Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Well That Was Lame

We're lucky, but I also blame George Bush for being such a dumbass with Katrina that they over-hyped this damn Irene to the hilt because no one wanted to end up looking like him.

We've had cloudbursts that were scarier than this "hurricane" was.

The "damage":
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A tree branch a few houses down fell down. An elderly guy with some hedge trimmers took care of processing it for recycling day pick up.

And the park that's a short walk from our house flooded.

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But this "brook" (part of the historic Morris Canal) floods nearly every time we get a heavy rain. I will say the stench was quite delightful....yeccccch!



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Friday, August 26, 2011

C'mon Irene!

It's my first real hurricane. I've only ever dealt with tailings.

We'll be fine though. I'm morbidly curious to see how heavy the rain will be.

Right before school ended we had a gigantic cloudburst that created some serious flash flooding (Chunky was trapped at school by flooding and a transformer fire), so it will be interesting to see how Irene measures up.

I had to go grocery shopping anyway this weekend, so I just did it earlier. The only "different" things I bought was bottled water and candles. Is it wrong that I bought shabbat candles for any possible blackouts?

And the only thing different I'll really be doing is not parking my car underneath this big ass oak tree that has plenty o'branches ripe for the falling!

I'll try to blog about my first hurricane afterwards. In the meantime, can you find the evacuation route sign?

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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Potpourri

I'll take Potpourri for $500, Alex!

First up, a Pot Garden update.

Most of my stuff has come and gone. The okra's still doing well but there's a big-ass orb spider living on the plant, so I've kind of let it go. Ha ha.

I'm waiting for these bad boys to get red:

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Mmmm...Tabasco peppers!

Next up, some FOs.

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Some simple stockinette anklets that I'll wear around the house this winter. This was the other skein of Lorna's Laces (Mixed Berries) that matched my Ringwood Gloves from late last winter.

I also finished this sweater last week as well.

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The details:

Pattern: Leaflet

Yarn: Lion Brand Jiffy in "Fisherman"

Needles: US 10

Notes: I liked this sweater. But I've always been a big fan of top-down knit sweaters.

What I'm not too fond of is the puckering where the collar meets the edge of the sweater. I should have added some more stitches as I hit the neckline I suppose.

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The only mod I made was adding a button and buttonhole. Not sure I like it. Maybe as winter progresses I'll change my mind!

But I do love the lace inset on the back!

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Finally, like many of my fellow sardines east coasters, at 2pm I felt my first Lower 48 earthquake.

As the building started to sway (I work on the 5th floor) was "Hmm, that's a bit disconcerting."

My second thought was that our old building was finally just collapsing. It's not like it's condemned, but it's not the nicest building.

When I finally thought "Oh, earthquake!" I grabbed my purse and keys and fled the building. Which is pretty stupid to do while the building is still shaking.

We were only evacuated for a half hour or so.

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The whole thing was a real eye opener. I learned that:

1. I need to bone up on my earthquake reactionary skills;
2. Brick/concrete buildings are scary during earthquakes; and
3. We gotta get the hell out of New Jersey, this place is SO not prepared for earthquakes.

The biggest thing I've noticed about living out here is the complacency of a lot of people.

"Oh we don't get tornadoes here!"
And then a tornado touches down in Brooklyn.
Or "We don't get earthquakes!"
And of course today's event happens.

I don't care where the Bezes eventually land, but when we do, our house will be made of flexible wood and we will have a tornado shelter/basement.

Before I leave, let me keep it light--tomorrow the new Knitcircus goes live. Fall and sweaters are right around the corner!!!



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Thursday, August 18, 2011

Bob Bob!

You know how toddlers fixate on ONE thing and ONE thing only?

It becomes an obsession with them--be it a favorite blankie or stuffed animal.

Moochie has two obsessions.

One of those happens to be his pajamas.

Last fall, when the weather was cold, and he was a little over 18 months old, we bought him a couple of pairs of long sleeved footed jammies.

He LOVES these things.

So much so that he refused to give up wearing them to bed when the temperatures started to rise in the spring/early summer and putting him to bed in too-tight footed jammies would be considered child abuse.

In a fit of frustration, and thinking I could get him to give up his tired old jammies, I cut off the legs and arms.

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No dice. He still demands to wear them. Sigh.

The second Mooch-fixation is absorbent and yellow and porous is he.

That's right, Sponge Bob Square Pants.

However to the 2 year old tongue Sponge Bob Square Pants is translated to Bob Bob!

Now as the weather is getting "cooler" I've decided to see if I can get one obsession to cancel out the other.

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Bob Bob flannel for new Moochie jammies.

Wish me luck!

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Saturday, August 13, 2011

Peter Piper

May have picked a peck of pickled peppers...

But I also finally fulfilled a craving I've had for years now.

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I finally pickled some jalapeno (and some habanero) rings.

I didn't grow these (I've got tabasco peppers in the pot garden right now) though--I picked them up at the farmers' market.

I like sticking them on nachos, or perhaps just eating them straight out of the jar!

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Wednesday, August 10, 2011

TPS Report

This is the story of my potatoes.

You'll remember in the winter, I opened my cupboard to discover the baby potatoes I had saved from my harvest last year had gone mutanty on me.

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I was a little worried because they had gone so berserker in the dark cupboard, but I planted them anyway, and soon I had my 2011 Pot Potato descendant from the 2007 grocery store potato I had planted on a whim.

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And then you'll remember about a month ago, I discovered these growing on my pot potato:

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Creepy!

But with a little research I discovered they were "potato berries" and inside they were full of true potato seeds.

I did some research on how to properly harvest true potato seeds.

Here's what I did.

I took my potato berry...

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...and cut it into quarters.

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See? Just like their cousin tomatoes--but with poison!

Next, I took my knife and scraped the seeds from the hull of the potato berry.

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I put the seed goo into a little paper dixie cup (although I imagine any small container would do).

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I added some water to the cup.

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Then I put the cup on the windowsill in my kitchen and let it sit for weeks. The premise was, that the seeds would sink to the bottom and the schmutz from the rest of the potato berry would rise to the top.

I also forgot to take a picture of what the cup looked like after a few weeks.

But after I felt everything had fermented enough, I poured off the stuff at the top of the cup carefully.

Next I poured the rest of the water on a coffee filter (although the tutorials I read online said a paper towel would work too) and I let it dry.

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You'll see some schmutz survived the pour-off, but no worries.

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After the seeds had dried, I gently scraped them off with my thumbnail and now they're stored in an envelope for the spring.

It's going to be a really interesting spring to see if I can't get these babies to sprout!

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Tuesday, August 02, 2011

Summer of Sweaters

I started the summer by finishing a sweater for Moochie.

Not to be outdone--I finished Chunky's Harry Pooper sweater on Saturday!

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I think he likes it!

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Being the trend setter that Chunky is, Mooch had to go digging thru his drawers and unearthed a sweater that Knitter Bunny gifted him when he was just a wee little Moochito!

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Shhh! Don't tell him that he's wearing it inside out.

Or that it's 95 degrees outside!

The details:

Pattern: Harry Potter Sweater by Alison Hansel

Yarn: Red Heart baby!

Needles: US 5

Notes: Ugh! This was a bor-ing sweater! I was so excited to have it done. I seamed it up, and gave it to Chunky to try on--only to find it was too short in the body! Grrr. So instead of frogging the cast on edge to knit a few more inches, I picked up the stitches at the bottom and knit a 2x2 ribbing. I think it looks a bit more polished than the rolled edge, although a ribbed edge isn't as "authentic."

The heat didn't deter him from wearing his sweater on Monday.

Because we went to Howe Caverns to hang with Grandma Great and Auntie Jaywalker.

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It was 50 degrees down there--pure HEAVEN!!!

Of course the tour guide asked him if he was wearing an Alvin and the Chipmunks sweater or a Harry Potter sweater. D'oh!

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