Monday, November 22, 2010

Mini Adventures

One of my favorite things is to do mini adventures.

When I was young, my father used to bring me hiking and we'd explore nature.  We went to the "Great Swamp" in Morris County and follow the trails and discover things.  My grandfather used to bring me to Jockey Hallow or Washington's Headquarters and we'd do a little local adventure.

I have since gotten older, and I have forgotten about the joy of these things.  I really want to take this up again.  Go out on a Saturday, and explore.  I have a road trip "planned" but is that the point? Shouldn't I just go out and do it?  I think that part of the problem with being an adult is the responsibilities that go along with it.  The weekends are times to catch up on shopping/cleaning/whatever.  I spit on that.  I'm going to get all of that done during the week, as expanding my possibilities makes a Saturday or Sunday worthwhile.

So, what are some adventure ideas?

  • Get here before they open and get a pizza
  • Go look at all the photo exhibits at the Art Museum
  • Visit Poe's grave to see the Poe Toaster
  • Learn to make biscuits (they don't need to be away, they can be just A LOT of things done in one day until mastery is achieved!)
  • PDT - NYC
I wonder what I could add to this.  I wonder if adventures are adventurous enough.  Remember my criteria.  Local.  Can be done in a day.  Make memories, people!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Frogging Is Needed

I just read the article I linked in my title, and I realize that something has changed with me in regards to Crochet... perhaps it will make me a better person.

Let's go back... frogging...

If you make a mistake in your kitting and don't notice it for several rows, the best course of action for fixing it is to remove the work from the needle and simply rip out the rows you have completed since you made the mistake.

This process is known as frogging because you have to just "rip it" (ed: say it out loud) and move on.

Also known as: Ripping

This is a term I've been using with my crochet, and I learned before I learned the term, ripping out your project is common and to be expected... so if something isn't turning out right, I rip it out.

I don't feel like a failure when I do this, and in fact, I am actively learning from my mistakes.

A lot of people, according to that article linked at the top, have "loss aversion" because after all, no one likes to lose.  However, without Loss, without Failure, you will never know how to deal with a problem.  Your problem-solving skills will atrophy.  I have always prided myself on my problem-solving, and I think that my failures will make my crochet projects successful.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

My friends from Alissa's newsletter!

I feel like I needed to update this.

I know.  I had to get poked!

Ok.  So, here I am, let me introduce myself.  My name is Dawn.  I have a husband who is awesome and a super-genius.  Two cats, Spanky and Darla, who are awesome and oh, so soft.  And a dog, Sprocket, who is in love with me a little.  It's ok, I'm definitely in love with him.  I live in PA, and I work in IT.  Systems if you know what that is... if you don't, that's cool.  I fix things so they don't crash on you.  I like to crochet (right now I'm making a Flyers afghan for my husband), I like to run (i used to run in high school, lost my mind a little in college, and didn't start again until this year...), I like to bake (see my previous postings), I like to cook (I made a delish pumpkin soup recently), and I like to relax.  RELAX... like TV and video games and reading.  Sue me.

I'm a bit geeky, but apparently, after you are out of high school, geeky is a good thing.  ESPECIALLY on a girl. So hold on geek girls, it will come around again!

Umm... yeah.  I'll try to do this more often from now on.  Promise.


Thursday, February 12, 2009

Infinite-loop Songs

There are songs that get stuck in your head, and they do have an end point, so eventually, they come out of your head.

But, then there are songs that loop FOREVER, and even if you listen to them, the soundtrack continues in your brain.

For your convenience, I've made a list:
  • John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt
  • Bananaphone
  • Song That Never Ends
  • Hole in the bucket
  • It's a Small World
  • 99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall
  • Badgerbadgerbadgerbadger
  • Peanut Butter Jelly Time
  • I'm Henry the VII, I Am
  • Yo Ho Ho Ho, A Pirates Life for Me

Saturday, August 23, 2008


I love food blogs. Beautiful pictures, yummy recipes, the backstories... LOVE THEM.

We, the "in the know" people", call this FOOD PORN.

It combines my love of a few things:

1. Food (hope that's obvious)

2. Photography... a beautiful picture of freshly made recipes will add 100% to your desire for that food. For example, if you are looking around the day that I wrote this... I don't even LIKE Bread and Butter pickles... they fill me with icky unhappy feelings... but the picture... YUM.

3. Sharing. There's this blog I love to read, and she's sharing HER recipes.

I love it.

For a little song and dance about potato salad... watch this...

Solid Potato Salad:

Stick through the singing to the odd finish.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Why am I so green?

I am known as an environmentalist. I hold "green" issues in high regard, and, honestly, well before it became the hot thing to do.

So, why?

I always had this feeling that we were put here, and that everything about the earth is so fragile. Since I have this sense of justice, and defending the ones that cannot defend themselves, I guess choosing to defend the earth was a natural choice.

My Dad always took me to nature preserves when I was younger. Showing me the flora and fauna of a place like "The Great Swamp" Nature Preserve (yeah, that's what it's called), in NJ, had me captivated. When I was younger, instead of becoming a doctor, lawyer or president when I grew up, I wanted to be a Naturalist. Yep, only kid on my block with that desire.

So, it seems natural for me to recycle everything I can, use reusable bags (I use the ones from envirosac), when i get a larger yard I would like to compost (and have a victory garden), etc.

I know that the idea of global warming is still for some a controversial one (if the earth is warming why is it so cold), however, I think that is simply because of a bad name. If we had called global warming "climate change" from the beginning it would make sense. Over hot summers, over cold winters, strange cyclones, hurricanes, drought, flooding.... it makes it all make more sense.

Some things I've referred to in this entry:
Great Swamp
Victory Garden
Global Warming
Climate Change

Sunday, March 30, 2008

A felon with sweet bacon....

Yep, I stole something.

Namely, John P's awesome picture of my bacon toffee.

BTW... I made this in FEBRUARY, so this is WAY late. But I wanted to mention it. I do like experimenting. Unbeknownst to my husband, I've never actually made red meat (I suppose corned beef counts, but I wouldn't want to eat it unless it has been boiled senseless, or on a lovely piece of rye bread), as usually my experiments with that go in the garbage. So, barring my wallet completely emptying, I stick with poultry, shrimp, and legumes.

So, I've made us do 2-3 vegetarian meals per week, and therefore made us not active beef eaters unless it's a special occasion. I just don't like experimenting with expensive meat.

Bacon? Well, bacon is why I'm not a vegetarian. I love it. It's my favorite. However, it's immensely BAD for you, so I limit even then.

So, on Valentine's day at my work, they were having a sweets contest. I think valentine's day is the day of love, so I was opposed to this competition. So, I made odd things.

1. Chocolate covered PB Pretzels - mind you, not that odd... like a candy.

2. Frito Candy - yep, it's got FRITOS in it. Really good, I would make it again. I would call the taste like a Skor Bar. (Which I love, btw)

3. Bacon Toffee - I got my inspiration from Simply Recipes, a blog I adore.. but I got the recipe here: Check out that presentation.

Once again, though, I had a sleeper hit. I won 3rd place at a chili competition, but I've only been told that mine was the favorite at the other two... ah well, it's my fate. I have a neato chili apron from my 3rd place win, though.

Thanks to John P. for letting me (unknowingly letting me), steal his AWESOME pic of my bacon toffee. He got the toffee from a care package I made him after the event...

Monday, March 17, 2008

Green Food Day Again and Traditions

I have very few traditions that I hold dear. I love just spitting in the eye of convention.

... except for one thing. St. Patrick's Day.

I really, really love to make St. Patrick's Day boiled dinner. I make Corned Beef and Cabbage. It's brilliant. Melt in your mouth goodness. Serve with Malt Vinegar, horseradish and mustard.

As an aside, strangely, this is a NEW ENGLAND thing, not an Irish thing. Cow is not exactly plentiful in the rolling hills of Eire. I would think that rolling would be your first indicator. The cows are not so suited for such things. But Corned Beef and Cabbage, AKA New England Boiled dinner, is a new england thing. Boston & New York are/were packed to the gills with Irish immigrants. So, they talked to their Jewish neighbors, found out about brisket, added potatoes and cabbage, both very inexpensive, and voila.

But as an aside, my hubby's work constantly has "days" for the holidays... Red food day for Valentine's... and today, obviously, green food day..

Last year I made Pistachio Pound Cake....

This year, I got a little lazy, and I made one of my old standards, but different. Lemon Butter Snowbars is the standard. But I said, this is green food day, so I made it Lime Butter Snowbars, and I put a little food coloring in it.

Here are the results.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Dinner 3/11/08

I made this really good soup last night, great with whole grain bread...

Try it, it's really good for you, and it tastes GREAT.

Click the title, the recipe is there.... Double Potato Soup.

Friday, March 7, 2008

The Story of Sprocket

Sprocket was adopted in 2004 from the Women's Humane Society in Bensalem, PA.

There's a story to that...

My cat Harley had to be put to sleep in March. He had a HUGE personality, and although we have Darla and Spanky... something was missing.

After hemming and hawing, and thinking about it (over-thinking it really)... I started looking on petfinder. In April, I saw this picture of this three legged dog. I said, oh, that three legged dog, someone must take care of him. I went to the shelter that Saturday, and I saw him, 4 legs and all... (he is so thin, they sometimes hide behind other legs)

However, the sign on his cage said, I've been adopted. Waiting to go home.

I left a bit despondent, as Matchstick (at the time that was his name)... was so hungry for affection, that he was rubbing against his cage in my direction, so it could feel like he was being pet.

I looked on petfinder a few more times, but no dogs caught my eye.

Two weeks later, I tried petfinder one more time. MATCHSTICK was up for adoption!!!

I asked my boss if I could take an extended lunch. He said yes, I went directly to the shelter. ACK! They needed to see my yard... would a picture do? Yes! I went home, took the picture, went back to the shelter, was approved, paid 40 bucks, and I had a dog in my backseat. :)

I brought him to my work, cause I really didn't know what to do with him. After renaming him, getting the riot act from my husband about getting a dog without telling him, and getting him supplies, a vet visit and a good wash (his feet are WHITE not beige!).... he settled into our happy home.

We've actually had to buy a bigger bed because of him. And most of our furniture will not show his fur, cause he's a shed machine. He went from 42.5 lbs, to a very athletic and healthy 55. We get stopped everywhere with people needing to know what kind of dog he is, and telling us how handsome he is.

They are always super surprised when I tell them he came from a shelter and was a stray before being taken there.


He's a good dog.

(Oh, and his name comes from the dog on Fraggle Rock. Matchstick was kind of awkward, and I never saw the movie Matchstick Men.. but he's not a conman anyway, so it didn't fit!)