Wednesday, November 05, 2008


For the first time in a long, long time, I feel like being American is something that can be respected in the national and international community. I am truly humbled by the impact that every American has been able to have on this day.

And that's all I'm gonna say about that.

(but now I don't need to move to Canada)

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Daisy Cardigan

Cute as a button, done just in time for Labor Day gifting to my niece, who is two and a half.
I sewed in a button stabilizer along the edge (blue ribbon), and these are technically fake buttons, I used snaps behind them, cause I didn't want to deal with the hassle of button holes, and this is just as cute. I love this sweater, and if making a two year old wear wool when it's 90 out wasn't cruel and inhumane, I'm sure she would have loved it too! She'll have plenty of time to wear it this fall I'm sure : )
Pattern: Daisy Cardigan
Yarn: handspun from roving from Massachusetts Sheep and Wool Fest
Needles: Knitpicks options, size 7 were a lifesaver as I had the arms and body working at the same time so I wouldn't run out of yarn. This is a top down pattern, my first, and I really liked the process.
And this is officially my second handspun item I've knit, I'm pretty proud of myself...

Friday, August 29, 2008

100 Foods

The Omnivore’s Hundred

Here’s a chance for a little interactivity for all the bloggers out there. Below is a list of 100 things that I think every good omnivore should have tried at least once in their life. The list includes fine food, strange food, everyday food and even some pretty bad food - but a good omnivore should really try it all. Don’t worry if you haven’t, mind you; neither have I, though I’ll be sure to work on it. Don’t worry if you don’t recognise everything in the hundred, either; Wikipedia has the answers.

Here’s what I want you to do:

1) Copy this list into your blog or journal, including these instructions.
2) Bold all the items you’ve eaten.
3) Cross out any items that you would never consider eating.
4) Optional extra: Post a comment here at linking to your results.

The VGT Omnivore’s Hundred:

1. Venison
2. Nettle tea
3. Huevos rancheros
4. Steak tartare
5. Crocodile
6. Black pudding
7. Cheese fondue
8. Carp
9. Borscht
10. Baba ghanoush
11. Calamari
12. Pho
13. PB&J sandwich
14. Aloo gobi
15. Hot dog from a street cart
16. Epoisses
17. Black truffle
18. Fruit wine made from something other than grapes
19. Steamed pork buns
20. Pistachio ice cream
21. Heirloom tomatoes
22. Fresh wild berries
23. Foie gras
24. Rice and beans
25. Brawn, or head cheese
26. Raw Scotch Bonnet pepper (too damn spicy)
27. Dulce de leche
28. Oysters
29. Baklava
30. Bagna cauda
31. Wasabi peas (addicted...they can do unpleasant things to your digestion in large quantity...)
32. Clam chowder in a sourdough bowl
33. Salted lassi
34. Sauerkraut
35. Root beer float
36. Cognac with a fat cigar (nada on the cigar)
37. Clotted cream tea
38. Vodka jelly/Jell-O
39. Gumbo
40. Oxtail
41. Curried goat
42. Whole insects
43. Phaal
44. Goat’s milk
45. Malt whisky from a bottle worth £60/$120 or more
46. Fugu
47. Chicken tikka masala
48. Eel
49. Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnut
50. Sea urchin
51. Prickly pear
52. Umeboshi
53. Abalone
54. Paneer
55. McDonald’s Big Mac Meal (nope, never)
56. Spaetzle
57. Dirty gin martini (love vodka martinis, not gin)
58. Beer above 8% ABV
59. Poutine
60. Carob chips
61. S’mores
62. Sweetbreads
63. Kaolin
64. Currywurst
65. Durian
66. Frogs’ legs
67. Beignets, churros, elephant ears or funnel cake
68. Haggis
69. Fried plantain
70. Chitterlings, or andouillette
71. Gazpacho
72. Caviar and blini
73. Louche absinthe
74. Gjetost, or brunost
75. Roadkill
76. Baijiu
77. Hostess Fruit Pie
78. Snail
79. Lapsang souchong
80. Bellini
81. Tom yum
82. Eggs Benedict
83. Pocky
84. Tasting menu at a three-Michelin-star restaurant. (Hugos in Portland)
85. Kobe beef
86. Hare
87. Goulash
88. Flowers
89. Horse
90. Criollo chocolate
91. Spam
92. Soft shell crab
93. Rose harissa
94. Catfish
95. Mole poblano
96. Bagel and lox
97. Lobster Thermidor
98. Polenta
99. Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee
100. Snake

Well, I've done quite nicely!! I think all of my non-bolded selections are due to lack of opportunity thus far.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Ohhh, I Should be DQ'ed

So I did sign up for the Ravelympics for the Sock Put, and I totally did not finish. I barely started. I did do quite a bit of knitting, but it was on an ongoing project that has an unexpected deadline. It's almost done, which makes me feel like somewhat less of a olympics looser. I'll post pics of the FO once it's delivered this weekend.
I do like the socks I was making (froot loop socks from Knitty), I'm trying toe up, which seems to make more sense for me and the way my brain works. Instead of a short row toe, I tried the magic toe from an old Knitty tutorial, it seems to look good so far, but then I haven't made it too far up the toe...

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Today I tell a Story, Aug 11...

This counts as Monday still cause it feels like Monday. Today's yarn iwas a recent post, but it's such a favorite it's making a second appearance...

Ohhh, Berrocco Ultra Alpaca, how I love thee... These are my top 10 reasons why I love this yarn:

1. it comes in soooooo many colors

2. it's fuzzy-soft without being itchy

3. it comes in solid colors AND heathers

4. it's a nice gauge, even though I like to knit it tighter than called for

5. it's cheep

6. a lot of stores carry it, so it's easy to find

7. it felts, but not too fast

8. it's got the perfect amount of stretch and give and spring back

9. it knits up euqally nice on metal and wooden needles

10. It's wool AND alpaca, for double the animal fun!

I'm loving the sweater in these colors that I'm making. it's going super fast, and the knit fabric is perfect for me. This must be the most commonly used yarn I have, I've made 4-5 items out of Ultra Alpaca. It's on temporary hold while I somewhat frantically attempt to knit my Ravelympics socks (sock put, team tardis), but can't wait to pick it up again!!!

Friday, August 08, 2008

I take a break from today's story... note some interesting Olympic facts. We are watching the opening ceremony, and I must say, we were all blown away by the whole beginning part. I can't even think about what my favorite part was, I liked it all. Then came the walking in part, which was notable for two awful reasons.

Matt Lauer. He should shut the f**k up and stop shitting on other countries. Seriously. The opening ceremony is not a time to degrade, make attempts on humor, or talk shit about the athletes. Really Matt, your just mean. The snarks that I heard just in the time it took me to write this post:
Apparently Vietnam has won a whole lot of medals in the math Olympics, and too bad they've only won one in the real Olympics.
Morocco is here to party, but not necessarily to win a medal, cause they never have before. But it's okay cause they're the richest country in the world.
If your an athlete from Austria, apparently dating the reigning Miss Austria is better than a cash prize.
The Gobi desert in Mongolia is to blame for the smog in China.
"Marco Polo" is a legitimate cultural connection between China and Italy.
Having grandparents from Germany is "good enough" to be on the German Olympic team.
If you win getting to carry the flag via getting the most text votes, someone should check to make sure you weren't up day and night text voting for yourself.

It's a little embarrassing. On the plus side, it would make for a kicking drinking game: Every time Matt says something snarky about another country or their athlete, you have to drink. Drink twice if he can't stop himself and snarks twice. Finish your drink if he says something that could create an international incident.

And of course, our beloved president makes an appearance. My favorite parts of Bush's appearance:
Seeing him tap his leg impatiently with the little American flag.
Seeing his nutsack cause he sits like he's at a Longhorns game.
Watching him struggle to button his jacket and wave his little flag at the same time when he stood up for the Americans.
Watching him look around with desperation, either for the hot dog guy or the Bud Lite girl.
Seeing him look at his watch about one third of the way through.
Knowing that we and every other person watching can see how completly bored he looks. I think Laura poked him in the back to wake him up. And I think that inside of his Olympic program that he frequently studies he stashed a Jughead comic book.

Today's Story: #7: It's Not Wool

No one will notice that I skipped #6, right? Good.

So today's story is a sad one about the wrong yarn and the wrong pattern. The yarn:

Jo Sharp DK in a nice plum color. The pattern: Sizzle, by Wendy of Knit and Tonic. The problem: I hate it. Something about the combo of the yarn and the pattern has caused it to sit in my UFO bag since at least the summer of 2006. It's just awful.

Now, one lesson I have learned about myself as a knitter is that I should never knit something that I wouldn't even consider buying if I saw one in a store. I like to knit things to wear, and reason stands to tell that if I don't own a v-neck knit tank, and haven't had to urge to purchase one, I should not knit one either. This is usually not a problem, as there are many, many sweaters that I would kill to have if it was at Banana Republic, and oh-my-lucky-stars, I can knit my very own!!!

The trouble I have with this is that there are many very funky-classy-cool-kickass patterns that I would never actually wear, but instead admire from afar; my "If Only I Got Paid to Knit" sidebar is full of them. And I got taken by Sizzle. I admit, it probabally isn't the right yarn for the pattern. Actually, I can't think of a garment that I would like the yarn in. It's not that it's bad yarn (no cookie!), but it's not wool, and that's automatically a big drawback, as I love wool. So this yarn, as nice as it is, taught mt a couple things: I love wool, I don't love cotton, and I should never fall for a pattern that isn't me.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

This month I tell a story, day 5

Today's Story is about Mirasol's Hacho, which I fell for in Sapphire Jade. This is one of the growing many yarns and fibers who take the fiber industry to a new level through social consciousness movements and grassroots community development. I'll quote from their website (which I would not normally do but think it's okay if it gets the word out about their project):

"Located high in the oxygen-starved sierra of the Andes Mountains of Peru near Lake Titicaca, the Mallkini Ranch was established to breed alpaca herds. The owners, Michell and Company, have always had the well-being of their employees uppermost in the running of the ranch. With this aim in view, they have sought a way of supporting their employees in the long term: the Mirasol Project. The solution is to take a percentage of every sale of Mirasol Yarn and invest it in the establishment and running of a boarding-house for local children. The proposal is focused on an infant and child-care programme and after-school support for older children so that the alpaca shepherds' families at Mallkini have a secure place where the children can develop their potential. The boarding-house will be built to provide accommodation, meals and health-care and support the children with their school-work."

As a Social Worker, I never caught the community organizing bug that is at times part of trying to change the world. I think much more micro level, and enjoy (mst days) changing one kiddo at a time. But I do really enjoy putting some of my yarn budget towards companies who take this effort on. The fact that they care about yarn and colors, want to make a profit for their company and employees, aren't based in name-your-favorite-city importing yarn blanks from random farming conglomerates are all things I want to support. And farms like Mallkini, who's efforts expand to support the development of the community that makes their yarn possible is quite admirable.

And their yarn rocks.

I'll step off my soapbox to go knit a bit now. Not this yarn though, it's being saved for a perfect pair of socks cause it's too good for anything else.