Good morning from the Purina National Dog Show in Philadelphia!

Halo and her handler at last year’s show.

Good morning and happy Saturday! My sweet Halo and I came down on Thursday night after work for shows on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center. This is the dog show that airs on Thanksgiving day and the televised portions of the show take place today. We did this same show last year too, and despite the fact that Halo had started her first heat cycle the week before the show, we had a fantastic time. We met lots great people, met lots of other pharaoh hounds including one of her brothers, and she showed really well.  

Halo getting acquainted with a new handler this year.

While I always hope she wins her competitions and earns points toward her AKC champion title, whether she wins or not, she’s always Best In Show to me.

Halo and her friends at her breeder’s house.

Traveling with Halo is easy. She’s a superstar in the car on road trips, and she is always on her best behavior when we stay in hotels. This weekend we are staying at her breeder’s house and there are four other pharaoh hounds here too. Good behavior is a completely different concept in the presence of so many other dogs of the same breed.

My usual travel knitting project

It wouldn’t be a weekend trip without knitting. The perfect travel project for me is socks because they are small and easy. I make every pair using the same numbers from <a href=”http://menwhoknit.com/files/Universal%20sock%20pattern.pdf”&gt; the universal sock pattern </a> so there is no stitch pattern to follow. I love self patterning/striping sock yarns and it’s fun to watch them develop as you knit.

Because there are so many dogs at Halo’s breeder’s house, I have been extra careful about protecting my knitting while we are there and I work on it most at the show site. This is a benched show, meaning entrants must stay at their assigned bench areas throughout the day when they are not showing their dogs in the ring. When the dogs are napping in their crates, I can get in a few rounds on the foot of a sock.

You’ll notice from the picture that I use double pointed needles (DPNs). I have tried magic loop and I have tried two at a time on two circular needles, and yet I always go back to my DPNs. DPNs are just my preference, and my hands have always felt comfortable using them, but a lot of knitters think DPNs look fiddly and awkward to use. I guess they may be for some people, although I felt the same about the magic loop and the two circular needle methods.

This is a great discussion topic for knitters and it often comes up at knit nights with friends, so let’s hear from our readers about it too. What is your preference for working in the round on smaller projects? Are you a DPN fan or do you prefer the magic loop technique, or the two circular needle technique?

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