is picked (via random number generator), then you make the project within the time you proposed and keep us updated with pictures of your progress and finished object.  Proposals for the first Yarn Grant are due February 21.
  • We are currently celebrating the Year of the Sheep in 2015.  The sheep of the month for February is Bluefaced Leister.  Come join the discussion!
  • During February we’re doing a read-along and literary discussion of the book Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World that Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain.  Thanks to Valerie for leading the discussion on our Ravelry thread!
  • Thank you to all the lovely individuals who donated to the Operation Sew Smart fundraiser.  We reached our goal of $300, which I will present to the Home Ec teacher on Saturday.

Awards and Scholarships

A Contest Celebrating Transition

  • Winner is XFARMGIRL, who is Linda from Delaware (post #9) — she wins a free copy of Another Door Opens, a beautiful shawl pattern by Sara Bauer

December Valedictorians

  • AGODIN, who is Anne from Newfoundland (post #101) — she wins a project bag from Halcyarn Knitting Accessories
  • AJANEKNITS, who is Jane from Newfoundland (post #93) — she wins a skein of yarn from Mountain Meadow Wool, our December yarn sponsor

January Valedictorians

  • CROUCHINGCHEESE, who is Angie from Ohio (post #47) — she wins a project bag from Halcyarn Knitting Accessories
  • SOBAHIME, who is Ryoko from Colorado (post #116) — she wins a skein of yarn from PHD Yarns, our January yarn sponsor

Year of the Sheep–January–Merino

  • Winner is BOOKISHSTITCHER, who is Jeanette from Texas (post #20) — wins a skein of merino yarn from PHD Yarns

Congratulations to all our prize winners!

Around Campus

I talk about my visit to Nevada at the beginning of January, which turned out to be rather stressful.  I did get over to Jimmy Beans Wool for a short visit and picked up this gorgeous yarn:

Mrs. Crosby Loves to Play, Hat Box base, Squid Ink (left) and Golden Butter (right) colorways

Mrs. Crosby Loves to Play, Hat Box base, Squid Ink (left) and Golden Butter (right) colorways

I forgot to mention last time the super adorable little sheep I got at the yarn shop in Dubuque, Iowa:

Sidney Sheep (left) and Olive Ewe (right) are cute, felted sheep by artist Emily Barnard

Sidney Sheep (left) and Olive Ewe (right) are cute, felted sheep by artist Emily Barnard

I also couldn’t help myself and bought another quilt/wall hanging from 3TalentedWomen on Etsy, and I hung it above the headboard of my bed:

I am enamored with gray and yellow right now...

I am enamored with gray and yellow right now…

 The Academic Status of My Knitting Projects

Graduated:  Grape Leg Warmers

legwarmers

Junior:  Vanilla Socks

socks2

Freshman:  Hapa II:  Fire and Ice Shawl

hapa-2

Freshman:  Fun Stripey Socks

sock

 Year of the Sheep

Our sheep of the month for January was merino, and since I didn’t get an episode out in January, I talk about the merino sheep in this episode.  I provide a little history on where merino sheep originated and then give some information on merino fiber and yarn.  I also talk a little bit about the superwash process and what that does to the fiber.  Listen to the show for specifics.

At the Library

I finished listening to two books that I enjoyed, which I review on the show:

  • A Little Bit Wicked by Kristen Chenowith (4 stars)
  • Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker by Jennifer Ciaverini (4 stars)

In the Classroom

Today’s topic is all about New Year’s resolutions.  Now is the time of year when people are talking about their resolutions and goals for changing behavior.  So I thought it would be a good time to discuss the research on making resolutions, including how common are New Year’s resolutions, how successful are most people at keeping their resolutions, and what factors increase the attainment of these goals.  Listen in to find out the answers to these questions and more!