I stopped talking and started my sock! After all the hemming & hawing I decided to go with my "Puck's Mischief" STR. I had considered the "Metamorphic," but I'm really liking the more muted/tone-on-tone colorways for this sock; plus I didn't feel like hand-winding 360 yards into a center pull ball without even a swift to aid the process.
I am so happy with this!! The pattern does seem to be written a little strangely at times, though. It might just be me (goodness knows I almost never follow patterns), but it really seems like you have to reread a few times & figure stuff out. I suspect I tossed an extra row in before I began the first row of the chart, but I don't think it will make much difference, and I noted it on my pattern so I would remember. I also noted where I increased from 29 to 30.
I think I'm going to crank this out asap, and if everything goes well, make one out of the Trekking for my Harvest pal after all. I'm still a little bit conflicted, but after looking at the pattern more, I realize that my biggest worry (altering it to fit her foot) is unfounded -- it's written for her shoe size. We shall see; I don't actually have to finish that sock until December! I doubt I'll take anywhere near that long to decide & knit, though. I'm too excited!