Finished Object: Boucle Wrap

1) I am not feeling very creative with titles.
2) I clearly have a thing for these colors, this is the second object with these colors, and I am currently coveting a Manos del Uruguay yarn with similar colors.
3) I'm sorry this is the closest to a good picture as I could get for this wrap.
4) Despite sitting, I feel like I'm leaning they way you do when climbing up a steep hill (which might explain number 1 and 3).

Way back in 2003 ago my dear friend M (I have many dear friends named M_______ but if she is reading this she'll know) sent me a goody package including the Better Homes & Garden's Simply Creative Crochet premier issue.  This issue taught me how to make granny squares and overall just got me out of my single crochet rut. 

However this might be my first finished object from a pattern in it.  I started the pattern in either February 2005 or February 2006 (I suspect 2005), finished my first skein and realized that it was crocked, so I ripped the whole thing out and started over, at a much slower pace.  Then it got warm and I got distracted.  I finally picked it up again last month and buzzed through the second and third skein (made some mistakes that are mostly hidden by the border).

Yarn: Bernat Soft Boucle, 3 skeins (5 oz each; I had 1.8 oz left over)
Hook: K/10.5
Finished size: 17.5 inches by 62 inches
Pattern: Soft Boucle Shawl (apparently the pattern author also wasn't feeling very creative with her/his titles)

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October 30, 2006. Tags: , . Crochet, former Vox Blog. Leave a comment.

Remember the lunch series?

So do I.  My situation changed, I no longer have a microwave to reheat stuff, so my current lunch mindset is in the process of changing.  I'm still trying to do leftovers when possible, but now I have to think, "will this reheat nicely on the stove or in the oven?"  And I know this just doesn't work for most people.

But I bring you fun links.  I recently found Vegan Lunchbox, and check out the Flickr tag, Mr. Bento.  I also became slightly obsessed with Bento TV today (thank you Vegan Lunchbox), it is relatively new, so don't go watching everything at once.  I know there must be more lunch blogs out there, but I haven't gone on a search, I like finding my blogs gradually (otherwise I end up with way too much in my bloglines account I don't actually read).

Me, I'm eating a lot of soup (thank goodness for the boxed soup goodness that is TJ soup).  And a couple days ago I made some very good and quick hacked Thai stir-fried rice.  I looked at the recipe from Hot, Sour, Salty, Sweet and simpliefied it (actually it didn't look all that difficult, I think I just cut out the meat).  Nonstick pan, oil, garlic (lots, 2 cloves for my cup of rice), rice, green onion, bit of fresh basil and fish sauce.  It was a very good accompaniment to my leftover chicken larb.

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October 17, 2006. Tags: . Cooking, former Vox Blog. Leave a comment.

QotD: My First Gig

What was your very first job? 
Submitted by Laurel.

My first "people pay me" job was babysitting.  I was 13, my charges were 4 & 6 (or 3 & 6), it was for a family friend.

My first, "here is a paycheck and SS got a cut" was at age 17.  I painted faces for kids at a local Christmas Tree Farm for 3 weekends in December.  Nothing intricate since we just had the crayon makeup sticks from halloween face painting kits but the kids seemed happy about it.

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October 13, 2006. Tags: , . former Vox Blog. Leave a comment.

Behold a Finished Object!

I thought I would never finish this hat.  I picked up the yarn just before we moved.  I even stashed it in my car knitting bag, thinking that I would finish it on the 4 day drive (or maybe in the hotel at night).  Hah.  I didn't even cast on until we arrived.  And then it took 3 cast-on attempts (the first was thwarted by a bee sting, but if I had continued I would have run out of yarn at the end).  The first two were longtail, and I had my usual, too much yarn/not enough yarn problems, so I decided to try the knitted cast-on despite worries about stretchiness.  Success! 

But I just felt like I was knitting so  s  l   o   o   o    w   l   y.  About half-way through I was also convinced that I was going to run out of yarn and just wasn't ready for another knitting disappointment.  Turns out I had a whole 72 extra inches of yarn!

Yarn: Candy, color 689 by Artful Yarns
Pattern: One skein Baby Hat on the back of the yarn label, except worked in the round (I need to get over my seaming fear) and I did something a little different with my knot at top.

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October 12, 2006. Tags: . former Vox Blog, Knitting. Leave a comment.

Vox Hunt: My Favorite Animal

Show us your favorite animal.
Inspired by the Emporer.

Dog says, "What?  Am I in your way?  I thought you put this laundry on the floor for me."  Generally he gets this air of  I am regal dog on my throne, but I just couldn't capture it with the camera.

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October 12, 2006. Tags: , . former Vox Blog, Life. Leave a comment.

Cooking marathon

I checked out Quick and Easy Indian Cooking from the library a couple weeks ago.  It was due today in fact (just renewed it on-line, I love that) and I didn't manage to cook anything from it until today.  I went shopping for the ingredients yesterday early afternoon and was all prepped to cook until I realized that starting a dish that requires 70 minutes of simmering at 5:30 was not a smart move.  Lucky for me TheHusband suggested going out for Thai when I picked him up from work.

Tonight's menu
Lamb Vindaloo (vindaloo)
Cauliflower with ginger, garlic, and green chilies (sookhi gobi)
Basmati rice
Yogurt with tomato and cucumber (timatar aur kheeray ka raita)
Garlic Naan courtesy of TJ's freezer section

First, something to note: Most of these meat recipes are only quick if you use a pressure cooker (there are instructions for both with and without a pressure cooker for most recipes).  Second, it felt like every recipe I was considering wanted me to use a large frying pan or wok.  For me that would be my beloved Caphalon Everyday pan (even if sometimes it is a bitch to clean).  I decided the meat would be okay if I cooked it in the large pot we have so I could use the everyday pan for the cauliflower and was glad I decided against a second vegetable dish.

Somehow I ended spending the entire afternoon in the kitchen.  Around 3 I thought, "oh I should throw together the riata", so I did (I also reheated my holy basil chicken and ate a late lunch at the same time).  Then I decided to start gathering everything for the lamb and cauliflower.  It is good too, because I realized that I did not have tumeric in my spice collection.  So I went to the store (that sucked about 35 minutes of my time, though I did get a little browsey and picked up white basmati instead of using the brown basmati at home and green split peas and jasmine tea).  Once I was home I decided I should chop the cauliflower fist since I only had one suitable cutting board.  Then I did a bit of mise en place with the spices (I got a set of itty bitty, 3 Tablespoons at most, small bowls once when I asked for ramekins, not quite what I had in mind but oh do I like having them around).  By the time I chopped the lamb and got it in the pan it was nearly 5:40!  I put the rice on and took a 15 minute break to check email then went back to start the cauliflower.  And somehow I managed to finish everything more or less at the same time (the cauliflower had to sit for 5 or 10 minutes while I cleaned up and waited for TheHusband to get home (lucky for us, it was almost 7:00, just as the lamb finished).  We ate and I finished cleaning up, putting the last few things in the dishwasher and washing pots.

I still can't wrap my mind around the fact that it was nearly 8:00 when I left the kitchen.  I hope I get back in the hang of cooking or pick quicker dishes next time.  But all in all I enjoyed myself, my kitchen is not a disaster area and TheHusband liked the food (he previously would not go out for Indian food with me).

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October 12, 2006. Tags: . Cooking, former Vox Blog, Thoughts. Leave a comment.

One less WIP, same amount of FOs

So that Knitty Xback tank I was knitting.  I almost finished.  And that is where it ends (it doesn't look half-bad from the front)I had to determine the proper strap length, connect the straps and weave in the ends. 

But it didn't seem worth it for a fit like this (there is a number of inchese of fabric between the strap on the back):

It does help a little to know that many people had a similar problem.  Last I remember (granted it has been a while) my gauge was correct, but apparently this yarn had more stretch than the yarn used by the pattern designer.  I will probably try the project again someday.  I don't know if I will use the same yarn.  And I will definitely check gauge more often AND try on the progress.  Other knitters recommended waist shaping, that also sounds like a good idea just as soon as I figure out how to do that.

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October 11, 2006. Tags: , , . former Vox Blog, Knitting. 2 comments.

QotD: Save It For A Rainy Day

What's the best way to spend a rainy day?
Submitted by Vee.

Sleeping in.  Then curly up in bed, on the couch or in a comfy chair with a blanket, a book and some hot chocolate or hot tea (depending on my mood).  Eventually eating soup and yummy crusty bread.

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October 11, 2006. Tags: , . former Vox Blog, Thoughts. Leave a comment.

I keep missing the QotDs that I want to answer

So I will answer a couple anyway.

How I met my BFFs
I wish I could say I activelly keep in touch with friends from HS.  But I don't.  So I will answer for those I still keep in touch with.  Needless to say TheHusband is a BF.

I met TheHusband (3rd year of college) through my friend S, who I met through my friend M, who I met through my other BFF H.  Which leads to my other BFF H.  Actually I have more, but I like the H story (partially cause I can link so many people through her).

I met H my 1st year of college.  We were assigned to be roommates (and we continued to be roommates when we got off-campus apartments).  Yes, isn't that cute.  It did help that we had chosen to live in this 'living community' thing but really, totally random luck.  And we didn't become instant BFF, though we became friends quickly.  She feels like a sister (and occassionally I think we managed to fight like sisters, but I'm not really sure since my sister is much younger and she doesn't even remember when I did live with them).  Sometimes we don't talk to each other enough (I've been procrastinating, for unknown reasons, writing her, I have the pretty stationary sitting on my desk just waiting) but she has always been there for me. I hope I manage to be there for her.

Brunch
I love brunch.  Brunch means lazy weekend mornings.  I do like to go out for brunch but I will also do some of these at home.  Typically I do more breakfast type foods for brunch than lunch type foods.  One place we used to go to have a lovely fruit and cheese spread.  It was my introduction to gouda and brie (they also had strawberries, cubed melon, grapes, cheddar, etc).  And fresh squeezed orange juice is the best thing ever.

Out: belgain waffles (I don't have a waffle iron)  I love belgain waffles, my grandpa used to make them for me (he does have a waffle iron).  Eggs benedict (until I read something icky, haven't been able to order them since, I want my eggs benedict back darnit).

In or Out: French toast (I once had the best french toast made from a very thick slice of french bread with a caramelized crust, it was so good it didn't need syrup), pancakes, omelets, quiche

In: egg-canadian-bacon-white cheddar-english muffin sandwiches (I will make them during the week, but they are so much better when rushing out the door doesn't come immediately after eating), huevos rancheros without the egg (yes, I know it is now a tostada, but I just couldn't do it with the egg, and actually only eat this when my parents make brunch)

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October 9, 2006. former Vox Blog, Thoughts. 1 comment.

Fabric found

1) We found fabric for bedroom curtains that we both agreed on.  I am not certain I bought enough, but there was very little left on the bolt, so I hope it looks good without the standard 1 1/2 to 2 times the width in fullness.  And I got the bolt remnant half-off and will use it for pillows.

A peek (now I just need to decide, clips, hidden tabs, grommets or a basic rod pocket and pick out a curtain rod)

The green is the fabric (it has ribs if you can't see it), the blue is our duvet, the pink is a pillow and the yellow is our bed skirt.  As far as amounts go I should have reversed the amount of yellow and pink you see…  The hardest part about picking a fabric was finding something that worked with my bright colors that wasn't overly girly or kid-like (I almost went with some flip-flop fabric).

I've also editted my earlier post about sewing to-dos with pictures of the intended fabric.

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October 9, 2006. former Vox Blog, Sewing. Leave a comment.

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