April 25, 2008


Right so I did not get to the plying last night. Mainly because I don’t own a lazy kate and I only have 3 bobbins so even with a kate I’d have nothing to spin onto. Also we went out but that’s beside the point.
single ply
single ply
I wound them by hand because I was super concerned that if I used my winder I would break the yarn and ‘eff up the stripey goodness.
single ply
Tonight Matt is going to a concert with a whole slew of guys (it’s some Pittsburgh band.. the Clerks? Clarks? Clucks? Chucks? Something like that) so I have a hot date with my spinning wheel. And something tells me that spinning after happy hour is the best plan ever.

In other news…
horned melon

Lauren was the closest and I totally called it:
horned melon
Horned Melons are Green! Crazy, right!
horned melon
And we were so excited about this development that clearly we had to send a picture message to everyone we know with the title “look what we bought!” Clearly.

By the way horned melons are not very tasty at all. The pulp has the same consistency as jelly and is quite sour and filled with seeds. Yuck. The really weird part is that it smells exactly like the cucumber melon scent from bath and body works. I think it would best be used as a garnish:
horned melon garnish
Not so perfect on white wine but I’ll bet if you slapped that sucker onto a melon/vodka “martini” you could sell it for like 18 bucks. Yuppies eat that shit up. Later on we did find a recipe for beef with horned melon sauce but I’m pretty sure no good can come of that.
horned melon garnish
Have a great weekend everyone!

April 24, 2008

Yellow? Orange? Green?

So waaaay back in January I said that one of my resolutions was going to be to spin something other than just worsted 2 ply wool. To that end I decided I was going to spin my own sock yarn. Luckily I had just the perfect thing on hand (it was a Christmas gift from my mom):
Cider Moon Roving in Banana Cabana
4 oz of superwash roving, Cider Moon colorway Banana Cabana

I did a little research and found out that a lot of sock yarns are spun 3ply. Also with a little careful preparation it’s possible to spin multi-colored roving in such a way that you get stripes. Spin your own self striping? I’m so there.

I took the roving out of the bag and laid it out to see what I had:
Cider Moon Roving in Banana Cabana
If I just started at one end and worked to the other end I would end up with the green and orange pieces at random in my yarn. Then whey I plyed the two together I would have no way of knowing how to match up the colors. So what I did was I separated the big, fat, strip of roving into 3 skinnier strips. One for each ply.
Cider Moon Roving in Banana Cabana

To illustrate the theory (crudely):

I also figured that I would be easiest to make stripes by keeping the color repeats as long as possible. That way there was a better chance of them lining up between the plys. So I didn’t want to rip the roving apart any further width wise – instead I wanted to draft everything vertically to create long stretches of the same color.

So at this point I just made center pull balls out of my 3 roving strips with the plan to pre-draft them vertically as I spun them up.
Cider Moon Roving in Banana Cabana
Also I weighed my balls to make sure that they were at least in the ballpark of being the same. They kindof were.

Then I didn’t do anything for 3 months because I was distracted by malabrigo. This week, however, the spinning bug bit me hard. Something about it being so nice outside made me uninterested in knitting. Instead I putzed outside and spun up all 3 of the roving balls:
cider moon banana cabana single ply
I tried to keep things nice and even and all the same thickness.
cider moon banana cabana single ply
Which is key in getting the color repeats to actually line up.
cider moon banana cabana single ply
But I’m not the greatest spinner in the world so it’s a bit lumpy.

Tonight I’m going to ply it and we’ll see if my self striping experiment worked!

In other news… check out this crazy fruit!
Horned Melon
It was easier to find at my friends grocery store than garlic. She lives in a very yuppie area. And obviously we had to buy it. Taking it through u-scan was almost a big fat FAIL (although hilarity ensued while trying). Luckily a very helpful bagger informed us (and the cashier who thought we were all sorts of crazy) that this lovely fruit is a horned melon. He did not know, however, what color it was inside. I guessed green and the other two guesses were orange and red. What do you guys think?
Still life with horned melon and friends watching an ANTM marathon.

I just think it’s cool looking. More melons should have horns.

April 18, 2008

Solidly Adult.

First off Thanks so much for all of the birthday wishes!!! You guys made my day!

So we figured out last night that 28 is a hard one because it is Solidly Adult. At 27 you’re still almost mid-20’s. Still in the “just starting out” phase. But not so much at 28. Being solidly adult isn’t really a bad thing though…

Ultimately we decided on Light Bistro for my birthday dinner – thanks to the suggestions of some of the girls over in the Cleveland Knits group on Ravelry. It was a good choice. Sadly I did not take pictures inside of all of the tasty food (Matt wouldn’t let me because it was “too geeky”) so all I have for a visual is this:


Light is mainly a tapas restaurant. So the way we decided to do it was order the 4 course “Taste” which were little tiny appetizer type dishes, and 1 “Share” which is a dinner sized portion all to split between us. Everything was wonderful.

Here’s what we had in the order of the course:

Melon, Mint, and Fresh Mozzarella Salad:
We got this “tapas” while deciding what to order because we were both starving… as Matt put it “the mint takes the bitchy aftertaste out of the melon.” So true. I definitely need to find a recipe for this one come summertime when the mint threatens to take over my yard.

Eggplan Flan:
If you ever go here get this. It was super unique and flavorful. Creamy and delicious. Also it appears that we are starting a Jeanne’s birthday = flan tradition. I’m fine with that. I think it might have been bad form of us to do this but we spread it on their homemade bread. Extremely tasty combo.

Grilled Flatbread:
This was also amazing. The arugula gave it a different flavor and the big globs of toasted goat cheese made this my favorite dish of the night. I’m easy like that.

Blue Crab and Shrimp Cake w/ Green Curry Sauce:
Ok. I took one bite and really enjoyed the crab/curry combo. Took a second bite and by the time I went in for a third no exaggeration Matt had devoured the entire thing. Seriously. He loved it. And didn’t look back or wait for me to catch up.

Cuba libre braised pork belly:
Matt – “It’s like they found a way to condense all of the best parts of bacon. Ok I’m going to sit back and give you a shot at this one because wow. I could eat like 87 more bites of that.” And that about sums it up.

Maple Glazed Organic Chicken Breast / Apple and Chorizo Bread Pudding:
This was our “Share” entrée and it was completely my choice. I love any combo of apples with something spicy in dishes. Also bread pudding. So it was kindof a no brainier. It was very good. The chicken was as moist as chicken can be and the maple glaze was sweet without being overpowering. If we go back I think I’d want to try something else for our entrée, though, because while this was good it didn’t blow me away like the other dishes did.

So from there it was on to the Velvet Tango Room where we met up with some of our friends. I was completely torn on what to order. It’s usually a one-cocktail kindof a place for us so I had to choose wisely. I usually get the “Bourbon Daisy” which is amazing. But it’s a whiskey drink that’s pink so of course I’m going to like it.

(As a side note here my friend Lori Beth has a theory that as long as it’s pink I will drink it. She has tested this theory many times and it’s usually right. Unless I was in the “order a drink to match my shirt” phase but that was a long time ago.)

Anyways despite my love of the “Bourbon Daisy” the bar tender convinced me to try something off of their new menu. I am SO glad that I did. I had the “Moscow Mule” which according to the menu is the way that vodka was introduced to the United States. It is served in the traditional way – in a frosty copper mug. The combo of the copper and the ginger beer was unlike anything I’ve ever tasted before. Completely fantastic. As Jill put it for our second round:

I want one of those!”

I went back to the BD for my second drink … the lure of the candied ginger that comes with it as a garnish was just too strong.

Us at the Velvet Tango Room
From L to R: Faux Matt, Jill, Me, Real Matt, Carolyn, Andy. You can see the copper mug that the “Moscow Mule” comes in on the table in front of us.

So yeah. I think 28 is going to be good.

April 17, 2008

The Big 2-8

Well as of today there’s no more doubt about it. I’m late twenties. Twenty Eight. For some reason that one sounds so much older than 27 did… .

Eh. Could be worse. I could be turing 1-8 instead of 2-8.

Random daffodil from my garden.

Anyways tonight we’re going out somewhere as yet to be determined to celebrate. Should be nice. Any suggestions as to where to go? I want to try somewhere new and local… so many options!

Oh and after that we’re hitting up Velvet Tango Room. I’ve heard they have added a bunch of new cocktails to their menu... Can’t wait!

April 16, 2008

Gone Baby Gone

So I’ve been gone awhile. Don’t really have any reason other than I kinda wasn’t feeling the blogging so much. Life just sped up there for awhile and I didn’t have time to catch up. So some goings on…

1.) Another rockband party:

Always funtimes.

2.) A new fav hangout – that I have no pics of (wait. Carolyn did. Rock.)– is the Prosperity Social Club.
Fantastic Gouda burger and games? Flawless. We seem to be defaulting to there lately as a group... And even though I suck at Scrabble it’s super fun to watch Matt and Jessica duke it out. Oh and you have try their sweet potato fries. Amazingly tasty.

3.) Speaking of Carolyn – she had us over to Andy’s place for fondue a few weeks ago. I’d never been to a fondue party before!
Very fun. And I got to prove that while I suck at Scrabble I am the Queen of Monopoly.
The dogs with Matt after he realized that the trade he just made me was a FAIL. Sorry, buddy.

4.) We went out for an extravagant sushi dinner for Andy and Matt’s birthdays:
Pacific East is amazing but pricy – worth it for good sushi but def. a special occasion type of a place for us. It's also way better than Sushi Rock in my opinion.

5.) A good friend of mine got engaged:

CONGRATS to Jill and Matt! Also this means that I’m in 2 weddings in the next year.
So I’ve been sucked into a complete Vortex of Tulle. And I just have to say that while wedding dress shopping is super fun it’s way funner when you’re not the one who has to get naked in front of strangers. WAY funner.
Also fun about wedding dress shopping? The 3 pitchers of margaritas.
a healthy amount of snark…
And a mariachi band with white shoes. Heh.
5.) Knitters fantasy was fun. I’ve been knitting charity hats for them for the past few weeks and ended up donating 5... and my mom donated a whole pile of them, too. I have nothing but crap for pictures b/c I forgot to take them until we were in the car on the way there.
charity hats
charity hats
And yes that is fun fur. And no it's not 2005. They're hats for kids. Someone will like it.

I took a class on knitting in the round on two circular needles from Queen Kahuna her self. It was a good class but I’m not totally sold on the technique – only because I knit socks because they are portable and knitting them 2 at a time doesn’t seem as portable. I'm a one at a time on double pointed needles kind of a girl. I may give it a try with my next pair, though!

I also took a class on a gansey sampler hat which was good… here’s a pic of the hat:
gansey sampler hat
and of the twisted ribbing:
gansey sampler hat
Wasn’t much instruction in the class b/c there wasn’t really much necessary. The pattern is nice, though!

Oh and I put on my evaluation form that I would be interested in possibly teaching a class next year… so we’ll see.

6.) I celebrated the end to Malabrigo March by immediately buying more malabrigo and starting a shrug:
malabrigo shrug
malabrigo shrug

What can I say. I had a gift certificate that was going to expire and no direction…

malabrigo shrug

That and I can't seem to break the mmmalabrigo habit. But, really. Can you blame me?
malabrigo shrug
I think that it will be a good spring layering piece, though. Oh yeah – this is the Two Tone Ribbed Shrug from Fitted Knits (Ravelry link). Very spring.

7.) Just for some random who else out there loved Sweet Valley High? C’mon. You know you did. Although the fashion updates make me sad inside (as does telling teenagers that they need to be a "perfect size 4" shudder.) if they also re-released the board game I’m not going to pretend I wouldn’t buy it. And they better not mess with the Babysitter’s Club. Claudia’s crazy outfits made those books. I’m just sayin’.
Edited to Add*******
I found the blog about the Babysitter’s Club!!! Holy crap! Thanks, Jacki for the link:

What Claudia Wore.

Best Idea Ever. Almost as good as a belt with feathers on it. Ouch.

So I think that’s about it. Hopefully I’ll get back into the blogging thing again soon!
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