Oh, The Places You've Gone!

The marvelous misadventures of wee little sock critters in a great big world

meet seanconnery. April 29, 2013

Filed under: Uncategorized — Hilary Emerson Lay @ 10:03 am


My most recent sock monstah commission was an unusually specific one: it had to be green, vaguely dragon-like, have NO glitter, and be named “seanconnery.”  After passing him off to the customer (my friend Jim), I asked if he could tell me the story behind this guy.
One of Jim’s good friends is leaving the area soon, and he wanted to surprise her.  In Jim’s own words:
“I wanted to do something whimsical for her.  You know, to make her smile.  So I thought I’d commission something from you.  But I needed to have some random information to make it special, personal, and quirky.  🙂
So I sent her this survey:
1. What is your favorite thing about Potsdam, NY?
2. If a mythical creature suddenly appeared in your house and you kept it as a pet, what would you name it?
3. What is your favorite color?
4. Do you have strong opinions about gitter?
These were her answers:
1. My favorite thing about Potsdam is the preservation of the old downtown buildings along Main and Market St.
2. Hmmm…if the mythical creature was a dragon, I’d name him Sean Connery. 🙂
3. My favorite color is green.
4. I’m not sure what ‘gitter’ is, so no, I have no strong opinions about it. If you meant glitter, I suppose the only opinion I have is that more women (or young girls, rather) should be aware that the glitter that many companies put in eyeshadow can be quite damaging to your retinas if accidentally rubbed into the eye. I just prefer not to wear it.
She seemed confused by the survey, asked its purpose, and I did not tell her.  I said something about needing the information for some plan.  The plan, of course, was you!”.
Jim and I walked around Potsdam last week and took pictures of seanconnery in various important locales, i.e. at the Potsdam Co-op, on top of the Clarkson University sign (his friend’s alma mater), in front of the cinema (where his friend works), and in the Clarkson bookstore, where we almost got kicked out for putting seanconnery into a university onesie and photographing him.
The rest of the pictures are here:



OH MY GOODNESS. February 5, 2013

Filed under: Uncategorized — Hilary Emerson Lay @ 2:00 pm


Guess WHAT??  Remember last January, when I loosed that very first sock critter into the world, all bright-eyed and innocent, assuming I’d just started the world’s greatest traveling critter adventure, and then never heard from him again, and became all dismayed, and the started the project over again with five new critters?

I just heard from that first critter.  (Well, I heard about that critter, not exactly from him).  One year and 8 days after I left him at that corner table in the coffee shop.

I recently received this email from Markie & Ania in Beverly, MA (I’d originally left the little guy at the Atomic Cafe in Beverly, so he didn’t get very far):

“Hello!  My roommates and I found your sock monkey the other day, in my roommate’s bike basket!  It was a great and fun surprise!  We are really excited to spend a week with her.  We’ll get back to you with pictures and stories!”

She shortly followed up with pictures of she and her roommates with ‘Peek-a-Boo’ at their hot cocoa party.

When I asked her what their plans were for Peek-a-Boo, she said that one of their friends really liked him, so they’ll either surprise her with him or leave him with a complete stranger.

Stay tuned for updates, and a million thanks to Markie & Ania for tracking me down!


Soon Pugnax Pants-Bunny checks in from Lao! November 16, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — Hilary Emerson Lay @ 4:47 pm

On the slow boat in Lao, heading to Luang Prabang!

First off, allow me to offer a public apology to Danielle, who sent me this update and these wonderful pictures back in June.  That’s how scatterbrained I can be.  I just realized today that I never posted this!  So Danielle, please forgive me my absentmindedness, and allow me to thank you profusely for checking in!

Here’s Danielle’s email:


I just came back from Lao, but my little buddy is still on the move!  We had a great time together, and I sent him off with a fine young British man to explore the south of Lao and possibly Vietnam.

I had him for pretty much the last few days of May until the end of the first week of June.

Also, I just read that you might be stopping this blog.  I dont’ think you should!  People loved the idea when iIwould tell them about it.  It takes people time to get everything together and remember to send you an email while they’re backpacking…especially when you don’t have a computer or wifi most the time.  Also, I was in so many poor areas where people/children would see the doll and ogle over it.  I almost gave it to a poor Lao boy in a depressed village. Aanyway, it still may not work out, but he’s out there somewhere now and hopefully in a few weeks you’ll find out where he’s been.


*Danielle is referring to way back in January, when I’d only sent one critter out into the world and was dismayed by the fact that I never heard from him.  I am NOT stopping this blog!

Danielle, thank you again for this.  I can’t wait to see where he turns up next!



This is what happens when you set a critter loose in Amsterdam.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Hilary Emerson Lay @ 2:46 pm

Sock critter tours Amsterdam on canal boat, part 1.

At the end of the summer, this dapper little critter was adopted by a man named Chris, who happened to be on his way to Holland and needed a gift for his niece.  I think he and the critter were on the plane within a few hours of their meeting one another.  I told him the little guy was a bit of a problem child, but Chris reported back that he was actually very easy-going but that he did have a bit of a cold.

Before gifting the critter to his niece, Chris sent me a few photos of he and his little buddy enjoying some of Amsterdam’s finer tourist activities.

Batten down the hatches, Europe.  The critters have arrived.



Customer appreciation photos! September 22, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — Hilary Emerson Lay @ 11:59 pm






This newly-adopted critter (who currently lives on cape Cod but will soon be heading to Germany) has been named Nuggles because he often has a stuffy nose and he really likes to “snuggle”….And when he goes up to people requesting cuddling, it always comes out sounding like “Nuggles?”





Find the critter!













And another customer just emailed me this photo of her daughter’s college dorm room.  Look who she brought with her!






















And lastly, we have some photos of “Soxy” hangin’ out with some mangoes!  Thanks to Chris, Lindsay, and Mary for sending along these pictures.  Glad to know everyone’s still clowning around!


Soong’s adventures in Thailand! September 5, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — Hilary Emerson Lay @ 9:45 pm

This just in from Anna, who inherited this critter in D.C. and took him to Thailand with her!
“I named him Soong, which means tall in thai (a word I had to learn quickly as a 6 foot tall woman in Thailand!).
Soong accompanied me on a night out of the town with my friend Ashley, where he got to try infamous Thai streetfood, as well as BeerChang, the national drink of Thailand.
He came with me to work later, and met my coworker Mo Hawm, who is from Burma. He even tried riding a motorbike! Although he was too short to sit properly, so we wouldn’t let him leave the parking lot. We also couldn’t find a helmet to fit him.
Over the weekend, Soong came camping with us. We went north to Chiang Rai, and hung out at the Khun Korn waterfall. It was pretty hot so Soong was grateful for the cool breeze and mist after a long hike. He got to take a bus ride, as well as a ride on my bike, and try some delicious French bread, even though we were in Thailand! A treat for all.
Last I heard my guy was in Laos with a friend, I’m not sure where he is now!”.
Hopefully we’ll hear from him soon (soong?).  Thanks, Anna!

Alumni update! August 24, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — Hilary Emerson Lay @ 9:43 pm

Today I received an email from a woman named Diane, whose friend gave her one of my critters for her birthday!  Here’s a picture of her critter at the grave of Doc Holliday in Glenwood Springs, Colorado.

Diane reports: “It was a half-mile hike up to the gravesite and it was HOT (over 100)!  I’m sure that’s why he seems to look reluctant in this picture.  But we did go for smoothies afterwards, so it all worked out.  I will say, though, that I often get that look from him; I expect that he doesn’t always trust my judgement.  Though at the moment he’s at my house guarding my books, which he seems to enjoy.  His name is Cotton.  Both literaly fitting, but also as a salute to my deep South upbringing.  Thanks for sending him.  He’s lovely.”

His bio is “Doesn’t get math, politics, social science, environmental science, cooking, or pretty much anything else. Loves peas, chocolate milk, and you.”  You can see close-ups of him on my sold Etsy orders page here.

I love how resigned he looks to be posing for this picture!

Thanks, Diane!