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I have been "blah" lately, and withdrawnish, so I haven't been posting.

That Michael Pollan books seems to fit nicely with the French Women Don't Get Fat book, which I am reading, and hoping to implement. The problem is that it seems to take so much time - learning what quality ingredients are, how to cook them, and how to savor the meal. I sometimes favor the food energy in, don't make me think about it method of eating, and this will be a big change. I'm sort of leery of it, yet fascinated.

I did 18 points of damage in one blow, as a 3rd level rogue on Saturday night. Way cool! (Crit hit, flanking sneak attack bonus)

I found the socks I'm working on for E., my baby blanket yarn (Lion Pound of Love), my missing tapestry bag that T. gave me and I have been looking for, and my nostepinne. They were all under the mending. I wanted to start doing some of my enormous pile of mending last Sunday, but was overwhelmed, so I embroidered instead.

I started a pi shawl on Saturday night, because I had not found the above yet, and I needed something brainless to knit during the game. In the Knitter's Almanac, the first lace pattern for the pi shawl, the decreases do not lean in the directions I want, and it took me a while to figure that out.

I am also reknitting the shrug collar, think I need to retoe some socks at a shorter foot length, and have decided to frog my first pair of socks, since I like the yarn a lot, but do not wear them because they are kneehighs, and do not stay up.

Major organizing project: ravelry: is going okay. I need to upload pictures, and sort out my groups, and I should be done.

This is a pretty good Austen fanfic recommended by someone at ML.

I had a problem with an Amazon.com order, and I talked to their customer service, which was a pleasant experience!

Ice Boom

Jan. 8th, 2008 09:02 pm
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There is a Niagara Ice Boom camera, which updates every 5 minutes, here:
http://www.iceboom.nypa.gov/include.htm

There is a pdf about the ice boom itself here.

This post brought to you by Da's question on Sunday.
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From the Renaissance Festival at Sterling:

http://renboots.com
http://www.redwolfandrose.com/ - Silly pins.

And for my ghoti friend:
Earth Shoes
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A friend wants to dress up steampunk later this year.

I said I'd help, as much as I can, so here are some helpful (I hope) links.

First, I'm not horribly clear on exactly what steampunk is. I am operating on the assumption that Victorian era clothing (1850-1901 ish) is what is needed. So:

The Greater Bay Area Costumers Guild (GBACG) has an online pattern review, which is a great reference for specific patterns, and for thee names of pattern companies.

In the big US patternmakers, you want to look under costumes, then Civil War and Victorian.
Here are the links to the costume pages:
http://simplicity.com/index.cfm?cat=4&type=19
http://www.mccallpattern.com/list/costumes/page-1
http://www.butterick.com/list/costumes/page-1

If you want either of these two blouses I'll give you may patterns, since I'm never going to make them.

Folkwear has lots of interesting patterns. I've never made one (though I own several), so I cannot advise you how easy they are to follow. They are generally full of lots of information, including historical stuff.
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I realized I should post it, because I read it a while ago, and it was really cool. Recommendation from a comments thread on Making Light, which is an awesome blog.

Resurrecting Mary

What happens with Mary, Lizzy Bennett's older sister....
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So I was in SF last fall:

This store in Japantown is really cool, and the proprietor (Kotaro Sugimoto) will burn the sticks for you to sell. He gets it sent over from Japan. He maintains a webshop here. I'll be ordering when I've burnt all the incense I already have.

R. loved Cocoabella Chocolates.

I must have liked this shop, because I took their card.

There was also an awesome shop on Grant Street, which had Kyrghyz clothing and stuff, and I got a handmade wool felt hat and vest matching set, which is nice and warm and cream and green. Alas, there is no link; its name was Kyrghyz Art Salon.
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I picked up some Japanese incense at the local supermarket and boy is it good stuff. The first of the links given here is the company which makes the incense I'm burning now.

http://www.shoyeido.com/
http://www.baieido.co.jp/english/index.html
http://www.nipponkodo.com/
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So I'm reloading my Mac, and these are the softwares I've had to go looking for to re-install:

Word processor, spreadsheet, and presentation software: NeoOffice
It uses the Open Office file formats and all, but is tweaked for use on a Mac.

Clock: TimeDisc
Puts an analog clockface in your header bar, on your desktop, or in your menu bar, or whatever combination you want. It allows you to change the size and transparency of the desktop face, and the colors of all three. I make the colors match my desktop wallpaper.

Timer: Minuteur
(I think this may be the original Minuteur site: Minuteur. C'est Fran├žais.) More on Minuteur here.
hun really likes it, and I can't find my other time app, the one that I used to use...
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So, the knitting group met today, and Katie was kind enough to share some of her links with us.

This appears to be a bookmark list for a variety of crafts.
Costume stuff here! Another list of booksmarks.
This is a collection of "misfit patterns"; they appear to publish anything. Including a squid.
Jessica Tromp has lots and lots of patterns up for knitting, crochet, and even some embroidery.

Blogs:
Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, the Yarn Harlot
Annie Modesitt
Moth Heaven includes a pattern for ARRRgyle socks. And apparently, argyle socks are hard to find current patterns for, so she includes some.

Thanks Katie!

Experience

Jul. 26th, 2006 11:09 pm
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So, how do you know if you are a beginner, and intermediate, or an advanced knitter or crocheter? You look at the Craft Yarn Council!

There's a lot of other fun stuff at that link, including sizing standards, and yarn weight standards and recommended needle sizes.

Knitty offers suggestions on how to increase your level of difficulty in a reasonable fashion, and also commentary on/for those of us who jump into things with both feet!

And if you're looking for a really good beginner's knitting or crochet book, may I recommend Knitting in Plain English and Crocheting in Plain English both by Maggie Righetti.
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So, now that I have my life pretty much organized into a 1/2" binder, I want something smaller. Something I can throw into a bag, maybe even into a pocket... how's about a Hipster PDA?

While at Target last night, I found an inexpensive 3X5 index card holder, which should hold up 100 or more index cards. It's purple, though I suspect it will eventually be duct tape colored. And my Fisher Space Pen fits nicely into it.

I'm currently deciding what gets moved to this thing. I have my six categories I file my life under, and there are 5 tabs that come with the folder, so that works. Then I'll need a calendar for this week, a calendar for next week, a calendar that runs a month at a time, and a phone book would be nice.

There might be some way to transfer what I have in OpenOffice files over.

One site listed below shows how to move information out of iCal into the HipsterPDA. This might be nice because then I have a backing-up-automatically electronic calendar, and the paper one to refer to when away from my computer.

So far, these are the Hipster links:

Original hipster with links to other hipster stuff on the rest of the site: http://www.43folders.com/2004/09/03/introducing-the-hipster-pda/

43 folders wiki, and article on the hipster: http://wiki.43folders.com/index.php/Hipster_PDA

Wikipedia article, with other external links, including some to preformatted pages: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hipster_PDA

D.I.Y. planner preformatted sheets; most awesome! and also the Open Office files to make your own: http://www.diyplanner.com/templates/official/hpda

The iCal to hipster info: http://www.leancrew.com/all-this/2005/09/ical_to_hpda_printing.html

Pocketmod, not a hipster, but cool anyway: http://pocketmod.com/
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Tatting is a form of knotted lace that dates back at least 100 to 150 years. It can be done with a needle or a shuttle.

This site has excellent directions on how to tat with a shuttle; they are probably the best I've ever seen.

This site has videos.

Some good places I've bought from are Lacis, Handy Hands, and DS9Designs.

Most of the following links are Celtic Tatting.
http://home.netcom.com/~ntrop/mimi/biblio.html
http://www.geocities.com/Heartland/5082/index.html
http://rozellalinden.com/
http://www.angelfire.com/home/avital/tatting3.html
http://www.snowgoose.cc/friv/
http://www.bellaonline.com/subjects/3737.asp
http://groups.msn.com/OurTattingLinks/celtictatting.msnw
http://www.georgiaseitz.com/celtic/celticvote.html
http://home.comcast.net/~elizabeths-lace/
http://www.paradisetreasures.com/index.html

If you google tatting or free tatting pattern you will get a lot of hits. Many tatters are very generous, and share their patterns on the web.

I don't tat very much, or very well, but I'd like to get better. Maybe I'll bring some along on my November trip; at least I won't have to argue about whether or not needles are allowed on the plane.
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This post is subject to revision!

Probably the best place to explore tea is your local Chinese/Asian/Oriental grocery. They'll have a bunch of different stuff, cheap, and you can try out a lot of things. Look at the packaging for words like "Oolong" "Green" "Black"

Pu-erh is a very nice, mossy tasting form of black from one particular province in China.
Genmai-cha is Japanese for green tea with roasted rice.
Sencha is Japanese, and indicates a decent quality green tea.
Bancha is Japanese, and indicates a slightly less good form of green tea. Often poured over rice as a meal in Japan, I believe?
Matcha is the expensive powdered green tea that is used in the tea ceremony.

Yamamotoyama is a good brand.

Here are a bunch of links to different tea companies:

Adagio Really nice Pu-erh, and cute tins!
Stash Good teas, can be expensive. Yamamotoyama 1690 varieties from Japan.
Republic of Tea I think somewhat overpriced, but still nice teas.
Bigelow I love their oolong. Nice stuff, reasonable prices, available in grocery stores.
Twinings Also nice stuff, reasonable prices, available in grocery stores.
Eastern Shore Also nice stuff, reasonable prices, available in grocery stores.
Celestial Seasonings Overrated, I think. I miss their Emerald Gardens tea.
Red Rose Now you know where my name comes from. I love this tea and collect the porcelain animals that come in it.

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